The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that Americans are in the middle of a sleep loss epidemic. And if you’re on the “success” track, you’re probably one of the sleepless.
Thankfully, the success model that promoted 5-hours sleep a night, long hours at the gym and ignoring our social life is now passe. The new more evolved definition of success includes keeping the important areas of our life humming at all times, and topping the list of what’s important is our health. We’ve learned from all those burnouts that success and health are interconnected. We’ve wised up to the fact that this living our best life business isn’t something we enjoy after we carve out time. We don’t enjoy it after we make the big bucks and can afford fabulous vacations and a housekeeper.
We now know that if we let the important and most basic areas of our life suffer, we risk being able to enjoy the success we work so hard for.
Our most basic needs
One of our most basic needs is sleep. It’s the rare person who can function at their best on little sleep. Most likely, you’re not one of them.
In the Doer’s Lifestyle, I talk about the importance of knowing who you and want to be, then learning habits and routines to best help you get it. There is irrefutable science pointing to exercise, nutrition, and sleep as part of our most basic needs. These are basic physiological needs that affect every single area of our lives. When we’re not getting enough, our relationships, career and money, health and personal development are all at risk. And not tomorrow, today.
The effects of too little sleep
The new science about the brain tells us that we reshape our brain with our habits, both the good and bad habits. The science points to sleep deprivation as being one of the most damaging lifestyle habits.
When we are tried, we have poor self-control. Poor self-control means less control over cravings and other impulses. We’re more susceptible to anger and our decision-making abilities are not as sharp as when we’re rested. We’re not as focused at work and don’t have the best ideas or follow through.
Run your day better and smarter
Some of the busiest people find a way to make their 24 hours work better for them, and so can you. In the Doer’s Program, we help members personalize strategies to run their day better. We’ll chat on social media and have weekly group calls to go over creative ways to better manage time. We’ll start with questions like the ones below and provide solutions, strategies, and opportunities to implement the ideas. A little coaching and support go a long way.
Until you can join us, try coaching yourself and find ways to run your life better with these starter suggestions:
- Consider time-saving services like food delivery services and food prep.
- Use healthy multitasking to get more done in less time (read while you’re working out).
- Identify your most productive time of the day.
- Get meticulously organized. It can save you as much as a couple hours a week, and it lower stress.
- Have a work “uniform” to make getting dressed quicker.
- Get help wherever you can.
- Cut unnecessary stuff out of your life to make room for the important stuff.
- If you can, work an hour longer Monday to Friday so you can leave work 4 hours early on Fridays.
- Practice task stacking and other productivity habits.
- Create time-saving and stress-busting routines like morning routines.
Do deeper work
- Work to eliminate minor distractions so you can focus on work when you need to, and on life and play when that’s where you need to be.
- Work on those fears that are keeping you up at night. Money and social connections are two of the most insidious because while you’re getting by with a little, not having enough is constantly playing in the background causing you stress.
Let’s try to work on these issues and not ignore them so you can sleep better and run your life smarter. And let’s make sleep a priority and a non-negotiable habit.
Christine is a lifestyle coach living in Los Angeles. She believes the way we live predicts our future health and motivation. Email email@example.com to find out about working with Christine.