It’s time to transform your sleep life. I remember those blurry, busy, bootstrapped two years in my 20’s. The ones I proudly talked about for years following. Years when sleep became the lamb I sacrificed in the name of productivity. The days I spent fueled by caffeine and high endurance workouts, desperate for the boost. I was desperate for clarity and patience. My patience was gone, my head was fuzzy 90% of the time, and my personality totally transformed. I became edgy, irritated and intense. The irony is that those around me loved it. I was celebrated and admired by many of my peers. How could I sustain it all when I was bloody exhausted? Why did people enjoy feeling this way? It’s odd that our culture so often celebrates such a shallow state of being.
TIME FOR A SLEEP TRANSFORMATION
I finally had enough, and actually transformed my sleep life. After months of sleeping all the time, people liked me more. I was kind. Most people even teased me for being so outrageous before. How had I let that happen? We live in a world that celebrates depriving our bodies and souls of nightly recharging, yet nobody enjoys it. Statistically it’s a misconception that we are more productive. Delaying sleep in the name of effectiveness is a dangerous delusion, so why do we ignore the facts?
For me, it was easy to ignore facts because I wasn’t paying attention. I was consumed by my need to get more done, and I had no boundaries. There was more media at my fingertips than ever before which was a total energy vampire. I wasn’t choosing my priorities or where my time went, so the world chose for me. The sleeplessness made my mind messy and my life chaotic. According to the American Sleep Association, 100,000 deaths occur each year in US hospitals due to medical errors and sleep deprivation.
“Sleep is the most under-appreciated health crisis in America,” states Dr Oz.
The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life, One Night at a Time.
by Arianna Huffington
In her recent book, Arianna Huffington does a brilliant job of explaining the pathology of what has happened in our culture to bring us to such a volatile state. She backs her war on sleep deprivation with a mound of science and data. She will shock and enlighten you. Then, she will help you fall back in love with sleep. Sleep is the sexy lover that always gives and never takes. It’s healing, refreshing, and vital to our well-being. Let’s be fierce on this topic. As an entrepreneur, you are your greatest asset. Take care of it.
My favorite part of the book was her manifesto which I keep in my planner and review when I feel drained. Below are a few of my favorites.
- Sleep is a fundamental and non-negotiable human need. Interestingly, we love to tell people about our all-nighters. We laugh at how we could hardly function the next day. I constantly brag about how hard I pushed myself in a workout, yet why don’t I relish in my good night sleep? Why aren’t we proud to say, “I usually only sleep for 8 hours, but last night I went for 10 and it was magical”?
- Exhaustion is a sign of chaos, not a badge of honor. I had a business associate in the past that used to say, “You can sleep when you’re dead.” The irony of that statement is that lack of sleep leads to so many health challenges that do eventually lead to death. Why not sleep so we can think straight and truly live. I don’t know about you, but I have never sent or received a text or email in the middle of the night that was anything short of regrettable.
- The bedroom is for sleep (and other wonderful things), not for work. We read Goodnight Moon to our children, and it’s time to start singing Goodnight Cell-Phone before bedtime. The hour before bed is reserved for things I love and time with my husband, my family and myself. If you have children, check out this bed charging station. It’s a powerful visual of recharging for the night. Can you imagine having hundreds of people in your room every night as you were getting ready to sleep? That’s exactly what you do when you sleep with your phone or your television on.
- Great pajamas are a great investment. Sleep is so wonderful and powerful, why not dress accordingly. I spent years wearing rags and old tee-shirts to bed. In college, I wore those rags to class too. I love to have clothes that I only wear to bed. It helps trigger my mind that it’s time to wind down.
It’s a new year, so choose to make sleep a priority and see the difference it can make for you. Who is ready? Let’s transform your sleep life.
Annalee Sirmeyer was marinated in Texas and cooked in Florida. She is a wife to Patrick and mom to two toddlers and two dogs. This basically qualifies her as a hostage negotiator. She is a connoisseur of excellent books, podcasts and TED talks. Anna is a graduate of Stetson University in Florida. She works as the Moxie of Marketing and Media at Luxus+ where she is lead evangelist of all things challenging, adventurous, and brand related.