Written By Jennifer Raskin
Burning the candle at both ends again? As any CEO or business owner will tell you, there never seems to be enough time in the day to get things done. But get it done you must, for you’ve got a company to oversee. A company that needs to be profitable.
If work isn’t keeping you up late it’s surely the worry of how to maximize your potential in today’s economy. Yet, there is one key thing you’re missing for your absolute best success – sleep!
Warren Zevon said, “I’ll sleep when I’m dead,” but that’s a mentality executives need to surrender immediately. According to the National Sleep Foundation, sleep is the time when the body begins to restore itself, mentally and physically. When you deprive your body and mind of this necessary function, you’re depleting yourself.
Making the time to get a good night’s sleep will improve your daytime functions. It could even be the big boost you need to have better ideas and better processes through your business. Who hasn’t woken up from a dream with a brilliant plan?
To get better sleep, you need to focus on developing proper sleep hygiene to bring your productivity and health full-circle.
Creating a Proper Sleep Routine
If you’re taking too long to fall asleep at night or you’re often sleepy during the day, it’s a sign your sleep hygiene needs an overhaul. The good news is that it’s quite simple to make a few changes that will help you achieve success for a better night’s sleep, and ultimately, your best health and productivity.
Start A Regular Bedtime Routine
A regular bedtime routine helps your body and brain get ready for sleep. Set an alarm on your phone to indicate that it’s time to begin your power-down process. Soak in the tub or take a shower, do a yoga sequence, and read a book. The key is to find something mellow that isn’t related to your business. Your brain needs a break.
Craft A Proper Sleeping Environment
Maybe your bedroom needs a makeover. Your mattress, pillows, and bedding should be comfortable and clean. The temperature in your bedroom should be cold enough, between 60 and 67F, according to the National Sleep Foundation. Put dimmers on your lighting to create a soft and soothing mood, and redecorate with blackout curtains that can block out shining streetlights or sunshine with ease. Other things that can help are white noise, humidifiers, and ear plugs to ensure you tune everything else out and get the sleep you need.
Limit Daytime Naps
Power naps are an ideal solution if you really had no choice but to stay up later to get your pitch ready for tomorrow. Be forewarned though that napping won’t ever replace proper nighttime sleep. If you must grab a quick nap during the day, limit it to 20 to 30 minutes or it could interfere with your real sleep cycle.
Watch What You Eat And Drink
Coffee is great for perking you up in the morning, but drinking it after 2pm can keep you from falling asleep. Even alcohol, which has the opposite effect, can disrupt your sleep cycle late at night by waking you as your body processes it. Caffeine and alcohol aren’t the only culprits though. What you eat also plays a major role. If you have a big client dinner late in the evening, choose lighter fare. Anything that’s rich and heavy, fried or fatty, or even spicy can lead to indigestion which can keep you up all night.
We make time for what’s important to us. You make time for your business, but you might continue to put your health on the backburner. Doing so will only make you less productive and less healthy (which in turn, makes you less productive). So take a few moments out of your day to exercise. Ideally, do this earlier on in your day so it doesn’t interfere with your bedtime. Exercising too late in the evening can have the opposite effect though regularly exercising can help balance the body and prime it for good sleep at night.
See The Sunshine
One of the most primitive things you can do to ensure quality sleep is to make sure you’re exposed to natural light during the day. Open the blinds and let the sun shine in. Take a quick walk outdoors and breathe in the fresh air. It’s all part of being alive and it restores your body in more ways than you can imagine. Even allowing yourself to see the night come on kicks in your body’s natural devices for maintaining your healthy sleep-wake cycle.
If you want to succeed in business, one of the best things you really can do is improve your sleep hygiene and get more rest. Getting enough sleep helps you stay focused with mental clarity and gives you the energy needed to hop from meeting to meeting, travel to clients, and tackle all your other responsibilities. Good sleep also prolongs your life. Don’t wait until it’s too late! Take control of your health and improve your business by turning out the lights on time every night.