Sleep Your Way to Success


No, not like that. This isn’t an episode of Mad Men. I’m talking about actual sleep.

There’s a great article by Tony Schwartz over at the Harvard Business Review on the subject. According to him, even mild sleep deprivation can be detrimental to your productivity. During a study, they put people in rooms without clocks, and let them sleep whenever they were tired. 97.5% of those observed got at least 7 hours of sleep per 24 hours. That magic 8 hours seems to hold up as the amount a normal body needs in order to be ready for the day.

I’m not a good role model here. I average 5-6 hours during the week, and maybe 6-7 on the weekend. If I wake up and realize I slept for more than 7 hours, I usually feel guilty about wasting all that time. Do any of you feel that way?

After reading this, I can imagine that I’m not working at 100% by keeping up this schedule. I don’t see any way of changing it any time soon, but it’s a nice goal.

What about you? Do you get your 8 hours every day? Do you notice a decrease in productivity when you don’t?

Sleep is More Important than Food – Harvard Business Review