When it comes to issues of how to be more successful n life, how to be more productive, achieve more etc. it’s inevitable that people cast around for every possible little factor that might make a difference. Recently, one that’s received lots of focus is sleep – from the perspective of simple quantity, quality and patterns.
One argument has been that if we replicate the sleeping habits of the rich and famous/ successful, then we too can have a better chance of achieving more. With this perspective, here’s a fun and interesting article that unearths lots of interesting things about the sleep patterns of successful people, both now and in the past:
If we can draw any firm conclusions they are;
a) In terms of basic amount of sleep, successful and ‘normal’ people really aren’t vry different. Therefore, if sleep plays a part, it’s likely to relate to aspects other than the simple length of time spent sleeping.
b) In another article i read recently, there was discussion of the quality of bed and sleeping environment. Considering how much time we spend sleeping, this is something that few people pay attention to. Nevertheless, I can’t help suspecting that successful people can afford better beds and mattresses (or choose to spend more money on them), as well as maintaining a clean, healthy and positive sleeping environment.
c) Provided a person is getting around the right amount (for them), in line broadly with the figures in the article, much then depends on how we use the time before going to sleep and after getting up. My guess is that these factors have a far greater effect on productivity and effectiveness. Things like, planning for the next day and shutting down electronic devices before going to bed, healthy breakfast, exercise and prioritising in the morning.
d) There is no simple ‘magic bullet’ to fame, success and living our most effective and productive life. Instead of going looking for one, I think good reflective perspectives on what works most effectively for us and then the discipline to do more of those things is a far better route to take.