Rest for success.
By Sean M. Lynden
Sleep: Everyone needs it, but most don't get it--until it's too late. By that time, you're beaten down by the latest virus traveling through the air, leaving you unproductive in your business and ornery at home.
"You can't ignore your sleep," warns Roger S. Smith, a sleep disorders specialist and consultant with the Stanford University Sleep Disorders Clinic in Palo Alto, California. "You need to put sleep somewhere in your strategic planning list."
But if you're wearing all the hats, working without a steady paycheck or pushing to meet deadlines, it's difficult to find the time to sleep more.
What often happens is this: The more stress you feel, the less you sleep. But the less you sleep, the more stress you feel. What can you do to break this vicious cycle?
1. Think long-term. Burning the midnight oil on occasion is fine, but if you consistently skimp on sleep, beware. You're racing on the fast track to burnout.
2. Make sleep a priority. Remember, good health and vitality--byproducts of a good sleep regimen--will give you an edge in the marketplace.
3. Determine your sleep needs. Smith advises that most people need seven to eight hours of sleep each night to perform their best.
4. Manage your time. Take care of crisis situations before they happen. This way, you cut down on the various "surprise" activities that deprive you of sleep.
5. Focus on the benefits of a good night's rest. Having the energy to accomplish tasks efficiently and the enthusiasm to go the extra mile for your clients will help you take your business to the next level.
Remember, your sleep--or lack thereof--will either positively or negatively impact your bottom line. If you don't snooze, you'll inevitably lose.