Arianna Huffington made some dramatic changes to her lifestyle the day after a sudden collapse from fatigue left her face-down in a pool of her own blood with a fractured cheekbone.
The experience was a wake-up call that ultimately led to Arianna hacking her own personal system to maintain her status as a successful executive and still get the proper amount of sleep.
In her book, The Sleep Revolution, as well as in this exclusive video, Arianna mentions several reasons, backed by science and rooted in fact, about why we (all) probably need more sleep.
Here are some of the highlights and my personal take-aways from this episode of Behind the Brand.
1. Stop believing the cultural delusion that we must sacrifice sleep to succeed.
I hear things like “I’ll sleep when I’m dead...” or people talking about missing sleep like it’s a badge of honor. I used to be this way too. It turns out sleep is not negotiable. Like water, food and air -- we need it. Everyday.
There’s nothing wrong with hustling your face off, but there’s hard science that supports the fact that you become less effective without proper sleep. In fact, 99 percent of (all) people need seven to nine hours of sleep per night. Children and teenagers need even more...
2. Sleep is the world’s ultimate performance enhancer.
More sleep will undoubtably result in better performance at work. You’ll be less grumpy and more aware. You might be more creative or be better suited to solve problems. You might experience having a better memory. Enjoy better health and well-being. Have a better sex life. Live longer and much more. This is a no-brainer. Make time for sleep and even take naps when necessary.
The Huffington Post offices have dedicated places for naps, and Arianna predicts that this will become a trend in offices all over the world in the near future.
3. Mastering sleep means taking (back) control of your life.
To be honest, I’m still working on this one. I have a morning routine, but I struggle with getting a consistent night’s sleep. I’m creative and always thinking about stuff. My mind races when I lay my head on my pillow, and it often takes me a while to fall asleep.
Arianna told me that she has a routine before bed that involves taking a hot bath and putting on her pink pajamas, which signals to her brain it’s time for sleep. Additionally, she meditates and thinks of a peaceful place and let’s her thoughts go there to rest.
She also has a strict rule about not having TV, mobile phone or any tech with blue lights in her room. This blue light tricks your brain into thinking it’s daytime, and your body doesn’t produce the hormones that naturally help you become sleepy and fall asleep.
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