It’s just like drinking

One of the things I often hear from the team leaders I work with is this:

“I work too much. When I come home, I have dinner with my family. Then, I log back in and work from 9 pm to midnight just so I can finish the work I didn’t have time to finish. And I also end up giving up my time for sleeping. I feel exhausted from all this.”

Charles Czeisler, a professor of Sleep Medicine at Harvard, explained the impact of depriving yourself of sleep on your performance. He likened sleep deficit to drinking too much alcohol, saying:

“It’s funny how we’ve created a culture where we are so prone to say, ‘Well done!’ to people who work harder and harder. We wouldn’t ever say to someone, ‘Well done for drinking too much!’ But why do we say, ‘Amazing! He’s been working late and long hours and he’s done an all-nighter!’? This is just absurd!”

Bonjour. In this video, I want to talk about something that can have a big impact on your day.

I want to give you two pieces of advice on this one:

#1. Have clear boundaries.

A key thing here is to get clear on the time that you need to be in bed.

For me, it’s 9:30. And I know my friend in Spain probably thinks I’m crazy because 9:30 is my sleeping time while it’s still dinnertime for them! Now, it doesn’t mean you’ll always find me in bed by 9:30 – I don’t do that every evening. But that is the case for most evenings because that’s the boundary I’ve set for my bedtime.

You may choose an earlier time or even later – it’s up to you. After all, everyone is different.

#2. Have a simple evening routine.

My evening routine is that when I go to bed, I do a review of my day and think about what I’ve accomplished. I also write down three things I’m grateful for in my gratitude journal. And I also read for pleasure – a novel, a book, just something I can enjoy. Then, I fall asleep.

The next day, I feel refreshed, rejuvenated, and full of energy – after all, I got my seven to eight hours of sleep.  

So, let me ask you this question:

What is the right time for you to go to bed every evening?

This is this week’s Work Smarter, Live Better tip. I hope you enjoyed it.  

A bientôt,

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