Getting to sleep an hour earlier can make a major difference in your career and your life overall.
There are 2 major potential payoffs for hitting the hay early…
Payoff One: Get an Extra Hour of Sleep
As I discussed in an earlier post, “Are Your Sleep Habits Hurting Your Career?” you need the proper amount of shuteye in order to function efficiently and to keep your body and mind healthy. If you are one of the many people who chronically get too little sleep, this single change can make a big difference in your life:
You’ll feel better and have more energy for your work and to fulfill your worldly responsibilities, and you’ll feel better and have more energy for playtime. You’ll also think much more clearly and you’ll write faster with higher quality. And you’ll be happier doing it.
Payoff Two: Get an Extra Hour of Time
If you generally get enough sleep, you can do what I do: get up an hour earlier. I typically rise between 5:30 and 6:00 and quickly get to work on my highest priority task for the day. In effect, I get an extra hour to do what I want, be it work, exercise, socializing, or play. Frequently I take the early hour and either read or go outside to watch the sunrise, or, in winter, to see the predawn stars.
Getting up early particularly pays off in winter. I get as much work done as possible by lunchtime so I can take a long walk in early to mid-afternoon, hopefully with some sun on my face; spending time outside in winter helps maintain good mental health, which can deteriorate for many people during winter’s short days.
How to Get to Bed an Hour Earlier?
You can likely cut something out of your evening that does not bring you closer to any of your important goals. For most people this means watching an hour less of television.
Examine everything you do in the evening. What do you do that is of little or no value to your life, or does not significantly add to your happiness? Stop doing it and go to bed.
Important: If you live with a spouse or significant other, discuss why you want to go to bed earlier and enlist his or her support for the plan.
And a caveat: some people are major night owls and they are just fine going to bed at 3 a.m., thank you.
Are you happy with when you go to bed and when you get up? Or could you benefit from going to sleep an hour earlier? Tell us below!