Productivity: Is the Solution LESS Sleep?

Productivity: Is the Solution LESS Sleep?

woman in grey suit taking nap on glass desk with white text reading "is the solution more sleep"

You’re busy.

You’re being pulled in every direction.

You’re constantly wrestling with what to do now vs what to put off until later.

You add more items to your “To Do” list than you remove.

Your days are spent working feverishly, not to move forward, but rather to avoid moving backward.

And somehow no matter how hard to try to make it happen, there never seems to be enough time in the day to do everything you would like to do.

There is a simple solution.

Sleep less.

For the past year I have been challenging my clients to make one small change to their daily routine – get up one hour earlier.

For many, their initial response was to completely reject the suggestion, but after some thought and discussion, several of my clients accepted the challenge and committed (not without trepidation) to do so for 100 consecutive days.

The Sleep Myth

We have long been told of the benefits, and indeed necessity, of eight hours sleep each night. Anything less, we have been warned, can contribute to health challenges, sluggish performance and overall reduction in quality of life.

We have been told we are a sleep deprived society and that much of what ails us could be eased with a little extra sleep each night.

So how have my clients fared?

With very few exceptions, they have reported extremely positive benefits from being awake, conscious and up one extra hour each day. Many have excitedly reported how much more they are able to get done, how much extra energy they seem to have and how much better they feel about themselves having forsaken one hours sleep each night in order to have an extra hour to “live” each day.

Several have developed new health habits which include early morning runs, 5:30 AM visits to the gym and biking to and from work instead of driving.

Others use this extra time to do things that they have been putting off for ages. Here’s the most interesting result: none of those who stayed the course for the hundred days experienced any ill effects from sleeping slightly less than they were before.

Almost all have continued well beyond 100 days. Waking up one hour earlier is now their new normal.

Most of my clients are self-employed business owners, which means they would love to have a 60-hour work-week. That would be such a relief from the time they currently spend growing their businesses. You may be surprised to learn all of those who enthusiastically undertook this challenge of foregoing one hour of sleep, reported significant increases in their businesses.

The Benefit of Time for Productivity

There is an enormous benefit to this practice. It is the unlike-anything-else feeling of accomplishment that goes along with knowing you have achieved so much before your “regular” day begins.

And once we have realized that we have done something we did not think we could do, we begin looking for other ways to push ourselves further, harder and higher.

Imagine what you could do with an extra hour each day?

Till we read again.

Photo of Rael Kalley,Habits coach in calgary canada

About the author

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