Creative Leadership

Get Some Sleep!

The research is in, and you need it...

Back in the 80’s and 90’s we thought it was cool to pull all nighters working on projects.  I remember staying up many nights working in the editing room until sunrise to get a TV program out the door.  Being the company workaholic was a badge of honor.  After all (we thought) the people that really make their mark are the ones who bring their laptops to bed, email during sex, and work all the time.

But boy were we wrong.  Recent research on expert performance at Florida State University tells a completely different story.  They discovered that great performers do indeed work hard, but they’re also the ones that get the most sleep.  People who cut back on sleep thinking they’ll be more productive are the losers in the study.

Research has already shown that multi-tasking is bunk.  It’s impossible for the human mind to perform well when it’s juggling multiple tasks, so if you want to be excellent, you need to focus.  Thanks to this research, another myth is being put to pasture.

However you do it – sleeping early, late, or napping – just do it.

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  1. Take a look at this study of students’ sleep:

    Tease quote:

    The performance gap caused by an hour’s difference in sleep was bigger than the normal gap between a fourth-grader and a sixth-grader. Which is another way of saying that a slightly sleepy sixth-grader will perform in class like a mere fourth-grader. “A loss of one hour of sleep is equivalent to [the loss of] two years of cognitive maturation and development.”

  2. I could done without the “email during sex” remark. …But other than that — this is a good reminder to embrace balance before we loose things that are more important than our work.

  3. And on the seventh day, God rested. And here is the interesting thing: He rests IN us! When we have a broken and contrite spirit, His Spirit rests IN us! That’s how, “Behold, I come quickly” happens, faster than a post on Facebook. And the third testament, is the book of you in whom God is now! Ever seen God’s light shining out of another person’s face? That’s a REAL good face book! Sleep on that! And oh yes, God can’t indwell the “too-busy-for-Him!” So, rest is good!

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