Home dillemas The Only Way to Win is to Sleep Your Way To The Top

The Only Way to Win is to Sleep Your Way To The Top

by Nellie

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Do you get enough sleep?

I know it don’t. I am actually not sure where it all went wrong. As a teenager you could usually find me napping after school and on the weekend sleeping in until 12 then going right back to sleep after breakfast. (Oh how I miss those days!)

Now, things have dramatically changed–now that I have a full time job, a full time blog, 2 little humans that depend on me, a husband and so much more sleep seems to take a backseat to everything else. When I talk to my girlfriends we are all in the same boat, sleep deprived but somehow still keeping it together.

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This post was inspired by the one and only Ariana Huffington’s interview this weekend at Blogher14. (You already know there is tons more to come on that!) she was interviewed by the one and only Guy Kawasaki and she talked about how important it is for her to get her rest. She gets a minimum of 8 hours sleep per night. She encouraged us to do the same, no matter how busy you are because the brain works better–all the stuff I already know but she already has an empire…I’m still hustling towards mine.

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I’m not sure why the first thing I sacrifice is sleep. There have been many nights where I decide that photo editing/emails/TV/cleaning is way more important than rest. It’s that notion of just getting something done, OFF my to do list, that is so satisfying. But how is that good for my health? Especially now that half marathon training has me up at 4:30 am twice a week.

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Ariana Huffington suggested having a transition period before bed. A good 30 minutes before your bedtime take the time to meditate, shut off all the screens and get as relaxed as possible. She also suggested a day of digital detox where you leave all the technology alone and rest.

[Tweet “”It’s a delusion that you have to burn out to succeed” [email protected] #blogher14″]

The interview made me step back and reevaluate my own sleep habits. Should I stop and really try to get more zzz or should I keep hustling to get where I need to be? Hmm.

Check out this brief TED Talk from Arianna where she chats about her aha moment, why women need more sleep plus I am kind of obsessed with her accent.


What do you think? Is a normal amount of sleep worth it in the end or YOLO no sleep at all? How many of hours sleep do you get? Do you have a transition period before bed?

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26 comments

Kristina Walters July 28, 2014 - 5:22 am

This is great Nellie! I totally get that because I know about sleep deprivation. I get to bed between 9:30-10 and get up at 3:30. To get 8 hours I would need to be in bed by 7:30 and I know that’s never going to happen. At this point I would be happy to just stay asleep all night to make the most of what little time I have to do it.

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:57 pm

wowza Kris! I still can’t get over 3:30am!! that is just amazing. I think it would be impossible for me to get into bed by 7:30 too.

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Carla July 28, 2014 - 5:24 am

Great post! I know you’ve mentioned in the past that sleep is the first thing you give up. I have read a recent study that shows that 7 hours is the best and that people who get 8 or more actually have a higher morbidity rate. I sleep what my body tells me to. I don’t use an alarm and I try to shut things down so I can sleep appropriately. I read for about half hour although meditation is a great idea. I may have to try that!

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:54 pm

I have succeeded with 7 hours so far this week! I hope to practice what I preach and put sleep first. 30 minutes of meditation sounds perfect!

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Allie July 28, 2014 - 6:11 am

Ah the elusive sleep! I try very hard to get 7 hours a night, and when I do, it makes a huge difference. However, life is what it is and sometimes the only quiet space I have to work is at night. If I had my way, I would go to be at 9 and wake-up at 4:30 and run!!! 🙂

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:52 pm

ahh yes so would I! It just seems like there is never enough sleep, catching up on the weekends doesn’t seem to work either :/

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Janine Huldie July 28, 2014 - 7:54 am

I am with you and loved sleep as a teen, but now as a mom and someone running a business from home, I truly don’t get enough, but like Allie said, it just is totally elusive here. Maybe someday, but still even with all good intentions the kids or the dog wake me, too. So, I just settle at this point (sadly) for what I can get here.

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:51 pm

aw, I totally get it Janine. Maybe with the kids in school it will be better?

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Tamara July 28, 2014 - 11:54 am

You’re all so right. Sleep is often the sacrifice. So often. I just don’t feel like I can do it all otherwise.
Big changes ahead, though. Kids in school. Time to work. Time to sleep? I hope.

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:50 pm

I hope you get some rest now that the kids are headed back!

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Kita July 28, 2014 - 1:54 pm

Sleep? When my money works for itself is when I will sleep. I try to shut down by 1 in the morning since the kids are not in school. I sleep in late and don’t get up until about 10 in the mornings. Now that kids are going back to school I plan on shutting down at 9pm every night since I have to get up at 5:30 starting soon. As long as I can get 5 hrs and a nap sometime within the day I am good

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:50 pm

1am?! dang. Are your naps long?!

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Kim July 28, 2014 - 6:29 pm

I try to be in bed by 10 since I get up at 5. My problem is that I don’t sleep that entire time – usually only about 5 hours of it – because I have serious sleep issues!!!

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:49 pm

oh man Kim! I hope it gets better soon, you have so much going on and you need your rest!

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Martine July 29, 2014 - 9:59 am

LOVE this post and it is so timely. This is a conversation I have recently been having with myself. There is so much to do and sleep is always the first thing I sacrifice. It often feels like the only thing I can sacrifice, but I have realized that I will ultimately pay a serious price for living like this and I have been making changes. Like you, I work and I have my blog, two kids, a husband, and the list goes on. It can be hard, but self-care is a must if we want to succeed. Thanks so much for sharing!

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:48 pm

Martine, thank you so much for stopping by! We have so much to balance and keep up with but we must get our rest. It has to be a priority!

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GiGi Eats July 29, 2014 - 4:18 pm

Uhhhhhhhh…. Does that mean my mid-day nap I just had is completely warranted? LOL!!!

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:42 pm

absolutely gigi!!

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Christine July 29, 2014 - 4:53 pm

Nellie! This is such a great post, thanks so much for sharing! It is hard to understand that we need those 8 hours. I’m a night owl so while I may not lay down until after 2am, I’m usually not up before 9/10am but that’s what works for me. All I know is that I am not a happy camper when I’m exhausted and the only thing that ends up happening is me falling asleep on my laptop LOL

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:41 pm

LOL I haven’t fallen asleep at the laptop but I have certainly ugly slept on the train and that is NOT cute!!

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Leslie July 29, 2014 - 10:51 pm

Sadly, I only get between 4.5 – 5.5 hours of sleep each night. It’s terrible for me, and I can often feel the effects when I’m at work. But I just don’t know how to balance it all with any more sleep. If I ever do figure it out, you can be sure I’ll want to share!

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:40 pm

PLEASE do! I can’t imagine 4.5 hours sleep girl how do you do it?!

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LaShawn July 29, 2014 - 11:27 pm

I was so inspired by her talk! I really have to get the book

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:40 pm

I got the book and I can’t wait to read!!

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Nellie August 1, 2014 - 3:47 pm

You need to rest as much as possible when you are creating a little human 🙂 You blog when you can, those babies come first always!!

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Michelle August 1, 2014 - 10:26 pm

I definitely don’t get enough sleep. I couldn’t tell you the last time I got 8 hours. It was a goal for me this year, and I’ve failed miserably. I am curious to know how many people who are small business owners, and parents of young kids, even bloggers really taking their blogging serious as a business, actually get a full night’s sleep. Something somewhere along the way has to give. I don’t think you have to burn out to succeed, but I also think it’s easier for someone who isn’t worrying about how to pay for their next grocery bill to say “make sure you get your rest.” Even if those people are in bed, I think sometimes they’re tossing and turning worrying about the next bill. Not sure what the answer is. I have a feeling you think clearer if you get more sleep though. Vicious cycle.

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