The Fantastic Life

A Two Day Series on Sleep. Day 1: Different Patterns


Sleep has been on my mind for some time.  Thirty years actually.  Today is the first of a two day series on Sleep.  For me, sleep continues to be a work in progress.  I have had mixed emotions about sleep all my adult career.  I remember getting at least 10 hours a night when I was playing professional baseball.  When I started working in real estate, I quickly figured out how I could get ahead of everyone…sleep less.  A lot less.  Over a couple years, I trained myself to live on 3-4 hours of sleep a night.  Then I did that for 25 years.  I got tons of work done, lots of great athletic events accomplished, and was able to spend time with my family.  There were/are substantial drawbacks, however, including: chronic sleep deprivation, falling asleep driving or in a meeting or even when I was hanging out with my kids, and what Mike Malone and I used to call “the edge.”  The edge is always being on the verge of blowing up at anything that wasn’t perfect.

I read all the sleep research, so I know that I am not unique. Most Americans are sleep deprived. Below are two graphs discussing sleep. The first one shows that optimum sleep seems to be around seven hours.  It also provides a well-being index showing the benefits of getting a good night’s sleep.  The second graph shows some prominent individuals and their sleep patterns.  I was right in the center of the circle for many years.

I do have one suggestion that I have used all my career that has been beneficial—napping.  Tomorrow I will break down napping.

Rule #5 from my book The Fantastic Life: Make Sacrifices
The pursuit of a Fantastic Life requires sacrifice. Taking an evaluation of the obligations in your life that impact your journey or hold you back can be one of the most helpful ways to overcome obstacles. But remember, the journey is different for everyone. While some may view sleep as nonessential, for others it is necessary to maintain a healthy balance. Define the truly important things in your life, and cut back on what can be disposed, and focus your time and energy on your pursuit.

Source: Bill Koenig, Of Interest Today


Source: Bill Koenig, Of Interest Today

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