A Good Night’s Sleep is the Secret to Success

May 10, 2019 | Law and business The Iowa Clinic Executive Health Department, 515-875-9855, iowaclinic.com/executive-health

Glowing profiles of entrepreneurs and CEOs often cite the sleep — or lack thereof — that top business leaders get each night. But sleep deprivation is not a reason to applaud; it’s a cause for concern.

Sleeping less than six hours a night increases your risk of early death by 12%. The extra waking hours make it feel like you can accomplish more, but they’re not as productive as you might think.

Poor sleep habits impair your performance.

A lack of quality sleep makes you less alert. You can’t process information as quickly or accurately. Your sleep-deprived state is comparable to someone who is legally drunk. Overall, you’re less effective and efficient at the office.

Sleep deprivation also puts you at greater risk of heart disease, obesity, Alzheimer’s disease, depression, diabetes, fatigue, memory loss and car accidents. Your health can become a liability to your career and your company.

Practice good sleep hygiene to boost your productivity.

A well-rested executive is a more productive executive. Even though you’re spending more hours in bed, you can do more quality work in less time. To restore your sleep and your productivity, follow these healthy habits for a good night’s rest:

  • Maintain a consistent sleep schedule. Go to bed and wake up around the same time every day.
  • Relax before bedtime. Spend 30 minutes or more winding down to help your body and mind learn to prepare for sleep and expect it.
  • Create a better sleep environment. Reduce the light, noise and temperature in your bedroom. Your body sleeps better when it’s cooler and darker.

Make your waking and working hours more meaningful. Get seven to eight hours of restful sleep each night to become a more effective executive.