Randi Zuckerberg explained the challenges of maintaining a work/life balance in her tweet:
The entrepreneur's dilemma:— Randi Zuckerberg (@randizuckerberg) December 9, 2011
Maintaining friendships. Building a great company. Spending time w/family. Staying fit. Getting sleep.
Now, this is not just an entrepreneur’s dilemma. All of us go through this every day, and a lot of us choose to sacrifice sleep. Bad idea!
I have not been sleeping much these past few weeks, and I noticed that though I spend more hours at work, I am not as efficient as my well-rested self. And then I stumbled on a podcast episode called The Economics of Sleep by Freakonomics. It opened my eyes and helped me realise that I should get more shut-eye. The podcast talks about how the lack of sleep affects cognitive reasoning and how it is a potential health hazard. Based on a survey of 7,400 individuals, Harvard University says that sleep deprivation costs companies (in the US) around ₹1,57,620 per employee each year.
Here’s an overview of the estimated cost of sleep deprivation around the globe.
And its not just about money. Lack of sleep affects your immune system and makes you prone to getting sick more often. Research shows that people who get less than 7 hours of sleep are more susceptible to catching a common cold. Less sleep also leads to high blood pressure, increased risk of obesity & diabetes, and neurocognitive disorders. Moreover, sleep deprivation affects your mood, your judgment, and your ability to focus.
So sleep is a big deal. But why do we take it so lightly?
“Burning the midnight oil.” That’s why! We’ve been told that someone who sleeps less, works harder and thus, is more likely to succeed. Yes, they work harder. That’s because their brains stop functioning at optimal efficiency after a point! We have to move away from this Industrial Age thinking and look at sleep as mandatory, not optional.
When confronted with the “entrepreneur’s dilemma”, most of us just choose the easy way out and ‘pick 3’ – sleep and/or fitness are the first casualties. According to Dailyhunt, the average Indian sleeps for just 6.5 hours a night and 46% of Indians get less than 6 hours of sleep a night. If you are one of these, you should reconsider your lifestyle.
And if what I’ve said so far isn’t motivation enough, here are the benefits of sleeping 8 hours every day.
- Stress-free life
- Prevents depression
- Faster healing
- Boosts memory
- Lowers inflammation
Now, if you are someone who has trouble falling asleep, here are some tips that will help you.
And that’s it! Hope this post has inspired you to get more sleep and live a healthy life.