Leatherbeds Arena bring it straight from the horse’s mouth for all would-be entrepreneurs on how to get optimal sleep, which is much likely to be disrupted when you are engaged in entrepreneurial activities. We asked these 36 successful entrepreneurs to give the best sleeping tip for upcoming entrepreneurs and here’s what they had to say!
This may sound counter to relaxing sleep, but I sometimes think about a business issue right before bed. While I am sleeping, my subconscious mind will be solving the problem or coming up with a new idea. Sometimes I fly out of the bed in the morning with awesome ideas. In fact, they’re sometimes so I awesome and simple, I can’t believe I haven’t thought of them before. But I needed to let my mind relax and my subconscious go to work. I wouldn’t recommend this if you’re the type who tosses and turns when thinking about business. But if you can manage it, this is a terrific creativity technique… to let your mind go to work while you sleep.
Nyquil (or Zzzzquil). Works like a charm for me if I’m ever having trouble getting to sleep.
Get used to sleeping about 25-40% less than you did when you weren’t an entrepreneur!
Make sure you invest in a good mattress. You roughly spend 1/3 of your life sleeping, so don’t try to save money when it comes to buying a mattress.
I didn’t invent this, but I read that you shouldn’t look at a computer screen or phone screen before bed. And when I stopped doing that, I started to sleep better.
Find what works with you – everybody is different. I find most people need 7-8 hours of sleep minimum.
My best tip is to get yourself away from all electronic devices at least an hour before you go to bed. No reading your tablet or smart phone in bed! It’s so important to have downtime and unplug. You will sleep better and it’s important to shut your brain off. I meditate in bed for about 15 minutes. This helps me to clear my head and relax and wake up the next morning ready to go with my work day.
If you want to set an alarm to get up in the morning, buy an alarm clock. Never bring your phone, pc or tablet into your bedroom. You want to empty your mind as much as possible when going to bed.
Get a lot of it. You’re making big decisions and dealing with a lot of stress. I didn’t realize how important sleep was until I became an entrepreneur. Don’t take it for granted.
Easy. Make so much money in your early ventures that you don’t have to continue to hustle later on… so maybe you can sleep. Exercise – I’ve heard – can help you sleep better.
Get rest. You might be able to burn the midnight oil for a while, but it will take a toll on your health, both mentally and physically.
Working many hours without an effective rest/sleep/nap will make you be more ineffective with work, like thinking slower, without creativity, and creating simple errors.
Clear your mind. I usually can’t stop thinking about work until I spend 5-10 minutes preparing for the next day. That way, I mentally know what kind of work lies the day ahead and can let go of other work related thoughts. I also listen to audio books and stretch for a few minutes.
Don’t work too close to your bedtime. Gets too hard to disengage and get a good night sleep.
Take an “Amish hour” before bed – no screens (laptop, TV, iPad, smartphones etc..). Instead, read a book, workout, play an instrument. It really helps me shut off my brain and relax before bed. And, I usually sleep WAY better too.
It’s really easy to start skipping sleep, especially when you are in start-up mode. Try not to – you just get grumpy and irritable. Your best bet? Turn off the TV and computer at least 2 hours before you want to be asleep. The artificial light from TVs and computers can be damaging to your sleep cycle.
Don’t look at email before bed. Read a great piece of fiction instead, because transporting yourself to another world often gives you a fresher perspective on your own.
Use blackout curtains and don’t look at your phone for extended periods within an hour of going to sleep. I also definitely sleep better when working out at night.
If you exercise 1.5 to 2 hours a day, it makes it easier to go to sleep quicker, because you are more worn out. If you sit at the computer all day and don’t exercise, it is sort of easy to stay up longer in a state, which is somewhere in between being fully awake and getting sleep.
Don’t believe that 6 or 7 hours is enough to get you by. If you’re looking at the long-term, you’ll be able to keep your sharpness through proper sleep, which is 8 hours and that can be a competitive advantage a long way down the road.
Make it a priority. If you are having any level of chronic sleeping problems, make the commitment to address it. The payoff in your energy levels and productivity will be fantastic.
My tip for sleep is to shut off your devices an hour before bed. Read a book instead. That usually helps.
Turn off all non-essential notifications on your mobile phone. There’s nothing worse than having your sleep interrupted by an unimportant Facebook update.
Don’t short change your sleep. It might be tempting to only get 4-5 hours of sleep a night to “get ahead”, but I find my mood and my productivity really suffer with continual sleep deprivation.
It’s easy to skimp on sleep as an entrepreneur. However, I find that I’m much more productive if I don’t get overtired. Short power naps are brilliant!
Best sleeping tip: at bedtime put on a SEO podcast. If that won’t put you to sleep, nothing will!
Keep your tech out of your sleeping environment. Make your sleep space your technology free zone.
I’d say go to bed when you feel like it. Some people have these expectations of when they should go to bed, like “I can’t go to bed before midnight” or whatever. I think that is crazy. If I’m tired, I go to bed. That can be difficult when you’re just starting a business of course, but still, I’d say that you’ll function much better with proper sleep, so definitely make sure you get enough!
My best advice is to have your sleep fall into a regular routine that ends your day and starts the day. How I start and end my day everyday is consistent. Having that structure keeps you sane. Entrepreneurs tend to work 18 hours a day. But it would be better to work fewer hours that were consistent in their time and routine.
My best tip is to be consistent in your sleeping times. I almost always go to bed between 11pm and midnight and wake up around 8pm. Then I have my morning routine (coffee, check email, read, shower), which gets my day started off right. I am right on the line between introvert and extrovert, and I find that some alone time in the morning right after I wake up makes me the most productive that day.
Get up early. I was never a morning person but forced myself to become one and now I get the most done before everyone is up and when I am fresh. Remember, to get up early, you have to go to bed early.
As for new entrepreneurs, my biggest tip would be to journal your sleep patterns for one month (naps, nighttime, weekends, weekdays… all sleep) and identify the combination that makes you feel most productive and alert. When you know you’re optimum sleep patterns, you can then build your schedule and habits around supporting this sleep pattern, improving your performance, health and mental clarity in the process.
Keep a regular sleeping schedule and try to get enough sleep. The more rested you are, the more productive you’ll be and more importantly, the quality of your work will be higher. At least, that’s my experience.
In my opinion, there’s no such thing as a successful 9-5 entrepreneur. You work when you need to, and if you have a family, you work around them. I’d love to sleep in, but those early morning hours when everyone is still asleep are often the key to me having a productive day. I do have one sleeping tip. Sometimes after dinner, if we are having a movie night, and the kids want to watch “Frozen” for the 800th time, I might sneak in a nap