The Busy Bee Syndrome - How Proper Sleep Helps You Reduce Your Work Hours

Written by Pamela Wagner

Written by Pamela Wagner

@pamelawagnerofficial

For all those 30+ reading this article and who grew up in either Europe or North America, you probably still remember when you could either use the phone OR the internet. But, not both at the same time. Or, when you would call people, and they wouldn’t pick up. And it wasn’t an issue. The person either called you back, or it simply wasn’t that important.

Two women using telephones.

We had less information and we were absolutely happy with it.

In the past 10 years, this has completely changed. Yes, people were overworked before. But, they could also relax better.

When you got off work, you got home to your family or took care of a hobby. There was no mini laptop in your pocket that was constantly beeping and buzzing for your attention.

Or, during the day, when you were waiting for something…whether that’s in a metro, a bus, or even a car…you sometimes just looked out of the window, observed, or talked with people instead of being tied to a screen.

Living in the moment was not ‘a thing’, it was natural.

Even former VPs of Facebook have admitted that the design of the platform to have people constantly react and be engaged is, in fact, destroying society.1

A women working on their computer.

We long know that social media platforms have similar effects on our brain as cocaine or slot machines.

So, what does this all have to do with being busy or not having time? We get distracted from focusing on what really matters:

  • Getting enough sleep
  • Getting enough off-screen time
  • Reflecting on your own, without distractions
  • Taking sufficient breaks
  • Valuing your own time for what it’s worth

As a result, we lose track of time of what really keeps us ‘busy’ and never stop to analyze what are the 20% actions that bring us 80% of results in life.

Social media icons

We prioritize buying a red bull to stay up late many nights instead of getting proper sleep. Way too many people work way too late at night on tasks that don’t actually matter. Just to get way too little sleep and due to lack of rest not being able to be productive the next day. Lack of sleep makes us 50% less productive. So, all the hours you work longer, thinking you ‘get things done’ could be cut in half with proper sleep. We lose sight of the fact that lack of sleep decreases our attention span, focus, and lets (mostly men) age by a decade and be more susceptible to Alzheimer’s disease later.

We prioritize going yet to another meeting and another meeting because we think it carries fruits for the future. In reality, Dr. Cialdini has long proven to us how the scarcity principle works: people don’t value your time when you’re always available. They value what’s scarce and rare, or unique.

We stay so busy doing, doing, doing, that we wonder at the end of the year where the 12 months went, and how few experiences we actually remember. And none of those were the times we spent in front of our screen (except when you’re a gamer, kudos to you!).

While we surely suffer from information overflow, at the core of all this lies a failure to prioritize and lack of self awareness.

Lifestyle change sign

See, our mind needs breaks. Just like muscles, which regenerate and grow when you’re not working out. And, a big part of that break is proper sleep as it is the major restorative phase for our body and mind. It helps us solve problems, relax, and regain energy.

If everything else feels like an impossible task to reduce in your work, then just focus on going to sleep at a certain time, so you have enough time to rest properly.

For example, I’m a big believer in the importance of getting 2-3 hours of sleep before midnight. Whenever I go to sleep past midnight, the quality of my sleep decreases, I will never have had enough sleep, and I feel grumpy and groggy because I’m tired. As a result, I’m usually in bed sometime between 9-9:30pm. And, there is fairly little that I let intervene with that. I leave get-togethers at the respective time, I shut down my phone, and make sure that I’m in an environment where it’s noise-free and silent and dark at night. Of course, sometimes, I go out, I party, I make exceptions. But, 99% of the time, I’m in bed at a (for me) ‘decent’ hour because I know the huge advantage it will give me the next day.

A women sleeping

So, to conclude, ask yourself these 3 questions: 

  • What exactly is preventing me from getting proper sleep?
  • Why do I keep engaging in this activity? 
  • How can I change the structure of the 2-3h prior to going to sleep, so that I actually fall into bed earlier? 
  • Bonus q: is it possible to go to bed 30min earlier every day? If so, what do I need to do to ensure that I stick to this new routing? 

Let us know the one thing you will do differently in the comments. We’d love to hear from you!

Sources:

1 https://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2018/dopamine-smartphones-battle-time/

Hi, I'm Pamela, the face of Hustle Less & Live More!

Hi, I'm Pamela, the face of Hustle Less & Live More!

I have trained and coached hundreds of people on personal development all over the globe – from Jamaica, the USA, to hosting workshops while being on a ship on the Atlantic ocean, all the way to Uganda, Austria, Ghana, the UAE, Pakistan, Singapore, and many more.

I am a go-getter, dream achiever, a true role model for behavior change, and I'm here to help you become the same.

Find me on:

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Hi, I'm Pamela, the face of Hustle Less & Live More!

Hi, I'm Pamela, the face of Hustle Less & Live More!

I have trained and coached hundreds of people on personal development all over the globe – from Jamaica, the USA, to hosting workshops while being on a ship on the Atlantic ocean, all the way to Uganda, Austria, Ghana, the UAE, Pakistan, Singapore, and many more.

I am a go-getter, dream achiever, a true role model for behavior change, and I'm here to help you become the same.

Find me on:

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to Top