Ah, the blogging life. Up at 6, work until midnight, up at 8 work until 10. You get up before the sun and go to bed just as it’s getting ready to rise again, and you love every minute of it because you’re working on building a business all your own. Eventually, though, it’s going to catch up with you. Here are five sleep mistakes you don’t you you’re making that could be hurting your blog.
Mistake #1: Lack of Routine
When people complain of insomnia the first thing the doctor tells them to do is develop a sleep routine. Drink a cup of warm milk or hot tea, close all the drapes, turn off the TV and go to bed at the same time every night. Developing this routing signals to your brain that it’s almost time to go to sleep and when you do climb into bed you fall asleep quicker and get a full-night’s sleep.
So it only makes sense that when you don’t have a routine and you follow the erratic sleep habits that all bloggers seem to share, you’re eventually going to suffer the same symptoms an insomniac suffers – fatigue, weight gain, sluggishness, loss of cognitive abilities, headaches, drowsiness, and digestive problems. All of these symptoms will eventually affect your ability to blog productively.
Mistake #2: Staying Connected in the Bedroom
How many electronic devices do you have in the bedroom? Cellphones, e-readers, televisions, laptops, and CD players – all of these devices have flashing lights and noise which can disrupt your sleep patterns. You might think you’re getting a good night’s sleep with the television blaring in the background, but turn it off for a night or two and there’s a world of difference. Get all electronic devices out of the bedroom and get some real sleep.
Mistake #3: Staying Up Too Late
Staying up too late is one of the biggest mistakes bloggers make. I suppose it’s because we don’t really think of blogging as work. But you have certain blogging tasks you have to accomplish every day, just like any other job. And just like any other job, you need to be awake and alert while you’re working.
Mistake #4: Caffeine Before Bedtime
We’ve all seen the cartoons that show bloggers hunched over their desks surrounded by soda cans, half-eaten pizzas and candy wrappers, puffing on a cigarette while they squint at their monitor. All that caffeine, sugar and junk food, and the nicotine, too, can keep you awake well past bedtime. Cut out caffeine early in the afternoon, eat a healthy dinner before 6 p.m. and limit snacks to fresh fruits and vegetables. You’ll sleep better and feel better and your blog will be better because of it.
Mistake #5: No Physical Exercise
Getting some physical exercise actually helps you sleep better. When you sit hunched over in your chair all day your muscles get stiff and achy, and you’re not doing anything to exert your body so it’s tired at the end of the day. Your body doesn’t properly relax when you climb into bed so you don’t get a good night’s sleep. Get out of your chair and get moving for at least 30 minutes a day.
It’s easy to ignore the need for sleep when you’re doing something you enjoy. But lack of proper sleep quickly takes a toll on the human mind and body. If you’re having trouble writing great content or coming up with post ideas for your blog, it might be your brain telling you it’s time to get some sleep.