This last Monday I had a last minute road trip through the middle of Nebraska and Kansas. For those who haven’t had the same pleasure– there wasn’t much to occupy my mind for a good 5 hours, each way. So, I downloaded some Podcasts to fill the void. The first three Podcasts were from different programs and covered different topics. However, each one, by pure coincidence had a guest speaker who had found success through incremental changes they had made throughout their lifetime. In other words, these weren’t people who stumbled upon a great idea and hit the jackpot. These individuals had worked hard, failed, and then realigned their efforts to achieve a lasting success story.
There was a striking commonality between these otherwise unrelated talks. Each speaker in some form or another professed these 3 foundational methods that helped lead to their respective success:
- Health: exercise, food, and spiritual/mental health.
- Ideas: Each had designated moments to develop ideas / thoughts
- Sleep: Wake up early
I wasn’t particularly surprised about the first two, but I was taken back that all three said that waking up early had something to do with their success. I recently watched this TED talk by Russell Foster which did imply sleeping habits have something to do with daily effectiveness, but not exactly in the same manner espoused by the three guest speakers.
Clearly the greatest point of differentiation here were those “smug” people that wake up early. Love this guy’s humor! But, I can’t say I agree with him on this point. From my own unscientific study including a sample population of 1 (that person being me, of course), I have indeed found that waking up early gives my mind the chance to rev up. By the time I am interacting with clients, I believe that I have a clearer sense of purpose when compared to an equal amount of sleep of the same quality with a later wake-up time.