Friday, January 18, 2008

We All Need Sleep

According to the article "Scientists Are Still Searching in the Dark For the Secrets of Sleep" in The Wall Street Journal, if we lose too much sleep we become reckless, emotionally fragile, and more vulnerable to infections and to diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. Sleeplessness is a self-inflicted epidemic in which lifestyle overrides basic biolgy. On average, most people sleep 75 minutes less each night then people did a century ago. However, more people are spening more money on sleep aids. By one estimate, pharmacists filled 49 million prescriptions for sleep drugs last year.

There are dire consequence of too little sleep. Almost half of all heavy-truck accidents can be traced to driver fatigues and decisions leading to Challenger space-shuttle disaster, the Chernobyl nuclear-reactor meltdown and the Exxon Valdez oil spill can be partly linked to people drained of rest. The National Commission on Sleep Disorders Research estimated 15 billion dollar costs a year in reduced productivity due to sleep deprivation. A nap can do a lot more good then people may think. People who take regular naps of 30 minutes of more at least three times a week, have a 64% lower risk of heart-related death, researchers at th University of Athens reported last February in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

Oddly enough, the well-rested entrepreneur gets more done, not less, than his sleep deprived counterpart. Tale time to be well rested as you build a stronger business.

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