Working long hours will kill that business

An adult requires at least eight hours of good sleep daily. FILE PHOTO | NMG
An adult requires at least eight hours of good sleep daily. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

It is believed that one of the pathways of success is the ability to work hard and for long hours. This often means sleeping less and having little time for resting, family and social life.

I was victim until I learnt something important from the teachings of Michael Hyatt, the author of The Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World.

The priceless lesson I leant is the importance of managing energy rather than time in order to be productive. In other words, being busy does not mean being productive. The key to becoming more productive is not managing your time but your energy.

How do you ensure you are full of energy in order to be productive during your working time? To achieve high energy levels you need a sound physical and mental health.

Eating well and having enough rest are crucial for optimal energy and performance. Yet the two are the most sacrificed in pursuit of productivity. We often work long hours and sleep few hours and sometimes skip meals or eat fast food to save time.

Time is important. However, more important is your metal energy and alertness that enable you to make sound judgment. You don’t need a chronicle of many accidents that occur on our roads and factories when drivers and operators are deprived of sleep.

In our offices and businesses, lack of sleep and rest causes more havoc unnoticed. Low productivity, making wrong decisions, illnesses and sluggishness are some of the unappreciated consequences.

We are often trapped in the misconception that working long hours is one of the characteristics of successful entrepreneurs and ignore that aspect of energy and productivity.

When your energy and creativity is low tasks often take longer to be accomplished. Common mistakes and errors of judgment become the norm and the costs to business or personal life cannot be overemphasised.

On the other hand having enough sleep and rest improves creativity, ability to make good decisions and minimises errors when executing a task. Regardless of how busy you are and how many tasks are seeking attention, you can accomplish more by getting enough rest and sleep.

Studies show that simple habits such as resting in between tasks or taking a nap during the day had many benefits such as restoring alertness, preventing burnout and reducing risk of some heart diseases. It also improves your creativity by relaxing your mind and allowing new associations to form in it.

An adult requires at least eight hours of good sleep daily. A nap also helps.