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Cat Naps

Lesson 65 Chapter 6 Module 6

If you are looking to justify a life decision, there is almost always a study or a successful outlier that will exemplify the result you are hoping for.

In recent years, the hustle and grind mentality of entrepreneurs and creatives (fueled by a 24/7 online news cycle and increased competition due to the saturation of the talent pool...another conversation for another week…) has led a number of big time personalities to start advocating for minimal sleep time to maximize your working/waking hours.

There are even a handful of studies that will confirm this pseudoscience.

Yep, that’s a hill I’m willing to die on.

Because the overwhelming opinion and data from study after study indicate that humans need sleep. A fair amount of it.

This is especially true for thinkers and creatives.

As we’ve discussed on prior rest days, it is going to be a whole lot harder for you to write if your brain is exhausted.

Sure, when we’re a little loopy on just a few hours of sleep our creative insights might seem brilliant. Heck, they might even be brilliant.

But think about Anne Lamott’s lesson on Sh*tty First Drafts, and compare it with your loopy thoughts and writing.

Yes, your exhausted mind might be able to get out some of those ideas that your sharp mind would not, because it is a bit more uninhibited.

Have you ever tried talking to an exhausted person, though?

Trying to get into the same mindspace as them, to interpret their incoherent ramblings?

It’s...a challenge.

Which means it will likely be the same challenge for your readers. Consider your tired creativity a sh*tty first draft situation. It gets the thoughts out of your brain and onto a paper somewhere, but chances are you’ll want to look at it later with a fresh (rested) set of eyes.

Which brings me back to sleep and creativity.

You want to be getting some healthy sleep at night (most science dictates that 6-8 hours is optimal, though I know a number of creatives who will aim for 8-9 hours consistently) and consider power napping during the day to rest and reboot those grey cells.

Instead of writing drunk and editing sober, maybe consider writing tired and editing rested as workflow.

Or, you know, skip the tired part altogether if you want, because who wants to be striving for exhaustion? That just doesn’t sound fun, now does it?

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