The Link Between Success and Sleep

Successful man looking out the window in the morning after a good night's sleep

Getting enough sleep can be hard when you have a busy schedule. It seems that there just aren’t enough hours in the day. Despite being busy, it is important to make sure you get the proper amount of sleep, because this can directly affect your success (or lack of).

Successful People Get More Sleep

You may think that working as many hours as possible leads to success, but this can actually lead to an opposite result. According to a report by the New York Times, studies have shown that brain function declines after being awake for 16 hours. Just like our bodies need enough water to survive, our brains need enough sleep to function. If your brain is only working at half-capacity, you will probably only achieve half-capacity success.

Sleep deprivation even affects CEOs, entrepreneurs, and other executives. Many CEOs only sleep four to five hours per night like PepsiCo’s CEO Indra Nooyi. While some people may be able to function at a high level with such a small amount of sleep, the average person cannot. Sleep deprivation can make a person irritable, depressed, and not focused. These are all bad qualities in a leader.

But sleep deprivation doesn’t only affect professionals, proper sleep or the lack thereof can impact our success in the earlier years of our lives as well. College students often run into the problem of not getting enough sleep. They may need to cram for an exam, pull an all-nighter to finish a paper, or possibly even work a third-shift job. While all of these actions may seem necessary, it actually leads to a lower GPA, poor performance in athletics, and mental health conditions such as depression.

Ways to Get More Sleep

There are three reasons that busy people don’t get enough sleep. They either don’t want to, they are too busy, or they can’t because they just can’t sleep. If you are a person that doesn’t want to get more sleep, just think of the long-term consequences and this may change your mind. However, if you simply can’t go to sleep or feel that you don’t have enough time, here are a few ways that may help you get more sleep.

1. Rearrange your day so you have enough time to sleep.
You may have to delegate some tasks to your employees, co-workers, friends, or family members. Prioritize the things you have to do in a day and make sure you leave enough time for sleep.

2. Buy a new mattress.
Sometimes you can’t sleep because you aren’t comfortable. Buying a new mattress can help. On average, you should replace your mattress every eight years, but if you’re not getting a resting sleep, consider replacing it sooner.

3. Cut back on the caffeine.
People consume caffeine because it keeps them awake. According to, you shouldn’t consume caffeine after 2 pm because the effects of caffeine can continue for hours after you’ve consumed it.

Get more sleep. There is no way around it, no magic pill that can refill your energy the way that sleep can. Our bodies need sleep to regenerate and refresh us for the next day. Sleep helps us stay sharp so we can focus on getting the most success out of life so if you want to be as successful as possible, catch up on your zzz’s.