Q&A Friday #70: When Do You Ever Get To Sleep?

Question: “Just how many hours do you sleep each night? Between all the work you do on your blogs (which I’m sure isn’t a nine-to-fiver), all the books you read, movies you watch, and time spend with your dog, do you ever get a chance to get some shut-eye? What’s your secret?” — The_Muck_Man

Answer: Two things.

How do I do all the things I do? I’m a workaholic. I enjoy blogging, I enjoy consulting, I like politics, I enjoy reading books, I enjoy reading blogs, and I do them all a hell of a lot. I am just willing to work at this more than most people, consistently, over a long period of time.

As to the sleep thing, I get 8, but my sleep schedule is a lot different than the average person’s schedule.

That’s because I don’t have to get up at the same time each morning. Moreover, although I do generally try to have all my updates for the day done by noon because of the way traffic patterns work (Traffic drops off a lot after 5 PM, when people can’t surf from work any more), I don’t have to have everything done at a certain time. So, all my posts can be done by 4 AM, by 8 AM, by noon.

What all this means is that my sleep schedule has gotten extremely flexible. One week I may be sleeping from 9 PM to 5 AM and updating when I get up. Two weeks later, I may be finishing my posts and going to bed around 6 AM and getting up at 2 PM. The next week I may be finishing late and sleeping from 4 AM to noon. In other words, if you told me I had to be up every day next week at 4:30 AM or if you told me I would have to sleep first shift, it wouldn’t be any problem for me.

That being said, I do generally get at least 8 hours of sleep and if I’m tired, I go to bed — which is nice. You know how it is to have the alarm clock go off early in the morning and you want to do nothing more than just sleep another couple of hours, but you have to go to work? When I am in that situation, I just go back to sleep or, alternately, if I absolutely have to get up because I have a radio appearance or interview, I do what I have to do, and go right to bed.

Before I went full time as a blogger, I worked tech support from 6 AM to 2 PM each day. No lunch, just a 30 minute break, which I used to drive home quickly (I lived like 8 minutes away), let the dog out, and then drove back to work. Then, after I got done with work, I had to update RWN. A lot of times, I wouldn’t get done until 12 AM or 1 AM, and then I’d have to be up at 5:15 AM to make it to work on time the next day.

So, that’s why one of the best things about doing what I do now is being able to get up when I want to get up, going to bed when I want to go to bed, and setting my own hours.

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