Over a decade ago, Nate stumbled upon the power of crafting sales messages to build businesses. Ever since, he's been enraptured. Today, Nate gets his thrills, fulfillment, and fun in creating sales letters, sales funnels, architecting direct response systems…you name it. If it involves persuasion on a mass, automated scale and it can be measured, he loves it. Today, he lives in downtown Denver, either working with Agora's Health Sense Media, building his own nutritional supplement business, or meeting with like-minded Denver entrepreneurs for coffee.
I am on a sleep rampage.
Yesterday, I made the decision to defend my sleep with the ferocity of a mother grizzly protecting her cubs.
This has been percolating for some time.
Years ago, when I loaded trucks for a living, I discovered a good night’s sleep could make the difference between a 12-hour shift of exhilarating challenges…
… and 14 hours of soul-crushing labor.
The lesson stuck with me, but my challenges with sleep shifted along with my lifestyle.
I needed another wake-up call. And I got one in the form of slogging through several nights in a row, where I’d drift off around 11PM, only to awaken around 2AM… and remain that way.
I’d try to relax back to sleep… get up and take melatonin and some relaxing herbs… and found the only “solution” was to get some reading done. Not because it helped me sleep – reading was merely a way to make use of the time.
Around 6AM, close to when I was going to get up anyway, I’d finally drift in and out of a funk… and then grudgingly start my day.
Because of my exercise and meditation habits, I could actually function like this for a while.
But there’s a big difference between feeling just fine, and working through the dulling blanket of exhaustion tainting every little moment…
… and pulsating with creative energy and relishing your life.
I chose the latter.
So I had a problem to solve. Because of my wired mind at night, I figured cortisol was gushing through me when it wasn’t meant to. Or I had a drop in blood sugar (a frequent cause of suddenly waking up around 2-3AM). I decided to experiment with my evening meal. Then I wondered if the nootropics I began recently taking, were at fault. In fact, I figured the latter was the answer.
Nope. Something else was ruining my sleep, and I’ll reveal that in a moment.
Finally, after another night with only two or maybe three hours of sleep, I happened to be facilitating a MasterMind meeting with some fellow entrepreneurs. I brought up my sleep problem. One of my guests suggested something that I figured wasn’t the answer… but I was willing to try.
She was right.
Before I reveal the answer, here are the actions I took before finally having my breakthrough.
That wasn’t enough.
Here’s what I was missing:
In the past, I’d have a morning cup of coffee, and then another after lunch. Usually around 2PM. Sometimes closer to 3PM. This wasn’t a problem before. However, through testing, I’ve discovered this afternoon cup of coffee contributed to me waking up around 2-3AM. Per my friend’s suggestion, I eliminated the afternoon coffee.
It worked. I’ve more-or-less slept through the night since then.
And now that I’m feeling the difference (and fondly remembering all the days I began well-rested) I’m on a rampage.
What I’m doing now:
Because of this sleep improvement, I’m also testing an increase in my workout schedule. I used to do HIIT training with three days of rest in between sessions. I’m reducing that to two.
Long-term, I’m moving closer to nature and away from the city.
But wherever I end up… if you find me and I’m sleeping… don’t wake me up!
UPDATE On 2-4-17:
I was wrong.
After a couple more days of restricting my caffeine intake, and failing to sleep through the night, I realized late-day caffeine was not the culprit. After consulting with someone, I tested something else:
For several days, I cut off all eating after 2PM. My sleep immediately improved and has remained that way. Even when I drink coffee up to 2PM. So now I’m testing the waters to see if I can eat certain foods later in the day. Either way, I’m thrilled I found the answer and am enjoying the benefits of more restful sleep.