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Sleep for Success: 10 Leader’s Sleep Habits Compared

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Sleep experts, Dormeo, have conducted some research looking into the sleep patterns of some of the world’s most high-flying business people to see if their success is affected by their sleeping habits.

While experts say that an adult should get between 7–9 hours of rest every night, some of the world’s most successful people don’t follow that advice. 

To get a better sense of who’s skimping on sleep, Dormeo decided to look at the habits of ten highly successful people. The people chosen range from politicians to sports stars to CEOs of huge companies, ensuring an insight into the routines of a diverse group of leaders.

The sleep habits of 10 successful celebrities

leader sleep habits
It is interesting to note that all of our famous faces are early risers, with no-one getting up after 7am every morning, suggesting that the early bird really does get the worm!

There’s more variety in the bedtimes of our leaders, with Tim Cook (9:30pm) and Oprah Winfrey (10pm) being those that like an early night. At the other end of the scale, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, and Barack Obama all go to bed at 1am, making them the night owls of the bunch.

Key findings

  • Donald Trump only gets 3 hours of sleep each night 
  • Tim Cook is the first in bed at 9.30pm
  • No personality lies in past 7am
  • Victoria Beckham and Richard Branson are cutting their sleep cycle short by 2/3 hours per night 

Other findings

  • Interestingly Donald Trump is the only personality type called ‘The Entrepreneur’
  • Both Tim Cook and Elon Musk are ‘Architects’ explaining their ability to build huge brands 
  • The Queen is the only leader figure who has more than 8 hours sleep 

Phil Lawlor, sleep expert at Dormeo commented: ‘While you might look at this list of famous faces and think that it might be worth trying out life as a ‘short-sleeper,’

‘It’s worth keeping in mind that they are likely to be a tiny minority. Also, remember that half of our list got at least seven hours each night, including Tim Cook, Bill Gates, and Oprah Winfrey, so there are plenty of ultra-successful people who get plenty of rest.

‘The likelihood is that you will be able to approach your work best when you’re well rested. With this in mind, I wanted share some quick tips for balancing sleep and your career.

‘Firstly, work next to a window, one of our recent studies found that staff slept better when exposed to natural light through the day. So, try to spend as much of your day near a source of light, such as a window or skylight, and you’ll find it easier to sleep.

‘Leave your work out of the bedroom, while it might be tempting to see what the latest work updates are in the evening before nodding off, you should try to keep electronic devices with screens away from the bedroom. This is because the blue light they emit can trick your brain into thinking it’s still daytime.

‘Make your room a sleep haven. Try to create the ideal sleep conditions in your bedroom so that you fall sleep faster. It needs to be as dark as possible, between 16–18⁰C, and your bed needs to be comfy and supportive. This might mean you need to invest in blackout blinds and a new mattress, as well as turning down your heating.

‘Take a nap, they are a well-known way to recharge your batteries and can help to top up limited sleep. If you’re the boss, you can probably take one, but if you’re not, it may be worth discussing the benefits with your firm.’

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