Many new copywriters have questions about which computers are best and which services are best for building their website and things like that.
And those are important questions, but they’re putting the cart in front of the horse a bit. There’s one crucial habit that most copywriters don’t give enough thought to, and it can be deeply detrimental to their work.
Now, look: I’m sure things like meditation and yoga and getting regular massages would benefit copywriters. (They seem to benefit just about everyone.)
But this particular self-care habit is one that copywriters might actually actively choose to cut back on instead of invest more time into—especially when they’re facing tight deadlines.
Confusing? You bet. Paradoxical? Absolutely.
Have you guessed what it is yet? Let’s not tiptoe around it any longer. This crucial self-care habit is…sleep.
Now, wait—before you shout, “BORING! I know I should be sleeping,” let me ask you a question: When’s the last time you slept without waking up to an alarm? (Or a child, or a pet?)
You know you should be sleeping…but you’re probably not getting ample amounts.
Let’s look at this from another angle. If self-care doesn’t motivate you but cash does, then listen up: Even sleeping just a little bit less than you should can drastically affect your creative performance.
And, lest you forget, for a copywriter, your creative performance is your bread and butter.
In Arianna Huffington’s book The Sleep Revolution, she reports that two weeks of getting six hours of sleep is equivalent to the performance incapacity of someone who has gone 24 hours without sleep.
Sleep is essential to creativity. You simply cannot create effective, insightful, and creative copy without sleep. So how well do you think you’d write copy if you were facing the same performance incapacity as if you’ve gone without 24 hours of sleep?
I think you might be seeing my point now.
Yes, your portfolio is important. And your contacts are important. And your experience is important.
But your mind—and your ability to use it—is the most important. And that’s why taking care of your mind (and your ability to use it) has to be of the utmost importance.
And if you’re a copywriter who consistently stays up late or gets up early to hit your deadlines, you’re giving yourself an extra hurdle of trying to write your best work when your brain isn’t up to the task.
Sleep needs to be a priority: not just because you feel better, but because you function better. You write better copy and you’re a better partner for your clients.
Sleep isn’t an extra for a successful career. It’s an essential.
Your turn! How are you going to make sleep more of a priority? Let us know in the comments below!