November 9, 2018

Sleepless Nation

Sleepless Nation

Some of you know I try to get to the gym as often as my schedule permits. This time of year, especially, I really look forward to my daily run, particularly when we get a crisp fall day between all of the rain. I get my best ideas when I’m pounding the pavement.

I’m just as big a believer in the power of sleep, which is why if I’m getting up at 5 a.m. to start my day, it’s hard to last until the 10 o’clock news every night. There’s always Starbucks but it’s hard to perform at your best when you’re running on fumes. Plus, it’s even harder to get motivated to put on your running shoes.

The Centers for Disease Control is now calling sleep deprivation a public health crisis, with one-third of adults getting less than the recommended 7 hours a night. Apparently, sleeping too little makes it harder for us to think clearly, absorb new information, read other people’s facial expressions accurately and stay resilient when facing obstacles – giving insomniacs and frequent long-distance fliers something else to keep them up at night! It also costs employers a lot of money, leading to over 1 million lost days of work a year. Even Arianna Huffington, busy as she is, is beating the drum about the benefits of sleep. You may have seen her book, The Sleep Revolution.

Still, it’s hard in a field like accounting to make sleep a priority. There are times of the year when deadlines loom. But we’re quick to call in reinforcements when we need to. That’s the beauty of running a middle market firm with a substantial-sized team.

Here at Marcum, we always appreciate it when our team members work hard and show commitment, but we don’t want them to burn out. That’s why we’re happy to see them taking their vacation time and catching up on their rest during our slower seasons.

Then again, maybe the sleep deprivation crisis will taper off. With all of the new time-saving technologies coming out, perhaps the next crisis will be about workdays getting too short.

Still, with the holidays coming and office parties around the corner, I’m going to try to do some power sleeping the next couple of weekends. It shouldn’t be too hard to get some extra Zs, with the days getting shorter and darkness coming earlier – as long as my kids will allow it. No time like the present to beat the crisis!

P.S. Thank you for the many responses to my column last week. This is my column, not Marcum’s. It is my space to share with those of you who care to know whatever’s on my mind in a given week. I realize not everyone will agree with my view of the world, but that’s perfectly fine. I appreciate that you take the time to read and to write me with your thoughts, even if it’s to disagree in the strongest terms.