Kate: Sleep your way to the top, says Arianna Huffington.





Arianna Huffington is here. QUICK, everyone look successful.

The 64-year-old Greek-born entrepreneur is easily one of the most powerful people on the planet. And she’s here in Australia right now.

Huffington is currently President and Editor in Chief of the Huffington Post Media Group — having started The Huffington Post in 2005 and sold it to AOL in 2011 for $315 million. It’s an astonishing story of fast, worldwide success.

In her spare time, Arianna Huffington ran as an independent candidate for Governor in California in 2003, wrote 14 books, and got appointed as a director on the board of the Center of Public Integrity. She has two daughters.

Arianna at the Sydney event. (Sidenote: Huffington is a stone-cold fox)

So, when Arianna spoke to a group of ambitious women at a Business Chicks event held in a floating venue on the water at Darling Harbour… Well, I was so in love with her career advice, I scribbled it all down on a pile of important napkins and carried her words around in my bag for days.

Here it is, for your reference: Arianna Huffington’s best career advice. Concise and efficient,  just the way she’d want it.


1. Sleep your way to the top.

Arianna Huffington may just be the world’s #1 napping advocate.


She’s a “sleep evangelist” who takes her 8 – 9 hours of sleep a night extremely seriously. She makes a 10.30 pm appointment with herself every night to fall asleep, at which time she says she “escorts her devices from the room”. She even recommends having a “sleep sponsor” – someone reliable, who you trust to remind you how important it is to sleep. “When you’re binge-watching episode after episode of Breaking Bad in bed, you just call your sponsor and they talk you down from that,” she says.

The simplest thing you can do to get some of Huffington’s energy: Get 30 minutes more sleep than you are now. Go to sleep earlier, get up later, just get that extra half of shut-eye. “When I’m sleep-deprived and tired, I take things personally, I fail to see any red flags, I can’t make decisions… It’s just not worth it, to live like that.”

True that. A regular on Forbes’ list of 100 most powerful people in the world just gave you permission to hit the ‘snooze’ button. Take it.

2. Step away from the devices.

Arianna Huff’s entire career has been about technology, but she’s the first to admit that we’re dangerously addicted to it. That’s why she recommends trying to actually put the phone away, talk to people, and be in the present moment. “Multi-tasking is an illusion,” she says. “Put technology back in its place, so it doesn’t control you.”

That includes taking one minute for yourself when you wake, before your arm automatically fumbles around on your bedside table for your phone. Think, meditate, pray, or do whatever your secular version of praying is, just for 60 seconds: “Set your own agenda before the world demands from you what it wants.”


She also recommends doing a self-imposed digital detox on Saturdays or Sundays. No emails. No texts. Just genuine peace and talking to other human beings.

3. Drop a few projects.

“Do regular life audits. Drop the things that no longer serve you. Whatever it is in your life you thought one day were going to do but you’re really not… just drop these projects one at a time. It’s really liberating.

For Arianna, that meant giving up her half-hearted goal of being a terrific skier. “I’m never going to invest the time and energy to become a good skier so it was liberating to complete that project by dropping it,” she said – to a roomful of laughing women who know exactly what it’s like to carry around superfluous life goals you’re never realistically going to complete.

4. Take your goddamn holidays.

Seriously. Take your holidays. Do a digital detox on Saturdays. Put your Out of Office automatic reply on when you’re on a break. Do relaxation properly.


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