What do Donald Trump, Leonardo Da Vinci, and Nikola Tesla all have in common? Aside from being some of the most recognizable household names, all attribute their success to a unique and sometimes extreme sleep routine. Believe it or not, a meticulously designed sleep schedule has been a common thread connecting some of history’s greatest artists, entrepreneurs, and go-getters.
While most experts seem to agree that adults need 7.5 to 8 hours of sleep each night, some influential people say otherwise! These masters of their craft defied the mundane not only in their careers, but also in their lifestyles. I think it would be safe to assume that some of these men and women had the finest of luxury bedding. But surprisingly, some spent very little time enjoying it. Let’s take a look at some of history’s biggest icons who reduced sleep in favor of more productive waking hours.
Winston Churchill is the most prolific sleeper of the bunch. Britain’s WWII era prime minister clocked an average 7 hours of sleep each day – 2 of which took the form of an afternoon cat nap. It’s said that Sir Churchill spent much of the day on breakfast, lunch, card games, and bath time. So, perhaps his night owl habits were a way of making up for lost time!
Entrepreneurial rock star Richard Branson, who was knighted in 2000 for his "services to entrepreneurship", comes in next with a respectable 6 hours of nightly sleep. Being Head of the Virgin Group is a demanding role to fill, so Sir Branson is sure to be up by 5:45 each morning. Perhaps this is to keep a healthy balance of priorities in his life, as he reportedly exercises and spends quality time with his family at the start of each day.
Margaret Thatcher, another one of history’s most enduring prime ministers, makes predecessor Winston Churchill look positively liberal with her 4 hours of sleep every night. If ever a woman deserved the moniker, “The Iron Lady”, it would be Mrs. Thatcher! Catching Zzz’s from 1 to 5 AM, Mrs. Thatcher made her successor, John Major, trek a rough road after the civil service grew accustomed to an insomniac PM.
Donald Trump, love him or hate him, couldn’t go unmentioned on our list. He not only dominates business and politics, his nightly 3 hours makes him runner-up for the most successful career achieved on the least amount of sleep. President Trump even credits his competitive edge to his extreme sleep schedule, and the results seem to speak for themselves!
Nikola Tesla shares the top spot for the most extreme sleeper on our list. Getting a mere 2 hours of sleep each night actually contributed to his severe mental breakdown he had at just 25 years old. However, adding more rest was somehow not in his recovery plan – continuing only to get a few hours per night for the rest of his life. He even caught 1 hour less each night than his arch nemesis, Thomas Edison.
Leonardo Da Vinci
Though his total hours of nightly sleep match fellow inventor Nikola Tesla, Leonardo Da Vinci earns his place at the top of our list for his unique sleep schedule. The archetypal Renaissance Man caught a nightly 2 hours of rest, but in the form of six 20 minute naps taken every 4 hours! His extreme polyphasic sleep cycle could be partly responsible for his sheer magnificence in everything he laid hands on. Truly one of the world’s most impressive men to have ever lived.
No matter the crazy demands life can have on our schedule, the important thing is to make the most of the sleep you do get! You don’t have to be rich and famous to afford luxury bedding either. PeachSkinSheets are affordable, exceptionally comfortable, and may be catalyst for your success. Start each day refreshed and ready to tackle your projects with the kind of energy that can only come from a good night’s sleep - whether that be 2 hours or 8!