self-improvement,  Success

Test Your Limits

Four hours of sleep is not enough.

I’ve been experimenting with my sleep schedule lately. Since successful people tend to wake up earlier, I want to alter my personal habits in order to become more like them. Today I set the intention to wake up at 4 am since I have to be at work by 9 am. I feel better about my day when I get my daily writing done before I head off to my public job.

I didn’t make it to bed until it was approaching midnight.

I managed to wake up at 4 am. I’m quite proud of myself at that achievement. However, I didn’t actually get out of bed until my alarm went off at 5 am.

I was just too tired to move.

I can achieve what I wanted to achieve this morning with a 5 am wake-up. My day won’t be negatively affected. And now I know that I have hit a physical limit.

In order to be as functional as I want to be I am going to have to train myself to go to bed earlier. I need 6-8 hours of sleep in order to achieve optimum functionality.

We ALL Need to Learn Our Limits

It is impossible to achieve goals that are beyond what we are capable of achieving. For instance, I would be setting myself up for failure if I set the goal of becoming a basketball star. At 4’10” tall, equipped with boobs so big that they feel like they’re going to rip off of my chest every time I run, that is not a goal that I can reasonably achieve.

If you have health issues that force you to rest intermittently throughout the day, you won’t be physically able to handle a high-energy factory job that requires a 10-hour shift. If you have one leg (like my father did), you have to select positions and goals that don’t require you to be on your feet all day.

You have to know these limits. They are the difference between success and failure. You can only do what you can physically do; trying to push yourself beyond on a daily basis is a recipe for disaster.

It doesn’t hurt to test these limits, however. Sometimes you will surprise yourself.

As a result of my tests I now know that I have another limit attached to the amount of sleep I need for optimal function. I will add it to the time limits imposed by my day job (I’ve got to work in order to pay the bills) and the financial limits imposed by my current income as I figure out the best way to achieve my long-term goal of financial freedom.

What limits do you have? Have you tested them? Please share your stories in the comments below.