Practice

How to Sleep Better, or, The Economics of Blogging

I mentioned in a past post that I really need to work on my practice of sleeping.

Later I got a very friendly email from a bloke named Wally, telling me that he had read the article, liked it, and thought that you (my erstwhile readers) might benefit from a smorgasbord of sleep tips he’d created on his site. I read his post – “50 Ways to Beat Insomnia” – and he’s right. There’s a lot of really useful tips, which I’ve read in many different places, all compiled in one easy place. What makes it even more appealing was that he backs up his tips with the scientific sources where possible – something that appeals to my inner skeptic.

I Almost Didn’t Post It

Why? Because the URL, if you look at it, is “whatisthebest-mattress.com.” Which on a certain level offends my purist blogger sensitivities, because it’s a URL designed to grab search engine traffic. It’s the grandfather of clickbait, back when people were trying to game Google and other search engines (yes, at one time there were actually other search engines) into sending traffic their way.

Google is a lot of things, and dumb is not one of them. A lot of the techniques people used back then at the turn of the millenium to try and “trick” the algorithms were quickly discovered and blocked, often with severe penalties (I once had to talk a client out of trying a technique he’d read about online because if he’d done it, Google would have blacklisted his site.

Now it’s gotten to the point where a person can actually make money helping companies find good, easy, and memorable site names (such as, ahem, LoveLifePractice.com). Not because they are hoping that Google will find them; no, you want a name that is easy to remember and type into a browser so that people can easily talk about you. Think about the problem that Wally has: how does he easily tell people his site? “whatisthebest (all one word) hyphen mattress dot com” doesn’t roll trippingly from the tongue.

It’s Not About Links. It’s About People.

Instead, though, Wally found my blog – probably from a Google search engine auto-notifier that saw the word “tired” – and reached out to me directly. Yes, it may have been a form letter – but he’s right, you know, there are some good things in there. In fact, here’s five practices (yes, this is actually a blog about practice) that I’m going to be working on to improve my sleep:

 

  1. Chamomile Tea – One of the many benefits of living with Natasha is that she knows her teas. More to the point, she probably knows how to make a tea that will help me sleep and taste ok.
  2. Meditation – While I already do meditation in the morning, for a while Natasha and I were also doing a meditation before bed. Renewing that practice may help both of us sleep better.
  3. Avoid TV – We are notorious for the “Well, we have to get up in 7 hours, but we can handle one more episode” kind of binge-watching that shows like Longmire and Justified tend to inspire. Cutting off TV emphatically 8 hours before we have to get up is a start.
  4. Avoid Late Night Snacking – It’s kind of a catch-22 – often, in order to stay awake through the aforementioned “one more episode“, we will snack. It’s not terrible snacks – often carrots and hummus – but still, maybe we could listen to our bodies when they say “sleepy” and not hear “hungry“.
  5. Nighttime Ritual – This one will be both the easiest and the hardest, I think. I already have a good set of morning protocols, so I’m not unfamiliar with the process. And we already have some bedtime customs that will fit into the “ritual” idea pretty easily. But we don’t have a terribly regular schedule, and it will be hard to keep events from interrupting. Wally recommends “Repeat the routine for at least a week to get into the habit before you allow changes in schedule to interfere with it.” A week? That I can do.

That’s why I’m suggesting that you do actually visit WhatIsTheBest-Mattress.com. Because even though it is designed to make money, it’s designed to make money by giving people what they need. I had already decided that I needed better sleep (based a bit on James Altucher’s work) and he gave me a head start on how to work on that.

A while back a friend complained about podcasts that talk about other podcasts. He couldn’t understand why they had to do that. I don’t think I really was able to explain it well enough to convince him, but it’s another part of this: the big failure of the internet is that old marketing doesn’t work. The new marketing is about people talking to people they trust and helping them find the things they need.

That’s why, on Wednesday, you’re going to read my review of the Stash Belt, and it won’t be about security or emergency cash or even anything that they expect their customers to write about. It’s going to be about how my StashBelt helped me feel very happy about myself, make another person’s day, and in general contributed to an Abundance Mindset.

If that’s the economic model of the digital age – at least this particular corner of it – I’m ok with that.

 

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