Is it possible to be productive from your bed? And who would want to get more done while in the most well-known space for relaxing? Great questions that we will explore because remote work doesn’t just mean working away from the office. It’s evolving daily to many locations and bleeds into the night as well.
Everyone knows that proper rest is crucial to good health. If you’re losing two hours of sleep to hit the gym so you’ll live to be 99, you are working against yourself. Not to mention being labeled a nut for climbing on a treadmill at 4:30 a.m.! Rest, work, and overall health are all about balance so let’s see if we can find more of it below.
When Bed Work Is Mandatory
Experts keep warning of the dangers of carrying screens and jobs over into bedtime. We cross the line from worker to sleeper, which makes both activities suffer. But sometimes we have no choice but to work from the bedroom.
People get sick and can’t muster the energy to drag themselves to the home office much less the real office downtown. On those terrible days, you can eke out a couple hours of work on a laptop so deadlines aren’t missed and projects delayed. Getting sick is rough - fired and sick, quite a bit worse!
This same scenario has played out for many moms and dads too. Caring for an ill child means comforting them while they lie around all day. Many a parent has snuggled with their kid, watching their fever while taking care of work emails or sending out invoices.
Now envision being bedridden long term. We are not indestructible. Plus, there are tons of dingbat drivers out there! We could end up the victim of an automobile accident that keeps us stuck on the couch or mattress for weeks. If our mind is still firing on all cylinders then we will still need to earn an income, especially if you run a business.
In cases like these, we have to adapt because some work is better than none at all when we have no choice. But for when we do have choices...
Crossing Lines Between The Sheets
The biggest issue with trying to be productive 24/7 is that it’s impossible. Show me a person who refuses to rest then I’ll show you someone who will slip up and eventually burn out:
● Drowsy driving is responsible for more than 6,000 fatal car crashes every year in the United States.
● Nurses working 12.5-hour shifts report committing more than 3x as many medical errors as those working 8.5-hour shifts.
● That guy from Wolf of Wall Street - being a jerk didn’t help.
See, working while in bed is not the problem. The issue comes from not having boundaries. When the internet is available 24 hours a day and you have endless amounts of work you could do, it’s easy to never let up.
A clearly defined schedule helps with this. Easier said than done for hard-driving people trying to build a better life for their family. Also, if you are the creative type, inspiration can strike at any time including bedtime. But setting a limit on the number of hours you will work in a day is a must. A firm shutdown time works for others. You may need an accountability partner - aka drill sergeant.
Sneaky Productivity Lying Down
Some people still read. Folks like you, who are reading this right now. Duh! This superpower can be taken inside the bedroom and lead to huge productivity that most people wouldn’t notice as a big deal if you mentioned it.
Work emails: What percentage are of enormous importance? Certainly not 100%, but they need to be sorted through. Winding down can be done while scanning your inbox, as long as you promise yourself not to get worked up over anything. Avoid this activity if you can’t keep that promise.
Learning: Turns out you can learn just as much about your company’s new software by reading about the features in bed as at your desk. This sneakily productive habit is a nice replacement for bedtime tv - especially if you’ve been hooked by shows that can hurt your character. You don’t want it leaked that you enjoy The Bachelor.
Idea gen: Reading fiction at bedtime can help generate ideas, either for business or pleasure. Author, Tim Ferris recommends fiction over non-fiction so your mind stays in the present. Even if that present is inside the mind of an interesting author on another planet. You focus less on yourself and more on a story. Thrillers are not the best thing to lull yourself to sleep, however.
Low effort that makes you more productive is a no-brainer. And reading is incredibly powerful even if you’re about to doze off. Especially considering the neural connections that happen during sleep which boost our ability to process information.
Comfort Is Easy Now
Imagine trying to work in bed in 1985. First of all, your laptop would have been a desktop PC the size of a DeLorean. Plus, the only accessory would be a pillow. In the modern age, you can click around to find tons of products that make productivity possible anywhere.
● Mattress desks like this
● Workstations to keep your lap cool
● Mobile desks to go from sofa to bed
● Stand-up desks for when you need to stretch
● Voice-activated devices don’t require jumping out of a warm bed
There’s no question we’ve got it made with all these products that make work more comfortable from any room in the house, while camping, or by the pool. Truckers still have to hit the road, but digital workers have limitless options for working how, when, and where they want.
The bed has become what the couch was just a few years ago. Innovative companies have created a better environment for getting things done without aggravating wire entanglement, stiff necks, or getting fried by a hot laptop. And there are more things to get done than ever as you’ll see as you read below.
Ok, some results of the web expanding have not been so wonderful. Example - hotdog influencers. Yet, the options for creators to create are still exploding. It’s quite amazing to see artists and innovators making:
● Inspiring fitness videos
● 25-second paintings
● Nature cool again via Instagram
● Informative podcasts with more than soundbites
● The public aware of homelessness and other issues
This content creation train is rolling along furiously with no end in sight. The cool thing? That this is the ultimate form of remote work. No boss to check in with and these creators have no idea what a timeclock is - congrats!
This work can be done in bed, on the couch, or while sunbathing - which is content all its own in some cases! And believe it or not, there is a great deal of work involved in this creator economy. A podcast doesn’t just happen, for example.
● There’s writing involved
● Outreach to guests
● Recording / editing
The final product is shiny and clean, but the grunt work to get there is behind the scenes and eats up massive time.
That accounts for so many creators working long hours even though their lifestyle seems all glitz, glamor, and glory. Long days turn into long nights so it’s crucial they have a bedroom setup made to transform into a digital workstation at least part-time.
Mobile World Marching On
You should now have a great idea about how and why our beds are making up part of our productivity centers. The secret is to flow along with our mobile world. Trying to stand still will only get you left behind. Time marches on and work keeps changing in the process.
It’s pretty cool honestly. Would you prefer being stuck on a farm plowing all day in the hot sun like our ancestors? Or running your accounting business from your kitchen table, maybe becoming the next chess influencer from your king-size bed? Easy choice, right?
We spend one-third of our lives in bed, unless you’re like that gym-nut we mentioned. And mattresses have been part of our lives ever since the first cavewoman had sense enough to put down some soft material for her family. Lucky for us, the way we use our beds keeps evolving with lifestyles that require mobility and flexibility.