Getting Enough Sleep

(Editor's Note:  Like many of us, our friend Zach Shulman sometimes doesn't get enough sleep. From personal experience we know the results aren't pretty.)

Kathy Savitt, the CMO of Yahoo, gave a presentation at the Cornell Entrepreneurship Summit NYC on October 11, 2013.  All the presentations from Summit will soon be up via video on the website.

Kathy presented a bunch of her personal rules of the road for startups.  Yahoo clearly still considers itself a startup (the world's largest!).  Her last rule was to get enough sleep.  I can relate to that completely.

The bottom line is that when I don't get enough sleep, I feel terrible.  This has only gotten worse since my neck surgery in November 2012.  When I don't get at least 7 hours, I feel like a zombie and my head feels like a pressure cooker.  And I am not that nice to people around me (in other words family members take the brunt of it).

I have a few students who regularly send me emails between 2am and 5am.  I answer them at 6:30am when I wake up and think "why were they still awake".  When I was in college, I never pulled an all nighter so I guess I am a little biased.  I realize that sometimes things can get a bit out of control, but if this is regularly happening and you are regularly pulling all nighters perhaps it is time you consider a change.

Get good sleep.

Zach Shuman is a partner with Cayuga Venture Fund, the director of Entrepreneurship@Cornell and a blogger at IthacaVC. More of Zach's writing at

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