By Nadine Araksi, Toronto-based Story Coach
Like many of you, I spent a good chunk of February watching the hit Shondaland show, Inventing Anna, on Netflix. Based on an article that was circulating wildly through my incredulous friends a few years ago, the story centres on Anna Delvey, a mysterious, uber-confident woman who took New York by storm and credit card, making everyone she encountered believe she was someone she is not.
I was obsessed. (I wish I could do this entire newsletter in my recently perfected Anna Delvey impersonation.)
In coaching, we often say, “Act as if.” Act as if you’re already the person who has that life. Act as if you’re already the person who has the successful business or the dream romantic partnership. The secret that swindlers know is that’s exactly how you get what you want. Anna Sorokin (her actual name) took that to a level that I’ve previously only seen in men like Donald Trump. It’s “fake it ’til you make it” to the extreme. I’m not suggesting criminal activity, but what would you do differently if you believed that you were already that ideal version of yourself?
The series does involve a lot of hotel sets, and as someone who REALLY loves a robe, I started to wonder if I was due for a night in a king-size. I felt exhausted from the emotional labour of raising teens, a decrease in social connection due to the Omicron wave and winter in general. Oh, and that nightly hour or so of pre-bedtime scrolling I tend to do that clips into my desired healthy sleep schedule, which goes kinda like this:
> Finally! Time to myself!
> Scroll/stream/both at once
> Just one more
> Why am I still up…
> Can’t shut my brain off
> Wake up exhausted
> Lots of coffee
> Use exhaustion as an excuse for why I didn’t exercise/meditate/finish that thing/work on my book/etc.
Sound familiar? (More on Procrastination here)
I needed to get some rest and a new perspective. A night in a hotel seemed like the magic pill that would rescue my fatigue situation. And while I don’t have any sort of trust fund (real or imagined), I booked a really nice room to recalibrate (OK there was some fake German heiress entitlement there). Surely it was my family’s fault I haven’t been sleeping well! Wouldn’t Ideal Me feel no guilt about throwing down her credit card for some luxuriation time?
While my Fitbit graded me an A+ on sleep for once, using hotels to solve my sleep challenges is not sustainable. I came home with the realization that you don’t need 1000 thread count sheets and soaker tubs with a view of the lake to get that kind of rest on the regular. Sigh.
Like anything that makes us better in life, it comes down to commitment and building self-discipline. Steph and I often say that we could apply our Kickstartology Coaching alignment framework to anything. If two night-owl, ADHD-brained entrepreneurs could use it to scale back to a reasonable bedtime, then we could teach it to anyone.
Sleep and a better bedtime are such big habit improvement desires for so many of our clients, from tired moms to single superstars. What might be different in your life if you actually learned to turn out the light at a reasonable hour? What opportunities could you create for yourself if you had the energy to “Act as if?”