Do more with less

Have you ever thought about pulling an all nighter to make your project finish faster? How did you feel after finishing the project? Did you feel great and ready to work on your next project? Do you enjoy what you do? We are going to talk about what you give up when you pull an all nighter.

Time

When it comes to finishing a project time is arguably the most important constraint, we all have heard about being at the right place at the right time.

This is probably the biggest motivation why someone might pull an all nighter. Well if you are close to a deadline, there is nothing to think about, you will have to do what you have to do to finish the task.

If you can limit the scope of your task to save some time that would save you a lot of headache on the next steps.

Momentum

Skipping your daily routines comes with its consequences, it might take some time before you can go back to your “healthy” sleeping cycle, not to mention if you have given up your exercise or eating healthy, you will have even a harder time to start.

Momentum makes it easier to do the routines that are necessary for moving forward, once you lost it it takes more energy to accelerate again.

Focus

Focus is all about spending the most amount of energy where it has the most effects, for that to work correctly you would need to take good care of all of your senses. Your instinct is able to tell you what matters most and what does not matter in the long run. For that to work, you will need to spend more time in the “zone”.

Let us assume that you can pull an all nighter successfully, you will probably lose a few days or even weeks of healthy sleep, you will find yourself less and less in the “zone”.

Motivation

If you love your body it will love you back, the opposite is true too. Your brain is probably unhappy about the intense pressure you put on it, you may experience “burnout” or simply lack of motivation.

Getting the motivation back is no easy task, it takes a clear goal, and a big will power to rebuild it as strong as before.

Conclusion

Although it is almost impossible for anyone to completely avoid the situations that all nighters are necessary, making that a regular strategy comes with its risks.

By finishing the task in a short period of time, you are making things worse for the above factors in the long run.

There is also a risk of creating a negative feedback loop, the more you pull all nighters, the less productive you become and chances of not finishing your future tasks before deadlines increases.

You probably want to:

  • Be in the flow at least a few hours daily
  • Limit the scope of your projects to be able to finish them within a reasonable deadline
  • Give some headroom for your deadlines to account for unpredictable circumstances
  • Keep up with your healthy habits to build momentum towards your goal
  • Stay motivated by keeping a work-life balance and making work fun