The 52-Week Pledge: STOP Overextending Yourself [Week Seven]

This past Sunday I was watching a Dormtainment video called “I Hate Rappers” where these hilarious young dudes were discussing their problems they have with today’s modern hip-hop stars, and one of the funniest (yet realest) points they made was ‘why do rappers always brag about how much sleep they DON’T get?’ They proceeded to say that maybe rappers would put out a lot LESS “hot garbage songs if they weren’t so sleep deprived. This made me laugh and then reflect on one of the stupidest things I hear people say FAR too often: “I got to grind now and I’ll sleep when I’m dead!”


This is typically accompanied by ignorant hashtags like #TeamNOSleep and the whole thing is incredibly ridiculous. The reality is, not only do we ALL need a healthy amount of sleep, but we also need to take DAYS OFF from chasing our dreams, so we can cool down, recharge our batteries and come back energized the next day or two after. The concept that life should be cramming a million different tasks into ONE day is ridiculous, but even worse, it’s EXTREMELY unproductive. One of our main goals as dream-finders is NOT to simply FINISH tasks, it’s to EXCEL at them, and if we aren’t 100% in control of our mental and emotional health, how the heck can we give 100% of our best effort? Well, the reality is we simply CAN’T.

What happens when you push yourself TOO hard…

Many of us have full-time jobs, part-time jobs, relationships, kids, out-of-work commitments, volunteer tasks and other obligations that demand A LOT of our attention – and that’s not even including our friends, our hobbies and personal undertakings like going to the gym or doing yoga once a week. Creating a work-life balance is HARD, but it becomes exponentially more difficult when it evolves into work-life-dream balance. Well here’s the FIRST part in figuring out how to do it: Determining WHEN you are going to give yourself a BREAK.

So this week’s challenge MIGHT be the hardest one yet, although it’s probably going to SEEM like the easiest one. We all need to develop a way to fit AT LEAST 24 consecutive hours of REST into our schedules. I want you ALL to try this because this may be the big difference between you chasing your dream comfortably and you getting so stressed out and overwhelmed you just call the WHOLE thing OFF. You can make it from Friday when you get off like to Saturday afternoon [i.e. 6 PM Friday – 6 PM Saturday] but it MUST consist of you NOT doing ANY business between that timeframe, including answering emails, scheduling meetings, and sitting in front of a laptop. You must COMMIT to spending those hours be productive PERSONALLY, whether it’s getting that work out in that you want, spending time with friends and family, or even just catching up on sleep you were deprived of during the week.

Before we start making GRAND plans on following dreams and being all we can be, let’s make sure we give OURSELVES some SERIOUS attention so even when we get busy, we know how to maintain a BALANCE.

This Is Your Conscience

When Lincoln Anthony Blades is not writing for his controversial and critically acclaimed blog, he can be found contributing articles for Uptown Magazine. Lincoln wrote the hilarious and insightful book "You're Not A Victim, You're A Volunteer: How To Stop Letting Love Kick Your Ass". He is also a public speaker who has sat on panels all over North America and the Caribbean.


  1. lincolnanthonyblades

    10/17/2012 at 2:10 AM

    Ladies & Gentlemen, what did you achieve in the last week while following your dreams?

    Also, what SPECIFICALLY will be your 24 hours of rest?

  2. lincolnanthonyblades

    10/17/2012 at 2:12 AM

    To start, this week I acted in my first ever commercial (debuting HERE soon), got a logo for my brand new online dating site and learned more about E-sales than I EVER knew before.

    Also my 24 hour timeframe is going to be Friday's at 5 PM to Saturday at 5 PM. No blogging, no writing, no vlogs or podcasting and nothing except my personal life.

    • 3Ls

      10/17/2012 at 11:16 AM

      In addition Lincoln, I think you need to add to your goals, a decent amount of sleep per a week. I know you talked about it, but will you actually do it, outside of the 24 hour rest(assuming it involves sleep)?

      • lincolnanthonyblades

        10/17/2012 at 1:35 PM

        I'm definitely gonna try. I have been working on getting more sleep at night…

    • jessssssssssss

      10/18/2012 at 1:39 PM

      Can't wait to see the commercial.

      • lincolnanthonyblades

        10/18/2012 at 2:02 PM

        Coming soon!

    • @undefined

      10/19/2012 at 6:32 AM

      congrats, can't wait to see the commercial

  3. 3Ls

    10/17/2012 at 11:04 AM

    Lincoln I am back. I have had the craziest month which included my computer being stripped away (aka stolen) and my iphone not being able to comment. With temporary computer at hand, I can finally catch up with you all.

    Whoa, great strides. I love the current adds by the way.What exactly is the commercial for? The book or the dating site? Are you getting a great response on the book?
    I like the idea of the 24 hour personal time. So often we are told that we are not being productive when engaged in such activities, that we feel guilty just thinking about it. Well I hope you really can stay away from your normal day to day and get some "me time" in.

    As for me, I have finally started my French classes. I feel like a fool. Its all in French or Haitian Creole and I am the one American going, "Uh what were the directions?" I feel bad for anyone my professor partners me with. Yet I will kick butt studying…after personal time.

    Contact was made on finding the girls for my group and I will conduct a meeting with them next week (pending). With the stolen computer, I am pushed back on my career goals.

    Tis all!

    • lincolnanthonyblades

      10/17/2012 at 1:41 PM

      Sorry to hear about the computer, but it's really cool you are still motivated and moving forward despite it all.

      The commercial is for an event I'm gonna be apart of next month and it should be ready in the next day or two. The response to the book has definitely been a blessing as well.

      Oh, and when is your period of rest?

      • 3Ls

        10/18/2012 at 7:03 PM

        You caught me. Well I think I'll make it Saturday at 6pm to 6pm Sunday.

    • GrandCentral

      10/17/2012 at 8:27 PM

      French classes, thats awesome. A class is the next thing I want to do. It will have to wait until 2013. Maybe a language or a dance class or some sort of cool activity. Those types of activities do wonders for us. Where are you taking your French class?

      • 3Ls

        10/18/2012 at 7:06 PM

        Hmm. I am goingto needto adopt your attitude towards this class. I live in Haiti where French is one of the official languages. So it would behoove me to learn it quick.

  4. GrandCentral

    10/17/2012 at 8:23 PM

    I'm going to go ahead and say that great minds think alike. This is like the third straight week you've pointed on an issue that I am currently dealing with. I have a nasty little habit of over committing myself and then I get super overwhelmed and start canceling and dropping on folks left and right and then I have a handful of people pissed off at me. I'm still trying to clean up the mess I made in April of this year.

    Last week I took a few more baby steps on starting my company. I created a time line for progress for the next seven months.

    I am an advocate for rest. I personally can't function without adequate rest. I like your 24-hour period concept. I think I already practice this subconsciously. However when I do this (I call it farting around) I feel so guilty and then on Sunday I get all frazzled and stressed. Just last weekend I woke up early on Saturday morning with all of these plans and the only thing that involved me, was my workout. That quickly changed and I ended up watching tv, taking a few naps, reading a book, did a training online for work and got some writing in. It felt great! Sunday, I got my act together and got back to business. For me it's usually Friday evening to Saturday afternoon. I have a session planned for this Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I definitely need to work on including this without guilt, and balance it.

    One practice that I have that I would like to add to the mix is awake late/to bed early. One night a week (my body usually forces me without my control) I go to sleep before 10pm. I am very refreshed when I wake up and the extra productivity goes a long way. One day a week (weekend) I sleep until I just wake up without an alarm.

    • lincolnanthonyblades

      10/18/2012 at 1:38 AM

      I find North American society is conducive to dangerously overworking ourselves. But your point about Arianna Huffington last week was well received by me!

      Congrats on making the timeline, that's a HUGE step!

    • Jesssssssssss

      10/18/2012 at 1:45 PM

      I overcommit as well. I feel guilty too when I'm not doing something for someone, but I'm learning to get over it. There is such freedom when you don't care anymore.

    • 3Ls

      10/18/2012 at 10:28 PM

      Nice work on getting the timeline started. It's a great way to pace yourself.

      As for overcommitting, you are going to need to learn to say no, my friend. It's better to agree to two things, get them done, than to try to agree to many and only getting a couple done. It's less stressful and more reputable. This goes for personal tasks to ourselves as well. Try that tactic and let me know how you fair.

  5. Bee

    10/18/2012 at 11:52 AM

    I have a social media/blogging conference tomorrow and Saturday, otherwise I would have made my rest period the same as Lincoln's – Friday eve to Saturday eve. I'll make it all day Sunday this week.

    This past week was pretty slow and frustrating on the goal front. I did do an interview with Dr. John Carlos (known for the "Black Power" protest at the 1968 Summer Olympics) and posted it on '83 To Infinity, which got a lot of great reviews and feedback. Other than that, I'm just taking things one day at a time…we'll see what next week brings.

    • lincolnanthonyblades

      10/18/2012 at 2:03 PM

      Oh snap I'm gonna go read that now!

    • 3Ls

      10/18/2012 at 10:30 PM

      A day at a time is what it takes.

      Great article by the way. My roommate and I learned a lot from it.

  6. Jesssssssss

    10/18/2012 at 1:44 PM

    Hey guys. Better late than never… I missed last week's posting (still beating myself up about it) but I had the flu. If you don't give your body rest it will MAKE you take it.

    I didn't post on my blog or do anything except rest. I also think that all of the emotional pull on me since the beginning of September had finally taken its toll. I was too worn to even think about writing. So my 9-5 didn't see or friends and fam.

    Good news is … I am back writing. Taking care of some personal items that are getting my finances back on track. I applied to be a blogger on a plus-sized fashion website (fingers crossed) and I lost 6 lbs!

    Missed you guys. You inspire me. I'm not giving up and I'm getting my rest!

    • lincolnanthonyblades

      10/18/2012 at 2:04 PM

      Missed you too and definitely focus on making yourself happy! We all understand!

    • GrandCentral

      10/18/2012 at 7:19 PM

      Jess we missed you! I have some stuff to share with you. I am going to DM you my email address via twitter. Be on the look out.

      You get a pass for missing last week. Your health comes first. Good job on your 6lbs. Remember slow and steady will yield you the best results. Keep pushing along, the best is yet to come!

  7. Funms

    10/19/2012 at 6:40 AM

    Congrats on your commercial, can't wait to see it.

    I think what I do need is rest. I have been in a rut in the last few days, just mentally exhausted and I feel like I am doing too many things at a time. When i try to slow down, I feel guilty but like you stated, rest is very necessary for productivity. I will try shutting down anything work related this saturday and watch movies all day. Sounds exciting already….lol

    I am almost done with my vision board. It is harder than I expected because I keep having doubts about my abilities to achieve my dreams but this pledge keeps me going so I will make sure I finish it.

    I think it's time I got a mentor or coach to further my entrepreneurial goals. Anyone have a successful mentor/coach experience?

    Weight loss is going well, the comments make me feel good, lost 2lbs this last week, total lost since I pledged 16lbs so pretty excited. I'm halfway done. Woohoo!

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