“My creative juices start flowing anytime after 5pm, with the mandatory stop for an evening sunset surf.“
Nicole lives in Cape Town and loves a good adventure. She is running a travel and lifestyle blog, and uploads weekly videos to her youtube channel. We talked to her about sleeping while traveling the world.
“... a time when our minds filter out the useless memories from the day & process the more important ones.“
What are you doing during the day?
This is my first year being self-employed after graduating in brand leadership in 2015. During the day I usually start things off with a surf or a run, followed by emails & then planning or writing new blog posts about my travels or general issues on my mind. I am currently trying to make weekly YouTube videos so you might catch me either filming or editing for the day.
Where did you recent travels lead you to?
My recent travels took me to California. Our main reason for going there was to attend VidCon, a big Youtube convention however a bunch of my friends & I went out to LA a week earlier & stayed in Venice Beach just absorbing the sun & sea. Ben & I then ventured to New York for one week after that. Now I’m in the UK before heading back to Cape Town very soon.
What time do you usually get up?
I usually try and get up before 9am & battle to sleep in anytime past that, however I am not a morning person and prefer to keep to myself whilst grumpily making coffee.
How does your alarm sound?
I have a sound of ducks quacking. It’s getting annoying.
What are the first things you do in the morning?
I check my emails on my phone first, and then make my way slowly over to the kitchen where I make my mandatory mug of coffee before heading outside to do a surf check. If there are waves, I’ll go for a morning surf & if there aren’t, I’ll head out for a run to get my day started.
Do you like having breakfast? And what do you have?
I’m not a big fan of breakfast. I usually like to grab something quick like a smoothie, or avo on toast. Otherwise my coffee and a banana will suffice until lunchtime.
Any breakfast or brunch places in Cape Town you recommend?
I love this place near my house called Petit Fours. It overlooks Table Mountain and the beautiful Atlantic Ocean, and on stormy days, the waves break right over the rocks across the road while you sip on a warm drink! Another great spot is a place called Melissa’s.
What time of the day are you most productive or creative?
My creative juices start flowing anytime after 5pm, with the mandatory stop for an evening sunset surf. I’ll usually be most productive from 8pm until midnight.
Do you think sleep influences your work?
Most definitely. I love my sleep, and can’t concentrate and lack motivation when I am feeling fatigued. Usually a little bit of exercise is a quick solution, however if I’m tired, my thoughts will be on sleep and not on my work.
Do you think you get enough sleep?
I go through cycles. When I’m at home, I usually get a solid 8 hours of sleep however when I’m traveling, I have a habit of staying up until the early hours of the morning whether it’s with friends or doing work & therefore end up coming back home feeling completely fatigued.
Where do you sleep best?
In a bed. I’m a fussy sleeper, I can’t sleep anywhere except in a bed... or on a couch.
Any rituals before going to bed?
What do you keep on your nightstand?
A collection of beach shells, the book that I’m reading, my lamp, there is usually a glass of water, my phone and a picture of my boyfriend & I.
Do you remember your dreams?
Sometimes I do. I went through a stage where I was having hallucinations just before I’d wake up. I got really scared because I’d never experienced anything like this before, and I felt like I was awake, aware that I was dreaming & seeing my surroundings as they were in my bedroom, however items like a top hanging over my chair would turn into a stingray. I once thought that my room wall was falling down in a storm and leapt out of my bed to hold it back up, screaming ‘NO’, cutting my foot open on my bedside table in the process. That was when I started getting scared to go to sleep at night.
What do you wear while sleeping?
I always wear a baggy T-Shirt, usually stolen from my boyfriend’s closet, and sleep-shorts or my underwear.
Describe your bed in 3 words.
Cosy, soft and heavenly.
The most memorable spot you’ve ever fallen asleep?
Outside Kings Cross Station (London) with three of my friends. We couldn’t afford a hotel for the night. It was probably one of the best & worst nights that I’ve had.
How do you sleep while traveling?
Any tips overcoming a jetlag?
I used to try and fight jetlag however I just go with the flow now or re-adjust my schedule if it has to be. For some reason, flying East absolutely kills me, so when I know that it’s going to be particularly bad, I do try and fight it by sticking to only sleeping at night & pushing through during the day.
What do you think happens when we sleep?
I think that it’s the time for our bodies to push reset. It’s a way to clear our minds and process through any complications or stress that we are feeling at the time and a time when our minds filter out the useless memories from the day & process the more important ones.
How many sheep do you count?
No sheep. After one, I’ve already forgot that I should be counting.
What do you want to dream about tonight?
An adventure. A fun adventure where nothing bad happens. Maybe a surf.
"Recently my dad & I did a little camping trip away together. We went to Gamkaberg Nature Reserve situated in the Karoo, an extremely desolate, arid region in South Africa. Because the light pollution is close to zero, the stars are beyond incredible! We had just finished up a ‘braai’ (South African for barbeque) and I could tell that my dad was really letting go of all of his work stress in this moment, as he stared up at the canvas of stars above."
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“I feel like my bed is a place of peace and comfort. I get to be my true self.“