Are you looking for an effective way to improve your productivity at work? Beyond to-do lists, calendars, and coffee, a good night’s sleep will improve your productivity, mood, focus, and focus. For many people, getting a good night’s sleep every night is easier said than done. Use these tips to sleep better and improve your productivity at work.
Benefits of getting enough sleep
The quality of your sleep and your work go hand in hand. Getting enough sleep improves your mood, your health and the quality of your work. When you sleep, your body repairs itself. Your heart rate and blood pressure drop.
Your body releases hormones that help your immune system beat infections. If you’re exposed to germs at work, getting good sleep lowers your risk of getting sick and helps you recover faster if you do get sick.
Your mood, mental health and cognitive functions improve when you get enough and good quality sleep. Your brain creates memories while you sleep. Neural connections made during sleep stimulate problem-solving skills and learning. You will wake up refreshed and energized.
What is sleep deprivation?
Sleep deprivation is a lack of sleep. Most adults need seven to eight hours of uninterrupted sleep per night. About 35% of American adults receive less than that. Almost 70% say they are regularly sleep deprived. Sleep deprivation is common among shift workers, those with two or more jobs, and caregivers. Untreated sleep deprivation is associated with sleep disturbances and anxiety.
Symptoms of sleep deprivation
Symptoms of sleep deprivation vary from person to person. You may feel tired, groggy, or drowsy when you stand up. You can doze off during meetings even if you’re not bored. Mood swings, decreased reaction time, and decreased ability also suggest that you are suffering from sleep deprivation.
How sleep deprivation affects work
Losing just an hour or two of sleep a night for a few nights in a row has a huge impact on your functioning. This is equivalent to missing a whole night’s sleep. You can be irritable with clients or colleagues.
Your cognitive abilities could drop. Your response time may increase, which could affect your performance. Difficulty in decision making, poor concentration, and difficulty completing tasks are also common with sleep deprivation. You may lose confidence in your abilities. Sleep deprivation leads to more absences from the workplace and financial loss.
No more accidents
You are also at a higher risk of workplace accidents and injuries if you lack sleep. Driving with insufficient sleep is equivalent to driving with a blood alcohol level of 0.05%, which exceeds the intoxication limit in all 50 US states and territories.
How to improve your sleep
When sleep deprivation interferes with your work, you can take these steps to improve the situation.
Improve sleep hygiene
Sleep and wake up at the same time every day, including weekends and holidays. This promotes a better circadian rhythm. Exercise every day. Go outside and take in the fresh air and the sun. However, avoid exercising within two hours of bedtime. Avoid nicotine, alcohol, and caffeine within four hours of bedtime. Heavy meals also interfere with sleep.
Create a comfortable bedroom
Choose room-darkening curtains. Install a ceiling fan or use a portable fan for white noise and air circulation. Consider using a sleep mask and ear plugs if sound and light are interfering with your sleep. Set the thermostat to 68 degrees Fahrenheit or less.
Create a bedtime routine
Avoid using electronic devices within an hour of bedtime. This includes your smartphone, laptop, and TV. Blue light stimulates your brain. Do something calm and relaxing, like coloring, knitting, stretching, reading, meditating, taking a bath, or listening to soft music.
Create a good sleeping environment
Take the clutter out of your bedroom. Avoid working, paying bills, or exercising in your bedroom. Go elsewhere to make calls or manage tasks. Use your bedroom for sleep and privacy and nothing else.
Choose the right mattress
If your mattress is 10 years or older, replace it. Old mattresses don’t provide enough support and may contain allergens that cause congestion and coughing. Choose a supportive mattress. If you get hot while you sleep, consider a cooling gel mattress. Select memory foam if you have chronic pain. Get the biggest mattress your bedroom and budget can accommodate.
Get out of bed
If you don’t fall asleep within 15 minutes, get out of bed. Do something else, like reading or writing in a journal. Don’t obsessively check your clock or phone to see what time it is.
Making these changes takes some time. You will notice gradual improvements in the quality and duration of your sleep. Better amount and quality of sleep will increase the productivity of your workplace and help you feel and perform your best.
Interesting related article: “What is mental health?” “