Nodding off at your desk? There’s this thing called sleep for that.
Read on to find out how sleep deprivation affects your day at the office.
We don’t always get sleep (or certainly not enough of it), though it’s something we all love and need. If you’re not getting enough quality sleep, and your career depends on focus and productivity, it’s likely that you’re holding yourself back professionally.
The relationship between sleep and productivity is clear –
Sleep deprivation is a productivity killer.
It’s also an employee health issue. Large organisations are now actively pursuing ways to gently encourage their workers in the right direction. Sleep experts were brought in at Goldman Sachs, whilst Johnson and Johnson offer employees a digital health-coaching program. The scheme involves an online sleep diary and relaxation videos for mobile devices. Thirdly, Google hosts ‘sleeposium’ events.
Based on facts (on top of feelings), Harvard released a study last year on the relationship between sleep deprivation and work productivity. It found that insomnia leads to the loss of 11.3 days’ worth of productivity each calendar year, for the average worker. It equates to $2280 lost. This shows lack of sleep to be a bigger issue than we first thought; for even a small business with 15 employees, that equals nearly 170 days of lost productivity (the equivalent of $34300). What’s even more shocking is that insomnia may be responsible for an estimated loss in productivity worth $63.2 billion nationally.
Want to land that big promotion rather than mindlessly stumbling through your career without enjoying upward mobility? It may be time to get some better sleep then…
Forbes have suggested three ways to get better quality sleep and advise that, because sleep is such a personal thing, you need to learn what your body needs and how different levels of sleep affect daily productivity. The following tips should help you identify a healthy sleep routine that empowers you to perform at your best.
Your bedroom sleep environment plays a critical role in the quality of sleep you enjoy. As well as light and room temperature, pay specific attention to your mattress. Whether you’re a side sleeper, back sleeper, stomach sleeper, or you mix it up, an all-natural surface is much better to sleep on compared to nasty polyester. Level of firmness and support is also very important to ensure the best night’s sleep.
- Afternoon and Nighttime habits
Your habits and routine have more of an impact on your sleep than you know. Decisions you make at 3pm, for example, can directly influence your ability to fall asleep at night. View your sleep cycle as an around-the-clock responsibility. Throughout the day, spend some time outdoors to ensure exposure to natural sunlight (helping to keep your melatonin regulated). After around 2pm, caffeinated beverages should be avoided. Alcohol consumption should be kept to a minimum as, although it can help you fall asleep, your sleep may be restless as the liquid depressant wears off. Finally, make sure you switch off a good while before your head hits the pillow – that means unplugging from work or social media.
- Morning time
Your mind and body need time to adjust so try not to stay in bed until the last possible second. A half hour period where you’re free to do something chilled (reading a good book, cooking a healthy breakfast or going for a walk) allows you to wake up properly before the demands of the day unfold.
Remember that your sleep needs will change over time so pay attention to the signs your body gives you. Don’t be afraid to make adjustments if and when required.
Sleep and productivity are directly intertwined and you can’t enjoy the latter without committing to an appropriate time of consistent, uninterrupted rest. Invest in the perfect mattress and adjust your daily schedule where appropriate because setting a conscious goal of improving your sleep habits will lead to great things for your career.
Sleep well, live well.