World Sleep Day

Getting a good night’s sleep isn’t just necessary so that your body can rest and repair, it’s important for your mind, too. 

Mar 12, 2020 | Feature

Friday 13 March is World Sleep Day – yes, it’s a thing.   

With the average person spending a third of their lives asleep, it’s fair to say that sleep is instrumental for our overall wellbeing – physically and mentally.

Not sleeping well can affect your performance at work, in ways you might not have realised. Here are our top tips on how to catch more Zs and be your best at work.

Be accessor-wise

It’s not just about the hours, it’s the quality of sleep you get. There are some amazing accessories out there, from eye masks and ear plugs, to pillow spray, sunlight alarms and even weighted blankets. Do your research and invest in anything that will have you sleeping better and raring to go in the morning. What snooze button?

Caffeine

A lot of us are guilty of reaching for the coffee after a bad night, and then experiencing the caffeine crash that inevitably comes along a few hours later. This can leave you even more tired and easily distracted, and you might struggle to focus at work. As a natural alternative, try lemon water or apple cider vinegar in the morning, or cut down your caffeine intake throughout the day so you’re less stimulated in the evening.

 

Find your level

Everyone needs different amounts of sleep – the recommended eight hours won’t work for everyone. So don’t panic if you need more, or have to make do with less (all you parents out there!). Keep a sleep diary to help determine what your optimum amount of sleep is, and then you can work backwards from there. If you’ve got a big meeting, you can adjust your bedtime routine the night before so you feel fresh.

 

All about the balance

The increase in flexible working has brought many benefits, but it has made it harder to separate your work life from your home life. This can impact your sleep as it’s harder to switch off. Have a cut-off time for work that’s a few hours before bed, and resist the urge to pick up emails on your phone when you’re in your bedroom – it should be a place for relaxing, not distracting.

 

Ditch the devices

Put your tech to bed a few hours before you go yourself. The blue light won’t help you to wind down, and whether you’re scrolling social or searching for the perfect GIF to send your friends, the constant connection won’t translate to a good nights sleep. Create a bedtime routine that helps you relax instead and stick to it for a weeks to see how it impacts your overall sleeping patterns.

 

Take note

Worrying and overthinking are both sleep thieves. One way to get a handle on this is to write things down, whether it’s your to-do list or your frantic I NEED TO DO THIS TOMORROW 2am thoughts. There’s something soothing about stopping ideas from bouncing around in your head and putting them on paper, and it will help you prioritise. Keep a notepad near your bed if you need it, and get scribbling.

 

Sleep mythbusters

 

  • Dreams don’t affect how you sleep, even if they’re strange or scary it doesn’t mean it’s impacted your sleep quality
  • Insomnia isn’t just not sleeping, it also includes waking up too early and not being able to fall back asleep, frequent awakenings, and waking up feeling unrefreshed
  • Not sleeping doesn’t cause illness but sleeping well can help to boost your immune system

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