Are you struggling to get a good night’s rest? Find yourself waking up in the middle of the night and having trouble falling back asleep? It’s possible that work stress or even your schedule are impacting your sleep. Sleep is critical for health and wellness, so you need to take it seriously when it’s impacting your day. Here are some of the best tips to help you get a better night’s rest.
Take Extra Care with Food and Exercise
Especially if you work an odd shift, it can be very difficult to take care of yourself when trying to find the right balance between work and life. But even for those who have a regular 9 to 5 job, nutrition plays a big role in wellness. The same is true for exercise. If you are navigating an odd shift, make sure you eat a full meal before you clock in. Bring snacks to keep your energy up throughout the night. There’s a good chance that you’ll have trouble finding a good meal during the long evening hours, to pack a good “lunch” for yourself. And when you’re home, make sure you get the rest you need.
For everyone, it’s important to make good food choices to help get better sleep. A meal heavy in carbohydrates can slow you down midway through your day, but eating small, protein-rich snacks every few hours will help you keep up your metabolism and also help keep you on your feet.
Exercise can also be a challenge to fit into your workday, no matter what your schedule looks like. But don’t fall victim to the 24-hour gym trap. Working out close to when your body should be preparing for sleep can throw off your natural sleep cycle. If you find yourself needing to choose between sleep and a trip to the gym, make sure you are prioritizing a balanced approach. But make sure you remember that physical fitness is an important part of keeping yourself healthy and able on the job.
Limit Working After Hours
Logging on after work hours, even just to follow up on a few emails, can ramp up your energy and your hormones such that when it is time to rest, your body struggles to wind down again. When this becomes a habit, it’s difficult to train our body and our brain to get back into a good pattern of restful nights. While everyone does have the occasional late night, it’s important to avoid getting pulled into a cycle of restless nights and fatigued days.
Try to Avoid Coffee in the Afternoon
A hot cup of coffee is a great way to start the morning. But if you’re trying to keep your energy up with a cup or two in the afternoon, you could be sabotaging your sleep in the evening. Most people know that caffeine stimulates the body’s nervous system, and keeps you alert for longer. But that effect can linger on much longer than you might expect. Doctors recommend avoiding caffeine intake after 4 pm or even by noon if you’re more sensitive to its effects. Instead of a cup of coffee or tea in the late afternoon, consider a caffeine-free beverage to give yourself a boost, or even better, take a walk or stretch to perk up and get an energy boost.
Sleeping Too Much on the Weekends
Those so-called catch-up hours on the weekend are probably doing you more harm than good. Instead of catching up on sleep, which doesn’t actually work, try to get into a regular rhythm that spreads out your sleep consistently across the week. Limit your work hours to stay consistent as well to help maintain that balance over the course of your regular week. Your body doesn’t know when it is the weekend, but it does know when it is nighttime. Lean into the consistency you can control, where you can control it.
For more advice on how to manage your wellness at work, connect with the happiness experts at Happy Faces Records Management.