Posted on November 7, 2020 at 4:39 am

Health & Beauty Lifestyle

Sleep and Productivity: How sleep affects your work performance 

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In a world based around work and productivity, it’s not unusual that sleep is the first thing to suffer. Oftentimes it seems like there aren’t enough hours in the day, so what’s wrong about shaving a few off of your nightly sleep? Apparently, sacrificing sleep could also imply sacrificing productivity and, in the long run, your physical and mental health.

Sleep is an essential part of your wellness, and if you’ve been ignoring a few hours night just to get more work done (or perhaps enjoy more of the day after work), you could be putting yourself at risk and weaken the quality of your work. To get the most out of your potential, you mustn’t neglect sleep. Unfortunately, in today’s fast-paced society, that can be easier said than done. To get the most out of your potential, you mustn’t neglect sleep.

Sleep and Productivity: How sleep affects your work performance 
Foto von Min An von Pexels

Sleep affects innovation and creativity

Poor sleeping affects our prefrontal cortex of the brain- the area accountant for creativity and innovation, and self-control. One study found that going 24 hours without sleep considerably impairs our ability to make updates on planning in light of new information or thinking flexibly. Therefore, we not only get through fewer tasks when we’re sleepy, the quality of our work performance suffers too. Another study found that professionals work an average of 4.5 hours at home weekly, suggesting that they have to work outside of the working schedule just to keep with their workload.

People taking their work home with them can cause a domino effect on the entire working procedures, especially for businesses with a short schedule to follow. This, in turn, increases the risk of burnout and affects creativity and innovation due to worrying about work.

We need to switch off

As our societies and our cities progressively become active 24/7, our working schedule follows suit. Not to mention that in today fast-paced world we quite literally carry our work around in our pockets. While smartphones make our lives more suitable in many ways, they come with the price of never really switching off – and it’s predominantly. 

One study has found that almost 50% of Australians, mostly aged 20-30, cannot spend one week without using their mobile devices in bed, which could mean that sleep problems are more common amongst our under the 30s than those over 30.

Short-naps are magic

No, this is not a drill – it’s an actual fact that may or not change your life. Several studies) including one from Harvard and one from NASA) have shown that only a 20 to 30-minute nap improves our productivity and alertness.

 What’s the trick, anyway? Find a foam mattress to sink in, and time your nap right. Not too litle, as you need enough to feel a distinction and not for too much either, because you don’t want to fall into a sleep that could mean you wake up feeling moody. “just right” translates in about 20 or 30 minutes straight after lunch or early afternoon.

No sleep, no emotional stability

Relationships and work performance may be compromised if you’re easily upset and irritable. But everything has a reason – this negative behaviour is strongly exacerbated by lack of sleep. A night of poor sleep will make it harder for someone to stop doing it. Studies have shown that poor sleep can encourage low self-regulation and negative workplace attitudes. The emotional turmoil of employees can make it even more difficult for companies to fully operate, leading to financial loss.

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