Empty coffee cups, sugary snack wrappers all over the desk, baggy eyes and barely functioning – these symptoms are red flags that you are in desperate need of more sleep.
According to a study by RAND, the culture of today’s society where you work until you drop and get a badge of honor for working late and getting up early is costing us not only our health but employers $411 billion in productivity and about 1.23 million working days per year.
Insufficient sleep has been deemed a public health problem by the CDC and linked to negative health effects. If you are lacking the Zs and in need of some ways to wind down the mental storm, try these sleep hacks.
Use Your Nose
Researchers have found evidence that certain scents may have an effect on your sleep. For example, lavender has been shown to lower one’s heart rate and calm the mind. Other scents such as vanilla and jasmine can also help you relax.
Sunshine Fun Time
Being locked up in an office all day isn’t fun for anyone. It’s time to go outside and soak up some sunlight. According to Livestrong the effects of sunlight and fresh air on the body can be rejuvenating and help you get some sleep.
“Soaking in daylight for at least 15 minutes at the same time every day, particularly in the morning hours, helps your body shut off a snooze-inducing chemical called melatonin, according to U.S. News & World Report. This will help your body develop a more stable night time and day time clock so you're less likely to have trouble sleeping when the sun goes down.”
Get a New Pillow
Buying a new mattress may not always be available in the budget today, but upgrading an old pillow is certainly more feasible. Overtime pillows acquire dust, dead skin cells and mold, they wear down and don’t support your head and neck. The Sleep Foundation recommends replacing your pillow every 18 months for health reasons. A good pillow can also help prevent against headaches or sore necks in the morning that could be effecting your productivity.
Regardless of the time of year, if your body is dehydrated, it can make you feel irritable or sluggish and effect your productivity.
According to the Sleep Foundation “Going to bed even mildly dehydrated can disrupt your sleep. Dehydration causes your mouth and nasal passages to become dry, setting you up for sleep-disruptive snoring and a parched throat and hoarseness in the morning. being dehydrated during night can compromise your alertness, energy, and cognitive performance the following day.”
Let it Go
Clearing your mind before you hit the pillow can help prevent against a restless night. If you’ve had a stressful day, set time aside before you go to bed to identify the root of your stress and figure out what you can and can’t control at the time. Journaling the problems could also be helpful to process one’s thoughts and solutions that you may have to address the next day.
Read more hacks to get a better night sleep at TechCo