Get more sleep- be happier at work

Sleep and happiness at work

I think we’ve all experienced how getting too little sleep makes us tired and crabby. So it can hardly be a good thing that:

  • 8 out of 10 Americans report at least one negative professional side-effect of getting a poor nightís sleep
  • Only 27 percent of Americans get the recommended eight hours of sleep each work night
  • 17 percent of Americans only get 5 hours of sleep Monday through Friday (Studies show that getting only 5 hours of sleep per night for a week induces an impairment level equal to a blood alcohol level of 0.1 percent.)
  • Of the overwhelming majority of workers suffering from sleep deprivation, 44 percent say they experience bad moods and unfriendliness

It’s a classic dilemma: We want to get more work done, so we work longer hours and sleep less. This in turn makes us less efficient at work, so we work even longer hours and sleep even less and, boom, you have a negative spiral going.

Also, spending your work day being tired and irritable is not exactly the recipe for happiness at work :o) What good is it to make your day an hour or two longer by sleeping less, if losing that sleep means you can’t really enjoy your day?

The Better Sleep Council has some very specific tips on how you can increase productivity by getting the sleep you need, including:

  1. Pay your sleep debt. Itís important to schedule 8 hours of sleep each night (7.5 to 8.5 is optimal) and maintain a regular sleep and wake schedule, even on the weekend.
  2. Bedroom business. Use your bedroom for sleep and sex only.
  3. Kick the caffeine habit. Avoid tea, coffee and soft drinks close to bedtime.

Or maybe the solution is different for you. According to a new movement called the B-Society, some people are just not made to function optimally early in the morning. Even if they do get 8 hours of sleep, they only really kick into gear around 10 in the morning, and businesses should cater to these people also.

The first Danish company has just been b-certified, meaning they acknowledge that this is how some people work, and structure their jobs accordingly.

To me this is just common sense. Few business really need every employee to show op around the same time and could they just as easily leave this up to the individual employee, so they can decide what works best for them.

That will certainly make them happier at work!

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5 thoughts on “Get more sleep- be happier at work”

  1. “Even if they do get 8 hours of sleep, they only really kick into gear around 10 in the morning, and businesses should cater to these people also.”

    Yes, yes! I am definitely not a morning person. Even if I have slept enough, it takes me time to get started. And indeed, before 10, I’m usually pretty oozy.

  2. True. Sleep is a huge factor in our performance. I believe that having enough sleep will eliminate those sleepy times which is affecting our task and give us enough productive time to finish our work.

  3. Stephanie: And plenty of people are that way. Expecting them to function at 7AM is just torture :o)

    Howie: Exactly! So how come we keep cutting into our sleep time to “get more done”?

  4. I think the blame should go to caffeine. Even though we know that lack of sleep will make us dozy at work, we still choose to do it because of caffeine.
    Without caffeine or any other means of staying awake, I believe that people wouldn’t stay up late at all.

  5. The more I sleep the less i get done at work. Seriously. I need to be uncomfortable to foster the most productive and aggressive state of mind.

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