Getting a full night’s rest isn’t always possible.
Most of us know how important it is to get a full night’s sleep to be alert and productive during the day. But life doesn’t always allow us to get the sleep we desperately need. However, there are ways to be productive with little sleep.
Sleep is vital to staying healthy. If we don’t get enough rest, we may find it is difficult to function and to be productive with little sleep. When we sleep, our body repairs itself — our heart and blood vessels get repaired, and our brain creates new pathways. Getting enough sleep at night keeps us safe and functioning. Missing a good night’s rest once in a while will have effects, but they won’t be detrimental. Truly negative health effects begin to rear their ugly heads if you become sleep-deprived over long periods of time.
Even if you don’t get the required six to eight hours necessary to ensure a healthy, focused day, there are still things you can do to be productive with little sleep. Below is a list of some things that may help get you through the day.
Get Up Immediately
While it may be tempting to hit the snooze button after a restless night for a few more minutes of sleep, this could potentially make it harder for you to wake up, and might make you late. As soon as your alarm goes off, climb out of bed and start your day.
Drink a small amount of coffee to give your body a jolt, and step outside into the sun. This will help reset your brain’s circadian rhythms and wake you up faster. Eat a light, healthy breakfast full of protein, whole grains and fruit. Avoid sugary foods. Even though they’ll give you a quick boost in energy, it won’t last long, and the crash will leave you feeling more drained than you already were.
Focus on the Most Important Work First
Once you get to work, focus on the tasks that require the most attention first to stay productive and alert. As the day wears on, there’s no doubt your energy and motivation will both start to flag. Getting your most important tasks out of the way at the beginning of the day will ensure you do them well, even when you’ve had very little rest.
You may also decide to focus on tasks you enjoy doing first — whether they are important or not. Being passionate about a project is a great way to energize yourself and help you wake up. It may give you the boost you need to get through the rest of your day and tackle the more challenging tasks after the fun ones.
Consider rescheduling meetings. It’s hard to focus when you’re tired, and your coworkers and clients deserve to have the best you. You don’t want to seem grumpy or unable to communicate clearly due to lack of sleep.
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There are numerous benefits to getting up from your desk and spending some time outside. From stress relief to short-term memory improvement to boosting mental health, taking a walk outside can also help restore some of your mental energy. If you’re exhausted from a poor night’s sleep, getting outside and getting a little exercise in the fresh air might be just what you need to get through the rest of your day.
Take a Nap
This may not sound like the most ideal thing to do at work, but getting 20 minutes of sleep during the day might be enough to restore your energy levels and help you feel better. For your mental health and energy, find a place to close your eyes for a bit.
In an ideal world, we would always get a good night’s rest so we can be productive and focused at work. Since that doesn’t always happen, there are ways to get your work done when attempting to function on very little sleep.
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