In a Better Sleep Council guide (sent to me by you-know-who) that was based on a study conducted to gauge the relationship between sleep (and lack thereof) and how productive people are at work I found something that gave me an ‘aha’ moment. These are some of the things I have been guilty of, especially when I was young and starting out, before I knew better and discovered the wonders of sleep.
The three quick fixes that people are more likely to employ than get a full night’s sleep:
33% of people drink coffee and other caffeinated drinks
At varsity I used to sit up all night while I was studying for an exam (more like sabotaging any chance I had of passing) and I drank can after can of energy drinks. I managed to scrape through my Honours and got an entry-level job at the (then) firm of my dreams. That was when I grew into a fully-fledged monster, if I wasn’t up half the night researching or balancing books that weren’t my responsibility (had to make myself standout) I was half asleep on my desk or declaring my undying love to the coffee machine.
17% of people take a nap
I napped on my desk during my lunch breaks, and let me just tell you that this didn’t help me one bit. My back ached; it took me a bit of time to get back into work mode and generally battered my body. The thing I hated the most on the days I had no other choice but to use lunchtime as naptime is that I didn’t get a chance to do some work.
For other companies though, this is a huge problem because their employees aren’t napping during lunchtime. Most people take 15 minute naps in between work.
18% of people go outside for air
This was at my second job, where we had a beautiful balcony and I often crept outside to for a bit of Jo’burg air. Doesn’t matter if it was hot or cold, I had to have at least two trips to the balcony, also not very productive or good for work. Mind you I don’t wok in the creative field so I know that one doesn't need for inspiration to hit before you can crunch numbers.
Imagine how much employees who take smoking breaks every hour are costing your company. These are the times I’m glad I only balance the chequebook and don’t have to sign any cheques.
There’s also a great bit about the role your mattress plays – as there always is – find the rest of the guide here.