It's Time For Us to Have "The Talk"
OK, this may be a bit uncomfortable for both of us. Please have a seat (or do an Active Squat Hold) . We know you've heard people talk about this at work. We care for you and your well-being, so we want you to get the truth, not rumors from your friends.
It's time to talk about the Birds and the ZZZZ's. We'll avoid eye contact during the awkward moments, but it's important to know the facts as this can affect your health and your future.
When a person and their job love each other very much, it's common for them to spend a lot of time together. It starts with 8-12 hours together at the office, but quickly advances to after-hours contact with phones and emails. Before you know it, a person and their job find themselves in bed together, preventing the person from going to sleep.
As rewarding as it can be spending time together in bed, sacrificing sleep has serious short and long term impacts on the person. And, embarrassingly, it can decrease the person's ummm, well, job "performance".
So let's chat about safe, healthy sleep practices:
- Sleep Quantity:
- Required sleep quantity varies between individuals, but the American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends a minimum of 7 hours for adults
- Using a sleep tracking device or app (Fitbit, Jawbone, Sleep Cycle ) can tell you how much restful sleep you're getting. Compare that with how you feel each morning to dial in what amount of sleep is appropriate for you
- Sleep Quality & Preparation:
- Stick to a schedule or, at a minimum, pre-bedtime routine that gets you in bed at a similar time each evening - we'll address shift-work and time-zone changes in another blog post
- Get sun exposure during the day, and keep lights dim at night
- Stop "business" or potentially stress-inducing activities 30 minutes prior to bed (stop checking work emails and social media, and we suggest turning off the TV)
- Create a cool, dry environment with fans or air conditioning
- If using electronics for reading, use dim lights (red LEDs if possible) and apps such as f.lux or iOS's Night Shift mode to reduce the blue light spectrum (this isn't pseudoscience-this is legit)
- When it's time to go to sleep, make your room as dark as possible:
- Use the clips on closet hangars to hold curtains closed
- Use extra towels to block light from under the door
- Use a washcloth or t-shirt to cover the light from the room alarm clock
OK, that wasn't too bad, now was it? We can make eye contact again. Sleep tight!
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