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Nine Ways to Sleep Better & Be More Productive at Work

This blog post is inspired by a post on Harvard Business Review regarding one executive who changed his life around by going to bed earlier and waking up later.

This got us thinking. Seriously, have you ever noticed when you get a poor night’s sleep, your following day may feel completely off? Maybe your meals are off, too and you’re not as focused working on deadline, whatever the case may be, here’s a quick refresher for nine ways to sleep better, courtesy of The National Sleep Foundation.

  • Your bedroom is your castle. That is, according to their Web site, create a comfortable sleeping environment which includes a top notch mattress and pillows, free of distractions. (Yes, we’re talking to you. Keep that BlackBerry or iPhone in your living room, not the boudoir.)
  • Your bedroom should be dark. This goes without saying but if it’s too well lit, you may want to invest in durable curtains and shades to block out the light to get some shut eye.
  • Create a routine and make sure it’s relaxing. This means no intense TV shows or mystery murder novels before bed. Their site indicates, “Allow enough time to wind down and relax before going to bed.”
  • Relax until you get drowsy. If you’re trying to snooze with all your might and 20 minutes pass and you’re still wide awake, the Sleep Foundation suggests getting out of bed to do something relaxing in dim light until you start feeling sleepy.
  • Keep the room dimly lit. When it’s close to your bedtime, try to keep your room dimly lit before shutting the lights off completely.
  • Exercise regularly but avoid working out close to your bedtime.
  • Use ear plugs to block out the noise. You can also use a sound conditioner as well.
  • Avoid caffeine. While we’re on the subject of diet, the site also recommends avoidin large meals and alcohol right before bedtime.
  • And while we’re on the subject of sleep, resist the temptation of a late afternoon nap or even evening nap, unless of course, you work a night shift. If you absolutely must take a nap, the site recommends keeping it less than 45 minutes long and before 3 p.m.
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