Texas billionaire T. Boone Pickens once said, “Work eight hours and sleep eight hours and make sure that they are not the same hours.” I don’t know if he was advising against sleeping on the job, or working too much, but he was clear about getting 8 hours of sleep. The average American gets 6:51 of sleep on weeknights. A respected study found top performers in various fields averaged 8:36 of sleep. What difference does a good night’s sleep make? A huge one! Here are some reasons why:
Makes you more alert and helps you think clearly
Balances hormone levels that lead to better food choices and weight management
Helps the body repair itself on a cellular level
Increases serotonin levels in the brain that impacts mood, sexual desire and function, appetite, sleep, memory and learning, body temperature regulation, and even social behaviors
Sleeping well should be a priority in any workplace health promotion effort. Here are a few ideas for promoting quality sleep among your colleagues:
Invite a sleep expert in to talk about the benefits of sleeping well.
Survey workers to measure sleep difficulties. Offer professional resources to those interested.
Invite people to take a WebMD quiz on sleep. Go to: http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/rm-quiz-sleep .
Conduct a “15-Minute Challenge” – go to sleep 15 minutes earlier or wake up 15 minutes later for a number of days, and see if it makes a difference in energy level.
Promote a “Sleep Journal Challenge” – record the amount and quality of sleep each day, as well as observations on how it affected you.
Host a “Read Yourself to Sleep Challenge” – expand the mind, relax the body, and bring on sleep with your favorite book! Count pages read and time slept.
M. J. White is the creator of “Lean Wellness”, a radically different approach to transforming health and well-being at work. It is inspired and supported from the top-down, but driven from the bottom-up by continuous learning and improvement. The result is a thriving work environment where people pursue becoming their best selves. To learn more, visit the website at: www.leanwellness.us or email him at: email@example.com.