There are many changes that come along with transitioning from the student world to the work world.
One of the biggest changes new grads can face is in their sleep schedule.
Getting enough sleep is important for everyone, but it’s especially important for new grads as the change in routine tends to be a big one. Gone are the days where you could grab a few extra minutes (or hours) of sleep if you needed to.
The side effects of sleep deprivation are scary, so we’ve put together some tips to make getting enough shut-eye simple!
1. Set your routine in place
The first step in ensuring that you get enough sleep is setting a routine and sticking to it. To do this, determine what time you have to wake up and count back seven to nine hours—that’s your bedtime!
For example, if you need to wake up at 6:30 a.m. you’ll need to go to bed between 9:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. depending on how much rest your body needs.
2. Turn off electronics
Set a curfew for your electronics. Researchers have found there might be a correlation between using electronics before bed and sleep quality. In order to fall asleep, the body needs time to wind down and it can’t do that after looking at the bright lights of a television, computer or smartphone.
To make sure that your sleep isn’t being hampered by your electronics, try to stay away from using them an hour or two before you hit the pillow.
3. Stay away from sugar and caffeine
There’s nothing like a sweet treat or warm drink before bed, but try to stay away from anything with high sugar or caffeine levels as the energy boost they provide will interfere with your sleep cycle.
If this doesn’t do the trick, try cutting back throughout the day as well.
4. Avoid problematic plans
You might not be on the same schedule as your friends and family, but you don’t need to be sleep deprived because of it. If your friends’ plans are tiring you out and affecting your work, don’t be afraid to pass on them every now and then. This doesn’t mean that you should become a hermit, but be aware of when you need to put sleep first and socializing second.
5. Wind down
Winding down before you go to bed can be anything that relaxes you, whether it’s reading a book, organizing your things for the next day, going for a walk, stretching or talking with your roommate. Whatever makes you feel less anxious—do it! This will help you get ready for a good night’s sleep.
It may take a while for the routine you establish to take hold. The important thing is to be consistent and keep trying. Don’t let one late night or difficult morning push you back into bad habits.
Photo Credit: Ennui