Sleep = High Performance

Updated: Jan 29



“Sleep is the golden chain that ties health and our bodies together.”

~ Thomas Dekker

Corey Boutwell

04/12/2019

Article Quick Glimpse

  1. Sleep is directly related to performance.

  2. Your body needs good quality sleep to function as it wants to.

  3. Hormones and stress affect your sleep.

  4. Being conscious and aware of your stress and using meditation can be extremely. beneficial to getting good quality sleep.

  5. Tracking your sleep can be done using Oura rings, watches and apps.

  6. Blue light blocking glasses can improve sleep quality.

  7. Your body has a tank of MSD’s (micro stress doses) it can be exposed to until cortisol is affected. Prolonged exposure to MSD’s can inhibit sleep.

  8. Earthing is the practice of getting outside on the grass, dirt or sand with no shoes on so the electrons from the earth to recharge your body.

  9. Scroll below to see what to do and what not to do to increase sleep performance

  10. Sleep can enhance work performance.

  11. Scroll down to attempt the sleep score checklist. The checklist gives you an overall score and allows you to choose what sleep practices are best suited to you. You should only choose the practices that resonate with you, no point giving a score to something you are not interested or will never try.

Importance


As you may have noticed people really care about their sleep. This was made evident to me in regards to how many people have come to my sleep presentations and the demand for awareness around sleep demonstrated by people in the workplace, friends, family and clients.


Sleep is directly related to cognitive performance. The better quality sleep you get the better your performance. You’re better at making correct decisions, split decisions, working under pressure, you’ll recover from distractions faster, prevent burnout, your memory will improve, your energy will improve, and you’ll make fewer mistakes.


As a third of Australians in a social study cited sleep as their top concern and the financial cost of poor sleep quality in Australia 16-17 was $26.2 billion (with a B) we know how critically important it is to get a good night’s rest. Many of these costs come from absenteeism, presentism and sickness.


What would it be worth to a business, an industry or a country if their people improved their sleep quality? As we can see above ...billions!

The good news is that the cost of treating sleep is small.


Employees have the responsibility to perform well at work. As performance is directly related to sleep quality, employees are obligated to try to get a good night’s sleep, wouldn’t you agree.


The problem is, how many people do you know who actually know how to get a good sleep, what they can do to get a good sleep, what they should not do to get a good sleep?

Hopefully, this article will increase your awareness on this and give you some knowledge that you can use towards improving your routine and your sleep quality.

Critical Statistics


  • More than half of the Australian workers surveyed don’t get enough sleep. 22% reporting feeling un-refreshed or exhausted during work, putting them at increased risk of road and work accidents.

  • The healthiest employees were nearly three times more productive while at work than the least healthy.

  • In the business world, jet lag or just a bad night’s sleep can cloud thoughts and diminish the ability to sustain concentration for any length of time.

  • Short-term sleep deprivation can have devastating effects on mood and mental performance.

  • Sleep loss can be directly related to obesity.

  • People know their sleep is routinely insufficient because they can’t function at normal levels of alertness, concentration and emotional control.

  • The components of total costs (total $66.3 billion in 2016-17), financial costs of 26.2 billion were estimated to be: $802 per person with inadequate sleep.

  • Sleep is essential for cognitive performance, especially memory consolidation.

  • One third of Australian respondents (35 per cent) cited sleep deprivation as their top concern, followed closely by mental health worries (26 per cent).

  • A federal government inquiry in 2019 called for sleep to be made a national priority, to be recognised as a “third” pillar of a healthy lifestyle alongside diet and exercise.

Sleep Science


This model shows that a good cortisol spike in the morning = potentially good sleep.


The production of your melatonin hormone increasing = good quality sleep.


The model above demonstrates the ideal cortisol and melatonin levels throughout the day. Positive stress like a run or sunlight and negative stress like being stuck in traffic can affect your cortisol levels.


Cortisol is your stress hormone. It’s natural curve is to spike in the morning and decrease during the day. As the afternoon arises cortisol should decrease to the point that allows the melatonin hormone to take over. The melatonin hormone is what allows you to really relax and get into good quality sleep states. MSD’s and other stressors increase cortisol or prevent it from decreasing to a level where melatonin can rise. If melatonin is prevented from rising…..Hello poor quality sleep.


The goal for good quality sleep is to have a healthy cortisol spike in the morning and wind stress down during the day to let melatonin rise and achieve a good quality sleep.


Please click here to read an article that shows you how to nail your cortisol curve.


Stress will inhibit your steadily decreasing cortisol levels so to prevent this from occurring, meditation can be an option.


Please click here to read an article on meditation that also provides you with some great guided meditation links.


Note* Good quality sleep starts as soon as you wake up.


Basically, to get a good sleep it is ideal to have your:

  1. Cortisol to rise in the morning (by using positive stress)

  2. Calming down as the day progresses

  3. Relaxing at the end of the day to allow melatonin rise and get a restful sleep

How to Track Your Sleep


We all know how important sleep is, so how do you get a better sleep?

Getting a good night's sleep varies from person to person.

If you can track it, you can find out what works best for you. If you know what works best for you, you can choose to improve your sleep quality.


The Oura Ring (https://ouraring.com/)


Most advanced heart rate tracking and sleep technology on the market at the moment.

The Oura ring is best for telling you your overall readiness score each morning for performance.


It measures and shows your:

  • Heart Rate

  • Resting Heart Rate

  • Heart Rate Variability

  • Calories to Burn

  • Calories Burnt

  • Links in with all other health apps

  • Body temperature

  • REM Sleep

  • Light Sleep

  • Deep Sleep

  • Awake periods

  • Sleep efficiency

  • How long it takes to fall asleep

  • Recovery Index

  • Training frequency and volume

Sleep Watch (and other sleep tracking software on watches)

https://www.sleepwatchapp.com/


This app is not as accurate as the Oura ring but it does monitor:

  • Deep sleep

  • Light sleep

  • Heart rate

  • Heart rate dip

As these are being monitored you can see where you need to make improves, and what your doing during the day is giving you better or worse quality sleep.


Sleep Journal


Probably one of the most effective ways to monitor your sleep, its free and its best to do paired with a sleep tracking device.


Daily, simply describe your days stress, what you have done during the day to improve sleep or what could have inhibited it before bed and give yourself a score out of 10 for how you felt during the day.


When you wake up give yourself a score out of 10 for how your feeling upon waking up and why you think so.


After a few months of journaling you should be a master at knowing about your sleep.

Blue Light


The effects of blue light:

  • Suppresses melatonin - a hormone that makes you fall asleep and get a good sleep

  • Lowers melatonin can inhibit your circadian rhythm - this is your body’s internal sleep clock

  • Eye strain

  • Tricks your brain into thinking it is daytime which can ruin your sleep quality

  • Blue light is emitted from:

  • LED’s

  • Phones

  • TV screens

  • Overhead lights

  • Majority of house lights

  • Computers

  • Tablets

Places blue light can sneak up on you:

  • Planes

  • Trains

  • Busses

  • Shops and markets

What you can do to avoid blue light:

  • Computer screen filter https://justgetflux.com/

  • Night time mode on phones, tablets

  • Turn down all brightness on TV

  • Blue light blocking glasses

  • Don’t use overhead lights after 6pm

  • Change light bulbs to red ones


Australian Blue Light Blocking Glasses Company


BLUblox is an Australian company that has done a bunch of research on the waves of light produced from our screens and light. There blue light blocking glasses perfectly block out the light frequencies that can have an affect on our sleep. You can get blue light blocking glasses elsewhere such as https://au.eyebuydirect.com/. The dark orange coloured ones are the best for sleep prior to bed.







MSD’s


Dr Rangan Chatterjee Micro Stress Dose


MSD’s a term Dr Rangan Chatterjee developed which describes how Micro Stress Doses can impact our lives.


MSD’s are all the little stressors you experience through the day which keep your cortisol levels high therefore, impacting your sleep.


Your body has a small tank of MSD’s it can be exposed to until runs out. When your tank is empty your cortisol spikes and your decision making and willpower decrease. It is surprising how small majority of peoples tans are.


MSD Examples:

  • Waking up to an alarm

  • Pressing snooze

  • Rushing

  • Stuck in traffic

  • Email over use

  • Phone use

  • Pressure from work

  • Pressure from relationships

  • Forgetting something

  • Argument

  • Getting beeped at

  • Having to work late

  • Something going wrong

  • And the list goes on……

To get the most efficient sleep ask yourself what Micro Stress Doses are you exposed to? And how can I reduce these?

Earthing


Earthing is the practice of getting outside on the grass, dirt or sand with no shoes on so the electrons from the earth to recharge your body.


Super earthing comes from a holiday in nature being away from cities and suburbia allowing yourself to soak up good bacteria, air and electrons that the world provides.


There is strong research to support that earthing recharges your body with good electrons and removes bad ones which allows you to have higher quality sleep.


NCBI has conducted a study on earthing that shows:

  • “The research suggests that being disconnected from natural earthing may be a major contributor to physiological dysfunction and unwell.

  • Reconnection with the Earth's electrons has been found to promote intriguing physiological changes and subjective reports of well-being.

  • Earthing (or grounding) refers to the discovery of benefits—including better sleep and reduced pain.

  • Earthing from 30 minutes to half an hour directly and physiologically decreases blood volume and stops the cells from clotting together, allowing blood to flow more easily and smoothly (Amazing!).

  • These results can be achieved by being barefoot outside or sitting, working, or sleeping indoors connected to conductive systems that transfer the Earth's electrons from the ground into the body.

Note* Get barefoot outside often as you can, at least once or twice a day morning to start your day charged and at night to sleep and recharge. Go on nature holidays for a few days once or twice a year to let yourself recharge completely.

What You Can Do


To improve your sleep:

  1. Wake up at roughly the same time every day, even on weekends

  2. Expose yourself to bright, natural light every morning.

  3. Sunlight throughout the day

  4. Exercise – and eat – early (cortisol spike)

  5. Avoid caffeine and alcohol.

  6. Minimize exposure to blue light in the evenings

  7. Relax in the bathtub

  8. Earthing

  9. Cold shower in the morning

  10. Hot bath at night

  11. Massage or foam rolling in the evening

  12. Meditate during the day or before bed

  13. Take a relaxing walk during the day

  14. Magnesium and glycine before bed

  15. Easily digestible carbohydrates before bed (honey, bananas, fruit, some breads, potatoes)

  16. Avoid screens before bed

  17. Get blue light blocking glasses and wear them in the late afternoon

  18. Avoid stressful situations later on in the day. (Vigorous exercise, presentations etc.)

What You Can Reduce


To improve your sleep:

  • Have caffeine during the evening

  • Have caffeine every single day

  • Wake up irregularly

  • Drink alcohol before bed

  • Exercise too late

  • Eat a meal too late

  • Catch up on emails and social media late

  • Skip exercise

  • Sleep in

  • Ignore the signs

Benefits For You And The Workplace


Making sleep a priority may advance your career:

  • Getting an optimal amount of sleep doesn't just boost your mood and infuse your body with extra energy—it can also help you wow your boss and maybe even snag a promotion.

  • You’ll recover from distractions faster.

  • You’ll help prevent burnout.

  • You’ll make better decisions. Sleep improves your ability to make more accurate split-second decisions.

  • Your memory will improve.

  • Your energy will improve

  • You’ll make fewer mistakes. Even if you're moderately sleep-deprived, you'll have a 50 percent slower response time and a lower accuracy rate on simple tasks than someone who is under the influence of alcohol.

  • This is great for those returning to work, new parents, those who want to perform well, those who want to be healthy and feel good.


Naps And What Other Workplaces Are Doing

High sleep quality = High-quality performance


Note* According to Christopher Lindholst, CEO of Restworks -- a company that provides workplace rest and napping installations for corporations, hospitals, and universities -- napping at work could actually be key to helping employees reach their full potential.


Sleep experts have found that daytime naps can improve many things: increase alertness, boost creativity, reduce stress, improve perception, stamina, motor skills, and accuracy, enhance your sex life, aid in weight loss, reduce the risk of heart attack, brighten your mood and boost memory.


One study shows that “a 60– to 90-minute nap could be as good as a full night’s sleep for learning a visual perception skills.”


If you have poor quality sleep from the night before and are sleep deprived, you’ll be more likely to nap as you feel a dip in energy roughly after lunch. Instead of using energy drinks or coffee to fight this off, it is more beneficial to try a short nap to refresh your brain before crushing your afternoon.


Another study has shown that naps can sharpen our brain and improve concentration in both fully rested and sleep-deprived individuals. Therefore sleep = high quality performance. You can use naps to achieve significantly better performance of various tasks, from driving to all kinds of work, assignments and projects.

Takeaways

Sleep = Performance


Awareness and equipping people with the right tools around sleep is extremely beneficial for productivity and performance. It is our own obligation to get a good night's rest and we all feel a calling to it. No one has ever said, “I do not want to sleep well and I want to be tired tomorrow”.


It is our obligation as workers to perform at our best, we can do this by taking care of ourselves during the day (and being aware of how our day prepares us for good or poor quality sleep) so we can get a good night's rest. This, in turn, increases our mood, performance and productivity.


It is the workplace responsibility to educate, facilitate and allow people to do what they need to do to get a good sleep, in order to perform well.


When people have the resources and tools to improve and be aware of their sleep, they then have the conscious power to make informed decisions throughout the day that may impact their sleep quality.

Raising awareness, creating a mindful culture and having some processes around improving sleep quality should be available for everyone.

Sleep Checklist & Score



Please click the image above to view the online sleep checklist.


This checklist gives you an automatic sleep score. You will then be able to look at your own sleep routine and sleep contributions you are or are not making and and make a change to get good quality sleep.


If you would like to do this manually please print out or attempt the checklist provided below.


You can attempt the checklist below.

Please Copy and Paste chart into your own Google Sheets Document.

Contact


If you resonate with this article, would like to talk to us, are interested in one of our programs or workshops, we would love to help you or even come do a talk at your workplace.


You can email me at: boutcore@gmail.com


Or call us on: 0414556322


Big Love

Corey

References and good reads:



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