Updated: Dec 17, 2020
“Sleep is the golden chain that ties health and our bodies together.”
~ Thomas Dekker
Article Quick Glimpse
Sleep is directly related to performance.
Your body needs good quality sleep to function as it wants to.
Hormones and stress affect your sleep.
Being conscious and aware of your stress and using meditation can be extremely. beneficial to getting good quality sleep.
Tracking your sleep can be done using Oura rings, watches and apps.
Blue light blocking glasses can improve sleep quality.
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.
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.
Scroll below to see what to do and what not to do to increase sleep performance
Sleep can enhance work performance.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Stress will inhibit your steadily decreasing cortisol levels so to prevent this from occurring, meditation can be an option.
Note* Good quality sleep starts as soon as you wake up.
Basically, to get a good sleep it is ideal to have your:
Cortisol to rise in the morning (by using positive stress)
Calming down as the day progresses
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:
Resting Heart Rate
Heart Rate Variability
Calories to Burn
Links in with all other health apps
How long it takes to fall asleep
Training frequency and volume