Making it Through the Day After a Bad Night's Sleep

A poor night in the sack can leave us questioning how we can make it through an entire day. You’re likely to ask yourself –Do I have enough energy, enough focus, and how do I avoid biting someone’s head off?!

You can find out a lot about your mental strength when you don’t get enough sleep, but in the ideal scenario, you shouldn’t have to.

If you do suffer low-quality sleep, there are ways in which you can deal with the effects. Apart from the thought of rushing out to buy a new bed to guarantee you sleep better in the future, we’ve got some advice for you to take on board.

1. Change your tune

Start the day by coming to terms with the fact that you’ve not slept so well, and that you can deal with what’s to come.

Don’t be so hard on yourself! You will end up wasting more of your already low energy which you need throughout the day. You can let people around you know that you had a rough night and that you might be a little under par today.

It might come across like you’re moaning, but most people will understand.

2. Let routine kick in

The wonders of routine will help you through the day! As humans, We crave routines and a good routine will help you, almost like a co-pilot, to successfully guide you through a sleep-deprived day.

Hop out of bed at the usual time without giving in to that extra snooze, because you’re simply delaying the inevitable. Stick to the plan and get up when you need to, go about things as usual, and remain calm. There’s little point in getting worked up because there’s nothing you can do other than deal with what’s happened.

Is green tea in your routine? If it’s not then you should introduce it because if and when you suffer a bad night’s sleep, it will be on hand to help you. This is mainly because it has L-theanine in it, which is a naturally soothing compound.

3. Lead yourself into the light

Rise and shine as they say. If you’ve struggled for sleep the night before, it’s well worth drawing back the curtains and getting some natural light ASAP. The exposure to bright light for around half an hour in the morning will energize you and also mend your mood. This all happens thanks to the release of serotonin in the body.

If the weather is dull, you can always keep an S.A.D.-lamp (Seasonal Affective Disorder) in the bedroom to turn on as soon as you wake up. You can also use this at other times of the day to help the release of those feel-good hormones.

4. Breathe easy

You’d be surprised how much of a positive effect simple breathing exercises have on your mood, energy levels, and alertness too.

Adopt some mindfulness-style breathing techniques that you can turn to that will help you overcome your lack of sleep. There are lots of different methods out there, so try and few and see what works for you.

5. Proceed with caution

Even the most minimal amount of sleep loss can have ill effects on your physical and mental capabilities. You’ll feel spikes in your energy levels during the day, but even in these moments your reactions and judgment won’t be at your well-rested level.

Therefore, it’s worth just paying that extra little bit of attention as you go about your day, particularly if you are driving or operating heavy machinery.

6. Speaking of energy spikes…

Before you try and counteract your tiredness with truckloads of caffeine and sugar-heavy foods, just consider that while these energy spikes will offer you a temporary reprieve from low energy, the following energy lows will induce stronger feelings of lethargy.

While we’re on the subject of low points, try to save the naps for another time because napping when you’re uncharacteristically tired will more likely send you down towards the deeper stages of sleep.

The feeling of “sleep drunkenness” will ensue and mess with your circadian rhythm, which is something you want to avoid. Instead, concentrate on making it through the day and getting a well-deserved, full night’s sleep.

This post was contributed by sleepadvisor.org