Fatigue is debilitating and can put you in harm’s way in the workplace. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) says that fatigue is a message the body needs rest and the mental and physical symptoms that arise from it can affect workplace safety and productivity. These five tips will provide keys to improving your energy and aid in regulating your sleep cycle to help get your body back on track.
- Eat yogurt
Yogurt is rich in probiotics or ‘good bacteria’, which aids in the digestive process. Yogurt can boost your energy because its soft texture allows for easy digestion which in turn, will convert to energy faster than solid food. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), at least one million people in the United States have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS ) and tens of millions more have a CFS-like condition. This syndrome is thought to be caused by an imbalance of ‘good bacteria’ in the digestive tract, which yogurt could aid in equalizing.
- Move Around at Work and Keep Proper Posture
If your work has you doing repetitive tasks, take a few moments to get up and stretch if you are sitting down at a desk all day and if you are standing up all day, find time to sit down. Posture is also important in energy conservation. Remaining neutral posture and keeping the neck in a comfortable position will help avoid wasting energy and will decrease the risk of injury. Keep your shoulders relaxed, without slumping and your elbows close to your body and in line with your keyboard while sitting at your desk.
- Set a Sleep Schedule
“Go to bed at the same time and do the same activities every night before bed,” says Heidi Connolly, MD, chief of pediatric sleep medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center. She says that doing this gives your body a cue that it is time to fall asleep. Before going to bed, try reading a book or having a cup of tea to relax.
- Embrace the Morning Light
Many non-morning people would rather shuffle around in the dark when getting ready in the mornings than face the blinding light. It turns out that reveling in the morning light can make us more productive. Experts say that turning on the lights when you wake up along with opening shades or taking a morning walk are all ways that can help us change our sleep schedule for the better, in turn giving us energy throughout the day. “It’s a very healthy way to reset your clock,” says Christopher Colwell, Ph.D., a neuroscientist, and professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at UCLA Medical School.
- Turn Off Electronics at Night
According to a recent poll by the National Sleep foundation, 95% of people use some type of computer, video game, or cell phone at least a few nights a week within the hour before bed. Electronics have the potential ability to disrupt sleep because it sends alert signals to our brain. The light that is produced by electronics such as computers and cell phones has been shown to delay the release of melatonin in the brain. In other words, electronics keep us awake past our bedtime, if used too close to the time we go to bed. Try avoiding using electronics at least an hour before turning in for the night.
Nova Medical Centers provides the highest level of healthcare to patients suffering from musculoskeletal injuries. Managing your fatigue can help you to stay alert at work and prevent you from injuring yourself.
For information about how to battle stress and stay productive, please check our blog post on 5 Ways to Overcome Stress in the Workplace: https://n-o-v-a.com/blog/4-ways-overcome-stress-workplace/
What do you do to stay energized at work? Let us know in the comments section below.
Heidi Connolly, MD, chief, division of pediatric sleep medicine, University of Rochester Medical Center.
Written by: Jessica Hurd