The number one thing that you should do to make sure that you are a successful person is to get a full night's sleep. When you regularly get a full night's sleep, you are happier, healthier, and wealthier in the long term. The gig economy may encourage people to work at all times, this is incredibly unhealthy for you in the long term. The Centers for Disease Control says that adults should be getting 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night, but more than 30% of us don’t.
Chronic issues with getting enough sleep can lead to is that will severely impact your financial life in the long term. You might not be sleeping well because you are grinding your teeth at night, or because your dog is waking you up.
If you find yourself feeling tired all the time, talk to your doctor about trying to figure out what is going wrong with your sleep schedule.
While some creative workers say that they work best while sleep deprived, it’s been proven that that is not the case overall. Your brain uses the time while you are asleep to deal with the memories that you made during the day. This allows you to have more space for learning new skills and making your brain function better.
Researchers at the University of California at San Diego found that REM sleep improves how creative you are by priming your associative networks to link unconnected ideas together. You are also more likely to be able to solve abstract problems after you wake up from REM sleep than when you slept poorly. The dreams you have during REM sleep are also very helpful in coming up with new ideas for your creative works.
When you do not sleep well, you are less productive overall, according to a study published by the RAND Corporation in 2016. That study determined that the United States loses up to $411 billion from its GDP every year because of the effects of insufficient sleep, which is the highest economic loss in any industrial country. You are more likely to take additional sick days from work specifically due to your lack of sleep, and be less productive when you are at work because of how tired you are.
If you find yourself lagging at work, see if you can find 45 minutes to lay down and take a short nap. You can combine this with a cup of coffee or a soda to maximize the effects of both the caffeine and the nap. This will help you feel like you are much more alive and be more productive for the rest of the afternoon. If not, the cup of coffee will still help.
People who have not slept well are much more likely to seek out risky behavior, according to a 2011 study in the Journal of Neuroscience. You are more likely to seek out a way to gain something when you are sleep deprived and to be less concerned about the loss in general, which leads to bad life decisions nearly unilaterally.
You’re also more likely to eat more, higher-calorie items than you would if you were not sleep deprived, according to a 2016 article in the SLEEP journal. Your body has the same cravings that it would have if you’d smoked a joint, except it’s the whole time you’re awake instead of just when you’re high. This can lead to weight gain and nutrient deficiencies.
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