It would be nice if sleep deprivation ended after our last final in college, but sadly, we aren't so lucky. We've all had nights where we've found ourselves still awake only an hour or two before we need to be at work.
Sometimes, calling out just isn't an option. Luckily, science has our back and there are things we can do to make it through a seriously sleep-deprived day. New York magazine's Science of Us spoke with sleep scientists to create an animated video for getting through the day after an all-nighter.
Here are some of their tips:
1. Don't you dare hit the snooze button.
If you did manage to get some sleep in, you want to avoid snoozing your alarm. Those extra measly five or 10 minutes of sleep actually don't help to make you feel less tired. Set your alarm for the latest possible time you can wake up and actually get yourself out of bed. You'll thank yourself later.
2. Eat breakfast, but make sure it's sugarless.
Scientists say eating within the first hour of waking up can actually boost your mood and cognition. Eat whole grains and protein. Sugar will make you crash later, so be sure to avoid it at all costs.
3. Drink only one cup of coffee before leaving for work.
You're limiting yourself to one cup at home so you don't run the risk of overloading on caffeine too early. Don't worry, there will be other cups later. Remember to drink it sugarless, though!
4. Go outside ASAP!
Sunlight will raise your body temperature and can increase your alertness.
5. Leave your sunglasses at home.
Even sun in your eyes can be helpful.
6. Do your hardest tasks at work first.
The first few hours that you're at the office will be the most alert you'll be throughout the entire day. Don't waste it on menial tasks.
7. Drink a second cup of coffee.
You have to wait about 30 minutes for caffeine to actually kick in. Time your cups appropriately for the important appointments you have throughout the day.
8. Enjoy a light lunch filled with grains, veggies and lean protein.
Continue to avoid sugar. It'll make you seriously fatigued later.
9. You can have your third and last cup of coffee in the early afternoon.
The early afternoon is going to be the drowsiest part of your day, so sipping another sugarless cup of coffee can help. Avoid drinking any coffee after 3 p.m., though. It could interfere with sleep later on, which is the last thing you want.
10. Spend the rest of your day doing simple busy work.
Studies suggest that people can only focus on something for 10 minutes at time when they're sleep deprived.
11. Try to leave the office a little early if you can.
Check out the entire Science of Us video below:
(H/T: New York Magazine)
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