Are you a night owl who also work a 9-5 job? If so, you could be doing damage to their health. Luckily, you can make four easy changes to your lifestyle to boost work performance and improve wellbeing. People who thrive at night can really struggle with traditional workday hours that are geared towards morning people. Night owls like to go to bed around 2:30 am and get up around 10:15 am. But, when the average day starts at 9 am, this can throw people off.
Health Effects For Night Owls
Researchers found night owls can face higher risks for diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. So, it’s more than just being tired during the day or having a harder time focusing. But, you’re in luck! Researchers found four simple changes led to improvements in cognitive performance and reaction time. They looked at 22 volunteers who made these changes and they found decreased feelings of daytime fatigure, depression, and stress.
Shifting Your Peak Performance Time
Instead of having a ‘peak’ performance time in the evening, your goal is to shift it to the afternoon. The four changes are:
- Wake Up 2-3 Hours Earlier – Get some morning light as soon as possible.
- Go To Bed 2-3 Hours Earlier – Put electronics away at least 30 minutes before bedtime and minimize your exposure to light sources when going to sleep.
- Eat Immediately After You Get Up – eat breakfast right away, keep your lunch break at the same time each day, and make sure to eat dinner before 7 pm.
- Make It A Routine – sticking to this schedule every day (yes, that means weekends) will set you up for success.
You night owls might find this list to be overwhelming, but the 22 study volunteers felt clear improvements in their performance and overall wellbeing. So, if you’d like to feel better during the day, it certainly can’t hurt to make these four simple adjustments. Try it for a month and see what results happen for you!