An early riser’s secret to boosting productivity

October 05, 2022


Student getting ready for class.

Image source: Pexels

School and college can be enjoyable and fulfilling times of life. At the same time, these may be among your busiest years too. It can be challenging to juggle between schoolwork, maintaining good grades, and socialising with friends. Given this busy lifestyle, it can be a challenge to get enough rest.

Once a student, I used to complain of fatigue and not being able to fully focus during class at times. It was then I realised my body was crying for help and needed some serious rest. Rest is an essential part of success. Many researchers have revealed that when you are well-rested, it helps you think, innovate, and enhance your productivity; and this is crucial among students.

(Check this out: Studying hacks that actually work)

A restful night's sleep is essential to re-energising the body and providing the brain with much-needed recuperation. If you are a student who struggles with lethargies, then you are most probably sleep-deprived. To be able to perform at your utmost potential, you will need to put an end to those restless nights.

You know you need those minimum hours of undisturbed sleep but are unsure what is keeping you awake. Besides the stress itself, there might be a few other factors, such as your erratic hours, the food you eat, and many more, that are ruining your restful night.
Sleep being the most important element for providing your body the rest it needs, here are a few strategies I would suggest you incorporate into your daily routine.  

5 simple ways to boost productivity

1. Follow a regular schedule.

Student creating a schedule for productivity.

Image source: Pexels

As a student, you may get overwhelmed with the number of tasks on your plate. By following a daily study schedule, you may be able to better organise your time and make the most out of your day. When you have a structured schedule, you will be able to schedule going to bed on time and get a proper seven to eight hours of sleep.

(Also read: How to cope with student stress and worries)

Maintaining a regular sleep-wake schedule, even on weekends, is important. When we have a habit, the body gets used to the routine and it becomes a way of life. Thus, maintaining a regular schedule instructs your body’s internal clock to fall asleep and wake up more easily.

2. Limit caffeine intake before bedtime.

Student falling asleep with book on face.

Image source: Pexels

Daily caffeine consumption is linked to poorer sleep quality and more grogginess during the day. Though coffee can be the greatest joy of life, it is damaging when we rely heavily on it to get through a long day. I’m not so proud to say that I used to be one of those students to have many cups of coffee to keep me awake through the night.

Consuming caffeine is not wrong. However, you may want to cut down on your consumption when you notice yourself being dependent on it a little too much. To ensure it doesn’t affect your sleep, you may want to limit or even stop having any form of caffeine at least six hours before going to bed.

3. Create an environment that boosts sleep.

Student resting well.

Image source: Pexels

Your ability to get a good night's sleep is also influenced by your bedroom ambiance. Try and keep the temperature in your room low, the surroundings quiet, and dark. Studies have found that students with TVs in their room tend to sleep later than those who don’t.

Therefore, ensure you eliminate such distractions from your bedroom to ensure you get the sleep you require.
Besides this, there are essential oils that can help to induce sleep. So, you might want to infuse a sleep-inducing essential oil such as lavender, chamomile, or ylang-ylang oil. It is not so hard to find one these days.

4. Reduce screen time at night.

Scented candle to help with sleep.

Image source: Pexels

Short-wavelength blue light from devices like smartphones, tablets, computers, and TVs is like sunlight. This light not only increases our alertness but also tricks our bodies into believing it is still daylight. As a result, the body's normal cycle of sleep and wakefulness is disrupted by a decrease in melatonin production. The effects on your sleep are worse the longer you spend in front of a screen.

Alternatively, you might want to read books before sleep. It puts you in a relaxing and comfortable state. Choosing a book to read could help relieve anxiety or other emotional distress that is keeping you up past your bedtime. Reading for 30 minutes could be just as effective in relieving stress as yoga or 30 minutes of comedy video.

5. Have early dinner.

Student having early dinner.

Image source: Pexels

Late-night eating frequently results in indigestion and disrupts sleep. When you eat late, it slows digestion which then causes you to feel bloated and uncomfortable. This eventually leads to heartburn that might keep you awake due to the discomfort.

Thus, it’s important to eat at least two to three hours before bedtime to avoid the digestive system from working when the body is at rest. In turn, you get proper rest and wake up feeling energised.

Being sleep deprived could be one of the main reasons why you often feel tired and unable to wake up feeling refreshed for class. To maintain attention, increase concentration, and enhance academic performance, students should acquire the proper amount of sleep every night. I hope this article has reiterated the importance of restful nights for a productive day in class.

“Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.” – Benjamin Franklin

Written by: Veronica Presley

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