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Study Reveals That Starting Work Before 10am Is Ruining Your Health

Published January 15, 2017 by teacher dahl

early

In case anyone was after confirmation, yes – early mornings suck. They especially suck on weekdays when you have to go into your crappy job on your crappy salary on the crappy train in the crappy rain.

But until society collapses and we no longer need to invest our time in exchange for money in order to survive on this god damn earth, I guess we’ll just need to bite the bullet and go to work.

Considering the average person spends roughly 30 per cent of their life at work, does it not make sense to want to spend it in the least pain possible? Enter science.

Science has your back. Not only has it proven that drinking wine before bed will help you lose weight, it backed it up with proof that eating cheese every day is good for you.

And for its final act: science is pushing for a 10am start on work days, comparing 9am starts to ‘torture.’

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The study out of Oxford University found that forcing staff to start work before 10am is making employees ill, exhausted and stressed. Before the age of 55, the circadian rhythms of adults are totally out of sync with the average 9-5 working hours, posing a serious threat to employees’ performance, mood and mental health.

Study author Dr Paul Kelley says sleep deprivation is particularly damaging on the body’s physical, emotional and performance systems.

“Your live and your heart have different patterns and you’re asking them to shift two or three hours. This is an international issue. Everybody is suffering and they don’t have to,” Kelly said.

And despite contrary belief, no – you cannot change your circadian rhythms.

“We cannot change our 24-hour rhythms,” said Kelly. “You cannot learn to get up at a certain time. Your body will be attuned to sunlight and you’re not conscious of it because it reports to hypothalamus, not sight.”

Just one week with less than six hours sleep each night leads to 711 changes in how genes in your body function. Lack of sleep impacts performance, attention and long term-memory, and can also lead to exhaustion, anxiety, frustration, anger, impulsiveness, weight-gain, risk-taking and high blood pressure.

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So when you’re forced to wake up or go to work earlier than what your body wants to, your sleep deprivation is putting your body under a huge amount of stress, and “sleep deprivation is a torture.”

Your move? Maybe don’t (actually, just don’t) accuse your boss of torturing you, but instead raise the topic of coming into work a bit later and back it up with the potential benefits like higher quality work, a greater work ethic and an improved mood.

This article originally appeared on Men’s Health.

Source

Five (5) Scientifically Proven Ways to be Happier at Work

Published March 21, 2015 by teacher dahl

happy

To be happier at work, you have to become intentional about it. Like working out or eating healthy, being happier is something you have to choose to work on. It’s a skill that takes practice. A growing body of research reveals that there are simple, concrete things you can do to help you feel more positive at work—and they don’t require huge changes.

1. Start the day on a good note

How you feel in the morning affects how you feel at work for the rest of the day. In one University of Pennsylvania study, researchers analyzed the moods and performance of customer service representatives. Those who were in a good mood in the morning were more productive during the day and reported having more positive interactions with customers.

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So make it a point to do something in the morning that makes you feel good. Take a few minutes to savor your morning coffee (or tea or hot chocolate or whatever you like to drink before the workday starts). This means actually pausing to enjoy it, not gulping it down as you rush to your desk. And get some fresh air. Research shows that spending just 20 minutes outside boosts happiness and feelings of well-being.

2. Make fewer decisions


Decision fatigue is real. Each choice you make depletes your cognitive resources, making future decisions more difficult. This can quickly exhaust you and make you feel run down. So put some parts of your day on autopilot. Eat the same thing for lunch or breakfast for a week, and then change it up, for example. (Steve Jobs famously said that he wore the same black turtleneck daily so that he wouldn’t spend energy deciding what to wear.)

Before you weigh in on something at work, ask yourself if 1) it’s high impact and 2) you have a strong opinion about it. If you say “no” to both, then this might be a great opportunity to not weigh in on a decision.

3. Help a colleague

University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers found that people in their mid-30s who had earlier rated helping others at work as important reported feeling happier when asked—three decades later.

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Helping your co-workers seems to create a virtuous cycle; according to another study, happier workers help their colleagues 33 percent more than those who aren’t happy.

 You don’t have to do anything huge or heroic. Grab your colleague’s favorite beverage when you get your coffee. Ask if they need help on a project. Offer to do something simple, like type up notes after a meeting. The tougher part is making this a regular part of your day instead of something you do only once in a while. One simple way to do this is to put a reminder on your calendar. It may sound cheesy, but you might be surprised at how effective this small habit can become.

4. Make progress and acknowledge it

One of the best books I’ve read about being happier at work is called The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work, by Teresa Amabile and Steven Kramer. One of the most powerful causes of positive employee morale and happiness at work, the authors found, was feeling like you’re moving forward and making meaningful progress.

Try this:

  •  Before you start your workday, write down three small things you will get done.
  •  Do them, preferably before you even open your email or take a phone call.
  •  Cross them off your list.
  •  At the end of the day, go back, look at your list, and acknowledge that you made progress.
  •  If you have a huge project ahead of you, it’s hard to feel like you’re making progress unless you break it up into smaller parts.
  •  On some days, those parts may have to be tiny.

5. End your workday with a simple gratitude pause

Our brains are better at remembering bad news than good news. One study found that the negative impact of setbacks at work was three times as powerful as the positive impact of making progress. But you can train your brain to fight your natural negativity bias (and better remember the positive things). Think of something you appreciate about your day and write it down. Many studies have shown that when people do this regularly, they report feeling more optimistic and better about their lives overall.

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Since you’re likely busy, create a simple gratitude ritual at the end of your day. To make this a habit, connect it to something you already do. If you share something positive about your day with someone else, even better. Research shows that discussing positive experiences with others enhances how good you feel about them.

Source: Reader’s Digest

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