No matter how much you try, whether you’re filling in for a coworker, working on an important assignment, or helping your child complete their project, there are times you just can’t avoid working overtime. On occasions when that happens, here are a few tips that will help you make it through the night.
1) Organize your workspace
Believe it or not, an organized workspace exponentially increases your productivity. Start by clearing out all the unwanted mess from your desk. You might also want to get rid of gadgets or any other things that might distract you from working. Get your laptop, chargers, and all essential work items within reach so that you won’t have to get up from your seat. Doing all this can also get your mind and body prepped up for the long night ahead.
On a side note, if you are working from home, do not work on your bed. Work only on a desk.
2) Avoid eating heavy meals
We all are well aware of the lethargy and drowsiness that creep in after a satisfying meal. This will work against you as you try to stay up all night. So, avoid eating heavy meals beforehand. Instead, give yourself something small and nutritious every now and then. This will help you get through the night just fine.
3) Use caffeine well
Caffeine can be your best friend when you are trying to stay awake for long periods of time. It is a stimulant that combats that feeling of sleepiness and tiredness. Pace yourself by sipping on small cups of coffee or tea at regular intervals can boost your alertness more evenly and help you stay awake longer.
4) Keep your room well lit
When you have a long night at work, make sure that your surroundings are well lit. Darkness usually prompts your body to release the sleep-inducing hormone called Melatonin and brightness delays the release of melatonin. Use LED bulbs or any other bright lights to ensure that your surroundings are as lit as possible.
5) Stretch regularly
Sleep experts advise against exercising at night because this can increase your heart rate and disrupt your natural sleep cycle. But, if you are trying to work late into the night, this is precisely what you need. Get up from your desk and pace about or do some stretches at regular intervals. The effect of these activities will give you enough energy to stay awake longer.
6) Take a power nap
No matter how hard you try, sometimes it is just impossible to stay alert at night, especially if this is not something you are used to. In such situations, it is better to give your body and mind a break. Take a power nap of 15-20 minutes once in a while. Research shows that these naps can reset your mind and give you a boost of alertness and motor performance. Just make sure the alarm is set on your phone and it is nearby.
7) Keep yourself hydrated
Drinking adequate amounts of water help keep your organs and brain well hydrated. This can help with processing and retaining information. So the next time you’re up for an all-nighter, don’t forget to keep your water bottle beside you.
These tips might help you get through the night once in a blue moon, but they can never substitute for a good sleep. As much as you can, avoid working overtime. Do it only if it is absolutely needed.