man sitting at work desk exhaustedIt’s true that when we don’t get enough sleep, our performance suffers the next day.  We feel groggy and unmotivated, and if repeated enough, we can even begin to feel depressed.  During the holidays especially, there is a lot of extra pressure on us to buy gifts for everyone, hit all the sales, visit family and friends, and attend (or host) various holiday parties.  It seems like there is never enough time.  I often hear friends say “If there were only a few more hours in the day…” We need to change our way of thinking and make sure to incorporate enough time for sleep so that our bodies can properly rest.  In a study done by Microsoft, cognitive performance was influenced by sleep duration, timing and circadian rhythms.  Findings of this study show that 2 consecutive nights with less than 6 hours of sleep can decrease performance for a period of up to 6 days.  The full study can be found here.  While we tend to “make up” for lost sleep with caffeine and naps, our bodies never regain that lost time that should be used for rejuvenation.

Please click here to read the online article on sleep deprivation and cognitive function.