The afternoon slump. You’ve experienced it before, and you’ve likely heard of the ways that can help you power through it – a healthy snack, a good stretch, a walk around the office building. Sure, these things help, but is there a way to avoid the afternoon slump completely? A solid night’s sleep can do the trick! Simple solution, right? If only it were that easy.
Most people measure productivity by how many tasks they can get done by 5:00, but productivity isn’t about packing as many things as you can into a given period. Productivity is all about planning, and its high time we plan on getting a good night’s sleep. We all know how we feel after we’ve slept well – we’re sharp, on the ball, and ready for whatever curve ball is thrown our way. We know this feeling because adequate sleep is such a rare occurrence.
Is It Time to Ditch the Late-Night Web Browsing?
There’s no shortage of people telling you that the secret to getting and staying asleep is keeping away from your technical devices before hitting the proverbial hay. That means no late-night TV, web browsing, or online games. This is because the blue light that is emitted from these devices prevents the production of melatonin in our brains.
What is Melatonin?
Melatonin is a hormone that anticipates the onset of darkness and controls our sleep-wake cycles. There are supplements available to help increase melatonin levels, but they can lead to morning grogginess. That’s the last thing you need!
f.lux Can Help You Get to Sleep Faster
If you can’t part with your late-night smartphone, laptop, or computer session, you should download f.lux
, a program that changes the color temperature of your device’s display, depending on the time of the day and your location. It’s available for Windows and Mac, and it’s absolutely free. F.lux will allow you the late-night internet session without the blue, melatonin-crushing glow.
How Does It Work?
Natural lighting changes throughout the day. The bright, blue light that we’re exposed to during the day helps keep us awake and alert, while darkness encourages the production of melatonin to inform our bodies that it’s time for sleep. The lighting of our devices, however, remains the same color temperature no matter where you are or what time it is. F.lux was created with this specific problem in mind.
As darkness rolls around, your screens will appear warmer in color. This will make looking at the screen at night easier on the eyes, which will help you get to sleep faster. As you rise, your screen’s lighting will adjust. All you need to do is punch in your location, and f.lux does the rest.
If you are a graphic designer, or in another profession that relies on visuals, you can easily turn off f.lux to ensure color accurateness.
Other features include:
- Time inversion for people who work at night
- Decreased red tinge for movie viewing purposes
- Darkroom mode for night-adapted vision
- Adjustments based on house lights
Checking your phone right before your head hits the pillow can seriously affect your ability to get and stay to sleep. If you’re not ready to part with the 11 pm Facebook scroll (you don’t have to admit to that one out loud), give f.lux a try. Forget coffee! A good night’s sleep is the best way to increase productivity levels.