Working the graveyard shift is not the norm for your body. Humans are not meant to be up all night. How do you cope while being on night shift? Here are a few tips:
1. Eat healthy. Often times we get hungry during our shift and we stop at the nearby 7-11 or convenience store in the middle of the night because it’s the only place that’s open. Try to bring your meal or snack with you, or eat a healthy meal before you go into work. Healthier meals will always give you more energy, plus you’ll feel so much better!
2. Stay hydrated! Make sure you’re drinking water during your shift and while at home. Dehydration causes sleep deprivation and this will cause you to have a difficult time sleeping after your shift.
3. Exercise. Your body needs some sort of movement. When you’re on night work, you tend to sit in your car for hours, and eat at odd times. Take an hour before your shift and get a workout in.
4. Take a nap before work. Although this may seem impossible to some, a small nap will help you. A nap will help you feel refreshed, especially if you have to commute to work.
5. Watch your caffeine intake! Do not drink caffeine close to the end of your shift. This will be a nightmare for when you’re home and trying to sleep.
These are just a few tips for you. Some things work better for others. In our jobs, we always think we’re invincible or we can get through it, but our mindset is not always keeping up with that.