World Sleep Day, organised by the World Sleep Society, is here again to celebrate sleep and highlight key issues relating to it, such as medicine, education, social aspects and driving.
Our Director of Wellbeing; Richard Holmes, who has spent more than 25 years coaching people to live well, work well and achieve more, said: “Energy dictates not only how much we’re able to do, but how well we do it – when your energy is low, your work suffers, we need to learn to pace ourselves to avoid fatigue and burnout.”
Why sleep is so important
Our sleep expert, James Wilson AKA The Sleep Geek, said: “Not sleeping well can have a detrimental impact on our health. Sleep is fundamental to health, when we sleep our bodies have time to heal and repair, and it is crucial for reducing the risk of chronic health conditions.
“However, due to our busy modern lifestyles and concerns like work and family commitments or financial worries, getting a good night’s sleep is something a lot of people have trouble with.
“It can be hard to access good sleep support and services when needed and I am passionate about changing this through consultations, coaching, and environment and behaviour analysis.”
A research study we conducted internally (The Westfield Health Big Sleep Survey 2017) on sleep behaviours amongst staff showed that 83% of staff had experienced a sleep issue in the last month and 76% said they often feel tired and unrested.
Lack of sleep is a growing issue and as a nation we’re sleeping 20% less than we did 40 years ago. Our changing lifestyles and access to technology means that the distinction between our work and home lives are becoming more blurred, so it’s increasingly difficult to switch off and relax and this can lead to sleep problems.
Recover with a Business Athlete Programme
Rest and recovery are some of the key areas that Richard focuses on in his wellbeing workshops for employees. His Business Athlete Programme, which is being increasingly adopted by companies across the UK, is a four-week programme which takes learnings from how elite sports people manage their performance and energy, and focuses on three key areas – nutrition, exercise, and rest and recovery.
“Most of us need to take a look at our life balance, our working hours and how we build ‘recovery breaks’ into our working day,” says Richard. “One of our clients; a major brand in the legal industry, has already seen the benefits, with 80% of staff reporting higher energy levels, 60% feeling more resilient to pressures and problems, and 80% feeling more engaged at work.
“Importantly, 60% felt more productive, showing that healthy, energised workers are often the most industrious workers.”
As well as being one of the building blocks for a healthy lifestyle, sleep is also vital for resilient, engaged and more productive employees. World Sleep Day is a great opportunity to raise awareness of how the burden of sleep problems can impact on peoples lives and their working lives too. Exhibitions, presentations and seminars will be taking place all over the world to educate people about these issues and we’re proud to be doing our bit to raise awareness of the benefits of good and healthy sleep.
Want to find out more how was can support sleep? Take a look at our Sleep Well Work Well programme and Health Calendar.