8 Ways To Function With Less Sleep

Sleep deprivation. I have it, you have it, almost everybody has it. It’s a vicious cycle that can go on for weeks at a time especially with the deadline of your final year project approaching. We all know how to sleep less, but do we know how to function with on less sleep?

1. Drink Up

MyEducation Malaysia Drink Up, Drink More Water

“Water! The essence of life!”

Drinking a lot of water helps to keep your brain alert and your body awake. A lot of people make the mistake of not hydrating their body when they lack sleep which results in drowsiness and the inability to focus in class and on tasks. We feel fatigued when we lack hydration so fill that bottle with as many liters of water as you can and start drinking to the end. You may need to visit the restroom a bit more frequently because of this but hey, what better way to keep you awake than running to and fro the toilet?

2. Say No To Hearty Meals

Avoid Heavy Meals

“Let’s try a big bite and see how that works!”

Heavy meals or meals that are rich in carbohydrate are a recipes for disaster when you’re trying to function on less sleep. Having hearty meals will make you drowsy and more prone to snoozing in class. Most people feel drowsy after a heavy meal even when they’re functioning on 8 hours of sleep, can you imagine the effect of consuming a hearty meal for those who are functioning on just 2 to 3 hours of sleep?If you want to keep yourself active and awake, opt for lighter meals that are rich in protein instead. Fruit, veggies, fish and chicken are examples of food that won’t slow you down for the day.

3. Bask In The Sun

Go Out in the sun

“It’s the power of the sun. I’ve got sunshine …”

If you’re still feeling sleepy after drinking a lots of water and eating a light protein-rich meal, take a walk under the sun! Apart from nourishing your body with Vitamin B and D which helps to combat the dreaded afternoon sleepiness, sunlight (in moderation of course, unless you’re planning to tan) can also improve your mood, give your immune system a little bit of boost and help you focus better on getting the job done. If your daily schedule does not permit you to take a walk outside, make it a point to seat yourself next to windows. Avoid dark and cold places at all costs!

4. Shower With Ice Cold Water

Rinse Your Face With Cold Water

“Similiar to the ice bucket challenge”

This might sound crazy, but if you haven’t been sleeping well last night you can actually reenergize yourself by taking an ice cold shower in the morning. The coldness of the water will stimulate your body to be feel more awake and there’s no doubt that you’ll feel a lot better when you step out of the shower. If you’re not in the position to take an ice cold shower, you can try splashing cold water on your face or rub an ice cube on your wrists or temple to help you feel fresh and more awake.

5. Simplify Your Day

Make A To Do List

“Let’s just keep today a simple one so we’re happy”

We get it, you’re tired and barely able to function on the amount of sleep that you’re getting. To make things easier and more productive, prioritize what needs to be done the most and start working on those. You might have 20 different things you need to do but let’s be real, you won’t get very far if you’re forcing productivity. The best thing to do in this situation is to simplify your day and prioritize the most important things on your to-do-list. Life is too short to stress and worry about things you have no control of so sit back, relax, take a deep breath and complete your tasks one step at the time. You’ll find this method to be more effective even on days when you’re not lacking sleep.

6. Caffeine Boost

Drink Coffee

“Another cup and I’ll be seeing audio signals”

Caffeine is known to be an infamous source of energy among students, be it in the form of coffee or even energy drinks such as Redbull or Livita. While coffee does a pretty good job at keeping your brain awake and alert, it is highly unadvisable for you to consume it in excess. Drinking too much coffee can actually hinder productivity and might cause kidney-related health issues later on in life. Try to drink in moderation so you will still get the benefit of coffee without risking your health. Drinking energy drinks is also an option, but remember that it’s always better to drink a lot of plain water before you resort to caffeine. Only consume caffeine when you can no longer keep your eyes open!

7. Socializing Helps

Be With Friends

“Let’s just keep today a simple one so we’re happy”

Being a sociable person, you might find it extremely difficult to stay awake without any social stimulant in your surrounding. If that’s the case, then it’s probably a good idea for you to be in the presence of your social circle. Your friends are probably struggling to stay awake just as much as you are, so why not do each other a favor and stay together until the job is done? Being the in the presence of others and interacting with friends offers a healthier alternative on trying to function with less sleep and you can even have discussions and exchange ideas for class presentations or assignments while you’re at it.

8. Crank Up The Volume

Listen To Some Wake Up Music

“Let’s just keep today a simple one so we’re happy”

Can’t be in the company of others because you’re bound to get sidetracked from your work? Worry not! Just plug in your headphones and tune out the world for better concentration. If you’re working on an assignment that needs writing, opt for instrumental songs with no lyrics so you won’t be distracted from completing your project. Listening to instrumental music also helps you to relax so your brain will be able to organize your thoughts and ideas better. If you already have the Spotify app on your phone, search for a playlist called ‘Deep Focus’ and you’re good to go. If you have no problems listening to songs with lyrics while working on your assignment, go ahead and listen to the radio. Remember that only you know what’s best for yourself.

Getting enough sleep is indeed important for our physical and mental development. But let’s face it, it’s almost next to impossible to always get a good night sleep when you’re busy stressing over college assignments and projects (especially the dreaded group projects!). These tips will hopefully help you get through your sleep deprivation days without much difficulty.

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