My Work from Home Challenge #1: Abnormal Sleep Schedule

Work at home is great. It has many advantages over the traditional work-at-office model. But it ain’t all sunshine and rainbow. The work-at-home model comes with its own set of challenges. In this Work from Home Challenge series, I will share with you some of the challenges that I face as a home worker.

Of course, these are my personal challenges. You may or may not encounter the same obstacles.

Anyway, one of the biggest challenges I face nowadays is keeping a normal sleep schedule.

My daily schedule back in March early this year consist of waking at 9:30 AM and going to bed at 1 AM. In retrospect, it waking time and bedtime definitely looked like they were trending out of control. And they did. Nowadays, I’m resistant to alarm clocks. My bedtime is usually 2 O’clock past midnight. And I always wake up late around 10:30AM – 11:30AM.

This new pattern is clashing with my old schedule which I feel has affected my productivity.

For example, in my old schedule, I started preparing for lunch around noon, which means my most productive morning work session is only around one and a half hour. To mitigate that, I no longer prepare lunch from scratch. While having a freshly prepared meal with fresh ingredients is said to be more healthy, I feel that my energy level and ability to focus drop after cooking lunch. Nowadays, I try to cook in bulk in the evening instead and store them in the fridge. This way I can fully focus on my work from when I wake up to 4-5PM which is when I usually need to take a longer break.

The main reason why I sleep late is really two reasons. One is when I wake up late, I also work late. Nowadays I tend to stop working just before midnight. Not so bad if you go to bed straight after that, but I’ll also need to spend some quality time with my cat. And spend even more quality time with my phone after that. OK, I admit. I’m addicted to my phone. Especially before bed, I just can’t put that down.

My plan to fix this pattern is not to get rid of my phone addiction because that would be tough. I plan to shift the whole routine 2 hours earlier. So instead of playing with my phone from 12:30 to 2/2:30AM, I will be doing that from 10:30PM to 12AM — which isn’t that bad from in terms of bedtime. Following this shift, I will be able to wake up around 8:30AM.

Now the challenge is to convince myself to actually follow this strategy…

Hank

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