Maintaining a quality work-life balance can be challenging for regular nine to five employees. And, when you’re working second or third shift, this balancing act becomes even more difficult.
Whether you’re on the night shift by choice or necessity, here’s how to make the most out of your schedule.
Block Out a Time for Sleep
Working all night and staying up all day is a recipe for disaster. Regardless of when your job starts and ends, you still need seven to nine hours of sleep. To keep sleep a top priority, set up a schedule and stick to it. You may decide to sleep during the day while everyone else is busy. Or, if you work second shift, you may sleep for four to five hours when you get home, and then take another three to four-hour rest in the late morning or early afternoon. Use earplugs, air conditioning and room-darkening blinds or curtains to recreate a nighttime environment.
Take Care of Yourself
When you are on a nontraditional schedule, it’s easy to let your health slide. Try to add a few smart habits to your routine. Go for a walk around the block or hit the gym at the same time every day. Or, if daily exercise isn’t for you, join a weekly yoga class or weekend pick-up game. To improve your diet, bring lunches and snacks from home rather than visiting the vending machine. And, be sure to drink enough water. A few minor changes can give you more energy and stamina.
Find Ways to Spend Time with Others
Your schedule probably won’t match well with your friends and families. So, you’ll need to be creative. Rather than going out for dinner, set up lunch or morning coffee dates. If you have kids, plan to sit down with them for breakfast or an after-school snack in place of an evening meal.
Use Your Vacation Time
Just like first-shift employees, you don’t have to miss out on events because of work. Look at your calendar in advance and request time off for things that are most important to you. And if you can’t make it to an activity, like a kid’s holiday concert, ask someone to take a video for you. Then, you and your family can watch it together.
Set Up a Support Network
If everyone else you know has a regular schedule, you may feel like you are in this alone. Instead of remaining isolated, try to connect with other people who are in the same situation. (You may be able to find them in the breakroom.) Share your stories, your challenges and your clever ideas. Together your group can figure out how to survive the night shift and have a life too.
Are You Looking for a Better Job and a Better Lifestyle?
FirstStaff places light industrial workers in Conway, Arkansas and the surrounding areas. If you are searching for a different shift, a higher-paying position or a new opportunity, we’re here for you! Check out our available openings today!