Getting better at anything requires lots of practice. If you’re averaging 2500 miles per week like many long haul commercial truckers, you certainly aren’t lacking in the practice department. However, practice is only part of the equation for improving your professional skills. The other part is consistently getting quality sleep every night. Without it, the work you do only wears you down and may cause attention and drowsiness problems that invite an accident.
If you find that quality sleep eludes you, bad sleeping habits could be at the heart of your problem. These include:
- Engaging in stimulating activity before going to bed. Exercise, a cold shower, an intense conversation or book, or a troubling phone call will elevate the wrong hormones and put you into a state of mind more appropriate for the start of your work day rather than at its end. Do things that relax and allow you to wind down.
- Flextime sleeping hours. The body’s circadian rhythm that governs wakefulness and sleep is fairly rigid. It doesn’t adjust well to varying sleep times. Rather than fighting it, you’re better off adjusting your schedule around it. Go to bed and wake up at the same times and get at least 7 or 8 hours of sleep.
- Consuming caffeine in the evening. Caffeine, being the stimulant that it is, has the same effects as engaging in the stimulating activities discussed previously.
- Using your laptop or mobile device before going to bed. These devices emit blue light, which stimulates the body into a state of wakefulness, much like the blue component of sunlight does.
- Turning up the heat at bedtime. The body sleeps best in cool temperatures. Use covers to stay warm.
- Inducing sleep by drinking alcohol. Although alcohol puts you to sleep quickly, it robs you of quality sleep. It decreases the much needed rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. Dreams occur during REM sleep, which is the last stage of the sleep cycle. Too little REM sleep leaves you feeling drowsy and tired the next day, and diminishes your memory function.
Poor sleep reduces your concentration and might cause you to nod off at the wheel. Getting into an accident will not only increase your rig insurance rates, but could harm your career. On the other hand, the increased security of having affordable and quality rig insurance may help you sleep better at night. For more information, contact us at J.E.B. Insurance Services, LLC. We provide insurance in the states of Florida, Georgia, Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Illinois, Iowa & Nebraska.