Tips to Help You Survive the First Few Days After the Time Change

It’s the Monday after the beginning of Daylight Saving Time.  We’re already enjoying the extra daylight in the evenings, but something’s just not right and we’re all really, really tired.  Most likely, it’s that lost hour.  For a lot of people, it doesn’t really sink in until they have to get up for work or school on Monday.  For others, it doesn’t really hit until Tuesday.  Here are some tips to help you get through the next couple of days:

  • Don’t be afraid to hit the caffeine. Whether you prefer soda or coffee, an extra cup won’t hurt you in the first half of the day if you feel like you need it.  Try to avoid extra caffeine in the afternoon, though, as it may keep you from sleeping at night.
  • Avoid napping.  Unless you normally nap during the day (for instance, if you work a split shift and need the extra sleep) try to avoid taking a nap.  The best thing for you to do is try to stick to your normal schedule.  If you nap during the day, it may push your bedtime back to a later time.
  • Try to stick to the same schedule you had before the time change.  There’s a temptation to go to bed very early because you’re exhausted.  Try to avoid going to bed more than an hour early, because it might lead to you waking up early, and keeping you stuck to standard time for another day.
  • Get plenty of light in the morning.  The best way to orient yourself to a new schedule is sunlight first thing in the morning. Unfortunately, for many people, the downside of the time change is that it’s dark while they’re getting ready for work, and maybe even for the entire drive to the office.  If this is the case for you, turn on some bright lights in the house while you’re taking a shower, eating breakfast, etc.  You may also find that purchasing a light box will help.