Re: first night shift this evening
graveyard shifts are easy.
I used to work shifts if 7am - 3pm or 3pm -11pm
in that case it's easy, on early shifts, get up at 6am to get to work for 7, go to bed at 10ish
on late shifts, get up at 8am, go to work, come home and go straight to bed.
graveyard shifts are fine, there is no reason that they should mess with your sleep patterns at all.
that said, night shifts are a killer, there is no way to get used to them at all.
my shift pattern changed to include night shifts, so I was night shift, late shift early shift in a rotating pattern. I'd find myself awake at night and tired in the day, just as I got used to the pattern it'd change.
now I don't work shifts at all really. early this if now 8am - 4:30pm, late shift is 9:30am - 6pm
I work on call though as well, so some nights (like last night) I get called loads (five different times) and work all day, then all night before working all day again. (actually I didn't work all day I told my boss I'd be late in an went back to bed for a bit first!)
my girlfriend works night shifts now, she does no preparation, just have an easy day not doing a lot before starting, then do a 12 hour shift, go to bed, then wake up and straight back for another 12 hour shift. at the end, crash and spend a couple of days in bed.
Basically, I don't think that there is a method that you can use at all. mostly just try to stay up later and sleep in longer before starting nights, and then try to get up earlier and go to bed sooner after doing nights.
I read something a little while ago suggesting that if you ever need to "reset" your body clock (either through jet lag or shift work) get up, and immediately have a big breakfast. it's a bit of a caveman/hunter gather thing that supposedly your body will then be in a rhythm where it assumes that food will come at that time, so it's a good time to wake.
if you're planning on sleeping during the day consider getting heavy curtains to block out all the light, then a light alarm thing that gradually makes the room lighter to simulate dawn to ease you from sleep rather than jolt you awake with a buzzer...
-those are things I've read that are supposed to help, but like I say I found that nothing helps, you just have to gut through it.
I didn’t fight my way to the top of the food chain to be a vegetarian…
Im sick of people saying 'dont waste paper'. If trees wanted to live, they'd all carry guns.
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