Scientists of the University of Trier and the Open University of Hagen (both Germany) found out in a study that unfinished tasks might negatively influence sleep. This especially relates to tasks that remain unfinished on a Friday. For 12 weeks, 59 employees (76 % female) were questioned in an online investigation about their working stress on a Friday afternoon (for example: experienced time pressure, unfinished tasks etc.) as well as on their plans for the weekend. The following Monday they had to report about their sleeping quality and their work-related thoughts.
Make a plan let go your thoughts
The scientists noted that there are two kinds of brooding: On the one hand the sorrowful brooding and on the other hand a creative, problem-solving brooding. Experiencing an inner unrest and repeatedly connecting negative thoughts with your work without being able to find a solution – this will lead to bad sleep as well as to some kind of permanent stress for your brain. But, when trying to look at the task creatively and in a problem-solving manner one might even profit from it and relax more easily. So, when having unfinished work before the weekend start to actively get to work on them.
According to the working- and organization-psychologist Christine Syrek of the University of Trier it is advisable to make a plan before the weekend. In this plan should be listed where, when and how one is able to finish the open tasks. The more concrete the plan is the better letting go works according to Syrek. The psychologist also draws the attention to the fact that other investigations revealed that a diary beside the bed leads to easier and better falling asleep in the evening resp. when waking up at night.
But, sleep disturbances are not the only consequences when it is hard to let go unfinished tasks mentally. Frequently postponing unfinished tasks may lead to stress, anxiety, depressions, loneliness and exhaustion.
“Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today”. Taking the above mentioned into consideration, the saying makes perfectly sense.
With this in mind – have a beautiful, restful weekend!
This post is also available in / Diesen Beitrag gibt es auch in: German