How to Adapt Your Lifestyle to a Third Shift Work Schedule

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Working third shift can take a toll on several aspects of your life. Your daily routines can get thrown off, as can your eating schedule. Of course, a third shift work schedule can also ruin your sleep schedule. Working third shift doesn't need to ruin your life, though.

  • Don't go to sleep as soon as you get home from work. If you worked 9-5, you wouldn't call it a night when you entered your home. Working third shift should be no different. Instead, stay up and relax after working a third shift. Watch some television, read the paper or run some errands in the morning.

  • Create an eating schedule that mimics a normal one. If you weren't working a third shift, for instance, you'd probably eat dinner early in the evening. Therefore, you should try to eat your last meal of the day when you come home from work and eat breakfast right before you go into work. It's also important that you have a lunch when working third shift, even if that lunch takes place at three in the morning.

  • Change things up on the weekend. This is especially important when you're working a third shift in the summer months. You won't, after all, want to sleep away the warm weather. If you work from 11 p.m. on Friday night until 7 a.m. Saturday morning, try to rest up immediately upon entering your home. Then, you can wake up in the early afternoon and still have the rest of the weekend to enjoy.

  • Give yourself enough time to take care of chores. With a 9-5 schedule, you would most likely do things such as wash your clothes or clean your home in the evenings. A third shift work schedule may tempt you to relax a bit more when you get off of work since you technically do have an entire day ahead of you. Still, in between the time that you sleep and work it's important to take care of necessary obligations. If you have to do so, make a schedule or calendar with chores and stick to that schedule.

  • Don't allow a third shift work schedule to dominate your life. Working 9-5 wouldn't keep somebody from going to a 7 p.m. baseball game, after all. Make sure to meet up with your friends and socialize with others away from work. Even though you work a third shift, you can still hang out with those people who work more regular hours. Remember that it's all about how you manage your time. Own your time, don't let your time own you.

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