While we all know that getting a restful night of sleep each night is one of the best decisions we can make for our overall health and well-being, there are often obstacles standing between us and a full eight hours of shut-eye. Between the busy schedules, never-ending work emails, and technological distractions we all face (“just one more episode…”), it’s easier than ever to stay up a little later than we should each night. Those hours of borrowed time come at a high price, however, and the results might not show up for years. Aside from the health risks, skimping on sleep can make you a less productive worker. That problem may be more widespread than previously thought, according to a new survey conducted on behalf of jobs and recruiting site Glassdoor. Their survey found that 74% of American workers get fewer than eight hours of sleep on a normal weekday work night.

The average participant in Glassdoor’s survey reported getting an average of just 6.9 hours of sleep each night, far below what is recommended by most sleep doctors. The survey asked 1,077 U.S. adults who are employed either full or part time to report how much sleep they get each night and asked various questions about how they feel their sleep time affects their performance. Perhaps not surprisingly, the survey found that 66 percent of American workers between the ages of 18 and 44 feel they would be more productive employees if they got more sleep each night. Interestingly, us lazy, entitled millennials all the news outlets love to bash on reported getting the most sleep out of any age group, averaging around 7.5 hours on a typical work night.

Given all the talk about declining American productivity, maybe it’s time we start taking a look at American workers’ sleep habits. Could more sleep be the key to getting our economy back on track?

Brett Tingley

Brett Tingley is a writer and musician from the mountains of Western North Carolina. Contact him at [email protected]

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