The “CBS This Morning” co-host and Oprah’s best friend told “The Cut” that she sleeps just three or four hours a night
Gayle King is the queen of insanely early wake-up calls.
In an interview with The Cut, the “CBS This Morning” co-host and Oprah’s BFF admitted that she wakes up at 3:22 A.M. to make it to work on time.
“My alarm goes off at precisely 3:22 A.M., and then I have a backup alarm that goes off at 3:25 A.M. just in case. I’m really glad to say I’ve never overslept… [And] then the car comes and picks me up at 4:30,” to whisk her to the Manhattan studio, she added.
“And lately I’ve been up until eleven or twelve at night, because you just start watching something and you can’t stop,” King conceded, making her sleep deficit worse.
King isn’t the only sleep-deprived American who might be craving some more shut-eye: Two-thirds of American workers — specifically, 73% between the ages of 19 and 44 — say they would be better employees if they got more sleep, according to a recent Glassdoor report. And three in four workers snooze less than the recommended 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night, averaging just 6.9 hours.
And insufficient shuteye is a nightmare for bottom lines. Previous research has shown insufficient sleep costs the U.S. economy $411 billion in lost worker productivity. Restorative sleep helps prevent chronic conditions like obesity, diabetes, heart disease, stroke and frequent mental distress, which leads to less sick days and health care costs. And a 2016 University of California at San Diego study found that people who increased their sleep by even just one hour a night saw their wages increase by 5% in the long-run.
Gen Z and Millennial workers are waking up to how important rest is, considering they get the most sleep (7.4 hours) of any age group in the survey. Those between 45 and 54 years old got the least amount at just 6.5 hours per night.
The survey also found that men get more sleep (7.1 hours) than women (6.8 hours), and married workers report more rest each night (7.1 hours) than singles (6.7 hours.)
Part of the problem is that knowing when we’re on and off the clock has become complicated.
“With technology allowing employees to work remotely, and flexible work schedules on the rise, employees are empowered to step in and out of work to accommodate their personal and family lives,” said Carmel Galvin, Glassdoor chief human resources officer, in a statement. “But with this advancement, the lines of when work starts and ends can blur, potentially impacting the rest employees receive during the week to be at their best.”
Plus, many dedicated workers struggle with taking time off to take care of themselves, period. Project: Time Off reports that 662 million vacation days go unused each year, with many workers stating they can’t afford to go anywhere, or they’re worried about missing the time at work. Glassdoor also found that three in five (61%) employees say they’d rather work when they feel sick than use their paid time off or sick leave – especially younger employees ages 18-44 (70%).
But the good news is, employers are more supportive of letting workers catch Zs than you think. Glassdoor also reported that about three in four (74%) of employees said their manager encourages them to take time off to take care of their health and wellness. And Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global has been working with Glassdoor to encourage employers to sign a “Pledge to Thrive” at their workplace to lower stress and burnout.
This story was originally published on Oct. 26th, 2017, and has since been updated.
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