The pandemic has been a major source of stress and a lack of sleep for many, whether it’s because of work-related change or feelings of uncertainty. But SEEK claims it can help with a Spotify playlist.
A new survey conducted on behalf of the employment marketplace found that nearly half (48%) of Aussies’ daily work routines have been affected by COVID-19.
More than two-fifths (44%) of people have also stayed awake due to career anxiety, while 76% of respondents admitted to having trouble sleeping whenever they’re feeling worried, anxious or overwhelmed.
SEEK’s resident psychologist, Sabina Read, says the pandemic has put everyone under greater stress and encourages people to seek out advice from a careers or mental health professional, as well as free resources online.
“Australians are now facing issues that they’ve never had to deal with before ─ reduced hours, sudden redundancy and having to take on new ways of working,” she said.
“When we are faced with uncertainty, our default is to look for predictability, understanding and solutions and when we can’t find those things it can affect the way we feel and behave. It can also leave us feeling stuck and unsure of what to do next.”
SEEK has used its industry expertise and science to create a personalised Spotify playlist with bedtime rhymes by rap artist Briggs, to help Aussies switch off from the daily grind and sleep better.
“I could empathise with people needing some assistance to turn off. Sleep time podcasts are something I’ve turned to from time to time, and a reason why I was excited to get involved with Sleepmix,” Briggs said.
When asked to provide his expertise for the project, Professor and Director of the Music, Sound and Performance Lab at Macquarie University, Bill Thompson, said there are a variety of technical elements to consider when creating tailored tunes.
“Sound and music can shape our moods and influence how we understand ourselves and the world around us. The right sounds can brighten our mood and help us to unwind, focus, and plan our futures creatively and effectively,” he said.
“When building the Sleepmix there were a number of elements that had to be taken into consideration ─ including the mnemonic, soundscape and the lyrics of the bedtime rhymes ─ optimising elements such as tempo, emotional tone, complexity and length.
“Music that is too familiar can trigger conscious imagery of musicians and venues, and music that is too complex can be distracting. We achieved this by creating sound and music textures that nurture a positive auditory experience and are personally meaningful, but not distracting.”
What’s keeping Australians up at night?
SEEK suggests many Aussies aren’t getting enough shut eye as a result of taking work home ─ even without necessarily realising it.
Simply reflecting on the day was seen as the top reason for losing sleep (37%), with a third (30%) also claiming to toss and turn over tricky conversations or mistakes they made during the day.
Although 39% of Aussies prefer to avoid the problem instead of solving it before going to bed.
Other things people are losing sleep over include challenges at work (26%), unfinished tasks (23%) and worrying about their own or their partner’s job security (22%).
Source: Independent research conducted by Nature on behalf of SEEK, surveying 4,800 Australians annually.
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