The current paper expands on traditional views of the work-nonwork interface to incorporate the critical component of sleep. We integrate past theoretical and empirical work from the sleep and organizational science literatures to inform a novel framework that will facilitate research evaluating associations among work, nonwork, and sleep, the three major areas of life. We propose that attitudes, behaviors, and states emerging in work and nonwork domains cannot be fully understood without taking into account upstream and downstream sleep quantity and quality effects. Rather, periods of sleep bookend engagement in work and nonwork roles. Thus, we propose the work, nonwork, and sleep (WNS) conceptual framework and, in doing so, identify specific, underlying resource mechanisms (i.e., human energy and time) operating both intra-individually and inter-individually. We also discuss contextual factors that act as predictors and moderators of these relationships. We suggest that a unifying framework explaining connections and underlying processes among work, nonwork, and sleep is necessary for applied psychology and management disciplines to significantly contribute to future research, intervention development and dissemination, and ultimately policy change. We provide a number of avenues for future investigation, including relevant special populations and methodological approaches. Although a plethora of work-nonwork theoretical frameworks exist, none have incorporated the third major area of life: sleep. We call for the expansion and acknowledgement of sleep, an important source of variance in everyday attitudes, behaviors, and states, and ultimately in long-term organizational, family, and individual health and well-being.
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This research was supported by the Mountain and Plains Education and Research Center, Grant T42OH009229, funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the Department of Health and Human Services. We thank Donald Truxillo and Dan Ganster for their very helpful suggestions on earlier drafts.
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Crain, T.L., Brossoit, R.M. & Fisher, G.G. Work, Nonwork, and Sleep (WNS): a Review and Conceptual Framework. J Bus Psychol 33, 675–697 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10869-017-9521-x
- Work-nonwork interface
- Work-family interface