You never go to bed early because you're trying to get stuff accomplished, right? Rethink that strategy.

Science is proving that your brain is surprisingly good at multitasking while you sleep — and your body functions at a surprisingly energetic level, too. Here are just a few of the surprising things you can do in your sleep — your mental and physical health will thank you!

Prep for that presentation.

Trying to memorize data for a big work project? Take a 20-minute nap in a hammock or rocking chair or recliner.

A study from the University of Geneva found that sleeping while your body gently rocks or sways activates the memory consolidation channels within your brain, sharpening your ability to recall facts quickly and efficiently. Rocking also helps you fall asleep faster and stay asleep, too.

Learn a new language.

University of Bern researchers found that during the phase of sleep known as slow wave, new vocabulary is efficiently cemented in your memory due to specific brain cells repairing themselves from your busy day.

Play a recording on your phone of those French phrases you're trying to learn for that upcoming vacation to Paris while you snooze, and when you wake up, you'll know them.

Heal that wound.

European researchers report that during sleep, your immune cells attach themselves to "targets" in your system — like the cold virus or the infection you might have gotten from a cut.

Sleep super-powers your immune cells to kill what's making you sick. Give these immune cells a boost by making sure you get at least seven hours of uninterrupted ZZZZs.

Stop those aches and pains.

Research published by the Society for Neuroscience found that just one night of decreased sleep can adversely activate the brain's perception of pain. If you get 7-8 hours of shuteye, though, you may experience less pain the next day — so sleep can help you get control of those aches and pains you deal with from hunching over your computer and phone as you work.

Enjoy a better outlook.

Good sleep can help cement a positive attitude once you wake up the next morning. When your brain is rested, you feel clearer about the possibilities and potential of what you can achieve. So, turn in early, and wake up tomorrow ready to meet those goals and more!

Here are five additional strategies for good sleep hygiene to help you get the highest quality rest, according to the American Sleep Association:

  • Go to bed and get up at the same time each day.
  • Don't nap, which can throw off the amount of sleep you get later.
  • Avoid caffeine after noon each day.
  • Exercise before 2 p.m. each day; it will help you sleep through the night.
  • Put your alarm clock or phone in a place you can't see it when you go to bed to avoid checking the time constantly.