Do you get tired in the afternoon? Do you reach for sugar or caffeine to help get you through that 3 o'clock slump?
The Spanish (and other cultures who traditionally take afternoon siestas) have the right idea:
You are supposed to nap!
Napping during the day isn't lazy! Just a 10-minute power nap can boost your alertness and improve your mood.
After lunch your body temperature naturally drops, and your body wants to sleep. You need this daytime shuteye to improve your heart functioning, balance your hormones, and repair cells.
Napping is becoming more common in the workplace, and even huge corporations, Wall Street, and Broadway performers are jumping on the nap bandwagon. They know that napping improves productivity.
Napping for just 10 minutes can enhance your alertness, mood, and mental performance.
A recent study even showed that a midday power nap can decrease your risk of dying from heart attacks by 37%!1
Read on to learn the best ways to benefit from your naps.
Top Ten Tips for Taking a Nap
- Take a 20-minute nap (or less) to boost alertness and productivity during the day.
- Nap in the late morning or early afternoon. If you wait until late in the day, you may wake up groggy and disturb nighttime sleep.
- Avoid caffeine and sugar before your nap.
- Make sure you don't eat food that is particularly hard to digest, which may keep you from falling asleep.
- Find a quiet place to sleep, where noises won't disturb you.
- Draw the shades, turn off the lights, and wear a sleep mask during nap time to help you maximize your rest and to stimulate melatonin, a sleep-inducing hormone.
- Your body temp falls when you sleep, so cover up with a blanket.
- Set an alarm to gently wake you up at the desired time. Nap for 50 minutes or longer to help repair bones and muscles.
- Enjoy your nap! Keep in mind that napping improves performance, and you are not lazy for needing to sleep during the day.
The Best Way To Wake Up
If you cringe when you hear a blaring alarm, then try the Zen Alarm Clock from Now & Zen. This alarm clock gently wakes you with periodic chiming tones so that you never jolt awake again! Use it to wake up naturally in the morning, and set your alarm for your nap time too.
The Now and Zen alarm clock makes waking up from a nap gentle and easy. The melodic chiming help you wake up refreshed and energized.
NO Snooze, You Lose
You NEED sleep to have a healthy body, but if you have trouble falling asleep, be sure to read about the connection between sleep and your adrenals.
As you start to give your body plenty of rest (at night and during the day), you will feel more vibrant andperform better on the job. Nap time is important, so carve time out of your lunch hour, or ask your boss to approve nap time in your office. Some companies even have "quiet rooms" just for this purpose!
Take a nap...you'll likely notice a difference in your health and the bottom line in your business!
- Siestas Have Heart Health Effects, Study Suggests, CBC News, 12 February, 2007. http://www.cbc.ca/health/story/2007/02/12/siesta-heart.html
- Jacobs, Dr. Gregg, "The Benefits of Naps," TalkAboutSleep.com, 27 July 2004.