benefits of power naps

Benefits of Power Naps

We’ve all experienced it, that mid day drowsiness that comes out of nowhere and makes you feel sluggish and weak. A short power nap my be just what you need! Of course, it’s not always convenient or even possible depending on where you are. However, time and circumstance permitting, a quick snooze can be very refreshing. In as little as 15 - 30 minutes, you can awaken revitalized and ready to resume your day.

The length of your nap is important

The amount of time spent in your daytime slumber is key. For the first 30 minutes or so, your body is still in the stage of light sleep. During this period, it’s quite easy to awaken without feeling groggy. Beyond 30 minutes, we begin easing into deep sleep. After the first hour, our bodies fall fully into this next restful period. While in this stage, creativity and decision making ability is sharpened. The downside is, if interrupted during this stage, you may awaken feeling even more sluggish than before your nap.

A full sleep cycle takes a minimum of around 90 minutes. If you are exceptionally tired, a nap of this length can be quite beneficial. It’s also easier to awaken after a completed sleep cycle. That said, most people are not afforded the luxury of this amount of time during a busy day. But, if you can find a brief window to allow for power nap, the benefits can be quite rewarding. Become more productive, alert and in better overall spirits with just a 15 - 30 minute break. 

Making time for a break

benefits of power naps

It’s amazing how much extra time we really have when we start paying attention to our daily behaviors. When feeling over tired, our productivity drops. Even simple projects take longer than necessary. We also tend to have far less enthusiasm for the task at hand. This is when many of us reach for a caffeine fix. A cup of coffee has become the standard response to the midday let down. But, too much caffeine can can cause a vicious circle of sleepless nights and restless days.  Caffeine retains it’s half life up to 10 hours. Afternoon consumption can leave a considerable amount in your system come bedtime. Try substituting your coffee break with a  quick power nap and see how much more energetic you feel!

When is the best time for a power nap?

Midday is the best time to squeeze in a quick power nap. Your body may not be ready earlier in the day and resist going to sleep. A late afternoon snooze may result in disruption of your evening sleep. Basically, any time in the mid afternoon when you’re sleepy and have a few minutes to spare is a great time to catch some Z’s! Give it a try and see how much more alert, productive and happy you can be throughout your day!

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