We all have been there when we have felt like we cannot take it up any more and decide to take a break.
Whether you are a student working on your endless assignments or gearing up for your examinations;
whether you are working in a stressful environment in an office or working from home or even if you are a simple homemaker struggling to make it smooth for your family, you have to try a power nap to believe the magic it holds!
What is a Power Nap?
Nap means ‘to sleep for a short time’.
During sleep, the body of an individual goes through five different stages of sleep and the fourth and the fifth stages are considered as stages of deep sleep.
A power nap means to sleep for a short period of time so that an individual does not go beyond the third stage of sleep.
What is a perfect duration for a power nap?
While there is no duration that can be regarded as perfect for a power nap, an average of 15 to 20 minutes is regarded as perfect by many.
An individual has to try and figure out the right duration that works for them. However, a power nap has to be strictly within 30 minutes since the experts believe that a nap more than 30 minutes can actually have more drawbacks than benefits.
Benefits of Power Napping
So you might be wondering why you need a power nap on your work station than have an eight-hour comfortable sleep on your memory foam mattress at night.
The Sleep Foundation has done its share of researches and figured out several benefits of having a power nap in addition to the standard eight-hour sleep requirement of an adult.
A power nap is a definite way of getting some relaxation and feeling rejuvenated but it also comes with the benefits of increased performance, agility, rise in alertness and thus, reduction in mistakes and errors.
There are several experiments that prove how one’s productivity starts decreasing after almost eight hours of being up.
A power nap after almost eight hours of being up will help to restore energy, make one completely alert and thus, perform better.
For the same reason, the suggested time to take a power nap is somewhere around the middle of the day when it has been eight hours or more of activity since morning.
It is the same time when an individual’s level of productivity, alertness, and focus are all starting to get affected—adversely.
Power Nap — Misconceptions
One of the most common misconceptions associated with power naps is that these are good for elderly people or young children.
There are still others who believe that only a lazy person needs a power nap.
Neither of this true.
An individual of any age can actually benefit from power naps.
Tips to take Power Naps like a Pro
Now that you know that taking a power nap has way more advantages than it has downsides, it makes sense to find out the right way of doing it.
So, here are a few points you must keep in mind to ensure that you have a successful stint at a power nap:
1. Find the duration that works for you
With practice and persistence, you will be able to figure out the duration that just serves right for you.
While for some it can be fifteen minutes, for others it can be twenty minutes. But remember not to nap any more than thirty minutes since it can leave you groggy and wanting for more.
2. Use an alarm
Once you have figured out the right duration of power nap for yourself, set an alarm for that time. This way you will not have to stress too much about getting up at the right time and you can have a peaceful, stress-free nap.
3. Take a shorter nap when you are tired
Ironic as it may sound but it is true! When you are too tired, avoid taking a long nap since it will make you comfortable and you might actually fall asleep.
For the same reason, a lot of people prefer taking a short walk instead of taking a nap in such cases.
4. Try not to get too comfortable
This is possibly the thumb rule of a successful power nap—do not get too comfortable!
Even though staying comfortable is important, when taking a power nap, do not look for a very comfortable position or a posture since it will make it hard for you to get out.
For instance, napping on your work desk is a yes while napping in a bed with a comfortable mattress is a big no!
5. Do not stress on sleeping
A power nap has nothing to do with sleeping! Even if you do not sleep during your nap time, you can still get up more relaxed and productive than before. So do not stress on falling asleep while your power nap.
6. Do not take a power nap close to your bedtime
Avoid taking a power nap close to your bedtime since it will make it difficult for you to sleep at night.
Close to bedtime would mean, do not power nap when there are less than three to four hours left to bedtime.
7. Add a grace period of 15 to 20 minutes
While a power nap will make you more productive and rejuvenate with energy, expect a grace period of about 15 to 20 minutes before you attain that level of productivity and energy.
In the hectic schedule, like we have these days, it is almost impossible to get full sleep every day. Power naps, therefore, comes to your rescue.
At first, you might have a problem cracking up the secret of power naps perfectly.
But gradually and with practice, you cannot just master them but will also get used to them.
So, the next time your brain feels foggy or you struggle to open your eyes when you have work piled up before you, trust a power nap and get going!