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While many might mock the idea of a power nap right in the middle of the day, there are many a busy executive and doctor and writer who have benefited by it. No longer is napping associated with just pre-schoolers. A power nap is said to do wonders to your productivity and creativity. Is it any wonder that Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison and Leonardo da Vinci were avid power nappers.
Taking a break and opting for a short nap is not just an opportunity to rest, but also to prepare you for the next task of the day. Research has shown that taking a power nap at the work place can measurably reduce stress levels and make you more effective.
Power nap is a short nap, usually taken in the afternoon to recharge your energy levels for the next part of the day. Mid-day sleep is said to boost concentration and productivity and most of all bestow you with better health. Power naps incorporated in your daily routine can go a long way toward helping you lead a stress free life.
Power naps are often likened to meditation where your thoughts move from the subconscious mind to the conscious mind and vice-versa. Your mind is relieved of the clutter and you awaken feeling refreshed and recharged. It goes a long way in stimulating body and spirit.
Power nap length
There are five stages of sleep and each stage is said to provide different benefits. Body and mind are relaxed during the first two stages of sleep. This stage will last for 20 to 30 minutes after which you will go into deeper stages of sleep. It becomes difficult to wake up if you sleep beyond second stage.
Hence sleep experts suggest that one should not power nap for more than 30 minutes or else you will wake up feeling groggy. But any thing shorter than 15 minutes isn't enough. So 20 to 25 minutes will comfortably cover the first two stages of sleep leaving you recharged and relaxed at the same time.
Benefits of power nap
Power nap increases the alertness and reduces the stress levels of a person. This is also the reason why many organizations are realizing the value of power nap and encouraging their employees to opt for a short siesta during the working hours.
Mind becomes more creative after the nap. Successful people have taken most of their best decisions after grabbing their share of a power nap.
Power nap enhances the mood, alertness and memory. It is also the best technique to fight fatigue. Many professionals like doctors and even those who drive for long hours are advised to take power naps during the course of the day to avoid any untoward incidents.
Students too benefit from the power nap as the information gathered and stored in their minds tends to get consolidated and streamlined during the sleep.
Power nap helps immensely to those who cannot get their daily dose of ideal eight hours of night sleep. Such people can fill their sleep deficit by power napping. But remember, power nap can never act as a substitute to good nights sleep.
How to power nap?
Find a calm and peaceful place to doze off. If you are at work, place post a sign outside your room to let others know that you are napping.
Dim the lights or else cover your face with an eye mask. Darker surroundings are conducive to quick sleep.
If possible play soothing music. Music ensures better sleep and relaxes your mind and body effectively.
Do not forget to set an alarm for 20 or 30 minutes to avoid going into deep sleep mode.
Have a cup of coffee just before taking a nap. It takes time for the caffeine in the coffee to work on your body. So it just starts working when it is time for you to wake up. This will help you to come out of your sleep without feeling groggy.
Lastly, switch off your mobile phones.
Once you are awake after power nap, wash your face with cold water to make you completely alert.