Do you also feel sleepy in the afternoon or you find that you can’t focus on your work and wished that you could lull into sleep for a while. There some days when your eyelids feel so heavy that it is a herculean task to keep them open and your energy abandons you sometime around lunchtime. Then you are a normal person and there is nothing wrong with this phenomenon. But instead of reaching for a cup of tea or coffee to fight that sleep, it is recommended that you disconnect from the outer world and settle down for a quick nap. This recommendation is based on the Benefits of taking Nap in office.
Therefore, don’t feel guilty about it, we could all use some more sleep. In fact, a sweet little catnap can make your afternoon a whole lot better.
Benefits of taking Nap in office
Given below are some important benefits of taking nap in office. Also there is a short video on the subject in the middle of this blog.
1. Nap improves concentration and performance
No human can perform with the same efficiency and alertness throughout the day. Whether it is physical work or mental work or the mix of the two, our bodies and mind are designed to get tired. Hence a break, preferably in the middle of the day works wonders. The body and brain get time to rest and get recharged for a great output once again.
2. Nap gives a boost to memory
In one study, participants who napped regularly for 10 minutes periods improved their performance on cognitive tests of memory and vigilance. The results showed an immediate boost in their performance.
3. Lowers blood pressure
A study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology found that the “siesta habit” is associated with a 37 percent reduction in coronary mortality, possibly because of reduced cardiovascular stress associated with daytime sleep.
However, it is not confirmed if the benefit was derived from the nap itself or a reclined position, or for other associated reasons. However, they concluded that this decrease in blood pressure may be why lower coronary mortality has been found in those who take naps.
4. The nap lets you become more creative and find solutions to complex problems
In your office hierarchy, the higher level of the pyramid you are at, the more complex is the nature of problems being brought to your desk. It is not always possible to come out with the best possible solution instantly and in the midst of the chaos caused by ringing phones, constant stream of e mails, and unpleasant discussions in the crammed meeting rooms. Our mind is actually a combination of subconscious mind and the conscious mind. While the conscious mind is good at performing day to day and task driven jobs, it is the job of subconscious mind to pull out all the relevant data of the current and past, connect with the higher conscious and suggest the best solution or the idea under the given circumstances.
But to approach the sub conscious and make it work, we need to bring out the frequency of brain to alpha or theta level. This can be achieved by trained persons through meditation like techniques or the other option is sleep.
Hence to get the benefits of great insights, there is a need to unplug by taking nap in office after lunch.
5. Nap Improves alertness
The National Sleep Foundation reports that a NASA study on sleepy military pilots and astronauts found that a 40-minute nap improved performance by 34 percent and alertness 100 percent. The foundation recommends a quick nap before driving your car to reduce the risk of a car crash due to drowsy driver.
6. Afternoon nap coupled with quality time can create better relationships
Interpersonal relationships whether at office or home get strained when we are stressed or stretched. It is impossible to be caring, see other’s point of view and speak kind words which are pillars of a true connection. While temporary flare ups can be fixed but if allowed to continue, one may not be the favoured colleague or boss or junior in the office. At home it can be still worse as it may cause divorce and lead to broken homes.
The information overload, higher expectations from self or by employers and high ambitions can drive a person crazy. This can be as damaging as smoking a pack or more of cigarettes a day.
Not all can take this and there is a simple solution. Taking the time off to nap and rest for about 15 minutes can do wonders. Besides other benefits of the nap, you can be more calm, composed and relaxed. You can rekindle and deepen relationships.
Video: Benefits of Afternoon Nap (Siesta)
Alternative to Power Nap – Meditation
If for one reason or the other you or your employers are not comfortable with the idea of taking a power nap or Siesta, then you can try Meditation.
Meditation has not hard and fast rules. As long as you are able to cut yourself off from the external disturbances and disconnect your can achieve the benefits of de-stressing. Meditation is so soothing and relaxing that you might doze off, and that’s okay (obviously it shows that you needed that rest).
Successful, enlightened people all understand the importance of meditation. In fact many people can meditate to relax even on the move – in car, metro, and airport or train.
You must have noticed that different people have different levels of sleepiness and alertness throughout the day Sleep is regulated by two body systems: sleep / wake homeostasis and the circadian biological clock – this is what causes these patterns? When we have been awake for a long period of time, sleep/wake homeostasis tells us that a need for sleep is accumulating and that it is time to sleep.
Well known personalities like Winston Churchill, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, Napoleon, Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison and George W. Bush are known to be valuing the napping habit. A nap in the afternoon can provide a simple way to some relaxation and rejuvenation.
Next time, you feel sleepy in the afternoon then don’t feel guilty about it. Go get some sleep. A little catnap can make your rest of the day a whole lot better.
Since most people work more than 9 to 10 hours a day, it’s natural to become sleepy during the day. This is especially more applicable to those who get up early to do household chores or spend some time exercising by going to the gym or walking or doing yoga. Your circadian rhythms ensure that you have two periods of extreme sleepiness during a 24-hour period: once in the middle of the night, around midnight; and the other, 12 hours later – right around lunchtime.
So let us appreciate the practice in some Middle Eastern countries, where a siesta is a cherished part of the culture.
Trying to keep productivity high when you’re sleep-deprived is neither a good idea nor practical on a daily basis. Sleepiness only results in poor productivity, bad quality output, slow work and a bad attitude. Is it possible to see a sleep deprived and exhausted person to be cheerful, chirpy and productive? Nobody wants to work with irritable and unpleasant people.
So show your boss this article. He or she will be convinced that a well-rested team member is a more productive, cheerful and efficient person!
Next time, catch you in your afternoon dreams!
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