For a long time opinion has been divided on whether or not napping is good for you. Does it hinder your chances of sleeping at night time? Or does it provide a much needed boost during the day? Read on and find out how to become an expert!
Why nap at all?
We’re all prone to wanting to carry on relentlessly during the day. Deadlines to meet, clients to talk to, meetings to be in. It seems to never stop and the idea of taking an hour out for a quick sleep strikes fear into most people’s hearts! But there are proven benefits to allowing our bodies some time to recuperate and refresh.Taking a break during the day can work wonders in making the mind perform more effectively and helps avoid the dreaded mental burnout. And if you’re still wondering whether to give it a try, think about the fact that 85% of mammals sleep for short periods of time during the day.We’re one of the only species to adopt the ‘one long sleep’ theory, which many suggests goes against how we’re naturally programmed.
What's the best time to nap?
Our bodies naturally slow down at two clear points during the day. 2 to 4 am and 1 to 3 pm, so a mid-afternoon nap will tie in with your body’s natural rhythm and have the greatest effect.
Your body will usually make this decision for you! People worry about falling asleep for hours, but like anything, it’s all down to training. The more you practice napping, the better at it you and your body will become. Anything between 10 minutes to an hour is plenty. Your body will dictate what works for you.If you're especially worried about doxing off for too long, have a coffee right before you lay down. This will limit how long you sleep for.
What are the benefits?
There are numerous reasons to switch off, not least to increase your productivity, improve your alertness, improve your memory retention, lower blood pressure and boost your immune system!
How do I do it?
Comfort is key! Don’t try to just fall asleep at your office chair. Find somewhere to lie down, with a comfortable temperature, little noise and as dark as you need to nod off. And once you find the right place and the right time, stick to it. Consistency is key to successful napping!