You glance at the time just to find you are only half-way through your day and there are still workloads to be managed. As you take a deep breath and strategize your next move, whether it be to the coffee pot or the nearest vending machine, your eyes begin to feel heavy and your train of thought comes to a screeching halt. When these symptoms occur, the only thing you can think about is crawling under your desk and taking a snoozer. Well, it’s time to act on those thoughts, and take the steps necessary for your well-being and recharge those batteries.
Napping leaves you feeling mentally refreshed. It increases serotonin levels which puts you in a better mood and increases performance. For a boost of alertness, experts advise a 10-20 minute nap is suitable to restore brain activity and heighten procedural memory. For intellectual memory processing, a 60 minute nap may add even more value to your day. Of course this depends upon whether your employer allows you an extensive break, or if you have time in-between classes.
In this unyielding, fast-paced world, prioritizing your workload and personal life may seem asymmetrical at times. So, instead of brewing up another pot of joe, close your office door, dim the lights, and shut off the nagging voices in your head. Try holding a set of keys or a pen in your hand as you doze off, the prop will usually fall 15-20 minutes into your nap (before you enter a different phase of sleep) and wake you up. If you aren’t particularly fond of naps because you find that you wake up groggy, the next time you take a siesta, try sipping on a cup of coffee before hand. Caffeine usually takes 20 minutes to kick in, and won’t hurt such a short break and should lessen the effect of sleep inertia upon awakening.
Don’t feel guilty for taking a few minutes to recharge. Enjoy a “cat-nap” and reap the benefits of improved productivity, energy, creativity, and extended mental capacity that it provides.