Waking up early and going to bed late can start to take a toll both physically and mentally after a while. We wake up, get ready for our day, go the whole day without taking a rest, and then stay up late, creating a routine cycle that can often leave us exhausted, depleted of energy, and more stressed than we need to be. All of that can be prevented by taking a nap every day. There are even some famous snoozers who reap the benefits of daily naps, including former President Bill Clinton, inventor Thomas Edison, singer/actress Jennifer Lopez, actor Matthew McConaughey, singer Lady Gaga, and actress Cameron Diaz. Here’s why:
One of the overwhelmingly obvious benefits of taking a daily nap is an increase in your energy afterwards. When you go through half of your day, your energy tends to dip, depending on how much work you’re doing (both physically and mentally), what you consume, and how much sleep you get the night before, among other things. By taking a 30-minute nap, your energy levels get a chance to rest and recharge, leaving you feeling refreshed and ready to take on the rest of your day.
Studies have shown that taking a nap of 20 minutes helps to clear your brain of built-up information, increasing the brain’s ability to remember long-term information. So, if you’re looking to improve your ability to remember people’s names at your new job, it might be a good idea to turn your computer monitor off and take a mini-nap to increase your chances.
It’s also been said that taking naps increase your alertness throughout the day. On a day without a nap, you may find yourself trying to fight off sleep. On a day with a nap, you’ll find yourself becoming more alert to what you’re focusing on, giving you a better chance to be productive.
Taking a break
One thing that doesn’t happen too often is taking a break. You’d be surprised what you can accomplish after you’ve decided to regroup and catch your breath for a minute or two (or five), as a quick mini nap:
- Helps cure writer’s block
- Takes your mind off of what you’re working on
- Gives you a chance to get up and stretch
- Gives you an opportunity to take a nap
That’s right: when you take a break from what you’re doing, you can nap and reset your mind. This gives you a chance to seize the day.
Taking a nap will let your mind refocus itself and give you a clear thought process for the rest of your day. This can be beneficial in many different ways: more productivity, more brainpower, less burnout, etc.
As you’re going through your workday, it might be a good idea to use part of your lunch break to sleep in your car (unless your job allows you to sleep in your office). Heck, it might even be a good idea to ask your boss if you can take short naps when you’re at work. Either way, find the time to get it done. You’ll be able to reap the benefits.
When our bodies shut down to sleep, they work on replenishing energy, relieving stress, and healing both body and mind. If you were to take a daily nap, even on the days that you don’t have work, you can begin to see your stress levels reduce significantly.
Because of this, we are ready to take on the day without dragging our feet the last half of the afternoon. So sit back, kick your feet up, and take a little snooze—your body and brain will thank you.
Taking a nap is just one of the many ways to make you less stressful: 5 Ways to Reduce Stress at WorkFeatured photo credit: Side view of businesswoman sleeping on counter in office via Shutterstock