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5 Reasons Why Naps Should Be A Mandatory Part Of Our Day

5 Reasons Why Naps Should Be A Mandatory Part Of Our Day

Though some may claim that naps are a sign that you’re lazy, there is increasing evidence which shows that a quick power nap can actually benefit your health. Whether you’re low on energy during the day, or just feel better when you have some time to yourself, it may be beneficial to let yourself nod off every so often. While you come up with ways to convince your boss to institute nap time, here are five incredible health benefits to fitting in an afternoon snooze.

1. Short Term Energy Boost

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    While those against napping might claim naps make you more drowsy, taking a shorter nap will actually boost your energy and alertness. Next time you feel the need to grab a quick rest, doze off with confidence. Napping too long will have the opposite effect however, and make you feel groggy for hours. To avoid this, aim to sleep for about 20 to 30 minutes in order to get the jump on the rest of your day.

    2. Say Goodbye To Your Daily Hump

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      The normal ups and downs in your energy are largely controlled by chemical systems in the body. Physiological makeup and sleep habits combine to make each of our sleep cycles a little different. However, there is usually a dip in energy in the late afternoon, in addition to an increase in sleepiness towards the evening. In one study looking at naps, caffeine, and exercise, naps were the most effective way to overcome this afternoon dip in energy. 

      3. It’s Natural

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        Humans are among very few mammals to sleep in monophasic sleep cycles. Splitting our day into one period of wakefulness, then one period of sleep is different from 85% of other mammals. These animals sleep on and off throughout the day in short periods, known as polyphasic sleep cycling. It is not clear if a monophasic sleep cycle is human’s natural sleep cycle, so some researchers believe napping may be perfectly natural.

        4. Helps You Work

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          Another way naps may keep you healthy is by warding off dips in performance. Many people experience a continuing decline in ability to focus and perform throughout the day, making them less productive in the afternoon and evenings. To combat this, NASA recently did a study on their pilots. The group who were allowed to nap were 34% more alert in their post nap flights, while the group that didn’t nap struggled more. If NASA’s on board, your campaign for extended lunch breaks might not be that frivolous. More and more, research supports short naps helping you have a more effective day.

          5. Helps Your Heart

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            Cortisol is a chemical our body releases when we’re in stressful situations, but when you sleep, your body release chemicals that balance out Cortisol. Naps aren’t excluded, as a recent study found that a 30 minute nap three times a week made a person 37% less at risk of dying from heart disease. Real world, lasting health benefits are as good a reason as any to take a reprieve from your to do list every once in a while. 

            Featured photo credit: Takashi Hososhima via flickr.com

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            Alicia Prince

            A writer, filmmaker, and artist who shares about lifestyle tips and inspirations on Lifehack.

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            Last Updated on August 10, 2020

            15 Simple Things You Can Do To Turn Your Life Around

            15 Simple Things You Can Do To Turn Your Life Around

            Life can be difficult. It can seem like nothing goes your way and the world is against you. The world can be a very cruel and lonely place. But there are things that you can do to begin turning your life around.

            Whether you’re in a job you hate, struggling with a loss, or just not on the path you expected, only you hold the key to turning your life around. Here are 15 simple things you can do to turn your life around.

            1. Read Daily

            Reading lets you escape to a different place within your mind. It can be relaxing and calming. And it helps stimulate brain activity and keeps you sharp.

            Reading daily can help you spend time away from the problems of the day and allow you to escape into a world of endless possibilities. Changing your perspective can help you turn around your life, and reading is a great place to start.

            Here’re some recommendations: 20 All-Time Best Motivational Books to Inspire You

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            2. Put Your Goals in Writing

            When thoughts are banging around in our heads, they can easily slip away. Walk from one room to another and you forget what you were doing!

            Make sure your goals are concrete and written down. This will help you stay accountable to yourself and is the first step in completing your goal. By writing it on a piece of paper, you must put in the thought of how you should word it, what exactly you want to accomplish, and will make you consider if it’s truly worth it.

            3. Prune Your Relationships

            Too often, relationships can be destructive. This is often looked at through the scope of romantic relationships, but also consider life-long friends, family, and acquaintances. Are the people you spend time with bringing you down? Are they helping you achieve your goals or hindering? It can be difficult, but pruning your relationships can be the quickest catalyst in turning your life around.

            4. Make New Friends

            Don’t underestimate how a new person or group of friends in your life can change your outlook. Be open to meeting new people, both at work and in your personal life.

            5. Get Healthy

            When you feel great, good things seem to come your way. Working out helps you feel better about yourself and can help change your outlook on life. Eating right can help you have the energy to do more. Getting healthy can improve your entire outlook on life and help turn your life around.

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            6. Start Saving

            For many, financial struggle can weigh heavy and be the cause of many problems. Without a change of job or career, changing your financial situation will take time and effort. Start saving with each paycheck to help build toward your future. Even if it’s a small amount each check, consistency in saving can help you change your path in the future.

            7. Start a Business

            Working for others can be tough. You may be underemployed, under-utilized, and under-appreciated. Starting a business can help you take control of your financial future.

            Understand that you don’t have to quit your current job to start a business. Find something you love and have skills at and do it in your free time. If you’re in creative services, freelance. If you’re great at carpentry, build tables to sell. If you are a talented painter or crafty, start an Etsy store.

            You may find that your side passion business can turn into more. Or, if you have the opportunity and skills, take the plunge and go all in. Working for yourself is challenging, but a great opportunity to change your life.

            Here’re some tips for you: How to Start a Small Business with Little to No Money

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            8. Find Opportunities to Help Others

            Helping others can change your outlook and help turn your life around. Changing the way you think about the world can play a part. But helping others can also open up doors you never had available. Being a good person can help you get out of a funk and can be the catalyst for change.

            9. Learn a New Skill

            When you have more skills, additional opportunities will be presented. If you’re tired of your blue collar job, take classes to learn computer skills. If you’re struggling to move up in your company, find a skill that makes you more valuable. And if you want financial freedom, learn a skill that can help you change your life. Knowledge is power.

            10. Stop Watching TV

            Watching TV can keep you distracted and take up a lot of time. Cutting out the time you spend watching TV and replacing it with more productive activities can help you accomplish more and stay focused.

            11. Listen to Inspirational Content

            You can learn much about yourself from others. Find inspirational and educational content that matches your needs and give it a listen. You may find that the advice from others in similar situations can give you the boost you need to change your life.

            12. Stop Complaining

            Negative thoughts and talk can turn people against you and make your outlook grim. Stop complaining so much and make the best out of your situation.

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            13. Find or Rekindle Your Passion

            Doing what you love can change your entire outlook on life. When you’re doing things you hate, you can be more stressed and make life much harder than it needs to be. Find things you’re passionate about and rekindle the love for what you enjoyed in the past. Doing what you love can turn your life around and make each day more rewarding.

            14. Take a Vacation (or Staycation)

            Sometimes, hitting the reset button is all it takes to improve your situation. Taking a vacation, or staycation, is a great way to get away from the stress of the daily grind and recharge your battery. A vacation can give you the perspective you need to change your life.

            15. Re-evaluate Your Attitude

            How you view the world will often reflect in how you treat yourself. Re-evaluate your attitude and ensure that you’re doing all you can to make the most out of every situation. A change in how you view your situation can often be the push that helps you change your life for the better.

            More Tips to Help You Change Your Life

            Featured photo credit: Conner Ching via unsplash.com

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