2 paths on the road from office working to home working.
The first is a ‘cut and paste’ of the daily routine. You get up at the same time as when you went to the office. You shower, get dressed in work clothes, and walk to your home office. You don’t allow yourself to leave the office (except for coffee, bio breaks, and lunch) until your workday ends. In effect you work the 8 to 5 sitting in your home office chair. Exhausting.
If the first path is ‘cut and paste,’ the second is a fresh page.
A page that takes it’s form from the location – home. Home is more relaxed and so is this path’s schedule. Bursts of productivity are intermixed with bursts of fun and relaxation. Working from home offers benefits the first path does not utilize. The benefit is not only healthy, it may even make you more productive. What is it? Napping.
The benefits of napping are many, but here are just a few that have made a believer out of me:
1. It makes you smarter.
Pushing yourself to be productive, creative, to solve problems works for a while, but sometimes the answers just don’t come. And sometimes you have just been at it for too long.
Some people take a break to get coffee or a snack. Others go for a walk. But the home workers have the opportunity to reset their short-term memory by taking a 20 to 30 minute nap. You will be able to learn and absorb information more easily after you wake.
Check out the research from Matthew Walker of UC Berkeley to learn more.
2. You can avoid the afternoon slump
The human body naturally goes through phases of deep tiredness and one of this is between 1 and 3pm in the afternoon. So don’t blame lunch. Actually, skipping lunch makes it worse. Napping can help diminish this period of reduced alertness and coordination.
3. Regular Napping reduces stress and health risks.
When I discovered the tips of napping on WebMD, I finally had the final ingredient to the recipe for staying productive as any anywhere worker:
- – Be regular. Just like exercise and eating right, the benefits of napping build over time. Keep a schedule of daily napping around the same time of day. Between 1 and 3pm are optimal.
- – Make it quick. I’ve fallen into a 60 or more minute nap and ended up groggy and less productive than when I started. Timing naps for 20 or 30 minutes are great.
- – Go dark. Blocking out the light helps you fall asleep faster and stay asleep for that short time. Close the blinds, turn off the TV and music, wear an eye mask if you must.
- – Stay warm. Your body temperature drops when you sleep so keep something nearby to put over you so you have a comfortable nap. Even in the heat of summer, the air conditioner can feel cool. Personally, I like to have a warm puppy nearby.
Make a commitment to include napping in your schedule for one week. Share your experience with me!