It's hard to be productive when you're not at your best. And let's be honest, it's hard to be at your best when you're tired. I do not know about you, but I hate to be tired. Unfortunately, far too many entrepreneurs are too tired, too often. There is a lot of research that supports the conclusion that most people, especially entrepreneurs, do not get enough sleep.
Part of that is because at some point in our evolutionary history we decided we wanted to sleep for a certain period of time, and then stay awake the rest of the time. The idea is that it makes the most sense to be up while the sun is shining, since in much of human history it was the only light we had to work for. This is not how most mammals sleep, and it is not necessarily the best way for humans to do so either. they sleep for short periods throughout the day. Humans are part of the minority of monophasic sleepers, which means that our days are divided into two different periods, one for sleep and one for wakefulness. It is not clear that this is man's natural sleep pattern. Young children and the elderly nap, for example, and nap is a very important aspect of many cultures.
How do we know it's true? Well, if you've ever lost all ability to focus or desire to do much of something an hour or so after lunch, you understand. You're not alone either.
The good news is that there is a solution: take a nap.
I'm not kidding. Power napping is a superpower, almost literally. Harvard Medical School reported in 2009 that a nap in the middle of the day is more effective than sleeping more at night, and even caffeine when you get past the drowsy feeling in the middle of the afternoon.
"A 20 to 30 minute nap may be the ideal pick-up," says the study. "Even just napping for a few minutes has benefits. Prolonged napping can lead to sleep inertia ̵
Set an alarm
Here's how I do it. I use the Apple Watch and set a timer for three minutes. So when it goes off, I start it again. When one goes off, I do the same thing again, for a total of nine minutes. I know some of you are thinking, how can anyone even fall asleep in nine minutes? In that case, you can set an alarm for 20 or 30 minutes, and just close your eyes.
A little longer than that, and you begin to enter deeper phases of sleep. If you try to wake up during these phases, you may feel particularly groggy and worse than before you close your eyes. basically. There are two things here.
The first is that if you have trouble falling asleep, it is often because you have difficulty clearing your mind of all the things you are trying to do. I strongly recommend that you take a piece of paper and a pen before trying to take a nap, and write down what thoughts you have, or tasks you want to remember. When you try to fall asleep, when things come up, also write them down.
Second, even if you do not work in a large fancy tech company with "nap pods", you can still get a nap in your daily routine. Especially while most of us work from home. That said, I do not necessarily recommend crawling into bed if you are only planning to lurk for 15 to 20 minutes. I recommend that you either close the office door to give yourself uninterrupted time, or move to another location (such as the couch).
Timing is Everything
Finally, you should take a nap at that point when you are most sleepy. It is not difficult to fall asleep when you barely keep your eyes open. Do not fight against it. Instead, allow yourself a 15-20 minute nap. So give yourself 10 minutes before diving back into something.
It is also best to avoid napping after kl. 16, so you do not disturb your normal sleep plan. A nap should not replace getting seven or eight hours of sleep, so take your nap early enough to give you more energy to get through the rest of the day without disturbing your sleep at night.