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Productivity Tip: Nap at Lunch

Written by Rita Kennen

Advice on snoozing at lunch to regain your mojo. Forget working out, take a nap!

Wouldn't sneaking in a quick afternoon siesta when creative juices run low be dreamy? Even though a few quick zzz's can't replace a full eight hours, sometimes it's all I need to recharge. But alas, working at a fast-paced job makes even a mini-snooze virtually impossible.

 
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According to the National Sleep Foundation
Forty percent of adults report sleepiness interferes with regular activities.
Dozing while driving accounts for 100,000 automobile accidents every year.
People can benefit from as short as a 5-minute nap.
A typical workplace nap lasts for around 20 minutes.  
 
Sometime, maybe sooner than later, weary clandestine nappers will come sneaking out of the closet.

"It's the no cost, no sweat way to better health," says psychologist William Anthony, nap expert and co-author of The Art of Napping at Work. The book was co-written by his wife, Camille, a workplace napper and president of the Napping Company.

Anthony doesn't advocate sleeping on the job. He suggests snoozing on your break or at lunch, and lists improved mood and performance as the benefits of a nap. It all translates to increased productivity for the employer. 

Not surprisingly, the majority interest in workplace sacking out comes from employees rather than employers. However, many companies are going public about nap-friendly policies. Furniture dealer OP Contract in San Francisco boasts about its single-user wellness room that logs in six or seven visitors per day.
 
 
"One of our founders feels very strongly about health, so she wanted to have a room where people could lie down," says Kimberly Oliver, director of marketing. "It's just an option; no one goes there to hide from work."

William and Camille Anthony feel so strongly about napping that they've devoted an entire Web site to it. They've declared the first Monday of daylight-saving time,usually in April, as National Workplace Nap Day.