There’s nothing better than getting a power nap in when you’re exhausted. The only downside to that extra snoozing is waking up feeling cranky and groggy. But it turns out, there’s an actual art to napping the right way. Here’s how to do it.
- If you have 10 minutes – When you only have time for a super quick recharge, 10 minutes can still help you feel more alert and improve your cognitive performance, according to one study. To get the most out of a short nap, don’t change out of your clothes, just lie on the couch or bed fully dressed with a blanket. And keep the blinds open to let the natural light come in to help you wake back up more easily. Those 10 minutes should still give you a boost, even if you can’t actually fall asleep and just end up resting.
- If you have 20 minutes – This one is called a “caffeine nap” and what makes it work is drinking a cup of coffee right before you lie down. Since the caffeine usually takes about a half hour to totally kick in, when you get up in 20-30 minutes, it’ll help you feel more alert and refreshed.
- If you have an hour – It isn’t logical, but the longer you sleep, the more likely you are to be groggy when you get up. To help keep that from happening, you can use an app called Pzizz that keeps your nap from heading into deep REM sleep. It plays sounds that are customized to the length of your sleep, so it helps you drift off and gradually wake back up when nap time is over.