Woman’s Day (Australia) - - Health -

A short but sweet 20-minute rest is the ideal time for a nap, ac­cord­ing to Carmel.

“Take ad­van­tage of the nat­u­ral alert­ness lull in the af­ter­noon (around 3pm),” she ad­vises. “At that time, lay down on your bed or sofa and set the alarm for 20 min­utes. Close your eyes and if you nod off, that’s fine. If not, don’t worry – it means you weren’t re­ally that tired any­way,” she adds.

And don’t be con­cerned if it takes you 15 min­utes to fall asleep and you only get five min­utes of ac­tual sleep.

“When the alarm sounds, get up and do five min­utes of stim­u­lat­ing ex­er­cise,” says Carmel. “Your mind and body are now re­freshed and you’ll be ef­fi­cient and pro­duc­tive for the next four to five hours.”

But it’s im­por­tant your power nap doesn’t go over the 20-minute mark.

“Oth­er­wise you run the risk of go­ing into deep sleep, which makes it harder to arouse. Re­mem­ber, nap­ping doesn’t re­place sleep – it’s merely a tool that’s very use­ful to re­store alert­ness when you’re tired,” she says.

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