In workplaces everywhere, coffee breaks may soon be replaced by napping breaks, where employees are encouraged to take half-hour power naps.
According to the National Sleep Foundation, 43 percent of us don’t get enough sleep. And our bosses know it! Already, 1 in 20 companies provide “nap rooms” or “rejuvenation centers” for sleep-deprived workers, including places like Google, and Procter & Gamble.
Nap rooms can range from a converted storage closet with a couch and a bubbling fountain to rooms packed with pricey $11-thousand dollar Energy Pods – kind of like recliners, with plastic hoods over them, to block out noise and light. They also have a built-in music player to produce soothing sounds – like ocean waves and an alarm that wakes you with a gentle combination of lights and vibration.
Executives hope that allowing naps will help restore employee focus – and boost energy and creativity. And it seems to work! For example, after the financial company Nationwide Planning installed Energy Pods, they quickly saw that employees were happier and more productive.
Of course, experts point out that a power nap can’t replace all of your lost sleep.
But if you’re short a couple of hours, a 20 to 30 minute nap can make a world of difference in focus and productivity. And let’s face it, a nap room’s a much better alternative to napping in your car at lunch, or sneaking a catnap in the bathroom stall!