Sleep. Many Americans get too little of it and use sugar and caffeine to keep going during the day. Just look at the proliferation of caffeinated products including gels, liquid shots, pumped-up water, and on the horizon- caffeine you can inhale.
Sadly, what people really need is just more sleep. The deep stage of NREM2 sleep allows your brain waves to slow, NREM3 allows your endocrine system to release growth hormones, deeper REM sleep consolidates memories and ingrains skills, and solves problems that you were exposed to before sleep.
I’m a huge fan of the nap. When my husband is around, I feel guilty about napping (he has a work ethic that won’t quit). On my own, I’ve found that I really need naps to handle the daily grind and to increase my creativity. If I’ve hit a problem in my manuscript, or I’m incubating on an issue in revision, I will often wake with a new insight or at least renewed energy to see the problem differently and reengage. Twenty minutes is good for a power nap but it is the 90 min to 120 min nap that allows us to visit those deeper REM stages of sleep. Napping also can give you more energy to exercise which in turn produces neurochemicals that affect mood.
Here’s more from Design Taxi:
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