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Answer transcribed from the Brightway Answers interview with recreation therapist Holly Auth:
I love to take naps. Current research says if you are going to nap you shouldn't nap longer than 30 minutes (no snoozing!) I know it's hard to do, but that's what the research says. I’m not a sleep expert, but I believe it starts to mess with your sleep cycle (falling asleep, staying asleep) if you sleep longer than 30 minutes during the day.
If you're totally against napping, there are other ways that you can help with energy conservation. One thing that is very important is pacing yourself throughout the day. Find out the length of time you can complete a task before you start to feel fatigued, and take a break before the fatigue starts. Then you can resume your task after a break. This practice avoids front loading your day with all your tasks and avoids a major crash at the end of your day. So take a break, do something, take a break, do something.
You'll find that at first you might only be able to do a task for 10 minutes and then you have to take a 10-minute break. But you're working on your cognitive endurance, so down the road you might be able to do 40 minutes of a task then take a 5-minute break. Building up your cognitive endurance is easy to do when you pace yourself.
Some people find it very helpful to set alarms and reminders on their phones to assist them in remembering to take these breaks throughout the day. This will help you to avoid feeling totally drained by the end of the day.
That's a hard question. Diet modification is something to look into. There's a lot of research suggesting your gut and your brain are in a direct relationship. So I would recommend tapping into diet modification - what kinds of food you eat. The diet has a big impact on energy, so perhaps some elimination of certain foods i would talk to a dietitian a nutritionist and get an opinion.
Naps are very common especially after trauma. It's also important to see how many hours you sleep during the night. Do you sleep too many or too few hours? Exercise and meditation are also worth looking into.