You Won't Believe What a Third of Your Coworkers Do in the Middle of the Day

According to a new survey, one-third of workers admit to midday napping while working from home.

Depending on your living situation and your ability to be productive outside of the office, working from home has either been one of the best perks or one of the most frustrating aspects of life amid the coronavirus pandemic. With many offices reopening across the country, business owners and employees are weighing the risks and advantages of continuing remote work. But those formerly office-bound workers who've become full-time work-from-home devotees might want to keep a new survey away from their bosses. According to the results, one-third of workers are napping while working from home.

The survey—for which career resource site Zippia polled 2,000 workers—found that 33 percent of respondents admitted to dozing while on the clock. Of those nappers, 37 percent relocate to their beds, while 15 percent just conk out right at their desks. Perhaps most alarmingly, 33 percent of work-from-home employees taking midday naps said they don't even bother setting an alarm.

If you've ever succumbed to an afternoon yawn session while working in an office, it shouldn't come as much of a surprise that your colleagues are taking some advantage of their comfier surroundings. The mental health drain of quarantine life is likely making people feel even more tired during the day, especially because sleep deprivation is a common side effect of anxiety and depression. And many employees are now pulling double duty, taking care of their kids and helping with online learning during work hours. Per the Zippia survey, workers who watch their kids are 6 percent more likely to sneak in a daytime nap on the job.

latina woman sleeping on a planner at her desk

For employers suddenly worried that all their workers are spending their days in bed, it's worth noting that the percentage of midday nappers varies significantly from state to state. North Dakota and Alaska are the nap-heaviest states, with 67 percent of workers saying they doze during the day. On the flip side of things, 0 percent of workers in Montana, Vermont, or Wyoming copped to napping while working from home, which suggests residents are either more alert there or less willing to fess up.

Of course, even workers who are staying awake all day aren't necessarily spending all their time working. Of the 2,000 respondents who took Zippia's survey, over 1,200 admitted to spending time on social media and on their phones, while over 1,000 said they were wasting time browsing the internet. Other non-work activities included playing video games, taking snack breaks, working around the house, taking care of pets, daydreaming, and "a range of bedroom activities that in the office would get you sent to HR."

While getting some shut-eye during work hours may not be ideal from the perspective of employers, there are proven benefits to napping. As Best Life previously noted, napping can aid in creativity, it help your brain recharge, and it can ultimately increase alertness—particularly if you can't stop yawning. (We're talking about a short nap under 45 minutes, which means those carefree workers who aren't setting alarms should probably start.) So, if you are ever caught napping on the job, just make sure you're ready to explain it's for the greater good. And to make the most of your nap, try these 17 Genius Tips for the Perfect Nap.

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