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Rest at work isn't a luxury, it's a productivity booster that benefits you and your boss

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Beyond working hard, there's something you can do to benefit your employer today: Take a rest. Of course, rest differs from sleep. A nap at work can rightfully get you fired.

Rest, however, should be encouraged on the job when possible because rested employees are more productive and better positioned to make the most of their workday.

"Active rest can improve the public health," said Dr. Matthew Edlund, "and is a skill everyone needs."

The key, said Edlund, who focuses on sleep issues and bills himself as "The Rest Doctor," is to recognize that there's a natural rhythm to the day. "You have a biological clock. You just need to learn to use it."

Many workers today are overstressed multitaskers who squeeze too many activities into a day. Too many people have decided that feeling tired and overwrought is natural, and believe there isn't much they can do about it.

Edlund, author of "The Power of Rest: Why Sleep Alone is Not Enough," disagreed. While getting enough sleep is vital, it's only one part of the much larger issue of rest.

"The benefits of making time for rest have proven extraordinary," he said.

"When people engage the body's power to restore and renew itself, they look younger, heal faster, lose weight more effectively and experience greater joy in their work and their relationships."

Here's how you can try to squeeze in more rest without closing your eyes on the job:


At the beginning of each work day, take 30 to 60 seconds to decide what you'll do first. Determine which parts of the day you have the greatest ability to pay attention and produce, and schedule accordingly.

Read more: New York Daily News

Carolyn Kepcher

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Growth in women's share of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) occupations declined to 27% in 2011from a high of 34% in 1990. While women make up nearly half of the workforce, they were 26% of the STEM workforce in 2011.

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