How To!

How To Beat the Dreaded Midday Slump

Dr. Sara Mednick, a sleep scientist, on the power of the downstate.


Episode Notes

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Every day around 2:00 p.m. Rob hits a brick wall. A busy job and two young children have zapped all of his energy, and he’s desperate to do something—anything—to make it through the rest of the workday. Enter the elusive and often guilt-ridden midday nap. But there too Rob struggles to really rest and then wake up without making things worse. On this episode of How To!, we bring on Dr. Sara Mednick, author of Take a Nap! Change Your Life and the forthcoming book The Hidden Power of the Downstate. Sara draws on years of research at her sleep lab to advise Rob, and all of us, how to stay energized during a long day (Hint: It might not involve napping at all).

If you liked this episode, check out: “How To Sleep” with Andy Puddicombe, co-founder of Headspace.

Do you have a question with no easy answers? Send us a note at or leave us a voicemail at 646-495-4001 and we might have you on the show. Subscribe for free on Apple, Spotify or wherever you listen.

Podcast production by Derek John and Rosemary Belson.


About the Show

What if Dear Abby were an investigative reporter? Each week, Amanda Ripley and Carvell Wallace take on listeners’ toughest problems and, with the help of experts, find the answers to questions you’ve always wanted to ask but couldn’t. Until now.

Do you have a problem that needs solving? Have you found the advice on our podcast helpful? Send us a note at or leave us a voicemail at 646-495-4001 and we might play it on the air.

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