You've heard about the power nap, but do you know about the power of napping?

The power nap, a short 10- or 15-minute nap in the middle of the day, is easier day-dreamed about than achieved. Time is short. There's too much to do. Falling asleep when the sun is at its highest point in the sky can be hard to do.

But according to new research, finding a way to steal away for a power nap can have a powerful impact on your ability to remember, think clearly and learn new skills.

Think it sounds too good to be true? Consider what researchers in Germany at the University of Dusselfdorf found out when they compared the performance of professionals who nap around noon versus the performance of professionals who pull "all-dayers." Turns out, according to the researchers, that the working professionals who napped–some for as few as six minutes a day–had significantly better memories than those who didn't.

How to fall asleep for six minutes

Okay, so napping is good. But how in the name of the Sandman is someone supposed to fall asleep in the middle of the day for as few as six minutes. Good question. Here's to master the art of napping:

  • Mastering The Art of Power NappingRelax. Find a quiet place where you are not likely to be bothered.
  • Put quality over quantity. A lot of people think they have to snooze for 20 or 30 minutes or longer to reap any benefits. You don't. All you need is between five and 10 minutes. So take your time, and let yourself fall into a slumber. There's no rush.
  • Start early. If you wait too long to take your nap, you might compromise your quality of sleep during the night. Take your nap in the middle of the day and avoid falling asleep too close to your bedtime. If you do, you might not be able to sleep at night.
  • Go natural. Stay away from sleep aids. If you use them, you might wake up eight hours later, confused, groggy and with an angry boss.