It seems the older I get, the more welcome an afternoon nap is to me! I see some heads nodding out there! I don't take a nap every day, but there are days when if I don't just go lay down and sleep, I will just drop where I am and sleep! Is anyone else relating to this?
How important is a nap to overall wellness?
Even when I worked a full-time job, I would sneak off and take a little snooze on my afternoon break. There was a couch with a couple of vending machines in the basement of the building I worked in. Hardly anyone was around and it was quiet, except for the sound of the vending machines. They hummed me to a semi-conscious state for about 20 minutes. Those power naps really helped me get through the rest of my work day.
I'm not saying I was the most productive person in the department, but I am saying that once I had taken a nap, I was better able to focus on my work and did not need artificial stimulation to keep me going like most of my co-workers, who would make a run for the coffee or soda pop. I was quite satisfied with my zzz's around 2:00 every afternoon.
After a little nap, I feel as though my creative juices are flowing better and my mind is recharged and ready to work on the more challenging aspects that before the nap I may have been struggling with. The term "fresh eyes" comes to mind. It is like you have literally shut your brain off for a short amount of time and then when it wakes up, you do have fresh eyes to see a problem in a different way and have the solution to it.
My mood improves after a nap. Now I will say, if I sleep too long, that's not good either. I can awaken a little groggy and have a hard time getting in gear if I've over-slept. It's best if I keep my nap between 20-30 minutes. Of course, I don't set an alarm, so if I do sleep longer I just suppose it's because I needed the extra rest.
Women who take a midday nap at least three times a week are 37% less likely to die of heart disease - and men are a whopping 64% less likely to die of heart disease! I do a happy dance when I find my husband taking a nap! I never complain one bit when I see that!
I usually zonk out about the same time every day - and I do not apologize for it. About 2:00 pm every day - I'm in la la land sawing logs and lovin' it! I try to make the room just as dark as I can and I snuggle in my blankets, just like I do at night. I have the luxury of being able to slip into my PJ's for my nap, which obviously you can not do if you're napping at work. I also have the good fortune of napping in my own wonderful bed on my own wonderful pillow.
To improve your mood, productivity and overall health and wellness - take a nap! It's not just for Kindergartner's anymore!!!