I have had the most wonderful holiday. We took our daughter down to Dunedin to help her settle her in to Otago University. Then my wife and I had a marvellous two weeks touring the South Island. We saw spectacular scenery, caught up with friends, and enjoyed lots of lovely dinners.
One of the other things I really enjoyed was taking a nap every day. I felt energised and recharged every afternoon. This got me thinking, and I did a bit of research …
Taking a nap of 20 to 30 minutes has many benefits:
- A quick nap in the early afternoon when we start feeling a bit sleepy restores energy and focus. It won’t leave us feeling groggy or interfere with sleeping at night.
Secret tip: drinking coffee just before taking a nap increases the effect of the caffeine when we wake up!
- Naps help prevent burnout when we’re on the go all the time, and if we’re not getting the recommended amount of sleep at night (seven hours). A 30-minute nap each day can relieve stress and “reboot” us so we are more resilient and alert.
- A nap can restore the senses of sight, hearing, and taste, and improve creativity.
- Napping reduces the risk of heart disease.
- A nap makes us more energetic and productive.
How to nap
- Take a 20 or 30-minute nap straight after lunch. If it’s not possible to do it then, fit it in before 4pm.
- Try to nap at the same time every day.
- Keep your nap short. Set your phone alarm so you don’t sleep for longer than half an hour.
- Nap in the dark by turning off the light or use an eye mask.
- Cover yourself with a blanket as body temperature falls when we’re asleep.
- Do it discreetly – some workplaces may not understand the benefits of napping.
Research has shown that people who nap are not lazy – they are smart and productive!
If you enjoyed this article, have a look at these: