For the weekend…
from Douglas E. Welch
Issue3: December 17, 2021
On Naps and Napping…
If there is anything I have learned over the lasts 2 years of isolation, working from home, and living life in close quarters with 2 other people, it is the importance — if not the outright necessity — of naps.
Napping allows us to recharge after a Zoom meeting or class. It allows others a few quiet minutes without you. It creates a sense of calm and relaxation throughout the day.
I think that I would have been much more productive in my previous office jobs had there been a place to grab a quick 20 minute nap at about 2 in the afternoon. As it was, I would find myself prepping yet another carafe of coffee in the break room to help power myself through the remainder of the day.
“It’s one of the secret perks of remote working: nodding off for a few minutes during your lunch break. In a survey of 2,000 people working from home in April 2020 by the career and jobs website Zippia, more than a third of the respondents said they were now taking naps.” — UF Health Podcasts
Discovering our own productivity cycles as we have during this time has probably played a big part in the overall productivity seen during COVID.
“These siestas remain frowned upon by corporate America, even though numerous studies have found short catnaps to be beneficial to your health and productivity. They’ve also been shown to increase alertness, boost your mood and cut down on accidents and mistakes on the job.” — — UF Health Podcasts
“Our Big Nap Survey of 500 people in 2019 revealed that people know that a 20-minute power nap has a positive impact on our productivity, energy levels and mood. 72% of respondents actively wanted a place to nap at work with 84% believing it should be an acceptable working practice.” — ProNappers
Whatever the reason or reasoning, I think we can all innately understand when we need a nap and why. I find that sometimes I don’t need a nap at all during the day. On other days, I will feel that a nap might be useful, but not required. On still other days, I am hit with a deep weariness that allows no quarter. I either lie down comfortably to fall asleep or I will fall asleep at my computer with my mouse still in hand. If you work on your phone a lot, this can be quite dangerous as it hurts quite a bit to drop your phone on your face as you drop off to sleep. (I laugh at this thought myself, but still rub my nose of remembrance when it happened. Ouch!)
Let me be the first to tell you and support you that wanting/needing a nap in the middle of the day is not weakness. it is not laziness. It is not avoiding work (at least for most of us.) it is our body sending us a critical warning that needs a little more reset, a little more time, a little less stress, so it can work more later. Ignore these warnings at your peril. Use them to your benefit even in you have to hide it from your boss or your coworkers.
Do what is best for you! Everyone will benefit.
(I freely admit that this essay was written after a short nap and I think that is what allows me to continue being productive from day, to week, to month, to year, especially during these stressful times.)
Do you take regular naps? When? Where?