Why Afternoon Naps Are A Sign of Health, Not Laziness.

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For many years I felt that taking an afternoon nap, was pure laziness on my part. However, as life pushed on and I took more and more naps, I started to realize something. When I awoke from my nap, I was energized, refreshed and far more productive than the days that I didn’t take a quick nap.

Now when I say nap, I’m not talking about a 2 or 3 hour sleep session, as those can actually be counter intuitive. I’m talking a nap that last less than an hour. Just enough time to recharge your batteries.

Our energy levels take a huge dip in the afternoon. Most everyone’s does.

The National Sleep Foundation recommend a 20 to 30 minute nap to restore alertness and improve performance. According to their research, a nap of this length will not leave us feeling drowsy or affect nighttime sleep.

The foundation describes three types of napping:

  • Planned napping, which involves dedicating a time for a nap, rather than waiting until you get too sleepy.
  • Emergency napping, when you suddenly become overwhelmingly fatigued, and you cannot continue the activity you were doing.
  • Habitual napping, whereby you nap around the same time every day.

Research shows, that habitual napping is actual one of the best ways to nap.

To receive the maximum benefit, we need to keep our circadian rhythms (internal body clock) stable, which means napping at approximately the same time each day.

Keeping our circadian rhythms stable regulates our hormone levels, body temperature, metabolism, and immune system—and it ensures we sleep more soundly during the night.

A persons energy levels typically dip between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. daily. With this said, you may want to consider take a nap right after lunchtime. You most certainly don’t want to nap too late in the day, or this will end up severely disrupting your night’s sleep.

Daytime napping is meant to reboot our system and leave us feeling relaxed and rejuvenated, not exhausted or disoriented. Therefore, if we do not feel alert and refreshed afterwards, we may be daytime napping all wrong.

So — go ahead and nap — guilt free! It’s super good for you and you will totally notice a difference in productivity in your life!