For as long as I can remember, I never took naps. I always thought they were a waste of a perfectly good afternoon when I should be out doing…something. Anything. Napping was for people who had nothing better to do other than sleep in the middle of the day. However, over the last couple of months or so, I have changed my tune on the occasional afternoon siesta. Now, I am doing my best to actually try to take one a few times a week even if only for a few minutes. It gives me some time to think about things, reflect on how my week has been so far, and then wake up to make my afternoon more purposeful. Waking up refreshed gives me some motivation to do some of those things I put off like the laundry! I realize that many of you have young children, which can seriously hamper your ability to get in a few ZZZ’s in the afternoon; some of my friends are in the same boat and can barely get sleep at night never mind in the afternoon. But if you can and you have the time, I highly recommend laying on the couch some Saturday afternoon and giving it a try. Some of the health benefits of napping include:
- Lower Blood Pressure
- Increased Alertness
- Mood Improvement
- Increased Cognitive Abilities
- Good For Your Heart
So what about you? Do you nap? Do you feel that it helps you? Napping has become part of my meditative work, and I certainly feel the difference after I take one. But one thing I can advise to those of you thinking of taking a nap – don’t take one too close to bedtime, as you might have trouble getting to sleep for the night!