Thursday, April 16, 2015

N Is For Nap! #AToZChallenge


Naps - Needed rejuvenation, horizontal refreshment, brain energy restoration, physical regeneration, children resist them, parents insist on them!

I've been a napper ever since I can remember. My mother was a nap gestapo and as a child I remember sneaking out of my crib when my grandma was baby-sitting me. She might have let me get away with it, but not so with mommy dearest! I was firmly expected to take a nap.

Here is an expert napper!
Sometimes one might feel a little embarrassed to admit that he or she loves to take naps. I think western society, as a whole, is so non-stop and productivity oriented, that a nap is seen as an inefficient use of the day. It may even be regarded as indolent and self-indulgent. (See my post on L is For Lazy) My circadian rhythms demand that I nap. I, like most people I know, go to bed way too late. I usually get 6 hours at night. But sometime during the day, my brain gets a bit foggy, my energy level drops and unless I want to resemble a zombie in an episode of 'Walking Dead', I nap. I must say that I don't drink caffeine of any kind, which is why I have the kind of schedule I do. My natural rhythms kick in easily. Once in awhile I'll drink one of those natural energy shots, if I need to push through something without a nap, which is rare!

Taking a nap increases the alertness of your brain. In fact, I find dividing my day in half, based on my nap time, will make the second half of my day as alert and energetic as the first half!

Taking a nap increases memory retention and decreases burn-out! Instead of feeling like taking a nap is unproductive, know that it's the exact opposite.
Perfect napping corner!
It's a scarey list of consequences for those who deprive themselves of sleep. Cortisol, a stress hormone is released. Too much cortisol contributes to all kind of horrible conditions such as weight gain and specifically abdominal fat, glucose intolerance, weakened immune and muscle systems, it hampers memory and creativity, and limits production of growth hormone and testosterone in the body.
On the contrary, napping will give your body a chance to heal and your brain a chance to rest! 

So pardon me, if you see me slipping away to an unspecified resting place during the middle part of my day. I want to get as much out of my conscious, awake time as I possibly can. And as far as I can tell, one of the best things I can do is nap!
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