Feeling tired lately? Most of us working parents would quickly answer in the affirmative to that question. There’s no denying it, we are all spent and in need of some extra sleep whenever we can get it.
Now, a nap won’t cure your sleep ills. It’s best if you can find a way to increase the amount of quality sleep you get each night. But a nap is a time-honored way of giving your body and mind a much-needed rest during the day. The trouble is finding the time to take one.
I can’t create more hours each day, but I can give you a few tips on finding ways to make your life more nap-efficient. Here are a few:
If you wait for a window of time to open up to take a nap, it’ll never happen. There are simply too many things to do each day. That’s why you need to build time for a nap into your schedule. It may not happen every day, but if you try to find an opening of 30 or 40 minutes in the afternoon before dinner or just after, it might give you the boost you need to plow through the rest of your day.
Shut Off Your Phone
Our smartphones and tablets are incredibly useful. But sometimes the best thing about them is the “off” button. Rather than waste 20-30 minutes mindlessly checking social media, put the phone down and shut your eyes. Checking in with the insides of your eyelids is much more productive.
Sleep on the Couch
You don’t need a bed to nap. If you’re tired enough, you can probably sleep anywhere. Depending on your schedule and your work environment, you might have time during your lunch break to find a place to snooze. If you get home at a decent hour after work, put the kids on homework duty and try to find 20-30 minutes on the couch to sleep. If your body is running low on energy, that little pick-me-up might be what you need to get through dinner, activities, and a trip to the gym.
All Naps Are Not Created Equal
To nap, you don’t necessarily need a large block of time. Sure, two or three hours in bed might seem ideal. But rarely do we have that kind of flexibility and abundance of time. Instead, focus on grabbing a solid 20-30 minutes of sleep to catch up. Again, this is not a substitute for recuperative nighttime rest. This is merely a prescription for a time to give your body and mind the opportunity to recover a little during our endlessly busy days.