>Naps: One of My Favorite Things


a short sleep, esp. during the day

I love to nap. Sometimes it’s all I want to do. Turns out, this isn’t a bad thing. Read on my skeptical friends…

 Research shows that the majority of people suffer from tiredness twice in every 24 hour period. We are what’s called Bi-phasic; we need two periods of sleep; a long one at night and a shorter one during the day. 
And even more important, body temperature dips into a sleep zone in the late afternoon. It seems that we’re naturally programmed to nap about twelve hours after we wake up from our nighttime rest.
 Afternoon naps tend to be made up largely of the most restful type of sleep, making them an effective way to catch up on the sleep you didn’t get the night before. A short slumber in the afternoon can make you more alert and improve your mood, memory, and ability to make decisions.
The human sleep-wake cycle causes a drop in alertness between about 2 and 5 pm in the afternoon and more dramatically in the early morning between 2 and 5 am.  This suggests we need two sleep periods a day, as in siesta cultures.
 A brief nap can improve your mood and productivity, alleviate tiredness, increase alertness and reduce errors made at work.  A nap as brief as 10 minutes will produce these results.
 Many experts advise to keep the nap between 15 and 30 minutes, as sleeping longer gets you into deeper stages of sleep, from which it’s more difficult to awaken. Also, longer naps can make it more difficult to fall asleep at night, especially if your sleep deficit is relatively small. However, research has shown that a 1-hour nap has many more restorative effects than a 30-minute nap, including a much greater improvement in cognitive functioning.

Famous people who napped:
– Bill Clinton napped while President of the United States to help him cope with the pressures of office.
Brahms napped at the piano while he composed his famous lullaby.
Napoleon napped between battles while sitting on his horse.
Churchill maintained that he had to nap in order to cope with his wartime responsibilities.
– Geniuses such as Edison and da Vinci napped.
Margaret Thatcher napped in order to be at her best.
Einstein napped frequently during the day to help him think more clearly. He would sit in his favourite armchair with a pencil in his hand and purposefully doze off. He would wake when the pencil dropped, ensuring he did not enter a deep sleep from which it would be difficult to wake up.

I’m convinced. Are you?


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