Naps = Zambonis for Your Brain

Updated: Feb 23

I have always enjoyed naps, but until recently I have always felt a bit guilty about taking an afternoon snooze. I believed that naps were for lazy people, and that I should be doing something more productive with my time.  Therefore I was happy when I read in Daniel Pink's book When that taking naps are actually proven to improve cognitive performance and improve mental health.  Pink suggests, "Naps are like Zambonis for our brains - they smooth out the nicks, scuffs, and scratches a typical day has left on our mental ice."  When I read this, it made perfect sense! I had always felt like a quick nap rejuvenated my energy, but it felt great to read it from such a trusted author in behavioral psychology. 

Now that I finally feel I have been given "permission" to take naps, I always try to look for times when I can shut my eyes for a few minutes.  Keeping naps short, however, is a key to a successful nap.  Pink maintains that the most ideal and "productive" naps last between ten and twenty minutes - with anything longer resulting in "sleep inertia" which is the confused, boggy feeling that is typically felt after taking a longer snooze. 



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