Bring Back The Nap

"There is a time for many words, and there is also a time for sleep." -- Homer "Nice guys finish last, but we get to sleep in." -- Evan Davis "To achieve the impossible dream, try going to sleep." -- Joan Klempner


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Nap Your Way to Success

Thomas Edison did it all the time. So did Winston Churchill. And just about every one of us had childhood training to be a star in the field. What field is that? Why, napping, of course. Yet despite these famous examples and early practice, most of us would never dream of napping on a regular basis - or admitting it if we did. Feeling drowsy an hour or so after lunch? That’s why Web 2.0 invented wireless in coffee shops!

As a confirmed napper myself, I’m here to tell you that you’re missing out. The right afternoon nap, 8 hours or so after you get up in the morning, can leave you refreshed and energized for the rest of the day. Call it a “power nap” if you’re feeling trendy, or a “catnap” if you’re more traditional. The idea is the same in either case: to derive the maximum benefit from the minimum sleep.

The key is to recognize that sleep isn’t a simple on-0ff switch, but a set of cycles. A typical sleep cycle includes five to ten minutes of falling asleep, then another ten minutes or so of light, restful sleep. Then comes an hour or more of deep and dreamless “slow-wave sleep” followed by a quick period of rapid-eye-movement (REM) sleep, when the most vivid dreams occur. All told, a single sleep cycle takes most people 90 to 120 minutes.

Read more when you wake up...


Afternoon cat nap may cut heart attack risk

NEW YORK: Sleeping a little over half an hour in the middle of the day may reduce the risk of death from heart disease, particularly in healthy young men, say researchers.

Naps - known as siesta - are often taken early afternoon after a midday meal. Such a period of sleep is a common tradition in hot countries.

Dimitrios Trichopoulos from the Harvard School of Public Health and other researchers looked at 23,681 men and women aged between 20 and 86 who did not have a history of heart disease or any other severe condition, reported the online edition of BBC News.

The six-year Greek study took into account ill health, age, and whether people were physically active. Participants were also asked if they took midday naps and how often, and were asked about dietary habits and physical activity.

The researchers found those who took naps of any frequency and duration had a 34 percent lower risk of dying from heart disease than those who did not take midday naps.

Read more ...after your nap...


Norse lullaby

By Eugene Field

The sky is dark and the hills are white
As the storm-king speeds from the north to-night,
And this is the song the storm-king sings,
As over the world his cloak he flings:
"Sleep, sleep, little one, sleep;"
He rustles his wings and gruffly sings:
"Sleep, little one, sleep."

On yonder mountain-side a vine
Clings at the foot of a mother pine;
The tree bends over the trembling thing,
And only the vine can hear her sing:
"Sleep, sleep, little one, sleep;
What shall you fear when I am here?
Sleep, little one, sleep."

The king may sing in his bitter flight,
The tree may croon to the vine to-night,
But the little snowflake at my breast
Liketh the song I sing the best,--
Sleep, sleep, little one, sleep;
Weary thou art, anext my heart
Sleep, little one, sleep.

10 Tips To Get You Sleeping Again

If you are suffering from insomnia, there are many steps you can take to change your behaviors and lifestyle to help you get to sleep. Here are some tips.

1. Wake up at the same time each day. It is tempting to sleep late on weekends, especially if one has had poor sleep during the week. However, if you suffer from insomnia you should get up at the same time every day in order to train your body to wake at a consistent time.

2. Eliminate nicotine, caffeine, alcohol, and other stimulants. The effects of caffeine can last for several hours, perhaps up to 24 hours, so the chances of it affecting sleep are significant. Alcohol may have a sedative effect for the first few hours following consumption, but it can then lead to frequent arousals and a non-restful night's sleep.

3. Limit naps. While napping seems like a proper way to catch up on missed sleep, it is not always so. It is important to establish and maintain a regular sleep pattern and train oneself to associate sleep with cues like darkness and a consistent bedtime.

4. Exercise regularly. Regular exercise can improve sleep quality and duration. However, exercising immediately before bedtime can have a stimulant effect on the body and should be avoided.

5. Limit activities in bed. The bed is for sleeping and having sex and that's it. If you suffer from insomnia, do not balance the checkbook, study, make phone calls, etc. while in bed or even in the bedroom, and avoid watching television or listening to the radio.

6. Do not eat or drink right before going to bed. Eating a late dinner or snacking before going to bed can activate the digestive system and keep you up. In addition, excessive drinking prior to bed can overwhelm the bladder, requiring frequent visits to the bathroom.

7. Make your sleeping environment comfortable. Temperature, lighting, and noise should be controlled to make the bedroom conducive to falling (and staying) asleep. Your bed should feel comfortable not too firm or too soft.

8. Get all your worrying over with before you go to bed. If you find you lay in bed thinking about tomorrow, consider setting aside a period of time at night before you go to bed to review the day and to make plans for the next day.

9. Reduce stress. There are a number of relaxation therapies and stress reduction methods you may want to try to relax the mind and the body before going to bed. Examples include progressive muscle relaxation (perhaps with audio tapes), deep breathing techniques, imagery, meditation, and biofeedback.

10. Consider participating in cognitive therapy. Cognitive therapy helps people with insomnia identify and correct inappropriate thoughts and beliefs that may contribute to insomnia.

"Take a Nap! Change Your Life."

It's OK to nap. It's actually better than OK. It's lifesaving.
"You snooze, you lose." That's a direct quote from the cover of the new book...

But it seems hard to believe. If you're like me, you associate napping with flagging energy — hellooo, sickness. Or boredom. Or hard partying.

But no, says author Dr. Sara Mednick, napping actually increases alertness, improves memory, reduces stress and cuts back on sleep deprivation.

If you are suffering from clinical depression or narcolepsy — a neurological condition — both of which can cause an urge to nap, don't read on. Some diseases, like diabetes when it's out of control, can push a person to conk out. But there are usually other symptoms present when the urge to sleep is derived from illness, Mednick says.

While there have been oodles of books and articles written about how Americans lack sleep — averaging 6.7 hours a night when the gold standard is eight — Mednick concentrates on the benefit of napping rather than lecturing on how we don't go to bed when we should and sleep with the room dark enough, etc. We've all heard that.

Read more after your nap...

10 secrets to great naps

1. Feet up. Prone is the best position.

2. Order some peace and quiet. Close the door. Turn off the lights, TV and phone.

3. Be comfortable. Slip into pajamas. At work, loosen tight clothing, remove shoes.

4. Keep it short. Rest for at least 15 minutes but aim for 30 minutes.

5. Don't watch the time on a clock.

6. Create a nap spot. Fill it with items of comfort.

7. Keep it cool, between 60-65 degrees Fahrenheit.

8. Let go of stress.

9. Pamper your body. Yoga, a bath or massage can help you relax.

10. Breathe! Start quiet time with meditation, guided imagery or deep-breathing exercises.

Source: Jill Murphy Long, author of "Permission to Nap: Taking Time to Restore Your Spirit" (Sourcebooks, Inc., 175 pages, $14.95).

Good napping tips

• Nap between 2-4 p.m. when you have the natural sleep drive and it won't disturb night sleep.

• Don't nap in the early evening when your sleep clock is counting down for a good night's sleep. It will mess with your normal sleep pattern.

• If you're napping in the mornings there's something wrong with your sleep. You should be alert after you've slept.

• Often, a short nap of 15 or 20 minutes is equally or even more refreshing than a longer nap. More than 30 minutes and you may feel worse.

• Teenagers are biologically wired to nap because they're sleep deprived. Teens need about an hour of sleep more than adults to feel rested. Their sleep clock also resets to a later sleep time, so they're night owls.

SOURCE: Dr. Lydia Wytrzes, director of Sutter Sleep Center in Sacramento and certified sleep specialist.

Who needs a nap when you have caffeine? Turns out, we do

"Napping is a very powerful, very inexpensive way of improving our work."
Dr. Steven Howard

An afternoon snooze refreshes, revitalizes, recharges body and soul. Yet in our caffeine-buzzed society, naps are downright un-American.

Slamming Red Bull, hanging at Starbucks and draining quad-shots of espresso is much more socially acceptable as the "cure" for sleep debt. Besides, it's tough to nap with all that caffeine rocketing through the aorta.

And remember, if you snooze, you lose, right?

Not according to scientific research. The rejuvenating effects of naps has resurfaced in a new Stanford University School of Medicine study. Emergency room doctors and nurses who worked overnight shifts and were allowed 40-minute naps showed a boost in alertness and performance over those who worked straight through.

Read more after your nap...

A nap a day keeps lost productivity at bay

"If you look at the rise of Starbucks across the 90s there was an amazing shift where suddenly they just exponentially increased their amount of stores. Not only are they pushing a market but there is also a market asking for it ... so I think what people are hoping is that they are going to supplement their sleep deprivation with caffeine."

Dr. Sara Mednick
Cornell University

A nap a day will keep lost productivity at bay, says the author of a new book, who says sleeping can change your life.

Research on the benefits of napping should serve as a wake-up call for employers as the drain on businesses is staggering, says Harvard-trained research scientist Sara Mednick.

According to a Cornell University study, sleep-deprived workers cost U.S. industry $150 billion a year in reduced job productivity and fatigue-related accidents.

Sleep deprivation can also lead to a whole host of health problems such as increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, depression, decreased libido and obesity, said Mednick, author of the book "Take a Nap! Change your life."

Read more after your nap...

Why The Decision On Taking A Nap Is Something You Should Sleep On

"It seems to be part of our biological rhythm to take a nap during the day," she assures. "It decreases your stress levels and gives you more energy. The beauty sleep of a nap is well known."

Dr. Sara Mednick

There's something about the concept of sleeping during the day that brings out images of slothfulness or laziness. But the truth is that's a North American conceit.

The practice of napping is a common one in much of the world, where both business and pleasure is temporarily put on hold in the middle of the afternoon for what old movie scripts used to refer to as '40 winks.'

According to the National Sleep Foundation, a good 20-30 minute rest during the day can help increase alertness, improve your mood, better your performance and make up for a lack of zzz's the night before.

The real problems come only when you sleep too long. Experts generally recommend no more than half an hour, no matter how tired you are. It's important not to disturb your regular nighttime patterns.

For Dr. Sara Mednick, a nap is good for what ails you. She's embarked on a quest to get North Americans to embrace the concept of a mid-day snooze, arguing it can actually help you live longer by reducing the threat of a heart attack, improving your memory and even helping you lose weight.

Read more after you nap.

Bosses, let your people nap

"The name of the game these days is increased productivity, and we spend a lot of resources on technology. But no matter how many gizmos and gadgets you give employees, they're not going to be more efficient if they're not alert. Paying attention to sleep is the low-hanging fruit that could dramatically raise productivity."

Dr. Charles Czeisler
Harvard Medical School
Baldino Professor of Sleep Medicine

When the cleaning crew arrives around 7 p.m. on the 43rd floor where Chicago attorney Donald McNeil often works late, his office door is shut tight.

Shoes off, tie loosened, he is stretched out on a green vinyl couch, dead to the world. His administrative assistant will wake him when she returns from her workout and he will go back to work, sometimes until past midnight.

"I've caught him snoring but he won't admit it," assistant Andrea Benuzzi says.

McNeil is part of an uncelebrated world of nappers who power through long workdays on less than the recommended seven to eight hours' sleep by stealing a snooze in an office, a parked car, break room or even a bathroom stall.

Just as industrialization did away with the midday siesta, the demands of an electronic age are whittling hours from our nighttime slumber, producing a nation of overcaffeinated workers who too often get jolted awake by a BlackBerry's buzz.

As statistics pile up suggesting we're a sleep-deprived nation, the solution would seem obvious: encourage people to get more sleep. Instead, business celebrates workers who push their waking limits.

Read more after your nap...

Too many of us need a wake-up call

Q: My job is wearing me out, and sometimes I doze off in the afternoon. Part of it is job boredom, but I'm also more tired because of the pressures and hassles. I certainly can't take naps in the afternoon. Any suggestions?

A: You're not alone. The National Sleep Foundation's (NSF) 2005 Sleep in America poll found that 70 percent of American adults don't get the recommended eight hours of sleep needed for good health, safety and optimum performance. In fact, 40 percent reported sleeping less than seven hours each week night.

A world that "never goes to sleep" offers many diverse activities -- even the possibility of working 24/7-- but encourages unhealthy and sometimes antisocial lifestyles. Instead of working to live, they are living to work, a shift that has had a profound impact on their personal lives. Adults report spending less time sleeping, engaging in social and leisure activities, and having less sex than they did just five years ago. Most Americans say they suffer from sleep problems and when they go to sleep, many sleep alone -- even if they are married.

Read more after your nap...

NODDING OFF: Naps can boost performance on the job

"Napping is a very powerful, very inexpensive way of improving our work."
-- Dr. Steven Howard

An afternoon snooze refreshes, revitalizes and recharges body and soul. Yet in our caffeine-buzzed society, naps are downright un-American.

Slamming Red Bull, hanging at Starbucks and draining quad-shots of espresso is a lot more socially acceptable as the "cure" for sleep debt.

And remember, if you snooze, you lose, right?

Not according to scientific research. The rejuvenating effects of naps has resurfaced in a new Stanford University School of Medicine study. Emergency-room doctors and nurses who worked overnight shifts and were allowed 40-minute naps showed a boost in alertness and performance over those who worked straight through.

Read more after your nap...

A relaxing spot

Take a nap, ignore the mess, meditate a bit — and don’t feel guilty

L-A-Z-Y. Four little letters, turned into a four-letter word.

As a culture, we are over-scheduled, over-worked and obsessed with do-more-and-do-it-now.

Some people can think of nothing worse than doing nothing. To them I say: Stop. Be still. Take a nap. Don’t clean the closet. Put off what you can do today until...

Listen to the cacophony as naysayers frenetically shake their heads, muttering words like chaos, heresy, abomination.

But the chorus is slowly being drowned out by experts, authors and ordinary folks saying it is OK to embrace your inner sloth.


Sara C. Mednick, a Harvard-educated research scientist, recently wrote “Take a Nap! Change Your Life.”

Mednick talks about the harmful effects of our sleep-deprived culture, including an increase in automobile accidents, depression and obesity. She then lays out a plan for optimal napping, including such benefits as increased creativity and alertness and improved memory.

Read more, after your nap...

Beverage Marketing USA, Inc., Launches Siesta (TM) Power Nap Z-drink, In New York And California

"Siesta, has just the opposite effect of an energy drink, it's the anti-energy drink."
-- Richard Davis

Date Released: 01/25/2007

Beverage Marketing USA, Inc., announced today the official United States launch of Siesta™, Power Nap Z-drink, the world's first non-narcotic z-drink, designed for power naps. The new power napping beverage promises to have folks in need of a few winks during the day dozing off in a matter of minutes, like when your eyes glaze over in front of the computer screen - but you just can't fall asleep, getting a little siesta at work is difficult, but now there is the perfect solution, simply kick back and down a can of Siesta, and you will be catching some zzz's in no time, getting your daily power nap is what refreshes, revitalizes, recharges the body and soul. Self described "napster" Jeff Weiss and President of Z CORP says, it's time to get your daily dose of zzz's, however in our caffeine-branded 24/7 society, an afternoon siesta is considered downright un-American.

Read more @ Fast Pitch press release.