Everyone has hectic days. Early mornings, rush hour traffic, dropping off and picking up the kids after school, cleaning the house – all of these everyday occurrences can take its toll on anyone. In addition to high stress levels, lack of sleep can contribute to many negative side effects to your health and your life. Sometimes it appears as if there aren’t enough hours in the day…or is there?
Getting enough sleep is essential for the body and mind to work properly. When we’re sleep deprived, we tend to feel sluggish and go about our everyday routines like zombies on autopilot. Although doctors stress the importance of getting at least 8 hours of sleep each night that is easier said than done.
However, if you can’t make the time at night to fully rest your body, it is possible to do this during the day. Children nap throughout the day so why can’t adults? For one thing, not having a full-time job or household to run makes it easy to rest during the day. If that’s far from your situation, don’t worry. It’s simply a matter of finding the time.
The average cat nap for an adult is about 30 minutes. Taking a cat nap three times a week has been medically shown to improve your heart, decreasing your risk for heart disease. Cat naps allow your body to rest during the day and is a great stress reliever. When you wake up, you feel refreshed and are able to focus better on the rest of the daily tasks ahead of you.
Working from 9-5 makes it difficult to take any kind of nap (most bosses wouldn’t be fans of employees napping on their desks). After work and before dinner is an ideal time to try and squeeze in a few minutes of shut-eye. Tell your significant other and your children that you need to lie down for a few minutes and find a spot on your favorite recliner or couch.
You can also use the bed, but often that can lead to sleeping longer than the recommended 30 minutes for a cat nap, which defeats the purpose. When you sleep for too long, it can result in feeling more tired. The idea is to get just enough sleep for your body to calm down and reenergize.
Stay at home mothers tend to have the best schedules to fit in cat naps. When you put the little ones down for their nap, use that opportunity to rest as well. Cleaning the house and cooking can be put off for a few minutes. Maintaining your health and catching up on much-needed rest should be top priority.
One way to get a cat nap into your schedule three times a week is to cat nap on weekends and once during the week, say a Wednesday for example. This makes it easier to prioritize your regular duties during the week without interference and your weekends are perfect for allowing you to catch up on enough rest to keep you prepared for the week ahead.