I love to take an afternoon nap. Babies and toddlers ensure this is a part of every day of their lives. By the time we reach preschool or kindergarten most children have dropped what I believe is one of the most important parts of the day: the afternoon nap. This most glorious activity does not get the respect it deserves, and I want to start a movement to bring back the afternoon nap.
Many cultures and societies around the world understand the importance of the afternoon nap. Have you ever heard the word siesta? It is the Spanish term for a snooze. There are places around the world, such as throughout Europe or the Middle East, where siesta is taken seriously and is scheduled into the day. In many places, businesses even close for up to two hours and streets are empty while children and adults alike lie down and take a rest. I’m jealous.
My desire to take an afternoon nap can happen in the middle of a busy workday on a Wednesday afternoon or a lazy Saturday at home. Have you ever been in a meeting, listening to a lecture or sat in science class when suddenly your eyes start to droop and your head tilts sideways? It takes everything in you to stay awake and focus. You don’t want to be the person who falls over in a chair and starts to snore. In your semi-comatose state, all you can think about is an afternoon nap. Even a ten-minute power nap would be perfect.
Some businesses understand the importance of an afternoon nap. They understand that employee productivity, in particular during a long afternoon, will increase, if people are given the opportunity to have a snooze. Some companies, like Uber and Google, have “nap rooms” in their offices. Brilliant.
But the most delicious afternoon nap happens on a weekend afternoon at home. Your boss isn’t there to tap you on the shoulder as you are slumped on your chair or unconscious and snoring under your desk. Here is my idea of a dreamy weekend snooze:
You are in the comfort of your own home and you plop down on the living room couch. You have a good book ready to read, an unfinished Scrabble game on your smartphone or this week’s episode of Grey’s Anatomy recorded on the PVR. The house is quiet and you settle in. After a few pages of your book, a couple of moves in the Scrabble game or a few minutes of the show on TV your eyes close and you fall into a deep and dreamy sleep.
The kids (or spouse or friends’ kids) could start swirling and screaming around you, but it doesn’t matter. You are perfectly comfortable and happy that the walls could come crashing down around you and it won’t matter. You have reached that ultimate state of Zen.
A couple of hours later you wake up slowly, usually with a bit of drool coming out of your mouth. You are unsure of exactly where you are or what time it is. But it doesn’t matter. You are relaxed and cozy on the couch and you feel great. Indeed you just had a delicious afternoon nap.
To make my afternoon nap truly delicious it has to be on the right couch in the right place. The couch in the family room at my own house is perfect. Second on the list would be any couch at my family cottage near Collingwood or David’s family country home in St. Donat. David’s cousin Pema, who lives in Friday Harbor has a nap-worthy couch in her home too.
Do you have a nap-worthy couch or a favourite place to take an afternoon nap? Do you want to join my movement to bring back the afternoon nap? Here is what I need you to do:
- Post a photo of your favourite nap spot. Or post a photo of you or someone you know taking a nap in one of your favourite spots. Post the picture on Facebook, tag me on Instagram @AliciaRichler or Tweet me @AliciaRichler
- Let’s use the hashtag #BringBackTheNap and let’s start napping!