The Fine Art of Napping

dog napBabies nap. Old people nap. But if you are in between those 2 eras of life and you are caught napping, it may be considered lazy, or weak. Of course, that also depends on what part of the world you are in.

Napping around the world

Hispanic and Latin American countries have been known for their siestas. Businesses would even close down after lunch for siesta!

In New York, there are actually “legitimate” spas where you can pay for a 20 minute session in a pod of sorts, where it is dark and quiet except for music of your choice. Many other high-producing executives have realized that a quick, afternoon power nap can energize them for the rest of their day.

Napping at my house

woman lying in grass Then, of course, there are Sunday afternoon naps. Those are the best! I actually heard a preacher, who was 10 years younger than his siblings, refer to himself as a “Sunday afternoon nap” baby, lol! My hubby and I joke as we are on our way home from our Sunday after church meal (lunch, supper, dinner, whatever you call it in your part of the world!), “hear” our bed calling us…

Wait! Did you hear it honey? It’s calling me, my soft, comfy bed is calling my name…”

My hubby is much better at napping than I am. He is much better at sleeping, period. Let him get still for 5 minutes and he is out! When I go to bed at night, it can sometimes take me an hour before I doze off, while he is just snoring away! And naps, very difficult for me to slow my brain down long enough to take a nap, but I am trying to learn how, for my sanity’s sake. It would be good if I could sneak in a 15 or 20 minute nap some days.

I remember back when I was 22 and had my 2nd baby. (when our 1st baby was born, I was 16 and lived with hubby’s mom, so I had a lot of help with her). When baby #2 came along, we had our own little place and I was on my own. I learned very quickly how to fall asleep as soon as baby went to sleep. I got pretty proficient at it. And then I had baby #3 and #4 come along in 2 year successions, believe me, if I got a chance, I was gonna take a nap!

Famous people in history took naps.

 Sir Winston Churchill
Churchill’s love of napping was no secret. “You must sleep sometime between lunch and dinner, and no halfway measures. Take off your clothes and get into bed. That’s what I always do. Don’t think you will be doing less work because you sleep during the day. That’s a foolish notion held by people who have no imagination. You will be able to accomplish more. You get two days in one – well at least one and a half, I’m sure. When the war started, I had to sleep during the day, because it was the only way I could cope with my responsibilities,” said the big fella.

Salvador Dali
The famous painter with the killer moustache had a very idiosyncratic napping strategy, but a highly effective one nonetheless.  He would sit in a chair with a spoon in his hand over a tin plate.  When he’d fall asleep, the spoon would fall onto the plate, making a noise and waking him up.  He said that even such a brief nap would refresh him.  No, I’m not making this up. 

Thomas Edison
Oddly enough, Tommy Boy believed that sleep was a waste of time and proudly reported that he only slept 4 hours a night.  He hoped that his invention of the electric light bulb would help people reduce their ‘unproductive’ sleep time.  It turns out, however, that Edison supplemented his night sleep with – you guessed it – naps.  He was reported to take two 3-hour naps each day!


If you are going to nap, find the right conditions and place for you.

- office during lunch hour

-your recliner

-the back porch

-your car (be safe with this!)

-your bed!

-on a blanket by a lake (my favorite!)

How about you? Do you take naps on a regular basis? Is it something you would like to try?

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21 comments to The Fine Art of Napping

  • Hey Bernice,

    I actually do take a lot of naps! I love them. It’s one of the big benefits of working from home in my book. If I’m tired, I lay down for a bit. Sometimes I won’t fall asleep but the quiet time refreshes me. Other times I’ll sleep anywhere from 20 minutes to 2 hours.

    My dad was a napper and I picked up the habit from him. It just makes sense. If your bodies tired, give it a break!

    Tanja from Minimalist Packrat recently posted..My Number 1 Tip for Clutter ControlMy Profile

    bernicewood Reply:

    Hey Tanja!
    Like I mentioned in another comment, unfortunately, I have a difficult time getting to sleep. What I will do some days, since I am working from home for now, is sit our on my deck overlooking our lovely backyard (we live in the “country”). We splurged on a pair of reclining deck chairs so it is very comfortable! I am in GA so we have warm days well into winter, or I can grab a blanket! I will just sit and listen to the birds and the chickens and the dogs and BREATHE. Slow my brain down for a bit!
    Working on my decluttering this weekend! Think I will come visit your blog for some motivation!

  • hey!!!

    i love to take naps. usually i do when my little ones are napping. however, my etsy shop has become my project time during nap times.

    I MISS MY NAPS! ;)

    i don’t think i ever responded to your comment a while ago. i had FULL intentions of doing so. i have no excuse other then life being crazy at times & i am terrible at handling it sometimes. please forgive me.

    thanks for the tweet. yes, we do need to meet up!
    have a super weekend.

    bernicewood Reply:

    Hey there!
    Yes, these projects of ours can eat up our time! When you have little ones though, you have to sneak whatever time you have for you whether it is for sleep or for creative outlets! Both are important!
    See you in Nashville!

  • I take naps in the car on long drives with hubs behind the wheel. When my four children were young I would stop at my mom’s after work and take a nap before going home;)

    bernicewood Reply:

    Ah, Tess, that is funny about your stopping by your mom’s after work for a nap, lol! I can relate though! I wish I could sleep in the car! Unfortunately that has never worked well for me, but the hubby will sleep if I drive!
    Thanks for dropping to visit!

  • My husband and I are fond of “20 minute snoozes”–it’s just enough time to refresh me, and I can still sleep at night, and it feels so luxurious to be snuggled in bed, especially on a gray day.
    Margaret Almon recently posted..Wordless Wednesday- Jazz in Mosaic by Nutmeg DesignsMy Profile

    bernicewood Reply:

    Many Saturday and Sunday afternoons, hubby and I will snuggle up in our double recliner for a nap. Well, he falls right asleep and I will do my best to relax and slow my brain enough to snooze. I don’t often actually fall asleep, but I do enjoy the rest and the snuggle!
    Thanks for visiting!

  • I love naps. I try not to nap everyday but I could. My dad also napped his whole life. I am not a good night sleeper and I don’t sleep in so it is the only way for me to catch up on my sleep.

    bernicewood Reply:

    My husband doesn’t sleep well either, mainly due to sleep apnea, so he loves his naps! Thanks for coming by!

  • Kim

    Instead of drinking coffee or tea in the middle of the day we should all take a snooze instead! A nap can be so rejuvenating and so needed sometimes during the course of a busy and stressful day. I will admit, however, that napping isn’t easy for me because I don’t allow myself to relax enough. But sometimes, I will try to find a quiet place and just close my eyes for a few minutes – even that is helpful. I love the photos of the dog and cat – we can learn so much from the :-)
    Kim recently posted..Paper- Pen and an Old Fashioned TraditionMy Profile

    bernicewood Reply:

    You are absolutely right. It can be difficult to calm oursleves enough to actually fall asleep, but even just closing our eyes and trying to rest our mind can be helpful. I find if I listen to music it helps!

  • I am no “napper” but Bernice, your post really seduces me~
    I think I like to try adding some breaks into my life ~ ;)
    Whenever I get up in the morning I feel totally “rebooted” & refreshed, so I think my new experiment can be quite interesting too~

    BTW, {Famous people in history took naps} is awesome, thank your for sharing :)
    Sandy recently posted..Sit your urge outMy Profile

    bernicewood Reply:

    Sometimes it does not take actually going to sleep. Sometimes we just need a rest, a time to slow our brain down and breathe, maybe listen to a little music or sit outside (weather permitting!)
    So how is your experiment going?

    Sandy Reply:

    My experiment goes lovely~

    I found can’t really “sleep”, for I normally sleep 8-9 hours at night ;) but I do break up quite often.

    Like in the afternoons, I burn flavored flower scented joss stick( I am Chinese ;) ), and just sit there, blank my mind and simply enjoy the scent, which is very relaxing for me ^^
    Sandy recently posted..Smile Breathe and Go slowlyMy Profile

  • ~`, I am really thankful to this topic because it really gives up to date information *”-

  • I wish! I have always taken like an hour to fall asleep. There is never enough time for naps for me. So sad! I would love to nap!

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