I’ve never been a fan of mid-day naps, not because I don’t think they’re helpful, but because I always wake up feeling groggy, slow and sometimes even worse for at least an hour after, which hampers my mood and productivity, so I just avoid the topic all together.
Someone told me I was “doing it wrong,” so I listened diligently as they told me about sleep cycles and said I should nap for 30 minutes. So I tried that and it still felt terrible.
I’m assuming that you’re reading this because you’re nap-curious / pro-nap so I won’t bore you with the benefits which you can already find here : https://www.sleepfoundation.org/articles/napping
THEN I read about the nappuccino, in bestselling author Daniel Pink’s book When: Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing. The author suggests that the perfect nap is between 10-20 minutes and that any time longer than that, “sleep inertia” kicks in, which was probably my issue in attempting to sleep for 30 minutes.
But even before your nap, the “(cap)–ppucino” component is downing a coffee right before your nap. Wait…a coffee / caffeine before your nap? That’s right! The peak effects of caffeine aren’t felt in the body until approximately 30-40 minutes after consumption, so when you get up from your nap, you’ll feel refreshed and have a boost!
Of course you don’t have to have the coffee component if it’s not your jam, but on days where you may want improved performance and focus for the rest of your day, due to disrupted sleep or late night / early morning combination.
I’ve given this new style a try and I find it’s not only the perfect length that it fits into my day, but I actually “wake up” feeling refreshed. I don’t think I actually fall asleep but there is something about laying down and closing my eyes in the middle of the day that allows my body and brain to reboot.
How to do the nappuccino:
- Make yourself a cup of coffee or appropriate caffeinated beverage of choice
- Let it cool while you prep your nap space (somewhere comfortable, the perfect temperature for you and where you won’t be disturbed)
- Down your beverage (please let it cool off)
- Set your alarm to go off in 30 minutes (this will account for the drift off time, approximately 7-10 minutes, 2 hours if you’re female…)
- Lay back, close your eyes (do you really want me to go into detail on this?)
- Alarm goes off, stretch it out and enjoy the rest of your day feeling refreshed
Obviously if we never needed to nap because we had a GREAT night of sleep (for sleep tips, click here), I think that would be the best situation, but this methodology worked great for me. It’s clearly not gospel, as we all have different physiologies and schedules, so if you have a different method that you swear by, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!