Are you a napper?

I’m sharing the truth. I am a napper!

There I said it out loud in a professional work setting. I used to feel embarrassed that I could use a nap some days of the week. It made me feel like I wasn’t being as productive as I was expected to be or that it wasn’t fair that I was taking this time for myself.

What is “Fair” in Self-Care?

Screw that. We live in a world where being “busy” “always on” and “constantly productive” has taken its toll. People realize now that breaks, naps or opportunities to reset and rest are crucial to our continued productivity and our mental health and well being.

So I am sharing the truth. Go ahead and judge, but I’ll tell you something, I think it’s helped my mental health immensely over the past two decades.

And I know some of you are going to say you hate naps. That’s fine. You might be someone who hates napping because it makes you feel tired, and groggy, or you can’t sleep at night after you’ve napped.

Equal Alternatives for Rest

Here’s my take… I got lucky enough years ago to pick up a CD from Kirsten Hope, certified coach, and hypnotherapist. I’m not even sure where I picked it up, but for years I would play her short 15-minute guided meditation in my CD player. Yes, eventually I had to move it to my iPhone so I could actually still continue playing it.

I probably started doing this when I was a SAHM (stay-at-home mother), at 2 pm just before I would go pick up the kids from school. In those days it seemed like it helped me make it through the evenings with patience!

Kirsten’s meditation says “This CD is short so that even on your busiest days you can still take the time to relax and by giving yourself this time you will be left with the delightful and refreshing feeling of relaxation.” I have her meditation memorized at this point because some days I don’t fall asleep. Sometimes I hear the entire recording.

And now that my professional career has evolved and my kids are grown, I still love the opportunity for a 15-minute reset/nap.

My body knows that if I lay down and put my noise-canceling headphones on and a bolster under my knees then it’s time to let go, even if it’s only for 15 minutes.

Office Slumber Parties Anyone?

Recently, I learned that a leader in a Long Term Care organization had created a napping room for her staff. I was absolutely elated! She realized during the pandemic some of her people needed this. There was so much going on for them and allowing them a place to relax and even nap was important for their mental health and well-being.

Now, I’ve come to think one of the reasons I felt that it wasn’t okay to share that I am a napper is because my remote work allows for this more easily than folks who don’t work remotely.

So, maybe sharing the truth is worth it for you to consider. If you are a leader or manager, could you possibly elevate your break time/room? Create a Zen space (quiet music, a sound machine, a comfortable couch, magazines, soft lighting – you know a real “break” room) or maybe you can consider how to add a nap room.

A Way to Improve Employee Culture, Morale, and Retention

Organizations that are intentional in taking care of their employees’ well-being see direct benefits to their culture and productivity. Staff feels a stronger sense of commitment and responsibility in their roles, and team communication strengthens. In short, when people feel good, they treat each other with more respect and kindness and are more productive.

Let’s find ways to offer real rest and resetting, no matter where we work.

If sharing the truth is something your organization is considering, invite me to join the conversation. We’ll determine what your teams could really benefit from while staying mindful of organization-wide goals. Learn more about my collaborative consulting. 

What are your thoughts? Join the conversation with us on LinkedIn!