Monday, March 06, 2023

Napping for Adults; it isn't just for old people

Science shows there are many benefits to taking afternoon naps, for health, creativity and productivity:

The Reasons for Regular Napping, and the Science to Support It
[...] Not that any of us are necessarily looking for an excuse, but napping has been proven to dramatically increase and improve learning, memory, awareness levels and more. Unfortunately, due to our corporate, modern day, fast-paced lifestyles, a mid-day nap has been overlooked, seen as a luxury, sometimes frowned upon and in some cases even considered a sign of pure laziness. People have become so consumed with their 9 to 5 that they see napping as unproductive, without realising that napping is actually very good and a completely natural phenomenon in the circadian (sleep-wake cycle) rhythm and makes a lot of sense when you examine the evidence to support it. [...]

The article mentions historical references to well known people who were known to take naps to solve problems, such as Thomas Edison. It's not hard to find articles about that:
Spark Creativity with Thomas Edison’s Napping Technique
[...] Edison may have relied on slumber to spur his creativity. The inventor is said to have napped while holding a ball in each hand, presuming that, as he fell asleep, the orbs would fall to the floor and wake him. This way he could remember the sorts of thoughts that come to us as we are nodding off, which we often do not recall.

Sleep researchers now suggest that Edison might have been on to something. A study published recently in Science Advances reports that we have a brief period of creativity and insight in the semilucid state that occurs just as we begin to drift into sleep, a sleep phase called N1, or nonrapid-eye-movement sleep stage 1. The findings imply that if we can harness that liminal haze between sleep and wakefulness—known as a hypnagogic state—we might recall our bright ideas more easily. [...]

I'm going to try napping more...