3 Reasons You Might Need a Nap

_Sleep Drunk_

My son’s naptime reminds me of a scene from Honey I Blew Up the Kid.

Instead of a giant toddler ransacking Las Vegas, the only thing giant-sized in this house is my kid’s tantrums around noon.

I’m pretty sure the whole neighborhood recognizes the signs. Whining morphs into crying and eventually turns into full-blown screaming.

In these moments of desperation, we play a game called “horsey wants to run.” It calms him down.

Yesterday, I scooped him up on my back and galloped toward the bed. Between giggles he said, “I don’t want a nap.”

“But you need a nap,” I said in my horsey voice, neighing and then trotting up the stairs.

“But I don’t want a nap.”

Can I just come right out and say it? If you’re cranky or anxious today, you probably need a nap too.

Adults need proper rest but often refuse to sleep, not realizing how it affects us. We lumber on like cranky toddlers, wide-eyed at the next Netflix episode or strung out over late-night comedy.

If you fall into this category, here’s three reasons you need more sleep.

  1. Creativity flows from rest.

Americans suffer chronic sleep deprivation, averaging less than 7 hours a night. That’s bad news if you make a living as a creative thinker. Loads of studies link proper rest to creativity.

Turning in early at night allows me to rise before the sun. That way I can get things done.

Often we’re duped into thinking sleeping less leads to more productivity, but that’s not the case. Going to bed early can increase work performance.

  1. Tired Brains Can’t Focus

Creativity isn’t the only thing that hinges on quantity and quality of sleep. Our attention spans and memory improve with eight hours of Zzzz’s.

Sleepy people often show signs of ADD or ADHD. If you’re having trouble concentrating, go take a nap. This article can wait.

Almost everything can wait.

Think of it this way. So much of your quality of life depends on your concentration and memory. Is finishing that book or late-night TV really worth it?

3. Sleepiness makes you feel like you’re drunk.

Recently, I stayed up way too late, relishing every moment I could spend with a group of witty, like-minded people.

I made a mistake.

It was late, and as the night waxed into morning, my body cried out for sleep, but I ignored it. Maybe you’re ignoring some of the symptoms, too.

  1. Forgetfulness
  2. Incessant yawning
  3. Giddiness
  4. Speed blinking to keep your eyes open

After a few nights of this routine, one thought plagued me—I feel drunk. Though no wine or spirits flowed, I found myself babbling and laughing incessantly.

Turns out, I’m not alone. Studies show, missing sleep can make us feel and act inebriated. I call it “sleepy drunk.”

That week I babbled on into the wee hours, but struggled to keep my mind for wandering during the day. My emotions, too, were a wreck.

While we’ll all have late nights sometimes, make sure they’re the exception to the rule.

Sleep does our minds and bodies good.

That little morsel of wisdom is worth drinking to—as long we’re drinking coffee (and decaf after 1 p.m.).

I would love to hear from you! How does sleep affect the quality of your life?

 

6 thoughts on “3 Reasons You Might Need a Nap

  1. On the weekends I often nap for a few hours on either Saturday or Sunday (I bet you don’t have that luxury, Trisha, though I hope you do); Afterwards I feel guilty for not getting stuff done during that time, but I should consider rest as doing something needed. It’s hard when I have lots I want to accomplish though. But sometimes God says “Cease!” and He knows best.

    • I have the guilt in napping too, but I trying to get over it. Usually when I lie down and nap with the kids I get my best writing ideas! Creativity really does come from rest.

  2. Oh my goodness! I laughed through this, mostly because I identify with so much of what you said. I’m not a mom, but I’m a grad school student, working in publishing, driving an hour to work each day, and trying to spend time with the people I love. Balancing it all isn’t possible most days, and is exhausting when I try. The explanation of sleepy-drunk is such a perfect fit! :) With humor, you brought a dose of truth to my life today, and a great reminder of the importance of rest!

    Great post! :)

    • Stephanie! Good to hear from you. Thanks for saying you understand. I was wondering if anyone understood. Lol. Well, I’m glad I’m not alone.

  3. I visited a friend yesterday who was babysitting a toddler. This child was fussing because she was tired and fighting sleep. (At one point, she sat staring into space as if asleep while sitting up.) When my friend said, “She does this all the time,” I replied, “We all can get a little ornery when we’re tired. I get fussy too.” Nice timely article. It sounds like something I’d read on a fitness blog. Thanks.

    • That is cool timing! Thanks for reading. I love your gracious comment to your friend. Why do we as women feel so self-conscious about our children’s behavior?

      This post probably differs from my usual posts, huh? I think sleep and rest are poorly understood spiritual disciplines. I love how God gives his people sleep. Thinking of this verse today, “In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat– for he grants sleep to those he loves” (Psalm 127:2).

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