March 10, 2020

Delight 5: The Intentional, Unintentional Nap

This post was last updated on March 11th, 2020 at 10:03 pm

Occasionally I meet someone who doesn’t nap and who doesn’t find value or delight in them. I don’t really get these folks. Ever since my public declaration of naps, (I have no way to prove this but I take credit for the #napchat hashtag), people continue to send me research and findings around the merits of naps. I don’t need convincing.

One of my favourite kinds of naps is on weekend afternoons while watching sports. Usually, it’s football or golf but golf is preferred mostly because the announcers talk quietly anyway. I like the idea of drifting off to sleep without trying or planning. That makes it feel like it’s more of a gift or a happy accident. While that can happen, I don’t want to leave such a delightful thing to chance. I want it to feel serendipitous but in reality, it’s totally planned although I work to make it seem like it just sort of happened.

Here’s how it’s done. You turn the volume down and wait for an opportune moment. With football, I like the 2nd quarter. If it’s golf, I start when the final group is on about the 7th hole. If it’s a really important event, I press record. Either way, I nap between 20-40 minutes and wake up late in the 3rd quarter or as the leaders are on the 13th or 14th hole. Sometimes it’s a full out REM sleep but more often than not I’m drifting in and out and occasionally hear an update along the way. When I do finally come out of my sleep I’m usually surprised by the change in the score. After the standard 1-2 minutes to get my bearings I make my self a coffee and settle in for the last hour of the event. Delightful it is. And the part about it being so natural is a big part of it. For those less enamoured by the nap, it’s the same feeling you get when you wake up and find out you’re meeting is cancelled or it’s a snow day or you just get up earlier than you needed and get to go back to sleep. It’s a free nap.

Fair warning, I can’t guarantee this will NOT be my only nap related delight. There are many things to be found within this timeless delight.