Sleep sometimes has a way of intervening successfully in a person’s life. Sleep is not for the other person. Sleep is for you. But, I will be having technical difficulties (read new web service installation tomorrow) and so need to knock out some business right now.
Sleep was looking good five minutes ago, but it’ll have to wait a little bit longer. Today, like any other day, had its share of energy and time drains. If you succumb to sleep, your body and mind thank you for it, even if like me, you sometimes go kicking and sleeping, I mean, screaming, into it. With so much going on, it’s tough to get those eight bangin’ hours of sleep that make you feel at your best the next day. So, what to do? I’m trying to master the micro nap.
Micro naps are when you lay down on something comfortable and just let your body float off. I have not read any books on this, but when you burn it at both ends as I do, mastering the micro nap is a must. The one thing a person needs before they attempt a micro nap is another person in the house. Fortunately for me, my wife was around today to make sure I didn’t zonk out for hours on end and wake up refreshed and distressed that I missed a gob-load of work I needed to get done.
It seems one of the ultimate forms of self-discipline a person can undertake—the micro nap, that is, is a hit or miss thing in terms of being something that makes you feel good. It’s kind of like hittingthesweetspot in the sense that my time for micro naps range anywhere from a few to several minutes, but not usually more than 10. Ten minute durations have left me feeling staggered. Surprisingly enough the three-, four-, even five-minute length naps seem to work best. While my body is feeling it can easily be lured into the sweet slumber of untold numbers of hours, it forgives me for not letting it go that long and lets me get done what I need to do for the next several hours.
I like coffee in the morning to get my caffeine intake going. But I’m not one of those guys who can do the energy drink think, I mean, thing. I considered myself the beta tester for modern day energy drinks back in the day when I used to drink coffee all day long. I worked the live long day typesetting for a commercial printer before going on to do janitorial work at office buildings on my second job. I needed to hustle and stay awake. Coffee, or should I say pots of it, were the way for me to get it all done.
But I paid the price
While I was physically meeting the challenges of almost 20-hour work days, I didn’t know anything about micro naps back then and would just feel my entire body vibrating when I finally crawled into bed at the end of the day. Before that, my hands would shake from all the typing, coffee, cleaning solvents and elbow grease I applied throughout my toiling with toilets.
Nowadays, I typically have 2-3 cups of java (I saw the funny haha about how the office worker shows the IT guy her empty coffee cup and tells him she successfully installed Java—I love that one) in the morning and I’m good caffeine-wise. Occasionally I will have some green tea in the afternoon—spot of tea as they say. I used to drink decaf green tea (boo). But now when I have a cup of it, it’ll be the regular, caffeinated, green tea variety.
None of us, nowhere and no how come to mind when I think about the mythical eight hours of sleep. To me, it’s like a unicorn; it doesn’t really exist. You just hear about it all the time from different people and think sometimes on days like New Year’s Eve that you’ll finally read that book about sleeping and figure out how to get eight hours of sleep every night. It’s good for you, you’ll live longer, have better sex and be happier the rest of your life.
Problem is that’s all B.S. Eight hours of sleep is the unicorn, baby.
The micro nap, with its varying length-of-minute durations, while not perfect, is still your best bet for getting enough rest to do the things that need doing.
Heck, it just worked for me.