I have always been a napper. I never complained about nap time as a kid because I secretly LOVED IT. I became a master at power napping between events at swim meets. I could nap at recess, in airports, in the car, at the beach, in the bathtub, in my playroom…Not long after becoming a pledge in my sorority, an upperclassman had dubbed me the Queen of Naps out of a sorority that really, really loved naps. Naps are my thing, okay? My husband has been trying HARD to break me of my nap habit because if I’m not careful, I nap for three hours. I kinda feel like today, National Napping Day, is really my holiday, y’know? And in today’s world, I think nap time is more crucial than ever.
We’re busy. We’re connected. We’re working. We’re talking. All. The. Time. We need breaks from the chaos! We need to pull back, break away, decompress, clear our minds. Give ourselves some sensory rest. Rest does a body good. It allows healing to happen, it eases anxiety and stress, it’s crucial for memory organization and storage. Rest is needed. Nap time is NEEDED.
Your version of nap time is most likely different from mine for one single reason: napping doesn’t necessarily mean sleeping. This has been a major breakthrough for me in the past few months, and I had to go back to childhood to figure it out. I need space and a break after interacting with people and learning, especially at work. So, I’d go home and take a traditional nap and end up throwing off my sleep schedule. I’d be cranky when I had no sleep before work. It made me grumpier than ever! Then, I remembered my mom’s lovely change from “nap time” to “FOB time.” This occurred in first grade. FOB time is not only a GREAT way to trick kids who need a nap into taking one, but it’s also a solid rule for adults. FOB time is simple: feet on bed. Your feet MUST be on the bed, whatever you’re doing, and you cannot do work or homework. You can watch a movie, you can color, you can play games, but your feet must be on the bed. Something about that automatically makes my brain be quiet, to this day. I like taking my FOB time in an area where I don’t sleep. When I was younger, I had a day bed in my playroom, thus the bed part of fob. Today, I have a futon in one room and a couch in another to choose from. Some days, I’m genuinely like a toddler. I come home, have a snack, and take my nap – and you probably don’t want to talk to me until that nap is done. Other days, I just need a quick rest up with my feet kicked back. Fob time is flexible for whatever you need that day.
Over the years, I’ve found tons of things that make FOB time way, way better. Whether you’re looking to get the maximum out of your FOB time, you’re a FOB/naptime addict, or you just need something soothing to treat yo self, you’ll find something for you in the list below. If I’m not napping in the sun (with sunscreen on!) or it’s a yucky day out, I like to have a nightlight. Just something that emits a warm glow. I like Himalayan salt lamps for this, and they also come with a load of health benefits. Whether you believe in the power of salt lamps or not, their soothing light is pretty unbeatable. See if there’s a salt cave or salt room near you that sells them to support local businesses! If there isn’t one, try The Vitamin Shoppe or Bed Bath & Beyond.
Background noise. I like making playlists of soothing music for FOB time, and services like Pandora and Spotify can be a big help. If you need something less musical and more quiet, you can go with a sound machine with a variety of background sounds (hello, rain time nap!) or use an app that lets you create a tailored background noise just for you. Want white noise with some rainforest sounds and a bit of thunder? Or maybe night sounds and a campfire? How about waves at a beach? They’re all viable options between loads of different apps out there. I’ve even seen one that had bacon frying in a pan as a background noise option.
Heating pad. I am like a grandma when it comes to my heating pads. I am always cold, so I ALWAYS want them. They make everything warm and cozy and happy. This brand is generally the universal favorite. My heating pad from them has lasted YEARS. I tuck it around my stomach or under my back.
Extra large blanket. I am a cocooner when I nap. I wrap myself into a happy little cozy burrito that’s safe from all the yuck in the world. Finding a blanket that’s big enough for my cocooning when I’m 5’8” is hard, y’all. That’s why these blankets are on my bucket list. THEY CAN MAKE A BLANKET THE SIZE OF A CAR. Do you know how snuggly that would be?!
Find yourself a sunny spot, get on your favorite comfy clothes, and prepare for a nice, long, snoozy nap. I’m thinking my skeleton onesies will do the trick.