Nap Time

Bob Goldman on

Master nappers do not impulsively snatch snoozes; they plan for them. If you are a beginner, you'll want to start with the MRN (Minimum Required Naps): the apr├Ęs-breakfast nap, the bookending pre-lunch and post-lunch naps, and the wrap nap. That last one starts an hour before you leave work and ends five minutes before you punch out.

As for embracing failure, it is possible that the novice napper will not manage to actually fall asleep during the scheduled time frame. Barribeau says that even if you are "just lying there breathing slowly, that's still better than the alternative."

I don't agree.

If performance anxiety impairs your napping program, simply reduce the time you spend doing and set aside more time for dozing. As Benjamin Franklin said, "If at first you do not nap, nap, nap again."

No. 2: "Get lulled to sleep."

According to Barribeau, "It's easy to ruminate and stress, and to spend half an hour digging through your mind's detritus rather than unplugging." This may be true for people who, unlike you, have not mastered the ancient Druid practice of Enlightened Emptyheadeadness. Keeping your mind a complete blank at all times is key to success, as a glance at your manager's career will tell you.

No. 3: "Set the scene."

Certain nap toys, many X-rated, are required by some people to successfully nap. The article includes "a sleep mask, ear plugs, a white noise machine, blackout curtains, weighted blankets, or pajamas" on its list of possible recommendations. You may also want to check the credit limit on your credit card, since the cost of buying all this junk would keep a Brazilian tree sloth awake.


Instead, take a tip from farsighted nappers, who have avoided the fad of weighted blankets by gaining a ginormous amount of weight during months of COVID-19 lockdown. You don't have to buy a weighted blanket if you are a weighted employee, though the purchase of a sturdy, new bed frame is essential.

No. 4: "Caffeine and power naps."

Some studies have shown that drinking coffee 20 minutes before you're scheduled to wake up can "supercharge your naps." This does seem counterintuitive; and the fact that the research was done at the Dunkin Donuts Institute, funded by a grant from Mrs. Folgers, may make you doubt this technique, but it is worth a try. The worst that can happen is that you'll stay up all night and not have the energy to complete a full schedule of napping the next day.

This is a terrible outcome, but the solution is obvious.

Take a nap.


Bob Goldman was an advertising executive at a Fortune 500 company. He offers a virtual shoulder to cry on at To find out more about Bob Goldman and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at




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