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Your lifestyle, your quirk
The other day, I came across the funniest meme. It had a picture of what you’re supposed to feel like when you wake up from a nap – and it had an illustration of this gorgeous girl hopping out of bed with a spring in her step, starting to sing. Directly below it, it had a picture captioned “What I Really Look Like After a Nap,” and it had the same girl with a mess of tousled, greasy hair, coughing and saying “I am Death.” To say that I chuckled is an understatement. It wasn’t so much that I found it hilarious, just true! How many times has this been you? It seems like a nap just adds to the problem most of the time.
Well, this is because a nap isn’t supposed to fix your problems of sleep deprivation. It’s supposed to be the icing on the cake of an already healthy sleep cycle. Too many of us have fallen into an unhealthy cycle of sleep, but that doesn’t mean you can’t fix it. After all, there’s no time like the present.
To begin, I have a bit of good news for you. You don’t necessarily need eight full of hours of sleep every night to feel great. Some people do, yes, but this is certainly not a blanket statement for everyone. If you can get anywhere above seven (so that means seven hours and 10 minutes is fine, but six hours and 50 isn’t) hours, then you’re likely gonna be able to carry on your business throughout the week. So you don’t have to be in bed at 8 every night.
Next, learn the best time to nap. Don’t let yourself fall asleep after 6:00 PM. All this will do is mess up your sleep cycle and keep you up later. If you really need to sleep, do so as soon as you get home; otherwise, hit the sack early. If you have trouble getting motivated to get into bed, then get into the actual bed as early as you can. Get in your PJs and under the covers and read, watch a movie, whatever, but get as close to being “in bed” as you possibly can, so you’re more likely to get tired and feel better about going to sleep early.
Lastly, don’t take the weekend as a license to sleep the day away! Get up at a reasonable time and use naps (also at a reasonable time, the earlier the better) to catch up on sleep, rather than sleeping til noon. Doing so only causes a really unhealthy cycle!