Why Rainy Days Mean More Quality Nap Time for You
April showers bring May flowers, right? Sometimes though, that gloomy sky can get us feeling a bit, well, under the weather. Pardon the bad pun, but a rainy day can put a cramp in our style when we’re hoping to get outside and enjoy the spring, afternoon sunshine instead of feeling cooped up and sad.
Here’s the thing: rainy days are the perfect excuse to get in some well needed nap time. Naps aren’t just for kids anymore. There are all kinds of studies that link naps to increased performance at work, better decision making, and even long term neurological benefits. There’s nothing better than a rainy day nap, we’re here to break down why that’s true, how to cultivate a great napping environment and schedule, and why naps are so good for you.
Rainy Days are the Perfect Nap Days Because of How Rain Sounds to Your Brain
You know that peaceful lilting sound of a soft rain against your roof? How it can lull you into sleep at the drop of a hat? That’s science at work. Rain is white noise, basically a constant, soothing tone that can switch your brain from an active state to a passive one. The theory behind white noise goes all the way back to our prehistoric roots, when we had to train our ears to search out predators — even as we slept. That’s why the slightest noise can sometimes still wake you up, even if you don’t have to worry about sabertooth tigers anymore.
White noise works by occupying the space in your brain that hears and processes noise, soothing it with a constant sound that can drown out other distractions. That’s why so many alarm clocks offer white noise settings, from ocean beach, to waterfall, to (obviously) rainy day vibes. A real rainy day has the benefit of being ambient, meaning that the noises aren’t coming directly from your room, making those tones even deeper and dreamier. Listen to the rain on the roof. It’s the perfect time to get some shuteye.
Naps are Amazing for Your Body and Mind — but Only in Small Doses
Naps represent a great way to refresh your brain and body. A nap can also be the perfect way to invigorate you and finish your workday strong. That’s not an opinion, it’s a fact, and one that many tech companies are taking to heart. Companies like Facebook, Google, and others have actually made designated napping areas for their employees. They believe that it increases creativity and inspiration — many tech CEOs report having their best ideas after a nap session.
Here’s the thing, if you sleep too long, you could mess up your sleep schedule. Basically, our sleep works on a REM cycle, and anything longer than 35 minutes (give or take) can put your brain in a place of confusion and sleep deprivation. It turns out that about 30 minutes is the exact right amount to get you a little boost for those last few hours of work. Set an alarm and then hit the hay, but try not to hit the snooze too often, or you may find yourself unable to sleep at night when you need a longer, more substantial amount of Z’s. Curious on which apps work best for tracking your sleep schedule? Check out our blog to get the goods on which one is right for you.
How to Best Nap on a Rainy Day
You can’t schedule a rainy day in advance, but you can schedule your naps. Try to be consistent with your routine. If you’re constantly tired around 2:30 PM, then that’s probably the best time to sneak away for a little shut eye. Try to find a dark and reasonably quiet spot, if there aren’t any at your job, sometimes it can be nice to slip away to your car and find a little shady area for a snooze. Rain on a roof is such a soothing sound, that you’ll be sleeping like a baby before you know it. Just make sure your car is off and parked before you nod off!
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