[Applied Psychology] Importance of Napping

The benefits of waking up early to work on my projects brings the drawbacks of fatigue. Establishing mental fortitude is not easy. Discipline requires sacrificing the complaining that minor aches invite. Pacing is the key to enabling that relentless charge toward the life I want to actually become realistic. I’ve found that snacking throughout the day, and moderating overpriced lunches to instead use that time to nap, works better for me. The reasons are below:

Concentration Litmus Tests
“I’m having trouble writing about the benefits of napping. Guess I better sleep.” I’m confident enough in my writing to know when the process isn’t going smoothly. That could be for many reasons. Reviews are typically more involved than these thoughts pieces. Or maybe I’m not versed enough in the material? It’s time to rest if my reason is more incoherent, than timid, word choice. Find a diagnostic litmus test to help you identify fatigue.

Detaching From Stress
If life were a videogame, stress would have its own health bar. We’d become aware we only have a certain amount of stress tolerance until that bar is depleted. We’d also quickly learn any interaction can deplete that stress bar: stressful conversation, regular conversation, attending concerts, working out, thinking, and any nearly anything. Sleep is one factor to help replenish that stress bar’s tolerance, in addition to eating in moderation and drinking plenty of water.

Sleeping In Moderation
I slept in this past Saturday. The fatigue of attending the Metallica concert had caught up with me. I was groggy throughout most of the day. The urgent external motivation that attaches itself with an alarm clock’s buzzer was gone. The eternal internal motivation was still there, it just inspired my writing at a meandering pace, which obliterated my pacing. I’ve been finding oversleeping to be less pleasurable now that I write so much content.

Napping In Moderation
Two factors can determine a successful midday nap: your alarm clock(s) and your discipline. I only use one alarm clock because my napping spot isn’t comfortable enough to seduce me into forgetting my work schedule. I’ll still detach into sleep, though only briefly, and I’m usually awake before the alarm goes off. These naps don’t replace a full night’s rest. They merely inspire me to push a little harder with the reward of temporary relaxation.

Relaxation In Moderation
I’m not completely focused every minute of the day on my goals, as much as I’d like that. Though I have significantly fewer hours per day and week of relaxation time now, compared to 6 months or 2 years ago, that relaxation time is also better spent. I’m not wasting hours on my computer if I’m fatigued. If my concentration levels are depleted or I’m feeling stressed, I’m more apt to switch gears now, to overcome that.

Working In Moderation
I have just enough time after writing this for a quick 10 minute nap before resuming my day. That’s another benefit to conditioning yourself to wake up early: you can nap, if needed.

My big goal is writing. My most important goal is writing "The Story." All other goals should work toward that central goal. My proudest moment is the most recent time I overcame some fear, which should have been today. I'm a better zombie than I was yesterday. I'm not better than you and you're not better than me. Let's strive to be better every day.