I have always been able to nap when tired or just overwhelmed. In high school, I used to escape to my car or tuck myself into the sound equipment closet for a quick 15 minutes. In college, I’d dash back to my room or stretch out on an obliging couch for a little between-class snooze. During my years as a nanny, I could always manage a little siesta while my charges watched TV next to me.
At my very first real job, we had an unused office that held ancient files and I’d often tuck myself halfway underneath the desk during my lunch hour in order to rest my brain and catch 20 minutes of shut-eye. Once, my supervisor walked in during a nap, saw me laying there, and offered a string of babbling apologies while backing out. We never spoke of it.
These days, I work from home and have any number of cozy places to take uninterrupted cat naps. However, when I feel the need to take a rest, I prefer to stretch myself out on the floor behind my desk, set an alarm for 18 or 20 minutes, and close my eyes.
Now, as floors go, ours is quite comfortable. Though the carpeting is getting on in years, it was the top of the line when my grandparents installed it in 1986 (good lord, my carpet is about to turn 30), so it’s not as if I’m settling down on hard wood or linoleum.
But the thing that’s so nice about opting for the floor rather than the bed or couch is simply what it communicates to my body and mind. It says that this is just a short term rest. Don’t dive too deeply, just let go for a moment. Relax quickly so as to maximize your sleeping time. And When it’s time to get up, there’s no cozy comforter encouraging me to flip over and sleep some more.