Everything is timing.
Those are the concluding words of Daniel Pink’s latest book WHEN – The scientific secrets of perfect timing.
My Lifted Up blog readers know that sometimes I challenge the tribe to step outside our regular patterns of thinking and consider everyday life from a different angle.
Books like WHEN offer the same challenge. Rather than simply a collection of ideas from an author’s own opinion, Pink provides 25 pages of notes citing documentation of research, scientific studies, and other forms of validation for the material he presents.
Hmmm. That last paragraph makes the book sound like a boring scientific journal. Not so. It’s beautifully written; so deeply rich, in fact, that here’s what happened as I was reading it while in the waiting room of my dentist’s office:
The paragraph about meaningful endings (not necessarily “life endings”) was so profound that I felt the need to share it—to read it aloud to someone.
But the woman sitting next to me was busily involved with work on her laptop, so I just kept quiet.
And yes, I AM the kind of person who would actually take that action. It has to do with my own quirky mental makeup as well as the personality of this town where I live. In other words, it’s unlikely I’d start reading aloud to others on a New York subway.
In addition to deep thinking ideas, WHEN offers some remarkably practical advice such as how to take a nap.
I imagine some of you non-nappers are scoffing right now. “Naps are for sissies…a waste of time!”
Actually, research shows that naps are so beneficial that some progressive companies such as Nike and Zappos have established spaces for employees to nap during the work day.
The top two benefits of a short nap are a boost to physical health as well as an improvement in brain function. What’s not to like about that?
You’ll notice I said “short” nap. It turns out that the ideal length of a productive nap is between 10-20 minutes. Sleeping longer than 20 minutes produces that groggy-I-just-can’t-seem-to-wake-up sensation.
Even if you can’t actually sleep, the restorative break is beneficial to your well-being. (Unless, of course, you’re lying there stressing about not working. Shame on you.)
Pink also offers a great nap-waker-upper process: Drink a cup of caffeinated coffee just BEFORE you lie down. Since caffeine takes 20-25 minutes to enter our bloodstream and it likely will take us a few minutes to fall asleep, setting the timer for 25 minutes after drinking the coffee works out perfectly.
Apparently the caffeine first/nap second process has caught on to the point where it has a name. Are you ready for it?
I’ve provided a link to Pink’s guide to this sleeping sensation at the end.
There’s even a “siesta café” in Barcelona that’s called Nappuccino. A link to their place is below as well.
So…if you’re reading this about seven hours after waking up today, have some coffee and go take a nap.