One of the first things that sleep specialist W. Christopher Winter, M.D., tells to professional sports organizations that are looking to build a nap room for players is to not call those rooms “nap rooms.”
“We try to get teams to call these rooms something that doesn’t have ‘sleep’ or ‘nap’ in the title — the ‘restoration room’ or the ‘regeneration room,’ for example,” explains Winter, who consults with the MLB, NHL, and NBA.
There are two reasons for this. One, it takes away the pressure that you have to sleep inside the room. The second reason is that it introduces the idea of “quiet wakefulness”, a powerful resting activity which is currently gaining traction among sleep doctors and health-conscious circles.
What is “quiet wakefulness?” It is defined simply as “resting with your eyes closed.”
It’s compelling, in part, because it completely eliminates the stress surrounding sleep — particularly that I can’t fall asleep right now so my health is going to fall apart feeling that keeps you awake.
Stress and naps are a common yet unfortunate pairing, Dr. Winter explains. Many people can work themselves up so much about falling asleep that they struggle to actually do it.
Of course, that’s normal. “Most people don’t have complete control over their sleep,” Dr. Winter acknowledges. It would be strange, he says, to meet somebody who says, I have never had any trouble sleeping whatsoever. Having occasional sleep problems is to be expected.
But while you might not be able to fully control exactly when you fall asleep, you can control when you rest — and that’s one of quiet wakefulness’ biggest benefits.
More details about this one over at Medium.
(Image Credit: Pixabay)