Carlsbad Around the Clock: 3:00 p.m.

There’s a revolution going on across Carlsbad and the entire country, albeit a yawny, stretchy one. More and more adults are pushing aside the stigma that afternoon naps are only appropriate for toddlers. Members of the workforce are napping as a way of recharging their batteries for the second half of the day.

In the case of Don Hughes, owner of Carlsbad Radio, a nap now and then is a way of refreshing his creative juices.

Hughes said he’ll come home to have lunch every day with his wife, then use the rest of the break to do a little work on his computer. “And then sometimes, I’ll step aside for a little bit and lay down,” he admitted. “Sometimes I’ll just sit for a second, but sometimes I’ll take a little bit of a nap.”

Michelle Roberson, an employee of the
Carlsbad Museum and Art Center, will occasionally take an
afternoon nap after she gets home.

The refresher clears his mind, he stated, and helps him work out ideas floating around in his head.

“When you are in the advertising business, everything is about ideas,” he explained. “I’ll lay down for a few minutes and get refreshed. I have a notebook next to my bed and I then hammer out some ideas for my clients.”

Hughes noted that he gets some of his best work done at home as well.

“It’s lunch, and sometimes a little nap after that,” he reiterated. “I’ve read numerous articles about big corporations that are providing space for their executives to sit in a reclining chair for a few minutes.”

Hughes is right, at least according to SleepFoundation.org, which states that a nap of 20-30 minutes can help improve mood, alertness and performance. The web site goes on to list Winston Churchill, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, Albert Einstein and Thomas Edison as afternoon nappers.

For Michelle Roberson, a mother of two and a part time employee with the Carlsbad Museum and Art Center, a 3 p.m. nap is a welcome endeavor that she only gets to enjoy occasionally.

Roberson stressed that she doesn’t nap on the job, where she works from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. She picks up her daughters, ages 9 and 5, after that. Her husband, Jeff, works for the Bureau of Land Management as a natural resource specialist from generally 6 a.m. to 3 p.m., so the entire family gets home at about the same time.

“Maybe once a week (during the weekday), when I don’t have something going on, I then get a nap in,” she shared, “except for the weekend. I totally nap on the weekend.”

Her two girls aren’t always nap-sympathetic, but now and then Roberson is able to steal a short break (while her husband is on kid duty), before moving into the evening’s activities such as dinner.

Roberson said she recently read an article about a museum that had “nap pods” set out for visitors who wanted a little break in between seeing exhibits.

“Some people may be embarrassed,” concluded Hughes. “But for me it is just the opposite. It is an important part of my day and I’m doing something that is healthy.”

Nap well and prosper.

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