8 Legit Ways To Sneak In A Nap While You’re At Work

BDG Media, Inc.

When you were a kid, you probably railed against nap time like your life was at stake. But now that we're all grown up, you'd probably give anything to get nap time back because #adulting is #exhausting. But taking a nap at the office feels... wrong, right? It doesn't have to be. If you're wondering how to take a nap at your office for real, rest easy that it's very possible.

Let's face it: If your boss is peeved that you snuck a 20 minute cat nap in the conference room, there's research to show that a tired employee doesn't do them any good. The New York Times reported that there’s a growing field of occupational and psychological research that is showing being well-rested makes people more productive. “Companies are suffering from tremendous productivity problems because people are stressed out,” Josh Bersin, principal and founder of Bersin by Deloitte, told The New York Times. “They’re beginning to realize that this is their problem, and they can’t just say to people, ‘Here’s a work-life balance course, go teach yourself how to manage your inbox,’ It’s way more complicated than that.”

But is it really that complicated? Maybe it starts with giving employees a chance to take 50 winks during the day. If you want to start getting a little rest during the workday, BBC News advises that you ask your boss’ permission to take a nap first. Further, limit your nap to your lunch break or other pause in your day — don't skip a meeting just because you can't keep your eyes open. Bring an eye mask to ensure you can actually fall asleep. And to make sure your nap doesn’t turn into an all-out snoozefest, BBC News says to limit your nap to about 20 minutes, with 10 minutes to wake up. Remember, you still gotta finish out your workday. Here are eight legit ways to sneak a nap while you're at work.


Go Out To Your Car

Not everyone owns a car or commutes with one, but if you do, take advantage of that space and turn it into a nap zone. Deck it out with pillows and blankets to make the most out of your limited break time.


Book A Conference Room

The best strategy is to pick a conference room that locks and doesn't have any windows (and, of course, isn't in high demand for actual work).


Take A Long Bathroom Break

Ilana from Broad City is a napping icon. Of course, for this one, you have to be able to fall asleep anywhere, and you've gotta really not care whether people think you were taking a long poo to pull this one off. Also, bathrooms are gross. But if none of that bothers you, grab a stall and hide out. Just don't fall in the toilet.


Pull A George Costanza

Aka, sleep under your desk. This only works in specific situations, like if your desk is in low-traffic areas or you have your own office.


Nap At Your Desk (Seriously)

This takes some practice, a low-traffic area, and a lot of chutzpah. Position yourself like you're deeply engrossed in a project so if someone comes by, you don't look like you were sleeping. For example, rest your head on your hand and put a highlighter in your other hand so you look like you were researching something, not getting some shut-eye.


Make Yourself A Nook In The Supply Room

Make sure it's not a highly trafficked supply room, of course. Then find a quiet nook in the back corner and catch some ZZZs.


Schedule An Off-Site Meeting

No one needs to know that meeting is with yourself and your eyelids. Or maybe you legit had an off-site meeting. Just schedule a little buffer in there so you can fit a quick nap in there before you head back into the office.


Take Lunch Off-Site

Depending on how close you live to the office, if you can swing it, just go home and take a nap. Just make sure lunch is involved at some point, too, because you need food just as much as you need sleep.


In an ideal world, we'd love to see nap rooms in every company. Everyone deserves a place to rest and decompress. But until the business world catches up with our human need for regular rest and rejuvenation, we'll all have to get really good at stealth-mode naps. Just make sure to do it as discretely and respectfully as possible.