Most of us are probably familiar with the mid-afternoon energy slump. After spending your morning energetically tackling your workload, you find yourself crashing after lunch. Whether you feel sleepy, exhausted or just lethargic, here are five ways to keep up your energy levels throughout the afternoon.
Go Light on Lunch
The biggest cause of that sleepy feeling is overdoing it at lunch time. If you eat a huge mid-day meal, your body’s going to be putting its energy resources into digestion. Make sure you have a healthy breakfast to see you through the morning, and you won’t be starving when lunch time comes around. Try healthy food options such as a wholegrain turkey sandwich or a salad. Add a couple of pieces of fruit.
Drink Plenty of Water
Instead of automatically heading for the coffee machine when you feel an energy slump coming on, grab a glass of cool water instead. Drinking a lot of water during the workday will help keep you focused and energized. It really does a more efficient job of waking you up than coffee.
Eat a Healthy Snack
If you took the above advice to go light on lunch, you might start feeling a little hungry mid-afternoon. A healthy snack such as a piece of fruit, a yogurt, a granola bar or a few nuts will give you a sustained energy boost to see you through till home time.
Avoid sugary snacks, though: they’ll pick you up initially, but the slump will just be deeper once they’ve worn off.
Get Your Heart Pumping
If you find yourself falling asleep at your desk, get up and go for a brisk walk. It only needs to be five or ten minutes. Walk around the corridors if you can’t escape out into the fresh air as long as you’re getting your heart rate up.
In general, it’s a good idea not to stay sitting at your desk for more than an hour without getting up and having a quick break. If you tend to get backache or sore eyes after a day at the computer, this can really help. At the very least, do some desk stretches.
Focus on an Exciting Task
Finally, the cause of that afternoon slump is often partly psychological. If you’re working on something tedious, it’s very hard to approach it with much energy. If it’s possible, switch to something that engages and interests you when you feel your energy levels dipping. Rotating between two or three different tasks can actually increase your productivity. If you really do have to get through something dull however, focus on the end result – how you’ll feel to have accomplished it or what it’ll mean to your boss, team or clients.
These tips should allow you to pull yourself out of that mid-day slump and keep your productivity going until you leave at the end of the day. What ways do you keep yourself energized throughout the afternoon?
SOURCE: Ali Hale, DumbLittleMan.com