Avoiding the Afternoon Crash
You get to work and already have 5 emails to answer to before your first meeting. You barely make it to the meeting and by the time you’re done with it, you have 3 new items to add your checklist. You get back to your computer and start checking things off the list, vetting emails as they come in, take a few bathroom breaks, maybe have another meeting and BOOM! It’s lunch time. How is it already lunch time?
You eat and chat with a few coworkers and all of a sudden it’s time to get back to work. You mosey over to your desk and watch as your energy levels rapidly decline. By the time its 1:45pm, you feel like you could fall asleep until dinner time. This is normal. Your body clock is programmed to go through cycles and unfortunately, that cycle happens right in the middle of the work day. Check out these life-hacks to combat that afternoon slump:
1. Take a break from the screen. Do some organizing in a notebook. Go for a walk around the office. Eat a snack without looking at your computer or phone. The light coming from the screen can cause your eyes to strain after extended periods of time. When your eyes strain, they *feel* tired. It tricks you into thinking you are physically and mentally tired, rather than just your eyes being tired.
2. Change positions. If you have a standup desk, use it. If you have the ability to take your laptop and work from a different spot in the office or a coffee shop, do it. A change of scenery can reset your creativity and give you more energy.
3. Drink something cold. Water is the best option. If you are looking for something bubbly or flavorful, try a sparkling water with low count ingredients and low sugar. Cold beverages actually lower your internal body temperature. When you are too warm, your body goes into sleep mode. Adding a quick cooling sensation can revitalize and wake up your body. Cold water boosts your metabolism, making your insides work a bit harder. All of this can give you more energy.
4. Ditch the email and make a phone call. Instead of sending over an email to the person you need to reach, make a quick phone call or walk over to their desk to talk it out.
5. Listen to something interesting. Put in your headphones and listen to the beginning of a podcast while you do some of your more mindless tasks. Or, turn up the song you have on. Music is one of the best forms of transferring energy. Try something upbeat.
6. Eat a smaller lunch and combat hunger by snacking throughout the day. This will help you avoid the post lunch food coma.
7. Don’t use sugar as a pick-me-up. Sugar gives you a very short burst of energy, but later leaves you feeling even more tired than before. The best food to eat when you feel sleepy is a “good carb.” These substances actually regulate your blood sugar, keeping you steady and alert throughout the day. Some examples are brown rice, whole oatmeal, beans, and fruit.
8. Try a Vitamin B supplement. This complex regulates your circadian rhythm, which prevents daytime crashing. You can get this from certain foods, such as berries, soy products, eggs, fish, cottage cheese, avocados, spinach, and bananas.