You’re having a productive start to the day, when suddenly that midday slump hits and you can’t help but find yourself wanting to face-plant onto your desk. Does this sound familiar?How do you typically boost your energy when feeling tired?
The common answer: caffeine.
That doesn’t have to be the only answer, though. You can refresh your body and mind without coffee or anything related to caffeine. Keeping your energy up is essential to your productivity and ability to meet daily demands.
Here are 10 ways you can overcome that lunchtime sluggishness and perform at your best.
Understand Why Your Energy DropsA healthy metabolism allows you to function at your best and ensures that you achieve the recovery you need at night - such as through good sleep. When your blood sugar is poorly regulated, you will experience a drop in energy over time. This can be due to a poor diet, skipping meals, or just generally not meeting your body’s demands. By regulating your blood sugar, you regulate your energy production.
Omit Processed Carbs
The right food can be a powerful source of energy that can fuel your body throughout the day. That’s why you should opt for food with a wide range of nutrients and healthy enzymes, rather than processed food stripped of its benefits. For example, avoid white rice during lunch and have quinoa instead. If you feel like snacking, pick fruits over items filled with refined sugar. Switching your diet to exclude processed carbs will not only help your energy levels but your overall health, too!
Choose Dark Chocolate Over Other Chocolates
Another snack to add to your list would be dark chocolate, preferably the type with more than 70% cocoa. Dark chocolate stimulates endorphins and serotonin, which are known as feel-good chemicals. Dark chocolate is packed with antioxidants and fiber, too - all the more reason to have some on hand! Check out this article
Prioritise Important Tasks
As your energy level is at its highest, prioritise the tasks that will require the most amount of attention. Once you’ve completed urgent or complicated tasks, you’ll be able to breeze through the rest of your agenda even if your energy levels have changed.
Move Your Body
When you feel the midday slump creeping up on you, start moving your body to release tension and to feel revived. If you were unknowingly hunching over your desk, focus on stretches centered around the neck, shoulders, and upper back to clear potential tightness. Why not start with these five easy stretches, or try some desk yoga?
You can also just go for a walk. From reducing blood sugar levels and elevating your mood to helping you think more creatively, and more, walking ihas certainly proven its various benefits!
Once everyone can safely return to the office, you could incorporate more walking into your at-work routine, too. Take the stairs over the elevator, walk to your colleague's desk instead of emailing, and have walking meetings over seated meetings.
Listen to Music
Music has the power to lessen anxiety and reduce stress by boosting happiness and regulating emotions. Favorite songs especially can work as a natural mood and energy enhancer so create a playlist of your favorite songs and let the music play while you work.
If you’re still working from home, you could even have a little boogie in between completing tasks and work calls - you’ll definitely be smiling, and feeling less sluggish, by the end of your party-for-one!
Stock Up On Essential Oils
When it comes to choosing an essential oil to use to improve your mood, you will be spoilt for choice. Peppermint, lemon, and/ or sweet orange are a few of my favourites. You can either rub a drop or two along your wrists, neck and/or temple - just remember to avoid the eyes. Alternatively, you can invest in a diffuser and keep your home-office area scented with essential oils throughout your working day for your energy levels to remain balanced.
Absorb Some Positive RaysIf you have the privilege of living by a balcony or garden, then utilise the space to your advantage. Make sure to get your dose of vitamin D as sunlight can trigger the parts of your brain that are connected to feeling alert. Sunlight has a positive effect on your melatonin production too, which means that your energy levels will increase - bye bye constant yawning! The ideal amount of time under the sun would be 15 minutes at least, so the next time you have lunch, why not take it outdoors? Researchers have proven how incorporating the sun into your work schedule can improve the mental health of employees
Ice, Ice BabyThis solution to dealing with the midday slump is the total opposite of absorbing sunlight. In lieu of sweating under the sun, a cold shower could be what works best for your body. Despite the differences in temperature, a cold shower has similar benefits: it helps you concentrate and can increase focus. Despite how a cold shower can feel like an attack when you're not used to it, it actually helps reduce stress levels and is ideal for those without access to a balcony or garden.
Get VisualisingVisualisation has long been used for personal development as it can better cognitive performance and in turn, support goal achievement. Moreover, visualisation techniques can enhance your energy throughout the day and prevent fatigue. If you’re new to visualisation, you could start by self-inducing certain states of being, such as being energised or relaxed, for example at your favorite holiday destination. If you prefer some guidance, use an app like HeadSpace.