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It never fails. I have been having an energy-filled, very productive day at work and then boom! I suddenly start to get sleepy, lose focus, and have pretty much begun to check out. I look up at the clock and it’s somewhere between 2:30-3:30pm.
Even though I know I am someone that tends to do better in the morning, this still sneaks up on me. And I have a feeling that even for those of you that tend to do better as the day goes on, this can still sneak up on you as well.
But worry not! The following are 6 tips that can help rid us of the dreaded afternoon slump.
Get your most difficult task done first
As I already mentioned, I am a morning person and because of that, I always like to get my most difficult and creative tasks done first. I know this is not true for everyone (and I am known to recommend we do our most difficult tasks at whatever time of day we are at our best), but I think when it comes to having a steady 9-5 job, this can also be important for someone who is not quite the morning person. When we get a difficult task done early and out of the way, it sets us up for success for the rest of the day. We have already accomplished so much by lunchtime, why would we not want to keep going? In addition, if we save our more “fun” projects for the afternoon, that is even more motivation to feel excited and find some energy to keep going.
Eat a healthy and light lunch
Raise your hand if you have ever gone to lunch and felt more tired and drained of energy than you did before you went (hand raised here). You most likely ate a rather heavy and carb-filled meal and crashed from it. I’m sure we can all relate to this! Sometimes our energy never comes back. That is why it is important to keep your lunches light and as healthy as possible. And make sure to not overeat! That is a sure way to lose energy. Also find foods that are not full of too many carbs or known to deflate energy.
Have an energy booster snack available
You need to continue to fuel your body throughout the day. Consider keeping a stash of snacks on hand that boost energy such as nuts or bananas.
Drink plenty of water
It seems that the benefits of drinking water are endless. So needless to say, staying hydrated is a must to have energy. Try to keep a glass or bottle of water near you all day so you don’t forget to drink it.
Get up and walk around throughout the day
It is never a good idea to sit for too long. We must get our blood and heart moving a little bit faster at times. Set a timer so you are reminded to stand up and walk around every so often for a few minutes. The intervals in which you do this will vary depending on what type of job you have and what it allows for. If you have the opportunity, use a stand up desk. Stand up desks can help you stay on your feet for much of the day instead of being stagnant in a chair.
Or maybe you already stand all day. For you, it might be helpful to try and find times to sit down for a few minutes every so often.
Keep your eye on the prize
At the beginning of the day, write down what you would like to accomplish before the day is over. Keep that list near your desk (or wherever you work) and look at it from time to time. When you start to feel yourself lose energy, pick it up and remind yourself of how good it is going to feel when you get everything done you set out to do that morning. Use it to motivate you to keep going and not lose focus and energy.
Afternoon slumps are no fun. Unfortunately, most of us experience them. But if we want to be more productive at work (and even at home, really), then we must find ways to help overcome them. Try these tips and see how well they work for you!
Please share if there anything else you do that helps you avoid or get out of the afternoon slump.
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