It isn’t uncommon to be hit with fatigue in the middle of the afternoon (and it usually hits around two or three p.m.). You’re expected to just push through, of course, and carry on. But the last thing you want is yet another cup of coffee. That will just mess up your sleeping schedule tonight. So, how can you fight midday fatigue? Here are seven ways to guarantee that you won’t fall victim to that afternoon slump when you’re meant to be working.
#1 – Good Sleep Habits
This one seems a little obvious. If you go to bed at a decent time and wake up at a decent time then you’ll be less likely to feel sleepy during the middle of the day. But it isn’t just about getting enough sleep, it’s about setting up a pattern.
Those that go to bed at the same time and wake up at the same time have better success than those that get a full eight hours but do so randomly. Eight hours are important, but so is training your body to know when it’s supposed to be sleeping and when it’s supposed to be awake.
#2 – A Balanced Diet
There’s something to be said for eating healthy. Having a filling breakfast and lunch will keep your energy stable during the day. Filling yourself with caffeine and junk food, on the other hand, is a good way to burn out your energy sources quickly and set you up for a good case of exhaustion. It’s best to practice a good, healthy diet to keep your body working strong for the full day.
#3 – Go for a Walk
Moving will get your blood circulating, which will give your brain a bit of a boost and wake you up. Taking a quick walk around your workplace will invigorate you and make you feel more relaxed and awake at the same time. It’s a great way to stave off midday fatigue, as well as get in a little extra exercise.
#4 – Have a Snack
Grab a healthy snack and stave off your drooping blood sugar levels. It’s important to eat healthy, of course, because large amounts of sugar will just set you up for a crash that you’re not going to enjoy. Eating nuts is the most recommended, although wheat crackers, vegetables and fruits are close seconds.
Bonus: science has proven that dark chocolate – 60% cacao or more – is also a good way to stave off midday fatigue.
#5 – Drink Some Water
Dehydration can be sneaky, but a good sign of it is fatigue. Often, we forget to drink water while working, and can therefore be doing some damage that we don’t even realize. Keep a water bottle at your workspace if you’re able and take sips throughout the day. Down a large glass every few hours if you’re not able to drink throughout the day. Make sure that you’re keeping up on your water levels.
It’s amazing how something as simple as being well hydrated can help you feel more awake.
#6 – Smell Some Peppermint
Peppermint (and Rosemary) have been proven to help wake up your brain. Keep a sprig or two on hand or buy a bottle of essential oils. They invigorate your brain and body, helping with mental alacrity and productivity. Plus, the smells often help to relax stresses and soothe headaches.
#7 – Enjoy Some Nature
Even if you can’t find time to walk around outside, take a minute or so to look at some greenery. Looking at nature relaxes the mind and body and helps boost your productivity.
And if you don’t have time to look at nature, listen to a nature soundtrack. The ambience noise will help wake you up and keep your blood moving, as well as relax your mind. Nature tracks (and there are a multitude to choose from) work better to boost productivity than traditional white noise or music.
There’s no reason to let a little midday fatigue strike you down. If you find yourself still suffering from the afternoon slump after trying all your other options, then check to make sure there are no underlying medical causes.