There are days that we grow so lethargic despite having had 8 hours of sleep and multiple cups of coffee. There are days that we woefully regret binge-watching ’13 Reasons Why’ all through the night, knowing full well of the consequences that will play out at work or school the next day.
Yeah, continue kicking yourself for bad decisions made at 2 am. While you do that, take a look at our list of nifty tricks that can help you stay awake at your desk.
1. Get active
Every 30 to 60 minutes, get out of your chair and do something physically active. For example, brisk walk around the level, taking the opportunity to hi to some colleagues on the other side of the room. You can’t fall asleep while on-the-go, can you? Better yet, do some jumping jacks and push-ups. There isn’t a need to be embarrassed, but if you’re feeling conscious, the stairwell is a good place to do those lunges.
No need to feel guilty about taking a few minutes away from your desk. Think about it this way: a few minutes of exercise is a good exchange for an hour’s worth of increased productivity.
2. Stay hydrated
Guzzle water like crazy. This method works twofold: hydration keeps fatigue at bay, and the consequent need to make frequent trips to the washroom will energize you.
You should never get to a point where you’re feeling thirsty. Regularly sip from a bottle placed within easy reach on your desk.
HealthLoco Tip: For more on how to up your daily water intake, read our suggestions here.
3. Listen to upbeat music
I love listening to instrumentals as I do my work. However, the slow-paced, calming songs I so enjoy have a tendency to lull me to sleep on days that I feel most lethargic. Go for more upbeat music that will keep your feet tapping and head bobbing along to the beat.
4. Snack lightly
Opt for foods that will give you a well-needed surge of energy. Protein is good for energy that won’t make you sleepy. Consume items such as eggs, almonds, and cashews, in addition to fruits and vegetables. Avoid foods too high in sugar – while they will give you little boost at first, the sugar crash that comes after will make you sleepier than ever.
5. Give yourself a massage
A massage is a great way to get blood circulating and stimulate your nervous system. Rub the back of your own neck and up your scalp, or the back of your hands between your thumb and index finger. These moves will help give you a jolt of energy.
6. More tips worth trying
Perk up your senses by sniffing on peppermint essential oil. Peppermint oil is a natural stimulant. A quick whiff of it helps clear the sleep fog in your brain, making you instantly more focused and energised.
While you’re at it, try some yogic breathing techniques. Feeling more energised can be as simple as sitting up straight and taking some deep breaths. Focusing on taking 10 deep, slow breaths per minute can increase both your energy and your cognitive abilities.
Alright, pal? Hang in there. The work day’s nearly over.
Cover photo: Imgur