Five Tips to Overcome an Office Afternoon Energy Slump

Five Tips to Overcome an Office Afternoon Energy Slump

Laura E. Hall
Apr 12, 2011

It's the middle of the afternoon. You've been at your desk for hours, your blood sugar levels are dropping from your lunch, and all the words on your screen are blurring together. Sound familiar? Yep, you're in the grips of a mid-afternoon energy slump. But not to worry; with these simple steps, you can shake it off, feel better and get back to your work.

Get Moving

The easiest way to snap out of a slump is to stand up and move your body around. After all, being hunched in your chair over a keyboard gets pretty fatiguing after a while. If you can't stand and wave your arms about or stretch, try taking a short walk at lunchtime. Being out in the air or even moving around the office can help put you in a more energetic frame of mind and body.

Ingest Some Caffeine

Caffeine may be the most obvious quick pick-me-up on this list, but it's about more than just chugging down a hot beverage. The ritual of standing, walking, preparing and savoring can be just the ticket for shaking off an energy slump.

Grab a Cat Nap

Workplaces may not always allow it, and if you're working from home, you may worry about oversleeping, but the benefits of a mid-day nap can dramatically improve your brain power. That study suggests a 90 minute break, but power naps can be effective after as little as 20 minutes snoozing. Experiment to see what works for you. Your work after will be easier, more enjoyable and of a much higher quality. Isn't that worth 20 minutes of your time?

Listen to Music

If you find yourself glazing over, head over to YouTube and load up an energetic song. The simple act of bobbing your head along (and singing out loud, where applicable) can help fill you with adrenaline and energy, and it also helps break you out of that mental tedium. (But be careful to not hum or drum a pencil, lest you disturb your office mates with your impromptu air guitar session.)

Graze on Nuts and Berries

Nuts, berries and edamame all contain some of the B-complex vitamins that help balance blood sugar. Berries are a better option for a sugar fix than cookies or candy, while nuts contain proteins and healthy fats. Best of all, they require little to no advance preparation.
For some more foods that are good for a quick burst of energy, check out this article by Livestrong.com.

Do you have any tips for waking yourself up from an afternoon energy slump? Share 'em in the comments!

(Image: Flickr member vtengr4047 licensed for use under Creative Commons. Dance: Flickr member cyclephotos.co.uk licensed for use under Creative Commons. Coffee: Flickr member jimmyroq licensed for use under Creative Commons. Nap: Flickr member sevenfloorsdown licensed for use under Creative Commons. Headphones: Flickr member Michael @ NW Lens licensed for use under Creative Commons. Food: Flickr member VancityAllie licensed for use under Creative Commons.)

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