One thing that has surprised me immensely since starting my career is how draining it can be to sit behind a desk all day. Obviously, I’m not doing any hard physical labor here, but the lack of movement and lack of change of scenery can really zap the energy out of you. This is even truer when it’s slow at work and the day seems to be just inching by. Here are a few methods I use to beat that afternoon slump.
This is the best way for me to wake up when I’m feeling sleepy at work, especially when mid-afternoon rolls around. I’ve gotten into the habit of walking for about a half an hour each afternoon, but just a quick walk and stretch can be a great way to get your blood flowing and get some energy back.
Get Some Sun
If you’re taking a quick walk in the afternoon, try to do it outside! When it’s nice out, it’s super refreshing to get out of the office. Not only does the sun wake me up, the energy of downtown Madison during the summer is so energizing, it’s impossible not to head back to work with your mood lifted.
Recharge With an Easy Task
When I’m tired in the afternoon, everything on my to-do list looks like such a huge undertaking! I just can’t bring myself to start a bigger project. I find that I can get recharged by choosing one or two super easy tasks and finishing those up quickly. I feel accomplished because I’ve managed to cross something off the to-do list, and I’m ready to take on some of the bigger tasks on the list.
Have a Healthy Snack
Part of the reason I get sleepy in the afternoon is that I’m always hungry by 3 or 4! Even when I eat a good lunch, I need a snack in the afternoon to make it through the rest of the day. Skip the chips or candy, and go for something like veggies, fruit, nuts, or string cheese.
Take a Social Break
If your brain is fried from work, take a break and socialize with some coworkers. They’re probably in the same boat as you, so ten minutes of socializing will be just enough to wake everyone up to get through the rest of the day.