Over the last couple of years, I’ve struggled with a severe case of afternoon slump – I’d feel fatigued, lethargic and overwhelmingly uninspired. The only solution I could think of was food – preferably sugar and carbs – so I’d mindlessly reach for snack, hoping they’d give me the much-needed energy boost.
Since then, I’ve tried and tested different tips, tricks and techniques recommended to me by friends and researched online. And while I’m still not completely midday-slump free – I’ve noticed promising improvements. Here’s what helped me amp up my afternoon energy levels.
- Stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of water and herbal teas helps me maintain a fresh and clear mind, while reducing my food cravings.
- Give up carbs. With occasional exceptions, I make sure to skip carbs for lunch – opting for lean protein, veggies and some healthy fats instead.
- Skip caffeine. I love a cup (or two) of coffee in the morning, but consumed in the afternoon, coffee gives me anxiety – not energy.
- Go for ginger. Whenever I notice the midday slump creeping in, I swap my herbal tea for ginger and lemon: zesty and reinvigorating.
- Don’t fear fats. Almonds, peanut butter, seeds, nuts – and a little dark chocolate – are nutritious, office-friendly and curb my cravings.
- Take a break. I like spending a minute or two chatting with my colleagues and actually enjoying the conversation – no stress or rushing back to my desk.
- Listen to music. A playlist full of good vibes – something completely new or perhaps my favorite but long-forgotten track – often do the trick.
- Tackle the to-do list. It’s the perfect moment to assess progress, next actions, and make a plan for the rest of the day and week.
- Breathe. When things are getting really overwhelming, I to take ten mindful breaths to soften and slow down my body and mind.
- Don’t overdo it. I tend to overcommit in a lot of ways, so it’s crucial for me to respect my boundaries, which may shift slightly based on how I feel.