How to Beat Afternoon Slumps – Manage Your Energy!
Copyright 2006 Synergy Strategies
The reality is many people experience afternoon slumps. It could be to may carbs eaten, low sugar or other things. The key is get your blood moving and get your mind and energy motivated. Here 8 simple tips to overcome the afternoon slump.
1. Eat smart. For lunch enjoy smoothies, fruit, water, nuts, proteins vs. carbs. Eat lite vs. a heavy meal that you will need to digest.
2. Do the hardest project of the day first. If you eat your “frog” in the am, rather than having the hardest thing to do in the afternoon, you will have other less difficult things to work on.
3. Create afternoon routines. For example after lunch, do a 5 minute power walk outside, then 10 jumping jacks, go to the bathroom, put cold water on your face, get a big glass of ice water, come into your office, clear your desk, do a brain bump of all morning to-do’s, turn on the lights/music, open a window and start working! Routines help our brains connect with what we want to do. Once you develop habits, you brain will automatically shift gears when you do the same activities.
4. Engage your body. Do things that get your body moving and that are “easy”. Stand up, sit on a balance ball vs. chair, do things that keep your blood and body moving. Stay engaged with movement and let the momentum of movement keep you alert.
5. Give your brain a break. Save the more mindless and active tasks for the afternoon. i.e. errands, phone calls, filing, straightening, sorting, etc. If you are trying to concentrate, looking at the computer, reading, listening, etc. you are working against your energy and have to work to think and focus.
6. Change the scenery. If you can, move to a different room. Do things to get extra lighting or air. Sit in a place that is suitable but not coz. Perhaps a natural environment to keep you from getting distracted when your mind is already wondering. Turn on some upbeat music. Let your environment keep you on your toes.
7. Play a game. Give yourself a goal or game to play. If you get this project done or so many calls made, etc. you can reward yourself with going home early, stopping for a treat on the way home, etc. Introduce some momentum and urgency to the picture to counteract the slowing force of your energy.
8. Lastly, don’t fight it. If nothing else is working, take the 10 minute power nap or a 10 minute mediation time (set a timer). This will allow you to 100% rest and then focus and re-engage in high productivity. If you keep fighting it, you will have a long period of low productivity.
Track your energy and look for the patterns of what works and what slows you down. Find the things that support you to be the most productive and attentive; try different things. When you find things that work, make it a habit. For ongoing success, stay focused, motivated and whatever you do; do something!