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  • Writer's pictureBelle Eykmans

When Coffee Isn't Cutting It

Staying up late finishing the season of Stranger Things, feeling the Monday blues, or having a sleep disorder are just a few reasons why you may struggle to stay awake at work. It is not uncommon for us hard-working people to experience a lull in energy during our work day. However, the bad news is… having energy and staying awake at work is essential to being productive.

The American Academy of Sleep reported studies showing that people who got 5-6 hours of sleep instead of the recommended 7-8 hours, experienced about 20% lower productivity. Additionally, people who got less than 5 hours of sleep experienced almost 30% lower productivity. Getting 7-8 hours of sleep is the first step to stay awake at work.

We do know that for some, 7-8 hours of sleep is a rare occurrence. So, aside from over-consumption of caffeine, you may ask “how do I stay awake at work?” You are in luck, we have just the tips to help keep you productive and invigorated.

  1. Eat healthy. Sugar may provide a temporary rush of energy, but it will make you crash harder and faster. Try eating some fruit with natural sugar to stay alert in a healthier way.

  2. Take short breaks. If you feel your body craving a snooze, shift your attention to a new project or task. If that doesn’t work, take a break from your workspace. Get up and grab a glass of ice-cold water or take a quick walk around the building to get your blood flowing.

  3. Exercise on your break. Weather permitting, there is nothing more refreshing than a brisk walk in the fresh air. If you are allotted a longer break and time permits it, go to the gym to work off any stress so you can come back ready to tackle the rest of the day.

  4. Schedule your demanding tasks when you are most alert. You know your body best; if you are a morning person, schedule your bigger projects and meetings at the start of your day, not in the afternoon when you’re more likely to lose steam.

  5. Use light energy. The lack of windows in some office settings is dismal. Talk to your doctor about where to find a lightbox that simulates direct and natural sunlight. Being exposed to the sun does wonders for our energy, mood and ultimately, productivity. If getting outside or sitting by the window isn’t convenient, a lightbox is a great alternative.

  6. Experiment with essential oils. Orange, Eucalyptus, Lemon, Peppermint, and Rosemary oils are just a few that can give your mind and body a boost of energy! Any citrus oils or fruits have been known for their anti-fatigue properties.

  7. Use the Buddy System. Believe me, you are not the only one struggling to stay awake at work at least some point in the day. Talk to your coworkers about things they do to keep the energy up and stay awake at work.

Productivity isn’t just important for your company’s success. It can provide you with a sense of accomplishment as well as decrease any stress about completing tasks or meeting important deadlines. When you just didn’t get a good night’s sleep, refer to this handy list of tips when your consciousness is suffering.

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