Working long hours is expected and even required in most positions of authority. As a small business owner, your company will only prosper if you put in the hours behind securing its future. Similarly, when given a job role at a well-renowned institute/corporation, it is expected that employees will prioritize work over other tasks. However, energy levels tend to wear out as the day goes by and if one is finding himself with a lack of energy as evening nears, it will directly affect his ability to complete tasks efficiently. As such, maintaining high energy levels throughout the day is of paramount importance in ensuring every day is as productive as can be.
Here are a few tips to improve energy levels to make the most out of every workday.
Tip #1: Rest
Take short breaks. Our bodies aren’t machines and despite what others may have us believe, it is near impossible to work for hours on end without feeling diminished. Taking a short 15-minute break every 90 minutes or so can revitalize your energy and allow you to recover your mind. In those 15 minutes, you should change your environment, walk around, talk to others and get your mind off work.
Tip #2: Sleep
Get a good night’s sleep. Our bodies need around 6-9 hours of sleep every night to maintain high energy levels and restore brain function. The ability to perform both physically and mentally can be diminished without sufficient sleep which will directly affect your energy levels. Building a sleeping schedule is also highly recommended by most clinical psychologists. That is, find a time to go to sleep and wake up every night and morning. If you can stick to this schedule for 21 days (3 weeks), it will become a habit and your body will naturally wake up at the time set by you.
Tip #3: Eat and Drink
Watch what you eat and drink: Contrary to popular belief, caffeinated drinks are usually a net negative in the long run. Energy drinks especially will cause a huge slump in energy after the initial caffeine is out of your system. Even coffee wears out relatively quickly and it is best to drink it in moderation. The best alternative is to keep yourself hydrated by drinking a lot of water. Furthermore, try and stay away from large meals as they induce grogginess after consumption. Opt for smaller, healthier snacks such as nuts, granola bars, and fruit salads.
Tip #4: Positive Attitude
Maintain a positive attitude throughout the day: All of us have tasks we would rather not do or don’t look forward to. However, just thinking about the task itself is mentally draining and therefore energy depleting. Try framing the situation in a way that helps you see the positive or puts you in a better mindset. If you are completing a proposal, for example, consider how it will affect your company going forward and the value it will add. These small tweaks in mindset can be the difference between high and low energy work.
Tip #5: Power Naps
Take power naps: Not all days are perfect. Sometimes you go off schedule and don’t have the time to get as much rest as required for the next day. The best solution to this is taking power naps when needed. Experts say 10-20 minute power naps will boost alertness and rejuvenate your mental processing. Ultimately, it will allow you to recapture some of that lost energy and complete daily tasks with more efficiency. Some experts even make the case for 60-minute power naps (if you have the time) as it helps with cognitive processing.
Tip #6: Clean Workplace
Keep your workplace clean: it’s never a pleasant sight to come into a messy workplace and just the sheer thought of having to clean everything up is bad for your mental state. Instead, make it a habit to clean after every day of work so when you come in the next morning, it seems like a fresh start. A wise man once said that “the objective of cleaning is not just to clean, but to feel happiness living within that environment”.
Tip #7: Plants
Consider adding plants: Studies have found a reduction in stress levels and work-related anxiety when plants are added into the office. Nature has its own unique way of improving our energy and keeping our brains feeling positive so it is imperative to include a little greenery in your office. Try and keep a plant by the corner of your desk or in a place where you can see it from where you’re sitting.
Faraaz Zaman is the content creator at Bayzat, a technology company that provides health insurance and solutions in Dubai. He loves to do trekking, biking, and gardening in his free time.