5 Quick Energy Boosters (No Caffeine Needed)

Is that 3 pm trip to the corner coffee bar a must in order to get through the afternoon? It's normal to experience a mild energy slump a few hours after lunch, but there are ways to perk yourself up without resorting to caffeine. Try these tips and you'll soon feel more alert and alive-naturally!

  • See the light. Is your work space dark or poorly lit? According to the Nursing Online Education Database, our bodies respond immediately to changes in light. If you're by a window, open the blinds as wide as possible. If you have an inner cubicle, try a brighter bulb over your desk.
  • Breathe deeply. Breathing is natural, right? True, but most of us tend to breathe more shallowly when we're tense, which deprives our bodies of oxygen and zaps our energy. If you're fading, close your eyes and purposefully breathe in and out slowly. Hold each breath for a few seconds before exhaling. After a moment or so of deep breathing, you'll feel restored and renewed.
  • Get up and go. Sitting passively makes you more tired, so refresh yourself with a quick walk. The sunlight and fresh air will invigorate you and improve your mood. If the weather's bad, you can still walk-stroll around your office building, incorporating a few flights of stairs along the way. This will get your blood pumping and prime you for the rest of the afternoon's tasks.
  • Feed the machine. No, not the vending machine-your body. When the afternoon sleepies hit, it's all too tempting to scarf down a processed or sugary snack. Instead, keep healthful munchies at hand in your desk, such as small portions of raisins and nuts, or fruit and string cheese. The good carbs will fuel you through dinnertime. For an added energy boost, pop a mint after you eat. Many people find the smell and taste to be an eye opener.
  • Drink up. Just as your body needs healthful food, it also needs proper hydration to function at its best. Sometimes lack of fluids masks itself as fatigue. Drink water with every meal and snack, and keep a big bottle of it on your desk to sip at regular intervals. If you don't enjoy plain water, feel free to mix it up with sugar-free lemonade or decaffeinated iced tea.
  • Get the giggles. Laughter is good for you, physically and mentally. Take a short break and chat with a witty coworker. Or hit an Internet site that always makes you chuckle.