Beating The Late Afternoon Office Slump

It’s that time of day when you’ve been working since the small hours, lunch seems like it was truly ages ago, you’re feeling round shouldered and drowsy and you really need a lift to see you through until dinner-time. Taking your eyes away from the clock-watching for a moment, here’s a few helpful tips to super-charge your afternoon and avoid the regular slump.

Rewind to lunch-time

Taking a brisk walk on your lunch break will give you some much needed fresh air in your lungs, away from the office air-conditioning, get your blood circulating and your body moving. It will also provide some natural daylight for a shot of Vitamin D, thereby resetting your chronological clock and keeping the sleepy hormone, melatonin at bay.

Re-think the carbs

What did your lunch consist of? Was it a fast sandwich, or a bowl of pasta and a side order of cheese & onion crisps? A carbohydrate-rich lunch can be so satisfying at the time, but it can also be the root cause of the afternoon yawns by producing serotonin and sapping all your energy. Re-thinking your lunch selection for a more protein based alternative can really help to avoid the heavy eyes later in the day.

The afternoon snack

Popping to the vending machine for a chocolate fix can become a habitual way of filling yourself up quickly and giving you a temporary boost, but when that’s over, you’ll sink; and fast. Try keeping your blood sugar levels regulated and steady by considering a handful of vegetable sticks with a nutritious dip, or a piece of handy fruit instead. Bananas, apples, oranges are all great choices for a more natural and sustained injection of sugars, fibres and vitamins. Some businesses offer their employees a fruit selection in-house by having a weekly basket delivery from providers such as Fruitful Office to help power through the afternoon slump.  

Staying hydrated can be one of the simplest ways of beating tiredness. Always have a drink with you and just keeping sipping! Stay clear of the energy and sugary drinks with artificial sweeteners if you want to avoid the high/low cycle of blood sugar levels.

A tidy desk is a tidy mind

If you’re really feeling demotivated, try having a good tidy up of your desk, clear your email inbox or do some filing during a period of minimal concentration. Don’t feel guilty for not stressing; you will still have achieved something productive. Perhaps take 5 minutes out with a call to your partner, parent, or someone who will lift your spirits, or maybe pop and see a colleague for a chat instead of emailing them in the next room. Remember to have a good stretch at your desk every now and then, roll your shoulders and be mindful of your posture and your breathing while you’re working.

Little step-changes to your 9-5 routine will benefit your well-being and put the spring back in your afternoon motivation, as well as a positive charge to your mental and physical health.  

Written by
Jeremy Kaplan

A 50-something year old lifestyle, career, and education blogger based in Atlanta, Georgia. Years of experience in the office setting working with others and still loving it year-after-year.

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