There’s no denying the reality of the afternoon slump. Even the most motivated people can find themselves extremely tired by midday. And whether it’s due to a lack of sleep or a heavy lunch doesn’t really matter. What does matter is that it’s impacting your ability to get things done? There are all sorts of factors that contribute to our energy, motivation and focus throughout the day. And knowing what to do when you feel the afternoon slump coming on can help you stay productive in spite of it.
So how do you make your afternoon hours as productive as your morning ones? Here, 4 of Jal Yoga instructor share with us their tip on getting over that afternoon slump!
1. Perk yourself up with essential oils for awakening | Hazel
When you are feeling sluggish and lethargic in the noon, Hazel recommends using essential oils to pick yourself up! Most people have the misconception that essential oils can only soothe emotions or lull us into a more restful sleep but they are also a great way to invigorate our bodies too! “Essential oil offers a wide variety of benefits and some of them can invigorate your senses and can help you feel energized,” says Hazel. There are several ways to use oils or blends of oils to help you stay awake and be more productive during the downtime. She recommends diffusing the oil or applying the essential oil on the neck and chest to keep you awake, improve your alertness and increase your energy. Some of Hazel’s go-to essential oil choices are wild orange, frankincense, breathe, peppermint and lemon!
⚠️Caution: When it comes to using essential oils it is important to always significantly dilute the oils with a carrier oil (coconut oil) before applying it on their skin. Also, always carry out a test of the essential oil with a carrier oil on a small area before applying freely elsewhere.
2. Backbends and breathing exercises | Krishna
“When I am getting tired in the afternoon, I will do some backbends and breathing exercises to beat the afternoon sluggishness!” says Krishna. Backbend is a great way to invigorate the body especially after spending half the day at work. “Even when we are in a space where we can’t just lay out the yoga mat and go into a backbend, a gentle Backbend standing up or using a chair is great as well,” he says. When we bend backwards, the cerebral fluid flows to the brain and the spine. As such, the body feels much more stimulated and the mind is more active to carry on with your day. In addition, Krishna does Pranayama as a way to boost his energy levels. One technique he recommends is Bhastrika Pranayama (Breath of Fire) as the active inhalation and exhalation keep the upper body muscles actively involved which stimulates the nervous system.
Have you tried out Krishna’s Pranayama Yogic Breathing Techniques for Office Workers? Check it out here!
3. Staying active & brushing teeth | Sarune
For Sarune, she copes with the lethargic afternoon with a variety of tools! For her, she believes that staying active is a great way to focus and stay on task. When she feels the sleepiness settling in, she tries to get out of the house for a quick jog or Pilates exercises to get her heart rate up! She also likes to include coordination exercises as it is a great way to activates both sides of the brain. Some coordination exercises she does are balancing on the roller/stability ball and even closing the eyes while marching. One interesting quick fix she tries is to brush her teeth as the peppermint sensation refreshes her and allows her to continue on her day with great energy!
See also: Common Misconceptions about Pilates
4. Bubble tea, healthy snacks & gentle stretches | Ming
When Ming is feeling tired in the noon after his teaching schedule, he rewards himself with a cup of bubble tea. ” In order to get my cup of bubble tea, I will have to walk from the studio to the bubble tea shop!” he says. The quick walk and exposure to the sun wake him up, giving him the boost of energy he needs. Even though he consumes bubble tea, he avoids sugar as it causes energy dips! He also reaches out for healthy snack bars that he carries around in his bag. Food, after all, is energy, so it makes sense that eating something will help you feel more alert. He recommends going for snacks that have healthy complex carbohydrates mixed with protein—that way the food will be digested quickly (giving you instant energy) but will also give you a boost until around until dinner. Last but not least, he does some simple gentle stretches standing up and/or on the aerial hammock to avoid the mid-day crash!
So, will you be incorporating any of these techniques into your own?