An hour or so after lunch, you’re sitting at your desk, chin resting on your soft, warm palm. Your eyelids feel heavy and start to close. You’re more than ready to take a long nap when suddenly you realize, you’re at work. There isn’t an employee in the world who hasn’t dozed off in the afternoon. And, it might feel extra awkward since you’re the boss. But not to worry. Here are a few ways to stay productive and alert during the sleepiest time of the workday.
Organizing your desk or bookshelf makes for a low-key energy booster in the afternoon. You might take a few moments to file or throw away papers on your desk. It also doesn’t hurt to get a cloth and multipurpose cleaner out of the supply closet and clean surfaces in your office that collect dust like the windowsill and the legs of your office chair. Giving any piece of furniture in your office a nudge to straighten or centre it requires you to exert just enough energy to shake off the sleepiness.
If you notice your employees dozing off in the afternoon, you might shake things up with simple team-building exercises. On a nice day, you could take your team outside and play games like fact or fiction or magic ball. You can also schedule walking meetings where you discuss important matters while taking a brisk walk around the block.
The food you eat plays a big role in how sleepy you feel in the afternoon, so it’s a good idea to be mindful of your lunch choices. You might avoid meals packed with fast-burning carbs, like pasta, because they make you feel sleepy shortly after lunch. Instead, consider slow-burning carbs like whole grain breads, veggies, and proteins like tuna, chicken breast, turkey, and low-fat cheese. You can also stock your workplace kitchen with tea, coffee, and healthy snacks to keep your employees energized throughout the day.
Staying alert can be a challenge most afternoons, especially as the week wears on. Developing a habit of getting up and moving your body when you feel drowsy could be the best way to keep your battery charged until quitting time.