During mid-afternoon is when the workplace seems to lose momentum. Typing slows to a halt, yawns are stifled, concentration dwindles and peckishness sets in.
Here are 3 tips to beat the afternoon slump:
1. Take a power nap.
Here’s how to have the perfect snooze session:
• Take your nap after lunch or in the very early afternoon — sleep expert Linda Baumgartner says taking a nap too late in the day puts you at risk for going into deep sleep, which will interfere with your nighttime ZZZs.
• Before your nap, tell yourself that you’re doing it to be productive later, Baumgartner says. This will make you feel less guilty about the nap while also making you alert and ready to work upon waking.
• Ensure the environment is cool, dark and quiet.
2. Put down the coffee.
Researchers from Henry Ford Hospital’s Sleep Disorders and Research Center, the Wayne State College of Medicine in Detroit and Zeo Inc. found drinking coffee even six hours before bedtime led to lower-quality sleep. If you absolutely must have an afternoon pick-me-up and don’t have time for exercise or a nap, researchers recommend drinking your last cup of joe before 2 p.m.
Another tip: If it’s after 2 p.m., try drinking something with less caffeine, such as green tea, for a pick-me-up that won’t interfere with your sleep.
3. Avoid mindless internet browsing.
Most of us are guilty of heading to Reddit, Facebook or Twitter around 3 or 4 p.m. in our workdays when our motivation wanes. And before we know it, we’ve been clicking through the web for hours. Try these apps to avoid an hourslong surf sesh.
• Moment (Free; iOS only)
This app allows you to see how much time you spend on your phone and set daily limits for usage. If you’re feeling particularly ready to stomp your device addiction, you can force yourself off of the device once you’ve used it long enough.
• Flipd (Free)
This app is for those wholly committed to using their phone less. With Flipd, you can set your phone to lock for a period of time, say for one hour before starting a project, and nothing you do — even restarting your phone — will bring it back to life.
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