Americans’ addiction to caffeine has gotten somewhat out of hand. Pictures of coffee cups flood Facebook and Instagram newsfeeds, #coffeeaddict is frequently trending on Twitter, and no one bats an eye when a coworker demands something along the lines of: “Don’t talk to me until I have my coffee.”
Here are seven things you can do to stay awake and productive without relying on caffeine to do the work for you. It might be intimidating at first, but after awhile, you may not even crave that 3:00 p.m. pick-me-up.
1. Get Up, Stand Up
One of the number one things you can do to stay awake and alert during your 9-5 shift is to work standing up. Sitting for long periods of time can induce drowsiness, and it can also tempt you to slouch in your chair, welcoming fatigue even more.
Drinking plenty of water is key to staying awake and alert because dehydration can cause fatigue. Plus, consuming lots of liquids will inevitably keep you moving around because it’ll make you take walk breaks to go to the restroom:)
Keep your mouth moving to keep your eyes open. Large meals can make you drowsy, so instead of a big lunch, try eating smaller meals and healthy snacks throughout the day to maintain your energy.
4. Listen to Music
Experts say that listening to music while you work can help keep you awake and increase your concentration levels. Although loud music may give you a jolt, Well Aware says it’s actually quieter music that forces you to focus on the instrumentals, lyrics, and percussion, keeping your brain stimulated.
5. Light Exercise Breaks
A quick walk to the water fountain or bathroom can spike your energy levels more than you realize. Also, consider getting in a workout during your lunch break, whether it’s a quick trip to the gym or simply going for a walk or run on a path near your office building.
6. Chew On This
Chewing ice or gum can stave off afternoon fatigue. Just pick where you sit at work carefully if you go with ice, because your coworkers might hate you.
7. Don’t Take the Heat
When you’re drowsy, avoid getting overheated at work, as exposure to heat can trigger fatigue. Open a window or put on a small fan, pointed at your face. It might be uncomfortable, but it’ll do the job.