Wake Up! How to Get Over the Mid-Afternoon Slump

Team JBC

Jul 1, 2014


You can feel it coming over you – that tempting urge to shut your eyes and slip into what could possibly be the best nap ever. Unfortunately, you’re at work and it’s only 3 p.m., so laying your head down on your desk for a quick power nap isn’t quite acceptable. Don’t worry, you’re not alone, it happens to the best of us. It’s actually quite scientific in terms of our body’s biological clock that insists on claiming the hours between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. as prime sleep time. If only all bosses saw it that way!

Boredom makes us sleepy; switch up your workload to prevent those eyelids from getting too heavy to fight back. Find something to do that will keep you engaged long enough to get over the tiredness and take you into the last part of your work day. To combat the afternoon sleepies, try these tips that will help you power through your afternoon and maintain an acceptable level of productivity.

Zone out. Choose a task and make it your only focus for an hour or two. Do your best to block out the office noise and focus on getting through the workload. If you have to put on your earphones and rock out to your favorite playlist, do it! Think of this as your power hour and power through. You’ll feel super-accomplished (and awake) once it’s over.

Get chatty. Good old human interaction – works every time! Chances are, your co-workers are experiencing the same midday drag. Head over to the other side of the office and have a quick conversation, introduce yourself to the new hires – just try not to distract anyone in the process. Also, don’t draw too much attention to yourself as you don’t want to be known as the social butterfly/distraction of the office come review time.

Go for a walk. Research shows that we should get up and walk around at least once every hour; but when you’re about to say nite-nite at the tail-end of your work day, that little stroll around the office just isn’t going to cut it. Step outside for this walk. Take your time and enjoy the fresh air – it will brighten your outlook on the day and alert your senses. When you return, power through those last few hours and keep those yawns at bay feeling refreshed and motivated.

Eat a healthy snack. Munching away on chips, cookies or candy is a bad idea for so many reasons – the worst being the sugary calorie intake that will only lead to another crash later in the day. Let’s not talk about the weight gain! Pack a healthy snack that you will actually look forward to having around this time of day and don’t eat it until then! Think of it as a treat. Fruit, yogurt, a green smoothie, or dark chocolate are some great options.

Stop looking at the clock. Time seems to move slower when you’re staring at the clock watching each minute slowly pass by. This might be a good time to start a new project that you’ve been holding off on – or finishing a few tasks that you’ve been placing on the back burner. Think of how accomplished you will feel once you check a few tasks of your list. If the tasks are boring, get excited about finally getting them out of the way.

Animal break! We’ve got an office full of dogs, so there’s always a furry friend around to help perk up our day. Dogs are proven to have a positive effect on humans. No dogs at work? Take a YouTube break and search for cute puppies, cute kittens, or cute anything, for that matter. We guarantee you’ll find something to lift your spirits. Just don’t get carried away – five to ten minutes should suffice.