I admit it...
I used to be a caffeine and sugar addict. They were such a quick fix when my energy dropped in the afternoon. But they didn't deliver the natural sustained energy that my mind and body craved. What’s more, I wasn’t sleeping well, I was piling on the pounds, and I felt stressed out and cranky.
Since reading last week's post, I’ve pared down my caffeine and sugar consumption considerably. I won’t lie, it’s been tough, and I have my slip-ups. All told, my efforts have been rewarded ten-fold.
Here's the lowdown on what's been working for me:
1. Guzzle Water
Visiting the water cooler has its benefits. Besides catching up on the latest office gossip, I now refill my trusty water bottle throughout the day. I learned that even mild dehydration can lead to a range of energy-draining woes including mental fuzziness, headaches and lethargy. Now, when I feel my energy dip, I reach for my water first. A few long gulps of H20 can prevent me from reaching for those 3 p.m. candy bars that used to whisper my name daily.
2. Thank You Walk
Exercise is key for energy seeking souls like me. It pretty much guarantees that I’ll sleep more soundly. Plus, it provides cells with more energy to burn and circulate oxygen. And, perhaps the best part is that it causes your body to release the stress hormones that make you feel energized.
I can’t always log a one-hour workout, but I can do a 10-minute thank-you walk. I get out and focus on things I’m most thankful for … not my to-do list. According to author Jon Gordon, this simple technique combines the power of gratefulness with the positive effects of exercise, flooding the brain with happy neurotransmitters and endorphins. “It energizes the mind and body and builds mental and physical muscle,” he writes inBecome an Energy Addict.
3. Posture Pointers
The next time you're tired, take a moment to observe your posture. All too often I slump in front of my computer. My neck, shoulders and upper back round and my chin reaches closer and closer to the screen. Experts say bad posture can make you feel even more tired because it limits the flow to the brain! I have a Post-it on my computer that reminds me not to slump. Alas, sometimes this reminder doesn’t help, so I stand up and take a short stretch break, which is also great for my computer-weary eyes.
4. Get those Nutrients
Nutrient-dense meals keep me calm and focused, especially when life gets extra bonkers. Nutrient Bar (honey granola, please) is my secret to unlocking natural energy when I'm on-the-go. Turns out that I’m not the only one experiencing an energy bump. According to a live clinical trial, 90 percent of folks reported a boost of energy on Nutrient.
I'd love to know what natural energy hacks work for you - let me know in the comments below!