How energized do you feel in your job? Are you battling to make it through each workday? According to the 2016 General Social Survey, a large portion of Americans are feeling tired in their daily working lives. Nearly 50 percent of people said they are often or always exhausted at work. People in 2016 were twice as likely to report that they were always exhausted compared to 20 years ago.
If you’re one of these people, it can be tempting to blame your job or the manic nature of modern life. But there are numerous things you can do to tweak and increase your energy levels on a daily basis. Here are four simple, natural ways to build resilience and energy back into your workday:
1. Eat Regularly
Breakfast cannot be overstated as a prerequisite for an energized day at work. By skipping breakfast, you’re opening up your body to a whole host of possible problems, from heart disease and diabetes to increased cravings later in the day. Make sure you make time for breakfast, then aim for consistent meal times throughout the workweek. Studies show that sticking to regular mealtimes encourages more healthy eating across the board. And during the day, have access to good, healthy snacks such as fruit and nuts.
2. Watch Your Magnesium
If you’re already eating regularly, take a more granular look into your diet. In particular, are you getting enough magnesium? This is an essential macromineral that helps to regulate the enzymes in the body, metabolism, and nerve functions. A magnesium deficiency causes a wide range of issues, from muscle aches to anxiety and sleep disorders. The foods with the highest amounts of naturally occurring magnesium include almonds and sunflower seeds—try to also choose whole grains wherever possible. If you decide to take magnesium supplements, consult with a doctor or naturopath first as these supplements can interfere with other drugs.
3. Take a Walk
It sounds obvious, but this is remarkably effective in practice. If you’re feeling tired, uninspired, or just need a break, head out for a quick, brisk walk around the block. Studies show that taking a walk at lunchtime can significantly improve productivity and lift moods. When you go on a walk, you’re breathing in lungfuls of fresh air, taking in the larger world around you, broadening your perspective, and stretching your legs. You can be guaranteed you’ll have more of a spring in your step when you walk back in the door. And if you don’t have time to leave the building, other studies reveal that taking walking breaks even more regularly—such as five-minute walks every hour—can boost energy levels.
Just over half of the human body is made of water, and your brain holds a significant amount of H2O. A study by H.H. Mitchell published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, found that 73 percent of the human heart and brain is made of water. So if you’re feeling dull, tired, or uninspired, could your brain literally be dry? Keep a glass of water by your side, and be aware of what could be further dehydrating you. It’s not just coffee and alcohol that are to blame—there are a whole host of hidden causes of dehydration.
By tweaking your habits and building new routines that help you to move, stay well fed, hydrated and filled with the right vitamins and minerals, you will start to feel dramatic changes in your overall energy levels and sense of wellbeing on the job.