When you're at home, and you nod off, you can easily hit the bed and fall asleep for a little while. However, if you keep nodding off at work, that's a whole other problem you need to deal with as soon as possible. Being tired or dazed has serious consequences- you could miss a deadline or fall back on your work. In fact, if this becomes a pattern, you could lose your job.
It is essential that you treat the cause of your perpetual sleepiness. Not only will this prevent you from nodding off at work, but it will also boost your energy levels and improve cognitive function. However, remember that daytime sleepiness will not just disappear in a day. You need to stay patient and consistent and continue working on it.
Here are some solutions to ensure that you are not nodding off at work, especially in front of your boss:
Help Yourself to Caffeine Shots
If you are feeling tired and exhausted at work, the first thing you need is a shot of caffeine that will allow you to jolt right awake.
Caffeine is known to be a stimulant. This means that it boosts activity in the nervous system and brain. Caffeine, present in coffee, tea, and matcha, is known to improve mental performance and thinking ability, all the while helping you fight midday sleepiness. All you need to do is go to the break room and make yourself a freshly brewed cup of coffee or head to the nearest coffee shop.
However, you must be cautious with caffeine- you do not want to go overboard. Consuming too much coffee can cause jitters as it overstimulates your nervous system, affecting your productivity level.
Take a Power Nap
On days when you are extremely sleepy, a shut-eye is the only solution. Fitting a quick nap into your work routine is better than falling asleep on your desk every couple of minutes. All you have to do is utilize your lunch break to fit in a quick power nap.
If you have a combined workstation, all you have to do is put on some noise-canceling headphones and put your head down on your desk for 10-15 minutes. If you have an office, close the door and lay down on the couch. If these options don't seem convenient, you can always take a quick nap in your car. Recline the sleep, put on the car shades, and take a quick nap to feel energized.
However, don't forget to put an alarm on your cellphone, or you may end up oversleeping and missing important deadlines.
When you sit for too long, you are more likely to feel sleepy and exhausted. Instead, walk around and leave your workstation every hour so that the blood flow increases in your body. Moreover, this habit can also ensure that you remain active and are able to concentrate on your work.
Of course, you might not be able to be away from your workstation for too long. However, taking a quick walk to the bathroom or just getting up from your chair and stretching your muscles can do the trick. Shake your leg, reach for your toes, and stretch your arms. If you have your own office, make it a habit to walk around the room while talking on the phone.
A great way to remember to do this is to keep an alarm for every hour on your phone or smartwatch. You can also keep periodic reminders that will ensure that you get up from your seat and walk around every one hour. The best part is that this habit will also help you get your steps in!
Listen to Some Music
Sometimes, silence can be deafening. This feels worse when you are tired or sleepy, almost as if the silence will never end. You may feel like you will fall asleep any minute. Any time you feel this way, all you have to do is plug in your headphones and listen to a long playlist of some upbeat music.
However, we would encourage you to check with your employer first and ask for permission- some employers do not feel comfortable with their employees listening to music as they believe that it affects work productivity.
Once you get permission, find a playlist on YouTube that suits your taste. Make sure that your music is not too loud. You do not need to listen or pay attention to the lyrics. All you need is some cheerful background sound.
Keep Your Lunch Light
If you are someone who struggles with daytime sleepiness, especially at work, you could feel sleepier if you consume a heavy lunch. Hence, it is best if you stay away from carbohydrates, sodas, and sugary snacks. Do not consume paste or white bread for lunch.
Instead, opt for lighter options that will boost your energy and keep you moving on your feet. The key is to feel satisfied after a good lunch, but you should not feel stuffed. If you work from an office, make sure you pack your lunch at home. Choose healthier sources of energy such as whole grains, vegetables, boiled eggs, berries, nuts, chicken, and nuts.
Ensure that Your Workstation is Bright
If you are lucky enough to work in a place with lots of windows, open the curtains and allow some natural light to pour in. The brighter your office is, the more energetic and alert you will feel.
In case your office does not have lots of windows or your workstation is away from a natural source of light, ask your employer if you can bring a lightbox into work and keep it at your workstation. The lightbox will emit a low level of UV light so that you do not feel sleepy or tired when working.
Splash Cold Water on Your Face
If you find yourself nodding off at work, go to the bathroom and run some cold water in the tap. Then, wash your face and splash the water in your eyes. This is a cheap and effortless way to reenergize yourself, especially on days that you feel extremely sleepy.
If it’s a breezy day, step outside after washing your face. Do not dry your face with a tissue. Instead, allow the breeze to slap you in the face so that you feel extra fresh. What a great way to feel alert, isn’t it?
Get a Standing Desk
Regardless of whether you are working from home or office, a standing desk is a wonderful option to keep yourself active. When you spend too much time sitting during the day, you start to feel exhausted, sleepy, and tired. This is because you are not moving at all slows down the blood circulation in your body, making you feel as if you might fall asleep any minute.
A standing desk, like the Willow Pro Solid Wood Standing Desk, keeps you on your feet. The best part is that it is a healthy way to lose weight, even with a desk job. Using a standing desk will give you an energy boost and will also improve your posture. You will no longer be complaining about a terrible backache!
Keep Yourself Busy
There is a famous saying- the idle mind is the devil’s workshop. Does that sound familiar?
When you have too much time on you, it is easy to feel tired and sleepy. The key is to keep yourself busy so that you do not have time to be tired. Depending on your job and responsibilities, you may find that you do not have as many responsibilities during the day. During these times, you need to keep yourself busy- read a book, plan out what you will do when you go home, or simply listen to an interesting podcast.
If you cannot find anything interesting to do, you can also ask your boss to give you some light responsibilities that will keep you occupied. You can help out with some overflowing work or some management responsibilities around the office- it's also a great way to become your boss’s favorite employee!