It may still only be spring, but if officially feels like summer in Oklahoma. These warm afternoons bring on a serious afternoon slump, and it can be hard to fight it.

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Fighting the Afternoon Slump

Original photo by Isaac Davis
Because I work full-time, freelance write on the side, and I’m working on a novel, I find the afternoon slump to be particularly disheartening. It’s like my own internal kill switch just waiting to shut me down. And the worst part is that it happens while I’m still at the day job, so I haven’t had time to go home yet and even begin working on my own projects.

While I’ve learned some ways to fight the afternoon slump, it’s definitely something that I fight often. It makes me sad to know that children who get to nap every single day complain loudly about having to nap. DON’T THEY KNOW THAT THEY’RE LIVING THE GOOD LIFE?

(And to be fair, I am also living the good life because I nap quite often too.)

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It’s worth noting here that it’s really important to regularly get a good night’s sleep. So, if lack of sleep is the cause of your afternoon slump, you may try creating a night time routine, or building better habits to help you get a good night’s sleep.

And now, in the interest of sharing resources, here’s how I fight the afternoon slump.

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How to Fight the Afternoon Slump

001: Make Some Iced Cold Brew Tea.

My go-to for the afternoon is usually a cup of tea, but during the summer, I don’t want to hit up the break room coffee maker or hot water dispenser for tea. That’s why I like having these cold brew tea bags. I can just get some cold filtered water from the water dispensers all around campus, and make me a big class of iced tea.

002: Keep a Yoga Mat Handy.

Even though my business casual wear isn’t yoga friendly, I keep a yoga mat in my office so I can do some quick stretching. I just close my office door and do some some quick sun salutations. This gets the blood flowing, and generally makes me feel more awake than I felt before I started.

003: Take a Power Nap.

I’m the queen of the power nap. (Seriously. I have a crown.) I have been known to set an alarm, put my head down on my desk, and sleep in my office. If this is something you’re cool with, I recommend it because it recharges me more than any of the other options. If you’re a serious power napper, I recommend investing in this desk napping pillow. It has a space for your arm underneath it so you aren’t resting your head directly on your arms when you put it down on your desk.

004: Stand Up.

I absolutely love standing desks, and I think everyone should have one. But I know that a lot of employers aren’t offering them because it would be a huge hit to their budget. So, you may check with someone to see if getting a standing desk is an option. And if it isn’t but you want to get your own, I can’t recommend this model enough. It’s relatively cheap for a standing desk, but with a lot of space and the same functionality as the higher-end models. But if you want something that’s going to be a lot more low key and easy to move around, then this guy is perfect. Either way, when you stand it’s easier to stay awake and feel energized than it is when you’re sitting down.

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005: Diffuse Something Strong.

While I will never be the type of person to suggest an essential oil as a medical treatment, I do believe that good smells are nice and that some smells will perk you right up. That’s why getting an essential oil diffuser like this is a good idea for your office. Then, scents like grapefruit and peppermint are perfect for pepping you up a little. And if you teach, I definitely recommend getting a calming blend to diffuse around finals week. It keeps you and your students calmer during those tense office hours conversations about the importance of adhering to deadlines.

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How Do You Fight the Afternoon Slump?

What’s your go-to method for staying awake in the afternoon? Do you keep pounding coffee regardless of whether or not you’ll be able to go to bed? Do you beat the afternoon slump by napping at your desk? Let me know in the comments!

2 Responses

    1. I love minty ones and anything citrus! I feel like they freshen up the room and don’t trigger my allergies. But I’m also a big fan of cinnamon.

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