Lack of Sleep - 5 Tips to Stay Awake

A large meal before bed, too much on your mind, or a crying baby that keeps you awake all night: sometimes results in less sleep than needed. In the morning we feel wiped out and the thought of a day full of work, meetings, and errands makes us feel overwhelmed. Here are a few tricks to boost your energy when you’re lacking sleep and help get you through the day without the classic uppers like coffee and other caffeinated drinks.

1. Keep your body hydrated

If you feel totally exhausted in the morning, it’s time to hydrate! When our body is dehydrated, we feel even more tired. Always drink a large glass of lukewarm water with a squeeze of lemon juice in the morning. You’ll see how it really boosts your energy.

2. Movement and light help wake you up

Even if you feel totally exhausted after a short night’s sleep, it is important that you move enough: ride your bike to work, get off the bus or subway one stop earlier and walk the rest, or park your car farther away from your workplace – it will help wake you up. You will also be exposed to enough daylight or even sun in the fresh air: light helps block the production of the sleep hormone melatonin. Also make sure that your workspace is well lit, like with a good desk lamp, or better yet go outside during your lunch break.

3. Eat the right foods

Naturally, it’s tempting to drink tons of coffee when you haven’t had enough sleep…but be careful not to have too much. After all, caffeine makes you restless and edgy.

On your “tired days” grab a refreshing piece of fruit, water with lemon juice, or foods rich in protein (nuts like almonds or cashews, yogurt, chicken, fish, etc.). Stay away from large meals that force your body to use a lot of energy for digestion. Fast food like burgers and fries or meals high in carbs should be a no-no most of the time but especially on these days when you haven't had enough sleep.

4. Try power napping

Perhaps you could take a power nap during your lunch break. A mini nap in between helps to recharge your battery. It feels so good! The trick is to rest no longer than 20 minutes – otherwise you will be even more tired than before.

5. Add variety to your day

When you haven’t had enough sleep, you may be less active and not very productive the next day. So if you can, do things that are easy to manage, change up your routine a bit and call it a day a little sooner than usual.

Do you have more tips on how to get through the day when you’re tired? Post them below in the comments!

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