4 Ways to Stay Energized at Work (Without Caffeine)

Coffee: A rich, delicious, and bitter beverage that consistently remains a refreshment staple of most people’s days. “Coffee addicts” (aka any people with even the most moderate of responsibilities) use the caffeine within the drink to receive a welcomed jolt of energy to help them conquer the sluggish hours and continue chugging on through the day. However, there are some mornings and afternoons when there simply is no time to brew a cup of joe – the horror! If you’ve ever found yourself in a coffee-less situation, check out these 4 easy ways to stay energized at work without caffeine.

  1. Ignore the clock and focus on what you’re doing. It may seem obvious, but thinking about how tired you are will only make you more tired. If you’re staring at the clock, watching each minute tick by, you’re only going to become frustrated and exhausted. If you’re tired and need to stay alert, don’t look at your clock. Set alarms for any meetings and focus only on the tasks you need to complete at the time you’re working. Of course, when you’re tired, focusing can be difficult. However, it’s essential that you try – you may surprise yourself. If you still are having trouble concentrating, check out the next tips.
  2. On your lunch break, go for a walk outside. Not only will the physical movement help your body feel less lethargic, but your mind will thrive with the change in visuals, scents, and sounds. Numerous studies have found productivity increases in individuals who take short walks in between work. So, pack a lunch and take a short walk before returning to work.
  3. If you have the ability, listen to music. Bring earphones and turn up the volume to help get through any particularly boring work task. By listening to music, you’ll keep your mind active, regardless of how tired you feel.
  4. Smell an aroma. It’s preferable that the aroma is pleasant; however, any strong smell will help keep you energized. From peppermint to rosemary, many scents are known for keeping the mind active when smelled regularly. Additionally, taking deep breaths can also help you wake up – making smelling a pleasant aroma a win-win. If you need a quick burst of energy, keep a small bottle with the aroma of your choice… Just maybe make sure your coworkers don’t see you sniffing unless you want to be the center of workplace gossip.

Many people will give the advice to quit coffee all together… You don’t have to! Many studies have shown benefits and have not found health risks in drinking a daily cup of coffee. It’s not all in your head – coffee works. Now, if you recall any psychology or physiology class from school, you know that the reason why coffee works is because caffeine blocks receptors of a neurotransmitter in the brain called “adenosine.” Adenosine is one of the reasons you become tired – which is great at night, but not so great during the day. When you drink coffee, the neurotransmitter that makes you so sleepy is suppressed, which – in turn – causes you to become more alert. 

So, while you don’t have to worry about quitting coffee, you can lower your dependence on the beverage by having backup plans to energize your mind for when you forget or don’t have time to brew your cup of java.