Every goddamn afternoon it’s the same story: everything’s puttering along nicely and then just when… things… you… going… flurb.
There are lots of fun theories as to why we get the mid-afternoon slump, including one that it’s because our bodies never got over our school schedules, where we got used to bailing at 3-ish and curling up with a snack and The Afternoon Show.
That’s certainly why every afternoon I find myself idly wondering how the kids in Degrassi High are doing. Especially Caitlin.
However, the medical reason is a bit less Canadian and a bit more glucosy: it’s the natural side effect of you having eaten a few hours earlier, and also coincides when your circadian rhythms when levels of the hormone cortisol drops and starts to flood the body with melatonin.
The traditional way to deal with the crash is with sugar (which just tops things up for bigger later crashes) and caffeine (which takes about 12 hours to get out of your system so can mess with your sleep when you finally get that head down),
But are there other solutions? You bet!
Some are management related, like using the time you feel particularly uninspired to do mundane stuff like clear emails or other work-hygeine-related things.
But one big tip is: don’t have a big lunch. You’ll be burning energy digesting that bad boy, aside from the blood sugar issues.
Getting some vitamin D by going outside also helps, since physical activity and sunlight tends to perk we humans up. However, the temptation to turn off your phone and keep going until you find a nice tree to snooze beneath might become overwhelming. Honestly, doesn’t that sound nice right about now?
If you have the freedom to have a nap then yes, you absolutely should do that because your body is also releasing melatonin around this time: a 30 minute power nap will do you a world of good (but don’t go longer because getting into a heavy REM sleep will mess you up).
That you almost certainly cannot do that is a searing indictment on our lack of office hammocks and also how little late period capitalism cares for human well being and is yet another reason we should really get around to smashing the system in the next little while.
So that’s the takeaway: to beat the afternoon tired-blues you just need a light lunch, a nice stroll, and socialism. Easy!