A lot of us can relate to getting tired, needing a quick and instant energy fix and grabbing a cup of coffee to help trudge through the day. The natural quick fix we all know is caffeine.
This points to the fact that there is an impending energy crisis of historic proportions because everyone seems to be reaching for anything that will give energy, and more and more people are over-relying on coffee now more than ever.
While scrapping your coffee entirely is not the way to go, it however is not advisable to rely on a 7-cup habit to carry you through the day, either. That’s just putting a bandage on your exhaustion. Instead, you can beat your tiredness with these out-of-the-box energy boosters.
Chew a piece of gum.
Gum doesn’t just refresh your breath—it can also revitalize your body. A study conducted in the UK in 2012 found that people who chewed gum for 15 minutes felt more alert than those who didn’t pop a piece.
Chewing gum increases heart rate, which increases blood flow to the brain and also has the ability to stimulate the autonomic nervous system, which can increase alertness. A mint-flavored pack should be your choice as Mint stimulates your nerve fibers.
Find your whole-grain sweet spot.
High carbs like white flour will give you a boost, but then a crash so you feel sluggish. Whole grains however gives you real energy. In fact a recent study published in the journal appetite found that people who replaced refined carbs with whole grains each day reported an increase in energy.
There’s a reason darkness and bedtime go hand-in-hand. Bright light awakens your brain. But not all rays are equally stimulating. A 2013 study from the Lighting Research Center in New York found that red light is a stronger afternoon wake-up call than blue light.
With red light however, you’ll have more of an irritable, edgy alertness, whereas with blue, you’re going to have more of a calm alertness. As such, it is best to Install blue bulbs in your desk lamp (which you can switch on after lunch), and save red light for the bedroom, since edgy alertness can translate to sexual energy.
Learn something new.
According to a recent University of Michigan study, the most common work strategies are checking email, switching tasks, or making a to-do list. However, none of these tactics actually improve your sense of energy but learning something new does.
The more actively you can engage your brain, the more alerting an activity is going to be. You can actually overcome a good bit of sleep pressure just by engaging in something interesting. So brush up on your latent skills.
Listen to your favorite song.
Ever noticed how increasing the volume of your car stereo makes you drive faster? That’s because music is energizing—especially if you sing along. Researchers in London found that singing solo increases energetic arousal and decreases tension nearly as much as a cardio workout.
Choose a tune that really engages you—the one that makes you want to sing at the top of your lungs. Then sing it! Bonus if you get out of your chair to sing, as research shows that standing up can provide an instant surge of energy.
Massage your ears.
Applying pressure to the outer rim of your ear may help invigorate your entire body. That’s because all of your body’s “acupressure meridians”—that is, your energy pathways—pass through your outer ear.
Massaging the ear unites all of the meridians, and gets the energy flowing. Simply pinch the rim of each ear between your thumb and pointer finger, and rub up and down for 10 to 30 seconds