As we all get off work this evening, many will be sharing the same thought: one more day. Fridays are loved, Mondays are hated, and that is the way of the world. But why is that? Why do we all shoulder such misery upon the start of a new work week? Even those who love their jobs have been known to dread the start of a new week, and there has to be more to it than a general disdain for hard work.
Chances are, that reason is sleep. Or rather, the lack of it. Today, most people suffer from chronic sleep deprivation, so much so that they don’t even realize it. Before the advent of electricity, people used to have nothing better to do during long, dark, winter nights than to sleep. They used to spend two hours falling asleep before getting a full eight hours in, with a one-hour break in the middle to lie awake. But today, that rhythm is gone. We fall asleep almost immediately out of pure exhaustion, and feel cheated if we wake even once in the middle of the night.
Feeling constantly tired is a regular problem, but never is it more pronounced than first thing in the morning, especially at the start of a work week. But you shouldn’t have to drag that terrible feeling of exhaustion around with you all day, and certainly not all week! At Lifehacker, you’ll find a list of several completely natural, safe ways to wake up feeling energized for the day:
How to Manipulate Your Body to Wake Up
Grab a few minutes of direct sunlight, outside: It doesn’t matter if you’ve got a corner office that gets sun all day, light passing through windows just isn’t the same as the real deal. Step outside and let your skin grab some untouched sunlight, soak up some Vitamin D, breathe some fresh air and let your ears feel the openness of an unmuffled, non-office world.
Pull your hair: This one sounds bad but it really isn’t; slowly and gently tug at your hair to get blood flowing to your head in a new and refreshing way. It’s not as drastic as most of the other tips on the list, but if you’re just feeling the beginning tinges of sleepiness, it can help.
Pop a strong mint: The stronger the better, because the effervescent effects do a great job of waking you up. If you’re on the verge of narcolepsy, consider getting a menthol stick—they’re so strong that they help actors fake tears.
Massage your hands: The area between your palm and your wrist is a fairly sensitive one. It’s also far enough away from the super-relaxing massage spots, like your neck or back, so giving it a minute-long deep rub can give you all the good feelings, while not putting you to sleep in the process.
Social interaction with a complete stranger: This is one that nobody ever thinks about until after it’s already happened by accident. If you’re feeling dead on your feet, mention something about the weather to someone nearby. Acting tired is no big deal in front of friends, but our bodies tend to wake up pretty quickly to avoid any sort of social awkwardness.
For the complete list, check out Lifehacker here.
Do you have your own tips and tricks for waking up in the morning? Whatever works for you, we’d love to hear about it! Leave your thoughts in the comments’ section and let’s all have a smooth, energetic transition into this coming week.