late nights at the office

December 5, 2013



I've been spending a lot of time at the office the past few months. It's been a bit tiring but overall I have learned a lot and feel more confident in my day job abilities. Getting back to business here at joyful.life I thought it would be fun to share some of the tricks that kept me balanced on those late nights.

(Speaking of balance, it's about that time to check in on 2013 intentions and start planning for 2014. How about you?)

Now, adequate sleep and relaxation time are the best solutions for keeping balanced at work, but when you find yourself stuck at the office late, here are a few tricks to stay energized and alert without crashing hard or getting too wired up. Stash these items in your "goodies" drawer (come on, I know you have one!) at your desk and you will be ready to rally.

1. A water bottle - To maintain concentration be sure to drink water! The recommended amount is 8 glasses a day (or 1oz for every 2 lbs of body weight) to maintain essential cell function and keep your energy high. I like this Glass Water Bottle by Ello.

2. Dark Chocolate - Just a few squares of dark chocolate can boost energy levels and mood. Antioxidants, vitamins, caffeine and a stimulant called theobromine make this a good for you treat...in moderation. The darker the chocolate the better for you, but I like Lindt's A Touch of Sea Salt or you could even whip up a batch of these and keep them in your purse for a quick snack any time. 

3. Dried fruit - Complex carbs are good for you! They are full of fiber, which is a great source of steadily burned energy and helps to keep you fuller longer. If you are starting to get hungry, but don't want to spoil (a late) dinner, grab a handful and enjoy. 

4. Socks (or a sweater) - Make yourself cozy! Why not kick off those painful heels and let your feet relax for a bit while you finish up that spreadsheet. Or snuggle up in a favorite sweater so it feels more like home.

5. Earbuds or speakers - Pop in your favorite playlist and keep yourself motivated. If you are alone - or even if you aren't - feel free to sing along!

6. Aromatherapy - Use aromatherapy lotion or oil (no candles in the office please!) to boost your energy. If you're starting to fade, perk up by dabbing a little oil on your pulse points. Lemon, orange, peppermint, clove, rosemary, or sandalwood will do the trick. Just make sure you are kind to your neighbors who may be sensitive to scent. If the oil you have isn't meant for use on skin, make a room spray by adding 40-60 drops to a small spray bottle full of water and spritz the air around you.

7. Green Tea - If you plan to be at the office late, try drinking 3 to 5 cups during the day (daily is even better!) to help you maintain steady energy levels. High concentrations of natural antioxidants are good for you all the time, so consider adding green tea to your daily routine. I like Tazo Zen Green Tea because it has a milder flavor than some other green teas I have tried.  

8. Protein - A great fuel source and, like water, important for proper cellular function. If you are feeling hungry try some jerky, tuna, nuts, cottage cheese (if you have a fridge), protein bar or oatmeal to take the edge off and keep on truckin'.

9. Refresh spray or wipes - Refresh your skin after sitting in that dry office air conditioning all day long. Try Evian Mineral Water Facial Spray. And if there's no one left to impress, use make up remover wipes like Yes To Cucumbers to give your face, neck and arms a quick wake up.

10. Spirits - Wine, beer, or a Cuba Libre...you may as well have some fun while you're there! Keep it limited to one drink, be sure to double check your employer's policy on alcohol at the office, and - as always - never drink and drive.

There you have it! A tried and true guide to keep yourself moving when a long day becomes longer at the office. I sincerely hope you have found adequate balance between your work life and personal life, but if duty calls now you are well prepared.

Don't work too hard.