A Splendid Surprise That Will Get You Thinking

Are you someone who doesn't even want your coworkers to look in your direction before you've had a cup of coffee? (You're smirking right now, but you know it's true.)

Don't worry- I'm not going to tell you to give up coffee forever. I know plenty of people who feel great when they drink coffee and have a cup simply because they like it.

But the problem I see over and over again is when people drink coffee because they NEED it. They can't focus without it, they feel lousy without it, and they get headaches without it. I even had one client tell me that she needed coffee in order to feel normal. Sound familiar?

When you drink a cup of coffee, your body releases adrenaline and engages the fight or flight response. While this can be great for the initial jolt of waking up, we see diminished creativity and poor problem solving when this stress response is activated long term. Two things you do NOT want at work.

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My clients always understand this, but they don't know how to get out of the cycle. Read on for 5 of my best tips to boost your energy without the java:

1. Drink a full glass of water as soon as you wake up.

This will signal to your body that's it's time to get up and moving. Drinking around 8 cups every day will encourage your body to continuously flush toxins out. Dandelion tea is also a great option for the morning, as it detoxes your body and even has a bitter taste that coffee lovers crave.

2. Reach for an apple with almond butter (or another healthy snack) instead of a candy bar.

Each time you grab the candy bar, you're reinforcing a negative cycle that revolves around quick sugar- a cycle where you're going to want more sugar when you start to feel another crash. Eating an apple with almond butter will get your body out of this cycle and ultimately reduce your sugar cravings and cravings for quick energy.

3. Get your greens.

Greens are the most important food you can eat for energy and vitality. I know, I know. You wish blueberries we're going to be the magic food. For those of you who aren't a fan of greens, get creative: mix a little bit of kale with your eggs, hide some spinach in your smoothie, top your bison burger with a handful of mixed greens, or sautee collard greens with your pasta. Every little bit counts. And did you know that your taste buds can actually change over time?

4. Be still.

Spend 3-5 minutes in the morning sitting still. Recharge your mind, and your body will get just as clear and focused. If you're not used to this, something I like to do is find a quiet place to sit and observe how my body feels. Start with your toes and focus on them for 10 seconds, then name an adjective that goes along with how they feel. Move to your heels, calves and upwards, ending at the tip of your skull. This is so much easier than thinking about nothing for 3-5 minutes, and you get the added benefit of recharging your energy before your workday takes over.

5. Stretch.

Stretching is incredibly underrated. You don't even have to do any fancy yoga poses- anything you would learn in a 3rd grade Phy Ed class would suffice. And if you don't remember back that far (I personally have no recollection of 3rd grade Phy Ed), check out this article for easy stretches at work.

Use these 5 tips to boost your energy right away before you are tempted to reach for a cup of coffee. When you're using these tips, you'll have more control of your body because you aren't caught in a quick sugar cycle, and you can fully function regardless of your circumstances.

Plus, your coworkers will be able to say good morning again without checking your desk nervously for an empty mug.

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Posted in Dentistry Post Date 04/24/2016






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