Daylight Savings Self-Care Tips for When You’re Feeling More Tired Than Usual
We can’t give you your hour back, but we do have some energy-boosting suggestions to help you get through the coming groggy week.
We’ve heard it said that April is the cruelest month, but that thief of time we call March can be rough, too. Daylight Saving Time starts this weekend, meaning that Monday morning the alarm will go off at a time that feels extra early, and most of us will show up to work extra sleepy. (Renegades Arizona and Hawaii, we’re looking at you admiringly right now.)
Nothing completely makes up for losing that hour. (Well, except for that happy day when we “fall back” into sanity—but that’s not until November 7 this year.) But we can offer some suggestions to help you feel better rested and more focused.
Be Zen about It
Meditation is a time-tested way to tune out what’s distracting (like that crushing case of the sleepies) and refresh yourself. On a day when you might find your pool of resources a little shallow, getting going with a meditation session can help you focus your limited energy and maximize your effectiveness. (Yes, there’s a very real possibility that you will get so relaxed that you fall asleep. Since lack of sleep is the core problem, we say no harm, no foul.)
Try a Massage
A massage can also help you relax into a place where distractions melt away and you can focus what energy you have on what you need to get done. A vigorous massage can help rev you up into a state of more wakefulness, and a soothing one might put you to sleep. (And again, since sleep is what your body really wants, that’s okay.)
Work It Out
You might think exercise would just make you more tired, but in fact, as long as you don’t work yourself to the point of exhaustion, you should feel a nice endorphin-driven boost of energy for quite a while after your sweat session. If you can’t get in a hard-core cardio session, at least try to get a walk or jog in early in the day.
Sunlight is one of the best stimulants there is. Bright light, especially natural light, jolts your body into realizing that like it or not, it’s daytime and time to be alert. Travelers know that exposure to daylight can be key to combatting jet lag, but it can work to ease the pain of losing that one hour, too.
Eat Energy-Boosting Foods
Your diet can have an effect on your energy level, so it’s especially important this coming week to eat right. Try to minimize the refined sugar that you eat because you just don’t need to be on a quick-high/deep-crash roller coaster right now. Fruit sugars are a little easier on your body, and complex carbs that take time to digest like sweet potatoes and whole-wheat bread are even better.
Try an Energizing Drink
No, not those beverages labeled as “energy drinks”—those are typically full of caffeine and sugar, and will pick you up for a short while but ultimately leave you feeling worse. We’re not going to go so far as to tell you not to drink coffee at all, because do we ever like our coffee, but try not to use it as a substitute for self-care. Try a gentler booster, like tea, matcha, or ginseng. Consider an alternative, like this earthy reishi hot chocolate mix. And drink plenty of water. You’ll be amazed at how much more alert you can feel when properly hydrated.
Get Plenty of Sleep
It’s not news that the best antidote for sleepiness is sleep. But are you getting enough? And is it good sleep? Make sure you’ve set yourself up for success at shut-eye time by going to bed early enough and extinguishing bad bedtime habits like looking at your phone half the night. Get some sleep—you’re going to need it this coming week.
Read the 2021 Gardening Issue
To read: Click on the right and left arrows at the edge of the box to turn pages; to make the text larger, click on the fullscreen icon in the lower-right corner (desktop) or in the center (mobile).