To save yourself from drowsing off at your desk in the afternoon, these tricks from yoga and other practices can be very helpful and will give an immediate energy boost. Do them anytime when you feel like you are not at your 100 percent and need a quick energy makeover.
Bring your head lower than your hips to get some fresh blood and oxygen to your brain. If you don’t feel comfortable jumping into a handstand in the middle of the office yet, a forward fold will do. Just bend over your legs while sitting in the chair and stay there for a few deep breaths. Allow abdomen to soften, back to relax and elongate. Make no effort, the gravity will pull the heavy thoughts and tension away from your shoulders.
Inversion will clear up your head, boost your brain power, and can also be a good age prevention tool as your skin gets fresh blood and nutrients.
Focus on Your Eyes
Eyes are linked with visual cortex in our brain that takes up 30 per cent of the cortex. We use eyes so much during the day that it is no wonder that often our eyes become unfocused, distracted by the things that are going on around. This can happen when we’re “checked out” or when our eyes are tired from staring at a computer screen all day long or being in one place for many hours.
You can learn to focus our eyes with precision. Direct our gaze purposefully. Look out of the window and focus your sight just on colors or shapes. Imagine turning objects through 90 degrees. Close each eye in turn.
Our gaze (called drishti in Sanskrit) can help us direct the energy of anything we do, helping us stay mentally clear. The gaze also has other benefits. If you want to sit upright at your desk set your gaze and it will keep you fixed and balanced in your posture.
Focusing your eyes more carefully can also focus your mind and preserve energy.
Chest Openers and Backbends
Take a deep inhale and roll your shoulders back while reaching with your chest up and forward. You want to create a sensation of openness and stretching in your chest muscles. To take it a step further and activate adrenal glands that are responsible for stress fighting hormones, place your hands on your lower back, keep your hips right over your feet and with an inhale reach your chest forward while bringing your chin and your shoulders back, creating a light backbend in your upper back.
Relaxing upper back always does miracles on our tension in the shoulders which mounts up during the day. So hold for 5 deep breaths and come back to the exercise whenever you feel a need to or your shoulders are crying quietly.
Get Up and Use Your Body
Doctors throughout the world say that the human body isn’t designed to sit all day. Sitting all day or moving very little can result in chronic tension that can be the culprit behind both long-term conditions (depression, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure) and everyday health woes (headaches, back pain, insomnia, upset stomach, anxiety, anger).
Going down to a shop to grab a sandwich and come back up using the stairs allows our muscles to move; encourages blood to flow and helps us feel more like ourselves. Real selves outside confines of office and sitting.
Exercise also gets us breathing deeper, which triggers the body’s relaxation response. As odd as it sounds while you are hunting for lunch outside, concentrate on your breathing for as long as you are outside, even when you are buying lunch, keep controlling your breath. By focusing your mind on breathing pattern (like counting your breath or breathing deep and slow) you are diverting brain capacity away from what is stressing you.
Cold Water Hydrotherapy
A bit extreme but the results are momentous. Let cold water tap run to cool down. Start rubbing your forehead in between the eyebrows with the back of your wrist. Do it in circular motions 30 times to each side. Then fill up your mouth with really cold water and holding it, start splashing cold water on the point between your eyes. Do it until the water in your mouth warms up. The water should be cold enough for this kriya to have re-energizing effect. You should feel a light burning sensation on the forehead for a few seconds after splashing water. It might no be the best thing to do it in your office but in some situations you have to do what you have to do to be in your best shape for the executive meeting!
Brain food : a key brain chemical is acetylcholine. A deficiency in this is thought to be a common cause of declining memory. Foods: cauliflower, legumes, soya, oats, barley.
Mood boost: Serotonin is a hormone that makes us happier taking us from low to higher and better mood. Foods: chocolate (of course!), but also oats (that was interesting for me, perhaps I should eat more of it daily), bananas, milk, yoghurt, cottage cheese, sesame seeds, chickpeas.