Your body creates energy from nutrients, oxygen and invigorating stimuli, such as fragrance. Natural mood, beauty and body boosters such as these suit our increasingly busy lives because they provide an instant lift and are so simple to do each day.
Sitting for long periods causes carbon dioxide to build up in your blood, which in turn makes you sleepy. The ‘breath of fire’ is a traditional yoga exercise that helps clear the lungs completely. First, breathe in deeply through your nose, then exhale using 15–20 short, sharp bursts, clenching your stomach muscles to really push out each burst. Repeat three times.
Massage your ears.
According to traditional Chinese medicine, stimulating acupressure points on your ears increases blood circulation, and thus energy. Vigorously rub your ears all over for about a minute. They should start to feel hot and, almost immediately, you should feel more alert. Start at the lobe and massage up to the top of the ear.
Take a power shower.
Sprinkle eucalyptus oil on the floor of your shower before stepping in. Stand under steaming hot water and rub your body with a loofah. The eucalyptus scent stimulates your brain, while the hot water and the rub-down increase blood flow, sending oxygen to your cells where it’s transformed into energy.
Wake up with a break.
Your body can only handle about 45 minutes of sitting without becoming fatigued. Get up and march around briskly for 3 to 5 minutes, or do some quick stretches or squats.
Make a splash.
Dip a face washer in cold water and wet both the front and back of your neck. Then gargle with cold water for a couple of seconds. Your neck and throat are rich with sensitive nerves, and by stimulating them with the cold water you shock them into the ‘fight-or-flight’ reaction, which temporarily shifts more blood towards your brain.