Have you ever woken up in the morning feeling exhausted? And I don't mean a situation where you just worked insanely hard almost to the point of breaking down. Or have you ever had to go through the day dozing off in every taxi or bus or even fighting sleep as you drive? I have, so many times.
Fatigue might seem like no big deal, but actually fatigue is one major cause of reduced productivity, vigor and brain responsiveness. And all these are leading causes of inefficiency in business.
The entrepreneur and the nine to five worker alike needs a lot of alertness and vigor to be able to be as productive as they are expected to be and hence, we must take handling fatigue seriously.
I used to know a business owner, let's call him "Johnson," who had such excellent services that I always used to patronize His business, but he was always absent from his business place half of the time.
I soon stopped checking Johnson out, out of frustration. It turns out that my friend Johnson was battling chronic fatigue. He will often remain in his store, lock the doors, spin the sign to "closed" and sleep for hours on end. He lost a lot of business naturally.
Here I share a few commonsense and wise ways of handling fatigue before it loses you a lot more than you bargained for. Here are a few suggestions;
1. Go See Your Doctor and Get Checked Out
Our health is our most precious resource and we must protect it jealously, this is what makes this tip the most important and gains it a first mention.
Fatigue might seem to be a normal and common occurrence especially for busy people, but in truth unusual fatigue is a common symptom of many illnesses, including diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, anemia, thyroid disease, and sleep apnea.
For instance people with sleep apnea find that they suffer from sleepiness and chronic fatigue almost throughout the day, because apnea naturally causes light sleep during the night such that the person wakes up feeling tired and not rested.
All these diseases can be treated and are better discovered earlier, so if you feel an unusual tiredness and especially after you have had proper hours of sleep, then you need to go talk to your doctor.
2. Take a Bus
Take a train, a taxi or use the subway, but by all means avoid driving when you are fatigued. Whether or not you are suffering from any of the diseases stated above, you need to be honest to yourself and avoid a potential disaster.
There are a lot of common misconceptions and myths about fatigue driving and these misconceptions have led to quite a number of road disasters. The statistics are scary, with one recent estimate putting the number of fatigue related car crashes to 100,000 per year causing about 1,500 deaths. This is more with truck drivers and bus drivers.
You do not have to wait to feel sleepy to avoid the wheels, whenever there are subtle signs of fatigue like impaired memory, dizziness, slower reaction times, loss of consciousness, lack of motivation and other not-too-obvious signs. It is advised that you avoid driving.
3. Drink Plenty of Water
Everybody knows in theory that we should stay hydrated throughout the day, but not many people actually stay hydrated throughout the day.
Dehydration zaps energy and impairs physical performance. "Research has shown that dehydration makes it harder for athletes to complete a weight lifting workout," Dan Judelson, PhD, assistant professor of kinesiology at California State University at Fullerton has said, "It's reasonable to think that dehydration causes fatigue even for people who are just doing chores."
Taking along a water bottle to work is very good practice, staying hydrated can help improve brain performance and memory as well as vigor and general performance.
4. Shed extra weight
It turned out that for my friend Johnson, his problem was his weight. Losing extra weight can provide a powerful energy boost, even small reductions in body fat can largely improve your mood, vigor, and quality of life.
Most weight loss experts recommend cutting back on portion sizes, eating balanced meals, and increasing physical activity. Hitting the gym early in the morning or a thorough workout or jogging session can do wonders for your energy level. Again, a lot of the fatigue we face during the day stems from mental fatigue and a good exercise routine greatly improves mind function.
5. Don't Focus on regrets and failures
If it is in the past, it is past, move on. One of the greatest energy sapping drills for most business persons is the focus they give to failures.
When we focus on regrets or common challenges or failures so much we shut down psychologically and consequently physically.
We all have to face the rat race that we call life, but there is no reason for us to do it with a bent back. We can do it with a head held high and a smile on our faces.
Here's to a fatigue free routine!