The “afternoon slump” is a thing of the past, but it’s not all good news, as the decline in productivity actually happens much earlier.
A survey of 2,000 adults found that most of them reported a drop in their work levels at 11 a.m., with only nine percent feeling least productive at 3 p.m.
Almost half of those who feel unproductive lose an hour or more per day due to low energy levels — that’s more than six work weeks lost due to lethargy per year.
And with 46% struggling with productivity during working hours, it could cost businesses £3,500 a year per worker.
For a mid-sized SME, this amounts to nearly £438,000 a year.
Low energy levels are cited as the number one cause of unproductiveness, with two-thirds struggling to get through the day.
But many are confused about how to increase energy levels, and only a quarter are aware of the positive effects of diet, despite the fact that food is the main source of energy.
TV personality and fitness fanatic Mark Wright, spokesperson for California Almonds, who commissioned the study, said: “Between training, work, and time with family, my days are always so busy that I have to be as productive as possible. to make everything fit.
“A productive morning is essential for me to get everything done, so choosing the right fuel for breakfast is vital and sets me up for the day.”
The study also found that 43% struggle with productivity in the morning, but two-thirds don’t believe a balanced breakfast energizes them in the first place during the day.
And six out of ten never choose food based on energy.
Nearly two-thirds (60%) opt for quick refreshments like toast and coffee, which provide a short-term boost of energy but can also contribute to an 11am slump.
With one in five Britons feeling more productive at 10 am, a preference for slow-release energy foods like whole grains or nuts like almonds can boost productivity.
Mark Wright added: “I love choosing almonds to give me energy for the day as they contain protein, fiber and healthy fats that provide a slow release of energy.
“What’s great is that a handful (30g) can help you stay strong, so even if I’m running out of the house, they’re perfect for an on-the-go snack.”
MARK WRIGHT’S TIPS FOR A PRODUCTIVE DAY:
1. Plan like a pro. Knowing that you have a long list of things to get done can be intimidating and make it hard to get motivated to reach your goal.
Planning can give you extra time and energy to focus on your day and make it important.
2. Increase your breakfast. We all know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and is critical for energy levels, but one in ten of us don’t eat breakfast.
Choosing foods that provide slow-release energy, like almonds and oats, can set you up for the day, and studies show that almonds in the morning can help you feel fuller for longer.
3. Exercise for energy. Exercise can boost your energy and get you outside in the sun, which 43% of us say has a positive effect on energy levels.
Finding what you love, whether it’s cycling, swimming or tennis, can be a great motivator that will give you the “get up and go” mentality to help you complete your tasks. I personally like to start the day with a run or a workout at the gym.
4. The beauty of balance. It’s okay to enjoy a slice of cake, a pint of beer, or treat yourself to takeaway food, but don’t overdo it, as it can cause lethargy.
You don’t have to be perfect, but you do need to fuel your body with enough of what it needs.