Nobody likes staying late at the office. After a long day’s work, there’s nothing better than finally clocking out and going home to rest. Sometimes that’s not possible, especially when there’s a last-minute deadline to meet or an exceptionally large project. Late nights are sometimes just a requirement of the job, and they can be difficult if you’re not used to staying in the office past your traditional 9-5 workday. Here are some tips for surviving late nights at the office!
Get a good night’s sleep beforehand
You are rarely surprised by a late night at the office. Usually you’re aware of some impending deadline or late project, and you can prepare a bit for these late nights by getting plenty of sleep the nights before. Being well rested sets the foundation for a productive evening at the office, so you’ll want to do your best to keep yourself feeling great. If you’re already nodding off by the afternoon, you’ll be in for a long night!
Bring healthy snacks to the office
If you know you have a late night coming, be prepared with food on hand. Nothing is worse than staying late and realizing you didn’t pack yourself a dinner or any late night snacks. If you must raid the snack machine, avoid sugary sweets that will lead to a crash later on. If several of your coworkers are at the office together, consider purchasing takeout or delivery from a favorite local restaurant. There’s no reason you can’t treat yourself to some good food, even if you’re trapped at the office.
Drink coffee (at the right time)
Coffee is the obvious solution to a late night at the office, but you’ll want to drink it at the right time. Drinking coffee too early in the day likely won’t do much to help after hours when you still need energy. Similarly, drinking coffee too late will make it impossible to fall asleep when you eventually do get home. Remember that coffee stays in your system for 6-8 hours, so the best time to sip on some caffeine is mid to late afternoon. For lovers of coffee, read up on the best healthy coffee recipes to take your office coffee maker to the next level.
Take breaks when needed
You might think it’s best to just power through every problem that pops up during a late night shift. After all, you want to finish as quickly as possible, so this method does make sense. However, research shows that taking breaks is a great way to solve problems and increase productivity. During your breaks, step away from your desk and get active if you can. Take a walk around the building or pace in the hallway. Avoid looking at your phone and other electronics during breaks since these are not productive and might become a distraction.
Know when to call it a night
Finally, you need to know when to call it quits. Sometimes you reach a wall in your productivity, and you start to lose your efficiency. You need to be able to recognize this point and know when to stop for the night. Work is important, but your well-being is more important. A good night’s sleep might be just the cure for the problem you can’t seem to solve. There is such a thing as too much work!
Survival guide for late nights at the office
Late nights at the office are unavoidable. Luckily, the right preparation can make them as painless as possible. After a late night, be sure to give your body the chance to recover with a good night’s sleep and healthy meal. Do your best to keep from overworking yourself, and know when it’s worth calling it quits for the night. Late nights can be productive, but they shouldn’t be the norm!