25 Easy Instant Energy Boosters
Simple strategies for filling the tank when you’re running on empty.
The Morton Salt Girl got it right in her yellow raincoat. “There are days we need a shot of adrenaline before we even get out of bed, and colors can help with that,” says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute and author of More Alive With Color ($20, amazon.com). “By surrounding yourself with bright colors—something as simple as an orange bathrobe or a yellow umbrella—you can give yourself that needed energy boost to face the day.” In general, saturated, warm colors (the red, orange, and yellow of ROY G BIV) are considered most energizing, while cool tones (like green, blue, indigo, and violet) are calming.
Rise and Seek Sunshine
“You want to use light and stimulation to wake you up for the daytime, then use dark and quiet at night,” says Joyce Walsleben, Ph.D., an associate professor of medicine at the New York University Sleep Disorders Center. “If you can go outside within 15 minutes of waking for 20 minutes and face east, even on a cloudy day, you’ll get enough light to energize yourself for the day.”
End Your Shower With a Burst of Cold Water
Your body responds more quickly to a cold stimulus than to hot, so “a quick, short blast will perk you up,” says Jim Karas, a coauthor of The 7-Day Energy Surge ($16, amazon.com).
Get the Giggles
“With laughter, you reap the recharging benefits of exercise without having to spend time at the gym,” says Clifford Kuhn, M.D., a professor of psychiatry at the University of Louisville, in Kentucky, who is also known as the Laugh Doctor and happens to sell red clown noses on his website (drcliffordkuhn.com). “After a good laugh, you experience a momentary surge of energy, which—in addition to reducing stress and boosting immunity—can help your body regenerate more healthful cells over time,” he says. To get you started, go to funnyordie.com or huffingtonpost.com/comedy for laugh-inducing videos.
Dab on a Jasmine-Infused Fragrance
“Jasmine increases beta waves, which make you more awake and alert,” says Alan Hirsch, a neurologist and the founder of the Smell & Taste Treatment and Research Foundation, in Chicago. Keep a spillproof, solid jasmine fragrance in your handbag. (Try Mélange Perfume Melati Jasmine Solid Perfume; $18, melangeperfume.com.)