Confession: I sit all day long. I'm lucky enough to have a desk that pops up to stand when I need to perk up, and I regularly stretch out around the office, but the vast majority of my day is spent sitting down while staring at my computer screen. Working out regularly and eating clean keep me feeling relatively energized, but I'm always on the hunt for new advice that can give me a boost, naturally. When I chatted with Sonima Wellness Center's naturopathic medical advisor Dr. Janet Zand about my struggle to stay energized at work, she offered this tip that's rooted in traditional Chinese medicine. I was a little skeptical of at first, but to my surprise, it really works.
The next time you're feeling run-down, sleepy, and in need of a recharge, vigorously rub your ears for one minute. The ears are full of nerve endings, and this massaging motion stimulates acupressure points that can improve your circulation. This improved blood circulation translates to improved energy. It's like "pushing a reset button," said Dr. Zand.
I was feeling lethargic around 3 p.m., took out my earrings, set a stopwatch, and started rubbing. The minute felt much longer than I had anticipated, and around the halfway mark, my ears started to feel hot (luckily, this is normal). Once my minimassage was up, I took a few deep breaths and returned to my work refreshed and more alert. Yes, you will look a little weird as you're rubbing — if you're embarrassed to do it at your desk, head to the bathroom or go for a quick walk around the office — but once you try it for yourself, I doubt you'll turn back to that additional cup of coffee (and afternoon jitters) any time soon.