5 Reasons Why You’re Always Tired


There’s nothing quite worse than going to bed excited about how you’re going to crush the next day, and then you wake up tired and unmotivated to do anything. Even after we put in the “full eight hours” or shut off our phone, there are still energy sinks all around us. Being mindful of what they are allows us to conserve the energy we need to do meaningful work.

Here are some reasons why we’re tired and what to do about them.

You have a random sleep schedule

Yes, getting enough sleep is important, but even if you’re getting 6–8 hours, you might be left feeling tired when you wake up if you aren’t doing 2 things.

First, you want to adhere to a strict sleep schedule. This means going to sleep and waking up at the same time every day. Sadly, that includes weekends, too. Eventually, your body will adjust and wake up naturally.

Second, learn more about your REM cycles. Many of us have heard that our REM sleep cycle (light sleep to deep sleep and back) happens in 90 minutes. That’s somewhat true, but each of us is a bit different. So, time your sleep around 90 minute intervals and check if 85 or 95 minute intervals are better for you. If you wake up feeling rejuvenated, you might just have found your sleep cycle interval. If not, try again with a slightly different interval time.

If you time your sleep cycle correctly, you can say goodbye to that wretched alarm.

Eating a crash-inducing breakfast

What we eat for breakfast plays a huge role in how much available energy we have for the rest of the day. Unfortunately, the Standard American Diet (SAD) is a poor excuse for a meal; filled with simple sugars and little protein, it doesn’t have near enough nutrition to keep the furnace hot for more than a few hours. As a result, many people experience the mid-afternoon slump.

Instead, try some advice from Harvard Medical School, which emphasizes complex carbohydrates and protein in the ideal breakfast. When picking your carbs, look for high fiber grains (5g+ per serving) and make sure “whole grain” is listed as the first ingredient.

For proteins, lifestyle guru Tim Ferriss often talks about the 30/30 diet, which encourages getting in 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes of waking up. This will help you feel full longer and not want to snack on heavy foods that drag you down in the afternoon. You might even lose a little weight! Healthy sources of protein include Greek yogurt, protein shakes, or meat like steak or ground bison.

Hot shower indulgence

Especially if you live in a cold climate, you might think that a warm shower is just the thing to entice you to get out of bed in the morning. Unfortunately, warm showers do the opposite; as your body temperature starts to drop, your brain increases the production of melatonin which induces sleepiness.

If you’re trying to get meaningful work done, a hot shower first thing in the morning is not the way to go. Instead, opt for a cold shower, which increases blood circulation and oxygen intake. This sudden jolt of energy gets you revved up with the motivation needed to tackle the day ahead.
Pouring caffeine down the chute when waking up

By immediately chugging down that cup of coffee after you wake up, you are setting yourself up for failure. Unless you keep taking more caffeine, you are sentencing yourself to a huge mid-day energy crash. This is why lifestyle design and medical experts like Andrew Huberman wait 90–120 minutes after waking up to drink caffeine.

While it might be hard at first (I sure know it was for me), waiting until a little bit later to take in caffeine allows you to tap into the natural energy you have after waking up. And you maintain that level of energy later into the day without additional supplementation.
Staying seated all day

Contrary to popular belief, our “tired” state has both a physical and mental component to it. Whether you are super active or in a deep state of rest, blood flow plays an important role in levels of alertness. This is why working out increases our motivation to be productive.

If you don’t have time to lift weights or go for a run, you can rejuvenate your body by simply taking in a few deep breaths and doing some dynamic stretches such as lunges or twists to get your body fully oxygenated and feeling alert.

You might standing/walkinganding / walking desk (but please save us the lecturof e about how all us desk sitters are going to die young).

Bonus  Lack of Workflow

Newton was right  an object in motion stays in motion. Multitasking destroys our Newtonian motion. When you go and check your phone for “just five minutes” or answer just one Slack message, the constant switching between tasks can be super draining on your brain and reduce focus.

I find that I stay at much higher levels of energy when I just continue on the same task and then fully switch to something new. So, consider defining the exact thing you are going to do in each chunk of work time and then recover for a bit before tackling other work.


For me, there’s nothing worse than feeling lethargic when I want to take on the day. As with everything, everyone’s body and situation are different. That’s why I’m such a big fan of taking tips like these and experimenting with them for myself. Try some of them out, and you might be surprised by just how energized you feel!

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