Something pretty crazy happens in your body at about 2 or 3 p.m. every day. Around this time, most people start to get a little more drowsy. If you can’t focus as well as you did a few hours earlier, you’re not alone.
This temporary sleepiness isn’t just a post-lunch “food coma.” It’s a natural phenomenon of the human body clock, one of two daily slumps that are built into our circadian rhythm. (You may not have even noticed the other energy and body temperature slump, because it happens around 3 a.m., when most of us are still sleeping.)
It’s a performance-sucking problem. Recently, researchers from Harvard Medical School estimated that workplace sleepiness and drowsy employees cost the average-sized Fortune 500 company around $80 million a year. Scientific studies suggest that some of our neural pathways slow down at this time, which means it’s tougher to evaluate problems and make good decisions.