My brain is fuzzy, my eyes are hot and itchy, my head is pounding and I feel like I was out till the wee hours drinking Mojitos. All I want to do is crawl under that desk. And all I feel is guilt. More guilt.
- All the extra hours I’ve worked over the years; evening work, weekend work and business travel add up to a lot more in value than the slightly less productive day I’m having today
- I’m effectively sick, but I’m here – I turned up.
1. Wear something you love – you will feel better all day. Not your favourite pyjamas though, tempting as that may be.
2. Wear makeup if it helps, or if you already do, wear more. Especially under-eye concealer. And a splash of blusher will make you look less ghostly.
just a dab of concealer, and you’re Jennifer Aniston – right?
3. Drink coffee – I know, I know, this isn’t strictly the healthiest suggestion, but today is not the day for being a paragon of virtue. Be good to yourself, and if that means three cappuccinos, go for it.
4. Eat food – healthy food will give you more energy and make you feel better in the long run, but if you need a Danish today, don’t beat yourself up about it. You can be good again tomorrow when you have the energy for it.
5. Berocca, magnesium, vitamin B, juices, smoothies – these are all energy boosters that were recommended to me by kind sympathisers today; other working mums who have been there, dissolved the Berocca.
6. Do work that is really interesting, and will perhaps suck you in enough to forget about the tiredness. Or if you’re completely beyond concentrating on anything, get all that admin out of the way – the stuff that you’ve been putting on your To-Do list since 2010. And tidy your desk – you’ll never have a chance like this again (until the next bad night)
7. Take breaks during the day – go for walks if you can, get fresh air, have tea, chat to colleagues.
8. Plan an early night, think about your early night all day and how good it’s going to feel. Then really do it – don’t be on Facebook at 11pm tonight!
9. Fake it till you make it: decide to put on an Oscar-winning performance as the person you would have been today if you’d had a full night’s sleep. Putting energy into pretending to be bubbly and bright might just help you forget how you really feel.
And remember, somebody somewhere is lying in bed right now because they had too many Mojitos last night and just didn’t bother going into work this morning; in comparison you’re already a gold-star employee.