For nearly ten years, I woke up between 3:45 to 4:15 am every weekday to anchor my show on Bloomberg Television.
I joked often that I didn't have much of a social life given how early I had to go to bed, but the truth is, I did. However, going out to dinners meant that I often got only 4, 5 hours of sleep. I couldn't do that on a regular basis without looking like a tired mess, so I started to discover small ways to make myself look more refreshed than I felt. While nothing replaces a good night's sleep, here's a few tried and true ways to fake it--at least, for a little while:
1. Water everywhere: Nothing beats plenty of liquids to keep you feeling hydrated and healthy. A long night out should include plenty of water so you don't wake up with a headache. I'm also a big fan of the cold water shower routine to get you pumped up to face the day.
2. Citrus: Starting your morning off with a hot cup of lemon tea can perk you up in no time. Use real lemons squeezed and sliced into hot water, not "lemon tea" in a bag. Healthy food gurus swear by the detoxing effects of lemons; I can't proclaim any scientific knowledge other than the smell and taste gives an instant pick-me-up. I also asked a few CEOs what were their "power foods" and they give their ideas in the video below.
3. Get 10-20 minutes of exercise: On days you're feeling tired, the last thing you want to do is head to the gym. However, it's so important to do it because that little burst of adrenaline or even those moments of stretching will do wonders for your body and psyche. Find any moment to steal away and get in some exercise, even if it's for just 10 or 20 minutes.
4. Warm-colored comfy clothes: A day with little rest meant I wanted to stay in my pajamas all day. The next best thing was to wear the outfits that not only made me feel comfortable but were also warm and inviting to detract from my tired, jagged look. Wearing outfits in yellows, oranges, light reds lifted my mood and those around me.
5. Fake it: On days you feel like crawling back to bed, put a fake smile on your face and charge ahead. You'll be surprised how that fake smile can actually turn into a genuine one. Researchers have long found that your facial expressions can actually alter your moods. If you make a conscious effort to smile, pretty soon you'll feel less stressed and much happier. As they say, fake it until you make it!