We all have days when we wake up in a slump. On those days when you need a boost, small steps can help you recharge and re-energize, so you can make the most of your day and show up as your most effective and joyful self.

Here are four science-backed tips that can help you feel more joy and energy throughout the day:

Take a quick walk 

Try carving out time in the morning for an energizing walk before your workday starts. And if you’re in back-to-back meetings all day, consider making one of them a walking meeting. One survey in the Harvard Business Review found that teams who implement walking meetings are 8.5% more likely to be engaged with their work, and over 5% more likely to feel more creative. Also, sitting for prolonged periods of time without much movement can cause our energy levels to dip, which is why taking a brief walk during the day can help us reset. 

Watch a video that triggers joy

Sometimes, just taking a moment to smile or laugh can help you recharge during a busy day. As Arianna Huffington writes, “If a culture of well-being is going to be part of our future of work, one of the building blocks has to be joy.” And there’s science to prove it: Research by Shawn Achor, author of The Happiness Advantage, found that when our brains are in a positive state, we’re 31% more productive than when we’re negative or stressed. So pull up a video of your family or friends, a funny clip from your favorite comedian or social media account, or try watching a Thrive Reset to help you reduce stress in just 60 seconds. 

Incorporate nature into your day

There’s a lot of science showing the benefits of spending time in nature, but most of us don’t have access to a park or waterfront during our workday. But there are still small ways to incorporate the natural world into our day and reap the benefits. “Try shifting the orientation of your desk to face the window, so you can look at nature,” Nevin Harper, Ph.D., professor at University of Victoria and co-author of Nature-Based Therapy, tells Thrive. “Or bring nature into the workplace via plants, posters, and even screensavers.” Even small reminders of nature during the day can help us feel energized and joyful.

Take a moment to thank others

Research shows that practicing gratitude at work can boost our resilience and strengthen our connections with our co-workers — and it helps us feel fulfilled and energized by our work. After completing a project, write an email to your team expressing your gratitude, or compliment someone on how helpful they were throughout the process. It’s easy to forget the power of a simple “thank you” during a busy workday, but it goes a long way.


  • Rebecca Muller

    Senior Editor and Community Manager


    Rebecca Muller Feintuch is the Senior Editor and Community Manager at Thrive. Her previous work experience includes roles in editorial and digital journalism. Rebecca is passionate about storytelling, creating meaningful connections, and prioritizing mental health and self-care. She is a graduate of New York University, where she studied Media, Culture and Communications with a minor in Creative Writing. For her undergraduate thesis, she researched the relationship between women and fitness media consumerism.