I have been, or can be if you click on a link and make a purchase, compensated via a cash payment, gift, or something else of value for writing this post. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.
You will have to endure long presentations or training seminars that would bore the more energized person to sleep. It is a difficult challenge to remain focused when the presenter has lost “connect” with the audience. But you should never be in a situation when you purposely sleep through the meeting. You have to know your specific warning signs and be ready to react as soon as you notice them. For some, you can feel your lids slowly closing or you may start writing incoherent notes. But unless you have been diagnosed as a narcoleptic you have no reason to sleep through a presentations, as it can form a very negative opinion about your work ethics.
Before the meeting think about how you will prepare to stay awake. Especially if you already feel drained or sleepy, it is more likely you will nod off. Listed below are some suggestions, but you have to find out, through trial and error, what works best for you.
1) Caffeine Cocktail: This is not as good as you might assume. Depending on your normal caffeine intake you will need to find the correct dosage and frequency to keep up your coherency. If you miss the mark you are actually likely to fall into a deeper sleep once you crash off of the caffeine fix.
2) H2O Motivation: An effective technique is to simply consume your suggested daily intake of water. You ideally want to start doing this 1 – 2 hours before the meeting. When you are fully hydrated you blood flows easier (i.e. this is why the red cross suggest you drink plenty of liquids before giving blood) and indirectly gives you the feeling of more energy. In addition the pressure on your bladder will force you to go to the rest room, which is a lot less disruptive to your career than falling asleep.
3) Stay Focused: If the meeting is truly boring and useful, which some may be, find something better to do. You could start writing out a new approach to a business problem, define an action list for the next few weeks or even start a journal. People will only assume that you are taking notes during the meeting instead of being focused on other things. The only caution for this approach, is making sure no one is expecting notes of the meeting from you.
4) Temperature Frenzy: Get to the meeting early and cut the heat significantly in the room. Your body is less likely to be comfortable enough to fall asleep with a sudden temperature fluctuation. If you don’t have control of the room temperature then use a cup of ice. Please do not disruptively chew the ice, just keep your mouth full enough to cool your body down slightly.
5) BREAK time is the BEST time: If you can get out of the room or the building during scheduled breaks do so. You should try anything within your power to get your entire body moving and increase the blood flow throughout your body. The more you can move around during breaks the better chance you have of enduring those long meetings.