Ask Jack: Awake at Work, Interview Guilt, and Job of the Week

Young female office worker

Louise inquires...

What do you do to stay awake when you're falling asleep at work? Do not suggest caffeine (it makes me sleepy) or jumping jacks (I'm on crutches; long story). I have been eating all morning (not hungry at all) because consciously chewing and swallowing is keeping my eyes open. But I'm running out of food so I need some other options!

Aw man, now I want to know that crutches story!! And commuting with crutches may be something that's tiring you out. Still, occasional exercise is a great option, even if you're just lifting or stretching your arms, or rolling your head/neck or shoulders. Turn away from your screen and move your eyes around too. If earphones are allowed, some uptempo music can do the trick. Or if you can't turn up the tunes, turn up the lights -- sleepy people aren't crazy about brightness. (Vampires: Ignore last hint.) When you do snack, snack smart. For beverages, can't do caffeine? Try water, lots of it! Soon you'll be wide awake, hobbling on those crutches to the nearest restroom.

How about you readers? What stay-awake tricks work best for you? Mention them in the comments below -- thanks!

Meanwhile, Liam wants to get something off his chest (and it's not unsightly hair):

I called in sick the other day to go to a job interview at another company. Now I feel weirdly guilty. I missed a big meeting, and my boss has been pretty decent to me overall.... I don't know, am I being oversensitive?

Liam, there's one simple fix: Tomorrow, go in, go straight to your boss's office, and say, "I was dishonest with you. I wasn't really sick; I interviewed at another company." Oh, no, wait, the problem with that is, it's COMPLETELY IDIOTIC. A little guilt in this situation may just mean (gasp!) you're a good person who doesn't like to lie. But don't feel too bad, fella. There just aren't too many other ways to seek other employment while you have a job. Sure, you can try to schedule interviews before or during work or on a lunch break. Or if it's too far away, take a vacation day. Loyalty to your job is an admirable trait, but you can only take it so far. Remember, even at the nicest places, 9 times out of 10 they will screw you over in a heartbeat if it in any way benefits them. "Oh, we sold the company for a huge profit, so names starting N through Z are laid off effective tomorrow." Now, would they feel guilty?

Last week's Ask Jack questions

Do you have a work-related question for Jack? Write it in the comments below (better answers to this week's questions are also welcome!) or tweet it @AOLJobs with the hashtag #AskJack.

Jack's Job of the Week

If you're the super-sleepy sort, then maybe a position at Bed Bath & Beyond isn't for you. But for the rest of us, the company currently has 496 varied openings listed on AOL Jobs, all over the country. (Just a hint: If there's ever an interview to be clean and well-rested for, this is it.) That's just one of the thousands of great companies you can connect with by doing a search on AOL Jobs. Say goodnight to your job hunt!

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