We talk about energy all the time. We say things like, “I have no energy;” “He drains my energy;” or “That place has bad energy.”
What is energy as it pertains to human beings? Where does it come from? How can we get more of it?
As human beings, we get energy from many sources.
We gain energy from the sun, the air we breathe, a nice environment, nutritious food, the positive thoughts we have, our happy emotional experiences as well as the connection and engagement we have with our lives.
When any of these are compromised you lose precious energy.
According to The Energy Project, an organization that has developed a scientifically-based approach to energizing people, we have four sources of energy that need to be fueled so we can operate at our best.
>> Physical energy: Sleep is the foundation of physical energy. Studies by Harvard Business Review and The Energy Project show that no single behavior more fundamentally influences our effectiveness while we are awake. Ninety-five percent of us require seven to eight hours of sleep to feel fully rested yet the average American sleeps six to six-and-a-half hours.
Tip: To feel better, start winding down earlier at night and get more sleep. It sounds so simple and it is, but it will work wonders.
>> Mental energy: This is what we need to focus, think clearly and make good decisions. If you have a hard time paying attention to one task and you get easily distracted, and feel stressed, you need to refuel your mental energy stores.
Tip: Stop multitasking. Consciously give something you are doing your undivided attention. Do this often to refuel mentally.
>> Emotional energy: How you feel profoundly affects how you experience your day. The most common emotional triggers are being treated unfairly, being kept waiting, feeling criticized, not being valued and not feeling heard or appreciated for what you bring to the table.
Tip: Anytime you are triggered, before you react, force yourself to take a deep breath. Ground yourself by feeling the ground beneath your feet. By doing so, you will be able to make a conscious decision as how you want to respond. This will save you a lot of emotional drain.
>> Spiritual energy: Spiritual energy is what you get when you know you are serving something bigger than yourself. Spiritual energy comes from feeling secure in your purpose and your values.
Tip: Ask yourself what you truly value and find ways to incorporate more of that into your life. For example, if you value kindness, consciously seek out ways to practice kindness.
The most important thing is to realize you are a human being and you have energetic needs. You are not a machine that can just go on and on without rest and renewal.
Assess your needs. Reboot and refuel. If the way you are living is not working, then maybe it’s time for a change.
After all where will you be in 10 years if you don’t start changing now?
Alice Inoue is the founder of Happiness U. Visit yourhappinessu.com.