How to boost your energy

Do you find it hard to keep your energy levels up during the week? Do you yawn your way through Friday or load up on sugar and caffeine to get you through the day?

Even when we have exciting plans and goals, it can be hard to get any sort of momentum if we just feel drained all the time. Being a business-owner is exciting and fun, but it’s also challenging and exhausting. We need to make sure that our energy levels are topped up each week so we can show up as the best version of ourselves for our customers and clients (not to mention our family, friends and ourselves).

Here are the four biggest energy-zappers that can drain us when we most need some ‘va va voom’ – and the questions you need to ask yourself to stop them from stealing your goal-smashing mojo.

Physical zappers

These include lack of sleep, tired or aching muscles, the results of overeating or overdrinking, being dehydrated and not exercising.

  • How much sleep do you get each night?
  • Do you feel as tired when you wake up as you did when you went to bed?
  • Do you have a bedtime routine?
  • Do you keep checking your mobile phone until you go to sleep?
  • Do you tend to eat a large meal late at night or less than an hour before you go to bed?
  • Do you give your body enough slow-release energy foods like vegetables, oats? Or do you tend to seek fast-release energy from processed foods, chocolate, biscuits and fruit (Do you reward yourself with these things?)
  • Do you drink enough water during the day? (c 8 glasses
  • Do you have a regular exercise routine? Exercise actually gives us energy by releasing stored fats, boosting our metabolism and re-invigorating a sluggish digestion.
  • How much screen time do you have during the day? Do you take breaks?
Mental zappers

These include incomplete tasks, unmade decisions, self-limiting beliefs, negative self-talk, worries about the past or the future

Mental clutter can hold us back and it can also drain our energy because it contributes to our mental LOAD. If we’re carrying around a heavy mental load all the time it can be exhausting and leave no room for clarity, decisiveness and creativity.

The things we’ve left incomplete and the decisions we’ve put off can leads us to think negative thoughts about ourselves too. Those thoughts then lead to us feeling bad about ourselves, guilt, shame, a lack of self-belief… all these emotions come from our thoughts. And those emotions lead to our actions and ultimately our results. So it’s important to lighten our mental load and leave our minds with more space to imagine, dream and create.

  • How heavy is your mental load?
  • What tasks have stayed on your to-do list but you’ve never gotten round to them?
  • What decisions are you putting off?
  • What do you believe about yourself or your business that isn’t serving you?
  • What beliefs are serving you by keeping you safe?
  • How does your inner voice talk to you? Would you talk to a child that way?
  • What do you do when you have negative thoughts?
  • What is worrying you? Do you have any control over it? If so, what are you doing to mitigate the worry? If not, can you accept it or let it go?
Emotional zappers

These include long-standing arguments or situations, relationships, yours and other people’s behaviours.

Psychologists sometimes separate emotions into two dimensions: positive/negative and high intensity/low intensity. In other words, our emotions can be positive (like elated or serene) or negative (like angry or sad). And they can be high intensity (like elated or angry) or low intensity (like serene or sad).

High-intensity negative emotions can wear us out during the course of the day — even if we’re not feeling angry. How often have you relied on your so-called stress response to get things done? We fuel ourselves up with adrenaline and caffeine, over-scheduling ourselves and waiting until the very last minute to complete projects, waiting for that “fight-or-flight” energy mode to kick in and believing we need a certain amount of stress to be productive.

Long-standing arguments or situations and negative thought and behaviour patterns can create these high-intensity emotions too… and because we are incredibly adaptive, we learn to live with them.

But when our bodies go into that stress-response mode, we react to it just like any other danger and prepare to fight – we get a boost of adrenaline so we can get the job done. Then we also feel a ‘come-down’ from that high-energy-high-emotional state in the form of tiredness as we recover from the stress.

Remember the sleep I mentioned above? Our brains and bodies NEED that sleep to recover. When we limit that recovery time, we stay in a stressed state for too long… it’s no wonder we have no energy and feel exhausted!

  • Are there any long-standing arguments that are unresolved with your family, friends, partner or work colleagues?
  • Are there any emotional ‘situations’ that you’ve lived with for a long time?
  • Are there any behaviours, yours or other people’s, that you’ve learned to tolerate over time?
  • Do you rely on your body’s ‘fight or flight’ response to get the job done?
  • Do you find that you swing from emotion to emotion during the day?
  • Do you use caffeine or high-sugar foods to give you a boost of energy?
Relationships

It’s not just how or where we spend our time that impacts our results, WHO we spend our time with has a significant impact on our lives too. Some relationships uplift and inspire us and others are suffocating or draining.

Often our relationships can be long-standing and part of regular routine – the people we see at particular places or times in our week. They can even be people that we became ‘friends’ with on social media months or even years ago and we still see their updates.

  • Do you know someone or a group of people that you spend time with just because you always have?
  • How do you feel when you’re with them?
  • How do you behave?
  • Do you like yourself when you’re with them? If not, why not?
  • How much time do you spend with the most important people in your life?
  • How much time do you set aside to spend on yourself and what you love to do?

It’s important to start being really intentional about who we spend our time with. There’s a saying that we are the sum of the 5 people we spend most time with. I’m not sure I agree completely with that, but it’s an interesting idea isn’t it?

Make this work for you: Identify which of these are your personal energy zappers and use the questions above to create a plan that will stop them from ruining your day and give your energy – and motivation – a boost instead.


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