You know that feeling when all you can think about is getting to your bed and sleeping as long as humanly possible? Having no idea when exactly that will be but so desperately wanting it to be NOW?
Another cup of coffee….
Another energy bar….
Another piece of candy…
Reaching for ANYTHING to just give you some energy to get through the rest of the day.
We live in a world of stuff, stuff stuff everywhere–it’s always changing and so many issues develop everyday that weren’t even on your itinerary but require your immediate response. If you are like pretty much everyone else, you can often feel depleted of all the energy necessary to keep “at it,” without feeling like spontaneously combusting.
This is when you need to just stop for a moment, and realize that you actually possess all that is needed for you to recharge your batteries, at any given moment.
Seriously. You do.
Here’s some tips that help me to refocus and get my energy back:
1. Learn to Listen to Your Body’s Cues, and Don’t Ignore Them: One of the biggest reasons for burnout is because of that “Keep on keepin’ on” mentality. When you push yourself instead of resting a bit here and there, you are headed for a crash. Pacing yourself is one of the kindest things you can do for your energy retention.
2. Occasionally, Stop: Being still has a dramatically restorative effect on the body. It doesn’t require a huge investment of your time, either. Throughout your day, take advantage of quiet spaces where you can just be still. Concentrate on only that stillness that is around you and within you. Let it seep down into your core. Just a few minutes can be quite healing.
3. Don’t Forget to Breathe: Of course, you are always breathing, but how often do you focus exclusively on your breathing, alone? Practice some slow, deep rhythmic breaths, feeling each breath enter your body and extend to every part of you. When other thoughts begin to enter into your mind, block them and return to focused breathing. Just a few minutes of doing this is highly restorative and peace-giving.
4. You Are What You Eat: Eating the wrong foods can do more to make you feel flat and lifeless than anything else. Pay attention to how you feel after eating different foods, checking at five minutes, thirty minutes, and an hour after. Your body will tell you exactly which foods to avoid and which to eat more of.
5. Increase Your Whole Body Circulation by Moving More: At intervals through your day, take some time to perform some purposeful movements that integrate all of your body. And if you feel like you can’t do such moves at work without some privacy, you can do them in a bathroom stall. No really, I used to do it all the time and no one knew! Squats were my favorite These movements don’t necessarily have to be rapid: slow ones can have just as much benefit, when done properly.
6. Accentuate the Positive and Eliminate the Negative: Take a good look at your life to see if there are certain people, places or pursuits that tend to be a downer or stress-producing, and do all that you can to eliminate these altogether, or at least reduce them as much as possible. Allow yourself this luxury. Instead, think about the positives in your life–the ones which always leave you feeling better afterwards. These are the ones you want to add more of. Know when you just can’t add more responsibilities or gatherings with friends, co-workers and family to your plate and learn to graciously decline while leaving the relationship intact. Anyone who doesn’t understand belongs in the “get rid of” category, anyway.
7. More Than Meets the Eye: Often, we can get so caught up in the minute to minute struggles that we lose sight of the bigger picture. Try to look for the deeper meaning behind events and interactions, at the same time developing a way to recognize when your help or participation is not absolutely needed. Back off, whenever you can and become a passive observer–or redirect focus on something that will serve your needs and purposes. Remember, we teach other people how to treat us, so learning how to treat yourself well is a great example.
Remember, your body will respond with greater vitality, strength and be renewed if you address energy loss appropriately. So, even when you are at your most drained, burnt-out state and you just can’t imagine being able to go on… I promise you that you CAN gain control back by implementing these tips!