Today is about doing an energy makeover. Paying attention to what saps your energy during the day and making conscious choices about where to devote your energy will help you get more out of your day. Let me give you a couple of examples of how you could be sapping your own energy…
I train an actress, Renee (not her real name), who came to me complaining of feeling blah during the hours she most needed energy. When I asked about her sleep schedule, she admitted she was sleeping only four or five hours a night. I asked what her monthly budget was for moisturizer and facial creams. “Hundreds, but I don’t know exactly. Cost doesn’t matter for my looks. It’s worth it,” she said.
“Without proper sleep, you can’t rejuvenate your face. You are doing more damage than any moisturizer or concealer can fix. You are cutting your career short by prematurely aging yourself,” I said. There was no way of being subtle about it. Sometimes you have to be a flying brick to get attention. My blunt comment did the trick. Renee set herself a curfew and made it happen. She began bringing friends to workout sessions instead of staying up late talking on the phone. The change wasn’t immediate, but within a month I could see a noticeable difference. Her eyes went from glazed over to sparkling, and her energy soared. When Renee linked sleep to her looks, she was able to prioritize rest hours.
Another example: On a daily basis, I review what I ate earlier in the day or the day before. This is helpful if my energy level is off, or if I just don’t feel my best (and also if I get a stomachache!). I’ve continually tweaked my eating to serve me better by constantly listening to my body. The other side of listening and checking in carefully is that you’ll learn to eat what your body really wants. You’ll feel better and your energy levels will soar.
Today: Give yourself an energy audit. Use lights as triggers to check in with your energy. Whenever you see a light fixture (table lamp, chandelier, wall sconce, or candle), let it remind you of energy. Pause for a moment to take stock of how you are feeling. Be aware of your energy; imagine what someone would see if your energy and emotions expressed themselves as light and color. For example, if you are hot with anger, your light might be bright red. If you are exhausted, maybe it is just a dim yellow light.
Right now: Do a quick scan on yourself. What do you feel is draining you of energy? What areas in your body or places in your life drain you of power? Write down the top three that come to mind. Inhale deeply and slowly, and as you exhale fully, let them go. You will feel immediately lighter.
What energizing, uplifting, joyful feelings do you want to feel? Write three of them down on sticky notes and put them where you can see them. Now inhale deeply, breathing in energizing feelings, and exhale a radiating light.
I’m not done with you yet! I find visualization and meditation powerful tools for so many things, including for restoring energy. Try this any time you’re feeling energy-depleted…
Visualization: Close your eyes and imagine what is draining you of energy. See these things visually. If work is one of these, imagine your desk, your boss, or a meeting that you dread. Hear the sounds of phones ringing, smell the office, see the bright lights. Imagine whatever is overwhelming in your life with all your senses. When you can clearly visualize an image and hold it, begin to shrink it down. Next, picture a big trash can or dumpster and imagine yourself throwing your draining images into it. In goes the boss, the office, the meeting. Finally, see the trash collectors coming and watch as they haul off the waste that you no longer have room for in your life.
Meditation: Sit in silence for one minute and focus on taking full breaths of love. With each inhale and exhale, imagine a golden light radiating out from every one of your pores. You are glowing with energy and light.
Finish with this affirmation: “I love myself, and I will always be here for me. I feel comfort and ease. I create my new reality.”
How’s your energy now???
Click here to buy Joel Harper’s book, Mind Your Body: 4 Weeks to a Leaner, Healthier Life