If you, like all of us at Coaciety, are only too familiar with energy depletion, what probably comes to mind first is absolute burnout and drain — that feeling when you just can’t find it in you to do one more thing, when even a shower at the end of the day sounds exhausting.
But what about energy drain that’s harder to recognize?
This is the kind of fatigue that isn’t necessarily overwhelming; it’s the kind of tired that almost starts to feel normal, because you’ve gotten so used to long days, rising work loads, and even increasing personal commitments. It’s the kind of fatigue that doesn’t necessarily stop you from doing the work, but mentally, you’re not feeling it — you’d rather be in bed, or anywhere else but where you’re supposed to be.
In our rapid world, this is absolutely normal. Our day-to-day activities, as much as we love them, can weigh on us.
This type of low-energy drain, while more challenging to acknowledge, is actually what we want to be most aware of — when we can take note of this, it’s less likely it’ll grow to burnout or more serious forms of fatigue.
Here are some tips we’ve compiled that will help you increase your energy levels and fight back against our personal energy vampires:
Get more sleep. You read about this all the time. Shuteye is one of the most recommended tips to gaining back lost energy. Most experts say eight hours is best, but some people function well with six. As long as it’s regular, quality sleep, what’s best is what works for you.
To improve your sleep, try to stay away from any screens or devices at least half an hour before bed. Invest in blackout curtains if any light — even moonlight, or perhaps a sun that rises earlier than you need to — bothers you. If you must have light, soft red lights have been suggested versus blue or amber lights (hint: red nightlights are readily available on retailers like Amazon).
One last tip on sleep: take a 20-power nap whenever you can. Sometimes, this little cat nap is all it takes for an energy burst that will take you through the rest of your day.
Don’t skip meals. When you’re running around like a chicken without a head, as the proverbial saying goes, sometimes it’s easy to forget to grab a bite to eat! Again, totally normal, but not the healthiest habit.
Keep a snack nearby (pick healthier choices if you can — fruits, protein, better fats, whole grains) and make sure to stay hydrated. While a lot of people do tend to have three solid meals a day (breakfast, lunch and dinner), others do prefer to graze throughout the day. You’ll know best what works for you, but just make sure you’re fueled regularly, so you can avoid the drain.
Exercise. It seems counterintuitive to work out when you’re already worn out. But exercise — even just a 20 minute walk to break up the day, or a slow yoga session at sunrise — can be just the ticket to gaining more energy. Exercise doesn’t just help the body, it actually soothes the soul.