What’s the first thing you do when you walk into a dark room? You turn on the light switch. Deciding to stumble around and feel your way through would be senseless in most cases.
Consider sitting behind the wheel of your car. Until you turn the key in the ignition, that powerful V-6 (or VVT-i 4-cylinder) engine won’t do you a ton of good.
See, our energy works much the same way. It’s stored up waiting to be switched on. We can read all the motivation and know exactly what we should be doing to grow in life, but until we make the choice to make a move, we lie dormant.
I’ve watched team members trudge in to work on Monday, but as soon as Friday arrived, they were charging for the door. Energy switched “ON” at 4 p.m. Friday! What? Yes, our corporations are filled with employees showing up, but not truly engaging.
Many powerful warriors sit on the sidelines of their homes, their churches and their communities for various reasons. Perhaps they truly lack physical energy. Maybe the thought of what will happen (success or failure) paralyzes them. Maybe they don’t believe their leadership role is that important or has a significant impact on others. Maybe they don’t know how or where to begin and “elephant-sized” anxiety overwhelms them.
To switch energy and passion on in our lives, we have to make a mental choice to activate. Attend the meeting and sit on the edge of your seat. Take ownership of a task. Take notes. Give feedback. Engage. Pick up the phone and call someone just to say, “I love you.” Smile. High five some random person. Make energy happen inside so it can flow outside. Ignite your energy and show up with your best! Give your best!
When you get home for the evening, take five minutes to write your notes, finish social posts or call a client back. But baby, when you step in that door, get yourself a big glass of water and switch that energy right back on for your best clients – that wife and kid(s). Play, cheer them on, listen to them recount their day, ooh-and-aah over their homework and be fully present. This is switching on your energy!
Just like pushing yourself in the gym, you’re often surprised at your own strength. Start asking more of your energy reserves and you’ll be surprised how much engagement and passion is stored up inside. Believe in others and know that by showing up with energy for them, you make lasting impact!
Switch it on! Let it flow.
Recently I added some insulation to the crawlspace of our house. The leaking of heat in winter and conditioned air in summer are examples of lost energy.
There are plenty of areas in life where we lose energy. We can insulate these areas and save valuable energy instead. It starts with mindfulness as it’s easy to miss an insulation gap between the floor joists of life.
Here are a few common instances:
- Situations over which you have little/no control – don’t give your energy to these. ie. memed political post tempts you to share? Think about how many others’ energy will be wasted as they analyze the same. This doesn’t solve anything. A letter or phone call to your representative would be much more beneficial.
- Toxic relationships – these can come back over and over if you don’t make peace with them. Write the forgiving letter, make the phone call or break up with someone from your past who continually tries to pull you down.
- Excessive TV and social media – massive mental processing energy spent surfing channels or scrolling endlessly through social media. Limit your consumption and be purposeful. Setting calendar times for social media or DVR-ing a show can save tons of mental energy!
- Procrastination – can drain you so fast. Not only do you end up thinking about the task over and over; but, by not taking a small action step and getting started, delay forms a pattern of delay and makes starting even harder. Every time you get an assignment or take on a task, complete a small action item immediately. Then spell out the next small step so you can plug right back in.
- Bad habits – we all have our nemesis. This is the habit will-power has proven time and time again to be insufficient against. Get vulnerable. Ask someone for help. Be accountable and take steps to overcome hand in hand with a coach or accountabuddy.
Your energy and vibrance in life can be spent doing so much good. Save it from leaking out and being wasted in meaningless energy drains. Insulate today!
Do you remember Y2K? The predictions? The run on the stores and shortage of milk, bread and other necessities?
I remember my brothers building an entire room of train batteries, backup generators, power inverters and solar panels.
Like many, we considered our energy sources should a large-scale power outage happen.
Power outages happen in life, too. We wake up sick or just feel off kilter some days. Perhaps a super-busy, stressful stage of life pulls more energy than we’re used to expending.
Considering your sources of energy is critical because there are healthy and unhealthy sources.
5-Hour Energy shots are not a great choice, unfortunately. Not knocking them, Monster or Red Bull per se. Grandma always said, “If it comes easy it’s probably not worth it.”
Quick fixes aren’t going to give lasting energy. When the power outage strikes, we could light the house by setting it aflame. Light and warmth would result – for a short time.
Lasting energy starts with the right sources:
- Proper amount of rest (different for everyone. Saying no to TV and not staying up too late pay huge dividends).
- Picking some positive, motivational reading, listening and viewing sources (still should be limited as information overload can actually hamper application to our lives).
- Exercise (increases blood flow to the brain, strengthens your lungs and heart and releases natural feel- good chemicals in your body.
- Proper nutrition (so much to say here. Visit Dr. Josh Axe for so much more. Eating less and better is an over simplification but the evidence is overwhelming this would benefit our fast-paced, fast-food society in amazing ways.
- Taking time to help others (even a simple smile, calling a waitress by name, paying it forward or giving a hug will crank up the generator inside of you).
- Taking time to plan and write down goals and to-do lists (allows you to focus on the present and actions important to moving you forward).
- Reflecting (whether you journal, pray or just sit quietly before bed, reflecting on the day allows your brain to defrag and also cognitively think through how you did).
Grab one thing that stood out to you above and slowly, gradually and consistently work on getting some quality energy sources hooked up to your “house.”
The most basic elements of physics are often the hardest to explain. Let’s simplify.
Energy is in everything and everyone.
It’s potential (stored up), or kinetic (in motion).
Kinetic energy which is “movement” may be miniscule or gargantuous!
Science defines energy like this, “The ability to do work.” Think of a fire (thermal energy). The bigger and hotter the fire the greater amount of wood can be burned (or the more work can be performed).
Note: a roaring fire can even burn wet wood. The ability to do work is greatly increased.
How’s your energy? Is your passion red hot? Is your fire and fervor for life blazing?
Take inventory today. Consider some possible obstacles that are reducing your fire to a few glimmering coals.
Let’s go on a journey together of exploring some of the best ways to increasing and sustaining your energy!
The world needs your fire! You have the potential of being a force for so much good! A force to be reckoned with!
What creative idea do you have that will change your world and the world of those you care about?
Do you believe you can change the world by changing YOUR world?
Does the proactivity of changing from the inside-out and working in YOUR center of influence excite you?
See, changing you is manageable and has huge ripple effects!
Believe you can and you’re half-way there; however, there’s still the other half. Unfortunately, we get bogged down here too often.
We were created with a desire to create. That’s right. From birth we’ve been busy putting things together: blocks, trains, Legos, ABCs, words, sentences, relationships, life, etc.
Figuring out how to put together our basic needs comes most naturally. The dreams of life, the passions of our hearts, our dream jobs, or better life conditions on the other hand somehow seem to evade our ability.
We’re curious about doing something. We think maybe the diet will help us, maybe going for a daily walk will increase our clarity, or perhaps prayer time will reach the hurting friend.
Our creativity kicks in and we start considering, ruminating and thinking. We put ideas together in our minds, we build the house in our minds, we start the diet in our minds, we make the career change in our minds, and then – we shelve the idea.
- We get overwhelmed with all there is to do to achieve this goal.
- We relive a past failure and fear facing the same failure again.
- We’re afraid of what people will think.
- We procrastinate because the urgency isn’t there.
Making the leap from creativity to actual creation is key! Like Mr. Incredible says, “It’s show time!” Take a step of faith.
You’ve planned, and you know you can make a difference! Like my son said, “Dad, I gonna build train.” A minute later, “Dad, I builded train.”
Do this! Comment on this post, or text a trusted friend:
“I’m going to create ____________!”
Say it. Say it over and over. Do it. Create it! Change the world!
Now, comment or text this, “I’m doing this _________ (small, maybe tiny action item) today!” World changers create by daily taking action no matter how small!