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10 Effective Ways to Have More Energy With Less Caffeine (From a Former Caffeine Addict)

10 Effective Ways to Have More Energy With Less Caffeine (From a Former Caffeine Addict)

We’ve all seen the memes about morning time and coffee, but do you really want more coffee or do you just want more energy? Believe it or not, caffeine is not a synonym for energy. There are plenty of ways to get energized with less, or no caffeine. Caffeine should be used strategically – there’s nothing strategic about drinking an entire pot of coffee every morning. I’ve been there. As a recovering caffeine addict, I know what it’s like to want more and more energy when the caffeine seems to work less and less. Enough is enough.

Here are 10 ways to get more energy with less caffeine:

1. Get Moving

more energy less caffeine

    If you’re tired, more sleep may not be the answer. Exercise may be the answer. New research shows that exercise can help fight fatigue. Patrick O’ Connor, co-director of the University of Georgia Exercise Psychology Laboratory, says:

    “A lot of times when people are fatigued, the last thing they want to do is exercise, but if you’re physically inactive and fatigued, being just a bit more active will help.”

    Even just adding a minute workout to your morning routine can substantially boost your energy levels. If you want to incorporate a little caffeine, take a small amount just before your workout. The exercise will help to ‘activate’ the caffeine and give you even more energy.

    2. Lower Your Tolerance

    lower caffeine tolerance

      The less caffeine you consume, the more effective it is for you. Odds are, you’ve built up quite a tolerance to caffeine over the years. Try cutting back your caffeine intake to zero and then wait a few weeks before you ingest it again. You’ll be surprised at how much more effective the smallest amount of caffeine is once your tolerance for it has evened out.

      Just be sure to add it back to your life slowly or you’ll end up where you started. One study showed that caffeine tolerance can come back to the same level as it was before a caffeine hiatus in just 1-4 days if you jump right back into using the same amount as before.

      3. Change Your Mode

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      type of caffeine

        Does your caffeine come in the form of coffee, espresso, energy drinks or something else? You may be going for whatever has the most caffeine and that could be why you have an energy problem. Green tea, for example, has about 1/4 the caffeine of a cup of coffee. After the above-mentioned caffeine hiatus, you’ll be surprised at how well a little green tea works for energy. Find some new ways to caffeinate – there are literally thousands of options.

        4. Go Green

        greens for energy

          Green smoothies, green powders and green teas are just a few of the greens you need in your life. Eating and/or drinking more leafy greens in food and smoothies will seriously boost your energy levels. Many people find that green smoothies work better than a cup of coffee and you don’t have to worry about building up a tolerance. Some people actually question the benefits of green smoothies, but once you try them, you’ll understand how effective they are. There’s some controversy over green smoothies, but it really comes down to sugar content. The key ingredient in a greens smoothie should be the greens, not sugary fruit and fruit juices.

          5. Sleep More Sleep Better

          get better sleep

            You may be getting enough sleep, but are you getting good sleep? The quality of your sleep is just as important as the amount, and you may find that you can function well on less hours if quality is better. Here are a few tips to improve your sleep:

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            • Avoid caffeine, alcohol and heavy meals before bed
            • Invest in a high-quality mattress and a nice pillow
            • Adjust the temperature to your liking (usually 65-70° F)
            • Avoid ‘blue light’ from electronic devices before bed
            • Exercise – more exercise will lead to better sleep

            You should also try to sleep within the confines of sleep cycles. Sleep cycles are 90 minutes, so sleeping for 6, 7.5, or 9 hours is generally more effective than sleeping for 5, 8, or 10 hours. One way to take the guesswork out of sleep cycles is to get the Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock for your smartphone.

            6. Drink Water First

            drink water before coffee

              There’s nothing wrong with a cup of coffee in the morning, but drink water first. If you drink an entire liter of water, you may not even need the coffee. Our bodies are dehydrated after we go all night without any fluids. This isn’t just for morning time; drinking water throughout the day will help you to stay hydrated, which leads to increased and sustained energy levels. Contrary to popular belief, a reasonable amount of caffeine doesn’t really dehydrate you and the water that makes up the majority of your coffee can count towards your daily water intake, but it only accounts for a small fraction, so keep chugging that water.

              7. Cut the Sugar

              energy drinks sugar

                When you do use caffeine, go for things like black coffee and non-sweetened tea. Sugary energy drinks and coffee drinks are great for a quick boost- but then comes the crash. The crash usually isn’t from the caffeine (though caffeine can cause a crash), it’s usually from the sugar. If you’re going to have caffeine, have it alone, without all the sugar. Some people have found that energy shots work better for them, since the amount of sugar or sugar substitute is minimal- but everyone’s body reacts differently.

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                8. Spread it Out

                spread out coffee

                  Don’t think ‘chug’, think ‘sip’. Sipping caffeine over a longer period of time can cause higher and more sustained energy levels. Often, the caffeine passes through your system before your body has a chance to react to it when you drink it quickly. Sipping also helps your body to slowly clear the caffeine out of your system, which means a crash is much less likely to occur.

                  9. Use Food for Fuel

                  food for fuel

                    Keep your diet clean and full of fruits and veggies. This will help to sustain your energy levels throughout the day, without even touching caffeine. I love food and I’m sure you do too, but every meal doesn’t have to be a celebration. When you want a nice dinner, take the time to focus on it, but for every other meal, you’re just putting fuel into your body. Separate your leisure meals and your energy meals. For example, you may want a leisurely dinner every night with your family, but for breakfast and lunch, you’re just filling up the tank, so eat food that will give you the energy you need. Think: vegetables, fruits, lean meat, nuts and occasional whole grains.

                    10. Go Natural

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                    natural caffeine

                      When you do consume caffeine, try more natural sources like Guarana. Guarana is a plant that contains naturally occurring caffeine. Coffee bean extract and green tea extract are a few more ways to naturally caffeinate. Sure, to an extent, caffeine is caffeine, but natural sources will help you eliminate the artificial sugars, preservatives and chemicals found in many drinks and pills.

                      Just remember, you don’t need caffeine, and if you think you do, you’re probably addicted and it’s not working very well anyways. There are plenty of ways to increase your energy without caffeine and there are even more ways to strategically use caffeine to your advantage. Don’t work for caffeine, make caffeine work for you.

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                      Kalen Bruce

                      Military, Writer

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                      Last Updated on November 18, 2020

                      50 Habits of Highly Successful People You Should Learn

                      50 Habits of Highly Successful People You Should Learn

                      If you’re like me and really into self-development, you’ve probably read many of the thousands of self-help books out there on the market. But also like me, you probably find all the information a bit overwhelming.

                      That’s why I wanted to do the self-less task of taking the most important, life-changing lessons I’ve drawn from these books and condensed them into 50 key points.

                      Here’re 50 habits of successful people you should learn:

                      1. Believe It to See It

                      Our minds tend to focus on what’s happening around us and refuse to see what could happen. Only when you trust in what’s possible and dare to dream big, big things can happen for you.

                      2. See Problems as a Wonderful Gift

                      While others only see problems and give up, successful people use the problem as a lesson to find improvement in themselves or the task at hand.

                      3. Keep Looking for Solutions

                      Even if they’re knee-deep in problems, successful people will still put all of their focus on finding solutions.

                      4. Remember It’s All About the Journey

                      Successful people are conscious and methodical in creating their own success. They don’t sit around doing the bare minimum, hoping success finds them.

                      5. Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway

                      There’s so much fear on the road to success, but instead of letting that fear control and limit them, successful people do a good job of just forging ahead regardless.

                      6. Always Ask Productive Questions

                      It’s all about asking the right questions. Successful people make sure they are questions that will elicit information for a more productive, creative and positive mindset moving forward.

                      7. Understand the Best Waste of Energy Is Complaining

                      Successful people know that choosing to see the negative side of things will only create a useless and unproductive state.

                      8. Don’t Play the Blame Game

                      Taking responsibility for actions and outcomes is a form of empowerment that you can build your success upon. While the act of blaming others or outside circumstances takes this empowerment away from you.

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                      9. Maximize Your Strengths

                      Not every successful person is simply more talented than the rest, but they do use what they know they’re good at to achieve more successful results.

                      10. Be in It to Win It

                      Successful people are busy, productive and proactive. Instead of sitting around over-thinking and over-planning a great idea, they just take a step towards it no matter how small.

                      11. Know That Success Attracts Success

                      People who are successful surround themselves and seek out like-minded people. They understand the importance of being part of a team and forge win-win relationships.

                      12. Actually Choose to Be Successful

                      Dreaming big is a massive part of being successful even if your dream seems impossible. Ambition is a mindset that needs to be a daily conscious choice.

                      13. Visualize, Visualize, Visualize!

                      You’ve got to see your success in your mind’s eye even before it comes. Successful people clarify and get that certainty about what they want their reality to look like rather than being mere spectators of life.

                      14. Be a One-Off Original

                      Successful people look for what’s working and then create a unique spin on it. Imitating only regurgitates other people’s ideas with no originality.

                      15. The Perfect Time to Act Is Now

                      Waiting for the right time to act is basically procrastination wrapped up in an excuse. Successful people know there’s never a perfect time so they may as well just do it now.

                      16. Keep Learning, Keep Growing

                      Continuous learning is the key to a successful life. Whether it’s academic, being a student of life or actionable learning, it’s all about expanding your knowledge and personal development.

                      17. Always Look on the Bright Side of Life

                      Successful people have the knack for finding positive aspects in all people and circumstances no matter what.

                      18. Having a Bad Day? Do It Anyway!

                      We all have bad moods but it shouldn’t be an excuse to stop everything. Giving into a bad mood just stop-starts your life, slowing success way down.

                      19. Sometimes Risky Business Is Needed

                      Calculated risks are a must for success. It’s about weighing the pros and cons while moving forward with that element of trust.

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                      20. Accept Challenge All the Time

                      Dealing with problems head-on is a must to be successful. Successful people also face challenges in order to improve themselves.

                      21. Make Your Own Luck

                      In the mindset of a successful person, there’s no such thing as ‘luck’ or ‘fate’. They take control to actively and consciously create their own best life.

                      22. Ignite Your Initiative

                      While many people are reactive, successful people are proactive – taking action before they have to.

                      23. Be the Master of Your Emotions

                      Being effective at managing emotions is key on the road to success. That’s not to say successful people don’t feel like we all do, but they’re just not slaves to their emotions.

                      24. Champion in Communication

                      Consciously working on effective communication skills gets anyone closer to success.

                      25. Plan Your Life Strategically

                      Successful people’s lives aren’t a clumsy series of unplanned events and outcomes, they methodically work at turning their plans into a reality.

                      26. Become Exceptional at What You Do

                      To become exceptional, you typically have to do things that most won’t. To become successful, hard decisions need to be made and acting on them is crucial.

                      27. Choose to Live Outside of Your Comfort Zone

                      While many people are pleasure junkies and avoid pain and discomfort at all costs, successful people understand the value and benefits of working through the tough stuff that most would avoid.

                      28. Live by Core Values

                      Successful people firstly identify their core values and what’s important to them, then do their best to live a life that reflects these values.

                      29. Realize Money Isn’t Everything

                      Money and success are not interchangeable and the most successful people understand this. Putting money on a pedestal and equating it to success is a dangerous mindset to have. Success comes in many forms.

                      30. Don’t Get Carried Away

                      Successful people understand the importance of discipline and self-control and as a result they are happy to take the road less travelled.

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                      31. Self-Worth Is Not Tied to Success

                      Successful people are secure. They do not derive their self-worth from what they own, who they know, where they live or what they look like.

                      32. Kindness Breeds Kindness (And Success)

                      Generosity and kindness is a common trait among long-term successful people. It’s important to take pleasure in helping others achieve.

                      33. More Humility, Less Arrogance

                      Successful people are humble and happy to admit and apologize for mistakes. This is because they’re confident in their ability. They are happy to learn from others and happy to make others look good rather than seek their own personal glory.

                      34. Change Opens New Doors

                      People who are successful are adaptable and embrace change, while the majority are creatures of comfort and habit. They are comfortable with, and embrace, the new and the unfamiliar.

                      35. Success Requires a Healthy Body

                      It’s not just how you think, it’s about how you show up for success. Successful people understand the importance of being physically well, not for vain reasons but because being in tiptop condition creates a better personal life for success.

                      36. Laziness Just Doesn’t Exist

                      Successful people are never considered lazy. Yes, they can relax when they need to, but working hard is their game.

                      37. Resilience by the Bucket Load

                      When difficulty strikes, most would throw in the towel, but successful people are just warming up.

                      38. Feedback Is Just Another Chance to Improve

                      How people react to feedback determines their potential for success. Being open to constructive criticism and acting on it to improve is most seen in those who are successful.

                      39. Your Vibe Attracts Your Tribe

                      If people are hanging out with toxic and negative people, then they need to take a look at themselves. Successful people hang out with others who are positive and supportive.

                      40. Can’t Control It? Forget It

                      Successful people don’t invest time or emotional energy into things which they have no control of.

                      41. Swim Against the Tide

                      Successful people are not people-pleasers and they don’t need constant approval from others in order to move ahead.

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                      42. Alone Time Is Valuable Time

                      More self-worth means being more comfortable with your own company. Successful people are more happy and see the value in spending time alone.

                      43. Self-Standard Is Higher Than Most

                      Everyone has a choice to set high standards for themselves. Successful people do this, which in turn produces greater commitment, more momentum, a better work ethic and of course, better results.

                      44. Failure Isn’t Rationalized

                      While many use age, health, lack of time, ‘bad luck’, or lack of opportunity to explain away their failure, the key to success is finding a way to succeed despite facing these challenges.

                      45. Down Time Is an Important Part of a Routine

                      Having an off switch and taking time to do things that make them happy is a common trait of a successful person. Take a look at here The Importance of Scheduling Downtime.

                      46. Career Isn’t Who You Are, It’s What You Do

                      Successful people know their career isn’t their identity. They are multi-dimensional and don’t define themselves by their job.

                      47. Be Interested in Only the Path of Resistance

                      While most people look for the easiest way or the shortcut, successful people are more interested in the most effective way. They look for the course of action which will produce the best results over the long term.

                      48. Follow Through

                      Many spend their life starting things that they never finish, but successful people get the job done. Even when the excitement and the novelty has worn off they still follow through and finish.

                      49. Invest in All Your Dimensions

                      We’re not just physical and psychological beings, but emotional and spiritual creatures as well. Successful people consciously work at being healthy and productive on all levels.

                      50. Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

                      To obtain success, it’s important to practice what you preach. Successful people don’t talk about the theory, they live the reality.

                      So there you have it, a summary of what I’ve learned from self-help books. But of course, you need to start taking actions so you will get closer to success too.

                      Bonus: 5 Bad Habits To Quit

                      More About Success

                      Featured photo credit: Juan Jose via unsplash.com

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