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Easily Feel Drained? Beware Of These 10 Energy Suckers

Easily Feel Drained? Beware Of These 10 Energy Suckers

Do you find it hard to focus on your day-to-day activities? Do you still feel tired after two cups of coffee? When your mind and body feels drained, it can be hard to complete your work… which will lead you to feel even worse, in a vicious cycle.

What can we do to get back into our normal routine and avoid feeling like this? I’d like to bring you 10 tips right from the Dalai Lama, so we can figure out what’s causing us to feel drained and find solutions to help us bounce back to our former self.

1. Stay with toxic people

bench-sea-sunny-man

    This one is self-explanatory, but so many people have trouble identifying those who are toxic, and those who are not. Whether it’s a friend or a family member, there comes a time when you have to cut them loose. You have your own problems to deal with; adding more stress to your life will only bring you down that much more.

    It’s going to hurt cutting ties with the people you care about, but your mental health will thank you for it. It’ll give you time to rejuvenate! Surround yourself with people who make you feel good about yourself. Remember: “If you light a lamp for someone else, your own path will also brighten.” A famous quote to live by from the Buddha.

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    2. Grudge but not forgive

    Learning how to forgive people who wrong you is such an important step towards self-growth. If you carry the weight of hate around on your shoulders forever, you’ll start to suffer. Whether they deserve forgiveness or not doesn’t matter. You’re not doing it for them – you’re doing it for you!

    If you learn to forgive someone for the actions and pain they’ve caused in your life, you’ll know what to look out for next time. Forgive, but never forget.

    3. Make promises but fail to keep them

    Pinky swear

      If you’re the type of person that pinky swears you won’t tell a secret, keep that promise. Not only does breaking a promise hurt your friends and family, it gives you a bad name. No one will want be around you if they think you’re untrustworthy.

      Keep promises and don’t be afraid to open up and tell somebody a secret of your own. Trust is a two-way street. It takes forever to build, but can break in a matter of seconds.

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      4. Not pay your bills on time

      No one wants to walk around knowing they owe money to someone else, whether it’s $10 or $10,000. If you borrow money from your friends or family, come up with a date that you will pay them back by. You’d be surprised at how many people would be okay with a “payment plan”. Paying back something as small as $1 will show them that you’re trying to pay them back for all they’ve done.

      A good motto you should follow is “Don’t owe anyone anything”. Treat others the way you wish to be treated, and the world will be a much better place.

      5. Try to control of everything in life

      We are constantly looking for the next big thing to happen. Whether that means buying a home, getting married, having children or becoming the next big CEO of a corporation. If you can’t stop to smell the coffee every now and again, your life is going to fly by faster than you’d like. Take each day with a grain of salt. Work towards your goals, but take time to enjoy each improvement you make.

      Accept your life, your choices and the people in it. Everyone is working towards a better future and everyone deserves to take a break to see just how far they’ve come. Remember this: you navigate your own ship. Go with the waves and avoid going “full steam ahead” all the time.

      6. Keep pleasing everyone but not yourself

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          Too many people worry about what someone else thinks of them. If you spend your life trying to please everyone else, you’ll never please the most important person: you. Don’t worry about following the crowd. Do things for you and you alone.

          If you love knitting, find a unique pattern and knit your day away. If you love pottery, create beautiful handmade pieces that you can give as gifts. Show off what you love! Chances are, more and more people will follow in your example.

          7. Forget the importance of being healthy

          Your body and mind rely on your good health. Work towards becoming a better version of you every day. If you’re overweight, start doing small exercises to get you back on track. If you’re addicted to smoking, try to limit yourself to a few cigarettes a day until you can go a full day without any.

          If you don’t pay attention to how your body is feeling, it will shut down. Mental, physical and emotional health should be worked on each and every day. Start small and work your way up.

          8. Keep clutter with you
          Declutter your life

            If you feel like your life is cluttered all the time, rearrange everything! Go through your home and move furniture around. Go through your computer and delete files you no longer need. Use space-saving techniques to make more room in your home.

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            Work on decluttering your life at least two or three times every month. If you want to declutter your mind, you must first declutter your life. That’s so powerful I’ll say it again:

            If you want to declutter your mind, you must first declutter your life.

            9. Not do the right things at the right time

            Throughout your life you will learn that there is a time and place for everything. There are times where you should act immediately. These times include (but are certainly not limited to) going shopping when you run out of food, continuing your education (even if you believe you know everything there is to know) and getting to work on time.

            There are also times where you need to rest. These times include (but again are not limited to) after a long day at work, after exercising and after a hard day. So many people believe that working harder and pushing yourself will keep you from becoming lazy. The truth is, you need a lazy day every now and again. Your brain will turn into mush if you work it too hard! Give yourself (and your brain) a rest.

            10. Trapped by your fears

            This is something that everybody struggles with. Facing your fears is harder than it looks on your favorite TV show. It takes a lot of courage, guts, and knowledge to do. If someone is hurting you, confront them. If they refuse to listen to you, cut them out of your life. Do not allow a bully to rule your mind.

            Don’t wait for the answers to fall into your lap. Be an adult and stand up for yourself (and others) when you need to. You have the ability and strength to fight your demons, you just need to look around.

            What do you think you need to do in order to stop feeling so drained? Have you tried anything from the list above? Did it work? Let me know in the comments below!

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            Bill Widmer

            Content Marketing Expert

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            Last Updated on January 15, 2021

            7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

            7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

            The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

            Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

            Posture

            First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

            • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
            • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
            • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
            • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

            All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

            Facial Expressions

            Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

            • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
            • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
            • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

            If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

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            1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

            A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

            The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

            This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

            2. Relax Your Face

            New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

            The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

            To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

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            3. Improve Your Eye Contact

            Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

            The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

            To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

            3. Smile More

            There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

            Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

            4. Hand Gestures

            Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

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            It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

            5. Enhance Your Handshake

            In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

            “Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

            It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

            6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

            As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

            Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

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            Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

            Final Takeaways

            Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

            If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

            More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

            Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

            Reference

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