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Last Updated on December 14, 2020

Feeling Drained? 3 Simple Steps to Reboot Your Energy

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Feeling Drained? 3 Simple Steps to Reboot Your Energy

When you’re feeling drained, do you feel that it’s a more physical or mental (emotional) thing?

Feeling drained is ultimately a wake-up call.

The three steps in this article will help you understand how, and create the best way to reboot your energy. By practicing these, you can avoid feeling drained in the future.

Studies in the psychology of mind and the practical experience I have gained working with hundreds of different people have shown me that feeling drained comes as a result of a disequilibrium between physical and mental energy.[1]

Whether it comes from conflicts with your boss, friends, family members, or your idea or opinion about your self-worth, society, or life in general, you create a disequilibrium between these two energies. As a result, your nervous system produces chemical reactions (hormones) that impact your body’s physiology, which in turn will wear and tear your body to a point of exhaustion.

The process of wear and tear is natural and at the same time highly beneficial as it can teach us how to manage our physical and mental wellbeing.

Physical and Mental Wellbeing

Are you neglecting your mental and physical wellbeing by focusing too much of your energy (thoughts and actions) on insignificant things?

Since you’re feel drained, the answer is yes. You’re left with no energy and feeling tired and exhausted. Feeling drained is a wake-up call to slow down, reconsider your approach to external events and how you engage with them.

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Take your condition of being exhausted and these three steps in this article very seriously. They’ll motivate you and help you reboot your energy, learn about yourself, and use your capabilities wisely.

Why You Feel Drained

There must be something that permanently withdraws your physical and mental energy. Sometimes you can identify what it is, but when you’re feeling tired, it can be difficult to do so. Engaging in activities where we don’t have to put much effort or creative thinking becomes a dangerous norm during times like these.

This approach makes it even harder to manage the stressors that bring you to the point of feeling drained.

So, what can lead you to feeling drained? Is it a physical activity, like working long hours, running errands, etc.? It may be this, but probably not only this. However tired you get from a physical activity in an average working day, sleeping can help you fully recover from your physical exhaustion.

However, the biases, judgments, and misconceptions you have created for yourself are more complicated and require more than sleep to overcome.

Inefficient Thinking

You feel tired all the time because of the inefficient managing of your thinking about things that are insignificant to your physical and mental wellbeing. You approach things that make you less tolerant, less acceptant, and less patient, thus your perspective and understanding are limited or strongly clouded.

In my early twenties I had a skewed perspective on how society ought to function. This created a lot of conflicts in my private and professional life, and as a result I felt powerless and completely exhausted. Mentally exhausted.

One thing that influences your management of thinking is the fast-paced way of living — complying to the dynamics of modern life — like feeling the obligation of being present online and partaking actively in social media, as well as being active in society on a daily basis. We haven’t really learned how to effectively utilize our precious time, which seems to be dwindling with the development of society.

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The Signs and Symptoms of Exhaustion

Physical exhaustion is very simple to detect; your body feels heavy, and the first sign is feeling the need to sleep. After sleeping overnight, the nervous system is rested, and the immune system has balanced all the hormones in your body. You wake up and your physical and mental energy has been replenished.

Mental exhaustion is a bit trickier to detect as its signs and symptoms are vary; one day you feel more focused, the next day less. To detect them, you simply must stop any physical and mental activity and listen to your body — be aware of yourself.

The most obvious signs and symptoms for mental exhaustion can be physical, emotional and behavioral:

Physical Signs

  • Muscle weakness
  • Headaches
  • Stomach pain
  • Change in appetite
  • Disturbed sleep

Emotional Signs

  • Feeling neurotic and anxious
  • Feeling angry for no obvious reason
  • Lack of motivation
  • Lack of productivity

Behavioral Signs

  • Decreased sustained attention [2]
  • Intolerance towards yourself and others
  • Inability to accept circumstances and surroundings
  • Social indifference
  • Performance indifference
  • Apathy

Follow the next steps and create a routine to reboot your energy and make all of the above signs disappear.

3 Steps to Reboot Your Energy

It is self-explanatory that to not feel exhausted or drained, you must not only identify the root cause of it, the stressor[3], but more importantly, bring the decision to successfully execute the change and act diligently upon your decision.

To stop feeling drained, you must first stop feeling tired. Follow these three steps to reboot your energy and never feel drained again.

The Let-Go Approach

Mostly, in times when significant life changes are coming, drastic measures must be taken. The most significant step for that is taking a step back from the situation. To re-invent yourself, you must take time and distance yourself from all the things you’ve been attached to (the stressors).

This might seem like running away from things or isolating yourself, but it only requires letting go for a while. Let the events run without you for a while, and you can get back to them at a later point. Remember, you want to regain your energy and find a new way to manage your life in an efficient and joyful way.

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Letting go takes courage, the courage to show your ego that things in life can run without you. You may not want to let something go completely, especially if it is an important part of your life, but if it is causing you stress, take a few steps back to gain some perspective on how to handle it more efficiently.

For example:

  1. Let go of social media or watching TV for a few weeks.
  2. Invest 60 minutes a day in gentle breathing exercises and smooth physical exercises, like abs and push ups (or any other exercise that suits you).

The Observant-Guardian Approach

You have now reduced the number of activities on your agenda, and there is no energy consumption at the moment. By letting go, you have created a new moment of time and space in your life. When you are able to be still, observe how that stillness helps you regain and recreate your energy.

When sitting still:

  1. Take a loving, long, and slow breath.
  2. Recognize the fresh energy coming into your body.
  3. Exhale in the same way and let go of thinking and any tension in your body.
  4. Observe that state of pure stillness and pure flow of energy. Take this state as a very serious one, store it, and guard it, for it is the source of your energy.

Here, in this step, with breathing and stillness, you reboot your energy.

Option:

If you really think your body needs to move, then create a movement that is constructive.

For example:

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  1. Walk slowly in circles.
  2. Move your arms over your head while keeping pace with your breath.
  3. Make any slow and rhythmical movements in accordance with your breath.

This movement will enable you to observe your body and thoughts and guard the energy you have just regained.

The Passive Approach

Approach your daily life duties now not by pouring all your energy in, but by passively observing the situation. If you’re involved in a discussion, don’t react immediately. Try to first receive information without exchanging or investing your energy and:

  1. Let go of reacting or acting.
  2. Realize the capacity of your patience and tolerance for the situation.
  3. Look at your existing energy and deepen your stillness
  4. Improve your patience and tolerance.

Once you’ve realized this, accept the fact that you must not change the situation if it’s not to your liking, but act accordingly and do your best to find a solution that works for you and the other party.

If you have trouble accepting tough situations, this article may be able to help you get started.

This step will teach you how to invest your time and energy in the right amounts. You can integrate the first two steps here as well and manage your energy in the right way.

Final Thoughts

We, as highly intelligent and spiritual beings, should be concerned with the depth and not the surface of things. Don’t let things from the outside exhaust your inside.

Let go of them first, observe them, and realize the power of courage, patience, and tolerance that lies within you.

Apply these steps and avoid feeling drained in the future.

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Approach the world with patience. Be observant, and don’t get involved too quickly. Don’t go grab the flower; wait to get the fruit.

Featured photo credit: Doğukan Şahin via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Cornell University: Understanding the mind
[2] Science Direct: Sustained-attention
[3] Science Direct: Psychological Stressors

More by this author

Marcin Gil

Marcin is a spiritual being just like anyone challenging to uncover what we already have โ€“ spiritual freedom.

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Last Updated on October 20, 2021

7 Daily Stress-Management Rituals that Improve Your Productivity

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7 Daily Stress-Management Rituals that Improve Your Productivity

If you’re trying to be as productive as possible, stress will always be your biggest obstacle—and it’s not an easy one to overcome. To do it, you’ll need to develop a plan to make stress management a core component of your daily routine, but doing that takes commitment. The good news is that if you succeed in learning how to manage stress, you’ll unlock your potential and be well on your way to peak performance. But first, you need to learn how to make it happen.

The best way to do that is to learn about and integrate some stress management rituals into your daily routine. To help you get started, here are seven tips on how to manage stress and improve your productivity.

1. Give Yourself an Extra Hour in the Morning

If you were to do some research on some of the world’s most successful—and productive—people, you’d notice that many of them have one thing in common: they tend to be early risers. Apple’s Tim Cook gets out of bed before 4 AM each day.[1] Michelle Obama is already getting in her daily workout at 4:30 AM.[2] Richard Branson gets up at 5:45 AM each day, even when he’s vacationing on his private island.

There’s a good reason why they all do it—once you reach the point in your day that your work schedule kicks in, you no longer have control of your time. That means you have a limited opportunity every morning to reduce your stress by taking care of the things you need to do without anyone making other demands on your time.

What’s important about this isn’t the time you get up. The important part is getting up early enough to start your day without feeling rushed. For most people, getting up an hour earlier than you normally would is sufficient. This should give you ample time to complete your morning tasks without having to hurry or fall behind.

But when you implement this ritual, be careful. Don’t do it at the cost of getting the right amount of sleep each night. If you do, you might increase your stress instead of relieving it. Sticking to a proper sleep schedule and getting enough sleep is, in itself, a critical part of stress management.[3]

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2. Determine and Review Your Most Important Tasks Each Day

If there’s one productivity tip that almost all experts agree on, it’s that you should spend some time before bed each night to write down your three most important tasks for the following day. But if you want to maximize that practice and turn it into a stress-buster, you should turn that notion on its head.

Instead, you should do this as a part of your morning routine. There’s a couple of reasons for this. First, it’s that our always-on, always-connected business world means your priorities can change overnight, literally. You may list your top priorities, go to sleep, and wake up to find them woefully out of date. That means the best time to set your priorities for the day is in the morning. This will keep those priorities up to date and let you think about them before the distractions of the day begin. But don’t stop there. You should take some time before bed each night to review that day’s priorities.

Ideally, you’ll be able to check them off as accomplished. If not, though, think about what prevented you from getting to them. This is your chance to figure out some of the common daily interruptions that get in your way. Chances are, these also cause some of your stress. So, spend the time before bed game-planning how to remove those interruptions and stressors from your day. If you make this a habit, you’ll be more productive and far less stressed out in no time.

3. Save Your Emails for Later in the Morning

Another tip on how to manage stress is to save your emails for later. One of the key causes of stress comes from our inability to cope with the unexpected. If you stop to think about it, what is your most prominent source of near-constant unexpected information every day? You guessed it—it’s your email.

Now, you can’t simply ignore your email. The only thing you can do about your email is to learn how to manage it most effectively. But no matter what you do, it’s going to remain a source of daily stress and distraction. That’s why you should make a habit out of giving yourself an email-free hour or two at the beginning of each day’s schedule.

In that time, try to tackle one of your daily priorities and get it taken care of. Your email will still be there when you’re done. And when you do get to it, you’ll do so in a much better frame of mind knowing that you’ve already gotten some real work done before having to deal with anything unexpected. That alone will improve your mood and reduce the amount of stress you’ll feel—no matter what’s waiting for you in your inbox.

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4. Take a Walk After Email Time

Since you’ll have to deal with your email sooner or later, there’s no way to completely avoid the stress that will come with it. Although you’ll be in a better frame of mind after putting off your email to get some real work done, you’ll still feel some stress when you get to it. That’s why you should make a post-email walk a part of your daily routine.

Taking a walk is one of the best ways you can relieve stress. It’s a form of meditation that will put you back into the right condition to be productive, and there’s no better time to do it each day than after taking care of your emails.

Ideally, you’ll want to take a walk outdoors, and preferably in the most natural setting possible. If you’re in an urban environment, a nearby park will suffice. Studies have demonstrated that walking in such environments for as little as 20 minutes per day leads to an overall reduction in the body’s cortisol level.[4]

Cortisol, if you’re not aware, is your body’s main stress hormone. It helps regulate your blood pressure, energy levels, and even your sleep cycle. Every time your stress goes up, cortisol production also increases, throwing your body into chaos. So, taking a walk right after dealing with your email will help you to relax, reset, and get ready to be productive for the rest of the day.

5. Reserve Time to Research and Plan a Vacation

By now, everybody knows that taking vacations every now and then can improve your productivity and lower your stress level. But did you know that even thinking about a vacation can help you to reduce your stress? It may sound strange, but it’s true.

A Cornell University study in 2012 found that the anticipation of a positive experience—like a vacation—can reduce stress and make you measurably happier. It logically follows, then, that adding to that anticipation each day can maximize the stress-relieving effects of a vacation.[5]

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To do it, set aside at least a half-hour each day to research or plan an upcoming vacation. You can read about destinations. You can research airfares. You can even look at places to stay in locations you’re interested in visiting. And if you’ve already got a vacation booked, use the time to take a deep dive into what your destination has to offer.

This is an especially important daily ritual to observe right now, while the COVID-19 pandemic may be limiting your vacation options. If it’s been a while since you’ve been able to take a trip, the act of planning your next vacation will have a therapeutic effect. With vacation rental bookings still hovering below 50% in most major markets, there’s no doubt that the vast majority of people are in desperate need of their next stress-relieving vacation.[6]

6. Create a Shutdown Ritual to End Your Day

Another simple yet effective way to manage stress is to create a shutdown ritual. Just as it’s important to get your day off to a stress-free, unhurried start, you’ll want to do the same when the day is through. It’s because after spending each day in a reactive mode—dealing with the unexpected—you need to get back into a proactive mode to relax.

Studies have shown that having the perception of control over what you’re going through acts as a buffer against negative stress.[7] In other words, feeling like you can manage even a small chunk of your own time counteracts the stress from the parts of your day when you can’t.

This also means that your shutdown ritual can be whatever you want it to be. You might write in a journal, get in a quick light workout, or prepare your outfit for the following day. As long as you’re the one in complete control over what you’re doing, anything goes. Just make sure that you include the aforementioned review of your daily priorities somewhere in your routine!

7. Set a No-Screens Rule to End Your Day

Even though your shutdown routine is important, there’s one more ritual to include before bedtime that will help you manage stress. Spend the last 30 minutes to an hour before you plan to go to sleep observing a strict no-screens rule. Not only will this give you time to disconnect from the stresses of your day, but it will also allow your body to make a transition into a proper sleep mode.

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The screens we use—smartphones, tablets, laptops—all emit a wavelength of blue light that disrupts our sleep patterns. It’s the same type of light that our bodies recognize as daytime, so seeing it is like telling your brain that it’s the wrong time to be asleep.[8]

By eliminating all sources of this type of light before bedtime, you’ll increase your odds of getting restful, deep sleep. And since getting proper sleep is one of the best ways to manage your stress, this is the perfect way for you to end each day.

Final Thoughts

Although a totally stress-free lifestyle would lend itself to achieving maximum productivity, not many people will ever manage to live that way. So, the next best thing is to work some or all of these daily stress-busting rituals into your day to minimize the inevitable stress instead. Doing so will put you in the best possible position to succeed. And there’s no better antidote for stress than to make the most out of every day no matter what it has to throw at you.

More Tips on How to Manage Stress

Featured photo credit: Kaboompics via kaboompics.com

Reference

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