You don’t have to be perpetually tired all the time. Here are some ways to increase your energy levels.
In today’s society, many of us feel like we always need to be on the go. If you’re relaxing, then you aren’t doing enough or you’re missing out.
But this leads to burnout and feeling like you have no energy or motivation to complete even the simplest of tasks. According to this article from Psychology Today, the average American woman reported being tired 3.4 days per week!
That’s about half of the week which is crazy! How do we expect to be our best selves when we’re constantly reaching for caffeine or sneaking in a nap?
I know I definitely have struggled with low energy and a lack of motivation to complete anything on my to-do list. I let the list get bigger and bigger until it’s too overwhelming to even start.
Can anyone relate?
But I knew this had to change. So I’ve been trying out different methods to figure out what works for me.
Because at the end of the day, it will be different for everyone. After all, we all have different goals and aspirations. That’s part of being human. We aren’t all motivated by the same things, which is a good thing!
Here are the areas of my life that I looked into to find the root cause of my low energy. If you evaluate these 10 things, I am sure you’ll find ways to increase your energy levels and be more motivated.
1. Check in on your stress levels
This is the best place to start in my opinion. Stress plays a huge role in how we function. It can even make us feel sick which will definitely bring down our motivation levels.
If you’re too preoccupied and stressed about that project at work or about that fight that you and your partner are constantly having, it is going to be really hard to get things done.
When we are stressed, our bodies literally go into survival mode. As you can imagine, this is a lot on the body. I’m sure you’ve felt the physical effects when you’re stressed.
Your heart rate increases, you begin breathing heavier, you may tense up, and you become more irritable. I know I get a headache when I’m stressed.
Your body is basically going into overdrive which is tiring! It’s working harder than it has to since at the very basic level, you are perceiving this stress as a threat to your life. Which, yes, this may sound dramatic but this can definitely drain your energy levels.
Some stressors are one-time (such as a job interview) and others are more long-term (pressures of work). Both of these types should be addressed when you’re checking in on your stress levels.
Stress is something that is never going to go away but there are ways to cope.
Awareness is the first step in lowering these stress levels.
If you know what is triggering you, then you’ll be able to use coping mechanisms to lower the stress levels and stop your body from working in overdrive.
And if your body doesn’t have to work as hard, your energy levels are going to naturally increase. Motivation goes hand in hand with energy levels. Being too stressed thinking about work isn’t going to motivate you to mow the lawn when you finally get home.
A good way to keep your stress levels at bay is to incorporate self-care into your daily routine.
There are a wide variety of self-care activities that can help you cope with stress including yoga, mediation, journaling, exercising, breathing techniques, coloring, and the list goes on and on.
Once you find your thing that will calm you down then you’ll be able to tackle your stress head-on!
2. How much is on your plate?
This one is directly related to stress levels. While it is important to learn how to cope with stress, you should evaluate and see if there is anything that you can take off your plate.
We only have so much energy each day so if you’re doing too much, that feeling of being energized and your motivation to do what you need to do are going to be gone real fast.
Society has us believing that we constantly have to be on the go. If we aren’t doing anything productive, then we’re being lazy and we’ve wasted a day. But sometimes, a day of watching Netflix is necessary.
Rest is so important and it is something that is often overlooked. It is really hard to be constantly on the move all day long. If you are, no wonder you are exhausted by the time you get home!
There’s this notion that we have to do everything ourselves. We are independent women after all! But asking for help is not always a bad thing.
Delegating is actually a very valuable skill to have.
It’s something that I’ve been working on learning. I don’t like asking for help but sometimes I need it and so do you!
You’re going to be a better friend, partner, daughter, colleague, etc. if you take some things off your plate.
If you don’t want to, you don’t even have to ask someone for help. You can simply order your groceries to be delivered so you don’t have to go to the store or do one of those meal delivery services like Blue Apron or Freshly. (I personally haven’t used a meal delivery service but I am definitely intrigued). Then you can use the time that you would have been at the store or cooking for something else.
I know I’ve said this before but I love my robot vacuum. It saves me a lot of time since I don’t have to vacuum my downstairs.
Delegating things you don’t like to do (within reason) is a great way to increase motivation. Since as humans, we aren’t wired to be motivated to do things we don’t enjoy.
There are ways to take some things off your plate which leads to fewer things on your to-do list. Then you can actually relax and you’ll be able to see your energy levels rise.
As I said, we only have some much energy in our tank and once it’s gone for the day, it’s hard to fill it back up without taking a rest!
3. Cut Toxic People or Things out of your life
This one is a sneaky one if you ask me. It was actually the biggest energy drainer in my life. Between listening to my friends vent and what I was consuming on social media, it was really bringing me down.
A toxic person can take a ton of your energy.
Now, I’m not saying be a bad friend and not be there for your friend. Quite the contrary. We all have that one friend that is just a downer. I have a friend that complains about the same issues every day but will do nothing to change them.
I’m sure you can relate. You spend hours listening to them vent, give them sound advice and they ignore it. It’s honestly frustrating since it just seems like a waste of time.
So while it’s important to be there for a friend when they are truly in need, you aren’t obligated to listen to them vent. If it is sucking your energy and bringing you down, then it is quite honestly toxic.
A true friend will respect your boundaries. If not, then do you really need that person in your life? Especially if you feel they are taking your precious energy from you.
It is important to ensure you are not people-pleasing and living your life for others. Healthy relationships involve disagreements and if you’re bottling up your emotions to avoid confrontation or hurting other’s feelings, that can be a huge energy drainer.
Another thing that can be a big energy drainer is social media.
Now, this can be an easy fix such as realigning what accounts you are following on Instagram to a little harder which is cleaning out your friends’ list on Facebook.
If someone’s post is bringing you down and leading you to have less energy and lose motivation then you don’t need to see it. It’s as simple as that.
Social media portray this perfect life and let’s face it, no one has a perfect life. There aren’t that many people out there that will post about their struggles. Kudos to you if you do but most people don’t.
I mean there are those people that post every detail about their life but usually, that falls under a toxic umbrella if you ask me.
Just remember that you are in charge of what content you’re consuming on social media. If you feel like it’s not giving you value, then don’t consume it.
Another side of social media is that it is a huge time sucker. How many times have you been on Instagram or Tik Tok and a whole hour (or maybe a few) have gone by and you’ve accomplished nothing?
Yeah, same. It happens all the time.
Spending less time on social media could actually free up a lot of time that you thought was filled with other important tasks. It’s funny how sometimes we think we’re so busy but we’re really just being unproductive.
So if you feel like you have no time for your relationships or your hobbies, then looking at how much screen time you have on your phone is a good place to start.
4. Do you feel fulfilled?
I think feeling fulfilled is often overlooked but it’s super important. If you don’t feel like you have a purpose, it’s going to be hard to be motivated. If you have a strong why then you’re able to go back to that and help find motivation on days that you don’t feel like doing something.
It gives you a reason why you’re doing that mundane task.
If you have goals but you don’t feel fulfilled it may be time to re-evaluate your goals. If one of your goals is to wash your face every day but you don’t have a strong why behind it then it’s going to be hard to convince yourself to wash your face when you get home at midnight after a night on the town and all you want to do is sleep.
Mindset is everything
I know there have been times when I don’t feel like I have a purpose or I haven’t found my thing yet. That’s when I took a step back and evaluated how I wanted to live my life.
Because I was done with watching Netflix for hours every single night. All I was doing was working a job that I don’t love and lying on the couch praying for Friday and repeating the cycle week after week.
And that wasn’t living. No wonder I felt like I had no energy. I really wasn’t enjoying any aspect of my life. Other than when I was out with loved ones. But that’s the thing. You can’t rely on others for your own happiness and fulfillment.
It’s up to you to find out what you were meant to do and be.
That’s when I turned to blogging and I am way more motivated now. Sure, I have days when I have low energy and I don’t feel like writing a blog post. But I have more purpose. I feel more fulfilled.
Especially when I hit a milestone in my blogging career which for me, has been a very slow process.
Once you recognize your why then you’re going to be more fulfilled which will lead to more energy and motivation because you have a purpose.
And believe me, that’s an amazing thing.
5. Celebrate wins
Going off this idea of fulfillment, I think it is equally important to celebrate all your wins. Big or small. You should be your biggest cheerleader and give yourself a pat on the back.
I’m going to say it again, mindset is everything.
For example, my blogging journey has been way different than I was expecting or hoping for. I thought I would have way more page views than I do and that my blog would have taken off by now.
And it just hasn’t and that’s okay. Don’t get me wrong, I wish I was getting more page views or making a little extra money from this but right now, I’m not.
At first, I let it get to me. That I wasn’t cut out for this and maybe this isn’t my thing but you know what. It takes time.
The most important thing is that it gives me purpose and it fills my time with something other than Netflix. I’ve also started celebrating my little wins like every time I have ten more viewers or a certain amount of clicks on my Pinterest Pins.
Celebrating all wins can really help you keep on going and keep those energy and motivation levels up.
6. Do something different, out of your routine
Life can get boring if you do the same thing every day even if you love your job. There will be times that you feel like you’re in a rut.
If you feel like you have low energy and no motivation, you will keep feeling this way until you change something. If you don’t change something in your life, how do you expect things to change? That’s literally the definition of insanity.
It’s as simple as that. How can you expect something different to happen when you keep running through the same old motions?
That’s why it’s important to switch it up every once in a while and do something outside your routine. This doesn’t have to be anything crazy. Even small changes will amount to big changes in your life.
Just think about it, if you lost 0.1 pounds every day for a whole year, you would lose 36.5 pounds. Just imagine that!
I get that it can be hard to switch up a daily routine. You have to go to work to get paid after all and brushing your teeth should be involved in your morning routine but it can be as simple as planning a vacation.
It can even be a day trip or a weekend getaway. Something that gets you away from normal life.
Another fun way to do this is to create a bucket list and actually do the things on that list. It’ll be rewarding to be able to cross things off that bucket list and then you are creating memories that will last a lifetime.
It adds excitement to your life that’ll translate to more energy and more motivation to be able to go on your next adventure.
You probably knew I was going to throw exercise into the mix. Exercise provides so many benefits including an increase in energy.
As humans, we aren’t meant to be as sedentary as modern society has made us. We are meant to move so something as simple as walking can increase your energy.
You should try to move for 30 minutes at least 5 times a week but it is beneficial to at least get up and walk around every single day. I have a whole blog post on all the benefits of walking. Everyone should be getting up and walking every day!
That’s why smartwatches encourage wearers to stand up every hour. It does wonders for your body.
If you are feeling tired, you may benefit more from a quick walk versus a quick nap. Trust me, I’ve tried both, and walking does make me feel more alert (no matter how tempting a nap is).
The one thing about exercising is consistency. To see the results you are craving, you have to be consistent with working out. Otherwise, your energy levels aren’t going to change too much.
So I get that if you lack motivation, it may seem daunting to add exercise to the mix. That’s why it’s so important to find something you enjoy.
It can even be a double winner and you can do something like Yoga or Tai Chi and then you’re exercising and working on controlling your stress levels at the same time.
8. Are you sleeping too much?
This may sound contradictory but you can feel more tired and have less energy if you sleep too much. I know I can definitely relate. I definitely function way better on 7 hours of sleep versus 10 hours of sleep. If I sleep for 10 hours, I feel like I could sleep all day.
But beyond sleeping too much, the quality of sleep also matters. Harvard Health suggests sleeping for four hours and seeing how you feel. Did you sleep soundly the whole time? Then add 30 minutes until you wake up during the cycle. Then assess why you woke up.
I think 4 hours is a little nuts especially since the recommended amount of hours of sleep is 7 hours for an adult but it’s worth a shot if your energy levels are way down.
It’s supposed to be a baseline anyways so you can learn how little sleep you need in order to survive but I wouldn’t recommend staying at 4 hours of sleep a night.
Lack of sleep can affect:
- your mood
- how well you remember things
- your cognitive performance
- weight (can lead to weight gain)
- high blood pressure
- immunity (decrease in immunity)
So sleep is SUPER important. If you aren’t sleeping enough, it only makes sense that you aren’t going to have the energy to go about your daily routine.
9. Check your nutrition
I know, say it isn’t so but it’s true. Nutrition is so important. After all, it’s the way you’re fueling your body. You can’t expect your body to function well if all you are feeding it is fried food and sugar.
This is a hard truth for me too since I love french fries. I could eat them every day but if I do, I feel like crap. On the flip side, if I eat a more nutritious diet, I feel much better. I can definitely feel the difference in my energy levels.
Our bodies need certain nutrients to perform their best. These are four things you should check if you’re feeling tired all the time:
- Your water intake
- How much caffeine you’re consuming
- How much alcohol you’re drinking
- The amount of sugar and fried food you’re eating
Did you know that alcohol literally makes you tired? You probably don’t realize this when you’re out on the town at night but that’s why day drinking is so exhausting.
These four things aren’t groundbreaking. We all know we should be doing these things and it does affect your mood and energy levels as well as what is on the scale.
10. Talk it out
Sometimes, talking to a friend about what’s troubling you could be the medicine you need to feel motivated again and get your energy back.
But on a more serious note, if you have no motivation and you feel tired all the time, this could be a sign that you are suffering from depression. So if you tried some of the other tactics I mentioned earlier and still feel hopeless, please talk to someone. Even if you don’t want to try some of the other tactics and just seek help, please do.
You don’t have to have depression to talk to a therapist. It can help anyone. Honestly, everyone should probably go to therapy.
Depression can be treatable if you ask for help.
I’m not a doctor or a therapist so the things I suggest in this blog post are just things I do when my energy levels are low and I have no motivation. A therapist or doctor is going to be able to dive deeper into these things if you aren’t feeling your best.
Only you can tell what is going on in your head so it’s up to you to evaluate and decide if you need more serious help than just taking some things off your plate.
There are so many resources out there if you’re suffering from depression but here is one to check out.
Just remember, you are worthy and life isn’t hopeless.
If you’ve lost your motivation then follow these tactics to try to get back on track. You only get one life so it’s worth a shot. Everyone deserves to be happy.
And there you have it.
These are the techniques I’ve used to bring up my energy levels and live a more motivated life. Some of these fixes are relatively easy as long as you commit to them. It basically comes down to living a healthy lifestyle.
Since a healthy lifestyle is listening to your body, it only makes sense that this would help us feel more energized.
Let me know in the comments below what you do to stay energized in your daily routine. What do you do when you feel like you’re in a rut.
Until Next time,
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