Have you ever experienced that groggy mid-day slump, unsure how you’re going to get through the remaining hours in your day? Your energy levels are shot, and you need a quick pick me up if you’re going to continue to be productive and focused. We’ve all been there, right? Whether you work in an office all day or find yourself chasing after toddlers at home, you NEED energy if you’re going to be functioning at your absolute best. Day to day life can be full of ups and downs, stressful moments and crazy chaos that will easily take control and have a huge impact on your mood, your productivity and your health.
Higher energy levels will allow you to manage all this “life” in a better, more streamlined way. Not only that, you’ll tend to be a happier, more positive person in the long run. How do you make sure your energy levels are top notch, when you rarely have a moment to breathe during the day? You’re in luck! There are several simple ways to give yourself that much needed pick me up, even on the busiest of days.
Here are some simple, quick ways to boost your energy when you lack time, patience and money.
Laughter is the Best Medicine
One of the easiest (and cheapest) ways to boost your energy is to give yourself permission to laugh. Laughter is truly the best medicine when it comes to lightening the mood and creating a happier, more positive vibe in your life. Not only that, your energy levels will skyrocket after a good chuckle or two. If you’ve ever noticed, children find it super easy to work laughter into their life. As adults, we become serious and responsible and meh. Where is the fun in that? Start trying to find ways to work laughter into your day – watch some funny animal videos on YouTube, look up funny jokes or recount a past memory that made you LOL to someone you know. Allow yourself to do a full on, belly laugh at least once a day. By adding more laughter into your life, you’ll be amazed at how much more energy you have to make it through all of the “not-so-laughable” moments.
Connect with Others
As humans, we need connection to thrive in all areas of our life, including how much energy we have on a daily basis. Going it alone, although sometimes easier, will not prove wise when it comes to maintaining healthy energy levels as well as a happy, positive outlook. No matter how much of an introvert you are, you still need meaningful connections to make you feel at your absolute best. Whether you’re connecting with your own family, making new friends, or spending time with old ones, it’s super important to create a time and space to build these relationships. The great thing is, it doesn’t take a ton of time, effort or money.
In fact, technology has made it super easy to connect, even when you can’t physically be together. Try video chatting an old friend or a grandparent or start a weekly zoom call with a group of mom friends where you briefly get to unwind from the chaos of daily life. You can always go back to the old way of doing things and send a handwritten note or card to someone you haven’t talked to in a while, or a simple phone call/text can do the trick as well. Connecting with others on a regular basis will keep your energy levels high and work wonders on your mental, physical and emotional well-being.
A perfect way to give yourself a quick energy boost is to keep a glass of water handy all day long. Staying hydrated is so important to your overall health and can be a game changer when it comes to how productive and energetic you feel throughout the day. Even the slightest dehydration can cause you to feel fatigued so it’s best to avoid going in that direction. Keep a water bottle with you at all times so you can fill it up on the go – it will make it a little easier to avoid opting for that sugary, caffeine induced fix when you have another option at your fingertips.
If drinking water isn’t second nature for you, there are a few things you can do to make it more of a habit. Try using a tracking app to keep up with how many glasses you have each day. Start having water with every meal or increase the amount of water-rich foods you eat – watermelon, cucumber and zucchini are a great place to start! Put some lemon or strawberries in your water and give it that flavor-filled boost. Adding more water to your diet is a super simple way to boost your energy and put yourself on the path to better, overall health.
Get Outside Breath Fresh Air
When you’re feeling drained, a great way to give yourself an energy boost is to get outside and soak up some fresh air and vitamin D. When you’re short on time, spending a few moments in the great outdoors can reenergize you and make you feel much more awake and alive. The great thing is, you don’t have to have a wooded area and a bunch of hiking trails to get the true benefit of nature. Simply step outside your back door or head to a nearby park for 15-20 minutes to immerse yourself in the world’s natural beauty. When you get a daily dose of nature, you’ll not only feel more productive and focused, but you’ll notice your stress levels decreasing as well. Start making it a priority to step outside for a little bit each day and let the world’s natural healing powers go to work. Your physical, mental and emotional health will thank you in the long run.
Nutrition plays a vital role in how much energy you have throughout your day. There is nothing that can drain you faster than a diet full of empty calories and zero nutritional value, yet this is what many people live on to “get them through” the day. Processed foods, sugary drinks and too many drive through options have gotten in the way of clean eating and made it way too easy to fall prey to bad habits and an unhealthy lifestyle. If you want to give yourself a natural energy boost, start filling your plate with more fruits and veggies instead of opting for fast food and processed everything.
Meal planning is key when it comes to healthy nutrition because there’s less temptation to grab something unhealthy on the go. Start making your lunches ahead of time or opt for a home cooked meal instead of ordering pizza. Simple tweaks to some of your daily habits will work wonders on your overall health and the amount of energy you feel. By giving your body the right kind of fuel, you’ll be able to function at your absolute best, no matter how crazy your day gets.
Get More Sleep
Lack of sleep can have a big impact on the energy you feel throughout your day, yet it’s not high on the priority list for many people. Sleep is one of those things that easily takes second place to work deadlines, after school activities and those ever so important Netflix binges. However, by not allowing your body the chance to properly recharge overnight, you risk fatigue and exhaustion as the day goes on. Not to mention, your mood won’t be an overly happy one either.
If your sleep schedule has been somewhat of a coin flip, start creating a nighttime routine that works for you. Try winding down an hour or two before you would normally crash – read a book, take a warm bubble bath or try a 5-minute meditation. Leave the tv off, put your phone down for once and start going to bed at the same time each night. You’ll feel much more productive, focused and on top of your game when you allow your body the sleep it needs to recharge for the day ahead.
Move Your Body
The perfect time to get your heart pumping and your body moving is when you are in desperate need of an afternoon pick me up. This alone can help boost you up and give you the energy you need to get through the rest of your day. The best part is, you don’t have to commit to an hour-long workout or join an expensive gym. Simply get up from your desk or the couch and get your feet moving. Take a quick walk around the block or do some quick stretches in your cubicle. Take the stairs instead of the elevator or opt for the parking space farthest away from the building. If you’re at home, turn up the tunes and show off your best dance moves in the privacy of your kitchen. You will be amazed at how much more energetic you feel when you include a little simple exercise into your daily routine.
Read our interview with Olivia who created Liberate, the first-ever mental wellness studio with group classes designed to expand and empower you.
Kick the Habit
Sometimes the best way to increase your energy is to know what NOT to do. Over time, it’s easy to allow bad habits to creep in and have an impact on your overall health including how focused and energetic you are over the course of the day. Daily habits like smoking and drinking alcohol can put a huge damper on your productivity and cause you to feel tired and worn down. There’s a popular belief that alcohol helps you sleep better because it makes you drowsy, however, it can actually interfere with how much rest you get each night. When you don’t get enough sleep (see #6), you’re not going to function at 100%. Similarly, over time smoking can reduce the amount of oxygen your body gets and cause your energy levels to plummet without much effort. The moral of the story? Take note of those bad habits that deplete your energy and start making strides to eliminate them from your life once and for all.
Make Time For Self-Care
One thing that can really take a toll on your energy levels is not making enough time for self-care. A big misconception is that self-care has to cost a ton of time and money, neither or which is true. You can easily work self-care into any schedule by simply setting aside a short amount of time for YOU on a daily/weekly basis. Most people get so busy with the daily chaos of life that they rarely make time for anything self-care related. Don’t let yourself fall into that trap. Start by deciding on day/time that works for you where you can focus strictly on yourself. It could be one day a week for 30 minutes or 7 days a week for 10 minutes each day.
No matter what you decide, just make it a schedule you can stick with. The best part is, you don’t have to treat yourself to an expensive spa day (unless of course, that’s your thing). Make time to read that book you’ve been wanting to dig into or relax in a nice, warm bubble bath. Give yourself a DIY manicure or watch some funny YouTube videos that make you belly laugh. When you start making time for yourself, you’ll find that you have so much more energy to help you through the busy rush of daily life.
Related: Download this self love journal.
Do Some Stretches
When your energy levels start bottoming out, try adding a stretch break to your daily routine. Stretching is a great way to wake yourself up and give you that much needed boost to get you through the rest of the day. Coupled with deep breathing, stretching can also assist in better flexibility, circulation and posture. The best part is, stretches take little to no time to complete and can be done at any part of day – morning, noon or night.
From a full body stretch to the downward facing dog to a crescent lunge, there is no limit to the variety of stretches you can work into your day. Set aside 5-10 minutes a day and add one or two stretches into your routine. You can always build up from there if you choose but keep it simple in the beginning and just be consistent. As you begin to make stretching part of your normal routine, you’ll be amazed at how your energy levels skyrocket.
Even if you lack time, patience and money, low energy isn’t something you have to settle for. You can easily start to boost your energy with a few of these tips. The key is to become aware of the things that zap your energy the most. Once you do this, you can start to build habits that will increase your energy so you’re ready to take on anything that comes your way. From stepping outside to enjoy some vitamin D to belly laughing with a good friend to taking a mid-day stretch break, there are so many ways to give yourself a much needed pick me up that will put you on the path towards better health and high energy in no time.
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