By Heidi Pozzo
As a leader, it is important to have and maintain a high level of energy. High energy doesn’t mean you are bouncing off the walls. It means that you are engaged, focused and present through the course of your day. You have momentum that gets you through every day, every week. You don’t go home and crash at the end of the day. People notice your energy and either feel lifted up or feel drained. They look to you as a leader to set the tone and direction. And your energy level is critical to being effective. In this article, I’ll outline six ways to supercharge your energy.
Figure out what pumps you up and what drains you
Have you ever thought about how you feel after various interactions and experiences? There are a variety of assessment type tools that can help you get a head start if you haven’t thought about this before. Observation and reflection works too. Some people really enjoy being in a crowd. For others, being in a crowd is draining. Maybe you drive down the street and enjoy the scenery while others get frustrated by the traffic. Meetings, colleagues, events, etc. will elicit a response from you that either gets you excited or drained.
There are two things you can do to stay on the positive side of any situations. First, do more of the things that pump you up and less of those that drain you. And keep paying attention to make sure you are focusing in the right direction. The reality is, you won’t always be able to get around some of the things that drain you. So when you are in those situations, figure out what you can do to shift your mindset to make it a more positive experience. If you are in a large event and would rather be in a smaller event, create that smaller event for yourself in subsets of larger groups. If in meetings or with people you don’t enjoy, try to figure out what you can do to make it a more meaningful experience. Your mindset and finding the right balance of situations will go a long way toward keeping your energy high.
Get enough good sleep at night
How many times have you heard people talk about how little they sleep like a badge of honor? The reality is, adults need seven to nine hours of sleep a night according to the Mayo Clinic. There are many issues that can result from lack of sleep. According to WebMD, these include:
- Impaired Judgment
- Impaired problem solving and reasoning
- Serious health issues
It’s not enough to just get the hours. They must be good hours – not interrupted, and deep sleep. Things like having a nighttime ritual, the right temperature, no lighting and comfortable mattresses and pillows will all have an impact according to the National Sleep Foundation. By getting enough and the right type of sleep, you will have the baseline you need to keep your energy high.
Eat what works for your body
Different foods work for different people. Go to any bookstore and you will find a plethora of books on what to eat or not eat based on the latest study. There are perspectives based on body type, blood type, health issues (heart, autoimmune, etc.) and many others. I’m not a doctor, so would always recommend that you talk to a professional on this topic before making radical changes. For a number of folks and for me, the best result came from working with a naturopath to test for food allergies and intolerances. It is pretty amazing to find out how much food impacts how you feel and your energy level every day.
Water intake also has an impact on mood and cognitive functioning according to the NIH. The impact of physical activity and overall water intake on dehydration and its impacts on performance and cognitive activity vary. It is clear that hydration levels have an impact on how we function, and not always consistently. So, it is important to get enough water to maintain energy levels.
Regular exercise reduces fatigue and increases energy. This topic has extensive research and does not appear to have any controversy regarding the correlation between exercise and a whole host of benefits beyond energy levels. It also impacts overall health and well being.
So the question becomes, what is regular exercise? There is a whole host of perspectives on types and durations, with the typical caveat to see a doctor before you start. The baseline seems to be that it is necessary to have at least 30 minutes of exercise daily. This can be as easy as a walk. More vigorous activities and resistance (weight training) is typically recommended as well. Exercise boosts energy.
Work with your natural rhythms
Energy ebbs and flows throughout the day and can be impacted by when and what you eat, exercise, intensity of interactions, etc. Finding out what works best for you in terms of the types of activities and your energy is important to using your energy wisely. For example, if you need to concentrate on an issue that requires deep thought, the morning may be the best time. Walking around and talking to people to get a pulse of the organization may be best done on Friday after lunch as people are mentally winding down. The point is to work with the natural flow of you energy to operate at your peak.
Surround yourself with positive people
Whether at work or in life, the people around you will have an impact on your outlook and disposition. It seems like a no brainer, positive people will boost you up and negative people will drain your energy. People that are positive and excited about life will naturally attract like people. By looking through a positive lens in life and finding the good, you will attract a positive crowd. They will inspire you and help boost your energy levels.
Call to Action
As a leader, you must be physically and mentally centered and focused to be effective in your position. To do that, you must have and maintain high levels of energy. The six ways to supercharge your energy listed above will help you figure out what works for you. There is enough time in the day to do these things if you make them a priority. And if you do, you will find that you are more focused and effective in your day to day activities. What are you going to do to supercharge your energy?
Copyright 2017 © Heidi Pozzo LLC
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Heidi Pozzo is a strategy and performance improvement consultant. She has helped transform businesses by connecting the people in the company to the strategy, resulting in significant increases in earnings and business value. To find out more about her services,
or call 360-355-7862.