Energy is highly valued in our society. It is essential to our well-being and lives. People buy energy drinks, energy pills, and even drink 2 cups of coffee before work just to have more energy. It's sought after because not only is it associated with vitality and youth, but because we need it to reach our goals! One-pointedness and tunnel-vision are often associated with people who have accomplished great feats in life. If you want to accomplish your goals quickly, you need as much energy as possible directed towards them. So as important as energy is to humans, why are most humans so quick to use up their energy on just about anything?? Most people voice a desire to have more energy, but at the same time are quick to scatter their energy around and throw it away.
The following tips are designed to help you eliminate things in your life that zap your energy, so you can have the energy you need to reach your goals, enjoy more vitality and youthfulness, and actually have the energy to enjoy every moment of your life.
1. STOP JUDGING OTHERS.
When you judge someone your energy is being tied up and used up in negativity and in having negative thoughts, instead of being used in creating, increasing prosperity, or improving the quality of your life. So you're the one who ends up reaping the negative effects rather than the person you are judging. Whatever you focus on grows, so when you focus on the negative, that's what will increase in your life. To help you quit judging, remember that this is YOUR life and YOU are creating it. If you don't like something, why are you bringing it into your personal life by focusing on it and giving it your attention? When you're having thoughts about it, you're now giving it a place to live in your head. You just made it part of your life. If something doesn't resonate with you, just choose to not be interested in it and save your energy for the things that DO resonate with you.
2. STOP WORRYING ABOUT WHAT OTHERS THINK OF YOU.
What other people think about you is really none of your business. Because it's never really about you. Other people's opinions about you are largely based on THEIR beliefs, issues, experiences, and emotions. It has little to do with you to begin with, so spending your energy worrying about what others think or trying to prove yourself to others is silly. Other people's thoughts about you only carry as much power as you give them. If you don't give them power, they have no effect on you. So stop using your energy to empower the negative thoughts of others. In truth, this is YOUR life for YOU to enjoy, so save your energy for enjoying life instead.
3. DROP THE WORRY HABIT.
A ridiculous amount of energy is wasted on worrying. Worrying never helps anyone. On top of tying up your energy so you can't quickly direct it towards finding a solution or formulating a plan of action, your energy is actually being used to energize the negative and help THAT grow. As Dr. Michael Beckwith says, "Anxiety is just you projecting your fears into the future, and worrying is emotionally rehearsing the VERY THING you DON'T want to see happen." So now you're emotionally living it multiple times, though it might never even happen. Kind of crazy, right? So drop the worry habit. Remind yourself that you are actually harming yourself when you worry because you are putting energy behind what you don't want to see happen. Same goes for worrying about others. When you worry about them you are visualizing them as lacking. When someone tells me they're worried about me, I'm the first to say, "Please don't! Don't do me that disservice! Put that energy into thinking about me being happy, successful and knowing what to do instead!" My grandmother is finally cooperating with me and no longer worrying about me every time I jump on a flight. :-D Don't do yourself or your loved ones the disservice of worrying about them, and conserve your energy in the process.
4. LET GO OF THE PAST.
People spend so much energy on re-living the past in their own heads. That same energy could be used to come up with the next great invention, create an artistic masterpiece, or come up with the way to bring world peace. Imagine what brilliant ideas you could come up with and create if you saved all the energy you spend on re-playing your past, regretting your past, worrying about your past, and instead aimed it all towards your next great plan? Now, don't go back and regret the fact you could have been a millionaire by now! The key is to realize that the most important moment is NOW. Who cares about what you did in your past?? It's done. You can't time travel to change it. Instead change your present, which you DO still have the time and power to change. Harness the amount of energy you usually spend re-living things that have already happened, and you will have a lot more energy to fuel your current projects.
5. LET GO OF ANGER AND GRUDGES.
It takes a lot of energy to be angry, to hold a grudge, and to not forgive. While the person may not even remember you or even care that you are mad at them, and is therefore unaffected by your anger, you're the one who is being affected. It takes energy to get all red and raise your voice. It takes energy to remember you are mad, to permanently hold that emotion stored somewhere in your mind so that you can re-experience the anger at any given time- precious energy that could be going towards other things. So forgive and take back your energy. Forgiving doesn't mean that you now have to hang out with the person. It just means you are letting go of the anger and setting yourself free. You are making a choice to no longer be tied to that person and to take back your energy and the power they have over you. When you are angry at someone, they are holding power over your emotions, life, and physical health (anger can kill you- high blood pressure and strokes). That is way too much power to give to someone you don't even like. So forgive, and take back your power and energy.
6. STOP ARGUING YOUR POINT OF VIEW TO ANYONE WHO IS BREATHING.
How much energy do you waste on silly arguments? Always remember that wisdom is very relative. You may currently believe what you are arguing is right, but remember that two years from now you might think just the opposite. There are things you are sure you won't change your mind about, but think back to other things you've had strong convictions about when younger... If you are honest, there are things you felt strongly about and have since changed your mind. That's part of growing up. If you haven't changed your mind about any beliefs, then you are in trouble because that means you aren't growing. Keep all of this in mind when deciding how much energy to expend on random arguments where you are trying to impose your viewpoint (and by the way, trying to impose your point of view on others is a sign that your ego is running your life). It's a sign of maturity to realize that generally more than one point of view is right, and that as you grow up your point of view is sure to change and expand. So choose your battles wisely. It is said that you never really win an argument because even if you win, the other person is now upset they lost. Even though you proved your point, the other person is now angry with you, so what did you really win? A popular strategy is to stop before, or in the middle of an argument, and ask yourself, "Would I rather be right or happy?" If your answer is happy, then stop. Whether the other person believes the sky is blue or not is really not going to affect your life. However, the energy you just spent trying to prove them wrong could have gone to more worthwhile pursuits.
Happy growth and change! Some of these steps may be a little challenging for some, but they are definitely worth mastering, and will change your life. In future entries I intend to post exercises for each of the steps above.