"Human beings are creatures of habit." We have all heard the phrase maybe too many times. The phrase, subsequently, reshaped itself into a habit of making excuses for never changing things that impede our personal growth. It's just who we are, isn't it? Are we innately hardwired for self-imposed negligence? Are we just being lazy? Or is the fear of tangible change that paralyzes us? We are, after all, only creatures of habit. We could indulge in lengthy monologues about how complex, fragile, and still fairly unexplored human nature is - but we're not going to. Not today. Instead, let's unravel what's right in front of us: our bad habits and a long-overdue Rennaisance. Let's take a good look at six daily habits that are draining your energy and how to break the vicious cycle. The ship is changing course, starting today. Fellow creatures, all aboard.
Here are the 6 Daily Habits That Are Draining Your Energy...
As we get older, the pending truth slowly approaches the station (a lot of alternative transportation metaphors today, my apologies): our energy is, indeed, finite. Let's do a synonym blitzkrieg: fatigue, tiredness, weariness, lethargy, depression, exhaustion, enervation, lassitude, impotence, inertia. Brilliant, isn't it? The human mind is a linguistic genius when asked to describe concepts of abstract feelings. Yet again, it remains perplexed when asked to precisely pinpoint the actual culprit, let alone act upon it. By improving our emotional intelligence, we supply ourselves with tools that can guide us toward healthier lives. So, bad habits, show yourselves!
1. Sleep Deprivation
Sleeping 7-9 hours a day is a luxury very few can afford. The "I simply don't have the time" statement presents itself as a ubiquitous truth. But, is it? Let's not skip the part where we voluntarily numb ourselves after working long hours with Netflix and other available media. Then there's rumination. It usually kicks in the moment we start getting ready for bed: mental list checking, planning, losing meaning, regaining meaning, but, alas, with a coat of loneliness. And it's 3 A.M. A couple of hours of sleep, and it's rise-and-shine, beautiful! Time to relive yesterday. The key to breaking bad habits is consistency. Sleep deprivation causes hunger attacks, reduced focus, mood swings, and fatigue. Listen to your physiological needs. Sleep is the most potent source of our energy.
2. People-Pleasing Mechanism
This coping mechanism is associated with a personality trait called "sociotropy," a distinct behavior portrayed through being overly concerned with pleasing others and constantly obtaining their approval. As we can imagine, it does wonders to our negative self-image, leaving us feeling perpetually unworthy and energetically drained. By leading a life others expected from us, we agree to board the express train to Misery Town. Being genuinely kind and accommodating are virtues to admire, but we should learn to distinguish our benevolence from neglecting personal needs. Saying no to any kind of exploitation will inevitably lead to higher levels of self-respect and self-esteem.
3. Harboring the Negative Spectrum
Since we're talking about daily habits that are draining your energy, what are your thoughts on accumulation? It's rarely a friend. High-intensity emotions on the negative spectrum lead to mental, emotional, and physical fatigue. Nothing overwhelms nor overpowers a human being more than a tidal wave of anger and resentment. Holding a grudge is usually a consequence of our past hurt, extending its looming shadow to the present day. Indulging in this self-harming act never gets us closer to a viable solution, and it certainly doesn't take the bad feelings away. Learning to let go and forgive requires time. Nevertheless, it's the only healthy way to restore your positive energy and balance.
4. Social Media Consumption
Oh, the OCD scrolling hours. We are all aware of the effects social media has on our self-image; it is far from pretty. Any avid user falls victim to involuntary, and sometimes even subconscious, comparison. Our friends, coworkers, acquaintances, or worse - random strangers and their picture-perfect portraits become a natural vessel for self-loathing and ego despair. We leave the given platform bruised, discouraged, drained, and filled with self-disgust and auto-criticism. Replace your bad habit with a healthy one. Why not try some physical activity instead? Exercise fights off anxiety and successfully restores our energy levels.
5. Poor Diet
We are what we eat, no? Our diet directly impacts our mood, productivity, and, of course, our precious energy levels. Junk food takes away from our energy and is also quite masterful when it comes to hormonal disharmony. Still, we choose the line of least resistance, as it's proven to be time-effective, day in, day out. Without fault. The ugly (and overlooked) truth is that processed foods (trans fat, sugar, carbs, all that jazz) literally drain our physical energy, often leaving us feeling inexplicably tired and downright exhausted. How many times have we taken a nap right after a hearty snack? Lean protein, greens, and healthy fats will reboot your whole body, turning it into a pure power machine.
6. Toxic Relationships
We have all been there. Malicious people aren't that hard to find. In fact, you can stay put; they'll come to you. Out of respect for other people's feelings (and partially due to the people-pleasing trait), we often find ourselves involved in someone else's drama. And like in any drama, there are no innocent bystanders. Spending precious energy on pretentious, unkind, toxic people who gossip and plot out of sheer vanity is an act of self-neglect and masochism. It's time to cut ties and surround ourselves with positive people who can appreciate a true friendship. Learning to let go of toxicity is a great exercise for boosting our mental health.
Now that you've met and sat down with these 6 daily habits that are draining your energy, it's time to do the work. We may be creatures of habit, but we're also exquisitely capable of self-love acts. Don't waste another minute. Give yourself the care you truly deserve.