It’s fall and we’re into the last few months of 2013... already! Some of us are mindful of what remains to be done before the end of the year e.g. unattained goals, loose ends left untied, projects half-finished, commitments made, demands to be met, unresolved problems, deadlines looming… so much to get done. That’s not to mention the additional workload and social activity that comes with the festive season. Is it any wonder these last few months of the year can leave us feeling drained, overwhelmed and burnt out?
Here are 10 ideas to maintain your energy levels. See which ones might work for you and look for opportunities to use them:
• Focus on positive thoughts and actions. Every day, record three successes, regardless of how small you feel they were, and three things for which you are grateful.
• Build some “keep-free” time into your schedule and safeguard it. This is time to tidy up, catch up or simply STOP and be. Do this on a daily or weekly basis.
• Allow weekly thinking time in a quiet space — anywhere from 15 minutes to half an hour. Jot down your thoughts as they surface, organize them as needs be.
• Plan to arrive five minutes early for meetings and appointments. Avoid the last-minute rush and pressure. You can use the time to review your day, relax, build relationships, etc.
• Make time for energy boosters — whatever you enjoy (playing an instrument, exercising, learning, giving). Choose an activity that will fully engage you.
• Aim for progress rather than perfection. Give yourself permission to let go of perfection.
• Clear any clutter in your work or home space that drains your energy. Start small to make it manageable. Set yourself 15-20 minutes, after which time you can either continue or stop (and come back to it on another occasion).
• Connect with someone who matters to you, ideally someone who lifts your energy level. It might only be a quick telephone call or exchange via social media. Make it short and timely.
• Set some goals — we feel better when we are making progress towards clear goals, which are worthwhile for us.
• Ask for help in any area where you are feeling stuck or lacking in progress. By involving others, and even simply asking for help, you will feel the benefits of increased energy.
As we navigate through the last quarter of 2013, pay more conscious attention to the activities that reduce your energy levels and those that increase it. You may begin to notice how many things affect you that you were previously ignoring.
Hazel Morley is principal of Think Smart: Training and Coaching with Change in Mind. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.