Energy for a Purposeful 2022
We all need energy to do the things that we want to do. Learn about ways to support your energy levels to live on purpose, in balance, with “SPACE.”
Have you found yourself setting resolutions, goals, or intentions for what you want in the new year? A new year marks a new start to live purposefully (look to my blog “Envision Your 2021” to learn about vision boards as a way to help you do that!) Living with purpose also means you need energy to do all of the things you want to accomplish so you can stick to those resolutions, goals and intentions!
Through research, we know there are ways you can increase your daily energy levels.
This makes you more likely to do what you already want to do.
The list comes from Victor Strecher's book, “Life on Purpose.”
An easy way to remember this list is SPACE: sleep, presence, activity, creativity and eating.
S-sleep. Research shows that proper sleep for your body can increase energy and willpower, support a better immune system and a healthier brain. A lack of sleep can lead to health problems, lost time at work, and not being able to focus on your work or tasks at hand. The amount of sleep we need varies, normally between 7 and 9 hours every 24 hours.
P-presence. Have you ever had the experience of thinking so much about what happened (the past) or what might possibly happen (the future) that you drove to the store or work without remembering how you got there? It takes a lot of energy for your brain to do these kinds of tasks! Staying present, or being with what is going on right now, can help you increase your energy levels. It also can have a calming effect, especially if you are thinking about a stressful event of the past or trying to predict the future. Meditation can be one way to practice presence.
A-activity. Move your body in what ever way feels good to you. Some like the gym, others like walking outside, others like dancing in their living room. It really doesn't matter how you move your body, so long as you enjoy the activity and that you can do it safely. Start slow and with low intensity, and work your way up.
C-creativity. While researchers are still working out how artistic expression does this, studies have shown that artistic expression improves the immune system and reduces stress, fatigue and pain. Both creating and appreciating can be beneficial. You might consider paintings, music, movies, or even an activity like baking as a creative process! You can access creativity every day in your work or at home by finding new ways to complete a task or project, or by finding new uses for old items or by trying something new (a new radio station, ingredient, calling someone you haven't talked to in a long time, etc.)
E-eating. This is your body's fuel! How much, what and when you eat all play a part in how much energy you have at a given time. Finding your “right balance” will take some awareness and listening to your body's signals of what it needs—too much food or not enough food all play into your energy levels. It can even influence your willpower. If your body isn't properly nourished, you'll start getting cravings until you get some food; eating regularly can help you avoid cravings. Use smaller plates, eat slower, and go back for more food after giving yourself time to really tune in and see if more food is what you need are all ways to support your "right balance."
After reading the SPACE list, does one way to increase your energy feel like it would be important to focus on right now?
Why would it be important to make a change in this area?
What is one small, easy change you could make in this area?
Get curious and creative, and find the energy that will bring you what you are looking for this year!
Reference: Strecher, V. J. (2016). Life on purpose: How living for what matters most changes everything. Harper One.
Photo credit: Freerange Stock