Monday, 30 April 2012

More Energy Everyday – 15 Simple Steps to a Healthier, Happier You

It’s late afternoon, you still have tons to accomplish, yet you can’t keep your eyes open.  Your focus is gone, and all you can think about is how you will possibly get through the rest of the day.  When you do get home, you’re too tired to enjoy your family, cranky and irritable, and all you want is to have some dinner and collapse in front of the TV.  Sound familiar?
You are not alone.  So many friends of mine tell me the one thing they really want is more energy! Amazingly, small changes in your daily habits can produce big changes in how you feel. Try on some of the suggestions below, and see if you don’t begin feeling more alive, productive and energized throughout your day.
Action Steps to Energize Your Days
1. Eat often and eat light.  Food is fuel for the body.  Without it, we just don’t function well.  Eat every 2 1/2 to 3 hours, and never go more than 4 hours without eating. This will keep your blood-sugar levels even, and give you the constant fuel needed to get through your day.

2.  Never skip breakfast. When you awake, you come off a 10-12 hour fast. All foods convert to glucose, and glucose equals energy. Give your brain and your body the fuel it needs to begin the day with energy and focus.

3.  Have a mixture of complex carbohydrates, lean protein and a small amount of healthy fat at every meal and snack.

4.  Minimize simple sugars to avoid spikes in your blood glucose that are followed by an energy crash. If you must have a sugary snack, eat a small amount of protein with it.

5.  Drink water and no-sugar beverages all day. Energy slumps are often the result of dehydration. Your urine should be light or pale yellow. Anything darker means your not getting enough fluids.

6.  When working at your desk, take a break every 90-120 minutes. Get up, walk around, take a snack, get some fresh air, or call a friend. Even five minutes will bring you back to your task feeling refreshed and energized.

7.  Get at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep every night, preferably at the same time, to keep you feeling rested and alert.

8.  Exercise. It seems like the last thing you would want to do when feeling exhausted and drained. However, energy begets energy. Even 10 minutes of brisk walking will refresh you and make you feel more awake.

9.  Switch your exercise routine to mid-afternoon when energy levels are most likely to plummet.

10.  Practice de
ep breathing. When we are rushed and stressed, often we breath fast and shallow, and we don’t even know it. Taking a few minutes to relax your body and take a few long, deep breaths, will refuel your cells with oxygen, leaving you feeling more refreshed.

11.  Try a power nap. Set your alarm and don’t sleep for more than 20 to 30 minutes or it might interfere with the quality of you evening sleep.

12.  Avoid toxic relationships as much as possible. If you notice whenever you spend time with a particular friend or colleague you leave feeling exhausted, it’s a sure sign that they are an energy drainer.

13.  Commit to a time and finally complete that big project that’s been on your to do list. If it’s been constantly nagging at the back of your mind, getting it finished will release an enormous amount of energy.

14.  Stop multitasking. Stay completely engaged until one job is complete and then move on to the next.

15.  Build in some down time every day. Sitting in silence, meditating, journaling, praying or enjoying nature are all powerful ways to refresh and recharge your batteries.

It’s hard to change our habits, but when we take small steps, one at a time, we reach success. Choose one or two tips, and incorporate them into your routine every week. Within a couple of months, you should notice a huge difference in how you feel.  Everyday holds opportunities to love, learn, and enjoy life with those around you. Don’t be too exhausted to notice!

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