Carolyne Myss, author of Anatomy of Spirit discusses your body as an energy field. She says that your biography, the story of your life, is your biology. According to Myss, you create an energetic connection with each interaction that you have with your environment.
The energy of events registers in your body as body memory. She explains that incomplete work or unfinished business saps your energy field and physically depletes your body from energy or prana.
Myss explains it metaphorically as cords of energy that run from your body to every interaction that you experience. When activities are complete the connection remains but no energy is flowing into the cord.
Incomplete Activities are like parasites that slowly suck your energy.
When you have lots of cords tied up in the past or the future, there is little energy available for the present.
You know that you can increase your energy by doing certain things (eat and sleep well, exercise). What you are normally less aware of is that your energy can be drained by the actions that you do not take.
The following are examples of incomplete tasks that drain your energy.
- Avoiding important conversations – There’s something you want to tell your boss but, you haven’t mustered the strength to say it.
- Putting off work – Sometimes this is small items that don’t seem worthy of the time like unsubscribing from email lists. Other times it is activities that are going to take more of your time but will make things much easier in the long run like up dating computer skills or revising filing systems.
- Ignoring clutter – When your office is a huge conglomeration of piles that need to be filed, your car is a mess or your house is full of stuff that never gets used.
- Neglecting your health – Putting off going to the doctor about minor recurring issues that could be precursors to something bigger, failing to get regular exercise or choosing unhealthy convenience foods.
You know, procrastination. These things drain our energy.
How to Unplug Energy Drainers
Make plans to deal with it.
In order to increase our energy, Myss recommends making plans to deal with each item completely. It’s like shutting off the breakers that lead to cords attached to the past or the future and allowing the associated energy to be rerouted into the present.
When you unplug from the past and future, you have more energy to plug into the present – to be fully engaged and mindful of what we are doing in the current moment.
Write it down.
Get a piece of paper and put two columns on it – one column for home and one column for work. Sit down and think about all of the things that zap your energy in both arenas of your life.
You might want to keep the list nearby for a couple of days so that you can add to it as you go about your daily life. Caution – there may be many “little” items that you think are unworthy of the list. Don’t fool yourself – either do it or write it down.
Identify the Cost.
When your lists are complete look them over and identify what each item is costing you.
Some of the costs may include frustration, delayed progress, emotional stress, and denied gratification. Whatever the cost is, decide if putting up with it and bearing the energy drain is really worth it.
Notice what you are willing to put up with and figure out what value these situations hold for you. What is the benefit? You may decide that some of the benefits outweigh the costs. Therefore, some items may just stay on your list.
If you are not ready to deal with something because you have some emotional work to do first, then keep the item on the list for later and add a task related to getting the emotional work done now.
Prioritize what is left on your list and get at it!
Choose at least 3 energy drainers that you want to deal with in the next few days. Sit down with your calendar and develop a strategy for eliminating them – when, how and who can help – be creative (if you don’t use a calendar you’re not off the hook – you can do this mentally).
When you complete the first three, move on to the next items.
Give yourself a completion date for eliminating the entire list and write it on your calendar.
Getting yourself to follow through to completion will require consistent effort. Being aware of the cost of each energy drainer will provide inspiration to take action.
But just in case, here’s two more ways to create motivation:
- Create accountability. Find someone you respect and tell them your plan; and
- Plan other events around it. Make it important. For example: Tell your boss that you will be spending Thursday afternoon organizing your files or, invite people over on Friday evening if you have scheduled house cleaning on Friday afternoon.
Commit to taking the time to remove energy drainers from your life. Initially you may suspect that getting rid of energy drainers will require more energy than you have.
Trust that each time you unplug from some event that is consuming your energy in a peripheral manner, you will discover more energy front and center.
Take note of the surge of energy that you feel as you complete tasks. Allow your self to feel good about getting things done.
Use the completion energy to do the things that you really want to do – i.e. playing with your children or enjoying the outdoors. When you take control of the things that drain you, you will have more energy to do the things you love and life will naturally be more fulfilling.
Looking for more ways to make life more fulfilling? Contact me.