Saturday, August 29, 2009

Curious about Energy: How Much Do You Have? How Do You Get More and/or Maintain It?

The higher your energy level, the more efficient your body the better you feel and the more you will use your talent to produce outstanding results.” - Tony Robbins, American author

There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening, that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique.” - Martha Graham, American dancer

A lot of writers about business and entrepreneurship are extolling the virtues of energy – having it, using it, and maintaining it.

I count myself as being one of the lucky ones. I have always had lots of energy. I especially relate to the following statement by the British athlete Roger Bannister, the first to break the four minute mile, “I was always a great bundle of energy. As a child, instead of walking, I would run. And so running, which is a pain to a lot of people, was always a pleasure to me because it was so easy.”

After he broke it, many more did the same, even in that first following year. And, yes, from his statement, some could say that it was a natural for him. It certainly helped that he enjoyed running and felt that it was “so easy.” I feel, however, that a good part of our level of energy not only comes from enjoying what we do and our mindset, but also from what we eat and the shape in which we keep our bodies.

Our family mantra – repeated over and over again by my mother – was, “We are what we eat.” The American actress, Marilu Henner, sums it up, ““Foods high in bad fats, sugar and chemicals are directly linked to many negative emotions, whereas whole, natural foods rich in nutrients - foods such as fruits, vegetables, grains and legumes - contribute to greater energy and positive emotions.”

I teach eleven group fitness classes a week, seven of which are to seniors 65 and older. It is obvious that those who enjoy life, eat sensibly and give the exercise their all, enjoy an abundance of energy.

When I checked out the quotations about energy, I was sure that the majority would address environmental energy and/or energy sources. I was delighted to find a large number that were concerned with our own energy. Here are a few:
  • Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.” - Oprah Winfrey, American entertainer
  • Enthusiasm is the energy and force that builds literal momentum of the human soul and mind.” - Bryant H. McGill, American poet
  • Many people worry so much about managing their careers, but rarely spend half that much energy managing their LIVES. I want to make my life, not just my job, the best it can be. The rest will work itself out.” - Reese Witherspoon, American actress
  • We weren't put here to be miserable. We were put here to do the best we can, and we should take our energy and improve our state of being.” - Lenny Kravitz, American musician
  • In times of great stress or adversity, it's always best to keep busy, to plow your anger and your energy into something positive.” - Lee Iacocca, American businessman
  • When you are in the valley, keep your goal firmly in view and you will get the renewed energy to continue the climb.” - Denis Waitley, American writer

And three more to think about during this coming week:

  • The average person puts only 25% of his energy and ability into his work. The world takes off its hat to those who put in more than 50% of their capacity, and stands on its head for those few and far between souls who devote 100%.” - Andrew Carnegie, American businessman
  • Just as your car runs more smoothly and requires less energy to go faster and farther when the wheels are in perfect alignment, you perform better when your thoughts, feelings, emotions, goals, and values are in balance.” - Brian Tracy, American writer
  • Energy and persistence conquer all things.” - Benjamin Franklin, American statesman

So, how much energy do you have? I suggest you make a list – you know how I like lists – of those factors that give you energy. And also a list of those that take or sap your energy. Just being aware will provide the clarity of what you need to change or even do more of.