Time management may be the popular subject in the corporate world, but boosting your energy level may very well be the real lever that ensures peak productivity in your business.
While time goes on forever, energy doesn’t. It has to be replenished or it runs out and you lose your ability to perform at your top capacity. Distraction sets in when energies run low and costly mistakes could be made. You can have the best time management strategies in the world, if you don’t have the energy to execute, your output will be wanting.
Here are 5 ways to help you boost your energy level to ensure peak productivity in your business:
1. Work with Your Natural Rhythms
The thinking used to be that the longer we work, the more productive we’ll be. That explains why many entrepreneurs work long hours. But productivity experts are finding that that’s probably not correct.
In fact, working harder and spending more hours at work may actually reduce your productivity. It’s much better to find out what your natural rhythms are and work with those.
Working with your natural rhythms to increase your productivity means that you’re concentrating on a task when your energy is high and resting when the energy level is low.
In fact, you may even take a short nap to help you rejuvenate. This may sound contrary to everything you know about the workplace, but experts are finding that short naps (30 minutes or so) during your low-energy times can actually spike your energy level and make you more productive for the rest of the day.
Trying to power through during periods of low energy often result in shoddy output.
When you sync your work with your natural rhythm, you can prevent burn out and its associated damage to your physical and mental health.
2. Work in Your Passion
It’s probably no secret that you seem to have a lot more energy when you are working on something that you are passionate about. Entrepreneur and powerful business woman, Oprah Winfrey, once said, “Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.”
Oprah created a billion-dollar business from her passion. Perhaps, we can’t all do that, but we can use passion to increase our energy levels to the point that we’re super-productive.
The more passionate you are about what you do the more positive energy you generate. When you’re fired up, you don’t give up easily. You feel inspired to deliver, to get the desired outcome.
When you work on a job or business or project that you are not passionate about, you will hardly attain peak productivity. Your output will never be your best. You will not have the sense of fulfillment and accomplishment that comes with true success.
Passionate energy invites success for that passion into your life. If you don’t know what you are passionate about, it’s important you find it. It’s within all of us and we just have to dig a little bit to make it come out. Don’t waste the rest of your life on a job or a pursuit that just isn’t meant for you and that you feel no passion for.
3. Work on Your Emotion
One of the crucial ways to boosting your energy level and getting more done is paying attention to your emotions.
Emotion and energy levels are closely connected and understanding this link is important if you want to be more energetic and productive.
Scientists tell us that our brain's processing system pay close attention to the nature of what we're focused on and then produce neurotransmitters accordingly. Emotions like fear and excitement can actually raise our energy level and make us more alert and focused.
When you’re alert and focused, they activate changes in the sympathetic nervous system that increase your heart rate, your circulation and muscle tone all to make you more awake and productive.
On the other hand, when things appear dull and uninteresting, your brain tells you you’re safe and can just relax. Thus it will produce melatonin which settles you down and makes you sleep.
So, how are all these connected to your energy level and productivity?
You see, boredom is fatal for energy levels. When you find your energy waning one of the best things you can do is to switch up your environment or make the task you're performing more exciting. This will tell your brain something interesting is going on and it needs to become more alert and awake again.
Think of it for a moment: when you’re listening to a boring, uninteresting lecture, you are more likely to doze off. But when the lecture is interesting and the speaker is energetic, you stay awake because you don’t want to miss anything the speaker is saying.
Apply the same psychology to productivity: work on interesting stuff, you have the energy to stay awake. Boring and unchallenging stuff zaps your energy and productivity.
If you're interested in boosting your energy levels so that you can get more done and start living a more productive lifestyle, then you'll probably have heard that one of the best ways to achieve that is through exercise.
According to WebMD, one of the best antidotes to beating fatigue and boosting energy is to exercise more, not less.
Exercise not only makes you fitter meaning that more oxygen and blood get around your body, it also increases your production of nitric oxide which helps with wakefulness and focus, it increases your mitochondria count and function (those being the small 'energy centers' of your body) and it increases your strength so that everything comes more easily to you. You'll even sleep better and thus feel more energetic in the mornings.
But there's just one problem: exercising itself takes a lot of energy. How can you do something that requires energy in order to feel more energetic?
The first thing to do is to realize that exercise is not something that you can just 'pile on' on top of your existing regular technique. Too many people make the mistake of thinking they can just add a large amount of working out into their schedule and not have any difficulty. Of course though, if you are already low on energy it probably means that you're doing too much and this means in turn that you're going to struggle to suddenly take on something new that's big and tiring.
So if you're really serious about starting to work out and to feel more energetic then you need to prioritize and make time for your exercise. You must build work out into your daily schedule.
It also pays to do the right kind of exercise. All exercises are not made equal. For energy boost purposes, especially when you’re feeling fatigued, experts recommend exercising at your low to moderate training heart range. This will prevent you from depleting your body. Good exercises including brisk walking, Tai Chi, moderate dancing, and resistance strength training.
Of course, every exercise is still far better than no exercise!
5. Get Good Sleep
This seems very obvious, yet according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than one-third of adult Americans don’t get adequate sleep on a regular basis, resulting in all kinds of health and productivity problems.
The massive rise in the use of electronic devices like personal computer and smartphones is one of the major culprits robbing Americans of good night sleep. Scientists tell us that exposure to blue light on these devices, suppresses melatonin which then makes it difficult for us to fall asleep.
Sleep deprived people often have low energy during the day as well as problem of focusing for extended period on a task. The result is low productivity.
If you find you are not getting enough sleep at night, you should try a few tips to help you, such as:
· Make sleep a priority and keep a regular schedule to make it happen. Adults need 7-9 hours of sleep at night.
· Even when you do have a bad night’s sleep, don’t try to make up for it by going to bed much earlier the next day — it might make it difficult to fall asleep. Rather, you should take a short nap (about 20 to 30 minutes), during the day, but long before 4 p.m.
· Add a winding-down period at the end of the day to help you ease the transition to sleep. Turn the lights down and try activities that calm the body and mind down such as taking a warm shower, doing some gentle upper-body stretches, or reading before bed (ideally not from an electronic device).
· Turn off all electronics at least 20 minutes before bed. Keep your bedroom free of television and other electronics.
And keep your bedroom as dark as possible.
If after you’ve tried these tips, and you still are not getting enough sleep, you may want to talk to your health care provider. There may be other more serious issues like sleep apnea or depression.
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