Energy Crisis

Do you have an energy crisis? I am not talking about a global crisis, or the power lines coming down near your house. I am referring to personal energy and the ability to get up and keep moving. I have talked before about motivation, about having a reason to get up in the morning. I have talked about discipline. So when it seems like you have no energy in the morning, or halfway through the day, or as you are trying to gather brain power to finish something, and you feel like you are simply on empty, what do you do?

I think the first response I would likely get is “it depends.” That’s a fair answer, but what does it depend on? Well, let’s dive into a few common issues and how to solve them, shall we?

I am a pro at problem solving, and the first thing to do when trying to solve any problem is identifying the source. Once you have done that, the solutions could look vastly different depending on the source of the problem.

Here are the top three reasons that I have found for a total lack of energy:

  1.  Your body is simply worn out. You haven’t slept enough, or you don’t eat right, or you have been working really hard for an extended period of time.
  2.  You are under a lot of emotional or mental stress.
  3.  The pendulum has swung.

If you can’t totally identify with any of these, keep reading. I will fill in the details.

Let’s start with number 1.

 

  • 1) Your body is simply worn out. You haven’t slept enough, or you don’t eat right, or you have been working really hard for an extended period of time. Yes I said it. No matter how super you think you are, or how much of an exception you think you are, your body needs rest, and you really do have to eat your veggies. Barely sleeping is not a badge of honor; it is stupid. Eating and drinking junk because “you don’t have time to be healthy” is an excuse. You make time for what is important. And if success is really important to you, if you really don’t want to be constantly exhausted, then take care of your body and mind. To deny that and then try to be productive is to sabotage your chances of any kind of real success.

There is a huge amount of health research and information out there, so I will share what I’ve learned and what has given me positive results in my daily life.

You need to sleep.

You need to get at least 7 hours of sleep EVERY night.

You need to drink a lot of water and cut out soft drinks, even diet. Diet drinks are unhealthy, form bad habits, and can have major long term health implications including heart disease, obesity, cancer, liver problems, and bad dental health.

Coffee and Tea are good for you.

Avoid grain carbs. I am not just talking about gluten and wheat, although that is the worst.

Eat vegetables and meat.

And did I mention drinking water?

When you take care of your body, your body can spend less time trying to cope and survive and more time operating well. Think about it. If you never do maintenance on your car, or you put the wrong thing in the gas tank, it simply won’t work. Your body is an engine. Do some maintenance and give it the right fuel before it breaks instead of waiting.

2) You are under a lot of emotional or mental stress.

There are so many things that can cause this, I cannot even begin to address them all. Here is what I can say: At some point, you have to begin to eliminate stress. If your stress is relational, maybe you need to cut or reduce a relationship. If it has to do with a loss, allow yourself to cry for a day and feel your feelings. Keeping things pent up not only prolongs your stress and denies that it is there, but prolonged stress can lead again to health problems such as chronic headaches, back problems, and heart issues. The only way to deal with an emotion is to process it instead of holding it back. The more you do this the better you will get at doing it quickly without disrupting your life. It really does take practice.

Your brain needs a break just like your muscles do, and you need time for yourself. Find something that relaxes you. There shouldn’t be feelings of guilt around taking this time to let go. If you don’t recharge, you will never be able to be there for anyone. So take a nap, sit in the sunshine with your eyes closed, take a walk, shred paper into little bits, play a game (I recommend avoiding screens. There is a lot science connecting this kind of visual input with increasing anxiety and stress. Most of us could use less screen time)

The point here is this: Try to identify the source of your stress, and work in small steps to take breaks from it, process it, and eventually learn habits that will allow you to avoid it. It really is possible!

3) The pendulum has swung.

This is the part where you give yourself a break. Sometimes the pendulum swings and you are simply going through a lot. You need to give yourself grace to not be “up to par” all the time. Otherwise, you actually increase stress which then continues to sap your energy. This turns into a cycle. Get depressed. Form bad habits. Run out of energy. Get nothing done. Get depressed, etc. The key to breaking this cycle is by giving yourself a break. Only then can you allow yourself to a take a break without guilt. Eliminating the guilt motivates you to be and do more. This feels good, which energizes you. This allows you get more done the other times, which reduces the guilty feelings, and so on. Understanding that at times you will be tired will allow you to simply say “This is normal” when it happens. If something is normal, there is no need to feel guilty, and thus you eliminate the guilt/energy sapping cycle.

Here is the kicker, though. Most of us have trouble giving ourselves a break. We are afraid someone will think of us as a failure, or letting someone down, or we are trying to impress someone or earn someone’s approval. Most people don’t step back every now and then simply out of a desire to do good, and out of knowing that others are counting on them. This makes it hard because if you run out of energy, or have trouble finishing something you started, instead of thinking of it as something that happens to everyone, your brain tells you “See, you really are a failure!”

Don’t let a lack of energy keep you from being the person you already are!!! You CAN learn how to overcome this problem that literally every person breathing has gone through!!

 

If you can identify with any of these things, or if you found any of these tips helpful, then take action today! CLICK HERE to get a free 14 day productivity course delivered right to your email! And as a special thank you for investing in yourself, email me at stephen@stephenandrewcoaching.com to get 50% off an in depth 28 day course that will change your life by helping you focus, identify your goals, and learn how to achieve everything you are capable of!!!

Offer ends 2/28/19

5 Tips to Find a Career That Suits You

How do you respond when you’re 15, 16, 17, and people ask you “What are you going to do with your life?” The expectation to have the entirety of your life planned out before you even have much real life experience is high. Everyone seems very concerned that you don’t waste your life. Considering talents and undiscovered skills you may learn in the coming years, finding the right answer can seem daunting. No pressure! This is only a lifelong decision you need to have figured out before you graduate high school.

Let’s be honest. The expectation to get it figured out is pretty unrealistic. With all of the pressure to choose something “practical” or “useful,” how do you choose what to do with your life? Here are five things to consider while trying to avoid the drama of family expectations, the dread of a life doing something you won’t enjoy, and the pressure to have everything figured out by the time you’re old enough to drive.

  1. Think about things you enjoy. There is an assumption that if you enjoy doing something, it must not be practical and you could never make a good income out of it. But think about it. There are professional skateboarders and video gamers. I mean, of all the things that seem impractical, these would certainly fall into this category. And yet, people make money at it. What is the key? They looked for opportunities to show their skills to people who paid. Competing, honing their skills, learning everything they could about what they did. Just remember, it can’t be only a hobby if you are going to make a living at it. You have to take it seriously enough to put in work.
  2. Add something you’re good at to something you enjoy. Often if you enjoy something you will be good at it because you enjoy putting in the time to get better. Sometimes it goes the other way too, where you are naturally good at something and learn to enjoy doing it because it seems comfortable or it comes somewhat easily. Doing something “practical” that you are NOT good at just because it is a “good career choice” could be disastrous. If you pursue something you are not good, it’s a quick road to burnout and frustration. There is another common misconception around this, and that is that the path of least resistance is for sissies. If you aren’t working miserably hard, then you must be lazy and unproductive. But the opposite can be true. If something comes naturally, why not take advantage of your natural talents?
  3. Don’t choose a career based on what people think. It isn’t a bad idea to consider advice, but advice is just that. Advice. You can consider it, think about it, determine if it makes sense for your life, and use what works. Also realize that when listening to advice given from someone’s insecurities shouldn’t be taken as a serious desire to help you.
  4. If you think a career field seems interesting to you, spend some time getting into and immersed in it. Your first reaction shouldn’t be “I am going to spend money on getting the degree required for this job.”  I mean seriously, you have the internet, there are internships, base level jobs, and people in currently in those jobs you can talk to first. Think about it. Why would you invest thousands of dollars and years of your life without a plan? People who with investments research the funds or things they are investing in extensively before they put ANY money into it.  Why not do that before investing YOUR time and money?
  5. Don’t be afraid to change a few times as you grow and discover different things about yourself. Until you get a chance to start getting your hands dirty and get into the workplace, it can be hard to tell what you might be good at or enjoy. Think like a business owner, not a recruiter. A business owner knows all the worst parts of the job and running the business, but to him he weighs it against the benefits of what he does and how it makes him feel, or how much money he makes, and he doesn’t mind doing the harder things because he enjoy the work more. A recruiter tells you all the coolest and best parts of a job without telling you about the worst parts. If you feel the need to make a change in direction, just remember that the most important part of this process is honesty. Don’t quit a job by walking off because you discover you don’t like it. Maintain your integrity with employers and yourself as you work at finding what your purpose and fulfilling career could be.

Figuring out what to do for the rest of your life can seem like a daunting task, especially when it seems like the only thing people care about is that you do what they think is good for you. Don’t be afraid to take on some commitment in the form of a job, or starting to build a business. Be willing to figure things out. And remember, you don’t have to have it all figured out yet, but to get anywhere, you have to be willing to try!

 

If you want to gain the tools to help you find the right career, and start your journey toward being less stressed, and more fulfilled every day, then click here to subscribe to my FREE course 14 days to Stress Less and Achieve Your Dreams!

Why Do We Wait To Get Better?

Why do we wait to start change?

Does setting a starting date for being more responsible with money, eating right, or getting up early make it easier to start? Does waiting to forgive someone make it easier to reconcile? Do we need to wait for someone’s permission to value ourselves or take responsibility?

 

Change can be scary for a myriad of reasons, but instead of focusing on the fear, why not try looking at the results we are missing by not working to be better?

 

Recently I have had two friends unexpectedly pass away, a brother in a nearly fatal accident, and a brother and sister in law in a car-totaling accident. All of these events remind me that life only comes once, and it goes by so much faster than we think it does. It is important to maintain a balance between enjoying the current moment and working to make the next one better. Too often, we use the excuse that we are living in the moment to let ourselves out of improving ourselves.

 

Imagine living until age ninety and looking back realizing that the entirety of your life, you were afraid you had nothing to offer the world, and so you just lived day to day eating, sleeping, going to work, and being afraid of what people thought of you. Imagine if Michelangelo had never given the world the Sistine Chapel because he didn’t think he had anything to offer the world. What if Benjamin Franklin had not invented bifocals because he was afraid that if he failed people would think he was just a crazy old man? These men did things that they were uniquely capable of doing. So what makes you think that you have nothing to develop, or that if you have something, it is your right to keep it from the world?

 

While the things done by “great” people seem much bigger than managing your time, controlling your weight, or learning to be confident in yourself, it all starts somewhere. It starts with trial and error. It starts with discipline and failure. It starts in the very beginning with knowing that you are worth your own effort! You are worth changing for the better. It is good, great, and profitable for you to focus on yourself, developing what you have, so you can then in turn develop others.

 

To go back to the question about why change is scary, it usually boils down to people either being afraid they are not worth putting in the effort to change themselves, or they are afraid that others won’t like them anymore if they work hard at being the best versions of themselves.

 

Don’t let fear of failure or of others cheat the world out of the greatness that God created in you! Be brave. Work hard. Change!

 

If you are tired of waiting, sick of letting life go by you and want to start the change in your life, then click here to take my easy, FREE course! Don’t wait for the right time! Make the time!

Do You Know Why You Get up in the Morning?

Why do you live life? What drives you? Do you live just trying to make it to tomorrow? Do you live only thinking that if you make it to tomorrow maybe life will be better? Do you live in the past thinking that best has already come and gone and now life is misery until it ends?

These are questions that I think we have to ask ourselves if we ever intend to make real change in our lives, or have any real joy. Think about it. When someone becomes a Christian their focus changes to living a life of obedience to Christ and a hope of eternal life. When a great athlete such as Lou Gehrig, or recently Tom Brady, plays, they are playing from passion, either for the game, or for someone they care about. It drives them. When someone starts a new small business they put in a lot of effort and really pour their energy into it. If you were to talk to these people right after change took place, or while they were getting started, or while they were working hard at being the best, I would bet that you would see someone who gets up in the morning learning from the past to shape the future.

I have worked with hundreds of young people over the last few years, and want to share two examples. There is a young man I know of 28 who does not have plans for the future. When he comes to work, his life consists of trying to make enough money to pay bills. He is working for tips. This leads to stress and a great deal of job dissatisfaction that comes out almost daily. He gets upset about how much people underneath him make. He gets upset about how much other positions in his workplace make. He complains about the hours. And yet, he is not actively looking to change his position by leaving his current job and getting a different one that is a better fit, pays more, or just “appreciates him more,” like he claims to want. Why? Because he has trapped himself. He has a four year degree, workplace experience, and a great mind. But he won’t think bigger picture.

On the other end of the spectrum is a young man working at the same place, same pay, same workplace responsibilities. But he wants more out of life. He hasn’t even fully formulated what that looks like, but he knows that for anything to be different he has to want it first. To look for it. To seek what his different and better looks like. In the time I have known him he has gained control of his money, begun to resolve some relationship issues with his parents, and gained leadership experience that will help him for the rest of his life.

The difference between these two young men? Perspective. Purpose. Wanting something more. And, interestingly enough, you have to not be so self-centered that you don’t take care of yourself. The first young man is so focused on how he feels he is being wronged at work, that he is letting time and opportunity pass him by. The second young man is more focused on being his best self and helping others in a way that he will have unlimited opportunities open to him.

If you want a different life you need to think beyond the problems of today. You need to put something in front of you that you’re passionate about and meant to live for. When you do that, it’s a whole lot easier to get up early, to work hard, to stay focused, to say ‘no’ to distractions. You can be a lot more fulfilled and happy when you know that each day you get up is a day that matters. A day to help someone, a day to make yourself the best version of you yet, or a day to inch closer to a realized dream. When you’re just living to get through the day, it’s a sign of insecurity, dare I say selfishness, and an unwillingness to let go of your problems long enough to grasp something better. It may sound harsh, but often misery is self inflicted. Living for something that gives you purpose, looking to be better, makes the here and now matter more. It’s easier to be content when you know that life isn’t about surviving another moment. It’s about making your moments count. What are YOU living for?

 

If you want to begin the journey towards discovering your purpose, click here to take my FREE course, 14 Days to Stress Less and Achieve Your Dreams.

Investing in Yourself: Why You Owe it to Others to be a Little Selfish

Investing in yourself is essential to success. Taking time to do the things that you need and want to do is often viewed as selfishness, but it can become the deciding difference between mediocrity and prosperity.

If I am not careful, I will start sounding like a cheesy self-help author looking for another sale, hyping you up about yourself, only for you to drop off the artificial high with no long-lasting life change. That model doesn’t work. It’s based more on emotion than improvement and measurable success. On making you feel better rather than driving you to BE better.

Instead, I’m here to talk about real self investment. The kind that you make when you pay for a membership at a gym, or when you pay for budgeting help, or pay for personal coaching. It’s the investment that says “I want something different than I have, and I am willing to put in my time, money, AND energy to achieve it.” There are two things that drive people to make these kinds of investments: guilt and a sense of self-worth. The ones who feel guilty are the ones who invest in themselves because they think that if they achieve a certain goal, then they will have value. The ones who invest because they already believe themselves to have self-worth are the ones who say “I am worth this time, money, and energy.” Who do you think gets better results? And who do you think is going to get burnt out sooner?

Think about the people you know. What ones are more attractive to you? More than likely, the ones who are comfortable in their own skin, who aren’t comparing themselves to others standards of measurement, but seem driven for more. These people have little room for jealousy, but instead choose to be inspired by the success of others. Now think about someone you know who spends time on themselves to create a sense of self-worth. Are they afraid of what people think of them? Are they secure or insecure? Do they stick with activities if they don’t see a change in how people view them? Do they get negative if they don’t feel better about themselves?

Then there’s a third group of people. The ones who don’t invest in themselves. There are a lot of those out there, and, at risk of being too general, this high percentage of the population rarely accomplishes anything notable. Talent isn’t worth anything unless it is practiced and used. Someone like that may have huge amounts of talent and achieve small amounts of success, but they have no work ethic; they will not amount to anything.

One last concept before I tie everything together. If you are going to bring water to, say, your dog, you can’t pour water into his bowl from an empty pitcher, right? You have to fill the pitcher at the sink, and then fill up the water dish. People are the same way. You can’t give anyone what you don’t have. Do you want to be known as someone who is outgoing, has energy, is generous with your time efforts, or even your money? Then you first have to have those things. Have you ever felt tired and drained at the end of a day? You are just that. Drained. You gave all day and didn’t get filled back up. In order to give like you want, you have to first put those things into yourself.

You have to believe that you cannot give what you don’t have. And you can’t achieve results where you haven’t put in effort. Successful athletes, business owners, entrepreneurs, all have one thing in common. They have spent time, money, and effort getting coaches, marketers, or business analysts to “pour” into their efforts, and have brought out the success that we see on the news, at sporting events, or while buying their products and wishing we had their success. If you want it, you have to invest in it. Which means investing in yourself first. Think about it. We invest in better clubs to play better golf, we invest in better funds to have a better retirement, in a better car to get more use or enjoyment out of it. We invest in our kids, or our spouse, or our work, or our career. Don’t you think it would be okay if you spent some time investing in yourself? Don’t you think you kids and spouse would gain from you being a better version of yourself? Or your job from you being more relaxed and confident? You will thank yourself if you take the time to put back into you the things you want to give to others. You owe it to yourself and everyone around you to become the best possible version of you! And just watch, you will achieve far beyond any limits you think are holding you back!!

 

 

If you are interested the ideas presented here and want to get started making a better you, take advantage of my  Free 14 day course to Stress Less and Achieve Your Dreams by following this link: http://stephenandrewcoaching.com/free-course/