Each of us is constantly battling the twin demons of not enough
time and not enough energy.
The two go hand in hand. When you feel pushed for time, you may
rush around, feel stressed and not be as effective in your actions,
or as accurate in your thinking.
If you don’t have the energy you need, you will not be able to
achieve as much during your day, because you are physically drained
and unable to mentally focus as clearly as you should.
There’s not much we can do about time. We each have 1,440 minutes
in our day, 168 hours in our week, to do with as we will.
Some people are better managers of their time than others. But it
is what it is.
However, there is a lot we can do on the energy side.
I’ve always been fascinated with one of those wonderful ironies of
nature: the more energy you expend in worthwhile or healthy
pursuits, the more energy you generate.
This is one of the reasons that performing dynamic deep breathing
exercises, like the exercises in the Secret Power of Dynamic Energy
Exercise Course, is so beneficial.
Whether you perform deep breathing, dynamic breathing exercises,
walk or run, do yoga, lift weights – whatever – this will actually
help you be more energetic the rest of the day.
The time you spend exercising is more than made up in “extra” time
(or so it seems) because you are physically and mentally
rejuvenated and refreshed. You crank through the items on your
Beyond exercising regularly, you should also become aware of your
own energy profile or style. It’s the first step to more
effectively managing your performance each day.
We all have different energy utilization styles. And your style
encompasses two major areas: one is the rhythm of your energy, its
natural peaks and valleys. The other is your energy type.
In terms of rhythm, you probably already know you are a “morning
person” or a “night owl”, to give the two extremes of the
If you are a morning person, you like to get up and get going early.
You do your best creative and thinking work in the morning. If you
are a night owl, you may do your best work in the evenings — and
you can keep cranking right past the midnight hour without letting
I used to be more of the night owl variety. If I could adapt the
world to me, I would probably stay up until 1 or 2 in the morning,
and wake up about 10am. That always seemed to be the time when I
mentally woke up and felt more physically energized.
After becoming a mom, I had to adjust. The little ones tend to wake
up early, dont’ they? And when they’re up, they are up and raring
In recent years, I’ve gradually morphed into being more of a
morning person. We get going early in our house, especially during
the week. I like to dig in to creative work, or projects that
require a lot of thought, early in the day.
You may face a similar problem, where you have to try to adjust
your own natural rhythms. For example, most people feel really
sleepy and slow in the mid-afternoons. If your office has important
meetings in the afternoons, you may have difficulty contributing
and being at your best.
Adjusting your energy rhythm won’t just happen overnight. You have
to consistently make adaptations to the situation you are in.
It’s sort of like traveling overseas. No matter how well you
prepare yourself for the time change, you will still experience at
least a little jet lag for the first day or so. As you become
acclimated to the new time zone, your body and brain adapt and
you are fine.
Energy style is the other element in how you manage performance.
Energy style follows closely your personality type: Type A or
Type A people are outgoing, energetic, and usually have a lot of
drama going on in their lives. They are energizing and often
inspiring to be around.
However, they can use more energy than required and burn out.
Type B people are more introspective. They appear more calm and
organized. They are very steady. However, they may waste energy
through over-thinking and worrying.
Most people are not entirely one type or the other. They have
apects of both depending on the situation or time of day (getting
back to the rhythm part of this).
But you probably tend more toward one energy style than the other.
How to recognize and manage your style for better performance is
something we’ll discuss in your next tip.
Until then, think about how you act and react all day, and what
that tells you about how well you manage your energy. You may be
You Can Do It!
Copyright, Karen Van Ness, 2011