8 Steps To Re-Claim Your Energy
In real life, nobody gets to be a superhero. We all operate with limited amounts of time and energy.
Amidst the many challenges of lock-down, I initially enjoyed the mellowed-out pace of life. People operated under an agreement to slow down while we readjusted our lives. Seemingly instantaneously, we were expected to have it figured out and resume our high-paced lifestyle.
I felt burnt out. If you did, too, here is a simple exercise to manage your energy.
Step 1: List the ways you use your energy.
Set a timer for three minutes. Write, in any order, all the priorities you balance in your life. A priority is anything you spend your time doing, from household management to your job to your health. Just write. Don’t worry about sorting or ordering.
Step 2: Choose the 8 most important items on your list.
Now go through and circle the top 8 things that truly need your energy. Since we aren’t superheros, we truly don’t have the capacity for more than 8 priorities.
Step 3: Order them from 1 to 8.
This can be the trickiest part. Take your time and put these things in the best order you can. If you’re struggling, as yourself, “What would happen if this went undone?” Those items that are most critical will rise to the top.
Step 4: Create a Wheel of Energy
– Draw a circle.
– Divide your circle into eight “pie pieces” by drawing one vertical line, one horizontal line, and one diagonal line in each direction.
– Create a “bullseye” pattern by making four more circles inside your larger circle.
When finished, your Wheel of Energy will be a bullseye with eight segments and five rungs.
Step 5: Assign spaces in your Wheel of Energy
List each of these eight items on your Wheel of Energy worksheet. Each item gets a pie slice. Put the most important items on top, the least important on the bottom, and fill in the gaps from there.
Step 6: Give yourself a number grade for each segment.
Use your Wheel of Energy to grade how much energy you’re dedicating to each item. You will see the wheel has space for one to five. If you’re giving something very little energy, put a dot on the innermost ring. If you’re giving a lot, put a dot on the outermost ring.
Step 7: Reflect on your shape.
Connect your dots in each segment to make a shape.
Ideally, you will see that your most important items are scoring highest, and your lesser items are scoring lower. This will visually look like a funnel or a “V.”
If you have a shape that looks like a complete circle, meaning you’re giving level five energy to each item, you’re heading towards burn out.
If you’re looking at a disorganized shape resembling a star, you’re needing some better focus.
If you’re seeing an inverted “V,” you’re probably feeling unfulfilled by giving too much energy to the things mattering least to you.
Step 8: Re-dedicate your energy and outsource.
Start considering how you can re-dedicate your energy toward your ideal “V.” Perhaps you need better support systems to fill in gaps on your lower priorities. It’s also good practice to look at your initial list of items and see what things aren’t your highest priorities but still need to be done. Can you outsource any of these? Can you allow some to go undone?
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