Why Productivity Is the Key to Managing Your Energy (Optimize Your Energy, Part 2)

Managing your energy is a lot like managing your finances.

If you want to be in good financial health, learn how to budget your money. If you want to do the things you desire, learn how to manage your energy.

But now that you’re in quarantine, it’s so easy to be wasteful with your energy.

Hitting the snooze on your alarm five times. Scrolling on your phone throughout the day. Staying awake past midnight. Watching TV as a couch potato, instead of exercising.

We’re experiencing a new phenomenon where coronavirus-related stress is affecting our energy and motivation. 

Behavioral health therapist Dr. Jane Pernotto Ehrman calls it coronavirus quarantine fatigue. “This kind of fatigue drains our motivation,” she says, “We just want to go lie down on the couch and do nothing. Because of these difficult situations, we’re in a kind of shock and we don’t know what to do.”

Being stuck at home makes you more vulnerable to these energy sappers. And although they may seem minor, they can snowball into a serious problem. 

Because if you don’t get a handle on it, you’ll encounter more than a dip in your energy and productivity. You’ll experience:

  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Appetite changes
  • Racing thoughts
  • Poor focus
  • Signs of burnout

Poor energy management keeps you from creating and living the life you want. Last week, we learned how self-care can boost your energy. Now, I’ll show you how to budget your energy levels with a few productivity tips.

(And yes, all these tips can be done at home!)

Ready? Let’s begin.

How to Manage Your Energy Using These 4 Productivity Tips

#1 Master Your Environment

Ever tried focusing when your desk is in shambles? How can you work when piles of paperwork and unwashed mugs sit on a light coating of dust?

It’s more than distracting. It’s inefficient.

Each time you look for an unfiled document, you lose energy.

Each time an unwashed mug grabs your attention, you lose energy.

Each time you have to shuffle your clutter around, you lose energy.

Don’t let unnecessary clutter sap your focus, energy, and creativity. 

Before you sit down to work, take a few minutes to declutter your space. If you’re now working from home due to coronavirus, a dedicated workspace that is clutter-free is even more critical to preserving your focus. When your space is free from distracting elements, you can better focus on the task at hand.

#2 Understand Your Peaks and Dips

Ever notice how at certain times of the day, you’re ready to conquer the world? And then at other times, you’re ready for a power nap?

That’s because your energy levels fluctuate throughout the day — understanding how they rise and fall is key to optimizing your energy. You can do this by listening to your circadian rhythm.

Your energy levels fluctuate throughout the day — understanding how they rise and fall is key to optimizing your energy. You can do this by listening to your circadian rhythm. Click To Tweet

“Your circadian rhythm,” according to the National Sleep Organization, “is basically a 24-hour internal clock that is running in the background of your brain and cycles between sleepiness and alertness at regular intervals.”

Everybody’s circadian rhythm is different. It’s why early birds feel most productive in the morning and night owls work better during the evening.

Understanding your circadian rhythm helps you learn how to manage your energy levels throughout the day. You’ll want to save your cognitively demanding tasks, like writing or planning, for when your energy is highest. Similarly, you’ll want to save your less demanding tasks, like answering emails, for when your energy dips.

What does your circadian rhythm look like? How can you use it to structure your workday for maximum energy and productivity?

#3 Clean Up Attention Residue

If you still believe that multitasking is efficient, think again. Studies show that multitasking is actually wasteful with your energy and productivity.

Dr. Sophie Leroy observed that each time you switch between tasks, your focus experiences a type of lag. “This is what I call Attention Residue,” she says, “when part of our attention is focused on another task instead of being fully devoted to the current task that needs to be performed.”

Let’s look at an example.

You’re working on a project, but you’re notified of a new email. You check it out but reread it a few times because your mind is still stuck on the project you were just working on. After you respond to the email, you return to your project. You take a few moments, however, to figure out where you left off and your next step before getting started.

This is just one example. If you’re transitioning from working in the office to working at home, you’re exposed to even more distractions — laundry, dishes, and children just to name a few. Switching back and forth between tasks is often tempting but it wastes bits of your energy. To help you clean up attention residue, use task batching and time blocking.

Task batching is when you group similar tasks, like answering emails or editing a paper. Time blocking is when you dedicate a slot in your calendar to complete a specific task. 

These strategies will help you be more mindful of how you’re spending your energy and where you’re directing your focus.

#4 Start Outsourcing or Delegating

Here’s the reality: there’s no way you can do everything yourself.

Trying to do everything yourself can lead to coronavirus quarantine fatigue and feeling overwhelmed with life.

Your time and energy are limited. But that shouldn’t discourage you from getting your priorities completed. Instead of doing everything yourself, start relying on others.

Outsourcing or delegating your responsibilities is an efficient way to manage your energy while getting things done.

If you’re a business owner, there are several business operations you can outsource:

  • Administrative tasks
  • Bookkeeping
  • Copywriting
  • Customer service
  • Human resources

Outsourcing these processes frees up your time and energy for things that you enjoy, like serving your clients or business development.

You can even delegate or outsource at home. Your spouse and children can help out with the household chores. Or instead, you can hire a housekeeper to tidy your home while you’re at work or a cleaning service to come in periodically.

Your energy levels are finite. But when you start outsourcing, you tap into the energy pools of other people. This neat productivity tip gets your priorities done without overextending yourself!

Productivity is Only One Part of the Equation

As I mentioned above, this article is part two of a two-part series on energy optimization. (Link to Part one at bottom of article.) The productivity tips I shared help you better utilize your energy. But productivity tips do little when your energy baseline is low from exhaustion and stress.

Productivity is only one of two keys to optimizing your energy. The other key is self-care.

As you work on better managing your energy, remember to take care of your body. Regular self-care can expand your energy baseline, improve your mood, and protect you from coronavirus quarantine fatigue.

To help you build self-care into your daily routine, take advantage of my “From Burnout To Balance: A Simple 10-Minute Daily Self-Care Practice.”

This practice has been shown to:

  • Increase mindfulness, well-being, self-confidence, and personal power
  • Increase your ability to concentrate
  • Cultivate a greater resilience to stress, a positive mindset, and a sense of hopefulness and calm
  • Decrease stress and stress-related symptoms like frustration, mood swings, feelings of overwhelm or lack of control, anxiety, depression, low energy, headaches, body aches and pains, muscle tension, chest pain and rapid heartbeat, insomnia, and frequent colds and infections
  • Reduce or even stop worrying

Click here now to claim your free gift of my “From Burnout To Balance: A Simple 10-Minute Daily Self-Care Practice.”

Go here to read Part One: Feeling Tired All the Time? Try These 4 Self-Care Tips (Optimize Your Energy Pt. 1)

Feeling Tired All the Time? Try These 4 Self-Care Tips (Optimize Your Energy, Part 1)

It’s 2:00 and you’ve hit another afternoon slump. You wonder if you can make it to the end of the day.

“Why do I feel so tired all the time?” you ask yourself.

Even if you’re working from home due to coronavirus, it feels like another exhausting day in the office.

You consider pouring yourself another cup of coffee. You might even have an energy drink waiting for you in the fridge.

Yet there lies the problem. You rely on sources that offer temporary energy boosts. However, the problem — and solution — is deeper than that.

You’re having a new and different experience — life in quarantine. And with the added stress and anxiety, you may be experiencing coronavirus quarantine fatigue. “It’s just overwhelming,” says behavioral health therapist Dr. Jane Pernotto Ehrman, “and part of the fatigue is the uncertainty, unpredictability and the unknowns in all of this.” 

That’s why it’s time to put away the caffeine and sugary energy drinks and practice a healthier response to feeling tired all the time: self care! 

Self-care is free, easy, and can be done at home! 

How Self-Care Can Optimize Your Energy

Energy is like a battery. Ideally, you’re waking up at 100%. 

But what happens when you don’t get enough sleep? Or your diet is lacking nutrients? Or your life is all work, no play?

You might wake up at only 80% or 50%. These are only a few causes of low energy in women that can lead you to suffer from signs of burnout.

And if you’re experiencing exhaustion from coronavirus, you might be feeling any number of the following symptoms:

  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Low motivation
  • Appetite changes
  • Insomnia
  • Racing thoughts

That’s why I created this two-part series on optimizing your energy, especially in these uncertain times. In this article, I explain how self-care can boost your energy. Next week, I’ll show you how to budget that energy with productivity tips.

So, why self-care? you might ask.

Everyday presents its own stressful challenges and the coronavirus outbreak has introduced new ones.

Yet, imagine starting every day at 100%. Your mind feels sharper. You have more bounce in your step. Your goals are clear. You know what you need to do. And you take action.

Yet, imagine starting every day at 100%. Your mind feels sharper. You have more bounce in your step. Your goals are clear. You know what you need to do. And you take action. Click To Tweet

“If we don’t take action and recharge,” says Dr. Ehrman, “We will remain stuck. So, it’s important to relieve stress to re-energize and be more present.” Self-care helps you optimize your energy so that you can create and live your best life. 

Here’s how you can do it.

Feeling Tired All the Time Because of Coronavirus Quarantine Fatigue? Here are 4 Self-Care Tips to Optimize Your Energy

#1 Clean Up Your Diet

Your body is like a car and the food you feed it is the gas you pump.

Without gas, you’re running on fumes. With poor-quality gas, your car starts experiencing some problems.

It’s the same way with food. Some foods are low-quality and do little for your body. They’re usually high in calories and low in nutritional value — think chips, candy, and fast food.

If you want to boost your energy, look at the food you eat. If you discover your diet could be better, try planning your meals in advance. This encourages you to be mindful of what your body is taking in. The following tips will keep your diet healthy and your body energized:

  • Consume more complex carbs (like fiber-rich vegetables and whole-wheat grains)
  • Avoid simple carbs (like cookies and dairy products)
  • Increase your intake of dark, leafy vegetables (like spinach, broccoli, Swiss chard and kale)
  • Reduce your caffeine intake to avoid energy crashes (like coffee, energy drinks and soda)
  • Drink enough water (the Institute of Medicine recommends 9 cups each day for women)

But if you’ve been to your big chain grocery stores lately, you probably noticed that some shelves are picked clean. You may need to explore other options for buying nutritious foods. 

Now is a good time to support your local businesses by visiting a nearby mom and pop store. Or you might even want to start a garden and grow your own produce!

When you feed your body high-nutrition foods, it rewards you with increased energy and longevity.

#2 Cultivate Better Work/Life Balance

As a modern woman, you wear several hats: mother, businesswoman, caregiver, spouse, and more. But one that you might forget to wear is the woman who practices self-care.

You spend all of your energy on other people and obligations, but forget to save some for yourself. You suffer from poor work/life balance. Your other obligations — whether professional or personal — dominate your life and your health begins to suffer.

Show yourself how much you love yourself by putting your own self-care first. 

Try creating and maintaining a morning routine. Before you give your time and energy away, give it to yourself first. Exercise and meditation are great ways to kickstart your day. I enjoy greeting the morning with meditation and words of affirmation, followed by quality time with my pen and journal. 

If you work from home — which many of us are doing in these crazy times —  set a cut-off time for the end of your workday. Clean up your workspace and shut down for the day. Unless you’re a doctor or firefighter on call, work can wait until the next morning.

Your home should feel like a sanctuary. Don’t let coronavirus ruin it!

#3 Schedule a Well-Deserved Staycation

Daily self-care is critical to your health and well-being, but sometimes you need more.

Even when you’re maintaining a morning routine and getting enough quality sleep, you can still feel over-extended. If you’re still stressed, it may be time to take an extended break.

With what’s going in the world, now may not be ideal for traveling. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t relax and play! 

Instead, schedule a staycation as soon as possible. Stepping away from your responsibilities, while staying home can do wonders for your health. A staycation gives your mind and body the time and space needed to declutter and unwind.

After a relaxing break, you can return to your daily responsibilities with renewed energy and focus.

#4 Cage Your Monkey Mind

Have you ever heard about monkey mind?

“Monkey mind is a term that refers to being unsettled, restless, or confused,” says Dr. Diana Raab, “It is also the part of your brain that becomes easily distracted.”

Has this ever happened to you?

You might be working on a task, but your mind veers instead to the latest COVID-19 update.  There are many changes happening within your community. You might be checking your local news or social media to stay informed.

Each time you get distracted, you squander valuable time and energy.

Cage your monkey mind with meditation. Monkey mind often feels like you’re swimming in cluttered thoughts. Meditation pulls you out of the water by inviting your attention to the act of breathing. Many people remark on how clear and alert they feel after a meditation session. 

If you’re new to meditation, try using guided meditation apps, like Insight Timer or HeadSpace. Their sessions will teach you the foundations of meditation and intentional breathing.

Do you have any energy-boosting self-care tips that I didn’t mention? Share them with me in the comments below.

Make Self-Care a Habit

“The holy grail of habit change,” says James Clear, author of Atomic Habits, “is not a single 1 percent improvement, but a thousand of them.”

Waking up with a fully charged battery will support you when you feel coronavirus quarantine fatigue creeping in. But this happens only when you commit to making self-care a daily habit.

You might not notice a difference in your energy levels at first. But if you maintain a self-care routine, you will notice higher energy levels over time.

And daily self-care doesn’t have to be a two-hour routine. It can be as simple as 10 minutes every day with my “From Burnout To Balance: A Simple 10-Minute Daily Self-Care Practice.”

This practice has been shown to:

  • Increase mindfulness, well-being, self-confidence, and personal power
  • Increase your ability to concentrate
  • Cultivate a greater resilience to stress, a positive mindset, and a sense of hopefulness and calm
  • Decrease stress and stress-related symptoms like frustration, mood swings, feelings of overwhelm or lack of control, anxiety, depression, low energy, headaches, body aches and pains, muscle tension, chest pain and rapid heartbeat, insomnia, and frequent colds and infections
  • Reduce or even stop worrying

Click here now to claim your free gift of my “From Burnout To Balance: A Simple 10-Minute Daily Self-Care Practice.”

Unexplained Fatigue: 2 Tips (From an Intuitive Empath) to Help You Cope

I have been working from home for as long as I can remember – at least 30 years! When COVID-19 forced most of the world to stay home or work from home, it didn’t change this for me. 

What the appearance of COVID-19 did change for me is that I began to feel so tired all the time. I went to sleep earlier and got up later, thinking I was pushing myself too much. However, the more I slept, the more I felt that I needed to sleep. I didn’t feel ill or anxious in any way, therefore I was uncertain as to what was happening. And I was experiencing pain that periodically shifted from one location in my body to another.

I needed an answer to this unexplained fatigue and fast!

Seeking Help to Heal From My Unexplained Fatigue

So, I had a healing session with a colleague. Through that experience I got in touch with how I was taking on other people’s stuff and it was manifesting as physical sensations and pain. My colleague helped with some healing, but it was still there. As an empath, at times I can feel what others are experiencing emotionally. What was odd about this was that I didn’t feel any angst on an emotional level, yet there it was in physical form. This was the first time I was aware of this happening. 

For the past couple of years I’ve been using some practices that empower me to help myself. These come from Access Consciousness, an organization known worldwide for creating transformational life changing tools and processes to empower people to know what they know. 

As a result of this recent empathic experience, my coach reminded me of an Access tool called “Who Does This Belong To” that allows me to distinguish between and release unwanted thoughts, feelings, and emotions that are not mine. This tool is simple and easy, so I began practicing it in my daily life. And it has made all the difference for me. No more pain! No more unexplained fatigue!

I was so glad that I had finally asked for support. It is so important in these challenging times to ask for and to receive support from others, because it could be just what we need.

I realized that I had this incredible experience right now because living in the midst of a pandemic, emotions are amplified with heightened fear, heightened contraction, and heightened anxiety. And I wonder how many other women have been having similar experiences without being aware that they are taking on other people’s stuff.

Because an empath is someone who is so highly aware of the emotions of those around them, that they actually feel those emotions themselves. Empaths are intensely aware of others, their pain, and what they need emotionally. 

This is the number one trait of an empath. No matter what someone else near them is feeling, even if they aren’t showing it, empaths are likely to pick up on it immediately, actually feeling the emotion as if it were their own, like they were a sponge.

No matter what someone else near them is feeling, even if they aren’t showing it, empaths are likely to pick up on it immediately, actually feeling the emotion as if it were their own, like they were a sponge. Click To Tweet

But it’s not just emotions. According to Dr. Judith Orloff, author of The Empath’s Survival Guide, empaths can feel physical pain, too — and can often sense someone’s intentions or where they’re coming from.

Have you been so busy that you haven’t had time to even acknowledge the physical, mental and/or emotional experiences and sensations you are having? If so, right now is a great time to pay attention to what’s going on in your body. And then get really present to that. 

According to Dain Heer, co-creator of Access Consciousness, “98% of your thoughts, feelings and emotions actually don’t belong to you.”

If you’ve been dealing with greater than usual fatigue or feel that you may be picking up on the emotional, physical or mental angst of those around you, check in with yourself and ask, “What is mine?” and “What am I taking on from others?” 

Then try the Access Consciousness tool called “Who Does This Belong To” that worked so well for me. 

Just ask, “Who does this belong to?”

If you feel lighter, then it’s not yours. 

If it’s not yours, say “I return this to sender with consciousness attached.” 

Do this whenever you feel emotional, physical or mental sensations and you’ll feel much lighter immediately. 

For more context around this, click here to see it explained by Dr. Dain Heer, co-creator of Access Consciousness.

You may find, after asking, “Who does this belong to?”, that the thought, feeling, or emotion does belong to you. If so, now more than ever it’s important to really get curious, to slow down, to check in with your body, and to ask questions.

Here are some questions that you can ask yourself:

  1. “What am I feeling?”
  2. “Where in my body am I feeling it?”
  3. “Is this real?” (This is helpful for times when you place a meaning on something, which may not be true. This question keeps you from holding on to uncomfortable emotions over something that isn’t so.)
  4. “What is this telling me?” (When you ask your body this question, it may respond with a word, a phrase, an image, a sensation…)
  5. “What does my body need from me?” (This question may get a similar response from your body as the previous question)

It can also be helpful to journal these questions, taking note of the responses you get and the actions you will take next. When you slow down and tune in this way, you are able to connect with your amazing body wisdom and get in touch with what your body needs from you.

I check in with myself daily. At times I forget, like when life gets busy. However, I have a way of reminding myself with a daily alarm. As an empath, it’s important to recognize my sponge-like nature. And it’s important to squeeze out the sponge every day! So instead of allowing it to detract from my life and my clients, I can use it in ways that contribute. 

Practices like “Who Does This Belong To” and body check-ins are just a couple of the tools I work with. My vast coaching toolkit is a great support to my clients. 

Although these tools are a great start to working with unexplained fatigue, anxiety, overwhelm and other symptoms, sometimes, more support is required. 

If you’re ready to get out of overwhelm so that you can thrive during this time, I’d love to help you. This week I have two spaces available for a complimentary “Overcoming Overwhelm” Discovery session. 

In this 60-minute consultation you’ll:

  • Reveal a clear and compelling vision of what else is possible for your life when you no longer have so much on your plate and are enjoying your life again
  • Get simple and practical tips for how to break free from your symptoms of overwhelm
  • Tap into greater energy and inspiration 
  • Explore how having a partner on your journey will provide a shortcut to all that you desire.

Click here now to sign up for a complimentary “Overcoming Overwhelm” Discovery session.


How to Live a Meaningful Life: 5 Tips to Find Your Purpose, Manifest Your Values, and Increase Happiness

Ever hear stories about people who seem to “have it all” but still aren’t happy?

They have wealth and the many luxuries it can afford, but… something is missing.

That’s because the accumulation of wealth and material possessions doesn’t equate to happiness and fulfillment.

What may be missing is meaning.

Without meaning, life can feel merely like an accumulation of experiences.

When you learn how to live a meaningful life, everything you do and everything that happens for you has a purpose. 

Even now, the coronavirus outbreak has a purpose. And it’s up to you to find that meaning and understand it.

We’ll be exploring why and how you can do that in the sections below.

When you learn how to live a meaningful life, everything you do and everything that happens for you has a purpose. Click To Tweet

How Meaning Can Create Huge Changes In Your Life

When you  seek meaning in your life, you have access to a greater sense of well-being:

  • Improved mood
  • Increased life satisfaction
  • Greater resilience to adversity
  • More productivity because you’re working towards your purpose
  • Creative expression
  • Feeling energized

And here’s something else that meaning and purpose can do for you: help you live longer!

That’s right! A recent study discovered that for adults over the age of 50, “a stronger purpose in life was associated with lower all-cause mortality.” This might be attributed to how having a purpose can lower your cortisol levels and increase your motivation to pursue an active and healthy life.

So, if you’re feeling like your life lacks direction… If you’re waist-deep in pessimism or nihilism… It may be that there’s insufficient meaning or purpose to guide you.

If this is you, here are a few ways to cultivate more meaning in your life:

5 Tips on How to Live a Meaningful Life that You Design and Love

#1 Live a Value-Driven Life

A good starting point for living a meaningful life is your values.

What values are important to you? Some popular values include:

Take inventory of your daily life and compare them to your core values.

Is what you’re doing aligned with what’s important to you?

If creative expression is important to you, are you making time for a hobby like writing or painting? If you value courage, is your comfort zone something you hide within or regularly challenge?

With each action you take moving forward, ask yourself, “Does this align with my values? Is this something that a person with this value would do?”

What value is most important to you? What is your next step for weaving it into your daily life? Share your answer in the comments below.

#2 Build Relationships that Uplift You

Are your support systems doing exactly that — supporting you? 

Will they respond when you call and ask for help?

Or are those systems sources of envy, gossip, and pessimism?

Take a moment to really assess the quality of your relationships.

You might realize that some of the people around you block you from living a more meaningful life. Each time you get bogged down in petty squabbles or friendship politics takes you further away from actualizing your purpose.

If you’re in quarantine, this is an opportunity to distance yourself from the negativity magnets. And for a long life that is abundant in happiness and meaning, it may be time to cut toxic relationships. Build relationships with people that share your values and mission.

#3 Give Meaning to Your Struggles

Whether or not you like it… Whether or not you’re prepared for it… Whether or not you deserve it…

Adversity is present throughout your life.

But will you fight or embrace it?

Many women will resist when they feel overwhelmed with life. They cry at the unfairness of it all — cries that often go unanswered.

Many events in your life are beyond your power — the weather, COVID-19, a tragic loss of a loved one. But this shouldn’t suggest that you’re powerless.

You can still choose your attitude and your actions.

Can you find the lesson in your challenges? Can you ascribe purpose to your adversity?

Even now, with the coronavirus outbreak, what can you learn?

Perhaps it’s a reminder to value your relationships, your community, and the planet.

Everything happens for a reason. And you have the option – it’s within your power to trust that your Higher Power is doing everything it can to lead you in a better direction.

#4 Do a Digital Fast

Social media, electronics, your favorite TV shows on-demand — all of these are subjecting your brain to a dopamine frenzy. 

So what does this have to do with living a meaningful life?

It’s because digital dependency might lead you to value instant gratitude; you crave quick wins over meaningful wins.

And by quick wins, I mean …

  • Social media likes
  • Text notifications
  • Victories on mobile app games
  • Putting in your two cents on Facebook arguments

Do these things really define a meaningful life for you?

Or perhaps the dazzling sights and sounds are distracting you from your life’s purpose.

Consider going on a digital fast for a few days. Remove the bells and whistles to get to the heart of what is important to you.

If you value creativity, now might be a good time to explore a creative hobby. If you find value in learning, then take this opportunity to enroll in an online course or read a new book.

#5 Cultivate Self-Love

Many women find meaning in the world outside.

Improving their community. Climbing the corporate ladder. Changing legislation, even.

That might be you.

Yet what about finding meaning closer to home — finding meaning within yourself?

Instead of predominantly directing your focus outward, can you pivot and begin to prioritize directing it inward?

Can you appreciate who you are as a woman?

Can you see your strengths and values?

Can you love yourself?

Because there is both power and meaning in loving yourself. When you love yourself, you build a strong foundation on which to grow and thrive. Sign up for my email list to receive helpful and actionable advice on how to cultivate more self-love and purpose in your life.

So, what are you waiting for?

A life brimming with joy, love, and meaning awaits you!

Your purpose is already beckoning.

You need only to answer the call.

Combat Stress With Happiness: 5 Tips on How to Live Healthy and Happy

We’re living in stressful times.

How are you coping amidst all the changes related to coronavirus?

You, like many other women, might be struggling — whether it’s from losing your job, keeping your family healthy, or securing basic supplies for your home.

Some days might even feel like a battle just to make ends meet. 

How long can your physical and mental health endure? You’re doing your best but you’re so stressed and overwhelmed.

I know it’s tough right now. 

But can you still find the strength to detect a glimmer of happiness in your life? Can you summon the wherewithal to cultivate that happiness?

Because learning how to live healthy and happy may be exactly what you need to carry you through these stressful times.

Can Happiness Really Relieve Your Stress?

Right now, the world can feel like a scary place.

Instead of attempting to draw happiness from the external world, try looking within.

Cultivating happiness from within will create profound changes in your life.

For one, you’ll gain more resilience to stress and overwhelm.

When you’re overwhelmed, your body releases the stress hormone, cortisol. According to Premier Health, high cortisol levels lead to fatigue, headaches, and can suppress your immune system. 

When you start cultivating happiness, your body releases hormones like dopamine and serotonin. These are the hormones that make you feel happy and fulfilled!

How amazing is that?

Happiness doesn’t have to be some elusive concept. You can make the conscious choice to stop depending on external achievements and learn how to cultivate it from within.

You can stop feeling overwhelmed and start feeling happy again.

Here’s how!

How to Live Healthy and Happy: 5 Tips to Nurture Happiness from Within

#1 Start a Gratitude Journal

If I asked you, “What’s going wrong in your life?” you probably have a mental list already prepared…

  • Overwhelmed by work
  • Coping with COVID-19 and quarantine
  • Strained relationships
  • And much, much more

See, your brain is wired to see the negativity in your life.

It’s a survival instinct that helped your ancestors evolve. It triggered a stress response that allowed them to quickly spot danger or risk getting eaten by a predator.

It was an eat or be eaten world back then.

Nowadays, not many of us are getting chased by wild animals.

Yet, the stress response remains, triggered instead by the endless obligations and negativity that life throws your way.

But what if you can take that survival instinct and widen it to also notice everything right in your life?

A powerful way to do this is by starting a gratitude journal.

Every day, jot down at least three things you’re grateful for.

Our minds are so prone to jumping from one stressful thing to the next. This practice teaches you to slow down. By grounding yourself in the moment, you can take stock of your life.

You might notice there are so many blessings you take for granted, like having a roof over your head and waking up to live another day.

Yes, life is stressful. But life can be filled with beauty and joy. Daily gratitude will remind you of this.

Kickstart this gratitude practice right now by sharing one thing you’re grateful for in the comments below. 

Kickstart your gratitude practice right now by sharing one thing you’re grateful for in the comments below. Click To Tweet

#2 Embrace Forgiveness

There’s a saying — holding a grudge is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.

While you’re not literally drinking poison, holding onto a grudge is still dangerous to your mind and body. According to Psychology Today, resentment may lead to emotional distress and feelings of shame or guilt. You might even experience physical symptoms, like illness or fatigue.

Is there something from your past that you won’t let go of?

Maybe it’s anger at your mom. Or resentment towards a toxic ex.

Ask yourself, “Why am I holding on this? Is this doing me any good?

More often, it’s not.

Past experiences help you grow. But grudges hold you back.

Can you give yourself permission to forgive somebody who wronged you?

Can you summon the courage to move forward?

If you do, you might find the road is brighter looking forward than it is looking back.

#3 Nurture a Hobby

There’s more to life than work and home.

You’re a woman with unique interests and when you nurture them, you’ll tap into greater happiness.

What activity brings you to life?

  • Is it when you’re mixing different colors to capture the right essence on canvas?
  • Is it when you’re stringing stories from all the ideas bouncing in your head?
  • Is it when you put on your running shoes and sprint towards glory?

The point of nurturing a hobby is to tap into your creative flow. When you’re in flow state, the world around you — your stress and obligations — they all slip away. 

All that’s left is you and your craft.

Find a hobby that you love.

And if you’re not quite sure what hobby that is, quarantine might afford you extra time for a little self-discovery!

#4 Get Your Body Moving

Earlier, I mentioned how happiness releases hormones like serotonin and dopamine.

One of the best ways to boost those hormone levels is to exercise!

I know a little physical self-care can be challenging with gyms closing due to coronavirus.

But there are so many ways you can stay active from within your home.

  • Living room yoga
  • Exercise videos
  • Go for a jog outside (if it’s permitted)
  • Turn on your favorite music and dance your heart out!

Just get active.

As you exercise, you’ll notice the stress leaving your mind and body. That’s the happiness hormones doing their job!

#5 Filter the Negativity

While there’s much beauty and abundance in this world, negativity is everywhere:

  • The news
  • Your social circles
  • Music
  • Social media
  • Movies

Continuous engagement with negativity can create a stressful environment. Expose yourself for long enough and it can seriously affect your mental state, leading you to be more prone to pessimism and despair.

While there is no way to “negativity-proof” your life, you can take steps to filter the negativity you allow into your life.

You can remove a toxic friend from your life. Reduce your exposure to the news. Be selective about what media you choose to watch.

Then, find sources of positivity. Friends who uplift you. Inspirational books. Funny movies.

And on that note, introduce more positivity to your email inbox by signing up for my mailing list. Receive helpful and actionable tips on how to reduce overwhelm and create your best life.

Remember: Stress and setbacks will come at you throughout life, especially under today’s circumstances. Still, you can cultivate happiness from within, starting with loving yourself and appreciating the blessings in your life.

How to Be More Resilient: Getting Back on Track When Life Isn’t Going Your Way

Ever notice how some women have this uncanny ability to bounce back from adversity?

With each challenge, they emerge wiser and stronger?

These women are resilient.

Resilience looks like the woman who loses her job but polishes her resume and starts seeking career opportunities.

Resilience looks like doing the best you can, even when coronavirus has disrupted your daily life.

Resilience is showing up for yourself every day, even when it feels like you’re carrying the world on your shoulders.

You don’t need a suit and cape to conquer your challenges. 

Resilience can be your superpower. And I’m going to show you how to be more resilient when you’re feeling overwhelmed with life.

What is the Meaning of Resilience?

Psychology Today defines resilience as “the psychological quality that allows some people to be knocked down by the adversities of life and come back at least as strong as before.” 

Resilience is choosing to move forward instead of giving up. 

Embracing optimism over pessimism. 

And understanding that each struggle is temporary and you have the power to create positive change in your life.

What Resilience Isn’t

Being Emotionless

Even resilient people undergo emotional turmoil during tragedy. The difference between those who are resilient and those who aren’t is how they cope. 

Something You’re Born With

Some are born with greater resilience than others — like athleticism or your IQ.

But that “level” isn’t set in stone.

Like training a muscle, your resilience grows with each challenge you overcome.

This is good news for you. Even if you have low resilience now, it’s something you can work on. The following tips will help you build resilience in the face of adversity:

5 Tips on How to Be More Resilient and Emerge from Adversity Stronger than Ever

#1 Build Your Support System

Different events can trigger emotional trauma — divorce, losing a loved one, even moving into a different home.

And trauma isn’t something you can necessarily weather alone. 

Building resilience is also about learning when to ask for help. Sometimes you need to rely on compassionate friends and family who will support you. 

You may also want to join a specific group. Stanford Medicine shares how “being active in civic groups, faith-based organizations, or other local groups provides social support and can help with reclaiming hope.”

#2 Cultivate Healthy Outlets

Some women resort to unhealthy outlets when coping with adversity. It looks different for each woman — substance dependency, compulsive spending, and overeating, to name a few.

That’s why it’s helpful to build habits that will support you during difficult times. Healthier habits include:

  • Exercising regularly
  • Prioritizing quiet alone time for yourself
  • Cooking nutritious meals for your body
  • Engaging in a creative hobby
  • Spending quality time with family members

These positive outlets will give your body the resources it needs to cope with stress more productively.

#3 Find the Lesson

Why is this happening to me?

What did I do to deserve this?

These thoughts probably have passed your mind when misfortune falls in your lap. You might feel betrayed. You might even curse at your Higher Power.

Sometimes, tragic events are inexplicable. Yet, it’s up to you to find the meaning in them.

If you recently lost your job, what lesson can you find in that? Maybe it’s an opportunity to connect more with yourself and priorities.

What meaning can you find in the passing of a loved one? Perhaps it’s a reminder of your own mortality and the precious value of time.

How about recent events?

What can we learn from the coronavirus outbreak? There are reports of pollution reduction around the world. Maybe coronavirus is offering us a glance into what a healthier planet would look like.

Finding the lesson helps you build resilience. It encourages you to change how you view adversity:

  1. You can let adversity defeat you.
  2. Or you can let adversity teach you.

Have you recently experienced a setback? What lesson did you find in it? Share your discovery with me in the comments below.

#4 Take Just One Step

When you’re stuck in your problems, there are days when you don’t want to do anything.

Believe me, I know

There were days when I didn’t want to get out of bed because I was so overwhelmed by stress and fatigue.

Yet all you need is one small change to shift the course of your life.

For me, that was transitioning into a growth mindset — that I wasn’t helpless to the forces around me and there are things in my life that I can influence.

And your next step doesn’t need to be that big.

It could be as small as getting out of bed. Or perhaps it’s giving yourself just five minutes to sit in silence.

Set your own pace.

Confucius once said, “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.”

Start with finding your single next step… and then taking it.

Resilience isn’t as much about how fast you bounce back — it’s more about your ability to adapt and move forward.

#5 Seek Additional Support

For some, the above tips are enough to build their resilience.

Others might need a little more support. 

Perhaps that’s you.

I had my own life coach to help me overcome overwhelm and break free from burnout. I’m here to be that for you, as well.

If you’re suffering from overwhelm and want to thrive again, sign up for a complimentary “Overcoming Overwhelm” Discovery session with me. 

In this 60-minute consultation you’ll:

  • Reveal a clear and compelling vision of what else is possible for your life when you no longer have so much on your plate and are enjoying your life again
  • Get simple and practical tips for how to break free from your symptoms of overwhelm.
  • Tap into greater energy and inspiration 
  • Explore how having a partner on your journey will provide a shortcut to all that you desire.

Click here now to sign up for a complimentary “Overcoming Overwhelm” Discovery session.

Hi, I’m Whitney

About Me

As an International Speaker, Certified Life Coach, Spiritual Counselor, and Ordained Minister with 3 decades of experience researching personal growth and how we heal from within, I have healed myself from fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, and burnout. My proven strategies help women overcome overwhelm and break free from the burnout cycle. I then partner with them as they reclaim their passion and create the life they desire. Having experienced first-hand the challenges of finding physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual balance, I believe that life is meant to be enjoyed, not endured!!!

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