Have you ever wondered how some people seem to have boundless energy and effortlessly influence those around them? The secret lies in understanding the science behind energy and influence, and using that knowledge to optimize your own performance. Here are some scientific tips that can help you improve your energy levels and increase your influence in both your personal and professional life.
Tip #1 - Prioritize Sleep for Real
Ever notice how when you don't get much sleep, your energy lags and you struggle focusing and communicating well? If you're like me, you may even find it more difficult to make healthy food choices when you're sleep deprived. There's a scientific reason why, but we won't dive into that here. #nerdalert. What we know for sure is the late night Netflix marathons, social media scrolling, and any other habit that keeps you sleep deprived isn't helping you be the joyful and productive person you want to be. Numerous studies have shown that quality sleep is essential for cognitive function, mood regulation, and physical health. Aim for 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night to allow your body and brain to rejuvenate. Establish a consistent sleep schedule, create a relaxing bedtime routine, and optimize your sleep environment by keeping your bedroom dark, cool, and free from distractions. Prioritizing sleep can significantly boost your energy levels, leading to increased productivity and better performance in all areas of your life.
Tip #2 - Practice Mindfulness in a Way That Works Well for You
There's a reason so many successful people say the use some sort of mindfulness practice to manage stress well. Stress is a natural part of life, but chronic stress can drain your energy and negatively impact your influence. Mindfulness, which involves paying attention to the present moment without judgment, has been scientifically proven to reduce stress and improve overall well-being. Throughout your work day, you can add moments of mindfulness that make sense for you. You don't have to meditate for 20 minutes to feel a significant difference in your energy. When I worked in a building, I used to go sit in my car during lunch and close my eyes for 10 deep breaths and that made a huge difference in how I felt. Now that I work from home, I just step away from the computer about every 1-2 hours and practice some form of mindfulness. Sometimes, it looks like simply closing my eyes and taking a few deep breaths. Other times, it's a five minute walk outside. When possible, I try to squeeze in a longer walk after lunch. Figure out what is the best form of mindfulness for you and practice it. It will reset your energy and reduce your stress. When you're less stressed, you'll be better equipped to handle challenging situations, make clear decisions, and positively influence others.
“The mind is like water. When it’s turbulent, it’s difficult to see. When it’s calm, everything becomes clear.” – Prasad Mahes
Tip #3 - Fuel Your Body with Nutritious Food
We all know that the food we eat plays a significant role in our energy levels and overall health, but we all aren't intentional about it. Opt for a well-balanced diet that includes a variety of nutrient-rich foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats. Avoid sugary and processed foods that can cause energy crashes and negatively impact your mood, like a donut or bagel first thing in the morning. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. It helps if you have a nice water bottle and a straw. Even mild dehydration can lead to decreased energy levels and impaired cognitive function. Nourishing your body with nutritious food is essential to you feeling your best and being able to influence others positively.
Tip #4 - Surround Yourself with Positive People You Want to Be Like
I know you've heard the saying, "You're the average of the five people you spend the most time with." It's said because energy is contagious and we as social creatures learn from others and often mirror their habits. So you want to surround yourself with supportive and positive individuals who uplift and inspire you in the way you want to be inspired. For example, when I wanted to learn the business of public speaking, I joined a community of professional speakers who supported and inspired me. Take the time to reach out and make meaningful connections with others. A coffee chat to meet a new person or pour into an existing relationship is almost always on my calendar. Strong social connections have been linked to improved mental health, increased resilience to stress, and enhanced well-being. Building positive relationships and social connections boosts your energy and influence by creating a supportive network that motivates and empowers you.
Tip #5 - Be Intentional with Your Energy When You Communicate
Effective communication is a cornerstone of influence. It's not just about what you are saying, but the energy you are generating. Pay attention to your thoughts and if they're negative, shift your focus to compassion, gratitude and appreciation. Ask yourself questions like: How can I show compassion? What am I grateful or appreciative of? What would make me proud of how I showed up? It may look like getting into the habit of starting off conversations by thanking others for taking the time to meet or for anything else you appreciate or admire about them. Pay attention to your non-verbal communication, such as body language and tone of voice, as these can greatly impact how your messages are perceived. Practice empathy and seek to understand others' perspectives to build trust and rapport. By improving your energetic communication skills, you can enhance your ability to influence others positively and achieve your goals.
Optimizing your energy levels and influence requires a holistic approach that encompasses various aspects of your life.
By prioritizing sleep, practicing mindfulness, fueling your body with nutritious food, developing positive relationships, and being mindful of your energy when you communicate, you can boost your overall energy and influence, leading to greater success in your personal and professional endeavors. Include these science-backed tips into your daily routine and watch as your energy levels soar and your ability to positively influence others flourishes.