by Amanda Jason
Beat the Winter Blues
By this time of the winter, many of us can hardly wait for spring. The seasons truly affect our emotions and energy levels. The cold and grey sky of winter contributes to low motivation, low energy, and low moods.
While we canít change the weather, we can make changes in our lives to create more energy. Take a few quiet moments for your self to envision a beautiful spring day. Imagine, perhaps, a park with lush green grass, and shade giving trees. The sun warms you just enough to be perfectly comfortable and there is a gentle wind that kisses your bare arms. Hold this vision with all its sights, sounds, and feelings, just as perfect as you would have it. What does this spring day mean to you? A freshness? A bounce in your step? New ideas? A heightened mood? More opportunity to get outside and enjoy nature?
Now what does it mean to your sense of wellness? A feeling of peace? Joy? Promise?
To keep that feeling year round, we must continue to look inside ourselves for clues, and become aware the energy flow around us. There are things we tolerate in our lives each day that we donít even know drain our energy. Eliminating these energy drains, will allow room for more positive energy to move into our lives.
Look around the space you use daily at home and at work. Are there piles of papers calling for your attention? Books that havenít been read? Trash that hasnít been taken out? How about that light bulb in the bathroom youíve been meaning to replace. Each time you see them, the small annoyance drains a little energy.
For example, I have a habit of driving my car until there is the smallest drop of gas left in the tank. This drains my energy. I rush around all day and spend my time in the car worrying when I can get to a gas station because I might run out, instead of practicing breathing and enjoying a small break between errands.
I share my activities with you because they have worked for me and helped me create a joyful, peaceful life. To begin removing your energy drains practice the following activities:
1. As you move through the next days, just list the things in your life that you think might be draining your energy. As you list what we consider little things, you will also discover big things that youíve been putting off but still hang around in your mind and drain you. For example, creating a budget, or painting the kitchen. Just write them all down.
2. Once you feel you have a thorough list for home and work, look for items that have been hanging around for a really long time. Mark those with an ďO.Ē Itís an oldie.
3. Then cross off any of the items you are willing to let go of. Let go, commit to spending time on other things.
4. Now as we said, some items are big and some are small. You will break this list into two different lists. One will be named Projects because it takes more than one step. The other list will be called Next Action Steps because they will only take one step. For example, on the Projects list you might have create a budget or organize wardrobe. These will take more than one step. On the Next Action Steps list you could have change light bulb or take out trash.
5. Once you have your two lists, look at your Projects. Each project will of course have a first step. Write this first step on your Next Action Steps list. Now you have a complete list of actions you can take to eliminate energy drains.
Donít overwhelm yourself. Do a few each day until you have eliminated your list. Then you can go back to your Projects and look at the second steps. This might sound a little challenging at first, however once you identify the energy drains and start eliminating them, it will become easier and youíll have the energy and motivation to keep moving forward. If the project is just too daunting, it can help to have a friend work on this project with you. Create a day that you will work together on your energy drains and then treat yourselves to dinner. You can call each other when you need a break or a pep talk.
I wish you much success.