The biggest source of energy suckers in your life is yourself. You are the one cutting corners by not respecting your own needs, eating well, exercising or making time for fun in your life. Anything that takes the fun out of your life is an ‘energy sucker’ and anything that puts the fun back into your life is an ‘energy giver’ and feeds you energy. Identify your ‘suckers’ and replace them with ‘givers’ that feed you with energy and enthusiasm.

Energy sucking Foods: Foods are one of the biggest energy suckers in our lives. Our bodies function most efficiently when we eat foods that are close to their natural state – the more fresh foods, free from preservatives and human intervention that you eat the better. If you’re not eating a diet high in natural, fresh, raw foods then you are robbing yourself of energy.

Keep a food diary for a week and see what you are really putting into your body every day. The reality of what you are doing is usually quite different to what you think you are doing.

Energy Giving Foods:

  • Go for brown in everything: wholemeal bread, pasta and rice. Be careful with grain breads, because many have a white refined-wheat base, making them the same as white bread, but with seeds.
  • Concentrate on making sure that you have a full range of colours in every meal.
  • It’s not as though you haven’t heard it before…drink more water, two litres of pure, filtered water every single day.
  • Enjoy your foods and always go for quality before quantity. I am into hot chocolate as one of my ‘free day’ treats, and I would rather go without during the week so that I can enjoy my double white chocolate with caramel topping – that’s quality over quantity.

Energy Sucking People: Have you ever noticed how some people can really suck the life out of you? They rely on the dramas in their lives for attention and fuel their own energy by taking yours. You know the type of person; they only seem to want to speak to you so that they can re-live their dramas in every painful detail.

The way I have learnt to handle people like this is to first realise that they are handling life in the best way that they know how and second, to realise that I don’t have to buy into their games.

If you must spend time with someone like this, try changing your perspective. Listen to them, pay attention, be present, and realise that they have something to give in their own way. By changing your perspective, they will not be able to suck the life out of you. If you go into the conversation thinking ‘okay, here we go again’ you will open yourself up to their energy-draining ways.

Energy Giving People and Attitudes: When you find yourself whinging about something or someone? All it does is drain your energy. Choose to focus instead on the positives in life and surround yourself with positive people.

We all go through cycles and sometimes we can get caught in a negative groove; if you’re in one at the moment, choose to change your perspective about what is happening in your life. Focus on what you do have and what is working for you, rather than on what you don’t have or are missing out on. Allow five minutes to feel sorry for yourself and then get on with it. Don’t go around draining the rest of your life and others because you’re in ‘poor me’ mode. Changing your perspective is as easy as catching yourself being negative and consciously changing your thoughts.

Energy Sucking Beliefs and habits: We all have negative habits and beliefs at times, it’s only human, so don’t beat yourself up over it. It’s your life, and if you choose to do something that has a negative impact on your health such as smoke, at least do something to balance it out, you might take Vitamin C daily to lessen the impact for example.

Noticing your behaviour and refocusing on something to balance out the negatives will be more productive than guilt-tripping yourself will ever be. By giving yourself a hard time, you simply reinforce the negative and make it more difficult to correct.

Energy Giving Exercise: The easiest way to get more energy is to give more energy and you do that by moving your body. When you are feeling low in energy, get up and move around the office, do a set of wall push-ups and breathe the energy back into your body.

In Chinese medicine we say the way to get energy is to give energy. So when you are tired at the end of the day the fastest way to recharge your batteries is to get up and move your body in some way. Even some fun play time with the kids outside or a short walk around the block can be enough to recharge you.

Remember your life will always be filled with challenges. Waiting for the right time to allow yourself or to choose to be happy is futile, the right time never comes. If something is “sucking the life out of you” do something about it and replace it with an action that feeds you energy. If you choose to not replace that energy sucker, stop whinging about it, change your perception, get your head around it and get on with life. Your sanity depends on it.