"Running on Empty"
♫ “Everyone I know, everywhere I go.
People need some reason to believe.” Jackson Browne
Ever feel like you are running on fumes? Sometimes the low fuel light is glowing brightly, and you just don’t know how much remains in the tank. With my first car, I knew exactly how far I could go on the last few drops of fuel. With that familiarity came a sense of confidence and power, however unwarranted. These days, do you know when you are running on empty? It’s critical to recognize how you are doing; physically, intellectually and emotionally.
Physically, you must maintain your body to most effectively meet life’s opportunities. Having four heart stents, I am keenly aware of what positively affects me and what doesn’t. Regular exercise and a nutritious diet pay off in both the short and long run. Have you been getting any signals that indicate whether your physical choices are recharging or draining you?
Intellectually, you have heard, “the mind is a terrible thing to waste.” There are moments when you just need to give your brain a rest. However, most of the time, your mind is ready to work and you should let it operate in productive ways. This could come in the form of reading, solving problems or learning a new skill. I recently read there is evidence to suggest that our brains are shrinking as we are getting more specialized. It is easier for us to let others do things for us, rather than taking the opportunity to learn something new and different. Is that your goal?
Emotionally, try and develop relationships that provide energy as well as require energy. Too many interactions and situations that are only energy drainers will eventually deplete you. It is not sustainable. As they highlight in the airplane cabin, “place the mask on yourself before assisting others.” This is true for all of life because, if you go down, you cannot help anyone else.
Life is tough and it is perfectly understandable and essential to take a break and recharge. To make the most of what is given to you, be very aware of your physical, intellectual and emotional status. Respond effectively to changes and inconsistencies. Do not ignore the low fuel light, signs and feedback from the people around you. Ignorance is not bliss; it is fatal! Give yourself reasons to believe and not run on empty for long.
Enjoy the journey!