My entire life has been an active one.
Starting in middle school and all through high school I had long days. Early mornings to school followed by basketball , football, or baseball practice.
Once married, my long days continued.
For long periods of time I’d work two jobs. Or worked a job and went to night school. Or worked a job and at night practiced martial arts. Always playing basketball. Or working out. Or golfing. Always moving. Always active. Plenty of energy.
My health has not been good.
For almost two years now, I’ve been battling daily with a lack of energy. I’ve been lethargic, I’ve had no enthusiasm. Literally, I could go to sleep nightly at 6 or 7PM without difficulty and sleep through the night.
I’ve tried decreasing my sugar intake. Extreme workouts. No breakfast. No carbs. I’ve tried vitamins. I’ve read books. I’ve prayed.
Try as I might, I still have not solved the problem.
What is energy? What is it’s source? How do we create it?
The first law of thermodynamics states that energy cannot be created or destroyed. In essence, energy can only be transferred from one form to another. Apparently, energy just IS.
If this is true, how do we gain access to it? How do we convert it and apply it in our lives?
As I contemplate this problem, I’m encouraged by the notion that the energy is available. Somehow I just need to tap into the source.
I’m reading the book by Swami Chinmayananda, A Manual of Self Unfoldment, recommended to me by a friend.
A Swami is a male Hindu religious leader, and as someone who knows next to nothing about Hinduism, I’ve been reading with great anticipation as to how this viewpoint aligns with the life of Jesus and his teachings.
Although I’m not quite through the book, I’m pleasantly surprised with the synchronicity of these ideas with the life of Christ.
What’s super exciting to me are the chapters around mindset and the timely topic of chapter 4 : Conservation of Energy.
The essence of the chapter is that we have three areas in life where our energy, which already resides inside of us, dissipates, or leaks. The Swami teaches first to conserve your energy by stopping the leaks.
The three leaks are represented in the past, the present, and the future.
The past takes our energy if we focus on regret.
The present robs our energy if we focus on the excitement of unhealthy pursuits.
The future steals our energy when we focus on anxiety and worry.
Our energy is conserved and increased when we focus on the present and replace our excitement of unhealthy pursuits with enthusiasm for good and moral endeavors. This righteous purpose ultimately becomes an energy source all it’s own.
What I’ve learned is that the energy we seek is already present. We must first conserve it. Once we’ve stopped the leaks, we can take the energy conserved and begin to build.
Scott Adams, one of my favorite authors, puts energy in perspective. “The way I approach the problem of multiple priorities is by focusing on just one main metric: my energy. I make choices that maximize my personal energy because that makes it easier to manage all of the other priorities.”
Energy is our only metric. Mental, physical, and spiritual energy. Energy that can be given away to benefit our neighbor, all the while making the world a better place.
Here’s to the builders and creators who harness their energy to forge a future that benefits us all.
Here’s to you and me, reclaiming the energy within.