Where are you spending your energy?

Posted September 28, 2011 by Marcy Twete in On the Ladder
Your energy is a commodity. It’s valuable, it’s tangible, and it gets you through the day. We often evaluate what we’re spending our energy on, specifically. Perhaps through timecards, perhaps through checking items off of a list. But how often do we truly ask where we’re spending our energy, meaning what emotions, what feelings, what actions are we spending energy creating?

To start, put yourself in this scenario. You’re in the office and someone (doesn’t matter who) does something you consider phenomenally stupid. This person might have overstepped their bounds, usurped your authority, made a huge mistake….and the list goes on. Ask yourself, which reaction to this situation would expend more energy? 1) You can blow up, freak out, talk to everyone in the office who will listen about how stupid and careless this person or situation might be. Gosh, that takes a lot of time, doesn’t it? That takes a lot of energy, doesn’t it? What’s the other option? 2) Shake it off, let it go, move on, and fix the problem swiftly. As maddening as it might be, there’s no denying the second solution expends considerably less energy than the first.

How often are you spending energy on negativity, anger, misery, and annoyance? And what is it creating in your life? The photo above doesn’t lie. If you spend your energy in these incredibly negative places, you’re creating a nightmare of a life. It’s not that negativity doesn’t exist in our lives. It does. And often we can’t control whether or not we feel angry, negative or annoyed. But we can control how we choose to devote our energy to that feeling.

So this week, rather than trying to control your feelings, rather than spending energy on those feelings, spend energy on lightness and positivity. Devote your time and your energy to what will move your life away from “glass half empty” scenarios and toward “glass half full” scenarios. Positivity doesn’t have to mean you’re Susie Sunshine, but it does mean you’re giving energy only to that which grows and provides joy in your life. Think through this, and it might just make your day a little…..dare we say…..brighter.

About the Author

Marcy Twete

Marcy Twete is a career fundraiser turned corporate responsibility executive, a career and networking expert and the author of the book "You Know Everybody! A Career Girl’s Guide to Building a Network That Works."