It’s normal to get a little sleepy sometimes, but if you’re constantly asking yourself, “Why am I so tired?” it's time to start identifying energy leaks that are causing you to feel this way.
Sound scary? It is! Your energy is your most precious resource.
The good news is that your body is wise and you are equipped with an amazing feedback system that can help you if you choose to listen to and understand it. Today we’re going to learn about all the little places your energy can leak out.
WHAT'S CAUSING YOUR ENERGY TO LEAK?
Sugar? Caffeine? Unfinished projects? Clutter in your workspace or home? Pent-up emotions? Being hard on yourself? Going against the flow? Trying to be in control instead of surrendering? Eating nutrient-poor foods? Disease? Overtraining? Stress? Lack of restful sleep? Toxicity?
All these big and seemingly little things add up and can play a role in why you’re so tired.
WHEN ENERGY LEAKS GO UNIDENTIFIED
Some of you are sick and know what it’s like to live without energy. You spend all of your time trying to heal your body and if you're lucky, you can make it through the day without a nap. I’ve been there. I’ve been so exhausted struggling with allergies, multiple chemical sensitivities, and digestive issues that I couldn’t get out of bed for days.
How many times have you made the excuse that you can’t do something because you don’t have the energy?
How often do you go to bed without getting everything done?
TAKE A LOOK AT WHERE YOUR ENERGY IS LEAKING
The big culprit is diet. The food you eat leads to a healthy bioterrain, essential to your energy levels. These probiotic bacteria within your bioterrain produce short-chain fatty acids made in the gut. They get utilized for energy and they also produce vitamins K and B, where they are easily absorbed right on site in your intestines.
But when your gut health is compromised, your energy levels falter.
Sugar and caffeine strip the body of minerals, making it hard for the nervous system to relax, causing interrupted sleep.
You are letting the energy leak out all the different places in your life and you're not doing anything to stop it.
Donuts – not the best source of energy…
Drinking caffeine is basically borrowing from tomorrow’s energy. Refined sugar causes ups and downs in your energy level. It messes with your insulin, fat storage, and metabolism.
Having good insulin sensitivity and the ability to burn fat easily is essential to maintaining even keel energy levels.
There are other foods that deplete and rebuild your energy. In Gut Rebuilding®, we call these kryptonite foods and superpower foods. Learning your individual kryptonite foods is a lifesaver in helping you avoid energy dips.
Nutrient lacking foods create an unhealthy bioterrain, meaning that bad bacteria and yeasts are free to grow and produce toxins which slow everything down. These toxins are taxing on the liver and disrupt hormone regulation. Toxins can also come from your environment, amalgam fillings, bad bacteria in the gut, chemicals like pesticides, and many other places.
Another big energy leak is disorganization. This is one of the leading causes of energy leaks and a possible reason why you’re so tired. That unfinished sewing project? The cluttered garage? Putting things off will drag your energy down.
Emotional Intelligence and Boundary Setting
Emotional discord will also cause energy leaks. Overcommitting, not being able to say no, perfectionism, and not going with the flow has a very real impact on your physical body. Self-hatred wreaks havoc on your emotions, as does avoiding confrontation or intimacy with others. When you’re stressed out about a relationship or taking care of someone else’s needs instead of your own, you're draining your energy reserves. The same goes for holding grudges. Learn how to be a channel for normal human emotion and let them flow through you.
Work and Rest
Of course, there is the issue of sleep—most people aren’t sleeping well enough or long enough. Our natural sleep cycles are interrupted by screens at night, overstimulation, caffeine, being in constant fight or flight, lack of activity, stress, not having the right bacteria in the gut to produce GABA, or having certain pathogenic bacteria in the bloodstream.
Too much exercise can take a toll. I’m not a fan of high-intensity boot camps. Slower workouts are better because your body needs time to adapt. Run for ten minutes every day for a month and work up to twelve minutes, rather than push your body too hard.
MOVE FROM IDENTIFYING ENERGY LEAKS TO STOPPING THEM
Here are a few action steps you can take to regain your energy:
- Write down when you feel a wave of extreme exhaustion noting what you may have eaten, committed to at work, left as an incomplete project, or done at the gym the hour or two beforehand
- Pause before saying yes to new projects so you can take an inventory of those that are unfinished first and set realistic deadlines to complete them before taking on new ones
- Recognize the necessity of maintaining a healthy bioterrain with nutrient-dense, gut-supporting foods and probiotics
- Get good quality sleep by avoiding overly stimulating substances, foods, or devices at least a few hours before your regular bedtime
- Practice emotional and stress release that feels right for you (an important topic my students learn about in depth inside Gut Rebuilding®)
Start thinking about how you can take small steps to build your energy levels every day. Notice how what you eat, think, or do impacts how tired or energized you feel. Every little piece adds up and will start making a big difference in how you feel.