Do you ever find yourself exhausted and you’re not sure why? Do you ask yourself, “Why am I soooo tired?” often?
Emotional energy leaks can drain us of our vitality and leave us physically exhausted, compromising our quality of life.
Watch below so you can learn how to identify and fix energy leaks that might be sucking your precious bandwidth dry!
Prefer the audio? Listen here.
In my 25 years of experience as a psychotherapist, I have found there are common energy leaks that leave my clients, students, and community members feeling drained, flat, and exhausted.
Over the past 2+ years of the global pandemic, these leaks have become even more apparent. I invite you to consider the list below and see if anything resonates with you, especially if you are actually getting enough sleep, but you’re still beat.
The Top 7 Emotional Energy Leaks:
1. Difficult relationships
It is incredibly exhausting to have relationships in your life that are fraught with conflict. Are you in a dynamic with someone where you feel like you are constantly in a debate or on the defense? Is there someone in your life you feel like you can never please?
Relationships, where nothing is easy and feels like you’re always on the defense or being criticized at every turn, are big energy drains. Think through the relationships in your life that eat up your bandwidth. It could be a romantic partner, a family member, a friend, or a work colleague.
How much time do you spend worrying about things that haven’t happened? When we worry, we are fearfully or catastrophically projecting into the future. If you have a habit of worrying, it could be a learned behavior. Some of us come from a long line of worriers where we saw this behavior modeled when we were growing up.
We can think worrying about others is a way of loving them. It’s not. There can be this unconscious connection that worrying about the ones we care about in some way might make them safer, but that is not true.
What I have found both personally and professionally is where your attention goes, your energy flows. Excessive worrying can kind of be like praying for the exact opposite result of what we want. Obsessing over all the potential bad things that could happen will not do squat to change them from happening (because worrying is not the same as preparing) and it is a huge energy leak.
To get ideas on what you can do to break the cycle of worrying and reclaim your emotional energy, download the guide right here.
When we procrastinate, we are not doing something we know we must and, usually, even though we are not doing the thing, it is still dominating our mind. Remember, where our attention goes, energy flows.
A lot of times there can be illusions about procrastination. I’ve had therapy clients who would say things like, “I do my best work under pressure”. In all my psychotherapy and professional experience, that narrative just is not true.
You do your best work when you are expansive, not constricted waiting until the last minute. You might get it done, but I do not believe it will be your best. The best work is done with time and preparation, when we have the luxury of space to be creative, think things through, and make adjustments.
If you have a tendency toward procrastination, you’ll learn some strategies inside the guide to help you kick it to the curb and get the energy you’ve been wasting back!
4. Overdoing It on Screens
Now I love me some Netflix, but if you’re streaming things or scrolling for hours and hours at a time on a regular basis, this can absolutely drain your energy.
Here’s something important to think about: if you’re watching things that are violent or stressful, your body responds. When we watch things they elicit real, actual feelings. So when you watch a scary movie, your body is releasing hormones like cortisol, the stress hormone. Over time, these hormone dumps can fatigue our adrenals and lead to exhaustion and inflammation.
Work/life balance is essential to optimal energy flow. Overworking is a massive energy suck. Research suggests that working more than 45 hours a week — is detrimental to your health, physical and mental, in many ways.
There is a certain tipping point when it comes to effectiveness and efficiency, so even if we are in a habit of overworking, it’s really not in our highest good.
I am a recovering workaholic and it’s something I always have to be aware of because it can be very easy for me, especially when I’m excited about a project, to fall back into this pattern. I have systems in place to protect myself from getting lost in my work because I want everything else, like my marriage, my family, my friendships, and my self-care to have a sacred and specific place in my life.
Codependents suffer from exhaustion based on the over-functioning, over-giving, and hypervigilance codependency requires. How do we know if the way we relate to people is dysfunctional and codependent?
Take a quick inventory:
- Are you doing things for others they can and should be doing for themselves?
- Are you inserting yourself into situations that are not on your side of the street?
- Are you overly invested in the feeling states, outcomes, relationships, and choices of others to the detriment of your own internal peace?
If you’re nodding your head, you might be leaking a lot of energy from codependent behavior patterns. As a recovering codependent myself I can tell you – codependency is exhausting.
7. Disordered Boundaries
One of the biggest underlying causes of energy leaks (yes, all of the ones above included) is having disordered boundaries. They are inherent in codependency, where our internal and external boundaries are blurred. Procrastination is a disordered internal boundary because it has to do with the way we relate to ourselves and time.
When your boundaries are out of order, it takes up so much precious bandwidth! Think about it – if we are doing things we don’t want to do, over-functioning, accepting crappy behavior, and not speaking our truth – it becomes a constant energy drain.
I cannot emphasize enough how much your life can change when you learn how to set and maintain healthy boundaries, including how much energy you will reclaim!
If you would love the help of an expert guide (moi!) Boundary Bootcamp is now open for enrollment! You can get all the details and join us for BB 2022 right here!
Be sure to download your guide to get a relationship inventory around your energy leaks and my tips to help you take back some of your life force energy. You can grab it right here.
If this resonated with you, please share it with your people. You deserve to feel energized, enthused, and excited about what you’re doing in your life!
I hope you have an amazing week and as always, take care of you.
Thank you for a really good coverage of energy drainers and some possible solutions. It was short and to the point. You never "waffle on" and you genuinely know what it's like to have issues – not just theory that can't be put into practice. I love the way you deliver stuff, no blame and shame but encouraging people to own their stuff.
Thank you so much for your kind words, and I’m glad you enjoyed the blog. ❤️❤️