Struggling With Energy | Unhealthy Habits | PintFeed

Energy is the powerhouse of your lifestyle and can either make or break your success in feeling incredible. If you are struggling to complete your everyday tasks, stay energized all day, or even get up in the morning, your energy levels may be drained. Luckily, there are a few culprits that may be depleting your energy through the habits you practice daily. By getting to the source of your low energy, you can change your habits at your own pace to protect your energy and keep you positive and productive. Challenge yourself to address these five unhealthy habits if you are struggling with low energy but have not figured out why.

Eating Processed Food

Eating fast and processed food may seem like a good idea in the moment, but your energy levels are being depleted in the long term. Fast food tends to give you a "rush" of energy followed by a dramatic crash later due to the empty calories found in greasy or sugary foods. This is why you may lean on fast food in the moment but struggle to maintain your daily energy levels. Processed food has a similar effect and can cause you to feel full without necessarily energizing you. This is because processed food is high in calories but not nutrients, so your brain and body are hungry for more. This can lead to fatigue, stress, and cravings that distract you from your tasks at hand. You can reverse the effects of processed food by simply focusing on eating more whole foods whenever you can. Dark leafy greens, whole grains, fruits, and plant protein are all clean "fuel" for your energy levels.

Staying Up Late

Losing out on sleep can have devastating effects on your mental health and energy in the long term. Sleep is your body's chance to recharge and restore its energy levels, and neglecting sleep can affect your entire next day. The first sign of incomplete sleep is difficulty waking up in the morning or addiction to caffeine to start your day. You might also experience irritability, lack of motivation to exercise, energy crashes in the afternoon, or brain fog while you try to concentrate. These consequences can be reversed over time if you prioritize 7-8 hours of sleep whenever possible. You can disconnect from your devices or create a relaxing nighttime routine if you currently struggle to sleep each night. Sleeping at a reasonable time can improve your energy levels without making any dramatic changes to your lifestyle.

Neglecting Fitness

Avoiding a consistent fitness routine is likely a reason your energy levels are sluggish, especially if you have a grueling work schedule. Fitness is about far more than weight loss; your body requires a consistent level of exercise to function properly, protect your metabolism, improve your mood, and reduce stress. The release of endorphins after exercise is your body's natural stress relief, and you may experience excess anxiety or lack of energy if you have not worked out in some time. Luckily, the benefits of exercise can be felt right away if you simply begin now. Go at your own pace and walk outside or stretch during a busy day to keep your energy levels high. Creating a strong fitness routine can protect your energy levels no matter how stressful your life is.

Forgetting Mental Health

Neglecting your mental health has detrimental consequences on your wellbeing and energy levels. If you experience high stress levels and anxiety without seeking help, these can drain your mental and physical energy to the point where you become depressed. Even addictions such as alcoholism can develop if you are not coping with stress in a healthy way, and these addictions drain your energy even more. Do your best to address any mental illness or mental health challenges proactively so your energy levels and health are protected. A licensed psychologist and your primary care doctor are great places to begin if you worry that your mental health is depleting your energy. Asking for help can put you back on track and help you sustain a lifestyle with the energy you need to thrive.

Beating Yourself Up

The last energy-draining habit you may struggle with is perfectionism, or beating yourself up when you do not exceed your expectations. Self-esteem is a powerful psychological energy source, and neglecting to celebrate your small wins can drain you mentally. This impacts the level of energy you bring to daily tasks including healthy eating, exercise, and anything that involves self-care. Building your self-esteem over time and learning to adapt from failures can protect you from anxiety and some stressful mindsets that are dangerous in the long term. Consider working with your therapist if you have the habit of beating yourself up for failing, as this can heavily drain your mental and physical energy.

Consider these unhealthy habits if you have struggled with your energy and are searching for the cause. These are subtle habits that can creep into your lifestyle when stress is present, so do your best to change your habits as you see fit and ask for help when you need it. By protecting your own physical and mental health, you will double your energy levels and create a lifestyle where you can thrive.