If you can’t start the day without a caffeine hit, battle sleepiness on your commute to work, and feel exhausted by the time you get to the office, you are not alone.
Studies indicate that as many as 3 in 10 people experience prolonged fatigue.
There are many possible causes of exhaustion, but Mira Kirshenbaum, a psychotherapist, and researcher, points us to a surprising finding: the most significant cause of low energy is not the lack of sleep, nutritional deficits, or insufficient physical rest.
Kirschenbaum found that:
Physical energy supplies — at the most — 30 percent of our total energy. The remaining 70 percent of our energy comes from our emotions.
In view of these findings, it’s clear that taking care of our physical wellbeing is a necessary but not sufficient condition to feel energized.
Generating the energy we need for a good quality of life requires creating the right emotional environment — both internally and externally.
Creating the right emotional environment
When it comes to the internal emotional environment, you probably already know that your self-talk and the way you think about your circumstances will have a massive impact on the way you feel.
Pop psychology and self-help literature will tell you: “Master the internal narrative, and you’ll live in a state of bliss.”
What they tend to overlook, however, is the impact of the external environment on our well-being.
The reality is, however, that the people we interact with frequently trigger most of the emotions that we experience daily.
To understand why this happens, it’s useful to look at a phenomenon called “emotional contagion.”