Balancing our energy is like balancing our finances

spend-saveWhen it comes to our finances, ideally we want the flow of money to be higher income than expenditure.  If the flow is in the right balance we have “left overs” that we can bank and keep in reserve for harder times.  If the hard times go on for a long time we use up all our reserves and start going into debt. The further into debt we slide the harder it is to come out of.  We know that once our finances are back into the right balance we know that it will take time to firstly get out of debt and then to build up reserves again.
In our youth our bodies are quite good at producing more energy than is expended, and we can easily build up reserves.  When we hit a period of extra demand on our energy, we have the reserves there to handle the extra drain. For example when we’re young we can pull a series of all-nighters for work or uni and survive quite well afterwards.  Unfortunately, this can lull us into a false sense of security, we mistakenly think that because we managed so well in the past, we can continue to use up our energy without acknowledging it needs to be replenished at some stage.
As we age, our body becomes less efficient at energy production and our ability to produce more energy than we use is diminished.  If we are moderately healthy, we may be producing enough energy to sustain our normal day to day energy expenditure but not enough to build up reserves.  Many of us have health issues that mean our ability to produce energy is so diminished that we are not even producing enough to sustain our “normal” activity.  If we continue to drain our energy faster than it’s replaced, we will start heading into energy “debt”.  And, the longer we continue this pattern, the further into debt we slide.

Similar to finances, the deeper into debt we slide, the harder it is to climb out of.  Not only do we have to get our body healthy and producing energy to fulfill our daily needs but we need to produce extra to pay back our energy debt and hopefully build up reserves again.  When we’re in significant energy debt it is going to take time and sustained effort to get back into balance.  There are no ‘quick fixes”.
The journey to recovery can be frustrating because sometimes we have periods when we are feeling better and have more energy and then we fall into a slump again.  My suggestion is that when you have those periods of feeling good you should “bank” some of that energy rather than using it all up doing the things you haven’t felt capable of doing for ages.
Ideally you would avoid getting into energy debt in the first place, by being mindful of looking after yourself, giving your body time and space to replenish your reserves when you need to.

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