How’d you like more energy?!?!

How’d you like more energy?!?!

If happiness is about doing things you love and loving things you do…

…then happiness requires a certain amount of energy so you can get out there and live life!

Enjoying more happiness, therefore, will be more likely if you can enjoy higher energy levels…

via Eric Barker

The world might be all go-go-go but that doesn’t mean we are…

When Gallup researcher Tom Rath surveyed 10,000 people only 11% said they felt like they had a lot of energy.

From Are You Fully Charged?:

When we surveyed more than 10,000 people to see how they were doing across these three areas, we found that most people struggle on a daily basis. For example, when we asked them to think about their entire day yesterday, a mere 11 percent reported having a great deal of energy.

Luckily, Tom and his team didn’t go take a nap. Instead, they pored over studies and talked to experts to get some answers on why renewable energy is a big thing everywhere but inside our bodies.

From Are You Fully Charged?:

To discover what creates a full charge, my team and I reviewed countless articles and academic studies, and interviewed some of the world’s leading social scientists. We identified and catalogued more than 2,600 ideas for improving daily experience.

They found there were three factors that separated your supercharged days from your “low battery” ones. Tom summed up their results in his book, Are You Fully Charged?: The 3 Keys to Energizing Your Work and Life.

We’re going to look at some of what he found and learn how to have more energy.

Alrighty, let’s get to it…


Everybody wants happiness — but that little bugger can be quite elusive and fleeting. As Viktor Frankl once said, “Happiness cannot be pursued; it must ensue. One must have a reason to ‘be happy.’”

But if we seek meaning in life, we often get happiness as a bonus. So what’s “meaning”?

It comes down to doing stuff that benefits other people. Research shows what makes us happy in the moment is often kinda selfish. And here’s where things get a little weird…

Because neuroscience studies demonstrate that while focusing on meaning ends up making us happier, pursuing our own happiness can make us — believe it or not — unhappy.

From Are You Fully Charged?:

A 2014 study followed a group of teenagers for a full year to see how their brains reacted to self-fulfilling (hedonic) acts versus acts that created meaning (eudaimonic) using fMRI scans and questionnaires. While the participants were in the fMRI scanner, researchers posed scenarios to them about keeping money for themselves versus donating it to their families. The researchers also followed up at the end of the year to review any changes from the teens’ baseline levels of depressive symptoms. The results revealed that teenagers who had the greatest brain response to meaningful actions had the greatest declines in depressive symptoms over time. In contrast, teens who made more self-fulfilling decisions were more likely to have an increase in risk of depression. Meaningful activity essentially protects the brain from dark thoughts.

But happiness feels good, right? Isn’t that why they call it happiness? Well, oddly enough, it doesn’t feel good to your body if there’s no meaning. The bodies of people who are cheery but lack anything deeper actually show higher levels of inflammation.

Happiness without meaning is the physical equivalent of being stressed out.

From Are You Fully Charged?:

When participants in a study led by the University of North Carolina’s Barbara Fredrickson were happy but lacked meaning in their lives (defined as pursuing a purpose bigger than self), they exhibited a stress-related gene pattern that is known to activate an inflammatory response. They had the same gene expression pattern as people dealing with constant adversity have. Over time, this pattern leads to chronic inflammation, which is related to a host of illnesses, like heart disease and cancer. Fredrickson noted, “Empty positive emotions… are about as good for you as adversity.” Unfortunately, 75 percent of participants in Fredrickson’s study fell into this category; their happiness levels outpaced their levels of meaningfulness. In contrast, participants who had meaning in their lives, whether or not they characterized themselves as happy, showed a deactivation in this stress-related gene pattern.

And when we feel we’re making progress in meaningful work we’re 250% more likely to be engaged at the office.

From Are You Fully Charged?:

My research suggests that the odds of being completely engaged in your job increase by more than 250 percent if you spend a lot of time doing meaningful work throughout the day. To discover what leads to better work and lives, Harvard Business School’s Teresa Amabile and psychologist Steven Kramer sorted through 12,000 diary entries and 64,000 specific workday events collected from 238 workers across seven different companies. Their conclusion from this research was: “Of all the events that engage people at work, the single most important — by far — is simply making progress in meaningful work.”

Okay, so how do we find this meaning stuff? Well, you don’t find it. You create it. Research in the area of “job-crafting” shows that if we tweak how we work, we can enjoy a lot more meaning in those hours at the office.

What activities give you a feeling of engagement, warmth and pride in what you do? Find a way to spend more of your time doing that stuff and less of the other stuff. Talk to your boss and co-workers to try and shift duties around if you need to.

And speaking of co-workers, who makes you feel good versus stressed? How can you spend more time with the former and less time with the latter?

Small changes in how you work can make a big difference in how you feel.

From Are You Fully Charged?:

This research, led by a team at the University of Michigan, found that you can craft existing jobs to significantly improve the meaningfulness of your work. Effective “job crafting” starts by looking at how much time you dedicate to specific tasks that give you energy each day. It also entails looking at the way your relationships at work and your perception of what you do create meaning for others.

I know what some people are thinking… they can’t change a thing about what they do or who they work with. No, you’re not screwed.

The most important factor here is perception — how you feel. And everyone’s work benefits someone else. By thinking more about who your work helps and making a little effort to see those results, you can dramatically increase the level of meaning in your life.

When university call center employees who were asking alums for donations got to meet the scholarship students who benefited from their work, productivity, enthusiasm and the amount of money coming in went up dramatically.

We’re often focused on our well-being above all else. Put a little more effort into your well-doing and your well-being often takes care of itself.

(To learn more about the science of a successful life, check out my bestselling book here.)

Okay, so meaning can help fill your tank. What else do we need?

…keep reading the full & original article HERE