11 Habits That Zap Your Energy

by Carina Wolff

Nothing is worse than feeling tired and lethargic without even knowing why. Everyone wants to be filled with vivaciousness and energy, but a number of your daily habits may actually be killing your energy levels. Your overall lifestyle can have an impact on how you feel everyday, and making sure you're taking care of yourself can help you feel revitalized and motivated. Knowing what habits can help you feel energized and which can drain you of your vitality can help you work out a daily schedule that leaves you feeling ready to conquer life.

"Our energy is finite and has to be renewed regularly," says holistic health practitioner Brandon Mentore over email. "Things like sleep, proper nutrition, stress management, physical activity and hydration restore and replace energy. Most people are subpar in these categories, which means the fatigue point of choices and decisions is very low in most people."

If you constantly feel drained of energy, you're not alone. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 15.3 percent of women report feeling tired and exhausted all the time. To avoid constantly feel lethargic and unmotivated, you might want to consider ditching these 11 habits that can zap all your energy.

1. Stressing Out

Stress and anxiety can lead to tiredness and fatigue, according to the CalmClinic. "It's important to manage stress and part of that is clearing it as well," says Mentore. "Having an outlet such as exercise, yoga, meditation, mindful walking are god ways to clear stress."

2. Keeping Secrets

According to a study in the Journal of Experimental Psychology, keeping secrets can actually be both a psychological and physical burden. "Participants in the study actually perceived hills to be steeper and believed that tasks required more effort when they were keeping a significant secret," says holistic health and wellness coach Samantha Elkrief over email. "Lesson: Don't keep secrets or do things that require hiding."

3. Sleeping In On Weekends

"We've all had long nights that didn't include a lot of sleep, but too many sleepless nights can really take a toll on your energy," says Elkrief. "Using the weekend to catch up on sleep will only take you so far." A study from the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism found that sleeping in on the weekends can actually give you "social jet lag," messing with your body's natural circadian rhythms. Instead, try to keep your amount of sleep balanced throughout the week.

4. Multi-Tasking

"Multi-tasking feels good, but it actually does nothing for your productivity," says Elkrief. "It requires a lot of mental space and energy to constantly jump between tasks." One study from the University of London found that students who multitasked while performing cognitive tasks experienced significant IQ drops comparable to individuals who skip a night of sleep or who smoke marijuana. "Try blocking out time for specific tasks rather than jumping between them," says Elkrief.

5. Relying On Sugar

"We're all familiar with that time of day when our energy starts to fade and we head to the vending machine," says Elkrief. "Sweets are a quick and easy way to bring your blood sugar up and give you energy, but the energy fades just as fast and leaves your more depleted. If you really want something sweet, try adding some fat or fiber, like an apple with peanut butter, to help slow the absorption of the sugar and give you more lasting energy."

6. Spending All Day On Social Media

"The constant stream of negative news and disagreements on social media can make you feel frustrated, hopeless or unheard," says Dr. Meggie Smith, holistic chiropractic practitioner, over email. "None of these feelings lead to energy or enthusiasm. You may be especially tempted to mindlessly scroll through social media when you are tired. But avoid this temptation. Instead read something positive or look at images of beauty and nature online if you cannot see them in person."

7. Hanging Out With Draining People

"Introverts know all too well how draining it can be to be out in the world when they just want to be at home," says Smith. "But even extroverts can be drained by spending time with people who they don’t trust or don’t agree with." Choose who you spend your time with carefully, and avoid people who are too exhausting to be around.

8. Physical Inactivity

You might think resting all day would give you more energy, but the opposite is actually true. Regular exercise can help improve your energy levels and fight fatigue, according to research from The University of Georgia.

9. Too Much Caffeine

"Most people have replaced their metabolism (which yields energy) with caffeine," says Mentore. "This is a huge problem because you couple the activating systems and chemicals in your body to be completely dependent and reliant on caffeine. This is why people go through withdrawal when they don't have coffee for a few days or just can't 'get things going' until they drink it."

10. Not Eating Enough Healthy Foods

Eating a healthy diet is good for more than just staying in shape. "One of the main reasons we eat food is to provide energy to our body," says Mentore. "Eating foods that aren't nutrient dense and that are processed packaged are more expensive to digest than the nutrition and energy they yield. This will take more energy away form you than it'll give back."

11. Pressing Snooze

It might be tempting to try to sneak in those extra few minutes, but pressing snooze can actually leave you more tired than when you originally woke up. When you fall back asleep, your alarm wakes you up in a deeper part of your sleep cycle, which can leave you feeling groggy and fatigued.

The healthier your habits are overall, the more energy you'll find you have.

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