What if you were able to create 10% more energy in your life today, through mindfulness? The article below explores simple ways to start!
In the spirit of energy,
Mindful ergonomics – Making the most of your energy
When I was in my last year of college, I found myself suffering from chronically low levels of energy. This was quite an issue because my degree was a specialization in sculpture, and I was doing a lot of heavy lifting in the daytime. So in addition to the intellectual and creative demands, there was also the physicality of the work too. One of the ways in which I got through this successfully was by paying attention to the Qi gong principle of not using any more muscle effort than was necessary for any given movement. For example:
- When I was lifting a heavy bag of clay or plaster I would only use the muscles I needed; grip strength, shoulders, lower back, glutes and thighs. The rest of my body I kept as relaxed as possible
- When I was walking I walked using only the leg muscles and the ‘swing rhythm’ of the arm movement. I relaxed the body as much as I could when walking
After a short while of doing this I realized how much unnecessary effort I had been putting into my physical actions, and how much physical energy I could save through this simple mindfulness practice.
Nowadays, this isn’t a practice that I limit to the physical world. I continually notice that there are ways in which I can get ‘less for more’ in the positive sense of the word. for example:
- This afternoon I was having trouble organizing my education program for next month. I could notice my instinctive response to ‘try harder’ to fix the schedule in my diary. I consciously relaxed, took the intensity of my energy down a little, and worked patiently, step by step. The problem was then resolved without much energy or emotional friction
- I notice I can’t choose the emotions that I’m having in the moment, but I can choose how much energy I give them. Anxiety that I am unconsciously feeding and investing energy in is far more draining than anxiety I hold lightly and choose not to give too much energy to
Energy saved is energy you can be using elsewhere in your life to find fulfilment and wellbeing. How can you be more mindfully ergonomic with your energy today?
Article © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com
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