The Power of our Emotional State and How it Affects our Energy, Productivity and Overall Well-Being
Why Emotion Affects Energy
“Emotion is more powerful than reason. Emotion is the driving force behind thinking and reasoning. Emotional intelligence increases the mind’s ability to make positive, brilliant decisions.” Dr. T.P. Chia
There is a definite link between our emotions and energy. In fact, our emotions play a key role in how high or low our energy levels are. Which is why it’s important to manage your emotions.
Let me explain.
If you want to start feeling more energetic and get more done then it is important to think about the way you are managing your emotions. Emotion and energy levels are intimately linked. Understanding the links between the two is the key for those of us who want to feel more awake and productive.
Why Emotion Affects Energy
Consider this: The brain is essentially a large web of connected neurons which psychologists call the ‘connectome’. This connectome fires as we experience various things in the world or as we remember certain things and this then creates a variety of different subjective experiences for us.
“I don’t want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.” — Oscar Wilde
At the same time, our brain’s unconscious processes pay close attention to the object of what we’re focused on and then produce neurotransmitters accordingly. For instance, if what you’re seeing or experiencing is important, your brain will produce things like dopamine. Increased dopamine can make us more motivated and it also helps us to remember things better.
On the other hand, if what we’re seeing makes us scared, is at all associated with pain or a negative experience, our brain produces norepinephrine (adrenaline) making us more focused and anxious about that experience.
These experiences/events also affect our energy levels. Being alert and focused triggers changes in the sympathetic nervous system that increase our heart rate, our circulation and muscle tone all to make us more switched on and productive.
On the other hand, when our experiences are dull and uninteresting, our brain tells us we’re safe and able to go back to relaxing. The chemical reaction in the body is to produce GABA and melatonin both of which calms us down and also induces sleep.
The Optimum Emotional State for Energy
Boredom then is absolutely fatal for energy levels. If you find your energy waning, you can offset that by changing your environment, or the way you are doing something such as a dull or mundane task. Doing this then tells your brain that something interesting is going on. Your brain responds, sending signals to the rest of your body that this is important, which in turn helps you become more alert and awake.
People who suffer from depression experience this. When you’re depressed, you struggle to be interested in, or care about anything. By doing something that makes you happy you can produce serotonin and oxytocin which will make you more positive and interested again. This is why spending time with friends, laughing or even exercising are so energizing.
The good news is you can ‘trick’ your brain into a positive response by making yourself believe in the positive aspects and pushing aside the negative aspects of an experience.
Earl Nightingale said it best, “Whatever we plant in our subconscious mind and nourish with repetition and emotion will one day become a reality.”
That is not to say that we should do that with all negative experiences. Our bodies are wired to respond to danger in ways that can protect us. This is called the “fight or flight” response. And the subject of a different conversation. I am not talking about those types of events. I am really speaking more to the everyday, mundane and sometimes uninteresting things we experience as a matter of course, the little emotions. Those “little emotions are the great captains of our lives and we obey them without realizing it.” — Vincent Van Gogh
That is why its important to understand the link between our emotions and our energy levels.
By knowing this, we can consciously make the changes necessary to enjoy a more fulfilling life. After a while, your subconscious will take over and begin looking at the events in your life, changing your “attitude” or “perception” about those events in a positive way, resulting in raising your energy levels throughout the day!
“Emotions influence us mentally, spiritually, psychologically and physiologically in everyday life. We will gain if we are blessed with positive emotions. We will lose if we are controlled by negative emotions.”– Dr. T.P. Chia
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