Quiet the Hive is all about putting the control in your hands. Designed to energise, inspire and motivate, we share helpful ideas, challenges and prompts to boost your mental wellbeing, confidence and sparkle. Recently, over on the Quiet the Hive instagram channel we curated an ‘Energy Week’ full of ideas on how to build more energy into your week. Find the highlights below, and choose one a day to focus on.
Hint Number One: MOVE YOUR BODY
Move your body daily, especially (ironically) when you are feeling sluggish and lethargic and least likely to want to! This image was taken early on a Saturday morning just after completing a HIIT workout that I really didn’t want to do. But that, my friends, is the post-exercise face of smugness! Exercise releases endorphins (the happy chemical). The ‘runners high’ is no myth.
The important thing is to choose something that brings you joy. If running’s your bag, do that. More of a swimmer? Go! Prefer a hike? A bike? A HIIT? They’ll all work.
Think about how you are going to build exercise into your week. In between a busy day and a chore filled evening, you need to schedule your exercise to make sure it happens. Hold yourself accountable by setting a move date with a friend. Do an online workout (Joe Wicks on You Tube is a great, free resource) at home when the kids are in bed. Get a yoga DVD. Whatever works for you. But plan it in.
Hint Number Two: SLEEP
You’re body (and, ergo, mind) won’t be full of energy is it’s not recharged properly. You know how much sleep you need, but it’s not likely to be less than seven hours (more like 7-9 hours). Why not challenge yourself to get eight hours each night this week. Go to bed earlier if need be. And, if you’re awake in the middle of the night reading this…switch it off immediately! The blue light emitted from your screen confuses your brain and inhibits melatonin (the sleepy chemical).
Also, don’t ‘medicate’ with alcohol to help you sleep. That doesn’t work either. It may help you to drift off, but it disrupts REM sleep (which helps to stimulate the brain areas incolved in forming memories, restoring chemical balance in the brain, and learning); not great for your day ahead.
When you don’t get enough sleep it really buggers up your body. Not only does it reduce your energy levels, but it can also contribue to physical isseues such as heart disease, weight gain, depression and anxiety.
So, tonight, switch off your phone an hour (at least) before bed, have a caffine- and alcohol-free drink, and instead read or meditate ahead of bedtime.
Hint Number Three: LET IT GO
You know that thing that doesn’t give you energy? The thing that really zaps you and drains you? Yes, that. That thing that’s instantly popped into your head as the almost unconscious answer. Well, now is the time my friend, to chuck it!
Think about what you can ditch (Hate ironing? Just stop. Only buy non-iron clothes), do differently (Do it with loud music, or a movie on – something that’ll make it more joyful), or delegate (Who can you get on board to do it? Kids want to earn some pocket money? Partner really doesn’t mind ironing?).
Make a list of the regular things you do each week. Does it bring you joy? Nope? Then ditch it, do it differently or delegate it.
Hint Number Four: CUT THE CRAP
We all know what makes us feel good and what doesn’t. Whilst wine and chocolate and crisps all fill a gap, they don’t really fulfil you. When you fuel your body well, you give it the right raw material to generate the energy you need. You’re not messing around with your bloody sugar levels and you’re maintaining the right balance of nutrients to give your body every chance to perform to it’s optimum potential.
Today, try and make good food choices. Make sure you take on board plenty of water, and maybe, just for tonight, go alcohol free. You’ll find you get a better quality of sleep too.
Balance is key, but today tip the scales in favour of fuelling right and cut the crap.
Hint Number Five: WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY?
This one is simple really. What makes you happy? The things that make you happy bring you energy. For me some of those things are friends and family, running, being by the sea, having adventures, watching confidence grow in others and sewing!
Take some time and make a free-flowing list of everything that makes you happy. Don’t self censor, just let it come. Set a timer for five minutes, and just write. At the end, highlight a couple of things that you could build into your week. It could be something simple like reading on your commute, or taking to a friend on the phone. Just make sure you fit it in.
Hint Number Six: IT’S OKAY TO PUT YOURSELF FIRST
It’s okay to put yourself first.
Read this. Absorb it. Remember it. Do it today.