Everything is energy in motion.
-- PIR VILAYAT INAYAT KHAN
While many scientists and experts study energy, the truth is you don't have to be a scientist to know that energy is all around us and inside us. Human beings, trees, water, sunlight, air, plants and every other single thing in the universe — they're all made of energy. In fact, when we get down to it, energy is all that exists.
In high school science class we learned that energy is never created nor destroyed. It is simply transformed from one form of energy to another. The energy of two cells uniting to form an embryo; a power plant turning the energy of water into electricity; a plant using the sun's energy to live; all are examples of energy flow and transformation. The same energy from sunlight that feeds an apple tree also provides us with the energy to walk, talk and think. Energy never disappears. It is recycled into other forms of energy. Energy is never stagnant. Rather, it flows, it transforms, and it creates.
Feeling the Energy... We All Do It
While energy is a difficult concept to grasp because we can't physically see it, we can think about our every day experiences to understand how "it's all about energy." When we eat food, we feed our bodies energy. Sunlight and water provide a plant with the energy to live. Cars need energy to drive. When we walk into a restaurant or party, we feel the energy immediately. We instantly decide whether we like the place or we don't. We might say, "That place has great energy" or "That restaurant didn't have a good feel to it."
Likewise, when we meet someone we decide immediately whether they have a "good vibe" or a "bad vibe." We read their energy and make a decision on how their energy affects us. We've all met people who have a lot of great energy. We want to be around them more. In contrast, we've also had the experience of meeting someone I call an Energy Vampire where they literally sucked the energy right out of us. If we paid close attention we could feel the energy being pulled from our bodies. Energy Vampires do exist and they will steal your energy if you let them.
Energy is also found in the thoughts we think and the words we read and hear. Have you ever gotten excited about an idea and felt energized? Or listened to an energetic speaker and become motivated to take action? Or read a book and become inspired? Words are so powerful they have started fights and wars. With each book we read and each sentence we hear, we take in energy. With each thought we think we send energy to our body and project that energy out into the world.
We also find a tremendous amount of energy in music and other people. We listen to music and it lifts us up. Have you ever seen a live concert? You can literally feel the power emanating from the performer. They are sharing their energy with the audience and the audience is receiving it. The energy is so powerful you can almost touch it.
Or have you ever been in a football or baseball stadium or basketball arena? The crowd goes wild. The home team comes from behind and wins the game. It was as if they were feeding off the energy of the crowd. They were. That's why they call it "home field advantage." Or how about the way you feel after meeting an old friend for lunch or dinner. After talking to them you feel better than ever. You laughed non-stop, told stories and felt full of life. You shared energy.
Many of us also experience energy in many other ways. Have you ever said a prayer and felt God's energy fill you up? Or gone to the beach and become rejuvenated? Or hiked in the mountains and felt the energy of the trees? When you exercise do you feel like you have more energy even though you just ran two miles? When you get a good night's sleep do you feel like someone recharged your battery?
We have all of these experiences and many more like them because we are energy beings and as energy beings we interact with other forms of energy every day. We give, receive, share, transform, maximize and focus energy every day.
It's all about energy.
INCREASE YOUR POWER SUPPLY
Too much of a good thing is wonderful.
-- MAE WEST
We all know someone who seems to have more energy than the rest of us. When I ask people in my seminars if they know someone who has a lot of energy, everyone in the room usually points to two or three people. We can see it with our eyes, hear it in their words and enthusiasm, and feel it in their presence. Just as some people are born to play the piano or baseball better than the rest of us, there are those who, I believe, are born naturally with more energy.
However, the great news is that energy can be acquired. While we may not be born as energetic as some people, we can become more energetic by acquiring more energy. Just as a baseball player can practice hitting to improve his batting skills and an actress can practice displaying different emotions to improve her craft, all of us have the ability to become skilled at acquiring more energy.
The key is to become an Energy Addict. Like any addict who is addicted to something, an Energy Addict always wants more positive energy. Energy Addicts are always interested in increasing their power supply — acquiring more energy to become more energetic and powerful. If we measured an Energy Addict's energy supply it would far exceed that of a normal person. Energy Addicts take in more energy from more sources. They know where to find the energy — how to tap it — and how to make the most of the energy they have.
Just as a good financial planner can take your $1,000 and turn it into $5,000 while an average financial planner would turn your $1,000 into $2,000, an Energy Addict can take the same amount of energy as a normal person and create more, do more, and accomplish more with it. So an Energy Addict takes in more energy and makes it work more efficiently and effectively. This leads to a larger power supply even while energy is being used every day.
And because Energy Addicts are skilled at acquiring more energy for their life, they are always replacing used energy and adding to their power supply. With all of their energy, Energy Addicts also have more to share with others. This energy can be used to help other people increase their power supply — creating a more energetic company, family, organization, neighborhood and world.
As you read on, you will discover many ways to increase your power supply. Simply remember energy acquisition is a skill. The more you do it, the better you will get. The better you get, the more you will increase your power supply. You may have not been born energetic but you can become energetic. Up to this point you may have not lived a life filled with energy, but today you can become an Energy Addict. This will allow you to create more success for yourself and others.
FIND YOUR SONG AND PLAY THE MUSIC
Drumsound rises on the air, its throb, my heart.
A voice inside the beat says,
'I know you're tired, but come. This is the way.'
Most of us have a favorite song that lifts us up whenever we hear it. You might be sitting in your car and your favorite song will come on the radio. You start singing and before you know it your day has turned around from frustration to joy. Music is energy that vibrates just as the approximately 75 trillion cells in our body vibrate. When we hear music our bodies will often feel the music before we even realize we are moving to the beat.
Music has the power to make us laugh and cry. Think of the music from the movies "'Terms of Endearment" and "Titanic." The music starts playing and the audience is reaching for tissues. Music also has the power to motivate us and inspire us. Think of the "Rocky" movies. When I hear the "Rocky" theme song I still get the urge to sprint a hundred yards.
Music sets the tone in restaurants and shopping malls. It plays during sporting events, religious services, and family holidays. After all, what would a birthday be without a "Happy Birthday" song?
Music makes us think and feel because it is a powerful source of energy and each day you have the opportunity to make the energy of music work for you. When you are down you can play a song that lifts your spirit and adds a kick to your step. When you are going to an important meeting or event, you can play a song that gives you confidence. When you are stressed and nervous you can play music that relaxes you. Music is energy that you can use to fuel your life whenever and where ever you need it.
PUT YOUR ENERGY FIRST
Imagine you're an energy vending machine. Your family comes up to you, puts a few coins in and says 'we need some energy'. Do you have any to give or are you already spent. Are you stocked up or sold out. Or think about your boss standing by your machine. Now that's a scary thought! They are looking at you deciding if they want a large or a small amount of energy today.
Do you have the energy to give? There are a lot of people looking to put coins in us and if we don't have the energy to give, they'll likely bang on the machine looking for their money back. Let's just hope they don't tip the machine over.
The fact is, we can't give what we don't have. To give energy we need to have energy. To have energy we need to put our energy first. This means that we need to stock up our vending machine before we give it to everyone else. While some may call this selfish, I call it smart. While some may call you self-centered, I call you generous. If you put your energy first you will have more energy for yourself and more to share with others.
Consider Ted. Ted is always giving to everyone. He ignores his own needs, works tirelessly, gets little sleep and spends his free time making sure everyone else is happy. Everyone else receives his Energy but Ted has nothing left for himself. Everyone says, "WOW, look at how giving Ted is. Isn't he great?" But Ted's machine becomes empty. In the future Ted may burn out. Or Ted will likely get sick and will not be there for his family when they need him. Or Ted might leave his family to find so called "happiness".
Now consider Ed. Ed puts his energy first. Ed stocks up on energy. Ed makes time for exercise, sleep, play and himself. Ed takes care of himself so he has something left to give his family. Ed takes care of himself so he has more energy for his career. Ed knows that he can't give his energy if he doesn't have any for himself. In the end everyone in Ed's life is better off because Ed put his energy first.
So remember, even when society criticizes you for putting your energy first, be like Ed. This doesn't mean you are selfish. You put your energy first and then you share your energy with others. You get a massage so you will be more relaxed during the week. If you are a mom with small children, you hire that sitter for a few hours so you can recharge and rejuvenate. You take your lunch break in the park so you can be more productive in the afternoon. You exercise in the morning so you can spend time with your kids in the evening. You ask your husband or wife to watch the kids so you can take some time for yourself. You balance your personal life and career.
In the long run everyone you live with, work with and interact with will thank you. Those who have the energy are the ones who can share it. Instead of handing out your energy to everyone else, remember to first stock up your energy vending machine and then you can dispense your energy accordingly. When those who need you most put their quarters in, you'll have plenty of energy to give.
The most accomplished performers
have defined specific rituals in daily life
whereas those who are less successful do not.
— JAMES E. LOEHR, ED.D, AUTHOR AND PSYCHOLOGIST
As part of any "energy for life" plan, rituals are the key to turning our goals into reality — or chaos into concrete. Rituals help us create positive habits that will become our foundation in a crazy world.
For example, when I was at the peak of my unhappiness several years ago I asked myself what was missing in my life. The answers were loud and clear — a healthy diet, exercise, creative expression, and time with my wife and kids. So I developed my routine and rituals around these very things. My wife and I decided to make Saturday night our date night; every Saturday we would hire a babysitter and go out for dinner and a movie. I started writing every night after I read to my daughter and put her down to sleep. It became a priority to get home each night so that I could spend time with her before she went to bed.
On the exercise and diet front I created exercise routines and diets and made them a part of my everyday life. I went to the same deli every morning and ordered four egg whites and fruit for breakfast before heading into work. I liked walking in the door and holding four fingers in the air; the cooks knew what to make. Amazingly these routines and rituals helped bring a certain order and peace to my life that made everything flow much easier. My habits became my life and I was much happier.
By incorporating meaningful habits into our lives with rituals and routines, we make our lives more meaningful. This gives us a foundation and a center that we can build on and around. We can develop a routine or ritual for anything. Perhaps we walk our dog every night before we go to bed. Or we do yoga before we shower in the morning. We eat French toast every Sunday. We call our special friends once a month at the same time. If we are single, we might go to a social event once a week every Thursday. If we are married we might call our spouse every day at noon to ask how he or she is doing. If we are religious, we most likely go to a religious service once a week. If we are spiritual, we likely meditate and pray daily.
Our life is the result of our words, choices, thoughts and actions. What we believe, say, choose and do is what we become. When you create rituals that increase your mental, physical and spiritual energy, you become more energetic, happier and successful.
Reprinted with permission of the publisher,
LongStreet Press, Inc. ©2003. www.longstreetpress.com
Energy Addict: 101 Physical, Mental, and Spiritual Ways to Energize Your Life
by Jon Gordon, M.A. (originally published in hardcover as: "Become an Energy Addict")
Practical, common-sense, sometimes counterintuitive, Jon Gordon shows how we can become addicted to positive energy and habits, making small changes in our lives that will produce big results.
About the Author
JON GORDON is known internationally as The Energy Addict. Jon's seminars, newsletters, articles, radio and television appearances are seen and heard by tens of thousands of people each week. Jon's energy coaching has increased the energy of people from all walks of life. Jon has infused energy into organizations such as The PGA Tour, The Jacksonville Jaguars, New York Life, State Farm Insurance, The United Way, The Children's Home Society, Cingular Wireless and The Ponte Vedra Inn and Club. Visit Jon at his website: www.JonGordon.com.