Since I added a post on Instagram – about the energy cycles, I got dozens of messages about it. It really resonated well. So I thought I’d write some more about what I mean by this “energy sinusoid”.
What is energy sinusoid?
My own “energy adventure” must have started back in high school. There were days I could do so much – study, workout, meet with my friends. And then on some other days, something as easy as walking the dog or cleaning up my room could be an issue. The only activity I was able to perform on such day would be to prepare more tea and open another book.
I thought of it as the “up” and the “down” days, and I really didn’t like myself after the “down” day. I thought I was doing something wrong, or I was being lazy.
The years went by; I finished high school, got my master’s degree, and this never changed – so it wasn’t an adolescent phase either;) I was thinking about myself in terms of that weird dualism, but I couldn’t fully understand what was happening and why.
Luckily enough, most of my professional life has to do psychology; I’ve always been interested in figuring out why we do what we do and feel what we feel. It was when I was studying to be a psychotherapist that I discovered that curiously enough, everything that was going on with my energy/creativity/motivation sinusoid was completely natural.
Ups and downs for growth.
We are creative human beings – all of us. And, understandably, we cannot work at full speed all the time. It’s like when you drive – you won’t use the 5th or 6th gear all the time. (A metaphor for those driving a stick.) You need to start with 1 and then 2 – otherwise you will have problems with your car. We work exactly like that. To be productive, effective, creative, we need to rest and recuperate. Otherwise our ‘motor’ – might get too exhausted.
So that sinusoid is also about our growth. When we’re ‘down’ we accumulate energy necessary for our next steps, we regenerate, we heal. And then – being ‘up’ this hill again- we are able to perform, to go outside our comfort zone and reach for higher prey. It’s only natural we’re able to do it only once in a while. It’s like with running. You cannot sprint through all of your training. There are moments you have to slow down, to level your breath, to calm your heart and stretch. Only then – are you able to sprint – go through the finish line, and break that record. It’s a complete training that matters – it all makes sense together.
So to sum it up – the moments of our minimal productivity really serve us well. They are nourishing, in a way. It’s better to enjoy them with a clean conscience because only rested and with a clear head, can we start all the new challenges that await.
Something that helps immensely with getting to know ourselves and who we really are is mindfulness = being present, being aware. And one of the tools from the mindfulness toolbox would be journaling. Writing and noticing, connecting the dots, and learning about ourselves I cannot recommend it enough.
Something to keep in mind if you’re a woman.
Your menstrual cycle will impact the way you feel and how productive you are. It could be a good idea to read some more about it to help yourself navigate your months better.
And last but not least – a crucial remark. Those shifts in energy are only natural if they are not disrupting your life – if they seem healthy in general. There’s a line between the natural cycles and depression or possibly a bipolar disease. If the ‘down’ feels too low, or the ‘high’ is – too high – you should absolutely consult a specialist.
How about you? Are you comfortable with how cyclical your life feels? Can you see the added value in that?