There are lots of great articles written on how to keep your energy levels up all day. Most of the answers are quite similar and logical. Then it occurred to me… I need to pay attention and do what my 4 year old granddaughter (KJ) does! Here’s what I came up with based on her “advice.”
I’ve been doing a lot of research lately on how to improve my energy levels during the day. You see, I’m a caregiver – part of my day is spent helping my mom at her house and the rest of my day I hang out with KJ (one of my four grandchildren) – in addition to taking care of my home. I have lots of things on my to-do list every day. If I sit down to relax, there’s a good chance I won’t get up and move anymore! I need to improve my energy levels throughout the day. So, what to do?
1. Get up!
KJ says that if she wakes up and it’s light outside, she can get up. In other words, don’t hit the snooze button and delay the day – there’s fun stuff to do!
2. Eat like a cow!
KJ grazes all day. She makes sure to start the day out right with breakfast. Her favorite? Scrambled eggs and toast. Then, she snacks periodically all day. We’ve created a “snack box” filled with some of her favorite snacks like peanut butter crackers, fruit snacks and bananas. There’s another snack section in the refrigerator (where she can reach it) with Jello cups, carrot sticks, and string cheese. It varies week to week, but you get the idea.
Create your own snack box. Protein is great fuel for the body as it keeps you feeling strong and energized, like nuts, low-fat dairy, and yogurt. If you’re not in to Gogurt (another of KJ’s favs), there are some awesome recipes on Pinterest for “energy bites” like these Peanut Butter Energy Bites.
3. Drink lots of fluids!
KJ’s most said sentence during the day? “Nana, I’m thirsty.” I swear if I had a nickel for every time I heard that… well, you understand. 🙂 Water replenishes. Sometimes, we think we’re hungry when really, we’re just thirsty.
4. Take your vitamins!
KJ’s vitamins are children’s gummy vitamins. Did you know they make these for adults, too? They’re yummy!
5. Play dress up!
Looking like a princess on the outside can help our mood on the inside. Take care of yourself, even if you have nowhere to go.
6. It’s OK to make a mess!
Don’t be afraid to experiment, play, or do something different. We learn from our mistakes. Sometimes, it’s fun to knock down the tower because then we can build it again a different way!
7. Go outside & play!
Sunlight has a stimulating effect on the brain. Environmental cues play a huge role in the body’s energy grooves and sunlight can also help alleviate seasonal affective disorder. Go for a walk. If it’s too cold to go outside, open the curtains and let in the light!
8. Get up & move!
KJ never stays in one place for long. She will skip (or dance) to another room. The lesson here is to move to a different area to work. Changing your view may change your perspective and generate new ideas/energy. Try a new exercise routine!
9. Take a nap!
Sometimes, we really do need a break. We may call it “meditation.” KJ calls it “rest time.” I have to admit, it’s one of my favorite times of the day! I try to give myself a certain amount of down time in the middle of the afternoon, and then force myself to get up. I’ll end up with more energy throughout the evening and get more accomplished.
10. Don’t worry, be happy!
When we ask KJ, “How ya doin?” Her response? “Goooood!” Keep a positive attitude. Choose to be happy. Develop an attitude of gratitude. Laugh… Sing… Don’t worry because God will take care of you.
Take time and experiment with what works for you. Try new things. Break old (bad) habits. I’ve found that following KJ’s advice and example has given me more energy throughout the day. Hey! If a 4 year old can do it, surely you can, too!