“The higher your energy level, the more efficient your body. The more efficient your body, the better you feel and the more you will use your talent to produce outstanding results.”
Tony Robbins (Motivational Speaker & Author, Awaken The Giant Within)
“Out of control emotions make smart people stupid.”
Daniel Goleman (Psychologist & Author, Emotional Intelligence & Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence)
“The energy of the mind is the essence of life.”
Aristotle (Greek Philosopher)
I used get wildly angry at my boss.
Especially after a long day at work.
I’d fantasize about throwing everything off of my desk, kicking his office door open, and yelling “Hey, fool — I quit!”
(I may have used words other than “fool” as this fantasy played out in my head over and over).
One day, I realized that there was a pattern to my anger.
I noticed that I would get fired up and have this quitting fantasy at the end of my work days, not at the beginning.
When I had a day full of pointless meetings, these fantasies would happen earlier in the day.
There was a method to the madness in my head.
Once I figured this out, I started pushing my lunch breaks back to later in the day (and secretly extending them a bit).
I went for a run or went to the gym during these breaks.
Sometimes I just went for a long walk.
This made all the difference in the world and my “frustration cycle” (as I like to call it) was reset.
How Your Emotions And Energy Levels Control You
The single biggest differentiator between massively successful people and average people who just eek their way through a mediocre life is focus.
Focus is the differentiator.
But in today’s world, staying focused is exceptionally hard.
Everyone in your life is vying for your attention.
This includes large companies, television commercials, pop-up ads, your close friends, beggars on the street, and even me right now.
Studies show that every unit of your attention that you give away to one of these factors decreases your mental energy levels and decreases your level of control over your own emotions.
So how can you protect your attention? What’s the first step?
Contrary to popular belief, eliminating distractions is NOT the first step.
The very first step is tracking your attention.
This means tracking your mental energy levels, or when your attention is at it’s sharpest, versus when your attention is dull and distracted.
This also means tracking your emotions, or when you are happiest, on average, throughout the day.
When are you the most frustrated?
Tracking both your mental and emotional energy will build psychological resilience while protecting the focus for your purpose.
How Managing Your Emotions Protects Your Focus
Tracking your emotional and mental states is essential to controlling your productivity and focus.
In a study published in the journal Chronobiology International, the results found that your mind and body go through rhythms of emotions and energy.
One simple example of such a rhythm is the dip in mental energy you and most people feel after eating lunch and returning to work.
These rhythms can be tracked and used to your advantage.
The above study went on to find that patterns in performance and focus were in fact governed more by numerous individual factors.
In other words, emotional states and energy levels varied greatly depending on the person and the circumstance.
The Journal of Biological Rhythms agreed that regardless of any physiological or time-based influences (including sleep) peak performance was the most influenced by these factors: alertness, mood, and motivation.
How To Leverage Your Emotions And Energy Levels
You are 100% responsible for your mental and emotional energy levels.
Outside factors may affect these levels, but you are still responsible for managing them.
This is a good thing.
Remember, more than anything else, your alertness, mood, and motivation will affect how well you perform in life.
Your focus, emotions, and energy will affect how successful you are in life.
The problem is that very few people have learned how to master their emotions.
Very few people know how to focus their mind or increase their energy levels at will.
This is because very few people have ever identified, or tracked, their emotions or energy levels.
Honestly, when was the last time you tracked how alert you are?
Or how happy you are?
Or how angry you are?
The first step to manage your mental and emotional energy levels is determining how these levels fluctuate throughout the day. Here’s how…
1. Track your mental energy.
The first step to managing your emotions and energy levels is to carefully track your mental energy levels, or alertness, throughout the day.
Starting when you wake up in the morning, on your phone or on a little piece of paper in your pocket, write down every hour of the day that you’re awake: 7AM, 8AM, 9AM, 10AM and so on all the way to 11PM or whenever your normal bedtime is.
Then, next to these hourly times, rate your energy levels on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being a very low mental energy level and 10 being very high.
Do this for 3 days and look at the trends.
Everyone has fluctuations in their day governed by multiple factors, both internal and external, including physiological influences.
Tracking by the hour will quickly show you where you are most mentally optimized and able to focus during your day.
Your goal is to identify when your mental energy levels peak.
These are the hours you need to start protecting.
These are the hours you should be using to advance your personal goals.
By scheduling specific tasks during your peak mental hours, you will be more productive on those tasks than at any other time of the day.
You will work through tasks more efficiently during these times, which means there will be fewer errors and more creativity.
In other words, you’ll get more quality work done (and faster) during these times.
You also need to determine when your alertness starts to crash.
Thanks to a scientific concept known as “willpower depletion”, everyone crashes sooner or later.
When you feel like you can’t organize your thoughts, you’re easily distracted — you read the same 2 sentences on the page 5 times and haven’t absorbed any information — this is when your mental energy levels are crashing.
Stop trying to force yourself to focus during this time.
Stop doing mentally straining tasks during your low energy hours.
Instead, re-organize your tasks.
Plan on doing low energy tasks like answering emails, or plan things like exercise to boost your energy levels back up.
2. Track your emotional states.
After tracking your mental energy levels, you can apply the same strategy to track your frustration levels.
When are you feeling the most defiant and fired up?
Use this time to power through a difficult task on your own, not to do a conference call with a bunch of people who annoy you.
Utilize your “frustration cycle” to confidently tackle an intimidating task, not to have a meeting with your boss.
You can apply this same technique to any emotional state.
For example, you can track your happiness levels.
When do you feel the most joy during the day?
When do you feel the most peace?
Track the time of day, the conditions of your environment, your internal emotional dialogue, and look for patterns.
Look for what contributes to positive emotional states and how you can attract and incorporate more of that into your life.
Schedule activities during these times that will extend this emotional state for you.
Go on a nature walk during these times.
Play with your kids during these times.
Hang out with positive friends or family or make a point to connect with your partner during these times.
Give more attention to your positive emotional states more than your negative ones, but don’t ignore your negative states either.
Instead, actively manage your schedule and activities to mitigate your most negative emotional states.
This is when you block off time to be alone, to meditate or exercise, or schedule time with someone that is in the opposite state (like a positive friend).
If you don’t take action when you are in a negative state, if you’re unable to manage your emotions, these states will sabotage your focus and your success.
3. Leverage your peak hours.
Once you know when you peak emotionally and mentally during the day, you can start being strategic in managing these peak states.
This will allow you to stop being at the mercy of random thoughts and overwhelming emotions.
Your emotions are more powerful than you.
Mental tiredness turns everyone into a coward.
These are facts.
You can’t beat your own biology.
You can’t outsmart your body’s biological rhythms.
Instead, you need to leverage your rhythms — use them to your advantage in life.
Stop being mentally and emotionally unfocused.
Stop being reactive, dramatic, and erratic.
If you continue to let your emotional and mental energy levels control you, you will fail in life.
You will lose the respect of everyone around you.
Others will see you as unstable and unreliable.
They will question everything you say and will treat you like a child.
They will see you as nothing more than a toddler in a supermarket.
Start being intentional with your energy and emotions. Who and what deserve your peak levels?
Start scheduling your most important tasks — the ones that matter to you the most personally — during your peak times.
Start protecting your peak states.
Track and identify your patterns of alertness, emotion, and motivation, and then make rational decisions based on these patterns. This is the only way to be the most efficient version of you that makes real progress. Remember, you are 100% responsible for your mental and emotional energy levels. Outside factors may affect these levels, but you are still responsible for managing them.
To learn more about how to measure and manage your emotions and mental energy, and to get instant access to exclusive training videos, case studies, insider documents, and my private online network, get on the Escape Plan wait list.