Last week when the sky began to again fall down in the U.S. equities market, Jim Cramer spoke with me very early one morning. To be more truthful, he spoke “at” me and millions of other CNBC viewers. I was at the gym on a treadmill before sunrise warming up for an outdoor run. Cramer implored his viewers to dump their energy stocks. He said something like, “If you’re in Big Oil, you’re catching a FALLING KNIFE! Get out NOW!!” As it so happens, I don’t subscribe to cable and only watch a few minutes of Cramer each week while on that treadmill before I invariably turn off the TV and walk in silence. Therefore, with no disrespect to Jim Cramer I’m holding onto my BP stock for a very long time.
Head Fake! We’re Talking About YOUR Energy
But that is not the point of this article. Instead I want to again return to the topic of personal energy, something so many of us complain we never have enough of.
The week before last, my wife, daughter and I went to Banff for five days, The mountain landscapes were so jaw dropping I couldn’t even take them all in. The walking, the hiking, and the recreational amenities were all world class. And yet I was miserable for more than half the vacation. Starting midweek, I developed a low grade fever that alternated between 97 and 99. I was achy, weak, tired, and had a slight sore throat.
I attributed the sickness to a typical 24 hour bug and soldiered through my symptoms with Ibuprofen, copious portions of smoked salmon from the breakfast buffet at the Fairmont, and plenty of germ killing alcohol. Meanwhile, my energy level went to crap. I took long afternoon naps every day and went to sleep even earlier than my typical octogenarian pattern. Working out was nearly impossible, but yet I still did it because I’m that kind of an OCD fanatic when it comes to exercise. And I was grouchy, irritable, and just plain ‘down.’
A Powerful Metaphor for Personal Energy
Returning to the topic of personal energy in general, I have always believed in the concept espoused by author and personal development trainer Brendon Burchard, of “generating energy.” Brendon focused on this in his book, “The Charge.” In essence, he literally recommends thinking of yourself as a power plant. Power plants don’t ‘have’ energy. They generate it.
But while in Banff, I couldn’t generate any energy, and this bothered me. In large part this is because wherever I have worked, when people have complimented me — for example about something I wrote, a presentation I delivered, a training session I gave, or if I simply helped them laugh — they have always cited my high levels of ‘energy.’ I have literally thought of energy as my secret money maker weapon.
And now I just didn’t have any. I expected to feel better when I got back home. I did not. A week ago Monday night I finally threw in the towel and went to Urgent Care. It turns out I had strep throat, which I apparently contracted from my daughter, who has been a repeat sufferer this past summer.
As I write the initial drafts of this article on Monday, August 31st, nearly two weeks after I started feeling poorly, today is the first day I have my energy back. I feel awesome. The emotional funk has lifted. I’m thinking much more clearly and positively. I’m not whining or complaining at all. Damn it feels good to be alive!
Positive Thinking Is Not Enough
What’s the lesson? You can talk all you want about the importance of being emotionally resilient, and of having a positive growth oriented mindset. I know this is where I direct so much of my attention. But if you don’t have a strong physical backbone as your foundation. and are not constantly focused on how to create and generate energy consistently, I can assure you it will be much more difficult to regulate your emotional and mental strength. And this will impede your “success” in every aspect of your life. Perhaps I’m stating the obvious, but if I am, then how come I constantly encounter people from all ends of the economic spectrum who seem to be chronically lethargic and exhibit very low levels of energy?
And I guess that’s my point. Energy is not just my money maker – it’s yours as well. If you still think I’m out of my mind, consider the following people: Richard Branson, Oprah Winfrey, Elon Musk, Marissa Meyer, Marc Andreessen and Ginni Rommetty. Do you see any of these people speaking monosyllabically, moving lethargically…phoning it in? No you do not. Question: When is the last time you went through an entire week without thinking or stating out loud how tired you are? Hmmmm…..
It’s when something is taken away, like personal energy, that you have the opportunity to realize how valuable it is. I certainly have. So….start focusing on enhancing your physical health to “up” your emotional and mental game, contribute more to life, and yes, get more out of it as well. We can save the discussion for how to best fuel that power plant of yours for another day!
In closing, I send my deepest condolences to Wayne Dyer’s family and closest friends, given his passing last weekend. For me, Wayne exhibited the highest essence of personal energy, working consistently and tirelessly to teach us all for many decades, despite the many challenges he faced, until the very end of his life. He was a leading disciple on the topics of self reliance, spirituality, and inspiration. I look forward to continue learning from him for a very long time. Namaste Wayne!