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What if Life Energy was Currency?

Think of your life energy as currency.  What if you had a limited amount of currency to spend each day?  So for the example’s sake–what if you started out each day with  $1,440. Imagine each day you are handed $1,440 and each day you either earned or spent money on any activity you engaged in.  So anytime you walked the dog, made coffee, did laundry, changed a dirty diaper, talked to a drama filled friend or read a really good book you either earned or lost money depending on how much energy that activity drained.

  • There are some activities that purely take our energy–talking to a drama filled friend.  
  • There are some activities that add to our energy–read a really good book.
  • There are some activities that we do were we break even we loose some energy but we get some too–like laundry. 
Many of us mindlessly spend our energy. We allow the drama filled friend to steal hundreds of dollars a week.  We allow work place backstabbing to suck up valuable dollars. We have the ability to control how we spend our energy currency, but too often we choose to just let the money go flying out the window. 
Even if we eliminate many of the total energy drains on our lives there are still those activities that we have to do that can be an energy drain.  Honestly much of our lives fall in to the 3rd category (we loose some energy and we gain some too). Laundry is a great example of this type of energy spending.  Doing laundry might be draining but having clean clothes is energizing.    But think about a way to make doing laundry where you have to pay less money–maybe you do it while listening to a book on tape or talking on the phone to a loved one.  Maybe you set aside laundry time to go with reading time and the whole time you are doing laundry you can be engaging in reading a really good book.  The money spent on laundry would be MUCH less. 
When you think of energy as a currency, it becomes a game of maximizing your energy.  Frequently I will have clients do this exercise.  Looking at how they are spending energy.  Clients are always amazed at how mindlessly they have been controlling their energy. Inevitably they are shocked to discover how much of their energy is wasted and how much of it is within their control. 
I believe we are rarely asked what do we want to be doing with our time rather then what should we be doing with our time?

Today ask yourself 3 questions.
  1. If I had to pay money for all of the energy drains in my life how would I be living differently?
  2. How would I spend my time differently if I did what I wanted rather then what I should?
  3. How can I add more of those wants into my life and let go of (or get creative with) someone of those shoulds?
Photo Credit:  Jessica Tam via Flickr

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