Keeping Track of Your Energy

February 20, 2024

Just as a phones battery is drained during continuous use, we spend our own energy working through our daily tasks. Our bodies energy reserve is comprised of different types of energy. When working out, we use up physical energy, while tasks that require analytical thinking and concentration put a drain on our mental energy levels. Emotional energy, on the other hand, is tapped into during social interactions: Consoling a friend or feeling anger towards someone also takes up energy. The fourth type of energy is spiritual or ideological energy. The consumption of ideological energy is dependent on whether we are doing something that is meaningful to us or morally demanding.

Draining your energy has mental, as well as physical consequences. Constant low energy levels can lead to difficulties with concentration, a lack of motivation, anxiety or even depression. It may also trigger headaches, a change in appetite and increase your chances to get sick. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to be mindful of your energy levels.

Together with researchers and medical professionals at the Dutch institute Basalt, working on, Structured has developed a tool that enables you to keep track of your energy levels throughout your day: the Energy Monitor. By selecting a daily energy limit, you control your energy levels and avoid exhausting yourself. This number can vary a lot between individuals. It is best assigned together with a professional, like an occupational therapist. Alternatively, start with the number 25 and adjust it if you are feeling that it’s too much or too little. Don’t feel bad about adjusting your daily energy limit, everyone has a different amount of energy to dispense!

Now, when creating new tasks, you can select whether it drains your energy, recharges it, or has no impact on your energy levels. For energy draining tasks, you can choose between three intensities. Riding your bike to university might feel like a low intensity task, while listening to a lecture costs more energy and meeting with a professor can drain your energy levels drastically. Depending on the duration of the task, Structured will automatically calculate the number of energy points the task will cost you. When selecting an energy modulator, keep in mind that this is a very subjective decision. One task might refill the energy of one individual, while it puts a massive drain on another’s.

When you have activated the Energy Monitor, a little battery symbol on your timeline will depict the amount of energy you have available for this day. Keep track of this number and take care that is does not exceed your limit. It might also be wise not to max out your energy points every single day. What might feel fine for a certain amount of time can still put a strain on you over a longer time span. If you have an intense week, try to keep the energy points a bit lower on the weekend.

By integrating the Energy Monitor into your daily routine, you can learn how to manage your energy better. Figure out what takes up a large part of your daily energy and try to reduce it. Also device new ways of recharging your energy and incorporate them into your day. Have you tried meditation or yoga? Does good food fill your energy levels? Is reading a book draining or recharging for you? Be mindful of how you use your energy and make sure not to exhaust yourself to keep healthy!

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