Change can be difficult to manage, especially when it feels like there are so many things you have no control over. Even more, finding the energy, motivation and bravery to adapt to these changes can often seem daunting as we grapple for a sense of normality.
The truth is, there is often a lot we can’t control, but there are small steps you can take to support your mental, emotional and physical energy levels and help you adapt to change, stay motivated and remain positive in the face of uncertainty.
Why your daily routine can help with your motivation
A familiar routine often makes us feel safe and provides a sense of normality, but in recent times many of us have found ourselves out of sync with what we’re used to. It might feel like once you settle into some semblance of a routine, things change again and you are forced to adjust to a new situation. Instead of fearing change, think about how you can adapt and create a positive new routine with things that still feel familiar. Tune in to what makes you feel good and then make time for it in your daily routine, whether it’s listening to your favourite playlist or audiobook before you start working, substituting a gym class for an online workout or connecting with friends and family on video call. They don’t have to be ground-breaking; it could be trying out a new recipe, finishing a book or having a clear out of your wardrobe.
How your mindset can help you find energy
Think of your mindset as a muscle that can be strengthened and developed. Instead of thinking of change as a negative obstacle to overcome, try changing your perspective to one that recognises the positives of your current circumstances. Try to look at the good side of life; what small things are you grateful for and what are you managing to enjoy more of that you didn’t before? Can you notice three positive changes of your new routine and what reasons to they give you to feel optimistic? Don’t expect too much from yourself either, it’s natural for uncertainty and change to make us feel stressed or fearful – accept that is how you are feeling and think about ways to adjust to your new circumstances in a positive way.
How your exercise routine can make you feel good
As things continue to change, it’s easy to let good habits slip but making sure you prioritise time to exercise and get the blood flowing is really important and will help you stay motivated and healthy. Along with the obvious physical benefits to exercise, physical activity also causes an increase in endorphin levels, the body’s ‘feel-good’ chemical, and can help you feel more self-confident and energised. If you find your routine has changed, look for other ways you can incorporate exercise into your day, whether it’s a quick HIIT session, a bike ride with your family or an evening yoga session before bed. If you’re nervous about heading outdoors to exercise, there are a number of workout videos for all ages and fitness levels on YouTube, many of which you don’t need any equipment to do. If your plan is to head outdoors and enjoy a bit of nature and fresh air, try 40 minutes of powerwalking or biking. Getting outside to exercise, even for a short time, can be hugely beneficial for both your body and mind, as well as enjoying a free dose of vitamin D.
Why you should be eating for energy
As obvious as it sounds, what you eat can have a huge impact on your energy levels, particularly if you have found your normal eating patterns changing in these new times. You may have just gotten into a rhythm at home and now feel like you have to adapt to a new routine all over again, as things change. Whether you are still working from home, or are going back into your place of work, it’s important to fuel your body with the right vitamins and minerals it needs to stay healthy and strong. Whether your routine means that you prefer to eat three main meals a day, or five smaller meals, make sure you are getting a variety of unrefined carbohydrates, proteins and fats and particularly getting lots of vegetables, whole grains and healthy oils in your diet. Adapting to change can be draining, so try to include foods rich in iron, magnesium and B vitamins to help support a strong energy yielding metabolism and a healthy immune system.