Where Do You Get the Energy?

I enjoy a question that challenges me to think.  I especially enjoy a question that challenges me to think and grow.

A colleague posed the following question in follow up a recent speaking engagement {my answer follows}: 

Do you ever get tired? Exhausted? Do you ever wake up in the morning and just feel physically and mentally that you don’t think you can be the “passion on purpose” guy that uplifts everyone that day? What do you do when you have the flu? When you have a cold?   Living a lifestyle that puts you all over the internet and the world as a professional speaker–where do you get the energy to live up to that and to keep up the schedule and level of excellence?

I do have off days. I get sick. My back goes out from time to time. In spite of those momentary setbacks I maintain my energy level and a positive attitude largely because it is well within my power to do so. Regardless of my external circumstances, I always have a choice about how I respond. How I react. How I think guides how I feel. Simply stated, that is up to me.

My energy and enthusiasm for the work I do is largely driven by 3 principles I think about:

Responsibility: I am healthy. I am educated. I am safe from harm. I live in an abundant world. I am hopeful. I have nothing to complain about. I have been bestowed very good fortune and I feel a sense of obligation to try and fulfill my potential. The long hours, inevitable setbacks and daily pressure to perform are actually opportunities and I simply try and do my very best. That isn’t my job. It is my responsibility.

Making a Difference: When I wake up each morning I know that I get to spend my day preparing to make a difference. The work isn’t about me. I try to help other people become the best of who they are capable of becoming.  Leading with that thought helps me stay in the “peak performance zone”.  I believe I can help.  I believe we all have the power to make a difference.  I know that most of the people I meet don’t know me. I want to make sure that they have an experience that has lasting impact.  I want the time to matter. Perhaps it won’t for everyone. That is ok. But if I can impact a few people on my journey then I will have made my own little dent in the universe.

Legacy: I know my time here is short. In considering that time in total I am able to approach the day’s challenges in the right frame of mine. What is my legacy going to be? The power of that question exists in my own ability to write the answer through the life I live.

As a daily affirmation these 3 questions serve as a pretty good compass for staying switched on:

How am I being responsible to my potential today?
How can I make a difference in the lives of others today?
How do I want to be remembered by the people I meet today?

Paying close attention to those thoughts and our own internal dialogue is important.  As Ghandi so eloquently stated:

“Watch your thoughts, for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”

I know that to ensure my energy source isn’t depleted I also have to eat right, exercise and get enough sleep.  Everyday.

I know that if you want to live inspired it helps to spend time around other people that embrace inspired living. The people around us have enormous impact on our being.  How we think, act and experience the world around us.

I am always looking for new sources of inspiration.  One I came across recently was this Leave Your Legacy video put together by a group of Stanford students.

I hope you enjoy it.


#leaveyourlegacy from Hooded Trees on Vimeo.

Animated gif of Ryan speaking on stage Screenshot of e-newsletter

Get Ready to achieve your own personal and professional goals for the coming week

Subscribe to our weekly e-newsletter to expand your perspective on the future of business, hear stores that inspire you to develop deeper relationships in your personal & professional life and tips to help you maximize productivity.

Learn More & Subscribe