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[...] Why was I out of energy for the last couple of weeks? It was then, that I noticed, how I was feeling for the last one or two months. After some reflection in my journal, I realized what was missing... [...] 🙄
Today I want to tell you about 5 habits that have changed my life. I will give you suggestions on how you can quickly and sustainably integrate them into your everyday life. Even if you already know one or two habits I'm going to list here, you can ask yourself if you just know and understand them or have really successfully established them in your life.
Knowledge is not Power. Knowlege is only potential Power. Action is Power.
It was the end of January 2022. It was already dark when I got home from work. I threw my bag on the floor and grabbed a Snickers bar from my nightstand. While my sugar cravings were slowly satisfied, I looked at a YouTube Video. This is on an intellectual level of an RTL TV show. I don't know if you have ever watched "Take me out" - if not, you did not miss anything. After the first episode, my eyes closed and I fell asleep. I woke up tired and groggy after an hour of sleep. What happened? Why was I out of energy for the last couple of weeks? Only then I noticed, how I was feeling for the last one or two months. After some reflection, I realized what was missing: Exercise.
Normally these are the first 3 questions I ask myself when feeling down:
- Did I eat enough?
- Did I sleep enough?
- Have I gotten the water intake I need for today?
90% of the time my answer to one of the questions is "NO".
🏃♀️ 1. Regular exercise
Currently, I do sports at least 4 times a week. I go to the gym in the evening, but I like it even more in the morning because then I am awake and feel fresh. I also notice that I can switch off my chattering mind when engaging my body. Often I get good ideas for problems that pop up while running.
Since I've been going to the gym, I've noticed that my cognitive performance has gotten a little better than when I only did cardio. I think the mix is perfect between cardiovascular exercise and weight training. If I had to break it down to a percentage and guess it would be 60% cardio /40% weight-training for optimal results and brain function.
🚿 2. A cold shower in the morning
Every morning I take a cold shower for 3 minutes. It is recommended to let the cold water splash directly onto your face and chest for the last 20 seconds of the 3 minutes time period. Why the hell do you want to do this voluntarily, you ask? I ask myself the same question every single morning. Then I remember the benefits of a cold shower:
- You get "fearless" like a navy seal. A process called hardening takes place. Exposing yourself to cold water every day, lets your immune system get used to a small level of stress. Taking cold showers consistently, thus helps you to keep a cooler head in stressful situations.
- Concentration and energy spikes. Due to the cold water your breathing changes. You will take deeper breaths - Co2 in your body decreases.
- Increase of white blood cells which protect your body against disease.
If you want to learn more about cold exposure I recommend:
Listening to this Episode of the Huberman Podcast.
🤐 3. Intermittent fasting diet
Something I have discovered only recently is to skip breakfast completely. For over a month now I have been intermittent fasting. Only eating from 12 noon, till 8pm. My mind feels fresh and light throughout the morning. Also, the stomach is not constantly working. I sleep better and I am more mindful when eating. Have you already gained experience with fasting for several days in a row? I would be curious to hear because I have not yet dared to give it a try. Mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org
🥰 4. State management
This fancy word "State Management" derives from Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP), a therapy designed to change behavior by reprogramming unconscious patterns of thought. My NLP trainers always tell us, that if they had one day to teach someone the most powerful technique in NLP, they would go with State Management.
It is simple, yet highly effective. State Management is about changing your emotional and physical state. You decide how you feel. A simple technique is to change your focus. Because what you focus on, determines how you feel. If you ask yourself a lousy question like: "Why does this always happen to me?" You will get a lousy answer.
However, if you ask yourself: "What am I grateful for? How can I make the most out of this situation? What can I learn from this a**hole?" Your brain will give you a completely different answer.
💧 5. Drink water
I try to do the following on a daily basis:
- Drink half a liter of water after waking up. You lose a lot of water while sleeping.
- Your hydration has direct effects on your mood, visual perception, and memory so I first drink water when I am going through an afternoon slump.
These days I am using a reusable water bottle (0.75l) because I have noticed that my water consumption increases significantly. I believe it is because I always take it with me and don`t have to refill a lot, due to the size.
If you want to know more about habits, check out my latest Podcast Episode "My Productive Morning Routine." You can listen to it on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or Google Podcasts.
You can also check out a whole list of articles I wrote on the topic of Productivity.