How To Restore Your Mental Energy

One of the problems of modern society, or the post-Internet age, is that there are so many things bombarding us that we could care about. I think it’s more important than ever to really get clear and focus on what’s worth caring about and what’s just noise or distraction” – Mark Manson

With the information flux today, fixating on other peoples’ lives and often feeling like there is something lacking in our lives, mental health concerns have statistically risen across the world. Especially, young people feel drained even after not doing much during the day. On the other hand, with life becoming extremely competitive, stress levels are also at an all-time high. People often want to be perfect in the way they look and who they are as individuals. Our ability to endure and exhibit patience through life is becoming difficult as it feels like we have to achieve too much with very little time. It is becoming hard for people to truly choose their battles and pursue what they authentically want rather than seeking something because everyone around them is or because that is what is conventionally considered cool and acceptable.

One fact is undeniable – life can be hard! Life is not necessarily meant to be easy, every once in a while, life will and does suck and that is not the problem; however, in the day and age we live in, we need to wisely choose which problems we focus upon and what we care about. We can not worry about everything and try to achieve everything. If we prioritise what is important to us and let go of what does not necessarily align with our values, we will lead richer lives. Mental energy is not restored by avoiding negativity but rather by replacing the negativity in our lives with something valuable and what makes us happy. This article offers a range of ways you can restore your mental energy when you find yourself bogged down by life or stuck in a rut:


1.     Recognise You Are In A Rut

Reflection is key. The day and age we live in, people have become emotional vampires becoming almost numb to what is happening to their lives. The phrase going with the flow goes a little too far when people completely lose track of their time and how they use it. Hence, if you constantly feel unsatisfied with your life with a huge void in your heart, it is high time you address it. A lot of times, people mistake constant unfulfillment with the nature of life and it being difficult. Life is difficult but what we choose to make out of it is in our control; therefore, recognise not only that you are in a rut but also possible factors that make you feel low. What are activities you do that drain your energy further? What puts you in a bad mood? Ask yourself.

Read this great article for more on this: The Power of Self-Reflection.

2.     Radical Self-Compassion

We live in highly consumerist society with so many of our relationships being transactional. Living in a world where your relationship with yourself is also based on conditions whereby you will only allow yourself to feel grateful or be at peace if you look or are a certain way, you will very quickly get drained of your zest for life. Of course, all of us have to take some difficult decisions in life to get somewhere or achieve particular goals. The acquisition of these goals require self-accountability. However, we often confuse self-accountability with self-hate and shaming ourselves. This puts us in an even more vicious cycle of not being able to do what we require ourselves to do. You do not need to be harsh on yourself to get anywhere, remember this. Research proves that there is a direct link between self-compassion and improving in life. 

3.     You Are Not Your Appearance

Taking care of oneself is great and important to a certain extent. Fixating on how we appear to others is what robs us of peace. We do not decide how we look; we can take care of our bodies and faces but we can not change them or magically look like someone else. Therefore, it is very important to engage yourself in things that you truly enjoy and that take you beyond what you look like. Do not spend your precious energy on how you look, as all of us are beyond our appearances.

4.      Stop Complaining

Complaining can become highly addictive. The harsh truth is that no one else can solve our problems or the work we leave pending. Complaining is in no way synonymous to venting or expressing our feelings. When we express a feeling with the intention of wanting to feel less isolated and subconsciously seeking a solution even if we sulk in the emotion at the moment, this is a useful technique of dealing with any hardship in life. On the contrary, complaining is focused on the problem. It makes us fixate on the problem and eventually sulking in our misery becomes addictive. Hence, stop complaining about your problems to other people and start taking small steps towards change in your life and actually achieving what you want.

5.      Stop Trying To Please Everyone

If one is raised as a child who has the pressure to please everyone, they might carry that similar pattern into adulthood. The difference is that as adults, we are fully capable of dealing with disagreement and dislike. When we are older, we understand that we all have different life experiences, and we are less afraid to stand apart from the crowd. You are also more mature and are able to make sense of disagreement as not necessarily as something negative but neutral whereby nothing at hand is personal and does not mean there is anything wrong with you. Research shows that people pleasers often devalue their own opinions about things and this leads to want to please others. Once one realises that as an adult, we are capable of this, we begin to understand the importance of authenticity and we let go of fear and embrace whatever comes our way.

6.     Choose Curiosity Over Fear

We have too many fears and the more we think about them, the more real we become. The truth is that we all as human beings want to belong, be accepted, and be loved; however, we have to train our bodies to seek this experience not by being fearful and shrinking ourselves but having the confidence to truly own up to who we are and not afraid of being seen. When we choose curiosity over fear, we embrace that we do not know everything and that we are open to the experience of learning and growing. This relaxes your mind because from here on everything that you set out to do, you do with the intention of learning and growing rather than being perfect or impressing other people through the process. This gives us a sense of freedom and soothes our brain.

7.     Release Shame

So much of our mental energy is drained because of stored shame in our body. Paralyzing fear of being judged, disliked, and rejected takes over us. Shame thrives when we do not talk about it to anyone else or think we are alone in our experience. When we begin to not only understand the roots of our shame but also that everyone around us feels shame to a certain extent in their lives, we become a little freer in ourselves.

8.     Do Not Procrastinate

Often, our mental energy can only be restored if we truly confront the problems in our life rather than running away from them. There is a high chance for instance that if you are working on a project or a final dissertation and you have been putting off your work for a very long time, you will feel very stressed and drained. Even when you are trying to have fun or do something entertaining, the thought will constantly loom over you. Hence, it is very important that we are consistent with our tasks.

9.      Journal And Meditate

Taking time out every day to journal your thoughts is necessary. Again, however, it is essential that in our journal entries, we are not hard on ourselves, and we use words that actually help us become better version of ourselves. These entries should truly feel cathartic and reflect our inner worlds as we try to make sense of the world around us. Meditating, sitting and solitude, and taking social media breaks simultaneously is crucial. No matter what anyone tells you, it is close to impossible to connect with your inner voice if you are continuously consuming unnecessary information on social media about random celebrities or comparing your life to other people.

10. Exercise

There is no easier or better way to release endorphins and make your nervous system feel calm than to exercise regularly. One should exercise truly for the experience and how refreshed it makes you feel, setting the right intention before you exercise is extremely important as if you only associate weight-loss or appearance-oriented goals with exercising, you will soon fall of and feel uninspired; hence, it is essential that exercise for the right reasons.

11. Cut The Cynicism

Life is hard and the only thing that makes it harder is your bitter attitude. Even if you have successively had the worst experiences in life and you detest yourself, try one last time to rise above it and hope for something better in life. Do not become cynical of people and be kind without expecting it from other people. Be the change you want to see in the world and soon enough you will be able to observe people around more easily you make these little efforts that you crave to see in the world.

12. No Feeling Is Final

Understand that life and whatever you feel is temporary and hence do not come to life-long conclusions on a bad mood or a bad day. Let negative feelings run their course and then you also let go of them. Do not think of emotions as the end all and be all of life. Emotions and opinions based on emotions are the most superficial parts of our lives, the more real and authentic parts of us come out with effort, with rising above hopelessness and despair.

Final Word

Our mental energy gets drained very easily in the emotionally taxing times we live in. To be able to restore and sustain our energy overtime, we need to firstly be acutely aware of what robs us of our energy. Once we are aware, it is time to try our best to protect is by ensuring that we are striking a balance between our relationships, belonging to other people and being our authentic selves. However, if we wish to be our most authentic selves and avoid people pleasing, we need to focus on spending time alone, journaling, and meditating so we can cut out the noise outside and focus outside of ourselves. The key is to never cling to anything or any outcome and to trust ourselves and our fates to bring us the best it has to offer.


How do I control my emotions? How do I stop getting angry so often, or how do I stop being sad? And I think there’s a really important distinction to understand is that you can’t completely control your emotions. What you control is your reaction to your own emotions. And a lot of people don’t ever make that separation for what goes on with them” — Mark Manson


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