Merge's Blog

Energy-boosting tips for leaders-on-the-move (Part I)

My professional colleague (and good friend) Michelle Cederberg, CSP is a health and productivity expert who helps people with full schedules and a long list of responsibilities maximize their personal energy so they can optimize their productivity and success!  Hmm, full schedules and a long list of responsibilities …. well, if that doesn’t sound like every leader I know!  So I asked her if she would give our readers some quick and easy tips on how to do exactly that.  Michelle went all out; she was an absolute treasure trove of simple yet powerfully effective tips to take small steps toward big changes, so that you can find energy, productivity and success – even with a busy schedule!

In today’s blog post, she’s going to give us scads of ideas in three categories. And at the end, if you hankering for some more, fret not dear reader, I’ve already invited Michelle back!  She’s promised to guest on this blog again next month (December 1) and you can count on even more tips to become more energetic, productive and successful.

Ahhh leadership! It’s a roller coaster ride of success and stress. Every day is fraught with highs and lows that keep you on your toes at a level far beyond life before leadership. Even still, every day you get to work at something you love, inspire your team toward common goals, put out fires, problem solve, maybe even change the world. To really amp up your effectiveness against that mounting to-do list you better arm yourself with energy-generating strategies. But it’s not like you haven’t got other things to do right?

Your goal is simple then: conquer in your career by taking small self-care steps every day in key energy-generating areas of your life. Below I share some effective energy tips in three categories for leaders-on-the-move. These tips represent vital mind, body and spirit activities that will help you squeeze every bit of drive and productivity out of your work and life.

Move it or Lose it

Move your body regularly or lose your energy quickly. Exercise energizes, and I guarantee that once you make it a regular part of your day, even in small increments, excuses like lack of time, energy or motivation will no longer be an issue. Don’t wait until you’ve got the right amount of time and just enough energy. Just do something. Incorporate at least ten minutes of purposeful physical activity into every day.

At work:

  • Schedule walking meetings with members of your team
  • Take the stairs part way instead of the elevator
  • Get off the bus or subway a few stops earlier and walk
  • Park your car a good distance from your office
  • Drive part way to work and cycle the rest of the way

At home:

  • Do crunches on all the commercial breaks while you watch your favorite show
  • Go for a walk after dinner
  • Do jumping jacks as you wait for the kettle to boil
  • If you already walk your dog, add hills
  • Do walking lunges down the hallway
  • Run up the stairs. Chase your kids if you have to

Exercise less for success! And when you’re talking yourself out of it remember this: Ten minutes of doing is better than the hour you were thinking about doing.

Eat for Energy

With so many lunch meetings and dinners with clients, healthy eating can be a challenge. So if you want better energy, choose to make a few small, smart changes with your eating habits every day. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

  • If eating out is hard to avoid, pack healthy snacks for between meals
  • When eating out, balance fun and flavor with healthier sides. Compromise! I always have my burger with salad instead of fries. I can enjoy the burger guilt-free and save 500+ calories by not eating fries
  • Down-size your full-whip super large mocha to a medium non-fat latte with chocolate sprinkles
  • Cut your portion sizes just a bit
  • Eat breakfast – even just a few days of the week
  • Be cautious of the little nibbles you sneak here and there
  • Choose healthy late night snacks
  • Skip the vending machine as a food source. Hint*: Balanced meals don’t sit behind glass for weeks
  • Add in fruits and veggies
  • Trim the fat.

Regular, healthful eating helps you think clearly through the day, keeps energy levels up and even assists with weight management and health issues.

Stay hydrated…seriously!

Why is water so darn important? Did you know your body is made up of approximately 50 percent of the stuff? Your body needs fluids to help with the digestion, absorption and transport of nutrients as well as elimination of waste products. Fluids also act as a coolant for maintaining body temperature and lubricating joints, eyes and air passages. If you consider that 75 percent of North Americans are chronically dehydrated, then the simple act of drinking more water will make a big, big difference to your energy. Water you saying? Drink up!

I’ll be back next month with some more tips on how to easily build energy-boosting activities into your crazy day.  Until then, remember to move, eat and drink well!

Michelle Cederberg, CSP helps people with full schedules and a long list of responsibilities maximize their personal energy so they can optimize their productivity and success. As a highly accomplished speaker, author, educator, fitness professional, life coach and entrepreneur, she equips people to feel their best so they can do their best – on the job and in life. Her new book, ENERGY NOW! Small Steps to an Energetic Life will be released January 2012 in book stores everywhere. Visit www.workLIFEenergy.com to learn more.

So what are you doing to boost your energy on the job?  Do you already do some of what Michelle is suggesting?  What are your challenges?  Do you have any other suggestions to share.  Do tell!

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