It’s no secret that introverts struggle to have enough energy. Many factors can drain our energy, such as overstimulating activities, socializing, and stress. Too little mental stimulation and a lack of purpose can also leave us feeling depleted.
With so many factors seemingly working against us, it’s no wonder having consistent energy is such a challenge for many introverts.
I have to confess that as much as I have come to accept and appreciate my introversion, the energy challenges that come with being a highly sensitive introvert are the one thing I would change if I could.
This raises the question, is it possible for introverts to consistently raise our personal energy levels?
I mean, we all know that things like exercise, proper nutrition, and meditation energize us. And yet, for many introverts this isn’t always enough to keep our tanks full.
Too often, we are running on fumes and don’t even have the energy to do the self-care routines (yoga, walks, meal prep) that we know will make us feel better.
While it’s true that everyone gets depleted, introverts tend to be drained by activities that are energizing for extroverts. It doesn’t help that we live in a fast-paced, overcrowded world that is an extrovert’s playground.
Meanwhile, introverts are told that the only way for us to “recharge” is to seek out solitude as needed.
Now that many of us have more solitude than we ever banked for you’d expect introverts to be bursting with energy. However, there are plenty of introverts who feel more tired, depleted, and unmotivated than ever.
Now more than ever, personal energy—which is energy from within that is linked to your willpower, focus, and emotions—is an invaluable resource.
At first glance it appears that this magical self-renewing energy is a lot the X-factor that makes people famous—you either have it or you don’t.
If I didn’t believe it before, reading a recent interview with Jennifer Lopez in Allure magazine definitely built a strong case for the argument that personal energy is something you’re born with.
In the interview, J.Lo details her insane schedule in 2019, the year she did “all the things”, including filming a Blockbuster movie, giving the Superbowl performance of a lifetime, and doing the awards circuit. And she did it all with a smile and style.
If I were to “do all the things” at such a non-stop, high-octane level, rest-assured I would do it with a resting bitch face and bad skin. Either that or I’d be dead or at least incoherent from extreme exhaustion.
Although we may never have the kind of outward extroverted energy that JLo possesses, there are ways that introverts can increase our personal energy.
4 Ways to Increase Introvert Energy
Here are some ways that introverts can have more consistent and abundant personal energy, even if you’re normally about as energetic as a sloth.
1. Know your why
Since personal energy is about willpower and focus, having a sense of purpose that drives you is key. This doesn’t mean you have to know your highest calling in life. It simply means that it’s important to have a bigger WHY behind your actions.
Why is it so important that you have more energy? In other words, what will having that energy give you?
Maybe having more energy will allow you to be more focused at work and get that promotion you’ve been wanting. Or maybe it will allow you to have a more fulfilling social life.
Being connected to your bigger Why will help you to stop wasting energy on useless pursuits, while also giving you more energy for what your heart truly desires.
2. Meet your needs directly
If you’re like a lot of people, you may have a habit of trying to meet your needs indirectly. In other words, instead of directly doing the thing that would give you love, success, or validation, you take the scenic route.
For example, perhaps, what you really want and need is to be accepted and loved. Instead of meeting that need directly by being vulnerable with someone, you may try to self-improve your way to more love. You think to yourself, “If I just read one more self-help book I’ll be worthy of love.”
Because getting your emotional, physical, and mental needs met is inherently energizing, doing so in the most direct way possible will instantly give you a boost.
Luckily, there is an easy way to ensure that you’re not wasting energy on things that won’t really meet your needs. When you set out to do or achieve something, ask yourself this question:
What will having done/achieved that give me?
What will that promotion give you other than just a raise? Will it give you what you truly want (ie. validation, purpose, happiness)?
What will going to that networking event give you? Is it the most direct, easeful route to what you truly want?
Remember, there are infinite ways that you can go for what you want. Why not choose the most easy and fulfilling path?
3. Fully relax when you’re not engaging
You might’ve heard me talk before about how introverts are like cats. Well, there’s one more way that introverts should aim to be more like our feline friends. Allow me to explain with an image we’re all familiar with.
Imagine a cat lying in a sliver of sunlight, its body sprawled and its eyes half closed. The cat is a master at relaxing, and yet…when it’s time to pounce, cats are fast, precise, and very powerful.
In order to stop wasting energy, introverts, too, must learn to fully relax when we’re not actively engaged in an activity.
This means relaxing our muscles, mind, and nervous system. I know that this is easier said than done.
When I have a standup comedy performance that I’m feeling anxious about, my tendency is to be very on edge the entire day. Having my nervous system revved up the whole day depletes my energy.
Instead, I now try to fully relax into the day. If I have other important tasks to fulfill, I take them as they come. If there are moments when I can take a break, then I try to sink into those moments without guilt or worry.
So, if you’re one of the many introverts who struggles with anxiety, it’s especially important to seek ways to relax your mind and nervous system.
4. Get rid of the gunk
For a while now I’ve been having problems with the heat in my apartment. When a contractor came to check things out, he said that the pipes in the radiator needed to be cleaned.
He explained that over time a buildup of dust and dirt collects and makes it difficult for the heat to come through.
The same thing happens with humans. We get a lot of emotional gunk clogging our internal systems. Pent-up stress and worry has a major impact on our energy levels.
So does suppressed anger and sadness. That’s why sometimes crying can feel so good. We need that emotional release.
If you’ve been feeling unusually lethargic and unmotivated, it may be time to explore your suppressed emotions. Do some journaling and meditation. Sit with your feelings. Cry it out.
Another tool for emotional release is Emotional Freedom Technique (E.F.T), which is an alternative treatment for emotional and physical pain that involves tapping on the same meridian points of the body used in acupuncture.
Physical activities, such as yoga and dance can also help you release stored emotions and anxiety. The key is to set an intention of emotional release and be present in your body as you move.
I hope these tips to increase your personal energy resonated with you! Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.
Since confidence is another powerful way to increase your personal energy, be sure to grab my free Introvert Confidence Lessons.
P.S. If you’re new to the blog, allow me to introduce myself. I’m Michaela Chung, author of The Irresistible Introvert and The Year of The Introvert, and creator of this amazing innie community we have here. For several years, I’ve been building up a labyrinth of introvert resources that will take you on a magical journey toward more confidence, connection, and self-love. Start with this free Introvert Connection Guide.