energyIt can be hard to keep your energy levels high when others try to drag you down. There are many obstacles to overcome when trying to achieve our goals at work and in life, but it is particularly hard when other people are a drain on your energy levels. Beware of energy-sapping people; they can make it difficult to keep your focus and momentum on a particular task and can cause a great deal of time and effort to be lost in unnecessary activity. To make sure you do not get dragged into an energy-sapping situation, it helps to remember the following things:

Minimize drama

Most people have a friend, colleague or family member who creates a lot of drama – someone who likes to make a big fuss, grab attention and turn every small bump in the road into a major hurdle that requires large numbers of people to become involved. It can be fun to have people in our lives that bring color and excitement, but it is important not to get sucked into the noise and activity they create unless you can add something positive to the situation. Keeping a calm head, recognizing a level of noise which is unnecessary relative to the size of the problem and being able to suggest a way forward to diffuse potential drama will all help prevent the situation escalating. If you can not bring any of those benefits to the issue then step back and let someone else who can help bring things under control.

Challenge negativity

There is nothing that will sap your energy faster than negativity from those around you. A little challenge or stress can spur you on, but constantly being told you can not do something or that the obstacles are too great will drag down even the most enthusiastic and focused of people. If you encounter negativity along the way to reaching your goals then listen carefully to what is being said. If the person is flagging a genuine problem then thank them for their interest and discuss how you may be able to overcome the issue. If it is negativity with no good basis then challenge it and ask them to look at the situation from a different, more positive perspective. By sharing a more optimistic or constructive view of the task it may be possible to influence and change negative attitudes; however, if negativity remains it is sometimes best to suggest the person is no longer part of the journey.

Hold on to your motivation

Whatever motivated you to start on the road in the first place may hold the key to maintaining energy levels along the way. When things are difficult or you feel you are losing focus, try to remember what motivated you in the first place and how you imagined achieving your goal would feel. Once you have regained some perspective, and reminded yourself of the potential benefits from what you have set out to achieve, it may be possible to rekindle the enthusiasm with which you began. Sometimes the best thing to do is take a break, get some rest and come back with a renewed sense of purpose and a different perspective. It may be necessary to change the route or method, but by keeping the goal in sight you can hold on to your motivation along the journey.