Applied Behavior Science for Health and Happiness
January Happiness: Remove What Drains Your Energy
January Happiness: Remove What Drains Your Energy

January Happiness: Remove What Drains Your Energy

JanuaryThe new year is supposed to be a time of renewal and motivation, but I’ve always struggled with it. I hate the cold, and early sunsets, and having my workouts impeded by all of the resolution runners. It’s not a good head space for me to make positive changes.

In her book The Happiness Project, Gretchen Rubin designated January as the month of improving her energy. Some of her tactics are the typical January behavior change (going to the gym), but one I loved was clearing your environment of items that drain your energy. For Rubin, it was old clothes including items she’d bought only to discover they didn’t really work for her:

When I finished . . . I no longer felt drained; instead, I felt exhilarated. No more being confronted with my mistakes! No more searching in frustration for a particular white button-down shirt!

Even though there is very little January left, I’m trying to take inspiration from Rubin and clear items from my environment that drain my energy–while also adding items that give me energy. I have some of those clothing mistakes that will have to go and so many things I’ve held on to “just in case.” I also have a documented fear of being a hoarder, so removing energy drains is an exciting project for me.

As for adding items to my environment to boost energy, I’ve invested in new photo prints for some old frames, picked out a few new scented candles that smell great, and a comfy new pillow for my bed. These small changes are ones I notice and appreciate daily, and do give me a better sense of vitality.

How will you gain energy this winter? What drains on your energy will you ditch, and what energy-boosters will you add?