The Energy Metric

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How should we spend our time?

If you have ever reflected on this question at any level of granularity (now, today, this month, this year or even longer), you’d understand that it is not an easy decision and sometimes a tricky one too. We often make such decisions based on factors like the easiness to start something (easy to watch TV and browse Facebook), or how much we like the activity (eating junk food, playing video games) or the number of your friends involved (everyone is going to the party, if I go I’ll have fun too!!). In the book How to fail at almost everything and still win big, Scott Adams suggests a single metric that could help you make this decision - The Energy Metric.

Energy doesn’t mean the hyperactive caffeine energy but the ability to focus and be attentive after the activity. The best analogy I can quickly think of is the energy level after a good sleep. You don’t feel like jumping up and down but you’re relaxed and focused. Although there are some commonalities among people, the energy metric is highly personalized and varies from person to person. Below are some of my energy boosters and busters -

Energy Boosters

Exercise - Exercising for even a few minutes a day or going for a walk outside are great energy boosters.

Good Conversation - I’m usually an early sleeper but the few days I’ve managed to stay wide awake past midnight have mostly been due to good conversations.

People - Energy is often contagious and you definitely do not want to be around people who’re negative and energy suckers. You’d want to be the person who can spread the energy to the people around you.

Energy Busters

Overeating - Focusing on the energy metric would mean eating food that would help you focus even after a meal. It means eating healthy food, avoiding junk/oily food and more importantly not overeating.

Shopping - Shopping is a huge energy killer for me. My energy level after a 10K is usually higher.

TV or Movies - I tend to push this towards the end of the day, just before sleep.

source - How to fail at almost everything and still win big by Scott Adams

Kaushik Rangadurai

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