It seems like a paradox. That doing work, could in-fact give you more energy. But this is the answer to why some people can be so productive.

Let’s consider introverted people, those who expel energy the longer they are interacting with others, and extroverted people, those who gain energy from being around people. It’s easy to try to apply the same logic to work. That we’re hardwired to either hate or love work, to either gain or lose energy by doing work.

Nope.

As with introverts, some situations are very taxing, and yet, if the conditions are right, the right people, the right topic, the right environment, these situations can be uplifting despite our introverted nature. It’s the same with work and energy.

We can experience both work that drains us, and work that boosts energy. We’re not hardwired to be permanently stuck to one outcome for all “work” in general.

The question is, have you found activities that even in your most drained moments would pick you up. Not just keep you going because you can escape your reality, but actually improve your mood, and give you excitement for a couple of hours beyond the normal drop-off time from a long day.

It’s our responsibility to decide what we do with our time, to find more activities that boost energy, and reduce the number of activities that drain it. If you work hard enough at it, and pick the right activity, you’ll be able to make a living at something that boosts your energy most of the time – allowing you to significantly reduce tasks that drain it. You’ll notice I said most of the time, no one ever loves what they do 100% of the time. That’s a false reality they just try to sell you on the internet.

This energy is what people mean by “passion”. But passion is so heavy – so theoretical. It’s intimidating to have to “find a passion”.

So take it simple. Think about the activities you do, from work, hobbies, personal interactions that positively affect your energy – even slightly. Most passions aren’t obvious, but you can find activities that extend your attention and extend your willingness to push past what you thought was tired.

This energy question gives us a measuring stick to decide what might be worth pursuing, and what isn’t. What could be a passion if we spend enough time at it.