Get Your D.O.S.E. and Fill Your Spiritual Energy Tank!

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As we set out to write about Spiritual Energy for our Personal Energy Series, Ute and Deborah each noticed and acknowledged a significant sense of spiritual exhaustion. After all, how can we write about living with a sense of purpose and fulfillment when our world, as we know it, continues to feel, well, hopeless?

The answer to everything begins with a few deep, cleansing breaths. Ahhhh! So, take a moment to recognize that while universal atrocities are abundant, and, as Plato said, we are each fighting great personal battles within our own lives, we do have agency when it comes to our spiritual energy.

You see, spiritual energy comes from “living on purpose”. Think about it. When you’re living in alignment with your values, working toward making a positive impact on the world, how do you feel? Do you feel “lit up”? Do you feel energized to make a difference?

If not, take another breath and ask yourself the following questions (maybe with a notepad, to capture and see your purpose in black and white):

  • What do you truly care about? What matters most to you?
  • How can you align what is actually going on around you with what you would like it to be?
  • How can your strengths and talents make a difference?
  • What would you tell a friend to realign within themselves?
  • What would someone you admire do in a similar situation?
  • How can you start making a difference, here and now?

Now look back at your notes. In what ways has your spiritual energy shifted? Do your answers provide more clarity about your purpose, talents and what you can do to make a difference? Even if it’s a small difference in your immediate environment, do you sense a change in your spiritual energy tank?

When you take time to focus on what’s possible rather than the opposite (as in, not working and not aligning with how you would like things to be), your neurochemistry starts to shift. You can feel yourself moving from helpless toward hopeful. And when your neurochemistry begins to shift from despair to a tiny tad of hope, it allows your brain to expand from tunnel vision to a broader perspective.

So, how can each of us use our neurochemistry to refill our spiritual energy tanks? Start by calibrating the right D.O.S.E. of the body’s natural ingredients. Read on and consider how you can implement some of these ideas to keep your spirits high, compliments of the hormones you produce naturally!

Dopamine: (the reward neurochemical)

Appreciation can lift your dopamine levels. So, make time daily to appreciate your accomplishments, small and large. Consider starting a confidence journal so you can review your accomplishments in your own handwriting. You can also help others feel they are appreciated. It works in both directions.

Oxytocin: (the love/bonding hormone)

Surround yourself with companions (furry and non-furry) to help inspire a boost of oxytocin. Once you feel the warmth of oxytocin spreading through your system, take advantage of that boost, just like we do when we’re writing together. Ask yourself in the moment what gives you a sense of purpose and can be achieved in the company of others?

Serotonin: (the mood stabilizer)

Build a meditation practice and/or commit to spending time out in nature, regardless of the light and weather outside. Remember, there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing! On the flipside, when feeling shocked by the affairs in the news, revisit the previous bullet point, and remember what Brene Brown said: “We need hope like we need air.” Ask yourself what gives you hope. Now breathe, and continue to exert your energy in areas where you can make a difference.

Endorphins: (the painkiller)

Exercise and stretch throughout the day to release endorphins, especially when your spiritual tank is running low. Without these endorphins, it is so much harder to cope with the adversities we face in life each day. Take it from us: you can do this!

But wait, there’s more! We are excited to spotlight the “holy trinity” of activities. Each releases the full D.O.S.E. of happy hormones:

Practicing Gratitude: Dopamine is generated by focusing on what we have as opposed to what we lack. It also allows for that sense of well-being derived from serotonin and endorphins. This practice frees us to foster social bonds and positive relationships more easily, triggering oxytocin.

Creating Personal Boundaries: Taking control of your boundaries will lead to a sense of accomplishment. This, in turn, will trigger dopamine while reinforcing a positive self-image that can lead to a sense of well-being and increase serotonin. When we foster healthy relationships due to creating boundaries, we can build trust and connection with others, which inspires the “bonding hormone”, oxytocin. Finally, the empowerment and satisfaction felt by standing up for your boundaries will release endorphins. Quite a package!

Prioritizing Social Connection: Equally as important as creating personal boundaries is prioritizing connection. After all, when our spiritual energy tank is taxed, many of us tend to isolate, which is unhealthy for our spirit. Oxytocin is nicknamed “the bonding hormone” for good reason. Endorphins and dopamine abound when we are socially active, due to positive interactions and to the inevitable laughter we enjoy when in good company. And serotonin has shown solid links to social connection.

So, if you’re feeling reluctant to reach out to a loved one, do it anyway. The boost of spiritual energy will soothe your soul and keep your social energy tank brimming.

This just in: Deborah recently began investigating the concept of Social Energy as a fifth energy tank while engaging in an Author’s Book Club for Powered By Me, from Neha Sangwan. The concept of Social Energy now has us both filled with hope and excitement at the possibilities! Please join us as we explore Social Energy for the first time in our next post.

Deborah Goldstein is the founder of the Driven Professionals, a community driven to support the health, well-being & success potential of NYC professionals. Deborah is also the founder of Goldie’s Table Matters, providing education and entertainment to both corporate and private clients nationwide.

Ute Franzen-Waschke

Ute Franzen-Waschke is passionate about developing people for the international workplace. Throughout her career, she has worked with her clients on co-creating environments that allow individuals, teams, and businesses to thrive, be the focus on communication, relationship, or corporate cultures. Ute is doing research on how Coaching can support wellbeing and engagement in contemporary corporate work environments. She is the author of the book “How to create a successful remote work culture”, Co-author of the book “Changing Conversations for a Changing World Vol 1 & 2”.

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