Here are three energy boosters and three energy busters. These come from several experts interviewed by Oprah’s “O” magazine: Let’s start with the energy busters – the things that drag you down that you may not know about.

  • Like, stress. When your stress is prolonged and unresolved – like living in a bad relationship, or working at a job you hate – it can cause your adrenal glands to stop producing as much cortisol. You may think that’s a good thing, since cortisol is your stress hormone, but you need some of it to keep your energy up. When you have too little, you feel lethargic – and that’s what happens when you have constant stress.
  • The next thing that may be dragging you down: Winter darkness. A lack of energy is the #1 complaint of people with seasonal affective disorder. That’s according to Dr. Kelly Rohan, a psychology professor at the University of Vermont. To combat the shorter, darker days, get outside for at least an hour every day. Even gray skies let through the type of light your brain needs to stay positive.
  • One last energy buster: Boredom! You know you can get burned out from doing too much, but you can also have “bored-out” from doing too little! That’s according to clinical psychologist Carl Mumpower. Dr. Mumpower says the longer you’re bored, the less energy you have and the more likely that temporary feeling can become permanent.

So, get off your keister and do the first energy booster – which is:

  • Exercise! A University of Georgia analysis of 70 different studies on exercise overwhelmingly shows that exercise combats fatigue and increases energy levels.
  • Acupuncture! An unexpected benefit of this ancient Chinese form of healing is increased energy. That comes from Harvard Medical School.
  • A nap. Your energy naturally dips around 2 pm every day. Lay down for 20 minutes and you’ll wake up with more energy.