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Wise Woman Ways to Boost Your Energy

Almost every woman has, at one time or another, felt so fatigued she wanted to cry. But for some women, and for a variety of reasons - including menopause, caring for a new-born, working odd hours, chronic anxiety, and poverty, to name only a few - fatigue is a constant, not an occasional, problem. Stimulants don't really give us more energy, though they are what many women turn to when they feel too tired. Stimulants create false energy, leaving us more exhausted at deeper levels. One more cup of coffee, one more soft drink, one more jolt of fear increases energy, to be sure. But these choices also deplete our bones of their minerals, weaken our core energy, and prevent truly restful, restorative sleep.

Even herbal stimulants, like cayenne and guarana, are, well, stimulants. They push us too hard and erode our long-term health. Are there ways to boost energy that are effective and healthy? My guide, Grandmother Growth, gave me some ideas of how to help myself when I feel bone-tired. And I gathered together the best remedies I know, plus the wisdom of my Wise Woman friends, so you can help yourself too, when you are too weary for words. "Fall into my arms and sleep," offers Grandmother Growth.

"You don't have to make things happen; they will happen on their own. Let me hold you. Let go. Don't resist. Rest. You are working hard. You are delving deep and changing yourself. Of course you are tired. Change is hard work. Rest in my strong arms.

Let go. Give your weariness to me. Let go of all that worries you. Surrender yourself into my strength. Take courage from me. Let me support you. Let me ease you. Let go." Extreme fatigue indicates a profound need to do nothing. Ask family and friends to give you a day totally off .

and take it! Barricade yourself in your room if need be (or, like the cartoon character Sylvia, in the bathroom). BE GENTLE WITH YOURSELF The internal processes that occur during puberty, motherhood, menopause or any other profound change in your life require tremendous amounts of energy. Even if you provide yourself with very high quality nutrients and use your energy wisely, you may still feel unreasonably tired. Many cultures offer newborns and moms a quiet, alone month or more, allow menopausal women to retire for a year or more while they Change, and give grieving parents/partners/children/friends time off from responsibility. If yours doesn't, if you can't, at least be gentle with yourself. Give yourself a break: every hour, take a 60-second break. Breathe deeply; stand up and stretch; drink a glass of water or some herbal infusion. Schedule a regular time to meditate or take a nap every day. Small frequent rests help more than an extra hour of sleep; but do both if you can. Set aside an hour a week to do something indulgent for yourself: a long soak in a hot bath, a manicure, a walk alone in a beautiful place.

Nourish yourself and you will have more energy to give to others. Treat yourself to a massage once a month. (It need not break your budget; find someone willing to barter for a skill or product you have.) A skilful massage releases tension, helping you get more benefit from your sleep and downtime, thus liberating more energy and helping you begin the upward spiral into increased vitality. "Lower your standards." This advice, though difficult to hear, has been one of the most important guidelines for me in choosing a life that delights and energizes me. It helped me choose to let the floor go unswept, the dishes unwashed, the bed unmade, while I gardened, or studied, or even just went for a walk in the woods. When I do the things I want to do I have LOTS more energy. What are you doing that saps your strength and erodes your delight in life? Find a way to quit, or at least cut down on the time you devote to it.


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