Is your mojo running in slow-mo? Are you dragging through each day, seemingly unable to move out of neutral? Are you fighting a bad case of the grumpies? If so, chances are you need a mojo boost.
Like most of us, you’re being adversely affected by the negativity you absorb in the midst of the world’s widespread challenges—on Wall Street and Main Street―and it’s depleting your energy levels. Going to work when you’re constantly hearing about layoffs or reading about the latest company shutting its doors is difficult. Trying to remain creative, upbeat and productive can be twice as hard.
Before we begin to boost our mojo, we need to understand what it is. Mojo is reflected differently in each person, yet its essence is the same for all of us: It’s the internal energy, inspiration and power that propels us joyfully forward in life, allowing us to fulfill our goals and act upon that which we desire. In short, mojo is our fuel for a happy and productive life. Our tanks get low when we allow our mojo to become stagnant, depleted or sucked away by others.
However, we can fill our tanks whenever we wish. All it takes is some intention, conscious awareness and choice.
Find Your Mojo
How can you boost your mojo? You acquire more when you choose activities that are healthy, balanced and blissful. At work, especially, this means finding the silver lining, even when times are tough. But don’t despair! Below are five simple yet effective mojo boosters to help you out of the recession rut.
Be good to yourself. One of the most important steps you can take to boost your mojo is to adopt a rigorous plan for self-care. This includes choosing the highest quality fuel to run on. Choose healthy foods to eat and snack on, avoid eating on-the-go, and avoid too many empty (albeit comforting) sugary foods and simple carbohydrates.
Get outside at least once a day to breathe in one of nature’s biggest mojo boosters: oxygen! All it takes is a simple walk around the parking lot or office to get your energy boost. Also, don’t be shy when it comes to getting those 40 winks over the weekend, soaking in a tub, or getting a massage. Take care of your body so it will take care of you.
Be playful. When was the last time you saw a child without energy? It rarely happens! Most children have one agenda item on their list: have fun. They revel in the act of creating, exploring and playing. Their days fly by, and they never want to take a nap or go to bed for fear they will miss something wonderful. We can learn something from these smaller teachers by incorporating a little more play into our lives.
At work, think about the ways you can bring more play into your day. Display your favorite bobble head or figurine. Use your lunch break to play a board game with co-workers while you eat. Sign up for a joke-of-the-day e-mail. Outside the office, pick shells on the beach, play with your family outside, or play in the sprinklers in the back yard. Let your inner kid play again!
Be mindful. Our mojo gets sapped when our minds endlessly jump from task to task, or more precisely, obsess over problem after problem. Our computers need to be turned off every once in a while to function optimally, and our minds are no different. Take time to mentally “defrag” through the act of meditation.
If you are new to meditation, simply carve out a few minutes every day to comfortably sit in silence. Do nothing. Simply be. Take the end of your lunch break and use it to meditate. You’ll be surprised how much more energized you feel after letting your brain rest for a bit.
Once you have incorporated periods of silence into your life, you can begin to add other mindful activities such as creative visualization or clearing office space through de-cluttering. Or consider other simple Feng Shui techniques like turning your desk toward the door, placing plants in corners, and moving electrical equipment as far away from you as possible.
Be present. A major obstacle to maximizing one’s mojo is the all-too-common practice of regretting the past or fretting over the future. We spend so much of our energy wallowing in previous so-called failures or fearing the absolute worst of what may happen instead of living joyfully in the moment. We don’t know what the future holds, and it’s simply a waste of valuable time and mojo to try to control it.
The best way to remain firmly planted in the present is to increase your awareness of yourself and your surroundings. Place your hand on your heart. What do you feel? Look around. What do you see? Our lives are rich beyond measure when we take the time to be fully present. It is, after all, the only thing we have.
Be grateful. Expressing gratitude is like receiving a shot of adrenaline. When we are grateful for what we already have—a home, family, love, health, food and shelter—we instantly get a boost of mojo that can help us through the tough times. The key is to make the expression of gratitude a daily habit.
Think about starting and ending each day with a “gratitude rant.” Before you get out of bed and drive to work, or before you shut off the light to get back into bed, mentally rattle off all of the fabulous things in your life. Take note of the gifts contained within the challenges of the day. If you operate from a perspective of gratitude, you will never have that familiar feeling of running on empty.
Even though it sometimes seems like our energy is dependent on our job status, messages from the media, or the balance in our bank accounts, we can break that pattern by making these simple mojo-boosting choices over and over, day after day, minute by minute. Choose to have a life of abundance, balance and creativity, and go about embodying those ideas, beliefs and actions that support it.
Theresa Rose is an inspirational speaker and author of Opening the Kimono. As founder of Serious Mojo Publications, she specializes in fresh approaches to energy-management, productivity and creative development. Her experience includes owning a healing center, senior manager of a Fortune 100 firm, and vice president of a consulting firm. For more information, visit www.theresarose.net.