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Filed in Kim's Corner — September 12, 2016

Energy drainers are those things that we are tolerating, ignoring, or putting up with that are draining us of our precious energy. Energy Drainers can be mental or physical clutter and when they are handled, you can reclaim the energy that is being used up by them.

There are four types of energy drainers that are particularly detrimental to us: Stuck on It, I Wish, Worrying, and What Ifs. All of these are double whammies in that they not only drain us of our energy, but they produce no positive results.

Stuck on It

This is when we use our energy to focus on things that can’t be changed. You see, problems deplete our energy when we continue to focus and talk about them long after we’ve done everything we can with them. For a lot of us, it is hard to let go of something without reviewing why it happened. We can get stuck on questions such as: What could have been done differently? How could I have prevented it? How will others judge me?

Here are a few more examples of questions and thoughts that help us stay stuck:

Why did he/she do this?
Why did this happen?
I still can’t believe the relationship is over.
I shouldn’t have done that.

If you are thinking these thoughts over and over and over again, you are Stuck on It.

I Wish

When we are Stuck on It, we can also get caught up playing I wish. The I Wish game is when we repeatedly think things like,

I wish that hadn’t happened.
If only I had…
If I just could have…then it wouldn’t have happened.

Playing the I Wish game is an indication that you are unable or unwilling to accept the outcome of a situation, learn from it, and move on.


Let me first make a distinction between productive planning and worrying. There is no denying that we need to have goals and plan for our immediate and long term future. I am talking about unproductive worrying here that acts as an energy drainer and inhibits our ability to fully engage in our present. Either we can’t act because we are too worried about our chosen course of action, or when we finally do act, we worry so much about our choice that we become Stuck on It. Clearly, an unproductive cycle that leads us nowhere fast.

What Ifs

Again, a distinction needs to be made: It is always a good idea to look at the possible outcomes of an action that we are considering. However, when we continue to ask “What If” over and over we inhibit our ability to see the picture clearly and move forward. Here are a few examples of thoughts that might indicate you are playing the What If game:

What if people reject me?
What if I try and fail?
What if I look stupid?
What if I don’t know how to do it?

Other types of Energy Drainers:

Procrastinated tasks (these are the things that are hanging over your head)
Exercise & Losing Weight
Quitting Smoking
Work projects

It actually takes more energy to procrastinate something that it does to actually do it!

Emotions tied to the past
People: these are the people that leave you feeling exhausted after spending time together. Examples include:
Mr/Mrs. MeMeMe
The one-upper
The downer.

All of these Energy Drainers can inhibit our ability to move forward toward healthier life goals. We exhaust ourselves when we continue to expend energy on something that is finished. Wishing about the past and worrying about the future guarantees that you will miss out on the present. Imagine all the things you could do if you freed up some of the energy that is currently being misdirected. You already have all the energy you need within you. Reclaim it and unleash your true potential.

What is draining you of your energy? Are you stuck on something? Are you a worrier? A procrastinator? I challenge you to take a look at one thing in your life that is draining you of energy. No matter how big or small the energy drainer, you will be amazed at how freeing it will feel to let go of it.


Identify the Energy Drainer (e.g., worrying about something)
Ask yourself, “Is this productive or not?” “How will I benefit from worrying about this?”
If no productive results are likely to come…LET IT GO! Make a conscious effort to stop the energy draining thought.

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