Genki: part 2

By on July 31, 2012
Last month I gave you three tips for physical energy to help you get and stay genki. This month focuses on some less tangible strategies for ramping up your energy and enthusiasm in life and work.

Ever experienced that tight feeling in your chest or gut when you do something that doesn’t feel quite right to you? Maybe you went along with your friends on something you didn’t want to do, agreed with the boss’s opinion just to climb the corporate ladder, or didn’t stand up for yourself when you were treated poorly. While you might be conscious of how and why you compromised yourself in the moment, more often than not these small “integrity gaps” go unnoticed on a conscious level. The problem is that each of these little compromises is like a small hole in your gas tank – it slowly drains your energy.

To fill these leaky little energy holes, you first need to become more aware of the values and principals you want to live by. Take a moment to list five things in your life or work that give you that “leaky” feeling. Now ask yourself what value or principle is being compromised by you or someone else in that situation.

Now that you are clear on the areas where your actions, decisions, or circumstances are not in alignment with your values, you are in a better position to hat action can you take to close that integrity gap?  Closing those gaps is easier if they were created by your own actions than by someone else’s. If you have compromised your value of kindness, for example, treating someone unkindly you can go apologize and rectify the situation, but you have less control if your energy is being drained by someone else’s unkindness towards you.

Ultimately if certain people in your life keep acting in ways that go against your values and principles, your only choice may be to let go of your relationship with them. Recently several of my clients have made decisions to let go of employees who were also friends due to a mismatch in work values. Without exception, after the difficult task of letting the person go was over, all of these clients found they had a lot more energy and enthusiasm for their business.
Plugging your energy leaks is just the first step in staying genki on a mental, emotional and spiritual level. The second step is to make sure you are regularly fueling up your mind and spirit so that you have the energy you need to go the distance.

Spending time each day using and developing your preferred strengths and talents is a key source of energy. Think of that good tired feeling you get after spending a day doing something you really love. While you might be physically or even mentally tired you feel emotionally and spiritually fulfilled or energized. Think about the days at work that are most energizing for you. What did you spend most of your time doing? What skills were you using? What areas of knowledge were you working with? Take note of these areas and make a plan for how you can spend more of your time doing these things that energize rather than deplete you.

Another key source of energy is having a sense of meaning and purpose. Research shows that people feel more energized when they understand and are excited by how the work they are doing is making a positive difference in the world. It doesn’t need to be a grand purpose or even be meaningful to anyone else – it only matters that it feels important to you.

The final ingredient for filling your genki gas tank is having a compelling vision. A compelling vision is energizing in and of itself, but it also provides focus and direction that prevents you from wasting energy pursuing too many different vectors. Just like you can eat too many sweets, you can overload yourself with work opportunities, hobbies and social activities. When your vision is clear, it becomes easier to tell which of the many good things you are being offered are really and truly good for you.

When you combine the physical energy tips from last month with these techniques for ramping up your mental, emotional and spiritual energy, you will stay genki from dawn to dusk.

Andrea Jacques, founder of Kyosei Consulting International, has spent more than 20 years developing the potential of individuals and organizations worldwide. Five of these years were spent in Japan where the core philosophies of her work on the relationship between passion, performance and profits took shape.  A dynamic speaker, coach, and facilitator, her work integrates leading eastern and western thought with top-tier leadership, engagement, wellness and sustainability consulting to build the capacity of people and business to thrive. Her clients represent a diverse cross-section of industries including banking, retail, government, insurance, academia and high-tech. She can be contacted through her website at

About Andrea Jacques

Andrea Jacques is the founder of Kyosei Consulting and the author of Wabi-Sabi Wisdom: Inspiration for an Authentic Life (available on She has spent more than 20 years developing the potential of people and businesses worldwide, five of which were in Japan. A dynamic speaker, coach, and facilitator, her work integrates spiritual insight with top-tier leadership, wellness and sustainability consulting to help individuals and organizations build thriving, purpose-driven cultures where employees know their work truly matters. She can be contacted through her website at