From the book The Diet for a Busy Life:
Your new formula for life is this: Energy = Happiness. First ask yourself if you can handle being both tired and pleasant at the same time. This is not such an easy task is it? Next, reflect on moments when you may have stayed up too late, or had a very demanding day in which you felt just peachy. Did you snap at your loved ones? Shy away from stress? Become reclusive? Is there such a thing as a happy, exhausted you? In rare moments perhaps, but in most cases when you are tired and have no energy you are not the most pleasant person are you? Now think about times when you had abundant energy. Just the opposite was true. Having energy means your happiness is generally greater. The lack of energy doesn’t necessarily mean unhappiness it just means the feeling of contentment can be that much harder to achieve. Energy = Happiness is especially true given the fact that having energy or not compounds how you feel whether it is good or bad. Happiness and energy are intertwined. The more content you are the more energy you generally have. I would argue though that the true source of happiness is your own personal energy level.
Let’s go a bit deeper as to why having energy is so important.
Energy = Strength = Happiness. When your body is well nourished and your muscles pumped with adrenaline you can achieve things like lifting heavy weights and running long distances. This ability brings with it a boost in self-confidence which is one of the key ingredients to happiness. Self-confidence helps drive you to reach your goals in life and so being fit and strong boosts your chances of happiness. Energy comes from being physically fit, eating well and as you will learn, from being mentally fit too.
Energy = Courage = Happiness. OK this is getting a bit more abstract but bear with me. Having courage applied in a non-reckless manner will increase your happiness. Any time your mind or body is put under duress you react instinctively and decide to fight or to retreat. Courage is nowhere to be found. Courage takes something special. It requires extra effort because it trumps instinct. Having the courage to ask for a promotion can bring you happiness. Just asking for it will be enough. Asking the attractive person you see everyday on a date is courageous. Sure rejection sucks but having the answer to that burning question alone will bring you relief. Running down the purse thief or stopping the mad man with a gun is not what I am talking about. I am talking about actually doing something about the every day problems you are faced with. A lack of energy makes you less courageous. Overcoming obstacles takes energy and the courage to take that first step. Without energy your chances of retreating from problems increase greatly and with that retreat goes a better quality of life. It takes courage to change your life. It takes courage to ask for that promotion. It takes courage to ask out that hottie on a date. Energy is the foundation of courage which lends a hand in happiness. Having energy will give you more courage to face down your obstacles and create a better you.
Energy = Success = Happiness. Simply put, if you are successful chances are you put in a lot of hard work to achieve this success. If you struggle to understand this then you need to ask yourself whether or not you live in the real world. Even those born with a silver spoon in their mouth cannot claim success without having taken some risk or callused their hands in some way. Success does not come to those who…? Fill in the blank. Wait? Sit on the couch? Leave it to others? Can anyone say with a straight face that they found any level of success without some burning desire inside them? This desire is fueled by the amount of energy that you have to tap into on any given day. Having no energy means being stuck on the couch while the world spins by. This is the opposite of happiness and achieving success at anything will surely bring you anything but misery.
Energy = Life = Happiness. The most important reason why you should do anything and everything to maximize your energy levels is because of the simple fact that while you exist here on Earth, living and breathing, you are a consumer. Be it of food, water, energy, love, companionship, friendship the mere fact that you are alive right now means you are taking something precious away from this world and you are using it for your own selfish needs. Unlike animals, the meat on your bones cannot be consumed, your excrement cannot be used to help grow crops and even your decayed flesh is of little use. In other words, your physical body is useless unless you do something with it. It gets worse. Your brain, the most powerful tool in the history of the Universe can clearly be put to waste. It actually takes effort to use this brain to give back to the planet and sadly there are many people who feel instead the world owes them something. When you die all I ask is one simple thing: When the score of your life is tallied there is a +1 in your column. I don’t mean having children and adding to the worlds population. What I mean is when we look back at the history of your life you did enough to go from a consumer to a producer. Somebody who produces is one whose love for their fellow man exceeds the love they have received. To achieve a +1 in life is simple: you carry in your mind every single day the notion you are still at −1. Now do you understand the ultimate importance of having energy? It takes effort to get a +1. It takes energy. Thinks of the regrets you would have if you died tomorrow. Would there be anything positive left from your existence beyond what you should do by default? Did you drag down the world or boost it upwards? Energy = Life = Eternal Happiness. Get to work on your personal energy level so that you can get the +1 you are responsible for.