Are you struggling to become more productive and get ahead of your “to do” list? Do you feel overwhelmed at how meet all of the demands life makes of you? Most people focus on external solutions like time management skills or organizational systems to help them become more productive. An important, yet often overlooked, aspect that is critical to your success is your energy cycle.

In nature, there are many cycles. The seasons change from summer, to fall and then to winter and finally spring. You can count on that. Plants and trees appear dormant for months on end, until the conditions are right for them to burst forward with new growth. We have an energy cycle that is available to us as well. Working WITH our flow of energy instead of AGAINST it can make all the difference between having good results and outstanding success. Here are 5 strategies to help you get the most from your energy cycles….

1. Tune Into Your Energy Cycle

I define your energy cycle as that feeling of being in flow. Is your internal sense of vitality feeling strong and on the upswing, or is it feeling weak or low? Some people are early birds and their daily energy is better in the mornings. Night owls are the opposite, and can focus more and stay in flow later in the evening after the busyness of the day is over.

You might find that certain times of the month or the year you have your energy cycle in high gear. For example, the back-to-school season in September is a very energizing time for me typically. When I was a fundraiser, setting major goals in the summer was always avoided because most potential donors were more interested in vacation season than making a decision about donating to a worthy cause.

The first step is to notice what the rhythm of your energy cycle is so you can then use your natural flow of vitality and focus to your advantage.

2. Grab Your Board When The Surf is Up

When your internal energy feels strong and like you’re in the flow of things, this is a great time to take action. Like a surfer, you see and feel that big wave coming. Make sure you have your board ready so you can ride the wave all the way to shore. Clear your calendar of non-essentials and distractions so you can hunker down and take full advantage of your energetic upswing. Focus on getting outstanding projects and tasks completed.

3. Dig for Clams When the Tides are Low

The tide goes up and down, as does your natural energy cycle. It is important to respect and work with your energy flow, instead of trying to push your way through your day. When your energy feels low, this is a great time to reflect and rejuvenate. When the tide is low, that’s when you can dig deep and come up with “clams” or insights and new ideas. Give yourself permission to remain still and allow your natural creativity and wisdom to bubble to the surface.

4. Shift Gears When You Need To

It’s great to match up your energy with your activity level so you can stay productive, but sometimes there is a mismatch. What do you do when you have a pressing deadline, but your energy and attention are dwindling? There are times when you have to consciously shift your energy state.

To break out of an energetic lull, there’s nothing quicker to uplevel your energy than physical activity. Whether you hit the gym, take a walk, dance to a few of your favorite tunes or even just do 10 jumping jacks, physical activity helps to move your energy around and create more flow. You might need some support, like asking for advice from someone or delegating some of what is on your plate. Talk to a trusted friend or coach to help you clear any resistance that might be showing up to interrupt your flow.

Sometimes we need to learn to unplug from high level energy and activities and let our energy settle down. Running on an adrenalin rush isn’t a healthy way to operate in the long term. Let your energy soften and unwind by taking a technology break – turn off the computer or cell phone for even an hour and see what a difference that makes. Slow down by taking some deep breaths, doing some yoga or meditating. Grab your journal as a way to lead yourself back to your inner wisdom and guidance.

Watch your productivity and sense of satisfaction soar as you learn to harness the power of your energy cycles!

Author's Bio: 

Success Strategist, coach and best-selling author, Carolyn B. Ellis, is the founder of, empowering you to thrive no matter what your outside circumstances are. To get free tips on turning adversity into opportunity in order to improve your relationships, increase your self-confidence and reach your highest potential, visit