When You Just Don’t Have the Energy


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Have you ever felt like there was something you were drawn to do, but another part of you felt like you just didn’t have the energy?

I think we’ve all felt that way at times. During covid especially, when I thought ahead to certain things I wanted to do, I felt daunted and drained just thinking about it. I didn’t dare to take it on – because I felt like – I just don’t have the energy.

At times like this, it’s so easy to layer over that feeling of low energy with a sense of disappointment in ourselves, even shame.

As one of my teachers recently said, “shame is so readily available in our culture. Watch out when you feel it drawing you in.”

There is a lot of pressure to be “up” all the time, and be ready for anything. Be superwoman. Or superman. Even a simple, beautiful, natural thing, like rest, is readily interpreted in the overculture as weakness.

So, when we “don’t have the energy,“ there can be a lot of layers of heaviness imposed on us, from inside ourselves and from outside in the culture.

Because of this unhelpful pressure, first and foremost, I want to encourage us to simply respect the legitimate feeling. Unique circumstances aside, it can be a genuine response to the overload of news we get bombarded with in the culture.

From that place of respect, I also want to invite curiosity.

What if it’s possible that there is a deeper wisdom at work when we feel that sense of ‘not having the energy?’

In my work as a Jin Shin Jyutsu practitioner, I connect directly with the energy system of the body. We all know that there is more to our being than the material body. There is an animating force that flows through us. Whether you call it prana, life force, electromagnetic energy, Chi or Ki, it is readily apparent when you yourself feel that energy strong in you and when you don’t.

You can even *see* this energy in your pet and your house plants.

Sometimes there’s a lot of vibrancy and energy and sometimes there isn’t. When you see your house plant drooping, what do you usually say?

“Oh you pathetic plant. Why can’t you have the energy to spread your leaves out. It’s easy. It’s a beautiful day. The other plants are just fine. They’re doing it. Why are you just sitting there in your pot!”

I would venture to guess, this is not at all what you say when you see your house plant wilting.

Instead, I’m willing to bet you recognize right away that it needs something.

I think you’re compassionate with your house plant. Am I wrong?

Our bodies are a little more complex, but in essence and energy not all that different.

Sometimes it’s true, we just need something. Some vitamins. Nutrients. Water. Rest. A heartfelt chat with a good friend. Some gentle exercise to raise our energy back up.

Sometimes, however, it’s really a different need. And that’s what I want to invite our curiosity about today.

In Jin Shin Jyutsu, when our energy shuts down in some way, this can be a signal that something needs to stop – or shift – or change. That something isn’t safe, energetically. It’s like an internal guidance system.

When I was a kid, one of my favorite stories was Black Beauty. In one episode, this magnificent horse was pulling a carriage bringing a doctor to someone who desperately needed help. On the return journey, late at night, she stopped in the dark. Refused to go any further. Not even one step. Despite the urging and irritation of the driver, she would not budge. He even whipped her. Finally, he recognized something was wrong. When he stepped out of the carriage and looked around with his lantern, he realized that the bridge was out. Black Beauty had known – she stopped and refused to move – and that saved his life.

Our bodies are the same way, even if our minds are like the driver at times. Our inner wisdom steps in to stop us if we are going in the wrong direction. It will stop us firmly at times if we really need to rest.

This is a deep inner wisdom that we would do well to honor.

And the only way to know if that is what’s happening is to shine a light within. To be curious.

Do I not have the energy because I need something? Water? Rest? Nourishment? Connection? A helping hand?

Or do I not have the energy because the path ahead is not my path? At least not now. Maybe the bridge is out, and the timing just isn’t right. Maybe what I thought I wanted… isn’t what I need now, and deep down my body knows, when I truly stop to listen.

A deep respect for any answer – the one that rings true for you – and for staying curious.

With love,


Feeling low energy & curious about what support might look like? Interested in sharing a story of your own that relates? I am here for you & would love to connect. Hit reply to share your story, or click here to learn about coaching options.