5 Situations That Drain Your Emotional Energy

· July 15, 2018

We’ve all been in situations that have drained us of our emotional energy. They’re usually situations that, in one way or another, involve you deeply. However, after having been through them, you believe you didn’t get much after all the effort you put into them.

Emotional energy is a relatively new term to describe our vitality. Vitality is the strength that we have before fatigue sets in. If we feel that some situations drain us, then it’s because they take away all our vitality in matters that are insignificant, but ones that do require effort.

“Do you love life? Then do not squander time, for that’s the stuff life is made of.”

-Benjamin Franklin-

There are many situations that drain our emotional energy. They should be avoided because they demand too much from us and contribute very little in return. They’re situations that only distract us from what’s truly important, and from the things that enrich us. Let’s learn to identify them and avoid them. Here are five of them.


1. Arguments about insignificant issues

A debate is a fabulous opportunity to present your own points of view and learn from other’s opinions. Few things enrich us as much as having a constructive dialogue with people who think differently. It broadens our perspective and enriches our thinking. It also strenghtens our communication skills.

Colleagues arguing at work

However, something very different happens when two people get into a pointless argument, where the only purpose is to “beat the other person”, and impose their own points of view. This often only leaves a bad taste in your tongue. You waste a lot of energy, you exhibit the very worst of you, and it’s just a matter of personal vanity.

2. Complaining also robs your emotional energy

Both complaining and listening continually to the complaints of others, are situations that drain our emotional energy. Complaining is something we all do from time to time. It’s quite normal. But sometimes complaining becomes a habit and a way of life. We go on and on about the same problem, without actually doing anything to solve it.

Complaining is a type of communication that develops an attitude of impotence. We aren’t happy about the way our lives are going, but instead of focusing on what we can do to change, we just keep going on about the negative side of things. It’s just not worth wasting our time on this. It only makes us evade our responsibilities.

3. Gossip

One of the situations that drains our emotional energy is sticking our noses into other’s private lives, instead of concentrating on our own. This sort of “voyeurism” is no more than a sign of a lack of identity. Whoever gossips about others, looks for themselves in other people. The thing is, they just can’t find themselves.

The worst thing about this type of attitude is that it’s often accompanied by an implacable criticism of other people. We observe others and get involved in their personal lives, but only think about bringing them down. There’s no worse way of wasting time than gossiping. It not only drains your energy, but it degrades you.

4. Worrying over and over again

Worrying about things over and over again always leads to confusion and inaction. It’s clear that you must weigh your options and that the only way to do this is to look at the pros and cons. But the problems start when you just go over and over all the options and never make a decision.

One of the situations that drain our emotional energy is compulsive doubt. This is when we think and think but only come up with “ifs” and “buts”. We try to find the right answer or make the right decision just by reflection. However, we forget that many answers come only when we combine thought and action.

Man with box on his head

5. Need for approval

We’re constantly trying to get other people’s approval. We spend so much time worrying about things that it blurs our vision of life. Instead of investing time to explore who we are, whether others like us or not, we just spend our time doing things that other people want us to do.

By doing this we’re just wasting our time. People either accept you or they don’t, and sometimes for reasons that are completely beyond your control. If you’re blond, you’re blond. If you’re Swiss, you’re Swiss. In fact, a factor that often generates rejection is the excessive desire for acceptance. Therefore, it’s simply not worth wasting our time doing this.

These situations that drain our emotional energy should be eradicated from our personal lives. We usually end up doing them when we’re confused or when we feel insecure. Your life is valuable. Your time is too. Don’t waste it on things that don’t enrich your life at all.