Energy, like time and money, is currency. We give it, we share it, we receive it. Since we cannot create or destroy energy, we have no choice but to view it in terms of quality and quantity.
Whether we respect it or not, we all have a proverbial energy bank. Typically we come to respect it when all of our reserves are depleted. Everyone has a different trigger for energy depletion; most of us find out that we’re out of gas when it’s dangerously late to pivot and replenish the bank.
The more we come to understand how much energy we personally need to live our most abundant life, the more likely we are to budget said energy to spread to people/places/things around us. On any given day we typically know what has to be done, and it’s up to us to budget our time and energy to complete those things without depleting our reserves in the process. The same way we schedule sleep, work, and time with friends and family, we can schedule energetic output. You already subconsciously understand that you’ll put out more physical energy in a workout than you would resting and reading a book. The same can be said about the amount of energy you dedicate to stressing about a thing that you cannot control, complaining about an idea rather than working to solve it, and even holding space for another person.
Just like the quality of calories matters to your overall health (think: kale vs. pork rinds), the quality of energy matters as well. If you’re around people who constantly output negative energy (the chronic complainer, the person who always reaches for the negative no matter what, or the person with no energetic impulse control), it is highly likely that you will absorb it in kind… and output in much the same fashion. Even if you scoff at the idea of ‘negative energy’ — you cannot negate the fact that a miserable person has the ability to suck you into their world, infect your way of thinking, and potentially influence your future energetic output.
That’s not to say that you should surround yourself with people who are only about glitter and unicorns and rainbows. The key is balance. The more balanced your energetic surroundings, the more balanced your energetic output. And if you view energy as the currency that fuels your life, you’re more likely to understand how to give it, invest it, and replenish it as needed.