When you encounter something new, your working memory compares this information to your existing knowledge and activates the prefrontal cortex. The activity in the prefrontal cortex is energy-intensive; it quickly results in fatigue. In other words, acquiring new information, getting an insight into your behavior or learning a new skill takes a lot of energy. It’s exceedingly difficult to do if you have a low energy level in general, are distracted with multitasking or overloaded with information.
It’s also extremely easy to get involved in your own, or other people’s, drama, reliving the same event or emotion for years. You need a high energy level and a clear head to create some space for change. Otherwise, you are stuck in a vicious cycle because you don’t have the reserves to break out of your routine and create new, beneficial habits.