Wake Up Eager Wednesday - Weekly Mind, Body and Spirit Ideas and Tips
Wake Up Eager Wednesday is a weekly dose of the things I'm thinking
about, doing and feeling - that are contributing to my Wake Up Eager
Life and Work. Get quick Mind, Body and Spirit focus tips and ideas, here. (New in 2019!)
I Body (Doing/Extrinsic):
THE WEEK OF Wednesday, May 15, 2019
- We are almost halfway through the year, and this week I've been thinking about whether I've stayed true to my quest to focus on and do what is my highest level of contribution, something I talked about in January's tips, here and here.
I'm reminded of this quote by Essentialism Author Greg McKeown, "It's not being unhelpful to the world for you to say no to something that's less important, it's not being unhelpful or selfish. Your obligation is to the highest contribution you can make." (More about Essentialism, here.) While I've not been 100% on track (I still say yes to some things that really aren't of interest), but I am spending more and more of my time every day on the things that relate to my highest level of interest and contribution. And, that feels good!
I have a Whole Body Vibration Plate in my office. I get on it when I want to think, need a break and before calls. There are a lot of benefits. It can promote fat loss, it's energizing, balances hormones and increases flexibility and mobility. I like mostly it because it feels good! (To see what it looks like and hear about the research around it watch this video.)
- We did a Team Building Tune Up program this week - to help a team build bridges of trust and communication so that they become a truly cohesive and effective team. The goal was not only to improve self awareness, but to help them discover each other's point of view, strengths and to embrace - their blind spots.
We used our science in the Talent Insights Assessment, to provide a framework for MORE understanding and appreciation of their differences, and to REDUCE JUDGMENT and FRUSTRATION. (No matter how much we talk about diversity it is a human bias to want others to think and do things the way WE DO THEM!) If we want TRUE connection and appreciate, we HAVE to learn to VALUE and APPRECIATE our differences.
When we live work and play with others - "It's not what you look at, it's what you see." Do you see their strengths and value - EVEN when they are very different from you? (THAT's LOVE and truly embracing diversity!)
THE WEEK OF Wednesday, May 8, 2019
- This Tip fits into the Systemic part of this category, in that it is a structure or system that is helping me Wake Up Eager - and that is the virtual workshop and meeting solution: Zoom. I have an 18 person virtual class going on now and Zoom has made it a breeze. Easy to login, easy to record, easy chat box and so much more. I've also used it to get better sound quality during podcast interviews. Solid systems like Zoom, make everything else easier!
- A favorite doing mindset mantra and attitude goal of mine is, "I get things done immediately, thoroughly and cheerfully."
Notice the three different and equally important descriptors in this mantra: immediate (I don't procrastinate), thorough (I don't rush and make mistakes) and cheerful (I feel happy in the doing).
I can feel how well I'm doing AND I can actually MEASURE IT through the TriMetrixHD assessment, by looking at my clarity and emotional orientation score in one of the six key dimensions that we measure: Practical Thinking Here's the definition of Practical Thinking: The ability to anticipate potential opportunities and problems. Sound problem-solving abilities. A calm, cool approach to managing opportunities and problems. Good follow-through.
One key trait of good practical thinkers is that they spend more time working diligently toward important goals than they do "putting out fires," which are urgent but potentially less important in the long run. For example 84% of a 30-person department had lower Practical Thinking scores. They were stressed, making mistakes, putting out fires and becoming disengaged. Knowing that the gap exists is the first step to making a change.
Here's a little worksheet with tips and ideas to improve Practical Thinking scores. "I get things done immediately, thoroughly and cheerfully." Yes, this IS possible.
- This Wake Up Eager Facebook Post was liked and shared a lot last week: (Go over to our Facebook Page, like it and get these Tips and other notes every week!)
for yourself today. APPRECIATE you today. Relish in your awareness of
your wisdom, that you care and that you are doing the
best you know how to do, right now.
CONTRARY to popular belief,
believing in your value and worth does NOT make you arrogant.
you be RESILIENT, AVAILABLE TO OTHERS AND OF GREATER SERVICE TO THE
Say it with me now, "I AM AMAZING!" - then go be, do and have
all that makes your heart sing...
Keep scrolling for past 2019 Weekly Tips and Ideas...
THE WEEK OF Wednesday, May 2, 2019
- I've spent 80% of my time lately on ONE PART of my business. Other things, while important, have had to wait. It's been exactly right for me to focus here even as some of the other areas are undone for now, as it ties into the 80/20 rule.
This RULE SAYS that if you have ten things on your to do list, TWO of the ten will turn out to be MORE IMPORTANT to your overall success, than the other eight. Knowing this is KEY to staying out of overwhelm and finding more success and JOY.
Here's a coaching process I use when someone has a to do list that ten people could not complete:
FIRST, make a list of all of the projects that are on your desk or that you know are pending. Be sure to include projects that have been assigned to you AS WELL AS projects you personally think are important for you to work on. List them ALL. NEXT, talk or think through your answers to these questions:
- Out of this list, right now, what 20% is most important?
- What can I do to re-prioritize these projects?
- Which projects can I delegate and/or get support on?
- Which projects don't really need to be done right now?
- Which projects should I ADD to my list?
This exercise might take 20 minutes, and it WILL help you. You just have to do it. (Sometimes I do this every day because there's a lot going on, and I know that working in a state of overwhelm DOES NOT produce high quality results. PLUS it ruins any chance of having a great day, week, month or life!! Not everything is important all at once. It's just not.
- We had a perfect steak dinner last night, and I cooked it! My attempts with steak use to be hit or miss until I found this recipe in the Wall Street Journal in 2007. The journalist visited one of the most renowned steakhouses in the country to learn how to make meat like a pro. The steps are easy and it works every time!
Lessons From the Pros Master Recipe
2 steaks: cut strip steaks or rib-eyes about 1 1/2 inches thick, filet mignon, 2 1/2 inches;
2 teaspoons oil and Kosher salt
-Remove steaks from refrigerator 2 hours before cooking time. Dry them with
a paper towel. Preheat oven to 400 degrees, with a rack set in the middle.
-Heat a heavy, cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat, until a few drops of water
sprinkled in the hot pan evaporate within 3 seconds. Coat the bottom of the pan with
2 teaspoons of grapeseed or canola oil. (I use avocado oil.)
-Liberally salt the steaks with kosher salt, about 3/4 teaspoon for each steak.
-Place steaks in pan and sear for 2 minutes on each side, flipping only once with tongs.
-Transfer the steaks, still in the pan, to the oven and roast for roughly 8 to 9 minutes
for 1 1/2-inch steaks to achieve medium-rare (an instant-read
thermometer should register between 125 and 130 degrees).
-Let the steaks rest, under a tent of aluminum foil, for 5 minutes before serving.
PERFECT EVERY TIME!!
- "Journaling, I believe, is a practice that teaches us better than any other the elusive art of solitude — how to be present with our own selves, bear witness to our experience, and fully inhabit our inner lives." Maria Popova, Brain Pickings I agree with Maria's statement about taking time every day to reflect and think. I almost never re-read or keep my journals. (I've been writing in them since college.) For me the gift is the in-the-moment reflection, quiet time and appreciation. The result for me, every time, is clarity and direction.
THE WEEK OF Wednesday, April 24, 2019
- I am realizing that I say NO to something every time I say YES to or commit to an activity. Remembering this helps me because my default response tends to be: "Yea, sure I can do that!!" It helps me PAUSE before I jump in. I am trying to consistently check-in with myself to make sure I am making my best choices, moment by moment, day-by-day.
- I stock up on these two daily writing products:
1) I love this pen in black ink. I've ordered many and I place one every area I write, work and think. It's smooth and water-based, which is good for us lefties as there's no smear on your hand.
2) My favorite daily List of Six notebook is this simple, inexpensive Project Planner. It's weird to say, but I AM LOST WITHOUT IT. I reference it at least ten times a day! It grounds me and keeps me on track.
On the weekend I think about the upcoming week by reviewing key appointments and listing my top priorities for that week. Then, every day I list the SIX THINGS I MUST AND WILL DO THAT DAY. All week I revisit my notes to see if I am on track, or if I need to either adjust a priority or adjust how I am CHOOSING to spend my time.
It's not that we need anything fancy to stay out of overwhelm and to ensure that we're moving forward,we just need to find tools and USE THEM to help CONSISTENTLY PRIORITIZE, THINK and PLAN. These work for me.
- "Busy is the new stupid." Here's a short video clip (1:30) of a conversation with Bill Gates and Warren Buffett around being deliberate about how you spend your time, and that sitting and thinking could be a better use of your time. Take at least 15 minutes today to reflect, write and think. (15 minutes = 1% of your day.)
THE WEEK OF Wednesday, April 17, 2019
- I'm pondering this quote: "We cannot control the evil tongues of others; but a good life enables us to disregard them." Cato The Elder
To me - it's saying - the more I put my attention on and get really good at creating my version of my best life, the less impact naysayers have on me.
- I preface this week's Body (Extrinsic/Doing) tip with a reminder that this area includes ANYTHING related to - getting things done - that help me Wake Up Eager. Until today, I've shared health and fitness tips. Get ready for a tip around HANDLING DOG 'BUSINESS'! I have three dogs. (See them here).
These TOOLS make my 'work' as a dog mom - easier: The Best Doggy Poop Bags, EVER, Poop Bag Holder Hook and this Poop Bag Leash Attachment. The poop bags are AWESOME! They have a nice scent and when you roll them out, the way they're printed, you can easily open the right end, quickly. This is ESSENTIAL when it's raining, dark or when I'm juggling three leashes!
Other's agree.There are over 10,000 five star reviews about them, on Amazon!! Who knew that dog business was such a pain point for so many people?!?! I can honestly say that these "dog business" tools contribute to my Wake Up Eager days by making a hum drum, not very glorious, clean up 'job' - SUPER EASY.
- The War of Art by Steven Pressfield is a must-read (or listen to on Audible) for anyone who wants to create anything - art, a business or a great life. I've listened to it three different times and will do it again, soon, as I clear my thinking for writing the next book. He explains internal resistance and how to beat it. It is empowering and enlightening.
Wednesday, April 10, 2019Mind (Thinking/Systemic):
- Everyone has specific-to-them actions that fill or deplete their energy 'gas tank'. THE ONE THING that's most helped me create more Wake Up Eager days has been: KNOWING AND USING more of my top personal interests, attitudes and values, every day, as revealed in the Workplace Motivators science.
With this knowledge I consciously and without self-judgment fill my life with MORE 'fill my tank' activities, and do LESS of my stressors. And with this framework I understand other's motivators and stressors, as well. This helps me be an empathetic colleague, coach and family member.
Recently a leader made a DECISION that had her senior leadership team in an UPROAR! She was blind sided. Her decision took away something that filled their energy 'gas tank'. She thought she was helping them, when she actually TOOK AWAY SOMETHING THEY VALUED. Her mistake was obvious, once she revisited their top drivers and stressors. She reversed her decision but not without creating turmoil, and losing respect and commitment from her team.
Understanding what fills your tank and what depletes you is a key self-management AND leadership tool. Use it!
- This video by Trey Kennedy is super funny. Its a comedy routine about people who brag about their fitness and health routines online. I love to think about about health and fitness, and it's a personal hobby. BUT - I don't ever want to be this guy. You have to laugh when you watch this...
- Due to my naturally urgent nature - I can OVER FOCUS on getting things done quickly. I tend to be a 'busy' person.
This quote reminds me to get in the flow before taking action: "When we get too caught up in the busyness of the world, we lose connection with one another - and ourselves.”― Jack Kornfield
My remedy? Take 15 minutes a day for Tune in Time every day, and sometimes several times a day. Connection trumps precision. Alignment first, action next.
Wednesday, April 3, 2019
- I know this: 'Your number one priority is to set your priorities.' And, while there's always room for improvement I'm pretty good at creating and following my priorities. It makes my life feel purposeful, less stressed and keeps me moving in the direction that matters most to me.
So much strife, confusion, tension and overwhelm relates to not being clear about what the priorities are! We NEED clear priorities for business, our team, our job and our personal life. We need this so that we know how to spend our time this year, month, week and in each day. If the priorities are not clear for the company, for every job and even in your family, you'll see silos, competing interests, frustration, slow progress and overwhelm.
If everything is important, nothing is. We HAVE to take time to reflect, revisit and clarify what's important. And then once clear, we must communicate those priorities to the people that need, and discuss and measure them on a regular basis.
A great clarifying, figure-out-your-priorities statement, is: "If this doesn't happen _________ in the Company (OR in my job OR at home) this year (OR this quarter OR next month OR today) we/I will have failed... In addition, here are two priority-creating and keeping tools: the Dashboard and My List of Six.
health and energy, I am always looking for tasty and quick ways to
flood my body with nutrition. Several weeks ago I shared that Green
Smoothies were an easy and quick on-the-go option. Here's another option that I've been using for the last four weeks: Daily Harvest.
This delivery service offers delicious ready-to-blend smoothies,
harvest bowls and ready-to-heat soups for health nuts who don’t always
have the time for meal prep. All-natural ingredients are picked at the
peak of maturity to ensure maximum nutritional value, with no added
sugar or preservatives.They share, "We take care of food, so that food can take care of you, so that you can be at your best, always." Sounds like Waking Up Eager to me! Try it with this link and get three free cups. Plus, I get three free cups too!
- The power of appreciation...
Don't know what to do? At a loss about anything? Make a lists of
appreciation about everyone one and everything in your
life, and watch what changes. Observe the clarity, insight, answers and energy
that flows through you and to you!. The more I do steps 1 through 7, below - the more I get to live step 8! Let this be your mantra...
- Appreciation before me,
- Appreciation behind me,
- Appreciation to the left of me,
- Appreciation to the right of me,
- Appreciation above me,
- Appreciation below me,
- Appreciation within me,
- Appreciation ALL around me!
Wednesday, March 27, 2019
- Every week I meet and work with people I am meeting for the first time. I tend to want to impress them, to try and get them to like me - which is pretty normal. But, over focusing on what they think of me puts most of my attention on myself, when I should be focusing on THEM! And it's usually coming from a place of insecurity. If I find that I've slipped into an insecure mind set I work to STOP it and change my focus.
I remind myself that I can't control what anyone else is thinking, and that that focus is unproductive. What they think of me is none of my business!
My work is to turn my attention TOWARD them. Seeking out their goals and questions. Looking for their strengths, goodness, and possibility. Thinking about how I can help them get to where they want to go. To find and feel appreciation and eagerness about our time together. To focus on what I can do, in that moment, that will serve them. This mental shift is empowering, uplifting and can become a habit that makes a difference on so many levels.
- I was teased as a 3rd grader for not having 'the right' clothes. In college, as an Intern in Washington. DC for a Congressman, I didn't have the business attire that every one else had, and I looked out of place. While no one in the congressman's office said anything, and I was recognized for doing good work and had a great time, I noticed that I was out of step. Things like this stoked my desire to have clothes that look and feel great.
Today as an adult I buy the clothes I want. It brings me joy. I don't judge it. I just notice how good it feels to be able to wear things that help me look and feel my best. 90% of my closet is from the Cabi Clothing line with my personal stylist, Rhonda King Sprague She's fun and super helpful. My clothes match, are appropriate for each situation and I'm in style. That helps me feel at ease, comfortable and fully-present when I walk into any room, any where with no negative mind chatter. As Rhonda says, "Life's too short to wear boring clothes!"
- In our TriMetrix Assessment one
of the areas that we measure, that impacts performance at work and
personal fulfillment, is SENSE OF SELF. It measures how clearly you're
VALUING and treasuring YOU.
It's an indication of how much you do or don't give yourself a break.
The ideal is to see your value, to know your worthiness and to ALSO be open to learning and growing. If your Sense of Self is lower it can impact your ability to: handle stress, manage your time and take accountability for mistakes. It can also impact whether you are defensive or open to other's ideas and feedback. It's important to advocate for your goodness and value as much (maybe more) as you advocate for others. Here's a Sense of Self mantra, "I'm happy with who I am and I give myself the benefit of the doubt. I'm also eager to learn and grow, and motivated to improve. I want to use ALL of my potential."
Wednesday, March 20, 2019Mind (Thinking/Systemic):
- I'm teaching a TriMetrix Training Course to HR Managers next week in Chicago. Key focus areas will be on using TriMetrix to ensure job fit. One of the sciences used in TriMetrix is the Science of Axiology. It measures how we think and make decisions and was discovered in the 1960's by Dr. Robert S. Hartman. Hartman shared these five questions with his executive clients at AT&T, GE, IBM. I share them in every workshop: "Are they going to be happy? Will they want to stay? Will they own their job? Will they be productive? Will they contribute their talents generously?" These are the questions to be thinking as you are interviewing, on boarding and coaching others. Finding job fit is as important today, as it was in 1960!
- What's a nutritious, delicious, easy to make and easy to clean up meal? Green Smoothies! They are the perfect solution to a hectic schedule. I discovered them back in 2010. Check out my article and get the one page ingredient guide. Smoothies are another easy way to FLOOD your body, mind and spirit with nutrition! I made one this morning... Yummo!
- If you're feeling out of time, pressed and stressed here are two questions for you: 1) Are you willing to allow more support into your life? 2) Are you willing to let other people into your world to help?
If so, here are ideas of help and support that I've used over the years without guilt: house cleaners, dog walkers, business mastermind phone calls, shopping services (Instacart, Shipt, Amazon), wellness coach, business coach experts on specific topics, therapist, massage therapists, reconnecting with high school girlfriends for annual getaway trips, annual birthday dinners with 'soul sisters', virtual assistants, yard helpers, dog groomers, task helpers at Fiverr.com and clothing stylist. It's funny, once you DECIDE TO ALLOW more support and to let people in - there are options for help and support EVERYWHERE. But - first, we have to LET IT IN.
I can and do get caught in stressed and pressed days, because life is just happening all around me. I also try to catch myself and choose every day to set things up so that I let in the support I need. I want less feelings of stressed and pressed, and more feelings of ease and happiness.
Wednesday, March 13, 2019
- When interacting with others at work, use the ratio 3:1, which is three positive and appreciation statement to every one correction. In your personal life go for the ratio of 5:1 (five appreciations to every criticism). There's compelling Gallop Organization research showing that relationships thrive when these ratios are applied. In other words, appreciate more, criticize less...
- My Dad's memory issues prompted me to tune into the work of Brain Specialist, Dr. Daniel Amen of Amen Clinics, through several podcast interviews and his book: Memory Rescue. He's doing amazing work on health and improving brain function with his Personal Brain Health Workout. One area that he discusses is how toxins "Steal your mind". He recommends using the the Think Dirty App to scan personal products and eliminate as many toxins as possible (parabens, phthalates, lead, aluminum, PEGS). One afternoon I walked around Whole Foods with this app and was amazed as I scanned 'healthy' deodorants, shampoo, soap and detergents. Not everything is as it is advertised! This app is one simple way to eliminate extra toxins by managing what you put ON your body.
- I've carried this lovely statement, in a framed poster, to every office I've had since 1992. It will stay with me until I leave this earth. It inspires me, every time I read it. It FEELS RIGHT TO ME to look at life this way. I thought you might like it too: "Your life is a sacred journey. And it is about change, growth, discovery, movement, transformation, continuously expanding your vision of what is possible, stretching your soul, learning to see clearly and deeply, listening to your intuition, taking courageous risks. embracing challenges at every step along the way. You are on the path exactly where you are meant to be right now. And from here, you can go forward, sharing your life story into a magnificent tale of triumph. of healing, of courage, beauty, wisdom, power, dignity & love." By: Caroline Joy Adams (Every day IS a new day, let's begin again, now!)
Wednesday, March 6, 2019
- A few years ago I gave a 20 minute Ted-Style talk and the title was: The Stickiness Factor. It was about four factors important to creating long-term, positive relationships with clients. The most important factor of the four, is probably not what you think - it's: Embrace Happiness and Create Ease Every Day. I discovered how important this is because my urgent nature can cause me to easily slip into being rushed, in a hurry and over worked. I use to equate the stress of being overworked and over committed to being successful, until I had a particularly high volume and harried year. I realized that I could change my approach, and I did by beginning to prioritize feelings of happiness and ease. This shift has made a HUGE difference in my business, my client relationships and personal life!
Recently I heard Jim Collins, best selling author of "Good to Great" talk about how he tracks, on a spreadsheet, his answers to these questions at the end of every day: "How did today go? What did I do today? How did I feel?" He then rates the day on a +2 to a -2 scale. He chooses to do more of what happened on +2 days, and less of what happened on -2 days. I love that this scientific, very succesful business researcher also embraces happiness and is focused on creating feelings of ease and satisfaction every day!
I find that my +2 days are when I spend the days closely aligned with doing the things that reflect my top two workplace motivators (what I am most interested in), and my -2 days are when I have to spend a lot of time around situations or things that match my number six motivator (what I am least interested in). Socrates reminded us that, “To move the world, we must first move ourselves.” If we want to serve others, we must fill our happiness, ease and satisfaction 'gas tank' first, and with this 'full tank' we are then able to make our highest level of contribution and difference in the world. And well, THAT - feels great!
- I love Hu Chocolate. It's 70% House Ground Dark Chocolate - Organic Cacao, Paleo, Vegan, Dairy-Free and Yummy! Small bites for a guilt free treat. (NO Dairy, NO GMOs, NO Emulsifiers, NO Soy Lecithin, NO Gluten, NO Refined Sugar, NO Cane Sugar, NO Sugar Alcohol)
Here's what Hu Chocolate's shares
on their story and philosophy page:
"The goal isn’t to just get by. The goal is to live actively, age
gracefully, and flourish. We
are inspired by quality food’s ability to heal versus poor quality
food’s guarantee to hinder. We started Hu to help people get back to
eating, living, and thriving like humans" I say, AMEN to that AND to great tasting, healthy treats!! Whole Foods carries it. I ordered mine from Thrive Market, an online membership community that uses the power of direct buying to deliver the world’s best healthy food and natural products at wholesale prices.
I found: Where Should We Begin? with Esther Perel on Audible and listened to it when I was in for a long ride by myself. It's fascinating to listen in on couples counseling with a famous therapist. It's raw,
intimate and profound. (Warning: this is mature content.) While different from coaching, I noticed that she includes coaching in her therapy sessions. (Coaching mostly helps others look ahead and move forward, while Therapy often helps people unravel, understand and heal the past, so that they can move forward.) Esther Perel is amazing. These couples are brave. I was wide awake for my entire drive! Good stuff...
Wednesday, February 27, 2019
- Prioritizing and Pre-Paving: The one tool that consistently keeps me on track, out of overwhelm and moving forward is my Daily List of Six. It's simple. I take time before every week and at the end of every day to determine the six things I will ABSOLUTELY will do the next week or day. (ONLY SIX forces me to prioritize what is most important AND on what I am willing to do.) Every morning I wake up and know what is important for the day. It seems like after I have my List of Six for the next day my subconscious plugs in and pre-paves the way, setting me up for another good day! It is a BIG contributor to Waking Up Eager!
- 30 Years Younger: This Journal of Applied Psychology study shared by @chriskresser found that regular exercise may keep your body 30 years younger. The researchers found that people in their 70s who had exercised regularly for decades had muscles that were, in many ways, indistinguishable from people that were decades younger. Wow! That's enough incentive to get and keep moving, right? I've been a long time fan of Cathe.com home workouts. You could say I'm a 'Cath-lete'. Her latest workouts are - as always awesome. Working out at home with Cathe - works!
- Two Things When Under Stress: If I start to feel stressed I do two things, after I've pouted for a bit, 1) I stop and prioritize everything going on around me, because not everything is equally important at once and I need to remind myself of that; and 2) I figure out what kind of support will help me feel better and to think more clearly. This week - the extra support I allowed for myself included - finding more dog walkers (WAG app) to give me more time to work on a special project. I also tried SHIPT - a grocery shopping and delivery service. Thumbs up to both! I will use again, and ahhhhhh - I feel supported...
Wednesday, February 20, 2019
- I'm updating my TriMetrixHD two day training program a where each workshop participant will be brand new to the TriMetrixHD Assessment. I've had to get in touch with a 'beginner's mindset' to make sure that I'm objective, fresh and clear. You see - I've interpreted more than 10,000 TriMetrix results, and while I'm always learning, I am considered an 'expert'. But, sometimes EXPERTISE CAN GET IN THE WAY OF BEING AN EFFECTIVE TEACHER, FACILITATOR, COACH AND LEADER. Shunryu Suzuki shared this in Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind: “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few.” I've been thinking about what's essential about TriMetrixHD, and how to succinctly share the power and 'why' of this tool. I found questions that Dr. Hartman, who was the Founder of the Science of Axiology - one of the sciences in our assessment - shared with human resource executives he was coaching about their hiring focus, back in the 1960's. And, it's as true today as it was back then, “Are they going to be happy? Are they going to be productive? Will they want to stay? Will they own their job? Will they contribute their talent generously?” THAT is the essence of what the assessment reveals. Ah, yes, my focus on having a beginner's mind is helping me get back to the basics, and I know we'll have an awesome program because of that.
- This week I have kicked my coffee habit to the curb with a new, better habit: Pique Teas. It's like no tea I've ever had! It tastes great and is high quality. There are no toxins, it has 12x the polyphenols (healthy stuff) of other teas (verified by 3rd party testing) and it comes in easy to use packets that are tea crystals. Pique explains that the caffeine in green tea is released in smaller does over 4 - 6 hours and does not lead to the spikes and crashes coffee's caffeine causes most of us, and that coffee can become a fat inducing roller coaster (YIKES!) because it causes cortisol (the stress hormone) to rise quickly. Check out this short PDF eBook for all kinds of interesting tidbits about tea: Ode To Tea. Yes, I have finally kicked coffee to the curb, and I feel great!
- "The Best Way To Get Approval is to Not Need It." I have Gaping Void's Art of this quote framed and hanging in my office so that I see it every time I walk in. It reminds me to align with my knowing, of my intrinsic worth and value, before I take any action. It reminds me to believe in myself and to step back and realign, ANY TIME I start to whine or feel needy.
Wednesday, February 13, 2019
- While creating a DON'T list of the things I choose to NOT do any more, I found this Peter Drucker quote, “There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all.” It's not been easy to make a 'don't do' list. This question, from the Essentialism Book has helped, "Is this the very most important thing I should be doing with my time right now?" The "don't list" could be applied to personal things, work projects, processes and basically anything you, your team and/or organization are doing automatically or unconsciously that is no longer serving you or the business. I'm asking this about everything, "Is this essential? Should I (we) still be doing this?"
- This week is my quarterly week-long fast. It's probably the 10th time I've fasted. I see it as a time to reset, realign and to give my body a rest. I actually look forward to it. The change in my eating routine helps ensure that past habits, like too much coffee, wine or processed foods, do not creep back in my daily life. And, there are so many benefits to fasting. (Here are ten.) Before I had my first fasting experience, I didn't think I could do it. Listening on Audible to The Complete Guide to Fasting and using the guidelines and supplements my Wellness Coach provides, helps. It's surprisingly doable. I'm now a fan of fasting. Crazy how you can adjust, learn and benefit in so many ways by just being willing to try something new...
- We just returned from Vail, Colorado and like every other trip my husband and I take, as we were flying home we recapped everything we did that was fun, enjoyable and satisfying. It's a way we savor and appreciate all that went well. I like to do this at the end of most days, too - recalling my ten favorite things about the day. It's interesting how quickly I can 'forget' all of the things that go my way, every day. There's a scientific reason to consider taking time to appreciate, and that is that our brains have a strong bias towards negativity, which psychologists appropriately call the negativity bias. Positive thinking is a skill that can (and needs to) be cultivated. I like knowing about the science, but mostly though, I just like recalling what went well because it just feels good!
Wednesday, February 6, 2019
- I'm thinking about how a RELAXED FOCUS makes me more effective. We're in Vail, Colorado and my best ski runs are when I am focused AND relaxed. If I become uptight or worried, thinking things like: "...there's too many people around me" "...ooh, this is steep" "...I'm going too fast" I'm more likely to stumble. My form suffers. On the flip side, if I take a lackadaisical approach or look too far ahead of where I am, "Oh, the mountains are so pretty..." "Wonder what we'll do for lunch..." "How long in this run?" once again, my ski run is a bit sloppy. My best runs - where I'm sure-footed, competent and 'on my game' - are when I find the SWEET SPOT between focusing and relaxing. This also applies to being 'on your game' at work. It requires:
- Preparation: Mentally and physically preparing for the activity in advance.
- Skill: Building confidence by growing your skills.
- Awareness: Paying attention to the balance between being focused AND relaxed, and making adjustments to both, in the moment. (Managing Your Mind podcast episode for more tips.)
- I tend to wake up a lot when traveling in different time zones. I use Sleep Mode, a Bulletproof Product, to help me wind down and keep to my normal sleep pattern so I'm not tired or groggy. Here's what's in it: Clinically-backed, optimal dose of bioidentical melatonin; L-Ornithine, an adaptogenic amino acid that acts on cortisol, your stress hormone; Brain Octane® oil as efficient fuel for cellular recovery during sleep.
- I don't have children and I almost never watch 'kids' movies, but a one of my mentors shared that she enjoyed the Christopher Robin movie. I watched it on the plane ride to Vail. It's sweet and touching. Pooh is a great example of being present, non-judgmental and kind, and is quite the philosopher! One of my favorite Pooh quotes: "I always get to where I'm going by walking away from where I've been."
Wednesday, January 30, 2019
- Since applying the principles of Essentialism (as outlined in our January 2019 newsletter) to my work and life are top of mind, I'm pondering these questions: 1) What is something that's very important to (you) that you are UNDER-invested in right now? 2) Why is this area so important to (you)? 3) What amount of daily time would (you) need to invest in this to be able to say, I'm not under investing anymore? 4) What fears, people or activities are keeping you from doing this? 5) What is something that is good but non-essential that (you) are OVER-investing in currently? 6) What trade offs or changes are (you) willing to make and what kind of systems can you put in place to make the shift toward investing more in what you shared in question 1, effortless? An Option: Replace the word (you) with (your company) or (your team) or (your job).
- The lyrics in the song - My Life song by songwriter Pam Rose is inspiring me today. It's a heartfelt call to use all of your talents, love and life so that you can say at the end, "I lived my life, I did something good with it." There's nothing sadder to me than wasted talent and regret...
Wednesday, January 23, 2019:
- I started using the online free goal setting commitment contract platform sticKK last June when I decided to meditate every day for a minimum of 15 minutes. It's a great system created by behavioral economists at Yale University specifically structured to help people leverage the power of incentives and accountability and is empirically proven to increase your chance of success by up to 3x! Here's how it works: Once you have a goal in mind, you have the option to select an anti-charity that you will donate to if you don't meet your goal. You can also ask people to serve as a "referee" for you. Every Wednesday, for the past six months, an email asks me to "report in". Even though I fell off my goal in November and December, those darn notices KEPT COMING, reminding me that my goal was important. I am now, back on track. A great system to help you execute on important goals.
- I have a home office and a six month old Tibetan Terrier puppy Oliver. (Watch a 30 second video of Oliver cuteness, here).
Oliver NEEDS long daily walks before he will "let" me sit down to
work! I love walking and him, but it's been a challenge to do that AND
workout AND do my work! To increase efficiency and reduce the
time pressure - I've been taking him and Walter (our two-year old
shi-poo) on long walks using a Weighted Walk Vest while listening to favorite work-related podcasts or books (Audible). They sniff, stroll and bark at everything, while I learn and track my steps for the day using the app Pacer. (Where there's a will, there's a way!)
- The Listener, a painting signed by James C. Christensen that
I recently purchased and hung in my office is inspiring me. The image is staying with me and reminding me to listen, connect and tune in first, before taking
action. This quote goes with the painting as a wonderful reminder of how and who I want to be, "There are two types of people - those who wait to talk and those who listen." -Anon.
Wednesday, January 16, 2019
- I listened to this podcast byTim Ferriss with Author Greg McKeown about the concepts in his book: Essentialism and the Disciplined Pursuit of Less I then read the book AND listened to it on Audible. I've written pages and pages of notes and will listen to it again. It's helping me think more clearly about what I say yes and no to in my life. My goal for 2019 is to become more of an Essentialist!
An Essentialist is someone who: Focuses on the relentless pursuit of Less But Better. It is learning to say no to everything but the Essential, so that I can say yes to the things that really matter to me. It is making sure that I don't major in minor activities, so that I can do great work. Two questions I'm asking myself a lot these days: If I could be truly excellent at only one thing – what would it be? Is THIS the very most important thing I should be doing with my time and resources right now?
- A quote I am pondering. This quote fits with being an Essentialist and my focus on making more deliberate choices around how I choose to spend my time. Younger Seneca was wise! “No person would give up even an inch of their estate, and the slightest dispute with a neighbor can mean hell to pay; yet we easily let others encroach on our lives—worse, we often pave the way for those who will take it over. No person hands out their money to passersby, but to how many do each of us hand out our lives! We’re tight-fisted with property and money, yet think too little of wasting time, the one thing about which we should all be the toughest misers.” — Seneca the Younger
- I love using the Peloton Spin bike in our home gym. I've been Spinning for years, but just got the actual Peloton system as a gift from my husband for my birthday. It's a tough HIIT workout, that's fun, motivating and versatile. I highly recommend this tool for easy access, highly effective AND quick fitness! (My Peloton 'handle' is: wakeupeager1 - if you're using Peloton too, say hello there, and maybe we can race each other!)
- I am back to spending at least 15 - 30 minutes every day 'being' quiet. (I got off track in November and December, and I could feel the difference in my stress!) Sometimes I write lists of appreciation, meditate or just turn off all noise (phone, social media, music, t.v. etc.) and breathe. It's amazing how simple it is, the difference it makes in how I feel and how hard it can be sometimes to actually slow down to do it! I'm recommitting to this practice, once again...
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