This was a jam-packed week. Attending a Punch Brothers concert, getting together with friends, meeting deadlines and managing difficult situations at work, personal appointments, and taking care of things on the home-front while Mark was out of town were all on the agenda. This is no different schedule than many of you manage, and there may be the addition of caring for children and/or parents, going to school, and volunteering your time.
This level of activity, faced every week, can be daunting and stressful. Especially if we are not pacing ourselves, keeping things in perspective, getting restful sleep, eating well, and exercising. That is one of the reasons I write about having fun, focusing some time on you, and dreaming.
Knowing this is not enough. It is a starting point, but to realize your best self and really enjoy life you must move your body and mind into it.
In the last couple of days, I spoke with a female executive who is struggling with balance and stress in her life. She is raising children, learning some new responsibilities which are very challenging and draining to her, hiring new team members, traveling for business, attending her children’s sports activities, and grieving the loss of a family member. It is very hard for her to turn off the work stuff when she is home, but that is what she needs to do. She must find ways to quiet the noise, catch her breath, and find respite in order to keep herself whole.
This goal of decompressing begins with changing the thought tracks running through your mind. When you are at home doing family activities, you do not need to be regurgitating what happened at the office that week, what went wrong, what still needs to be done, and the deadlines coming up. Let it go. Focus on what is in front of you. Lighten up. Have fun and help those around you to do the same. And, don’t tell yourself you “can’t let it go.” You can. It is a conscious decision.
Once you believe you can, the next step is to be aware of your thoughts. If they stray to all the stressors in your life, bring them back to the present. If something stressful is happening in the present, then keep it in perspective rather than “awfulizing.” This may take some time and energy, but it is so worth it. Retraining the mind is possible. It may take focus and commitment, but it so worth it.
So, your assignment this week is to have fun. The more you build this in, the happier and healthier you’ll be. And when you’re in the midst of your fun assignment, let the other stuff go. You’re shooting for a “10” on the fun scale.
Coaching Inquiries: Do you over-think things? Ruminate on the negative? Not allow yourself to fully relax? If you were to focus on eliminating one stressful thought that keeps you on edge, what would it be? Are you committed to letting it go this week, and finding fun and energizing activities and thoughts to replace it?
Winter Salad with Maple Vinaigrette • I’ve served this several times and the combination is always well received.
Fresh spinach leaves or a lettuce mix with spinach
• large apple, cored and thinly sliced
• red onion, thinly sliced
Toasted walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped
Feta or goat cheese, crumbled•optional
5 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
1 tsp of Dijon or stone ground mustard
3 tablespoons of maple syrup
• cup olive oil
Whisk the first three ingredients and gradually add oil. Cracked fresh black pepper is good either in the dressing, or cracked on top of the salad, once dressed. Salads are better if you toss the ingredients with the dressing, rather than just pouring the dressing on top. Wait until close to serving time before adding dressing.
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May you be filled with goodness, peace, and joy.
Kate Kriynovich (Kate@LifeTrekCoaching.com)
LifeTrek Coaching International
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