Archive for May, 2013

Ready, Set, GOAL!!!

As summer is upon us, we embrace on our annual refection
process and find it’s a great time to set new goals. It has been studied and
said that setting goals is the #1 predictor of success. Here are some tips to
make your goal-setting experience fun and successful this summer season:

Set a long-term goal
and a short-term one
– Make sure the short-term goals are realistic and in reach,
and build towards your long-term goals. For example, if you want to add meditation
into your life, start with 5 minutes, then 10, 15, 20, etc. working up to 30.

Create a plan- It’s
always easier to have a map!  Give yourself a strategy to meet your goal.  Schedule a healthy cooking class or join
a 10-week beginner’s yoga series.  What
are baby steps you can take to create the change you want?

Set a deadline- Give
yourself a time frame to work on change. This will motivate you to get started.
 Don’t wait for the next thing to
push you to change – NOW is the time. ‘By September I will have lost 15 lbs., bringing
me to my health weight.’

Write it down –The
power of pen to paper. Keep reminders and inspiration of your goal visible! Try keeping a motivational quotation in
your wallet.  If your goal is a yoga pose, keep a picture of it in your workspace.  Allow your calendar to reflect your progress and time frame- if
you want to exercise regularly, write down every hike you go on.

Find a friend -Having
a goal buddy will keep you motivated, supported and hold you to your integrity.  And they may even help you remember why you’re doing it when things are challenging!

Track your goal
memory can be selective! Keep notes of your successes and detours.

Stay Positive- Focus
on what you are DOING verse what you are not. We are our worst critics. Allow
the path to your goal to be one full of positive thoughts. Don’t beat yourself
up. Notice how the negative thoughts are usually just in your head.

You are the
motivation!

Obstacles are those frightful things
you see when you take your eyes off your goal.

-Henry Ford 

Posted on: May 23rd, 2013 No Comments

10 Quick Ways to Relieve Stress During Your Workday!

Here’s a quick list to try throughout your day:

  1. Deepen and lengthen your breath.  Allow your belly to expand on the inhale.  Try at least 5 counts on the Inhale (“Inhale 1, 2, 3, 4, 5”) and 7 counts on the Exhale (“Exhale 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7).  Do this for 5 breaths (roughly a minute), every hour.  Set an outlook reminder.
  2. Get up and move your body.  Shake, shimmey, convulse, dance, hop up and down… do something that moves your entire body and shifts your energy.  Just 1-2 minutes and you’ll start feeling a shift.
  3. Talk to your stress monster (the one that spins stories of how you’ll never get it done, or won’t do it well, or always make a mistake, or have to prove yourself, or have to make yourself important…).  Ask your stress monster what he or she is bringing to this experience that is helpful.  If anything feels helpful, keep it.  Get rid of everything else.  Just let it go, or file it away in a drawer.
  4. Find a helpful thought and stick with it.  This may be something you know to be true about yourself (“I am strong”), something you know to be true about the world (“There are starving children in Africa”), something that makes you relax (“green grass”), something that inspires you (a person or a quotation or a word), or anything that is helpful to your state of being.  Repeat it like a mantra throughout the day. 
  5. Drink more water.  Feeling hydrated can help us not crave food that dulls and slows us down.  And it can boost our energy level in a non-caffeinated way.  Plus, a trip to the water cooler every hour is a great way to get up and move your body- extra credit if you skip there!
  6. Listen to music that is soothing and positive.  Let it play in the background as you work.  Classical or ambient music is great because there aren’t words to sing along to, but find what works for you- Pandora or Spotify can be great to introduce new tunes that might introduce new moods.
  7. Laugh at something.  We don’t necessarily recommend laughing at your boss or co-workers (though somedays…!), but find a website, blog or cartoon that cracks you up, and in less than a minute you can have a good laughing fit.  When I was a lawyer, my favorite was www.damnyouautocorrect.com and now I’m a big fan of www.dogshaming.com  If you have a tendency to spend more time than intended with these things, set a timer and let it gently guide you back to work.  A minute an hour is a good ratio!
  8. Sit up tall.  Change your posture to something that makes you feel powerful and strong and energized.  As we slouch and lean in towards our computer, we are energetically conceding.  Stack your shoulders over your hips, ears over shoulders, and find whatever pose allows your perspective to shift.
  9. Eat well.   Think about your food as fuel, and then decide what grade fuel you want running the show.  Would you put french fries in your car tank?  The way we eat can have a profound effect on how we feel, and what levels of stress we can handle effectively.  Have healthy snacks available through the day, and choose your meals wisely.
  10. Stop looking for the quick fix!  Spend 5 minutes right now or this evening looking at BIG things that need to shift in your life— adding a meditation practice, a morning run, diet changes, a yoga practice, a weekly counseling or coaching session, or an evening bath… Then look at your list and ask what honestly holds you back (this is bigger than I don’t have enough time… we find time for what we prioritize.  So, what is it that has you not making the time for your health and well-being?).  When you see what holds you back, it can be easier to move forward.  Then pick one, just one, and commit to it.  Decide what you’ll need to say yes to in your life, and what you’ll need to say no to in your life, to make it happen.  Write down your commitments.  And make it happen.  

Please comment with any additional stress-relieving tips you use in your life, or share your experiences with trying any of these!

 

Posted on: May 15th, 2013 No Comments