So there I was, lying in a “sensory awareness” pod, floating in dense salt water. For the first 10 minutes, there is light and the sound of waves. Then darkness, and only the sound of my own breath and heartbeat.
The float was featured at a speaker retreat with the goal of emerging with clarity, peace and new ideas. The pressure was on. Could I shut my mind off for an hour in hopes of creating something really unique and original? For the first few minutes in the tank I was a bit freaked out, then calm…until the lights went out and them my mind went on overdrive:
What am I going to make for dinner? Stop that. Did I pack the kids’ snacks? Relax. I have an itch near my eye. Will I get salt in it if I dare touch it? Just breathe. Why do the Mavericks always lose in overtime? Focus! Dang, what time is it?
Rejoining the group was so disappointing. While my colleagues fiercely scribbled brainstorms, no new ideas surfaced for me and I sat sadly in front of a blank paper. Finally, I wrote the word “MOMENT.” Then I wrote, “not many moments for mom.” Hey, MOM is the first three letters in MOMent! Then, in the middle of moment, I saw ME!
There it was! We all need to put more ME into our moments. In thinking back, I had a whole bunch of ME time in the float tank, and I couldn’t relax. I couldn’t focus on my breathing. I couldn’t clear my head. The environment was perfect, yet I didn’t know how to begin. Scheduling “me” doesn’t come naturally for many of us, but hey it’s 2013. Come on, let’s go for it!
DEPRIVE your mind of all your crazy stimuli. Can you apply brain brakes? Stop dwelling on the past. Stop obsessing over what is next. Stop blaming. Stop checking Facebook (tough!) Step out of the Twitterverse. Quit scheduling. Stop everything except what’s going on here and now. For a moment…just be.
STRIVE to be MINDLESS. Of course you’re soooo busy! What can calm your brain? Yoga? Meditation? Quiet time? Add something different to your “To-Do” list- time for you! Mark your calendar for mind-free time.
REVIVE + THRIVE! Now that you’ve cleared the decks of your mind, what next? Enjoy your fresh focus! Did you get new ideas? Did clearing chatter help you hear anything new? Put your new energy into things that help make your MoJo flow. Then, for cripes sakes, schedule more of those things! Who says you can’t plan time each day just for you…don’t you deserve it? Listen to the sound of your own breath and heartbeat. You may be surprised at what you hear.Read More...
Tis the season to be stressing…fa la la la BLAH! Between placing holiday decor, creating the perfect Christmas atmosphere, gifts for all, clever cards and finding a new place for Elf on a Shelf, many of us find this most wonderful time of year overwhelming. Getting the pre-lit tree to light seems impossible, yet there are those who have time to synchronize their outdoor lights to Gangnam Style!
Wait! Don’t let this harried season pass you by without taking time to enjoy life. Many of us bring on our own stress scenario. Do you need some helpful holiday ideas? Here we go…
GOOD STUFF TIPS FOR A TRULY MERRY CHRISTMAS
• Feel free to skip the Christmas Newsletter. We know your kids are the smartest and cutest. We also know where you have been on vacation. Don’t you know I follow you on Facebook?
• Send a Happy New Year card in January if you can’t get it together now.
• Wear and repeat. Yes you can wear the same sequin scarf you wore last year. No one will remember. Take the money you’d have spent on new holiday bling and drive your contribution down to the homeless shelter. It will be far more meaningful.
• Deck your halls with less. Putting up fewer decorations means less time putting them away. Twinkle lights go a long way to brighten a room.
• Instead of worrying about what to give people in your life who have everything already, adopt a needy family.
• Store bought cookies can be very tasty.
• Give gifts of time and skills instead of things – cut your neighbor’s grass for a month, take your brother’s kids for the weekend.
• Skip mall madness.Try online shopping! You’ve gotta love free shipping and gift-wrapping.
• When people ask if you are “ready for the holidays,” say yes and smile. What does “ready” mean anyway?
Don’t drive yourself crazy trying to do everything. Just make a few simple changes to welcome the season. Enjoy the lights. Go hear carolers at the park. Drink hot cocoa-spike if you like. But most importantly, take the time to enjoy the people you love this Holiday season! Cheers!Read More...
When people think about humor, it usually relates to telling jokes, or situations where you double over in laughter. To me it’s more than that – it’s about having (and making) fun in the ordinary and often dull routines in everyday life.
For example, after dropping the kids off at school, I dread coming home to the disaster in my kitchen. Often times while cleaning up breakfast dishes and lunch prep chaos, our chocolate lab will plop down nearby with a heavy sigh.
In my effort to put off re-combobulating the kitchen for as long as possible, I call his name – Murphy – and then I hide behind the counter. When he scrambles to his feet, a chase around the center island ensues. Yes, I play Hide & Seek with my dog. Don’t judge me. It’s great fun and gets the blood flowing — for both of us.
Another fave in our family is the “Restaurant Name-Game.” Last week, I took my son on a lunch date to one of our favorite places, Which Wich. You build your own sandwich, turn in your order and write your name on the bottom of the bag. For kicks, we always put random names, like “Dude,” “Happy,” or “Tired Puppy” (that one would be mine). It is always a kick when the young employee yells out in a bland voice, “I have a turkey for… Tired Puppy.”
This can also backfire. My brother and his wife were going out for dinner and made reservations at their favorite restaurant. Also a goofball, he made the reservation using the name “Hungry,” and mentioned this was a special evening. At the end of their evening, the restaurant brought them a complimentary dessert with (in chocolate writing), “Happy Anniversary Mr. and Mrs. Hungry!”
How can you add fun to your daily routine? One thing is for certain – humor makes memories. Figure out ways to make the mundane into something memorable. Get out there and use humor to make the ordinary extraordinary!Read More...
On our car trip in Michigan this summer, it wasn’t long before the kids started asking the universal car question --”Are we there yet??”
Knowing we still had a long way to go, I had to quash this line of questioning straight away. “Yes, we are exactly where we need to be.” This bought us a little bit of silence as they tried to figure out what I was saying. That was my answer the next time as well. They stopped asking.
As annoying as Are we there yet? is when my kids ask it again and again, I’ve found that many adults ask that question throughout their lives. Am I there yet? I will be there when I graduate from college, get a job, get married, have kids, when kids move out, change jobs, make X number of dollars, retire, etc. So many of us wait for a certain event to happen before we believe we’ll reach our destination of happiness and contentment.
You are exactly where you need to be. If you don’t like where you are now, think like a GPS: recalculate and change direction. But whatever you do, take time to enjoy the journey. You’ve probably heard the saying, Wherever you go…there you are. And you are. Enjoy.
We’re on the expressway. We’ve been following a truck for some time and the HOW’S MY DRIVING? sign keeps staring back at me. I remark to my son, “Thank goodness mommy doesn’t have a sign on her car asking people to call about her driving!” He seemed happy about that too, much to my chagrin.
So what happens when you call that phone number? Have you ever wondered? Have you ever called? Are you getting ahead of me here? Oh yes, I had to do it.Read More...
I want to tell you about Don, a truly wonderful guy. A great example of his wonderfulness (if that isn’t a word, it should be) was the time he, his wife and his mother-in-law were coming home from an overseas trip. He dropped them off curbside at the departure terminal and went on to return the rental car. It was uber early and the place was still closed, so he threw the keys in the slot, left the car in the appointed spot, and shuttled back to the terminal.
I may be a perky motivational speaker on stage, but at home in the morning, I am a hard-core drill sergeant. After my sing song “get-out-of-bed-sleepy-head” routine, it is GO TIME.
Typically, I bark orders at my elementary school babes, push blueberries, search for papers I need to sign, throw together lunches and try to tame my daughter’s wild lion’s mane (anyone have ideas for curly hair care?).Read More...
As a motivational speaker, I try to be uplifting and inspirational. But it’s hard sometimes because people can be oblivious. Have you ever had someone corner you – someone you hardly know – and blather on, telling you his deepest, darkest. Clearly the expectation is that you’ll sit like a bobble-head doll, head bouncing up and down, and quietly listen. What?!Read More...
Have you ever left your house, happily arrived at your destination, only to have that “where the heck is my phone” panic scramble? This includes, but is not limited to: patting down pockets, reaching into bags, completely dumping said bags, searching under car seat. All the while your eyes are darting around, frozen in time, hoping that a flash will hit, reminding you of your last phone encounter.
Last week I had that panic scramble while out running errands. The unthinkable had occurred: I left my phone at home. Breathing slowly, I told myself that I was only running a few errands. What could go wrong? I reassured myself that I’d soon be reunited with my phone.Read More...
After many years of sticking plastic lenses in my eyes, I developed an allergy to my contacts. Can you say, “Owieeeee??!?” Lasik always sounded like the way to go, but fear always got the best of me. No longer able to wear contacts, I researched doctors, did the whole pre-screen thing, and had the surgery DONE (really!) within a week (I knew that waiting and thinking about it would mess with my head.)
So here I am a few weeks later, seeing better than ever and wondering why I didn’t do this sooner. When I squint my right eye, I can hear the famous Steve Austin, “do-do-do-do-do” (bionic eye sound effect).Read More...