Tis the Season to Be . . Stressed Out!!

stressThe causes and experiences of stress are different for everyone. I tend to hold my stress inside, often without realizing it. I feel fine and everything seems ok . . then that ‘one thing’ causes all my stress and frustration to be expressed with great force. At that moment I feel the anger, disappointment, sadness, and exhaustion of days or weeks of underlying stress. I had one of those moments yesterday that turned into an evening of questioning so many things about life, family, and my ability to see circumstances with clarity.

I realize I am being a bit vague here, but I hope you grasp the idea. I have let little bits of stress – physical, emotional, mental, financial – go unchecked and it caught up with me. When I feel this kind of stress I make poor choices in how I take care of my physical self. By doing this I actually create even more stress in my body.

In thinking about stress and my response to it, I was reminded of some great tips from Sanoviv Medical Institute about managing stress. Sanoviv says the following about stress:

“Stress is an adaptation response in your body when there is a perceived challenge or danger. In this response, your body readies itself to either fight this challenge off or flee from it. Chronic stress is a pervasive stress response in the body that can have serious health repercussions as this does not allow your body to rest and heal itself effectively. Chronic stress can trigger or exacerbate most of the major health conditions that we face today.”

Here are just a few simple daily habits that can help lessen the stress in your  life.

Fruit-and-Vegetables1) Reduce or eliminate refined carbohydrates, sugar, caffeine and alcohol.

2) Increase your intake of healthy fats from nuts, seeds, avocado, olives, and cold water fish while decreasing your intake of damaged fats and oils (hydrogenated oils, deep fried foods).

3) Stress can deplete B-vitamins, vitamin C, magnesium and zinc. Take a high-quality, pharmaceutical-grade supplement. See my recommendation here.

4) Engage in regular, moderate exercise.

5) Eat more fruits and vegetables, and less processed foods. (This can be a challenge through the holidays, but is possible and worth it!)

6) Identify the source of your stress and deal with it effectively. When there is an elephant in the room it causes a lot of stress!

I am incorporating these tips in my plan for a healthy 2014. If you would like help, encouragement, and resources in creating a healthy game plan for 2014 please contact me by clicking here. It will take work, but the results will definitely be worth it!

Be Extraordinary!

Advertisements

The Pinch

rock and hard placeI did some calculating and discovered that I am in a pinch. Have you ever been there? Everything seemed good but then, when I looked at the situation more closely, I found myself in a big pinch. The cause of a pinch comes in various forms – emotional, relational, financial or even a health. Regardless of the reason the pressure of a sudden pinch almost knocks my feet right out from underneath me. I feel pressure, uncertainty and my mind is scrambling unsuccessfully for a quick solution.

I need and want a solution, but when I am in the midst of panic a solution is the last thing I can come up with. All I can see are the problems, the uncertainties, the guilt and the blame. I have a simple process I work through (and am working through right now) to get myself in a place where I can see the solution.

1) Name the problem. I admittedly am in a bit of denial when I first find myself in a pinch. I don’t want to believe this is happening; I want to take a nap and have it disappear while I sleep. Therefore, I must name in detail the problem at hand. There is no room for beating around the bush. It is time to call it exactly what it is.

2) Own my part. I do not usually find myself in a pinch and also find myself 100% free of anything to own. In my current pinch I made choices over the past several weeks and even months that have placed me in my situation. I acknowledge and say these choices out loud. By doing this I free my creativity to come out and do its work.

3) Brainstorm solutions. This is where the creativity comes out and is most crucial. Brainstorming is not about thinking inside the box or being reasonable. It is about possibility and super creativity. Any idea is ok in brainstorming; even if an idea is ridiculous and does not work, it may be the one that causes me to think of the idea that does work.

Choose and Move4) Choose and move. Once the brainstorming is complete then it is time to choose a course of action. I like “choose and move” because putting feet (action) to the plan is critical. My choices put me in the pinch in the first place and my choices (different ones) are going to move me into a better place whether it be emotional, relational, financial, health or countless other pinches.

What about you? Are you in a pinch? Do you want out? What is your plan of action to get out of that pinch?
These choices are not always easy, but they are always worth it!

Be Extraordinary!

Life on Purpose

PurposeMy life purpose is to enrich the lives of others through compassion, generosity, and extraordinary living. When is the last time you sat down and considered the purpose and direction of your life, business, health or family? Having a specific purpose in any endeavor gives parameters and direction to all the little choices connected to that endeavor. So often I am caught up with the daily grind that I don’t take time to really consider whether I am even on the path that leads toward my goals and dreams. In the chaos and mundane routines, it is easy to lose site of  these goals and dreams.

This weekend I took a much-needed night away to refocus, and strategize the direction of my business. (I am so thankful for a spouse who sees the value of this time and even made sure it happened!) In a few short hours I recalled and clarified what I do: I am a coach. I teach people how to earn full-time income while working part-time from home. That seems rather simple and also sounds a little over-kill to take a night away to get this kind of amazing clarity.

This clarity arrived in the first hour, but the hours since then have been just as crucial. I mapped out how everything I tried to do to build my business now has a purpose and focus. If I post on Facebook or any other form of social media, and I hope to see a direct impact in my business then I better know where I’m headed. There is no way for anyone to follow me if I do not know where I am going. This is true for any goal in life, business, health, or family.

What is your purpose? for your life? for your family? for your future? for your health? for your business? What area of your life could use some serious consideration about the direction and path you will take?

Be Extraordinary!

Managing Life’s Disappointments

photo 2-1I was watching my 7-year-old, Celina, attempt to manage some disappointment the other day. Actually she made no effort to manage it — she was feeling it fully. Her second grade world often involves disappointments like not receiving the pencil prize, or losing three minutes of recess because the entire class would not be quiet. On this particular day things did not turn out how Celina had planned in her mind. She and BJ (her 10-year-old sister) had sold pie certificates from the local pie company for a school fundraiser. They worked together and knew they would share the prizes. If your kids have done fundraisers like Jump Rope for Heart or jog-a-thon you know they have a list of prizes that accumulate based on how much is sold. BJ and Celina had sold enough to receive prizes A-G and had figured out who would keep which prizes.

On prize day, the girls got off the bus with only a small envelope. Apparently the listed prizes were only for the sale of cookie dough; the girls had sold only pies. Celina was devastated. She was especially sad over the loss of the finger puppet. Did you read that? She was devastated because she didn’t earn the finger puppet! It seems ridiculous, doesn’t it?

photo 5Perspective. In Celina’s world it was a big deal and a big disappointment. Life didn’t go as she planned. I can be guilty of the same thing; in the middle of a situation it is easy to lose perspective and only see the one thing that didn’t go as I wanted. Celina became so focused on what she did not have that she could not even fully enjoy what she did have. Do you want to know what she did have? BJ and Celina were the top pie sellers in the whole school, and won a $50 gift card to Toys R’ Us!!! She could buy 100 finger puppets with $50!

Are you so focused right now on the thing or things that are not working, that you are missing out on the big prize? It is easy to do this in marriage, parenting, business, health, etc. My challenge to myself and to you today is to gain a little perspective. Step back from your situation and look for the blessings you are missing. You may be surprised at what you find.

Be Extraordinary!

photo 1-1 photo 4-1 photo 3-1