Renew Your Mind , Body, And Spirit Wtih Daily Rituals…

Baby it’s cold outside!

I know it’s December and I live in Minnesota, but I always have a hard time adapting to below zero temperatures. Brr! It just doesn’t seem right to me. I am a summertime gal and love warm temperatures and sunshine, so it probably never will.

Thankfully–I have an upcoming trip to look forward to. Nothing sounds better to me than a warm breeze, sunshine and the calming ocean. I hope you have an opportunity to take a warm vacation get away this winter too.

Speaking of the ocean—I recently read something interesting about the Great Barrier Reef, which stretches some 1800 miles from New Guinea to Australia in the Pacific ocean in one of Brian Johnson’s Philosophers Notes on the book, The Art of Peace. “Earl Nightingale, on a visit there with his son, noticed how the coral polyps on the inside of the reef, where the sea was tranquil and quiet in the lagoon, appeared pale and lifeless, while the coral on the outside of the reef, that is subject to the surge of the tide and power of the waves, were bright and vibrant with splendid colors and flowing growth and asked why this was. ‘It’s very simple,’ came the reply, ‘the coral on the lagoon-side dies rapidly with no challenge for growth and survival…while the coral facing the surge and power of the open sea thrives and multiplies because it is challenged every day.’”¹ It is funny how that works, but is true for most organisms in the universe and humans, as well. While we all need challenges in our lives to grow, sometimes they can cause stress overload.

So how can we thrive, yet deal with the stresses of our lives? According to Dennis Waitley, in his book, The Psychology of Winning, “One of the best ways to develop adaptability to the stresses of life is to view them as normal.”² While some of us would rather avoid stress, it is a part of life and we need to learn to deal with it. We can also try and maintain balance in our lives by practicing daily rituals, such as exercising, that help renew your mind, body and spirit. Twyla Tharp, in her book, The Creative Habit, says “When you stimulate your body, your brain comes alive in ways you can’t simulate in a sedentary position. The brain is an organ, tied integrally to all the other systems in the body, and it’s affected by blood flow, neural transmission, etc.”³ By exercising and moving our bodies, we not only help de-stress our brains, but stimulate our creativity and promote well-being.

Some rituals can help prepare us for the day, while others can give you a break from work, or daily activities, and others may help you relax into the evening and prepare you for a good night’s sleep. Some examples of rituals include: meditation, walking, working out or exercising, reading, yoga, massage, going to the movies, prayer, date nights, and more.

Many of these can easily be incorporated into a daily routine, while others can be added weekly, or monthly. Matthew Kelly, best selling author and speaker, reminds us we must feed our physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual self to become the best version of yourself. 4

How are you doing?

Thanks for reading!

Barb

Reference:

¹ Brian Johnson’s Philosophers Notes—The Art of Peace. http://www.entheos.com/philosophersnotes/notes/all/The Art of Peace, pg. 2

² Brian Johnson’s Philosophers Notes—The Art of Peace. http://www.entheos.com/philosophersnotes/notes/all/The Art of Peace, pg. 1

³ Brian Johnson’s Philosophers Notes—The Creative Habit. http://www.entheos.com/philosophersnotes/notes/all/The Art of Peace, pg. 4

4 Mathew Kelly: Becoming the Best Version of Yourself. Beacon Publishing, 1999. CD.

Why Put Off Tomorrow What You Can Do Today?

We’ve all heard the saying, “Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today,” but how many of you really live by it? My guess is that while we all may have good intentions, we are all prone to procrastination at times— some more than others. Why, you may ask, is that? We are all complex human beings. Often times, our daily activities can seem overwhelming and get in the way of what we truly would like to accomplish. When this happens, our feelings often take over and can stop us from doing what we truly desire. So how can get around this? The answer is actually pretty simple…take one step at a time.

walking-with-one-foot-in-front-of-another

In fact, Brian Tracy, Professional Speaker, Best Selling Author, & Entrepreneur explains the concept with a metaphor. He asks, “‘How do you eat an elelphant?’ The answer is, ‘one bite at a time.’ This can be applied to any goal. You accomplish it one step, one task, one measure at a time. He also talks about eating your frog, which is about tackling your most important, daunting tasks, and getting them done. Brian’s main point is that you eat your most ugliest frog first, the next ugliest, and so on, until all your frogs are done. When you ‘eat your frog,’ you feel empowered, happier, energized and are more productive.”¹

frog

Robert Emmons, in his book, Thanks, tells us “to go through the motions and do it now, and the feeling will come.” ² Have you ever felt overwhelmed by doing a task, but went ahead with it anyway and then felt a sense of relief after, even if you didn’t complete it? Brian Tracy explains this as “‘Slice and Dice.’ You can cut a big task down to size with the ‘Salami slice’ method. Basically you lay out the task in detail and resolve to just one slice of the job for the time being.”³

slicing-pepper

What have you been putting off that you want to do?  Perhaps you want to clean up your garage, so you can park your car inside during the winter months? So take that first step. Fold up that ladder. Get some boxes to organize your garden tools or other stuff. Hang up your bike and keep going until your space is uncluttered.

If you want to start eating better, again take that first step. Go to the grocery store and try shopping the perimeter of the store only. There you will find most things that you need to incorporate a healthier diet including fresh produce, meat, and dairy products. Shopping this way will help you avoid processed foods, which are often loaded with artificial ingredients, additives and sugar. When you get home, go to your pantry and get rid of any processed foods that you know are unhealthy and want to avoid.

produce

If you want to add more exercise to  your day, vow to take a walk after work. Change into those sweats and tennis shows and get yourself out the door. If you like going to a gym, pack your gym bag ahead and take it with you to work. That way you will be prepared and less likely to make an excuse for not going.

healthy-light-woman-legs

So what are you waiting for? Make sure you take that first action step and keep going.

Thanks for reading!

Barb

Source:

¹Tracy, Brian. Eat That Frog. A book Summary. http://www.super-super.com/hpe152/page11/page16/page17/files/frog2P.pdf

Brian Johnson’s Philosophers Notes—Thanks. http://www.entheos.com/philosophersnotes/notes/all/Thanks, pg. 5

²Tracy, Brian. Slice and Dice The Task. http://www.briantracy.com/blog/leadership-success/slice-and-dice-the-task/