Mind, body connection: 7 easy steps to maintaining balance

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Usually when I awaken, my mind is fuzzy. A cottony tangle of sleepy remnants harvested over the previous seven hours. Yesterday morning, however, the synapses knitted together a single thought: balancing the mind-body connection. I could ask myself why I attempted to make sense of a topic that begs deeper scrutiny at any time other than 4:15 in the morning. But if I were to venture a guess, I’d say it’s because my sub-conscious was trying to get my attention to validate: I’m out of balance! This led me to check in with Google, which turned up these seven steps as a useful check-and-balance system for re-establishing and maintaining a mind-body connection: 1) take time each day to quiet the mind and pray/meditate; 2) eat a healthy diet; 3) exercise every day; 4) prioritize restful sleep; 5) release emotional toxins (i.e., let go of past hurts, disappointments and anger); 6) nurture loving relationships and 7) enjoy wholehearted laughter at least once daily.

How do you maintain mind-body connection?

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

When we need a factory reboot: tapping into our personal reset button

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Have you ever wished humans were fashioned with a reset button? Not unlike a smartphone, we’d be equipped with the ability to erase our cache of self-inflicted damage and begin again with a clean hard drive, so to speak, while still able to retain the good stuff: a foundation to draw from as we recreate ourselves. Yet, in essence, each morning affords our own personal factory reset—devoid of negative self-talk, and/or judgment, until we attach wings to our thoughts. At times, we might require extra impetus to break through the chatter that clambers for attention, to make way for new habits to replace the old. Yesterday, in fact, I began a 21-day cleanse—a detox of self-destructive patterns exchanged for self-affirmations—tangible gifts that function as a reset button: a mental spring cleaning to purge that which no longer serves me, whatever self-limitations keep me stuck or stagnant. And to bring into balance my mind, body and spirit.

What helps you swap out old patterns for new?

Image source: Shutterstock.com.

We all reside here: hanging in the balance

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Today is the first day of the rest of our lives. What shall we do with this gift? For some, #thestruggleisreal and their days hang in the balance as they fight for their next breath. While others grieve, strive, win some, lose some, laugh on the outside, cry on the inside. Continue to repeat the same mistakes. Yet, when we break it down, we all reside in a similar place: each of us shares the same 24 hours. And our days are numbered. What if we acted like it? Was that argument I had with my daughter yesterday afternoon worth it? Would she remember the last words I spoke, albeit in anger: “Drive safe”—or, rather, would she remember the sound of the phone line going dead with no goodbye? It’s so easy to forget that our words, our actions, oftentimes leave lifelong imprints on others’ hearts. When we can be anything at all, let’s use our gift to be kind.

How will you use your gift today?

Photo source: http://www.lawyersweekly.com.au.

The price of sacrifice: a necessary evil to create space, balance

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The boss and I were discussing a non-work-related topic and I mentioned “not having time.” He said that depended on the level of importance I placed on accomplishing a particular task. And that it would, of course, require a sacrifice of something else on my agenda. Ah yes, the sacrifice. Herein lies the conundrum: I refuse to surrender a couple big-ticket commitments. Although I’ve unloaded one burden (see “When you run out of margin…”) that will free up space, I still struggle to carve out time to do the things I need to do and those things I want to do. Not to mention the 7-8 hours of sleep I should log in each night. I’ve juggled, rearranged and finagled my morning and evening schedules. I’ve simplified, multitasked, prioritized and modified habits and routines. Yet I continue to wrestle with this challenge. Perhaps the answer is to re-examine my needs and wants to find a balance between the two.

What are you willing to sacrifice for more time?

A different kind of super power

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Super hero powers

With a packed social calendar, this past week I contemplated: if I could possess a super power, what would it be? Without a doubt, I would choose to be in two (or three!) places at once. I’m not sure such a super power exists, but the costume would comprise a tiara and a handful of sparkles scattered in my wake (of course). Lately, I find myself in situations where I am unable to attend one event because I have already committed to participate in another. For example, in a couple of weeks I travel 1,700 miles to my hometown to celebrate with family; however, I will miss two functions ‘back home’ involving my extended family of yoga practitioners. Even yesterday I missed out on a gathering to attend worship service. It’s at times like these when we don’t necessarily choose the better option but, rather, do the ‘right thing…’ because oftentimes juggling our commitments requires balance. Perhaps this is a super power in itself.

What’s your super power?

Image courtesy of vectorolie at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Don’t wait until you die

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Don't wait until you die

 

To anyone who thinks they’re falling behind in life” is written to me. I am the one who thinks I need more motivation, to read more lists and posts about how I’m not doing enough. Because I’m not doing enough, right? I’m still writing blogs about how I need to simplify, find balance, be kind, follow my dreams: to do. To be. To perpetuate an endless cycle of more than. The pièce de résistance? …we all need more than anything… permission to be wherever the f*ck we are when we’re there. Oh, this soothes my soul. Who doesn’t crave permission to love themselves exactly where they are? A yogi instructor recently ended her evening class with Alan Cohen’s words: To love yourself right now, just as you are, is to give yourself heaven. Don’t wait until you die. If you wait, you die now. If you love, you live now. I exited the room, tears streaming down my face. I want to live now.

Which one are you?

Image courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

An easy(ier) life

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An easy(ier) life

I have likely arrived at the ‘beating a topic to a pulp’ phase. Yet, when you find something that works, you want to spread the word—it’s about my intention this year to simplify. It’s taken me about 10 days to settle into my routine and, not only have I enjoyed several rewards of living more simply—which is a mindset, as well as a tangible practice—but the side benefit has been increasing balance (last year’s goal). Three words: ditch the multitasking. Yes I’ve written blogs on the topic (e.g., Multitasking equals write thinking); however, checking off a few extra items in the planner does not a simpler life make. But since I’ve put my Clear-Cut Chore Chart in motion, I ‘located’ extra time to do the things that re-energize me—like reading and writing more, coloring and doing puzzles—while maintaining my well-being and home, and cultivating family, friends and outside pursuits. Five words: work hard and play hard.

How’s your New Year’s intention working out?

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Turn the page to begin anew

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Turn the page begin

The first blank page of 2016 arrives with good intentions: Simplicity. Balance. Happiness, health and wellness. Just when we thought it was safe, in creeps remnants of discouragement. Wait, didn’t we leave that behind at 11:59 p.m. on New Year’s Eve? As I folded and put away a couple days’ worth of clean laundry this morning, I reflected on how, when not managed immediately (or within a reasonable amount of time), the wash and myriad household tasks pile up much like the residual of unkind words, broken promises and unrealized expectations—all of which weigh us down with disappointment, regrets or hurt. I suggest, instead, we do what we can in an allotted period of time; i.e., spend XX minutes each day working on housekeeping tasks or making an effort to right a wrong, and then be done with it. Let it go, whatever it is. And with intention, choose to travel lighter, unburdened. Then turn the page to begin anew.

How did your New Year’s Day transpire?

Image courtesy of sixninepixels at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Handling the unexpected

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road less traveled

When I complete a survey now, I check the 50-55 box (when did that happen?). Finally, I’ve discovered happiness in its myriad levels—joy, contentment, peace. I’ve gotten the hang of this balanced life thing and look forward to simplifying in the New Year so I can experience more of the above. I’ve set the cruise control and am prepared to sparkle my way into this new season. But what happens when you’re traveling on the right path and life behind the wheel doesn’t look like you hoped for or expected? Maybe you’ve returned to your proverbial waiting place to plan for a new transition (e.g., career change or physical relocation). Perhaps your GPS requires recalibration to allow you to regroup while you navigate the scenic route for a spell. It’s possible a recent challenge or setback is meant to strengthen you to help family or friends. Just take a deep breath, sit back and savor the ride. And Happy New Year!

How do you handle the unexpected?

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Putting on my big girl panties

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Tutu glitter

It’s not working. The path to my purpose, plan and joy; living in the ‘ah-ha’ moment; circumnavigating discontent; creating my own luck (and balance)… you name it: Just. Not. Happening. And I’m a broken record when it comes to the things in my life I’m unwilling to change in the first place. My sweet friend, Joan, said, Maybe you just can’t [do anything about it] right now. You’ve got lots of stuff going on… You’ll come out of this… then you’ll fix what ails you, a little at a time. She reminded me it’s all about baby steps. Yet, even indecision is a decision. So for now I’ve decided to flounder a bit, “cut myself slack” and indulge in a little selfishness—with my time and energies. To heck with the big girl panties. It’s time for me to stock up on chocolate, wine and paperbacks, and to stop waiting for Someday to arrive in order to start rocking my tutu Today.

How will you live out Today?

Image courtesy of DealDash’s Photos.

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