People often voice concern about how there's too much to do, and this is especially true during the holiday season. Many have discussed time management skills and techniques to feel less stressed and to get more done with less time. Time management is a critical skill. In this blog, however, I would like to discuss three internal skills. This blog is less about time management and more about how to feel better no matter what is going on in your external world.
First and foremost is the practice (and skill) of starting the day under the best influence. This is done by being intentional. See last month's blogfor more on being intentional. What influence you are under when you go about your day, making decisions and interacting with others, is very important. Being under the influence of worry, anxiety, a sense of lack, being unmotivated/wanting to avoid, stress, negative self-talk vs being under the influence of calm, connection to your heart or higher sense, or a feeling of happiness or joy, will make a difference on how you make decisions. It will also determine how you perceive what is happening in your day and how you interact with others.
The NUMBER ONE thing you have control over is getting yourself under the best influence possible before making a decision, interacting with others, or letting your self-talk get going in your head.
The following are some ideas on how to shift what influence you are under, to start the day, or make a shift during the day:
- Take a walk outside and focus on slow, long breaths.
- Sit in meditation. Click here for my blog on meditation.
- Take a nap and when you wake up, journal or meditate.
- Take a warm bath or shower.
- Sipping a cup of tea or coffee outside, being present to your breath.
I have no doubt that you can think of other things that only take 10-20 minutes that help you feel better and stop the negative and allow the positive to seep in.
Make a Decision
Once you have gotten yourself calm with freer head-space, this is the place from which you make decisions and plans.
It is very important to make decisions or take action from this space, and it is very important that you DO make a decision. Let's break both of those components down.
It is important that you do not allow yourself to commit to something or make a decision that affects your time and you and your families experience when you are in a rush or under some other negative influence (like peer pressure at work). You can say, "I love that idea, let me sit with the time commitment before I decide if I can do that right now". Some couples will say, "Let me check with my partner first". This is not because your partner is in charge of what you do, but it's a way to put space between the question and the answer, and allow other people to give you a broader perspective. The bottom line is to wait and get yourself in a calm state before you make decisions.
Then, it is very important to make a decision or answer the question. This is because once you are in the best space possible to know what is best for you right now. It is important to TRUST that what you sense and know when you are calm, is what is best for you and your family. Make the decision without regrets or worries. Be decisive, because your peace matters.
Let Go of the Outcome
After you have made a plan, decision, or commitment, during your best feeling time, you let go of the outcome. This follows as you trust your ability to make the decision that is best for you. This trust involves NOT worrying about what others think. Click here to read my blog on not worrying what others think.
Letting go of the outcome is the best way to do things in a way that feels right, no matter what happens or others say or think. You have then started a practice of finding balance in your life and can proceed with your day with less worry and stress.