Monday, November 18, 2013

The Committee

"The Committee"
Hi Everyone!

Today's picture seems to fit the title for this column - the committee! Doesn't that look like a committee of butterflies deciding whether or not the fruit on the platter is suitable for eating?

My question for you today, though, doesn't pertain to butterflies. It's about "the committee" you sometimes allow to take up residence in your head. You know the one..."You'll never be able to do that" or "Can you believe what THEY did to me?" or "Why can't I do - or be - or have" or whatever...

And the committee can also get very vocal about how you perceive what's happening in your life. For example, within weeks of her last birthday, a friend of mine started talking about how old she would be on her next birthday - and in doing so, she is not only losing this entire year, but she has now convinced herself that she's old and may not have much time left. Perhaps if she focused more on her current age or especially the fact that she actually feels pretty good, she might find daily life more enjoyable. The trouble is, that darned calendar reminds her that, indeed, she is aging every day. But we are all aging every day, aren't we? The more we focus on that, though, the more we remind ourselves of all the little - and not so little - aches and pains we are "enjoying" at this stage of life.

Or maybe your age is significantly lower than my friend - and you focus on all the things you haven't experienced - or can't afford - or wish you could do...  That "future focus," of course, robs you of today - and it will rob you of tomorrow's "today" too.

Another friend is going through an absolutely horrible health experience - you know the one...the one that starts with the dreaded "c" word. He has cancer and is going through a very strong round of chemo. For several weeks he has been talking about the toxins and poisons they will be putting into his body. The other day, we discussed that it might be mentally healthier for him (and perhaps even physically healthier) if he decided that what is going into his body is a very strong medicine and that although the medicine may make him feel bad, it has to be that strong to kill the cancer cells.

You see, "experts" have studied how our mind influences what we actually experience in our lives. We're all familiar with the placebo effect, when whether or not a patient is taking the actual medicine in the study or a sugar pill, if that person thinks they are taking the medicine, they often get better. The sugar pill obviously doesn't have the same benefits as the medicine and yet our minds can convince us otherwise - and our bodies actually react to what our minds are telling us.

Ah...and there's the problemOur bodies react to what our minds are telling us. And our minds react to what our minds are telling us - through negative thoughts, feelings, emotions - and ACTIONS - based simply on what "the committee" is insisting is the truth in this situation, whether or not it actually is the truth.

But I'll 'fess up here - overruling the committee can be really hard. After all, it's "them against us" and there's only one of us! But believe me when I tell you that it is WORTH fighting the committee's negativity. You'll feel better emotionally and sometimes even physically.

So what do you say? Let's FIRE THE COMMITTEE!!

Let me know if you're able to do that - I know you'll be glad you did!


Friday, November 1, 2013


Greetings, everyone!

Today's word is taken directly from a webinar series I am currently conducting, titled "Managing Your Priorities."

Although the webinar series pertains to time management, I think we could all take a step back and do a bit better in how we handle our life priorities. I personally tried to do that by going on vacation as I mentioned a few weeks ago. The picture above shows exactly what my priorities on vacation were - peace and quiet!! It was very important to me to have some real downtime on vacation - and we found a spot where I could do just that.

And since we've been back, my priorities have shifted once again. I've been on several overnight business trips recently, which require me to focus on details, details, details. Hotels, directions, where and when to eat - mundane things really, but priorities nonetheless when I'm traveling. When I'm back in the office, I am focused on making sure I have all of my programs ready for upcoming workshops - and that the content of those programs is just what the participants will need for that topic.

On a day-to-day basis though, I can lose sight of my "life" priorities. A whole day can go by and I haven't given my doggie or kitty the pats and pets they deserve. Or maybe I haven't given my husband the hug he deserves for being such a good friend and cheerleader. 

Sometimes, I don't prioritize eating right or exercising - which results in my health not being a priority. Of course, when chocolate is such a big priority, it's hard to worry about eating right :-)!

Sometimes it's rest - I stay up too late or allow my mind to whirl in a hundred different directions as I'm trying to go to sleep. And again, my health can suffer. 

Sometimes it's my attitude that needs priority attention and that's one thing that can slip without me even realizing it. That, then, can affect other priorities - trying to be kind, compassionate, caring...instead of disgruntled, irritated, or moody.

Whatever your "life" priorities need to be, I hope you'll take a few minutes to see where you stand regarding those priorities. And I hope you'll re-prioritize if you need to. 

When we have our priorities straight, so many other aspects of our lives benefit. I'm going to keep working on getting it right - how about you??