Living in the Richness of the Moment – Part 4: Do Less

acupuncture.jpgIn the previous post of this series, I invited you to Slow Down to the Speed of Life. In this post, I’ll be talking about the importance of leverage, focusing and working smarter – what I call in Seven Sacred Attitudes, the Do Less Attitude.

Working Smarter
In his book, 365 Tao, author Deng Ming-Dao includes a Chinese fable about an ancient king who had much to learn from a common butcher about working smarter. As entrepreneurs, we can heed the same advice.

My short version of the fable is this: Rumor had it that this butcher could dismember an entire ox without much effort. As a result, he only had to sharpen his knife once a year. As the king’s own butchers had to grind their blades daily, he asks this village butcher how such results are possible. The butcher tells him that “he inserts his knife in the spaces between the muscles, thus parting the body along its natural lines.”

The Law of Least Action
The Do Less Attitude is founded upon the Chinese Law of Least Action. This Law advises the acupuncturist to choose to place needles in only those acupuncture points that will get the energy moving — no more, no less. The same law advises us to Do Less of the unimportant stuff. To Do Less of the unnecessary. To do only those things that have the greatest leverage for us—just as the wise butcher did in China when he dismembered that ox with just four simple cuts of his knife.

Not About Laziness
When high achievers (a.k.a. entrepreneurs) hear the phrase Do Less, we often squirm. We often (erroneously) think that Doing Less means being less productive. But if we take a minute to consider the fable above, and the times when we are most productive, we know there’s much to be said for Doing Less. The Do Less Attitude has to do with focus. It does not have to do with being lazy, letting important things slide through the cracks, or abdicating responsibility.

Speak without words, work without doing
Few realize how much how little will do.
–Lao Tsu

Do Less Applied to Business Wellness
As an entrepreneur, you already know that your business is at its best (I call it business wellness) when you have a clear and focused vision of where you are heading, know which activities are closest to your bottom line and delegate or dismiss the tasks that are not the best use of your time. This is the Do Less Attitude in action.

Do Less Applied to Pesonal Wellness
When it comes to your personal wellness regime, the same Do Less idea applies. Eating less “empty-calorie” foods and more energy-packed nutritious food; doing less of the couch-potato or computer-hunch activities and more high-leverage physical activities (take the stairs, walk more briskly while heading to appointments, power walk with light weights) are all examples of the Do Less Attitude in action.

Do Less = Greater Wellness Overall
You’ll actually come to work, life, and the richness of the moment more fully when you adopt the Do Less Attitude, because there will be more of YOU (your energy, passion, creativity) available. You will be, as author Chin-ning Chu wrote almost 10 yars ago in her wise little book, Do Less, Achieve More, “…elevated from the ordinary agitated state of consciousness into an extraordinary level where desired objectives and results unfold with an uncommon ease of effort, thus positively effecting our practical day-to-day performance in all arenas of life.”

As I’ve been emphasizing in this series, when we are bombarded by more e-mail messages than ever before, new information arrives every minute, and everything seems to be urgent, it can be easy to get distracted. It can also be easy to become addicted to busy-ness. But distraction and busy-ness are not requirements in life.

The keys to focusing and the Do Less Attitude are:

  • Identify what’s important (I discuss this in detail in the second post of this series.) This means getting clear about which activities in your work environment are closest to your bottom line and which wellness activities will help tone your physical ”bottom line.”
  • Identify the activities that you can delegate or dismiss.
  • Ask yourself what price you have been paying for trying to do everything.
  • Ask yourself how important is for you to be more relaxed, productive, efficient and clear-minded.
  • Commit (preferably to someone else who is interested in your well-being) to saying No to those items that are not worth your precious energy.
  • Commit (also to someone who wants the best for you) to saying Yes to those items that have the biggest payoff to you (however you define this.)
  • Keep it simple at first. Cut out a few things at a time. Once you get the hang of this and make it a habit, the Do Less Attitude will become a new way of life…a new daily practice.

The question is: When would NOW be a good time to identify those high-leverage activities?

I’ll be cutting a few unnecessary words from this post and focusing on a high-leverage article today. How about you?

Keep us posted.

Table of contents for Living in the Richness of the Moment
1. Living in the Richness of the Moment: Come to Your Senses
2. Living in the Richness of the Moment: What’s Important?
3. Living in the Richness of the Moment: Slow Down to the Speed of Life

Living in the Richness of the Moment–Part 3: Slow Down to the Speed of Life

smell-of-apple.jpgLiving in the richness of the moment means we are living life and not just thinking about it. Living in the richness of the moment means taking in every luscious drop of life that’s right here, just because we’ve been gifted with breath and just because we can. Living in the richness of the moment is also called mindfulness and I’m certainly not the first one to write about it. But mindfulness is a passion of mine, a major component of wellness in my view, and a life-long practice. And so it’s the topic of this 7-post series.

In the first post, I explored the topic of Coming to Your Senses as a tool to use for living in the richness of the moment. Doing so plays a vital role in the degree to which we experience personal and professional wellness. Next, I challenged you to consider What’s Important and to do so daily.

Today, I’m inviting you to Slow Down to the Speed of Life. Just in time for the weekend.

Popular Hypnotic Suggestions
In the span of one single day, I recently heard the following three statements:

  • “Life is so hectic these days…”
  • “It’s amazing how the pace of Life has gotten so crazy…”
  • ”The speed of Life is ten times what it used to be…”

I won’t tell you which of those delightful phrases came out of my own mouth, but I will say this: each of the three phrases is untrue. As my mentor, (and author of Taming Your Gremlin), Rick Carson would say, these statements are subtle “hypnotic suggestions” that most of us have adopted.

The Real Pace of Life
When we stop to think about it, we can see that the pace of Life has not changed one bit. It still takes 365 days (most years) to go around the sun. It still takes however long it takes for a caterpillar to create a cocoon and turn into a butterfly. And (when you aren’t stressed) your breath still comes in and goes out at the same pace it did several years ago. The building blocks of Life have not changed.

So, what has changed?
The things I’ve been discussing in this series: our activity levels, the amount of information now available to us, and the demands we’ve put on ourselves – in other words, the conditions of our lives — are all that’s changed. But Life itself has not. I think this is an important distinction to remember. And when we are mindful of those hypnotic words we use, it can help us remember the distinction.

Evidence is all around us

Last year I wrote an article in my ezine with a similar title to the one I’m using on this post. And when I told a colleague that the article was called, Slow Down to the Speed of Life, she looked at me with a frown.

“But the speed of Life isn’t slow,” she said.

I asked her to put her hand on her 3-year-old child’s chest the next time he was napping—to watch the rhythm of his breath. “To me,” I said, “that rhythm is Life. And that has not changed—despite cell phones, high-speed-internet connections and the five after-school activities your middle-school-age daughter attends.”

She nodded and sighed. “Hmm. Never thought of it that way.”

We continued to talk and our exchange helped me flesh out the article. It also helped remind me do to so with a gentler pace. It’s still reminding me to do the same as I craft this post.

So be on the lookout. The next time you hear yourself remark about the pace of Life, remember you’re hypnotizing yourself and you’re more than likely commenting about the circumstances of your Life.

Then stop and observe your breath for a while. And also observe a squirrel, a tree, flowers or the ocean…and you will see the real pace of Life.

Stop…Breathe…Notice…Choose™
Observing the differences between real Life, the circumstances of your Life and/or your concepts about Life, will help you remember that you have choice over the activity-level and busy-ness with which you fill your days. More importantly, you have choice about where you place your attention.

So go ahead. Just for today, practice what I call the Go Slow Attitude…and Slow Down to the Speed of Life.

Try this: Savor the Flavor Experiment

Here’s a dining experiment that accentuates the Go Slow Attitude. Because it requires silence, try it the next time you are eating at home alone or where you will be uninterrupted by a waiter, waitress, or dinner companion. Hopefully you’ll find the right moment this weekend.

Upon sitting down to your meal:

Take a moment to observe the food on the plate before you. With gentle curiosity, just notice the colors, textures and aromas. Give silent thanks for the food in a manner that suits you. (You will remain in silence throughout the meal.)

• Pick up your utensil and gather your first bite.
• Place that bite in your mouth and
set your fork or spoon down and then begin to chew.
• Chew slowly. Savor every taste of that one bite. Notice all aspects of the food—flavor, texture, temperature, aroma.
After you have swallowed that first bite, pick up your fork or spoon and gather the next bite.
• Continue the practice of mindful eating (putting down your utensil between each bite) until you are full and have finished eating your meal.
• Enjoy!

I once attended a residential retreat where we engaged in this mindfulness practice for five days, three meals a day. After putting aside my resistance (which took two days) I began to look forward to each meal. I found I enjoyed my food in a way I hadn’t before, did not eat beyond fullness, and was more present to the moment before me throughout the day. Every now and again, I do the exercise simply to remind myself about the real pace of Life. I’ll be joining you this weekend.

Let me know how the experiment works for you.

Table of contents for Living in the Richness of the Moment
1. Living in the Richness of the Moment: Come to Your Senses
2. Living in the Richness of the Moment: What’s Important?

Living in the Richness of the Moment–Part 1: Come to Your Senses

rich-moment.jpgMy readers don’t realize it, but I had a self-centered motive when I wrote Seven Sacred Attitudes®. I really wrote it to remind myself that living in the richness of the moment is a life-long practice, not a one-time event. Now, those of you in this blog community, who are all busy entrepreneurs, passionate about life and want to drink in every luscious moment, have asked me to write more about this practice. So here goes.

This is the first post in a seven-part series. The series is designed to help you start living in the richness of the moment. Right now. With this breath. The focus is on learning how to spend more time on the heart-centered present, even in the midst of your busy entrepreneurial life. And the first step is to:

Come to Your Senses
Your body is talking. Are you listening? Not to your mind and all you think about your body and what you should do for it, but to your body itself? Your body has much to say. Every moment. Right now, as you read this, can you come to your senses and access your inner wisdom? What is your body saying at this moment?

Accessing the inner wisdom of your body takes practice. “Practice?” you say. “Another ‘To Do’? I don’t have time for everything on my plate as it is right now.” Well, the practice of listening to the inner wisdom of your body doesn’t require that you do anything else—no new activity to schedule in your day— but it does require that you shift your attention.

Try this: Choose one activity that you’ll be doing anyway in the next 24 hours—preferably an activity you do outdoors. Decide to place your full attention on your body during this activity. Even if you use outdoor activities or exercise time for creative thinking and problem-solving, do something different today.

Place your attention on your body’s experience of the activity. Start small. Start with 10 minutes where you will pay attention. Not to your mind where the stories live—“Oh, I wish I could get this power-walk or run over with.”—but pay attention and stay present to your body. Take your mind off of the mental “To-Do-list” chatter and come to your senses!

Your body lives in this moment. It breathes now. Notice it in action. Discover what it has to tell you about this activity on this day for these 10 minutes.

Print this list out and use it to guide you:

•Notice your breath.
•Notice the air against your neck.
•If you’re swimming, notice the water against your muscles. Notice the sensation of the water against your face.
•Focus on the muscles in your legs as you walk, jog, bike-ride or swim or even if you use a walker or wheelchair.
•Switch focus and pay attention to your arm muscles.
•If you’re at the computer, notice your shoulders, neck and brow.
•Whether indoors or out, notice the sensation of your clothing against your skin.
•Notice the rhythm of your breath.
•Pay attention to the sensation of your breath as it enters and leaves your nose.
•Pay attention to the sound of your breath as you jog, sit, or exhale into the water of the pool.
•Keep your focus on your body and your senses.
•Notice what your body is telling you.
•What do you learn from coming to your senses?

And try this: If you usually walk, swim or run for a certain distance or a certain time period, put away the timer, pedometer or lap-counting routine for today. Use your body as the barometer for a change. Without a watch or measuring distance, let your body tell you when it is done or tired.

If you usually sit at the computer until you have gone through all the email, written every response and use ‘being done with the task’ to dictate when you are finished, go ahead and set a timer for 10 minutes today. Stop when the alarm goes off and check in again with your breath, shoulders, head and neck. Is your body done? Is your body saying something? Is there something you have been pretending not to know?

We have been given the power to direct our attention wherever we want. Today, place it on your body.
See how it goes.
Just for today.

Let me know what you notice.

And let me know what you think, if you disagree with my thinking, or if there is anything about living in the richness of the moment you would like me to cover in this series.

Hallowed Treats for Goblins You Love: Promote Wellness & Help End Childhood Obesity

halloween.jpgWhat do “Halloween”, “Wellness”, and being an “Entrepreneur” all have in common? Simple. You. (That is if you live in the U.S., Italy, the U.K., Ireland, France and anywhere else that celebrates Halloween. If you don’t, perhaps you know someone who does and can pass along this post.)

Let me start by saying that I’m indulging a bit today. I’m climbing up onto my soapbox and ranting a bit about a subject that gets me fired up: Childhood Obesity. At the outset and launch of this blog, I promised to limit my rants to only once in a blue moon, and Halloween’s role in Childhood Obesity is a subject that counts as a blue moon as far as I’m concerned.

So, here’s the rant. Yes, Halloween brings out the kid in us. No matter our age, it can be fun to get dressed up in costumes and go to parties or take our costumed kids and parade around the neighborhood. And yes, treats can be part of the fun. However, treats don’t have to be sticky, gooey white-sugar-based candy, and treats don’t have to be food. So when it comes to Halloween (or anytime) “treats” for the children in our world, the usual commercial fare is just not the way to go.

You know the statistics. You see evidence all around you. Childhood obesity has reached such epidemic proportions that world health officials have decided they need to take a more aggressive approach if they are to head off a global explosion of fat-related diseases.

But I refuse to wear a colored ribbon signifying an end to the socially caused problem of Childhood Obesity. Why? I just don’t like the whole idea of colored ribbons. I don’t like saying that I am against things. I’d rather jump on the bandwagon to support the things I do believe in — like health, wellness and the freedom to engage in entrepreneurial ventures. It just seems to me that teaching and modeling health and wellness to our children is the only thing that makes sense, and in doing so…we will end childhood obesity.

That said, I’ll contradict myself for a minute and talk briefly about what I’m against. Childhood obesity is no laughing matter. In fact it’s worth crying about or at least ranting about and risking your blog readers’ disapproval. On the other hand, healthy and fit kids will contribute to a healthier future and give all of us something to smile about.

Are you thinking, as I admit I was at one point, that since your own kids, nieces, nephews or friend’s kids don’t suffer from childhood obesity that you’re off the hook? Please think again.

We are all very much on the hook. And handing out sugary treats on Halloween because it’s easier than finding creative alternatives is no excuse in my book for contributing to the epidemic.

So what can you do?

Whether from your office checkbook or from your front door on Halloween, give “Hallowed Treats” that support wellness in our children.

Here are 31 ideas (in 4 venues) for doing so:

Venue #1: Your Front Door

Instead of refined white sugar or refined flour treats this Halloween, (when sealed treats are important) give out:

– colored pencils
– gel pens in bright colors
– crayons
– whistles (be mindful that they’re not choking hazards to little goblins)
– erasers in animal shapes
– coins
– stickers
– decorated hair clips or ponytail holders
– toothbrushes
– sealed fruit cups (applesauce, etc.)
organic juice boxes (100% juice)
– string cheese
– herbal tea bags (individually wrapped)
– protein or granola bar (without sugar)
– boxes of raisins
– individual whole grain Fig cookie packs
– individual 2oz almond packs
– All Natural dark chocolate squares by Endangered Species (at Trader Joe’s)

Venue #2: Your Own Healthy Halloween Party

Host a Halloween party at your home (when sealed treats aren’t required) and serve:

– spiced apple cider
– spiced apple cake made with applesauce and spelt flour
– popcorn sprinkled with parmesan cheese or brewer’s yeast
– fresh apple slices or do the “bob for apples” bit
– fresh veggies and spiced hummus dip
– pumpkin seeds (sprinkle with Tamari and let the kids help bake)
– whole grain cookies such as Fig Newman’s
– whole grain crackers with organic almond or peanut butter
– healthy mini-pizza’s: broil whole grain English muffins with tomato sauce, raw cheese, olives, and other veggies
– pumpkin soup
non-food treats such as those on the above list

***Notice I included NO sugar-free Splenda-containing items on these lists. With good reason, but that’s a rant for another blue moon. I promise. But if you don’t want to wait til then, check out what Dr. Mercola has to say about the hazards of Splenda by clicking on the link above.

Venue #3: Your Entrepreneurial Office and/or Nearby Walking and Jogging Trail

Get Running and Take Out Your Checkbook. “Treat” the planet’s children and:

– make a donation to the Obesity Action Coalition (OAC)
– sponsor your own Halloween Fun Run, the weekend prior to or following Halloween. Gather neighborhood parents and kids, ask others to chip in for each few blocks you and the kids run/walk, and raise money for KidsPeace charity to help support healthy children.

logo.jpgVenue #4: A Salad Creations® Restaurant near you

“Treat” your kids to a “Create Your Own” healthy salad and show them what fun it is to choose from the 28+ fresh ingredients.

Let me indulge a bit more and do a little shameless self-promotion. Not sure if you know or not but my husband and I are the Area Developers in the SF Bay Area for the Salad Creations® franchise. We’re downright proud of the fact that Salad Creations® is committed to helping kids eat healthier and to helping put an end to childhood obesity.

So click here to locate a Salad Creations® near you and take your goblins for a crunchy Halloween treat! (And if there isn’t a Salad Creations store near you just yet, call a friend or family member with kids who does live near one, and pass along the idea for this healthier Halloween “treat”.)

———

So there you have it. Healthy tips “masked” this Halloween as my once-in-a-blue-moon rant (of course I may post it again the day before Halloween as a reminder:) Thanks for tuning in.

• Got “treat” tips? Love to hear them. Post your ideas about promoting wellness this Halloween!

• Feel strongly about Childhood Obesity? Send your comments!

Wellness Coach Tips for Energy & Stresss Management

woman-outstrtchd-arms.jpgEntrepreneurs know a thing or two about stress. In fact, most of us accept the fact that managing stress and our energy is a regular part of living. We manage a gazillion facets of our own businesses, juggle schedules, and do our best to keep our stress levels down and our energy levels up. Without realizing it, you have probably put together your own tool kit to help manage your energy levels throughout the day. Browse through this list and see if there are a few more tools for you to add to your kit:

– Learn to calm your mind and body through meditation.
– Eat your meals in a relaxed environment.
– Take frequent breaks for stretching and walking throughout the day.
Eliminate refined carbohydrates from your diet.
– Eliminate or restrict your intake of caffeine and alcohol.
– Eat smaller meals and healthy snacks throughout the day.
– Support your adrenal glands with vitamin C, Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), vitamin B6, zinc and magnesium – do so with the addition of broccoli, whole grains, salmon, sweet potatoes and legumes to your diet, or see a nutritionist for the supplement levels that will serve you best.
– Consider adding a high quality ginseng supplement to your regime, either Chinese or Siberian, to support your adrenal function and help your body’s resistance to stress. One valid approach is to take ginseng in a cycle of 2-3 weeks on and 2 weeks off, to give the adrenal glands a rest from the ginseng. Educational literature tells us to be alert for signs of possible ginseng toxicity, including nervousness, restlessness, and insomnia. Each person responds to ginseng in a unique way so starting with a low dose is the rule of thumb listed in most supplement manuals. As always, consult a health practitioner for the appropriate levels for you.
– Decrease stress and increase energy by learning to breathe with the diaphragm. Take breaks throughout the day and do so purposefully. Sit comfortably, both feet flat on the ground, eyes gently closed. Inhaling though the nose and exhaling through the mouth, place one hand on your belly and the other on your chest. Pay attention to the breath and focus on the hand on your belly. Inhale for a count of 4 or 5, filling the belly and expanding it so your hand rises about an inch. Pause for a count of 1 or 2. Exhale to a count of 4 or 5. Keep focused on the breath and repeat the process. Do so until you have reached a level of both relaxation and refreshment. Aim for 5-20 minutes a few times a day.
– Go for a brisk walk – with or without your ipod or mp3 player.
– Organize your office and life with the zen-like wisdom and help of David Allen’s book, Getting Things Done.

For more tips, you can also check out the article, “Your Guide to Never Feeling Tired Again” posted today on the WebMD site. Author Nancy Rones gives you 22 more ideas for enhancing your energy.

Post a comment and let us know what you do throughout your entrepreneurial day to stay energized and stress-free.

Entrepreneurial Time Out

time-out.jpgToday, I came across a little video on the internet that packs a big punch. It’s called the 5.75 Questions you’ve Been Avoiding and it’s by Michael Bungay Stainer. What I loved was the time-out it gave me to stop and consider some thought-provoking questions that were big and delicious. (There’s a jaunty jazz track in the background too.) Take a break yourself right now, put your feet up and check it out. Write the questions down and spend some time thinking about them this week. To Michael’s list, add the following:

1. What is already in place that supports me in my entrepreneurial wellness?

2. When it comes to my overall wellness, what am I pretending not to know?

3. What (and who) makes my heart sing that I have forgotten about lately?

4. When it comes to my wellness, when would NOW be a good time to make some changes?

And send a post to let us know some other questions you are inspired to add…

Balance: The Entrepreneur’s Key to Wellness

istock_000003796974xsmall.jpgBalance. The illusion is that it is a static state. Nothing could be further from reality. Try this: stand on one foot, lifting the other from the floor a few inches. Stand like this for 1 full minute. Simply notice what is happening in the ankle of the foot you are standing on. No doubt, you can feel small, almost undetectable movements going on in your ankle. Your body is course-correcting — shifting subtly so you remain upright. This is how your body naturally achieves balance. It’s those tiny shifts that do the job. So my question for you to consider today is this: where do you need to make small shifts in your business and life to bring about even higher levels of wellness?

Once upon a time, my own business and life were so greatly out of balance that small shifts did not do the trick. A car accident and health challenge were the wake-up calls to do some major course-correction. But there were clues way before that. I just wasn’t listening. Now, I look for clues every day. You can, too. But first, define wellness for yourself. No doubt some clues to balance will be right there.

Does wellness for you include time outdoors everyday? Does it include a healthy financial bottom-line in the business? Does it include a weekly lunch meeting out of the home office? Does wellness for you include 6, 7, 8 or 9 hours sleep each night? And how do you judge whether you are in balance?

In the stand-on-one-foot example , balance was determined by this criteria: were you able to stand on one foot for 1 minute? How will you determine if your entrepreneurial life is in balance? How will you define wellness? I encourage you to do more than think about this.

Take some time out, eyes closed, and begin to imagine the experience of balance. Get a strong sense of how balances feels in your body by actually shifting yourself into your perception of a balanced state — perhaps a state where you are relaxed, yet quite alert. Notice your breath. Notice your posture. Notice your heartbeat and yet at the same time, notice the air temperature. Just notice. Take a few deep breaths and spend some time writing about balance. But write about the feeling, rather than what you would be doing if your business and life were in balance.

I emphasize the feeling of balance because it can be home base for you. A place where you return regularly. At any point in time, you may be course correcting back to this place of balance. In this way, you will come to appreciate subtle shifts — to your nutrition, to your activity level, to your busy-ness factor — as the powerful tools they are. Subtle shifts on a continued basis keep us in balance.

I described my own return to balance in a recent interview with Monica Flores, owner of SistersInBiz.com In the interview, I mentioned that role models, mentors, and a coach all play vital roles in helping me live a balanced entrepreneurial life. Find the role models, mentors and coaches that will help you do the same. They can help give you perspective, advice, input, and feedback to help you make those subtle shifts that will keep you returning to your “home base” of balance.

What helps you live a balanced entrepreneurial life? Let us know.

Never Eat the Skin of a Non-Organic Apple

apple1.jpgIt’s autumn, and apple season is upon us! With so many varieties to choose from, it’s easy to try a type that’s new to you and good for you. But healthy eater beware. While grabbing a fresh, crisp apple (along with a handful of almonds) makes for a great snack for busy entrepreneurs, eating organic is a must. In his post today, Dr. Andrew Weil discusses not just the benefits of an apple-a-day habit, but the risks associated with non-organic apples…especially the skin. So before you crunch into that delicious-looking apple, be sure it’s organic. And while you’re munching, check out Dr. Weil’s post and let us know what you think.

Taming Stress from the Inside Out

tyg_new_book_shadow1.jpgOne of the greatest wellness tools I’ve ever discovered and used came in the form of a small book with a huge message: Taming Your Gremlin®. My love of the book lead me to study for a year with the book’s author, and master Gremlin Tamer, Rick Carson. To this day, Rick’s Gremlin-Taming® wisdom helps me bring about wellness in my daily and entrepreneurial life. His on-going coaching is a vital part of my business life and personal wellness program.

If I’m deep into a complaint of a stressful situation, one of the skills Rick reminds me to use is the powerful technique of “Simply Noticing.” In order for me to see that I am the one causing my own stress (because then I can choose whether to continue or not), Rick has me actively look at how I stress myself.

This activity is much more than a mental exercise — my whole body/mind/spirit gets involved. I jump in and answer a series of inquires to help me do so. I’ve now learned to do this for myself. When I use Rick’s technique, I take a thorough inventory of exactly how I’m stressing myself. (It is, after all, my unique way of creating stress for myself — so who better than me to explore my own self-stressing techniques?)

As if I were teaching someone how I “do” stress, I answer:

  • What thoughts am I harping on? (Am I making myself look at all the worst-case scenarios? Regretting something? Worrying?)
  • What am I physically doing with my shoulders? (And my neck? Head? Eyes? Arms? Legs? Am I tensing? Staring? Squinting? Wrinkling my brow?)
  • What’s the quality of my breathing? (Am I breathing? Is my breath shallow, rapid?)
  • What else am I doing? (Screaming? Crying? Pouting? Grinding my teeth?
  • How else am I making myself miserable?

Then a remarkable thing happens – I begin to see my role in my own stress. Sometimes, I even burst out laughing. Inevitably, I catch myself putting myself in my own “stress” zone and making myself feel awful – which reminds me once again that, I have choice. Which leads me to remember that, as Rick says, “Feeling Good is primarily an inside job.”

How do you stress yourself? Give us lessons in how you personally go about it! Read Rick’s book, apply some of the Gremlin-Taming wisdom in your own life and keep us posted!

Fitness for Entrepreneuers on the Go – Yamuna Body Rolling

yamuna.jpgI recently discovered a wonderful new fitness/wellness routine that relies on specially designed 6”-10” inflatable balls. It’s called Yamuna Body Rolling (YBR). Yamuna (Ya-men-ah) is the name of the brilliant woman who developed the Body Rolling approach.

What I love about YBR is that the unique system provides health, fitness and massage-all “rolled” into one. The balls deflate and take up little space in a suitcase, so it’s great for entrepreneurs that do a lot of travel. There’s also a set of “Foot Savers” that you can bring along on the plane to promote circulation and massage your feet while in flight.

A brief description of the YBR method from their website: “YBR is a revolutionary approach to health and fitness that creates both positive and long lasting changes in your body. Unlike other ball exercises, the YBT approach goes far beyond random movements and stretches. The YBT method is comprised of various routines that match the body’s own logic and order to re-educate muscles and stimulate bone.” Read more on the YBR website.

I’m pretty fussy about my fitness routine. So I was skeptical when I first heard of this one. But I bought a set of the balls and Foot Savers and got started. I like what I am seeing so far, and it just feels good…both signs that this routine will be with me for the long run.

Check out the YBR website and try the system for yourself. Keep us posted about your experience.