Great things

"To achieve great things, two things are needed: a plan and not quite enough time." --Leonard Bernstein

I have both a plan and a shortage of time as I head into the final stretch before Moms Mean Business is officially released. As I lamented my current state of feeling a bit overwhelmed earlier today, though, I realized that I'm so very fortunate. As I told a friend on the way to our sons' soccer game this morning, none of this is life or death.

The laundry will get done (it's happening as I write this), the groceries will be procured (I'm hoping my husband will go to the store today), and the list of things I need to do will get done--or they won't. It's all OK.

This week as you look at the undoubtedly long list of things you need to get done, I encourage you to breathe. And to smile. And to put taking some time for yourself at the top of your list. The important things have a way of getting done.

By the way, if you see me in the coming days, I might need a quick reminder me of this fact!


Where are you looking?

"If you're looking where everybody else is looking, you're looking in the wrong spot." --Mark Cuban

I remember telling a past boss along with his boss that I wanted to write a book. I was in my late twenties, doing marketing for a financial services company, and really just kind of killing time in my career. They knew I wasn't in it for the long term and they asked me what I wanted to do. When I said I wanted to write a book, they looked at me with an amused, "Oh, how naive you are" expression.

I immediately felt like a little kid who had put forth some grandiose idea. I questioned whether I was somehow wrong or maybe just idealistic to want to be an author. I remember wishing I could feel content at the thought of continuing on with my marketing career.

But, the thing is, I couldn't. I went on to work in advertising. Bad fit. I worked for a start-up company in a management role. Better fit but still not right. And, then, I started working for myself. Much better fit.

Fast forward several years and I've finally written a book. I'm just so thankful that all of those years ago I had the inner knowing to look somewhere other than where my two bosses would have had me look.


Fresh start

"You may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing that we call 'failure' is not the falling down, but the staying down." --Mary Pickford

Having a fresh start any time you want one? What freedom this creates.

And, the implication is that you don't get to repeatedly beat yourself up over failures, mistakes, and shortcomings. What a concept!

To choose a fresh start often. To let the past go constantly. I'm in--how about you?


Stress no more

I read an article in Redbook magazine recently that suggested a fun exercise to manage stress. It was attributed to Dr. Kathleen Hall of the Stress Institute in Atlanta so she gets all the credit here.

If stress takes over sometimes or if you're just one of those people who forgets to schedule fun, this is worth a try and it's simple which is always a plus.

Label one half of a sheet of paper 'credit' and the other half 'debit'. On the debit side, write down five things that are causing you stress, worry and/or anxiety. On the credit side, write down five things that make you calm, relaxed and/or happy.

Next, schedule time this week to make progress on one item from your debit list and also schedule time for at least one of the activities on your credit list.

Voila! You're taking action on the things that drain you and nurturing yourself along the way. Do this every week and I can almost guarantee you'll feel the difference in no time.



"Complaining allows us to acknowledge the imperfect without having to take action--it lets us luxuriate in inertia." --Roxane Gay

Oh, how we love to complain. And, luxuriating in inertia almost sounds like a good thing. But, complaining can easily turn into a lifestyle if you let it.

I'm not saying you can't bemoan things here and there. Sometimes you have to get it out of your system so you can move on.

If you find yourself lamenting something over and over, though, it's worth considering that your time just might be better spent doing something else. One possibility? Taking steps to change the thing you don't like.