Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Back to Life as Usual Blues

Are you feeling the pressure as summer draws to a close and life ramps back up? Here are some tips to deal with a very stressful time of the year.

For some of us the beginning of September is filled with shopping and coping as we, or our children, head back to school. This can be somewhat of a relief, but, at the same time can present challenges for you and your kids. Everyone can end up stressed out.

Fo some this is simply a time when the “let it slide” attitude of summer is replaced by tight deadlines.Whatever the case may be most of us are taking on more.

One of the things that can really help is remembering that you were able to handle life before the summer. Look at your schedule and see where some “useless” time slipped in. Reclaim that time now, as your schedule gets more intense.

How did your pre-summer schedule work for you? Look for things that could be improved. Can your life run more efficiently? Take this opportunity to get back into the swing of things in a healthier, more productive, way.

You may discover that your schedule needs a complete overhaul. Re-thinking it will consume some time. It will also get you focused on the things that are really important. Organizing your life will always help you release the stress.

Make your improved schedule about priorities. Be honest about what need to get done. Start with the big chunks first. How much time to you need to allocate to your job? How much for school and other non-negotiable commitments? Your family? Never forget to get some time in there for self-care, exercise, meditation, yoga, whatever you do to keep stress levels at a minimum. Once you have the big ticket items dealt with you can develop a base schedule that will save you time every day.

Don’t sweat the details. You’re better off dealing with them at the start of your day. Each morning, or maybe the night before, make a list of the big ticket items that have to get done, then create a detailed task list for the day. Then, all you have to do is work the plan. Remember to be flexible. Build in some time for the unexpected.

Before you know it you’ll be back in the swing of things, getting stuff done, and finding some time for yourself that you didn’t think you had. Do you find this time of year challenging? I’d love to hear why, or why not.

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Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Truths to Live By: No fear

 In this post we’ll explore fear, where it comes from and how it has been used to control you. In our benevolent Universe Ifa tells us that there is no need to fear.

Fear is a basic animal impulse. It is the flight side of the fight or flight response. It prepares us to run from predators. When you are being chased across the savannah by a lion, fear is very useful. When fear is used to keep people in line, it is dis-empowering. It can  rob us of will and compromise our destinies.

Pain and difficulty are part of life. We can neither deny, nor avoid them. They are often a source of dread. We must learn not to fear the unpleasantness of life. Misfortune and difficulty are temporary.

Look at challenging times with a longer-term perspective. The Universe is always sending us exactly what we need in order to fulfill our destinies. The more quickly that we can embrace the lessons, the easier it will be for us to move on. Accept hardships because they bring growth.

Our other great fear is death. The Yoruba did not fear death. They understood that this realm is simply a place that we visit. Our natural state is boundless, timeless, energy. We are here for experiences that can only be had by limiting ourselves.

Our culture is obsessed with youth. We under-value the wisdom we develop as we grow older. We do not understand the different roles that we play as we move through our lives.

Fear of growing is the most illogical of all human fears. We all chose to be here. That choice included growing old, and dying. The loss of youth, the wrinkles, body fat and everything else that comes with it, is balanced by maturity, wisdom and spiritual insight. We should do everything we can to stay healthy so that we can live long productive lives. The pointless pursuit of youthfulness in not helpful to our growth.

Have you made a journey out of fear? How has it been for you? Do you believe that we are meant to live without fear? I’d love to hear why or why not.

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