Archive for the ‘Mindset’ Category

Choose How You Feel

Last night, we were up late at a concert about 1 hr away, so we missed out on at least 4 hours of sleep we would normally get. I remember the words from The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod and Flip the Gratitude Switch by Kevin Clayson that when you wake up, you set your own mood.

If you wake up after 3 hours of sleep with kids waking you up, you can choose to say to yourself, “that was the perfect amount of sleep and I feel 100% ready to start my day” or you can say “ugh I feel terrible – today is going to be terrible, I should just call in.”

This isn’t new age BS. If you actually say these words to yourself, you manifest a better attitude which affects how you feel. It’s hard to overcome, but it’s effective if you avoid saying the negative and try starting with something positive. Read On…

Brief Interval

What we make of our life, the sum total of thoughts, emotions, words and actions that fill the brief interval between birth and death is our one great creative masterpiece.

I just started listening to this book called “The Mind Illuminated: A Complete Meditation Guide Integrating Buddhist Wisdom and Brain Science”. I know, what a title. I was sold by the reviews though. I love meditation and I can tell how my days begin to suffer if I don’t set aside at least 10 minutes to breathe deep and observe my thoughts. Read On…

Process-focused

At work, I try to focus on the big picture, looking at the process by which we accomplish work. Sure, you can ram any given project through, but how sustainable is the process? Is it solid or flimsy? Is it constant or ever-changing? Is it even documented? Do the affected parties even know what it is?

I think an important part of succeeding in any setting is not caring as much about the results, although you should care (your boss will),  but to really focus on how work gets done. Write it down. Talk about it with everyone involved. Does it make sense? Are there unnecessary bottlenecks? Any opportunities to eliminate steps?

Once you do that, you have the chance to scale up your work. You can fly through projects much faster with a solid, consensus-built process.

Morning Meditation

I lost track of my morning time, following the move. Our kids in their new rooms, waking up at different times, with new needs and feeding times are all things I tried blaming for missing my morning time to sit and think. But it’s all on me. I needed to make the choice to dedicate time to myself in the morning – no one else is to blame.

In the time that I was not sitting in the morning, I added some weight, got stressed out and I felt noticeably worse. Since starting back up, I have run 5x more than I was before, I feel better and I can think more clearly throughout the day.

 

Where is the Gift?

Wisdom is gleaned from a situation whenever we ask ourselves, “Where is the gift in this?”

I wrote this down on April 5, 2017 and I can’t remember the source. But this is great advice. This forces you to find the good part of anything that happens, whether you consider it good or bad. There’s always something, you just have to look.

Reframing all scenarios like this helps reframe your perspective on life.

Burnout

I read an article yesterday about how burnout is not what you think it is. It’s not overwork with no vacation. In fact, the article stated that a vacation to solve burnout is like taking a painkiller to cure a brain tumor.

Burnout, according to the author, is the result of job-induced depression. – whether you feel ineffective at your job, like it’s not going anywhere or the purpose of your work has been blurred.

Burnout is the opposite of grit. Grit is hunkering down and busting out the work, despite how much you don’t want to. Burnout is checking out because the work seems to have no purpose or goal.

I thought this was interesting because I’ve always thought of it as overwork or being tired, where a vacation or a few days rest would fix the issue. I don’t think people realize the problem runs deeper, it runs inside your perception of your personal work motivation.

What are we supposed to do?

I am about 10 years into my professional life and I am still wondering if there is a such thing as “what we are supposed to do”. The narrative you are told is that you are destined to do something meaningful with your life and you won’t be happy until you figure out what it is. And most people never figure out what it is, slog away at their J-O-B and die unhappy. Read On…

Survival Mode

I can tell that a lot of my good habits and routines fell by the wayside following our move. Our kids aren’t used to sleeping in the new house yet and Cece is especially bad at it, maybe because her teeth are coming in. With a lack of sleep and the stress of moving, I dropped my early morning meditation and running and the 3x per week lifting I was doing. It’s something I can tell I miss a lot.

Now that we have been moved in for a month, I am picking them all back up, starting with waking up early and sitting in silence for some time. It was something I felt guilty about before, like it was a luxury, not a necessity. But I can tell it’s necessary to maintain my focus at work and to keep my energy up too. Sitting in silence in the morning helps to focus my thoughts, eliminate the chatter and be able to be effective as an employee, a parent and a husband all day long.

Hanlon’s Razor

We all fall victim to this, being self-centered enough to think that anytime something goes wrong, it is an intentional slight meant to aggravate us. However, it is usually not the case.

Hanlon’s Razor is “never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by neglect.”

This means that the world, your co-workers, the utility company, the other drivers are probably not colluding to make your life miserable. They are probably not even aware of the impact on your life by their action (or inaction).

That lack of intent may not seem important because your life is still impacted, but it is important. Intent is something that can drastically change a murder trial, a traffic accident or an IRS audit. Knowing someone’s intent opens a new door of further being able to find out a root cause for something. And usually, the root cause is negligence or lack of awareness.  Read On…

Vacation Needed

We have a kids-free vacation for next week planned as well as two separate weeks up north this summer. I was talking with Jess about how we need more time away from the usual stuff. We love our kids, but they and we all can use a change of  scenery now and then.

It feels selfish to ask for it. But I don’t know why. It feels greedy to use the 5 weeks of vacation time I’ve accrued, but it shouldn’t. We all need time to ourselves, especially when we have a lot on our plate. Our families require our attention continuously, there is no break for sleeping or weekends. That can be an enormous strain on your mental capacities over the years.

We’ll attempt to enjoy ourselves while we are away next week and savor the time we have to ourselves, with as little guilt as possible!