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Overwhelmed? I Feel Your Pain!

Weekend paperwork

Weekend paperwork

With this Motivation Monday post, I throw my support behind anyone struggling to get it all done. I’m with you. Lately it seems to take me longer to cross the tasks off even the most organized to-do lists. So, I offer a reminder  that sometimes you simply need to take a deep breath, remember you’re human and accept the reality that the world won’t end if one or two things have to wait until tomorrow.

Where is this all coming from? Last week, I posted about renewing my adult CPR/AED certification with the American Red Cross. I left that requirement until one of the last weekends I could get it in and still get my paperwork in for my NASM personal trainer re-certification. Two days ago, I blocked out time to take a NASM Integrated Flexibility Training online workshop so I could obtain the last continuing education units (CEUs) needed to actually get re-certified. The deadline is only a few weeks away. I got through the material, passed the online test and  rushed all my paperwork to the post office. Now I wait for it all to be processed, approved and then hopefully receive my new NASM certificate in the mail sometime next month.

I got it all done, but I have never been one to wait until the last-minute to get important items like these off my plate. But the clock seems to tick at a faster place lately, the work days bleed into the all-too short weekends and then the cycle repeats on Monday. I am looking to the energy of the new season to figure out new ways of doing things. That includes possibly re-vamping plans on how I schedule everything from my workouts to overdue catch-ups with friends and family.

Through any stressful time, working out and eating healthy always help me keep my cool. However, I hate to admit, over the past month, the frequency of my workouts has taken a hit thanks to longer-than-expected work days and overall fatigue. But there are peaks and valleys in every relationship – including the one we have with the gym.

So here’s to the new week with the NASM re-certification application crossed off my to-do list and the chance to find new energy to tackle what lies ahead. If today gets a bit manic, like Mondays often do, take a breath, close your eyes for a moment and remember this one thing: you are stronger than you think. Sometimes we all need a little reassurance to stay on the path to have fun, be fit and feel fabulous.

The Best Laid Plans…

The extent of my "heavy lifting" over a fun fall weekend!

The extent of my “heavy lifting” over a fun fall weekend!

As you loyal readers know, I’ve been posting new material for Motivation Mondays since this blog started back in July 2011.  While I didn’t plan to push this week’s post to land on Tear-It-Up Tuesday, sometimes you just have to take a deep breath, realize there are only so many hours in a day and accept the way things work out. The bottom line is we can probably all do a better job at NOT beating ourselves up when we don’t cross out every single item on our to-do list every single day of the week.

That being said, I’ve finally “forgiven” myself for not getting to the fitness center during my business trip to Los Angeles. I did pack my workout wear, but when I factored in a five-hour flight, three-hour time difference and production call time of 3 am, I had to choose between getting the rest I needed to do my job well or sacrificing the few zzzz’s I could get for a workout. At the end of the day, the project went well, my boss and the clients were happy and by not running myself into the ground, I also warded off some serious cold germs provided by my fellow passengers during the flight home.

When I returned, it was just in time to enjoy a fun fall Saturday with a dear gal pal and her family and then round off the weekend spending quality time with Mom and Dad. Could I have banged out a post when I got back to the city on Sunday? Probably. Would it have been coherent? Probably not. Obviously if I had a work deadline, I would have sucked it up and got things done. However, when things that are supposed to be fun start stressing you out,  it’s time to step back and ask yourself: “Is the world going to spin off its axis if this doesn’t get done for another 24 hours?”

So, instead of fretting over writing, I used the time to get organized, rest and recover. You know what? I had extra energy to kick off my Motivation Monday with a Physique57 class and then attack the computer. Now I’m ready to take on whatever the week ahead throws at me – physically and mentally.

Let’s face it, most of us have too much on our plates on any given day of the week. When crunch time gets extra crunchy, we sometimes have to make choices to make a whole laundry list of “stuff” a little easier to carry. Maybe your favorite group exercise class falls on the same night your child needs help studying for a spelling test or the only night you and your spouse or best friend have time to catch up on a long-overdue date or phone call. Make the choices that work for you in that moment and remember tomorrow’s coming…with a whole new set of opportunities to help us have fun, be fit and feel fabulous!

Mindful Monday

Now’s the perfect time to take stock of what makes you smile!
Photo by Leslie Hassler

I can’t believe we’re one week away from Labor Day. I’m part of the group that considers the holiday the unofficial end of summer.

When I was a kid, that meant dealing with a mix of dread and excitement in anticipation of a new school year. Now that I’m a grown up, (not that I always feel like one) even though I don’t have kids, I find this back-to-school time one of the best times to take stock of where I’m at and figure out where I’d like to go from here.

What does that mean exactly? It’s time for me to get out the big planner and set up a new schedule and some new deadlines for some new adventures. That involves taking all of the following into consideration:

  • Reality: The hours involved with my Monday through Friday work schedule.
  • Current deadlines: That includes the writing I do for the posts here each Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
  • Necessities: Working out on my own and the group exercise classes that my body and spirit can’t live without.
  • New projects: I’ve been collecting information for a new writing project for quite some time and I need to get my butt in gear and start putting things together. I also want to lure some guest bloggers to appear on my site and hopefully get some of my writing on other sites in return. There’s a lot of social networking ahead of me!
  • Down time: Yes, I plan to designate which days and/or nights I’ll be social and which ones where I’ll be alone to work on all the other “stuff” or simply chill out.

What’s my motivation for getting my fall plan on paper in the week ahead? Because when you have a to-do list in your head, it can be overwhelming. You stress about all there is to do, and with no plan, the stress festers and nothing gets done.

If you’re busy helping the kids get ready for the new school year, why not use this time to also get your own September schedule in order. Maybe this is the autumn you put it on your schedule to get to that gym class or meet a friend for a walk one or two days a week after you get the kids out the door. If the afternoons are better, then schedule an hour to get some exercise before you have to pick the kids up from practice or other after-school activity. While they’re busy with their extra-cirriculars, maybe that’s your hour to spend on a project you’ve had on the back burner for too long. Have you wanted to start your own blog or write a book? Or maybe now’s the time to find out what the Zumba craze is all about or take that photography class.

Making time for you doesn’t mean you’re being selfish. Prioritizing what you need to find your contentment will only make it easier for you and the people you care about to have fun, be fit and feel fabulous!

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