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Posts Tagged ‘Habits and Routines’

9 Powerful Reasons Why Work Rituals Deserve a Place in Your Business

Work rituals are a strategy you can use to achieve excellence time after time. How? They carve out a special moment in time for a specific, desired outcome…“If you are going to achieve excellence in big things, you develop the habit in little matters. Excellence is not an exception, it is a prevailing attitude.” ~ Colin Powell

Are work rituals the same as work routines or work habits? Yes…and no.

We perform a ritual over and over again like a routine or habit, but we attach more importance and significance to a ritual. It elevates something mundane and transports it into something deeply motivating, because of the meaning we attach to it. It becomes something special, something that inspires us with wonder and power. Our rituals are symbolic actions performed at key moments to help us connect all our Parts into one deeply motivated being.

When you add work rituals to the workplace, you carve out a special moment in time for a specific outcome you desire. As food for thought, here are 9 reasons why work rituals matter…

  1. Work rituals foster a sense of shared purpose and experience.
  2. Work rituals help people feel more deeply involved in a project.
  3. People who have work rituals deal with anxiety and disappointment better.
  4. Work rituals engender a sense of control.
  5. Work rituals make celebrating successes memorable and more motivating.
  6. Work rituals welcome new employees in a special way.
  7. Work rituals create team spirit.
  8. Work rituals de-personalize mistakes and facilitate discussions about lessons learned.
  9. Work rituals reinforce positive self-talk that you’re disciplined and focused.

We all have routines that we can change into rituals by performing them more mindfully. In the workplace, it’s important to understanding your body’s natural ebb and flow of energy and craft work routines that tap into the time when you’re most focused and powerful.

It doesn’t really matter what you choose as your ritual — wearing your “lucky” shoes, stretching, breathing, exercising, taking a coffee break, stepping outside the building, looking out the window, mentally closing a file… What’s important is that it symbolizes that you’re doing one of two things: 1) You’re making the task in front of you special or 2) You’re using the ritual to close out one task to free you up to move on to the next.

As an example, imagine the executive who wears a favorite jacket to each of her speaking engagements. In and of itself, that jacket doesn’t have some magical power, but when she puts it on, she’s gearing herself for success, because her brain recognizes the pattern: wear this jacket, feel confident, and smash the presentation! And she does every time!

Don’t be afraid to create your own work ritual, no matter how unusual. You don’t have to even tell anyone you’re doing it.  Would you like to formulate some more personalized ways to achieve business excellence? Please contact me and schedule an “Unlocking Your Potential” 30-minute complimentary consultation (in-person, by phone or via Skype). We’ll brainstorm the perfect solution for you!

9 Everyday Rituals That Can Enrich Your Personal Life, Too!

One of the most effective ways to change your belief patterns is by practicing everyday rituals that support and empower you to achieve your full potential.“If you pick the right small behavior and sequence it right, then you won’t have to motivate yourself to have it grow. It will just happen naturally, like a good seed planted in a good spot.”  ~ BJ Fogg

The most common trait of highly successful people is the recognition that they have the power to shape their reality through the way they think, believe or expect. One of the most effective ways of changing our belief patterns is by practicing everyday rituals. When I read “The Power of Habit” by Charles Duhigg, I loved his powerful observation about habits or rituals: “And once you understand that habits can change, you have the freedom and the responsibility to remake them.”

I truly believe it is our responsibility to change something in our lives that isn’t working for us or that isn’t challenging us to reach our full potential. Oftentimes, we get stuck because we don’t know where to start. So, I’m going to share some of my everyday rituals to help you explore possibilities for enriching your own life. My everyday rituals include:

Getting restorative sleep. Early to bed, early to rise is the motto I live by.

Working out. I move my body first thing each day.

Eating breakfast and dinner with my honey, because I want us to continue feeling connected and close.

Guarding my boundaries. For example, I hold to my ‘No work before 10’ policy fairly well.

Eating clean. For me that means, eating whole foods and not drinking alcohol. A couple of years ago, I started noticing that just the little bit of alcohol (my hubby makes some tasty homebrew!) would leave me feeling sluggish and fuzzy for a few days afterwards. I started to pay attention to that and experimented with no alcohol for a few weeks and then reintroduced it. It became clear that my body was telling me that consuming alcohol was not in alignment with how I wanted to feel and operate in the world. Do your own experiment. Notice what is no longer needed in your life and create new ways to support yourself throughout the day.

Fostering personal growth. I listen to podcasts, audiobooks, take online classes on a regular basis, use Tea Time and self-editing to be current with my emotional and mental state. I see my coach regularly to always have better perspective on situations and make better decisions. I know that I’m stronger when I support myself in a consistent and deliberate way.

Fully being present when I take time off. Whether it’s a retreat, a vacation with my family (I look forward to my yearly trips to visit my mom, brother and niece – they are nourishing and exciting!) I take time to unplug and get away so that I can return feeling refreshed and recharged.

Making changes. I need to change something in my life on a yearly basis. It might be changing the furniture around or updating my website, experiment with no meat for a month or taking a new route to work. I need to try Neways often (my business name is Neways after all!)

Expressing Gratitude. I like sending handwritten notes to people I love. I like surprising people with a thoughtful gift or just saying “you are important to me”. It’s a way I also acknowledge how blessed I am.

Has my list of everyday rituals given you some ideas of what new rituals you’d like to implement in your own life? Why not make this a family topic and come up with some rituals that help you reconnect with yourselves and each other? And I’d love it if we could stay connected too! Please sign up for my newsletter to stay current with the changes I’m making — in my own life and in those of my clients — including my Foundations of Life Coaching and NLP training coming up September 26 to 29, 2019.

Harness the Power of Rituals So Your Life Goes Where You Want It to Go

Harnessing the power of rituals will help you feel more centered and grounded, less overwhelmed, and make you more intentional about day-to-day activities.“A daily ritual is a way of saying, I’m voting for myself. I’m taking care of myself.” ~ Mariel Hemingway

When you feel overwhelmed, because your life is out of control, how do you regain your balance, centeredness, and harmony? Do you have a particular ritual you rely on? Of all the things that empower us, the one that I think is most sustainable is harnessing the power of rituals.

The power of rituals that I’m referring to are the daily actions, habits, routines or patterns that keep you grounded and centered throughout your day. No doubt, you’ve experienced how one event can send you spiraling down until your whole day has been ruined. On the other hand, I hope you’ve also experienced how starting each day with a quiet, mindful practice can give you focus and strength that you can continually draw on throughout any crisis during the day.

Just as we harness a powerful horse to take us in the direction we want it to go, we can engage the power of rituals intentionally with a definite destination in mind. Whether it’s feeling better physically, connecting more fully with loved ones, achieving satisfaction from your work…

Tapping into the power of rituals involves creating an intention, then making repetitive, beneficial choices and actions until they become an ingrained habit. It becomes part of who you are. You wouldn’t consider going a day without engaging in it. Repetition makes your new ritual easier and, once it’s established, it takes much less effort on your part.

We naturally develop rituals around daily activities. Think for a moment how you get ready for work, travel to the office, and how you proceed through your work load. What rituals have you already formed?

I love what Stephen Covey said — “Our character is basically a composite of our habits. Because they are consistent, often unconscious patterns, they constantly, daily, express our character.”

Therefore, harnessing the power of rituals helps you:

  • reconnect with what’s important to your inner self.
  • become the creator of your reality.
  • make order out of life’s chaos.
  • enter the zone more easily.  
  • perform at a predictably high level, without over-thinking.

There are many ways of checking in and reconnecting with yourself. Here are just a few examples of how you can use the power of rituals in your own life:

  • Sit outside with a cup of coffee as the sun arises to set intentions for the day.
  • Read your collection of inspirational, motivational messages, when stressed, to regain your composure.
  • Stop, stretch, breathe to reconnect with what your body is telling you.
  • Light a candle or smell essential oils to calm, focus and prepare yourself for a challenge.
  • Go to your sacred place, to reflect and meditate on what’s truly important to you.
  • Before a challenging event, check in with a trusted friend or coach.
  • At the end of each day, grab a drink, go to the back patio, and talk with and listen to your significant other.

The most helpful rituals engage all of your senses, as this anchors the experience and allows you to revisit it in your mind when you need to be centered during the day. Simple and intentional rituals are the best. They set you up for the best possibility of success.

A ritual is usually comprised of a certain series of actions you do over and over again. You can harness the power of rituals by breaking down the individual steps and tweaking each one individually.

Would you like to learn more about the power of rituals in your life? Please contact me and schedule an “Unlocking Your Potential” 30-minute complimentary consultation (in-person, by phone or via Skype). I’d love to brainstorm some ideas with you so it can relieve your feelings of being overwhelmed by your workload or personal responsibilities.

18 More Tiny Habits that Transform You into the Person You Want to Be

Here are18 more tiny habits you can use to transform yourself into the person you want to be. “You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” ~ John C. Maxwell

Wouldn’t it be a dream come true to wake up one morning and … POOF! … you’re thinner, smarter, richer, stronger, more successful? It sounds so good to take the easy way out, without having to work for it, without discomfort or struggle.  

The trouble is that, if that happened, you’d feel more discontent and less self-confidence. You’d have no self-esteem, because there would be no victories and no personal discoveries. There would be no need for creativity or determination. You’d be a very shallow version of yourself. As Ovid said, “Habits change into character.” Life would become meaningless, because it’s the journey, not the destination that’s important. It’s what you learn along the way that matters, not what you produce, when you’re done. Because we are never done, until we’re dead.

Transformation is a process. Aristotle said, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” Dramatic breakthroughs won’t change your life. Tiny habits will. To change your life, start now and start small!  

Earlier I shared some microhabits that can make a huge difference. Let’s expand the list. Here are some more tiny habits to practice daily:

1. Tiny intentions. Each morning ask yourself, “How can I make today better?” It’s such a waste to just “get through” a day. Each day is an opportunity to find joy and fulfillment.

2. Tiny acts of friendship toward your future self. Acting on what you want in the moment has led you to where you are now. Who do you want your future self to be? Strong and vibrant at the age of 70? Then commit to making choices for the benefit of that future self.

 3. Tiny blocks of time. Organize and do similar tasks together. Some examples – do all of your errands in one trip; chop up a week’s worth of vegetables and put them in baggies; have a set time for answering emails and returning phone calls. You build accountability and momentum that way.

4. Tiny pauses. Before you react to a strong emotion, enquire into your state, without judgment. What emotion are you feeling and where did it come from? Then determine what response will benefit you the most.

5. Tiny pit stops. Just as a racecar must stop during the race for gas and maintenance, you must make time to refuel with nutritious food and restorative sleep.

6. Tiny health choices. Take the stairs. Walk a little further. Drink one more glass of water. Eat one less unhealthy snack. These choices all add up to better health.

7. Tiny measurements. Track and measure your progress. You want better finances? Record every penny you spend. You want to lose weight? Record your exercise and food intake.

8. Tiny pushes. There will be times you don’t feel like doing something …do it anyway! Go a little bit beyond what’s expected. Dress a little nicer. Try a little harder.

9. Tiny connections. Reach out to one new positive influencer, in-person or online. Great relationships simply begin with “Hello”. Be open and see where it takes you.

10. Tiny deletes. Avoid people who drain you and don’t support you. Clear out the clutter in your home or office, one piece at a time.

 11.Tiny check-ins. Make a practice of mindfully observing your patterns. Why are you procrastinating? What led to that unhealthy behavior? What inspires confidence?

12.Tiny self-assertions. If you have difficulty standing up for yourself, start mindfully saying “no” more often. Preserve your time and energy for the things that really matter.

13. Tiny communication adjustments. Notice when people misunderstand you. Are you speaking consistently and clearly? Are you being silent, when you need to speak up? Notice and make a correction.

14. Tiny doses of inspiration. Instead of mindless screen time, read uplifting books before bedtime. Read about people you admire and what they’ve overcome to get where they are today. You’ll wake up with renewed inspiration.

15. Tiny motivations. There is power in thinking about a motivational quote each day. I share inspiring quotes on Facebook and Instagram, because they put me in a better state of mind.

16. Tiny attitude shifts. Remind yourself, “I am responsible for me and my life. No one makes me feel this way; it’s how I’m choosing to react. Life isn’t fair, but I can make mine better. If I don’t like it, I can change it.”

17. Tiny praises. Be your own cheerleader. Waiting for praise from someone is a recipe for disaster. If they don’t notice, you’ll be crushed. Celebrate each win.

18. Tiny pivots. Sometimes your path isn’t getting you to where you want to be. Be willing to course correct so you stay aligned with your big “Why”.  When you have a powerfully, motivating reason, you can do almost anything.

Are you feeling overwhelmed – not knowing what to do first or what will make the biggest impact? If you’d like our help to define your most meaningful plan of action, join our Women: Bring Forth the Leader Within Retreat June 20 to 26th in Grand Canary Island. It is going to be transformational!

Neuroplastic Healing: Make New Brain Connections for Optimal Wellness

Neuroplastic Healing: Make New Brain Connections for Optimal Wellness“Better keep yourself clean and bright; you are the window through which you must see the world.” ~ George Bernard Shaw

For years, we’ve heard advertisements for apps like Lumosity that work to improve your neuroplasticity. But what exactly is neuroplasticity, and how can you use neuroplastic healing to achieve optimal health and well-being?

According the National Center for Biotechnology Information, a branch of the National Institutes of Health, Neural plasticity (also called neuroplasticity or neuronal plasticity)…

“can be defined as the ability of the central nervous system (CNS) to adapt in response to changes in the environment or lesions. This property of the CNS may involve modifications in overall cognitive strategies to successfully cope with new challenges (i.e., attention, behavioral compensation), recruitment of new/different neural networks, or changes in strength of such connections or specific brain areas in charge of carrying out a particular task (i.e., movement, language, vision, hearing).”

Did you notice the words I highlighted in bold type? They show that just as plastic is flexible, your brain and nervous system is flexible too. If it wasn’t, you couldn’t learn a new skill. In a nutshell – when you mindfully make healthy, new connections between the neurons in your brain, which result in greater well-being, you’re taking advantage of neuroplastic healing. If one brain circuitry isn’t working properly, you can often consciously train a different brain circuit to work around the broken one.

Another way of explaining neuroplasticity is to think of it as rewiring your brain. Take for example deeply ingrained habits. They literally form pathways in your brain, however you can mindfully disrupt these and reroute to create a new pathway towards a better habit. It takes time to form these new paths; that’s why using microhabits can be so useful.

Problems may arise because of inflammation, toxicity or genetic abnormalities at a cellular level. Brain circuits may die, become dormant or fire at irregular rates. Other circuits may become overactive. If your system has gone haywire because of illness, stress, trauma or unhealthy choices, your whole body-mind-spirit wellness will suffer.  

Since your nervous system physiology is directed connected to your neuroplasticity, it’s important to keep your nervous system healthy. Read through the following list of how a person benefits from a healthy system. Then use this information to determine where neuroplastic healing may help you obtain your optimal state of well-being.

People who are out of balance and need neuroplastic healing often react to life’s challenges in one of two ways:

  • They either live in the survival mode of fight/ flight response that pumps adrenaline and cortisol throughout their system all day long.
  • They freeze up, shut down, tune out or numb themselves so they feel nothing.

When you work at restoring total body-mind-spirit wellness via somatic coaching, you create a foundation for neuroplastic healing. Then the above-mentioned benefits will become part of your life naturally. If you’d like to learn more, please contact me and schedule an “Unlocking Your Potential” 30-minute complimentary consultation (in-person, by phone or via Skype).

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