You may have noticed my newsletter was late in May. There’s a reason…I took a break. A longer than usual vacation. I needed it. We all do. Let’s face it. We’re all just too busy. And sadly, the busy-ness seems to just happen—one thing piles upon another until we feel buried and stuck. Rarely do most of us work toward goals—stuff just happens and we wind up far from where we ever thought we would be.
So as we approach summer and vacation time (hopefully!), it’s a good time to reflect and regroup.
Over the next three months I plan to focus on helping you re-evaluate and revamp your life in three specific areas: your health, your home (and family life), and your “business”—(job, school etc.) Let’s think of it as a “System Reboot.” And we start today.
First step, and this is the most important, so listen carefully.
PLAN A BREAK
Schedule in a break—a real one. Whether you’re taking a family vacation, a staycation, or you plan to spend more time outdoors swimming or exercising, be sure to schedule it in. Make a solid plan. Even if you can’t take a week or two off, take advantage of the longer days and schedule mini breaks—long walks after dinner, day trips—you get the drift.
Then use this time to truly disconnect. Yes, sure, I know you need your cell phone with you (or do you?), but put some distance between yourself and your technology and break your normal routine. Read a book just for fun. Put e mail on hold—put up a vacation message and stop checking regularly. Even if you just do that on the weekends, be sure to disconnect. Think of it as putting up some fences—boundaries to keep the distractions and spam out of your life.
CONNECT WITH NATURE
Get outside more. Look around and allow yourself to absorb the beauty and order of God’s creation. Appreciate the order of the seasons and how they reflect our own lives. There’s such beauty and as chaotic as the world seems to be socially and politically, nature is for the most part ordered. Watch the waves, observe the birds, listen to the sounds. He’s got this.
One of the reasons so many feel God doesn’t answer their prayers is simply because they can’t hear Him over the noise. God is not a screaming parent. He whispers in the silence. Enter silence for at least 30 minutes each day. Take a walk without your headphones. Sit at the beach and listen to the waves and the sounds of children playing. Ask God to speak to you each day in little ways. You’ll be amazed.
SET SOME GOALS
Once you’ve unwound a bit in silence and in nature, start to think about what changes you would like to make in your life. Is it too hectic? Are you stressed all the time? Is it empty—maybe not enough social interaction? Evaluate what you would like to change.
Let’s focus on three areas:
Let’s face it, that’s the foundation of everything. Investing time and effort maximizing your health will be worth every minute and every penny you spend.
Your home (and family)
Truth be told, most of us are suffering from what I call “mess stress.” If your environment is messy or your family situation is a mess, think about what you would like it to be and then we’ll work on helping you make those changes.
By “business” I mean your job, an actual business or school. How are things in those areas? Is there room for improvement? Where do you want to be five years from now? Setting goals is the surest way to get you there.
In each of the above categories, make a list of what’s working and what isn’t. Be brutally honest—this is for your eyes only.
Where do you really want to be five years from now? Together we can make that happen. It all starts with an honest evaluation of where you are and solid goals of where you would like to be.
And that’s it for June. You’re done. In July, we dive in!
Allison is also the Founder and President of www.CatholicTherapists.com, a nationwide network of dedicated Catholic therapists.
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