A Lot More Proactive

“Since I did the 5 Choices program, I became a lot more proactive and became more conscious of the moments when I am automatically reactive. In those moments, I recognize it, stop for a moment, try to get my consciousness back, and some of these times I read my roles’ statements to get in touch with what is most valuable to me (and sometimes read my life mission statement as well). And this is giving me a lot of effectiveness and self-realization when I do the 30/10 planning based on these valuable things to me. Regarding the fifth choice, I feel a lot more comfortable now when talking to people about how important “relaxation” and “human moments” are. The other three I think were already more popular to talk about. But those two relieved a lot of blame. I feel more integrated now having the ‘approval’ from science (confirming what I had always felt) that all these together make us more productive. I am very grateful for this program.”

5 Choices Participant

A Walk and a Good Nap

When I woke up I instantly knew it was going to be “one of those days”. After a week of travel and accumulated missed sleep, I was dragging. I tried to work on various projects, but my energy was low and my ability to focus was almost non-existent. My multiple attempts to remedy the situation with caffeine and sugar produced a brief energy bump, but did nothing to improve my attention. Finally, around 2:00 p.m. and barely able to keep my eyes open, I was forced to take a nap. I felt guilty as I set my mobile alarm for 45 minutes and instantly fell asleep. 39 minutes later I was awake. No alarm needed. I still felt tired and hazy, almost worse than before I laid down. For a moment I felt a deep sense of regret. It seemed this small amount of rest just made me more tired. Knowing I had work to finish, I decided to take my remaining six minutes and go for a quick walk up and down the street. The fresh air immediately worked to clear my head. Moving my legs and my arms started the blood pumping and within minutes I felt like myself again. I went back to the office and completed more work in three hours than I had in the previous six.

It is funny the things we forget. When my kids were little, their moods and their actions warned me when they needed to take a nap or a quick stroll around the block. I was always proud of myself when I recognized the warning signs and found a solution before catastrophe ensued. Since my kids are all grown, it is certain that I am not a little kid any more. Yet, not much has changed. If I pay attention, I know exactly how to care for myself. I often ignore the signs or go for the quick fix. But occasionally I remember, to make the world right again sometimes the only thing I need is a walk and a good a nap.

Contributed by Suzette Blakemore – Regional Practice Leader – Productivity

Your Brain Needs a Rest – This is a “Q2” Not a “Q4” Activity!

I find so many people in my sessions defiantly  telling me they “like” Quadrant 4″, because they like watching tv, surfing the internet…it’s just the way it is, they say….I love when I hear that because my next question is….”so is taking some time for tv or the internet important for you to do to relax? ”  And I get a resounding, “YES!!!”  If it is important I gently point out, then it is a very, very good quadrant 2 activity…where important lives.  And they go, OOOOHHHH…I SEE!!!!  And they learn it is OKAY to take a break.  We are only in Quadrant 4 when it becomes EXCESSIVE, choosing to watch tv for hours and then paying the price knowing you SHOULD have been spending that excessive time on something much more important to you and the people around you.

Be kind to yourself…I know some of us overachievers feel like we have to keep moving, get things done.  But we cannot get things done well if our brains are exhausted.  When we think or plan or do create work we are using about 20% of our entire body’s energy load.  You MUST pause and let your pre-frontal cortex regenerate.  Research shows that by just pausing for even 10 minutes, you will do much better work or even have a much healthier conversation with family members.  Watch TV if you like.  Play a round of Angry Birds.  Take a walk around the office building and just quiet your mind.    Me?  I love a good People magazine once a week on the airplane.  Just to not have to think very hard, laugh a little (very good brain food) and take my mind off of everything else.  Just for a little while.  Very, very q2!

Contribvted by Kory Kogon – Global Practice Leader – Productivity