At this time of year there is always lots of talk around goal setting, new year's resolutions and kicking bad habits, adopting new habits. Sometimes they stick and sometimes they don’t and sometimes we feel very fed up as we don’t seem to be able to make the lifestyle changes we want to in our overloaded and busy lives. This can add to our stress levels which may already be high with in those fast lives we all seem to lead.
I decided to look at reducing the stress I place upon myself and that stress I allow from the everyday life of running a business. Now don’t get me wrong, I do not lead an extremely stressful life. In fact, I am really fortunate that I do a job I am passionate about and I work with amazing people in an awesome fitness studio that nestles in the beautiful Kent countryside. However, the hours of my job are not 9 to 5, and I must schedule carefully around PT and triathlon clients and my own training. Where I have been falling down is on creating and protecting meaningful down time to chill, switch off and recharge.
I turned to Dr Chatterjee’s book called The Stress Solution this Christmas as part of my yearly reflections and have been discovering some great tips that I hope might help others in taking time out to de stress and not feel guilty about it!
So far this year I have chosen to schedule more efficiently and by that I really mean I am scheduling time to turn off my phone for a period, to take time out to do something I enjoy such as reading, walking or doing a puzzle (currently). Jimmy and I have also decided to actually choose programmes we really want to watch and schedule that rather than collapsing into the sofa and surfing through the channels to half watch something we aren’t that thrilled by! If there is nothing to watch, we have decided to use that time to reconnect with our music collections and are rediscovering classic albums.
I am finding already that by taking a little time out to ‘switch off’ and by making this small lifestyle change I am being more efficient at working when I am working!
I also believe that when we feel less stressed, overwhelmed and tired we are more likely to be able to make changes that stick as we can do so more mindfully.