Rapid Reset

In yesterday’s post, I discussed how I have discovered that many of the stresses that come from being a teacher and parent are self-imposed. It was a principal that actually pointed this out to me. Yes, as teachers there are expectations given to us….but the reality is, administration knows we cannot meet them ALL 100% of the time. As a mom, my kids will forgive that I cannot be their entire world. In fact, they will appreciate that I help them create a larger circle of support. In short, it’s time to give myself a break.

Now what about today? How do I face today with optimism and faith? Luckily, I do not have to go far to find the answer. There are so many amazing professionals all around us that are so ready to help. Their advice? Remember that we must work on staying motivated DAILY. There is no magic bullet that will push us through and keep us going for years, months or even weeks on end. One of my favorite methods of getting motivated daily is by using the technique many success books describe as re-framing situations.

Here’s how I re-frame my world. I combine working on gratitude with changing my perspective. Yes, I start VERY small and go minute to minute when I have to, it absolutely changes my mood.

        Situation/Reframe

  1. I wake up tired. /I woke UP and my bed is warm and cozy.
  2. My sinuses are still clogged. / I have medications and techniques to           help me make it through the day.
  3. My hubby is hogging the bathroom./ I have INDOOR PLUMBING.
  4. My classes are too full!!/                   My students LOVE to come to my class.
  5. There aren’t enough books./               I have access to computers.
  6. There isn’t enough paper./                   I have a projector.
  7. I feel overwhelmed./                               I am EMPLOYED and can help support my family.

It may sound silly, but it is highly effective and will help you get through your day!! So as we say at Sierra — Make it a great day, or not. The choice is yours!!

 

 

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Do Not be Discouraged!!

I have been given a gift; a wonderful gift. It is the gift of determination. When I was younger, some people mistook it for stubbornness. As I grew, some thought it was DRIVE, then ambition….then strength. The truth is though, it is none of these. It is simple determination. That does not mean that I wake up everyday with the ability to get everything done that I would like to. What it means is that throughout my life, I have had dreams and goals that have been put on the back burner, but have NEVER gone away. The determination kicks in and I realize it’s time. I bring them forward and work on them and sure enough they begin to become what they were always meant to be.

Why do I share this with you? Because as I sit here this morning I realize I haven’t written in a while. I hadn’t written because I was busy. I was living my life and building my dreams. The “balance” I’ve been looking for is happening. My business is growing and I am developing it slowly while still making time for my family and friends. It hasn’t been easy and my kids are often the ones who throw that balance off….asking for more and more while doing as little as possible for anyone… including themselves. (Human nature I guess, but something that has to be addressed.)

The joy though, is that I see it and am able to confront it head on with time and energy that I seemed to never have before. So what does this mean to you? It means, so what that you’ve left things on the back burner. If you feel in your heart the time is now…bring them to the forefront of your life. It isn’t too late. Determination to me means holding on when others would have long since have given up.

The low down on the rub down!!

Over the last six to eight months, I’ve learned so much about massage and while those who get one regularly already know this, if you are new to massage, you may want to keep these things in mind.

First, a massage really should not hurt. Yes, there may be moments of pain if you are working an area of soreness or injury, but continued pain is NOT a good thing. Speak to your therapist. If something hurts, let them know.

Second, more is not necessarily better. Pressing harder may be what you want a therapist to do, but if you need a specific treatment, deep pressure may not be ideal. In fact, it may very well be counter-productive. Again, communication is the key here. If the therapist is doing something you wonder about, ask them.

Third, you have the right to tell the therapist what you want them to do. In fact, it makes their job easier. If you don’t like your ears to be touched, tell them. If you don’t like your feet to be touched, tell them….kicking them may cause a bit of a strain in your relationship.

Fourth, be sure you are working with a therapist who is flexible and does what is in the client’s best interest. For example, the elderly often need a shorter massage. They may not be able to tolerate lying on the table for a full hour. They may need a chair instead of a table. If you have an injury and just want a specific injury treated, a full hour may not be called for. If the therapist is insisting on hour long appointments and you want shorter sessions, they may not be looking out for you….but for their pocketbook.

Finally, don’t go to get a massage if you are sick…especially if you have a fever. A good therapist will not work on you. They will ask you to reschedule. That may not be what you want to hear, but massage during an acute sickness is generally contraindicated. You may be contagious and the massage may actually make things worse.

Now, I have to let you go….my daughter wants a massage. Have a great week!!!

Murphy’s Law for Mommies

1. Want to have some company….just go to the bathroom. The phone and doorbell will both ring and one of your children will barge in.
2. If that doesn’t work, plan a day alone….people will call, come by and you may even get invitations to go do things.
3. If you are still lonely, plan a day alone with your husband. That should do the trick….especially if you end up in the bedroom. Someone will SURELY come by to interrupt that!!
4. Feel like your kids are ignoring you? Just try to clean something. As you make the bed, they will pile on it taking pillow cases off the pillows, letting dogs in who will then take their turn “helping” and pee on your nice clean bed spread. (THIS REALLY HAPPENED!)
5. Think your children don’t play with their toys enough…just try to sort them out. As you sort and create piles of things to throw away, the toys will magically become brand new, wonderfully fascinating and irreplaceable. (You won’t get to get rid of anything, but the toys will get used again! This works with clothes too.)
6. Want your kids to sit down and be quiet? Try watching something inappropriate for them. They will automatically sit down and stare at the screen and soak up every word and image you do NOT want them to.
7. Want your children to dress nicer? Just tell them you’re going to make mud pies in the backyard. They will come out wearing their Sunday best!
8. If you have picky eaters and want them to eat their veggies, make only enough for the adults in the house. The kids will eat them all up leaving you with the hotdogs and potato chips.
9. To get your kids to get more exercise, get them dressed to go to church first. While you get dressed, they will run outside and play as hard as they can so until they are sweaty, their clothes are ripped and they stink to high heaven.
10. Finally, if you want your kids to sit down at the table, just try playing a board game too complicated for kids with YOUR friends. Your kids will be in your lap watching and sabotaging your every move.

Happy Friday Everyone!!!

Old School Perks

I LOVE technology. I really do. One of the reasons I write this blog is to enjoy using technology. HOWEVER, there really are some major perks to sticking with old school. Here are just a few of my favorites:

1. I have never had to call Amazon to fix the wireless connection for my paperback.
2. I’ve never had to reset my newspaper.
3. I don’t have to buy batteries for or recharge my magazines.
4. My hardbacks may be stiffer but not necessarily ruined if I drop them in the bathtub.
5. My phone book doesn’t show me 200 places by the same name in 20 different cities when I only need the local store.
6. I never worried about my landline emitting signals into my brain and causing cancer.
7. That same landline never used to beep and blink at me all night.
8. I never felt I needed to chase my three-year old down to get a book away from her (like I have with my kindle).
9. I never worried that my book was heating up too much while I was reading it.
10. The best perk about a good old fashion book is that I have NEVER had to wrestle my favorite novel away from my children so that I could read it!!!

Calling ALL Villagers!!!

We joke about it. We complain about it. Everyone KNOWS it’s happening, but no one seems to realize that this is what is wrong with our society. We are too dang busy and everyone thinks we all need to have double income families and all the things money can buy. Let me tell you what money cannot and does not buy. It does not buy memories or time we’ve missed with our loved ones. It does not buy back the opportunities we pass up because we have something “better” to do.

I know many people get reflective after a loved one passes, but this is not a new feeling for me. This is really my life’s purpose; looking to create memories for my children and teach them to cherish those memories. When I was a child, I spent weeks not just days with Grandparents and cousins. We had cookouts and get-togethers and traditions that were mandatory for family….not optional. As a teenager, I may have resisted that once or twice, but even then, I took a great deal of comfort in knowing that I had a large number of people to turn to, to count on.

I once heard a story about a band of young elephants that were invading a village and killing off the people. This was very unusual so people began to study it to try and figure out why it was happening. It was happening because the elder elephants had been killed off by hunters. The only way to teach the younger generation was to reintroduce older elephants back into the herds. The elders taught the younger ones respect and how to “behave”. It was what had to happen.

Now we already know as a society that we need our daddy’s to be involved, but what I lament right now is how so many other people just seem to put the responsibility of raising children strictly on the parents. If a child misbehaves, everyone judges the parents instead of trying to help. Whatever happened to the days when people just picked up someone else’s kids just because they enjoy spending time with them. My aunts and uncles did that with me. So did my grandparents, my music teacher, my pastor and his wife….the list goes on and on.

WE parents struggle because it feels like we are doing this all by ourselves. Gone are the days where grandma lived in our house and we could count on that extra pair of loving arms to help with the babies. Now she’s off “doing her thing” or is unable or unwilling to help. Siblings live too far apart or every adult in the family works 24/7. If you stay home with your kids, people stop inviting you places….”because you have the kids”. People stop just dropping by…”because the kids might be napping.” They forget that WE NEED YOU!!! We need each other. The kids need to have more adults around to be examples. Mom’s and Dad’s need more adults around to help us feel human again…not just like servants to the demanding little beings that have invaded our homes.

I feel like one of the SUPER lucky ones most of the time. I have super loving friends, in-laws and step-kids who work to keep the ties strong. Still, I am saddened that my own brother lives 100 miles away and doesn’t try to steal my children….and I really do wish he would. He would be the perfect person to teach them how to fish.

I call on you now Villagers. Think about your loved ones. Think of your nieces, nephews, grandkids, cousins, friends…whomever it might be….steal them for the day. Take them to the movies or just go hang out at their house to be that extra pair of arms. It really does mean the world to them….and their parents.

All I need to know I learned from Spongebob!

1. BE ENTHUSIASTIC ABOUT EVERYTHING!!!
2. Never give up!! (Not sure he’ll ever get his boating license.)
3. Be on-time.
4. Love your neighbors….even if they don’t love you.
5. Do your best at whatever you’re doing….even a fry-cook is important.
6. Take care of your equipment….that Spatula is your livelihood.
7. Be absolutely loyal to your friends.
8. Always look on the Brightside.
9. Be creative and even the most mundane tasks can be exciting.
10. And finally, when you dedicate yourself to something, do it completely and your rewards will be great!!!

So now that I’ve finished massage school…..”I’M READY!!!”
Let the fun begin!