Defeated or Determined?

There are times in a person’s life – say mine, for instance….or yours – when you’ve made a decision to change something and very soon afterwards, temptation is at your door step, hand-delivering an excuse, with your status quo looking more appealing than ever. For instance, you decide to cut down or cut out sugar and your good friend and neighbor shows up on your doorstep with a cake exclaiming how excited she is about trying this new recipe and she’s dying to know what you think. Or, you decide to get back into a regular pilates routine and just as you are about to leave for class, a friend phones and wants to treat you to the movie you’ve been dying to see. Or, deciding to start a new job search to leave a stressful, unfulfilling one behind and your computer dies right there in front of you right along with your commitment. There are countless examples when life seems to challenge us in this way. It’s as if the universe is saying, “Really??? Are you sure you really want to do this? Change is so hard and wouldn’t it be easier if you just left things alone?” No. It wouldn’t be easier. I see situations like these as a “call to arms”. The so-called universe has pulled out all stops and so should you. It’s a time to list all the reasons you made the decision in the first place and then regardless of the initial obstacles, find a way to succeed. Graciously accept the cake, throw it in the trash, and lie to your friend about how good it was. (Just kidding. There are other options that don’t involve eating the cake, thus breaking your commitment, in case you lean more towards humble honesty.) Ask your friend if she can go to the movies another night. Make a list of the skills you do have and companies or industries you do want to investigate for your job search. The point is, you always have a choice. You’ve been given an opportunity to dig deep, see what you’re made of, and discover your own resourcefulness and dare I say, willpower. Don’t – I repeat don’t – see it as a reason to delay your start or a reason to not do it at all whatever the “it” is that was just challenged. This is not a sign to call it quits or that something isn’t meant to be. The direction of your life is determined by you and sometimes – many times – your success has moments of solidarity. It’s just you and you alone. None of us are as weak as we think so dig deep, find that inner strength, and press on. Betraying your own trust is far more damaging than almost anything else you can do.

For those who regularly read this blog, you may have noticed that nothing was posted last week. The reason is that my computer DID die right in front of me and then I had to go out of town. Despite those challenges and even now having a nasty cold, the blog is back up and running. For those with keen memories, you took notice this isn’t an interview with Joanna Nichols at Light of Hand Massage. That has been delayed but I do, with great intention, plan to post next Friday.

As always, feel free to email me with feedback, questions, or suggestions for topics that interest you. I can be reached at smsunrise@yahoo.com or contact Bria directly. Thank you for reading!

This blog pro­vides gen­eral infor­ma­tion and dis­cus­sion about med­i­cine, health and related sub­jects.  The words and other con­tent pro­vided in this blog, and in any linked mate­ri­als, are not intended and should not be con­strued as med­ical advice. If the reader or any other per­son has a med­ical con­cern, he or she should con­sult with an appropriately-licensed physi­cian or other health care worker.Never dis­re­gard pro­fes­sional med­ical advice or delay in seek­ing it because of some­thing you have read on this blog or in any linked materials. If you think you may have a med­ical emer­gency, call your doc­tor or 000 immediately.The views expressed on this blog and web­site have no rela­tion to those of any academic, hospital, practice or other insti­tu­tion with which the authors are  affiliated.

Amaze Yourself

Recently, I saw a Youtube video of two people on the Cadillac doing movements that mesmerized me. When I shared this with a friend, he begged me not to attempt it. As if. The video though left me with a feeling that we are far more capable and competent than we give ourselves credit for. The following day I received an email from the pilates studio in my former town offering a discount if I’d return. Apparently, they didn’t know I had relocated to Seattle over the summer. Out of curiosity, I checked out their webpage to see what had changed. When I left Nashville, the studio was moving to a trendy area called “The Gulch”. Again, I came across a video that had me mesmerized. The owner and one of the instructors had created a choreographed dance scene on the Cadillac which was nothing short of mesmerizing. Both are former, professional dancers. I know both fairly well as I use to be an avid customer and had the privilege to be guided by their expert training.

My point in telling you this is that both videos demonstrate that we are far more capable of moving our bodies in ways than we give ourselves credit for. It’s easy to get into a routine and become “lazy” in the sense that we lose the connection between our bodies and our minds. Every class or workout routine offers an opportunity to reconnect, to push ourselves – within safe boundaries, of course – and to experience just how amazing these things are that we own and use to move throughout the day. I’ve shared the videos below not to challenge you to do this yourself, but to offer an opportunity to pause and find your own appreciation of your magnificent human body. It is capable of far more than you may give it credit for. If we strive just a tiny bit to expand our strength, our connection between the mind and body, and develop awareness, we may surprise even ourselves at what we can accomplish.

Pilates “Full Hang” by Regan Hoerster, Village Pilates Studio

http://simplybalancednashville.com/  (SEE BOTTOM OF PAGE)

As a heads up, Bria will be posting Youtube videos at some point in the future so that outside of the classroom, you, too, can develop your own practice from Bria’s expert instructors. In the meantime, next week’s blog will include an interview with Joanna Nichols, LMP at Light of Hand Massage located next door to Bria. She will discuss the benefits of massage, her unique approach, and what she hopes to give to her clients, just in case you want to give your amazing body a delicious treat and added support for all the work it does for you.

As always, feel free to email me with feedback, questions, or suggestions for topics that interest you. I can be reached at smsunrise@yahoo.com or contact Bria directly. Thank you for reading!

This blog pro­vides gen­eral infor­ma­tion and dis­cus­sion about med­i­cine, health and related sub­jects.  The words and other con­tent pro­vided in this blog, and in any linked mate­ri­als, are not intended and should not be con­strued as med­ical advice. If the reader or any other per­son has a med­ical con­cern, he or she should con­sult with an appropriately-licensed physi­cian or other health care worker.Never dis­re­gard pro­fes­sional med­ical advice or delay in seek­ing it because of some­thing you have read on this blog or in any linked materials. If you think you may have a med­ical emer­gency, call your doc­tor or 000 immediately.The views expressed on this blog and web­site have no rela­tion to those of any academic, hospital, practice or other insti­tu­tion with which the authors are  affiliated.

How to Reduce Stress Through Procrastination

Do you ever feel overwhelmed by all the things on your “to do” list that procrastination sometimes becomes a part of your life? Or, are there some tasks that you just can’t seem to get done for no other reason than you just don’t want to even if the task is important? If so, you are not alone.

A long time ago I read an article by John Perry at Stanford University which changed my life. (I placed a link to it at the end of this blog.) The concept is called “structured procrastination”.  If you’re really turned on by it and want to learn more, there are business articles, NPR interviews, a blog, and much more out there in cyberspace on the topic, especially if you want to procrastinate some more. I wouldn’t hold this against you. Getting back to “structured procrastination”, I’ll try to sum up the concept as best I can so you can get going, feel good about your accomplishments, and have less stress in your life. Less stress equals better wellness and we all want to feel the best we can each and every day.

The idea is to do something less important but still important. I know what you’re thinking. What??!!! Essentially, what a person does is inflate the importance of one task over the more important task so you get the less important task done. Then, you move on to the next “to do” item on your list, regardless if it’s that monster of a task that you’re currently avoiding. Typically, it isn’t. According to Perry, each task has to have two characteristics which really aren’t true: an inflated sense of importance, i.e. horrible things will happen to me, my family, and potentially all of mankind if I don’t do it and two, a deadline, i.e. I have to complete Task A-I-Don’t-Want-To-Do by this <insert deadline>. There is an art of self-deception here but what I’ve found from my own experience is that momentum is a wonderful and very fulfilling side effect. For example, if I opt to get the oil changed in my car – something I hate to do but is necessary – instead of paying bills, I feel a sense of accomplishment that enables me to move onto the next task.  I have to add, though, that for me the task doesn’t have to be important. I can do something completely off my “to do” list to really distract myself, aka procrastinate, such as organize a closet. I get the same momentum effect I would if I did something more important with a deadline. Feeling empowered, I typically go straight to the task I was avoiding. I know countless professionals who use this in their work life and develop a reputation for getting a lot done and done well. That truly IS important. They spend more time doing and less time avoiding. Try this and see if it works for you and don’t forget about the link below. Perry’s concept has been an invaluable asset in my life and I hope yours. With the busy holidays coming up, this might be just the tool you’ve been looking for, especially if you want to keep up or start new fitness goals to keep the holiday weight off. You’ll be able to go out, enjoy life, spend time with the people you love, and far less time worrying and stressing out about all the things you just can’t seem to get done.

http://www.structuredprocrastination.com/

As always, feel free to email me with feedback, questions, or suggestions for topics that interest you. I can be reached at smsunrise@yahoo.com or contact Bria directly. Thank you for reading!

This blog pro­vides gen­eral infor­ma­tion and dis­cus­sion about med­i­cine, health and related sub­jects.  The words and other con­tent pro­vided in this blog, and in any linked mate­ri­als, are not intended and should not be con­strued as med­ical advice. If the reader or any other per­son has a med­ical con­cern, he or she should con­sult with an appropriately-licensed physi­cian or other health care worker.Never dis­re­gard pro­fes­sional med­ical advice or delay in seek­ing it because of some­thing you have read on this blog or in any linked materials. If you think you may have a med­ical emer­gency, call your doc­tor or 000 immediately.The views expressed on this blog and web­site have no rela­tion to those of any academic, hospital, practice or other insti­tu­tion with which the authors are  affiliated.

Mindful movement = Healthier Lifestyles 24/7

What is mindful movement? We hear that term a lot and some even practice this in pilates. But how often do you use it in your everyday activities from walking, eating, getting in and out of the car etc? In this fast-paced world, it’s normal to rush but that can lead to all kinds of problems such as higher stress and even injury if we aren’t paying attention to what we are doing in the moment. All we have is the moment anyway, right? We can’t change what happened yesterday or even five minutes ago nor can we change what will happen tomorrow. So, mindful movement equates simply to focus. It requires only that we stop our “monkey minds” from running free and bringing attention to our present moment. This will not only bring you more fulfilling moments in your everyday life but better results in your workout routines from pilates to barre to any other cardio or weight training routines you practice. Think for a moment how you felt after your last workout. How good did you feel? Consider that perhaps it was because you practiced more focused attention on how your body is moving in space, how it relates to space, and how it feels in space. What would happen if every so often you made this a daily habit? If you checked in with yourself from time to time on how you feel, how you’re moving, how you’re relating to your world? My guess is that you would increase your levels of happiness and decrease your stress. Try it. You’ll see what amazing results occur when you simply slow down and bring your attention into the present moment. If you’re really up for a challenge, try really slowing down. On purpose. As if time were playing out in slow motion.  It really does change your perspective and believe it or not, you might even find you get more done in less time than you ever thought possible.

As always, feel free to email me with feedback, questions, or suggestions for topics that interest you. I can be reached at smsunrise@yahoo.com or contact Bria directly. Thank you for reading!

This blog pro­vides gen­eral infor­ma­tion and dis­cus­sion about med­i­cine, health and related sub­jects.  The words and other con­tent pro­vided in this blog, and in any linked mate­ri­als, are not intended and should not be con­strued as med­ical advice. If the reader or any other per­son has a med­ical con­cern, he or she should con­sult with an appropriately-licensed physi­cian or other health care worker.Never dis­re­gard pro­fes­sional med­ical advice or delay in seek­ing it because of some­thing you have read on this blog or in any linked materials. If you think you may have a med­ical emer­gency, call your doc­tor or 000 immediately.The views expressed on this blog and web­site have no rela­tion to those of any academic, hospital, practice or other insti­tu­tion with which the authors are  affiliated.