Wednesday, October 25, 2017

This One Thing Can Cause Sadness, Headaches, Forgetfulness and other Woes

As you may remember, I am on a quest to become more of a morning person, and less of a night owl.  I have been doing pretty good for the most part.  I am still experimenting with some things to see what works best for me (as in this is something that I can maintain over the long term).


My research led me to this study on interrupted sleep, and that led me to do even more research on the subject.

The study took two groups of people and over three nights.  The first group stayed up an hour later, and the second group's sleep was interrupted. They found that cutting their sleep by only one hour (from 7.5 hours to 6.5 hours) resulted in inflammation, immune excitability, diabetes, cancer risk, and stress for both groups. However, the Interrupted Sleepers had shorter periods of slow wave, or deep wave sleep than the delayed.

What's so important about the slow wave or deep sleep?  This is the stage that important body repairs and maintenance tasks get done.

Both groups reported declining positive feelings.  While the delayed sleepers bounced back with a full night's sleep, the interrupted sleepers continued to report declining positive feelings including a decline in friendliness and feelings of sympathy.  In other words, even after you get back to having a good restful night of sleep, if you had a couple of nights of interrupted sleep you may continue to have a crappy attitude or remain in a funk, and it may even worsen.  So, interrupted sleep is worse than staying up late to watch Jimmy Fallon. 


Sunday, October 15, 2017

Guest Poster: Do You Wonder How That Special Needs Kid Affects Yours in the Classroom? (2 Minute Read)

Hey Guys,

Natasha's back with an awesome story.  I read it this morning, and I am inspired to look at my week ahead with new eyes.  I'll be looking for new opportunities to embrace my own and others' "not normal".  (You'll get it after you read it. ) 

Do You Wonder How That Special Needs Kid Affects Yours in the Classroom?


Thursday, October 12, 2017

How to Slay a Dragon: A Very, Very Short Real Life Love Story

We all have that thing or things that you are always trying to conquer like being braver, speaking up, not being a pessimist, not blowing up and losing your shit so much, eating better, not being so judgmental, saying no, not feeling so guilty (about saying no), etc.

In the coaching world, the things that you want to improve about yourself are referred to as your "learning edge".

Your learning edge is the thing you need to conquer or master in order to help you achieve your goal.  Whether your goal is getting promoted at work, losing weight, improving your relationship with a family member, finding a new job, increasing your business, raising good kids, you are going to have to deal with your learning edge or not reach the full potential of your goal.

A very wise woman (my coach) shared this with me during one of our session in which I was

Thursday, October 5, 2017

To My Fellow Moms Who Sometimes Feel Like You Are Failing.....


I caught these two kids helping each other and doing good in the world, so I sent their mom a note letting her know her kids were awesome even when no one was watching.  She sent me an email back thanking me for the note.  She said it came at a great time because she said she was having a bad day that day, and felt like she was drowning and failing at everything, "but maybe in this one area, the best area, she was doing an ok job, but I really can't take credit because my kids are somehow miracles of bravery and tenacity."

I was like, hold up, WHAT? "I'm doing an 'ok' job." "I can't take the credit..."  


This email left me a little dumbfounded because she totally strikes me as brave and tenacious, and I don't even know her that well.  
How could she say "maybe" or doubt her impact on who her kids are?  Then I looked a little deeper and remembered just hours before telling my daughter's teacher that "I wish I could take credit for her behavior but she is just a really great kid."   

Why? Why do we do this?  And by "this" I mean, why do we feel responsible for every mistake that our children make, yet when they do good, when they show that they are good, we say, "Well, I wish I could take credit for that, but they are who they are."  

Who hasn't felt like they were at times drowning or failing? When we've burnt dinner, missed a deadline, forgot to get the poster board for that project that needs to be done tonight, forgot to get dog food (again).  Then your kid gives you a hug or something and you say, maybe I'm doing okay here.  I'm want you to listen to this.  You are doing better than okay.  You are rocking this mom thing.  Here is how I know.....

You say your children are BRAVE and TENACIOUS, and I will add INDEPENDENT, FORGIVING, and KIND. Well, here is how they got to be this way.


You children see that things don't always work out the way you planned or the way you wanted.  They see you stumble, and they also see you pick yourself up and get back to work rebuilding.  They see STRENGTH and TENACITY.  


They see you heartbroken.  They see you disappointed.  They see the world fall apart around you.  They see you grieve for things that did not turn out the way you would have liked, and then they see you put your heart back together and push down your fear.  They see you put on your big girl pants, a smile, and like a boss, get shit done.  They see that you can be scared and not sure of the future, but you move ahead anyway.....That is BRAVERY. 


Oh, they see you alright when you snap at them during a PMS moment, and more importantly they hear you apologize to them and own your own behavior.  They see HUMILITY.  They see you taking RESPONSIBILITY for your actionsThey see you ask for forgiveness, so they learn how to FORGIVE and how to ask for FORGIVENESS, and they see you FORGIVE YOURSELF and they learn how to forgive themselves.


They see a self-sufficient, kick ass, beautiful woman. They see that you have faith in them that they too can be self-sufficient, kick ass beautiful humans, and they emulate you.  They see INDEPENDENCE in action.

The good that I saw that day brings me to my last and the trait the world definitely needs more of today. I saw a child reach out a hand to help someone who needed it, and I saw a child reach up and take that hand.  I saw these little people act with KINDNESS, and just as importantly know when to ACCEPT KINDNESS.  

They see the GRACE and COURAGE with which you go through life.

So, YES! take credit for how your children behave. You earned it. 

And when your kids are buttholes, which every single one of them will be at some point, remember, it is NOT your failure.  It's your teaching moment to remind them that they can do better.  They can be better, and then you will continue to lead by example.  Better an asshole moment at age 8 or 10 then a lifetime of it as an adult. 


Our kids see us because they are looking to us to show them how to deal with life, so don't hide or be ashamed of your failures because your children are going to fail too, and they are learning from you how to respond.  They look at you and they see you can fail and not be a failure, unless you fail to get back up, and I know you won't.  They know you won't, so rest assured they too will get back up when they need to just like you've shown them.


We are preparing our children for the road, because as much as we might try to prepare the road for our children, at some point we will no longer be on that road with them.  That day will come much more quickly than we realize.    


We are teaching them how to pick themselves up, dust themselves off, and keep going, and some days that is so hard.  So, for those days girls, I want you to know that as much as you may feel like you are drowning and failing, you are rocking it in all the ways that matter. 

One final thought, we are quick with our judgmental eyes when things go wrong (me too, I'm not throwing stones), so why not 
tag or send this note or a note of your own to a mom (or dad) who deserves to know they are doing a great job?  They just might need to hear that today.




Wednesday, October 4, 2017

An Ode to Roasted Vegetables: Making Nine (9!) 15 minute Meals Possible

I hate grocery shopping.  I think I've mentioned that before.  I can't say I really enjoy standing in the kitchen wondering what to cook, especially on those nights where the kids have activities and we don't have a lot of time (or for me energy for cooking).

The last two weeks I tried something new and it worked, so I'm passing it along for all those people like me who stress over "what's for dinner" and/or are short on time some nights, and/or just want some easy and healthy new ideas.


Sunday, October 1, 2017

Be a Soldier of Kindness, Monday Morning Challenge


Gratitude
I've found myself getting a little depressed with all the craziness in the world, the hurricanes of mass destruction, The Donald not being able to get to PR because it's an island in big water, ocean water, taking a knee, outcry over taking a knee, the fact that both sides are so busy disagreeing on the knee thing that they have lost sight of the fact that they share one very important goal....they both want everyone to stand up.  Yet, here we are debating about the right to kneel.  I feel like a child being torn in two by fighting parents in the middle of a nasty divorce.  See, I'm falling in the rabbit hole again, and I digress.

I feel like I am so weighed down, and I feel a little helpless to make a difference that will matter at a CNN newsworthy level.  So, I took a timeout and caught up on a little "Arrow" from last season (sorry Stephen Amell, I'm a little behind).

Anyhoo, this character is feeling like a failure, like he just can't do enough to make a difference, and this other character says to him, "Stop worrying about what you can't do, and start doing what you can do." We've all heard something like this before, and I don't know, maybe I needed to hear it in a smart ass city boy accent for it to kick my butt into gear, but something just clicked for me.  I put down the pint of ice cream and got to work.  Just kidding, I totally finished the pint of ice cream, and the show, and the one after that, but I decided I am going to start worrying about what I can do.