As a professional coach I hear this all the time… I’m exhausted! I mean, who isn’t exhausted these days? Many of us are working hard, putting in long hours and then there is the family and civic responsibilities.
I get it we are all tired and to be honest I could use a vacation. But even when I am on vacation I am thinking of my to-do list. So how do you shut it off and focus on something else? For me, it starts with a decision that my smart phone, email in box and the never ending to-do list can wait. When my son asks me to spend time with him – I listen and where at all possible I will drop everything and spend that precious time with him. Why? Because what I put into my family will last much longer than the action item on that list. I determined a long time ago that there are non-negotiables in my life that start with my faith and extend to my family. I realize that many don’t always have as much luxury to put things on hold at a moments notice. But, you certainly do have the ability to control many aspects of your life by making a decision. Make a decision on what controls your focus. For some, there life is a stream of get up, go to work, come home late, kiss the spouse, vegetate on the coach and go to bed late.
Some ways to take back your life:
1. Eat a good breakfast each day and snack on healthy foods throughout the day. Moderate lunch and a good dinner. Diet is important to how you feel.
2. Exercise – even walking the steps at work is better than no exercise at all – but, if you can run, walk or actually go to the gym 3 to 5 times a week where possible.
3. When you get home, eat a sit-down meal with your family as many times a week as possible. Turn the phones and television off and spend time focused on your spouse and kids.
4. Read or spend time talking to your kids before bed.
5. Spend time talking to your spouse. Tell them the highs and lows of your day. Tell them your joys, sorrows and frustrations form the day. This is not about dumping on your spouse or telling them where they went wrong. This about sharing the inner-most feelings you have. Verbal intimacy builds emotional intimacy which grows the chances of physical intimacy.
6. IF you spend a lot of time with the television when you get home – I would strongly encourage you to have your cable shut off. Television is the one thing that sucks the life out of families and relationships. Spend time with your spouse.
7. Go to bed at a decent time WITH your spouse.
8. Take a power nap on the weekends. Now that you don’t have TV in your way you can get some rest. If you have an office and can get away with it – close and lock the door at work during lunch time, turn on the do not disturb on your phone – silence the cell and power nap for 15 minutes.
9. When on vacation – shut the phone and email off altogether or make an agreement with yourself and your family that you will only check your messages once a day.
Trust me when I say that I believe in work hard – play hard… I work very hard… but when it is time to shut things down and spend time with the important aspects of my life – I am 1000% in it.
Life is a marathon – you cross the finish line only when you pass from this life into the next. My personal retirement plan – when I am dead, I am retired. Until then I am going to live out my life with as much purpose as possible and I will always default to focusing on those things that are most important.
What decisions do you need to make to put your life back into balance?
Philip A Foster, MA is Founder/CEO of Maximum Change Inc. Elevating leaders and their organizations to the next level since 2005. Master Certified Coach, Philip A Foster, MA and his associates facilitate effective positive change by helping organizations, leaders and individuals in high demand — design and implement strategies that maximize focus and deliver results. Specializing in Organization and Strategic Leadership.