Saturday, February 25, 2012

That's the Way We Get By

Man oh man. 2012 has brought many changes in my life. It has been absolute craziness seriously since January 1st.

Sometimes when this happens I get a little frantic and crazy and I exhibit self-destructive behaviors such as skipping the gym and eating excessive amounts of cheese. And this time period was no exception.

Sometimes when this happens I feel like I am failing every day. Like no matter how on time I am or how much effort I put forth, things just are not coming together. This is particularly stressful due to my life in leadership positions.

So what do I do? I have to take a step back. I have to remember why I do what I do, and how I can be the best at it. Here are some tips if you ever feel this way:

-Think about your ultimate goal for where you are.

It is so easy to become introverted or absorbed in things outside of where you are. For me, it is sometimes difficult to focus because I have to do 2985 other things during the day. But I really am practicing shifting my energy. When I am at work, I realize my ultimate goal is facilitate a positive and welcoming environment. When my co-workers come in, I want them to be glad I am working that day. If you give your best to other people, it becomes easier to get the best out of them.

-Positive inner dialog

When I get busy and frantic, it also becomes easier for my negative feelings to come to light. Sometimes I might say something in my inner dialog like "well if you could get this right, maybe you'll finally be something important," or "maybe if you weren't so crazy thus and so would like you," and things like that. But I have to remember (and you should too) that you are where you are for a reason. If you have a job, someone believed in your skills enough to trust you with the position. And that alone is enough to justify a positive outlook in your work and in your life. The more you focus your energy on thinking about positive aspects in yourself, the more you will find positivity manifesting itself in your life and interactions.

-Make time for what is important to you

Case in point: I LOVE going to the gym. It is one of my most favorite things. The last few weeks it has been difficult to find time to go, and when I have time I am so exhausted that a treadmill looks like a medieval torture device. But I realized that when I do not get to the gym, I feel sad and, moreover, I feel unable to consume excessive amounts of peanut butter M&M's, which also makes me sad. So what did I do? I re-evaluated and now I get up super early so I definitely make it to the gym before work. Even doing this for three days made me feel SO much better not only about myself, and it gets my day off to a great start.

If you feel like you have zero time to do things that are important to you, you must re-evaluate your schedule. People make time for the things that mean a lot to them. You, too, can find a way to make it work. I promise it is worth it.

-Find ways to love what you do

Ok, retail management is not my ideal occupation for the rest of my life. But, like any job, it pays the bills. So I can choose either to degrade my position on the societal ladder, or I can find the positive aspects of my workplace and focus on those. For instance, I love making magic for customers. For every 2587 meanies there are 2 or 3 customers who come in and really have a wonderful experience finding things that make them feel good about themselves. I cherish these moments.

I am also very lucky because I get paid to make music many nights a week. Though there are frustrating aspects of these projects, I have to remember that I get to play piano and make music with people for hours on end every night of the week. And then there's the moment when the song is over, a split second of silence where everyone is thinking the same thing: "Wow that was good." When you get to be a part of that moment it becomes difficult to focus on anything negative.

-Do something frivolous every day.

On Mondays, I got frozen yogurt before rehearsal. I ate (more like devoured) it in my car and enjoy the you-know-what out of it. It is so good. On Friday and Saturday I wore a ridiculous (and adorable) headscarf as a color pop. On Thursday I bought the most amazing off-the-shoulder shirt EVER. Ok, I don't encourage buying clothing as a frivolous activity, that can be expensive. But you catch my drift. My mom calls this "finding pockets of peace." Finding a few minutes every day to do something that you really just like to do is epic. Even if it is just updating your fitness app on the train commute.

-Realize it's ok.

My "Ok's":

It's ok to get out at an inefficient exit at the train station to talk with the preacher on the corner every morning. It's ok to only wear Ugg boots after work because your feet hurt so badly you can't move. It's ok to eat your dinner from a vending machine because your forgot your meatless chicken nuggets at home.

In other words, I think it's ok to do some weird stuff sometimes to keep yourself moving forward.

So remember, every day can be the best day ever, you just have to find the good in it. Some days it will be harder to find than others, but it's there, even if you have to hit the snooze to cuddle with your cats or wait until 10pm to have a hefty glass of wine with some friends. Happy Saturday! Enjoy your weekend!

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