Monday, March 14, 2011
We blow right past those warnings don’t we? You know the ones that say we should exercise five to six days per week and take a day off for our bodies to rest and rejuvenate. But we know better don’t we? That exhortation is for sissies and slackers, not for me!!! I’m a warrior, a champion and a king. The rest of you can take a day off because I have to be faster, better and stronger just to keep up. And……….. Given popular and conventional wisdom working harder than uhm say YOU will help me reach my goals much quicker.
I had a neighbor who used to say we are all in the same church; we just sit in different pews. It was a quaint way of saying that we all have the same issues we just manifest them differently. If you give me truth serum I’m gonna tell you I wanna be thin in the worst way because being thin opens the door to being accepted by all those people who never accepted me, etc. etc. Maybe you word it another way but we are all desperate. We are desperate to be part of the so-called mainstream and we will do anything to get there. Oh, well we couch our desires in acceptable words and phrases and then proceed to blow right past the warning signs. In my darkest moments of despair I often ask myself am I running towards something or away from something. Sigh. It’s a slippery slope some days.
I took yesterday off. No exercise of consequence. I have to tell you it was tough. The little voice in my head kept saying “Go to the gym, go to the gym.” or “It’s nice out, go ride your bike or take a walk.” We hung out yesterday. We did clean out a closet that was threatening to take over a bedroom, but mostly we hung out. I caught up on my reading, looked to see how some of the bushes in the yard had weathered the winter, but mostly did nothing. It felt good.
Relaxation has become a four letter word. Usually it is packaged around five day trips to Cancun or Dublin and I’ve never met anyone who took those “relaxation vacations” that didn’t come back in need of a sedative. My BodyBugg exhorts me to keep moving.
My Achilles heel is the weekends. I can stay focused on my goals Monday through Friday but when Saturday comes around it’s “Let the good times roll.” This weekend I made a very conscious effort to stay within my plan and found it to be a struggle. As the day went on I became more tense and irritable. I ran all those scripts in my head trying to convince myself it was okay to privately endow the girl Scout troop selling cookies up the block. “It’s not fair!!!” “It’s not my fault!!!” Blah, blah, blah and yada, yada, yada. It was exhausting.
I took yesterday off. I ate well within my calorie limit and allowed my body to regain some of its momentum for a busy week ahead. I was amazed how good it felt and how guilty I felt in doing it. Kindly, I told my inner self to deal with it and get over it. It is when I had my “ah-ha moment.” I am, within reason, taking Sunday’s off. I need a day that doesn’t demand anything from me. I need a day to simply sit in the family room, or in a few weeks sit on the deck and just enjoy what is front of me. Yes, I’ll probably throw in a load of laundry or two. I’ll clean up what needs to be cleaned up, but for the most part I am going to cultivate the lost art of relaxation. It’s part of the balancing act I go through, thanks in part to the great people here at Spark. Great people like you!!!
Sunday, March 13, 2011
They are often over looked, taken for granted, remembered occasionally with an email, a card or a prayer. They exist in the back ground, like pleasant music, we know they are there but don’t often feel the need to acknowledge them. They cause us to laugh, to smile. They move us to tears with their unselfish acts of kindness and thoughtfulness. They are often the glue that binds the rest of our lives together. We share our deep dark secrets with them because we know they won’t ever judge us. They are our BFF’s, our pals, our buddies, our friends and they are a very important part of our journey.
Health is a balancing act. It not only requires that we pay close attention to the physical factors, but that we begin to undergo and emotional transformation inside of ourselves that opens me up to the world and allows it to not only see my beauty, my splendor, my foibles and flaws but causes me to allow you, my friend to love me and to honor me. Yup, most of us are really good at giving friendship. We can rush to the rescue of every disaster known to person kind and be ready to eagerly assist. Let the tables turn and it’s a horse of a different flavor, so to speak.
I have learned it is easy for me to give and darn near impossible for me to take. Some place, in the maze of confusion that often resembles my thought process, I have come to believe that I should give, give, give and that if my score card tallies up correctly at the end of it all I’ll get some sort of eternal reward. Givers are noble and takers, well takers, they are just slackers, weak people, not much back bone……. All that rot. It’s how most of us were raised. God loves a cheerful giver………..
I read somewhere, recently that the single largest act of vanity occurs within me when I do not acknowledge your out stretched hand. I shake my head and turn away. I can handle it myself!!! If I acknowledge your affection it means I am weak.
All of this laughable because real health is a balancing act between our body, our minds and our souls. When I accept you as my friend I am asked to do something we have a hard time with – trust you. I have to believe you are going to love me, care for me and even though it means you may have to get upset with me from time to time, have my best interest at heart.
I cannot be a friend unless I allow you to be mine. The wisdom you send me daily is the wisdom that fortifies me and makes me want to continue this journey. I have learned many things in my time here at Spark but the most valuable asset I have is you my friend.
Tuesday, March 08, 2011
….I woke up this morning with the same expectation for my day that a child has on Christmas morning.
….I couldn’t wait to leave the house because I was so excited about the new people I was going to meet and the new things I was going to learn
….I smiled all the time
….I told people I was happy
….I began each day in awe and with profound and reverent recognition of my Creator and all He has done for me, all He has taught me and how very much He loves me.
….I stopped the first person I met this morning and in a very sincere manner told them something they had done, anything they had done, had meant something very important to me at a time in my life when I really needed it.
….The people in my life knew they really mattered because I told them so.
….I took the time to encourage a new Sparker, maybe through a comment of encouragement or support. Fifteen months ago, some very special people took the time to welcome me, check up on me and show they cared. It’s the reason I’m here.
….I didn’t worry what people thought about me, my ideas and my beliefs.
….I made a new friend today
….I stood my ground and didn’t bow to the pressure when someone offered me a box of Girl Scout cookies.
…. I did it with a smile and a “thank you.”
You probably could add to this list if you’d like. I’m going to go now. There is a whole great big world out there waiting for me to explore, enjoy and appreciate. Part of the reason is because you are in that world.
Be blessed this Tuesday.
Monday, March 07, 2011
The scariest part of my day comes when I find myself with nothing to do. There is a blank space on the calendar, the phone doesn’t ring, and no one knocks on the door. There is no b log to write, no seminar to conduct, no client to assist. It is simply quiet and I am left looking at me. We’ve been taught, conditioned, use whatever word that suits you, that our worth and value are determined by how much activity goes on during the course of our day. “An idle mind is the devils work shop,” and all that other hubris. Words like “stressed” or “worn out” are used as labels to evaluate the pecking order in our world.
I have tried and failed many times in my life to manage my health. It always seems that one area or the other is lacking and I always feel slightly off center. A good friend blogged the other day about abusing food when she was tired. I had to raise my hand and join that group of people. When I put ten pounds of sugar in a five pound sack it usually means I run out of gas earlier in the day then I’d like and I don’t really care what goes in my mouth. Usually it’s something, quick, convenient and not in my own best interest. But, hey, I’m a busy guy!!! I have things to do. I have to go-go-go!!! Right?
I was at the gym the other morning when I had one of these “Ah-Ha Moments.” I was impatient. I needed to get going, get things done and the people using the equipment I needed were not cooperating with me at all. Suddenly, this little voice inside my head “Where are you in such a hurry to get to, John?” I’ll cut to the chase. The answer was nowhere. Oh, I had things to do that day, but I was hell-bent upon getting them all done in an hour. I was in a hurry and the more I hurried the more tense I became. It’s a vicious cycle most days. Being honest with myself means I have to look at how I manage my life, say good-bye to my excuses, and learn to manage my energy. It means I need to be okay with not being active and realize it is indeed a healthy practice and not some sign that I am some sort of slacker.
On top of being really good looking I also read minds. Some of you reading this are saying, “Yeah, but he doesn’t know what my life is like. He doesn’t know how really busy I am!!” I’ll issue a bit of a challenge then. Sit down with a piece of paper and ask yourself how much of your “busyness” is necessary and how much of it is created to keep you from really getting a handle on you? The first time I did it I crumpled up the paper, and threw it in the garbage. Everything I did was necessary!!!! Well, I’ll clue ya in on something. You can throw the paper away but you can’t throw the thought or intention away.
What I came to realize is I put all my worth and value in being active. If I couldn’t be liked or loved for looking good I’d be liked and loved for being a whirling dervish. I never saw that I was loved, respected and appreciated for who I was. I only learned it when I created time in my day for silence and balance and some days simply sitting and staring out my kitchen windows. I’m not suggesting you quit your job and abandon your family. I’m saying that when you look at those activities that keep you and me from looking at ourselves simply remove a few and use the time to improve yourself.
My favorite quote in the Bible goes something like this: “No person can serve two masters. They will love one and hate the other.” I can’t pursue a path to a healthier life as long as I leave room for unhealthy activity.
Have a great Monday.
Get An Email Alert Each Time JOHNTJ1 Posts