How To Do More, Be More, and Give More in 2016
Posted on 07 January 2016
As modern women today, we work damn hard and we wear many hats at work (business owner, manager, leader - sales, marketing, product development… the list does not end) and at home (mother, wife, sister, friend, chef, chauffeur, counselor, cleaner, etc. – you get the picture). The problem with wearing all of these hats is that if you fall, those around you fall too. This is why it is critical at the start of this year, instead of making new years resolutions that you won't keep past February, to just focus on putting yourself first. Put Your Oxygen Mask on First (PYOMOF).
When you fly on an airplane, the flight attendant instructs you to put your oxygen mask on first, before helping others. Why is this an important rule for ensuring survival? It is because if you run out of oxygen, you can’t help anyone else with their oxygen mask too. This is an important metaphor for most modern women I know who run around taking care of everything and everyone else, except themselves.
If you don’t take care of yourself, you can experience burnout, stress, fatigue, reduced mental effectiveness, health problems, anxiety, frustration, inability to sleep, and reduced happiness. It’s time to let go of the guilt and the excuses, and put your oxygen mask first by making your own health & fitness a non-negotiable investment in your own well-being. It's the key to effectively and happily being able to 'Do More, Be More and Give More.'
Here are five tips that work for me and my own life (small business owner and mother of two under five) to ensure that I can continue to not only take care of those around me, but take care of myself:
1. Schedule it in. I schedule in my workouts in advance much like my meetings so I can plan out my week. My ideal week would have me working out 5 times a week, but often life gets in the way and I only end up working out 3-4 times. I know myself well enough to know that if I don't workout at least twice in one week everything and everyone around me suffers.
2. Focus on the positive. Rather than thinking about all the things I should not or cannot eat, I just focus on eating mostly clean, whole ‘good’ foods, and I then have less appetite for junk. I know that doing this turbocharges my energy levels for the day, so I don’t stress if I have a treat each day or a daily glass (or two) of wine!
3. Make fitness fun. There’s really no shortage of options for fitness these days, and the more you enjoy it, the more likely you will return to it! I am a huge fan of dance cardio workouts (sweating and jumping to awesome music – what’s not to love!!), but I also love a good high intensity interval training workout too.
4. Early bird gets the worm! Personally, I have found that my motivation wanes by the end of the day. I like to get up early and get my workout in and get home before the rest of my family is up. I guarantee that after just 3 days of feeling ‘tired’ when the alarm goes off, you’ll get hooked on the post workout endorphins and jump out of bed.
5. Listen to your body. While I am a massive advocate of working out and being active, listening to your body means that if you are under physical or emotional stress, sometimes a walk outside with some fresh air in your lungs is actually much better for you than a hardcore sweat session. Listen to your body and what it needs, and take your steps from there.