Tag Archives: goals

Are You Always Late? Be on Time Now!

clock-running-lateI am often running late. In fact, I was born a week late. I have good intentions. I want to be on time. Yet, it always seems I’m running 5 to 10 minutes behind schedule.

Most people don’t like to be late. Being late may actually be a habit you’ve developed over time. Think about your history and patterns. Are you late to everything or just some things? What causes you to run behind? How do you feel when you’re late?

If you truly want to make a change, you can overcome lateness. Here are 9 steps you can take to be on time:

Make a To-Do List Every Day
Each morning, make a list of things you want to accomplish that day. Try to create a realistic list, so you’re more likely to achieve your goals. Arrange tasks in the order of importance, urgency or time of day. Cross off each item when you complete it. I actually like to write out my to-do list the night before so that I don’t worry about it while I’m trying to go to sleep. Plus, I’m more awake and function better at night than I do first thing in the morning.

Schedule Events on Your Calendar
Keep a desk calendar, day planner or use a smartphone app to keep track of appointments or activities. Getting into the habit of keeping track of events on calendar can help you become more organized and prepared for what you need to do each day.

Check Your Calendar 3 Times a Day
Make it habit to check your calendar at the same times each day. It might make sense for you to review it first thing in the morning, after lunch and towards the end of the day. While writing things down may help you remember, be sure to check our calendar regularly to ensure you’re on track.

Be a Time Pessimist
Assume that everything will take a little longer than you anticipate. This approach will keep you on time, or even make you a little early. People who run early tend to be more calm, organized and ready to handle whatever comes up.

Plan to Be Early
Late people always aim to arrive right on time, but that leaves no room for contingency. You may know that you can drive to work in exactly 15 minutes. Yet if you get stuck in traffic due to an accident or have to run back for important papers you forgot at home, it makes it impossible to be on time. You should plan to be 15 minutes early to everything.

Welcome the Wait
If being early freaks you out, look at it as an opportunity to have some down time. Bring a magazine or book to read, call a friend for a few minutes, or go over your schedule for the week. If you make it an activity you will enjoy, you’ll want to be early.

Prioritize
You may be late simply because you don’t have time to do everything. The only way to change this is to cut back on what you’re doing. Figure out what’s most important and make it a priority to check these items off your list.

Be Honest with Yourself
Why are you letting yourself be late? Why aren’t you controlling your time? Part of being on time is acknowledging why you’re late. You’re letting your schedule run your life. To be on schedule is to plan the life you want to live and then create a plan to make it happen.

Make Organization a Daily Habit
You can make a change that will help you achieve a more balanced life. You can become more organized and create a habit of being on time.

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8 Ways to Fit Healthy Habits Into Your Hectic Life

time-1128278-mDoes it ever seem like there aren’t enough hours in the day to accomplish everything you need to do? Lately, that seems like every day for me.

How can I fit in healthy habits when I don’t have any time? Then, I just feel more stressed and out-of-sorts because I didn’t fit everything in.

Decide what you truly want to accomplish and prioritize your life around your goals. When you make the time for healthy habits, you’ll have more energy, lower your stress levels and achieve more life balance.

Here are 8 ways you can fit healthy habits into your hectic daily routine:

Track your time
For a day or two, write down everything you do and what time you do it. Then, take a look at your routine. Does anything stick out to you? You may be watching more TV than you realized, or playing games on your phone. You might be able to break that time down and fit in your healthy habits.

Ask yourself: What tasks take longer than they should? Do I need to change my priorities to cut out things that are less important than more healthy options? What can I say no to?

Cut your to-do list
Highly successful people often have very short to-do lists. You may be overestimating what’s realistic to get done in a day. Cut your planned to-do list down by 25% to take into account all those things that can come up and derail your plans. Then, you can keep from overloading yourself. Make sure your healthy goals are at the top of the list!

Drink more water
Be sure you’re drinking water throughout the day. Water is an all-purpose, healthy drink. It helps your digestion, circulation, aids in weight loss, improves your skin and more. If you feel fatigued during the day, it could be because you aren’t properly hydrated. Water can also help you feel full and keep colds at bay.

Stock up on healthy snacks
One of the quickest ways to derail your eating habits is to grab an unhealthy snack when you’re hungry and on the go. When you go grocery shopping, pick up portable, healthy snacks. For instance, baby carrots, string cheese, fresh fruit, nuts, and single-serve packs of yogurt, applesauce, crackers, etc.

Buy frozen, healthy ingredients
One of the biggest deterrents to sticking to your healthy eating habits can be making time to prepare nutritious food. Purchase frozen, ready-to-cook ingredients. Frozen fruits and vegetables still have a high vitamin and mineral content. You can also buy frozen boneless chicken breasts and a variety of frozen seafood in single-serve packages. These are great options for quick, healthy meals.

Try interval training
A busy schedule means your workout may get left out. You can fit in a great workout in 20 minutes. Short bursts of high-intensity exercise can actually be more effective.

Walk it out
The average job means sitting at a desk in front of a computer for a big part of the day. Then, consider your commute to work, eating lunch and dinner, and then relaxing on the couch at the end of the day. You may find that you spend as much as 80% of your day sitting down. Sneak in some extra exercise by running errands on foot, taking the stairs, and parking at the end of the parking lot. All those extra steps you take add up!

Give yourself some slack
Are you trying to create a 4-course meal every night for dinner? Obsessing about creating the perfect presentation for work? Worrying about whether your kids’ favorite outfits are washed? Focus on getting tasks done, not striving for perfection. You can have leftovers or a quick, healthy meal for dinner. The presentation will be fine, and the kids have plenty of clothes to wear.

Go to bed
Sleep is one thing you can’t cut to get more done. When you don’t get enough sleep, you will be less efficient during the day, your energy level suffers, and your cognitive function is reduced. Lack of sleep can also make you more susceptible to getting sick. By getting enough sleep, you are more likely to have the energy to get more done during the day.

Making healthier choices may be a matter of making more time. Decide what you truly want to accomplish to create a more balanced life. Then, use these tips to fit your healthy habits into your daily routine!

Is Your Life in Balance?

zen-still-life-605551-mI have been feeling really pressed for time this summer. I am working full-time and chauffeuring three kids to multiple sports activities and events. There just isn’t enough time in the day to accomplish everything I need to do.

I went on vacation a few weeks ago and worked a few hours every day that I was gone. I feel like I neglect my kids and husband some days, and I haven’t spent time with friends in months.

When your life gets out of balance, you may feel burnt out, unsatisfied, angry, depressed or stressed.

On the other hand, when your life is in balance you have better over health, you’re more fit, you have a positive outlook, and your relationships are strengthened. You will have greater peace of mind, feel in harmony and be excited to embrace each day.

Here are a few questions to ask yourself to determine if your life is out of balance – and what you can do to bring it back into balance:

Do you feel overwhelmed?
If you feel like pulling the covers up over your head in the morning and hiding from the world, you may need to reevaluate your priorities. Stress and anxiety can keep you from feeling balanced. It might be a good idea to take a break, step back and give yourself some down time.

Here are 9 Intriguing Things to Know About Stress

Do you have a social network?
And by social network, we don’t mean Facebook or Twitter. When is the last time you spent time with friends and just relaxed? Do you spend quality time with your family? Our relationships are important to our sense of well-being. Neglecting friends and family, or having conflict within your relationships, will make it difficult to find life balance. Make sure you take the time to nurture the relationships that matter to you.

Your friendships matter. Here are 7 Reasons Why We Need Friends

Are you out of shape?
Lack of exercise and poor eating habits will take their toll on your mind and body. Letting yourself get out of shape can impact your quality of life and lead to negative feelings that impact your mood and attitude. Eating right and exercising are good for the body and soul.

Get some workout tips at 15 Exercise and Fitness Do’s and Don’ts
Want some healthy eating tips? 10 Healthy Eating Myths and Facts

How is your energy level?
Do you find yourself yawning and wishing for a nap about halfway through the day? Do you wake up groggy in the morning or toss and turn at night? Your sleep habits can impact your life balance. It’s important to establish good sleep habits and make sure you are getting plenty of rest.

Need more reasons to get a good night’s sleep? Here are 8 Serious Dangers of Sleep Loss

Are your finances a mess?
Are you living beyond your means and feeling the pressure of debt? Your financial situation can cause stress, as well as put added strain on your relationship with your spouse. You can get control of your finances by taking a look at your spending habits and creating a budget to help you get back on track.

Want help creating a budget? Read more: Tips to Achieving a Balanced Budget

Do you have bad habits?
Are you controlling or overbearing to your friends and family? Maybe you’re a perfectionist and expect everyone else to be that way, too. Do you smoke, chew your fingernails or overeat? If there are things about yourself you would like to change, then do it! With time and some patience,  you can change those bad habits and replace them with good habits.

Need to overcome bad habits? Learn how: 7 Steps to Breaking Bad Habits

What do you want to accomplish?
What are your goals in life? We all need dreams and plans to keep us excited and motivated. Set goals for yourself and accomplish them. Then, set new goals and challenge yourself to continue to grow and expand your horizons.

Read our blog: 9 Tips to Set and Achieve Life Goals

Finding and maintaining balance in your life is a journey. It’s something you must work at every day. You will have bad days and obstacles will crop up in your path. Give yourself a pat on the back when you accomplish your goals and appreciate the good moments in your life. Continue to seek and strive for balance in your life. You will find that you are happier, healthier and more at peace.

9 tips to set and achieve life goals

Reach your lifetime goalsI feel like I’ve been floating through life lately. When I was younger, I had more concrete goals. I wanted to start a career, get married and have kids. I’ve accomplished those goals.

But, what am I doing now? I am just trying to survive each day with work, kids, homework, sports and housework.

My husband’s grandmother recently passed away at almost 90 years old. She was a five-foot tall spitfire, and if she wanted to do something she did it. As I head toward my mid-40s, it has me thinking about what I want to do with the second half of my life. I need to set some goals to determine where I want to go from here and how I’m going to get there.

Goal setting is a powerful way of thinking about your future. By knowing what you want to achieve, you can concentrate your time and effort on those things that will help you get there. You can quickly recognize distractions that will take you off course, and then get back on course.

Here are 9 tips to help you set and achieve your life goals:

Brainstorm your life goals
Spend some time in quiet contemplation. Think about what’s really important to you. Think about what you’ve always wanted to do. What really excites you? Whatever you come up with, write it down. Don’t limit yourself based on what you think is realistic. For example, you may want to:

  • learn to play the piano
  • start your own business
  • find a partner
  • take a trip
  • change careers
  • buy a house

You can focus on different areas of your life, too. You can set goals for health, fitness, finances, relationships, work or even spiritual growth. Setting goals can help you create overall balance in the different areas of your life.

Set lifetime goals
The first step is to set lifetime goals that give you an overall perspective and allow you to focus on the big picture. These lifetime goals give you the foundation to shape all other areas of your decision-making. Setting goals in different categories can help you create more balanced coverage of all the important areas of your life.

For instance, you may want to set lifetime goals for your career, education, healthy lifestyle, finances or volunteer efforts. As you plan, make sure these goals are ones that you genuinely want to achieve rather than simply ones that sound like good goals.

Break it into smaller goals
Once you have your lifetime goals in mind, you can break them down into smaller goals. For instance, you may want to create a one-year plan, six-month plan and even monthly plan. By developing progressively smaller goals, you can build up to your lifetime goals in gradual steps. Not only will you see immediate progress this way, it makes it easier to stay on track and reach your goals. You can even create daily to-do lists that help you work toward your end goals.

Write it down
Putting your goals on paper (or on an electronic device) makes them more real. You are committing to reaching these goals. It’s also easier to reference  your goals and reaffirm what you are trying to accomplish. You can even hang a copy of them by your bedroom mirror or on the fridge to help encourage you to stay on track.

Set deadlines
Give yourself specific deadlines. For instance, if you’re going to start a business, set a date to have a business plan prepared. If you need to quit your current job, set that date. Determine a date to open your business. Outline goals for your one year anniversary. By having deadlines, you create a sense of urgency and a need to complete tasks on time so you can reach your goals.

Plan for bumps
Sometimes life gets in the way of your life plans. Decide now that if something comes up that gets you off track, it’s not the end and you haven’t failed. You may need to hold off on that goal. Or, you may need to adjust that goal to fit into the new situation. You can take a break or you can modify your goal, but you are not giving up on it.

Avoid procrastinating
The next hurdle you may encounter is procrastination. Something new is often scary and intimidating. You’ve got to push through and just get started. Armed with your schedule of daily, monthly, and yearly goals, just get started. It’s easier than you think!

Challenge yourself
Dream big. You are capable of more than you think. Imagine if all of the world’s great inventors and leaders had decided they couldn’t do it. Our world would be a vastly different place. So, dream it and do it.

Review your progress
Check in with yourself every once in a while. Make sure you are staying on the path to achieving your goals. You can make adjustments if you need to as you go along. Congratulate yourself on your progress and set new goals.

Do you have lifetime goals in place? What tips do you have for achieving your goals?

Get motivated to exercise in 2013

getting exerciseOne of my goals for 2013 is to get into a regular exercise routine. I seem to exercise in fits and starts. I do really good for a week or two and then something happens and I lose ambition. I might get a cold and not feel like exercising. Or work gets hectic and I bump exercising to meet deadlines.

And sometimes I’m just lazy. I don’t think I will ever be one of those people who looks forward to exercising. For me, it’s something I feel I should be doing but don’t really want to do – like going to the dentist and washing laundry.

After I exercise, I feel great. I am so proud of myself for doing it. It’s the making myself do it part that I struggle with. So, I am putting together a list of ways to get motivated – and hopefully stay motivated – to exercise in 2013. Maybe some of them will inspire you, too!

Set Goals
Start with simple short-term goals to keep you motivated. You can set weekly and monthly goals. By setting exercise goals, you can track your progress and have a sense of accomplishment. Make sure your goals are reasonable and will keep you interested in exercising. For instance, you can set a goal to get your heart rate up with 30 minutes of cardio exercise three times a week. Depending on how active you have been, you can walk briskly or jog. See how far you can run or walk in 30 minutes. Challenge yourself to increase the distance over weeks and months.

Maybe you want to run a 5K. Set goals to help you increase your speed and endurance as you train for the race. Maybe you want to fit into an old pair of jeans or look better in your swim suit. Set goals to help you get there.

Make It Fun
I have a mental block against planned exercise. I have a really hard time making myself get on the treadmill or put in an aerobics DVD. I would much rather exercise accidentally. I play volleyball once a week with friends from high school. We reminisce about the good old days, talk smack about our playing abilities, and have a great time. It definitely gets the blood pumping, and I use muscles that don’t get used on a daily basis. I also go bike riding with my family, play basketball with my son, and jump on the trampoline with my girls. Adding some variety to your exercise routine can also help keep you interested and motivated.

Find an Exercise Buddy
If you make plans with a friend to go to the gym, walk on the local track, or play tennis, then you feel obligated to follow through. It’s easier to get motivated when you know someone else is counting on you. It’s also more fun to exercise with someone. You can push each other to work harder and get in some social time, too.

Schedule Your Workouts
Write it down. Seeing your exercise times written on your schedule will help you view it as a real commitment. Think of it as an important meeting and mentally prepare that you are going to do it. If you workout at the same time on the same days of the week, you can turn exercising into a habit. Once you make exercise part of your daily routine, you will be that much more likely to stick with it.

Reward Yourself
I often bribe myself to exercise. I will plan my time on the treadmill to coincide with one of my favorite TV shows. I get to watch a great show, and I get in my exercise. I also reward myself for reaching my goals. For instance, if I workout 3 or 4 times a week for a month, I can spend $50 on new clothes.

Be Flexible
Try not to be too hard on yourself. There will be times when you don’t reach your goals. Maybe you need to reevaluate your plans and set new goals. Even if you only have time to walk for 20 minutes instead of 30, do it anyway. Any exercise is better than none at all. You may have a cold or the flu and miss a week’s worth of exercise. You may feel like you’ve failed and want to quit altogether. Give yourself a break. Exercise is a lifelong journey. You will fall off the workout wagon. The important thing is that you get back into your exercise routine with renewed enthusiasm.

We know we need to exercise. Exercise benefits the mind, body and soul. So, why is it so hard to workout regularly? Share your exercise tips with us. How do you get motivated to exercise?

Staying on the Path to a Balanced Life

path to balanced lifeWe all live in a crazy, hectic, fast-paced world. We are bombarded with different obstacles and challenges every day. It is a lifelong journey to become the best version of ourselves we can be.

There are temptations at every stage of your life that will pull you from the path to a healthy, balanced life. It may be as simple as taking a detour, or you may end up going down the completely wrong road.

As you prepare for a new year, it’s a good time to reflect on the changes you can make in 2013 to help you achieve a more balanced life.

Where are you on the path to balance?
What can you do to find balance now and create more balance in the future?

Depending on your age and the stage of your life, you will face different challenges and obstacles. You can adjust your priorities and your goals to find a healthy balance at each stage:

The Roaring 20s
In our 20s, we can be tempted to stay up too late, party too hard, take our families for granted, and neglect our finances and overall health. We want it all and think we are invincible. We have plenty of time to become grown-up and responsible. Yet, the habits we develop at this age will be the hardest to break as we grow older. Now is the time to develop healthy habits that will stick with you and help you maintain your balance as your life changes.

  • Start a regular exercise routine
  • Develop relationships that will stay with you the rest of your life
  • Create a financial plan now that will guide you into a comfortable retirement
  • Establish good habits now and avoid bad habits later

The Thrilling 30s
When you reach your 30s, you may have a spouse, young children, sleepless nights, a mortgage, and a dog. It’s even harder to keep everything in perspective. You may be working at a job you don’t especially like, but feel you have to keep it so you can buy all the things you want. You may feel a little lost and not really sure how you got to this place. Staying on the path to a balanced life can help you put it into perspective and get you back to living your best life.

  • Think about what is important to you – do you need to have all the “stuff” that everyone else has?
  • Learn to manage stress now – for your future health and sanity
  • Focus on getting enough sleep to improve your physical and mental well-being

The Fabulous 40s
By your 40s, you may have moody teenagers who are testing their boundaries and your patience. You are worried about paying for college. You may be eating poorly and struggling to find time to exercise. You are stressed out and running from one place to another – trying to squeeze in all your commitments and doing everything for everyone. This is a crucial time to keep on the path to a balanced life. Now more than ever, you need to:

  • Eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables
  • Continue to challenge yourself to make exercise part of your daily routine
  • Reconnect with your friends and nurture those relationships
  • Take time to do things that make you happy

The Freeing 50s and 60s
The kids may be grown up and out of the house. Now, it’s time to figure out what you want to do with the rest of your life. You may want to reconnect with your spouse, or you may find you have more time to help others.

  • Spend time getting to know your spouse again
  • Find a cause that you are passionate about and volunteer your time, provide your unique skills, or donate money
  • Evaluate your goals and think about what you want to accomplish in this phase of your life

To learn more about staying on the path to a balanced life at any age, check out the interactive book, A Completely Balanced Life, published by Remember Your Health.