Compliments of ulterior epicure via Flickr

In my last few blog postings, I’ve referred to Peter Walsh’s “all inclusive” approach to organizing. He suggests that taking care of ourselves is an essential aspect of organizing our lives. How often have you neglected this most important component of holistic living? Your own personal regimen should include healthy eating (difficult for me, because I’m addicted to sweets), regular exercise, yearly maintenance, and time for yourself.

In her book “What the Yuck: The Freaky and Fabulous Truth about Your Body” Dr. Raj describes examinations that individuals need across gender and age groups. Avoidance (because you are too busy) simply postpones the inevitable, and magnifies what would have been simple to correct. Taking care of yourself is especially important if you have others who depend on your care. Being in tip top shape mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually is the key to your being of service to those around you. We make sure to maintain our vehicles, our air conditioning units, and a multitude of other devices. As a complex machine, a six million dollar man or woman needs that much more attention.

It boils down in large part to personal discipline. Can you make a schedule and stick with it? Because it takes twenty one days to formulate a new habit, mastering your daily routine is imperative. In the same vein, we sometimes need to divest ourselves of activities that (while providing short term gains) drain us.

Moonlighting, too many extracurricular pursuits, and friends that are a bottomless pit fall into this category. Each of us has only so much to give at our optimum level. When we strain our resources, the result is evident in both how we feel and in what we achieve. This predicament begs the question: how to find your most productive level?

  • Make a list of all the projects in which you’re currently engaged (including your work). Does thinking about this list overwhelm you? Another tell-tale sign of too much is scheduling non-stop – too many hours/day, seven days a week. It’s hard to feel refreshed when you have obsessive focus.
  • Decide what you can eliminate -sometimes several chores must be fated for the chopping block. Was your quality of life better or worse before you assumed these additional work/responsibility/friendships? Now may be your time to return to equilibrium.
  • What is most important in your life? Not just things, but in the larger picture, the totality of your experience. Compare this listing with your items in #1. If there’s a discrepancy, you are focusing your efforts on pursuits that don’t contribute to your happiness.

Work like you don’t need the money. Love like you’ve never been hurt. Dance like no-one’s watching.

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All viewpoints expressed by Jackie Gilbert are her own, and not of her employer.

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