Posts In: business stress

I love to brainwash myself with positive messages. I haven’t watched, listened to, or read the news much in years.

Do I miss out on important events? I don’t think so. In fact, well-wishing people often inform me of things they think I should know that I’d rather not know.  Between Facebook, friends, and clients I haven’t missed a major crises yet. (Unless of course I missed it and don’t know.)

Instead of feeding my brain (and therefore my body, emotions, energy, and mind) a daily dose of what’s-wrong-with-the-world-scary-stuff I feed myself a daily dose of feel good. Actually I “eat” feel good message multiple times a day and from different sources. I do believe in variety in my diet after all.

Here are a couple of my favorite free sources.

Emails from God

Many days I get emails from both God and the Universe. Actually the emails are from Neale Donald Walsh in the form of “I Believe God Wants You to Know” and from Mike Dooley via “A Note from the Universe.”

Here’s one recent message from the Universe.

“No matter how things seem, Sharon, hope is near and love is present.

In the house,

The Universe”

Want to know what God had to say?

“On this day of your life, dear friend, I believe God wants you to know that life was meant to be FUN! It’s hard to believe sometimes, but it’s true. It’s all about point of view.”

Both are free. Sign up for Mike’s emails at and get Neale’s messages at

Any regular uplifting and inspiring messages you dose your brain with? Share them here.

Boost you and your business by learning more.

First I want to give a disclaimer about this tip. Learning more can be an excuse or a distraction from taking action.

I know because I’ve used it that way myself.

And I’ve coached more than one person who’s explored the option of additional training because they’re not reaching their business goals. And they haven’t even explored the reason for they’re not reaching their goals.

Sometimes lack of knowledge is not the reason for lack of success.

While Learning can be used to distract you from your goals, it should also be part of your success support team.

 Benefits of learning include:

  • Improves your self-esteem.
  • Increases your ability to accomplish tasks with greater ease.
  • Affirm what you already know. I’ve taken a number of business trainings in the past seven years. It’s helpful to attend a class and walk away saying “Hey, I know this stuff.”
  • Helps you determine your path. I took a website design class so I could put together my first website. While I learned I “could” put together a site, I also learned that creating a quality site took more expertise than I wanted to develop. I learned that this was a job for me to outsource.
  • Create opportunities for connection. Whether the class is live, a teleclass, or online the opportunity for connection exists. Connecting with other like-minds and hearts (as well as mind and hearts that bring a different perspective) is one of my favorite reasons for attending and leading classes.
  • Learning is good for your brain. Those new neural pathways open new options for you.
  • Fun. I’ll admit not all learning opportunities are designed to be fun. But well designed and well-chosen classes should bring pleasure, not pain.
  • Everything on this list can help you reduce stress and feel more balanced.

Plenty of reasons to learn and no shortage of learning opportunities 

So how do you choose the best one for you?

When I’m looking at a learning opportunity for a client or myself I use several criteria.

1. Look for the holes. Are there areas where you struggle, where more information would increase your effectiveness and the quality of your work? Even if, like me with the website class, you decide it’s not your thing, you’ll be more prepared to find the right person for outsourcing.

2. Look for the joy. What do you find yourself getting excited about? What do you currently do that you’d like to do more of? Love a particular kind of bodywork? Enjoy groups more than one-on-one? Because I enjoyed using essential oils in my own life and during massage I decided to get more training. Now I use aromatherapy during coaching, classes, and massage.

Your action

Answer the two questions above and then, find the perfect class (or let it find you.)

One other disclaimer about this topic. As a training junkie I’ve learned that time for integration is just as important a learning. Learn well, have fun, and don’t forget the marinating step before leaping into your next training.

What have you learned recently? What benefits has learning bestowed on you?

My plan was to complete and post 2 blog posts on the train. That should be easy since I had 4 hours between Salem and Seattle.

Tech intervenes

I love technology and all it allows me to do.  But sometimes it just doesn’t come through. While I had internet access on the train (which I think is pretty cool,) wordpress and Ipad don’t talk nicely. 

I was productive, but the bottom line is that I wasn’t able to complete what I’d planned. And because I’ve promised you a cool tool every week I felt stressed about not completing this task. 


My muscles tensed. My breath got shallower. I felt anxious. I tried to find a work around, trying apps for different browsers, etc.

But in the end I didn’t find a workable solution and had to let my plans go.

Once I released my plan I could relax and work on something else. But until then the plan held my energy and attention captive.

 When Imperfect is Perfect

Accepting an outcome that was less than perfect reduced my stress level greatly. I’m pretty sure posting my blog post a couple weeks late harmed no one.

I love Dr. Brene´ Brown’s take on this subject. Watch this five-minute video of her speaking about The Gifts of Imperfection. She mentions feeling like we’re not enough, authenticity, the need to set boundaries and how these effect our energy level.

Want more? Check out her book by the same name. I just bought it and am looking forward to reading it. Anyone out there read it? What did you think?


Have the issues of trying to be perfect and not feeling like you’re enough ever tapped you on the shoulder? Share your thoughts and experiences here.


Do you have a file where you keep the instruction manuals for equipment your business owns?

Go ahead and pull out the manual titled “Business Owner’s Manual.” On page one you’ll find a list of “Do’s.”

Check out number one. “For optimal functioning business owner must move on a regular basis. Lack of movement will decrease effectiveness and life of business owner.”

Too much butt in chair time?

If you perform work that has you sitting on your butt, then this article is for you. Even if your work has you moving most of the time, there are still times when your butt is the chair or car seat for prolonged periods. Working on your business plan, creating marketing materials, emailing clients or colleagues… They’re all typically done with butt in a chair.

The human body is not meant to sit for long periods of time. This is not news to you as your body has already provided notice of this information anytime you’ve ignored this rule. Ask anyone who’s ever made a transcontinental flight.

Fitting it in to your day

woman swimming in the poo

One thing I help people with is finding ways to incorporate more movement into their days. Personally I’m challenged by sitting for long periods of time. Had ADHD been a popular diagnosis when I was in grade school I probably would have acquired the label. (Instead I got notes on my report card like “Doesn’t work up to potential” and “Talks too much in class.”)

The upside for me is that I have sought out ways to incorporate movement into my life. Long before we were told to move more on airplanes to keep from getting blood clots I was doing “plane yoga.”

Worth the move

But don’t take my word for it. The advantages of moving (look back at your owner’s manual if you don’t believe me) are many.

  • More energy
  • Better focus
  • Less anxiety
  • Enhanced sleep
  • Decrease stress
  • Improve immune function
  • Decrease high blood pressure
  • Burn more calories
  • And more!

You can keep it simple. Some people I’ve worked with have incorporated a single stretch paired with a regular activity into their day. A client I talked with the other day has started doing standing yoga poses while talking on the phone.

Treadmill desk

You can also get equipment that will help you in your movement quest. Treadmill desks range from the high priced ($1000’s) to the self-constructed. I tried to rig up a treadmill desk with our treadmill, but given the configuration of our treadmill I couldn’t ever get the ergonomics right. My arms fell asleep after about 15 minutes.

Here’s a link with from a blog post about how to make your own treadmill desk for $39.

My favorite at Amazon.

Google treadmill desk and you’ll find more info.

Saying goodbye to the treadmill

I gave up on the treadmill desk with the treadmill we owned. But I’m not easily deterred. I tried a small stair stepper. That works okay, but it takes more focus than the treadmill.

Enter Fit Desk

Now I have a Fit Desk. Think spinning bike with a computer tray. It’s an affordable $220, folds up, and is lightweight. The seat is pretty comfy for a bike seat. Assembly was easy.  While it’s a low-tech piece of equipment (large rubber bands hold your laptop in place) the bike feels really sturdy.

Now it’s your turn. How can you incorporate more movement in your workday?

At the beginning of a yoga class I ask students if there’s anything they want to focus on—a pose, a part of their body, an emotion…

I had a student; I’ll call her Beth, who always asked for corpse pose. And she wanted to do it for the entire class. Yoga’s corpse pose or savasana is the final resting pose at the end of class.

Beth not only joked about wanting to spend the entire class in this pose, she also requested milk and cookies as it reminded her of nap time at pre-school.

Why Beth was right

Our western culture values action over rest. And subscribing to that philosophy contributes to your stress, tight muscles, sleepless nights, upset stomach…. Corpse pose offers you a great place to practice non-doing, to experience deep rest.

Even though the pose reminded Beth of a nap, your goal is to stay awake and be aware. The resting of corpse pose offers profound effects. You can enhance the effects by

  • Making sure you’re not going to be cold.
  • Using an eye bag to block out light.
  • Finding a quiet place where you won’t be disturbed.
  • If you have a time restriction, then set a quiet alarm. I like the cricket sound on my phone.
  • Practice regularly.

How to Be a Good Corpse

To practice corpse pose, come on to your back. Your legs are about hip distance apart. Place your arms by your sides, palms face up. If your low back is uncomfortable with your legs extended, then place your feet on the floor, a little further than hips distance apart, and lean your knees on each other.

Once you’re in the pose draw your focus to your breath. Continue to watch your breath until you’re ready to come out of the pose. Then roll on to one side. Stay there for a few breaths. Let the relaxation of the pose come with you as you transition back to a seated position.

Great for long workdays, travel, any time when your stress level is too high. Use it for recovery. Use it for prevention. Give it a try and then share your experience. What did you notice?


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