Here to the New Year in Good Cheer – Day 4 – Plan D

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It’s Day 4 of the Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge and today the letter “D” will be directing the show.
Words beginning with “d” are drenched with determination as if daring us to do something difficult, daunting, or demanding. 
Let’s face it, Darling, dealing with the holidays can be discombobulating.
So what do you do?
Well, my answer to everything these days (okay, maybe every day since the 80s) is disco. 
Before you dis this idea, don your earbuds or headphones, dive into the video, and discover for yourself how this dazzling display of dorkiness dispels any doubt that dancing develops the necessary dossier to deal with drama. 
A few of my distinguished friends and followers have agreed to be featured in this divine dance with me. Tom, Terry, Bob, and Barbi have demonstrated that disco never dies. I’m sure you will agree they are dynamite.
For more fun than Dominick the Donkey, drop in on the folks at JibJab  and let them help you make a decidedly different holiday card that will delight family and friends and delineate your card from dozens of others this year.
If that doesn’t drown you in good cheer, come back tomorrow when I dole out more advice with the letter “E” as our guide.
Dare to share your dancing dreams in the comments below. Be sure to click here to register for door prizes and other goodies dispersed throughout the challenge. A link will be provided so you can download your Holiday Survival Guide once you register.
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Rhythm is Gonna Get You

Black metronome with guitar and several notes on the wooden background
 
It’s Day 30 of our Get Stuff Done 1×31 Challenge. Today’s challenge is to notice how rhythm plays a part in how you do things. This is a subtle but essential ingredient to be aware of in establishing the ebb and flow of your days. Not to mention your relationships with other people.
When I used to live alone and work from home, I didn’t notice rhythm much. For the most part, I moved at the pace of grace.  I call it the Goldilocks gait –not too fast, not too slow. Just right.
But when the firefighter moved in, with his lightening quick reflexes and urgent call to action impulses, I became acutely aware of the tortoise and hare situation we had on our hands. I also knew that rhythm was going to get us and lead to our demise if we didn’t learn to adjust to each other’s approach to getting stuff done.
I’m not saying we’re dealing with the sloth situation in Zootopia, but I’m sure it feels that way to Bob sometimes. On the other hand, because of slow and steady progress (1×31), the tortoise did win the race in Aesops’ famous fable.
I’m the first one to admit there are times when time is of the essence. There is a need for speed. The sooner the better. Fast and furious. Now or never. Life or death.
Just rapidly writing those words stressed me out a little.
Because what I’ve learned and what Erin Stutland has incorporated in her ingenious workouts is this.

What you seek, is also seeking you. What is meant for you will not pass you. Broadcasting fear or scarcity does not bring you peace or abundance. Consequently, my motto is to act with intention and do with deliberation.

If you’re not sure what I mean, experiment. Trying pushing yourself to do things at a faster or slower speed than you normally would. Try adding more things to your schedule or taking a few items off your list. How does this make you feel? Anxious? Irritable? Accomplished?
Sometimes we need to adjust our rhythm or our pace to work effectively with a team. Sometimes we need to adjust it when we’re touring with a group, taking a family vacation, involved in a special project, or participating in a Get Stuff Done 1×31 Challenge.
Some days you may not even know what leads to your undoing. For me, it usually comes down to time and space. I need breathing room and I need time to just be, create, observe, marvel, write, read, learn, laugh, and process what just happened. When I over-schedule myself or allow my world to get too cluttered, I get cranky.
You’ve just given yourself the gift of 30 days to discover how you get stuff done. With just one day left in our challenge, what do you really want to get done without pushing or forcing or “shoulding” on yourself?
I’d love to hear how rhythm impacts you and what your favorite thing about this challenge has been. Share your comments below or email me at penny@wellpower.com.
Oh, and don’t forget to add this to today’s playlist. 🙂
 
 

Take Stock of What You've Got

kids in autumn park counting and choosing leader
It’s Day 15 of the Get Stuff Done 1×31 Challenge and today’s challenge is to take stock of what you’ve got.
This morning as I was transferring my shirts from their bulky plastic hangers to their luxurious slim velvet ones, I realized I had an opportunity to take stock of what I’ve got. How many shirts do I really need?  How many of them spark joy?
A year ago I read Marie Kondo’s wildly popular book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and took her advice to heart. I ruthlessly cleaned my closet, kitchen, garage, basement, bathroom, and office using the “Does it spark joy?” question as my guide.
Although I felt quite successful then, it now appears as though I need to go through the whole process again.

Taking inventory is an essential task that dictates the action that is to follow.

Although I’d like to think I have a fairly accurate idea of the people, places, and things in my life, the reality is my perception is skewed. Especially when it comes to my favorite things.
I seemed to have lost sight of how many journals, pens, books, scarves, shoes, dog toys, exercise equipment, Buddhas, bracelets, containers, and now hangers I actually have. So, it’s time to give some of it the heave-ho.
The thrill of getting rid of my stuff now rivals the thrill once reserved for getting it in the first place.
The paring down, the letting go, and the shedding of my skin that seems so insistent during these 31 days of Getting Stuff Done prepare me to move more mindfully and purposefully in the months ahead.
As an educator, August and September feel more like the beginning of a new year to me than January.  All of this last minute sorting, stewing, inventorying, and doing in July helps me sort out what stays and what goes as I move forward in my life, get my groove back, and become the badass I keep telling myself I am.
Taking stock of what I’ve got helps me come clean as to who I am and what I need to succeed. Knowing this has huge impact on how I proceed. Because I am not the same person I was a year ago. What worked wonders for me then may not work for me now.
And that’s the amazing thing about being alive. You just never know.
In my latest attempt to understand and appreciate the male species I was listening to Sam Keen’s excellent audiobook, Fire in the Belly.  In it Sam talks about having a conversation with his friend Howard Thurman who said, “There are two questions a man must ask himself: The first is ‘Where am I going?’ and the second is ‘Who will go with me?’  If you ever get these questions in the wrong order, you are in trouble.”   
As you take stock of what you’ve got, may your answer to these questions spark the kind of joy that helps you discard what you no longer need with the greatest of ease.
Share if you dare in the comments below.  Or email with your stories at penny@wellpower.com.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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