When I woke up the first morning in July, I was shocked that the year had flown by so quickly. I’m not sure if you suffer from the same sensation. (Some say it’s a sign I’m getting older – haha!) When that happens, I immediately gravitate to asking myself if I had accomplished all that I had planned. It was a “No” this year.
This year, however I’ve decided to “pump my brakes” before diving headfirst into a “I’m so disappointed in myself” conversation and think instead of how I want my July and the remainder of my year to unfold and spend time thinking about what went right so far this year.
The remainder of this year I’m committed to stopping before I expect more of myself than is humanly possible to accomplish (as in it requires more hours than we all have!). Far too often when we look backward, we are only focused on the “could have, should have, would have’s” instead of “what did I learn from that experience and how can I apply it to what I do today, tomorrow and in the future?”. If you haven’t noticed – this blog is a day late and I’m giving myself the grace that that’s ok since yesterday was a holiday afterall!
The theme I’ve selected for our 3rd Quarter blog and activities at JennQuest is Relax & Reset. What I’m focusing on personally and for JennQuest over the next few months will be connected to our theme.
When was the last time you truly relaxed? We are in mid-summer and most try to take some scheduled vacation time during this season. If you are, do you have a real plan to Relax? I know traveling to do site-seeing or as a large family may not always include much time for pure relaxation. If you’re looking at your itinerary and it exhausts you – consider plugging in a free afternoon to really relax – no boxes to check or tasks to complete. If busy in a different way brings you joy, you might still find the busy on vacation relaxing.
This year, I’m taking off for 2 weeks. I’ve not enjoyed two weeks off for quite a few years and my goal is to only be focused on relaxing with “my toes in the sand” for a big portion of the trip. I’m road tripping back to Maryland to see friends and get in some much-needed time to relax – no boxes to check or tasks to complete!
Taking time off from work is a key component of living a healthier longer life. Some experts suggest that you really need at least 8 days to be enough time to truly relax while on vacation. If you read that and think to yourself – “I can’t take that much time off from work” - ask yourself why? If time off is limited due to number of days you have available that are paid – what can you do to include weekend time when you would have been off to get your 8 days?
If you’re fearful of what might go undone or “blow up” when you’re away from work – ask yourself why? If you’re a leader that can’t take time off because no one else knows how to do your job or you don’t have a back-up, make empowering or coaching your back-up a priority. You must make time to relax. If you don’t, the “blow up” might be you losing it because of overwhelm.
You Deserve the opportunity to Relax!
Once we’ve relaxed and recharged our bodies and minds so that we are human and happy, we can then look at what we need in order to Reset and begin tackling the priorities for the remainder of the quarter or year. Your rested mind will allow you to look at whatever is on the list with fresh eyes.
Resetting isn’t about starting over; it allows time to examine your goals to determine if they are relevant and reprioritize. When we set our goals, we should build in the option to reevaluate them at least once per year. This mid-point mark is a great time to do just that. Things frequently change at work and in our lives and by making time to review your goals and pick your current priorities you can Reset.
Set yourself up for success by being realistic on what you can accomplish in the time you have. John C. Maxwell wrote that he “plans for double to stay out of trouble”. Using that philosophy – if something you think might take you 2 hours to complete – plan for it taking 4 hours. You can see very quickly how important it is that you build in a little margin so that you can accomplish your goal, but do it realistically. I struggle with thinking I can do more in the time I have than I really can, so I might even need to multiply by 3!
When you’re resetting – remember that anything you don’t feel is a priority today, doesn’t mean it can’t be revisited in the future. Keep a “future” list somewhere so you can go back to it, but help yourself visually by removing anything from lists or planners that is now on that “future” list. Taking it off the to-do list will make room for you to spend your thinking and planning energy on your priorities.
Resetting should also include time reset your mindset. Consider making note of the things you tell yourself and examine them for truth. We need time to reflect in our relaxation so that we can address any mindset items that are working against us. Review our previous blogs on mindset to determine steps you can take to reset your thinking and thoughts.
JennQuest Book Club
For the 3rd quarter we’ve picked 3 books that we’re excited to read. They lean towards a more autobiographical genre with elements that support some relaxing (maybe even waterside reads) and elements on resetting our thinking.
July: The Light We Carry by Michelle Obama
August: Finding Me by Viola Davis
September: The Moment of Lift by Melinda Gates
We plan to continue our scheduled discussions on the last Tuesday of the month at 6:30pm CST. We hope to host at least one in-person this quarter. Look for details coming soon on date and location. Register to attend our online discussions on Zoom: https://bit.ly/JennQuestBookClub .
Tell us your plans to Relax and Reset in 3rd quarter. Share by becoming a site member to comment below. We hope you make time for some relaxation and allow yourself the opportunity to reset!