Let me introduce you to Leo. He was a 5 month old Collie / Alsatian cross when we rescued him last November. Now, just 8 months old he’s growing in confidence and character.
His confidence in us is growing, his confidence when he came across a stone lion, on the left, in the dusk wasn’t so high. He saw it out the corner of his eye, thought (or I think he thought) “PREDATOR RUN”.
And that he is what he tried to do. Unfortunately he was attached to me! In a split second I was on the pavement / road landing nose first, knees next! Leo was at the full extent of my right arm and lead away from me in the middle of the road.
The next day I carried on as normal, going for walks, going to his training lesson looking like I’d been 10 rounds with Mike Tyson to my face and with aching, very swollen knees! It’s just bruising I thought.
A week went by
Deciding to take time off from my part time role was a must, I wasn’t focussing I wasn’t concentrating and I was in pain.
ENOUGH I told myself!
I got a physio appointment and went for my assessment.
Turns out I’ve damaged both ligaments either side of my left knee as well as given myself a swollen fluid sack beneath the knee cap. Rest, Ice, Heat, a knee support and elevation were needed.
Time to put MYSELF first!
You’re longest serving, highest income generating client.
I need to put myself first for the next 5 weeks, no driving. Flat short pavement walks only. No holding Leos lead in case I twisted my knee when reacting to him.
Working with my clients about their time management mindset, I teach them all that you’re longest serving, highest income generating client is the same for them, as it is for me, as it is for you.
Without myself, you have no family, no friends, no business, no employment, no way of generating cash or servicing those you people you need to be there for.
I had to put MYSELF first. I reduced my part time hours, I worked sometimes from the sofa. I got lifts to my face to face networking events. I asked for help and support.
Everyone of my clients fully understood I need to put myself first.
So my question to you is
When did you last put MYSELF first?
Do comment or email me and let me know when you last put MYSELF first.
Want to be informed each month about what I’ve learnt from Leo about life and business? Then sign up here.
I had my 1st vaccination 5 hours ago and so far I’ve had no reactions at all. The injection itself was less painful than the Depo injection I have every 3 months. The fact the Depo is also injected into the muscle means I didn’t feel the pain, really.
My hubby by now was complaining of a sore arm, a fever, a headache amongst other things.
I don’t have medical training, this is just my thoughts.
I want to clarify, I don’t have medical training or nutritional training. These are my pondering on my choices, sharing some of the information I’ve been given and listen to. This me thinking about the things I do but my Hubby doesn’t and why I think they have helped me with my reactions so far.
Why am I sharing this?
I’ve seen other friends share on Social media and in very safe groups about how they have been affected by having the vaccine and if I can help someone I know to not have as bad a reaction as my Hubby, I really want to help them.
It’s not all about Genetics.
In my view it’s not all about my genetics, as a family member keeps insisting and the hubby keeps reiterating to me. The person saying this has no medical training, no training in genetics. They refuse ,as does my hubby, to accept it could be down to my choices of supplements, the fact I listen to friends who are on the front line and follow their advice.
What advice did I get?
This is written in the order I did things, not in order of preference or bias.
24 hours before your appointment.
PARACETAMOL My friend who works on the front line said to me, she had heard taking paracetamol for 24 hours before you have the jab (injection). I did this, don’t know if it made a difference, however when I’m given advice from someone on the front line who is around people with medical knowledge, as well as having medical knowledge themselves I’m going to listen.
SUPPORT YOUR IMMUNITY. As part of my daily routine I normally have 1 sachet of Immunity Support each day. In the 24 hours before my jab I upped this to 2. A single serving of this vegan food supplement pouche are a convenient way to get essential vitamins and minerals along with an instant pick me up any time or any place.
Drink more water. As a rule I already drink loads of water, I have a litre of water with a supplement that helps support cognitive performance including aspects like memory and learning and a supplement that delivers a blend of electrolytes to support isotonic balance and rehydrates cells to promote proper muscle function. In the morning especially if I’m on a heavy computer day as I need to keep hydrated when working at the computer.
1 hour before your appointment
Take 2 paracetamol, again I don’t know if this helped but as mentioned I didn’t find the injection painful nor has my arm become painful so maybe it does help.
Take 1 Sachet of the Immunity support. I took a sachet of my immunity support supplement an hour before so my body had time to absorb it.
After the appointment
Another friend of mine, who is a volunteer organiser for the vaccination appointments, advise taking regularly paracetamol for 24 / 48 hours after the appointment. They advised that the younger generation (40s) struggle more with the vaccination in general than the older generation, their own sons had a much more severe react than they did. They advised that paracetamol every 4 hours for 24 / 48 hours really helps with managing / reducing the symptoms.
4 hours after my appointment I took another sachet of immunity support sachet.
Currently (5 hours) after the injection
We’ve just got back from a dog walk, during which I called into Tesco to pick up some new food and some some fish to add to her current food to see if we can’t tempt her to eat it. We also needed a loaf, in case I do have worse symptoms tomorrow. I carried the shopping home, a mile and a half and have no pain in my arm.
I have no headache, I’m not shivering, I’m not feeling tired. I’m writing this watching the Eprix.
What do I differently to my hubby?
1 – Positive Mental Attitude.
My hubby has been telling me, “I’ll get worse” or “Your arm will start hurting later” or “You just wait”. Every time my response was “I’ll be fine”. The family member I mentioned earlier had been telling him since he got the date we would react badly and should expect to really struggle. I think he got into his head to expect nothing else.
I believe that a positive mental attitude and the self believe that you’ve done everything to help your body deal in the best way to jab is the huge part of the battle.
2 – Listen to people with knowledge.
Hubby listened to hearsay, his main advisor was someone with no medical training. The only experience they had a of being jabbed was their own and their partners.
I listened to people who are on the front line, have medical knowledge and took their advice.
3 – I use supplements
As a couple we do eat well, we cook most things from scratch using herbs from my garden and later on in the year we have salads and veg from the garden too. However I believe in putting myself first and I work with my clients on the easiest way to do this too.
So give my body the best chance to deal with the jab, the supplements I have used which my Hubby doesn’t have given my body the additional supplements of:
Naturally derived caffeine from Green Tea Leaf and Guarana Seed
Do they actually make a difference? I don’t know but I’m feeling a lot better than he was.
4 – Paracetamol Regularly
I have taken paracetamol regularly before and since my jab, my hubby only took it once he was feeling very ill.
5 – Ignore your arm
The more you focus on something, the more you subconscious focuses on it and the more you worry about what’s going on. My hubby was constantly looking at his arm, seeing if “he had stopped bleeding” or “if he’d got lunch” or “if it ached more”!
I have an arm, like I have a back, a bum, a neck, a face. Don’t focus on it and your subconscious won’t.
6 – Drink more water
There is no downside to drinking more water,
I’ve shared here what I’ve done differently to my hubby and I do believe that some, if not all of it, has meant I’ve had less a reaction to the jab.
It’s very easy to get rushed off your feet looking after the wants and needs of other people. This could be answering questions for colleagues at work, finishing tasks out-of-hours for a boss, making sure your children are fed, clothed and entertained. It could be helping a neighbour with their shopping or checking in on relatives who may have been self-isolating during lockdown.
To make sure you can carry on helping others it’s important to take care of yourself. When flying, there’s the safety talk at the start of the flight advising passengers to “put your own oxygen mask on first” and this makes sense. How can you look after someone else when you’re running out of air?
Luckily, help is at hand! You really don’t have to do everything yourself, all the time. Through collaboration with others, learning accountability and extra time management skills can make a big difference. I can help with these things, but I also wanted to share with you the power of looking after yourself through something as simple and straightforward as making time to treat yourself.
Detox and Relax
Making time in your diary to relax and recharge is a vital part of keeping the balance between being busy and being stressed. It’s great to be busy, jumping from one job to the next to the next. But it can be draining on your time and your energy and this is where scheduling in “relax and recharge” time is essential for your mental and physical health.
When we feel good, we enjoy life more. The knock-on effect of being happy often makes us more outgoing and more productive. We achieve more and look for new opportunities.
Make Time for Bath Time
This is my top tip today! At least once a month, make time to run yourself a deep bath and immerse yourself in warm water to soothe troubles away. Add a shake of Arbonne’s Rescue & Renew Detox Soak dissolving sea salt crystals into the mix and you’re set for an aromatic journey whisking you away from anything that’s playing on your mind.
Let the pure essential oils cleanse and revitalise your skin. With natural ingredients such as grapefruit, tangerine, lavender, juniper berry, orange, rosemary, dandelion, turmeric and ginger root, you’ll be transported into a luxurious blend of smells and senses revitalising you inside and out.
Find Out More
I’ve been using Arbonne products myself for many years and can thoroughly recommend the Rescue & Renew range of sensual, relaxing and revitalising ways to relax and recharge. The products are vegan, cruelty free, gynaecologic and allergy tested, meaning they can be used safely no matter your skin type or skin sensitivity.
I’m an Arbonne Consultant and can advise on health, nutrition and skincare, offering advice and accountability to help you achieve a healthy lifestyle with more energy to enjoy the things you love.
If you’d like to know more about Rescue and Renew products, or if you’d like a free 15 minute consultation to find out how being an Arbonne Consultant can make a big difference in your life, book in here.
Rachael Chiverton, Focus Guru – Giving You Your Time, Your Way
Does the thought of collaborating with one of your competitors make your blood boil? Is the mere thought of chatting with someone who does what you do make you want to run a mile? We’re often taught to be wary of competitors and to keep them at a safe distance.
Are you concerned if they know too much they’ll poach your customers? It’s possible they could steal your business and take away your turnover. You might worry they’ll undercut your prices or include extras you haven’t thought of. Maybe you’re worried they’ll drive you out of business?
Changing Your Mindset
Of course, it makes sense to watch your back when you encounter a competitor. You might meet at a networking event where you’re pitching for the same business from the same people. If you’re an independent consultant representing the same company, offering the same products, at the same prices, you might think it can leave little room for differentiating yourself. You might think, “how can I compete?”.
But, that’s where changing your mindset from competition to collaboration makes a big difference. Instead of stressing, you can relax. Rather than racing to be first to follow up each potential customer, you can take a step back and see the bigger picture.
Two Heads Are Better Than One
There genuinely is enough business for everyone and working together to achieve a common goal can be extremely satisfying. To be able to say to someone – “I can’t help with that, but I know someone who can”, or, “I’m fully booked this month, but have you tried speaking with…”, puts you in a powerful position to be remembered as the person who went out of their way to be helpful, rather than the person who wouldn’t share information.
Being able to outsource surplus work is another good reason to have names of competitors in your address book. Attending 4Networking meetings always generates fresh leads for me, and my competitors. Yet, people in the same industry can and do work together. I have realistic expectations and I’m always looking for ways to collaborate with others.
Unless you’ve invented something revolutionary, the chances are someone else will be doing what you do, or something similar to what you do. This happens in almost every industry across the world. It’s unlikely you’re the only plumber in town, or the only car salesperson, utility company, marketeer or life coach. If your business is network marketing, you’ll almost certainly meet a competitor at events. They may be from the same company or offer a similar product. Remember, there really is enough business to go round.
Having realistic expectations when meeting a competitor can open many doors to new customers and new opportunities. Instead of running them down, ignoring them, or being fearful of them, is there a way you could work together? Being open-minded to collaborating rather than competing gains respect and forges lifelong friendships.
I work with people who run businesses in many different sectors, from accountants, to IT companies, to freelance tradespeople, network marketeers and many more. Everyone has a common goal, to earn money to feed their family, provide a roof over their head, to afford nice things, and to grow their business.
I run Focus Guru Power Hour workshops via Zoom for individuals and teams to explore collaboration opportunities within your business sector. It all starts with an easy conversation about what you’d like to achieve. I’ll give you the tools you need to be confident in meetings when you meet someone who does what you do. Contact me on 07756 772950 to find out more.
Rachael Chiverton, Focus Guru – Giving You Your Time, Your Way
How many times have you started to do something and then something else grabs your attention and you forget all about the task you began? Then something else catches your eye and you stop and start something new. Then something else…
I call these “Squirrels”.
Squirrels are the activities which steal your time and energy away from ticking the items off your Achievement List. They’re subtly distracting you from your long term goals. It’s the “five minute phone call” that lasts an hour. It’s the “just a quick look” you promise someone. It could be receiving a Facebook notification saying you’ve been tagged in a photo, or a discount voucher email from your favourite shop. Anything that takes you away from what you wanted to get done.
Squirrels can take a minute, or an hour, or a day. While they undoubtably provide short term satisfaction and entertainment, let’s face it, squirrels are really cute, they can be a menace if you have a deadline to meet or a place you need to be.
Have you got a friend who’s always late when you arrange to meet up? Do you know someone who can’t stop checking their phone? Maybe you’re the person who seems to be here, there and everywhere? The reason could be squirrels!
This isn’t to be confused with being genuinely busy.
It’s perfectly possible to enjoy squirrels once you’ve achieved everything you wanted to get done. Sometimes what looks like a squirrel will become an important item on your Achievement List. But, things may not always go to plan. Things will crop up and take your attention. It could be a family emergency. It could be a client needs to rearrange a meeting. Things inevitably will happen outside our control.
This is where it’s essential to have the self-discipline to recognise what needs doing and what’s a squirrel. With great time management, accountability and outsourcing, it’s possible to achieve everything you want to do and still have time to have fun.
I’m a “Go To Person” who loves helping people improve time management and accountability skills. I work with individuals and teams, identifying your unique squirrels and creating innovative solutions to streamline your systems and processes. This might include suggestions for outsourcing or automating tasks which can be performed cheaper and quicker, leaving your time free to focus on what you need to do.
“Rachael is a FIREBALL! She understood my needs and got straight to the point. No messing about. Highly recommended!” Vernand Fong – Pain Free Ninja
With my Focus Guru services, I’ll guide you away from the distracting squirrels and help bring out the best in you and your employees.
Overwhelm doesn’t usually happen overnight. It can creep up on you over days, weeks, months or even years. It comes in tiny layers of stress, building in your mind and showing itself sometimes in physical form. That stiff neck and shoulders you’ve had all week. A recurring headache. General lethargy and loss of interest in your favourite hobbies.
Left untreated, overwhelm can lead to more serious physical and mental conditions. So, if you see signs of overwhelm in yourself or in your family, friends, colleagues or customers, then you may have an opportunity to act, intervene, assist or remove the cause of the stress and overwhelm.
Remember, it’s ok not to be ok.
Everyone has different tolerance levels. What seems easy to you may be difficult for someone else. While you learn how to do something new quickly, it might take someone else lots of practice. This can vary from social skills to practical tasks. It might be daunting attending a networking meeting, or filing your tax return, or driving on a motorway.
Everyone is different and we are all good at different tasks too. Overwhelm can cause us to doubt ourselves. A task you could do with your eyes closed suddenly seems complicated, you’ve forgotten the steps, or the directions, or the system or process. This can cause anxiety, stress, and panic.
Symptoms of overwhelm can include an increased temperature, sweating, quicker heartrate, shaking, irritability and insomnia. One of the key symptoms is our susceptibility to distractions (otherwise known as “Squirrels”). You might call it procrastinating, deferring, postponing, or messing around, but these are all side-effects of overwhelm.
There’s often a logical reason behind why you haven’t jumped at sending that email, or made that phone call, completed that purchase or done the next task on your achievement list.
I recognise my overwhelm when I am scrolling aimlessly through Facebook or find myself watching daytime TV. If I was mentally ready to do the tasks on my achievement list I wouldn’t stop for half an hour to scroll through what my friends had for dinner or where they’re going on holiday after lockdown. Online quizzes and polls wouldn’t catch my eye and I wouldn’t look at the clock and wonder where the last hour had gone.
Make time for yourself.
If you need to watch an hour of TV to unwind and relax, that’s ok. If you want to have a blitz of news from Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok and Instagram, that’s ok too. It’s when your list of important tasks gets set aside that you might feel overwhelm creeping up on you.
Perhaps you had a deadline to meet and now there isn’t time to get that report in for your boss. They won’t be happy and you can imagine their reaction when you have to tell them. This adds a layer of stress. Or maybe you had a client appointment to prepare for and now you’re winging it. You may be thinking you could have done better or worrying about what the client thinks of you and this could cause a layer of stress.
Allow plenty of time to achieve tasks on your list. Can you ask for more time if needed? The idea is to remove the layer of stress brought on by unreasonable deadlines and unexpected delays.
Keep an eye out for symptoms. Are you feeling rushed? Any physical signs? Do you need more skills or training? Could this task be delegated to someone else? Is there anyone you know who seems stressed, angry, tired, or tearful? These are common signs of overwhelm.
Look after your body as well as your mind. Simple suggestions include homecooked meals, drinking more water, having a good night of sleep. Making the time for seeing friends, exercising, and learning new skills is as important as meeting that deadline.
I know how overwhelm can cause short term and long term problems and I work with people from all over the country to help them recognise their symptoms of overwhelm. I can help put steps into place to reduce overwhelm in your business and personal life. If you’re juggling too much something will give.
Don’t let overwhelm run your life. If you find you’re bouncing from one task to another with no time to rest or relax please get in touch with me. I will help identify where you can carry on with what you’re doing and where it makes sense to outsource or delegate tasks. No task is too big or too small and if you feel overwhelmed, please give me a call.
Rachael Chiverton, Focus Guru – Giving You Your Time, Your Way
Have you ever stopped on a Sunday evening and wondered where the weekend has gone? Those 48 hours between Friday and Monday have vanished again without a trace. Have you felt frustrated about going back to work knowing there were things you wanted to do, people you wanted to see and places you wanted to go?
This is a really common situation and it doesn’t just apply weekends. It could be that week’s holiday you booked to catch up on home projects where the time drifted away. If you’re self-employed, it could be those few days waiting between projects where nothing seems to happen.
It’s important to recognise when your body is telling you it’s time to rest, relax and recharge. This is the time where your mind can process everything that’s happened and work through solutions to problems. Have you ever written down something that’s bothering you, gone to bed, and then the answer has presented itself to you the following day? Our minds have the extraordinary ability to solve almost anything with time and patience. Sometimes the more we think about something, the harder it becomes to think clearly. We can’t see the wood for the trees.
Some of the common signs telling us we need to slow down are feeling tired, slow, difficult to think or speak, loss of interest in hobbies, not wanting to see people and, if left untreated, this can start to affect our physical as well as our mental health. So, we can all agree it’s good to have downtime. But how can you make the best use of your downtime?
I’m talking about making the best use of this time, not treating downtime as work or a chore. I hope you will turn your downtime into time you take for yourself. I want to help you feel as though the time has been well-spent and not wasted.
The first step is to know when your downtime is coming. It could be looking forward to the weekend, or it could be a random day off if a client cancels a meeting or if a project is postponed.
The second step is to know what you want to achieve in your downtime. For me, I like to take a break from work to walk my dog, Missy. She enjoys the time we spend together, and I love being out in the fresh air walking in my local park. After our walks I always feel revitalised and ready to take on new tasks.
Another form of downtime for me is helping Mum with her weekly shopping. Before lockdown we would do this together, spending an hour going to the supermarket and then I would help unpack and put the food away afterwards. This usually involved a cup of tea, some biscuits, and a good catch up. Now I carry out the food shop and have the cup of tea and catch up standing outside while she packs things away.
As well as my routine of walking Missy and helping Mum, I have also added some personal projects to my Achievement List of things I would like to do. One of these is to carry out the scanning and filing of many thousands of photographs I’ve taken over the years. From a hard drive filled with random images, I am slowly working through labelling and organising the photographs into categories, holidays, people, and events. This has been on my list of things to do for a long time and it feels good to take the time to put things in order.
The third step is to put this into practice. So, the next time you have a spare half hour, half day, a week, or any period of spare time, have something ready to achieve. You’ll feel better about going back to work if you have achieved something in your downtime. It could be something as simple as making a phone call to a friend, or organising your photographs, or going on that day trip you promised yourself. But make the time to do something for yourself during your downtime and it will pay off in many different ways. You’ll feel re-energised, and ready to take on new tasks.
If you need a boost to help keep yourself relaxed and calm at work or at home, I can recommend the new calming products from Arbonne. These botanically based natural healers offer a truly relaxing experience. As the name suggests, Arbonne’s InnerCalm and SuperCalm remedies are perfect to help you relax from the inside to the outside, taking care of your wellbeing and giving your body the opportunity to become revitalised and ready for new adventures.
For help making the best use of your downtime or to find out more about the relaxing remedies, please book your free 15 minute call. I specialise in helping business owners streamline tasks and processes to free up your time and energy for the things you enjoy the most.
For any company to reach a 40 year anniversary is a huge milestone, but this year it’s even more special for Arbonne because this is the year they have been awarded B Corporation Certification recognising the highest standards delivered by the company.
I am proud to be a brand ambassador for this amazing company. Every year I fall in love with it a little bit more. The ethos, products and community are second to none!
My involvement as an Arbonne Independent Consultant enables me to meet people from all walks of life, from all business types and cultural backgrounds. Arbonne brings people together. It’s not just about selling the beauty, health and wellbeing products, it’s about creating a supportive community with a holistic approach to life.
Arbonne health and skincare products are suitable for men and women of all ages. The plant-based products are 100% vegan, cruelty-free and backed by years of scientific and clinical research. I’ve been fortunate to follow my clients on their journey using Arbonne products and have seen first-hand the health and healing process.
B Corporation Certification is awarded to companies that meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose. Arbonne balances people, planet and profit to deliver outstanding results.
For Arbonne to achieve B Corporation Certification, strict criteria have been met. Arbonne is one of the top five largest companies in the personal care industry to achieve this recognition. A pioneer in creating clean, plant-based products, Arbonne focuses on a holistic approach to healthy living that improves the mind, body and skin.
As an Arbonne Independent Consultant I am able to bring the power of positive mindset alongside sustainable solutions to help you look better on the outside and feel better on the inside. This combination is vital for business owners to maintain energy levels and achieve the best use of your time through making better decisions in health and nutrition.
The best part for me is working with you to free up your time and energy. I can help make small changes which will make a big difference. Wouldn’t it be great to be more productive during your working hours and still have plenty of time to spend with your friends and family and on the things you enjoy the most?
To find out more, please give me a call on 07756 772950.
We’re nearly a quarter of the way through 2020 already. The year is flying past and it feels a long way since the cold, dark months in January. The days are getting lighter and there’s the hint of Spring in the air.
This made me think back to my January New Year Resolutions and I wondered how many of my friends have stuck to the goals they set. Resolutions to stop smoking, lose weight, eat healthy food, to exercise more, to travel more, everyone chose something different.
It was easy in January with the new year momentum propelling changes in both personal life and at work. But how many resolutions have slipped by the wayside. It is likely many cigarettes have been smoked, extra pounds have been gained and gym membership cards are gathering dust in wallets and purses. The signs of our failed resolutions exist in many ways. But it doesn’t have to be like this.
I’m a firm believer of looking after myself from the inside to the outside. I’m more conscious than ever about the food I choose and making sure I take regular exercise. It helps because I’ve got an energetic dog who loves to walk in the park. She keeps me motivated, even when it’s raining. We go out every day and I always feel better for it.
Another way I look after myself is using the “30 Days to Healthy Living Program” from Arbonne. For those of you who know me well, you’ll know I’m an Arbonne Independent Consultant, an ambassador for Arbonne products. I truly believe these products work and cannot recommend them highly enough.
The 30 Days to Healthy Living Program is surprisingly easy, simple to follow and achieves great results by building new habits to improve life-long health.
More Engaged in Life
Using the 30 Days to Healthy Living Program, you’re embarking on a health journey that will rest your liver and kidneys to maximise their function. You’re not on your own. The program includes the tools and knowledge to increase awareness of food types and how they interact with your body and work with or against your lifestyle.
It’s a gentle program scientifically engineered to bring out the best in your body, to give you more energy, focus, motivation and zest for life.
If you’re feeling heavy, anxious, irritable or tired, this program can help. If your joints ache, your movement is limited and it’s hard to focus during the day, the 30 Days program can help.
I’ve seen first-hand how this program literally transforms lives. Lethargy becomes vitality. Anxiety turns to confidence and uncertainty and fog turns to focus and clarity.
The best part of the 30 Days to Healthy Living Program is how easy it is to implement alongside your current lifestyle. If you would like to find out more, please give me a call on 07756 772950.
This blog is focusing on my personal journey which I talk about in presentations and in 4Sights at 4Networking meetings. I’d like to share some of the steps I’ve taken to get to where I am today. I hope my experiences will help you take control of your lifestyle, your time and your income. There are many opportunities available which easily fit around your current commitments.
It’s said on average humans make 35,000 decisions every day. Many of these decisions are made at home before we even think about going to work. For example, a typical man makes 3 decisions when choosing which shirt, trousers and socks to wear. In comparison, a woman might make 10 or more decisions including clothing, make-up, jewellery and accessories. That’s before choosing whether to have toast or cereal with tea, coffee or orange juice. So, it’s easy to see how the number of decisions each day adds up to tens of thousands of micro-decisions taking place every few seconds.
Can you imagine what it would feel like if each of these micro-decisions took several minutes to make? This is known as “Decision Fatigue” and it’s a sign our brains have become overloaded. Simple tasks become agonisingly difficult. It’s where molehills become mountains. It can feel like you’re walking through treacle. Over time, decisions can take longer and longer, until the difficulty of making a choice becomes painfully slow, causing stress symptoms, anxiety and depression.
One tip I can offer is to lay out the clothes you want to wear tomorrow as one of your last tasks before bed. In the morning everything will be ready, and you’ll have a few less decisions to make.
Our decisions have a huge impact on our lives. To do, or not to do, that is the question.
In my teenage years, I had an incredibly tough decision to make. At age 18, from a busy, active and energetic life, playing hockey at club level, swimming at county level, canoeing, playing the violin, viola and singing in voice choirs, always on the go, suddenly the backache I’d been ignoring became serious. I was given a terrible decision to make. To undergo high risk surgery or live the rest of my life in a wheelchair.
I chose surgery and after a successful operation on the 14th of October 1997 I spent 5 weeks in hospital relearning how to stand, how to walk and how to climb stairs. With the metal rods in my back, even now, I sometimes feel like a cyborg. My recovery took months of physio plus lots of support from my family and friends. Instead of the super-active lifestyle I was used to, I took up gardening, cycling and joined an orchestra. I made the decision to love the new life I had been given.
Around 15 years later, I aggravated my back slipping down some stairs. I was in agony. I had a beautiful garden that needed my attention, yet I could hardly move from the sofa. Without my care, the precious plants I’d nurtured from seeds would wither and die. They became my motivation.
Again, I had choices. Should I ask my husband to help water the plants? That was an option, but previous experience told me the plants would probably die. Should I give up? In this option, the plants would certainly die. The third option was to find a way around this. To find a viable solution.
I chose the third option. There would be a way around this problem. I just needed to find it.
To aid the recovery from my back injury, the best advice was to walk and to increase my walking every day. Once I was walking freely and unaided, I started carrying some weights around with me to build up my strength and resilience. I didn’t have traditional weights, so I made my own. I used a 2 litre bottle of water.
At first, I only filled the bottle enough so I could water one of my plants. I chose the one plant that meant the most to me. The one I wanted to help survive while I was recovering myself. Having given the plant enough water, I refilled the bottle, again just a small amount, but enough to water the next plant. It took time and patience, but in the second week I could fill the bottle enough to water 2 plants in one go. Then in the third week, I filled the bottle enough to water 3 plants. Then within a month I could fill the whole 2 litre bottle and carry it around. It was enough to make sure I didn’t lose all my garden.
It wasn’t extra money or time at the gym that helped my garden to flourish. It was the power of the 2 litre bottle of water. It gave me the strength to build up my muscles without straining my back. I regained my posture and my confidence.
Seeing the plants thrive in the garden reminded me of the power of water.
As humans, we benefit just as much as plants from drinking water. Keeping ourselves hydrated throughout the day is like putting fuel in a car. It’s like recharging a mobile phone. If you find yourself lagging during the day, if your eyes itch or you are easily distracted, take a few sips of water.
You’ll find when you’re properly hydrated, decisions are easier to make. You’ll have more energy and feel more awake. I can also recommend cutting back on tea and coffee, these drinks will dehydrate you during the day. If you need help remembering to drink more water, set an alarm or ask me to be your accountability buddy.
This is how 2 litres of water helped in my recovery from my back injury and gave me the tools to help my garden survive. Water has helped build my strength and my confidence. It helps maintain my health and has been massively beneficial for me in many ways. I believe every problem has a resolution and I enjoy thinking outside the box, finding solutions for myself and my clients.
What simple thing in everyday life has helped you?
“Rachael is an excellent 4Sighter! I recently saw her 4Sight at Leek Breakfast and her story really made me reflect on ways I can stay focused when working from home. I’m now more aware of the breaks I’m taking and I’m making a conscious effort to drink more water! Thanks Rachael!” – Sarah Spicer, The English Coach, Macclesfield.
If you would like to hear my 4Sight in person with more details about my journey, surgery, recovery, the plants and the solutions I find for others, please give me a call on 07756 772950.