5 Out of the Box Ways to Cut Your Stress!

Dramatically Cut Your Stress !

Yesterday was National Stress Awareness Day  in the United States. ( It probably has something to do with taxes being due.) And April is Stress Awareness month.  There's no better time to tackle stress, which is still rampant.  Over $300 billion is lost annually in American business due to stress, in terms of poor productivity, absences and illness.  Over 80% of all doctors' visits are due to stress.  So what can you do to cut your stress?

5 Out of the Box Ways to Reduce Stress

flowers cut stress1. Flowers in the workplace benefit everyone! Women who receive flowers unexpectedly are happier, even 3days later. Women with flowers have less anxiety and and are more innovative at work, whether the flowers were sent to them or not! (Health.com)

2.  Listening to music 1 hour a day a week reduced symptoms of depression by 25%. Music, especially classical music, can cut stress dramatically. Anxious about an upcoming meeting or project? Listening to Pachelbel's famous Canon in D helps avoid anxiety and lowers heart rate and blood pressure. Music can also elevate mood, improve immune system function, reduce fatigue and improve self-acceptance in people. (Journal of Advanced Nursing study)

3. Screaming kids in the car? Vanilla oil soothes restless children. It has a positive impact on the limbic center of the brain, which controls emotion, according to Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. A few drops on the wrists of a child can transform a cranky, whiny child into one who is happy and laughing. Try this on your next road tri .

4.  Eat walnuts to cut your stress and treat depression. Harvard Science Review published a study citing that walnuts are powerful antidepressants!  Pistachio nuts cut inflammation, lower cholesterol levels, and improve your body’s response to stress. Just 1.5 ounces of pistachios provides a boost of energy and can slow the absorption of carbohydrates when eaten together.

5. Soak your legs to cut your stress and sleep better. A study from the Journal of Physiological Anthropology found that women who soaked their legs up to their knees in hot water for 30 minutes slept better than those who did neither. No time for a bath? Try running warm water on your wrists.

"Stress spelled backwards is desserts." Loretta Laroche

Yes, we live in a stressful world.  But there are dozens of small things you can do today to cut your stress and the stress of others. Try these and let me know how they work for you.

Snowden

 

photo credit:©Valerie Titoval/Dreamstime.com

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Become Your Best Self

Lincoln had a tremendous capacity for personal growth - more than any other American President.  Henry Louis Gates

Two friends helping towards personal growthAre You Who You Want to Be? The Personal Growth Opportunity

If you died tomorrow, what regrets would you have?  Were you the person you wanted to be for your spouse, your friends, your children, your co-workers,

and your employees?  There's always time to change and for personal growth, and nothing works better than the present to start.

How to Develop Yourself

Accept and Forgive I learned the hard way many years ago that righteous indignation against people who have wronged you will only hurt you. It certainly backfired for me.  Once I learned to accept what had happened, forgive myself and forgive others, I experienced a freedom I had never known.  Your don't forgive for the other person, you forgive for yourself. Try it.

Stop Faking  So many of us have been plagued by the fraud syndrome, where we tried to be someone we weren't. Have you ever spent time with someone, only to discover they were nothing like who you thought they were?  Many people put up a facade, but it always falls away at some point and the real person shows up.  Why waste all that time and energy? ? Just be yourself. Always.

• Work on Your Health - That means every aspect of your health, emotional, mental, physical, spiritual.  Develop yourself.  I have found that exercising nearly every day has made a huge difference in my emotional well-being. Meditation and prayer are important aspects of my life.  I continue to take courses on a variety of subjects to be learn and grow.  You can do the same.

Demonstrate Integrity  Let your word be your bond.  When you make agreements or commitments to others, keep them.  Do the same with yourself. Be honest in your interactions and demand that of those close to you.

All you need to do is look at Lance  Armstrong to know how destructive  deception can be. Only through open, integral communication can real connections grow and develop.

I believe in you.  You are already terrific. Now take your personal growth to the next level.

Snowden

A few blog posts you may find of interest:

Are You an Authentic Leader?
Who are You Blaming?
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How to Release a Bad Mood

 Do You Know How to Release a Bad Mood?

There are over 7 billion people on earth and you're going to let 1 person ruin your day?

Yes, I am a motivational speaker and people see me as a positive, enthusiastic individual.  But I am also human and yes, I do have bad moods.

release a bad moodNot too long ago, I woke up groggy, had a small argument with my husband, which is very rare, tried to go work out but found the equipment all in use (3rd time this week,) learned someone had broken an agreement which impacts our taxes, and so I was angry and frustrated.  ARRGGHH**!!!

But I remembered hearing Christopher Reeves speak after his accident.  He said that although everything in his life was out of his control, the one thing he could control was his attitude, the way he treated his caregivers. Powerful.

 

5 Ways to Get Out of a Bad Mood 

• Get physical in a good way So I couldn't work out at the gym.  I came home, jumped on my rebounder, turned on an exercise show on cable, did my lunges, and pushups and felt better. Exercise is a GREAT way to release upset and stress.

 Write it all down and burn it. I spent about 10-15 minutes writing all my frustrations down, free flowing without censoring anything, writing everything that came into my head.  Then I burned it! AHHH- release!

• Call a Friend I called a girlfriend and vented.  She is a wonderful support system and we do this for each other.  Sharing upset often releases it.

• Find Good Things to Look Forward To. I did some research on upcoming jazz shows, places to go ballroom dancing and comedy clubs. Laughter is a great healing agent.

•Meditate I'm a huge believer in meditation, and I know from my research how much it decreases stress. If you don't know how, try deep breathing with your eyes closed and focusing on a beautiful scene in nature.

I'm much better now, thanks to these tools in my toolkit. Let me know what works for you.  Have a great weekend.

Snowden

A few blog posts you may find of interest:

Anger into Action
Clean Up Your Emotional Junk
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Are Your People Rockstars or Superstars?

Radical Candor - Managing for a positive employee attitude

Managing to create positive employee attitudes

In her wonderful book Radical Candor, Kim Scott tells a story about building teams at Apple. As she was developing her people, Kim focused on those most likely to be promoted. A leader at Apple told her all teams need stability as well as growth to succeed.  Nothing works if everyone is trying to get promoted. The leader referred to the excellent positive employees she had who were on a more gradual, steady growth track as "rock stars" because they were stable like the Rock of Gibraltar.  These people loved their work and were happy with what they did. In contrast, those positive employees who were upwardly mobile, fast tracking, were called "superstars."  So everyone ended up being valued for their traits and was a star of sorts.

Cultivating a Team of All Star Positive Employees

Acknowledge specific achievements of rock stars as well as superstars.  In most companies, it's the superstars who get all the glory.  Even out the balance and give very specific public praise to both groups of positive employees.

Don't focus on promotions.  Focus on achievements and when someone does get promoted, be clear whether their job is changing and what the new responsibilities are.

Be transparent about your mistakes. Encourage others to be open about theirs.  It's much easier to fix a problem early on than later.

Spend 1-1 time with each employee and find out what their dreams, life experiences, and previous jobs have been.  You can learn a great deal.  Ask this key question: "What skills or talents do you have that are not being currently used here?

Give them autonomy with guidance. All humans crave autonomy.

Truly listen to your people.

Keep your agreements.  Be a walking example of integrity.

Don't ask for input unless you really want it.  Never accept the first answer- keep digging and you'll come up with gold.

Your people are the key to success in any organization.  Honor them for who they are and encourage them.  They will reward you with excellent work and great ideas.

"A workplace filled and driven by employees with positive attitudes vibrates continually to the tune of service excellence and passionate team success." Ty Howard

Snowden

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3 Out of the Box Ways to Boost Productivity

How's Your Productivity Right Now?

Would you like to get more done and generate excellent results?  Here are 3 ways to boost your productivity that you may not have considered.

  1.  The High Performance Research Group found after surveying millions that checking your email within the first hour you awake reduces your productivity by 30%.   Focus on your own priorities first thing. Family connections, spiritual connections, physical exercise and setting your own agenda for the day are paramount.  "Your inbox is an organization system of other peoples' agendas."  Brendon Burchard

Fire up your productivity2.  If you've heard me speak, you know I always recommend deep breathing as a  stress reliever and a way to get more oxygen into your body.  Most of us breathe shallowly and are not providing the fuel we need to get things done.  Brendon suggests you couple your deep breathing with movement.  So bounce while deep breathing 10 times several times a day- this gets your lymph glands flowing and deepens your oxygen intake- all of which helps you be more clear-minded.

3. Visualize your day as super-successful.  When you awaken, picture every person, meeting, and activity you plan that day.  Visualize that each connection as productive and meaningful, with positive outcomes for all concerned. See yourself as happy, energized and fulfilled.  Send positive energy to everyone you plan to connect with.  And then watch the outcomes.  This is powerful!

“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.” Paul J. Meyer

Women and Overwhelm

Most of you know I am writing my 7th book. This one is on women and overwhelm and you can help. Your story may even be featured in the book. Just complete this survey (women only please)  that takes less than 5 minutes. And after completed, you can download  for free the report  "The Top 10 Unusual Stress Relievers”
Here’s the link : http://www.firedupnow.com/women-survey/ If you have any problems accessing the survey, go here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/women-survey

 

You can be part of this new book designed to empower women everywhere and free them from the bondage of overwhelm!  And if you complete the survey and download the report, you could be entered to win a free coaching session with me- a $300 value!   Thanks so much for your help!

If you enjoyed this please share it with others. Sign up for tips on success, marketing, and stress reliefhttp://www.firedupnow.com/kindlings
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Laughing Your Way Out of Stress

"Hearty laughter is a good way to jog internally without having to go outdoors." Norman Cousins

Laughter and Laughing to relieve stress in a business meeting
At his recent birthday party, my husband was on painkillers for his back issues.  While playing a game similar to Charades, he moved in such slow motion that it totally tickled me.  I burst out laughing and had tears streaming down my face.  I laughed hard for a good 5 minutes and everyone around me laughed.  It released so much stress!  And there's a good reason for that.  Laughter is healing on so many levels. A study showed that one good belly laugh is worth 45 minutes of stress relief!

Laughter Reduces Pain

A new study by Clarkson University in  New York examined patients with the chronic pain condition Fibromyalgia.  Those who find humor in everyday situations are much more likely to have a positive state of mind and less pain.  The University of Maryland Medical Center shows that a good hearty laugh jogs your internal organs, gives your body a workout and reduces pressure.  Laughter also improves your immune system function by increasing
the level of infection-fighting T-cells.

How to Increase Your Laughter

• Listen to Comedy  Have a long commute?  Turn on satellite radio's comedy channels and laugh your way to work.  I did this in traffic for years and it made all the difference. Or pop in a CD from your favorite comic.
 Lighten Up We all have a tendency to take ourselves very seriously, and really, there is such much to laugh about.  Some situations are inherently funny and some can be viewed that way later.  As a wise man once said, "If it's going to be funny later. you might as well laugh about it now."
• Watch funny videos  There's a reason those animal videos are so entertaining- they make you laugh.  Funny movies can do the same thing.
• Encourage laughter in meetings  Start with a positive and then tell a funny story that is not offensive to anyone.  Laughter sets a tone and communicates subtly "We're going to have a good time here."  The healthiest organizations encourage laughter and stress relievers.  Promote that in your organization.
Try to consciously insert more laughter into your life.  I guarantee it will make you feel better.
Snowden

Celebrating Our Tribe

Mindy Baker imageMindy Barker of Mindy Barker & Associates does a fantastic job providing entrepreneurial business owners and non-profits with Fortune 500-level CFO services. A positive,  intelligent woman who loves to give back to her community, Mindy just celebrated her daughter's wedding!. A community leader and business advocate, Mindy serves companies nationally, but is based in Jacksonville, Fl.  Learn more at www.mindybarkerassociates.com.
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Are You Leading A Life Of Reaction Or Intention?

"Our intention creates our reality." Wayne Dyer

High Performance Habits by Brendon Bouchard

Leading a Life of Intention

Did you know the most successful people in the world have several repeatable, straightforward habits that most of us don't?  And they do them every day.
I had the pleasure of attending Brendon Burchard's four hour webinar Tuesday and wow was it powerful!  Took 16 pages of notes and have already implemented several of his key strategies.  I recommend his new book, shown here.
One tip I wanted to share with you today requires a bit of self-analysis.  Are you living a life of intention or of reaction?

Here's What  Happens

What I mean is perhaps you start your day at work with great intentions- to provide excellent service to your clients, to create more sales where you add value, to complete critical projects which advance your company's success. etc.  And then despite your best intentions, you end up spending your day reacting to others' needs.  Maybe your various direct reports interrupt you in the middle of concentrating on a major project.  Or your boss drags you into an impromptu meeting.  Or your child's school calls and tells you they're sick. All of which means you move from intention to reaction. You day has been hijacked, and you end up at the end of the day wondering what you accomplished.

Make Your Day More Meaningful

• Start your day with a written list of the outputs, the deliverable which are most important to accomplish that day.  These are your highest ROI activities.
• Set aside blocks of 90 minutes in your calendar when you won't be disturbed.  Let your staff know you are off line, off phone and unavailable until 90 minutes later.
• Turn off all distractions, beeps, emails, texts, social media and crank for 90 minutes.  Take massive action on one of those high leveraged deliverables.
• If you get interrupted, train the interrupter to save their questions and issues for one set time during the day- like before lunch.
• Use charts, measurements, tools to track your success on your big most important outputs.  Track your progress every day. Tracking is a major key to high performance consistently sustained.
• Keep learning. Read books, attend seminars, listen to podcasts. (Mine are hosted on podbean.com http://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-itewf-b4deb)
You have infinite ability to thrive and succeed.  Set your intentions and live from them rather than reacting to everyone and everything else.  You are a winner!
Snowden

If you'd like to be featured in Kindlings and my social media, just refer someone to become a Kindlings subscriber.

Looking forward to promoting you!
Snowden
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Image from Brendon Burchard's new book
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Three Winning Sales Tools You Need

"Make a customer, not a sale." Katherine Barchetti

Sales is a Mind Game

Sales success - Listening handshakeWhen you go to make a sale, what's your mindset?  What are the words going through your head before you enter the building?  How's your attitude?

3 Winning Sales Keys

1. Mindset Adopt the attitude of optimistic neutrality.  Optimistic because you want the best for the client and yourself or company, and neutral because you can't be attached to the outcome.  Know that if it's the right product or service for the customer and you can share the benefits and success stories convincingly, the sale will happen.  And if it doesn't work, you're on to the next customer.  Just add value, help this person, and build a good relationship for the future.  They may not be ready today but in a few months, who knows?

Energy and Enthusiasm If you believe in the product or service you are selling sincerely, generate true enthusiasm about the value you are delivering.  Share stories of others who have loved the product or service. Show the results and any real data you have.  Real enthusiasm is rare and contagious.  Believe in what you are selling or no one else will.

• Add value always Whether you get the sale or not, always add value to the other person.  Educate them, share information they may not know, inspire or uplift them, help them solve a problem.  That problem may have nothing to do with what you are selling.  Just demonstrate that you care about them as a person.

A great book on selling is Go Givers Sell More by my friend Bob Burg.  It's all about the giving mindset and how that will build your sales through relationships.

Wishing you every success!

Snowden

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©2018 Snowden McFall All Rights Reserved. You may share this post and reprint with author reference and copyright.

A few blog posts you may find of interest:

Get the Facts

http://firedupnow.com/dont-assume-ask/

Clear Communication

http://firedupnow.com/fire-up-your-communication-with-clarification/

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**6 Ways to Increase Your Happiness**

The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate."
Oprah Winfrey

Today is the International Day of Happiness

stress-free professionalsToday, globally, people are paying attention to happiness: their happiness and the happiness of others. Whether they're doing random acts of kindness, sharing good news, laughing with others or celebrating life's little pleasures, people are consciously focusing on happiness today. Here's how you can, too, and be happier as a result.

6 Ways to Increase Your Happiness Today

Let go of the past.  It doesn't serve you to hold on to negative experiences, hatred, resentment, guilt or fear.  It's over.  Forgive yourself, forgive others (whether they know it or not) and move on.  The present is her today, the future is yet to be.  The past is done. Move on.

Find the good.  Actively look for good things happening around you.  In almost every situation, there is something good that can be found, even out of tragedy.  The sadness of the shootings in Florida led to young people all over America standing up and taking a stand for what they believe.  Their courage and determination is inspiring.  Whatever is happening, look for the good.

Sleep more and be less sensitive to negativity. According to a study by BPS Research Digest, fatigue contributes to sensitivity about negative emotions such as anger or fear. The more sleep you have, the more resilient and resistant you are to negativity coming your way.  Aim for at least 7 hours and grab a quick nap if you can.

Be with people who make you happy.  Sounds obvious, but how much time do you spend around whiners, complainers and critics?  Walk away from the "ain't it awful crew" and look for someone smiling, who makes you feel good about yourself.  If you need to, start collecting a new group of friends.

Do small acts of kindness for others.  It's really simple.  Pay for someone's toll or parking meter. Buy the person's coffee behind you.  Hold the door open and smile. Say a genuine hello to strangers.  Look a homeless person in the eye and smile when you give them food or money.  Sociologist Martin Seligman says, 'We scientists have found the doing a kindness produces the single most reliable momentary increase in well-being of any exercise we have tested."

Be kind to yourself. A 2017 study published in Health Psychology Open showed people who with greater self-compassion  handle stress better.  They don't have as much of a physical stress reaction to negative happenings, like arguments or traffic,  and they release whatever stress they do have more quickly.  So when you make mistakes, be gentle with yourself.  Say nice things to yourself, forgive yourself, stop expecting perfection, and your day will be much smoother.

Your happiness is contagious and it impacts others.  Use International Day of Happiness as an excuse to shine your light brighter and see what a difference you can make.

Wishing you joy,

Snowden

 

A few blog posts you may find of interest:

Add New to Your Life
http://firedupnow.com/add-new-to-your-life/
Stop Judging Yourself
http://firedupnow.com/are-you-badmouthing-yourself/

If you enjoyed this newsletter, please share it with others. Sign up for tips on success, marketing, and stress relief. http://www.firedupnow.com/kindlings

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Work Smarter, not Harder and Reduce Stress

Life is about timing. " Carl Lewis

In his new book, When, Daniel Pink shares the results of analyzing nearly 700 studies in a variety of areas on timing, and the most effective timing to get things accomplished.  Our cognitive abilities change throughout the day, and impact our decision-making, our relationships, our receptivity to others and to new ideas.
What's the Best Timing for You?
By examining the research, Pink has come up with three basis types of people and their ideal timing.
Larks are early to bed and early to rise.
Owls are the opposite. They stay up late and sleep late.
Third Birds are somewhere inbetween.
Why does this matter?  Because most of us have peaks, troughs, and recovery.  I have experienced this myself, as I now perform best in the morning, tend to crash between 2-4, and then revive around 5-7.   (It's interesting to note that this has changed as I have aged.  I started my career as a night owl and wrote my first book between 10-2 pm.) The blessing of being an entrepreneur is I can schedule my day to take advantage of peak times and take breaks with walks, etc. in my trough time.
Why Does This Matter?
The research shows that you tend to make better decisions and be more receptive to others in your peak time.  You make wiser financial analyses and take better action steps during that time.  Your outlook is more positive and your energy and enthusiasm, (which are key to sales success) thrive during your peak.  Tackle your biggest challenges and most difficult talks during peak times, and take a break during your troughs. If you're in sales, approach prospects in the morning.  You will have a greater likelihood of success.

Most people have a clear idea of how they perform.  But if you're not, buy Pink's book.  He also has a test on line for you to clearly define your style. It's at http://www.danpink.com/MCTQ

Plan your time according to your natural body rhythms and you can create more success in every area of your life. Happy tracking!
Snowden
If you enjoyed this newsletter, please share it with others. Sign up for tips on success, productivity, and stress relief. http://www.firedupnow.com/kindlings
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All Rights Reserved You may reprint with full credit and permission.
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