relax relate release

Its Not News, Its a Distraction: Happy Ferris Bueller’s Day Off Day

Ah .. one of my favorite movies and one of my all time favorite movie-quotables (see below)– I JUST found out that today was “Happy Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” Day. I’m just coming off an awesome #IHRIM2014 conference, so I was in the office today — but I’ve got it on the calendar for next year.

Thanks to some heroic statistical sleuthing by Baseball Prospectus’s Larry Granillo, we know the date: June 5, 1985.

Granillo pinpointed the date by scrutinizing some fragmented data in the film about the Chicago Cubs game being played during the gang’s trip to Wrigley Field. “It appears obvious now,” writes Granillo, “that this is a real ballgame that Ferris is at, not just something recreated for a film crew. The Harry Caray play-by-play and the Braves players on the field are pretty solid evidence of that. So what game, then, are they watching?” After examining the box scores of games during the Cubs 1985 schedule, he ultimately concludes that it was the June 5, 1985 game against the Atlanta Braves (the visitors won 4-2).

http://www.thewire.com/national/2011/02/your-newest-holiday-june-5th-is-ferris-bueller-s-day-off/17808/

 

Enjoy (and mark your calendars for next year 😉 ) …. and while you’re at it — make time for yourself we all deserve to have our own little Ferris Bueller Day — and you don’t even have to “fake out” your parents or take their car, cut the drama and just schedule the day ;),.

Taking a moment to stop and look around, yours,

 

 

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Its Not News Its a Distraction: 2014 #ACL Lineup

Its an exiting day! They have released the big lineup for ACL 2014! So excited to see Pearl Jam will be returning to ACL — and with the new format, it will be for TWO weekends. Also due to the new format, I learned last year that I don’t have to make a mad dash to get tickets as I have in the past and then try to piece together a day or two here or there because I couldn’t get a weekend pass. This is really about making music available to everyone (yes I know its a steep pricetag, but hey, you’ve got headliners for three days worth of music– bargain to me!) — so this morning I took the puppies for a long walk and did not hoover over my computer for 2 hours trying to get tickets.

A great way to “relax, relate, and release” in my hometown — have you ever been? Its great (just don’t think that Austin is so cool that you want to move here — don’t believe the hype, its really a terrible place to live 😉 )

 

I’m Stressing the Children I Don’t Even Have Yet

Photo credit: Olimpia Zagnoli

I lead a pretty stressful life — I like to work, I like to work hard, and I like to be involved in a lot of activities — coupled with a high sense of responsibility and accomplishment — yup, I have a lot of stress.

So imagine my “stress” when I read this article in the NY Times,
Inheriting Stress, which explores the question: Can children inherit stress from their mother? My initial thought, “YIKES!”

WE intuitively understand, and scientific studies confirm, that if a woman experiences stress during her pregnancy, it can affect the health of her baby. But what about stress that a woman experiences before getting pregnant — perhaps long before?

It may seem unlikely that the effects of such stress could be directly transmitted to the child. After all, stress experienced before pregnancy is not part of a mother’s DNA, nor does it overlap with the nine months of fetal development.

Nonetheless, it is undeniable that stress experienced during a person’s lifetime is often correlated with stress-related problems in that person’s offspring — and even in the offspring’s offspring. Perhaps the best-studied example is that of the children and grandchildren of Holocaust survivors. Research shows that survivors’ children have greater-than-average chances of having stress-related psychiatric illnesses like post-traumatic stress disorder, even without being exposed to higher levels of stress in their own lives. — excerpt from article http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/09/opinion/sunday/can-children-inherit-stress.html?smid=tw-nytimes&_r=0

Okay, okay, okay. So I don’t have any kind of post-traumatic stress, but the piece goes on to explore if the stress has an impact on parenting style?

I’m always concerned about the amount of stress in my life–  barring the impact to my future children, I know that its not very helpful to me, but the thought of my stress potentially having this kind of ripple effect, takes stress management to a whole… ‘nother.. level.

I met with a friend last week and she swears by yoga and feels that it has made positive changes to her life and her sense of stress. I’ve always viewed it as just a means of exercise, but she urged me to get into the meditative pieces of it as well (maybe Bikram is out?), but silly as it may sound, I have a new found motivation.

Even if there is no link — we all know the benefits of a life with less stress.

The battle goes on… how to “relax, relate, release” … but still maintain my “intense” and competitive edge with my career. Could meditating be the answer?

Do you have employees who have this truly mastered, or is just as elusive as a purple cow?

Still searching… 🙂

Yours,

 

 

 

 

Photo credit: Olimpia Zagnoli

 

Gearing up for the New Year

Its SO hard to believe that its 2014! The holidays have been a flurry of decorations, shopping, gifts, wrapping, traveling, unwrapping, more traveling, shopping, eating, baking, shopping … and a little bit of time away from my “day job.” I also had touch of illness around the house for both my and my sig-o (what holiday wouldn’t be complete). Long story short, I’ve been away — but I think that’s been a good thing.

2013 was a GREAT year. I had a lot of great successes with the day gig and with my local HR chapter, SAHRMA. I LOVE LOVE LOVE those people. Not only have they helped *finally* start to get the feeling of “home” in a now not-so-new city, I had a great program year with being one of the chairs of the 2013 South Texas Symposium and starting a new mentoring program for HR professionals as part of my committee — College Relations. I also started blogging more regularly here on my blog (a lil less tweeting) and contributing blogs on bloggingforjobs.com.  I’ve made little changes here and there, but think that I’m ready to do some re-designing here… and the gears are turning.

Most of 2013 I was moving at break-necking speed — I didn’t slow down until the very end, and it was actually because my body forced me too. I took a well need vacation in early December before the holidays got too hectic — I should “walk my talk” more often… a few days away to “unplug” (yes, with quotes, but hey, that works for me) did me good and actually allowed me to give myself the permission to take some time away from my blog and my work — and it was so needed — I was SO stressed. I did feel a little guilty about taking some time, but the time has been well spent with family and friends — and photos! I love photography, even though I’m not great at it, I almost lost my hobby. I’m doing a photo project for 2014 — its been pretty uneventful so far, but hey, its only 7 or 8 days in. 🙂

I’m almost back, I’ll take some more time over the next weeks to get the gears in motion.

I hope that you had a wonderful holiday! I normally do resolutions, but I conscientiously didn’t do them this year — an experiment?  Tell me about yours!

Cheers! yours,

 

Its Not News, Its a Distraction – First Dog to Climb Mt. Everest

Okay so ignore the not great writing of the story and focus on the cutest dog ever (after my pooches of course) who accomplished something big and pretty cool!

A former stray dog has pulled himself up by the bootstraps and created a better life for himself. A life that includes becoming the first dog ever to climb Mount Everest.

Many of yall know that I’m a BIG animal lover — and LOVE dogs! While Rupee wasn’t trying to do anything “great” or break any world records, I imagine Rupee was just as happy as could be just hanging out with his person and doing something that they enjoyed together.  The bond between a person and their dog is special!

My take away–> GET OUT AND GET MOVING! And I’m going to take one of my furry friends with me! We love walking, hanging out in the park, people/squirrel watching, shopping (you’d be surprised the places where you can take your dog — especially in Austin — love it!), or grabbing a bit to eat at Sonic!

Need some more motivation and/or don’t have a dog? If you’re nearby I’m happy to let you “borrow” one of mine and we’ll adventure together! Otherwise, I know of a lot of dogs at local shelters who would love a caring human to take them on a long walk or play fetch with for a couple of hours.

You don’t have to climb Mt. Everest to make a difference or inspire — you’d still get “cool points” with me if you did either of ’em.

Make Today Great!

Yours,

 

How to Have a Blissfully Unproductive Weekend

Getting some much needed rest and relaxation is on my mind (again) — This is one of my struggles as I still can’t find the balance. However, I’ve learned a few times over my working career, and once again as recently as last week, that if you don’t take the time to slow down and rest, your body will do it for you. I’ve been sick the last 13 days — twice! And while I’m starting to finally feel like “myself” I know that I largely got sick because I’d over extended myself for too long.

Still my challenge to overcome so I maintain committed to finding the balance — and sharing with you want I find. I found this great article from Debbie Woodbury with some great tips:

1. Change your mindset, if only for the weekend. If you have a workaholic, productivity-proves-validity mindset, like me, you don’t relax easily. Why not try changing your mindset for just a weekend? Everyone needs time to relax and recharge, and anyone who thinks they are productive 24/7 is just kidding themselves anyway. So go ahead, throw relentless productivity to the wind and resolve to be blissfully unproductive this weekend. You can always go back to being a crazed workaholic on Monday.

2. Unplug from your electronics. Put the stresses and obligations of the workweek on hold by separating yourself from your cell phone, tablet or laptop. Deliberately unplugging makes a statement to yourself and others, “I choose to relax and be blissfully unproductive for a few days.”

Go one step further and seek out silence. As Deepak Chopra said, “Silence is the great teacher, and to learn its lessons you must pay attention to it. There is no substitute for the creative inspiration, knowledge and stability that come from knowing how to contact your core of inner silence.”

3. Stay in the moment. As hard as it is to unplug from your electronics, it’s even harder to unplug from your monkey mind. You know what monkey mind is — the incessant chatter of worry, “shoulds,” “what ifs” and a past/future focus. When the chatter starts building, take a breath and stop. In that moment of awareness, you create a gap that allows you to recognize the noise for what it is, before it takes you away with it. Practicing “catch and release” of your monkey-mind thoughts keeps you present in the here and now and focuses your mind on one thing at a time.

4. Play. Play is not a luxury. Let me repeat. Play is not a luxury. In fact, play is vital to health and increased productivity. Spontaneous play and the fun it elicits are transformative, and happen more often when you’re in the moment. Planning play is as important as planning your meals. And play takes all kinds of forms — run through the sprinkler, have sex, read a fun book, take a hammock nap or just jump up and down! Play doesn’t have to be big and noisy. Play is whatever feeds your soul and makes you feel more alive. Go play!

5. Reconnect with loved ones. Sometimes we’re so overwhelmed with obligations, schedules, responsibilities and appointments that we forget to really be with the people we love. If you turn off the TV, phone and laptop — if you stay in the moment and open yourself to play and fun — guess where you’ll end up? Reconnecting with friends and family!

via 5 Steps to a Blissfully Unproductive Weekend | Debbie Woodbury.

Seems like its just 5 simple things, but some of these are still going to be a real challenge for me. I think I’ll have to take it one at a time and work my way up to all 5 at once :).

Relaxing, relating, and releasing — thanks for joining me on the journey to better work life balance! Making the HR connection, yours

All Work And No Play Means No Play

I am so lame. This you may have already known if you’ve been a long term reader of my blog 🙂 — but seriously I did the silliest thing ever last week.

About two months ago I brought 2 seats for my and my guy to go see Bill Burr in San Antonio. I was so looking forward to it. We don’t get out much. We haven’t assimilated much into the area and this was something that we would have done from “back home.” I bought our tickets (I even splurged and got ‘the good ones.’ Got excited. And waited for the date to come.

Coincidentally, the last 2 months have been some of the busiest in a long while. You’ve probably noticed that the blog has been a little quieter than normal too right? Its been a lot of late nights and early mornings at the office — long weekends working on projects for work and for other HR projects — but our night out with Bill was coming!

I was working late a couple of Friday nights — I was WAY TOO tired to go out, and figured I would work a bit longer and then go home and crash. And when I got home, I was SO tired that I literally fell asleep with my clothes on. I made it up the stairs, took my shoes off, and feel asleep. Out like a light. I woke up the next morning and checked email and my Facebook. I was greeted by a stream of photos, tweets, and updates from people talking about Bill Burr. Weird. Weird. Weird? What? Wait.. No.. no.. oh no.. seriously.. no way.  Yup. I MISSED the event that I had been looking forward to for months.

I wasn’t mad for the money that I wasted for the event that I didn’t get go to. My sig-o didn’t even remember ( but to be fair, I AM the calendar and he goes where I go). I was annoyed that I was so busy with work that I clearly had not made time for ME! Sounds cliche.  Cue every single work life “out of balance” saying you know out there now.

I’m bummed to have missed Bill Burr. But I’m even more bummed on all those other things that I missed. Don’t get me wrong – I LOVE my work — but October is gonna be all about bringing “balance” back.

Have you ever been “here” before? Let me here your stories?

Tell me I’m not alone 🙂 Thank goodness I have Netflix and can catch Bill there (its not the same, but its a lesson).

Making the HR connection, and fumbling through Netflix, yours,