Energy Drain

Understanding where your energy comes from and
where it goes is key to living life well.

Do you know what drains you? It is a first step in managing your own energy.

The DiSC is a personal assessment tool we can use to understand the way we are wired. We are each a combination of D and I and S and C. Understanding these basic 4 types of behavior styles is the first, really great step in understanding your own personal wiring.

ENERGY DRAINS

For D’s and C’s, too much time with people contact is a drain. D’s are fast paced and can manage people and time well, as long as it is attached to getting something done.  Just to “hang out” or be entirely social can be a drain. C’s generally are drained by any type of prolonged people contact. Meetings, parties, shopping, chatting…..all deplete a C.

I’s and S’s are drained by having to focus too much on the task. Sitting and staring at a computer, in an office while everyone else is at lunch, working on a project alone can be a sap on energy for those that are people-oriented.

We can’t always avoid the energy drains,
so we have to know how to replenish our energy.

 

For I’s and S’s, energy comes from interaction with others. I’s like a party. They like groups and action and noise and fun. They get energy from being in a crowd and interacting. S’s like connecting, one-on-one and with some depth. They value serious conversation and true friendship.

For D’s and C’s, energy comes from a task. D’s like to start things and to solve problems. They like competitive games that move fast and then end. C’s like research and detailed plans. They like computer games that require concentration and knowledge and that can be played alone.

With some simple tracking and awareness, you can identify your draining times and activities. Once you’ve identified what is zapping your energy, you can limit your exposure to those sources and, more importantly, be intentional and schedule time for replenishing activities that give you life.

 

 

 

 

 

The Platinum Rule

It has been said that understanding DiSC is learning to practice the Platinum Rule.  If the Golden Rule is to “treat others as you would be treated,” the Platinum Rule is “treat others as THEY would like to be treated.”  Ahhh.  Slight (yet, big) difference.

Early in our marriage, I threw my husband (High C and High D–not so much energized by people) a surprise party with a lot of people attending.  He thought we were going to our friends’ for a 4 person dinner.  When we walked in and there were 20 or so people there, his first thought was, “How will we get rid of all these people so we can eat?”  We had to tell him that everyone was there to celebrate his birthday and he still had a hard time loosening up and believing the fact that some people actually might enjoy this sort of thing.

I have never done that again.

The-Platinum-Rule-fortune-cookie

We do tend to think that others will enjoy what we enjoy.  So, when we are thinking of doing something nice for someone else, our initial thoughts will be to do for them what we would enjoy.  If I would enjoy a party, won’t everyone else?  If I only enjoy one or two people at a time, doesn’t everyone?  If my way of dealing with stress is to clam up and put my nose to the grindstone, isn’t that what others want me to encourage them to do? If I am most effective when processing while I talk, won’t others be happy to listen to my musings?

Assuming that the high “S” project manager wants to be interviewed on camera because her high “I/D” boss would love it, does not make it accurate.  Assuming that a high “I” will love researching the best route because their high “C” partner wishes they had the time, may not tap into strengths.  Giving an I, who is in charge of the annual picnic, a strict budget to follow on their own may not have the best outcome.  Expecting a “D/C”, task-oriented birthday man to think 3 hours of conversation and games is a good way to spend an evening just might not result in the most appreciative attitude.

Learning my own DiSC pattern and how that affects my choices of behavior is crucial to my success.

Learning the preferred behavior and motivation of the people I live and work with is the key to successful relationships.

Without conscious attention to differences, it is easy to assume others are just like me.  But, sameness would be boring, if we are honest.  The variety in our relationships is what gives success and breadth and growth and enjoyment… IF we recognize and value the differences. When we recognize and value the differences we can treat others as they would like to be treated.

 

Learn more about the DiSC Personal Profile System and Understanding Your Wiring HERE.

 

 

 

 

 

 

photo credit: Alick Boych Friiends Of Mine via photopin (license)

Have you been wanting to try yoga?

In my long-time  pursuit of fitness, I have done a lot of different activities.  I loved sports when I was younger and that was enough, along with being active with my 5 kids, for a long time. But when I was recovering from a neuro-muscular disease and needed to rehab shrunken muscle fibers, I found that I really loved weight lifting.  I liked the evident progress that came from increased strength.  I loved it so much that I would make myself do some cardio before allowing myself weight time!

A few years ago, I discovered classes that I enjoyed.  “Women and Weights” was at one gym.  BodyPump with 800 reps in an hour was at another.  There came a time, though that my more strenuous weight lifting and bouncy cardio was giving me some new aches and pains. My lower back was often achy. I found myself limping some when my right hip complained. It was time for something with less impact.

So… I tried a yoga/tai-chi/pilates class. Two things happened:

  1. My aching back and sore hip got back into behaving as they should.
  2. I was sore!  I thought that I was in great shape and that yoga would set me back, but not so! I was using muscles in new, and evidently, better ways for my over-60 body.

Now, I am a regular yoga practicer (practitioner?).  Sometimes in a class, sometimes at home with a video. I recently tried a “power yoga” class that stretched me (pun slightly intended) and went to a new level.  I love the instructor who gently corrected some of my poses and encouraged me with my progress.

If you have been wanting to try yoga but don’t know where or how to start, here is an idea.

I am a featured writer for sixtyandme.com, a huge on-line community of women over 60. I am happy to pass along this information about the gentle yoga video series they offer.  This is definitely beginning yoga, so have no fear of being sore or needing to be super limber or strong to begin.

Check it out at HERE.

This might just get you moving more with fewer aches and pains!

*****Of course, if you are a beginner and under 60, you might like them, too!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

photo credit: Raimond Klavins | Artmif.lv Yoga Intensiv 2017 Turkey Yantra.lv via photopin (license)

It’s Easier to Keep it Off than to Take it Off

I had just turned 40.  Dave and I were at a gathering and he was conversing with someone and I was not included in the conversation.  My mind wandered.

True confession…..it wandered to the obvious weight gain of the female person my husband was having a chat with.  I thought, specifically, “Wow.  She needs to lose about 30 pounds.”

Then, I did a bit of calculating myself:
I had just turned 40.  And, I had just gained 3 pounds over the past year.  Yikes!  This person was 10 years older than me.  10 times 3 definitely equals 30.  Thirty pounds!!! In ten years, I would be the one needing to lose 30 pounds, if I didn’t stop gaining 3 pounds a year.

With a moment of sympathy, I did recognize that this person (the one talking to my husband and not talking to me), would have a hard time losing weight at age 50.  I was finding for myself that the older I got, the harder it is to keep weight off.  Nutrition and health are topics for me, so I knew that the older I got, the more difficult it would become to lose any excess pounds.

That day, I determined to keep it off.  And my mantra “it’s easier to keep it off than to take it off” was born.

Now, twenty-five years later, I am not quite the same weight I was that day, but I have managed to stay pretty close.  It is not easy.  People will often assume that I am just lucky.  Ha!  No way!  There is no luck involved in showing up to work out five days a week (most weeks).  There is no luck in choosing to eat less. Or to eat lower calorie foods that have higher nutrition than the pastries and desserts and carbohydrates I once enjoyed. Nope.  Not lucky.  Just determined.

It’s easier to keep it off than to take it off.

Determined to stave off old-age as long as possible.

Determined to be able to enjoy grandkids and their activities as they come along.

Determined to be able to keep up with my fit and active husband.

Determined to not purchase clothing in a size larger every year or so.

Determined to keep making a difference in the world as long as I am able, even in my third third.

 

 

 

 

photo credit: franchiseopportunitiesphotos person about to stand on weighing digital scale via photopin (license)

Your Story

your story

 

What is the story you are telling?

I am at an age where I have told my story a number of times, in a number of places, to a  number of people.  My story has become more and more consistent as I have worked hard to define what is important to me and what I believe deeply. “Worked hard at” means faced fears, listened to criticism, changed behaviors, stood my ground, moved, cried, laughed, stayed, left.  I determined long ago that I would live my life with intention rather than letting my life live me.  And that has taken work.

I determined long ago that I would live my life with intention rather than letting my life live me.

The most important people in my story are my husband and my kids… though none are “kids” any longer.  And I don’t think of any of them as “kids” at all now, but as adults to be admired and valued and respected, each in their own right.  Their lives, intertwined with mine, are the fabric I wear now.  It surprises me, because “family cohesiveness” has never been a stated goal for me. The theme of my story is responsibility and choices–and personal discovery so that my choices are intentional and so that I am responsibly being the very best human being possible.  My modus operandi?  Grace and truth, always finding the balance.

What story are you telling?

We are all telling a story. To tell it with purpose and with as little regret as possible is a worthy goal.  That isn’t easy… but it is worth the effort… continually.

 

 

Forgive

forgive

 

If you are alive and breathing, someone has done something that requires your forgiveness. Someone has offended you. Someone has wronged you. Someone has stepped on you or over you or around you on their way to a place you thought you were going with them. Someone has devalued you by their actions or words.

And, now, you are living with the memory of that (or those) wrongs and offensives.

Sometimes, a relationship is strong enough that reconciliation is possible. Sometimes, hearts are pure enough that repentance happens. Sometimes, those events are the result of addiction and amends are made. Sometimes, life-change comes and clarity allows for frank discussion.

But, not always. Maybe, not often.

You don’t have to live with dark clouds hanging over you. Someone else’s inability to consider others is not a limit on your own life. Just because someone else has offended you doesn’t mean that you have to live with resentment or anger or self-doubt or lack of confidence.

You can forgive.

Forgiveness requires only one person. One person who decides they will not live with resentment, but rather, choose a clear conscience and a clear heart. One person who will choose to say, “What that person did hurt me……but I will not hold it against them.” One person who can look beyond the “now” of keeping score and look to the future of moving forward without barriers.

Forgiveness is not saying, “It doesn’t matter.”

It does matter. It does hurt. It does have consequences. BUT, you can let it go. You can allow the other person to have their own journey….without your participation. And without your resentment.

Reconciliation requires more than one person. At least two people need to converse and confess and concur for reconciliation.

Forgiveness, though, only requires one person. One person who will have the conversation with themselves that can end the inner turmoil and move forward.

One person who can muster up the courage to say, “I forgive.”

 

 

 

 

 

Perfection is Highly Overrated

Perfection

Perfection is Highly Overrated

Full disclosure… My natural inclination is not toward perfection.  I prefer to make things work, rather than fix them.  I had a VW bug that needed a new starter (1970’s) and rather than spend the money to get it fixed, I always parked on a hill (easy in Austin, TX) so I could push it and pop the clutch to get it started (that worked well until I moved to Lubbock, TX, where there are no hills).

I get my face and hair to the point that I am satisfied and then I don’t look in a mirror for the rest of the day.  I have written a weekly newspaper column and this blog and others, but could not bear the tedium of trying to write good poetry.  I have no problem creatively substituting chicken for shrimp or cauliflower for potatoes or flour for cornstarch rather than making another trip to the store. I don’t regularly check the air in my tires or the balance in my checkbook or get birthday cards mailed on time.

Perfection is Overrated

I do have an appreciation for doing things well and right and correctly, though.  In truth, I am a rules follower (if I have deemed the rules worthy of being followed).  Grammar, driving, attendance, polite behavior, reading a book from the front to the back, putting your dirty dishes in the dishwasher, doing that you say you will do…all of those examples and others like them should definitely be done following the rules.

There are times when doing things close to perfect is important.  Trying your hand at carpentry?  You should definitely measure twice, cut once.  Knitting an afghan?  It makes a difference if you check the dye lot on every skein of yarn.  Going on an overseas trip?  Checking the expiration date of your passport is prudent.  Heading for a baseball game at Wrigley Field?  Checking the weather can prevent being way too cold on a blustery day in August.

I am all for doing things well…
striving for perfection, however, is an entirely different thing.

The pursuit of perfection on an everyday basis wastes time, prevents communication, halts progress, frustrates goals, annoys others, gives false impressions, and generally keeps progress from happening.  Finding the reality of “perfect enough” saves a lot of misspent energy and time.

 

 

 

 

Take a Break and Relax

take a break and relax

I wanted to do something fun and slightly edgy to celebrate turning 65. I decided to take a break and relax. I weighed lots of options and tossed around a lot of ideas and finally settled on going to Cuba.

Always interested in the history of this little island and remembering the turmoil of the late 50’s with Fidel and Che’s revolution, recalling the Cuban missile crisis and the Bay of Pigs, I decided I wanted to visit Cuba before Starbucks is there.

relax-1It took some planning.  I had to arrange to cover a significant amount of real estate business, details at home needed planning, travel matching with Dave’s schedule took some discussion.  We finally got it all together and off I went to meet Dave in Merida, Mexico where he was hosting a small group of travelers.  We met up, spent a day with his group, then flew to Havana for three days. And flew home.

Merida was beautiful. Cuba was interesting. The food was phenomenal. The weather ideal.

The trip was short. The travel days were long. There was a lot of walking and waiting. It was exactly what I wanted.

 

I was completely satisfied.

And, surprisingly,  it was relaxing.

As I reflect on the relaxing part, I realize that there was an element to the trip that was not relaxing, at all.  It started with a 15 hour travel day, followed by cars, planes, taxis, late nights, and more long days.

The relaxing part was that I made the decision to completely unplug for the time we were in Cuba.  Using my phone would be possible, but expensive.  We read that internet is sketchy at best. So, I just turned everything off; I took a break.

No phone. No email. No texting. No facebook.
No communication….for 52 hours. Nothing.

That is not a very long time… but it was lovely.  And relaxing.

Relax

 

I have a job that requires communication. I have family I want to stay connected to. I’m curious and love to research and write and read and have information ready when I need it (or want it).  I’m involved in our community.  I love having a smart phone and a laptop and a tablet.

Those 52 hours make me think about how stressful and energy-sapping being plugged in constantly is.  I am going to be better at intentionally giving myself regular quiet time with no connections for better energy and real relaxation.

 

 

What is one thing you can do to create space in the rhythm of your life to unplug and recharge? 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Objective & Subjective

 

objective

Designing our best ThirdThird requires that we be able to merge objective information and subjective information.

Subjective information like….

  • What gives me joy?
  • Who do I like to be around?
  • When am I most satisfied?
  • How do I like to be treated?

Objective information like….

  • How have I been successful in the past?
  • When have I been able to accomplish my goals?
  • Who has been there for me?
  • What is my skill set?

 

The DiSC Personality Profile allows me to connect the dots on both subjective and objective information I have about myself, to allow me to design my life for the greatest satisfaction and joy.

Personally, I know about myself that I …..

Am not afraid of hard tasks,

Need to be learning new things,

Function best with some, but not strict, order,

Have stories to share that will inspire others,

Love to make people laugh.

DiSC explanations make me realize why these are true about me…

I enjoy a challenge, 

I bore easily, 

I’m wired to like to sort and organize, 

Meaningful interaction energizes me, 

Adding to others’ lives makes me smile.

 

You can learn a lot about yourself and be designing your own BEST ThirdThird now, no matter what your age, with our Understanding Your Wiring DiSC program.