Welcome, to The Music of Life. Some of the most important connections of our lives, those we form with ourselves throughout life, as well as those we form with our families and friends, are being lost in this modern world of “social” media, minimalism, and keeping up with society. I hope, through this column, to remind my readers of all that matters, and help them re-establish their bonds with life, memories, mementos, and traditions.
Christmas music is everywhere these days, and with Christmas being less than a month away, that really isn’t surprising. My daughter started singing Jingle Bells six weeks ago., and given that we still had 2 weeks to go until Hallowe’en, I figured asking her to wait was a reasonable request. A few years ago, I was chastised by an older woman in a grocery store, when I was a bit exasperated with my daughter who was very excited about Christmas and showing it. “Enjoy it”, I was told, “these are the best times.” I looked at her and just said; “We’ve already had six weeks of this, I’m just about done with it.” It was still a couple of weeks until Christmas, and it was wearing me out already. She just looked surprised and moved on. Here we are years later, and I’ve now been listening to my sweet girl sing Jingle Bells over and over since Remembrance Day. A friend recently taught her how to play the song on the piano as well, so now I get to hear it that way too. Nearly four weeks to go until Christmas. I think it’s time she learned some new songs too!
Read the rest of December's The Music of Life Column HERE. And, if you want to know more about the fabulous A Cappella group; Supertoniic, hear sample's of their Christmas CD, and purchase your own copy of the album, click HERE.
Wow, the week sure did go by quickly! That's what happens when life gets busy. A couple things I want to touch on this week....name change for these Monday posts, and what to do when things get a little nuts, which given the time of year, is likely happening to a lot of people right now.
First, the name of these Monday posts. I've decided that I don't really like the name "Motivation Monday", so I'm dropping it. Not sure if I'll come up with a special name for these Monday posts or not, but for now, each one will just be titled based on the content. I hope you'll join me as I continue exploring life and all the ways we can make it groovy.
Now let's talk about this busy time happening now, or just gearing up for you. I spent yesterday at The Well Event in Oakville. It was a fantastic day, and I did 26 readings. Can I just say, WOW?!? That is the most readings I've ever done in one day. I had a lot of fun, and really enjoyed meeting everyone who booked a reading. And boy, was I tired last night. And today too. That's okay though; that's how it is when doing events like this. I'm going to take a bit of time today and just unwind a bit to get my energy back up.
I'm looking ahead at the rest of my week, though, and the weeks to come, and seeing that there is all my regular stuff on my plate this week, plus some special orders for journals, a busy Saturday, and an event on Sunday. Beyond that, the weeks look pretty much the same. Seeing that, especially when I'm already feeling a bit depleted, makes part of me want to cancel everything and hibernate for the next 6 weeks. But I know, that's not what I really want, it's just a temporary, natural response to where I'm at right now. It's okay, and so am I.
So, how am I going to roll into the holidays, without being exhausted and stressed? By doing a few simple things to help maintain my connection with my self and my family, and by keeping my awareness on where I am right now. I'll be scheduling breaks, time off, and low key time both alone, and with my family. Without these times, I won't enjoy the next month and a half very much, and will mostly just be looking forward to Christmas and all that goes with it, being over. I really don't want that to happen.
To keep my mind focused on what I'm doing right now, I'll be keeping my planner handy all the time. It's important to be aware of upcoming events so I don't lose track of what needs to be done, but keeping all of it in my current awareness is exhausting and stressful, at least for me. To prevent this, I keep all the details in my planner, and only focus on what needs doing now, with a little more awareness of what else is happening today. Before adding anything else to my schedule, and at the start of every day, I look at my planner to be sure I'm not overbooking, and not forgetting anything. I also spend a bit of time at the start of every week going through my planner to get an overview over the coming week, while looking for spots where I might need one of those "me" breaks, and scheduling them in.
These steps make all the difference for me. I hope they help you as well.
I hope you have a wonderful week!
Keep on groovin;'
I don't live in an area where earthquakes are common. We get the odd tremor, maybe once every few years, but that's it. As a result, I don't have to worry about physical earthquakes, but every now and then, I have what could easily be called a "lifequake". Something happens that really shakes things up in my personal or business world, and I'm left bracing myself, and taking shelter until the movement mostly stops, and the dust starts to settle. I'm sure you've had similar experiences...no one goes through life with nothing ever getting stirred up.
As I've been going through this latest event, lets call it a "bizquake" since the earth isn't actually shaking, and all of this is specific to my business, I've also been trying to look at the experience from the outside in, viewing how the process is changing me, and what my business will look like going forward. It all started when I was having a business related conversation with a friend, and she said something about how to look at my business that really stirred up my thinking. This one simple comment, and all of my thoughts about it, set off this crazy bizquake, that is leaving me wondering now; what's next?
The best thing we can do when this kind of event occurs is to just stay with it. Let it happen. Let our thoughts roll around it, write about it if you find that helps, and just let everything vibrate and shake until things start to settle. Often, our first reactions are to try to keep things the same, to hold on tightly to how it all used to be, and try to put these foundations back together the way they were. That really doesn't work very well; usually the pieces no longer fit together, and there isn't any reason why they should. These changes happen because we need them. Sometimes it just takes a while to realize it.
At this point, I'm not sure that the outside appearance of my business is going to change much, but this bizquake isn't over yet either, so it may be too soon too tell. For now, I'm going to keep watching and keep myself as stable as I can while the landscape around me shifts and changes. If you're going through something similar; whether its a bizquake or a lifequake, I recommend you do the same. Only when the dust settles will you be able to see clearly.
Keep on groovin'
If you look at my blog's Author paragraph and read the first sentence, you'll get a huge tip about what today's blog is all about. "My name is Kayleigh Radatus and I'm the creator of This Groovy Life." That's right...I am the creator of my version of This Groovy Life. Try it out for yourself, but put your own name in the sentence; "My name is _____________ and I'm the creator of my groovy life." Feel powerful? Scary? Nothing at all? A bunch of different things? Whatever you felt is fine, it just pays to take note of how you; all the parts of you; body, mind & spirit all responded to that statement.
The thing is, you do create your life. Everything you think and do creates the outcomes you are experiencing. Change what you think and do, and your life changes. Simple right? Not necessarily, because it's common that people "forget" when caught up in all the day to day bits of life, then bed time rolls around and you're just falling asleep and you realize you forgot to do that one thing you promised yourself you'd do today. Change is challenging, not because it's particularly hard, but because we tend to live our lives on automatic pilot, and in some areas, that's not a bad thing. Putting some tasks on automatic pilot frees up brain space to remember or work out other things; but...and this is a big one...if you're living your whole life as a combination of automatic pilot and reacting to situations as they come up, then you're not really living your life, you're disconnected and just responding to outside events, and you're going to have a really difficult time doing that new thing you want to add to your life.
So, how do we change this? Well, it involves one of my favourite things; planners. It's best if you do this on paper, but if you do all of your planning electronically, that's okay too.
Here are the steps you need to take to break out of that automatic & reaction based way of living.
1) Decide what change you're going to make. For example; you decide you want to have some sort of physical activity every day. Is it going to be the same activity every day, or will it change depending on weather, or your schedule? Some people like to visit a gym a few days a week, and go for a walk on the days in between, but what happens if the weather isn't great for walking? What happens if a snowstorm hits on gym day? What happens if you get sick? (For me; for this particular issue...I decide in advance what level of sick I have to be before I let myself not do what I said I would. I will also adjust my plan; maybe my activity on sick days will be gentle stretching, or a more moderated version of my usual activity.) You need to have some sort of plan, even a loose one, of what to do if something gets in the way of your plans.
2) Take out your planner, and look at your week. How does your plan for daily activity fit into your life schedule? This is the part where you are completely committing to doing what you have said you're going to do. You are going to do this; no matter what. If you don't have that level of commitment to your change; you're likely to be unsuccessful, because as soon as you say; it's okay if I don't do this some days, you're giving yourself an out for those days when you're really busy, or just don't feel like it. When you commit 100% you take away the question of whether or not you're going to do what you say you're going to. It automatically becomes part of your life.
So; choose which days you'll go to the gym, and which days you'll do your walk. You might have a day, when the only window you have for a walk is lunch time at work. Schedule it in, and make a note that you need to eat at your desk that day. Or maybe, your only window happens if you get up early or go to bed late. Decide right now, what you are going to do each day, add it to your planner, and make sure you add any extra steps you need to make sure it happens (maybe you need to reprogram your alarm). In the case of that unexpected snow storm; this is where your planning in step 1 comes in; maybe you plan a dance party in your living room, or you research, in advance, a home workout routine you can do without equipment. Or maybe, shoveling that snow does the trick. Schedule time in your planner to repeat this process EVERY week.
3) If you don't have a set time each evening AND morning to check your planner, you're going to need to start. Leave your planner where you can look at it first thing, or put a sticky note on your phone. Make sure that you look at both your week and the next day when you start your day and when you end it, as this helps keep your new plan fresh in your mind.
4) Put a sign somewhere that you will see it regularly that says what you're doing, and what the intended specific, positive result is; keeping with the physical activity theme, maybe your sign might say; "I'm having daily physical activity, and I'm feeling healthy, strong and happy! I can wear the clothes I want to, and I can join in all the activities I choose!" If you need an extra boost to keep focused on your change, I have a product called Remembrings Cards* designed to help with this. You fill out a new card with your chosen change on it, and every night before bed, spend some time focusing on the positive message on the card, then spend some time focusing on your chosen change, and put the card on your night stand. The next morning, you do the same focusing exercises and put the card in your pocket. Every day before bed, you write out a new card. The acts of writing the card daily, plus the focusing exercises, and keeping the card with you reinforces your change and your commitment to it.
5) Do what you had planned to do each day. If you've done all of the above, it's likely that you'll have no trouble remembering to do it. You might not feel like doing what you said you would, but that's a whole other challenge, and on a really basic level, the reality is that we don't always feel like doing even our most favourite thing. So if that part comes up, start dealing with it by remembering your 100% commitment to yourself, and do what you said you would anyway. You'll thank yourself later!
6) Give yourself a high five! Or a 5 minute break! Or a sticker on a chart tracking your progress! Give yourself some sort of congratulations that you did what you said you would. You don't have to do this ongoing, but when you're at the beginning of creating changes, positive reinforcement goes a long way to helping you feel great about the process. At the beginning, we're not seeing the results we're looking for, and without that positive reinforcement, it's easy to give up, so set yourself some little rewards along the way, and be happy and proud of ALL you do.
When creating a new habit, there are lots of things that can get in the way, but in my experience, both in my own life, and with my clients, following these 6 steps solves a lot of the issues that most people face. In future blog posts, I'll address some of the other things that can get in the way. All the best to you as you begin the process of creating your own groovy life!
Keep on groovin'
*If you'd like to purchase these cards, please message me. I am working on getting my online store up and running, but it's not quite ready yet.
Last month, in the Music of Life column, I wrote about the way music weaves its way through every aspect of life, and how important it is to make a point of including music in our day to day lives.
With Remembrance Day approaching, this month we'll look a little more at how music keeps us connected to others, particularly in moments of sadness or grief, and the benefits we receive as a result.
Like many, I grew up attending Remembrance Day services at school; going to the assemblies and listening to the announcements that day. With music affecting me the way it does, it's not really a surprise that the first song I learned to play when I picked up the trumpet at 16 was The Last Post – the song that was played with our two minutes of silence every year on Remembrance Day.
There are may songs that trigger grief and sadness for me, and The Last Post is one of them. Amazing Grace is another.
Read more at www.OneThousandTrees.com, by clicking HERE.
My name is Kayleigh Radatus, and I'm the creator of This Groovy Life. As far as I'm concerned, we're here to really live and love This Groovy Life, and it's my purpose to help you do exactly that! I hope this blog is helpful. If there are any Personal Empowerment or Metaphysical topics you'd like me to cover, send me a message!