How to stay FOCUSED

The top reasons a plan doesn't work is that either A - it doesn't suit your lifestyle or B - you are having a hard time staying focused. These are two areas I actively work on with clients.

The way I address option A at Inward to Ithaka- is by recalibrating your program every week, removing what doesn't work for you, and implementing more strategies for success. Not a lot of people offer this, and while I do hope this becomes common practice, I understand why it is not. It takes a lot of time and effort to not only develop a program for someone but to be continually adjusting it. The back end research and front end communication with clients take a lot of time and that is something people do not always see. Luckily, as time goes by the planning gets easier, you learn more, and at some point you no longer need me! The effort needed on your half for implementation however, will always be there. My focus is your success and that is why I want to offer you suggestions and help through Option B.

How can you adjust your life in order to stay focused? While this may not be your common list - its is what I see stopping people on a regular basis. I will start with addressing the main issues I see and then offer suggestions to help.

1) Time - many people feel they have too much to do in a day and that they can't fit it in. So what is the solution? Reclaiming your time. This means starting with a daily log of everything you do in the day. Yup, thats right - you have to write it all down, because in between the chaos is time. A well made plan addresses the issue's you may be having with time management in order to prioritize the things that need to get done.

Once this is done - you shift the focus into a 15 to 30 minute calendar of things to do in a day so that you can start following and checking it all off. If you are not accounting for the time, it can get wasted. I can't tell you enough how successful this has been for people with time management issues. It may seem tedious but it is not long term. It does however, need to be implemented for long enough to make it a habit.

2) Money - It is often a number one stressor for people and they feel it is what stops them from living their optimal life. I rarely accept this as an excuse... in fact I don't think I have made an exception to date yet. Luckily for you, I have a business degree so I will root through your financials with a fine tooth comb if that should be what you need to alleviate stress. There are many options to cook inexpensive healthy meals - work outs from home and ways to enjoy the simplicity of life. If you are trying to figure this all out alone, start with your own budget and speak with a financial advisor. See where you can cut costs and bring in extra income or support. Next, start looking at meals and prep in advance. I often have coupons and magazine adds from different stores and I will scout out what I want to make in the week based on what is going on in each store.

3) Energy - This can feel the most challenging sometimes. You want to make a change but you simply do not have the energy to get started. I call this stage the "zombie march". In other words, you take that plan and you put one foot in front of the other. It is about doing things one step at a time, 15 minutes at a time, small choices that are good for you, one in front of the other and recouping as much as you can.

I highly recommend having a juicer or good blender during this time. It gives you a way to access nutrients quick and easy. Over time I promise you, things do get easier as you transition out of the lethargic state and into repair. Just do what you can to turn your brain off (who needs to expend energy on that thing anyway) and just let your body go on autopilot. I haven't had a single person tell me yet they didn't feel better a month after working together then when they started. They may not feel great yet at that point, but definitely in an upward direction. I have faith in you that you can do this, and get out of that slump because we will work hard together to find the root cause.

4) Partnerships - If you are not in a partnership that is supportive you will end up being sabotaged in your journey to health and happiness. You will know in your heart right away if you are in this type of relationship so don't try to ask yourself a million questions or make excuses for the other party, just say "am I in a healthy, loving and supportive relationship" YES or NO? And see what comes up first.

In my mind you have two options if the answer is NO. One, you can leave the toxic relationship. If you truly feel it is toxic there is no point in staying and your health will be dependant on it. If you are just at different stages in your lives, maybe you've been married a long time, or the other person just needs convincing, than you need to step up to the plate and take responsibility of your life.

This means leading by example. If you care about the person you are with (and yourself) you must find the motivation inside to be that person and to help aid your partner on their journey. Perhaps you will drift over time, or - better yet - you may spur them onto a whole different path where they join you. I have often heard people say they inspired their partner and before they knew it, the other half was teaching them! This is a beautiful experience to go through with someone but it takes setting boundaries, and being firm in who you are to be successful.

Oh, and if you think I was done this section I am not. Lets also address the partnership that is with yourself. There is no place for negative self talk here. Listen, accept, and release. If you feel it is taking over, I would recommend daily, hourly affirmations to drown out the background noise and recreate the script inside of your head and heart.

I am enough

I will always be enough

I choose to live a healthy, happy life

I am perfect, whole and complete

Over and over and over again.

5) Anxiety/Depression/Past trauma - While these are all separate issues I will be putting them in one category for now. Anxiety and depression in some form are seen in 85% of my clientele and are often linked from past trauma. I don't know at this point if the anxiety/depression rates are coincidence in who I attract or becoming extremely prevalent today but it needs to be addressed. What I would suggest is that you MUST begin supporting your brain with optimal foods and nutrition.

Also, a morning and evening routine is paramount to begin grounding yourself physically, mentally and spiritually. These areas can occur from having an overactive third eye and mental state so you need to start implementing more mental discipline and balancing your body out in different ways. Developing a daily physical practice can be one of the best ways to do so. Something that gets you in a mode where you don't have the time to think. Playing sports can be good for this, but if you are not that type, then a form of cardio also works where you have to focus on breath work. Regular cardio is shown to boost the size of the hippocampus (area of memory, thinking and learning) - no weights do not do the same thing in this case.

6) Acceptance - Last I want to talk about is acceptance, which may or may not be linked to the above. In order for us to implement a healthy lifestyle and fitness plan we need to accept where we are at in life. We cannot take a magic pill and have things all go away, we need to continue to work at life, continue to grow and move forward. Evolve and transition into a higher state of being.

The choices we made, the jobs we've decided to work, the belief systems we created (or held onto from family) are why we are in this spot. There are going to be times where you may be financially burdened, or have family obligations that demand your time and presences. That does not mean you need to lose sight of yourself. Instead, except that the spot you are at is temporary, and acknowledge that with time, you will be in a different place.

This is a time where you should be journal, saving, and taking the steps you need to move forward with patience. Reflecting on each month, noting whether or not you have made some small advances and celebrating in them. Things do not often change over night and the lack out patience can throw us into the anxiety/depression category.

Learn to love the journey you are on. Learn to love the place you are in, and always keep that goal.. your "Ithaka" in your mind. Remembering that it is not the destination that is what is important, but how we got there and who's hearts we touched along the way.

**Should you be interested in hearing more about a certain point - email me, and I will work on a more detailed blog XO - All my love!


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