#77 Switch Hands

Scientists tell us that if we are using one side of our body more often than not, it hold true also that we are using only one side of our brain more often than not.

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#77

Switch Hands

Want to give your brain a quick boost? Spend a day primarily using your non-dominant hand for a day. Try using it to zip, button, and snap. Soap your body, brush your teeth, and comb your hair with your ‘other’ hand. Keep going. Try buttering toast and reaching into the fridge opposite from how you usually do it.

This activity is considered exercise for your brain. Scientists tell us that if we are using one side of our body more often than not, it hold true also that we are using only one side of our brain more often than not. Something as simple as using a different hand will help you develop the other side of your brain; grow neurons.

Healthy Brain

In the same way we strive for better health in our bodies, it is imperative that we are attentive to keeping our brain healthy. If we change those little things that we do rotely, it forces us to use brain power and think about what we’re doing.

Healthy Body

If you’re right handed, your right bicep is probably stronger. You are likely right footed as well with more developed right leg muscles. Shifting things into your left hand will activate the left side and balance the muscle development in your body.

Marketing

Researchers have suggested that we tend to ‘lead’ based on our dominant hand; meaning that we will lead to the right when we are moving through a store, an amusement park, or generally anywhere we go. Watch what direction people tend to move as they exit an escalator or at the entrance to a concert hall. One of the most helpful tips I read when going to Disney World the first time was to go left as soon as we entered the park because most of us will automatically go right. [More than 70% of the world’s population is right handed.] And, by the way, it worked. Change is good for us all.

You may be surprised to discover the benefits of exercising your brain by making a commitment to …

Switch hands.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#78 Revisit Your Childhood Home

t can refresh our minds of a simpler time and allow us to reflect without all of the complications that have settled upon us since.

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#78

Revisit Your Childhood Home

Many of us go ‘home’ during the holiday’s and are reminded of childhood memories and the places they represent. Often, just driving past a movie theater or a diner will elicit fond memories of times past. Those places where we giggled over infatuations and had our first dates. The place we caught our first fish and the location of our our first kiss; all of the ‘firsts’ of childhood are there to induce one memory after another.

A trip down the memory lane of childhood can be beneficial on many fronts. It reminds us of where we came from. Sometimes, a little humility feels good. It can refresh our minds of a simpler time and allow us to reflect without all of the complications that have settled upon us since. When we are reminded where we came from we can make the effort to reconnect to that younger self; to remember our purest beginning.

Sharing the place it all started is fun. Children are humored by the stories we tell about a time they can only imagine. The enjoy getting to know the person behind mom, dad, aunt, or uncle. Our significant other can garner a better understanding of us if we are open to giving them a tour of our early selves. Often, moving through our childhood habitat allows them to gain insight about how we came to be who we are.

Going ‘home’ may ignite more memories than would be typical to have. It’s common for people, places, and things to stimulate a deeper memory bank and one often begets another. Before long, a flood of visions of your younger self will be moving through your mind.

Often, knocking on the door of the home you grew up in will introduce you to others who are sharing many of the same kind of memories. People have been known to offer tours of the house in its current state and are frequently quite curious about the history of those who came before them!

Some people don’t have great memories of home and may avoid going there. The benefit of closure is considerable if you can visit without reliving the pain or discomfort that may have been a part of your childhood. I recommend to clients that you prepare to watch the memories as if they were a movie with an arbitrary actor instead of personalizing the memory. This technique can be very healing, especially if you are with someone safe and supportive as you move through the recollections.

If you are going ‘home’ for the holidays, consider taking a significant other or a dear friend and …

Revisit your childhood home.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#79 Go to the Library

It’s one of my favorite places to go if I need to concentrate on a project as I hope that the collective wisdom, represented by the volumes of information will guide me.

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#79

Go to the Library

In this digital age of Kindle and e-readers and Amazon’s ability to deliver hard copy books to us in 48 hours or less, our jaunts to the library are far and few between for most of us. What was once a weekly trek to replace the books that I’d devoured in in short time has become a rare occurrence. Sadly, I must admit that it’s my loss – not taking the time to enjoy browsing the rows of hard bound books – running my fingers along the spines and choosing carefully, a new book to read.

Libraries appeal to our senses in a way the a laptop connected to the internet never can.

Aromas

There’s something whole-hearted about being in a library. That smell, the aroma of paper and glue, of dust and ink. If it was a glass of wine it may have hints of acidity and grass or vanilla and smoke. The old ones are my favorite as that old inviting scent seems to have permeated the walls.

Comfort

They seem to have more nooks and crannies that allow you to hide, or escape with a book. It’s one of my favorite places to go if I need to concentrate on a project as I hope that the collective wisdom, represented by the volumes of information will guide me.

Sounds

The hushed quiet is reassuring in some way. It’s as if we must be still in order to absorb what our eyes are experiencing. The complimentary noises of books opening and closing, of being moved around on the shelves, and of people searching connects to our brain in a way that may remind it to scour for its own collection of information. It’s as if sitting in a library reminds us to dig deeper into our own knowledge banks.

History

There’s a bit of history in libraries that has yet to be captured by the world wide web. Certainly, we’re not yet at the point where each and every book has been scanned electronically. There are historical collections of newspapers, magazines, and lessor known copy that exist in libraries – especially the larger ones – that can offer a historical perspective unavailable in our technology. There’s something magical about holding a book published in 1940 and understanding that it’s been moved around our culture and literally shared by thousands of people since. Touching it connects you to that history – joining your combined energy and adding your own historical fingerprint.

If we don’t make the effort to continue to support these institutions, they will disappear and the world will lose part of its vitality; an element of its heartbeat. So, the next time you pass by… make the effort and take some time to…

Go to the library.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#80 Take the Long Road

Taking the long road may allow you to contemplate a problem or run through solutions because driving and heading home are such rote activities

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#80

Take the Long Road

While this advice may not always be in your best interest, sometimes taking the long road offers a range of opportunities.

Taking the long road home allows you to gather your thoughts and partition work related stressors away from the energy you want to greet your family with.

Taking the long road on vacation allows you to experience the culture and ambiance of the location you are visiting in a vastly different way than a freeway or interstate does.

Taking the [figurative] long road in responding to a hurtful remark will allow you to make sure that your return comments aren’t ugly and spiteful.

Taking the [figurative] long road to consider ethical challenges will most often allow you to feel confident that your considerations were well thought out.

Taking the long road may help you bypass the frustration of traffic congestion.

Taking the long road may allow you to explore a conversation that may otherwise get interrupted. Some of the best conversations happen in a car when parties are somewhat captive.

Taking the long road may allow you to contemplate a problem or run through solutions because driving and heading home are such rote activities

Of course, taking the long road may also use more gas, put more miles on your automobile (except when using the figurative sense) and ultimately cost more money. Yet, there are times when it’s a clear advantage to…

Take the long road.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

 

#81 Attend a Mystery Night Out

While murder mystery ‘game night’ boxes have been around for decades, the idea has taken on a very different vibe with museums, galleries, restaurants, and others getting in on the fun.

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#81

Attend a Mystery Night Out

Are you a mystery lover? Do you like to solve problems? Are you seeking a new idea or an alternative for your next ‘date night’? While murder mystery ‘game night’ boxes have been around for decades, the idea has taken on a very different vibe with museums, galleries, restaurants, and others getting in on the fun.

Host at Home

If you want to invite a few people over for a fun night at home, consider a box game – readily available from a variety of places. You’ll get everything you need to invite a few friends over and role play a real life game of Clue. You don’t need the box though – you can download a game and all the necessary information to play.

Get Out

Not into hosting? Want to be a partygoer? Keep an eye out for a Murder Mystery night in your community. Local theaters, tourist train companies, galleries, libraries, and even small townships have hosted murder mystery nights with themes ranging from Casablanca style nights to Old West Gold Rush motifs.

Finding Fun

A simple Google search for “Murder Mystery Night in YourTown” will hopefully return a number of options in your community or nearby. Sites like Eventbrite and Yelp also returned local options and Yelp of course, offered some reviews and comments about the events themselves but word of warning for those comments: The fun is often determined by the people involved in the experience and as such – will be different for each group.

Social

Just a few days ago I touted the benefits of a game night and this is just a twist on that suggestion. It’s yet another way for couples to enhance time together in a unique way. It’s a great opportunity for families to get disconnected from electronics and do something fun. It’s an entertaining way to spend time getting to know new friends or building comradery with business associates or team members.

Do a quick search for opportunities in your area, gather one or more peeps, and …

Attend a Mystery Night out.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#82 Create a Plan

It’s really very simple. Life is just one big, personal house that we begin designing in adolescence with a vision of who we are and what we want for ourselves.

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#82

Create a Plan

Any good life coach or business development coach will tell you that the secret to success is a plan. We can easily relate to this concept if we understand that many aspects of our life are akin to building a house. Every house that’s ever been built began with a vision and then moved into the planning stage and a blueprint is designed.

Blueprint

The blueprint is the base ‘plan’. It’s a conceptual illustration of how things ‘could’ work with all systems in place and in the absence of major changes. It’s a starting point and a visual from which to work.

In your plan, this means writing things down… make a list – create a binder – build a vision board, etc.

Foundation

The next step is to lay the foundation. This may be the most important piece as everything else is supported by this base and many of us have witnessed first hand what happens to a house when there is a deficiency in the foundation.

In your plan, this means education – training – experience, etc.

Construction

Few of us have ever built a house single-handedly. Indeed, most of them are built with the cooperation and coordination of people who are there in support of the entire project and they are aware of the ‘plan’.

In your plan, this means family – friends – experts, etc.

Work Order Changes

Sometimes, as we move about the construction, the plan on paper doesn’t actually work the way we thought it would in real life. When something needs to be changed there’s a mini plan developed to accommodate the shift. Most often, it’s no big deal. Sometimes, it’s a major repositioning and we need the support of everyone involved and maybe even a bolster to the foundation. Some houses get built with very little deviation from the primary plan. When I did it, there were 22 work order changes; the irony of it is not lost on me.

In your plan, these modifications may be health – relationships – money, etc.

When the foundation is in great shape, the alterations are handled efficiently. When it isn’t – sometimes you go back to square one and adjust the original plan in detail.

It’s really very simple. Life is just one big, personal house that we begin designing in adolescence with a vision of who we are and what we want for ourselves. The biggest mistake that we make is going into adulthood without a blueprint for how it will unfold. Maybe you did but there’ve been so many ‘renovations’ along the way that you now need to go through each room to make sure that they meet the conditions set forth with the current revision. It’s a process many of us can benefit from every couple of years.

If you never did implement a formal design… it’s never too late. Take the time to consider your future and …

Create a plan.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.

#83 Go Ahead and Veg

For some reason, we give ourselves permission to spend the day on the beach ‘vegging’ but deny ourselves that relaxation when we are at home.

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.

#83

Go Ahead and Veg

Do you know how to relax? Do you feel guilty or restless when you spend time doing ‘nothing’? It may be time for you to learn to let go and experience the pleasure of ‘veg’ing’ once in awhile.

Define

According to Urban Dictionary – to “Veg” means to “relax all day”, or to “be in a vegetative state”.  Most people think of this in terms of ‘doing nothing’ or ‘not accomplishing anything’ and I can’t help but wonder why most of us are so compelled to constantly ‘be accomplishing’ something.

I suppose we should also now clarify what it means to ‘relax’. The concept is easily considered if we imagine spending a day on the beach with our feet in the sand, a good book in our hand, and our mind fully content listening to the surf and seagulls. For some reason, we give ourselves permission to spend the day on the beach ‘vegging’ but deny ourselves that relaxation when we are at home.

Rest

Some might argue that in contemporary societies, we simply do not rest enough. Many studies have pointed out the perils of sleep deprivation with attention to the fact that it is at epidemic levels in the American society. Sleep then, would be the most beneficial way to obtain rest but so too… is fostering one’s ability to ‘veg’. This is a time when we are absolutely not focused on those things which could be linked to daily stressor items; work, money, family, etc. It may be reading a nonsense fiction book, or sitting on the deck birdwatching, or channel surfing – any activity at produces a resting heart rate and allows your mind, body, and soul to be on auto mode.

Recharge

Vegging helps you recharge. It settles your body and brain from the demanding performance levels one frequently experiences day-to-day. It is a ‘plugging in’ of sorts – breaking away from energy draining activities to recharge and regroup. Thinking of vegging in this manner may help you dismiss any derogatory feelings about letting those hours slip by unaccomplished.

Perspective

This is not to say that constant vegging will be good for anyone. Indeed, vegging should be utilized in those times – other than vacation – when its obvious that your tank is empty or when you feel the stress level about to overflow. Those are the times when its imperative that you give yourself permission to let go of the ‘to-do’ list and …

Go ahead and ‘veg’.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.