I have returned now from a wonderful walking holiday in the Western USA. I have seen some amazing sites including the Grand Canyon (one off my bucket list) which was amazing. However my favourite moment of the holiday was in the Canyonlands National Park. We walked on the ‘Island in the Sky’ to the rim of a huge canyon where we sat in silence for a few minutes just listening to the sound of the desert – amazing!
I have been back for nearly two weeks now and I have found the jet lag really hard! Going west was not so difficult just a matter of staying up for as long as possible but coming home after a couple of weeks on Pacific Time has been a completely different story. The first thing I always do when I return from holiday is re-establish my ‘magic morning’ routine.
When was the last time you had to consciously learn that 6×9=54 or consciously remember that you already know the answer? Probably when you were about 6 or 7. But when you need that little piece of information it just pops up – it is nicely stored in your unconscious mind ready just in case you need it.
I wish I was better at keeping the promises I make to myself!
I have been reading Gretchen Rubin’s book ‘Better Than Before’ and she sheds a little light on why this may be hard for me.
I was skiing last week. On Wednesday evening I was reflecting on my skiing journey. I was feeling pretty pleased with myself because I was in an off piste lesson group with an old friend who has always been a much better skier than me. Learning to ski has been a long hard slog for me and the fact that I am now even using the words ‘off piste’ in connection with my skiing seems amazing!!
Thursday was a different story…
My journal is where I talk to myself – and by spending time talking to myself I get to know myself better. When I know myself and understand who I am right now I can more easily work out where I want to make changes in my life and how I am going to do that.
I sit down nearly every morning with my journal and a cup of coffee and have a good old natter with myself!
The tone of my morning conversations depends on how I am feeling that day. I always start by asking myself how I am feeling today?
I spent yesterday thinking about why a change in organisational culture is so hard. But actually the answer to that question is easy – it is because you are asking everyone (or very nearly everyone) in the organisation to change their habits.
Skiing down a very icy piste last week I was looking for soft snow at the side to turn on. Turning on ice is a hazardous business – it’s hard to get a grip and the result is often not very dignified. I thought this is a good metaphor for life when the going gets tricky.
India – the most extraordinary country!
I have seen the most amazing sights in the pink city of Jaipur and at Agra the stunningly beautiful Taj Mahal. I have visited palaces of Maharajas and heard stories of their wars, family feuds and love.
We took the overnight train to Varanasi (very grim!) and then at dusk and again at dawn walked and took boat rides along the famous Ghats that lead down to the Ganges – mother Ganga – the river that is worshipped and also used for bathing and laundry and cremations. The burning Ghats of the Ganges are the most holy place for a Hindu to be cremated believing that cremation here will send their soul to heaven and put an end to the reincarnation cycle of death and rebirth.
Here is a guaranteed way to make you smile every day.
Here is one of my favourites – before making a difficult phone call –find a private place – stand tall, arms and shoulders down and stretched, look up to the sky, grin as hard as you can and say yes, yes, yes. Walk directly to the phone and dial the number – remain standing and alert posture.