Craig wanted to share a few personal tips that have helped him regain control of his life when he felt that things were slipping out of control all around him.
There’s lots of changes affecting us at the moment, both in our personal lives as we enter a post-COVID environment, and in the wider world with the current war in Ukraine.
If you’re like me, you’ve made sensible decisions to protect your family, friends and work colleagues over the last few years. But I still think there’s things we can do to help ourselves be calm, be in control, and look after our own wellbeing.
A challenge I face in the hybrid world, where my time is either spent on the road or at home is to remember the basics. The basics are vital for my well-being. And I really do mean the basics. For example, it can be so easy to become engrossed in what I’m doing and I end up sitting in front of a computer for eight hours a day, which I know so many of us will relate to. So, I consciously focus on and remind myself, to look out the window, grab some fresh air, stand up from my desk and move around, at least every 60-90 mins.
Since the beginning of COVID, I made a choice to watch the news once a day, for five minutes, only for the headlines. Rarely is there anything that makes me think, “Ah, that’s wonderful and really cool”. So why would I choose to feed my brain with lots of the news that could impact my mindset?
I remember the days when the news ended with a quirky, happy story… the type of story where a local individual had grown a potato that looked like a famous person. This reminded me to consider the mindset I’m choosing and why. Am I allowing everything that’s going on around me to choose my mindset for me? Am I looking for all the bad, just to reinforce that things are pretty challenging at the moment? Or am I taking a step back and deciding on the day I want to have?
You can choose how you want to think and feel. You can choose how that’s going to impact you and the people around you. You can create your own energy. And weirdly, even chatting about it now, I can feel myself starting to get energised, just because I’m talking about things that make me smile and happy. I’m taking control. I believe it’s about getting back to basics; giving ourselves a refresh and asking the question, how do I make 2022 my best year ever?
What am I doing to look after myself? How can I break up my year up into segments of what I want to focus on? For example, what do I want to gain from my job this year? What would ten out of ten look like for me at work? Where would I score myself right now? If I was an eight at the moment, how can I achieve a ten? What two or three things could I choose to do this year to increase my score? If you’re particularly daring, you could choose a segment such as love, life, laughter or personal and physical wellbeing.
To aim for ten out of ten for my own physical wellbeing in my working day, I’d be grabbing some fresh air, taking regular breaks, and sleeping for eight hours (Ok, six hours!), so that I feel refreshed and fulfilled every morning when I wake up. And, when I score myself against my goal and see that I’m only achieving seven out of ten, my driver would be the key activities that I choose to do now; the key things I could do that drive me further towards my goal.
When I’m in a virtual meeting with a client, I check in with them at the beginning and agree with them that we both don’t sit in front of our computers for two hours. I ask them when they’d like to take a five-minute break, just to go stretch their legs, grab a drink etc. It’s about building these steps into your daily routine and consciously choosing them.
This thinking and approach is based on a model called the ‘wheel of life/anything’, and it usually features six segments (although, it’s your wheel so you decide what number is right for you). You can choose to identify which segments you want to focus on. You can include your career, physical/mental wellbeing, finances, fun, relationships, personal development or anything that’s important to you. For me, music and drumming are in my segments.
For each segment ask yourself:
• what would ten out of ten look like for me?
• where am I right now?
• where do I want to be by the end of the year?
• what one or two actions can I commit to that will gently tickle and nudge my score up a bit?
Then you’re taking full control of how you want your year to be. You’re choosing how to drive your year forward. There’s bound to be challenges that impact you this year but you can always take a step back and refocus. You can tweak where you are and what you want to do because you’re choosing to do things for yourself, that makes you the best version of you ever.
I’d be really interested to hear your thoughts on your wheel of life and achieving your best year ever.
We’ve attached an editable version of our ‘wheel of life’, which you can download… so why not give it a go!