Tag: Balance

A Run in with My Younger Self

Written By: Jax Menez Atwell
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I’d fallen asleep but found myself awake in a strange place.  An alley.  A dark alley with dim lighting from a lamp above, some fog and mist for affect.  There before me was my younger self.  It appeared he was listening to me.  What was I saying? 

I’m sure everyone at one point has thought, “Oh, if I could just go back” or “I wish I would have known this when I was young”.   For me it is a real dilemma.   If you had known somethings would you have made the same choices in life and would you be the person you are today.  At forty years old, I am full of scars and mistakes that are all a huge part of what makes me who I am.  If I take away many of those supposed “negatives” then would I have experienced success, would I have enjoyed my triumphs, would the positives still be there without the negatives.  Each individual can only answer that question for themselves.

For me, experiencing the height of a mountain only has the elation and joy if you came from the valley.  That physical and true metaphor has a ton of weight for me as I contemplate what I would be telling my younger self.  My life has truly been hills and valleys and deep canyons and mountain tops.  For me the sweetness of the journey, in success or failure, is what makes the man.

Sure, there are lots of silly things I’d probably love to be telling myself.  Just in items of fitness alone: “Don’t lift so heavy, your joints will pay for it when your older”, “Protect your elbows and knees”, “Don’t waste your money on most supplements and learn how to eat correctly”.  I use the fitness items just as an example I’m not sure my younger self wouldn’t have already tuned out! 

If the silly, little things wouldn’t need to be said and I’m pretty confident I believe my journey of ups and downs was truly an exercise in seeing the forest for the trees.  Then what would I actually be saying to the younger me?

I found myself telling him about balance.  Such an important part to this life.   A person has categories to their life. I believe I have four categories.  I believe one category would be my spiritual side.  The physical side would represent health, fitness, body, and sexuality.  The work life or occupation would be another.  Finally, your home life and what that entails.  I was told by a man that you can have one of these categories in turmoil but getting a second into turmoil causes major life disruptions.  If a third category begins having issues then this is when we see life struggles that can cause fierce issues. I’m not sure if it was the darkness, the misty lighting or my cryptic personality but my younger self appeared to be a captive audience so I continued…

I began telling him about a code I’d develop in law enforcement.  One that has served me well as an investigator, father, and just being a good person for those around me.  The code is pretty simple, “There are two sides to every coin”.  This very simple philosophy can be applied to a plethora of things in life.  It keeps your mind open, it keeps you from instant judgements, it prevents prejudice, and it drastically will reduce failures of all kinds.  I’d want my younger self to have this mental power much sooner to deal with things to come.  Even though my younger self looked a bit puzzled I moved on.  Not knowing how much time I would have.

The process of hurt blurted out of my mouth.  Hurt will happen.  People will hurt you.  Expect to be hurt but DON’T let it make you give any less love.  As my dear mother says, “Your rewards will be in heaven”.  I found this to be a very slow and painful life lesson that I wish I’d conquered much sooner.  Always being shocked when someone close hurt me or when that knife in the back really catches you off guard.  As we get older we close people off, trust people less, have less friends…our circle gets so small that sometimes there isn’t anyone around.  I’ve experienced this and done this very action.  It really is a natural reaction to “circle the wagons” but if we do that and don’t experience the gift of giving our love to others we miss one of the true joys in life and one that is unique to the human experience.  Not sure if that one took; his look of puzzlement went to deer in the head lights!

So, feeling like my time was over I simply left him with this, “In this world, dark times will come and go, keep yourself grounded and balanced, look above to God, follow your heart, and survive the storm.”  For me that would be the best advise because I relish my journey.  I wouldn’t want to veer my younger self from the path.  “Enjoy the Journey” would be my last words.   This is where I go slinking into the shadows and disappear!  Oh, the look on my younger self’s face, you should see it!

Did he listen?  Would your younger self listen?  Life’s a journey, enjoy the path.

About the Author

Jax Menez Atwell plays The Scavenger. Jax has more than ten years of investigative experience in law enforcement agencies in Arizona and California. His investigative law enforcement experience and training include under-cover operations, narcotics, SWAT, person and property crimes, etc. Jax has been a private investigator since 2008 specializing in the hard to solve cases such as cold cases, civilian, business and government investigations. Jax was additionally part of a team of three investigative team that explored missing people in History Channel’s “Missing in Alaska.” When Jax is not perusing the truth in his investigations he finds time to throw himself at acting roles. He has been in a number of productions since 2013. Films like “.357”, “New World Order: The End Has Come” and another Montana made film “The Big Muddy” western series. Plus more. Jax brings with him a lot of energy, enthusiasm and a fierce work ethic.

 

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6 Tips On How To Balance Work and Life

By: Christopher Toste
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Originally Published Here.

These days, work-life balance can seem like an impossible goal to achieve and with technology making workers more accessible around the clock, it makes it even more difficult. So how do you achieve some balance?

There is no single right way to attain a balanced life as it is a personal decision how one combines their career, spouse/significant other, children, friends and self into an integrated whole. The key is to develop creative solutions that can help you balance the responsibilities and joys of your multiple roles in life.

Here are some of my tips that I use to help me achieve work-life balance.

Build a Support Network
When there is a mutual understanding of the demands of work but the ability to always make time for one another is very important to have in your network. Therefore build a great support network with family and friends.

Build downtime into your schedule & Get Organized
When you plan your week, make it a point to schedule time with your family and friends, and activities that help you recharge. Set priorities, work smarter not harder, and delegate. By planning out activities can help balance out your work and personal responsibilities. It can also help keep you organized.
If a date night with your significant other or a softball game with friends is on your calendar, you’ll have something to look forward to and an extra incentive to manage your time well so you don’t have to cancel.

Remember that a little relaxation goes a long way
Even during a hectic day, you can take 10 or 15 minutes to do something that will recharge your batteries. For example, take a bath, read a novel, go for a walk, or listen to music. You have to make a little time for the things that ignite your joy.

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Establish Limits and Boundaries
Boundaries and limits define how you take charge of your time and space. Without limits it can be difficult to say “no.” Remind yourself often that your boundaries are necessary for balancing work and life.

Enjoy Quality Family Time
Remember to enjoy quality family time when you can as there are no real work emergencies unless you work serving the community. Cherish each moment spent together and build a strong relationship with your significant other and with your children as they can be instrumental to your success.

Vacation or Staycation
It is important to take a vacation or staycation as it can help you recharge and relax from the hustle and bustle of work. If you can’t get away then plan some activities that you can do in and around your own city. Just having an escape from the daily work routine will make a difference in the way you feel.

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These are some tips that I use to help me but remember everyone balances their life differently. One of my mentors gave me a great advice that I would like to pass onto all of you. “To have a truly balanced life, you must have goals for the following: financial, spiritual, physical and relational. These goals must tie in all aspects into your life.” Find what works for you and before you know it, you can achieve balance!

About the Author

With a passion for real estate and strong business skills, Chris hopes to establish himself as an authority in the Toronto Real Estate market and surrounding communities.

To ensure that client expectations are always surpassed, Chris has secured a team of professionals who share his uncompromising professionalism and integrity. As a full service brokerage, whether looking for a mortgage lender, real estate lawyer or a home inspector we have put together a group that can fulfill all our client’s needs. A strong focus on the customer is what differentiates Chris from the rest of the pack.

Specialties
Toronto Real Estate, Houses for sale in Toronto, Toronto Condos, MLS Toronto, Toronto real estate listings, Toronto and Surrounding Area’s Real Estate

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Motivated Mom on a Healthy Mission

Being a mom, we tend to forget about ourselves as we are always busy taking care of others and ensuring that everyone else is ok. So it can be difficult for us to find the time to take care of ourselves and maintain a healthy lifestyle in the process.

This is why my “Mom of the Month” goes to Michelle who is a coach with BeachBody.

Michelle is in her 30’s who juggles a lot on her plate. Michelle works full time as a retail manager, is a wife, mother to a 4 year old daughter and in her spare time is a coach for Beachbody. This Torontonian also loves to sing and to dance but admits she is not very good at either one. She also loves to workout, especially with choreographed routines.

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I got a chance to catch up with this busy mom to find out more about her mission to motivate others for a healthier life.

1. What is BeachBody and what does it do?

Beachbody is the #1 home workout provider with amazing programs such as P90X, Turbo Fire, Insanity and 21 Day Fix. It offers accessible ways for everyday people to get fit, have fun and change their lives. By being a Beachbody coach, I am an extension of the company as I have used many of these programs and have seen great success. You want to lose weight but hate burpees, like me? We’ve got a program for that. Love to dance, like me? We’ve got a program for that too. You want to workout in a puddle of your own sweat while cursing at the trainer on the TV, we can offer you that. Beachbody isn’t for everyone but there is a program for every type of goal, fitness level, interest, etc. And don’t forget about shakeology. It’s like liquid gold. It packs all my nutrients in one scoop which is great for someone like me who forgets to take their vitamins.

2. When did you start your hobby business?

I finally decided to sign up to become a coach just over two months ago. I have been using their programs and products since 2008 but have never made the decision to be a coach. Under great guidance and support over the past few years from my own personal coach and others I have met along the way, I finally decided to do it.

3. What inspired you to start this venture?

It’s not about the money for me. Sure, it does not hurt, but it’s more about helping people. I love making people’s days. I do it every day at work, and wanted to inspire people the way I was inspired. I am not perfect. I don’t always eat 80% healthy, 20% not, I’m not good with meal prep and I hate burpees but….I am a compassionate, realistic working mother who is making the time to get her health together. I have always been chubby and looking back at pics from my early 20’s, I was a lot heavier than I remembered. I have yo-yo’d a lot. I lost a lot of weight with BeachBody’s Turbo Jam from 2008 to 2011 before I became pregnant with my daughter. My energy levels dropped, my nausea and appetite increased and I ate myself into a 70 pound weight gain. I made excuses after her birth and didn’t bother to take the weight off until 2013 and ever since then I’ve worked out and came into my own. I hope to share my story and reach out to those looking for help in getting on the right healthy path.

4. What do you hope to accomplish through your business?

I want to help people find their motivation, be their support and hold them accountable as it’s so difficult to do this on your own, which I’m sure is one of the reasons as to why Beachbody introduced coaches into their programs. I hope to be able to reach out to people, inspire them in some way and build new relationships and friendships. Through my personal workout groups, I have forged bonds with women who would otherwise be strangers. We support and encourage, and offer friendship, guidance and sometimes a good kick in the butt. We laugh, we cry and we sweat. I want to be able to offer that to so many people out there.

5. How do you stay motivated to get and stay fit?

There are many motivators, some better than others. Obviously family is my number one. Everything I do is for them, I want to be there for my daughter every step of the way, be with my husband until we are in the 100’s and show them all about a healthier lifestyle. Health is a huge one. Being fit keeps me out of harm’s way so to speak. Also, it is a little superficial if I’m completely honest but I want to feel good in what I wear. It’s not necessarily about looking good because I can be 15 pounds overweight but if I’m killing my workouts, eating 80/20 and feeling confident, it doesn’t bother me. I’ve always compared myself to others, and have been picked on for my weight a lot, which can be very damaging, and unfortunately that doesn’t always go away. So staying fit and feeling confident helps to fight those old demons.

6. As a busy working mom, how do you find the time and balance it all?

It is all about priorities for me. Family, work, health, faith, personal development, friendship, these are all my priorities. When something is of great importance to you, you will find the time to give it the attention it needs. I love fitness and I love social media, so I schedule my life around getting it done. I have mad respect for those who can get their behinds to a gym to do their workouts, but I would never find the motivation in that, so I pick programs and workouts that I can stick to, motivate me and inspire me to make the time. My life is all about balance now, making sure that my career and family are taken care of, and taking the time I need to take care of myself and my health.

7. For the everyday mom, what tips would you give them to help them start the path to fitness?

Honestly. First thing for me and the first step is setting a goal. An attainable goal with a specific timeline and work from there. Such as, “I want to lose 20 pounds in 6 months.” How can you get to that goal? Will it be by increasing activity, or making a dietary lifestyle change? Who can help me, support me, challenge me, hold me accountable and motivate me to stick to it? What does success look like?

I’m no expert but I know having a SMART goal (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-Sensitive) for me, written down is a great way to start. It won’t be easy or free, but anyone can start, it just takes that first step.

8. How can people connect with you?

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MotivatedMamaMichelle
Twitter: @misha_57
Instagram: @coach_turbomisha

Website: http://www.teambeachbody.com/en_CA/member/sn/turbomisha
Email: coachturbomisha@gmail.com

Michelle’s journey to a better and healthier lifestyle is a true inspiration. Her drive and mission to help others is amazing even with her busy schedule. This is why this mom is our “Mom of the Month” on Momma Braga.

Michelle states, “No matter how you plan to achieve your goals, just stick to it. It can be rough and discouraging but everything you do, is in the right direction.”

If you have any questions or would like to learn more, please feel free to contact Michelle using one of the social media platforms mentioned above.

“I feel it’s my calling and what I’m meant to do…..help people”, says Michelle. I couldn’t agree more with you Michelle and I wish you continued success!

You have already motivated this momma and now I am off for a walk! 😉

Special thank you to Michelle for taking the time to contribute to this piece.

Until next time…..Happy Parenting!

– Momma Braga