Archives for March 2020

Exercise impacts the rest of your life in a positive way

Exercise is so important. It’s not to sport a six pack of abs or Popeye like biceps, but to give your body something it needs. Exercise benefits your body and your brain.

To quote the Rolling Stones, “you gotta move.” When you are healthy, movement helps your body to be healthier (this is easy to Google). Movement helps your body physically, but also mentally. In times of stress, like now, it can help reduce anxiety, depression, and stress, and improve your mood and cognitive functioning. Read that sentence again; movement can help you to be more centered and at peace.

Anyone who has had back pain can tell you how debilitating it can be. Movement helps keep your body loose and helps with your pain. Movement can be stretching or your regular mode of exercise. Of course you may want or need to use ice afterwards to help, but movement, along with heat and ice, work together to ease pain.

I have had back pain and know. Many people lay in bed and do nothing until the paid recedes, which is a good move if that what your doctor recommends. Otherwise, especially with soft tissue pain or injury, the counterintuitive action you should take is to move. For me, using movement (stretching and exercise), heat eat and ice works well.

The combination of these three methods of treatment help me recover faster when my back hurts. I have found the less I move, i.e. not working out and or sitting in my chair at work too long without getting up, the more back pain I have and the longer it lasts. I try to move and walk so that I am doing what I can to keep my back pain at bay.

Exercise also benefits your brain. It provides time think on life issues large and small. It can help clear out detritus you haven’t had a chance to think over. It also can provide the clear mind you need for inspiration. My wife and I hike regularly, and many important life decisions have been made on those hikes or as a result of conversations started on a hike.

The trick is to find something you like to do. You don’t have to go to the gym, but that may be your thing. You know you won’t keep doing something you don’t like to do. If you find something you like to do, you can make it a habit and therefore part of your life. Do this and you will feel better, and what’s better than that?

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Be Kind – it matters now more than ever

We are in unprecedented times. The limits on society are changing daily as the world tries to slow the spread of Covid-19, the Coronavirus. People are hoarding certain foods and toilet paper. Videos of people fighting over the last package of toilet paper in a store have been posted on social media. Many people are out for themselves and ignoring the negative effect they are having on their community and neighbors.

But there are glimmers of kindness as neighbors offer to go shopping for neighbors who are elderly or immunocompromised. Others are sharing ideas for craft projects or online learning for parents with school-aged children trapped in their homes.

Which person are you? Are you out only for yourself, or are you trying to help those who can’t help themselves? If you are the former, you should look in the mirror and ask yourself why you think about only yourself when all around you are experiencing the same concerns and fears you are.

We all can do better, whether ordering take out from a local restaurant (and tipping heavy if you can) to shopping for that elderly neighbor. When the worst of the Coronavirus passes, you will want the good restaurant down the street to still be open and your elderly neighbor healthy and waving as they pass your home on a morning walk. We all need to remember we are part of a community that will resume a more normal life (hopefully) in the near future.

We all continue to move fast through our days. Are you nice to the people who cross your path? You should be because how you treat people is what stays with them when they think about you.

Currently, many people are working from home, or may have lost their jobs or had their hours reduced. Many business have been ordered to close or severely reduce their services, i.e. income. Others are supposed to stay in their homes. We all could use a little boost or show of caring.

The benefits of being kind outweigh the efforts you put in. Knowing this and acting on it will help you and your reputation.

In the same vein, continue to do random acts of kindness. Compliment someone. Be patient with those who make mistakes, whether a co-worker or the checkout person with the long line of impatient people waiting to buy food or goods.

Doing so is good for you in many ways. The feedback and reactions you get will brighten your day. What you do or say will brighten others’ days. Try it and see how good it makes you feel.

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Relationships are everything

Whether in your personal or professional life, this seems obvious if you think about it. Relationships make life interesting. They can lift you up, but can drag you down (if you let them). You want healthy relationships that make you a better person, or business owner, or attorney, or whatever it is you are.

You have choices. You don’t have to have an unhealthy relationship with someone, even if it’s a family member or business partner. You always have the ability to make choices about who you deal with and how. This isn’t necessarily easy, but, as my wife is known to say, “hard choices, easy life; easy choices, hard life.” If you think on this you know it’s right.

No one becomes an attorney without an interest in helping people, me included. Sometimes the want to help leads to poor decision-making. Not everyone can afford to pay for the help they want or need, or want to listen to the recommendations they are paying for. The real answer is for me to understand my client’s goals and financial situation to craft a strategy and plan that is aimed at reaching their goals and which they can afford. This results in better working relationships and trust because our respective expectations are taken into consideration. If I don’t think a potential client is willing to hear the truth of their situation or wants to go down a path they can’t afford, I know I am saving myself headaches by declining the representation.

By making hard decisions such as to not take on all clients or their work, I know I am working on one of my goals, which is to work with clients who are realistic about their options and truly open to my input, whether positive or negative. That’s because honesty is important and is a good basis for healthy personal or professional relationships.

A good exercise is to think about the relationships you have and whether they add value or not. If so, you should nurture and work on the relationship. If not, you need to decide whether you are willing to make the hard choice of either ending the relationship or, at least, giving it less energy. If you do this, a year from now you will have less stress and a better network of personal and professional connections and relationships.

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