All The Pretty Shiny Distractions

Reduce Your Stress Manage Your Time 022015

The modern world is stressful. Western culture generally compounds the things that cause stress exponentially. It’s all too fast. Too much. Too expensive and too toxic. Stress has been found to play a large part in the overwhelming health problems most Americans are faced with. And yes diabetes and weight gain are conditions that are affected to a large degree by stress. According to www.diabetes.org, “Excessive stress is a major barrier to effective glucose control and a danger to one’s general health. – See more at: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/parents-and-kids/everyday-life/managing-stress-and-diabetes.html#sthash.jSzF3sLT.dpuf

That article goes on to say that excessive stress impairs sound thinking and contributes to poor decision making which can lead to eating poorly and compulsively. Coincidentally poor judgment can also lead to eating the very things that cause weight gain as well. Stress also releases hormones that cause us to prepare to fight or run and also to make us hungry even when didn’t actually have to expend the additional calories fighting and/or running. Those extra calories cause weight gain and of course we know that uncontrolled weight gain is a recipe for disaster if you’re diabetic.

Deciding to lose weight is admirable but the constant cycle of trying-failing, losing-gaining can ultimately be frustrating and stressful itself. This is where effective goal setting comes into play. The key here being effective. I have found that for me this was problematic. I have Ooooo-its-new-and-shiny-syndrome! Because I am a Health Professional I am often bombarded with emails on every new program for every kind of wellness activity and I find that many of them have real merit. I really want to know it all so that I can help myself and my clients so for a while I signed up for every class and every seminar often times missing sleep and cramming more & more into my already crazy schedule. It was all so new and shiny, so very interesting. Lack of sleep, the stress of so many deadlines and appointments and the constant stress nibbling shot my blood glucose into the stratosphere. Shiny and new? Yes. Good for my overall goal of weight and diabetes management? Uh No! Not even!

It was time for me to get myself under better control. I took a moment to take something I had seen in time management books and modified it so that it better suited me. It became my 4 Quadrant Approach to Time Management. I’d like to share it with you. It works for almost every aspect of my life.

Here’s how it works: First you divide the area of your life (ie your weight loss) into “4 Goals” that are absolute priorities that will move your weight loss forward. Next divide each of those Goals into “4 Projects” that will move you toward reaching your Goals. Do this one Goal at a time so that Projects 1-4 are all listed under the appropriate Goal. Next under each Project list the Task or Tasks that lead to completion of that specific Project. Once you have filled in all 4 Goal quadrants you have created your overall road map. Anything that comes up that doesn’t fit into a Task for a specific Project under a predetermined Goal is a distraction. Pure and simple. Obviously I’m not saying that if your hubby comes home with tickets to see that R&B group you’ve adored forever that you can’t race him to the car giggling like a school girl. I’m saying don’t allow every offer of a movie you hadn’t really even thought about, every happy hour invite or social media posting frenzy keep you from doing what you’ve committed t yourself to accomplish. Activities that don’t fit comfortably into one of the quadrants are distractions…pure and simple…and they don’t move you toward your ultimate goals. Don’t allocate any time toward distractions. Don’t try and squeeze them in! If you have tackled tasks in every project under every goal and you still have some time left over go back and look at the Goals you set for yourself in other areas of your life and work on them. If you still have time left over…your goals weren’t big enough…your dream wasn’t large enough! It’s time to get Ready2Roar!


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