Hay House Cruise: My Five “Ah-has” During My Journey
I just came back from the most amazing experience. I went on a seven-day cruise chartered by top book publisher Hay House. We made three stops: Peurto Rico, St. Martin, and a private island in the Bahamas. Throughout this trip I had many “ah-ha” moments. Not only was I surrounded by 1,800 like-minded people who are working to make a difference in the world, I was enrolled in a course called “The Movers and Shakers,” a program that helps people learn how to get their message out and establish themselves in a way that will make it easier for them to reach their audiences.
Listening to Hay House CEO Reid Tracy and bestselling author Cheryl Richardson, not only did I learn more about how I can continue to make my dream come true of making a difference in the cancer community, I learned some flat-out important lessons about life. I offer them here in the hopes that they might be useful to you. If they strike a chord, please write back and share your thoughts!
1) Take time for self-care: Cheryl has written a book called The Art of Extreme Self Care. It was a delight to hear her talk about how important it is for us to take time out of our busy schedules every day to care for ourselves. If you’re drained, stressed out, exhausted, grumpy, irritable, and overworked, you just have nothing left to give anyone else. This was a pivotal message to me because I talk about it in my forthcoming book, and it helped me realize how very often we need to be reminded of this critical message.
2) Disconnect: I had a huge victory while on the ship. For the first time ever I was able to turn off my cell phone. That meant no calls, no e-mail, and no text messages for seven days! In doing so, I realized even more fully the importance of totally disconnecting when you’re away. If you’re still answering emails or taking that occasional call, you still have one foot at work while the other is trying to take some time off. The result? You never fully recharge. Disconnecting was one of the best things I’ve ever done. And guess what? When I got back, my business was still intact and running perfectly—nothing had fallen apart!
3) Surround yourself with supportive people: Since this was a business trip focused on a very specific area of study, I went with a dear friend of mine, Laurie, who shares the same interests. Here’s what I learned—when you’re traveling, or even just choosing whom to spend your time with, it’s so important to be with people who support and encourage you to be yourself. When you’re with someone who has healthy boundaries, who allows you to do what you need to do, and gives you space, that person is essentially allowing you to be you, with no guilt and no unreasonable expectations. Why spend time with anyone who doesn’t allow you this? It’s just not worth the drain on your energy.
4) Work smarter, not harder. Because I’m a business owner, I tend to want to be involved in every aspect of what’s going on. My best friend Shanda once said, however, that if your to-do list keeps going over into the next day all the time, you’re no longer leading, you’re managing. Cheryl shared with us another shocking revelation—that 70% of what people do is a waste of time! You can bet that when I came home I immediately did an inventory of those daily activities that bore me, that I don’t like to do, or that are plain tedious. From now on, I’m going to delegate more tasks to the capable people around me so I can free myself up to really focus on the meat of my business, not the daily tasks that drain me. We just have to commit to our priorities if we don’t want to feel like hamsters on wheels.
5) Don’t take the hook. What this means is that we don’t allow others to destroy our sense of serenity or to intrude on our energy. I’ve been committed to this goal for some time, and of course you know the minute you do that, here comes the universe to test you out! I hadn’t even gotten on the plane yet when it started. I was standing in line when an airport attendant barged in front of me and rudely pushed my bag back so she could get hers in line ahead of me. She did all this without saying a word to me. Now the old me would have raged—either silently or out loud—about this person’s rude behavior. How dare she treat me in such a way? My energy would have spiraled from joy and peace to anger, frustration, irritation, and indignation. Instead, right then and there, something in my mind said, “Don’t take the hook, Britta.” So I didn’t. I told myself that this person’s actions had nothing to do with me, which I’m sure they didn’t. She was wrapped up in her own world, and who knows what was going on there? I spend way too much time in my life being affected by someone else’s energy, so I chose to let it go. And you know what? Within a matter of moments, I had forgotten all about it, and I felt just as serene as I had before she came barreling by. Don’t take the hook.
Now that I’ve returned to my New York home, I am thrilled to have had this great opportunity, and to have made some steps forward in my own personal evolution. And you know what? When it’s all said and done, it’s the simple things that matter—like spending a day in the sun with a good friend. It’s soothing medicine for the soul, and I highly recommend it!
Do you have healthy ideas for this holiday? Please share them with our readers!
Photo courtesy the Armagan Orki via Flickr.com.