When I was a young, driven CEO with 2 small children, the idea of taking time for myself each day was laughable. My “me time” was the 3-4 times each week when I snuck in a run or an aerobics class. Other than that, it was work, family and chores.

My new Controller told me one day that every morning she got up before her husband and their 2 kids and took a cup of coffee out to the backyard. She would sip it quietly, look at the sunrise and breath for 10 minutes before she showered and went off to work. What a brilliant idea. No way could my “hurry brain” allow for that.

It must have been in the ’90’s the first time I heard Vistage speaker Steve Snyder talk about visualizing a beautiful place that immediately drew you to relax. I closed my eyes and saw a waterfall in Yosemite. I could feel the spray, I could smell the fresh air and the sun on my face. Ahhh. He said it was important to go there every few hours to lower your stress. I tried it for about a week and the habit soon slipped away. But the awareness that stress reduction was a daily practice stayed with me.

Stress is a daily occurrence – ergo a practice around stress reduction should be one, too. Some people set a timer on their watch to stand up and breathe deeply every hour. Some people meditate twice each day. I suspect that running on the treadmill watching the news does not lower your stress, but perhaps it works for some people. Not multi-tasking in those moment would be a gift to your heart.

Find your daily oasis and spend a little time there. Ahhh. How lovely.

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Image of Yosemite Falls, 2020. Any waterfall works for me!