Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Posted by: Dr. Alan Zimmerman
Dr. Zimmerman's TUESDAY TIP:
"I promise you nothing is as
chaotic as it seems. Nothing is worth your health. Nothing is worth poisoning
yourself into stress, anxiety, and fear."
Steve Maraboli, author
of "Unapologetically You"
Dr. Alan Zimmerman's PERSONAL
When I was in junior high school, one of my teachers introduced me
to the classic movie, "To Kill A Mockingbird." I watched it so
many times that I actually started to memorize some of the dialogue.
In one scene, the little girl, Scout, is being put to bed by her
father, whom she calls Atticus. As he's tucking her in, he pulls out his
pocket watch and lets her open it up. She says to him, "Atticus,
where'd you get this watch?"
"Your mother gave me that watch, Scout, and I reckon someday
it'll belong to your brother, Jem."
As soon as I watched that movie for the first time, I wanted a
pocket watch. It may not have been very practical, but it sure looked
cool. When I finally got one, I wore it in my vest, with my three-piece
Sunday suit; I wore it on the belt loop of my jeans, and I even put it in my
pajama bottoms -- just so I could pop open the case and stare down at it like
Atticus or Gregory Peck, the actor who played Atticus.
People would ask me what time it was and I'd say, "I reckon
it's time for bed, Scout." Then I'd wind it up and shove it back
into my pocket.
That fascination lasted for about three months. By then,
everyone I knew was getting sick of it, including me. It was no longer
quite so cool. And before long, the pocket watch just sat in my dresser
A few years later, I dug out the old watch. When I began to
wind it, I found that it didn't work anymore. I hadn't dropped it.
I hadn't bumped it. I hadn't even used it. And that's exactly
what the problem was. Later, I learned that some of the older watches
contain a certain oil that gets gummy when the parts aren't moving. And
if the watches aren't wound up once in a while, the parts get jammed up and
they stop running.
1. Use it or lose it.
That's how human bodies and brains are put together. We're
like a handcrafted watch. If we don't put our bodies and brains to use,
they start to slow down and won't work properly. They might even stop
But it doesn't take much to get them going again. We just
have to wind them up about three times a week. Working out ... even if
it's just a brisk thirty-minute walk three times a week ... or listening to a
motivational recording thirty minutes a day three times a week ... can not only
enrich our lives but actually extend our lives. Both activities are vital
sources of health and energy.
When it comes to your body or your brain, you need to use it or
lose it ... but ...
2. Don't overdo it.
As author Ralph Brandt reveals, a nationwide survey revealed that
87% of Americans felt that they had too much stress in their lives. Their
watches were wound too tight. So it's no surprise that the three
best-selling drugs in this country include a tranquilizer, an ulcer medication,
and a drug for hypertension.
More than half the time you and I go to the doctor, we are
experiencing symptoms that are either caused or complicated by stress. Indeed,
stress may be the number one threat to our physical, mental, emotional,
occupational, and relational lives. And it affects all of us ... at all
stages and at all ages.
That's why one of my most requested keynotes and seminars
continues to be "Take This Job and Love It! Managing Stress,
Preventing Burnout, and Balancing Life ... On and Off the Job."
Learn more about the keynote here.
Learn more about the seminar here.
After Social Worker Sarah Beckius from the "South Central
Organization of Providers to Educate" attended the
program, she wrote, "I returned to my work and home life re-charged and equipped
to be a better me!"
And Jo Gardner, a Logistics Specialist at Boeing,
program is full of life-changing information and strategies that made me
re-think, re-evaluate, re-tool the way I was living my life and doing my
So how you do use it but not overdo it?
3. Simplify your life.
Weed out things at work or at home that don't mean all that much.
Even though I believe you can do a LOT, you still have some limitations.
You can only do so many things well. So learn to say "no"
to some good things so can say "yes" to some better things.
For example, you may have to say "no" to that long-time
friend who always drags you down so you can say "yes" to more fun
time with your kids. You may have to let go of some of the 50 great ideas
you picked up at a seminar so you can truly commit yourself to the 5 best ideas
4. Take a break.
Human beings need accomplishment for the brain to thrive, and
human beings need exercise for the bodies to thrive. BUT, human beings
also need some downtime to re-charge their brains and their bodies. And
as hard as it may be to take time off when you're really, REALLY busy, that's
probably the time you need it the most.
It's even good for your productivity. When you take an
occasional break, you often get more done in the remaining time than you would
have if you'd worked straight through.
Remember the old line? All work and no play makes you dull.
But it also keeps you stressed out and boring.
On the other hand, successful people ,,, in the truest sense of
the word "successful" ... are never boring. They're fun.
They've learned not to take themselves and their failures too seriously.
They've learned to lighten up, laugh, have some fun time once in a while.
Please, please, please don't end your life, looking back on it
filled with regret. Don't put your life or your pocket watch in the drawer and
forget to take it out and wind it up. Don't be like one person who left
this world with these words she had written.
"If I had my life to live over again, I'd try to make more
mistakes next time. I'd relax. I'd limber up. I'd be sillier
than I've been on this trip. I know of very few things that I'd take
seriously. I'd take more vacations. I'd be crazier. I'd climb
more mountains and swim more rivers and watch more sunrises. I'd do more
walking and looking. I'd have more actual troubles and fewer imaginary
"You see, I'm one of those people who lives life
prophylactically, sensibly, hour after hour, day after day. Oh, I've had
my moments. But if I had it to do over again, I'd have more of them.
In fact, I'd try to have nothing else -- just moments, one after another
-- instead of living so many years ahead each day."
"I've been one of those people who'd never go anywhere
without a thermometer, a hot-water bottle, a gargle, a raincoat, an aspirin,
and a parachute (just in case). If I had it to do over again, though, I'd
go places, do things -- travel lighter than I have this time."
"If I had my life to live over again, I'd start barefooted
earlier in the spring and stay that way later in the fall. I'd play hooky
more often and wouldn't have made such good grades, except by accident. In
short, I'd ride a lot more merry-go-rounds and pick a lot more daisies, if I
could live my life over again."
Such great insights. The question is ... what are you going to do
Select three ways to simplify your
life and work ... starting today.
About the author:
As a best-selling author and Hall of Fame professional
speaker, Dr. Alan Zimmerman is focused on "transforming the people side of
business.” His keynotes and seminars are noted for high content, high energy,
and high involvement that transform people's lives and the companies where they
here to learn more about his programs and products, or to receive a free
subscription to his weekly Internet newsletter.
Copyright© 2013 Zimmerman Communi-Care Network, Inc.
Reprinted with permission from Dr. Alan Zimmerman's
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