Tag Archives: individual

The Other Side of the Couch – Letting Go

Grief

I received the news yesterday that one of my dearest friends, one of those friends that has touched your life in a thousand ways, unexpectedly succumbed to pneumonia.  She had been battling cancer for some time, and she had started on a new kind of chemotherapy.  I knew that she had been struggling with side effects, but the news that she had not survived was both shocking and so very sad.  As I face this grief, I notice that is a familiar experience now – the weight in the chest, the tears that lurk behind the eyes, the feeling that nothing much matters.  I have been here before.

Any loss recapitulates all the other losses – and as we live life longer, those losses indeed pile up.  I believe that one of the lessons that all human beings are called to face is that of how do we let go.  When a loved one has moved beyond us, as will happen if we live long enough, how do we go forward?

Perhaps one way of looking at this is NOT to go forward, but to stay still. The shock of loss is immobilizing at first, and for good reasons.  We are not thinking clearly; our rational mind has been overturned, and we are living in – swimming in – the emotional sea of grief.  I would wish for all space, quiet, support, time.

David Whyte, a poet and author whose work has been very meaningful to me, has written a wonderful book called Consolations.  He chooses 52 words and writes essays on each.  One of his words is Heartbreak.  Below is an excerpt.

David Whyte

HEARTBREAK

“…If heartbreak is inevitable and inescapable, it might be asking us to look for it and make friends with it, to see it as our constant and instructive companion, and even perhaps, in the depth of its impact as well as in its hindsight, to see it as its own reward. Heartbreak asks us not to look for an alternative path, because there is no alternative path. It is a deeper introduction to what we love and have loved, an inescapable and often beautiful question, something or someone who has been with us all along, asking us to be ready for the last letting go.”

‘HEARTBREAK’ Excerpted From CONSOLATIONS:

The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words.

© David Whyte and Many Rivers Press 2015

Now Available http://davidwhyte.stores.yahoo.net/newbook.html

As I think of my friend, and experience the heartbreak that comes with my loss of her, I am asking of myself the opportunity to sit with my heartbreak, to be with it and with her, to remember, to regret, just to be with the precious moments that we did have, to grieve those that we will not have, as I allow that piece of my heart that belonged to her to open, to grieve, and to let go.

About Susan Hammonds-White, EdD, LPC/MHSP:

Susan is a communications and relationship specialist, counselor, Imago Relationship Therapist, businesswoman, mother, and proud native Nashvillian. She has been in private practice for over 30 years. As she says, “I have the privilege of helping to mend broken hearts.”  Contact Susan at http://www.susanhammondswhite.com

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Build a Team of Leaders

Building A Team

One of the most effective team leadership outcomes you can facilitate is for everyone on the team to end up thinking and acting like a leader. It may seem counterintuitive, especially if you’re focused on making your mark by asserting your own unique version of leadership. Therein lies the paradox that alludes many leaders: Your ultimate success will be based on the success of those on the team you lead, not on your solo contribution.

But why should you have to foster a leadership spirit in your team? What keeps people from exercising leadership on their own? I once heard John Lachs, a Vanderbilt University philosophy professor, explain it by describing how passivity creeps into organizations, sapping them of leadership, energy, and ultimately, performance.

Dr. Lachs told the all-too-familiar story of trying to return an item to a retail store, only to be stymied by a passive clerk who cited the rules and regulations restricting her ability to help him. She missed a great opportunity to be exceptional at her job by making a positive difference to a customer. She could have solved another person’s problem, represented her organization well, and made a good impression on her supervisors. Still, accomplishing all of that would have required more effort and responsibility on her part. It would have required she act like a leader by taking ownership of finding a solution. She would have had to take the customer’s request to a higher level and lobbied on his behalf. Instead, she took the easy way out by telling Dr. Lachs she could not accept his return.

If you’re not vigilant, that passivity may show up on your team. Despite what we might like to think, we’re all vulnerable to the temptation to operate more as a dispassionate role or title than as an engaged human. That’s because professional roles are circumscribed, neat, and we can often hide behind them, just as Dr. Lach’s clerk did. Interacting as our real selves requires more from us. It demands we invest ourselves emotionally and take responsibility for outcomes, without any clear indication that we will benefit from doing so. No wonder, “that’s not in my job description,” slips out so easily when one is grousing about having to do too much.

Obviously, you want your team to resist the siren’s call of passivity. These are the behaviors and attitudes you want to foster:

  • Take responsibility.
  • Take obligations seriously.
  • Try to outperform your colleagues.
  • Reach beyond your role.
  • Embody this statement: “I’m ready to serve and will do the absolute best I can.”

Just how do you foster these behaviors and attitudes? Here are some ideas:

  • Make your expectations known.
  • Model these same behaviors and attitudes.
  • Recognize and call them out when you see them in others.

Make it clear that you value leadership and expect it from your team. If they are up to the challenge, you will see the effects in their overall performance, and, instead of your raising the bar for them, they may just start raising the bar for you!

 

About Dr. Debra Fish

Dr. Fish is a consulting psychologist whose writing and work focus exclusively on helping individuals and teams lead more effectively. Her firm, Fish Executive Leadership Group, LLC, counts among its clients everything from Fortune 50 corporations to small, privately-held professional service firms.

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Photo credit: iStock_team meeting_rawpixel.jpeg

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How Can I Run My Business With All These Distractions?

?????

Sondra’s business grew rapidly in the past 18 months as she expanded product lines. Then she added three new employees last quarter when she opened a second store.

With two retail locations and a constantly expanding line of products, Sondra can’t keep up with all the details. She is constantly bombarded with employee requests for time off from work and yesterday several employees came to work with ripped jeans and t-shirts which is not the image Sondra wants to present to her customers. The employees say they thought the dress code was casual.  This morning she spent an hour sorting out a dispute between two employees.

Now it seems one of the new employees at the new store is not working out and should probably be fired, but  Sondra needs time to read the store manager’s notes to verify the grounds for terminating employment. Then she needs to hire a replacement.

Sondra’s been delaying taking action because she hates these administrative tasks. But she also knows her business is getting stuck because she’s stuck making up the rules as she goes.  She knows she can’t procrastinate any longer. She considers hiring an HR consultant to fix all these HR issues. Then she realizes that hiring a consultant would be a waste of money if she doesn’t first decide what she wants, so she wades into the details that will fix her employee problems:

  • Step one is to revise the job description for her store employees to ensure the next employee has the qualifications she needs.
  • Step two is to create a list of what constitutes proper attire in the work place.
  • Step three is to create a time table for each work day so that employees know when each work shift begins and ends and the consequences of showing up late (or not at all).

Then Sondra asks her store managers to review the new rules. Based on their suggestions, she decides to add a dispute resolution process to make sure future employee disputes don’t escalate. Now that all the basic details have been hashed out over several weeks, Sondra can hire an HR consultant to actually create an employee handbook for her business.

Every small business begins as Sondra’s did, with informal employee and HR policies. As the business grows and adds employees, it is necessary to create administrative structure to ensure the whole business runs smoothly. Corporate Compliance Risk Advisor assists business owners in creating HR policies appropriate to their company size so that business owners like Sondra are free to actually run their businesses.

About Norma Shirk

Norma started her company, Corporate Compliance Risk Advisor, to help employers create human resources policies for their employees and employee benefit programs that are appropriate to the employer’s size and budget. The goal is to have structure without bureaucracy. Visit Norma’s website: www.complianceriskadvisor.com/.

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The Other Side of the Couch – Is Your Brain High Jacked?

Limbic Brain

I had an odd experience the other day.  I had made an appointment for an orientation to a wellness center, but when I arrived at the appointed time, my name could not be found in the computer. A little background would be in order – since I have a hyphenated last name, computers often struggle with me. However, they tried all possible combinations and nothing came up.  I was offered the opportunity to  a) come back an hour later, b) reschedule, or c) receive a free personal training session as a compensation.

What was interesting to me was my reaction.  I became tearful; my voice began to quiver; I stated that I was irritated and upset and that none of those options were acceptable, and I walked out.  As I walked to the car, I felt my heart pounding, and when I got to the car, I got in, slammed the door, and tried to figure out what on earth had happened.  I was reacting to this computer glitch as though I had been personally attacked and I was feeling hurt, powerless and angry.  My brain had been high jacked!

I knew that I was in the grip of an adrenaline rush powered by a variety of neurochemicals and that I was not responding rationally.  I also knew that something was powering this that was bigger than a computer glitch.  So I took a few minutes to sit with myself – but nothing came up.  I was still distressed.  I decided to leave and to check this out when I was a bit calmer.

Later, I looked again at what had happened and I discovered the iceberg beneath the seemingly insignificant experience.  For me, the iceberg included ambivalence about committing to an exercise program based on fear of injury (old stuff), a story that I was telling myself that said something like, “You’ll never be able to do this right. Why are you even trying?” (self-judgment), and a sense of hopelessness about my body.  Wow!  What I found out was that even getting in the door of this wellness center had been a huge stretch and that I was carrying a lot of self-judgment that was activated by this small disappointment.

I called and made another appointment, and I will take that free session as compensation!

This kind of experience is actually quite common in human beings.  Our limbic system, ruled by the amygdala and based on fear, can high jack our logical, thinking brain all too easily.

What can you do when your brain is high jacked?

  1. Recognize it – you want to react much more strongly than the situation warrants; you have physical responses – heart pounding, breathing quickened, voice changes; you want to react impulsively.
  2. Leave the situation if possible – take a break; drink water; go for a walk.
  3. If you are with a partner or a friend, explain that you need a time out.
  4. When the physical symptoms pass, sit with yourself and listen without judgment. Your body and brain know a lot about what has happened, and if you listen to yourself, you will learn.
  5. Do what is necessary to repair the situation.

Careful listening and self-compassion are the keys to a better understanding of your own brain.

About Susan Hammonds-White, EdD, LPC/MHSP:

Susan is a communications and relationship specialist, counselor, Imago Relationship Therapist, businesswoman, mother, and proud native Nashvillian. She has been in private practice for over 30 years. As she says, “I have the privilege of helping to mend broken hearts.” Contact Susan athttp://www.susanhammondswhite.com

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Flying Solo:  Pros and Cons of Being Self-Employed

Flying Solo

I am self-employed.  Notwithstanding a part-time hourly gig, I am entirely responsible for my work product, time management, working conditions, clientele and income.  In the past, I spent years working in a corporate environment; a place I learned is not for me.  But being my own boss is not without challenges, either.  Thankfully, I have my supportive HerSavvy friends to help me over the rough spots and to celebrate my victories big and small.  In fact many of us are self-employed, leading one Savvy gal to refer to us as her “advisory board.”  I LOVE IT!!!!  Indeed there is a veritable font of knowledge flowing through this group so I decided to ask the question: What are the pros and cons of being your own boss?  And being the generous women they are, they gladly opened up and shared some of their lessons learned.  So, in no particular order, here are some answers from our HerSavvy Advisory Board:

“For what it’s worth, I love being self-employed because I have complete and utter creative and aesthetic control over my products and how they are presented, marketed and packaged. There’s no group that has to sign off on my new collection or the colors of my logo. I also enjoy being able to accept challenges and quickly modify offerings/policy based on client feedback. What I often struggle with is switching between the creative (right brained) responsibilities and the business/analytical (left brained) tasks. I find that to be most effective, I often need a bit of space between the two.”

“What I like – no issues with changing schedules as needed.  What I don’t like – being all things – custodian, bookkeeper, office manager, marketer etc…until and unless you have funds to outsource all this, it is a lot of work to wear all these hats.”

“Practically, my biggest hurdle to overcome was technical support.  I had resources to address all the legal consulting issues specific to my profession.  It was having/maintaining the technical tools that was tough. In a broader sense, I had to critically analyze my greatest weakness(es) and find outside resources to bolster my practice.  It takes a critical, objective eye and the willingness to admit that ‘you can’t do it all.’  That can be very difficult for some people. For me the biggest pros were not bowing to bureaucratic requirements that got in the way of serving my clients and freedom to set my own hours, focus on the type of law I wanted to practice, etc.  I also had greater freedom about setting my rates and even accepting consideration other than money.”

“Pro: You are your own boss.  Con: You are your own boss.  But expanding on the Pro side, you have flexibility with your time.  Even though all of us that are self-employed put in many hours each week we can take the time to go to that special family event or take our vacations on our schedule and not someone else’s.   And on the Con side being your own boss means you wear many different hats and that can be stressful and very tiresome at time.”

“Pro: Flexible schedule.  Con: Having to keep a watch on every piece of the business (i.e., billing, scheduling, business filings, etc.); not having anyone else to help manage those things.”

“Pro: I absolutely love the ‘Flexibility’ of being self-employed!  Con: The need to continuously look for the next job!”

“I thrive on the accountability of it. You do good work for a client you get rewarded; there are not as many variables between you and the work you do, unlike in a large corporate firm where the performance or needs of partners. etc., may affect you. I like control so this allows me maximum control over my work and reward. On the other side it is occasionally lonely. While your employees may be friends with each other, as their boss I could not have the same level of camaraderie. This is especially true in a small environment when you have 2/3 people working for you.”

So, there you have it, straight from the mouths of the most successful, motivated, intelligent, passionate, creative and amazing women I have ever known.  If you are self-employed, let us know your pros and cons and how you keep it all together.  Stay Savvy, my friends!

About Barbara Dab:

Barbara Dab is a journalist, broadcast radio personality, producer and award-winning public relations consultant. She currently hosts two radio shows locally in Nashville, TN. Check out her website athttp://www.zoneabouttown.com.

Barbara is also creator of The Peretz Project: Stories from the Shoah: Next Generation. Check it out at http://www.theperetzproject.com If you, or someone you know, is the child of survivors of the Shoah, The Holocaust, and would like to tell your story please leave a comment and Barbara will contact you.

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Going Natural, Part II

Linda SackLast month we delved into the world of wearing our natural hair color.  One native Nashvillian set herself apart with her beautiful silver hair.   She entered a contest for a skin care line who wanted a representative who was over 40.  Tish Hooker, later becoming known simply as Tish, was a beautiful 45 year-old who had stopped coloring her hair at 42.  From the prominent Fort family of Nashville, I knew her from local media and she wore the prettiest salt and pepper hair I had seen.  In the 80’s, I recall discovering her picture in a Germaine Monteil cosmetics advertisement in a national magazine, Vogue, Elle, or Glamour.

Wearing a full-length gown, I thought how beautiful she was. Today she is still strikingly beautiful.  Tish recalls shocking people with her silver hair when everyone else was coloring their hair.  You can read about how she took a gamble with her life and wound up in New York, and other multi-faceted life experiences in this 1984 article in The Spokesman – Review.

Since writing this, I have asked other friends who have gone natural about their reasons.  Kate Stephenson, an attorney with the best hair around, says her motivation was that she was tired of paying so much to having her hair colored and when she realized underneath was white and that it might be interesting, she stopped coloring at about age 45.  Having begun seeing white hair in her 20’s, she colored her hair for many years.  Using blonde at the end, she simply stopped coloring her short hair and it easily grew out.  Not remembering reactions of other people at the time, she gets lots of compliments on her short white hair today and has no regrets at all. Kate says to anyone thinking about doing it, “Go for it. Natural is good. We are what we are.”

Photo: Linda Sack and her lovely natural hair color.

About Renee Bates

Renee is the executive director of the non-profit, Greenways for Nashville, a member based organization. In addition to growing private support for the trails and green spaces, she enjoys oil painting, hiking, nature and working in the garden. Renee is married to David Bates of Bates Nursery and Garden Center, a 3rd generation business begun in 1932 by a savvy woman, Bessie Bates.

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Have a HerSavvy New Year!

Happy New Year

I am the lucky HerSavvy gal who gets the first post of 2015!  I have written before that I am not a fan of “resolutions.”  Resolutions, to me, feel absolute, black and white.  Resolutions are either kept or broken.  If you keep one, you are successful.  If you break one, you fail.  Since I already carry my fair share of “Jewish guilt,” I see no need to pile more on right from the beginning of the year.

I do, however, believe in setting goals.  And while many people see the beginning of the year as a “blank slate,” I approach it as an opportunity to choose what issues or projects to carry with me into the future, and what to leave behind.  So, without further ado, here are my goals for 2015:

  1. Exercise good self-care. That means continue my quest for lifelong good health, fitness, energy and vitality.
  2. Focus my mental and intellectual energy where it is most meaningful. Change is difficult, but often necessary in order to pursue a purposeful and fulfilling life.
  3. Read more. I set this goal every year.  For me reading is a glorious pastime that engages my senses and refreshes my soul.
  4. Listen better. I believe listening is one of the most critical elements in good relationships.  Good listening builds bridges of understanding and trust.
  5. Practice patience. My mother used to say, “All good things come to those who wait.”  I did not understand what she meant for a very long time.  I thought you had to just sit and wait for things to happen.  I now know she was trying to teach me to be willing to work hard and not expect immediate results.  Important goals and dreams take time to realize.  Mom, I get it!

In the coming year, I wish all of you good health, love, patience and the courage to set goals and reach for your dreams.

About Barbara Dab:

Barbara Dab is a journalist, broadcast radio personality, producer and award-winning public relations consultant. She currently hosts two radio shows locally in Nashville, TN. Check out her website athttp://www.zoneabouttown.com.

Barbara is also creator of The Peretz Project: Stories from the Shoah: Next Generation. Check it out at http://www.theperetzproject.com If you, or someone you know, is the child of survivors of the Shoah, The Holocaust, and would like to tell your story please leave a comment and Barbara will contact you.

Like what you’ve read? Feel free to share, but please… Give HerSavvy credit. Thanks!

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Going Natural

Kate Stephenson and Mark BatesIt is being discussed more and more.  Women in their 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s are deciding to cut the hair color and return to their ever lightening roots.  I’m curious, so I’ve asked some friends who have stopped coloring to share their experience with me.

Linda had been coloring her hair from her 20’s.  Because it grew so fast, she would have a color line within a week or so, and needed to color every 2 weeks.  About 6 years ago she decided to stop and go back to her own hair color, which she calls silver, or platinum.  When I asked her why, she said it was because of the pain it was causing…the physical pain from the chemicals, and the emotional pain, being so tired of feeling self-conscious when the gray would start growing out.  “At the time I was dating someone who was not in favor of the silver.  Soon after the relationship ended, I chopped off all of the color damaged, dead hair and took it as short as I could,” adding that it was a bit of a shock, even to her.  When I asked her if she saw any downside to going natural she offered, “After I started growing the silver out I’ve had nothing but compliments. The only reason that someone would not get compliments is if they didn’t style their hair.“

When I asked her what advice she would give to anyone thinking about taking the plunge she said, “If they had darker hair, I would encourage them to start by going with some highlights, blonde goes to silver easier– because when you go from dark to silver, it is too difficult, and with highlights you won’t have that nasty skunk line.  Get as close to platinum as possible.  Otherwise, chop it all off.  It felt amazing.”

Because Linda has beautiful olive skin, hazel eyes and looks much younger than her years, when she was coloring her hair blonde she got hit on often by younger men, fifteen to twenty years younger.  Now that she has gone silver, that doesn’t happen anymore.  She is grateful.  The younger men were not always the most tactful and it would often be hurtful when they found out her age.

“I didn’t feel natural, or pretty, coloring my hair.  I am so grateful that I listened to my intuition, and not my ex-boyfriend.”  Linda adds that just a little bit of platinum highlight keeps it light around her face.  She shares that her hair is much healthier and thicker, another reason to be very happy about the decision to go natural.

When I asked Linda how her business life has been affected she dropped her voice to that solid, personal truth telling tone, “I feel embracing my natural hair color and doing what I wanted to do has brought me in line with being authentically who I am.  This has made me feel more comfortable and has led me to coming into my own.  People see my natural hair and expect me to be a more real person, or maybe I am a more real person.“  Linda Sack is a licensed message therapist and came to that profession after she made the decision to stop coloring her hair, leaving a corporate career behind, and feels that massage therapy is perfect for her.

My lovely friend Marilyn Shriver, who colored for over 25 years, and has the most beautiful white hair now, says, “What kept me coloring was that someone told me that if I let my hair go natural, because I was fair, I would disappear from the neck up.”   This turned out to be mis-information.  She says, “I get more compliments on my hair since I stopped coloring it.  My obsession with hair has diminished.  The hair is much better hair and I have accepted that I am the age that I am.  Everybody’s aging at the same rate.”

So, I am thinking about it more.  The first reason is because my hair is thinning from the chemicals.  Another, besides embracing the real, I’d like to simplify my life and spend time doing the things I enjoy most.

This is part one of a two-part article.  Come back next month as I continue the exploration of going natural with a native Nashvillian who was selected from a group of 7,000 women to represent a world wide cosmetic company, not entirely because of her beautiful platinum locks, but she wouldn’t have gotten the job without them.

About Renee Bates

Renee is the executive director of the non-profit, Greenways for Nashville, a member based organization. In addition to growing private support for the trails and green spaces, she enjoys oil painting, hiking, nature and working in the garden. Renee is married to David Bates of Bates Nursery and Garden Center, a 3rd generation business begun in 1932 by a savvy woman, Bessie Bates.

Like what you’ve read? Feel free to share, but please… Give HerSavvy credit. Thanks!

Photo Credit: Nfocus Magazine; Kate Stephenson & Mark Bates attend Authors in the Round Dinner, Humanities Tennessee

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Are You A Leader Or A Boss?

Leader or Boss

It’s an important distinction. Just because you’re a boss doesn’t mean you’re an effective leader. And, just because you’re not a boss does not mean you’re not a leader.  Bosses get things done, but they sometimes focus too much on the tactical. Effective leaders get important things done and done well. Their accomplishments continue to reap benefits in the long term and for a greater number of people.

Here are 5 questions you can use to gauge where you fall in the leader vs. boss balance:

  • Do you focus more on whether individuals are hitting performance goals or on what big adjustment you can make next to unleash their full potential?
  • Do you spend more time thinking about how to turn around employee-related problems, or on creating ways for your employees to take pride of ownership in what they produce?
  • Do you spend more time critiquing what your employees are doing, or critiquing how you’re helping them?
  • Do you pay attention to your employees’ aspirations only during their annual reviews, or do you attend to them throughout the year?
  • Do you tell your employees what initiatives they should undertake or do you enlist their help in fleshing out what their roles should be considering your department’s strategic objectives?

Obviously, if you’re in a leadership position, you probably do a little of all of the above.  But if most of your time and energy are spent on activities in the first half of each of those questions, then you are missing tremendous opportunities to make a difference with effective leadership. By seeing broad possibilities and appreciating the talent around you, you can help your organization

About Dr. Debra Fish

Dr. Fish is a consulting psychologist whose writing and work focus exclusively on helping individuals and teams lead more effectively. Her firm, Fish Executive Leadership Group, LLC, counts among its clients everything from Fortune 50 corporations to small, privately-held professional service firms.

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The Road Ahead:  How I Stopped Making Excuses and Learned To Love, er, Like Running

Run.

I have a confession to make: I like running.

Not the most earth shattering admission, to be sure, but for me this is mind blowing.  You see, for most of my adult life I have had a love/hate relationship with this type of exercise and by that I mean mostly a hate relationship.  I have started running many times over the years, only to stop over and over for reasons ranging from tendonitis to a lack of time.  I have also invested in countless pairs of specialized shoes, fancy leggings, supportive bras and sweat-wicking socks.  Each of these also was a “culprit” for quitting.  The shoes just didn’t work with my plantar fasciitis, the leggings were too hot, the socks bunched up and the bras weren’t supportive enough.  You get the idea.

So what’s different this time, you ask?  I’ve been trying to figure that one out.  For starters, this past year I’ve packed on some unwanted pounds without changing much about my diet or lifestyle.  I’ve also been feeling sluggish and irritable and definitely not my usual perky self.  Added to all this is a general malaise and a desire for more challenge in my life.  I definitely want to recapture my energy and enthusiasm.  And while there is so much we can’t control, we can definitely control our exercise.  So off I went in search of some new physical challenge.

First in my quest was a personal trainer at the YMCA and a program of weight lifting and cardio, along with my regular Pilates regimen.  All went well for a couple of months and I really loved how my body was changing and becoming more toned and defined.  But one morning I awoke with neck pain so severe I could not move my head.  This continued for a couple of months and even with a lighter weight load, the pain and stiffness persisted.  So I stopped the weight training.

I have several friends who are runners and I began quizzing them on why they like it and how they train.  One friend calls running an “efficient” form of exercise.  She can accomplish some high level problem solving and planning while she runs.  Another runs so she can enjoy a foodie lifestyle with her husband.  Another just likes to sweat.  My weight trainer is also a runner and she didn’t start until after she turned 40.  She was my best cheerleader and encouraged me to just get out there and set small goals.

Once again, I invested in some great shoes, fancy leggings and a supportive bra and, joined by my new puppy Bentley, off I started.  The area around my house is very hilly and not much fun so after several weeks of hell, I headed to the local greenway, a flat nature trail that goes for miles.  The first day I decided to just run without tracking my speed or distance.  And I’m not going to lie, for the first 20 minutes or so I kept thinking of excuses to stop.  But I focused my gaze on the road ahead and kept going, Bentley at my side.  I’m not sure how far I ran that day before turning around and walking the last bit, but when I finished I felt great!  It was still hot and humid, but the feeling of accomplishment, of pushing myself to my limit, was exhilarating!

I’m now a couple of months into this running experiment and I have been tracking my speed and distance.  I’ve worked up to running 5 miles at a fairly good clip.  I’ve participated in two races, a 5K where I had my personal best time and a 5-mile where I ran and walked with my daughter.  I’ve lost weight, I sleep more soundly, I have found my energy and I feel like myself again.  I still spend the first mile or so thinking up reasons to stop, but so far I have been successful in keeping my gaze fixed on the road ahead, setting small goals to stay motivated and finishing what I started.  Efficient, challenging, good cardio; Sounds like life.

I really like running!

About Barbara Dab:

Barbara Dab is a journalist, broadcast radio personality, producer and award-winning public relations consultant. She currently hosts two radio shows locally in Nashville, TN. Check out her website athttp://www.zoneabouttown.com.

Barbara is also creator of The Peretz Project: Stories from the Shoah: Next Generation. Check it out at http://www.theperetzproject.com If you, or someone you know, is the child of survivors of the Shoah, The Holocaust, and would like to tell your story please leave a comment and Barbara will contact you.

Like what you’ve read? Feel free to share, but please… Give HerSavvy credit. Thanks!

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