Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Take Time For Fun

Last Friday we did something wild and radical here at the office. . .

We took 2 hours off to have some fun.

Please don't misunderstand, we were busy. Busier last week than the average actually. You could feel the tension building while everyone rushed to meet our deadlines. The entire team was feeling overwhelmed, stress levels were rising - you know how it goes. Our IT department in particular had been putting in some crazy hours trying to reach the goals that were laid out for them.

We could feel this all building up. Instead of just waiting for it to pass over, or piling on more work, we decided to go let off some steam. Often when you are feeling overwhelmed, that's the best thing you can do. Go for a walk, forget about everything for a few minutes, meditate, whatever works for your personally.

Our answer? The surprise picnic! What a fun way to reduce stress on a Friday afternoon. We know not every company will allow this, but it works for us. A nice little thank-you for all the jobs well done and all the hard work, but also a great way to burn off some of that extra stress that was bringing us down.

Why not think of some things you (or your team) could do over a lunch to re-focus? The time you spend doing this is well worth it.

Just for fun, here are a couple pictures!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Remember the Good, Let Go of the Bad

On Friday I mentioned my recent trip to "paradise" with my family. It was indeed a lovely vacation - mostly.

Unfortunately, the last 2 days of our wonderful vacation were filled with stress and difficult feelings from a situation that we really had no control over. We all came home exhausted, stressed out, and focusing on how our vacation ended.

This leads me to today's blog post. Remembering the good, and letting go of the bad. It certainly is difficult to look back on that week and not think about the way it ended. Sadly though, it's easy to forget about the 5 GREAT days we did have!

Life is like that. If you do 10 things right and 1 thing wrong in a day, which one do you remember? Same things as this. So what can you do? For us, we are focusing on remembering all the wonderful things we did get to enjoy, and all the quality time we spent together. What a shame it would be to waste that experience by letting the negative thoughts take them over.

It's not easy, I'll admit. It is, however, so important to help us keep a positive attitude every day. Let go of the bad things that happened to you, the things that didn't go the way you wanted, and hang on to all the things that went right.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Take Time

I was fortunate recently to have a wonderful vacation with my family. We escaped to a tropical paradise for a week, and I was able to completely relax.

Then, something amazing happened. While I was relaxing on the beach watching the sunrise, I was hit with a flood of ideas for a new project we've been working on. There, in the middle of the sand and surf, I found inspiration.

Thankfully, this is not the first time this has happened to me, so I have learned to travel with a pen and my notebook whenever I head out to nature. I came back to work refreshed, and with pages of thoughts and ideas.

As much as I would love to escape like that more frequently, it's not exactly realistic! However, I don't think it was the beach that did it, I think it was the time. Time, doing nothing really, that allowed my brain to run wild. Now THAT I can do right near my home.

I really feel that it's important to allow yourself time to relax and recharge. Go out somewhere for a hike, go for a boat ride, or get up and enjoy the sunrise and the quiet the early morning brings. Allow yourself to just unwind.

You probably won't get amazing thoughts every day. Some days you'll just remember things you may have forgotten to do, and some days you'll just let your mind go. Don't forget the paper and pen though - you'll want to write down any ideas that do come to you before you forget them!

If you can't do this every day, aim for at least once a week. Trust me, you'll love it.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Generating Greatness

Words of wisdom I was compelled to share . . .

“Our worst fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, “Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?” Actually, who are you not to be? You are a gift of God; you playing small doesn’t serve the world.

There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. You were born to make manifest the glory of God within us. It is not just in some of us, it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

- Nelson Mandela

Friday, March 6, 2009

Determination & Dreams

Do you know what tomorrow is? The start of the Iditarod Race!

Haven’t heard of that before? To learn more about the Iditarod, check out their main page

It is an 11 hundred mile race on dogsleds across Alaska and is also known as the “last great race”.

Now, why am I so excited about this? The determination that these teams show is unbelievable! I always love to cheer for the “underdog” of sorts, so I follow the Hardcore Huskies team. The team is led by Heather Siirtola, and last year she faced almost unbeatable odds. Rather than giving up, Heather pushed on and finished the race. Not just that, she signed up to do it again this year! Now THAT is determination to reach your goals. Wow.

I find this race to be inspiring, and a great tribute to attaining your dreams. Make sure you check it out, and think about what in your life could inspire you to be this determined. What dreams keep you going? Oh, and Go Hardcore Huskies!

Monday, March 2, 2009

The Importance of Humour

Did you know that today is the birthday of Dr. Seuss? I can remember reading those nonsense books to my kids and laughing at the silliness of them. In honour of Dr. Seuss, let's think about the importance of humour for a few minutes.

Here at BizXcel we love humour. Just this morning I returned from a trip to find my office saran wrapped by some of my team. Although we are all terribly busy, I love that we can take time out to laugh together. We are a motivated, creative team, and trying to squash that would be terribly counter-productive.

The same holds true in life. It is of utmost importance to be able to laugh and smile everyday. Did you know that only human beings can laugh? Why waste such a wonderful gift! Not to mention, a good hearty laugh can lower your blood pressure, improve your mood, help your heart, and relax you overall.

Don't let days go by without humour, what a shame that would be. No matter how bad you may think it is today, find a way to smile. Keep a humour board in your house somewhere to stick funny comics or jokes. Whatever it takes to make you crack that all important smile.

A few words from Dr. Seuss himself . . .
"From there to here, and here to there, funny things are everywhere." -Dr. Seuss
"I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it's a way of looking at life through the wrong end of the telescope. Which is what I do, and that enables you to laugh at life's realities." - Dr. Seuss

Oh, and in case you need an addition for your humour board, check out my office! :) Have a happy day!