Thursday, October 16, 2008

Survival Tips in Any Kind of Crisis

I am not going to ask you the condition of your finances however I am going to ask you about your state of emotions. If you are one of the many people who are going through a turbulent time financially (or otherwise) right now, how are you dealing with it? I want to give you some advice about how to do that. I don't want you to lose your money and your wife. I don't want you to lose the really important parts of your life. The really important parts - your wife, your family, your friends - all those relationships that you have that are the keystone of what is important.

Step one is to remember the importance of the relationships. Don't take your frustrations out on the ones you love and the ones who love you.

Keep things in perspective. Money is money. A roof over your head is important, but having the love of your life beside you throughout it all is even more important.

I don't know what is going to happen, but I do know that our journey here on earth is an adventure and we cannot always control the adventure. We might have to go with the flow for awhile. And isn't it better to go with others than doing it alone?

My first husband and I went through a time in our lives when we almost lost our whole business and the employees and contractors that were working for us, all the equipment and the contracts. We were down to the final days in our house before repossession. I literally watched my husband's hair turn gray. I watched the lines appear on his face. (Don't ask me, I wasn't watching my face, but that's probably when I started acquiring lines on my face too!) It was a long climb for us but we did manage to climb out of the financial crisis. I tell you this so that you know I have been there in the past and have FELT what it feels like.

So how do you keep yourself from exploding at the family? How do you keep yourself sane when all about you others are going mad?

Here are some tips. Put them into action in your life:

1.) When something is said or done that causes a reaction within you, stop. Before you respond, take several deep breaths. Count to 15. Visualize the big picture. Visualize the loving relationship that you have with this person. Give yourself time to choose your response, rather than reacting without thinking. If you need to tell the other person that you need time, say "Just a minute." Or use the famous line by John Cage from the TV show Ally McBeal: "I need a moment."

2.) Take up a physical sport that you do daily or at least 3 times a week. I suggest jogging. Jogging doesn't cost money! Anything that requires physical exercise. It could be shoveling snow or digging holes in your garden!

3.) Take up Tai Chi, Kung Fu, or any other of the martial arts that gets your physical, focuses you, and takes into consideration the holistic you.

4.) Give up caffeine. Really! It helps you keep calm all day and evening. And helps you sleep.

5.) If you have the urge to hit someone, pick up something soft and throw it as hard as you can at the floor, wall or ceiling. Don't aim it at anyone.

6.) Have a friend that you can talk out your problems with - whether it be your wife, another man, or your sister. Perhaps a counselor or a coach. (Hey, you could hire me!) When people discuss the things that are bothering them and get another's input into the situation they are able to deal with anything in a much stronger way.

7.) Don't take on more than you can manage. Especially in times of stress. Draw back with your commitments and look after yourself and your family first. Don't pressure yourself to achieve more than you can handle. You may have to learn how to say "no" to committees, organizations and friends. At least until you have your life back in control. At the same time, I need to tell you, help others if you can. Helping others takes the stress and focus off of your own problems and helps you feel good about yourself. The important rule for you now is to take on what you can handle and not to over extend yourself. Find the balance.

8.) Pay attention to the music that you put on your IPOD. Have one play list that is relaxing, de-stressing music that you can pop into your ears when you need to find a calm moment.

9.) Be proactive. Create a lifestyle that doesn't tax your resources. Do what you need to at work and at home that shows your leadership ability and your ablilty to solve problems - no matter how big or how small. Give yourself little victories everyday.

10.) Remember to say "I love you" whenever you can. Get that kiss and hug. Find something to make you and your spouse or family laugh each day. Remember to enjoy life throughout the hardships.

Yes, it is possible. Many have gone before us and done the same. Use the positive people as your role model, not the negative or the victims.


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