Day 3 – Stress-Reduction CD

Another day, another tactic.  I know at this point that sitting on a cushion and clearing my mind isn’t going to work.  There is just too much chatter.  Today I  listened to a stress-reduction CD.  Brian Weiss, MD has a little book on Amazon with lots of stars, Eliminating Stress, Finding Inner Peace which has with it a CD.  The book is a basic summary of the nature of stress.  Most of the reviews say that the best thing about the book is the CD that comes with it.meditation blog

Sitting at my desk in the early afternoon, I listened to the 33 minute CD.  Dr. Weiss’ voice was clear and very soothing.  It was easy to listen.  Occasionally, a bit of chatter would find its way in, but I tried to focus on his words.  After about 5-10 minutes, the CD was over.  Where did the other 25 minutes or so go?  Hmm.  I do feel refreshed and very mellow.  A little too mellow for the work ahead of me this afternoon.  If I can figure it out, I’m going to put it on my iPhone (without the zillion other songs in iTunes).  I want to listen to it lying in bed instead of sitting in an office chair.

The book includes a CD transcript.  But, I think I’ll stay in suspense about the other 25 minutes, and listen to it a couple more times before I read it.  Surely, I can trust Dr. Weiss; after all, he has been on Oprah.

As a side note, both dogs are sound asleep and appear to be totally stress-free.

You are getting very sleepy…

How do I get off of this runaway train called cortisol?  Stress isn’t something new to me.  I’ve had my share of stressful times throughout the years.  But afterwards, I relax and my body gets back to homeostasis.  Homeostasis, that place where all is well within.  Somehow, I have crossed a line and I can’t get back.  The stress trigger comes and goes, but I remain hyped.  In my heart, I believe that meditation is a big part of my answer.  Books, CDs and downloads galore!  My attempts have been unsuccessful.

Being one to always look for a shortcut, I came up with hypnotism.  Simple.  Go to a hypnotherapist, be hypnotized and viola’ I can relax enough begin a meditation practice.  sleepy blogAfter googling (what did we do before google??) “hypnotherapist + Louisville”, I was on my way to a consult to discuss my options.  She did a little test to see how susceptible I am to hypnosis.  Seems I need to do several weeks of relaxing meditation at home before I can be hypnotized.  Can you believe it?  So much for shortcuts.  Need a plan B.

Curse or Blessing?

Recently I was moaning about the due date of corporations with extensions.  After working on them continuously for several weeks, I gave a big sigh of relief on the due date.  A friend said to me, “Well, at least you’re finished until next April.”  Whoa! What?

due dates blogUpcoming due dates started zipping through my head.  Individuals with extensions – due October 15th.  3rd quarter payroll tax reports – due October 31st.  Fiscal year trusts – due December 15th.  A CPA lives for due dates of which April 15th is just the most infamous.

The curse of accountants!  Woe is me.  But is it really?  After adequately consoling myself over my dire due date plight, I started thinking.  It might be tough at times, but I get those corporate tax returns done on time.  I get those individual tax returns done on time.  I get the payroll taxes done on time.  What would happen if I didn’t have due dates?

Take my personal life.  I have the same seemingly endless to do lists, but I don’t get as many of the items marked off.  Every new to do list always starts with all those unfinished items.  Some items I give up on after a couple of years and let them fade into the land of the undone.

The land of the Undone.  I imagined a fantasy world with no due dates for accountants.  I imagined piles and piles of unfinished tax returns.  Old years mixed with new years.  Individual tax returns mixed with payroll tax returns.  How would I manage my time?  How would I even get started on them?  I would be too overwhelmed.  Every distraction calling my name; anything to get away from the chaos.  Nothing would get done.  Then it hit me.  Sadly, my professional life would be just like my personal life.

From this flight of imagination, I’m disappointed in myself that I’m so dependent on external due dates.  How can I take those accountant due dates so seriously, and not the things that need to be done in my personal life?  This is an area that I really need to give some thought — ha, put that on the to do list.  Yes, I’m putting it on “sixty-four” to do list!  I would love to hear how you keep yourself on track.

So, when the next accountant deadline draws near, I’m going to thank my lucky stars that I have a due date!

Slow Start

I’m off to a slow start into my year of whipping myself into the best sixty-four I can be.  Yoga most everyday is my start.  This yoga DVD is an old standby for me: A.M. & P.M. Yoga – Conditioning For Weight Loss.  It became my favorite yoga workout back before DVD’s when you could only get it on VHS.  I’ve tried other routines, but keep coming back to this one.  It has two routines on it, but I only like the A.M.

Since the end of tax season, I’ve felt like a slug.  Last week I started feeling a spark of life in myself.  I think the yoga is helping.


I planted my herbs!   Each year I fill a couple of pots with my favorite herbs and then enjoy them all summer long.  Too much neglect last year (and a hot, dry summer) killed my faithful perennials – rosemary, sage, thyme and tarragon.  I had to plant new ones.  In addition to the perennials, I fill in with several annuals.  You just can’t have too much parsley and basil.  This particular pot is right outside my front door, so it’s easy picking when I’m cooking.


I love my herbs.  And it seems that my herbs love me too.  This heart within a hickory nut must have been buried by a squirrel, and was a nice surprise.

Planting a few pots with herbs doesn’t seem like much of a feat, but I can’t tell you how many little pots over the years have wasted away and died without being planted.  I love the planning and the purchasing of supplies.  It’s the execution stage that stops me.  Maybe I’m lazy or a procrastinator extraordinaire.  And the wanting things perfect malady which of course is just another form of procrastination.

Here’s what happens.  Say I want to organize my pantry.  First is a shopping trip to get all of the supplies needed which always includes containers and labels and whatever is new.   Back home, the job seems overwhelming, and I’m tired from all that shopping.  Where do I start?  I know the solution will come to me, and of course if I’m organizing, I want it perfect.  So, I put it off.  Now I have a messy pantry and a stack of new containers/labels/etc.  Crazy isn’t it.  I should have just jumped in and made some improvement!

Sadly this applies to most everything I do in my life, including this 64th year of improvement.  I have already been tempted by e-courses, books, journals, DVD’s, magazines, organizational systems for my plan, and on and on and on.  And of course, I MUST have some of this stuff — it’s totally ingrained.  Next blog post will be what items I’ve decided are essential.  Stay tuned.

Perfection and Procrastination

Perfection is an invited, but unwanted guest in my life.  This certainly isn’t to say that I accomplish perfect things.  It’s just that crippling sense of it isn’t the right time, maybe I could do it better tomorrow, when I have more time, more stuff.  I don’t have the time to make it perfect, so I just won’t do it.  Obviously fits right in with my other malady of procrastination.  Yes, perfection and procrastination are quite the team.  Oh, what I could do without those P’s in my life!  I would certainly be blogging more if I didn’t have to wait for the perfect time to do it.  It’s a daily struggle, but I do believe that I’m slowing getting better at ignoring these thoughts.

Every year I do less and less at Christmas.  This year was especially a bah-humbug sort of year with me wanting to do nothing.  I jumped at the opportunity to have my granddaughter, Lucy help decorate the Christmas tree.  We were getting the decorations out, and Lucy wanted to put on the bead garland.  Whoa!  That’s not easy.  This year I hushed that nasty P word, and said, go for it.

Why not get creative with garland and have it take a few twists?

Is it really set in stone that garland is draped around the tree?  Vertical has it’s appeal.

If that slippery garland is getting away from you, just give it a few wraps.

It was a wonderful day.  Just me and Lucy having fun with no P’s in sight.