During a visit with dear friend, Jane Gordon, she shared with me a way she calms her spirit when sleep will not come. She will visualize the worry or concern as a tennis ball, and she will take her hand and swat that ball back to God. She’s had to warn her husband, Gordon, so he isn’t alarmed with her flailing arms in the middle of the night – ha! I love it.
Whether it is this technique or something else that works for you, we must protect our sleep. We are no good to anyone when we are walking zombies. Besides, so much of what we stress about it completely and utterly out of our control. By hitting those “tennis balls” back to God, Jane is placing them where they belong: at the feet of Jesus.
I often tell my mind “This is not the time, nor the place.” If it truly is something I need to deal with, I get my notepad out that I keep by the bed and write it down. Then, I can let it go for the night and revisit it in the morning. Another tactic when I am unable to sleep is to pray coast to coast. I start at California and pray for anyone I know in that state and move through the country. Since I never seem to make it past the Midwest, I then start at New York the next time and head west. This takes the focus off my own stuff and puts me in communion with God. Talk about a great place to be!
Sleep is the only time our brains get to shut down and renew. It is critical to mental health, but sleep depravity will also negatively affect our physical health. We will feel exhausted and grab the wrong things (like caffeine and sugar) to pep ourselves up. These things then wire us and interfere with sleep, creating a vicious cycle.
If you continually struggle to sleep, you may need to speak with your doctor. I encourage you to try calming your spirit and clearing out you mind on a daily basis to see if that helps first. Perhaps journaling your thoughts before bedtime? Try different things and see what works for you. May the sleep be with you!
One major culprit for disrupting our sleep these days is technology. All doctors agree that the light from smart phones prevents your body from creating serotonin and melatonin, both required to fall asleep and stay asleep. Experts suggest we put our phones away at least one hour before bedtime.
I am pleased to see more and more resorts having cell-free zones, and I believe we should unplug more often. We are giving time to a device that should be given to people. Devices won’t be there for you, and if you don’t invest in relationships, people won’t be either.
Yes, we can connect with people through them, but is isn’t the same. When families sit around a table with their faces in their phone instead of looking at each other, we have a problem. Every day, we should set aside “tech-free” (no phones, TV, computers, or video games) time. Use it to converse and share highlights from your day. Play board games or do puzzles. Do a creative craft project or take a walk together.
My husband and I got a billiards table in 2020 when the world shut down and our options were limited outside the home. We purchased the ping-pong topper as well so we could do either activity. It’s a great way to spend time together that doesn’t involve technology, although we will have music playing.
Find something you and your spouse can enjoy together and carve out time every day for it. If you have kids, have them take turns at picking an activity for the day. What you might find is too much technology is dumb, and the smart decision is being together without it.
Talk to any recruiter and one of their major frustrations is clients wasting their time on searches. Recently, a recruiter spent a year on a CHRO role, bringing many qualified candidates to their client, only to be told it wasn’t the purple unicorn. Then, while he finally found the purple unicorn, the company decided not to hire anyone out of fear of making a mistake like the previous disastrous employee.
What a waste of not only the recruiter’s time but all the candidates who participated in the process. And I can tell you this, no decision IS a bad decision. What this company has done is set themselves up for burnout and turnover because someone has to fill those shoes and do the work. They don’t have the title for it ,and they certainly aren’t getting paid. Yes, the company is saving a ton of money by not replacing the CHRO, but it will cost them in the end.
My take on the situation is that they took too long and presented too many options, and this created paralysis by analysis, coupled with a fear of making a mistake. In order to prevent this during the hiring process, be extremely clear on the front end what the hiring manager wants. Don’t let candidates form the job spec – meaning as they see people, they will say “Oh, we want this, but not that.” The candidate profile and job descriptions should be detailed and agreed upon before the search begins.
If a bad hiring decision was made in the past, drill down and discuss what went wrong and what wasn’t done properly. Address those things and proceed ahead taking them into account. Again, no decision will be a bad decision, so set a time line for when the job MUST be filled and stick to it.
Work with a recruiter who isn’t afraid to coach and guide the process. My background is vast and my experience broad. Let’s have a conversation so I can share with you how my process is different and will get you the best candidates in a timely manner.
Stress will never go away. We don’t arrive one day to a stress-free life, but we can manage it in healthier ways. My book, A Healthier, Happier You gives you 101 ways you can reduce your stress emotionally, mentally, physically, and spiritually to create a more balanced life.