How To Focus On Your ‘Right’ Priorities

The word ‘right’ for me means right-brain, which translates to intuitively honoring the optimal choice or investment of time and energy. The right priorities are not always the obvious priorities.

In fact, you may think you need to focus on something but find yourself drawn to something else – afterward, you realize that you weren’t in the mood to do the first one which would have meant you were pushing for it and that makes everything hard.

Humans have a basic need for variety, but they also have a need for stability. The way that I recommend we balance these two needs for our best focus is to have a ‘shopping list’ of things to get done, and then when you have time, look at your list. The first priorities are any that have deadlines (or life lines, as I prefer to call them). If there is a time commitment, that is what needs to be handled first.

From there, if you have time that you can put into something you choose, make sure you have your list handy and then do what’s called ‘eye dowsing’ – see what jumps out at you first. Whatever you see or notice first is generally where the natural energy is most intense or flowing, so that will be the priority that will be your next ‘right’ choice to take action on.

By honoring the energy of what is ‘right’ for you in right sequence and right timing, you can create a systematic flow that may defy the mind’s literal organization and that opens up to enhanced opportunities.

Now for the best way to focus on your ‘right’ priorities: the word ‘right’ for me means right-brain – so intuitively honoring the optimal choice or investment of time and energy. The right priorities are not always the obvious priorities.

In fact, you may think you need to focus on something but find yourself drawn to something else – afterward, you realize that you weren’t in the mood to do the first one which would have meant you were pushing for it and that makes everything hard.

Humans have a basic need for variety, but they also have a need for stability. The way that I recommend we balance these two needs for our best focus is to have a ‘shopping list’ of things to get done, and then when you have time, look at your list. The first priorities are any that have deadlines (or life lines, as I prefer to call them). If there is a time commitment, that is what needs to be handled first.

From there, if you have time that you can put into something you choose, make sure you have your list handy and then do what’s called ‘eye dowsing’ – see what jumps out at you first. Whatever you see or notice first is generally where the natural energy is most intense or flowing, so that will be the priority that will be your next ‘right’ choice to take action on.

By honoring the energy of what is ‘right’ for you in right sequence and right timing, you can create a systematic flow that may defy the mind’s literal organization and that opens up the most important asset you have in your business – your energy.

Lynn Scheurell

www.mycreativecatalyst.com

How Smart Shopping Leads To Better Health, Even On Budget

Smart shopping starts with a grocery list. By shopping with a grocery list, you not only realize cost benefits, but you save time, make healthier food choices and become more conscious about the things that are important in your life. We’ve all experienced going into the grocery store to pick up that one thing, then leaving the store with a trunk load of items, many of which we could have done without. Well this can easily be avoided by shopping with a list.

First, when you make your grocery list you should do so after having taken inventory of what is needed around your home. Other things to take into consideration are your budget, what you deem to be a priority and future planning. With all these things in mind you can set out to create your grocery list. Now that you have your list you can decide where to do your shopping. This should primarily be based on competitive pricing, which is why another good practice is to scan the local newspapers and sign up for newsletters and alerts with the local grocers or food manufacturers for coupons and sales.

Next, after you’ve made your list, gathered your coupons, and decided where to shop its time to do the actual shopping. When it comes to grocery shopping smart planning is key. However, it can at times be challenging because not only are you attempting to realize cost savings, but you also want to make healthy food choices and herein lies the challenge. This is where smart planning, difficult decision-making, budget and grocery lists all come into play simultaneously.

For instance, say you’re looking to purchase ketchup. You see that the store brand ketchup is on sale for an unbeatable price at your local grocer. However, you also know that it’s over-ridden with high fructose corn syrup and other nutrient dense ingredients that you prefer to do without. Meanwhile, the organic ketchup is also on sale at the health food store, but cost a dollar more. What do you do? You’re on a tight budget, but at the same time you’re determined to change your eating habits for the better and ketchup is on your grocery list. Well, it comes down to what’s more important, money or your health. In the end, you realize that you can’t buy good health and without it you cease to be so you purchase the organic ketchup and feel good about your decision. After all, you didn’t stray from your list and you still realized a cost savings, which was actually two-fold. You saved money on the retail price and a future trip to the doctor or on prescription drugs needed to treat a health problem which was the result of a poor diet.

Smart shopping is not just about grocery list and coupons, but it’s about making healthy choices and careful meal planning that in the end save you more than just money. Smart shopping is essentially about making you a priority.

How to Make the Most of Your Outfits’ Shopping Trips?

Whenever I head to the malls, I look at my overflowing wardrobe to remind myself, though usually fruitlessly, that I must exercise restraint. I do the same, when I browse my favorite websites online. The online stores offer irresistible deals, so this personal resolve weakens there considerably. And, when it’s about sales and discounts – whether online or in the real shops – even the constant reminders fail to work.

I am sure that’s the case with most people, these days. After all, who would say no to the wonders of a nice shopping trip! However, what is important is that this ‘happy’ and ‘adrenaline-pumped, relaxed, de-stressed’ feeling remains (and escalates), even after credit/ debit card swipes.

Unfortunately, that’s not the case – always. Once the colorful stuffed bags are in hands, the ‘happy’ feeling fades, getting replaced by guilt or remorse – for many. There have been instances, when I have instantly regretted a purchase. I have seen women cursing themselves for buying something ‘useless’, as they were influenced by a fellow shopper or coaxed by a pushy shop assistant.

Some just cannot say no! Others decide to cancel, or worse, refuse Cash On Delivery orders. Cancellations and refund requests are a routine affair in the online shopping domain, and most ecommerce portals reel under the pressure created by incessant ‘returns’. Many of us just cannot seem to get the most out of our shopping escapades. And, a wrong shopping decision is not just about wasting the money – it’s also a great burden on our time strapped lives.

Well, here we bring you some tips that will help you make the most out of the time, effort and money spent on every shopping trip you take – in the real or the virtual world.

1. Think of Your Vital Expenses – for the month

This is one thing that I have always seen working for my husband, who always mentally cruises through the current expenses list, before he clicks on the ‘Buy’ button. Start with the expenditures that are waiting payment or processing.

Okay, it may sound like a depressing thing to do at the beginning of a, probably, uplifting shopping cruise, but it does make a lot of sense. You will be reminded of the priorities, so you will end up shopping only for the priority stuff.

2. Don’t Go Shopping (even online) – when in a hurry (or just before a meeting)

The feeling of ‘running around’ makes us stressed and anxious. We may not realize, but any frenetic, frenzied run-through is bound to leave you on your nerves.

Purchases made in such a frame of mind are quite unlikely to fit in the ‘great’ category. Also, we tend not to be our resourceful best, in such a state of mind. Plus, hurrying doesn’t let us look for options. Buying whatever we encounter first, irrespective of quality – especially when it’s something essential (at the moment) – is quite likely in a maniac rush.

That is precisely why planning ahead works well. If you have to make some purchases for some event, occasion, wedding or anything – even a gift – do so in advance, as you are unlikely to get something you ‘really admire’ in a hurried shopping trip. For the same reason, I now even avoid buying groceries and veggies in my lunch hour ‘free-time’. Doesn’t really work well, I realized!

3. Don’t Go Shopping – when angry or hungry (or thirsty)!

Cranky is bad, when shopping. If you are hungry, again you will be in a hurry to wind up the shopping, so you can eat (and drink). So, all we talked about in point 2 – applies here too.

Most women decide to go shopping to beat stress or a bad mood, alright. But, ask these ladies, if they love their purchases made on those ‘seriously-need-a-mood-lift’ trips. The majority of answers will put you off doing this in future. Instead, go for a run, or to a park to play with kids, or simply take a stroll with your favorite music in your ears – to uplift sodden spirits. Shopping is best done, when you are in a balanced state of mind!

4. Make a List

As old-fashioned and clich├ęd as it sounds, preparing lists really helps in prioritizing and cutting out unnecessary buys.

Contrary to the popular belief, making lists ahead of a shopping trip is not restrictive. Instead, it leans a direction and flow to your trip down the mall or street. And, at the end of it all, who is asking you to ‘not’ buy anything apart from what the list lists. Just start with the most important stuff, or something that you actually need, and then go to the peripheries and extras.

It will also reduce your effort too. I recently needed a new Anarkali, which I forgot, as I entered the mall. I shopped for 2 pairs of shoes, which I don’t regret at all. But, on my way back, I realized I ‘really’ needed the dress for my dance class. Since I was already out, I did not go back to level 4 in the mall – to my favorite store. I bought one from a shop near my home, and I rarely wear that suit now. Get the point?

5. Keep a Time-Limit

Okay, I know it sounds quite contra-indicative to points 2 and 3, but ironically it still makes sense. So, you shouldn’t be hurrying while shopping, but you must also know that you don’t have all the time in the world. Your trip or virtual crawling need not be bound by strict time deadlines, making it impossible for you to ‘breathe’. But, you still must set a stipulated time, when you would need to finish you stroll through the mall.

This will help you prioritize and avoid endless comparisons. It will also save time and efforts, as you will not dilly dally! Still not convinced? Try first and tell us later!

6. Visit your Favorite Stores First

Again it’s about prioritizing. When you start your shopping stroll, you are freshest, perkiest and most sorted. Most of us know, what we want and what we need. So, things are clearer. And thus, it makes sense to head to stores that are your favorites, or where you know the fitting, quality, prices etc. are most suitable for you.

So, instead of mindlessly drifting to the spots nearest to parking area or entrance (like my husband does), or getting enamored by biggest discounts and most vibrant hoardings – first head to your trusted labels. Devote the best part of your shopping trip to the places that are sure to fit your personal bill! Everything can come later.

7. Pay by Cash – whenever, wherever you can…

You know how it works. When we count notes to make payments, we better register – how much we have paid. Plastic money doesn’t let it seep in our mind – unless we see those humongous bills.

8. Don’t Go with a ‘Friend’ – who is too haute, too self-immersed, too cranky, too critical, too rich, too careless – basically ‘too’ anything.

We don’t need such influences, when we are trying to make the most of a coveted shopping trip. That’s the reason, shopping online, when at work, surrounded by colleagues with hundreds of divergent opinions doesn’t work well.

Ask for opinions, suggestions, feedback – but not from someone, you know, would always disagree, or has extremely different likes that your own preferences.

9. Dress up well, wear well-fitting lingerie and good shoes

You will, invariably, end up trying your clothes, so you must know how they will actually look on you, when you are ready to ‘go out’. So, don’t make the mistake of going shopping in flip-flops and shabby undergarments, especially with a shopping agenda to buy something special.

Dressing up well also invites good attention from shop assistants, besides giving you confidence to say ‘NO’ when you want to. Look great, feel sprightly and shop right!