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Thursday, September 29, 2016

Energy, the X-Factor

Hi Readers, I’m low on energy this week. Fortunately, I picked up this book, 50 Success Classics, which I do every so often;  When I’m not sure what to blog about, I open it at random and dip in. This week I opened at random to the chapter on Loehr & Schwartz, The Power of Full Engagement. It turns out I have the whole book on my shelf, too; I haven’t read it yet. But this piques my interest. It’s about energy. Energy being the “x-factor” in success. Focus, purpose, and resilience. The key to success is managing your energy.  Physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual energy. More is better, energy-wise, but self-control is essential. 

I don’t have the energy to read their whole book right now. Possibly because I’ve allowed the presidential campaign to drain my emotional energy. 

The good news is that, “It is a very good plan every now and then to go away and have a little relaxation…”  This, by the way, is apparently a quotation from Leonardo da Vinci in A Treatise on Painting, another item I lack energy to read this week. Leonardo, I think no one will argue, was attuned to the creative cycle. He was savvy to it way before these guys, way before Julia Cameron told us to “fill our wells” and Stephen Covey to “sharpen our saws.” Even before I promulgated the 20-minute-snoozle as a major energy restoration technique. As well as a procrastination device….

Not that my book, 50 Success Classics, is the iChing or anything, but it does seem serendipitous and illuminating that I opened to this idea of energy in relation to success in the aftermath of the presidential debate. In case you couldn’t bring yourselves to watch, let me fill you in. The question of stamina arose - the question of which candidate has the stamina to be president. The answer was self-evident, although the questioner, it will be no surprise to anyone, disagreed with the evidence. 

In short, this is to say that, this week, Readers, I’m sharpening my well of energy. To mix a few metaphors. In short, here’s the update: 

  • The college student seems to be adjusting to college. This involves participating in an array of activities. This also involves tantalizing but insufficiently informative texts.

  • The 9th grader is well on her way to being overbooked. Tennis, music, acting, art, schoolwork, and keeping up her feminist Instagram account are cutting into her free time. Because she plays French Horn, and French Horns are apparently in short supply, she’s been recruited for an area orchestra, on top of the school band. Busy, busy. 

  • The husband continues his grueling work schedule, which he supplements with talking me down from hypochondria after I read books for the trade instrument for which I review them, such as the soon-to-be-released new book by a famous diet doctor about the evils of sugar. 
Me, after finishing the review: I’m thirsty. So thirsty. Do I have diabetes? Husband: No.Me: But why am I so thirsty? Maybe it’s metabolic syndrome? Husband. No. You're thirsty.

Then we watch Veep. That Julia Louis-Dreyfus is incredible as the reprehensible Selina Meyer. 

  • Read an article by Deborah Spar, President of Barnard, about the conflicting pressures of feminism and workplace success*. Specifically, the pressure on women of a certain age who are in leadership positions to have cosmetic interventions on their faces to keep them looking young. This article reminded me of the piece I published in the Motherlode about make-up and feminist guilt. It also reminded me of the episode of Veep in which Selina Meyer gets her eyes done, and as a result, can’t make a key speech during her campaign. 

  • Spoke to an editor at a publishing house about my book and now I have more work to do. Thus the pull back and the well sharpening and the energy replenishing. 

Maybe once my book is published, I’ll need to get a little work done. We all want to look somewhere between 40 and 60. As women we have authority at that point. 

And last, I read in The Washington Post that Hillary Clinton meditates - and has had contemplative thought leaders to the White House, so it’s not a new thing. A Google search revealed that this knowledge about her meditation and doing yoga has been out there for awhile. Well, it’s new to me. Probably contributes to her ability to withstand the bullying from T. It’s also a great way to enhance the x-factor in success - energy.

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