Category Archives for "Prioritizing Yourself"

May 07

We All Want To Give Our Best

By Jen Regan | Prioritizing Yourself

Is your life starting to feel simpler? Even though there is much unknown? Is life wonderfully centered around those you love? Even though the past month has been a big adjustment? Are these areas you want to hold on to as you move forward? I definitely do! There is one thing that can derail all of it, and it’s all about you.Enter your text here...

I had a rough week last week. I had a number of health setbacks that decided to hit all at once. Now that I have started to make a turn for the better, I look back and realize, understandably, I was not at my best last week. I was not able to go above and beyond for my loved ones. It also seemed like there was less simplicity and more loose ends.  It reminded me, in order for me and my loved ones to live our BEST, it is so important for me to take care of myself first. When I take care of my needs and health, I have so much more to give to those I love, and keep our lives running smoothly and simply.

Do you find the same to be true for you? What are some areas you can keep in check to make sure you are at your BEST, so that you can give others your BEST?

Your Physical health! 

  • Food brings energy, or not. Can you take baby steps to improve what you are putting into your body? 

  • Exercise. How are you doing with your movement? What can you do that is fun and active? What baby step can you take today to get going?

  • Sleep. How are you sleeping? If you wake up in the middle of the night, what are you thinking about? What would be something beneficial to think about as you try to get back to sleep?

  • Medications. Sometimes when our schedules change, we get out of the routine of taking our meds as our doctor has prescribed. What reminders can you put in place to make sure you stay healthy?

Your Mental and Emotional Health!

  • What can you do to have some time to yourself? Many of you are home 24/7 with your children and have very little time to get away. This will require some creativity, but it is so important in order for you to be at your BEST.

  • Are you having some fun? Have you picked up an old hobby? Started putting together a puzzle? Whatever you enjoy doing, how can you add more of that into your life?

  • Are you staying connected to others? We are meant to live this life together, and we have had to change the way we do that lately. Are you staying connected to people you care about and who care about you? Who can you touch base with right now?

  • Cry when you need to. There are just times we need to grieve and cry. Allow yourself to express your emotions, and give love and grace to friends who need the same.

What else do you need to live you BEST? What baby steps can you take to add more of it into your day? Some days and weeks are harder than others, but there is usually something we can do to feel better. In turn it will help us not only be our BEST but give our BEST to others too!

My Daily Walk With Jesus: This past week I asked God many times why He was allowing me to be in so much pain again. I think we all can ask the same question. Why is He allowing so much pain in our world today? For one, I do believe that God loves us each so very much. I believe sometimes He has to allow pain to get our attention, sometimes to teach us something important, and many times it is for reasons that will only be known by God Himself. He loves us so much and has a great plan for us. For me, I believe that God is teaching me a lot of things right now. How about you? Is He trying to get your attention? Teach you something? If you ask, He will show you, even if you don’t expect Him to.

Photo by Dominika Roseclay from Pexels
Sep 19

Fall Fun Just For You!

By Jen Regan | Prioritizing Yourself

School is back in swing, new routines are being set for the new school year and schedules get busier and busier with fall activities. Dare I mention, the holidays are right around the corner, too. Our lives are filled with a lot of “good” stuff, but today I want to encourage you to think about something fun for you. It’s part of your Fall Self Care.

It is always great to have something to look forward to. It could be an upcoming vacation, it could be a day off just for yourself, it could be having time to read a good book. Life is so busy and demands so much of us, it is important for us to have some fun.

I have an upcoming trip to Atlanta with a friend. I cannot wait to enjoy a road  trip as well as all of the activities we have planned. I have been planning this trip for most of the year, and it has supplied some much needed anticipation, especially during some of the tough challenges that I faced this year. 

What do you like to do for fun? Just for you. Yes, family vacations can be awesome, but what do you like to do for YOU? Years back when I was focused on climbing my career ladder, I somehow stopped having fun. When my body told me I needed a break, I had forgotten how to have fun. One of the questions I asked myself as I rediscovered fun in my life, was “What did I enjoy doing as a child?” This helped me to get back in tune with my love for being outside, being active, keeping things simple. If you don’t do not have much fun just for you, take some time to think about what you have enjoyed in your past and how you can bring that into your future.

Life is an experiment! Don’t give up if you don’t discover “fun” right away. Try different things. If they do not work out, ask yourself “why?” Years back, I discovered my love for cycling, but I learned quickly that I don’t like to cycle like everyone else. I like to ride slow and steady. I do not like to ride fast like many other cyclists do, and that is okay for both of us. I found the right way for me to have fun on my bike. I have also never been a big movie watcher, but recently I noticed a few movies that I would love to see in the theater, so I am trying something new. What is something fun and new you can try?

Start a new tradition! Plan a girls weekend and make it a yearly tradition. Do something fun with a friend and before the night is over, schedule your next time together (Life is so much better lived together). My Mother-In-Law, Mary, just recently invited me to a St. Louis Cardinal baseball game (Go Cards!). We had such a nice time. When we were done, we said “we need to make this a yearly tradition!” Now I have something to look forward to next year!

Schedule it! You all know that if you do not block time out for your “fun time” something else will fill that spot. Look at your calendar right now and block off some time for some FUN! I know emergencies come up, but barring that, try to be firm about keeping your “fun time”. It is very easy to push it off to another time. Remember, fun is a part of our Self Care. We are much better moms, wives, employees or bosses when we prioritize fun in life. What are you putting on your calendar right now to have some fun?

Fall is such a fun time of year. Take care of yourself and add some fun in your life, just for you!

Here’s to living our best life filled with lots of fun times!

Sep 05

Is There Something Weighing On Your Mind?

By Jen Regan | Can Do Attitiude , Perseverance , Prioritizing Yourself

What is weighing on your mind today? Life has a tendency to throw us curve balls in big and small ways every single day. The challenge is, how do we work through those challenges each day while keeping up with life? 

I received a medical bill in the mail today. I knew it was coming, but I kind of hoped that insurance had taken care of the whole amount and I was good to go. That was NOT THE CASE! I am trying to move on about my day, like writing this blog post, but it is still weighing on my mind.

The Amount of this medical bill was a surprise, but many of you are dealing with much bigger issues. Issues that are going to take up a good amount of time, effort and energy. 

If you are like me, you feel you can pile that BIG CHALLENGE on you shoulders and keep going. Afterall, that is what you do, right? Life does not stop or slow down for us, it keeps moving and we feel like we need to stay on pace with it.

I want to challenge you today to approach your new challenges a little bit differently.

Allow some give and take in your life.

Would you consider your life to be busy? I know very few women that would answer that as “no”.

If your life is already busy, and you have a new challenge added to it, would you consider looking for something on your schedule to remove to prevent overload?

I don’t think we realize how much work it is to take on a new challenge. I just read this interesting fact. “A 2010 Study started by making the point that anytime we have something on our mind, it’s literally using up energy - even though it accounts for only about 2 percent of your body weight, your brain uses up 20 percent of your energy. 1

Today, whatever challenge has come your way, your mind is using energy to work through it, even as we go about our busy day. 

I encourage you today to remember that you only have so much energy to expend. If you have had to add more onto your plate, consider loving yourself enough to find something to remove, even if it is temporary.

We want to live an amazing life. Giving and taking is a huge part of that. Let’s not forget that challenges require energy, and energy can be in short supply. 

What is weighing on your mind today and do you need to make some adjustments to make room for it?

Here’s to cutting back when we need to, and keeping our energy tanks full!

If you could use a friend to encourage you at this point in your life, take a moment to reach out to a dear friend. Life is so much better lived together.

1 Michael Bungay Stanieer, The Coaching Habit (Toronto ON Canada: Box Of Crayons Press 2016) 48.

Photo by Rio Kuncoro from Pexels
Aug 22

How To Adjust, When Your Body Tells You A Change Must Be Made

By Jen Regan | Baby Steps , Overcoming Obstacles , Prioritizing Yourself

Has your body been telling you to slow down, get moving, or it’s time to make some other needed changes? We can cruise along in life for quite some time feeling good, bet inevitably an adjustment needs to be made. Life might be dishing out a little extra stress. You may have received a medical diagnosis, or your work has had you sitting a lot and your body is craving some movements. Is your body asking you to make some adjustments today?

I have tornado dreams. I live in the midwest, and even though I don’t have an extreme fear of tornadoes, I certainly have a fearful respect for them. I have found when life starts to get a little bit too stressful, my body communicates that I need to make some adjustments, My body does that through tornado dreams. There have been many times when I have felt like I was holding life together just fine, but my body was telling me differently. There have been times when I have been surprised to have a tornado dream, but once I sit back and think about it, I can usually see that something has been causing me stress. 

If your body (or doctor) is asking you to make some adjustments today, chances are it is a little bit stressful. We all live very busy lives and adjustments take extra time and energy we do not have. How do we move forward to a place of feeling better?

  • Take a deep breath, take a moment to yourself and even allow yourself to cry. It is important to love yourself and take care of yourself mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually. Your body may need a release when stress hits and I have found the above to be helpful.

  • Gather information. This may be as simple as recognizing stress and asking yourself what you need to do to make adjustments. This could also be learning about the medical condition you have been diagnosed with. Maybe meeting with a nutritionist to help guide you. Taking a little bit of time to learn and see what others have done to succeed is a great start. Take small chunks of time if you need to. Try not to let your lack of time keep you from this step. Something might have to give for this week to allow you to focus on you. 

  • Break it down into small action steps. Once you have started to gather your information, it’s time for action. Decide what actions step you need to take first, and maybe a few more steps after that. Write them down, or put them on your calendar. Keeping them inside your mind, which already has a lot to keep track of, might not work the best. Once you start moving forward, it is a great idea to keep a journal right from the start. Document what is working and what is not. Over time it is hard to remember all of the details and it can be helpful to look back, sometimes just to see how far you have come.

  • Move forward slowly and steadily. Remember, sprinting off the starting line feels great, but we can also fizzle out quickly. Slow and steady is a great philosophy and has shown to work in situations that require effort over time. 

  • Shift your mindset to self care. It is your heart to serve and take care of others, but many times this means we get the leftovers if there are any. Start to think about self care and its importance. When you take care of yourself, you can take care of others with more energy and vitality. Try to shift your mind to love yourself and love taking care of yourself. 

  • Celebrate each small accomplishments. One of the things that stinks about taking care of yourself is that you do not get many accolades for doing it. Like it or not, we all like to be told we are doing well. Learn to build celebration into your life for yourself. 

You are an amazing woman, but life does throw you some curveballs at times. Adjustments need to be made and your body needs to be taken care of. Keep moving forward one small step at a time and before you know it, you will be well on your way to feeling better.

Here’s to moving forward the best we can, even when adjustments need to be made!

Mar 28

3 Personalized Boosts For Your Day Today!

By Jen Regan | Prioritizing Yourself

Every single day we are taking care of those we love and work with. Taking care of and helping others is what we do, it’s who we are. We get a tremendous amount of joy from helping others and making their day run the best it can. An important question to ask is “What can we do to keep our tanks full and feel our absolute best at the same time?”

We are all coming to the end of winter, and for that we are thankful. For those of you reading from warm climates, we envy you in the months of February and March because the wait for spring, more sun and warmer weather can be grueling. It is this time of year when the sun starts to shine and the birds start to sing, that we start to feel alive again.

Even with the sun shining and the flowers popping up through the ground, we are all still prone to feeling worn out. It is important to us to keep all of the balls of life rolling and rolling well. Sometimes we find ourselves the last “ball” to be rolled, but I think it is time to change that. There are small things we can be aware of each day to give ourselves the individual boost that we need. It just requires some intentionality.

Today, ask yourself…

Does my body need a boost by moving and exercising, or could it benefit from some rest? It is pretty clear when our bodies are screaming for rest. Usually we can look back on our previous week and see that there has not been much rest in sight. There are also those days where you have been stuck behind your desk for hours on end, or sitting in your car running from one place to the next. These are the times when you body calls for some movement. Both movement and rest are wonderful ways to get a boost. Which one do you need today? Even in the smallest of ways, how can you make that happen today?

Would I get a boost by spending time with other people, or do I need to refill my tank with time by yourself? We have all had weeks that have been focused in on a deadline, project, or concern in life. As we work through these times and come out the other side, pay attention to how spending time with the important people in your life might give you a boost. Sometimes it feels great to have your office door open and walk around to chat with others. Sometimes, the door to your office, or maybe even your bathroom at home, needs to stay shut a little longer and even locked. Sometimes we simply need some time to ourselves to fill our tanks. When it comes to people, what will give you a boost today?

Will I get a boost by getting out of my comfort zone, or staying in it today? So many times we think staying inside of our comfort zone is the only way to bring us comfort, but that is not always true. Sometimes we know we need to take an uncomfortable step to move forward. Once we know we need to take that uncomfortable step, the longer we wait to do it, the more it actually zaps our energy. Sometimes “doing it afraid” and taking the “step of faith” will bring not only relief, but it can bring you a great sense of accomplishment too. There have also been times where I have been out of my comfort zone for quite some time and I needed the rest of staying comfortable for a while. What is the right thing for you today?

Like all of the wonderful people in our lives, we deserve a boost every single day! Many times we will be blessed with a boost from someone else, but let’s ensure our success and fit a boost in of our own!

I would love to hear what you have done or are doing to bring life and energy into your day! Leave a comment below! You have so much to contribute and share with other amazing women!

Here’s to having a great day filled with great things!

Aug 09

Take A Break? Are You Kidding Me!?!

By Jen Regan | Keep It Simple , Prioritizing Yourself

You start your day and get dialed in to what you need to accomplish that day. Your “to-do” list expands faster than you can remove items from it and you have not even pulled out of the driveway. Whether you work inside your home or outside of your home, the demands on your time are never-ending. How could you even consider taking a few minutes to do nothing? To take a break?

One of my summer reads challenged me to start to take breaks in my day and in my life. The book Peak Performance by Brad Stulberg and Steve Magness shared sound evidence stating that I would actually come out ahead if I took a few short breaks in my day.

This is counter-intuitive to the way my mind works. I feel like I will get more done if I keep plugging away, with no stops. Okay, maybe a bathroom break every once in a while, but only when it is an emergency! Brad and Steve were very convincing in their argument and their research. Convincing enough to motivate me to give it a try. It unexpectedly turned into my own personal experiment.

I started by setting the alarm on my phone for a morning and afternoon break. Once the alarm went off, I would find a natural stopping point in my work and take a ten minute break. One thing I have learned, before I get too much farther, is the longer I wait to take my break after may alarm sounds, the more likely I am to keep working and forget my break entirely.

Once my alarm sounds I head to the back steps of our office building for my break. The recommendations of this break is to allow your mind to wander and relax, not strategize your work for the rest of your day. There has been evidence shown that going outside is beneficial, and walking or adding in some sort of movement, is great too. I have heard of individuals going up and down the staircases at their work. Wow, what great exercise that would be. Each one of us work in completely different environments, so we do the best with what we have. The key is to allow our minds to wander during this time.

Here is what my experiment has revealed. The days I take my morning and afternoon break, along with my lunch break, I feel less “brain fried” at the end of the day. No joke! I have found dramatic results. The days I forget to take my breaks, I drive home like a zombie. My brain is wasted. I find that when I take my breaks during the day, I can work well all the way until the end of the day. When I forget a break,  I start to slow down by the end of my work day. When I take my breaks, I feel better and have more energy left for my evenings.

I have to tell you that I did not expect these results when I start taking breaks. The results are unmistakable. Breaks make a HUGE difference. I work better and I have more left over at the end of the day.

Two ten minute breaks and a lunch break is what I challenge you to try. Don’t beat yourself up if you miss one, because I still forget one here and there. Give it a few weeks and pay attention to the difference it makes. I know, for me, this is a lifelong habit that I want to create.

Here’s to trying something new, creating a habit that is great for you and those you love!

Apr 12

Something’s Gotta Give!

By Jen Regan | Perseverance , Prioritizing Yourself

In the midst of your busy schedule, have you ever felt absolutely exhausted and like something has got to give? I think we have all been there at one point or the other and I am here today, to tell you that when life throws you a curveball and your busyness goes to a whole new level, something should give.

What happens so many times, is that we keep pushing through without making any adjustments. We pile the added project onto our already busy life. I am all for pushing through the hard times, because it is in the pushing through that eventually gets us out the other side. However, I also believe it is essential, during particularly difficult times, to make adjustments to help us make it through in one piece.

Here are a few positive ideas to help you through the tough times.

  • Be extra kind to yourself by giving yourself some grace. If you do not get everything done, it is ok. This is when you get back to your “must do” and “wanna do” lists. When life is particularly busy, give yourselves the grace to just focus on what has to get done for now. There is even a chance some balls may be dropped in the process. Be kind to yourself, take responsibility, ask for grace from others and keep going. I am having to remind myself of this exact thing right now in my life. It is hard.
  • Be extra intentional about blocking off some rest time for you so you don’t get worn down and sick. Our bodies can only take so much. When you get worn down, your immune system gets worn down too. Take your calendar right now and block off some time for rest, and make it happen.
  • Find and savor the little moments in the day where you can get outside, get some fresh air, some sunshine, and some peace. Every day at work, I have to walk down a nice long driveway to get the mail. It does not take long, but I try every day to take my time, enjoy the moment, take some nice deep breaths and savor the few minutes of peace. Find a similar moment in your day. It’s there if you look for it.
  • Listen to some uplifting music. Listening first thing in the morning starts your day on a positive upbeat note.  Listening as you wind down for bed sets your mind on something positive as you fall asleep.
  • Try to keep up with the things that will ultimately help you feel better and give you energy. I know sometimes we are so tired and don’t want to get to our exercise class, or would prefer a big old candy bar over something more nutritious. I am all for rest and treating ourselves to something special, but I know we always feel better after we have worked out. Eating the more nutritious food gives us much-needed long-term energy to keep us going.
  • Remind yourself that this time is temporary. If you have an “end” date, mark it on your calendar. Countdown the days to when life gets back to “normal”. I know there is not such things as “normal” but,  you do have to be intentional about slowing yourself down once the additional commitment is removed. Plan a celebration dinner, plan a weekend away, or send yourself flowers to mark the end of the difficult time you have made it through.

I know there are a lot of you with added pressures right now. Be kind to yourself, keep pushing through and celebrate as the end approaches!

Take care of yourself, for you are amazing!

Feb 01

Lovingly Say Yes To…

By Jen Regan | Prioritizing Yourself , What's Most Important

I intentionally did not include what you are to say “yes” to in the title because I wanted you to open my post. There is one thing that very productive, busy women have a really hard time saying “yes” to. It is essential for you to lovingly say “yes” to YOU! Taking care of yourself, first and foremost, is a difference maker. This is very serious and BIG STUFF!

I have shared with woman after woman, in my years of Life Coaching, the importance of prioritizing oneself. Much to my sadness, most do not feel it is possible for them. They feel as though there is no possible way. I am here to tell you it is possible. It will not happen overnight, but it is possible and I beg you to start on that journey today.

Let’s look at where to start. Read the following “starting points” and pay attention to which one resonates with you the most.

  • What can you start to do to prioritize your physical health?
  • What can you start to do to prioritize your mental health?
  • What can you start to do to prioritize your spiritual health?
  • What can you start to do to prioritize your emotional health?

I do not feel these need any additional explanation. Which one caused you to pause and shake your head “yes”. That is your starting point.

What one small thing can you add for the next month to start prioritizing this area of your life?

No more excuses, get started!

  • Prioritizing yourself will be a difference maker in your life. You will start to really feel like you are living again, and as you feel better, those around you will be impacted in a positive way as well.

I make it happen each day, other women are on the journey with us. You can lovingly say “yes” to yourself as well. Join me!

Here’s to loving ourselves, loving those around us, and being a difference maker!


Action Steps:

  • Decide on your starting point.
  • Decide on the one small way you are going to move forward this month to lovingly say “yes” to you.
  • Get started!


Nov 16

Saying No Is Hard To Do

By Jen Regan | Overcoming Obstacles , Prioritizing Yourself

The Holiday Party invitations are starting to arrive in the mail, and the calendar for the next couple of months is starting to fill up. But what is the solution if we have decided to slow down this Holiday Season? What do we do if our priorities for the rest of the year conflict with what everyone else wants of us? I don’t know about you, but saying “no” is hard to do!

This December I have a weekend scheduled to remove myself from my day-to-day life and focus on how to move my dreams for my book writing and other dreams forward in the upcoming months and year. This week I received an invitation to an important event  that is scheduled for that same weekend. The individuals hosting the event are putting their hearts and a lot of time in the planning  to make it very special. How can I possibly say “no”?

I have a dear friend who has been crazy busy for the past few weeks. Her family’s schedule shows no signs of slowing down. Everyone wants to do a ton of fun things. There is no way she could say “enough is enough” or “no, we are not going to add that to our schedule!” How can she possibly say “no”?

When we are on the outside looking at these scenarios, it is pretty easy to say “yes Jen, you need to get away for that weekend to keep moving forward on your dreams!” but when we are faced with these decisions ourselves, it is so much harder. It feels selfish to put ourselves before other people and their wishes.

I absolutely believe we must work for a compromise with those we love, but sometimes that compromise does mean putting ourselves first. After a week of waffling back and forth, I finally told myself that I had to make a decision. It was incredibly hard, but I decided to decline the invitation to the event and stick with my original plan of focusing on my writing and the upcoming year.

My purpose of this blog post is to remind all of us that it is okay to prioritize ourselves. We all give to others every single day of our lives, so it is good and right for us to treat ourselves with love and respect as well. It may be one of the hardest things you have to do, but remember your life and your priorities are very important, they are essential for you living your BEST!

It may take some time to work through it, but if you feel strongly about adding to or subtracting something from your holiday schedule, talk to those you love and make it happen, for you, this Holiday Season!

Thank you John Regan, for supporting me and my dreams! For taking care of things at home while I take some time away, for myself, to plan and dream about the future!

Oct 19

As Good As One, Two, Three!

By Jen Regan | Be True To Yourself , Prioritizing Yourself

Be kind to yourself. Be true to yourself. Chart a course for yourself.

These three things are so important!

First, be kind to yourself! You and I can be our own worst critic. We know when we have fallen short. We do not need anyone else to beat us up about a mistake, because we are usually well on top of kicking ourselves when we are down. I am learning though, and I hope, you are learning along with me, that we are never going to be perfect. In order to live the best life that we can, we need to learn to be kind to ourselves. Just like learning any new things, we have to start, keep trying and over time and with practice, we will get better and better at being kind to ourselves. We all extend kindness to others each day, let’s keep a portion of that kindness for ourselves, too. Let’s also remember to treat ourselves every once in a while. It could be grabbing a yummy coffee, scheduling a spa day, or maybe spending some time with a friend. Whatever makes you happy, let’s make sure we get those things added into our schedule.  

Second, be true to yourself. This is one that I have been working through quite a bit lately. It is human nature to try to impress our desires onto someone else. Our desires are so much a part of who we are, it seems natural that others should feel the same way. For example, I have the desire to look at everything with rose-colored glasses. Because this is so important to me, I shared with my husband, John, that he should look at life the exact same way. He was kind and listened to me, but a few days later he explained that he does not see things the same way. It was a good reminder for me to allow John to be true to who he is, and it also reminded me to continue to be true to who I am. The same goes for our dreams for the future. It’s important for each of us to have our own dreams for the future. It is true, when we have a significant other in our lives, that we share our dreams with each other, but I am coming to see that John and I need to have our own individual dreams too. I have dreams of getting on my bike for multiple day trips to see the countryside. John has a dream of having an RV and seeing our country that way. I think we can make those dream mesh together, they are simply going to look a little different for each of us. It can be easy at times to just go along with someone else’s dreams, but I encourage you to have dreams of your own, and be true to them.

Third, chart a course for yourself. You have probably figured out by now that I am a planner. Chances are, if you have continued to read my blog for this long, you are too. The only way to get where we want to go is to decide where we want to go, figure out how we should start moving forward, and start take steps towards our goal. There are times that numbers need to be crunched to make sure we reach a goal. There are times where we have to learn new things to move forward, but regardless of what it is, I believe we need to chart a course for ourselves. John and I were out on a walk this morning talking about our future, and we both acknowledged that there are so many variables that make planning for our future a challenge. We have an end goal in mind, we know the things we already have in place, the things we need to work on, and we keep moving forward. But I also need to set my own individual course as well. Sure, John and I have shared goals, but I need to make sure that I am setting the right course for myself too. I want John to do the same for himself as well. Having a goal and moving forward on a plan gives us something great to work towards and hope for the a great future.

I don’t think you can go wrong if you are kind to yourself, true to yourself and chart a course for yourself. Enjoy your week ahead and live your BEST every single day!