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Intentional Unwinding: Lifestyle Practice

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Practice Unwinding Between Work and Personal Time

Simple Instructions:

  1. Every day, during your transition from work to home, take ten minutes to intentionally separate yourself from the “work” part of your day.
  2. Some examples are taking a walk around the block, sitting quietly and meditating or just breathing, changing out of your work clothes and into something more comfortable, listening to music, or even finishing listening to a podcast in your driveway before going inside.
  3. On your non-work days, consider the important transitions from one part of your day to another and intentionally wrap up one before running off to the next.
  4. If you work from home and/or are a stay-at-home parent, create a distinction for yourself so that at some point each day you have a defined boundary between the real work of your job and/or running your home and your “life” as mom/dad, wife/husband, and human being. It would be best if this break occurred at a time where you could shut down the “work” part and turn on the “human being” part.

Watch this video for an explanation of this Lifestyle Practice from Whole Life Challenge co-founders Andy Petranek and Michael Stanwyck.

Why Is This Practice Important?

For most of us, the activities and events that make up our days don’t have any separation. We move from one thing to another, bringing much of the junk from one situation into the next. It can look like we’re handling the task at hand, but really we’re still thinking about something that happened hours ago or answering work messages long after we’re home.

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Modern life and technology don’t make it easy to define boundaries, so this week’s Lifestyle Practice is an exercise in creating those lines for yourself. We’re going to start with one single boundary — the one between “work” and “home.” By practicing creating a clean shift between those things, you’ll be able to take that skill into all areas of your life.

Imagine yourself taking control of the energy you bring to each activity and interaction, and being able to say to yourself, “This is where this ends and this begins.” Imagine your productivity at work when you’re able to focus on your responsibilities. And imagine your personal interactions at home, without the anxiety of your job looming.

This week’s Lifestyle Practice will help you explore what it’s like to put aside anything left undone and enter each moment as it really is — new and filled with possibility. This intentional separation will create your personal space exactly as you would like it to be — whatever that looks like for you, free from negative influence and distractions.

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Michael Stanwyck
Michael Stanwyck is the co-founder of The Whole Life Challenge, an idea that developed during his seven years as a coach and gym manager at CrossFit Los Angeles.

He graduated from UCLA with a BA in philosophy as well as a degree from the Southern California School of Culinary Arts, and feels food is one of the most important parts of a life - it can nourish, heal, and bring people together.

Michael believes health and well-being are as much a state of mind as they are a state of the body, and when it comes to fitness, food, and life in general, he thinks slow is much better than fast (most of the time). Stopping regularly to examine things is the surest way to put down roots and grow.

He knows he will never be done with his own work, and believes the best thing you can do for your well-being starts with loving and working from what you’ve got right now.