“The time is flying by, the next thing you know, it’s time to die.” – Lolita Guarin
We all want control over time that’s why we dig the idea of a time machine. Unfortunately, it’s never going to happen. Before we run out of it, we should really start spending time thinking about time. In this episode, Art and Stress Management Coach, Lolita Guarin, reveals life hacks and best practices on time-management, effective scheduling, and beating stress. Lolita also shares why we should be looking at our total well-being more seriously and how to make saying “no” a little bit easier. Listen to today’s conversation and have a stress-free week ahead!
Listen to the podcast here:
01:11 Start Of Stress Management
08:49 Crush Stress While You Work
13:16 Best Practices For Better Time Management
17:28 How To Say No Without Saying No
21:00 Scheduling Tips
27:22 Different Doesn’t Mean It’s Wrong
36:22 How Well Is Your Well Being?
41:53 Value Your Time Before It Runs Out
Did you know that you can say “no” without having to say the word “no”? Tune in as @myexpectation and Lolita Guarin shares the secret to keeping our boundaries with ease and getting ourselves out of all the unnecessary stress! #expectations… Click To Tweet
06:28 “Stress gives you a proposal to achieve something… It helps you to see what you want to improve.” – Lolita Guarin
19:34 “There are plenty of ways how you can say no in a nice way without sounding rude or mean to people.” – Lolita Guarin
25:55 “Creating little successes leads to greater successes along the way.” – Art Costello
31:56 “Different doesn’t mean it’s wrong, it’s just different.” – Lolita Guarin
41:54 “The time is flying by, the next thing you know, it’s time to die.” – Lolita Guarin
Lolita Guarin is a Certified Stress Management Coach/Life Coach, Speaker, and Workshop Facilitator. She has dealt with stress and tried many stress release techniques over the years and found a solution that consisted of natural remedies and practices. Managing stress without medication became her priority. She helps her clients to lower stress & burnout and increase health, productivity, & profitability by implementing simple stress reduction strategies. She is also the author of, Crush Stress While You Work, which provides doable stress management strategies to help you be more organized, happier, and relaxed.
Art Costello: Welcome to Shower Epiphanies Podcast. Today, Lolita Guarin is our guest. She is an author, speaker, but more important, she’s an expert in the field of time management, which is near and dear to my heart. And which is a skill that I think everybody that’s listening to the show should have. Actually, everybody in the world. So with that being said, I’m going to go ahead and introduce Lolita, and let her tell you her story.
Lolita Guarin: Well, thank you, Art, so happy to be here and thank you for inviting me on your show. Before the recording, you asked me how to pronounce my name. My full name is Lolita [inaudible] Guarin. If you’re wondering what those are, those like my middle name, like soup of letters, means my Lithuanian maiden name. As probably you can tell I have an accent, and I came from Lithuania. So yes, I speak Lithuanian, not Russian. For those who think that Lithuania is in Russia. No, it’s a standalone country. And of course, I can speak Russian too, because while I know lots of languages, I’m from Europe. If you want to watch a TV and a good show, like I was growing up in Soviet Union and I watched Miami Vice on a Russian TV, you will learn all of those words. And I watched Polish TV and all of those languages, I still remember because if you are growing up in Soviet Union, there’s not much to see except Russian television. So I learned many languages. My dad knew many languages. I grew up in Lithuanian between times. And they went through, Lithuania getting independence. Then in 2000, I came here to the US. I love traveling. And so I traveled a lot, and then I thought I’ll go to the US. And I came here as an old pair, and I’m only one child, and my parents, of course, they stayed in Lithuania. And back in 2000, to make an international call was very expensive. So my mom would go, and there was some internet cafe, and then we would make a call through the internet, and that’s how we’ll get in touch once a week. And then I came here in April and my mom had the end of May, she’s calling me. And I’m thinking, wow, she’s calling me. And she’s not crying because in those days, the day I left, she was crying, leaving, she’s all by herself, and dad, and I’m only one child, and in the best child because they cannot compare to anyone else. She was just missing me.
Then once she called me, she was not missing me anymore. She was very happy, and she was talking as, how am I doing? And I’m thinking, something’s fishy here. I said: “Guy’s, did you win a green card lottery? Because you’re so happy.” And just: “Yes, we did.” So we were one of those fortunate families that actually got here in the United States because my parents won a lottery. So they became residents as soon as they came in. Of course, now in the whole lot of time passing the American citizens. So when my parents came, I joked, I said, when I was in Lithuania, I was the only one child. But when my parents came, I became a single mother with two kids. And I really didn’t know what to do here at all. I finished my old pair times, and my parents came the next year, and we had to find the jobs. We need to feed ourselves. Our savings really just ran dry because there was not much money the parents brought into the US. And it was an interesting situation because I was able to speak English, but I didn’t have permission to work. I must ask permission to work, to stay here in this country legally, and study and such, but not working. And my parents had the permission to work, but the one that was really speaking in English. So all of us together was like a great package, but not separately. Well, we started after I was done with my old pair times, we started like many immigrants do right from the bottom. And I found this nice lady that gave us a job to go and clean offices during the night. We cleaned at the hairdresser place, the dentist place, and that’s really helped us to start up. Then my dad went to work for Kroger’s, which he’s still working. And because in Lithuania, he was a butcher and he is still a butcher at Kroger’s, and he loves what he does. My mom was an accountant in Lithuania, and she’s an accountant here. So we get through this.
And so I thought, okay, who am I? What do I want to achieve? And I’m thinking, this is the best country in the world to achieve your dreams. Because if you really want to, and you put your energy into that time, you will get rewarded. So I went back to school, then I finished. I went to work with the gas company, and I was like, wow, this is an opportunity for me. So I started really working very hard. Being an immigrant, I always thought that I am blessed so I have to prove myself. And so I was working through lunches, long hours, my week will be like 60 hours work, weekends. I didn’t have time to do exercise, the only one time I’ll get up from a desk is when I need to use a ladies room and lunches where whatever is left over, hot pockets, you know, there’s always been not nutritious food. I was just really pushing myself and I’m like, I can get this, I can do this. And in the work environment, I noticed that the more they give you work, the more you think, okay, I can do this. I’ll prove it to myself and others. I was afraid to say, no. I was afraid to tell my supervisor, look, I cannot handle anymore, or I need help. So all of that, it really came that my health truly deteriorated. It totally messed up my hormones and everything. And because it was stress management, not knowing how to manage my time, how not saying no, I ended up in the hospital and as you know, in this country, there are so many doctors and they say, Hey, I’ll give you a pill. You take this and you’ll be fine. And I’m like, we live all through our lives with stress, just impossible that you can get rid of stress all together. And also we need stress. I mean, if we will be so happy riding horses, we’ll not have cars right now. So stress actually gives you a proposal to achieve something. And noise helps you to see what you want to be improved and kind of make that happen. But they thought well, so if I have to live with stress, I need to know how to manage it, I don’t want to have a pill to just take it. Well, there are plenty of books, and webinars, and coaching and all of that on how to manage stress naturally, how to manage your time. And then I just started applying those little tips and tricks that I learned and my day definitely got much easier and then I learned how to say no. I learned more exercises, simple things like physical or mental exercises that I can do through the day that don’t require so much time and actually help me so I can carry on all day and don’t collapse at the end of it.“Stress gives you a proposal to achieve something… It helps you to see what you want to improve.” - Lolita Guarin Click To Tweet
I remember I was at a party and I was sharing my tips with this nice lady. She said: “You could be a coach.” I’m like: “Coach? What do you mean coach?” And so I find that there are plenty of coaching programs out there. So I became a certified life coach and also certified stress management coach. As I started teaching others and sharing my passion, there are plenty of ways how you can manage your stress. And I hear all the time, like I say: “You can take one minute and just breathe in, breathe out and just stop whatever you’re doing.” And I hear all the time people telling me: “I don’t have time for this.” You can make time if you really want to. And I realized there’s so many little tips throughout the day that you can manage your time, your stress levels, that you don’t have to take hours, you don’t have to like talking with the client over the phone. And then if you don’t hear the answer that you want to hear and you say, Oh, hold a second. I’m going to run out to my yoga class for 45 minutes, I’ll be right back. You know, it doesn’t work that way. But what is that you do when somebody cuts in front of you in traffic? What does it do when you have too much to do, how are you going to manage that? So I teach that to my clients. I’m a coach, I’m also a speaker. I do speaking engagements. I go to companies and do [inaudible]. I teach these professionals how to manage the stress levels in the workplace environment. So my book, Crush Stress While You Work, is available on Amazon. And really the book came together as I was teaching my clients how to manage stress. But the first is I needed to know if they would be willing to try out different tips and tricks. I will tell them, try this, try this, try that. And I thought, you know what? There’s just so much talking about time management, and there’s so much time wasted on me repeating myself. I wanted them to have something like a handout that they just kind of say, Oh, you know what? I can, I think I’m ready to use another trick. So I put it all in that box. So that book is like totally tips and tricks. It doesn’t even take that much time to read it. You’re just going to flip a page. You go through your chapter to say, okay, let’s see about workload or about physical activity. Something that can lower your stress or time management, and you just pick one tip and say, I’ll do this. It doesn’t have to take hours, it can take a minute. Whatever you get into this flow of, okay, I feel stressed, or I don’t have enough time, okay, let me pull up my toolbox and use something that can help me now. So that book came to that and I’m still using it and giving it to everyone, and I send it to you, Art, correct?
Art Costello: Yes. I read it.
Lolita Guarin: Yay. So I’m assuming you’re very stressed. You’re not stressing anyone, you have time management.
Art Costello: The thing that really struck me about the book is it’s really practical tips that we can apply very easily if we’re only willing to do it. I mean, it’s really important to really understand that this is not a complicated system. You know, this is really straightforward, just do it. That’s what I love about your story is that, coming from Lithuania to here, to Houston, Texas. You have what I call really inactive and put into practice what every single person should be doing that already lives here and those coming here, you didn’t sit and wait for something to happen. You came and made something happen, and that is so powerful. And that to me is what just struck me about hearing your story. I just have so much admiration for people who don’t just sit on their duff and just wait for things to come to them. You go out and make it happen. One of my questions to you is, I write a lot about expectations and how they affect us, and one of my big things is managing your expectations. I believe that stress actually comes from not managing your expectations. When you learn to manage those expectations, then you can learn how to manage your stress. So we’re really talking and teaching, you and I, the same thing. I really believe that in my heart. After reading a lot of the book and seeing the practical tips you put in, I probably go into it from a more psychological avenue than you do. You come at it from the practical and the applicable, you make it applicable to people’s lives. What a great job you’re doing. I mean, what a great, great job. I’m a big fan. I think that this is something that is needed across this country, needed across the world. I really do commend you. Let’s talk a little bit about time management because it was the part of your book that really, really struck me is that, because people can learn to manage their time, they can get so much more done. Priorities in the American culture are, when I’m off, I watch TV. They don’t read anymore. Just so many things. Any thoughts about that?
Lolita Guarin: Yes. So first one, I think if someone wants to find more time during the day, they should really observe themselves on what they do every day. Have like a diary and say, Oh, no, I woke up in the morning, I took a shower and that took me eight minutes, I took lunch and took me 20 minutes, just write it down. What does your day look like? And then also see how much time you spend on all of those tasks, then really go and look where there’s some things that were not really necessary, or maybe you took it too long. I was so surprised to hear how all, you know, pandemic, there were so many people sitting at home. You were thinking they have plenty of time to do the stuff they want, right? Because just for you to get ready, to go to work, then sit for hours in traffic, going there, and then coming back home, that already can save you at least two, three hours just like in everyone’s life. I mean, I live in Houston, so it takes me forever to go anywhere. Of course, there’s someone very lucky that their work is 10 minutes away, that’s great. But most of us take time to get there and back. All of this could be used when you sit at home, you don’t have to go to work, you just save all those hours. And I was so surprised to hear so many people actually totally wasted them. You’re like, no, I still have so much to do. I was so busy, I couldn’t even do it. And I’m like, well, you read the book that you wanted to read and learn. So much advice like now, we know through the pandemic that we have so much time. You can do yoga online now, and you can write a book and learn the foreign language. And then there’s always the question at the end of the day, did you do it? Even if there’s more time, first, there’s so much wasted time so I first recommend to see where you are wasting your time? Because there’s so many things that totally are useless in your life, really, and don’t even matter. You need to look at something and ask yourself, okay, I was watching the show for four hours non stop, will that impact my life in five years? Probably negatively because you were sitting there, you’re not exercising, you’re probably wasting some chips with some snacks that’s really not contributing to your health. So will that impact your life? Probably yes, but probably negatively. But if you were looking at the show that you love, and you learn so much about health, and about your physical body, and you contributing to your soul and your wellbeing, then it’s a good thing. So it really depends what your goals are.
So first, I’ll recommend looking at your day, and then when you see all of the day, then you eliminate those times when you are really wasting your time. Of course, there are some people that are really so hardworking and they think, Oh, if I’m just going to sit around and not do something, this is bad. I need to work on something. I need to do something, but we cannot just go, go, go. We need to also schedule when we take care of ourselves, and our bodies, and our thoughts. And all of the stress that’s coming back, it’s very mental stress because there’s not much of physical stress per se right now. We are standing or we cannot sit down all day. We are all just sitting now, so it’s all really mental stress that we get into anxiety. You need to get rid of this. This is sucking your life out, and wasting your time, and you’re wasting your energy. So you need to eliminate those things that you do during your day. That shouldn’t even be there because they won’t make any difference in your life. Another thing, what I will recommend is to learn to say, no. Overall, humans love to be in the human group, right? We like to be accepted so if somebody says, well, we’re going to jump off the cliff. You’re like, yes, let’s do this. When? I am coming. And I noticed that’s what happened to the pandemic because I was being fearful and anxious, then it kinda influences everyone. And then this big cloud of stress is just hanging over us. Like, why don’t we just spread a little more love and understanding to each other and say, it will pass and we’ll all be fine. And it just really depends where you’re putting your energy and attention. But I really recommend those people who have so much to do, learn by saying, no. Saying, no, to the employer who gives you too many projects. You need to say, I’m sorry, but I cannot do this. You want me to do this but what errors, or you want me to do it the right way. And the quality work thing also is hard for people to say to people that they love. For example, if your kid says, I want to have a snack, I want some chips, but the homework still needs to be done. Well, if you want to say, no, then you’re going to sound like a bad mommy or daddy. But then you think, okay, I’ll just go, go, just go and have your snack. But you know that that’s not good for them, but just to keep the peace and like, okay, go get it. But you know there’s some responsibilities behind it and need to do so, so if you don’t want to say no, you still can say, no, in a nicer way. For example, you can say yes, you can get your snack after you finish your homework. So you say that as a yes, there’s NO words or NO. And then you give a chance for the child to actually build their self esteem and feel like, yeah, I’m going to do my homework. They finished their homework, the treat, and they feel accomplished, and that’s it. It builds through the life of job done instead of just multitasking or just unfocusing. So there are plenty of ways how you can say, no, in a nice way without sounding rude or mean to people.“There are plenty of ways how you can say no in a nice way without sounding rude or mean to people.” - Lolita Guarin Click To Tweet
I have some online courses that I teach to busy professionals on how to manage stress. One of the courses is very short, actually, it’s for free. So if anyone is interested and they want to learn how to manage, how to say NO without sounding rude. If you go to my website, beamazingyou.com, and click online courses, there’s a course I created very short on how to say no with confidence. So if you will just very busy and you see how many things you need to do in your day, you see that lots of times you’re pleasing other people because like your sister inviting you for lunch, and you’re like, you just saw her last week, but you’re still afraid to tell her NO so you going to go there. You have lots to do, but you still want to please her and you don’t want to say, no. There are plenty of ways how you can manage that meeting and say some things that she wants for you, like a rejected heart. So really need to see also, what are you talking about time management? You need to also know what is the timing to use it for? What is your goal? You need to ask yourself, in five years, what do I want to be? What I am right now is making me happy, then great. Continue doing what you’re doing. But I think our human nature is to, we fulfill the one, we have a goal. Achieve something, even small things during the day. So have a goal. What you want once you get, even if you’re going to have to be, Oh, my goal is to be a bestselling author or something. It doesn’t have to be that. Maybe your goal is to be a great parent, or your goal is to perform well at your workplace and complete your projects on time, and that’s your goal. And so I recommend, number one, to spend the most time during your day on the projects that are really important to you and will propel you forward. And there is plenty written and said about, write it down your to do list. And seriously, our brain loves lists because we know what’s going on, there’s no unexpected. So then you know how your day looks. If you’re in the morning, you do the to do list and then, okay, mark A, or 1, or whatever special symbol you want to sign that those are the tasks that you really need to make today. And then there’s B, what you can do tomorrow. And then C’s or 3’s during the week or a month. And then you put it on a calendar and you assign the time that you’re going to work on it. And if there are many tasks that you need to make, then do it every half an hour or an hour. And also remind yourself and put an alarm. We have so much technology these days that we can manage the time by reminding us, Oh, this is about time for me to finish 1000 instead of another task. And it can be something on your cell phone, your computer. But if you set yourself a schedule, let’s say, from this time to this time, I’m going to work on this project. From here to there, I write a book. From there to there, when I do yoga, I do my homework with my kids. And then you feel more in control of your time. And also you feel more relaxed since you’re managing your stress at the same time, because you know where things are, and you feel comfortable, and you feel in control.
Art Costello: Do you think that people do things out of a laziness?
Lolita Guarin: Yes, it is. I think what I hear a lot with my clients is they say first, Oh, I don’t have time for this. And then as the months pass by, even though they have the goal, they feel at the same time disappointed. There’s like, Oh, well, you know, I didn’t have that much time, and so now I didn’t, for example, I didn’t write that book. And now I feel disappointed in myself because I didn’t write the book. I couldn’t do it because it was the family, the kids, and then my daughter died, and then my grandma was sick, and it was just all of those things. And I think our brain likes to be comfortable and we don’t want to do something that is outside of our comfort zone. And outside of the comfort zone, this is how we grow. This is where we achieve things. I really like Mel Robbins, 5 Second Rule. I love that because if you have a little doubt and you think you need to do something, but you think you’re gonna talk yourself out of it, I love how you just say, just do it. And really for achieving anything, you just have to do it. So it really comes to that. And I think for those who think, Oh, there’s this, there’s just so many excuses. You need to ask yourself, where you are right now? And if you’re not gonna take any actions, you’ll be right now in five years still in the same place. Well, are you happy? Do you think it will be happy in five years? Well, then start doing something today.
Art Costello: I have a kind of a ritual when I get up in the morning, the first thing I do is make the bed. I mean, I’ve done that since I was in the Marine Corps, and it just starts your day out. I know when I look at my bed, I know I’ve started the day out successfully, that I’ve accomplished something and it just gets me in the mood to just keep doing things. And that’s one of the big things that I learned from being in the Marine Corps, that discipline of creating little successes really leads to greater successes along the way. And I think it’s really important that people do that. So start out with the little things, that yes, you successfully and get those done, get them out of the way. I mean, I’m never ashamed to have anybody come into my home because I know that everything is always, the bedroom, everything’s always picked up, I don’t leave things lying around. So it’s just those little successes. One of the things that you talked about that really intrigued me was, I think that when we have adversity in our life, that it does create opportunity in our lives, and it creates creativity in our life. When I was a little boy, I was abandoned and had to figure out life on my own. And doing so, I learned some great lessons. And looking back on my life, I think that it was exactly what was supposed to happen in my life. It was exactly the way that things were meant to be because it taught me time management skills, it taught me how to say NO, it taught me all the things that we’re talking about and prepared me for the successes of my life. And that’s how critical I think that what you teach is to success, and to being a creative and productive human being.“Creating little successes leads to greater successes along the way.” - Art Costello Click To Tweet
Lolita Guarin: I think I’m very impressed with your story. And I think what you did that many don’t do is that you assigned specific meaning to things. Someone can say, well, my [inaudible]. Now, I’m going to be the victim for the rest of my life. But you put the meaning that helps you to sustain yourself and grow, and become who you are. The meaning when you assign something as bad, it will be bad. If you assign something as a good, it will be good. So have a really salute to you, hands down that you had a good job.
Art Costello: Well, I think that it’s important for people to learn that it’s not what others think of you, it’s what you think of yourself. And I think that was one of the greatest lessons that I learned as a child. Because when I went to school, I was looked down upon much, probably the same feeling that maybe you had when you came from Lithuania, you felt less than, I don’t want to say perfect because I don’t believe anybody’s perfect, but less than who you really were, because people didn’t know and understand your accent, didn’t understand your culture that you came from. We have a tendency to do that in America to judge other people by our standards, and that’s not a good thing because anytime you judge on people, you’re pre-thinking who and what they are. I mean, I have met some of the most beautiful people in the world because I opened up my mouth and I started talking to them, and I learned about what they have gone through. I mean, the people only knew what you had gone through to get here and all of those things, it just changes the whole perspective and appreciation for what people do. And I think that that’s what we lack in this country. We don’t explore the deeper meanings of people. We take everything as surface because we see all these commercials on TV about, Oh, everybody’s supposed to be 110 pounds and have these voluptuous figures, and every guy is supposed to look like a [inaudible] and all that. We get all these stupid things that are in our heads, but they’re actually put there for a purpose. And that purpose is that advertisers, governments, religions, and churches, and all of these organizations who want to control people. The biggest thing that we have is everybody wants to control everybody. Your employer wants to control you, your parents want to control you. Why don’t we let people be who they are, accept them for who they are, and really relish in the fact that they’re these. We have so many God given skills and talents that are so unique to each and every one of us, it makes such a big difference, why can’t we embrace that? We don’t because we want to make these judgments.
Lolita Guarin: I always said something is not negative. Something that is different than using a negative, it’s just different. I think that as we realize, it’s just different. It doesn’t mean it’s wrong, we all are fine. Like going back to what you just said about, let’s say owners of the companies, they feel like they really need to control the employees, but that really comes out of fear because they are afraid that if the employee’s are not going to perform, then the company will go bankrupt. That means their livelihood will be jeopardized. It comes from fear, but if you will come from the love and understanding for the other human being, and if you have a company and you have employees and you say, I’m treating you the same equally and give praise to people who do a good job. You know, you have a family and you want to go on vacation during the spring break with your kid, go ahead and do that. I think as soon as you start treating others with respect that you want to be treated, then we all realize we all really want the same thing. You look through all around the world and no matter what culture is, and no matter what religion, everyone just wants to live and be happy. And so I think at the bottom, we just want to be all happy. But there’s so much fear, and also judging yourself, and others that I think we’ll learn from a small age and we just continue. But I think, I hope that we are already getting on a better route, because there are more and more people like you, Art, and others who are spreading the light and saying, Hey, you don’t have to be that way. We all want the same thing when they just accept each other, and different doesn’t mean it’s wrong. It’s just different.“Different doesn't mean it’s wrong, it's just different.” - Lolita Guarin Click To Tweet
Art Costello: Yeah. Being different is very beautiful. I mean, if we could imagine a world where we were all the same, we all had the same thoughts. Oh, golly, we’d really be at our throats. I mean, creativity would fall, everything falls. But you’re right about fear, fear is what stops us. And I have this philosophy that fear lies in, because everything we do is based on an expectation we have. And we look at our expectations only through two lenses, either faith or fear. And faith, not always being a religious sense, but faith being faith in yourself and then others. Faith in a religious sense I think is the ultimate faith it doesn’t have to necessarily be that for everybody. But the one thing about fear, it is the one thing that stops every human being from being who they were meant to be. Because of fear of what they are going to think of me? What is she going to think of me? What is my husband going to think of me? What is my wife gonna think of me? I mean, fear is what stops people from doing it, stops action in its tracks every single time. People that overcome fear in any level really need to take that level and raise it each time that they overcome a fear that they have and raise it to the next bar, try to overcome something else. Because sooner or later, I learned that at nine years old that I could say, no, to teachers. And that I could say, no, to people that were around me. It didn’t always make them happy, but I had to do it to protect myself sometimes. And that’s one of the things about expectations is that people often say to me, aren’t you being selfish when you expect all these different ways for yourself? No, it’s about self care. It’s about caring for yourself and caring for others.
So there’s a lot of beautiful parts to it. And there’s much to be gained by being nonjudgmental and being open with people. We have this social distancing right now because of this pandemic and all that, and one thing that I worry about with people is that we’re going to start holing up in our homes, and I’m glad to see people doing Zoom calls, and FaceTime and all that to stay connected because I’m a hugger person and I love to hug people, and I love to just really shower good feelings towards them, and I hope we don’t ever lose that. I have worried about it before from the sense that the computer world that we live in, kids sit in front of computers now and don’t go out and get involved with other children’s plays and all that stuff. And the more that we do that, the more distance we have from the human side of really having that connection, that eye to eye contact, and playing. Playing is such an important part of children growing up, playing with others. Children learn so many skills from playing. You’ll never learn those skills playing from a computer game, sitting in front of the tubes. So it’s always really interesting how that works. What are some of the skills that you think that you learned by managing your time? What do you think that they taught you?
Lolita Guarin: What really helped me to manage my time is understanding that I don’t have to do everything right now and I can not be in the state of, I’m gonna make this perfect. I have to realize that I’m doing the best I can in the moment, and I’ll try to do my best and that’s okay. I have to rest and I have to take care of myself because no matter what kind of goal I have, I won’t be able to perform it if I’m not rested, if I’m not taking care of myself, if I’m not feeding my body the right nutrients and not moving enough. And you have to also remember that if you’re not taking care of yourself, you won’t be able to take care of others. And I think that’s when I started coaching others, especially women, they would say: “I don’t have time for this. I have to take care of my family.” And I would say: “What do you think it was gonna take to take care of your family when you are all sick in the hospital? Because basically you put yourself there, you didn’t take care of yourself.” Like the oxygen mask in the plane, you have to do this. And that’s not just saving you, but you’re saving others. If there’s [inaudible], you should take care of yourself. And if you don’t take care of yourself, I mean, what’s out there left? I remember when I was growing up, being selfish was a very bad thing. Like if you want to have something only for yourself, that’s a very bad thing. So we just give, give, give, give, and we don’t get back because really you’re the one that knows what you need. So if you’re going to give yourself something that you need, you’ll always be empty because you’re going to take care of yourself. So it’s really necessary to understand through the day, no matter how busy you are, you need to see what’s really contributing to your life. It will lead you in five years, or 10, or even a year or a week, depending on your goal. But you have to be really centered on how it is helping you and others.
Art Costello: One of the things I love about your book, and you just brought it back into my attention when you said it was the nutritional section of your book about foods and stuff. I grew up around avocado farms and everything, and I did not know, I love that story in avocados and how the ink is named. If nothing else, folks, get the book just to read because it’s cute and I’m not going to spoil it for everybody by telling you what it is, but it brought a chuckle out of me, and I just really loved it. I do love that part of it that you brought in about nutrition, because nutrition is so important to our wellbeing. And it just showed, I thought, how you really care about our total wellbeing. I mean, this isn’t a book just about managing stress and everything, it’s about creating an atmosphere of wellbeing for you and your family, and everybody around you. And that’s a beautiful thing when you do that. I really loved it. So with that being said, we’re getting close to time, but I want a lot to come out. There are five essential tips that you use to manage our time and maximize our results. Do you want to quickly go over some of that with us? The five tips that you have for time management?
Lolita Guarin: [inaudible] over those time suckers. Create more time for yourself by saying, no, to projects that don’t really benefit you, to activities that don’t benefit you. Make sure you have a goal. You break it down into chunks and you take action every single day, no matter what you want it or not. Make yourself an appointment with yourself and just have to do it. Make an alarm so you know when to start and going to end. And you need to also take breaks because if you don’t take breaks, you will just break down.
Art Costello: Those are five great tips. I mean, that really is. Do you recommend that people have planners, daily planners?
Lolita Guarin: It really depends on the person, but I like planners because it just gives you the feeling that you are in control and you see what your day will look like. And there are just some people who love writing diaries. And there are plenty of writing diaries, but there are plenty of technology planners that kind of remind you, they should draw an email or a message say, Hey, it’s time for you to start doing this activity or stop doing that activity. And I will recommend as a stress management coach, you have to put yourself, if you would take a break every hour, just for one minute, just stop whatever you’re doing. Of course, if you’re driving or operating heavy machinery, don’t do that, don’t hurt yourself or others. But if you just stop and close your eyes and tell yourself, this is a moment for me, and I’m not going to think about anything, about problems. I’m just going to close my eyes and just breathe in and breathe out, and be mindful of my body, how I feel and just be there for one minute. And if someone feels, Oh, I’m going to fall asleep, don’t put the alarm on, it will ring in one minute, and you will open your eyes, and you go home for the rest of your day. And if someone thinks, Oh, I don’t have time for this. Really? One minute. I think anyone can find plenty of opportunities that you can STILL one minute here or there. So those little breaks need to be penciled, and there’s plenty of technology that can remind you to do that.
Art Costello: What do you think, what’s some of the best tips that people can take away from the book?
Lolita Guarin: Well, as I wrote in my book, “The time is flying by. The next thing you know, it’s time to die.” And you know, some people don’t like what I say, but that’s the reality of this. I mean, when you think about it, it felt to me as just Christmas. And we already like looking in those spring and summer. So my biggest time management tip is live, just live today because the time is flying by. You won’t get there if you won’t do anything. But we have such a limited time and that time will not come back. So use that time wisely to achieve your goals, to become a better person, to spend time with your family, towards your project or something that you want to achieve. Time is passing by so catch that before it’s gone.“The time is flying by, the next thing you know, it's time to die.” - Lolita Guarin Click To Tweet
Art Costello: That’s one of the biggest lessons that I learned in being in combat as a Marine in Vietnam, was that time is so precious. And I think I learned it when I first saw people dying, because young men who, one minute we’re looking forward to life, to live in, to going home to their parents and seeing their parents, and then one instant, it was taken away from them. And I think that was the biggest impact that I had in Vietnam, learning that this life is precious and we never know. And I think that people who have been in those kinds of harrowing experiences have a different perspective on life and how to live it. I know from talking to people who have lived in war torn countries that they learned early on that life is precious and that you got to live and you’ve got to make the best of every moment and become all that you can be. And then again, some people became the victim. They let it victimize them and they didn’t, and I’ve always been intrigued, what made me so different to have that perspective about looking at things and saying, that was a learning experience versus what happened to me. Because I think that there’s a lot of people in this world that let events happen to them and not let them be part of it and learn something from that. In your background, is there anything that you had that was traumatic, that they changed your perspective on it, they brought you to where you are? Or did you just naturally gravitate to this?
Lolita Guarin: I think the biggest shock for me was when I arrived to this country because I realized I was all by myself and all the comforts that I was getting when I was with my parents in Lithuania, such as, losing your friends in Lithuania, and US is eight hours difference in time. So when I’m awake and I want to talk with a friend, well, guess what? They’re sleeping, I have to make an appointment to talk with my friends and get in touch with them. Then there was missing the food, just simple staples or rye bread, for example. You have to go and find an Eastern European store to get the rye bread. Now I know all the little spots around town and they go get it, and they freeze it. When I eat that bread it’s like a dessert on a special day. Just walking on the street and enjoying the winter crisp, and the snow is falling, it’s just so clean and nobody walked through it, and then I just walked through that and just breathed fresh air. I live in Houston, we don’t have snow. So to me, it feels like it’s never Christmas, time is passing by because there’s no snow. So my brain is constantly in like a summer mode and I’m like, what? 20 years past? Actually, 20 years have already since I came here and they’re like, wow. And I think that was the biggest challenge for me. I didn’t expect that it would impact me that much because when I came here and my parents were back in Lithuania, I realized, wow, I really miss them. I know just the simple conversation, or just a little watching TV, after the news and just enjoying a cup of tea with them and having a cookie became really amazing things for me. And I remember I felt great, really grateful because there are plenty of stories of how somebody lived all their life, and then their parents die in the hospital and they say, gosh, I wish I had all that time with them. I wish I could call them more often, I visit them more often. And now, it’s too late. Time flew by, you didn’t put it in, they don’t have it now. And I think what I learned in my 20’s when I came here was, well, guess what? They still have all that time. So now I call my parents, I go and visit them every week and we are in a very close relationship. I’m really happy that I didn’t have to wait, and my parents are already gone and I’m saying, I wish I could have done it. I learned the appreciation of the little things that make me happy, and other people that I appreciate, and I love my friends and my family. It looks to me like I got that wisdom when I will be like, you know, at the end of my life, I got it in my 20’s so I’m feeling a winner because they still have so many years to go with appreciating those things.
Art Costello: Some people never get it. They just don’t go through life wishing, you know, my mom was very much like that. She always wished something had happened, and that had a big effect on me. While I was around her, she always wished, I wish I had done this, I wish I had done that instead of doing it. And I think that that’s part of what made me want to always be doing. I always got to be doing something. I mean, I’ve got to be learning something or creating something and all that. So it’s all great, boy, this has been a great, great 50 minutes with you. I mean, it’s just been really great. Can you tell our audience where they can get a hold of you, and how, and what you’ve got coming up, and all the good things that are coming for you?
Lolita Guarin: So my website is called, beamazingyou.com, simple. I’m also on Facebook, you’re just looking for Lolita Guarin. The same on LinkedIn, you can also contact me through LinkedIn and Instagram. I have, of course the book, Crush Stress While You Work. I also have online courses through the pandemic, a new course, Manage Stress During Lockdown, it just came out. Then teaching stress management tips, how to deal with that. And hopefully we are out of it by the time listeners listen to this interview. But I also have another online course that teaches to manage stress, specifically for busy professionals in the workplace. Because I think a lot of stress is caused in the workplace and many people work with other people. Workplace doesn’t have to be in the office, it could be in the field, but you still have coworkers, and the bosses, and the stresses that come with that. So the book is a short way on how to get tips and tricks, and that’s available on Amazon.
Art Costello: It has been great. I’ve just really appreciated the time with you. And I look forward to doing it again. I mean, there’s so much that we didn’t cover that we could cover.
Lolita Guarin: I’ll be happy to. Thank you so much, Art, for inviting me on your show.
Art Costello: Yeah, we’ll have you back, definitely. And everybody in the listening audience, I’m going to encourage you to go out and get Lolita’s book, it is really full of tips that you can really, really make a difference in your stress level and in your life, and it’s great. And again, you know where you can find me Art at Expectation Therapy. My email and my site is expectationtherapy.com. And Lolita, it’s been an honor and a pleasure having you on the show, I look forward to having you back. And Heather White, could you take us out of here?
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