Fitness,  Health,  Productivity

Stay Productive and Healthy During Chaos

As I scan the news and think about what is going on in the world, my neck becomes very tight and my shoulders start inching up towards my ears. I can hear my voice in my head, “lower your shoulders”, that I speak in my exercise classes constantly. Stress of world and local chaos can derail our best attempts at keeping a routine of sorts. If you are trying to keep up with chores, kids and work tasks, while endeavoring to stay healthy and fit, you may find yourself lost in a sea of uneasy and anxious thoughts. Before you know it, the day has disappeared and you haven’t reached your work or fitness goals.  How do we begin to bring our focus on our tasks at hand and personal care to help us stay productive and healthy during chaos?

Being able to compartmentalize life issues and world events can be a very helpful way to begin to attain your goals and keep all the juggling balls in the air. Living in the world we do, it would be easy to let outside influences bring you down. Well, store those surrounding circumstances in a room off to the side in your mind, and focus on your immediate goal. In this Forbes article, 5 Steps of Compartmentalization, to help you as you start this process. Several steps include…

  1. Compartmentalize it. Isolate the issue from all the other challenges you are dealing with.
  2. Apply extreme focus on each compartment, but only for a short period of time.

Utilizing these two steps alone will get you on your way to what you really want and need to do to keep yourself productive and healthy during times chaos around you.

Routines and Habits I have Employed Each Morning

Every morning I wake up and want to see the news to find out what’s going on around the world. Get the curiosity out of my system and then storing those thoughts away in a room, helps me free to read something reflective and meditative. Listening to some soft relaxing music on and having some positive reading material to  center my thoughts on helps me get into a great mental space. This can be positive quotes of someone you admire, to the Bible or other Inspirational or Spiritual Book you to embrace. Many times, I will write down a verse or quote and meditate on it and see how it brings me hope, life or a vision. The outside world begins to feel far away.

Exercise and Stretching

The next part of my morning routine continues to keep my mind in a positive and healthy space where my focus lands on mindfully moving my body. I concoct an exercise plan that I will present to my students depending on what day it is. For me, it might be actually easier because I am the teacher of the classes and I get to decide what we’re going to do. I get to choose a whole segment of different exercises and how to make them fun and easy enough for a full participation among my students. Once class is finished, we all end up being motivated and inspired to tackle the next part of the days events. Check out my article to help you do this during your workday.

Time to Get Some Work Done

Once I’ve taught my class and enjoy some fellowship with my students, now I actually get down to the business of work. I actually have lots of different work going on in my life. I am currently pivoting from a professional career of engineering into something I desperately love, my health and fitness business. So I start out my day spending time working on my business answering emails, dealing with customer service issues, and writing articles.  My mind will start to wander right about now, and I take a quick break, walk outside, feel the sun on my face, enjoy the breeze, think about my inspired quote or verse and put my worries back in the compartment again.

Back inside, I start back up with projects that I have and or finishing something I have started. Once I have finished work on my business, then I complete projects that I’m working on for someone else’s business. Coordinating with clients, designing parking lots and such, and preparing construction drawings takes my full concentration to keep from making errors. All in all this becomes a very full day, but I am not done yet.

Service to Others is a Must

Giving back to community or my family is something that I am always doing. I am sure you are too. My teenage daughter is in her first semester of college and taking almost a full load. She graduated high school 6 months early and struggles with school. As busy as I am, I carve out time to tutor her in Music and English. She does most all the work, while we discuss music theory and the construction of her paragraphs.

Service to charitable organizations have become a part of my life. Sharing my gifts with others gives me purpose and lifts my spirits when the world’s troubles plague my mind. Today, I have my weekly Rotary Meeting and it was announced that our club was able to send $12,500 directly to the Rotary clubs that are helping the Ukraine people. Adding my own contribution today gives me hope that lives will be tangibly helped and possibly spirits lifted in a very grievous time. Our amazing club is always reaching out to help locally and internationally and it makes me leave the meeting with a huge smile in my heart.

The Day is Still Young

In my life, my day is filled and overfilled with lots of participation in many things. I wouldn’t ask or expect others to do what I do, but, I definitely have lots of energy and enjoy engaging in a variety of activities.  Perhaps, I do this to keep young but also to keep my mind occupied and the gray matter lively. On a regular basis I sing for my church, participate in a few small discussion groups, visit with friends and family and try to relax. Each night I unwind with my spouse and finish my day reading something non-related to world events and focus on peaceful ideas.

5 Action Steps for You

To help you take action I have put together 5 simple steps that you can perform each day to help you stay productive and healthy during chaos in your life.

  1. Start your day with a quiet time, purchase a good journal to take notes as  read something that is inspiring to you. Grab a quote and focus on this when your surroundings get grim.
  2. Mindfully move your body somehow. Go for a walk, take a bike ride, swim, workout at the gym or online, Just moooove.
  3. Take all distracting thoughts and items (ie. phone, news, phone calls, emails, etc.) and turn off notifications to allow focus time. Lock your door if you are at home and set a timer to have focus work and productive time. 
  4. Serve others – Getting your mind of your troubles and the troubles of the world is easier to do when you are helping others selflessly. Join a service club or church and volunteer your time to make a difference to those in your community.
  5. Find a hobby or activity that you truly enjoy. Spending your time having fun will give you joy that you can share with others. You will meet people who are like minded and you can share joy together.

Change the World One Mind at a Time

We all want to change the world when we are just kids. Our dreams take us to places where we can actually do something to make the world a better place. In some circumstances, however, we can’t change what is going on around the world and it feels like chaos is everywhere. The one and only item we can change is our minds and how we think and organize our time and focus. Employing these 5 action steps, will help you stay productive and healthy during chaos.


I am personal trainer, corrective exercise specialist, online entrepreneur, civil engineer, author, Kathy Denise Hicks and would love to connect with you. If you are trying balance your world to incorporate effective exercise strategies and regain your health please check out my other blogs and teachings at Kathy Denise Hicks |.