Moving from Overwhelm to Action by Reframing Your Thoughts

By Kelly Beischel PhD, RN, CNE Have you ever had a negative thought? Felt like having a pity party because you were in overwhelm? It happens to the best of us, you know. The good news? There’s relief ahead. Just a few weeks ago I was mired in negative thoughts. I was tired of our weather in Cincinnati. I missed the sun. I was scrambling to catch students up after so many cancelled classes all while teaching in overload. I was feeling downright overwhelmed and exhausted. In the midst of my pity party, I received an email from Brooke Castillo, author and coach. Brooke teaches in Self-Coaching 101 that our circumstances trigger our thoughts, thoughts cause feelings, feelings cause actions, and actions cause results. These results become evidence for our thoughts. The funny thing is I subscribe to this theory and have seen it play out in my own life innumerable times.  I even coach my students using this model! Yet, there I was having a pity party – complete with party hats, balloons and horns. In Brooke’s email she wrote, “There’s no such thing as a rough day or a hard day or a bad day.” My next thought? “Ok now you’ve gone over the edge with this Pollyanna […]

A Tribute to Teresa: Life Lessons


By Kelly Beischel Teachers are everywhere. One doesn’t need a doctoral degree to acquire wisdom nor dispense it. And for certain, some of the most important life lessons are taught outside of classrooms. Let me tell you about some important lessons I’ve learned  from an extraordinary person, a teacher about life. I’ve had a thing about getting older. If I’m being honest, some have called it an obsession. In fact, there are periods of my life when the fear of aging led my mind down dark alleys. Thankfully, I’m beginning to acknowledge that aging isn’t always a bad thing. I’m learning to embrace it. I tell you this because I’ve just come home from my sister-in-law, Teresa’s funeral. She was a person who lived vibrantly and taught me much. Over the last 20 years, we marveled about being married to Beischel men, told stories about our children, sought advice from one another and laughed about our ever-changing hairstyles – color and all. My heart is heavy. I’ve lost the mother of my beautiful nieces, the wife of my gentle brother-in-law, and the aunt who was ever-ready to laugh with my children. Teresa was just 53 years young. I can’t help but reflect on what I’ve learned from having known and […]

Getting the Most Out of Your Pomodoro Experience!

By Kelly Beischel Learning how to use the Pomodoro Technique has saved my life! Ok, that may be a bit melodramatic. But I rely heavily on this strategy to manage all my tasks! In my previous article, I gave an overview of the Pomodoro Technique. This technique could be used to complete all of the tasks on your to-do list. I’ve listed 10 Strategies here for getting the most out of your Pomodoro filled day: 1. Embrace your inner Ringmaster. Be filled with gratitude that you have such a full plate, that you have various opportunities for creative outlets. 2. Prioritize!! You juggle many balls in your teaching, scholarship and service roles as faculty – not to mention your roles outside of work. Take a moment to think of all the balls you’re juggling. Which balls are made of glass that if dropped would break? These are your priorities. 3. Buy a fun kitchen timer. There are many varieties. I have one in my home office as well as in my university office. 4. I often work in third spaces like bookstores, coffee shops, libraries, and my co-working space. To keep me on task, I use the 30/30 app on my iPhone. 5. DO NOT get up or switch tasks […]

Using the Pomodoro Technique

By Kelly Beischel I’m a Circus Ringmaster, trying to keep the 3 rings of teaching, scholarship and service going at the same time. We all know too well how this goes. Classes begin in a week. I’m scheduled to teach three courses and coordinate a practicum course. So, I have four courses to create – one of which is a total redo. That’s merely the teaching ring.  For the remaining rings – I’m scheduling my writing time over spring semester, reviewing manuscripts, and entering data into SPSS (ouch) while trying to catch up on various tasks that fall under service. I have too much to do with the little time left of Winter Break. You live this story, no? It’s okay, I’m not stressed about it. (Okay, maybe a little.) I’ve learned to get it all done using the Pomodoro Technique.  Have you ever used this technique? This is the gist of the Pomodoro Technique: 1. Write out all the activities you must accomplish on a sheet of paper. 2. Prioritize your activities on a different sheet of paper – called Priority To Do’s. 3. Set a kitchen timer for 25 minutes. 4. Work only on the task at the top of your priority list. 5. When the timer rings take […]

Top 10 Strategies for Finishing the Semester Strong

By Kelly Beischel Walk down any hall in any college and you know the semester is nearing the end. Everyone is stressed! I don’t know about you but I find fall semester especially stressful as the holidays are mixed right in there. In sports, we often allude to leaving it all on the finish line. But do we really want to leave it all on the fall semester finish line ? If we leave it all on the finish line then what will we have left over for our families or for preparing for the holidays? Instead, I propose we finish strong in mind, body, and spirit – with energy left over, to thrive. These ten strategies might help you do just that. In everything give thanks. Yes, that even means giving thanks for being so busy. A smart woman once said to me, “You are torn in so many directions because you have so many choices. Be grateful that you have choices.” Eat right. Eat foods that will nourish you and give you stamina to finish the semester strong. You know the old adage – “Garbage in. Garbage out.” Record lessons. If you’re like me and you wish you had more time to get a few last learning points across but are […]

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