I openly admit it. I did this to myself. I had a great two-week break and was ready for a busy January. I wasn’t, however, aware of the back-to-back scheduling of my contract work – until three days ago. I looked at my calendar which informed me I would be in Nebraska on Saturday and Virginia on Monday – at which point I looked at my plane tickets and realized I was scheduled to arrive home at 2 pm today … and fly out to Virginia four hours earlier at 10 am. Oops. That doesn’t work without the time-turner Hermione Granger used in the third Harry Potter movie.

Saying we live in a fast-paced world is the understatement of the year. Most of us are over-scheduled and over-stimulated – and since modeled behaviors are internalized, we need not ask where our kids are picking up these behaviors. On my way to the airport this morning I was very surprised by several drivers, who were navigating the roads as one would expect in a fast-paced video game. Fast-forward to the airport, where, though lines were short, individuals were frantically rushing through security. Now as I sit waiting to board my plane, I have seen no less than three different families with kids reaching into parents’ purses and bags to play games on their parents’ devices. All individuals around me plugged in – including me.

The problem with stimulation is that it is…stimulating. It can stir up excitement, anxiety, drama, and oftentimes challenging behaviors. Though I already have a good New Year’s resolution, I’m taking this weekend’s flight debacle as a sign I need to add one more to my list: I need to ground myself – Slow down. Unplug. Sit. Listen. Watch. Be. I hope this goal will not only positively impact my own behaviors, but ripple out to others in the process.

PS – Thanks to the incredible Southwest Airlines agent who reworked my entire flight schedule with no stress, no fees and a very pleasant disposition. Her momma raised her right.