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How Does She Do it All?
Ananda Kiamsha Madelyn Leeke is the kind of professional Marci Alboher had in mind when she wrote the book, One Person/Multiple Careers: A New Model for Work/Life Success. Ananda is a lawyer turned entrepreneur who uses her background in law and business in her role as President and CEO of Kiamsha.com, LLC. Through Kiamsha.com, LLC, Ananda shares her gifts as a novelist, blogger, artist, creativity coach, workshop facilitator, yoga teacher, Reiki Master practitioner, radio host, social media strategist, online content publisher and social networking site community manager.
I met Ananda as a member of one of her online communities and after watching her work, I wondered how in the world she manages to do it all. So I asked, and here’s what Ananda told me about how she finds balance and peace while managing a very long to-do list.
Tap Into a Higher Power
"I am work in progress. So I am still working on balancing my life. My spiritual and self-care practices set the tone for my day, week, month, and year. They consist of prayer, meditation, yoga, Reiki healing touch, chanting with my mala bead, saying affirmations, setting intentions, reading my daily devotional texts, drinking water, eating healthy, and moving my body. Having a regular practice centers me and creates a daily reminder of balance that I can come back to throughout my day."
Have a Theme
"I also make sure that I have quiet time in the morning, afternoon, and evening. Doing breathing exercises, giving myself Reiki, and using mindful walking help me to slow down my thoughts and the busy bee energy that I often carry inside of me. This year I decided that my theme was joie de vivre (joy of living in French). I call it JDV. To maintain my JDV state of mind, I am spending time learning and managing my feminine and masculine energies with support from the Buddhist principles of right view, right intention, right action, and right speech."
Find Help and Support
"I also use the support of a life coach, body wisdom coach, and two spiritual communities (a monthly meditation group and weekly service at All Souls Unitarian Church). Making sure I get enough sleep and taking breaks from email and online activities helps me too. Spending time with family and friends is a great recharger."
Take a Breather and Connect with Nature
"Having do no-thing days each month helps me surrender more and relax. Journaling and blogging about my experiences helps too. I take walks in nature and touch trees to really let go. Having acupuncture each month and using herbs and vitamins works wonders for me. I also listen to a lot of music and live without a regular television. I do watch television online, but it is limited. That helps me manage my time better because I am addicted to television!"
Stick to a Schedule
"I am a scheduler and organizer. My parents and the nuns that ran my all-girls Catholic high school gave me a first class education in organization. Being a lawyer with finance experience also keeps me on top of my game when it comes to setting aside time to do things each week."
Have Someone Hold You Accountable
"With all that said, I am still a procrastinator when it comes to writing my books. That’s why I have a book editor, copy editor, and a circle of readers who stay on me. I also get overwhelmed with my life and projects. When that happens, my agenda doesn’t get accomplished. It can be frustrating. Sometimes the little girl in me just wants to play and have fun. She doesn’t want to do any work. So my agenda doesn’t get accomplished. Other times my inner critic is yelling at me so loudly that I don’t think I can do what my agenda calls me to do. So I stop where I am and become stuck."
"Last year I started to identify, claim, embrace, accept, and integrate the different parts of myself into a personal council. My life coach and body wisdom coach helped me name the eight parts of myself. I call them my eight archetypes. Now I embrace them on a daily basis and can better understand myself and what they need when things happen. Having this understanding really helps me manage my feelings about being stuck and overwhelmed. It calms me down and allows me to breathe and accept where I am and what I feel."
Let Go of the Need to Control Outcomes
"Acceptance creates space for surrender. Surrender allows me to let go of my need to control. And letting go of my need to control humbles me so that I can exist in the present moment. Once I come into the present moment, I can see what I need to do. Then I can make a choice to do only those things that really need my attention. I can handle the other things later. That process offers me balance in the midst of an overwhelming storm."
Ananda’s current book,Love's Troubadours - Karma: Book One (iUniverse, Inc. - August 2007) is on sale now. Love’s Troubadours tells the story of Karma Francois, a thirtysomething Oakland-born BoHo B.A.P. (Bohemian Black American Princess) with Louisiana roots and urban debutante flair. Her forthcoming title is a poetic memoir, That Which Awakens Me. This book focuses on Ananda’s journey as a creative woman. It will be published in late spring. For more information, contact Ananda at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also readers can visit the following web sites to find out more about her monthly radio shows: BAP Living Radio - www.talkshoe.com/tc/18598 and Go Green Sangha Radio - www.talkshoe.com/tc/21325.
Thank you Ananda for sharing your words of wisdom!
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