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Exercising Values

Happy, Healthy, Kind, & Considerate Kids

Power of Less

education goals habits inspiration mental health parenting support time management working moms Mar 06, 2014

I recently began doing coaching for Precision Nutrition which means I left my job as Personal Training Program Manager for Heritage College and my job at Life Time Fitness coaching triathlon. I enjoyed both jobs and so it was a big decision to choose to focus on Precision Nutrition and of course, on Exercising Values and in so doing to choose to do less. When a really busy person slows down it's like the quiet center of a tornado. Part of me couldn't stop spinning. As I'm adjusting to this change, I find that it suits me. My sister says the only time she remembers me not being busy was when both of my arms were broken when I was seven. One turning point for me was a friend saying, "We can't do it all. Well, of course we can. But we can't do it all well." That distinction and her poster which read, "Stop the glorification of busy" were the tipping point that made me count the cost of a very scheduled life. I chose less.

Recently, I was watching a show about the daughters of some of the most active  spokes people for feminism as it was called in those days. These daughters decided to postpone careers believing that they could not actually have it all. They could have it in one sense but they couldn't experience it the same way as they would if their attention was less divided. Or so they said, as their astonished moms looked on in disbelief.  Thankfully, these days women tend to support each other more in what ever choice they make or situation they find themselves in. My son wrote a song with a lyric I like, "The only thing that matters, is does it matter to you." Listen to the song "What Matters" here.

So we all have the task of sorting out what really matters to us. Part of the power of less is that it opens you to more consistency. In the Exercising Values program, you only have to commit to fifteen minutes a day for five days a week with one day of longer activity and one day of rest on the weekend. We might be tempted to think that if we were going to ensure that our children learn good character, health and fitness that such important topics deserve more time. But I counter with, because they are so important, they deserve consistency. Offering children a time each day that they can count on where you will teach, encourage and play with them is a priceless gift. To pull this off requires doing a little less of something every day. Then as you sort through your various commitments, you may be inspired to cut back here and there just to free up time for yourself, your family or something of more value to you.

Every day we have to decide how we will live with the people who mean the most to us. Will we carve out some special time like what the Exercising Values program asks you to? Will we wander around busy, distracted, and tired? What are we willing to give up to make room for something new or something important in our lives? In the movie One True Thing, the character, played by Merle Streep who is dying of cancer, tells her daughter, played by Renee Zellwigger, that her husband thinks less is more but she thinks more is more. I truly loved the zest this character showed for draining the last drop of life, while she sat hairless and in a wheel chair. So like all things, there is a balance. We want to fill our lives with service, productivity, adventure and relationships. The art is filling it almost full, with margin for the unexpected friendship or opportunity. Comfortably full. At Precision Nutrition we recommend people eat until they are 80% full and stop. I'd say, let's fill our lives until they are 95% full and then be open to filling the remaining 5% with life's gifts and responsibilities. Let's be available for the next great opportunity. Just as we don't want to eat until we are over full, let's not live that way either.

Let me know what you think. Are you ready to replace busy with comfortably almost full?

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About the Author

Pamela Davenport


For decades I have helped countless parents and their children overcome significant obstacles. My unique accomplishments in the fields of child development, health, and fitness have given me an unparalleled perspective and expertise that I would love to share with you.

  • Award-Winning Author and Parenting Coach
  • Mother of six and grandmother of five
  • Studied Juvenile Justice at Stanford University
  • Master’s degree in Social Work
  • Experienced family counselor
  • Support group leader for struggling parents
  • Taught health at the university level
  • Program manager for the personal training programs at two colleges
  • Personal Trainer helping people lose 5lb-100lb+
  • Two-time Ironman Triathlete and competing member of team USA
  •  UMB Lifetime Sportswoman Award 2017