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Getting back the ‘spark’

When Laguna resident, author, nurse and proprietor Connie Merritt became aware of the “busyness” epidemic that she saw destroying so many lives around her, she felt compelled to filter her talents as a caretaker, motivational speaker and writer into a self-help book.

“Too Busy for your Own Good,” released last month by McGraw-Hill, is a guide for managing tasks, finding balance in the midst of multiple demands and “getting that spark back” in our lives that so many of us have lost.

“In 30 years of working with more than a million people, I noticed that juggling too many tasks is destroying us,” Merritt said.

“We’re all too busy and it’s harming our health, relationships, finances and careers. We lose track of our priorities and our lives become cluttered and stressful.

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“The nurse-caregiver in me wanted to give healing relief and people to get that ‘spark’ back for life.”

Merritt will host a book signing at 7 p.m. during Thursday’s Artwalk at Laguna Beach Books, 1200 S. Coast Hwy., where she will also provide tips for managing busyness and stress.

The three-part guide contains questionnaires and self-tests, useful exercises and breaking research gathered from top leaders in medicine, business and body-mind studies.

Through quizzes, readers can determine how busy they are and what in their personality compels them to be that way, learn to cope with stress through various breathing and yoga exercises, and how to manage their time more efficiently.

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“Stress can be motivating, but too much wears us down [insidiously] like water on a stone,” Merritt said.

“By routinely practicing things like [desk and traffic] yoga, learning to reprioritize tasks and to work smarter, people can regain balance in their lives.”

She also advises people to make their homes a sanctuary, where they can relax and unwind. This, she said, is essential for finding peace and balance.

Merritt is the author of the 1997 dating survival manual, “Finding Love (Again!),” which she said she felt inspired to write after being widowed in her mid-20s.

She has also written numerous articles on relationships at work, home and dating, earning her the nickname, “The Lion Tamer” for her masterful teachings.

A Laguna resident since 1969, she is one of the founders of Laguna Beach Free Clinic, now the Community Clinic.



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