TRIGGER WARNING!

Your procrastination is self-sabotage. End of sentence. Period. Point blank.

Okay now let’s unpack.

For everyone who has their ammunition ready to fire and say “I get my best work done last minute!” I say, yeah because there are no other options but do get it done at that point. This conversation is not about how effective procrastination is in your life, it’s about improving your productivity and crushing your goals. You cannot procrastinate on important tasks and get important tasks done quickly — they are mutually exclusive.

Why is procrastination considered a from of self-sabotage? Well first of all, what do I mean by self-sabotage? According to Healthline, self-sabotaging presents itself in behaviors or thought patterns that stop you from doing what you want to do. Sometimes it is obvious and overt, but for the most part, self sabotage happens in the depths of our subconscious. Procrastination, according to Dr. Piers Steel, a professor of motivational psychology and author of “The Procrastination Equation: How to Stop Putting Things Off and Start Getting Stuff Done,” is putting stuff off against our better judgement. The word originates from the Latin word “procrastinare,” to leave until tomorrow, and the Greek word “akrasia,” to do against your better judgment.

The reason why people engage in procrastination, despite knowing it is probably not the best solution, and in fact not a solution at all, is because they’d rather put off the task than have to prolong the negative emotions associated with said task. In the words of Dr. Steel, “People engage in this irrational cycle of chronic procrastination because of an inability to manage negative moods around a task.” It makes so much sense if you think about it. I put off telling my parents about my first tattoo because I didn’t want to deal with their outrage. I procrastinated on getting my license renewed because I had to stand in line at the DMV and be miserable waiting on their subpar customer service. On the contrary, I was never a procrastinator in school because I enjoyed writing papers (much like I enjoy writing now) and I enjoyed learning and getting feedback. At the most basic level, procrastination is usually exercised when it’s something we do not want to do, despite the fact that doing that thing may benefit us in the end.

We don’t necessarily procrastinate because we are “scared of the outcome” or because it seems like a daunting task. We might procrastinate because the task seems incredible boring (like standing in line at the DMV), or intimidating, anxiety provoking, self-doubt inducing, requiring patience that you don’t have, and so on. The key is to recognize exactly why you want to procrastinate on a given task and then work to overcome the root cause of your procrastination. The DMV example is easy enough— I realize it is boring and sometimes frustrating to go, but if I don’t go with plenty of time, I could risk missing a paper and having to return another day after my license has expired! Other ones are not so simple; why is it that people procrastinate looking for a new job when they really want a new job? Is it the uncomfortableness of being “on the market,” is it self-doubt of your ability to land a new job, is it anxiety over the interviewing process? Whatever it is, this is something you need to uncover because you can job search, especially if you have a job already. Otherwise you run the risk of procrastinating indefinitely!

Strategies to get Moving

Understand your Limitations 

More times than not, our limitations are self imposed. For example, we tell ourselves, I want a new job but I first need to fix my resume, and buy new clothes in case there’s an interview, and practice my interviewing skills, and so on. What we are really doing is stalling. Procrastination allows us to not have to deal with whatever feelings come up when we think about doing something outside of our comfort zone. While the thought of knowing we are procrastinating might make us feel bad, it also feels safer because we don’t have to set outside our comfort zone if we keep finding ways to stall. Other times procrastination is used as an excuse to let yourself off the hook for a job half done. Like when you have a big presentation for work or school, and you wait until the last possible minute to prepare. If you bomb it you tell yourself it was because you waited till last minute but you totally could have crushed it if you tried. If you do well, you reinforce the behavior and do it again next time. Either way, you are limiting yourself from the potential of having prepared, practiced and built the confidence to know you will crush it (and then go out and crush it).

Make a Definitive Choice 

Indecision is the twin sister of procrastination. They like to skip the yellow brick road hand in hand. The only difference is that indecision might drive you crazy— having to think about this vs. that, this vs. that, over and over again. The best advice for making a decision is to separate your self-worth from the outcomes. For example, if you make the choice to ask your boss for a promotion and they say no, it is not really a reflection of your decision to ask, whether you asked or not, the answer would have still been no. Another example: you make a decision at work to go with consultants A vs. consultants B, C or D. Consultants A turn out to be terrible consultants and you have to now terminate their contract and hire consultants B. At this point, it doesn’t matter that you “didn’t make the right choice” because you had no way of knowing the future and either way, you have the opportunity to fix it. The fact is there is no such thing as the “right choice” and indecision will only delay you making a choice whether the outcomes are favorable or not; or stop you from doing anything at all.

Welcome Delayed Gratification

The fact that we live in a world that reinforces instant gratification is nothing new. It’s also counterproductive to personal growth and the realities of how to achieve real influence and success in the world. Jeff Bezo didn’t just become rich and successful. There’s not such thing. Using this same lust of instant gratification, we push back things that we want to do or should do because those things produce initial negative emotions and delayed gratifications. Clear example: the thought of working out makes me feel really icky. I don’t want to sweat, I don’t want to feel tired, I don’t want to get up and do it. But like clockwork, every time I work out I feel great afterwards! It’s the delayed gratification of putting your body to work and doing something good for yourself. The key here is to shift your mindset— think long term. In the long run, it is wiser to get going now so that later you want enjoy the gratification. Don’t think about the initial uneasy, instead think about the final reward.

The Bottom Line

First and foremost, you have to know why you are procrastinating despite knowing you want to do it or doing it will greatly benefit you. Once you understand the root of your procrastination, you can work on overcoming or reframing or by-passing the cause whereby minimizing its effect. We all like to think we know ourselves but we often don’t ask ourselves the hard questions, so how will we be able to overcome something like procrastination? The other piece is to take action. It is not enough to know why, you have to use that information to learn, grow and adapt. What use is it that I know I have fear of failure if I never do anything to deal with it? Use this new wisdom you’ve gain about yourself to make a meaningful change. And if you need help, don’t be shy, reach out to me.

Related:

Part 3: Confidence is a muscle, Learn How to Train It.

From the 3 part series: How to Overcome the Fear of Putting yourself out there.

Achieving your personal and professional goals takes courage and a belief that you can accomplish them— it’s called confidence. In this mini workshop, Life and Career Coach, Cat Marte, will give you 3 life changing tips to improving your confidence plus bonus 3 tips that will help you go from inaction and procrastination to manifestation.

Sign Up to Watch the Free Mini Confidence Bootcamp


Articles Cited: Why You Procrastinate (It Has Nothing to Do With Self-Control), How Self-Sabotage Holds You Back

I swear by self-reflection, especially the Buddhist philosophy that we separate from our thoughts. Our thoughts do not define us, they are not us, they are separate and independent of who we are as people. One way to achieve this awareness is through meditation— sitting still and metaphorically watching your thoughts pass you by. Soon you realize thoughts are fleeting, we aren’t married to our thoughts as much as we might have thought to be the case. It’s freeing. Unfortunately, like all things worth doing, meditation is hard. The good news is that I’ve found a good gateway drug to meditation through journaling. Especially prompt journaling. Prompt journaling adds a level of intentionality to each journal entry, allowing you to take a deeper dive into your thoughts, ideas, and self-limiting beliefs. You can then take those thoughts out of your mind and onto the paper. Like with meditation, once the words are on the paper, you can detach yourself from them. They are no longer yours, they now belong to the journal.

Example Prompt from my Journal

There’s no right or wrong way to journal. In the example you’ll see below, I am writing in a stream of consciousness format, half having a conversation with myself, half going off topic.

What does self-love look like?

For someone who was a people pleaser nearly all my life, I will resist the urge to say self-love is when I feel loved by others. That makes no sense anyways, but it’s the first thing that popped into my mind. It makes sense to want to feel loved by others having gone into a helping profession, but I think it has to do less with wanting to feel loved and more with wanting to make a lasting impact on someone’s life. It’s about the satisfaction in knowing I was able to be a good influence in someone’s life….Okay I’m rambling on and deflecting.

What does self-love look like? What does self-love look like to me? I think it looks like doing the things that I want to do and sticking to my guns despite negative feedback or discouraging feedback. Like when I was younger and my mom always wanted me to straighten my hair because only “straight hair was beautiful” and I said F-that, my hair is curly and I think that’s beautiful. At the time it was probably more of an F-you to my mom because like most teenagers, I thought she was annoying and controlling. At the same time though, that small act of defiance made me really proud of my hair because it was mine, it was how I came into this world and it was the hand I’d been dealt. It’s really more about accepting who you are and then growing to love yourself for being that way. Something else that just came to me was my teeth…random thought but I’ve always been so self-conscious about my teeth, they were either crooked when I was younger, now I have random gap that wasn’t there before. It’s always something. I used to not smile or laugh with my hand to my mouth because I was so bothered by it. Now I smile despite it. Now I smile and look in the mirror and stare at myself smiling just to get used to my new gap. Again I think it’s more about accepting myself and my “flaws” than it is about the stupid gap.

It’s not just the physical stuff, it’s everything about me. My personality flaws, my life choices, my failed relationships. I think self-love looks like loving myself even if I’m not prefect, even if I look in the mirror and see “flaws” or I look within and see “flaws.” It’s like I am marrying myself, “I promise to love me and take care of me, through the good times and the bad, till death strikes me down.”

Try it Yourself

Pick a prompt below and see how it goes. Ask yourself, how did it feel to release this prompt onto your journal? What did you learn about yourself?

I’d love to read some of your self-reflections! Contact me to share your prompts.

indfulness writing prompts:

  1. What does self-love look like?
  2. How do I value myself?
  3. When was the last time I carved some time out just for myself?
  4. If I could do anything in my life and money wasn’t an option, I would…
  5. The first thing I think when my head hits the pillow is…
  6. What if I cared for myself, as much as I cared for others?
  7. What is one area where I add value to the world?
  8. Describe a day in the life of your ideal self.
  9. If there was nothing holding me back, I would… 
  10. Describe someone inspirational – could be someone you know personally or someone you admire from afar. What about them makes them inspirational? Why them?

Coming Up:

Part 3: Confidence is a muscle, Learn How to Train It.

From the 3 part series: How to Overcome the Fear of Putting yourself out there.

Achieving your personal and professional goals takes courage and a belief that you can accomplish them— it’s called confidence. In this mini workshop, Life and Career Coach, Cat Marte, will give you 3 life changing tips to improving your confidence plus bonus 3 tips that will help you go from inaction and procrastination to manifestation.

Sign Up to Watch for the Free Mini Confidence Bootcamp

How to Overcome the Fear of Putting Yourself Out There.

For so many of us, the thought of putting yourself out there can be nauseating. How many things run through our minds before we do something in the realm beyond our comfort level? It’s daunting and it’s anxiety provoking, but it’s necessary. Putting ourselves out there is the only way we can grow. It’s the growing pains. It’s the uncomfortableness that allows us to open up minds, and stretch what we thought was possible.

I recently started a three part series touching on some of the cornerstones of overcoming this fear on my social media channels. The first part is about doing the inner work that is necessary to set yourself free of any emotional or psychological baggage you might be carrying around. Mine, it turns out, had to do with my emotional block and unwillingness to be vulnerable. It took me two years to come to this conclusion, but hey, there’s no time limit on self improvement, right? You can watch part’s of the series below. If you like what you see, watch part 2 under that. If you more, be sure to sign up for part 3, which I’ve turned into a mini workshop. I look forward to seeing you there!

Part 1: My Story

Part 2: Owning Your Story

Part two of the series touches on the importance of owning your story. What the heck does that mean? It means understanding that you are the author and narrator of your story. Perhaps you didn’t decided the beginning or the first few chapters, but at some point the unfinished book was passed over to you to write up the rest of the chapters. Watch part two to learn the power of the pen, and how owning your story can help you reframe the past and build a better future.

Sign Up for Part 3 Now

Part 3: Confidence is a Muscle, Learn How to Train It

Achieving your goals takes courage and a belief you can accomplish those goals— really it is a belief in yourself. In this mini workshop, I will be discussing 3 tips to help you build the conference you need to move your goals forward plus bonus tips to help you go from inaction and procrastination to manifestation. Be sure to sign up here. I look forward to seeing you there!

Click here to watch for Part 3 Now

After close to 3 years, I realized I was actually traumatized by my father’s death. I’m pretty sure I was going through some serious PTSD all of 2018 and 2019. 

I didn’t realize it at the moment, but looking back it seems really obvious. When he died in December 2017,  I didn’t know how to process my emotions,  I didn’t want to face the music; I didn’t want to lean into my own pain and vulnerabilities. I couldn’t even bring myself to cry. It was the result of years perfecting how to control my emotions, so much so, that when a real life tragedy happened in my life, I couldn’t express it. 

But it was not just that, I had a mental block that was not allowing me to be emotional. Part of my mind was telling me that he was gone forever and the other part was telling me it was all a dream and I’d wake up one day and he’d be there and it was all a cruel joke. I was going through the motions but really just waiting for him to show up one day and everything would be back to normal. And sometimes something would happen and I’d think it was so funny or so annoying and I’d almost pick up the phone to call him and tell him the funny thing that happened before the functioning side of my brain would say, he’s gone silly, you can’t call him. It was really hard to process internally because I was stuck in the denial phase, I just couldn’t reconcile all the events in my mind, it was too much. And I couldn’t tap into my emotions because I was emotionally blocked. 

This trauma creeped into my entire life becoming pervasive. I couldn’t get excited about anything at work; everything in my life seems so lackluster; nothing brought me happiness or joy. I don’t think I was depressed, I didn’t feel a deep sadness, I just felt a void, like a deep black hole that was never ending. Relationships failed, friendships fell apart. The patient, level-headed person that I considered myself to be had turned into a grumpy, impulsive, madwomen who couldn’t get a grip on anything. I was also hopelessly lost in my life, I didn’t know what my next move was, I had no direction. Everything felt like it was caving in on me and I don’t think anyone really notices. Now my friends will say “I noticed!,” sit down Sarah, you didn’t notice…I know no one really noticed, because I didn’t notice. I knew something was off inside of me but I couldn’t put my finger on it and I couldn’t quite figure out how to feel or why I was so distraught.

Then something really healing happened. I joined a writer’s group and we met once a week, and I started writing. At first I’d write about just nonsense or things that vaguely interested me. Then I started writing a short story about a daughter who loses her father. The short story became a little long so it turned into a long story, then a novelette. The story started in 2015 and ended in 2017 — 2 years of my father fighting cancer. In the writing group you were meant to write for an hour and then share your story with the group for feedback. So I found myself sharing my most vulnerable moments and thoughts with mostly complete strangers. It felt really healing, like a weight was being lifted off my shoulders. I remember writing down some parts of the story and getting really emotional, and then smiling at other parts of the story. It was the self reflection that I never gave myself. It was so powerful to free myself from the burden of carrying all that emotional baggage by myself. I remember my mom would say, you think I’m weak because I’m crying all the time but I’m letting out my emotions and acknowledging my pain and sharing the burden with my loved ones meanwhile you are keeping everything locked inside— that’s more dangerous. And of course she was absolutely right. 

I’m sharing this because I know someone out there can relate to my story and know they aren’t alone and know they will get through difficult times. I really believe human beings are extremely resilient and adaptable. To build up that resilience, it’s essential to do the inner work, whether that’s journaling, mediating, therapy. For people like me, it can be so uncomfortable to reflect on ourselves, but if we just ignore it we would be doing ourselves a disservice as we will be limiting yourself from our full potential.

When I say “your energy,” what comes to mind? At first I thought of it as some abstract, mystical thing that isn’t measurable, similar to the vibes, the auras. What I now realize is that this form of abstract energy is measurable through your physical, mental and emotional energy levels. Let’s consider this scenario; you walk into a room and take a look around to see a series of gloomy faces with hunched shoulders and lackluster eyes. You interpret those physical cues as “low energy.” In contrast, if you walk into a room where everyone is chatting and smiling, laughing, relaxed posture and lively eyes, you interpret those cues as high energy. The relationship is between your interpretation of the energy levels in a given situation and your own energy levels as they become effected by your observations.

The basic phenomena is that as social beings, our instincts are to mirror the energy levels of the things around us. That’s why dogs have been aggressively bred to have big eyes that mirror babies, because babies are generally happy beings, and dogs with their big eyes remind us of happy babies. That’s not a stretch, that’s a fact— according to an investigative article by The Atlantic, dogs have developed specific eye muscles that allow them to open their eyes and lower them in ways that their biological cousins, the wolves, cannot. The point is, like a happy dog, the “energy in the room” can affect our moods and our physical and emotional energy levels.

All this to say, it’s crucial to protect our energy and by extension our time. I don’t think it needs much explanation, but I will break it down into this simple equation— Energy Drain = Exhaustion = Time Wasted Trying to Recuperate. There are some simple and some not so simple things we can do to protect our energy, ranging from mindfulness to cutting energy draining people off.

5 Things You Can Do To Protect Your Energy

Beware of Energy Draining People

Let’s start off with what will likely be the hardest one. As I said earlier, to an extent, we mirror the people in our lives. Sometimes we are so used to the people around us, we don’t realize those very people are draining our energy. A good way to tell is by taking note of your mood and your overall energy level after you’ve left that person. Do you feel tired? Why? Is it because you did something laborious, like a sport or a physical activity, or is it because the person sucked all your energy out? A naturally introverted person might argue that they lose energy talking to anyone, irrespective of the energy they give off. The flaw in that thinking is that it’s only about physical energy, when in fact, a draining person might also shift your mood, or your mental equilibrium as well as your physical energy. If you find friends or relatives draining you in any of these ways, consider creating some healthy space between you and that person.

Counterattack Energy Draining Activities

Examples of activities that can drain your energy are tasks that are stressful, dull, time consuming, cumbersome to complete. Anything that is interpreted in our minds as a chore is something that can be an energy draining activity. Sometimes we can’t escape these (i.e our jobs, or studying for a test) but what we can do is recognize them as energy drainers and work to counterbalance the drain. For example, taking stretching breaks at work; mediating before a draining activity; rewarding ourself with a relaxing activity afterwards. Another way to reduce your energy drain from activities is to be efficient. The more time you spend on an energy draining activity, the more energy you drain.

Be Mindful of Mindless Activities

I’m looking at you social media. Platforms like Tiktok and Instagram are specifically designed to keep you scrolling. If you aren’t paying attention, you could scroll for hours at a time. It’s not the scrolling that is draining, its the mental chaos that comes with it. OMG Megan is pregnant, Oh man look at Tyler’s abs, he’s been working out, oh wow look at that car she’s driving, look at her engagement ring, look at, look at, look at. Often times we sit there and stare at other people’s fabricated lifestyles and compare them to our own, wondering why we aren’t as successful or as skinny or as this and that. It’s draining. The same can be said for TV and movies, video games, etc. Our consumption of “picture perfect” and manufactured realities distort our perception of real life causing us to self-doubt, self-loath and self-drain. A good rule of thumb is if it’s not enriching your mind and body, then it’s draining it.

Declutter Your Space

Our physical space is a reflection of our mental space. Sure there are some people who like to live in a sort of organized chaos, but there’s a big different between appearing unorganized and actually being unorganized. There are those who have everything thrown everywhere and can never find exactly what they are looking for. Their space is a cluttered mess, just like the cluttered mess in their minds. Take the time to declutter your space, and you will start to declutter your mind. What does this have to do with protecting your energy? Your mind is the energy drain. You can’t focus on anything, your mind is all over the place, you bounce ideas and lose focus all the time. That’s so draining. Take 5 minutes out of your day to de-clutter your space, little by little. Then take 5 more minutes to sit in that cleared space and do nothing. You will soon see your mind start to unburden itself from the weight of mental clutter.

Practice Self-Care

Low-self esteem is a silent killer. It’s a subconscious script that we replay over and over again in our minds, reinforcing that we ain’t worth shit. Damn, is that not energy draining? Who wants to do anything or go anywhere when they feel like they aren’t worth two pennies? One way to rewrite this negative script into a positive script is to practice self-care. Self-care reinforces self-love and self-appreciation, in turn boosting our own self-worth and confidence. The ironic part is that once we start to practice self-care, others start to notice. We start to get compliments. Outward positive reinforcement matches our inward positive reinforcement— uplifting our moods and our energy levels.

The Bottom Line

Notice how many different ways we can drain our energy throughout the day? It’s overwhelming, isn’t it? What I’ve found to be the most preserving is to live mindfully. Go throughout my day checking in on myself and noticing my energy levels. Was that virtual meeting super draining? Maybe I should take a 10 minute break and recharge. How long have I been scrolling on instagram? Okay let me put the phone down and do something else. Being cognizant of the things that suck your energy dry will help you start to notice when these things take a toll on you. The end game is to have energy for the things that you truly care about and want to put energy towards.

I stumbled upon Brendon Burchard on the Joe Rogan podcast and was impressed by what he had to say. Then somewhere towards the end or the middle, he said my book, High Performance Habits, is on my podcast channel for free as an audio book. It’s all of season 4. Uhm. Okay. So I found his podcast and went to season 4 and listened to him read his own book. This time I really liked what he had to say. Brendon is an executive coach whose worked with thousands of executives and other high level business people. His company has conducted large scale studies to identify the habits of successful people.

I found his book really interesting because he gives several real life examples and also provides practical exercises for the listener to try on their own time. If you go to his website, you can also find other tools and resources on the website (so he says in the book but I couldn’t find exactly where they were).

And for those not interested in picking up the book or listening to Brendon personally, I’ve summarized them below, also check out my video for a more in-depth explanation. You can also find two good articles on the book, one by entrepreneur and one by inc.com.

High Performance Habits according to Brendon;

  • Seek Clarity: Get into the habit of continuously evaluating your goals and what you are putting energy into. 
  • Generate Energy: avoid burnout by giving yourself breaks 
  • Raise necessity: Why is this important? 
  • Increase Productivity: Focus on the important things first and always. Be a big picture thinker and don’t get stuck in the details. Once you have the big idea, think ahead, what steps are necessary to make the big idea a reality? 
  • Develop Influence: help others reach their goals and guide them through it. Inspiring others to grow will in turn develop yourself as an influencer. 
  • Demonstrate Courage: Fear is a natural part of growth but pushing through it is where the growth happens. Also finding something or someone to fight for, makes it all the more important and will motivate you more to keep going. 

Related Books

Think and Grow Rich (Currently reading).

7 Habits of Highly

There was a time in my life where I felt like I had a clear direction and plan of action to get there. Then I hit all my goals and was kind of like…now what? I felt like I had no vision, no purpose in life. I was doing okay but my life felt stagnant and un-motivating. It was a really strange feeling that I bet plenty of people go through— essentially a quarter life crisis. It stunted my growth during a time where I thought the most exciting things would happen; I’d become a professional and start making bank; I’d meet the love of my life; I’d maybe have kids; I’d live some version of the white picket fence happily ever after. Literally not a single thing I just mentioned actually happened… and that’s okay. The problem was I wasn’t sure what I wanted or how to get there.

There are two dilemmas that can stunt your growth: having a vision for what your life should be but not knowing how to get there and/or setting goals with no clear reason why you wanted to accomplish them. I was suffering from the latter. I had vague goals, which weren’t goals as much as they were societal expectations, and I wasn’t super clear on whether I wanted to accomplish them or not. I guess that’s why I didn’t. I really had to dig deep and think about what it was that I really wanted, I had to seek clarity before I could seek action. As it turned out, once I found the clarity I was looking for, I was still stuck! This time though, it wasn’t because I was confused, it was because I was afraid. Fear, and particularly fear of failure, is one of the 3 things that can stunt your growth, along with imposter syndrome and a negative mindset.

Thing 1 : Imposter Syndrome

Thing 2: Negative Mindset

Thing 3: Fear of Failure

Thing 1: Imposter Syndrome

If you get to asking, it turns out many people experience imposter syndrome at some point in their lives. Maybe you’re a new mom and you have no idea what you’re doing or you were an amateur chef and you nailed your dream job at a prestigious restaurant. You feel that you don’t belong, that you are pretending to know but you really don’t know and that any minute now someone will discover that you actually do not know.

The thing is…no one knows.

People have no idea how to do something until they actually do it, and even then, things are always evolving and changing, creating new ways to do the same thing. Think about that. All the people that you consider experts in whatever you’re doing, once upon a time, maybe not even that long ago, also didn’t know what they were doing. They had to do it over and over and over again to do it well. And there’s always room for improvement. One way to shift your perspective is to consider the possibility that in fact, no one is an expert at anything. We are all just students, learning as we go, evolving as the situation evolves, mastering and re-mastering. Consider the fact that your mentors have mentors, and their mentors have mentors. There will always be someone who knows more or less than you do at any particular time but in reality we are all just learning as we go. There are other benefits to having a student’s mindset in life, such as the ability to image uncharted possibilities. If you are wise enough to embrace that you only know what you know and have much yet to learn, you will constantly improve because you will be open to the possibility of learning more. Whereas, if you are constantly worried about what you don’t know instead of what you might learn, you will be in a constant state of playing catch up.

Thing 2: Negative Mindset

Sometimes we are faced with a block in the road, and that block is ourselves. Our mind is the block. It started with our self-assessment. Our self-assessment of whether we can do something or not is about an 80% indicator of whether we will do that something or not. We either suffer from a negative mindset or a limiting one. If it’s negative, we exercise the mental script that tells us we cannot do something because of xyz. If it’s limiting, we exercise the mental script that tells us we can do X, maybe Y, but definitely not Z.

The thing is…you’ll never know.

A negative or limiting mindset acts as a defense mechanism to protect us from potential failure. If you stop in your tracks before you even start, you won’t have to deal with disappointment and failure. In some ways, a limiting mindset is worse because it gives you wiggle room to try just a little, but you’ll never reach your full potential because you tell yourself you can only go so far. Sometimes we unintentionally limit ourself because we cannot envision who we could be and only see who we are. You might wish to be the Executive Director of your company but never set out to accomplish that goal because you don’t think you’re cut out for it. Instead you work towards Associate Director. Fine. You get Associate Director and your coworker who has the equivalent experience and knowledge as you gets Executive Director. It could have been you.

The Thing is…we can’t see the future.

Telling yourself you can’t do something stops you from trying, just like visualization increases your chances that you will try and likely succeed. The obvious alternative to a negative mindset is a positive mindset, but I say start small— switch to a neutral mindset. This is one where you are neither pessimistic nor optimistic about the outcome, you just don’t know. You let go of expectations and just try and see where it gets you. The goal of this approach is to detach yourself from the negative, limiting voice in your head telling you it isn’t going to work out. You tell yourself, “I don’t know how this will go, but I will try and see.” Couple the neutral mindset with the 40 rule. Jesse Itzler seemingly brought this concept to the general public’s attention in his book “Living With A SEAL.” According to Itzler, the rule is that once your mind starts to throw in the towel and you feel like you can’t possible go on anymore, you are about 40% done. That extra 60% is the untapped potential that you didn’t realize was still in you. In one sentence—, combat a negative mindset by trying anyways; have no expectations; and when you feel like stoping, keep going.

Thing 3: Fear of Failure

As I’m writing this, I realized that these 3 things are compounding. Imposter Syndrome can lead to negative mindset or a limiting mindset (I don’t know what I’m doing, I can’t do this, I’m not good enough), which can lead to a fear of failure, which can ultimately lead to inaction. The good news is that in this version of the game, you can skip jail, pass go and collect $200. In other words, you don’t need to have imposter syndrome or a negative mindset to hold yourself back in life, all you need is an uncontrollable fear of failure. Fear of failure is all it took in my life to be completely immobile. I knew I could do it, I wanted to do it, but I didn’t do it. I didn’t even realize I was scared to do it until after I finally starting doing it! I called my friend Michael and told him I was becoming a life coach and he reminded me of a conversation we had a year ago where I mentioned I wanted to become a life coach. WOW, an entire year flew by and I didn’t realize I was holding myself back because I was just scared.

The thing is…failure is temporary.

The book “Think and Grow Rich” introduced to the concept that failures only come permanent once we give up. It was as if a lightbulb had turned on for me in my darkest hour. As long as I continued to try, I could never fail. It reminds me of Percy Fawcett and the exploration of Z. Will we ever know if he found Z? Probably not, but he was unwavering in his pursuit of the lost civilization and even though he knew he might fail, I suspect he wouldn’t have lived his life any other way. His legacy carries Z into existence and into our wildest dreams. Then there was Thomas Edison who is heavily cited in the original Think and Grow Rich. The author, Napoleon Hill, did not want his reader to forget the 1,000 times Edison temporarily failed, until he didn’t. When he succeeded it upstaged all his failures, no doubt about it. The key here is to reset your thought patterns surrounding failure. Just like with imposter syndrome, you have to train yourself to think of failure in a new light. Repetition creates new patterns. It’s up to you to constantly tell yourself you cannot fail, you can only learn what doesn’t work for next time.

The Bottom Line

The moral of the story — we often have a reoccurring script in our minds telling us what we can and cannot do, or what we shouldn’t do to avoid failure. Our minds are the most interesting and powerful tools in goal reaching, so much so, that those who learn how to train it can accomplish amazing things. Like most amazing things though, training our minds take an incredible amount of work, time and commitment. In return we grow confidence, self-assurance and self-worth and most importantly, a new perspective on life. I’d say it’s worth it, wouldn’t you?

On payday I did what I usually do and filled out my budget spreadsheet, making calculations and adjustments and more calculations and more adjustments till it dawned on me that I am borderline obsessed with my budget (remember what I said about being obsessed with your goals?). I check it at least once a week and adjust as needed. I don’t know what life would be like if I didn’t have a budget…no wait, that’s a lie, life would be a mess, that’s what it would be. My budget is the holy grail of money in my life. With a tremendous amount of mental shifting and pain taking effort, I’ve finally instilled in myself the mindset that if there ain’t room in the budget for it, it ain’t happening— full stop. The fact is that budgeting is not something you do, it’s something you subscribe to. It’s a mindset. And if you don’t have a budgeting mindset then it won’t matter how many different budgeting plans you try, it will never help you stay in budget. 

Why budget? 

It’s tempting to think of a budget as something restricting when in all actuality it’s freeing in a lot of ways. When you budget, you don’t have to worry about over extending yourself and creating future debt for future you. You also inevitably cut out all the things that were nice but not necessary, leaving more room for all the things that are great and by their greatness make them necessary. For example, I used to go get manicures and pedicures all the time, and that was nice. Was it amazing? Not really. Did it fill my heart with joy? Eh. This might not be the same for everyone; someone else might treat getting their nails done as their ultimate treat/self care/self love routine, and that’s great! The key is to find what makes YOU happy and make room for that in the budget by taking out all the things that are just eh. 

Who budgets? 

Let me tell you a secret, not so secret: anyone with a significant amount of wealth, either in liquid assets or fixed has a budget. Sometimes it’s called an accountant or a financial advisor, but all it is is a budget! Another way to think about it is money management. How are you managing your hard earned funds so that you get the most benefit out of every dollar? The bottom line is, if you care about building wealth then you’ll budget your money, that’s who budgets…

My 4 Budgeting Rules 

  1. Adjust all of your expenses to occur during a one week period. This is the foundation of the budgeting plan I’ve laid out in rules 2, 3, and 4. It works is by giving you time to earn and plan for every dollar you make in a given month, and then pay all your expenses at once. This works really well for me because I get paid monthly (I know, at first I though WHAT THE HECK??). When I get paid at the end of the month, which happened to be Wednesday this month, I sit down and fill in my budget, then I go ahead and pay all my bills which are all conveniently due between the 1st and the 7th of the month. Once everything is paid and done with, I don’t have to think about a single expense for the rest of the month. For those who get paid weekly or bi-weekly, the same end result can be accomplished by setting all your expenses to be due at a particular time (say the end of the month) and then setting money aside each week or whenever you get paid to cover those expenses. This method avoids having to use one paycheck to over a big expense like rent or car insurance. Another way to think about it, is that you are creating weekly/bi-weekly sinking funds for your monthly bills and expenses. In 2, 3, and 4 below I’ll show you how it works.
  1. Plan for fixed expenses. You know every first of the month the rent comes knocking at your door, so why aren’t you prepared? You can reduce your money related stress by simply planing ahead. If you get paid weekly, you can take out 1/4 or 1/5 (depending how long the month is) of the rent money every paycheck. Say your rent is $800/month and you make $600 a week, you can set aside $200 a week to pay your rent, by the time the first rolls around you’ve got all you need and don’t need to scramble to come up with rent money or spend an entire paycheck and then some on rent. Same applies to their fixed expenses; if you know you pay $65 a month for your cell phone bill, you can put aside $15 dollars a paycheck (I promise you won’t even notice) and again by the time you come around to pay your cell phone bill, you’ll have all the money needed. Let’s use my income and expenses as an example.

I take home about $750/week and pay $1,200 in rent, $65 for my cellphone bill, $80 for internet, and $104 for car insurance monthly. In order to accumulate the payments for my fixed expenses throughout the month, I’d have to save 1/4 of all my fix expenses each week. That comes out to $362.25 a week for fixed expenses, but we aren’t done yet.

$300 Rent
$16.25 Cellphone 
$20 internet 
$26 insurance 
Total $362.25
Remainder $387.75
  1. Pay yourself first-ish. Some people say you should always pay yourself first, but I’m more like “I before E except after C” kinda girl. In other words, I like the idea of paying myself first but only after I’ve secured my basic needs. Without meeting your basic needs how can you accomplish any money goals when you’re only just surviving? So I like to make sure my rent money is situated, for example, before I get carried away paying myself first. When it comes time to figure out how much I should be paying myself, I decided on a percentage. At the moment, I am paying myself 5% of my paycheck to myself.This may seem small to some, but I rather err on the side of realistic and accomplishable. There have been many a time where I’ve tried to really stretch my goals, only to disappoint myself. I’ve basically learned the hard way that it’s better to start small and work your way up as oppose to starting too high and falling flat on your face. Let’s continue with my budget as an example, if I put side 5% of $750, I get $37.50, with my fix expenses, that brings my remaining balance down to 350.25 per week.

  1. Plan for Variable Expenses. Plan for variable expenses last because they are often more flexible and can be adjusted as needed. For instance, credit cards are variable expenses— sometimes you pay well over the minimum, sometimes you pay the minimum and sometimes you don’t owe anything at all. Because you won’t know with certainty how much you will owe in variable expenses, it’s good to set aside a percentage of your income to cover the amount that is equal to or greater than your minimum due. For example, I have 5 cards, the minimum combined of all 5 is $130 per month, so depending on what else I have going on that week, I may set aside $32.50 (1/4 of $130) or I may set aside a little more because I know I have nothing going on that week. This brings our remaining balance down to $317.75.

Depending on your family size, $317.75 may seem like not enough or more than enough. As a single person with no children or other dependents other than my dog, $317.75 per week is more than enough to spend on groceries, gas, entertainment, etc. The best part is that I know I’m putting money aside for upcoming expenses and do not need to stress out or over extend myself when it’s time to pay up.

The Bottom Line 

I’m not a financial adviser nor do I claim to know anything beyond the basics. With that said, I’ve been budgeting for a good 10 years now and I’ve learned a thing or two about what works for me and what doesn’t. I’ve basically taken the advice of the Dave Ramseys of the world to make my own plan and my own financial path. Hopefully this plan can serve as a guide or a starting point for others looking to get serious about their budgets. If you’re ready and excited to have the best budget game you’ve ever had, you can download my free simple budgeting guide to help you get started. 

2 Life-Changing Habits to Live more Intentionally

How to really create change in your life.

close up of beer bottles on wood
Photo by Bruno Scramgnon on Pexels.com

What is life??

Does anyone else ever worry that they are just strolling through life without a clear plan or goal for the future? I know there are a lot of “I’m just taking it day by day” types out there, but I just get the feeling some folks might be ignoring that life has a way of just passing you by without you even realizing it. At the same time, living day by day doesn’t mean living in oblivion does it? One can choose to live day by day and still develop meaning and purpose in their lives.

Seek Clarity

A life with meaning and purpose is a life worth living. It’s your WHY. So many people go through life without these two things, constantly searching for the next big thing that will make them feel seen, heard, and grounded in life. Your version of WHY can be many different things, or just one thing. I know my mother’s WHY are her children and her family. My WHY is the love and appreciation I feel for my family, my community, the planet, the people on this planet, the other living things on the planet. Once you gain clarity around your WHY, you will start developing a life with meaning and purpose that is centered around your WHY. Here are some concrete habits you can develop to live your WHY.

Practical Exercise- Start a Gratitude List

Gratitude is the feeling you get when something brings you happiness. You feel gratitude because you are thankful for whatever happened to bring you this happiness. Keeping a gratitude list is a visual representation of all the things you are thankful for. After a while, you will start to see patterns. I am always thankful for the love and support of my family— could they be a part of my WHY? I am always thankful for my dog Lucy— is the love of animals part of my WHY? In this way, we can start to see clearly the things that are important to us and the things we should be focusing more of our time and energy into. If you want to go the extra mile, you can start a gratitude journal. This will help you capture in greater detail why certain things give you gratitude and in what circumstances. Similar to a gratitude journal, you can start a habit tracker. This is for those who know already what brings joy and satisfaction to their lives and what to make sure they are incorporating those things everyday.

Make Definite Decisions

This is hot off the press in my life. I just came across this idea of making definite decisions as I was listening to my audio book by Napoleon Hill, Think and Grow Rich. His main argument is that those who are indecisive (i.e changing their minds frequently) are less likely to get anything done in the end, in which case, indecisiveness and procrastination are one and the same. Hill gives several examples of successful people who made a definitive decision and stuck to it, only to reap the benefits of their persistence. This is something I personally struggle with because I seem to overthink things to the point that I can’t tell which is the better option. One way to get over this is to realize neither might be better than the other and just pick a course and stick to it. Otherwise, inaction will stunt your growth and leave you stuck in place.

Practical Exercise- Start a Hobby and stick to it

Often times hobbies are things we like to do…often times. Sometimes we pick hobbies that we know will challenge us, or make us grow in ways we deem necessary. Which ever the case, I’ve found that sticking to your hobbies is closely related to making definite decisions. It’s a small thing, in the grand scheme of things, but an area where you can practice the art of making a definite decision. Sticking to a hobby that you like and enjoy is easy and can have the added benefit of making it to your gratitude list, but what’s even better is sticking to a hobby you realized you don’t enjoy as much or a hobby that makes you uncomfortable. For example, I signed up to play softball on a social league a few summers ago and initially I thought it would be great! When the season was about to start, all of my anxiety and suppressed feelings of athletic inferiority came rushing back. But I stuck to it, and I stuck to it (mostly because I had a friend doing it with me, if I’m being honest!), and once it was over, I was really proud of myself for accomplishing something despite my discomfort. In the end, I became more confident in my ability to deal with adversity (I still can’t play softball, but alas!) and I felt great about following through on something I’d committed to doing.

The Bottom Line

Self-care and self-improvement are essential to showing up for yourself. When you show up for yourself, you free up the space that uncertainty, ill-feelings and no direction took in your life, allowing you more room to show up in other ways. That is one of the reasons why personal development and professional development are related but different. Aligning your everyday life with your WHY, building consistency, confidences, and resilience in your personal life are all things that will make you a better leader, expert, and professional, but even more important, they will help you live with intentionality.

Let’s be real, I was broke till not too long ago. But no more. I’ve been learning the ways of the rich and I’m here to share these golden secrets with you. It’s actually not a secret at all —the rich love to talk openly about how they got to where they are. You know what it is? It’s hard. That’s the real barrier to entry. The rich can feel comfortable sharing all their secrets because most won’t listen and those who do won’t follow through. It’s why the rich get richer and the rest of us resent them.

How Not to Get Rich

Sometimes it’s not about what you do or don’t do, but how you think. I first learned this lesson in Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Poor Dad. Most notably, he said his rich dad thought he was rich before actually being objectively rich. He didn’t say “I will be rich” he said, “I am rich.” Right now I’m reading Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich and it’s the same deal— those who believed without a plan B that they will accomplish something, inevitability accomplish that something. If you don’t have the rich person’s mentality, you lack vision and therefore cannot grow rich.

Most of us cannot conceptualize this mentality because we see things at face value. How am I rich now if my bank account is empty? To us, being rich is an objective, observable and measurable thing to be. You are rich if you have X amount of money and assets, full stop. The secret here is that being rich is NOT a status, it’s a mentality. In Think and Grow Rich, Hill describes it as desire plus faith. If you desire something deeply AND you have faith you will get it, it will come. Of course not magically out of thin air, but it will come eventually because with desire and faith, you will keep working and working at it until it comes true. If you don’t desire with relentless faith, you lack commitment and therefore cannot grow rich.

What I’ve come to accept despite my reluctance is that commitment is not enough. You could be fully committed to accomplishing your goals and end up getting knocked down so many times that you eventually give up. Say your an actor whose gone to 300 auditions and never had a call back, would you go to the 301st audition or would you finally call it quits? If you’d call it quits then you do not have a rich person’s mentality. Rich people are winners and winners don’t quit. According to Hill, Thomas Edison failed at inventing the light bulb over 1,000 times before he finally get it to work. If you quit, you lack perseverance and therefore cannot grow rich.

Rich Habits 101

People don’t grow riches, riches are inside all of us. Maybe your parents or your community didn’t teach you how to foster a rich person’s mindset but it’s never too late. It all starts with your mindset. You can cultivate this mindset by doing as the rich do.

  1. Hone in on your problem solving skills
  2. Change your spending habits
  3. Keep learning and Think Smart
  4. Obsess over the goal
  5. Be flexible

Hone in on your problem solving skills.

Poor dad thinks, well this was the hand that I was dealt, can’t do much about it, while rich dad thinks, I am rich, I just need to get the money to show it. Poor dad thinks, can I do this? Rich dad thinks, how can I do this? Problems are only problems because we don’t know the solutions yet. According to Kiyosaki, the rich do not disengage when there are obstacles, in fact, that’s when they lean in. That’s why it took Edison over 1,000 tries to figure out the lightbulb. Smithsonian Magazine reports a quote of Edison saying “I have not failed 10,000 times—I’ve successfully found 10,000 ways that will not work.” It’s the kind of mindset that fuels perseverance and that never give up attitude that allows failures to turn into lessons and lessons to turn into riches.

Change your Spending Habits.

Here’s a practical one. It’s not all in your head, you do also have to make literal changes to grow rich. I dive deeper into this topic on my post, Your Broke because You Act Rich, Except Rich people don’t act like that. One common mistake people make is living at capacity, or in other words, spending every dollar you make. When you live at capacity, you don’t have room to save and then what happens when you need money for an unexpected expense? You go into debt, that’s what happens! Even if tomorrow you start making loads more money, if you aren’t careful, you will experience lifestyle creep, where your spending habits re-adjust to match your income and your back at capacity. Changing your spending habits so that you live under your income capacity is a great way to secure funds for savings and cut out unnecessary (and detrimental) spending.

Keep Learning and Think Smart.

Attaining knowledge is one of the first steps to attaining success and wealth. Of course, it’s not just about attaining knowledge, it’s about how you use that knowledge. As Hill said in his best seller, professors hold a great amount of knowledge but they get paid very little. Someone who doesn’t hold half the knowledge of a professor but thinks smart has the potential to make triple that of someone who knows many things but not how to use them. The trick is to know what to do with what you know and to know when you should enlist in someone who knows more. For example, I know from experience if I have a salaried job I can easily do my own taxes because it is not very complicated. On the other hand, if I am self-employed, I should hire a professional that can help me get more bang for my buck and masterfully work through a more complicated process. In this way, thinking smart is simply knowing how to use what you know and what others know to your advantage.

Obsess over the goal

No one accomplishes a really hard goal that they are mildly interested in. First of all, if it’s extremely difficult or seems impossible (like building generational wealth) only someone that is unapologetically obsessed with accomplishing it will get it done. That’s why Bill Gates and Paul Allen spent day and night working on a software for a micro-computer that was more sci-fi than reality at the time. Gates and Allen were not only obsessed with the goal, they’re entire futures were resting on this goal. That’s the type of energy and weight needed for someone who wants to see their dreams come true. Let’s be clear here, it’s not just Harvard dropouts that make their dreams come true; Eminem started off with major disadvantages as a poor, white kid with nothing but a dream, only to become one of the most widely recognized and acclaimed lyricists in his genre. His story of rags to riches, like so many others, speaks to the tunnel vision and ‘can’t give up’ attitude that can bring you success and prosperity.

Be Flexible

Don’t be flexible with your goals, be flexible with the means. I once interviewed the CEO of a company I worked for and she said something I’ll never forget. She said, I am where I am today because I always said yes first and figured out how to do it later. She said first they asked her to open a branch office in another town she’d never lived in, so she said yes and then she learned how to open a branch office; then they asked her to manage the team at the branch office so she said yes and then she learned how to manage the team; then they asked her to be the director, she said yes, then they asked her to be the CEO and she said yes. Along the way she was asked to do so many other tasks she’d never down before but she said yes anyhow. The point is not to go around saying yes to irrelevant things, but to be flexible and take risks, learning as you go.

The Bottom Line

I hope everyone gets a few takeaways from this post, but most importantly, if you want something enough and you are willing to work hard for it, push through the lows and keep moving, you will get there. As humans we all have doubts, but our courage has to be stronger than our doubts. Most importantly, we have to believe more than anything that we will get there.

My friends and I unofficially started a little book club and this was the first book. We all braced ourselves for a tear jerker and potentially the saddest think we’ve ever read (based on the reviews). I didn’t think it was all that sad, frankly. Maybe because I felt it was an unfinished story or maybe it was the philosophical tone of the whole thing, I don’t know.

From my perspective, Paul was objectively looking at his own mortality as if he were observing the life of someone else. It didn’t necessarily feel impersonal, but it was very “as a matter of fact.” This isn’t a criticism though, I actually enjoyed the book — as much as you can enjoy a book about death and dying. Actually I’m not convinced it was about death in the first place. It was as much a story about life and virtue, meaning and happiness, as it was about death and dying. What I really appreciated were Paul’s revelations in the face of death. What he chose to do after he found out his time was imminently coming to an end was really telling and quite inspiring!


Related Books

Guess what? I wrote my own book on death and dying. It’s loosely based on my father’s death and the part of me who died with him. Coming oh so soon!

Unsuccessful people bring it upon themselves.


I was having a conversation with a friend the other day who said that we all have equal opportunity to be successful and that those who aren’t successful are not working hard enough or just don’t want it bad enough. Of course I believe everyone has the right to their own opinion but I’d just like to point out that there is a plethora of statistical evidence that proves without a doubt that we all do not have equal opportunity to be successful…

At the same time, “success” is a abstract concept and what it means to achieve it varies from person to person. So for the purposes of this conversation, I’d say a “successful” person is someone who has their basic needs met (food, home, income security, and strong social connections) and who is looking to build upon this foundation usually by climbing the social influence ladder or the financial ladder. Without delving deep into a black hole of civil inequalities, I’d argue that you must have these basic needs met before you can climb any ladder, otherwise you aren’t working towards striving in life, you are only just surviving.

Here’s the thing…

There are many people out there who do have all their basic needs met and the potential to be successful, but aren’t. The people that I’m referring to are the ones that have all the tools but they haven’t set themselves up for success. In short, they haven’t focused their time and resources into developing and maintaining habits that lead to positive outcomes.

If you are one of those people…

Fear not. If you think of life in it’s simplest form, it is just a series of actions. Actions done over and over again become automatic, or in other words, they become habits. Changing your habits can change your life. Someone who quits smoking can clear their lungs in a few years, changing their life course. If they take it a step further they can invest the money they used to spend on cigarettes and move the needle even further.

Start with visualization. Visualization is just a fancy way of saying you believe in yourself (as they say, seeing is believing!). I wrote an entire post on visualization and what it means, but I’m not sure I made it clear enough that visualization on its own is not enough— hence why it’s only one step. The trouble is that it’s extremely difficult to change behavior, will power alone just won’t do it, you need to develop habits that will move the needle.

10 Things You can do RIGHT NOW to get moving.

  1. Gain Clarity – This is something I learned from performance coach, Brandon Burchard’s book High Performance Habits (Book review coming oh so soon!). To Brandon’s point, knowing what you want out of life is essential to being a high performer. If there is no clarity, the vision is blurred, and if the vision is blurred, so is the finish line.
  2. Call a friend – Sometimes we need a little help, and that’s what friends are for right? Picking up the phone and being able to have an honest conversation with your best friend or your sister or your dad, mom, brother, uncle, neighbor, etc, can be a great way to focus your thoughts and also gain some perspective (ergo why it’s so important to have the right people in your life!).
  3. Make a plan – If you’ve been here before, you know I love a good plan! They say that creating lists and plans are just tricks to make yourself feel productive, but there’s no better feeling than checking something off a list as done. First things first, you have to create the plan.
  4. Set an alarm – I’m the type of person who will not remember where I put my phone down two minutes ago. It’s impossible for me to remember deadlines and appointments, so I have several alarms, on several devices to keep me on track! Set an alarm now to wake up early tomorrow and get something done!
  5. De-clutter – Clear space, clear mind. I know some people say they are naturally “messy,” but that is just not conducive to productivity and healthy habits. Giving yourself an extra ten minutes a day to tidy up can make a world of difference and potentially help you de-clutter your mind as well.
  6. Meditate – Another way to declutter your mind and also calm anxiety and stress is to mediate. Set your thoughts free, as they say! (Has anyone ever actually said that about meditation?)
  7. Exercise – Get your body MOVING! Physical health is a pillar of achieving excellence. You don’t have to be an olympic swimmer or a competitive bodybuilder, but you should get that lazy behind off the couch and move!
  8. Find a Mentor – Anyone who is serious about accomplishing their goals will invest in a mentor. Whether that’s a monetary investment in a life coach or spending more time with the right people, we could all use some encouragement and support in our lives.
  9. Stay Accountable – So you made a plan, now what? A good way to keep yourself accountable is to monitor your progress. I, for example, keep a daily record of the habits I want to incorporate into my everyday life. Things on my list include walking, writing, reading, meditating, and exercising. Every day I check off whether I’ve done one or more of my habits so there is no way of denying that I clearly haven’t worked out in two weeks (or a month)!
  10. Count your #Blessing – Sometimes we are so down in the weeds with our problems, we can’t remember being any other way. Gratitude is humbling, and it’s also a good reality check. When you are having a terrible day (or you’re living in 2020), it really helps to take a second and think about all the things you can be grateful for. Let’s take this moment for example, I am currently sitting in my backyard getting terrorized by mosquitos on this swam like DC summer night. BUT, I am thankful for having a backyard (hard to come by in DC), and I am thankful for my dog, Lucy, who hangs out with me in the backyard, and I am thankful for my landlords who let me share their backyard with them.