Maybe Self-Care Isn’t What You Need?

_You were about to drink this cappuccinoOne of my favorite things about my job is the super cool people it attracts into my life.  I spend my days hangin’ with massage therapists, energy workers, acupuncturists, coaches + therapists.  It’s awesome!  

And, I totally benefit from their wisdom all the time. 

It’s actually part of how I keep growing + learning and upping my personal game.  

Like last week.  I had an amazing session with a dear colleague who got me thinking about the difference between self-care and nurture.  And my own self-care vs. nurture routine(s).


Turns out I’m a pro at one, and whatever comes before novice at the other.


I like to consider myself a bit of a self-care pro.  

Sure, it’s part of my work.  I also practice what I preach.  

I mediate,  I  get massages + energy work,  I walk by the water whenever I can,  I know about my food allergies and follow ‘em,  I learn (often),  I grow (often),  I take long baths,  lose myself in my coffee every single morning,  I keep a gratitude journal…. I mean seriously, the list could go on and on.

So when my friend asked what I do to nurture myself, I was totally surprised by my loooong pause + “I’m not sure” response.


What gives?  

My first thought was, “But self-care IS nurture, no?”   Turns out, not so much. 

They seem the same.  They’re both about taking care of you.  But, when you pull back the layers you see how different they really are.

In a nutshell: all nurture is self-care, but not all self-care is nurture.  Mind blowing!

So I started a nurture journal to help me (+ you) understand and up my (+ your) nurture routine.  
And here’s what I’ve got so far:

Self-care is the action.  
It’s something outside ourselves.  
That we do cause we feel like we’re loosing it for ourselves.  

Nurture on the other hand is a feeling.  
It’s something inside us.  
That we need to feel good survive.

Self-care, especially if you lean towards the over giving + over functioning side of things, can turn into just that:  more giving.  
More checking things off the list.  More things you “should” do.

Nurture is about being in the present moment.  It’s when you let in and fully experience self-care.  It’s that warm belly, fueled from the inside, peaceful feeling.  Like chicken soup when you’re sick.  


In other words, nurture is about having rather than doing.


Turns out, you can totally turn (almost) anything into a nurturing experience.   Here’s how:

1.  Set your intention.  Be crystal clear about what you want to get from each thing you do.  When you want nurture acknowledge that.

2.  Be present.  For EACH step.  This reminds me of Ally McBeal drinking coffee. (See below)  One of my all time fave clips!  Slow down.  Take your time.  Be present + savor each and every step.

3.  Allow.  Allowing means letting the good feelings in.  Not making to-do lists in your head.  Not thinking about how much your BFF, hubby or kids would love this.  Not blocking, or skipping over, the joy that’s coming from this experience.  Instead, allow the love + nurture to wash over you and enjoy every single sip moment. 

Don’t skip the foreplay in your life, hon!   It’s the best part.  With it, even coffee can be a nurturing soul-fueling experience.  Enjoy! :)

 

What is Life Coaching, Anyway?

Screen shot 2014-09-02 at 9.43.07 AM
Since making the switch from traditional therapy to Life Purpose Coaching, I get this question all the time: “So, what exactly IS life coaching anyway?” 



In a nutshell: coaching is all about discovering the intentional and unintentional ways we stop ourselves from living big.  


Like setting goals we don’t really want to reach. (Hence the awesome fitspiration image from my peeps at The Body Department.) 


See, we take classes to understand and learn things like math, science, reading + business.  But we don’t get classes on making our life work (maybe someday?).

That’s where coaching comes in.     It’s like a class on how to do life. 


So here’s my best answers to the question: “So, what is Life Coaching anyway?”


1.  It’s a place to learn. 

Coaching is all about learning.  

Learning about you, your patterns, your strengths + your blocks. 

I often joke that I’m a personal trainer for your brain. ‘Cause that’s what learning is:  a workout for the ol’ noggin.  

Just like a physical workout means you can DO more, working your brain out means you can SEE more.  
With coaching you learn to see yourself + your patterns from different angles.  
And to see opportunities + choices where you couldn’t before.  

It’s a way to learn how to make your life work for you.  


2.  It’s a support system.

Let’s be real: loneliness sucks.  And taking on life changing projects all on your own is the worst kind of loneliness.  Working with a coach is like bringing on a partner to help you every step of the way.    

Someone who:

  • totally supports you. (Even when you can’t.) 
  • wants you to succeed AND can see you doing it(Even when you can’t.) 
  • is able to see the bigger picture. (Even when you can’t.) 
  • focuses on your strengths.  (Even when you can’t.)
  • lovingly holds you accountable (even when you can’t) + helps you learn to tackle resistance. 
  • and, is so curious about you, they could spend the whole hour just asking questions about you with ZERO judgment. (Especially when you can’t.)

Basically, a coach is someone who’s got your back.  Fully.  (Even when you can’t.) 



3.  It’s YOU time. 

It’s time you set aside to intentionally focus on you.  Without which, very little nothing changes. 



4.  It’s strength focused. 

You’ve got it go going on.  

Maybe not in every part of your life, but in some areas you’re totally rocking it.   Coaching builds on that.  

What’s already working for your.   What you’re already knocking-outta-the-park. 

It helps you reframe + understand these snippets of success so you can purposefully create the same success over ‘n’ over.
(Instead of feeling like it’s a fluke.)



3.  It’s about getting to the next level.

Life Coaching is a support system with one goal in mind: improving the quality of your life. 

It’s about reaching goals.  Moving forward.  Upping your game.  

In my words, it’s about going from good to ah-mazing.  

Sure, there’s usually some healing + letting go along the way.  But what makes coaching so effective is it’s focus on growing + learning and what you DO want in your live. 

When you understand exactly HOW you take the ball and run-  you learn how to (better) do life + totally up your game.   



 

 

 

How to Up Your Affirmation Game (+ My Rookie Mistakes)

CaleyPowerPointTemplate-3When I first learned about affirmations I dove in head first.  The idea that I could change my words and change my entire life had me at hello!

I diligently made post-it notes with Louise L. Hay’s words and stuck ‘em everywhere.  All over my wallet, mirrors, fridge, notebooks home + car, you name it. 

Then I’d read ‘em and nervously look around expecting some sorta genie, or maybe Happy Potter, to instantly pop into the room and “grant my wish.”

After a few times of reading these little saying and NOT having a magic genie (or even Dobby) INSTANTLY appear I started feeling worse than I did before I tired affirmations.  

Sound familiar?


Now, it would’ve been easy to blame the affirmations.  To call ‘em stupid or ridiculous and turn my nose up at the whole thing.  (So many people do!)  Or to just quit. 

Well– that’s not how I work.   

So, I dove head first (again), into figuring out WHY they weren’t working for me.  Here’s what I learned:  affirmations are an art, and they take a little skill.  

It’s not as simple as reciting some words scribbled on a post-it note.  For affirmations to work, you’ve got to feel ‘em, believe ‘em, embrace ‘em and live ‘em.   They’ve got mean something to you. 

So today I want to help you up your affirmation skills.  I figure there’s no better way to do that than to break down the rookie mistakes I’ve made + what to do instead.  

Ready?  Let’s go:

1. I did it ’cause someone told me to.   With zero heart.

Kinda like homework, I jumped into affirmations ’cause Louise L. Hay told me to.  I was all head + zero heart.  I used her words, did what she did, went through the motions and ignored any red flags that came up for me…. I tried (my best) to be a mini-Louise.  


Instead:  Engage your heart!  

Affirmations only work when you feel ‘em.  In your body.  Choose + use affirmations that speak to you.  That touch you.  That feel like emotional bullseye in your body.   The words aren’t nearly as important as the response they create in your body.  Changing how you feel IS the path to changing your life. 


2. I was worried.  Worried it wouldn’t work.  And, worried it would. 

In my heart of hearts, I was terrified that it wouldn’t work AND that it would.  

I wasn’t prepared for a better life yet.  I wasn’t really ready to leave my comfort zone.  So, while I liked the idea of having a better more passion filled life, it felt a bit like jumping from the high dive. Good in theory, terrifying in practice. 

Instead:  Acknowledge + look for any blocks or internal glass ceilings!

One of the (many) great things about affirmations is that, when you let ‘em, they’ll highlight your patterns and internal blocks.   Look for any kind of eeek! that comes up when using affirmations.  It’s a like a big blinking sign pointing to where you need a little TLC.

3.  I expected it not to work FOR ME.

To me, energy follows focus has always made total sense.   It’s the perfect combo of science + faith.  I wanted affirmations to be easy + totally work.  And I believed it was easy and totally worked for Louise.  I just didn’t believe it’d work FOR ME.

Instead:  Address this block first!  

This is a shining example of one of my internal blocks, and it’s a block that many of us share.  Good things can + do happen, I just wasn’t sure they happened for me.   Make sure you believe they’ll happen for you first.   Otherwise, you’ll end up spinning your wheels. 

4. I ignored how I felt.

Remember above when I said I was all head + zero heart.   Well, truth be told, I was feeling something each time I read one of my little post-it notes– it just wasn’t a good something.  

Instead:  Forget the words, focus on how you feel!  

Energy does follow focus, and energy isn’t thoughts.  Energy is the spark + fire that we feel.  It’s the zest + vitality that moves through us.   Sure, words can create vitality, but not all words do.  Focus on how you feel.  The good, the bad, and the ugly and follow your emotions not your logic.   

 

3 Simple Word Swaps That’ll Boost Your Self-Esteem

Words are to your self-esteem what  foodSelf-esteem is a prerequisite for a passionate life.  


It isn’t some I-conquored-that-particular-thing-so-I-feel-good-about-myself-forever kind of thing.  Your self-esteem needs love, care, nurture and support just like your body.  After all, it’s a living breathing thing. 


Simple word choices make a big difference in how we feel.  Think of it this way:  words are to your self-esteem what food is to your body. 


Choosing words that fuel + uplift you is like choosing foods that do the same.  There’s so many simple vocab swaps you can make to nurture and grow your self-esteem.  Here’s 3 of my fave: 




Swap “but” for “and.”

When you “but” yourself, you’re forcing yourself into an all-or-nothing, black-or-white box.  And, you end up labeling yourself + your experiences ALL good or ALL bad.  

The truth is you’re a wonderfully delightful complex being.  Nothing about you, or your experiences, is all good or all bad.  

That’s the beauty of “and.”  When you “and‘ yourself, instead of “but” yourself, you’re celebrating + making room for ALL of you.  


Swap “deserve” for “worth” or “matter.”

The D-word is like nails on a chalkboard for me for so many reasons, but here’s my top 3:

1.  To say you deserve something is to say you had to earn it.  And you so DON’T have to earn being loved.   You are worth being loved.  ‘Cause you matter.  See the difference?

2.  If you “deserve” the good, then it follows that you “deserve” the bad. Using the D-word, even when we mean it with love, sets us up for feeling worse about ourselves when things go haywire.  

When you have worth, you have that worth no matter the situation.  

And when you know you matter, you matter, no matter what. 

3.  When we think + feel that we “deserve” something we dive into “proving mode.”   We’re all about TELLING people we “deserve” this or we “deserve” that.

When we know our worth + that we matter, we SHARE what we want + need.   And sharing is HOW we’re able to receive + make connections.  ‘Cause when we share we’re open.


Swap “because” for a nice long pause….

Whenever we use the word “because” to justify our wants, thoughts, beliefs or actions we’re saying they aren’t enough on their own.  We’re defending ‘em before they even need defending. 

Instead, take a beat when you share your wants or thoughts.  

Practice saying, “I want to see this movie.”  Period.   Then, let that beautiful, I matter, silence ring!

It might be a little uncomfortable at first and that’s OK.  It’s an incredible self-esteem workout that lets you + your wants matter all on their own.  

 

How to Make Your Past Work for You,
Not Against You

CaleyPowerPointTemplate-2When it comes to the past letting go isn’t always what you need. 

Usually the past hangs around when you’ve yet to learn what you need from it.

Don’t get me wrong; the classic cycles of dwelling, obsessing, blaming, revenge plotting and comeback hunting are in no way helpful.  And yet, when done correctly, looking at the past is one of our most useful tools.
 
See, your past has incredible nuggets of info that’ll totally help you learn, grow and create future success.  Studying it with purpose + intention is literally your best resource for figuring out what works, and more importantly, what doesn’t.   


The trick is HOW you review it.
 
Here’s the keys to making your past work for you, not against you.   

1.  Look at YOUR part in the situation.

While fantasizing about saying or doing something different so that other people act differently is totally normal, it’s also a complete waste of your time. 

When we pay attention to our part + what we brought to the situation we learn.  We grow.  And, we move on.

Focusing on anyone’s actions but yours is like trying to change what’s already happened.  Instead, use what’s already happened to help create a future + present that you want. 


2. Review the choices you made even if they didn’t’ feel like choices.

Here’s the thing: everything we do is a choice.  It doesn’t always feel like a choice.  And, it IS a choice.

Accept this.  And, notice when you feel like you do or when you don’t have a choice. It is one of the most empowering things you can do. It’ll show you where your strengths and weaknesses are.  Where your blind spots are.  Plus, what totally triggers you. 


3.  Questions are Queen.  

Instead of digging in your heels and reciting the past as fact, ask yourself questions.  Boatloads of ‘em.  

Questions are how we learn.  How we digest + understand new things.  They’re how we expose old limiting thoughts, assumptions, habits and unconscious beliefs.  

Here’s some marvelous questions to include in your lineup:

HOW did you make your choice(s)?  With you head?  Heart?  Gut?  Out of fear? Panic?  Habit?  

Where you acting out of love of fear?
Did this choice take you closer to your purpose or farther from it?
Was this in alignment with who you want to be?
What are you actually avoiding with this choice? What are you creating more of with this choice?
What would it say about you if you felt like you had a choice?


4.  Which of these things is like, or not like, the others? 

To really learn from your pasts + create a different future look for patterns.  Both success and failure leave clues– you’ve just got to be willing to look for ‘em.

Keep the questions going +  look at the situation from all angles to uncover your clues:

What were the signs (that maybe you missed) leading up to the event?
How was this similar to past experiences?  How was it different?
How did you feel heading into it?
How might you’ve missed these signs?  What did they feel like? 
Did you listen to yourself?
What can you look for + do different going forward?


With the right action plan + focus the past can totally work for you.  Next time you’re feeling stuck ‘cause the past just won’t seem to let go, stop trying to out run it and use these steps to turn it into an opportunity for growth.

Hole-Poking: How You’re Holding Yourself Back

Hole-PokingHole-poking is one of the most common ways we get stuck.  


The more you use this negative-Nelly habit, the more stuck you feel.  Guaranteed.

What is hole-poking?  In a nut shell, it’s focusing on why something: 

  • won’t work
  • doesn’t apply to you
  • is hard to do


For example:  someone shares an idea or new concept with you and no matter what they say, or how they explain it, you zero in on the one or two words that make it NOT work for you.  

And, you pounce on ‘em like a cat going after a laser dot.



They might have 100 awesome points.  That would totally help you out.  
Yet all you hear is the part that will be hard.  Uncomfortable.  Or doesn’t fit perfectly the first time through.  



You’re not looking for solutions. You’re not growing.  You’re not learning.


Instead you’re caught up in a horrible case of rationalization- determined to find fault in anything that tries to move you out of your comfort zone.


Basically, you’re hitting the emergency brake.  All.  Day.  Long.  

We’ve all been there.  And it’s no fun.


Here’s 5 ways to take your foot off the brake and stop poking holes.


Embrace your scaredy-cat-ness. 

Change.   Growth.  Progress.   As much as we want these things they mean leaving your comfort zone in the dust.  And that’s scary stuff.   

Acknowledge + communicate what’s got you spooked.   Remind yourself that it’s OK to be scared.  It’s OK to be unsure.  Let yourself be in the “and” place:  “I want this change AND I’m scared.”  Then, take it slow. 
 

Look for how the info DOES apply + how it CAN help.

ALL information can help us.  Teach us.  Direct us.  If we’re willing to listen.  

Information is like making a new friend.  Looking for how it does relate to us is how we create connections, understanding, new possibilities + how we create a new pattern in our life. 


**If a theme is coming up again and again-  listen. It’s happening for a reason. 


Look for what’s gone right.

Tony Robbins says, “Success always leaves clues.”  And it does.  Big time.   

When you start looking for how/why things have gone well, you can recreate + build on that success without reinventing the wheel.  It’ll get you out of the parking lot and back into the race.

Un-plant your heels.  Literally. 

When we’re hole-poking we generally feel:  

Tense + ready for battle 
Defeated, “This won’t work, why bother?” 
Stiff, “It has to go perfect. Must.  Resist.  Anything.  Less.”  

Relaxing your body is one swift way to refocus your mind.  

Loosen up your shoulders.  Unclench your jaw.  Shake out your hands.  

Let your body know you’re NOT under attack.  This will instantly calm your internal alarm system.  And let you start seeing things from a whole new lens.



Breathe first. Speak second. 

Before you speak take a deep breath.

Acknowledge you’re feeling some resistance. 

Take another breath.

THEN speak.  


If you’re still only finding fault(s) start with questions.  Get clear on the intention of the information (or the person delivering it) so you can find common ground. 


Hole poking is easy to spot when you know what you’re looking for.  With a little practice you’ll be have a lot less holes in your life in no time.

11 Relationship Dos
That’ll Help You Rock Your Job

11 Relationship DosThis Saturday marked 11 years since the hub-ster and I got hitched!

I can honestly say we’re (WAY) happier today than we were back then. 


Don’t get me wrong, our wedding was beautiful.  


But for us, marriage took some figuring out.  

We had to learn HOW to make an in-it-for-the-long-haul-relationship work.  Kinda like owning vs. leasing a car.  Marriage is a whole different thing than dating.  To figure it out, we had to learn about ourselves and each other.  



Well, much like marriage, your career falls into this in-it-for-the-long-haul category.   


It’s different than a “job.”  And takes different skills + understanding than the one-hit-wonder gigs of your youth in order to keep the passion alive. 


So today I’m tipping my hat to our 11 years of marriage by helping you work out some in-it-for-the-long-haul career kinks.  Keep in mind, everything I’m sharing today can absolutely be applied to BOTH your career + personal life.  At their core, each of these 11 dos are mindsets that lead to a passionate life. 


11 relationship dos that’ll totally help you rock your job. 


1. Compromise doesn’t feel like compromise when you know your why.  Look, I love my husband.  I value my marriage.  The distinction is key.  ‘Cause on days when I’d kinda like to stab him with a fork (and they do happen), I know WHY working it out is worth it TO ME.   Same rules apply to your job.   Odds are you won’t love every day.  And, one bad day doesn’t have to ruin the bunch. 


2.  Compromise can always be reached.  If it’s not happening someone is trying to win.  If it’s you: stop it.  If it’s them: help ‘em win.  The only way to create a win-win is to be on the same page.   


3.  Plans are sexy.  How much do you get done that’s not on your to-do list?  Exactly.  


4.  Waiting to talk is not the same as listening.  Listening to your co-workers or customers is the quickest path to rock-stardom.  They’ll feel valued, important and their walls will come down so you’ll be able to solve challenges together in no time flat.  


5.  You’re responsible for what you bring to the situation.  Blame looks good on no one.  Own what you bring to each situation.  If it’s not your proudest moment, that’s OK.  There’s no way to change it until you’re aware of it.   


6. Don’t take things personally.  We’re all a bit self-focused.  Whatever they’re doing is 100% ’cause of them, NOT YOU. 


7.  We’re not the same.  Don’t assume they’er thinking what you are.  Don’t assume you’re thinking what they are.  Communicate without assumption.  It’ll be like a breath of fresh air! 


8.  It’s a good thing that we aren’t the same.  Life, and projects, would be totally boring without some diversity.  Our differences are opportunities to create amazing mash-ups + totally inspired projects. 


9.  Play to each others strengths.  Everyone has a place they truly shine.  Embrace that.  Utilize that.  Celebrate that.  It’s how passion thrives.   


10. Score-keeping is like shooting yourself in the foot.   It makes you feel bad.  And, makes everyone want to avoid you.  If you just have to score keep, start tracking the wins instead.  Your foot will thank you. 


11.  It’s always worth fighting for. ‘Cause YOU are worth fighting for.  When it gets tough, roll up your sleeves, ask for help and be open to learning.   There is 100% a way to get back on track- but you’ve got to be open to it.  

Let it Go Already: The Dos + Don’ts of Letting Go

Hands down, the question I get asked most often is:  “Yeah but, HOW do I let go?”

Great question.  And, a must have skill for a happy life.

No matter if it’s forgiving.  Heartache.  Or, saying adios to an old, not-working-for-ya-anymore pattern, there are some tricks of the trade that can help you let go.  


Here’s the essential dos + don’ts of letting go. 


1.  DON’T ignore what you really need. 

Letting go isn’t a catchall phrase and it doesn’t heal all hurts.
  
Letting go happens once we’ve processed + healed the hurt.  

Not before.

If you’re in the middle of a major anxiety melt-down, drowning in heartache, or desperate for things change, odds are letting go isn’t what you need (or want) right now.

DO clarify what you really want.  

Support, understanding, nurture and healing all have to happen before we can let go.   And, they’re what we need most when we’re in pain.  

Take time to ask yourself what you really want right now.  If it’s got to do with pain, I promise a little TLC will go a long way.  



2.  Don’t Nike yourself.  

By this I mean, you can’t “just do it.”   Not when it comes to letting go. 

And, the more you badger yourself to “just do it” the more stuck you’ll become.  

Letting go is a process + it can only happen when we’re open.   When you’re screaming, “JUST DO IT ALREADY” at yourself, you’re body’s in total lock down mode.  Nothing is getting in OR out.

DO embrace some woo-woo.  

Letting go involves all of you, not just your beautiful mind.  

I mean it’s not your mind that hurts; it’s your body, right?  

Meditation, energy work, yoga, breath, reiki and prayer are essentials to letting go ’cause they get you outta your head and into your body, where the hurt is.  



3.  Don’t do what you’ve always done.

Whatever you’ve been doing hasn’t worked.  So why keep doing it?  

DO try new things!  

Think outside the box.  Get out of your comfort zone.  The only way to feel something new is to DO something new.

If you’re worried about looking silly or find yourself pooh-poohing ideas ’cause they’re “weird” it’s a sure sign you’re still closed.  Go back to step one and clarify what you’re really looking for.  When you’re really ready to let go you won’t care what you look like doing it. 



4.  Don’t do things ’cause someone told you to.  

I call this “good-student” answers + actions.  When my clients do something ’cause I told ‘em to –  with zero heart, connection or intention of their own – this never ever works.  

DO what speaks to you.  

The truth is there’s many ways to let go.  And what works for me may not work for you.  

When you’re open and willing to learn + feel the process on your own, letting go happens naturally.  It’s not the steps that allow you to let go, it’s letting something you need in that makes the difference.  So listen to yourself + ask, what do you really need to let this go?


BTW, a little TLC is a necessity before we can let go.  (And it’s the most commonly skipped step.)



5.  Don’t look for all the ways it didn’t work. 

I call this “hole-poking” and it’s the single worst thing you can do to yourself.  If you spend your time, energy and attention looking for what’s wrong then that’s what you’re gonna have– a life that feels wrong.

Do look for all the ways growth is showing up.  

Teach yourself to look for + celebrate the places that you have made progress, that are going well and how far you’ve come.  The more joy, compassion + hope you look for- the more you’ll have a life that feels that way. 



6.  Don’t fantasize about “them” fixing it.  

Someone may have hurt you, yes.   BUT, and I say this with love, the wound is yours.   

Let me explain: if they literally physically stabbed you with a knife, they (literally) hurt you AND the cut would be yours to take care of.  Even if they apologize!   

You’ve got to clean, dress and care for the wound ’cause it’s on your body.  Well, same rules apply to emotional wounds.

DO focus on you.

Take your power back here and focus on you + what you can do.  Your options for taking care of yourself are endless when you focus on what YOU CAN DO.  

If you’re stuck running the loop of having it out with them in your head, it’s a sure sign you need to go back to step one and figure out what you really want.  This means something is still missing.




7.  DON’T do it alone.

It’s painful.  It’s lonely.  It’s totally unnecessary to do it alone.  And, it will take so much longer.

DO embrace support

Support comes in all different shapes and sizes.  And it’s yours for the taking.  You’ll feel so much stronger.  So much clearer.  And it will go so much quicker if you buddy up with someone.

Keep these do + don’ts in mind no matter what steps you take, and you’ll be on your way to letting it go in no time!




 


The Than-Game: 8 Signs You’re Playing

CaleyPowerPointTemplate-1Something really interesting + sorta unexpected happens when I talk to people about self-esteem:  they become jerks.  And, their self-esteem actually plummets.

Seriously.  

It’s happened to me.   And I’m pretty sure it’s happened to you.

You know those times when your day is going just fine?  
You’re feeling pretty peaceful.  
Getting stuff done.  

Then, someone talks about improving their self-esteem, and Wham!  You feel awful. Can list 100 things you need to change about yourself.  And your self-confidence (not to mention day) is now in the toilet.   


We’ve all been there. 

And h
ere’s what’s really going on: you, out of habit, dove, head first, into what I like to call the “Than-Game.”



We all know this game.   It’s where you feel good (or bad) about yourself because you’re better (or worse) than the person next to you.   So, to feel good, you’ve got to be:

  • better than
  • skinnier than
  • smarter than
  • make more money than
  • have more seniority than
  • drive a better car than

   …everyone. 

And, when someone else is better, skinnier, smarter, richer than YOU… your self-esteem takes a major nosedive. 

Yeah.   The Than-Game is so not fun.  Especially at work. 

Playing this grass-is-greener-game at work means you’ve taken your eye off the ball.   

You’re not focused.  You’re not producing great stuff.   

And, you’re stuck.  

‘Cause instead of putting energy into the pitch coming your way + figuring out HOW to hit your own home-run, you’re wasting energy tracking your co-workers.  

Not helpful.  (And, so not going to get you noticed for your skills.)

Here’s 8 signs you’re totally playing the Than-Game at work. (Maybe without even knowing it.)

  1. You can’t be happy for a coworkers success.  If each win your coworker has feels like a loss for you.  You’re playing the Than-Game.

  2. You can’t make a decision.  If making a decision feels like making a commitment.  Like you’ll be tied down to something you’re not even sure you want.  You’re playing the Than-Game. 

  3. You fear being wrong.  If being wrong means someone else is right instead of a chance to learn something new.  100%, you’re in the Than-Game. 

  4. You fight with people over things you don’t even want.  If you fight (to the death!) to win, not because you really really want the “prize,” but ’cause you have to win.   You’re literally playing the game. 

  5. You can’t seem to settle down.  If you want to be seen as an expert in everything, not just one thing.  You’re in the Than-Game. 

  6. To you, the grass is always greener.  If you can’t feel grateful for what you’ve already got, ’cause someone has more something different.  Yep.  You’re in the game. 

  7. You nitpick the heck outta what others do.  If you can + do find fault in everything + everyone.  You’re probably a Than-Game All-star. 

  8. You throw co-workers under the bus.  If you avoid “being wrong” at all costs.  You’re definitely a Than-Game All-star.  

Now that you know about this slippery slope of game (+ if you’re an All-star or not)
keep your eye on the ball!  

Instead of diving head first into old habits, practice keeping your eyes on what’s coming your way + how you’re spending your energy.  


You’ll be knocking ‘em outta-the-park in no time.  

Not to mention feel so much better. 



6 Signs Change ISN’T What You Need

photoThe idea of change can be alluring + seductive.   Especially when burnout’s knocking at your door.

A fresh start.   Something new.   Something better.

Gets your blood pumpin’ just thinking about it, no? And, maybe even thinking, “That’s exactly what I need. Right.  Now.”

But change always shows its true colors.

It’s a short-lived high- in cute shoes.

The change-game is one of the best seductresses of all time.   I mean, just the thought of that breath-of-fresh-air feeling gets you wired.   Craving.   Jonesing to feel that high again.

All the while she’s whispering in your ear, “This will be the one that takes.   This could be the change that lasts.   This is what you’ve been missing!”

The problem with the change-game is you’re so hopped up on your quest for new, more… better,  that you don’t realize what you’re giving up each time you start over:   growth.

The truth is,  to the outside world,  change looks a bit like bobbing ‘n’ weaving.  
You’re going left when everyone else is going right.

So while you’re drinking in that breath-of-fresh-air feeling you’re also leaving people,  jobs,  retirement plans,  benefits,  seniority + vacation days,  friends,  relationships,  and maybe even cities in your dust.

Here’s 6 signs it’s time to get out of the change game.   For good.

  1. The high wears off.  You listen to the whisper in your ear, make the change and get a new gig.  It feels intoxicating!   For a little while.   Then sobriety sinks in and you’re back where you started,  but without your seniority + benefits.   The only thing that seems to bring that excitement back is the thought of doing it all over again.   And again.
     
  2. The breath-of-fresh-air-feeling is the best part.  Putting in your notice.  Walking out the door for the last time.  This. IsFreedom.  And THIS, is the best part!  Once this high wears off you feel stuck.   Trapped.   And all you can do to get that glorious freedom back is fantasize about telling everyone + everything you’re supposed to care for to go screw off.
     
  3. Your resume, business niche or relationship history looks like a game of musical chairs.   Job or relationship hopping is easy to blame on others.   But (and I say this with love) YOU are the common link between all your jobs + relationships.  If you’re always on-to-the-next-one in 2 years or less you know change is whispering in your ear + running your show.
     
  4. You feel like you’re spinning your wheels.  You work your booty off.   And yet, while you’ve had flickers of success, more often than not you feel lost.   No matter how hard you work, when change is running your show, you’re always in the start-up phase.
     
  5. You’re focused on what you want (+ don’t want) instead of what you have.   It’s easy to get sideswiped by the thought of greener grass when you’re not aware of change’s seduction skills.   Her 1-2 punch is comparison + lust.   Once you realize it could be different.   It could be better.   This is missing.   Or that… she’s got you on the ropes.   You’re no longer paying attention to what’s in front of you.   Instead, you’re lusting after that next high.
     
  6. Change is how you handle everything.  You have a bad day.   A fight in your relationship.   Or maybe you’ve lost your work mojo.   And change is the first thought that enters your mind.


The truth is your mojo-  both personal + professional-   comes from within you

And, change without growth, stunts your mojo.  BIG TIME!

So, next time you hear that seductress call, tell her the jig is up. 
You’re on to her.
And you’re going another way.

This time to change things up, you’re choosing growth instead.