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5 Things I've Learned So Far About Being Sober in January

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When this blog post publishes we’ll be over halfway through the month of January, the first month of 2018. My goodness.

First, let me explain why I decided to do dry January and what it is. Dry January is where you spend the month of January not drinking. It is a popular trend (rightfully so) because we spend most of the two months prior, November and December, socializing and celebrating the holidays which includes a lot of sugar, carbs, and alcohol. 
 

My decision to partake in dry January is no different being as I had travel quite extensively the month of November (two international trips) making it a wee bit hard to keep a routine including proper sleep, nutrition, and exercise, along with two holidays (Christmas and Thanksgiving) that found us on the road for most of it. Lots of travel time.

If you’ve been tuning into the podcast then you know how much I thrive off of having my “anchors,” which include needing two out of the following three in order to feel somewhat grounded; 8 hours of sleep, proper nutrition (mainly paleo based diet and minimal alcohol) and exercise. Oh! And lots of hydration. There is also something else that happens when you eat properly, get enough sleep, hydrate, and exercise...your body is able to rid itself of toxins. Some may call it “dropping the kids off” others may refer to it as “I’m going to my office,” regardless it is extremely important to feel said normal.

A friend once told me that if someone is in a bad mood it is probably because they didn’t poop yet that day.

Can’t deny it. (<----Seriously can’t believe I just bought up poop in my blog post.) Anywho, moving on.

My closest family members and friends know that when I’m gone for too long and feel like I’m living out of a suitcase….I get antsy and my husband would probably add, irritable.

My husband and I spent New Year’s Eve with a group of friends at one of our friend’s farmhouse in Indiana. I was already having some anxiety about being away from home again being as November and December were a bit touch and go. I also knew that I was leaving for Vegas for 8 days on the 6th of January so I really wanted to spend time at home.

All of that to say though, on New Year’s Eve I got to a place where the way I felt created enough pain for me to decide, “That’s is. We’re going dry from here until the end of January.” I needed a reset. I had looked back on the past two months which don’t get me wrong, were a flipping blast. I went on a mini vacay with my mother-in-law as she joined me in Barcelona post my first trip at the beginning of November, followed by celebrating Thanksgiving and eating such great food to heading back to Spain the Sunday after where my close friend met me in Madrid halfway through my work trip and we decided to take an impromptu trip to Bordeaux, France where we visited the vineyards, ate unpasteurized cheese (so. good.) and ate more croissants in three days that I have eaten during the entire year of 2017. And of course, Christmas and New Year’s was no different - all a blast.

Declaring I was going dry New Year’s Eve Day could have been a bit gutsy...I mean come on! What are you supposed to do when the clock strikes midnight on New Year's Eve?! Well, let me tell you. I have no clue because I was sleeping by 10:45 pm. Ha. Which I was completely okay with because in that moment my body needed sleep and rest and it was going to get it.

But in addition to that my 30th birthday took place in January (the 6th to be exact), I was spending a whole week in Vegas surrounded by 50 very outgoing, fun and social folks. Would I be tempted?

What was helpful is that I’ve done dry January in the past with the same events; birthday and Vegas, and did just fine so I knew I could do it again.

Part of the benefit of not drinking in Vegas is not compromising my immune system. There is nothing I hate more than being ill. And I know myself well enough that alcohol is the trigger. Because when I drink I don’t get good enough sleep, I tend to stay up later than I usually do which throws my sleep cycle off and in that moment I wanted to protect it.

The reason why I bring these up is that I want to create the context for what I’ve learned so far being 18 days into dry January.

 

Being all in is easier than being 50% in

It is much easier to be binary (all or nothing) vs partial. The reason being is because when you are partial you leave decisions up to that very moment when you need to make said decision. Sometimes you’re not in the right headspace or environment to make the decision that best serves you. By being all in, you don’t leave it up to chance. You already know your decision. It is made for you, by you.

Better sleep

I think this goes without saying that there’s no doubt a person gets better sleep when there is no alcohol running through their system. Especially if you’re someone like me who thrives on sleep, you don’t want to waste it or sabotage it. Where my 8-hour sleepers at?!

One less thing to manage

Alcohol influences our decisions, decisions to eat more, stay out later, be influenced by our surroundings. When you’re sober you making quicker and faster decisions. It also doesn't take up space in your brain wondering whether or not you're going to drink at dinner or not. 

When you really want to do something, you’ll do it

I’m a massive fan of Tony Robbin’s book, “Awaken the Giant Within.” There’s a part of why we as humans do what we do and usually, it is either to avoid pain or gain pleasure. My decision to not drink in January brought more pleasure than actually drinking; better sleep, better decision making, FEELING better. I also knew that I was only not drinking for 30 days and it’ll be there when I'm done. 

Your friends may be bummed, but they’ll get over it

While this didn’t happen to me as much, I’m sure it happens to other people when they go dry so I do want to acknowledge that the decision to go dry is YOUR decision. Know that you’re doing it for you and your benefit. While other’s may be bummed or disappointed, they’ll get over it and move on.

I suppose another thing I’ve learned so far is that I love Pellegrino with lime...in a wine glass ;) It helps to make me feel like I’m still involving myself in the social affair.
 

So what’s next?

I’ll finish out the rest of the month dry.

I’ll be more intentional when I drink and how much. Going dry helps bring awareness to my actions. Also, going dry shows you just exactly how good a person can feel. Similar to that if someone cuts out carbs and refined sugar for a month, you feel amazing! You now have that benchmark of knowing how good you can feel and how crappy you can feel when you put not so great foods in your body thus helping you make better choices that serve you in the future.

One thing that I’ve scaled back from doing is drinking wine during international flights. In the beginning, I’d do it to make myself sleepy but it made adjusting to the new time zone a nightmare. Now I usually stick to one glass or less, avoid drinking within the first 48 hours upon landing in order to let my body adjust.

I’m curious, have you ever done it? If so, I’d love for you to share your experience.




 

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Top 5 Downloaded Podcasts of 2017

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Hello friends! Happy Wednesday :)

Today’s blog post is a recap of the top 5 most downloaded podcasts of 2017. So if you’re new to She Did It Her Way and wondering where to start, these are great ones to help get you going AND if you’ve been listening to the podcast for a while but maybe missed these ones, then you definitely want to go back and listen.

Here we go….

  1. Arielle Loren - How to Shift Your Energy to Change Your Reality

  2. Megan Minns - Putting in the Work to Make Your Dreams a Reality

  3. Jen Sincero (Author of “You are A Badass” - Your Fears and Feeling All the Feels

  4. Lauren Benbassat - Side Hustle to Full-time

  5. Ashlyn Carter - Turning Your Passion into a Paycheck

 

Also, I’m working behind the scenes for She Did It Her Way Summit coming this spring and guys! It is going to be amazing, I cannot wait. The speaker line-up is killer and the venue...Oh. M. G. it is beautiful.

I’ll be sending out my first email in the next few weeks with initial details about the event. Plus, I’ll be offering some exclusive deals to anyone who is on the list that you won’t want to miss. Trust me. So get on the list, my friend! You can sign up here.

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6 Habits I'm Working on in 2018

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Happy New Year friends! Welcome to 2018 :) Last month as I was thinking about the goals I wanted to set for 2018 I couldn’t help but want to include the habits I wanted to change as well being as our habits create the outcome. So for example if the goal is you want to get more sleep then what habit might you change in order to make that happen?

 

Here is a list of 6 habits that I am working on in 2018...

 

  1. Plugging my phone in a room that is isn’t my bedroom - My goal is to get better sleep. I’m fairly good at being disciplined when it comes to going to bed when I need to but I want to make the sleep even better.

  2. Placing water next to my nightstand before bed - I’ve always lacked in the hydration department and I know that when I’m fully hydrated I’m not as fatigued when I wake up (I can especially tell this when I workout during the day and don’t get enough water...my body the next morning is like dead weight.) I’ve started placing a glass of water next to my bed as a reminder to drink first thing in the AM.

  3. Turning my phone on airplane mode (more) - I have learned that turning my phone on silent isn’t enough because even the visual cue of the text message coming through is enough to distract me.

  4. Building in time for rest and recharging - Practicing looking at the month ahead and mapping out social activities, dinners, get-togethers and also mapping out downtime too.

  5. Building in chunks of time for education - Truly using Friday afternoons for purely educational purposes. I’ve created an Asana task to reoccur every Friday and during the week as I see things that I want to learn more about I can copy and paste the information into that specific task.

  6. Giving time between the ask and my decision // make it // then move on - Here’s what I mean...I am someone who lives in the moment and because of that, I can easily get caught up in the excitement that takes place in that moment causing me to make emotional decisions. I might be at an event, a one on one conversation, you name it. Someone asks me to do something and I immediately say "YASSSSSSSS!" because I'm either feeling the flow or I also don't want to offend that person. I’ve shared this habit of mine before on the podcast. I’m working on being allowing myself some time to let the emotional excitement settle to make an intentional decision by saying something close to, "That sounds amazing! Let me think about it and get back to you."

 

What are some of the habits you working on in 2018? Could be to change habits, make new ones? Share below!

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5 Things I'm Leaving Behind in 2017

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2017 has been a great year. And I say a “great year” not because everything was positive, in fact, there were quite a bit learning moments. The moments that you have to go low in order to go high, points. Smell what I’m stepping in? ;)

It is in those low or tough moments that we find ourselves wishing to move through them as fast as we can. I remember telling a friend of mine earlier this year, “I feel like I’m trapped in a room. Everytime I open the door thinking it is a way out, it simply leads to another damn room. LIke, what the heck! I’m ready, I’ve learned my lesson. Can I. just. Get. out.” When in reality in order for me to move through and learn what I needed to, I needed to surrender and trust.

Anyone else experience this feeling?

I find that in those types of moments is when we learn and grow the most.

But there were definitely some major highlights to 2017 that happened like...getting married to my husband, Mike. Probably the BEST thing that happened. I couldn’t have asked for a better partner in crime. The kid is legit the happiest person I know, rarely (and I mean rarely) in a bad mood, he is also an entrepreneur (errr, well was technically. After 8 years of running his own digital agency with his partner they got acquired earlier this month. He’s suuuuppper excited.) I hosted my first in-person event, She Did It Her Way Summit. Attendees traveled from all across the country and my favorite part was that I got to meet some of the listeners! It was amazing! Mike and I also moved into a 1BR with a den so now I have my own workspace. Lastly, I attended a money mindset boot camp that really helped me uncover a lot of beliefs and blocks from stopping me performing at the level I desire.

 

Here is what I am leaving in 2017:

 

1. The act of not putting me (or my business first)

I truly believe that in order to be a good business owner, friend, spouse, mother, sister, you name it, we have to put ourselves first in order to show up 100% with those that we then choose to be around. We cannot serve the world with our gifts if we do not serve ourselves first.

 

2. Underlying Belief I’m Not Good Enough // Not loving myself

Woof. Where do I even begin? To give you some content I had always thought I “loved myself.” When people would talk about “Do you love yourself?” My answer always was “Yes, of course.” But I’ve learned (for me at least) that in order to love myself I have to believe I am enough. Truly believe I am enough. Peeling back the layers sent me on a journey of even deeper self-discovery.  Why did I believe I wasn’t enough? My act of projecting emotions onto others demonstrated that I a) didn’t fully love myself and b) proved that I didn’t believe I was enough. There is so much rooted in our subconscious, programming that has been impressed on our mind since we were children. This is something I still actively work on every day.

 

3. Apologizing when I don’t need to

Okay, first let me say, a good apology for the right reason goes a long way especially when one is warranted. I’m talking about over apologizing or apologizing in the first place when it doesn’t need to even be a thing.

A friend of mine once left me a message via Voxer and apologized because she was taking time for herself, creating space for herself and hadn’t been active for over a week so she apologized for being distant and right after she said that in my mind I was like “GUUURRRRLLL, what are you apologizing for? You do you.” Then, right after I thought in her voice message that she retracted her words and said, “Wait, why am I apologizing. Haha. Okay, I’m not sorry….”

I used to overly apologize when I felt like I had disappointed someone or let them down when ultimately I was saying NO to something they had offered because I needed to protect my energy and space and that is something we should never need to apologize for.  

The next point leads into why I would apologize so much.

 

4. Fear of disappointing or letting other people down

I realized that my need to be a people pleaser was really driven by the fear of disappointing people. I would make commitments that I truly never intended to keep, said yes to events because I felt like I should but ultimately overcrowded my scheduled and it made me feel overwhelmed. Which trust me, no one wants to be around me when I’m overwhelmed and stressed out.

 

5. FOMO

I’ve learned that more clear you are with where you want to go, what you want to do, saying NO to opportunities become easier because you realize the benefit of missing out.

 

By putting ourselves first we can rest in knowing that we have clarity, FOMO is no longer the driving factor to our decisions, we move from a place of self-love and the disappointing and apologizing no longer dictate our decisions.

 

What are things you're leaving behind in 2017?

 

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3 Books I'm Looking Forward to Reading in 2018

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I’ve already started crafting my book list for 2018. This past year I fell off the reading wagon. I used to be so good and routined about reading in the morning and evening before bed. Reading books just like listening to podcasts really inspire me and motivate me in my business to do and be better.

Everyone’s journey is different from one person’s to the next and the important thing is to figure out what is truly right for you. The past few years have been what I would consider a “plateau.” I didn’t feel any true growth like I had experienced in my mid-twenties. I felt like I had lost my zest for life and business. I questioned if I was destined to do something great. I struggled to make a decision for the fear of making the wrong decision.

Then I joined a Money Mindset Bootcamp at the end of this year. This boot camp did more than uncover mindset blocks around money, it also brought up some deep-rooted beliefs that I wasn’t even aware were impacting me and stunting my growth. Ending this boot camp has left me feeling empowered and motivated because I know that I am a different person than I was at the beginning of 2017 with different experiences, outlook, and mindset.

That being said, here are the 3 books that I’m looking forward to diving into in 2018 to help continue my personal development growth:

  1. High Performance Habits by Brendon Burchard

  2. The Power of Your Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy

  3. The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins

 

What are some of the books you're excited to read in 2018?

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Find Out Which Planner of 2017 Made the Biggest Impact in My Business

Over the past year I’ve tested out multiple types of planners and as 2017 begins to wind down and 2018 is just around the corner I’m getting ready to purchase my next planner to kick off the new year.  Of the handful of planners, I tried this past year there was one that I found to suit my needs the best. 

I tried using the Simplified planner and Bullet Journalling. While I really fell in love with Bullet Journalling in the beginning (and may someday go back to it) I was still looking for something that incorporated setting goals and was action-oriented. 

Then I came across the SELF Planner.  The planner is outlined for a three-month increment or a quarterly increment rather and I found it to be perfect because not only do I like setting goals on a quarterly basis but it also had a bit of Bullet Journal feel to it. I say that because there are parts of the SELF Planner that you get to build out. 

 

Here are the 5 reasons why I love using the SELF Planner:

1. At the beginning of the journal it takes you through a series of prompts and helps you set actionable and achievable goals that later get broken down via your daily tasks

2. It incorporates a gratitude portion at the beginning of the day and before you go to bed. It is a similar practice to that of the “5 Minute Journal.”

3. There’s a place for your daily “Big 3” - the three things you want to accomplish in order to move your business forward and accomplish your quarterly goals that you’ve set out to do

4. Daily reflection - Lessons Learned and Wins for the day

5. My favorite part is the weekly/daily tracker. Every week you set daily habits that you want to work on.  Mine are usually mediation, workout, drink water, accomplish my big 3. Every day I keep track of those habits and every week at the end of the week I reflect on those daily habits along with rating how I felt my week went along with the progress I made towards my quarterly goal. When I look back I can definitely tell what causes me to rate my weeks lower or higher. With that information I can them make sure for future weeks to do more of what raises the weekly score and less of what lowers it overall increasing my productivity and progress. 

As you can tell I love the reflection aspect. It is important to track progress and reflect on your goals. 

 

What are your favorite planners?

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Bridging The Gap

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Life is about the journey and the people you meet along the way. I'm excited and honored to participate in the launch of Bridging The Gap campaign, a campaign that unites the Millennial and Midlife Demographics to blur the artificial lines while encouraging mentorship, authentic connections and a community to lift others. 

Catherine Grace O, who is a previous guest on the She Did It Her Way podcast, has taken the initiative to bring together 200 influencers who have stepped up to take part in social change for good. 

Through this experience I had the pleasure of meeting and instantly connecting with Mindy Schinnerer, a strong business woman, a mother and a former professional singer. I was blown away and inspired by Mindy's journey and her career. It is not every day that one can say they've worked alongside Fleetwood Mac or Don Henley - think Boy's of Summer. 

What I appreciated most from our conversation and something that has inspired me is how Mindy doesn't let mistakes in life define her, she let's go of the unimportant things and keeps herself open to the right opportunities. 

Thank you Catherine Grace O and Bridging The Gap team for bringing us together!

 

Mindy Schinnerer

For me, and I'm imagining for many, by her warmth and lit up personality, Amanda Boleyn is one of those women whom you meet and immediately feel like you've known each other before or know that you are certainly destined to become friends. 

Maybe it's because of our small town, midwestern roots, our love at first date relationships become marriages, enchantment with living in Chicago or our passion for empowering and mentoring female entrepreneurs that we realized we are so much more alike and connected as women in this life, and not defined, limited or separated by our age.

I was inspired listening to her share about how like myself, she has always been willing to follow the opportunities where life is guiding her and yet has a big vision & purpose directing the way. Her passion project SheDidItHerWayPodcast.com was born out of her innate teaching and leadership skills and a desire to create community for female entrepreneurs and to empower women to create businesses that thrive doing what they love.  

I'm so impressed by how Amanda boldly brings her ideas into fruition. She is now branching out to create live events with the first She Did It Her Way Summit coming up this month in Chicago!  

So much fun that Bridging the Gap brought us together, but even more so that it's only the beginning!

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My Morning Routine - The 5 Things I do Everyday

Hey friends! Today I am switching things up and instead of doing a full on blog, I did a Facebook LIVE that I turned into a vlog? Is that how it is said. :) I'm sharing the 5 things I do every morning in order to ensure a productive, centered and successful day. 

Enjoy!

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What Slowing Down and Target Have in Common

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Hey friends! Happy Wednesday :) 

You're probably wondering what slowing down and Target have in common, right? Well let me tell you that as a former bullseye employee in one of their stores, Target (as well as other retailers I'm sure) are quite clever in their approach to their shoppers and driving sales. 

First, let's bring the focus to us as individuals. Take for example in the mornings when you get up does sometimes it seem like you're rushing around from one thing to the next - hitting the snooze, flying out of bed, rushing to put on your workout gear because you're running late to class, get to class and have to adjust your spinning bike in the dark because class started, rush out of class, get in your car, get home, hurry up shower, scarf breakfast down all in order to make your 9am call? Okay, so maybe your morning doesn't look exactly like this but maybe something very similar that ultimately you're rushing from one thing to the next and never really slowing down to take a moment to stop and be present. 

THIS is where Target comes in. 

Working at Target you learn some of the great tricks of working in retail, like... 

"Why is the milk all the way at the backend of the store?" Because milk runs are a thing and if customers only have the intention to purchase milk retailers are going to place it in the back of the store making you walk past everything else in hopes you get distracted and buy more stuff. 

"Why is important to "zone" shelf product?" (Note: zoning is when you pull forward all shelf product so that the shelf looks full) Because studies show that when the shelves are perceived to more full and easier to shop, it drives more sales.

Okay, NOW, my favorite one.....ever wonder why the Target Dollar Spot exists? And no, it isn't because they want to make more money, which indirectly happens because of the Dollar Spot, but it is much bigger than that. 

The Target Dollar Spot is there to make you slow down. Yes, that is correct. It is to make you, the shopper who is in a hurry to slow down. Every retailer's goal is to make you spend more money. If you walk into their store with a plan of only purchasing 5 things (which let's be honest, there's always a $50 cover charge every time you walk into Target - haha, get it? ;) and you're in a hurry, they need to find a way to slow you down and voila - Target Dollar Spot.

They slow you down AND get you in the shopping mode. Shopping is a behavior. If you start putting more things in your cart, selecting more items, you are more likely to continue that behavior during your entire trip to the store, ultimately spending more money, walking out of their store and going "What the heck? Dang it! I did it again! How did that happen?"

Well, my friend. Slowing you down is how it happened. 

Now, back to our individual daily lives. How do you find something that will get you to slow down in certain areas of your life?

First step is bringing into awareness what it is that you're doing. As odd as it may sound, take time to acknowledge what it is that you are doing in this very moment and then the next, and then the next.

It is kind of like eating or drinking. If I go to dinner at a Mexican restaurant and there are chips there I don't even think about what I'm doing, I just go for the chips and dive in. Only to regret it in the middle of my meal or post meal when I feel like I've got gut rut. Because I didn't think about what I was doing or didn't bring it into awareness. 

Even slowing down your pace in which you walk. There are simple things you can do to slow yourself down. 

I hope you enjoyed this post! And maybe even saved you a few dollars ;) 

 

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3 Easy Ways to Avoid Burnout

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In the early stages of building a business...heck...any stage in business or in life, it is easy to find yourself in a state of burnout. Meaning, you run yourself into the ground, you feel like you're running from one thing to the next without ever being physically present, you're always a little bit behind schedule and you have numerous OSM's...aka oh sh*t moments...you know, the one's when you forget to email, call, schedule something ;)

Friend, you are not alone. I've been there many times in my life and I'm sure it will happen again. But what I can tell you is that when I find myself in a place of being overwhelmed it is because I didn't do the following three things below to avoid feeling overwhelmed....

 

1. Schedule Buffers

Buffers, buffers, buffers. I love me some good ole buffers. And I'm not talking about the kind when you go bowling, I'm talking about LIFE buffers. TIME buffers. Post reading Essentialism I became very aware of how I was scheduling these so called "buffers" into my life. Buffers are time slots before and after an activity. Realistic buffers I might add. 

For example if you have back to back meetings but only allow yourself 10 minutes to get from one meeting to the next while they are both at different locations, is it realistic to assume that it will only take you 10 minutes? This is the point where you have to be honest with yourself. Before I would say, "Yup, 10 minutes is enough." But what would is happen is something would come up and I would find myself running 10 minutes behind, thus taking me 20 minutes. Especially living in the city of Chicago, anytime my Uber app tells me it takes 10 minutes to get somewhere, I automatically double the time allotment and schedule accordingly (this sometimes drives my husband nuts because we sometimes get to places quite early) however, to be on time is to be late, right ;) I would MUCH rather arrive early than late. And if you're ever worried about wasting time by getting somewhere early either pack a book, or download a podcast and bring some headphones. 

Rule of thumb - DOUBLE THE AMOUNT OF TIME YOU THINK IT IS GOING TO TAKE YOU TO GET FROM POINT A TO POINT B. 

Areas you can easily schedule buffers in your life: traveling (car, uber, taxi, train, walking, biking), scheduling calls (leave some time in between), even completing a task (if you think it will take you 15 minutes, maybe double it or increase it by 50% of the time).

 

2. Take advantage of the small windows of time

Time is one of those resources that you never get back. One of the things I noticed that I would do is think to myself when I would have an extra 10-20 minutes is that "Hmmm, I could do XYZ but I'm going to wait until I have a chunk of time to get it done." Because truthfully I would think that those 10-20 minutes or so couldn't be used in a productive manor which in reality they could be...even if it is responding to 1 email that has been on your to-do list. So instead of checking social media during those extra minutes (guilty - insert hand raise) put them to go use.

 

3. Say NO more often

This one is extremely important. I used to pack my schedule with meetings, events, travels, you name it. What I noticed though overtime is that it would cause me to burnout because I wouldn't incorporate buffers and I was moving from one thing to the next without every being present. I also found myself saying yes to things that didn't excitement and only saying yes because I either felt bad or that I should attend and that can be energetically draining. By forcing yourself to create buffers and get clear of your goals and what YOU want you'll automatically start saying no more often and my friend, THAT IS OKAY! Give yourself permission to take of YOU. 

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How to Start Surrounding Yourself with the Right People

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Friends, regardless of what journey you find yourself on it is important to surround yourself with people who make you better, encourage you and support you. When I initially went out on my own back in 2012 I was fortunate enough to be surrounded by people who encouraged me to take the leap and dive head first into entrepreneurship.

There were also people in my life who simply didn’t understand the entrepreneurial journey and while their hesitations came from a place of love and protection, had I let their voices influence my decision I may have never taken the leap.

The people you surround yourself with take you where you go in life (and don't go).

Here are 3 ways to start surround yourself with the right people...

 

1. Start Reading Books

And reading the right books. You can tell a lot about a person based on the books they’ve read. When someone shares with me they’ve read “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill or “4-Hour Work Week” by Tim Ferriss, I recognize that we have similar interests which then allows me to want to get to know that person even more.

Check out THIS blog post where I put together the Ultimate Book List.

 

2. Find The Right Events to Attend

Nothing is better than an in person connection. Search keywords in Eventbrite or Meetup.com to find people with similar interests as you.

 

3. It is okay to move on

People come in to our life for a reason and they also move out of our life for a reason. Those reasons vary from individual to individual. As you continue to grow, so will the people you surround yourself with.

 

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The one thing I do to scale my business.

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I always knew that in order to build and scale my business I would have to at some point outsource tasks that I was continually doing on a regular basis, like producing a podcast episode in order to free up my time to work on other business growing activities.

Even if you’re starting out and it is day 1 of your business  or you know you need to outsource some of your daily tasks but not sure how, or where to start then this post is for you.

A few months back I decided (decision is key) that I was ready, needed to and wanted to outsource areas of my business. These areas were taking up a ton of time and it was becoming taxing every time I needed to do it. Plus if I ever truly wanted to unplug I would need to outsource as much as possible in order to do so.
 

1. Identify

First, identify all the tasks you do on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. This doesn’t have to be super complicated. For me all I did was keep a log in my Bullet Journal that helped me see exactly what activities I was doing over, and over...and over...did I mention OVER? After a couple of weeks it came very apparent to me as to what I needed to outsource.

 

2. Systematize It

To make it easier to hire and onboard someone to take over any tasks that you do you’ll want to systematize it. Break down what you do step-by-step so that when the new person takes over he or she knows exactly what to do. A great way to do this is by using Asana. Definitely check out Megan Minn’s Youtube video of “How to Build a Content Calendar Using Asana.” I was introduced to this video via my gal pal Tess Wicks and after watching it it has completely changed the way I create systems in my business, for the better.

 

3. Record Yourself

I have found that the easiest, most impactful way to teach someone is by recording me doing it. Break each process down into bite size learning moments. I broke the entire podcast production down into almost 10 models to make them easy to digest and understand. I was able to onboard my gal so quickly thanks to recording these bad boys. Again, even though you may be starting out and are not actively seeking someone to pay to outsource, it is still worthwhile doing these activities because then when the time comes you’re ready to go!

 

PRO TIP:

Instead of posting on a job board for the position you want to hire for, first inquire amongst your friends who they use. The best referrals are the ones that come from within your network.

 

Check out these other blog posts and podcast interviews for more on scaling and productivity:

 

Want to get more done in a day? Try this.

SDH 169: How to Stay Focused and Protect What Serves You.

 

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5 Ways to Stay Focused When Working From Home

 

 

Friend, if you’re just starting out or even if you work in a corporate setting but work from home then you know the type of struggle it can be at times. #struggleisreal Somedays I can be really productive at home and other days it is really hard to get the momentum going and I easily find myself distracted by a dirty dish in the sink or a load of laundry that needs to be done. Regardless, I have noticed a few things that have helped me stay focused when working from home.

1. Eliminate distractions

If you know that a dirty dish in the sink, load of laundry, messy house will be a distraction to you, schedule time the evening before to take care of it so it is done. I don’t know about you but there’s nothing more satisfying and enjoyable waking up to a clean home (or in my case a studio apartment ;) I feel as though I’ve already started my day out ahead because everything is done, clean and I’m ready to go. So even if you're tired or you think to yourself "Ahh, I'll get it in the morning." STOP yourself and recognize that the joy it will bring you in the AM is worth your time to clean up right then and there.

 

2. Know exactly what you need to do for the day

Part of getting stuff done is know what you need to get done. If you don’t have a plan it is easy to get distracted and find yourself at the end of the day thinking you were productive but didn't really do anything that moved your business forward. I started using Megan Minn's "Ideal Calendar" day technique to help me structure my days more strategically, to get more of the right things done, to move my business forward. 

 

3. Schedule co-working dates

Okay, at least for me, I can’t work from home everyday, girlfriend needs to switch things up every once and awhile. I like change. Find someone that you know you can work alongside of and still be productive while doing so. You could even schedule your co-working time with that friend as a weekly staple where you put it on the calendar for every week, same time.

 

4. Get Dressed

For this one, get dressed the way that makes you feel good. So many people can be a boss in yoga pants and others prefer non yoga pants (<---insert skirt, jeans, trousers...you name it!). Do whatever feels good to you. Honestly for me, some days I’m in yoga pants and other days I’m in regular clothing. It happens to depend when I workout as I try to be the most efficient as possible.

But friend, what is important is for you to do you! What you don’t want to have happen is to spend energy deciding what you’re going to wear and feel guilty because you want to put on yoga pants but feel like you should put on jeans.

 

5. Own Your Work

I remember when I started out and was working from home I would allow myself to answer all the calls and text messages I received from friends and family and thought “How cool is it that I can chit chat with friends and family during the day!” and while I am grateful for the conversations that I had with them, in hindsight it wasn't helping with productivity and what I needed to get done. Stick to your schedule and own your work. It is important for you to protect your time to get your stuff done. You deserve it!

 

If you liked this article check out these podcast episodes too!

 

SDH 160: Building a Business that Fulfills You with Tonya Dalton

SDH 169: How to Stay Focused and Protects What Serves You with Amanda Boleyn

 

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Why You Need to Give Yourself Permission to Keep Dreaming

Do you dream enough? Do you have a vision of what you want your life to look like in 6 months, a year, 5 years? I’m not even talking about it being on paper, can you close your eyes and see what you want your life to look like in the future? As you’ve gotten older has your ability to dream and have a vision dwindled? If so, friend you are not alone.

A few weeks ago I was watching an interview with Mimi Ikonn (which she is amazing BTW and such an inspiration) and I couldn’t help but pause the video and let the words she just said sink in…

“People lose their vision, in life and in business. And as we get older we stop dreaming for some reason but we have to keep the vision and dream going. We have to dream.”

 

A few years back I started noticing that it became more difficult for me to dream what life would look like 6 months out, a year, 5 years.

I honestly can’t say why.

Maybe it was because I thought that by this time in my life I should of had it more figured out than what I did. 

After watching Mimi’s interview I realized she is right, we have to dream. We need to keep the childlike spirit alive and never settle what is but instead will out dreams into existence because we have that kind of power.

Dreaming of what you desire your life to look like (and business) isn't always easy. Because when we put pen to paper or start to even think of how good we truly can have it, that voice inside of our head creeps in and tries to tell us "Who are you to think you can have that? You don't deserve it. You're not worthy of that."

It isn't about getting rid of those thoughts it is about being in conversation with them. Before you sit down to dream, acknowledge them and tell them that you know they're there but this time is for you., for you to dream because you deserve it. It is your life. 

Dreaming is like a muscle and if you have been dreaming on the regular, the beginning can feel like you're walking through mud, but keep going.

Dream for 5 minutes a day, then 10 minutes, until it because unconscious to you. 

When it comes to overcoming mental chatter be sure to tune into the following podcasts:

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Want to get more done in a day? Try this.



 

If there is anything I have learned about being an entrepreneur is that sometimes you feel as if there are not enough hours in the day and then I remind myself that I have just as many hours in the day as Beyonce. And truthfully it isn’t about the number of hours in a day, it is about what we do with them and how we spend them that counts.

Below are 3 things I do to help me get more done throughout my day...

 

1. Turn Your Phone On Airplane Mode

Do you ever keep your phone near you so that "incase" someone calls or texts, you can respond right away? Me too girlfriend. Been there done that! But what I’ve noticed is that when I’m always available or within reach, it becomes a major distraction and a major hinder to my ability to be productive. What I have learned is that when I’m working on projects or doing something that requires my full attention I will switch my phone to airplane mode. That way I can stay as focused as possible. Again, I’m not perfect and sometimes do still keep the phone close to me especially  if I know someone is going to call or I’m communicating with someone but for those moments of intense focus, creative work, that phone is going to be on airplane mode. 


 

2. Break your days down into 30 minute increments (using the Pomodoro technique)

The Pomodoro technique is a great way to break your day up into bite size increments that promote productivity. The Pomodoro method is work intensely for 25 minutes and then take a 5 minute break.

Megan Minn's has a great video around the Pomodoro technique and how to create  an “ideal day” calendar. So instead of schedule a massive 2 hour chunk of time on her calendar that says “Work” she will break that 2 hour chunk down into four 30 minute chunks of time and get real specific on what she plans on doing during that time. Check out her video here.

hashtaggamechanger


 

3. Check Email Last

I’ve found that when I check email first thing in the morning I tend to not only get sucked into it but get anxious. I started noticing that I would expend all my energy on email that when it came to the important stuff that really moves my business forward I would be drained and didn’t have the mental stamina to be fully present.

Now,  mornings are spent doing intense, thoughtful work like blog creation, planning, interviews. I want to make sure that i can give 100% to the important tasks before diving into email.

 

 

For the next week, pick one of the three tips to try and see how it impacts your ability to get more stuff done.

Also, check out this interview with Tonya Dalton, SDH 160 - Building a Business That Fulfills You. Tonya is the founder of inkWELL press and is all about productivity hacking. 

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3 Tips for Setting Financial Goals When You’re Just Starting Out

Whether you’ve launched your side hustle or have recently gone full-time with your business it can be hard to “predict” revenue let alone down right uncomfortable, which can actually lead to procrastination resulting in NO revenue goals ever set.

Exhibit A. Yours truly.

For a majority time of my solopreneur world when it came to consulting that is, projects and gigs flowed to me and I never felt I needed to keep track because projects just came to me.

Now transitioning to running She Did It Her Way full-time it is a bit different. I no longer want my business to be just me. I’m building a business that requires more than just one person and it is a chance to take everything I learned (didn’t do or did do) from the past 5 years and apply it to the current scenario.

The whole process seemed to be a bit overwhelming so I sat down with close friend of mine who had spent years coaching large companies on their business and  helped me actually set a plan in place.

Before you start on any of the follow, first identify how much money you want to make in a year. This will help you benchmark as you work your way through.

Here are the 3 key takeaways for anyone who is just starting out...


1. Identify Revenue Streams

Write down all the things that produce revenue in your business. It could be affiliate, product, services, events, speaking, anything that brings in revenue for you and your business.

Then identify how much it is currently bringing in per month (no matter how much - write it down). Times that number by 12 (for months in a year) and then add up all the potential revenue streams.

Depending on how much you want to make in a year this shows you where you may need to add additional revenue streams or increase prices. But ultimately it provides more information so you can take action.

 

2. Be Conservative

If there are some categories that you’re unsure of or you just launched, be conservative. Meaning under estimate the revenue vs overestimating and falling short of actual revenue later on. 

 

3. Identify behaviors

Once you’ve identified your revenue streams, then go back to each stream and identify what the behaviors are to help you reach your goal. Schedule that behavior in your planner, calendar of even Asana. Megan Minns has a great Youtube Video on how to make Asana work for you.

Happy Wednesday friends! If you have any other topics or questions, please suggest them below!

Xo,

Amanda
 

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How to Get More Done with These 3 Hacks

1. Self Imposed Deadlines

Let’s say you’ve always wanted to speak on a specific topic but never find the energy or determination to actual build out the presentation. What you do is apply/sign up for a speaking opportunity on that topic. Let’s say you get it, now you have no choice but to build out that presentation. You’ve given yourself zero outs. It is go time. #selfimposeddeadlines

 

2. Know the Difference between Energy and Time

Become aware of the not only the time you spend doing a task but also how much energy it takes to do that task. Ever dread doing something that you procrastinate doing it? Every time you procrastinate or think about doing it but don’t actually do it, you zap energy and you waste energy.

We all have things in life and in our business that when we put our head down, time flies. Know what I’m talking about? Can I get a hand raise?! For some people it may be that when you write or perform design work, time just flies by but when it comes to invoicing, scheduling social media, your energy drops and what takes you 15 minutes to complete feels like it takes all day to complete and you’re drained by the end of it.

Identify which tasks are the ones that give you energy and the ones that deplete your energy. Of the ones that deplete your energy see if you can outsource or automate them so you don’t need to spend as much time thinking about them or even doing them, saving you both time and energy. Which leads me to my next point….

 

3. Identify the type of task at hand

Sometimes there are tasks that only we can do that we may not be super jazzed up to complete but we know that it must get done. Think presentation, book, blog posts, research. As Brian Tracy would say, “Eat the frog.” Do the most dreaded task first and get it done. That way you can go throughout the rest of your day knowing that the “worst” thing is out of the way. You’ll be able to move through your day with more ease versus a lingering thought about something you need to get done.

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3 Steps to Take When You Have a Business Idea

In the beginning, having a business idea but not being sure on where to take it and what to do next can be a bit defeating at times. I totally get you, I’ve been there before. Overtime I’ve been able to develop a process for myself that helps me really see if the idea is something that I want to pursue long-term and helps me see if I’m ready to take the next step with my idea.

So you might be sitting at your desk, daydreaming of all these amazing ideas you have but you're just not sure where to start or let along how. 

No fear! Take some pressure offer girlfriend! It is all good. To get you started begin with these 3 steps...

 

1. Brainstorm Without Judgement

If you have an idea, start writing down everything about that idea. “What does it look like? How will it unfold? Who will use my product/service?”

Don’t think, just write!

Give yourself permission to dream and to brainstorm. Allow yourself to fully be in the brainstorming state with no judgement.  Be mindful of that little voice inside your head that hangs out and wants to tell you from time to time “Hey, that idea doesn’t make sense! Why are you putting it down on paper?? How are you going to execute it?” Acknowledge that voice and continue writing. 

Carve out a block of time and sit with your ideas and thoughts and put pen to paper. Seriously, grab a blank sheet a paper, don't worry about where you're going to save the paper, how it fits in your journal, just start ;)
 

2. Step away

The next step after you've spent time writing down your ideas is to take sometime and step away from your list. 

Maybe a few days, maybe a week. But enough time that will allow you some space and so you can come back to your list with fresh eyes.
 

3. Revisit

Now for the revisit. When you go back to your list, take inventory about how you feel reading each idea - “Is this something that I truly want to do or did it just sound like a good idea?” Circle 2-3 ideas from that list that you’ll use in the stage of exploring.

 

I still use this same process today in my business. I am an individual full of ideas and while majority of the ideas sound like a great idea they’re not always the best use of my time. Usually an idea will pop into my head, I act on that inspiration and take notes, step away and revisit.

Sometimes during the revisit phase I find myself chuckling and saying, “Wow. Yeah, that idea sounded like a wonderful idea but definitely doesn’t make sense for my business," and that is TOTALLY okay! That’s why you do this process. It will help you  save time and energy in the long run while helping you get focused.

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3 Reasons Why You Must Be Tracking Your Time

 

Hello beautiful friends and happy Friday! Was anyone a wee bit thrown off by the short week? (assuming you live in the states and celebrated 4th of July?) Welp, I definitely was. Hence why this blog post is a few days late but we’re here and we made it, right?

Whether you’re in the beginning stages of your business or a seasoned entrepreneur there are only benefits when it comes to tracking your time. Toggl is a great tool to track your time - they have an app and desktop platform so you can move between both platforms and better yet...it's FREE!

 

Here are 3 reasons why you must be tracking your time….

 

1. INCREASED PRODUCTIVITY

Tracking your time offers an accountability coach. Because overtime you press the start button to track your time you are making a commitment to that task at hand. That way if you ever have an impulse to check social media, to check email, before you do so, you remind yourself of what you set out to do thus making you more focused and productive with your time.

 

2. BETTER PRICING

By tracking your time you’re able to see where you spend it and how you spend it. It also may give you the confidence and a strong case as to why you need to increase your prices because you begin to see that those emails you send back and forth to your client, the travel time and prep time are associated with the product you sell. 

For example let’s say you run a coaching business and you charge $100 per hour for your services. So when you meet with your client you bill $100. But you’re not including the hour prep time so effectively you’re working 2 hours and only getting paid for one. You may need to adjust your pricing to reflect how much time you actually spend for your client. 

 

3. SCALABILITY

Tracking your time will help you become aware of the tasks you’re completing and the ones that may be time to outsource. Are you doing repetitive tasks every day, week or month? Are they ones that you can separate yourself from and pay someone else to do? By outsourcing tasks it frees up time for you to work on your business versus always in your business.  

 

CHALLENGE

Download Toggl on your phone, create and account and track your time for a week (5 work days thats is). And start to see where you’re spending your time. This is great whether you’re an entrepreneur or someone who is in transition of full-time corporate with side hustle. What gets measured gets managed. And when we measure our time, we manage it better. 

 

Have a wonderful weekend!

Amanda

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Help! I want to start a business but I have student loans.

 

Let me first by saying that I am in no way a financial expert and anything that follows this statement is of my own experience and all opinions are my own.

If you want to start a business but you have student loans there are a few things you can do that I did to help find what will work best for you.

When I graduated in 2010 I had accumulated a decent amount in student loan debt. My education was 100% self-funded. My loans were made up of private, federal and parent plus with interest rates ranging from 3.24% variable LIBOR to 7.75-8.4% fixed.

It is key to remember that everyone’s situation is different including their risk tolerance. To say there is a one size fits all answer to this question is not possible. Everyone has different financial goals, things they want to achieve and different values that will dictate their actions.  

Here are 3 steps I recommend that will ultimately help you find clarity and put together a plan.

 

First - Set the stage

Understand how much do you owe along with corresponding interest rates.

First things first, how much do you own? What is the total amount? I found it helpful to create an excel document that has the name of who the loan is with, login and password (I also suggest using Lastpass instead of keeping that information on a Googledoc or somewhere that it could be hacked), the interest rate, monthly payment and amount left to pay for each loan.

There are different ways you can track this - you can login manually each month to see or if you use Mint, it will automatically update the information for you.

By doing this it will help you prioritize and you can ask yourself, “Are there any loans with an extremely high interest rate that I should make a goal of paying off before quitting my job?”

 

Second - Take inventory

What does your budget look like? Do you have a budget?

Do you rent or own? If you rent, when your lease is up could you move into a smaller place that would save even $100 a month? What about cars? Would it make sense to see your vehicle and buy a beater in order to not have a monthly car payment?

Again, everyone is different.

If you’re looking for tools to help you budget you can check out my blog post, “My 3 Favorite Money Management Tools” HERE.

 

Third - Make a plan

Now that you know how much you owe and interest rates, and your monthly budget it is time to make a plan. Do you want to pay your loans off entirely before you launch your business? Do you want to pay off the loan with the highest interest rate and then start your business? Whatever it is, make a plan.

How are you going to do it? Are you going to make better money decisions? Pick up a part-time job? Write it out on a piece of paper and set deadlines. 

 







 

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