Most of us live our work lives in a very urgent, very hurried, very overwhelming state. Right when we wake up, we think two toxic thoughts, “I didn’t get enough sleep. I don’t have enough time.” So before we even get out of bed, before we pull the covers off of ourselves, before we put our feet on the floor, we already feel behind. This thinking makes us feel like we are already losing the day.
Then, we rush into work and we are laser focused on what we have to get done, what we need to finish. We are under major deadlines and people are relying on us! This puts us in a very weak mental state. We go into work and are hit in the face with never ending to do lists. We only have a certain number of hours in the day and it is fewer than what we need to get done what we have to get done. And then there is the pressure. OMG, the pressure! It builds and it builds and it builds…there is a huge pressure put on us to finish the work…on time and under budget.
Phew. It is soooo much to deal with! Some of us get so overwhelmed that we don’t know where to start. So, instead, we don’t start at all! We procrastinate, we shut down, we want to close our laptops and crawl back into bed.
We just try to get through the day.
But what if we decided to take a different approach? What if, instead of trying to get through the day, we tried to get FROM the day? What about facing each day thinking of the things that we want to do, that we want to discover, that we want to experience?
What if instead, when we wake up in the morning, we say to ourselves, " I got enough sleep, and I have enough time.” This puts us in a state of having enough. Enough clothes. Enough food. Enough creative ideas to find a solution. Going into life with the mindset of getting from the day will leave us energized, excited, and eager. It swings the power toward us. We get to decide what to focus on. We get to decide what we want from the day.
The mental shift is subtle, but it is effective. When we think about what to get from the day, we focus on the things we want to enjoy from the day. From OUR day.
In the comments below, tell me…what are the things you are going to get from your day…today?
Whatever we want to achieve in life, no matter how big our goals are, there are going to be times when we are faced with difficulties. There are going to be opportunities for us to give up on what we are working towards, to slack off, to not be our best. But if we are going to reach our highest potential, we have to stay committed.
We have to stay stubborn enough to believe that we will achieve.
Nothing good in life ever happened by giving up. Dreams and goals were placed in our hearts from when we were a young age. While we may get distracted as we go through life, deep down in our souls, our dreams are still there. When we are finally ready to pursue them, we have to make a promise to ourselves that no matter what, we will do whatever it takes to bring those dreams to life.
We have to have a stubbornness about it. We have to know that we will reach our dreams, no matter what. Being stubborn enough to think we can do it means that we make up our minds that we are in it for the long haul. It means standing up for what we believe it. To know we can reach the dream.
Sure, there are going to be times when we are pursuing our goals and bad breaks happen. People don’t treat us right. They steal from us, they lie to us. We start feeling sorry for ourselves. We think it is too hard, so we want to quit. Or we want to get back at the person who did us wrong. So we may not put in as much effort toward our dream, and instead direct it toward getting even. As we are complaining and crying about it, we are taking away the energy that we need to pursue our goals. The distraction is going to hurt us in the long run.
Take the story of Thomas Stephen Monaghan. He was raised in an orphanage after his father died when he was four years old. In college, in the year 1960, he borrowed $900 to buy a restaurant, a pizza place. His wanted to use the money he made at the pizza place to help pay his tuition. He never went back to school because the pizza place was losing money. He had all kinds of bad breaks. His business partner ended up stealing his life savings from him, a fire burned his restaurant down. His friends and family told him to give up, that this just wasn’t meant to be. But in the dark time, he stayed stubborn. He had an idea. He thought to take the pizza to the people. He had an idea of delivering pizza. He created a new pizza box that kept the pizza warm and made it so that you could carry multiple pizzas at the same time without them crushing each other. He started delivering pizza on college campuses. The idea worked. He started with one restaurant to what is now 6,000. In 1998, he sold his Domino’s pizza company for a billion dollars. Good thing he stayed stubborn.
We can’t give up on the promises and the goals that were placed in our hearts. We may make mistakes, but we should stay stubborn and stay committed to our dreams.
Here’s the deal. When we are going after our goals, we aren’t always going to be having fun. There are going to be times when we feel like giving up, when we aren’t having fun, when there are obstacles ahead. But that’s when we have to lean in even further. We have to get even more stubborn. We have to dig our heels in even deeper.
We have to say to ourselves “I am going to do the right thing when it’s hard. I am committed to this goal, and I am going to be my best. I am not going to give up because I don’t see anything happening.”
When things are easy and going our way, we are in it to win it. But when we get discouraged, when things are taking longer than we wanted them to, we may slack off. Being our best where we are, showing up with a good attitude, and doing more than you have to.
We have to Stay Stubborn. We have to keep being our best day in and day out. There are going to be times when nothing is going our way. Yes, it’s hard. Yes, it’s difficult. If it was easy, everyone would do it.
The dream wouldn’t be in our hearts if we weren’t the right people for the job! We already have the talent. We are already full of the can-do mentality and power! We didn’t come this far to stop now! We have to stay stubborn.
On the road to our destiny, half way through, every single one of us is going to be tempted to turn around and go back. Everyone will want to give up, stop and go back. Half of the people will. But we aren’t everyone. We have to move forward. The funny thing is that both people travel the same distance! If you start working toward pursuing your goals, learn things, go the distance, and then you stop, turn around and go back or if you keep pushing through to the end of your journey and reach the dream. Both people travel the same distance.
Stubborn people outlast the difficulty. They go the extra mile and do more than they have to. They stay faithful. They stay loyal. Stubborn people reach their dreams.
Year after year, stubborn people refuse to give up. They may see no growth, no increase. The dream in their heart may be taking longer than they thought. That’s a test. Are they going to give up? Get discouraged?
No. We are different than everyone else. We are a stubborn people. We don’t give up. We push harder. We believe and we know that our dream is right in front of us.
We have to say to ourselves, “I will never leave until I reach my goal. I will stay on the path towards it. I am committed. I am sticking with it through thick and thin. I am going to outlast the tough times. I am staying stubborn so I won’t take the easy way out. I remain loyal to this dream.”
There will be plenty of times when we are tempted to walk away. We may think that It’s been too long, we’ve worked too hard, it’s never going to happen. We have to be consistent. Loyal. Faithful.
We have to stay stubborn and know that we will win in the long run. But it isn’t for everyone. It’s not common, its not ordinary. Reaching the dream is for people who go the extra mile. We stay enthusiastic even when nothing is happening.
When we stay stubborn and determined, we know that quitting is not an option.
Staying stubborn means that other people can’t talk you out of your dream even when you aren’t making progress. When we stay stubborn, eventually things will turn around, our business will take off. When we stick through it and stay stubborn to wait it out, that’s when we will have the breakthrough, that’s when we reach our new level.
Stay stubborn when it isn’t fair. When you have every right to give up, stay committed. Stay in it for the long haul. Stay stubborn and fulfill your purpose. Don’t give up because it isn’t fair. When you stay stubborn, doors will open.
Stay stubborn, my friend.
Happy Birthday! Did you know that today is your birthday? And tomorrow and then the next day and then the next day?
When it is our birthday, we aren’t afraid to ask big. I was at a kids birthday party last weekend and the little girl who we were celebrating ran up to me and said “It’s my birthday today!" So I leaned down and gave her a big hug. A few seconds later, she grabbed my leg and looked up and said “today is my birthday!” So I leaned down again, gave her a hug and said happy birthday! She didn’t leave. She said for the third time, “today is my birthday, what are you going to get me?” She felt entitled to a present, because she knew it was her special day.
I thought, wow. That’s amazing. Here was this little kid, so confident, so sure of herself, that she just asked exactly for what she wanted. She expected to be given something.
I wondered, why don’t we all act like that? Why don’t we go around asking for and expecting to get what we want in life?
When it is our actual birthday, we aren’t afraid to ask. On our birthdays, we feel like it is okay to directly ask for something special, for what we really want. Any other time, we wouldn’t want to inconvenience anyone, but on our birthday, when someone asks us what we want or what we want to do, we think “ok, I am going to ask for that outfit, that golf club, that party.” We have boldness and we ask.
We don’t feel badly or selfish about asking for what we want when it is our birthday. Any other time of year, we hold back. We think about other people and how this could be troublesome or a bother to them. Too often, instead of approaching it like it is our birthday, we think it is greedy, it is selfish. Nothing makes the universe happier than to give us what we want.
When it is our special day, we have a birthday boldness to ask for what we want.
Here’s the deal. We deserve that birthday boldness mentality every day.
We get to live in abundance. We can dare to ask for what we want like it’s our birthday. We each have special gifts, unique contributions to offer this world. We were all born, on our birthdays, with certain desires in our hearts. We wouldn’t want something if we weren’t meant to have it!
Each day is OUR BIRTHDAY.
So for those times when our dreams look impossible, when we are in low points in our lives, and when things look bleak and like they aren’t going to get any better, that is the exact time for us to act like it’s our birthday.
Have the birthday boldness. We have to ask for making a way for our dreams to come true, even when we don’t see a way.
The universe that breathed life into us on the day we were born – it is an overflowing universe. Ask for birthday boldness. Ask for the things that seem impossible. There is more than enough to go around. Ask for the acceleration of our goals.
When we ask the universe for what we want, we have to ask like it’s our birthday. Ask for the secret dreams, for the deep down desires that were placed in our hearts.
Yes, it may look like the odds are against us. But there is a force out there bigger than us. We just have to ask for it. We have to make bold birthday requests. We have to ask in spite of what people are telling us.
Today is your birthday. What do you want? You can command whatever it is. You get to have that birthday boldness to ask for what you want.
Ask for your dreams, your healing, you aren’t inconveniencing anyone. You are the most prized possession.
TODAY IS YOUR BIRTHDAY, what do you want? TWO WEEKS from now it is your BIRTHDAY, what do you want? SEVEN YEARS from now it is your BIRTHDAY, what do you want?
Every day when you get up think, with a childlike faith, “happy birthday to me, this is what I want today!” Have the boldness to ask for what you want. Go to the universe like it is your birthday. When we ask, we will see it show up in your life in ways greater than we can imagine.
Have the birthday boldness to say “let my gifts stand out.. let my work stand out so that it is so inspiring that others. Make me shine, give me influence. Give me ideas. Let me use my influence to benefit mankind. I will help others.”
Boldly ask like it’s your birthday. Dare to ask for what you want. Treating everyday like it’s our birthdays means we can accomplish our dreams faster than we ever thought possible.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!!! So, in the comments below, tell me, what are your birthday wishes for today?
Today, I am here to give you some tough love. We live in a society of instant gratification. Social media platforms, amazon prime, drones, and other ways to get us whatever we want, whenever we want, has shifted our perspective.
We expect it now. We are used to instant gratification.
When we know that there is something we want, we want it immediately if not sooner. Right this moment if not quicker. We don’t have to wait for anything anymore. We don’t have to think about, plan for, or scrape away to get what we desire.
There is no waiting. We get it now.
Years ago, people would have to wait for what they want. They would have to put off getting exactly what they were looking for. Before being able to search for things online, they would have to wait for a sale to get what they wanted.
They would know what they were after and would sit and wait for prices to come down, for a great deal to come up.
Here’s the deal. In life, we expect our success to be like a flash sale. We want it to happen instantly and overnight. Like something we can buy on amazon that we can get in a couple of days, we apply the same line of thinking with success.
The reality is that there is no sale on success. It requires patience, hard work, and dedication.
Take overnight success stories. In many cases, what may seem like an instant success out of nowhere is actually the result of years, decades even, of hard work. The road to success is long, twisty, and fraught with hardship.
There comes a point in everyone’s career, business, or relationship when it looks like failure is right around the corner. When we realize that the sale we thought we had wasn’t really there.
That’s when it is time to get real. There is no sale.
When we are in the middle of the downward spiral, we have to stop and see that there is no sale. We have to embrace the reality of our situations, we have to accept where we are. We have to stop feeling sorry for ourselves and try to direct our energy toward solving the challenge at hand.
When we finally realize that there is no sale, we have to stay calm. Pause. Center ourselves. Keep moving forward.
We have to remind ourselves that challenges are part of the journey. So just like there is no sale, there is also no sold out to success. Success is available to everyone. So let’s get out there and get it!
With an endless amount of things we could be interested in, there are many directions our unique paths can take us. We could pursue so many different things. Sometimes it feels overwhelming! We can be or do almost anything. Deciding what we want to do and who we want to become can seem daunting. This is our LIFE we are talking about!
Sooooo…how are we supposed to decide?
An easy way for us to figure it all out is to look at what we are willing to commit to. The Big C. When faced with countless choices and directions to go, we can ask ourselves, what are we willing to really commit to?
To become good at anything, we are going to have to spend countless hours getting better. If there is something we want to be an expert in, we have to get committed. We have to put in the time. The effort. The energy.
Take a professional athlete. While there has to be a natural talent for a pro athlete to get to that level, there are so many other factors at play. They have to sign up for the Big C. They have to be committed. People who are professional athletes don’t just love the sport they’re competing in. They live it. They dedicate most of their life toward trying to reach their goals.They have countless hours of practice. Most train everyday for 3-6 hours a day. Some athletes spend 10,000 hours of practice before getting to the professional level. Others use virtual reality to continue the training.
In addition to the training, athletes sign up for the Big C in other ways. Getting enough rest is important for athletes so they can train at optimum level. They stay on top of their diet to eat right for training. They keep themselves hydrated. Then there’s the mental prep they have to commit to. Athletes need to be in the right state of mind to stay on top of their game.
Consider Michael Phelps, the 18 time gold medal winner, and his daily practice of visualization. During the months leading up to a race, Michael mentally rehearses for two hours a day seeing himself winning. He pictures himself in the pool, smells the air, tastes the water, hears the sounds, sees the clock and then sees himself being the first to finish the race.
Dedication and seriously hard work contribute to the Big C. Their mind is on the goal. They are committed.
So when we feel overwhelmed with all of the choices life can offer us, we can ask ourselves, what are we committed to doing?
In the comments below, tell me, what Big C are you willing to sign up for today?
In our society, we tend to focus on the wrong things. As kids growing up in school, we are often criticized when we don’t come home with good grades. There is a lot of pressure put on kids to “do well in school.” And the dreaded report card…oh, that’s always a fun day when we come home with that.
If we aren’t good at something like math and we have a failing grade, what happens? We work with a tutor. We spend countless hours making sure we understand the subject. We spend time and energy making sure we don’t fail, again.
How messed up is that? We spend all this time on things that aren’t our Super Powers!
We waste countless hours on an area that we aren’t interested in. Something that we have no desire of ever pursuing as a career in our lives, we throw our hearts and souls into.
The subject isn’t easy for us because we aren’t interested! We aren’t meant to be interested! We may not be good at math because we are supposed to be good at acting. Acting is our Super Power, not math.
The more we don’t focus on our Super Powers and what we are naturally talented in, the more we steer off course from our true purpose in life.
Yet, we can’t have ourselves or our kids have a “failing grade.” It would be embarrassing, shameful, humiliating. What if they don’t make it to the next school grade?
So we waste time. We waste energy. We waste resources. All for the wrong Super Power.
Then as adults, we go to jobs where we are evaluated with performance reviews. These fun meetings tell us what we could do better. We are coached to work on the areas we need to improve on.
But WHY? This isn’t focusing on our strengths or our Super Powers!
What if, instead, we worked toward getting better at what we are already good at? What if, instead, we make our Super Powers even more powerful?
You don’t have to look further than Marvel Movies to see this played out. Each super hero has their own Super Power. They each have their own area of expertise. The Hulk doesn’t shoot webbing from his hands to climb walls like Spider Man or try to fly like the Falcon. Just like us, they each have their very own skill and ability. They stay in their lane.
So for today, let’s choose to focus on our natural Super Power. It might be as simple as always being the cheerful, upbeat one in the office. So we decide to be the first to say hello when passing people in the hallways.
One way to help us figure out what area we are naturally talented in is to listen for what people compliment us on. Is it our writing? Our speaking? Our organizational skills?
If we all decided to pay more attention to what we are good at, and stop thinking about what we can’t do, what would our society look like?
We all have unique talents and special gifts to offer to the world. It’s time we show them.
So tell me, in the comments below, what is YOUR Super Power?
Things happen to us in this life that are not in our control. Beyond just the day to day annoyances, struggles, and inconveniences, real tragedies occur. Relationships we once thought would last forever end. The people we love pass away. Our bodies betray us through illness and diseases. We lose our jobs, our homes. We file for bankruptcy as we drown in student loan debt and bad credit scores.
Crazy stuff that we thought would never happen to us or could ever happen to us, happen! Life takes us down its own path that we never set out for.
So yes, like it or not, we all carry around some baggage.
If we aren’t careful, we may find that we drag this baggage with us. New relationships, new jobs, new conversations. We come in with baggage. We don’t even realize it is weighing us down. We come into what should be new, clean slate situations, and we bring in our past. The things that left a mark on us come right along with us!
Why do we do this?!?
Take my friend Marissa. A beautiful, energetic, successful woman in her 20s, from the outside looking in, Marissa has it all! She is smart. She is funny. She has a good steady job and some really fantastic friends. But she struggles in the dating area of her life. She just can’t seem to get past the two year mark in her long term relationships.
When asking her more about WHY and WHAT HAPPENS, she breaks it down and it all becomes very clear.
ME: Hey Marissa, sorry about the breakup. What happened?
MARISSA: Oh you know, the usual. My knight in shining armor turned out to be a loser in aluminum foil. ME: Well, its okay. I mean, like I always say, “men are a luxury, not a necessity.” But what really happened?
MARISSA: Well, he started acting distant. I wasn’t sure what was going on. He started getting really busy at work and I know he was stressed out. He had a lot going on.
ME: Okay, well what changed? Did you start doing something different?
MARISSA: I don’t know. I mean I was always there for him. Like ALWAYS. If he needed anything at all, I dropped what I was doing. I helped him in any way I could. I tried to be really understanding and cool with what was going on.
ME: Well what about YOU. Before you met him, I know that you were really into yoga, working out, and doing your charity events.
MARISSA: Yeah, I kinda put a little pause on all of that.
ME: What? Why? What do you mean?
MARISSA: Well, there were only a few times a week he could spend time with me. Like I said, he was really busy. He’s very important at his job and has a lot of demands.
ME: hmm…sounds like he’s just not that into you. And sounds like you are bringing in your past baggage.
ME: Remember that book and movie? Busy is another way of saying he is just not that into you. Busy is the relationship deal breaker. The word “busy” is just a bunch of BS. Men are never too busy to get what they want. Isn’t this the same thing that happened with the last dude you were dating?
MARISSA: Yeah. Same thing. We were great, things were great, perfect even. Then about two years in, I started hinting at wanting to get engaged and he disappeared on me.
ME: It sounds like you are repeating past behaviors. You might be bringing in your old baggage. Your backpack is filled with your story that you need to be there for them all the time. So. Here’s what you can do. Start your hobbies back up again! Do you. Go out with your friends, pick up new hobbies, try online dating. Do whatever it takes to get a life, a real life, of your very own.
MARISSA: Yeah, but then that means that I won’t be able to see them that often.
ME: EXACTLY!!! Stop dropping everything to be with them! If they like you, they will keep trying. Unload the backpack! Let go of the old baggage and story that you have to ALWAYS be there. They won’t get scared away by this if they really like you. Don’t you worry about that!
MARISSA: Ugh, I don’t know.
ME: Look. Your baggage is that you are a people pleaser. You don’t want to disappoint anyone. You are afraid that if you aren’t always there for them, they won’t want to be with you at all. You have to unload the backpack. That story you are telling yourself isn’t true. If they want you, they will find you. And remember, don’t waste the pretty!
The key is to unload the backpack that is dragging us down.
We enter in new situations with our past behaviors, our past stories, our past viewpoints. This could be the reason why we aren’t seeing different results in our lives.
We have to learn to unload our backpacks.
Here’s what we can do. We can walk into the next conversation, the next meeting, the next party with no expectations. No idea of how it is going to go. We can approach everyone we meet with curiosity. We can see them as someone we want to learn more about.
When we unload our backpacks and let go of our past baggage, we can breathe again. We can look at old things with new eyes. We can feel the weight of the backpack lift off our shoulders.
So tell me, in the comments below, what baggage do you need to let go of? What do you need to unload from your backpack today?
In a society filled with too much to do and too little time, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. We have so many choices and too much information at our fingertips.
So what happens? Our to do lists just grow longer and longer and longer.
When I set out to start a new presentation, I usually start by thinking about how I am going to tell the story. I like to think about the opening to get the audience engaged, the content with points that support my main objective, and an ending that will bring it all together. After I look at the outline, I see how exciting it is and how amazing this masterpiece is going to be! I get really pumped up, eager to see it completed, and feel empowered to take on the world!
Then about 5 seconds later, I become overwhelmed with panic. OMG this is so much information and how in the hell am I going to get it all done. I have a deadline coming up and I am not even entirely sure if my key points will be supported by real facts. Why didn’t I start this sooner, what was I thinking. I should just give up now, I am not going to be able to do any of this. UGH. OMG. WHAT DO I DOOOOO?
This time, though, I decided to try something different. I closed my eyes. I took a deep breath. I started repeating my mantra, ‘I am healthy, wealthy, happy, successful, and wise.” I thought about the things in life that I am grateful for. I am healthy. All my six senses are intact. I live in a country with endless opportunities, programs, and support for people like me. I am able to type this blog post because I have internet, how amazing is that? I shifted my perspective on my task at hand.
I told myself, Erin, just do one thing at a time. So, I started a list of things I needed to do. Then I shortened the list to the things I had to get down TODAY. I took the first one on the shortened list and focused on it.
In order to help us get a better perspective on life, let’s look at the most common things we think about when we get overwhelmed.
Once your WHY is important enough, you find the time. The phone turns off, the email and Facebook and Instagram stops getting checked. When the task becomes a have to, the time is there.
Put together Your To Do List. Look at it and think what are the things that have to happen NOW? What can wait? Then concentrate on the things that have to happen now. Shorten your list to the things that have to get done now.The shorter the list you are working with, the better you’ll feel.
Then turn off your phone. Turn off your email. Just do the task that has to get done NOW.
At the end of each day, make your ‘DID IT LIST’ of all the things you accomplished. What happens is that most of us make our to-do lists and then think about all the things that we didn’t get done. Spending time acknowledging the things we DID do will help us feel more accomplished for the next day.
So tell me in the comments below, how are you going to write your DID IT list today? And the next and the next and the next?
Extreme open mindedness is the ability to see all sides of a situation objectively and optimally.
Let’s say you are trying to convince your colleague start a new project because you think it will be profitable for the company. Deep down, you really believe your idea is valid. You have data, facts, and pages of information to support why it’s the right thing to do. But your colleague doesn’t agree.
Both sides think they are right. An argument ensues and you are pressed for time to decide.
To be effective and explore different points of view and different possibilities, we have to let go of our egos. It requires that we replace our attachment to always being right with the joy of learning what’s true. It allows us to see and consider all the good choices and make the best possible decisions.
In order to do this, we have to:
To practice extreme open mindedness, we have to get comfortable and understand that we can’t make a good decision without first swimming in the state of “not knowing” for a while.
And that’s okay.
We have to suspend our judgement for a time to emphasize with and see things through another person’s eyes. This means we have to open ourselves up to considering the reasoning of others and the possibility that we could be wrong.
When practicing extreme open mindedness, remember that we are seeking the best answer, not simply the best answer that we can come up with ourselves.
We can learn to appreciate the art of extreme open mindedness. When in a debate, our goal is not to convince the other person they are wrong, it is to find out which viewpoint is true. Thoughtful disagreement involves calm exchanges between two people in which we really see what the other person is seeing. And they really see what we are seeing. We are both trying to get to the truth.
We have to look outside ourselves for the answer. It is important to know what we don’t know. We can practice extreme open mindedness by asking ourselves: Am I seeing this just through my own eyes?
In the comments below, tell me, how are you going to practice extreme open mindedness today?
by watching the sunset over the ocean
in listening to my favorite folk rock music and dancing on my couch
by hanging out with my friends that make me laugh for a fun Sunday dinner
in the smile of my friend's 2 year old niece when she plays hide and go seek
by feeling the fear yet still walking up to the stage confidently
in the sweat trickling down my face because I worked out harder than ever
by planning a rock climbing trip, finally
in the breath and stillness of this moment
by talking to that hot guy in line behind me at the grocery store
We all can command joy in our lives. If we take a minute, a beat, a pause, and recognize all that we have to to experience in this world and all that we have to offer others, we will be amazed.
In the comments below, tell me, how will you command joy?