The Thing That’s Stealing Your Energy…and it’s not other people!

Back in the olden days of 1980-something, my dad complained the thousands of decisions he’d make each day at work.

I’d think, Jeez, Dad. Poor you. How hard is it to make decisions all day long? 🙄

To me, it sounded like a luxury! I mean – kids don’t get to make any decisions! You’re told what to wear. Where to stand. When to eat.

What a fool I was.

What I’d give now to not have to make decisions!

But for my clients and me, it’s not the BIG decisions that are killing us: it’s the teeny, tiny, stupid decisions.

• What time should we leave for the airport?
• What should we have for dinner?
• Which sneakers should I buy my kid?

UGGGGG! They’re exhausting and steal our time!

 

 

This is Decision Fatigue – that wiped out feeling you have because sooooo many things are swimming in your head – big things & little things & middle things.

It’s not only exhausting. It creates anxiety, worry, fear, overwhelm.

We all have BIG decisions to make. Currently on my mind:
• How do I want to scale my business?
• Where do I want to live in 10 years?
• How are we going to pay for retirement?

Why do I waste time with little, teeny-tiny decisions that don’t really matter?

Example: I want to stop bullshitting myself about my yoga practice & get serious.

And since yoga’s exploded in Syracuse, we have numerous studios to choose from.

#blessed

But, I was totally bullshitting myself by spending hours on the MindBody app, exploring which class to take, at what studio, at which time, with what teacher!

I mean. Seriously. HOURS!

Comparing, looking at my calendar, overthinking it all.

I wasted so much time deciding, sorting, ranking, and researching…that I wasn’t making it to class.

I was so tired of thinking about yoga that I wasn’t doing yoga!

It sounds stupid, but I bet somewhere in your life, you’re avoiding actually DOING something by spending too much time thinking about it.

This is buffering – avoiding just DOING the damn thing.

Thinking about doing yoga…Researching yoga…
Exploring yoga…Planning yoga…

Is NOT doing yoga!!

So I constrained: this means I pick one and go with it. See how it works out.

I mean – jeez, it’s all just an experiment anyway. We cannot know the perfect solution!

You’ll likely resist this tool. Tell yourself, Ohhhh! I need all the options!

No. No you don’t. All the options are absolutely paralyzing.

Here’s how I solved my yoga problem:

I committed to the studio I felt most comfortable with, most convenient to my home.

Made my constraints.
Bought a year unlimited pass.
That. Was. That.

Are you tired of making thousands of decisions a day – that feel important but actually aren’t?

Decisions keeping you from taking action?

You’re in Decision Fatigue.

How do you deal with it? Make it stop?

As usual, I suggest NOT overhauling your life. Choose one area you feel like you’re in Decision Fatigue.

• What to wear/eat/etc.
• Which podcast to listen to
• What exercise to do
• Which webhosting software to use
• Which book to read

These little decisions are keeping you stuck in a loop…creating anxiety, worry, and exhaustion.

How to constrain?

1. Decide about one aspect of your life that’s currently depleting you.
2. Simplify & take action.
3. Assess. Is life better? The same? #winning
4. Is life worse? Make a different choice.

This won’t be easy: that’s ok.
Make a choice – it may not be perfect. That’s ok.

We gain confidence not by doing things perfectly, but by doing something – knowing we can handle the outcome.

You can do this. I promise – micro shifts yield macro results.

Interested in learning more? Reach out – I’m creating an online coaching group to help people with this topic of mastering our time…I’d love to pick your brain & learn about what’s keeping you stuck!

How Losing $225K Wasn’t Actually a Failure

A client recently commented on my past “failed business.”

The one in which I was 20% owner for almost 4 years, working 60 – 70 hours/week.

It never made enough to pay me.

I gave back my 20% ownership last summer, giving up more than $200K in unpaid earnings and $25,000 in investments.

I looked at him, perplexed. I said, “Oh! I never think of that business as a failure.”

But, he said, you were so burned out from it. And you never made anything –  you lost all that money.

Hm. True, I guess. I never did make a dime.

Instead…

I made connections with people in this community who have shown me what generosity, acceptance, and respect looks like up close.

I made myself proud – creating & executing procedures, infrastructure, and communication to run a 9,000-square foot fitness facility with over 35 staff members…which I’d never done before!

I made it through two incredibly difficult years of being partners with my best friend – learning how to navigate impossible and unbearable conversations – coming out the other side with a stronger friendship than ever.

I made an impression on myself, my husband, my family, and my friends about what I am capable of.

I made myself into an entrepreneur, learning how to lean into discomfort and recreate myself when it’s time.

Yeah, yeah – that’s great, Jen. [Insert eye roll emoji here]

Most people get pissed off about the money when they hear this story. They have strong opinions about are curious about my lost $225,000.

Know what I got for a quarter of a million dollars?

  • A hands-on, personally-designed, just-for-me M.B.A. with ass-kicking real-life tests & rewards
  • A Ph.D. in myself – pushing me to the limits of my own expectations & ability
  • A 2000% increase in confidence, purpose, and mission

The last one alone was worth the price of admission.

Going through burnout, terror, fear, and lack of confidence was the price I paid to get where I am now. Without that business, I’d literally be unable to help the clients I help now.

Fer Sher…There are so many things I could’ve done better. Smarter. Faster. Easier.

But I still don’t see any of it as a failure. If I’d learned better, smarter, faster, or easier, I would not be where I am now.

Is there a failure that you’re holding on to?

A story you have about something that didn’t work out the way you wanted it to?

Or the way you think it should have?

I ask you to process it. Don’t let it fester. Don’t let it live under a rock.

Shine the light on it – explore what it taught you.

  • What were your wins?
  • What were your challenges?
  • And what were your wins within those challenges?

I could write a book on the challenges we endured at Method 360 Fitness. I could have a hundred chapters on the mistakes we made, the stupidities, the hubris, and the conflicts.

Within each one, there is a giant lesson. A win. Something to take away that I use now in my business, life, relationships, and mission.

It all had to happen – because it did happen. What’s the point of regretting it?

If you’re holding on to a past experience and calling it a failure or feeling regret, it’s time to ask how that’s serving you.

Is it keeping you from your next great thing?

Are you ready to explore the other side of the failure?

If you don’t know how – or it doesn’t feel safe to do it – I know someone with some perspective. 😉

Reach out. I’m here.

 

Is it possible to have a business AND a life?

I was doing something I’d never done before. We had 9,000 square feet of wide open space in our fitness studio, and I was dancing. 💃🏼

It was the first time in two years that I felt free enough to do anything like this. I’d put down my work, cranked up Flo Rida, and danced!

My best friend – one of my business partners – caught me dancing & looked at me with a smile – and a little sadness.

She said, “That’s the first time I’ve heard you laugh like YOU in a looong time. You don’t seem happy anymore.”
I stopped, out of breath, put my hands on my hips, and dipped my head to the side. It’s my I’m considering what you’re saying but I think you’re full of bullshit stance.
Hmph.
My days consisted of getting up at 4:30am getting to the studio by 5.  I’d run things all day long – behind the scenes and at the front desk – priding myself on how much I could get done.
During times of heavy traffic, “working” meant being there for clients. During slow times, I could really cross shit off my list. I was doing it all, 7 days a week, and calling it “passion.”

My VERY supportive husband understands start up life – and though he didn’t bat an eye when many nights I’d get home at 7:30pm, I may as well not have been there.

I’d eat, say hi to my family, and then get back to work because the load was crushing.

I was incredibly productive. We’d built something really amazing.

But I had no life.

I thought that owning a business meant I had to work all the time. I didn’t deserve to take a moment off because we weren’t making a profit.

Also, I have two fatal flaws:

  1. I like to be the best at whatever I do.
  2. I really love to work.

These characteristics are useful – until they go unchecked. Then I get knocked out of whack.

Back to me standing there, looking at Leslie, hands on my hips.

Dammit, I thought. She’s right. I don’t remember the last time I laughed. Listened to music just for the sake of listening to music. Had dinner with my family…without my phone! Or laptop.

  • I marvel at how focused I was, how productive I could be. How hard I really worked.

  • I marvel at what we built during that time.

  • And looking back, I see that I could’ve eased up.

But I didn’t know how. I didn’t think I could take my hand off the wheel.

I didn’t know how to have a business and a life.

My marriage suffered. My son suffered. My relationship with my best friend suffered.

I suffered.

Has something taken over your life?

How long has it been since you’ve felt happy? Fulfilled? Peaceful?

What would it feel like to be able to breathe again?

Every day I help men & women overcome the overwhelm suffocating them. I watch them achieve their goals. Impress themselves.

It is my mission to never get to that place again for myself – and help as many people avoid it for themselves!

The best thing Leslie did that day was help me notice that I wasn’t breathing.

Are you? Breathing, I mean.

What Will You No Longer Put Up With?

I did not want to have kids.

My mom & dad had kids. 😳 Obv. 🙄  And we were giant pains in the ass. Life seemed really hard. And stressful. I didn’t want my life to be like that.

Fast Forward to my first date with John, after 4 years of platonic friendship.

I told him, “Look, I don’t really want kids. And you’re a kid kind of guy. So, if you think you want to have kids, that’s ok.

But I’m not your girl.” 

Turns out I was his girl and things worked out nicely for us…BUT…

Because I’ve always known what I DON’T want, I judged it as a negative aspect of my personality.

I don’t want to get married to a guy who won’t let me be me.  But I didn’t know much more about how my marriage would work than that.

I don’t want to have an insane wedding that costs a lot of money.  But I didn’t know much more about how my wedding would look than that.

Does this resonate with you?

1. I never really knew what I wanted, so I avoided making goals. And stayed stuck

2. I sure as hell knew what I did NOT want! But felt that was too negative.

Knowing what you DO NOT want is as important as knowing what you DO want!

Especially if you’re like me – someone who was always unsure of what she wanted. It was kind of a joke among my friends and me.

Do you know what you want?  It’s ok that you don’t know. Many people don’t!

Maybe you’ve been using that as a reason excuse for far too long.

Don’t be fooled by the highlight reel of everyone else’s life. We’re all trying to figure out what we want.

 

 

Today, think about what you do NOT want.

  • What are your non-negotiables?
  • What will you no longer put up with?
  • What – one year from now – would you like to not have to deal with anymore?

Snow?  Your commute?

Her shitty attitude? His tendency to cheat?

Being broke? A job you loathe?

Overdrinking? Overspending?

Make a list of all the things you no longer want to deal with.  Don’t worry about HOW you will figure this out! (That was a different blog!)

Take time to think about what you DO NOT WANT. “All I know is, I don’t want to _________.”

Finish that sentence. For yourself. Over and over.

These are your Anti-Goals, the first step to figuring some shit out. Watch more about them here.

Need help? I live for working through this stuff! Reach out for a Discovery Session. I can help you dip a toe into the world of getting the things that will make you happy.

You deserve that. Happiness is not just for other people. Happiness is for you.

Have You Become The Frog?

A Typical Day:

-Wake up, 3am. Realize I’ve only slept 4 hours, panic. Get pissed.

-Mentally review my to-do list, ensuring I cannot get back to sleep.

-Fall asleep at 5:50am for 45 fitful minutes before the 6:30 alarm.

Grab my phone to open my calendar & see what fresh hell lies before me today.

-Plan how to get all the things done before dragging my ass out of bed.

-Set myself up for defeat because I know I can not get all the things done.

-Race through everything – mentally & physically.

-Snap at the people I love. Feel constantly disappointed, irritated, anxious, and overwhelmed.

-End the day exhausted, frustrated I didn’t get through my list.

Repeat again tomorrow.

This terrible version of Groundhog Day has no end in sight.

I didn’t know how to get off the hamster wheel: I was too tapped out, overwhelmed, & forgetful to think creatively.

l hated disappointing everyone ELSE in my life. I felt heavy. Weighted down. Low. I cried a lot. There was no end in sight. Nor a solution.

As hard as I worked, as many lists as I made, I was a failure. Every. Single. Day.

And it wasn’t just that I was sad. I was ANGRY!

I’m SMARTER than this, I thought! I know better! This stuff isn’t hard. Why does this feel so hard?

Here’s why it feels so hard: Have you ever heard of the boiling frog experiment?

Essentially, if you try to put a frog in boiling water, it will strongly refuse the offer. It does everything to NOT get into that pot.

But if you put a frog into a pot filled with room-temperature water and slowly turn up the heat, well…you’ve got a boiled frog before you know it.

(Who wants a boiled frog, anyway? IDK. Stay with me though.)

The poor frog doesn’t feel the heat turning up. It doesn’t notice the water getting S-L-O-W-L-Y hotter.

That was me. I hadn’t even noticed how HARD things had gotten. How out of control my life was. How I didn’t have mastery over my own time.

Does this sound familiar to you? If you’re feeling overwhelmed, burned out, or frustrated that you cannot get all the things done, I want you to know…

It’s not your fault. (*Just like it wasn’t the frog’s fault!)
• It’s not that you’re disorganized.

• It’s not that you need a new planner.

• It’s not that your partner is too difficult.

• It’s not that your kids are pains in the neck.

You just haven’t been able to notice the water getting hotter. So, first: NOTICE! Look up & around. Are you the frog?

Next: get someone to help you turn down the heat. By this point, your job is not to fix. It’s to breathe. And you need someone next to you to do it.

I’ve been there. I know what it feels like to feel low. SO heavy. SO weighted down.

Let me help you turn down the heat. You can get out of the boiling water! You just need some REAL, reasonable tools to implement RIGHT NOW!

That’s why I created Make Friends With Time: Manage Your Life Without Losing Your Mind.

It’s a 4-hour workshop that can change your life – if you let it. It can help you breathe. Find space & create time.

Sunday, 3/4 12:30 at the Tech Garden in downtown Syracuse.

Can’t make the workshop but want to turn down the heat?

Reach out for a free Discovery Call. It’s 30 minutes to talk about YOUR challenges.

How would it feel to get some help turning down the heat? PHEW! That’s how it would feel.

Reach out & set up your Discovery Call. Or sign up for the workshop. I’d love to talk with you about your time management challenges.

You really CAN have the life you want.