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How to Stop Being So Busy

Stacey with Katie and DawnThe photo to the right is me with my dear friends Katie and Dawn and I was SO thrilled to spend some time with them last weekend.

We had our family’s 12th Annual “Friendsgiving”—it’s a way we choose to celebrate the holidays with our “non-belly-button family” and it was delightful as always.

As we head into the holidays, let’s make sure we focus on what’s really important—our connections with the people we love—including ourselves!

To receive all the bounty the holidays have to give, it’s important to be conscientious about making time for the most important person in your life—you!—and that starts with a powerful mindset shift.

One of my favorite affirmations is “I have plenty of time.”

Why? Because I strive not to be “busy.” I am usually very good at keeping my time focused on doing the things that are most important to me, the things that will give me the greatest feeling of accomplishment at the end of the day.

Rushing around to finish a mile-long to-do list can undermine my happiness as much as not getting anything accomplished at all. And when I find myself going in a million different directions, I try to remind myself: “I have plenty of time.”

It allows me to slow down (if only in my head), which, of course makes everything flow much more easily. It helps me appreciate that I am exactly where I need to be in every moment. It helps me remember that I always have a choice when looking at any situation.

I find that I am most likely to feel stressed when I’m doing stuff that doesn’t seem “important”—you know, the mundane things like running errands and housekeeping.

And that fits with something else I’ve learned, because what I’ve realized most in my studies of happiness—and in my own life—is that a happy life is made up of happy moments. And that doesn’t mean those rare, big-ticket happy moments, like getting the publishing contract or the new car.

plenty of timeHappy lives are made up of the quotidian variety of happy moments, taking a walk outside while the fall leaves whirl around you, or petting your cat in that special spot that makes her purr.

It’s always important that we place a priority on spending time to “refill our well”—but it’s especially important during the holidays.

Understanding this leads to an even more important understanding: the power to choose our thoughts gives us the power to choose joy in any situation.

So if you find yourself trying to rush through any of your daily activities, wishing you could just be done with them already, your assignment for today is this simple meditation, devised by Thich Nhat Hahn:

Breathing in, I calm my body.
Breathing out, I smile.
Dwelling in the present moment,
I know this is a wonderful moment.

Thich Nhat Hahn goes on to tell us that mindfulness can be practiced while eating lunch, walking, and washing the dishes. “If you take time to enjoy dishwashing, then dishwashing can become meditation. If you think of the time of washing as the time that you lose… then you lose yourself. It means you continue to lose your life.”

Think of something in your day that you typically dread or rush through. Today, change your thoughts about that one activity.

If it’s the dishes, notice the light playing off the bubbles, feel the warm water, find a place of gratitude for that moment, breathe.

If it’s the drive to work, remain present, keep breathing, and don’t think ahead to what your day holds but notice the beauty in the things around you.

Thich Nhat Hahn suggests using red lights not as a source of irritation but as a reminder bell to return to the present moment and take a deep breath. Just think how peaceful and grounded you’ll feel if you make this a habit throughout the day.

If you’d like even more practices to help you feel peaceful and grounded this holiday season, click here: 30 Days to Inner Peace Program.

If you liked this post, I think you’ll enjoy the free weekly Special Delivery eZine. Just sign up here and it will be delivered to your inbox every Tuesday!

Stacey and Lisa MarieThat’s a photo with me and one of my beautiful Visionary friends, Lisa Marie Rosati.

I wrote last week about how I spent the previous week at my business training, and she was one of the people with whom I masterminded (and enjoyed cocktails!).

Last week, too, I shared one of the biggest gifts I received from the training (supreme clarity on my ideal client) but there have been SO many more that just keep coming!

I learned so many powerful lessons and received so many divine downloads I can’t wait to share them with you.

These lessons start with what it means to ask for, be willing to receive, and, most importantly, act on a divine opportunity when it is given.

I committed to Fabienne Fredrickson’s year-long business training and mastermind program back in January of 2014 (and re-upped in 2015) because I wanted to challenge myself to play a bigger game – which required that I extend myself waaay outside of my comfort zone.

If you want to play a bigger game, but you haven’t yet, it’s probably because you hate feeling uncomfortable, right? Yeah, me too.

Here’s what I’ve learned: I’m very happy connecting with people online through blogging, Facebook and Twitter, but I know if I’m going to see my business grow and thrive I need to do more things that take me away from the comfortable sanctuary I’ve created in my home office.

So one thing I’ve decided is that attending the live meetings three times a year is a fabulous networking opportunity.

Note the word “decided” – that’s deliberate. I’ve only gone to two other conferences where like-minded people were gathered – and they were decidedly not fabulous.

In those instances I went with only a weak idea of what I wanted from it. I was told it was important to “network,” so I went. Afterward I told myself, “See, I did it, and nothing special happened. All I know is that I don’t want to do that again.” In other words, I treated it like a blind date, as if it would be a giant waste of time if I didn’t find “the one” right off the bat.

With that in mind, I began my preparations for Fabienne’s live meetings by starting the conversations that could lead to a meaningful relationship way before I met anyone in person.

Even though I’ve been out of the dating world for a long time, I can still appreciate that you’d want to have at least a few exchanges via phone, email or text before the big date, right? After all, it’s always possible “the one” will have an off night. Or that you will. Placing all your bets on the two hours you’ll be together is way too big a risk.

But however you approach it – through cautious preparation or through an all-or-nothing jump into the unknown – if you’re willing to put yourself out there, and face any challenge or opportunity with a clear idea of what you want – and if you’re willing to let what you want manifest over time – well, putting yourself out there will never be a waste of your time, and there’s a chance that magic will happen.

And if you’re not willing to do that thing, then make no mistake: YOU are holding yourself back from success.

So – to get to the magic you have to be willing to put yourself out there. The good news, though, is that I’ve discovered a great trick for getting myself out of my comfort zone. That’s enormously important, because Everything you really want lies outside of it.

held back from successSetting your goals – whether you want to build a business or finish writing a book (or find your purpose-driven work in the first place!) – is great, but actually taking steps toward your goals can be scary because acting will require you to step out of your comfort zone.

Keith Cunningham said it best, “The solution to every problem you currently have is sitting just outside your comfort zone, or it wouldn’t be a problem for you. The question is…are you going to get it?”

Saying YES to your vision is a practice that requires courage, but the great news is that once you get started – and small “yeses” count! – they create momentum that has enormous pulling power.

And here’s the secret to saying yes to your vision: tap into the power of your vision. Tap into the way it would feel to get what you want. Tap into the joy of knowing you got yourself there. Use that power! Because when you consistently apply the power of your intention and combine it with your willingness to be uncomfortable you’ll discover your energy shifts from a place of uncertainty, confusion or fear to a place of personal power – the best energy state from which to create anything you want.

Whatever your desires are – whether it’s create more income, cut your work time in half, enjoy quarterly vacations, share the stage with big players, land your book deal (those are some of mine!) – it is totally possible for you… when you give yourself permission to play a bigger game, step out of your comfort zone and take inspired action.

What inspired action am I talking about? Well, you could do an exercise Fabienne taught us: create an “Inspired Action” notebook with “Sign from the Universe” on one side and “Action I’ll Take” on the other and feel your way into it.

Here is a list of inspired actions I’ve taken just in the last week:

1) Hire the coach.

Yes, Fabienne is my business and mindset coach, but she also gave me the “sign” that my No More Crying and Complaining: How to Transform Your Negative Thoughts, Improve All Your Relationships and Enjoy More Happiness, had been hanging out on the back burner for too long.

Fabienne first self-published her book, Embrace Your Magnificence, with Balboa Press (an imprint of Hay House) and impressed CEO Reid Tracy so much with its early sales that he gave her a book deal with Hay House. Her success inspired me to stop putting off my own.

So I hired a special book coach just to offer me guidance and accountability for completing it. I now have a top literary agent shopping the book to my ideal publishers right now!

As many of you know, I also self-published The Positive Focus Journal a few months ago – and I know for sure it wouldn’t have happened at all if my coach hadn’t held me accountable every step of the way.

2) Go to the event.

No, it isn’t easy or convenient for me to go the mastermind meetings that are an essential part of my growth and development (which directly correlates with the growth of my business!). But I believe in the Law of Association, which states that who you spend your time with and who you listen to dictates how big of a game you play in your life.

When you surround yourself with people who expect more from you, you create much more – amazing, wonderful things! – than you ever would have on your own.

John Assaraf says it best, “If you are interested you’ll do what’s convenient. If you’re committed, you’ll do whatever it takes.”

Which do you think I am? Which are you…or which do you want to be?

3) Reach out to that potential partner.

As you may have noticed in the last year with all my various projects, I’ve committed more than anything this year to collaborating with other heart-centered and spirit-led women.

Yes, that’s the Law of Association again, but it bears mentioning again because since I started applying this principle by aligning myself with people who are playing a bigger game, I’ve been taking more action than I’ve ever taken before. And the results are astounding even me!

I know my ability to fulfill my mission to help women find and live their purpose is directly related to stepping out of my comfort zone and seeking collaboration with other phenomenal women who are fulfilling theirs – which means you’ll be hearing about it a lot more!

Has taking all these actions required me to make big investments of my time, money and energy? Yup.

Has it been scary to invest so much in my growth with no guarantee that there will be some big return? You better believe it.

I didn’t exactly have the thousands of dollars I needed to make the trip to FL just sitting in my sock drawer. :)

Yes, I’ve often thought that if God or The Universe wanted me to make any big investment in my personal growth, a big check should show up in my mailbox first.

But I’ve been at this long enough to know that never happens – and I’ve learned to recognize something else too: the opportunity is the sign from God, not the check.

What I’ve found is that when I need to overcome these sorts of self-created obstacles, something bigger – inside me – has to shift first. What I know for sure is that we have to make big changes to see our dreams and goals manifest in our lives.

If you’re ready for a big change in your life, I’d love to help you! Just sign up for a completely complementary Live Your Purpose Strategy Session here: http://midwifeforyourlife.fullslate.com/

If you liked this post, I think you’ll enjoy the free weekly Special Delivery eZine. Just sign up here and it will be delivered to your inbox every Tuesday!

How to Stop Being So Busy

November 17, 2015

The photo to the right is me with my dear friends Katie and Dawn and I was SO thrilled to spend some time with them last weekend. We had our family’s 12th Annual "Friendsgiving”—it's a way we choose to celebrate the holidays with our "non-belly-button family” and it was delightful as always. As we head

Read the full article →

Discover what’s holding you back from your greatest success

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Read the full article →

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