Free to be ME

This photo captures the beauty of life still moving, in this case the sun setting, and yet not being totally overwhelmed, consumed and bogged down by the daily demands.

Every morning the sun rises, and every evening the sun sets.  We wake up, have endless amounts of ideas running through our minds, activities to attend, meals to prepare and eat, people to take care of, books to read, obligations that need to be fulfilled and duties to be performed.

I’ve always thought of myself as a happy person, but I will admit my emotions ran me most of the time.  I have always felt so damn close to being exactly where I want, and what I want, but then something would happen and I’d lose that feeling.  Well, since working with my Life Coach Lindsay Preston in her Life Luvers Course and then followed it up with her Unstoppable Woman program, I can honestly say to myself and to the world, I have unlocked so many doors.

As I try to put into words the power of the work that I have done, it almost feels impossible.  There were parts when it was super hard and I certainly did not like opening up some old wounds, but with her help, Lindsay gave me the tools to heal myself for once and for all.  I’m not saying I won’t have past issues re-surface, but now that I know what to do, I no longer fear them.   Most importantly, I learned to forgive, especially myself.

I mentioned that I was to do three 21 Day Habits.  You guys, I did them.  ALL. THREE!! It was easy to do, but it would have been oh so easy not to do as well.  I did my daily yoga, even when I was ready for bed and pushed it until the very end of the evening, I still pulled out my iPad and did some goodnight yoga stretches.  I blogged every day for 21 days, even if it was just a quote and photo.  I also repeated my mantra to myself every day, for 21 days straight, “I am free to be me.”

Do you know what happened?

  • I became more calm and got mad/frustrated less.  (ie. not yelling/snapping at kids or dogs)
  • I drew boundaries in my life where I realized there needed to be some.  (Business wise, familial, friendships)
  • I gained a sense of confidence in my writing, opening up and sharing poetry here, no longer caring if anyone liked it or not.
  • I got really intentional with my time, making my 24 hours in my day extremely valuable to me.
  • I stopped feeling the guilt if I let someone down (aka the people pleaser in me) when I realized I simply cannot do it all.
  • I learned to love my body, the way it is, even if it’s not perfect.
  • My relationship with my husband has gotten even better, and I have to say we have a great marriage, but this work has improved it even more so!
  • I am so attune with God, mother nature, the universe.
  • I no longer hold grudges or question, “why me?”  I started asking, “What is this teaching me?”
  • My weird heart palpitations are completely gone.  The Dr sent me home with Lexapro, told me I had bad anxiety…I have felt more zen than ever before, and life is anything but smooth sailing. (hello house fire at one of properties)
  • I’ve opened up even further to our business and am becoming more confident as I step further into this entrepreneur role.
  • I am just so “in flow” as I always call it.  I just feel lighter — and not like lbs, just not a sense of heaviness weighing me down.
  • I can feel myself slipping into my “IMG” and can pull myself back into my authentic self with the proper tools Lindsay taught me.

 

Lindsay will be running Life Luvers again LIVE starting on Monday 9/9 and they can use your code to get $20.  This is so powerful when you do it amongst a group of women!  The energy that flows is so contagious and so much growth can happen in such a short time.  If you are at all intrigued, hop over to her site  (www.LindsayEPreston.com) to take her coaching assessment to see if you are good to work together so you can get in that live group!!  Don’t forget to use the code JENN20 when you sign up, and save $20!

I know it seems like a lot of work, and I won’t lie, putting in the time to better myself was not always easy…but if you just take it one day at a time, one step at a time, I can promise you that life will get better, things seem to get easier, and you’ll gain a clarity that you’ve perhaps only dreamed of.

I started with two 90 Day Goals at the start of this Unstoppable Woman course.

Goal 1:  Improve my time management. At the start of this course, I gave myself a “3” out of 10.  I felt it was reasonable and attainable to achieve my goal. I wrote, “By the end of unstoppable, I will be at a 10.  I will feel less chaotic, and there will be a flow with my days. —- WOW!  I can say that I am there.  I feel in control, even on the days I have zero control, I am still in flow with my crazy.  (Owning your own real estate biz has so many unexpected twists!)

Goal 2: Improve my communication about me.  I will be okay with celebrating wins.  I gave myself a 6 on the scale at the start of this program.  At the end of 90 days, I won’t hide/skirt around my needs, wants and desires.  At the end of Unstoppable, I will be free to be me.  –again, WOW!!  I would say here I am at a 10.  I no longer hold back in fear of what others may think, say or do.  I honestly display my feelings, thoughts and stand firm in my beliefs.  My communication has honestly improved in all important relationships in my life and I feel nothing but gratitude and abundance, and of course, love.

I am just wrapping up the final weeks of this course, and just wish everyone could put in this kind of work to better themselves.  I’ve read countless self-improvement books, listened to audio, watched a ton of motivational speakers, but none of them have given me this literal step-by-step guide of how to get to the other side.

Mindset Matters

It’s Friday beautiful friends!!

The sun is shining.

Hubby is at the land with Bailey girl.

I’m sitting on our back deck doing what makes my heart happy: writing.

Baby girl is at school, learning and having fun on her “Culture Day” and I’m allowing baby boy tablet time while I feed my soul.

It’s not easy, this whole self-care thing.  We have been so engrained to work, push, hustle, care for others, put everyone else first, bla bla bla bla. But friends, YOU MATTER.  Every time I see another mama doing some self-care I just wanna jump through the screen and hug her.  Yes girl.  Be a queen.  Meditate. Enjoy that glass of wine.  Do some yoga. Read that book.  Lay in the sun.  Relish in the massage.  Take that workout class. High five!!!  It’s amazing at how much more you can provide to the rest of the world after you’ve taken care of you.

I’ve been very attuned lately with the universe and the quiet messages it’s sending me.  This week is of course all about gratitude, but also just a little bit more. 

I was once told it (in so many words) it’s amazing that I cook all that I do in my not so fancy kitchen.  And I get it.  I don’t have 10 foot ceilings, white cupboards, light grey walls, marble countertops and tons of island space, double ovens, Viking stoves– you get the picture.

However, what I do have is a passion for taking care of my loved ones and a love for creating delicious meals that fuel our bodies.  I love chopping, stirring, mixing, baking and of course eating! When I play Frank Sinatra, pour a glass of wine and get to cooking, it never feels like work. Sure, I would love a big new fancy kitchen with all the bells and whistles, and it’s certainly on my vision board, but the fact is I know to enjoy the now.

At my chiropractor appointment this week we talked about this.  I feel like he not only aligns my back/body properly but also my heart and mind!  (Is it just me, or do you really find some people with the BEST energy and wanting to surround yourself with them all of the time?!) Anyway, he lives in a modest home in a nice, but busy area, and has his practice in the home he resides in.  He went on and on to tell me how much he’d love a big fancy house, new this and new that, but it also felt really great to be in the financial spot he’s in.  His son is going off to college in the Fall and essentially they are debt free at the moment.

I say all this because we can all get caught up in wanting more, the best of the best, and being unhappy and unfulfilled with where we are in life and what we have.  Now I’m not saying to not dream big and crush some big old goals, but if you’re not enjoying what you have right now, or feeling gratefully abundant in all that you do have, maybe your mindset needs a little shift.  God will not give more to us if we aren’t ready.  If you find yourself looking left and right and feeling sorry for yourself, it’s time to take a step back and truly be happy for all the blessings in your life.

It ebbs and flows, and there are times I wish we already had our home built on our land with a swimming pool and all the fixings, but I have learned that we must time in the timing.  It will happen when it’s supposed to happen.  Life seems to be one big juggling act with so many moving parts; but beauty will always be in the silence.

The sticky hands of little ones who helped bake with you in your not so fancy kitchen.

The cuddles of your small dog on cold day.

The peace and tranquility of enjoying what makes your heart happy.

The tapping of your fingers on the keys of a laptop.

The birds chirping sweet songs.

The warmth of the sun and the cooling of the breeze.

The radiant colors of the potted flowers.

The smile from your significant other after a long hard day.

These moments are what make us.

So if you’re feeling a little off, make a list of things that bring you joy and take some time to check them off. Go volunteer, if that’s on your heart.  Go bake your friend some cookies.  Visit that grandparent.  Send your mom a sweet text.  Write. Read. Bathe. Whatever it is that you need to do, get grateful and work on getting your mindset right.

Luv Yourself

Hey there!!

While I try to stick to a super strict schedule, this week just threw me!! I am gonna take responsibility and I know that I am to blame, but I’ve been working on some anxiety (totally not used to feeling that way!) and it’s been a tough week.  But the tough parts are what make us stronger, right?  And I have been SO grateful for this opportunity to work with Lindsay Preston and be in this Life Luvers 21 Day Challenge.

I shared last week in my blog post that it was getting real and holy cow, how hard it was for me to put ME first more often!! If you’re new here, please read my first post on Life Coaching and what to expect from me weekly, as far as sharing my experience etc.

It’s all about fitting it in, no matter what and I really try to sit soak up each day’s lesson (hello forever a student of life!) and the more I work on my mind, I notice the better I want to take care of my body.  Note, the beet juice and protein waffle!

One thing Lindsay had us do before we even started the 21 Day Challenge, was taking this Strengths Finder quiz through Gallup.  My top five strengths came up as such:

I see these as strengths, but I’m not going to lie, I also immediately saw them as weaknesses too.  (Turns out that’s my Inner Mean Girl talking, so she needs to shhh!) But really, now the lesson to be had is how do I harness these strengths?  What can I do to use them to the best of my ability and really take myself to that next level?  She also gave us a bunch of tools to use to research our strengths, what they mean, and how to apply them to our life.  I have to giggle that “learner” is on there because while I know I am quite stern on the importance of education (not just formal education but learning anything in life!) this just re-affirmed it as well.

Another awesome tool Lindsay provided was the concept of a “Wins” Journal.  Each day, week, month, quarter, she says to sit down and write down your inside wins (changes inside yourself) and outside wins (changes outside of yourself).  Then, after you’ve taken the time to reflect and see your wins, the most important part is to celebrate.  Yup! How often do you let life pass you by without stopping to really soak that win up?

I took a photo of my cute journal next to my LV.  Sure it’s a pretty bag, but I’ve never shard why it means so much to me.  Last year we were working hard on selling quite a few houses and Joe was super busy working (legit no days off for like 20 days or something crazy!)  I sold one of the homes Rent to Own.  Granted, I do a lot of the calls etc in the biz, but this was different because not only did I go back forth with text messaging, phone calls, showing the house etc, but I also met with the couple and collected the deposit all by myself!  I went over the deal, explained everything and did it on the day my dad had a huge surgery (his lung removed from cancer.)   I was beyond nervous to do it all alone since Joe is usually the main talker, but I knew I had to jump in at some point.  I felt so proud afterwards!  This was a HUGE win looking back on it.  I reached a goal of selling a house, I overcame my personal fear of not being “good enough” at real estate investing to do it alone, I didn’t allow Joe not being there stop me, I was able to let go of limiting beliefs and provide an amazing couple with a home to live in! I gained so much confidence after this experience it was nuts.

What started out as a joke, turned into my purse.  I don’t collect a paycheck from our business, but I really work hard for us and wanted to earn this bag more than anything.   Looking back on it, I realized that I celebrated a win!  Now, this was clearly a big splurge and no I don’t go buy myself a new Louis for every home I sell (yet) but I do believe that counting your wins is important.  I don’t share my bag to boast, but simply to show that celebrating IS in fact so so important!  When we go out of our comfort zones and prove to ourselves that anything IS possible, think of how much further we can go?

Your celebrations can be smaller too, like giving yourself the gift of time for tea and a good book.  You can go grab a mani/pedi, or simply stroll the aisles of Target with a latté.  When we are intentional with our time and energy, and we begin celebrating ourselves more often, it will feel less icky.  I also believe it will lead to even more wins.

Another exercise was to find a photo of ourselves as a child.  I had my mom send me a bunch of photos via text and this one just stuck right out.  It’s who I am authentically!! This smile–the nose scrunch, the confident hands on the hips, messy long hair, happy eyes, healthy weight–it’s all who I am at my core.  Even the chubby cheeks, I still rock em.  I think I’m probably about Brooke’s age here, maybe 5-7? Not entirely sure.  This is the girl God made me to be, now I just need to work on bringing her to the surface as an adult more.

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Speaking of “authentic selves” if you are curious to see how close you are to being your authentic self, take this super short quiz Lindsay created! How Strong is Your Authentic Self? I am pretty close, but certainly have some areas to work on and improve.

Be sure to follow Linday on her social media pages, as she shares personal stuff on her insta-stories as well as lots of girl power, go get em, inspirational quotes on her FB and Instagram!

She also has a kick ass podcast you should listen to as well!

This journey is so good you guys; I knew it wasn’t going to be easy, as nothing worth having in life is, but I do feel like the more I keep pouring into myself and then putting myself out there, I am receiving back.  The abundance of love and gratitude I have for other amazing souls in my life is huge.  I’m really seeing who truly belongs in my life and those whom I cannot give so much time to.

Check back in next week as I share more progress and other tips and tricks Lindsay shares with us in our group!!  I hope you are enjoying seeing me breakdown things each week and talk about my journey. If you have any questions about life coaching or what I’m sharing, please don’t hesitate to ask! You can e-mail me, private message me on Instagram or FB or leave a comment.

Motivation Monday

Looking through my photos I see I have stocked up on come quoted once again! I figured a little motivation dump would be nice to share!

*Warning: there may be some adult language towards the end.

Have a fantastic week!!

Be

I get asked quite often, how do you do it all?

I don’t.

I find that in this season of my life, I simply do the very best that I can each and every day.

I’ve always been a type A over-achiever.  I put more pressure on myself than my mom, dad, grandparents, teachers or anyone else I ever encountered ever did.  I like to be really great at things, not fail and I used to try to be perfect.

I will say I have officially thrown my perfectionist hat out the window.  I have my daughter to thank for that.  My husband would tell me not to stress over things and to stop beating myself up, but I would roll my eyes and still meticulously plan out certain events, meals, get togethers, and try to create that picture perfect scene that laid out in my head.

This was before Pinterest people!!

I will say that the first time I realized I really did have the power to control my own mental attitude, was walking down the aisle to marry my husband.

The DJ played MY song when my bridesmaids starting walking out.  I may have screamed and dropped the F bomb while waiting next to my father and the poor wedding coordinator.  They both looked at me like—what are we to do? Stop him? Tell him to re-do?  But I simple paused, took a deep breath and put a smile on my face.  I knew that if I walked down the aisle with a bitchy look on my face, my fiancé would NEVER marry me.  So I took it in stride, realized it was out of my control, and that at the end of the day, no one would know that it was a mess up.  In the end, we all walked down to, “Lucky” by Jason Mraz. I can laugh about it now, but really that moment was a huge turning point in my mental thinking.

A few years later, along came our beautiful baby girl.  As much as I tried, there was no trying to get her to conform to what I wanted.  She slept when she wanted, ate when she wanted and eventually potty trained when she wanted.  God used her to really show me that I am not in control and that all of the stress I put on myself to try and control things, was really really bad.

A few more years go by, we add a baby boy.  I totally thought I had this mom thing figured out!  Turns out, baby boy was a total different experience than baby girl.  He had terrible reflux, I had to stop nursing him after 8 weeks and switch him to Nutramigen formula, and I don’t think he fully slept through the night until well after the first year. Funny how things work…

In the last 10 years I have been with my husband, I have learned so much about myself, life, being a wife, and eventually a mother.  I fully admit I DO NOT have this whole thing figured out, but I have learned to give myself a lot of grace.  I have learned to laugh at myself.  I learned to be more open to experiences, situations and let go of the ideas of what I want people to be, and just let them be who they are.  Accept them, or don’t. I have begun to embrace the chaos of my messes and though it be tough at times, view the chaos as a blessing.  I turn on the jazz music on the surround sound.  I tackle my to do list, one thing at a time. I stop to do something for me, to fill my cup.  Like blogging; right now there are mountains of laundry to be done, but my fingers needed to feel the keys for a few moments…

My life is filled with oops, and uh-ohs.  I just learn to do my best, try very hard to do it with a smile and save the worries and stressors for when I really need to.

My word this year is “Be.” (Yes, I am a huge dork and pick out a word for each year…) It’s a simple word but when I find myself getting out of alignment, uppity, stressed, or freaking out (probably for no reason) I try to quickly check myself and breathe so that I can just be.

…be in the moment

…be still

…be happy

…be healthy

…be joyful

…be confident

…be grateful

….be humble

…be helpful

…be aware

…be present

…just be.

Stress is SO bad for us, and the more we can become aware of our thoughts and shut them down before they take us down the rabbit hole of angst, the better we will be.

My top 5 tips for getting back into alignment

  1. Let go of expectations and accept where you are.
  2. Do something that makes you happy, self love.
  3. Get outside, preferably barefoot (weather permitting)
  4. Sign off social media for a bit.
  5. Acknowledge how you feel, but then let it go.

I also truly believe who we spend our time talking to, listening to, reading about, watching, helps us form our thoughts.  I am human, I love a good TV drama, but I also love a peaceful and happy life.  Just making small changes over time helps our overall mindsets so much!

Is there something you find yourself doing, to just be?