Group Coaching Class Now Forming! Step into the Next Phase of Your Life with Confidence

Are you dreaming about a new career but don’t know where to start?  Are you looking to make a
change to your lifestyle or location?  Many times we feel overwhelmed by the prospect of making
a big change.  Often, negative messages that we don’t even realize we are telling ourselves are
holding us back.  In this course you will:

•learn to identify your passions:  what do you really care about?  what makes you tick?

•learn to identify your skills and strengths:  what unique abilities do you bring to the table?

•combine your passions, skills and strengths to articulate a vision for your dream job or

•create action steps to make it a reality:  improve your confidence and the message you are
sending to to others with practical tips and strategies

•have fun in a supportive environment!

Call or email today to register:  classes are limited to 10 to ensure quality and will conveniently
take place in the comfort of your own home via Skype.  Class dates (Tuesdays 7 -8 pm): October 23,
October 30, November 6, 13 and 27 ( no class November 20).  $249 970-819-4661


How to Make a Schedule that Works and Stick to It


My post is late this week because I allowed my busy schedule to get the best of me.  Coincidentally, a couple of clients and prospective clients also mentioned the difficulty of creating and sticking to a schedule this week.  We all know how challenging maintaining a schedule can be, especially for single parents, people working multiple jobs, or going to school in the evenings.  However, for these people especially, finding a schedule that works is essential.  Creating and maintaining a workable schedule can keep you on track to achieve your goals, while allowing you to build in time for relaxation and recreation.  Here are some resources and tips I’ve found helpful.

First, it’s important to set priorities.  Scheduling is easier when you know what’s most important; you can make time for that first.  Here is a great resource for setting priorities and using time effectively:  Challenges and Choices: Time Effectiveness — Prioritizing Your Time

After you’ve made time for what’s important, work in the rest where you can.  Think about  what is most likely to succeed based on your own tendencies:  are you a morning person or a night owl?  As a morning person, I find that doing activities I tend to skip, like exercise, first thing in the morning, helps to keep me on track.  I don’t schedule much of anything after about 8pm, because I’m not very productive in the evening.  On the other hand, the struggle to get my son ready for school in the morning became much easier when I started working from home and he could sleep in a little longer.  It’s amazing what a difference a half hour can make.

Are you a procrastinator?  Finding a way to focus on your goals can help keep you on task.  I like Joe’s Goals, a free online “habit tracker” created by a “regular Joe” (sorry) who thought of a great way to hold himself accountable.  You create an account, add your goals, and then keep score of how you did over the week.  You can also journal about your activities.

Of course, there will be times when you want to be free of a schedule and just slack off for a day.  (See last week’s post.)  The beauty of a schedule is that it helps you to get tasks accomplished so you DO have down time.  When all else fails, read this Grand Pep Talk to keep you motivated to stick to your schedule and Just Do It.

How do you stick to a schedule?  Share what works for you in the comments!

Ten Mistakes People Make When Planning for the Future

Eighties music fans will remember the Talking Heads song, “Once in a Lifetime“:

You may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
You may find yourself in another part of the world
You may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
You may find yourself in a beautiful house with a beautiful wife
You may ask yourself, well, how did I get here?

Probably most of us can relate to this sentiment, waking up one day and wondering how we ended up in a dead-end job, or a life that is somehow not what we want.  Well, how did you get here?  What leads us away from our true hopes and dreams?  It’s true that there should be no regrets in life because every situation, for better or worse, is a learning opportunity.  Still, many of us find ourselves repeating these “learning opportunites” ad nauseum, as is repeated in the refrain at the end of the  song, “Same as it  ever was, same as it ever was, same as it ever was….”  Why do we keep ending up someplace other than where we thought we were headed?  Here are some common mistakes people make when planning for the future:

1.  Trying to live up to the expectations of others.  We do what we think our parents want, what society expects, what our high school guidance counselor advised.  As most brides discover when planning their wedding, you can’t please everyone, so you might as well give up trying.  Just please yourself.

2.  Not taking time for self-discovery.  (See last week’s post, “Who are you? Exploring the wilderness of your intuition”)  It is amazing how many people, when asked what they want, are surprised to discover that they don’t know.  They’ve never stopped to think about it.

3.  Thinking in terms of “should”, as in, I should focus on earning a lot of money, I should stay home with the kids, I should pursue this career because it’s what’s “hot” right now….

4.  Underestimating yourself.  Way too many brilliant people I know have a horror story about what an “advisor”  or authority figure told them they weren’t smart enough to do.  We tend to internalize these negative messages, and when opportunity knocks, talk ourselves out of it because we think we aren’t smart enough, experienced enough, tough enough, etc.  Why not give yourself a chance?

5.  Not addressing your skills.  I recently attended  a workshop in which the presenter said that many people make decisions totally with their hearts or their  heads.  Your unique gift to the world is a combination of the two.

6.  Not addressing your passions.  See #5.

7.  Allowing life to decide for you.  Many people just float along, working at whatever presents itself.  As the saying goes, if you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice – just not necessarily in your favor.

8.  Feeling like you can’t change the path you’re on.  Repeat after me:  it’s never too late.  It’s never too late.  It’s never too late.

9Not being willing to be a life-long learner.  Many times, taking a new direction will require learning new skills, going back to school, or doing things differently.  Don’t let this hold you back from your future.

10.  Quitting too soon.  “Most people give up just when they’re about to achieve success. They quit on the one yard line. They give up at the last minute of the game, one foot from a winning touchdown.” – Ross Perot

I admit I’ve made most of these mistakes in my life.  Which of these mistakes is holding you back?

Mothers Returning to Work – How to Ease the Transition

When I was a teacher, this time of year meant returning to work after having my summer off with the kids.  Though it was never as hard as the first time, each fall was a difficult transition for the whole family:  suddenly I was not there full-time to clean the house, prepare meals, do laundry, buy groceries, etc.  Though heading back to work after being home with kids is a challenging time, there are several things moms can do to ease the transition.

Plan and Practice Ahead of Time

The transition will be easier on everyone if there is time to adjust to the new routine.  If your children are not yet in school, research and commit to a childcare option that is comfortable for everyone.  Transitioning a breast-fed baby to a bottle will be less stressful if you give it some time – you don’t want to worry about whether or not your child is going hungry on your first day back to work.  Give yourself and your child plenty of time to take care of learning new skills like potty training.  It will go better if the pressure’s off.  In the days leading up to the Big Day, practice getting up and dressed by the time everyone needs head out the door.  Practicing ahead of time can instill confidence in kids and ease anxiety for mom.

Enlist Help

Starting back to work part-time is a great option for moms if it is available, but often it is not.  If you’ll be working as many hours as your spouse, make sure he knows that you will need an equal partner in household chores.     Most husbands are more likely to respond positively if presented with a request for help instead of  a demand.  Make a list of what needs to get done and divide it up based on personal preferences.  Maybe your husband is a master with the vacuum, but isn’t big on cleaning bathrooms.  Older kids can pitch in, too.  Even if they are ambivalent about mom going back to work, you can sweeten the deal with an allowance or reward for completing chores.

Go Easy On Yourself

This is the most important part!  It seems that guilt and motherhood just go together; stay-at-home moms often feel guilty that they are not contributing to the family’s income, and working moms feel guilty about kids having to go to daycare, or just spending less time with them.  Remember that quality, not quantity, counts when it comes to time with your kids.  It’s better for kids to get a few hours per day with a happy, fulfilled mom than a whole day with a resentful one that doesn’t really enjoy staying home.   Also, give yourself permission not to have a perfectly clean house or home-baked cookies for your kids’ snack.  Trying to do it all is the fast lane to burnout.  Finally, remember to make time for yourself – for exercise, relaxation or girls’ night out.  By taking care of yourself, you are taking care of your kids’ mom, and that benefits the whole family.
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