Gatherings with family and friends to plan and attend.
Oh, and you have a business to keep running, too? Good luck with that!
Actually, it doesn’t have to be so stressful.
No, I’m not talking about chucking it all and flying to the Bahamas. (Although that does sound intriguing.)
This is about lowering your stress levels so you can enjoy what’s happening around you.
And when your stress comes down, you start to think clearer. Make better decisions for you and your business.
Like, maybe you don’t have to make Aunt Edna’s brussels sprouts this year.
Or you don’t have to get involved with the usual family drama. After all, you could use that time and energy to make a big year-end offer.
How, you say?
Just tap along with my video.
The women leaders in my MVP Clubs asked for it. They know they do so much better in their businesses when they bring down the stress in their personal lives. Then they can focus on what really matters.
I wanted to share it with you, too.
Tap along with it as often as you need to. So you can have an easier, more relaxed December.
I know this sounds like I’m telling you to do the opposite of everything I help business owners do—get rid of what’s holding them back so they can take the right actions to break through to the next level. Make more money. Reach more people. Fulfill their purpose and change the world.
But going on vacation is essential to all of those things.
Let me explain.
When you find yourself wasting more and more time—reading Google headlines every 15 minutes, scrolling through Facebook, staring off into space, unable to concentrate on the task that needs to get done—you need a vacation.
When you’re stuck doing the same things in the same way, unable to come up with anything new—you need a vacation.
When you realize you haven’t truly connected with what lights you up in life for far too long (your loved ones, Nature, spirituality, a good book)—you NEED a vacation!
As business owners, we often get the message that we need to keep focused, follow through on our priorities, do what it takes to grow our business. And I get how important that is. How you often need to push yourself to achieve the type of business you can see in your mind. How scary it can be to realize you’re letting opportunities slip through your fingers because you’re not taking action.
But you can go too far by pushing yourself to do more and more without a break. That will actually make it harder to get to the next level.
Watch the video to see why.
A real vacation (which means getting completely away from your business, ideally for two weeks) gives you a number of benefits that help you AND your business. Some of the biggies in my book are:
You get real rest, so you come back with renewed energy and enthusiasm for the work of finding and helping your people.
You get the break that your mind and body have been craving, so you don’t find yourself doing so much of the same time-wasters after your vacation that were creeping into your day before it.
Your creativity comes roaring back, meaning you not only come up with new ideas for what to do for your peeps, you realize new and better ways to run your business so it can grow faster.
You connect with what matters to you, so you remember why you are doing all this in the first place. And then you get your motivation back.
I took last week off after at least eight months of working straight through without a vacation. This week I’m finding all the positives I just listed happening for me and my business.
It’s an important reminder for me.
In fact, not taking yourself on a vacation can be a sign of one of those subconscious blocks to creating the life and business you want that I get rid of with my clients. (Hey, we teach what we most need to learn, right?)
So go on vacation. Even now in the midst of the pandemic and the economic uncertainty. There are ways to do it safely and cost-effectively.
You need it.
Your business needs it.
And, hey, if you’d like some help with that, just email me and we’ll set up a time to talk about what’s going on with you to see if there’s a fit with what I do.
Next week you can try out some tapping with me. On Thursday, May 9th, at 10 am Pacific time/1 pm eastern, I’ll be the guest on a no-cost Zoom meeting, “Tapping to Free the Writer Within,” hosted by Ginger Moran, a published and award-winning writer and teacher who coaches people with a book bottled up inside who want to get it out.
I’ll be talking about using Tapping to release your creativity. We’ll do some actual Tapping to stop procrastinating and start taking action. And what we talk and tap on will be useful for any creative activity where you feel blocked, so don’t worry if you don’t have a novel you’re working on.
At the end of the call, you’ll also get access to a 3-part video series in which I teach you how to use Tapping to stop procrastinating, reduce your fear of getting outside your comfort zone, and break through money ceilings. So don’t miss this call.
Sometimes my clients tell me the reason they procrastinate instead of getting something important done is that they are just too tired to focus. Or be creative. Or even think. And I believe them.
This is a growing problem.
• There’s more and more stress in our lives.
• Stress interferes with our sleep.
• Lack of sleep interferes with our ability to think analytically, concentrate, and be creative.
So when you don’t get enough sleep, it’s harder to think. You might as well procrastinate!
If lack of sleep is one of the reasons you are procrastinating, I may have the answer. You can use Tapping in a specific way to get your brain to transition sooner from wide awake to sleepy thoughts. I show you how to do it in this video.
Use this technique the next time you can’t shut off your brain when your head hits the pillow. It just might help you get a good night’s sleep so you can get more done the next day.
To discover how to stop procrastinating for good, email me. We’ll set up a call to talk about what’s going on with you and see if I can help.
For this post I did something a little different. I shot a video on my recent trip on a cruise ship. I apologize for the quality—I know it’s not the best.
But the message is important, especially for high-achievers: If you want to improve your creativity—really, your ability to come up with new ideas for your work or your life—you need to stop working. You need to stop thinking about working. You need . . . a vacation.
By the way, if you watch to the end, you’ll meet someone very important to me, too.
Two women were struggling in different ways to get past their blocks to doing what they wanted. Their difficulties were insurmountable—to them. When I looked at their situations, however, their problems seemed self-imposed, and quite easy to change. Even without tapping.
“Angie” has a job she hates. She has been working toward getting certified so she can start looking for a bookkeeping job she will enjoy. But she has two more classes to take and won’t be finished for at least six more months. So she won’t be able to make a change for at least that long. And she can’t quit because she is the sole provider for herself and her ten-year-old daughter. She is frustrated that she can’t make a change now. Except maybe she can.
In last week’s tip I explained how we go into a fight or flight reaction when we perceive a threat and our brains’ higher functioning begins to shut down, whether that threat is an attacking grizzly bear, an angry boss, or even the economic news. The longer we perceive the threat, the less of our brain we can access.
Last week I focused on the importance of limiting your intake of media, especially the news, to lower the amount of stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline in your body throughout the day. The more we hear about dangers from accidents, war, crimes and even financial distress, even when these things happen to complete strangers in another part of the world, the more our body pumps out those stress hormones. For that reason, just cutting back on your consumption of the news can drop the level of those hormones in your body, allowing you better access to the parts of your brain responsible for decision-making, creativity, language, and other areas critical for success in business (not to mention life).
But even when you’ve limited the amount of media in your life, you will still find yourself in situations in which you are facing a perceived threat. Let’s say your biggest client calls you up and tells you they are going to pull their account. This is a big threat, but not one that your flight or fight response can help you with. Indeed, that response will actually prevent you from reacting to the client’s threat in the best way you could. The stress hormones that start coursing through your body will block access to the very parts of your brain you most need in the moment—like critical thinking, impulse control, problem solving, maintaining relationships, and simply being able to find the right words!
Relaxing Your Body Stops the Flow of Stress Hormones
Last week I went to a two-day training for therapists (I’m both a therapist and a coach) about how to treat trauma and PTSD. I was pleased to discover some useful information that also works for people who are not dealing with major trauma in their lives. Today’s tip is the first of two important take-aways for my readers from that training.
Perceiving a Threat Ramps Up Your Body and Shuts Down Your Brain
When you perceive a threat, even a threat of the non-lethal type like those you might experience at the office, your body releases a number of hormones like adrenaline and cortisol that prepare you to either fight or flee. Physically, your heart and breathing rates go up, your muscles tense up, and you get a lot of energy. This means you can potentially do big things, like the story of the mother who lifts a car off her child. But you can’t do them for very long as you quickly Continue reading “Too Much News Makes You Stupid: Turn It Off!”→
I want to share a technique that I use with many of my clients to get rid of all sorts of blocks to their success. The technique is called EFT, or simply “tapping”, and it’s growing in popularity, is being used around the world, and the number of studies documenting its effectiveness is mounting. Really, the only drawback to it is that it looks weird. Ah well, can’t have everything.
I’m going to teach you a simple version of tapping to use when you are feeling stressed. Stress can lower your ability to think and be creative, so it’s important to limit stress when you can. Before we start, though, go drink some water. No really, go. This won’t work if you are at all dehydrated. I’ll wait.
Welcome back. Okay, the first step is to write down the feeling you are working on. I’ll be using the word “stress,” but if “overwhelmed,” “underwater,” “scared” or some other word captures what you’re feeling better, please use that. Next, on a scale of 0 through 10 (0 is not at all, 10 is as bad as you can imagine), write down how stressed you are feeling right now.
It’s time to do the actual tapping.
1. Karate Chop. Take two fingers of one hand and tap on the karate chop point on your other hand. That’s the fleshy part on the side of your hand under your little finger. You’re tapping about as hard as if you had a push-button phone with a sticky button. So, you’re not whiffing it and you’re not leaving a bruise, but it’s solid. Now, while tapping on that point, we’re going to say something three times. Repeat after me: “Even though I’m feeling really stressed, I deeply and completely accept myself . . . Even though I’m feeling really stressed, I deeply and completely accept myself . . . Even though I’m feeling really stressed, I deeply and completely accept myself.”
2. Eyebrow. Now tap right where one of your eyebrows starts and say “This stress.”
3. Side of Eye. Tap on the ridge of bone on the side of your eye. “I am stressed.”
4. Under the Eye. Tap about and inch below your pupil under your eye. “I’ve got too much going on.”
5. Under Nose. Tap under your nose. “And it’s real.”
6. Chin. Tap on the line on your chin. “I’ve got good reasons to feel stressed.”
We could use two fingers for the next spots, but it will take too long to find them, so let’s do this the easy way.
7. Collarbone. Make a fist and, with the flat part of your knuckles, tap on your collarbone where a man would knot his tie. “I’m really stressed.”
8. Under Arm. Take all four fingers and tap under your arm, about four inches down from your armpit. “All this stress.” 9. Top of the Head. Finally, tap with all five fingers on the top of your head and say: “I’m so stressed.”
Okay, stop tapping and take a deep breath. Great. That was a single round of tapping. (By the way, all you really need to say as you are tapping around the points is “this stress,” but I like to keep it interesting.) Check in with your stress level. Is it still the same number you started with, did it go up, or down? Write down the new number. Usually the numbers go down, but sometimes they go up. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. It just means you are accessing something you’ve been pushing away and now you’ll be able to tap it down.
Time for a second round of tapping:
Karate Chop: “Even though I have this remaining stress, I deeply and completely accept myself.” (Say that two more times.)
Eyebrow: “This remaining stress.”
Side of Eye: “There’s a lot on my plate.”
Under Eye: “I’m not sure how I’ll get it all done.”
Under Nose: “So of course I’m stressed.”
Chin: “Anyone would be.”
Collarbone: “Still, the stress isn’t helping. It’s actually making it worse.”
Under Arm: “Maybe I can let go of some of it.”
Top of Head: “I’m letting go of some of that stress now.”
Stop. Breathe deeply. Check your stress number now. You can keep doing rounds of tapping until you get that number down to zero or until you have to do something else. Usually just a few rounds is enough to get the stress way down from where you started so you can think better and get more done.
There’s lots more you can do with tapping, but sometimes all you need is a quick boost. I hope that was helpful.
Two weeks ago a client came to me with an all-too-familiar problem: she was completely overwhelmed with all she had to do and couldn’t find a way to change what was going on. “Maria” and her partner were building a startup and were giving it their all. They worked from early in the morning until bedtime. Meals were eaten standing up while filling orders. Weekends were down to half a day. There was no time for friends, and phone calls with family were limited to ten minutes each week. And still she had projects on her To Do list that she simply couldn’t get to.