But I Don’t Know What I Want

Not knowing what you want is the most effective form of procrastination there is. It stops you before you even get started.

It can be baffling, too. Everyone else seems to know what they want. What their goals are. What direction they want to take in life.

And you just can’t decide what you want (sometimes even when it comes to the little things, like what movie to watch). When you try, you get stopped right out of the gate with “fuzzy thinking.” You just don’t know!

This may show up as difficulty making decisions in one area of your life, like what career to choose. Or it could be a global issue for you making every choice a challenge, from where to go for dinner to who to marry.

If you struggle with making decisions, whether specifically or globally, know that there is a reason it’s so hard, and that reason is usually buried deep down in your subconscious.

Watch the video to see what causes the “fuzzy thinking” and how to get rid of it so you can finally go after what you truly want.

When you’re ready to stop the fuzzy thinking and figure out what you really want so you can finally create the life you are meant to live, email me. We’ll set up a call to talk about what’s going on with you and see if I can help.

A Sneaky Kind of Procrastination

A sneaky kind of procrastination might be holding you back. This kind of procrastination shows up as a repeating pattern of almost—but not quite—getting what you want.

How is this procrastination? Well, if you don’t get what you want, you don’t move forward on your goals. Then you’re stuck, just like with “traditional” procrastination.

More than one client has faced this problem of coming close to achieving an important goal and then falling short. The first time or two we don’t get the job offer, or take advantage of a business idea, or finish an offer on time, it could just be life. But when it’s a pattern that happens over and over again, it shows that there is something happening below the surface that we’re not aware of.

Watch to find out what can cause this sneaky kind of procrastination and what you can do to get rid of it.

If you recognize a pattern in your own life of not achieving your important goals and want to stop procrastinating once and for all so you can create the life you are meant to live, email me. We’ll set up a call to talk about what’s going on with you and see if I can help.

Are You Paying for a Magic Pill?

Do you pay for expensive trainings, groups, or programs, then fail to follow through on what you learned? Or procrastinate so much you never even open them on your computer?

To others it can seem like you expect that just paying the money is a Magic Pill that will bring you whatever you want without your having to lift a finger. But that’s not what’s really going on.

There’s a reason that you get excited about those opportunities but then can’t bring yourself to take action. Watch the video to find out what’s really holding you back from taking advantage of those programs that could change your life, and what to do about it.

If you want to stop procrastinating once and for all and create the life you are meant to, email me. We’ll set up a call to talk about what’s going on with you and see if I can help.

Stop Procrastinating. Go Out and Play!

As kids we’re all taught to get our work done first before . . .
• playing with friends
• watching TV
• having dessert
• really, doing anything fun.
It’s called delayed gratification, and it’s not only a sign of maturity, it’s a skill that’s essential to accomplishing most anything that is important in life.

Most of us have learned to use this approach as an incentive to get ourselves to finish those things we would rather avoid. It makes sense. But, when taken too far, it can actually cause us to procrastinate.

This happened to a client of mine who had been trying very hard to be a good, mature adult who did her chores before going out to play. It backfired and ended up causing her to procrastinate on the very thing she was trying to get herself motivated to do.

Watch the video to see why that happened and how to know when you should chuck delayed gratification in the trash and just Go Out and Play!

If you would like some help figuring out what’s causing your procrastination, email me. We’ll set up a call to talk about what’s going on with you and see if I can help.

Are You Avoiding Something Because It’s Too Draining?

Are you procrastinating, avoiding doing something—even though you know it will bring you closer to creating the life you want—because it drains you?

Dave came to me with exactly that problem. Whenever he tried to make cold calls, he would quickly lose his energy, and even his ability to think clearly. It limited his work days and put a ceiling on how much he could make in his business.

He really wanted to grow his business, but to do that he had to fix the problem. He just didn’t know how.

Watch the video to see what we did to find out what was causing the drain and put the stopper in.

Sometimes it takes a bit of detective work to uncover why something is sapping your energy. Then, when you know where to direct your tapping, you are ready to tap away the cause.

If you would like some help figuring out what’s holding you back from the life you’ve been dreaming of, email me. We’ll set up a call to talk about what’s going on with you and see if I can help.

When the Universe Keeps Slamming the Door in Your Face

Sometimes it seems like the Universe keeps slamming the door in your face.

You going along, doing what you think you’re supposed to, then WHAM! Things go wrong. It can be a loss of a job, a financial hit, anything that prevents you from following the path you were on. What does it mean?

Turns out the Universe is trying to get your attention. If you listen carefully, you can find out what it means.

I’ve seen this happen with my clients a lot. If they seem to be causing the problem themselves, it is often an internal, subconscious conflict that needs to be resolved so they can follow their dream. But if the problem seems to come from the outside, it’s usually something else.

Just recently I talked to a friend of mine who had gone through this three times. Finally, with a little help from Oprah, she listened. Watch the video to find out what the Universe was trying to tell her and how she finally was able to hear the message.

If you feel like you keep getting the door slammed in your face, try what my friend did. You might just get an important message yourself about what to do next.

One Very Good Reason You Might Be Sabotaging Your Business

“Elizabeth” had a big block. Lately she had been unintentionally sabotaging her relationships with her big clients She was worried that it was jeopardizing her business, and she was right. She needed to get rid of her block. But her block wasn’t quite what she thought it was.

Elizabeth works hard at everything she does. When her clients say they need something, she always takes on the project immediately no matter how unreasonable the time frame. Then she knocks herself and her staff out getting it done. She has taken that old adage to “underpromise and overdeliver” and thrown away the “underpromise” part. She promises her clients everything they want in record time, struggles to make it happen, and then finds that they don’t appreciate how hard she works. Of course, she rarely tells them how difficult it will be to meet their deadlines, so how could they?

stressed callerShe also overdoes things at home. Despite having a successful business making more than enough money, she does all the cleaning and cooking at home. She manages her seventh grade son’s schedule, personally making sure he gets to all his after school activities, attends his games, and hosts his friends at home at least once a week. And when he started struggling in math, she researched geometry books, got the one with the most recommendations, and tutored him herself. When her husband complained about their outdated kitchen, she hired the general contractor then made all the decisions and dealt with the inevitable problems on her own.

She was stressed out and not sleeping well the few hours she allowed herself to lie down. Her health was deteriorating. The doctors were prescribing Continue reading “One Very Good Reason You Might Be Sabotaging Your Business”

To Finish What You’re Avoiding, Change How You Talk About It

After we’d cleared out some major blocks, “Sam” told me his energy levels were back to where they were seven years ago when he started his business, and he could power through all sorts of projects fast. He was feeling really motivated to go out and get those new clients he’d been talking about for the last couple of years. The one thing standing in the way of his moving forward on the next growth phase of his business were the piles of “stuff” on his desk.

“Stuff?” I asked. “Oh, billing and other paperwork. The stuff I have to do. But I don’t like it. I know I’ve gotta do it to keep my business running, but I would rather do anything else. It’s so boring.” We talked about a few different time management tricks he could use to make time for the stuff and just get it done, but it quickly became clear that this wasn’t a simple question of fitting it into an already busy schedule. Just the thought of working on the “stuff” was turning Sam into a rebellious teen, shaking his head and saying “You can’t make me.”

lonely lawnmowerThat rebellious attitude was the tip off to me that we were dealing with an internal block that was tripping him up. We had already uncovered and cleared some of Sam’s other issues with authority. Turns out this was another aspect of his automatic refusal to do what someone tells him to do. Only he was the one who was telling himself to do the work!

Now that kind of reaction to other people telling you what to do is often part of what drives someone to become Continue reading “To Finish What You’re Avoiding, Change How You Talk About It”

The Money Block

While sitting in a long line of traffic, I started thinking of a block that creeps into many people’s decision-making: they try to avoid spending money, but wind up losing opportunities that would have earned them more than they would have spent.

That day, the toll bridge in Seattle had been shut down, so all of us were shunted on to the other, non-toll, bridge. For $3.69, you can usually get across the toll-bridge quickly and easily. The other bridge has become a stop-and-go nightmare as so many drivers choose that route to save money. While I was experiencing the waste of time that many people willingly choose, I was thinking about how gladly I would have paid the toll so I could get back to my office an hour earlier and make some money. Instead, I was spending more time driving, NOT getting work done.

Traffic Jam!Fooled by a veneer of rationality?

Usually, a quick way to test whether you have an internal block is to look at whether your actions are rational or irrational. If, rationally speaking, you know it makes more sense to get your report into your boss early, or finish your billing on time, or hold your temper around a client, and yet you consistently do the opposite, it’s a fair bet that you have an internal block that is keeping you from acting rationally. Yet when saving money is part of the equation, our actions can sometimes appear rational on the surface even when a closer look shows us they are not. This veneer of rationality surrounding saving money can keep us from recognizing—and challenging—our own block.

Take that pesky toll. For most people reading this, $3.69 is a trivial amount of money. Pay the toll, if it will buy you upwards of half an hour of time, and you can put that half hour into things like completing projects early, getting more work done, or networking—any number of ways to impress your boss or lay the groundwork for a new job, either of which can lead to a lot more money in your pocket than the outlay for the toll. What is a half hour of your time worth, if you had to reach into you wallet and pay for it? If you own your own business, you can use the time to put your efforts into bringing in more clients, creating a new service or product your customers need, or other efforts to make your company more valuable. Finally, at the very least you could use that half hour for some real downtime (going for a walk in the park, playing with your kids, canoodling with your significant other) that will improve your mood, creativity, and/or quality of life. All for the low, low price of $3.69.

Saving Money Can Cost You

But so often, instead of looking at what an outlay brings us, we immediately think “I can’t afford it,” or “I don’t need that.” A lifelong habit of being careful with money—or a lesson painfully learned from a sudden loss of income—leads to an automatic rejection of any expenditure that we are not forced to make. And that can paradoxically lead to a loss of opportunities and therefore a loss of money.

There are a lot of things we “make do” with in order to save money that may in fact be losing us money. Anything that saves you time that you could better use to improve your business or advance your career can fall into this category. This includes everything from buying new software to having an expert prepare your taxes to picking up dinner at the deli counter on the way home. In fact, anything that you do that is not central to your business or career that could be outsourced is something to consider as a trade off for the dollar value of your time, like bookkeeping, chauffeuring the kids around, rotating the tires on your car, or cleaning your home or office.

Ooooh, that last one is an especially big bug-a-boo for a lot of people. Somewhere along the line they learned that it is morally wrong to pay someone else to clean for them when they are able-bodied enough to scrub their own toilets. But look what you lose when you take the time yourself to do that. You take time away from building up your business in ways that only you can. Just about anyone can vacuum; only you can do the rainmaking, or provide your professional services, or do whatever your customers come to you and not the other guy for. And if you work for someone else, taking time to clean your own home means you don’t have that time to get the certification you need for the next step in your career, or to meet someone in your field who could help you get into that great company you’ve had your eye on, or any of the other things that might move you up.

How To Determine Whether to Spend the Money or Not

To find out if you have a block around spending money that is preventing you from actually making money, try this exercise. Take a piece of paper. Draw a line down the middle. On the left-hand side, write down something you have been avoiding and what it would cost you to buy it. On the right-hand side, write down what it would buy you (e.g., “time to work on presentation” or “time to take on one more client”). Estimate what that could be worth to you. Yes, I mean a dollar amount (“a $5000 bonus” or “$30,000 for one additional client relationship over the next five year”). Now, come up with a percentage likelihood that you will achieve that benefit. (e.g., “15% likelihood that it will lead to the bonus” or “100% ability to work with potential client off my waitlist”). Multiply the potential worth by the percentage likelihood. If the resulting number is greater than what you wrote down on the left-hand side of the page, you have just shown yourself that the rational choice is to spend the money here.

Yes, I know your calculation is not really a hard and fast number, but it is a fairly rational way of estimating what the expenditure is likely worth to you. It is certainly better than a knee-jerk reaction of “spending any money is bad.” Then, if the upside looks like it is more valuable to you than what you have to pay to get it, it is time to spend the money. If it is just too speculative, don’t do it.

Got the Money Block?

Now, if the upside is more valuable than what you would pay and you still can’t bring yourself to do it, you’ve got yourself a money block. Do what you can to stay in your head, being rational, about the expenditure instead of just listening to your feelings that are screaming “Don’t waste money!” You’ve already calculated that it wouldn’t be a waste of money. So take a deep breath and make the commitment to doing the rational thing.

Of course, if you are currently working on a shoestring and you really have to pinch every penny, then you will have to trade some of your time for money, at least until you get some leeway into your system. Then, once you have more money that you can use to “buy” time, you will be able to shift your efforts from money-saving to more money-making efforts. For now, do what you have to. But keep doing those calculations. At some point, sooner than you expect, the upside of spending the money will outweigh the downside.