Let’s be real, at one point we’ve all made a messy mistake. Whether it’s missing a deadline, forgetting an important call — or something entirely different— it can be hard to swallow your pride and admit you’re in the wrong.
What if instead of punishing yourself, replaying the situation like a broken record in your head or doing/saying something you might regret - you used this as an opportunity for growth and and occasion to make the situation better for everyone involved?
Humility not only releases you from the negative thought pattern, it also connects you deeper to the person or people who were on the receiving end of the error. When you can admit that you are not perfect (newsflash - no in is) it allows for a level of vulnerability in a relationship that otherwise may have not been there.
The resistance behind the ability to forgive yourself, apologize, and move on is really just our ego — and often the more it gets in the way, the more we separate ourselves from other people.
So whether it’s in business, your relationship with yourself, or your loved ones, here are my top tips to help you swallow your pride, apologize, and move on.
1. Watch for signs of ego
We love the feeling of being right. But what does being right really do for you? It creates more separation between you and the person who is wrong. Instead, see if you could put yourself in the other person’s shoes and see their perspective. At a foundational level we all want to be seen and loved, so remember that when looking for a resolution.
Meditating allows you to quiet all of the noise. When in a challenging situation there are 3 levels, what happened, your emotions as well as what is at stake for you. Getting quiet allows you to access your intuition and see yourself more clearly. From this place you can be guided towards a clearer action plan.
3. Let go of the BS
Let go of the feelings and thoughts that are weighing you down. That includes resentment, taking things personally, and being harsh with yourself. Remind yourself that when you swallow your pride, you can make more space in your life for positive emotions to take over.
This time of year is an interesting one. It can be filled with excitement and glee as you gear up for the holiday season or it can be filled with dread and deep feelings of loneliness.
In North America, we just turned back the clocks giving us an extra hour of darkness and as the weather turns colder, more time inside.
It is the start of winter, the introspective season, a time where we have to face what is underneath the surface as opposed to running from it. Some of us may want to ‘throw in the proverbial towel’ and put things on cruise control until the end of the year while others may kick it up into high gear to reach those end of year goals.
So, where do you fall on that spectrum? Far to the left or right or somewhere in the middle? Wherever you are know that it is OK and I am here to support you in ending the year with a bang.
Are you still stuck in that job you hate? Dreaming of living in another city or looking for your soulmate? You don’t have to wait until 2020 to do that. You can start now and here is how.
1. Reflect on everything that you HAVE achieved up until this point
Our minds have a funny way of focusing on what didn’t go well, what we haven’t yet achieved or what didn’t go according to plan. However, there is A LOT that you have achieved so shift your focus there. Write out a list of all the things you are proud of that happened in 2019. Continue daily until the end of the year. This will surely help you see your value and motivate you for what is next.
2. Skim the fat
Often when we want to get a lot of things done in a short amount of time it can feel really overwhelming so we actually don’t do anything at all, leaving us more frustrated than when we started. Cut down on what you would like to achieve before the end of the year and focus on the ONE thing that is the most important to you, within the given time frame. You can add things to that list for the new year but for now, use the time that you have wisely.
3. Get support
You know that saying 2 heads are better than one? Well that’s because it is the truth. When working towards a goal it is always best to enrol other people in your vision because they can likely help. People are altruistic by nature - meaning that they want to help so if you share what you are working towards that may have resources that will get you closer to your goal.
4. Work with a coach
Working with a coach is a fast track way to reaching your goals and creating an important shift in your life. The reason for this is because your coach will recognize patterns and blind spots that you are not able to see and will hold you accountable in shifting them. The strong support system will propel you into seeing yourself in a different light, gaining momentum and changing patterns of behaviour that have previously gotten in your way.
Let me help!
Once a year I discount my one-on-one coaching program and the time is NOW! If you want to create a major shift by the end of the year sign up for a FREE intro call to hear more about it.
This is a $1000 discount! See what people who have worked with me are saying.
We all have that one friend that always replies to “how are you” with “soo busy” or “things are just so busy right now!” (or maybe we are that person ourselves). Admittedly, I’ve been there. As an entrepreneur, there have been so many times when I felt like as long as I had X number of clients then “I truly made it”. Which in hindsight, doesn’t make any sense.
I would cram my schedule with work, projects, meetings, events and so much more without taking the time to reflect on my accomplishments or even celebrate my wins. I was just “too busy” to make any time to slow down.
The truth is, I’m not alone. Being “busy” has become a badge of honor in our modern day lives. It makes us feel important, accomplished, on the ball — all the things we want to share with others. But it’s also exhausting to occupy yourself with being busy, especially if you are busy with the wrong things. If you are busy with negative thoughts, acting in a way you think you “should” or doing something you despise, this business will block you from being the best version of yourself and truly being productive and efficient with your time.
Being busy is not inherently a bad thing if we're busy with things that are most important to us and support or well being. But being busy without real time to rest and reflect only leads to burnout and exhaustion. Here are three tips to help you get out of the “busy” trap and find more enjoyment and fulfillment in your life.
Top 3 Ways to Stop Being So “Busy”
1. Reexamine your to-do list
I love a good to-do list to keep me on track to hit all of my goals. But one trick I use with clients is to dive into the “why” behind each item on your list. Before you add it to your to-do-list, ask yourself is it necessary? Does it get me closer to my goal? Do I actually enjoy this?
This will help you recognize the important tasks from the not so important tasks and make sure you’re focusing your time/effort on items that are 100% necessary and in alignment.
2. Set up a solid morning routine
You must find 10 minutes for yourself each morning. It’s an important foundational element to start your day off right. Whether it’s journalling, a gratitude list, a meditation, or just taking some time to mindfully sip your coffee, this time with yourself should be non-negotiable and can really put you in the right headspace for the rest of your day.
3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help
So often we take on way too much and become exhausted and ineffective. You can shift the pattern by examining areas in your life where you can ask for help.
Whether its business, love, fitness, etc. where you could use some help? A great coach can help bring out the best in you and take things to the next level. This could be the greatest gift you give to yourself to help you supercharge your progress.
Remember, being busy is not a badge of honor and you can escape the trap of missing out on life and becoming the greatest version of yourself. I’m cheering for you!
For so many people, Halloween is the designated day to day to dress up, overindulge in sugar, and get your fright on. It emphasizes the spooky parts of death and hones in on fears related to the afterlife. However, Halloween in other parts of the world, is actually viewed as a celebration. It is recognized as a traditional celebration with a deep connection to the supernatural and the dead.
This is referred to Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. A Mexican holiday with 3,000 years of incredible tradition. Over 2 days, families remember and honor the spirits of the unliving. There’s face painting, stories, food, and festivals greeting the spirits from the other side. Sure, the theme is death, but the tone is commemoration - undoubtedly different than the Halloween I grew up on.
So, this got me thinking...rather than fearing death, what if we used the thought of dying as a portal to
recognize the things that are still in us to create?
In addition it can be used as a tool to identify what has died within us and is ready to be released?
Death can provide us with valuable information for deeper insight due to the finality of it’s nature. Are there any limiting beliefs holding you back from realizing your dreams? What a perfect opportunity to go inward and figure out what we hope to get out of life and living.
So, if you died tomorrow, what unrealized dreams would you have?
Is it a relationship, traveling more, launching a business, or just more meaningful connections — that’s information on how you should move forward and what you should spend time cultivating.
By taking a moment to pause and step out of our regular routines, we can cut through the noise and realign to what matters most. And sure, it might be uncomfortable at first, but reflecting on death has a unique way of making what we want to do with the limited time we have left crystal clear.
Q4 is in full swing, and for me, that means taking a step back to see how I’m measuring up to reach my 2019 goals —and setting new ones for the quarter ahead, both personal and professional.
Maybe you had a vision for what you planned to achieve at this point in the year. Whether it was a promotion, a new relationship, launching a business, or better health—can you take a moment to check in and be honest with yourself with your progress? If you’re exactly where you planned to be, amazing! But if you’ve slipped behind, then this is the perfect time to reset. By asking yourself a few important questions, you can change the trajectory of the next 2.5 months and make 2019 your biggest, most successful year yet.
The truth is, if you’ve fallen behind, it’s really NO big deal. Instead of making yourself feel bad, what if you adopted a kinder mindset? This is not a failure, but an incredible opportunity to recommit to the goals you really want to hit to make true progress.
Here are 4 steps to help you reset, reconnect, and get on the path to crushing your goals for 2019.
1. Ask yourself the hard questions
Instead of being hard on yourself, sit down and reflect. Take some time to answer the following questions:
- Is this something I still want?
- Is this important and exciting to me?
- Does timing make sense?
2. Get tactical
After setting your goal(s), break them down into manageable bite-sized pieces. What three things can you do that’ll help you reach each of your goals? Get as specific as possible, and don’t forget to assign deadlines to them
3. Stay accountable
Whether it’s a manager, a best friend, or a coach, get someone to help keep you on track. Don’t be afraid to share your goals with others—having a support system is key to making the future you see for yourself.
Practicing surrender actually helps you meet your goals, because it makes you more relaxed and open. That doesn’t mean you don’t need to put in the work, but trusting the timing of your life and knowing that it’s not all up to you helps to take some of the pressure off and make this an enjoyable experience!
What goals are you setting this quarter? Do you need some guidance to get clear and back on track? I’d love to help you make real goals with real potential. Book your clarity call here to get started.
In our society, being busy, constantly on the go, and straight up burnt out is often seen as a badge of honor. We tend to think being “productive” is the only way to be and even feel guilty for declining invites or taking vacations. And while I’m all for juggling projects, making time for friends, and maximizing my output, deep down I know that sometimes I just need to chill.
With social media, it seems the pressure is even higher with a never ending competition of who can achieve more, share more, take better pictures, and hit up all the workout classes and brunches. If we really take a beat though, deep down we know that our bodies NEED rest to function at peak performance—and sometimes taking a break is the most productive thing we can do for ourselves.
But how exactly do you know if you’re just being lazy or if you really need to shut it down early and sleep in? To what kinds of feelings should you tune in to? Maybe physical like fatigue and sore muscles? Or emotional feelings like doubt and anxiety? The truth is, your body is constantly sending you important messages. You don’t need to understand them, you just need to tune in and act on them.
Here are 3 Ways to Learn to Listen to Your Body by Cultivating a
Stronger Mind-Body Connection
1. Slow down + Journal
How can you tune in to your body if you’re constantly distracted, on social media, and running from one appointment to the next? Intentionally remind yourself to slow down, even if it’s bookended at the beginning or end of your day. A great way to do this is to write out your daily intentions in the morning (for the day ahead) or before going to bed (for the next day). The simple act of writing these down will bring you clarity on what you (and your body) needs and unconsciously make what you desire more likely to happen.
2. Breathe Deep
Most of us are shallow breathers, meaning we don’t maximize the full benefit from taking regular breaths. If your breath is shallow, you can be left feeling anxious or in fight/flight mode. By taking deep belly breaths that reach all the way down to your diaphragm you will stimulate your parasympathetic nervous system - the system in your body that is responsible for rest and digest.
The empowering part is that deep breaths can be trained since breathing is one of the only systems in our bodies that is both automatic and can be controlled. For training your breath, I recommend the box breath. You inhale for one, hold for one, exhale for one, hold for one and continue doing this all the way up to 5 (for each count). Doing this daily will ensure that your unconscious breaths becoming longer throughout the day creating a more relaxed sensation in your body.
3. Take Action
Your body is sending you messages ALL the time and it is up to you to listen to it.
Does your neck hurt? That means you have probably been looking at a screen for too long.
Are your hamstrings tight? Stand up, go for a walk or run.
Is your belly upset? Place your hands on your belly as a self-soothing mechanism.
When certain feelings arise, allow the action to come from that place inside of you that intuitively knows what you need.
So while you may have planned to work out before work, or go for happy hour drinks, plans can always change. If your body is telling you it’s exhausted, listen to it. Take rest. Be honest with yourself and the benefits will flow out to every aspect of your life.
You made plans with a friend, got ready, and are closing the door to your apartment. You hear your phone vibrating and look over only to see a text from said friend with a lousy excuse and last minute cancellation. Your reaction? You’re pissed! You just hate it when people flake last minute.
Whether it’s the co-worker who you absolutely can’t stand, the ex boyfriend you still call toxic, or the sibling you don’t see eye-to-eye with, any situation or person that triggers you is ultimately an opportunity to transform.
What exactly do I mean by this?
Enter: mirroring. Mirroring is the concept that everything around you reflects back information about you. Anything (and everything) that triggers negative emotion is information and provides you with the opportunity to recognize a quality you lack or possess.
For example, you’re annoyed by your super competitive co-worker. Instead of pointing fingers and complaining, be objective and choose to look closely at what s/he is reflecting.
Are they bringing up your own competitive nature?
Or maybe they’re reminding you of your lack of motivation.
The reason this quality is annoying you is because on some level, it’s also yours. Mic drop moment, I know. If you continue to ignore it, it will continue to frustrate you because what you resist persists.
Owning up to it, which is usually the harder option, not only gives you the opportunity to process it but also gives you the chance to grow.
The truth is, if you don’t recognize it, it will continue to haunt you until you have faced it and it’s often that thing that triggers you the most in others, that you need to improve on.
Because that’s how issues work - the don’t go away until you deal with them! But subconsciously you know that already...
Think of the triggers you see in other people like looking in a mirror - every part of you will be illuminated and it is what you choose to do with the information that will allow you to see your beauty or your thorns.
So next time something happens and you’re tempted to get angry, offended, or hurt, — take a steback, take a deep breath and ask yourself: “What is being mirrored here? What is the lesson for me to learn?” — and I assure you, you will get an answer.
How to Continue to Work Through Your Triggers
1. Find your mirrors
Spend some time thinking about the emotions you feel on a regular basis. Answer the following questions:
- What person, place, or quality upsets me or stirs up negative emotions in me?
- What situations do I find most difficult to handle?
- What behavior do I judge?
Don't be afraid to ask yourself the hard questions and delve into the hard answers. This information will help you to begin to heal these patterns and create lasting change.
2. Be gentle with yourself
As you begin to notice these emotions, and recognize your mirrors, be kind to yourself. Don’t judge yourself for possessing a certain quality, but keep showing up and you will begin to see changes.
3. Make space for the positive
Begin to notice the people, activities, and environments that bring you feelings of joy, fulfillment, or passion. If you learn what makes you feel happy and fulfilled and take the actions to get you into that state, you will get closer to becoming your best self.
I just returned from a 5-day silent retreat and everyone keeps asking me - so, what was it like? And how did you not speak for 5 whole days?
To be honest - it wasn’t so much the not talking part that bothered me, I actually quite enjoyed that, it was harder to purposely not distract myself. I chose not to look at my phone, read or write in my journal. My days were spent in total silence, without any screens, books or technology to distract me. I meditated while walking, while sitting, and ate slow mindful meals. Most importantly, I got quiet and learned how enjoyable it is to eliminate the noise we are distracted with daily.
By slowing down and taking time, it allowed me to realize some things and put some change in my daily habits into effect. Here are 3 ways I’ve changed since the experience and lessons you can take away, even if you don’t have the opportunity to try a silent retreat yourself.
1. Be kind to yourself
I am totally guilty of always wanting things to be harmonious, balanced and a-ok. The reality of life, however, is that we are going to experience the good with the bad. What was illuminated for me on retreat was that ‘the bad things in life’ (or dukka as referred to in Pali, the 2500 Buddhist language) are inevitable and we need to welcome them in the same way we welcome ‘the good’. You know that little voice inside of you that criticizes you and over thinks when something doesn’t go your way? I now recognize it not as a voice of truth, but simply another distraction. When soothing myself internally I now include words like ‘it’s okay my love’ rather than ‘you are bad or wrong’. So I know bad things will come, but my relationship to it has changed, and I’m much more patient and kind with myself.
2. To reconnect with yourself, you’ve got to disconnect from the noise of the outside world
Making the space to sit in total silence is a powerful experience. Without my phone, mindless scrolling, Netflix shows to catch up on, a slew of emails to tackle, and an endless to-do list, I was truly free. I had the time and space to get close to my thoughts, recognize them, and process them. I had SO much more awareness of the small details around me: the smells, textures, tastes, and sounds I would have normally missed had I had other outside distractions.
3. Choose your words mindfully, not just to fill space
Without the ability to communicate with my words, I noticed how so often we talk just to fill space without considering the powerful residue our words create. These days I’ve been considering how I feel after certain remarks, how others react, and how I can speak in a way that inspires and comes from my highest self. Being quiet and only speaking when I feel I have something important to say is a new practice I am implementing.
Our emotions are always giving us information. They help us to inform decisions and are constantly providing us with what we need to know in order to survive. Our emotions can also be unfounded or reactive or out of control - making us feel like somewhat of a crazy person. Am I right?!
From an early age in school and at home we are taught basic skills such as how to tie our shoes and brush our teeth, but we are often lacking in our understanding of emotional management and regulation strategies, which is a skill we will use each and every day.
In our busy, technology connected yet socially and emotionally disconnected hustle vibes society, emotions are often brushed aside, not addressed or ignored. We are often taught that we shouldn't show emotions like anger and sadness and to pretend everything is A-OK all the time. Especially with social media constantly showing us other people's highlight reel - we can get caught up in thinking everyone else seems to be happy all the time - so what's wrong with me?
The truth is we need to feel and honor all of our emotions. If they aren't addressed or felt, they can built up inside of us, and over time can pile on and on and on until we inevitably reach a breaking point.
This is where a mindful practice comes into play. It teaches us how to dance with our emotions; to see and feel them and let them go when necessary.
Give these strategies a try to help surf those emotions waves instead of getting knocked over when the wave breaks.
Tools for Managing Emotions
1. Emotional layering: Tuning inward and identifying exactly what you are feeling in a given moment will help you understand where it is coming from, and how to move forward with the resolution. Let's say you are feeling uneasy about something. Close your eyes and place your hands on your heart and ask yourself 'what am I feeling right now?' See what comes up. Then ask yourself, what's below that. Continue until you think you've finally gotten to the root of the emotion. Often emotions are layered on top of each other so getting to the root will bring wonderful awareness.
2. Respond vs. React: We have all had those moments when something triggers us and we fly off the handle, jumping straight into frustration and or anger. Practice instead the art of responding. Taking in all the information about the situation as it is happening, process and pause and THEN respond instead of relying on that knee jerk reaction that can often escalate the situation even further. Having a regular mindfulness practice can help with this, I have been using this free app for daily meditation which has been really helpful.
3. Sit with your emotions: When those tricker emotions come up for you, try your best not to dismiss them before you have had a chance to fully acknowledge, understand and feel the emotion to the fullest. This may look like actually letting yourself cry when you are sad instead of swallowing back the tears, or releasing that pent up anger in a run or boxing class so it's not wreaking havoc in your body. Fully embracing your joy in high vibe moments like singing in the shower or smiling wide are great too!
4. Let it go: If emotions are like waves, then they are always coming and going. Emotions aren't meant to stay with us permanently so sometimes we need to allow ourselves to let go of what no longer is serving us and bring back the ease of the ebbs and flows of the waves. As weird as it sounds, holding negativity or being angry is almost like eating candy... it's addictive and once we let ourselves indulge, sometimes we want to stay in that state. Releasing when necessary is another helpful tool to support you in managing your emotions as they present themselves so they don't build up to the point of explosion.
Last week we talked all about new beginnings and how to make the most out of a fresh start and learn how to embrace new situations. If you missed it, check it out here. This week we're taking it one step further and unpacking the sometimes dreaded word, CHANGE.
Change is something that we all seem to resist yet it is the only thing CONSTANT in our lives. The ability to change your situation, your luck, your relationship etc takes massive guts and is hard. Remember when we were young and change happened daily in the form of a new tooth, an inch of height or fresh hormones (ugh, I don't miss those!). We didn't resist it, we simply understood that it was the way of life and accepted it or welcomed it.
Growing up in Canada, I never liked the cold. My parents took me to Vermont to ski every weekend and although I became a great skiier, I did not like putting on a skisuit and spending the whole day freezing my a$$ off! The hot chocolate at the end of the day was always the part I looked forward to the most. So from an early age I decided I wanted to move and I set my sites on California.
This dream from its first inception to becoming a reality took over 10 years to manifest! The lesson here is that you can't put a timeline on the things you want to change, you just have to keep working at them and trust that they will happen.
Over the years I've learned to make friends with change and to actually like it, even when it's throwing me a curve ball I didn't expect or sending me a change that makes me uncomfortable or sad. I know that life is better with an influx of change and I'm a better person for learning to love it.
Want to feel the same? Embrace these tips and watch the changes unfold.
Tips for Change
1: Nothing changes if nothing changes: The biggest thing that is halting change in your life is as simple as not making the changes. If you want to learn a new skill but never take a class or try the activity - nothing will change. If you want to change your habit of pressing snooze every morning but never make any changes like going to bed earlier or putting your alarm clock in the next room so you have to get out of bed to turn it off then nothing will change. We have more power than we think over the changes we want in our life and it all starts with baby steps and consistency.
2. Seasons of change: We are just like nature, always changing from season to season, day to day. Nothing is ever really the same and yet there is a consistency and familiarity to the sun rising each morning and setting each night. Work with the seasons in your own life by first off acknowledging that they exist and observing yourself through the days, month, years and how you DO change over time. How your body becomes stronger from working out and eating right, how your goals change, your mood changes with the seasons etc. Learn to notice the rhythms of your body so you know when they are coming and can prepare for what they bring.
3. Backwards plan: Changes take planning and the big ones don't just happen by chance. It wasn't by chance that I ended up calling California home, it took focused planning and dedication and many years to make it happen. Backwards planning has always been a great tool for me to visualize the change and break it down into smaller actions so it doesn't feel overwhelming. Think about what you want to change and think about the steps you need to take in order to make it happen.
4. Celebrate change: Chances are you've experience BIG changes and SMALL changes in your life. It's SO important to take the time to celebrate each of those that you've experienced and created for yourself. It's ALSO great to know when it's time to stay put and enjoy what you have created. We can't always be in a state of BIG change and don't need to be. Reflect upon what season of change you are in right now and honor yourself for being exactly where you are supposed to be.
Samara Zelniker is a yogi, wine drinker, pet lover and travel junkie.