What do selfies, stickers, and scotch have in common?

What do selfies, stickers, and scotch have in common?

On Wednesday evening, while out for dinner with a few fabulous females in my life up to BIG things, we laughed until we cried. LITERALLY.

I hadn’t done that in while! And boy did it feel good.

I’m all about having fun – and yet sometimes I let the seriousness of business and all of the goings-ons (exciting as they are) to get in the way…

It was no wonder when we got back to my place that evening and ended up selling my pull-out couch to a random stranger turned friend (seriously, we’ve been texting back and forth and now we’re getting together!), we had so much FUN trying to maneuver this thing and all its pieces onto luggage carts and dollies and in and out of the elevator and into the borrowed van… hilarious.

Here’s what she wrote the next day: “We talked about how much fun we had picking up, conversing, laughing, problem solving and moving the couch… who knew it would be such an enjoyable experience and adventure! Best kijiji purchase and interaction EVER – a pure pleasure!”

That morning, my friend and sleepover guest and I decided to pull out daily meditation cards (shout out to May You Know Joy… LOVE these cards!) and not surprisingly, the one I happened to pick out of the deck was “Today, I choose playfulness.”

I do try to bring play into all I do, and yet sometimes I feel I need to apologize for it, or like I need to be more business-like, or appear more professional in how I present my brand both on and offline.

Yet if I’m honest, I actually think we need to bring MORE play into both our business world and into our lives!

And that’s why, as part of presentation I gave to the City of Brampton Economic Development Centre this week I taught the participants how to take the perfect seflie. Now although some were totally getting out of their comfort zones, there was also lots of laughter and they had FUN! (I know because a few said it was their favourite part of the presentation in their evaluations!!!)

And that’s why when working at the Lodge yesterday, and I gave out colourful little stickers to everyone there, faces brightened and shoulders dropped. There were fun conversations and neat connections that ensued.

And that’s also why, when invited to a scotch tasting event last night, even though I don’t even drink scotch, I said yes. Because although I have a LOT of exciting things going on and a lot to do, it’s also important to find time to PLAY.

In fact, I would dare to say I NEED to play in order to be more productive.

And I would dare to say YOU could use a bit more play in your life, too.

 

SO, what do selfies, stickers, and scotch have in common?

This week, to me, they all meant PLAY.

 

There you have it, folks! All roads lead to play.

I truly feel this is especially important to remember as we’re experiencing the aftermath of the election results. (I’m not going to go there and shall refrain from commenting – as I’m not about to open up Pandora’s Box – and yet I was certainly affected this week…)

So, how can YOU add a little bit of playfulness into your work and into your life this week?

Perhaps you want to get yourself some stickers, or have fun practicing selfies, or say yes to trying a new bevvy!

Or maybe you want to colour. Go the park and have fun on the swings. Race down the grocery store aisle with your cart just because. Play a practical joke on someone in your family or a colleague (sneakily fill the coffee pot with decaf instead of regular… that’s always a good one!)

Whatever you choose, I dare you to have some FUN this week. To allow yourself to play. To laugh until you cry.

It will make you feel SO good, trust me.

What do selfies, stickers, and scotch have in common? All roads lead to play! We ALL need more play in our lives. (Click to tweet it out!)

 

Have a FAB week!

Carol - high res

  

 

 

P.S. Speaking of play, toady is the LAST DAY to get your eariy bird tickets to join us at Aerosports next Tuesday! Rest assured there will be a LOT of #playingbig happening there!

P.P.S. If you’re ready to add more play into your life, then you’re going to want to learn more about The Tribe. Although it hasn’t officially launched yet, message me  for more info…

Balance is overrated. Or is it?

Ah yes, the infamous work-life balance debate. One would think the idea of balance would have a nice feel to it. And yet I fear it breeds more stress than sweet sounds when you hear it.

For so many, especially women, achieving a work-life balance seems to be one of the biggest and most common goals. It comes up amongst my clients all of the time.

And yet, in my humble opinion, we are doing ourselves a disservice when we set out to achieve a perfect work-life balance.

Balance insinuates equilibrium – where both sides, opposing forces, are on an equal plane at all times. Now I don’t know about you, however I think that is an impossible feat to manage all of the time, and so we are simply setting ourselves up for failure.

I hope you will allow me to indulge for a moment and share a few of my opinions on this matter.

 

Different stages dictate different priorities.

I really agree with the statement “You can have everything, just not all at the same time.” Honour where you are now, and what is most important now. Are you a new Mom? THAT is where your focus needs to be! Single in the city? Embrace the dating scene! Starting up a new business? Yeah, you are going to have some long days ~ so get used to it! No situation is forever – so don’t fight where you are and what is calling your time and energy today.

 

Stop comparing yourself to others!

There is nothing that is going to make you feel worse than looking at how you balance your work and life as compared to how others do it. So just STOP IT! And if you don’t know how to stop it, and are looking for a laugh, watch this video NOW!

It really comes down to values. For some, career is very important. To others, it’s all about family. And others still, perhaps being a vagabond is where it’s at. And just as our priorities are going to change at different times in our lives, so are our values.

Your definition of work-life balance is going to look different to the person next to you. So get clear on what it means to you, and stop comparing already! Chances are they are looking at you, thinking you’ve got it all figured out anyhow.

 

Treat every day as a new day because it is.

What scale are you using to measure work-life balance anyway? It’s hard to look at what it would mean to achieve work-life balance if you’re not even sure how you’re looking at it. Are you hoping to dedicate an equal amount to both sides on a daily basis? Or would you be okay with working hard during the week and playing hard over the weekend? Or putting in a hard month and then rewarding yourself with a holiday?

Your definition of work-life balance is going to depend on where you are in your life, what matters to you most, and how you choose to measure it. Stop attempting to achieve perfect equilibrium – it’s overrated, anyhow! (Click to tweet it out.)

 

Set yourself up for success; set realistic expectations based on what’s going on in your life right now. Embrace where you are, do the best you can do today, and know that you get another chance at it tomorrow.

Have a FAB week!

Carol - high res

 

 

 

5 Ways to Create Your Own Sunshine

My week in pictures: At ladies Martini Night – fundraiser for Million Dollar Smiles (yes there were firefighters and a catwalk!); DivaGirl conference (first time displaying my own banner!); doing a demo Cheer class at the conference (totally should have been a cheerleader!); Running the Yonge St. 10k representing TEAM Cdn Dash for Diabetes

I saw that yellow umbrella with the words ‘Create your own sunshine’ in a storefront display yesterday morning. Quite apropos, as the last few days in these parts have been grey and rainy and somewhat miserable (even saw some snow!)

Now I would be lying if I said I wasn’t affected by the weather. It’s a whole lot easier for me to smile and be happy when I see Mr. Sun. And on the flip side, I can get a little more down or slower moving when it’s grey and uninviting out there.

And yet, if we have control over our thoughts and our mindset – and we do – we can choose to rise above whatever the weather may be on the outside, and create our own sunshine on the inside.

Because you can’t rely on Mr. Sun to create your own internal sunshine. Only you can do that.

How? Here are 5 ideas:

1. Get outside. Make friends with the rain.

Wednesday was Earth Day. And it was also a little rainy and dull. A good reminder of how lucky we are to have Mother Nature looking after everything! For my workout, I was tempted to simply go to my gym and hop on the treadmill. But I decided that didn’t quite feel right ~ I needed to get outside! And so I put on my gear, grabbed my running rain jacket, and did just that. And it felt good.

There is something magical about being out in nature. Even if you do experience a few raindrops. When was the last time you truly experienced it? Smelled the fresh air? Took in all of the colours? Really felt the rain? Smiled in the wind?… when you do, your spirits can’t help but be lifted.

2. Have an attitude of gratitude. 

I know it’s not the first time you’re hearing this. And there’s a reason for that. It works! When I shared my morning rituals a ways back, you may remember the first thing I do when I wake up is smile (a small gesture with a big impact!) and then I list off 3 things I am grateful for. It automatically gets me in a positive mindset. Perhaps you might like to do it before you go to bed, maybe you keep a gratitude journal, or you prefer to share with your partner or spouse at the end of the day.

However you choose to do it, research has proven over and over again that those who have some type of gratitude practice experience far higher levels of happiness and positivity.

3. Play.

When was the last time you played a game or did something a little silly, just because? Take out your favourite board game. Go splash in some puddles. Honk at some stranger walking down the street on your side, and then start waving madly in the opposite direction to confuse them (I used to LOVE doing this when I was younger!)

Life and work can get so serious sometimes. Loosen up a little. Take 5 minutes for fun and play. Like my Living BIG challenge this month, when things get stressful, ask yourself ‘WTF?’ ~ Where’s The Fun???

4. Make it about someone else. 

When I am feeling a little low, I like to reach out and connect with someone else, make it about them instead of me. Call an old friend. Buy someone’s coffee. Send someone a little gag gift that reminded you of them. I wrote quite a few cards this week ~ and although yes, I love acknowledging others and who doesn’t love snail mail ~ I also knew it would make me feel warm and fuzzy, too.

When you do unto others, you end up doing unto yourself even more.

5. Connect with your why.

Some days it’s harder than others to jump out of bed and get into the groove. Such is life, I’m afraid. Yet when you are living your life on purpose, when you are on a larger mission, when you are connected to something greater ~ a little rain isn’t going to keep you from doing the work you need to do. Not sure what your why is or how to find out? Ask yourself what fires you up most, what makes your heart sing, what you want your legacy to be. Connect to that.

The happiest people on the planet are those that are living on purpose. We all have something or someone that inspires us… Take the time to remind yourself of that.

There you go. Want to create your own sunshine? Get outside. Have an attitude of gratitude. Play. Make it about someone else. Connect with your why.

Because you can’t rely on Mr. Sun to create your own internal sunshine. Only YOU can do that. (Click to tweet it out!)

Have a FAB week!

Carol - high res

 

 

 

AND, now I wanna here what YOU have to say! What are your best practices when it comes to creating your own sunshine? Please leave your comments below :-).

P.S. What are you doing next Wednesday, April 29th? Come and hear me speak at One Red Lipstick Live – a global movement for female entrepreneurs to share their stories. Check it out HERE.