Conversations & Connections. Why they matter.

Happy Friday! (And Happy Friday before the long weekend!) 

It’s been an amazingly full week. 

And by full I mean my bucket is full, my mind is full, and my heart is full.

I started the week off in Las Vegas, as I had the honour of speaking at the SHRM 2019 International Conference.

Sunday had a lovely evening with the inspiring HoF speaker Barbara Glanz, followed by a gondola ride in our beautiful Venetian Hotel with another fellow speaker friend. 

Monday morning began by listening to – and learning a ton from – Brené Brown. Pretty darn amazing. And that afternoon had the privilege of delivering my session to an incredible audience. Now I love speaking to all crowds of all sizes, but when there is standing room only in your room with over 1000 chairs (we even filled the overflow room bringing us to 1250 in all!)there is an energy exchange that is pretty powerful. 

That evening, I was in awe as I watched Le Rêve, an incredible show in water put on by one of Cirque du Soleil’s directors. It was truly breathtaking and magical. 

Tuesday was travel day – which I surprisingly love – and was met at the airport back in Toronto by a friend and whisked off to see Hugh Jackman live for his AH-MAZING musical show.

Wednesday enjoyed an intimate dinner party with some other special speaking colleagues – and friends – and then went home to visit my Dad and his best friend who just arrived from Wales. 

And finally last night was invited to attend a very special Mess Dinner at The Canadian Forces College and met some extremely fascinating and inspiring individuals. 

Now I’m not sharing to brag or boast. First of all, this week was a bit of an anomaly ~ my weeks are certainly not always as full! (And it looked very different than last week I assure you!)

The reason I’m sharing is because as amazing as some of those events were, what actually made my week so full were the people, the connections, and the conversations I enjoyed. 

An experience isn’t truly an experience unless shared. Even if you take part in an experience on your own – which I often do – what makes it meaningful is sharing about it through conversation after the fact.

The dinners, the shows, the traveling, even the speaking was made so much more meaningful through the conversations I enjoyed with the women after the talk. And plane rides wouldn’t be nearly as fun if I didn’t engage in conversation with the people sitting next to me. 

A lot of my learning and ideas and ahas take place while in conversation with others. In fact, I was taking notes about what I wanted to say in today’s blog while sitting on my hair stylist’s chair, as we were ironically in conversation about the importance of conversation!

Think about it. It’s only through connection and conversation that we can truly make meaning about what is happening to us and all around us. 

For me, that is how I define whether my days are full.

As I’ve mentioned before, most mornings I write in my five-minute journal. One of the questions in the morning is ‘What would make today great?’ and one of the questions at night is ‘3 amazing things that happened today…’ 

And almost everyday, both answers have something to do with a connection or conversation with another I hope to experience or was able to experience.

So this week I invite you to be brave enough to engage in more connection and more conversations.

Courageous conversations. Meaningful conversations. Deep conversations. Curious conversations. New conversations. Transparent conversations. Generous conversations. Spontaneous conversations. Real conversations. 

Here are some tips to engage in more conversations that matter.


1. Be The First

Be the first to say hello to a stranger, to ask someone’s name, to ask how someone is, to begin the conversation at all. 

2. Give a Compliment

Not sure how to begin a conversation? Who doesn’t love a compliment? It’s a great way to break the ice and build instant connection. 

3.  Get Curious

Ask good questions. In order to be a great conversationalist, it’s actually less about how up to date you are with current affairs, and more about your willingness to ask good questions and to be curious enough to listen to the answer. 

4. Engage in Active Listening

Listening does not always mean hearing. Active listening means you are really in the conversation, and by using both verbal and non-verbal cues you show that indeed you are right there with the other person. 

5. Be Present 

It’s hard to turn our minds off, I get it. Work hard to be present in your conversations, avoid distracting thoughts or making your grocery list in your head, and choose to be all in. Only then will truly meaningful connection take place. 

I hope you engage in some meaningful conversations this week, and enjoy some meaningful connection as a result! Let me know which tip came in handy and what happened…

I look forward to hearing from you in the comments below.


Have a FAB week!

May you enjoy a moment of awe and wonder…

Photo by Gareth Harper on Unsplash

Happy Friday!

Awe and wonder.

That is exactly what I felt looking into the cutest, innocent, most precious eyes of baby Harris.

I’m a proud Auntie once again!

My Dad and I flew out to Calgary as soon as we caught word things were happening with my sister, landing an hour after the newest member of our family arrived into the world. 

And he is simply perfect. 

There is just something about holding and cuddling with a newborn baby…
The innocence. The softness. The scent.

I know babies are born every second in every corner in every part of the world, but that doesn’t take away from the miracle that is in each and every birth.

It is indeed magical and a miracle. 

And it got me thinking; that is exactly what this time of year is all about. 

So regardless of what you believe, what you celebrate (or not) I hope you take a moment or two to experience the magic and the miracle of the holiday season.

Amongst the shopping, the wrapping, the cooking, the baking;
the entertaining, the decorating and the holiday pie making…

May you experience a moment of awe and wonder. 

In fact, may you experience many special moments.

Adopting from a previous blog I shared around this time of year, instead of 12 days of Christmas, I wish you 12 moments of Christmas:

May you enjoy a moment of joy. 

Real joy… when your heart is smiling. When time stops.

May you enjoy a moment of laughter. 

Catch yourself next time mid-laughter. Milk it. Indulge in it. Laugh until your cheeks hurt. 

May you enjoy a moment of gratitude.

There is always something to be thankful for. Choose one thing you are especially grateful for. Inhale it in.

May you enjoy a moment of connection.

Allow yourself to be fully in somebody’s presence. Engage. Really see them, and let them see you.

May you enjoy a moment of peace.

Perhaps in silence, perhaps amidst the noise. Take a breath, and be still. If only for a moment.

May you enjoy a moment of love. 

Maybe in giving, maybe in receiving. Experience a moment where love exists. Allow it to make your heart sing.

May you enjoy a moment of fun.

Whether planned, or unplanned, ensure you bask in a moment of full-on fun. I dare you.  (perhaps you’ll need to borrow your friends’ or sisters’ kids like I did! Nothing is more fun than playtime with Auntie Carol!)

May you enjoy a moment of reflection. 

‘Tis also the time of year to look back on all that has transpired over this past year (or even this past week!) and look forward to all there is to come.

May you enjoy a moment of excitement.

Whether experiencing the season through the eyes of a curious child, or putting yourself back there (I still kick my legs under my sheets every Christmas morning in sheer excitement! You’re never too old!), invite yourself to feel what it’s like to get truly excited. 

May you enjoy a moment of giving.

It doesn’t have to be all about gifts at this time of year. You can give with your heart through your time, your words, your thoughtful acts, your presence.

May you enjoy a moment of presence.

Amidst all that’s going on, take a moment to just be. Notice the world around you, notice your feet planted firmly on the ground, notice your heart pumping. 

May you enjoy a moment of awe and wonder.

There really is so much to be in awe and wonder of at this time of year. Whether looking into the eyes of a newborn baby, watching the lights sparkle, or watching the world go by, take a moment to notice and appreciate just how wonderful a feeling awe and wonder is. 

No need to force any moments… I only encourage you to be open to invite some moments in, and indulge in how they make you feel.

Nothing to do, simply to be this holiday season. 

‘Tis the season for… moments. May you experience lots of special moments, enjoy lots of special moments, make the season count. 

(And then please share some of these moments in the comments below! I want to share in them with you.) 

Wishing you and yours an awe and wonder-filled season!

 

The power of spontaneity.

Photo by Alejandro Alvarez on Unsplash

As much as I try to deny it, I tend to sway closer to last minute planner than I do uber organised advanced planner. I wonder if I’ll ever change! 

However, I could look at it as being a bad thing, or I could simply reframe, and choose to say I enjoy being SPONTANEOUS.

And I do! 

And actually, there is power in spontaneity. 

Don’t get me wrong… it’s nice to have plans. To have something to look forward to, something to work toward. (And if you’re a Mom, running a household, or have certain responsibilities at work, you kinda HAVE to be on top of your planning game!)

At the same time, natural planner or not, sometimes it’s okay – and necessary – to be able and wiling to throw your plans to the wayside.

As great as plans may be, they don’t always happen ‘as planned‘. Sometimes plans change. Sometimes plans fall through. 

Back in the day when I was young and innocent, (of course I’m still both, let’s be honest!) I had big plans for my life. I thought I’d be married at 21 and have 8 kids by now. I’m not even kidding! I also thought I would be living on a farm and have a veterinarian clinic across the street. HA!

Alas, someone had other plans for my life… (funny as the weekly quote on my wall reads “We must be willing to let go of the life we planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us.” ~ Joseph Campbell)

So while it’s good to have plans, sometimes it’s equally as important, and powerful, to allow yourself to be spontaneous. To go with the flow.

To say yes to something that scares you, to say yes to something that appeared totally out of the blue, to say yes to something you never in a million years could have imagined for yourself or your life.

Looking back, some of the moments I’ve been most spontaneous in my life have also brought me the most joy, the best adventures, the biggest growth. 

For example…

Being spontaneous had me applying to Remote Year while in the same conversation I was first learning about it. I mean, within minutes. 

Being spontaneous led me to resigning from a good job in Toronto over email to accept a job offer while traveling in Australia… only to meet an amazing man and move into his van and go apple picking in New Zealand a few days later.

Being spontaneous meant some pretty cool work opportunities locally and beyond ~ from serving tables in fancy bars and restaurants (even facilitated an engagement!) , to playing a bartender in Space on TV (because why not?!?), to working in ski rentals (ie dancing on the ski and board adjustment tables and having the time of my life in Queenstown), to working at Club Med Crested Butte in the Kids Club, (I was visiting my best friend who was working there… and had an offer, a visa, and a return plane ticket within a week!) to selling yoga apparel and soon managing people (I was simply looking for a fun job just after my Mum passed… and to this day credit lululemon with the start of both my personal and professional development journey), to teaching French to kindergarten kids at a Russian school (boy did I learn a lot!), to working as a Communications Instructor at The University of Illinois while completing my Masters degree (will forever be grateful to my Springfield and Communications Department family!), to creating a yoga community in Wrexham, Wales… and I could go on!

Being spontaneous meant saying yes to a dare to go bungee jumping in Greece (if you wanna hear this crazy story, I’ll actually be sharing it from the stage at MoMondays Toronto in a few days!)

Being spontaneous led me to meeting some pretty amazing people all over the world, hearing some pretty inspiring stories, and experiencing some pretty amazing cultural experiences… like living in Ashrams and riding on camels and throwing both buckets of water and dump trucks of tomatoes all over thousands of strangers.

Being spontaneous has led me to numerous random events on random occasions, not knowing anyone, where I would end of meeting some of my now closest friends and entrepreneurial sisters… Oh, and my partners for our upcoming program and trip to Tanzania!

So although structure and planning is certainly an ‘area of opportunity’ for me, I will also say my ability to be spontaneous has led to some pretty amazing events and happenings and current joy in my life. 

Okay enough about me!

Wanna be more spontaneous and not sure where to start? 

 

 

1. Say ‘YES’ to something you would normally say ‘NO’ to.

 

And vice versa. Saying ‘NO’ to something you would have normally said ‘NO’ to may be equally as powerful. Dare to throw your norm out the window!

 

2. Quiet down, or better yet, turn OFF the ‘SHOULDS’ in your head.

One of my friends and colleagues runs an extremely successful pole dancing for fitness studio, and all because she ignored the voice that said ‘But good mamas don’t do pole!’ When she was first invited to attend a class. There is no one way you SHOULD be… as a Mom, a professional, or as any part of you for that matter.

3. Ask yourself honestly, ‘What’s the worst that can happen?

Sometimes we jump to conclusions or make assumptions or run down the rabbit hole of worse case scenarios WAY too quickly, or way too unrealistically. Take a moment to explore all possibilities, and then trust. You regret the things your DON’T DO way more than the things you DO do. 

AND, if you’re TRULY ready to be spontaneous, SAY YES to coming to our   ‘TAKE THE LEAP!’ event happening tomorrow at iFLY Toronto! Women Living Big is turning 3 ~ and without giving too much away, I’m just about to go and pick up the rose gold balloons!

YES, there will be a little bubbly… (of all sorts…), and YES we’re also going Indoor Skydiving!

And, if you’re not ready to physically take the leap (at least not yet!) you can still come to the IGNITE! Workshop portion of the event, and learn how to get OUT of your comfort zone and into your ‘B.I.G. Zone!’ 

(As a loyal Happy Friday reader and member of our community, I have a special offer… you’ll come as my guest for less than 50% … because EVERYONE loves a celebration, right?!? Use Promo Code HAPPYFRIDAY!)

Even if you’re not able to come out tomorrow, I would still LOVE to hear of you doing something a little spontaneous this weekend. What do you have to lose?!?

Test out a new restaurant or sample a new flavour of ice cream.
Get into the spirit of Halloween and buy yourself a crazy costume.
Try out a new activity or hobby (I hear crocheting is pretty amazing for the mind!)

And then TELL me all about it in the comments below. 

Have a FAB week!

 

 

 

 

P.S. I’ve had fun interviewing some of the members of the WLB Members of our community on what it means to ‘Take The Leap!’ Check out my interview with Jill Valentine, founder of UGO Travel for Change HERE, and Ashley-Ann Pereira, author, speaker, creator of The Key To Happiness HERE.

Bring On The B.I.G.GEST You! Here’s how.

Happy Friday!

And greetings from Chicago, where I’m still on an inspired high after speaking at Paylocity’s ELEVATE Conference.

I was fortunate to have been participating in the action over the last few days, connecting with delegates, Paylocity team members, and fellow speakers – not to mention busily prepping my presentation – hence the reason I’m a tad delayed in getting this blog out to you today!

Today’s session was entitled ‘Bring on the BIGGEST You: How to Step Into Your Power.’  And the room was a-buzzing!

You likely know I’m all about empowering people – female leaders and professionals especially – to step up, stand out, and bring all of themselves to the table.

Too many of us are playing smaller than we know we can.

And, at our core (as with every living organism) we are wired to grow as BIG as we can and live as LONG as we can.

So why aren’t we doing it?!?

Life. Responsibilities. Limited resources and competing demands. Expectations. FEAR. ALL kinds of fear… 

You and I both know there are as many fears out there as there are ice cream flavours (maybe even more) and at one point I had to stop the audience because hands were being raised left, right and centre sharing types of fear… we simply had too much juicy content to jump into!

Here’s the thing.

Because of our fears, we tend to overcompensate.

We read MORE books, 

We listen to MORE people. 

We get MORE certifications, qualifications, letters after our name.

We want to prove ourselves good enough, capable enough, successful enough ~ when we don’t already feel ourselves good enough, capable enough, successful enough.

YET,

Success doesn’t exist so long as you’re chasing it. 

Success exists the moment you realize you’re already there.

 

It’s not about getting a raise or a promotion,

it’s about putting your name in the mix.

 

It’s not about having more letters after your name,

it’s about continuing to learn and grow.

 

It’s not about crossing the finish line.

it’s about signing up for the race.

 

So it’s time to STOP.

  • It’s time to stop listening to the experts,
  • It’s time to stop reading Success Magazine,
  • It’s time to stop doing what everyone else is doing.

It’s time to stop chasing the carrot. 

It’s time to start chewing it. 

 

What do I mean by that? 

Whether you’re seeking success, happiness, or another rung on the corporate ladder, you’ll only arrive once you realise you’re already there.

You already have all that it takes to bring the BIGGEST you to all you do.

Fear ‘aint going anywhere any time soon.

And so we may as well invite it along for the ride, and learn how to play BIG in spite of fear.

Having had the privilege of speaking to and working with thousands of women over the years, it really comes down to three things.

The biggest part of you is the part of you that is:
(I’ll even share some slides from today!)

BRAVE

 INSPIRED

GETS INTO ACTION

And this is what today’s presentation was all about.

  • We looked at what it means to be BRAVE at work, and how to be braver.

  • We explored what it means to be INSPIRED at work, and how to be more inspired.

  • We discovered what it means to GET INTO ACTION at work, and how to get into more action, one step at a time.

 

When you bring the BIGGEST you to all you do everyone, and everything, becomes BIGGER. And you’ll be able to enjoy:

Bigger risks

Bigger ideas

Bigger action

Bigger results

Bigger connection

Bigger satisfaction

Bigger fulfilment

Bigger fun

Bigger growth

Bigger experiences

Bigger joy

Bigger insights

Bigger buy-in

Bigger opportunities

Bigger influence

Bigger impact…

The list goes on. 

Life becomes, well, BIGGER.

You start to play a bigger game of life, and in return create a bigger life for yourself and all those around you.

And who doesn’t want that?!?

If you want to learn more about the content and the ideas discussed during this presentation, simply reply to this email and I’ll be happy to share!

And if you’re ready to GET INTO ACTION now, I shall leave you with these questions:

  • How are you brave? How will you be BRAVER?

  • How are you inspired? How will you be MORE INSPIRED?

  • How are you getting into action? And how will you get into more action? 

Choose ONE action to take on. 

Commit to ONE action to take on.  

Take on that ONE action. 

And then SHARE your action in the comments below; I wanna hear from you!

Because it’s time for you too, to bring the BIGGEST you to all you do.

Have a FAB week!

P.S. For all of my fellow Canadians, happy gobble gobble weekend! Be sure to be extra thankful this weekend! Wanna learn more about the power of gratitude? Read my post HERE

How to be Unflappable (7 ways to more powerfully SHOW UP and STAND OUT.)

Happy Friday!

This week I won my entire swim training group muffins.

And Nick, one of my new fave baristas, just gave me a free cup of coffee.

What?  Why?  How?

Well, the muffins was due to a challenge our instructor threw out to the group, to see if anyone could remember everyone’s name during our 3rd practice. And if anyone could do it, muffins for all!

Now there’s not a lot of interaction during our swim practice. We arrive at the pool sometime around 5:30am, get our bathers and caps on, do some stretching, and then it’s into our lanes for drills and lengths and technique practice. After an hour, we’re out, showered, and most are out the door by 7am!

Well, I like a challenge, and I also like remembering people’s names. And when I’m in a new group, I try to make sure I get to know them just a little, or at least ask their names. So I think our instructor was surprised when I volunteered, and yup, nailed it. Now some of these folks had been swimming together for 3 years; it was day 3 for me, and there are 30 of us.

I think the ladies from #WeWorkingWomen where I delivered a presentation last night were equally as impressed when I cited everyone’s name before we began, having met them just a few minutes earlier (Now I have my limits, too! Certainly didn’t so this on Monday evening at Graydon Hall Nursery Schools! You were a FAB group, but anything over 100 in one shot and I’m out!) 

I’m not trying to boast, as anyone can learn how to do it (in fact I have a video where I share my 7 steps to remembering people’s names here). And it’s actually not just about remembering people’s names. It’s caring about people, acknowledging people, and creating space for them to show up and be seen.

I tend to talk a lot to strangers ~ I’ve been known to get into deep conversations at coffee shops, grocery lines, on the elevator or subway… and yes, it often means I’m delayed in getting my own work done. But I have to say it makes life so much more enjoyable! (And I do think certain perks like free coffee, flight upgrades, comp tickets, muffins… may be related to this attitude!)

You’re busy, I’m busy. We’re all busy. I get it.

And yet, if we could take a few moments to think about how we’re showing up, and how we want to show up, it can make all the difference in how we stand out. You only get 7 seconds to make a first impression, after all.

Want to show up and stand out more powerfully both at work and in life?

Here are 7 ideas to do just that.

  • Be the First. Instead of waiting for someone else to say hello to you, ask your name or how you are, let it start with YOU. Be the first to smile, to say hello, or to engage in conversation. Not sure where to start? Try a compliment, question, or comment.
  • Be Curious. Remember what you were like you were on a first date? For some that may be decades ago, for others it may have been last week! But I bet you were interested and engaged, and also wanted to appear interesting and engaging to the other. I bet you asked curious questions. Do more of that in your life. Ask more interesting questions, and be a great conversationalist. 
  • Be Intentional. Take a few minutes to think about how you want to show up before an important event or meeting. Do your research if necessary, and alleviate any fear or hesitation by preparing in advance. Set an intention before an important conversation. Think about your ideal outcome, but do not be attached to how you get there.
  • Be Consistent. Who you are here is who you are everywhere. Don’t claim to be a positive person, and then when you get in your car allow the road rage to come on! Don’t engage in behaviours like gossip. I know we wear lots of different hats. AND you are still you, regardless of whether you are at work, at home, or at play.
  • Be Generous. Be generous with your presence. Put away your devices when you are talking to someone. Be generous with your time, your sharing, your listening ear, your words, your gifts, your expertise, your encouragement.
  • Be Unflappable. I love this word! Are you able to maintain your cool, regardless of the chaos that may be happening around you? Are you able to stay in control when you find yourself in difficult, unpredictable situations? Are you always rushed and scattered? Slow down, take a breath, get grounded. Be unflappable.
  • Be Yourself. Above all else, to thine ownself be true. Be you. Be unapologetically you. Don’t be afraid to self disclose, wear clothing that makes you comfortable, or engage in behaviours that make you more of who you already are. Stop trying to keep up with the Jones’, and start bringing ALL of you to all you do.

So I dare you to this week to be the first. To be intentional. To be curious. To be consistent. To be generous. To be unflappable. And to be yourself.

And when you do, you’ll certainly be bringing the biggest you to all you do.

Which of these 7 ideas are you going to try on this week?

I’d love to hear from you in the comments below. 

Are You Brave Enough?

Happy Friday!

What does it mean to be BRAVE?

I don’t know about you, but watching people getting their brave on gets me pretty jazzed.

And that’s why I was on such a high last weekend, after witnessing first hand 4 incredibly brave women cross the finish line after their first Give-It-A-Tri triathlon (saying yes to a challenge I put out there less than 2 weeks previously!) It was pretty darn exciting.

There’s something about watching people being BRAVE.

Growing up, I wished I was braver.

Or just brave enough. 

Brave enough to be ME. 

Brave enough to say yes to the things I wanted to do and no to the things I didn’t, brave enough to stop trying to please everyone, brave enough to stand up for myself (I’ll share a personal story in the video about boarding school!)

Having the honour and privilege to have worked with and spoken to thousands of women over the years, I’ve come to discover what I call The Brave Zone. The place you can access when you want to be even braver.

Watch this week’s video to learn how to get into your Brave Zone!

If you and I were to live in our brave zone, just imagine what would be possible… 

If you were even BRAVER than you are today, what action would you be taking that you are not taking right now?

And when are you going to DO IT?!?

I want to hear from you in the comments below.

Have a FAB week!

P.S.  Ready to get your BRAVE ON? 

Come and join us at IGNITE! on  Sept. 26th,  Live B.I.G.GER + Pole Fit Nation Dance & Mingle  on Sept. 28th, and IGNITE! : Take The Leap (we’re going to iFly!) on Oct. 27th!

3 Ways to Declutter… Your Mind!

Happy Friday!

I don’t know about you, but I love ‘Back To School’ time of year!

Although it’s been a LONG time since I last strapped on my backpack to set foot down my high school or university hallway, I can’t help but still get excited.

September to me represents a fresh start, a blank canvas, a time for new opportunities.

And in order to do that, you first gotta create some space… in your mind as well as in your life. 

Incompletes, unfinished business, and messes ~ you got any?!?

We all do. And they affect our ability to give our full focus to whatever we have going on right here, or want to create. How? By taking up space and energy in our minds, even when we may not realize it.

Promises not kept, not acknowledged, or not renegotiated? Overflowing closets with clothes never worn? Junk drawers full of unnecessary or unusable items? Unpaid debts or financial commitments? Piles of disorganised paperwork scattered all over your desk? Incomplete projects that require doing, dumping, delaying, or delegating? Personal relationships with unstated feelings, appreciations, or retiring forgiveness?

It’s hard to hit the ground running, and get into a state of flow and creation, so long as we have some lingering incompletes, unfinished business, or messes lying around.

Watch this week’s video to learn 3 easy steps to declutter your mind… to leave nothing but space for creation & possibility!

What is just ONE thing that you could commit to taking on this week, that would knock something off your list?

Tackling the incompletes, unfinished business, and messes in your life leaves nothing but space for possibility, creation, and flow.

Perhaps you want to finally organize your desk. File your taxes. Clean up your closet or that messy drawer. Or maybe it’s time for some forgiveness…

Today is a perfect day to clean up, clutter down, and create space for new possibilities.

Share your commitment over on YouTube or in the comments below. I guarantee you’ll feel a whole lot lighter when you do.

I can’t wait to hear how it goes!

No risk, no reward.

Boy was I glad I wasn’t a judge at this week’s Speaker Slam! 

It’s an honour I’ve had the privilege of holding previously, and love cheering on excited speakers take the stage to give it their all, hoping to be crowned one of the coveted top finishers and take home one of the big prizes.

It’s always tough as a judge – but this week was truly stiff competition!

The theme?

No risk, no reward. 

The speakers shared some amazing stories and experiences about taking big risks, which sometimes lead to big rewards, and other times lead to pretty big flops! And yet none of them ever regretted the risks they took. Because there was always learning, growth, and new opportunities that arose they never would have expected.

It got me thinking about when I’ve taken some big risks in my life, and realised there are two types of risks. As it turns out, I’m pretty good at one type, and not so good at the other!

Watch this week’s video to learn about these types of risks, and why it’s worth learning how to take them.

Taking a risk looks different to everyone. And if you’re not ready to move into a van with a man and go apple picking in New Zealand, that’s okay!

But if you have a big dream to start something new, write a book, or climb a mountain (Tanzania anyone?!?) it may be worth the risk of saying yes and taking that chance.

Share a risk YOU are willing to take this week, and then share this video with someone in your life you think could benefit.

As I say in the video, sharing is caring after all!

Have a FAB week!

 

 

 

 

P.S. Are you liking these vlogs? Do you prefer written articles? Have any ideas or topics you’s like me to cover? Share in the comments below or shoot me an email hello@carolschulte.com. I want to know!!! 

Why it’s time to be ALL IN.

As you read this blog post, I’m currently ‘Unleashing The Power Within!’ with Tony Robbins in Chicago!

That’s right, I’ll be in the middle of what they say is an incredibly intense 4-day program, and no doubt fully immersed in the action, dancing up a storm, and trying to soak it all in. 

Now I’m definitely excited and open, and yet I also want to ensure I go into this experience without too many expectations. And at the same time, I want to ensure I’m fully present, and go ALL IN for whatever is supposed to unfold.

I remember listening to a motivational speaker years ago share wisdom he received from an old pop can: ‘No deposit, no return.’ And it’s true. What you put into something, is what you’ll get out of something.

Unfortunately, however, being the humans that we are, it’s not always easy to detach from expectations. And with the busy-ness of life, it’s also challenging to be ALL IN on whatever we’re doing, and whoever we’re with, considering the crazy number of distractions competing for our time and attention.

Yet when we do, we experience greater fulfillment, greater success, and greater JOY!

When you drop expectation, and you commit to being ALL IN, anything is possible. 

Here are three areas of your life where you can be all in, and the difference that it will make.

1. Be all when when it comes to the task at hand. 

In the book ‘Deep Work’ by Cal Newport, he talks about the power of focusing on going deep in one area of work, on one important task, and being ruthlessly disciplined in eliminating distractions. When you go deep, you move forward.

In this age of distraction we live in, it’s growing increasingly difficult to retain our focus on one thing – and as a result we spend a lot of our time doing ‘surface level’ work. And jumping from one menial task to another. 

When you’re able to be ALL IN on the work you’re doing, and with each and every specific task, you will no doubt produce some pretty powerful work. Not to mention get a lot more satisfaction while you’re at it.

2. Be all in when it comes to the person you’re with.

I hope you’ve experienced what it’s like to speak with someone who makes you feel as though you are the most important person in the room. It’s pretty darn powerful. And YOU have the opportunity to be that for someone else, too.

When you are fully engaged with the person you’re speaking to, giving them your full attention, and treating them as though they are the only thing that matters in that moment, you make them feel important. And people always remember how you make them feel.

Not only will you get noticed and stand out, your connection, trust, and overall relationships will deepen and become even more meaningful.

3. Be all in when it comes to the present moment. 

I know, I’ve spoken about this before ~ as have so many. The power of now. It’s not always easy, but there is a reason why yoga and mediation and any kind of mindfulness is all the rage right now.

The majority of people spend time feeling guilty about the past – which is over – or anxious about the future – which has not yet arrived. 

However the true power of experiencing life can only come from living in this present moment. And that is the only place where real joy can truly exist. 

Can you imagine what your life would look when you choose to be ALL IN when it comes to your work, your conversations and relationships, and this present moment?

I’m guessing even more powerful, fulfilling, and joyful than it is right now.

That is living BIG, and that is what you deserve.

Have a FAB week!

P.S. If you’re ready BE ALL IN when it comes to your work, your relationships, or another area of your life, let’s TALK! 

Wanna live bigger? Start smaller.

I’m finally back into a regular routine of working on my book. 

It’s a bit of a love-hate relationship to be honest! As it can be with many creative endeavours we face.

I mean, when I’m into it, and it’s flowing, I love it. But boy is it tough to stay disciplined on a daily basis! (if you can relate, I HIGHLY recommend Steven Pressfield’s book, The War of Art ~ he talks about how resistance shows up when facing any creative work. And more importantly, how to bust through it!)

What’s interesting to notice, is that as I’m changing and evolving with each new experience, it, too, is changing and evolving. 

And while the over-arching theme is still the same ~ how to live your biggest life ~ what is shifting is what it truly means to live big. 

As you know, I’m all for creating epic experiences (I mean, I’ve shaved my head, lived in an Ashram in India as well as with a man in a van in New Zealand, even said yes to a dare to go bungee jumping in my birthday suit!) yet I’m realizing it’s not necessarily those moments that truly make up a big life. 

And I think that’s where so many of us go wrong. 

The truth is, the majority of life takes place in the small moments. 

And I’m discovering living big is about finding ways to fully experience these smaller moments.

It’s about changing the way we view the seemingly or potentially insignificant moments in our life that can make the biggest difference. 

Living Big, Starting Small. 

That is the working title of my book.

Although I love having lofty goals, and making big things happen, it can also be very daunting to start. 

Which is why the majority of people often never do!

If you put ‘write a book’ on your to-do list, it will NEVER get done!

However if you write ‘reach out to X friend who has written a book to ask how they started’, or ‘schedule 30 mins in calendar to brainstorm potential themes/titles’ you are far more likely to do it!

Yesterday, I had lunch with one of my oldest and dearest girlfriends. 

We decided to squeeze it in last minute, and although it wasn’t a ‘fancy’ lunch per say (healthy grocery store salad bar) and I almost felt guilty for taking time out for lunch when I had so much other work to do, it was exactly what I needed. We were present, the conversation was rich and juicy, and it left us both on a high.

It was a living BIG moment.

Moreover, it reminded me what living BIG, to me, is all about. Enjoying the so-called small moments. Because that turns them into big moments. And that’s how you’ll begin to live bigger. 

Ready to create more ‘living big’ moments in your life?

Here are three easy ways you can start today. 

1. Define what living BIG means to you

When I work with female professionals, leaders, and entrepreneurs, it’s often the go-getters and the high achievers that feel the least fulfilled. And, they are the ones that rarely take the time to celebrate how far they’ve come, or allow themselves to feel successful or happy exactly where they are. 

One of the exercises I have them complete is to define what success means to them. What happiness means to them. All too often we’re chasing something that we think we should be chasing, when in fact it may not even be important to us at all. Or, it may already be right in front of us. 

So, what does living BIG mean to you? You may discover you’re already doing it.

2. Choose ONE area of your life where you want to live bigger 

Again, living BIG is going to mean something different for everyone. And yet a part of it means living fully self expressed. Living life on your terms, creating the life you desire and deserve to live. 

And it’s all possible, one area at a time. 

Do you want to be more present with your friends and family? Start an exercise regime? Adopt a morning routine? Launch a side hustle? Get rid of your debt? 

Choose one area. Get super clear on what your ideal, 10/10 life would look like in that area.

3.  Identify your first, small step

So you’ve chosen the area you’re ready to tackle. WAY TO GO! And now, let’s break it down. 

Let’s say you choose to adopt a morning routine. You want to get up 30 minutes earlier than normal so you can squeeze in a workout. Great!

What is your first small step? Perhaps it’s setting your morning alarm earlier. Maybe it’s setting your bedtime alarm earlier. Or it could be to ask your friend to be your accountability buddy and commit to going on a run together, or to choose what activity or exercise you want to do, or buy new running shoes. 

Whatever it is, identify it, own it, and COMMIT to making it happen!

Today is all we have. And it just so happens to be the first day of the rest of your life. 

SO, what are you going to do about it?!?

Living big really is all about starting small. And momentum builds from there. 

So, how can you start living bigger, by starting smaller, today? 

I want to hear from you in the comments below!

 

 

 

 

 

 

P.S. If you are ready to make small, but serious changes in order to live your biggest life, let’s TALK!