Reclaiming Time

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I have been struggling with my relationship with time: I feel like there is never enough. When I think back to the days right after I quit my job to travel, I remember the immense fear of “What do I do with my time now?!” As I became more comfortable with my freedom, I felt like I could soar and had no limits. I couldn’t believe that I had created a reality where I could to write, travel and soak up as much sun as possible.

That lasted 2 years. And then I started to get busy with building my business and had to coordinate a schedule again. It was fun and exciting to create something from scratch, but it took up a lot of time. I found myself on the edge of overwhelm.

The frustration that comes from feeling like there is not enough time rob the joy from the present moment.

I found myself no longer enjoying the moment I was in and looked at the time wondering if I had enough to get to the next thing on my long list completed. Then my sleep started to suffer. I would wake up at 3am my mind decided it was the perfect time to think about my schedule and dwell on the feeling of not having enough time.

The feeling of time scarcity created even more fatigue and stress.

I was missing was being in the present moment and embracing what was happening as it was happening. I was spending too much time projecting into the future that I robbed the present moment of my attention. So I decided to break up with my relationship with time in order to rebuild a healthier one.

As I found a healthier way to approach time, I found these tools to help immensely:

  1. Meditation every morning: This grounds me and brings me into the present moment before the day’s events even have a chance to overwhelm. From this new grounded state, I am able to approach the day with focus and intent.
  2. Put the phone down: Having access to the internet, emails, calendars and even time keeps me from enjoying the present moment. I decided to put the phone away while interacting with people in order to fully appreciate their presence and the time we were spending together. I found my interactions became richer and time seemed to feel abundant.
  3. Prioritize tasks: To-do lists are very important to me, but now I make sure that each week, I only write down the “must dos” instead of creating a long list of tasks that aren’t as pressing. When I complete the tasks I set out to do, I realize that I have plenty of time to tackle some of the less pressing priorities.
  4. Make time for myself: All the running around and working made me feel guilty to take moments to myself. But, when I make time for myself, guilt free, I feel more energetic and joyful and time seems to slow down for me when I am not as stressed.
  5. Workout: There is always time to get some physical activity in. Taking walks, bike rides, trips to the gym…can all be fit into a busy schedule. There are apps that have been created to help you get workouts in. Prioritize physical health and the gift will be higher metabolism and more energy to tackle a busy schedule.

The feeling of scarcity that comes from being constantly connected fades when I make time for stillness.

I learned that when I treat time with respect, it doesn’t run out. I feel more abundant with time when I practice mindfulness and step into the present moment.  From this place, I can breathe deeper and notice my surroundings.

Finding a Coach

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The growth of the coaching industry has raised the important question of “How do I find the right coach?” When choosing a coach, it is important to find someone who you jive with, is willing to hold you accountable and will help you achieve desired results.

There are several reasons to hire a coach….

  • Set goals and get results
  • Motivation to start, continue and finish
  • Accountability partner to drive results and keep you encouraged and inspired
  • Gain clarity on your life’s purpose, career path, relationship and specific goals
  • Grow spiritually, mentally and physically: There are coaches that specialize in spiritual growth, business/career, fitness and personal growth
  • Provide support and encouragement

When hiring a coach, it is important to know that results are obtained in time with dedication to the coaching plan. Although one session can be helpful, is just a launching pad to working towards desired outcomes. In order for coaching to be successful, scheduled meetings should be made and kept, this is where accountability can work its magic. Depending on your goals, packages can be purchased for 1-12 months with savings per session being greater the longer the time commitment.

A good coaching relationship will empower you, inspire you to go above and beyond what you thought possible, tell you the truth and ask questions to stretch you.

Here are 5 things to consider when choosing a coach:

  1. Offerings and Packages: What type of coaching do they specialize in? Do they offer packages that fit within your time frame and needs? Can you customize or upgrade? These are things to consider and good questions to ask a potential coach.
  2. References: Do you know anyone that has utilized a coach and achieved results? Does the coach have customer feedback on their website? Read the reviews and see if any of them resonate with you.
  3. Personality: Many coaches offer an introductory call or email where you can see if the energy is a good fit as well as map out a plan of action for the coaching relationship.
  4. Certification and Training: What type of certification does the coach have and what training was involved? Certification is important but so is ongoing training. Does the coach continue to develop their practice and stay on top of their own development?
  5. Pricing: Does it fit within your budget? Part of creating a successful life is staying within your means. Coaching is worth the investment and financial growth can be a goal, but make sure the services meet you where you currently are to propel you in the direction you envision.

A coach can be seen as part of your team of experts. In the effort to live at your highest potential it is important to have a team behind you, keeping you healthy, in tune, motivated and accountable. Doctors, therapists, personal trainers, spiritual leaders, chefs, nannies, teachers, mentors, CPAs, financial advisors, trusted friends and coaches are just a few of the possible people who can help you enhance your life.

If you have been considering coaching to help you move towards a goal, gain clarity or take your life or career to the next level, please contact me at emily@soulsadventures.com to schedule a complimentary 15 minute call. We can talk about how coaching can enhance your life and create a plan of action.

“Coaching is unlocking a person’s potential to maximize their own performance. It is helping them to learn rather than teaching them.”

– Timothy Gallwey

30 Day Challenges

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Living with intention is the cornerstone of my coaching practice. Whether I am working with a client on their career or spiritual journey, intentions are key to creating a life with desired outcomes. One of the tools that help are 30 day challenges. The fitness industry has greatly utilized this concept and a quick google search will result in several ways to get tighter abs, stronger arms and a sculpted physique.

All you need is the desire to make a change, the will to achieve the it, a plan and an accountability partner. Think about all the things that are on your to-do or wish list. Pick one of those things and see where you are in 30 days.

The key to these challenges is understanding that they are only a launch pad to healthier habits. Neuroplasticity is at work here and neural pathways are changing in the brain during these challenges. After 30 days, you will probably want to continue with the new habit or push yourself even further. Whether you choose to start a new habit or quit an old one, 30 days is a good time frame to build a foundation and you can then choose to continue to strengthen the new pathway or try something new.

I have had clients who wanted to produce more sales leads in their business, network with more likeminded individuals, read more, run more miles, spread more love and practice gratitude. Each challenge was tailored to their need and with some planning, accountability and encouraging vibes, results were created.

There are a few ways to be successful in a 30 day challenge:

  • Accountability: whether through a coach, group or trusted friend, accountability works and keeps you on track.
  • Check In Daily: send a text or email every day during the challenge to stay on top of the goal. This is a place to voice success and challenges during the 30 days.
  • Weekly Calls: Spend some time each week chatting on the phone about how the week went. Offer encouragement to each other and celebrate overcoming obstacles and milestones.
  • Reward: What is the reward for completing the challenge? Decide before starting. Reading for 30 days straight? Perhaps buy a new book. Love going to the gym now? Perhaps a new workout outfit.

Another month is just around the corner…such a great time to start something new. Let me know what you choose to challenge yourself with. If you need help creating a plan and want an accountability coach, email me at emily@soulsadventures.com.

Confidence: Interviews, Negotiations & Communications

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One of the topics that consistently comes up in coaching is finding the confidence for a job interview, salary negotiation and in personal affairs. Asserting oneself can feel uneasy because we don’t want to rock the boat. We end up stepping aside for someone else to shine and get that job or risk not getting what we really want.

Confidence comes with clarity. When we can clearly define what we want, we can visualize the outcome and communicate with confidence. Clarity is the super power when it comes to negotiations and communication. A well thought out argument is more likely to be listened to. When we can paint a clear picture or scenario of what and why we want something, we can get the point across with ease.

I remember when I wanted to negotiate my salary and felt fear and doubt rising inside of me, thwarting my confidence and telling me several excuses as to why it would not happen. I chose to sit in that painful place for a moment, but knew that I was the only one that could be my own champion. I went back and forth on approaching my boss and after careful planning, I took the leap and approached him with my proposal.

I had numbers to back up my performance, customer reviews and a number in my head that I wanted. I had done my research on comparable salaries and wanted to feel valued and appreciated. In fact, after all my careful planning, I realized that the underlying reason for my request was because I wanted to feel valued.

This can be said in personal affairs as well. We all want to be seen and heard and most of all valued. Confidence in communication does not need to be paired with arrogance, it is better partnered up with clarity.

When we communicate with confidence, we can be seen as more vibrant, attractive, intelligent and calm.

So how to boost confidence? Here are a few steps to muster courage, grow your confidence quotient and harness your inner bravery:

  1. Make a list of what you want and why. (note: the why is very important)
  2. Ask 10 people what they believe your top 3 qualities/attributes are. Notice any commonalities. (trust me: we sell ourselves short and this is a way to learn how others view us and boost confidence)
  3. Back yourself up with examples, numbers, hard facts, etc… Show them you did your homework and know your stuff!
  4. Visualize and breathe: close your eyes and see yourself negotiating, discussing and receiving. Breathe into this feeling. Find your calm and replace the anxious thoughts with confident thoughts.
  5. Power pose. If you don’t know what I mean, watch Amy Cuddy’s TED talk which has helped many people muster up courage right before the big talks/performances/negotiations.

Whether you are going in for an interview, negotiating a salary or having a hard discussion with a loved one, taking the time to find clarity and confidence will help ease the discomfort. Replace anxiety with anticipatory excitement. You are your own champion and we all want our superheroes to stand tall with confidence. Find yours within and embrace the bravery that lies inside.

For more information on coaching and a free 15 minute consult to customize a coaching package, email me at emily@soulsadventures.com

On Resting

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It is difficult to rest when there are things that need to get done. You may have noticed my usual post was supposed to go up last Wednesday but I knew it was not going to be done. The perfectionist in me was suffering but I had to let go of the expectation I had on myself to rest.

This past month flew by, I had a deadline to meet, a cold to get over and work that had piled up because I was sick. I felt defeated, behind and frustrated. I chose to stop my upsetting thoughts and recognized that my body was begging me for rest.

There was a need to prioritize and reshuffle my timeline. I looked at what needed to get done and weighed whether or not the task could wait. My book draft deadline and some other work could not wait and other things, like a blog post got pushed further down the timeline.

Rest became one of the top priorities. I knew that if I kept pushing myself, I would not get better nor would I have the ability to write or coach. I started to allow naps and went to bed earlier.  Within days, I was much better, my mind was clear and ready to tackle the remainder of the list.

Rest is extremely important and in our hyper connected world, it almost seems like it is more difficult to get our minds to settle down. For super productive types, rest seems like a waste of time. The praise of busy and the criticism of rest can keep us overstimulated and our calendars full.

Being busy does not necessarily mean being productive. As I was making my prioritized list, I realized that there were things that I was doing just to fill time. I never stopped to even think about them since I was “so busy.” When I recognized this, I easily cut them out of my schedule and was able to rest with even more ease.

In rest, a stillness is created which can result in deeper peace. Releasing the need to get everything done will focus attention and create space for relaxation.

There are definitely things that need to be done, but my challenge to you would be to look at your schedule, prioritize tasks and see what you can cut away to make room for rest. Start small and let go of at least one thing. Slowly remove the excess from your life to create balance and peace.

Take a rest. A field that has rested yields a beautiful crop. -Ovid

Intentional Themes: Shine

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Every month, I choose an intention to set the tone for my month. I have been practicing this for the past 3 years and have found myself benefiting from this intentional focus. This month, I chose “Shine” because I want to shine brightly and start the year off with light.

Since January experiences less light in the Northern Hemisphere, I wanted to infuse this month with inner light. Winter is a time to reflect while the days are shorter and clouds cover the sun. During this time, it is important to shine even brighter and illuminate from within.

My intention is to shed light on confusing situations where I have not been able to see clearly and take the time to reframe negative thoughts into positive ones. Reflection and meditation offer clarity and in the quiet, I can find the answers I may have been ignoring or overlooking.

Instead of hibernating, I want to awaken and work on solutions and plan for the year to come.

Something that I have noticed from setting these monthly intentional themes is that once the intention is set, the universe offers plenty of opportunity for me to learn and grow in that particular area. For instance, the month I chose “Focus”, I noticed the amount of distractions increased and I really needed to work on focusing. The month seemed to start off with struggle, but the more I committed to my intentional theme, the easier focus became. By the end of the month, I was able to block out time for projects and put aside distractions.

This month I was hit with stress and negative thoughts after setting the intentional theme to “Shine”. I recognized this as an opportunity to work on reframing my negative thought patterns surrounding a few areas and create a healthier outlook. One of the practices is immediately reframing with gratitude and looking for the lesson or opportunity in each trial. I am excited to see where this theme takes me.

I encourage you to set a monthly intention and encourage friends to join you. Create an accountability group where each person shares their themes and encourage each other throughout the month. Consider the following when choosing your intentional theme…

  • Is there a quality I want to emulate or enhance?
  • Where would I like grow this month?
  • Is there something that I have been putting off?
  • What is on my schedule for the month and what theme would help me optimize my experiences?

If you chose a theme or create an accountability group, email me: emily@soulsadventures.com and let me and share your experience.

How to Create a Prioritized Plan

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One of the main issues I help people with is prioritizing in business and every day life. It is easy to get caught up in the to-do lists and thoughts swirling in our heads. Knowing how to prioritize can create a more effective approach to work and life. With a prioritized plan, time is used more effectively and frees up unnecessary time saps.

Organization is an art and can be learned by implementing a few steps. Look at your current process and implement things from the steps below if they will help you become more efficient.

Here are a few tips on getting things done:

  1. Write down everything that you have to do (or thinking of doing). Use a white board, paper or fill a notebook. Just get it out of your head and onto paper.
  2. Go down your list and prioritize using 1,2,3 or A,B,C or even colors if that is more useful. 1/A being the most important and time sensitive. Are there things that you can delegate or eliminate?
  3. Create a timeline (day, week, month, quarter, year) and list tasks accordingly.
  4. Enter the tasks in your calendar. Add alerts if needed. When its on the schedule, it becomes concrete and is more likely to be completed.
  5. Stop multi-tasking. This is not an effective or efficient way to get things done. Pay attention to the task at hand and then move down the list.

Creating a well prioritized plan will create more order. Revisit your plan at the beginning of the week/month/quarter and revise accordingly. Life is fluid and ever-changing and plans should evolve accordingly. When we stay on top of our tasks and prioritize, we can make sure that our tasks are completed in a timely and organized matter. A good plan will make sure everything gets done and can eliminate some of the unnecessary tasks.

“Things that matter most must never be at the mercy of things that matter least”

-Goethe

If you would like help with prioritizing, organizing or creating a plan, I would love to help. Send me an email at emily@soulsadventures.com and let’s get the organization party started!

Live Your Summer with Intention

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I am so excited to announce the creation of an Intentional Summer Program and I’m kicking it off today! Join me this summer on an intentional adventure. Make things happen and learn how to set intentions and go after what you want. This 3 month program will help you set intentions, create a plan, determine your core values and define your personal mission and vision statements.

There is so much emphasis on goals and measuring achievements, but sometimes one of the most important factors can be missed: Why we do what we do?

In this program, you can expect:

  • Clarity
  • Self-Awareness
  • Defining your Personal Mission & Vision Statements
  • Determine your core values
  • Learn how to effectively set intentions
  • Coaching Sessions to help uncover your true desires
  • Prioritize what is important to you

Choose which statement resonates with you the most…

1) “I’m pretty independent and just need the basics”

  • 3-monthly Coaching sessions
  • Weekly email support
  • Worksheets
  • Personalized Plan
  • 2) “I want to stay on top of it and need a little guidance”
  • Bi-monthly Coaching sessions (6 total)
  • Weekly email support
  • Worksheets
  • Personalized Plan
  • 3) “I want an accountability partner”
  • 12 Weekly Coaching Sessions
  • Weekly email support
  • Worksheets
  • Personalized Plan

Let’s get started today! Your intentional life awaits! Sign up through August 1st to take advantage of the package pricing.

To sign up or for more information, please email me at emily@soulsadventures.com

Sabbaticals and Career Breaks: Reflect and Reset

pathWhen you find yourself at the precipice of quitting your job to take a sabbatical or at an unexpected career break, a spark forms inside. There is a mixture of anxiety and freedom marking the start of a very important transition; the birth of something new.

Sabbaticals range in time but they all have a common theme. It is a time to look inside yourself to figure out what you really want to do next. This pause in work creates the space to evaluate, plan and listen to intuitive cues. The time is finally available to sit and think about direction.

This time is a gift and although there is some anxiety because the next step is unknown, embrace the ambiguity. Sit with the question. Allow the silence to be a guide.

I have experienced two sabbaticals in my life. The first one was after my career as an investment banker where I watched the downfall of the market and was plagued with anxiety. I was too young to feel that upset all the time. So, I cashed out everything, including my retirement account and moved away to figure out my next step. The time was spent in a new city, exploring a part of the US I had never seen and taking one big trip with the last of my money to visit a friend in Australia. When I returned, I found a job in an industry I had grown quite passionate about–wine.

I worked in the wine industry for five years working my way from a courier to an account manager where I consulted wine makers on their wine making processes. The job gave me the opportunity to travel all over the world and learn so much about wine. After a few years on the road constantly, I began to feel burnt out. I was home a few days a month and exhausted. My passion had waned and I wanted stability and community more than anything.

I resigned after a couple years of saving and planning my next steps. I was terrified when I handed in my resignation letter letting go of the financial security I had created and worked so hard for. But, my intuition told me this was a necessary move.

My plan was to travel the world and write a book. I had a one way plane ticket to Bali but something told me to keep my apartment. I would travel in spurts. While I was in Bali, all of my plans disintegrated and my true path revealed itself. I resisted and argued with the realization. Knowing that my wanderlust was being put on the back burner broke my heart. But it was clearly the right answer.

I returned home and settled in and signed up for school. I was going to write at home and study to become a life and spiritual coach. This last transition has had its share of doubt, anxiety and ambiguity. However, the biggest difference was the way I approached it.

The key was to trust my intuition and know that the universe was going to provide the path as long as I stayed open and listened for guidance.

During this time, I received coaching from a colleague and truly believe in the importance of a coach during transition. Not only can coaching provide guidance and accountability, it can also open your mind to the universal clues we can’t see when we shut down out of frustration.

If you are going through or thinking about a career transition and would like to discuss coaching, please email me at emily@soulsadventures.com. I offer effective tools to tap into your intuition, explore what it is your really want to do and provide planning tools.

Your profession is not what brings home your paycheck. Your profession is what you were put on Earth to do with such passion and such intensity that it becomes spiritual in calling. -Vincent Van Gogh