Heartfirst Real Talk from Jess.

4 Concrete Steps to a Better You

Whether you enjoy goal-setting or not, here are 4 actionable tips to be your best, most authentic and empowered self.  I’ve selected these steps specifically because they first come to mind for me as powerful tips we’d do well to remember.

4 Concrete Steps To a Better You:

1/ Don’t wait. Many of us learn the hard way that things don’t just happen. Up until recently (gasp), I unconsciously believed that talent rises to the top eventually; it doesn’t.  Believing in your success is essential but it’s only one element.  Action is your best friend and resilience your second best.  Particularly when you’re pursuing something unconventional and that involves a lot of risk, you simply can’t afford to wait.  You also can’t afford to make any decisions coming from a place of fear or self-doubt.  You need to consciously leap into your mother-f*cking discomfort zone and go for it.  And if you fall down, congratulations – because when you get back up, you’ll be stronger than you were before.  We are meant to rise and fall, and rise and fall again – over and over.  This just means you’re truly living with intention and going after what you want.

2/ Speak up. As obvious as it sounds, many of us need a reminder to speak up. Asking questions or voicing your opinion (especially an unpopular one) can cause anxiety in certain situations.   I relate a lot to this personally, especially when I was younger — when I would stay silent at home to avoid tension and refrain from asking questions at school to avoid being the center of attention (it didn’t help that our near-retirement-aged Calculus teacher routinely made dumb blonde jokes).  However, this doesn’t apply only to highly sensitive people or women; most people remain quiet at times to avoid confrontation or the possibility of being viewed negatively.  We need to push through these feelings and speak up even when it makes us uncomfortable – and especially when it’s about a subject we care about (or need to know about).  The less we communicate, the worse things become.  And as uncomfortable as it may feel in the moment, the reward is more than worth it.  (Side note: Tact is also key.)

3/ Know that change is always possible.  Even if you are feeling stuck and emotionally or physically drained in your personal or professional life: know that you absolutely have the ability to shift your life in a positive direction.  Logistics, financial and family-related stress at times weighs so heavily that we can’t see beyond our struggles.  Through hard work, strategic planning and creative thinking, you can and will find a way out.  Trust your journey and be patient and keep pushing forward.  It is during our darkest moments that we develop our greatest strength.

4/ Hang (only) with positive people.  It’s that simple: avoid those who bring you down and drain your energy.  This can be a challenge, especially when it involves childhood friends or family members with whom unhealthy relationship patterns were developed long ago; however, the importance of surrounding ourselves with positive people can not be overestimated.  Our potential expands when we do and decreases when we don’t.  As Jim Rohn famously points out, we are the average of the five people we spend the most time with.  So save your energy, be intentional and selective.

* Song For This Moment: “Shed a Light”  (Robin Schulz with David Guetta)

Get Better at Being Heard

Why is it so hard to be heard?  As I lay with my eyes closed and my face frozen in a half-smile during a photoshoot for a facial massage last week (#randomgig), I knew I had to leave at noon.  In fact, I had initially turned the job down for lack of time but was assured it wouldn’t be a problem.  So when 12 o’clock rolled around and no one else in the 6-person team seemed to notice, I mentioned to the photographer that I needed to go. The others exchanged surprised glances and shared that the director had told them they would have more time with me.  It was soon clear that this wasn’t an oversight; the director had intentionally been dishonest in order to be sure I’d be there.

scream into micWithout trying to make this particular incident larger than it was, the fact that so many of us can relate to being taken advantage of is frustrating. As a genuinely kind, caring andconfident woman, I realize that I still haven’t mastered allowing my confidence to shine through in certain situations (whereas on stage or while coaching it comes naturally).  This stereotypically feminine need to be polite, to avoid confrontation and to just ‘make everything okay’ is something none of us should be holding on to (eye roll, please).  If you are, it’s important to work on consciously letting go of this unnecessary and harmful weight, in order to reveal your true badass self to the world — even when it is a little uncomfortable.  The more you’re aware of it and practice, the easier it will become, until you naturally own who you really are in every circumstance.  (And I’m right there with you!)

Convey Confidence.  No one wants to be the person others assume will just go with the flow and put others’ needs before his or her own.  So don’t be that person. If your natural way of being leaves you susceptible to being taken advantage of – and you want this pattern to end – you need to shift your behavior in a way that reflects your true strength and confidence.  This is especially important in business situations where the risk of not asserting yourself may lead to working more hours than were agreed to, receiving less compensation or both.  Avoid the risk of being misunderstood by keeping the following tips in mind during business interactions.

7 Ways To Make Sure Your Confidence Resonates:

1/ Maintain eye contact.  Eye contact is one of the strongest indicators of self-confidence so be sure keep a steady gaze throughout the conversation.

2/ Don’t fake smile.  Listen to the words being said and process them without using an inauthentic smile to make the other person feel appreciated or accepted (decreasing your strength in a business situation).

3/ Don’t nod in agreement while someone speaks.  Again, actively listen and engage in the conversation without passively agreeing to whatever is being said.

4/ Don’t self-touch. Resist fiddling with jewelry or tucking your hair behind your ears.  Fidgeting is a quick indicator of insecurity and low self-confidence.

shoes leaves5/ Point your feet toward whomever you’re speaking with. Doing this shows you are serious and an equal partner in the conversation.

6/ Take up space. Stand straight with your legs spread apart to show you aren’t afraid to take up space.

7/ Don’t lean in.  Listening intently and showing interest may cause you to lean in slightly, but doing this too much suggests you’re seeking  approval and decreases your strength in the conversation.

This Ted Talk about power poses takes things a step further and shows that when we practice certain postures we can actually increase our self-confidence and how we are perceived by others, improving our chances for success.

* Song for this Moment: “Express Yourself” by Labrinth.

Source Articles:

“10 Ways Body Language Can Help You Convey Power at Work”, Huffington Post.

“How Body Language Helps Shape Who You Are“, Ted Talk by Amy Cuddy.

Patricia Moreno: Fitness, Spirituality and Self Concept

These days we’re inundated with information about wellness. Between our favorite health and fitness websites, apps, newsletters, instagram and twitter feeds — there’s no shortage of content.  However, it’s not always easy to find quality content that resonates, educates and empowers us on a real level.  So when someone’s words, class and vibe authentically inspire in a powerful way, it’s only natural we feel the urge to share it with others. This is how I felt when I took my first yogaSati class with founder Patricia Moreno several months ago.  And after learning more about her personal journey and how the intenSati method came to be, I’m even more convinced about the importance of Patricia’s role as a force for positive change.

With over 30 years of experience as a trainer, educator and mentor, and as founder of a fitness concept based on mindfulness (or sati), Patricia Moreno has earned a stellar reputation in the wellness industry. The testimonials on her website speak for themselves, and with 620 intenSati instructors around the globe, her impact on the fitness industry has already been outstanding.  However, through speaking with her it’s clear there’s much more Patricia aims to (and will) accomplish.

A Tough Beginning in Fitness.  Patricia Moreno’s introduction to the fitness world began at a young age and was tragically linked to feelings of shame regarding her body. Growing up in northern California as the 9th of 11 children, Patricia’s family owned Mexican restaurants; she recalls “conversations both in and out of the restaurants were always, always about food.”  Fast food was a significant part of her regular diet and every few months the family would go on diets and take diet pills or shots to increase metabolism.  These quick-fix methods never lasted and a cycle of deprivation followed by over-indulgence continued.

As an eight year old, Patricia recalls, “I will never forget the sound of my parents gasping when the doctor told them I was 130 pounds.  This is the first of many times I remember feeling ashamed and absolutely horrified about my weight and body.

Patricia Moreno fell in love with group fitness classes as a teenager, lost weight, became fit and began to inspire others to workout. She began teaching aerobics before graduating from high school and quickly became known as a kickass fitness instructor.  Sadly though, her body image issues persisted for years to come, even after she had become a renowned fitness instructor with a daily televised workout program.

2 Breakthroughs That Inspired IntenSati:  Years later during a particularly rough time in her private struggle, Patricia experienced two major revelations that led her to create IntenSati:

1/ Self-concept.  Patricia explains, “You have to live in accordance with your own self-concept.  When I was working out – no matter how thin I got, I would still believe I am fat and unlovable.  So ultimately, I would keep returning to however I believed I was. The truth is, being fat was never how I am or how I was; I am just a person and my weight is the result of my actions and thoughts.  This concept was revolutionary for me because even when I was physically thin – in my mind and in my heart I still believed I was a fat person.  This made total sense and was a major revelation.”

2/ Activating a State. The second breakthrough came shortly after during a Tony Robbins retreat, when Patricia was asked to repeat the words, ‘All I need is within me now.’  She was suddenly struck with the desire to create a workout that would change people’s self-concept by activating a state of being.

Intensati_0167Your state of being determines your results. You can activate a state of courage, love, acceptance or gratitude – and you can turn this on within yourself. I wanted to design a workout that would activate joy for no reason except that if it could be done during class, it could be done in life.  And I wanted people to turn up the volume of gratitude.  I decided to marry this information with my expertise in exercise.  I didn’t want to use exercise as a way to fix, punish and force — but as a way to change how we move and how we speak to ourselves. We have the ability to use the body to change our inner conversations.  This eventually became IntenSati.”

IntenSati beautifully uses fitness as a spiritual practice.  It reminds us to live consciously and with intention, and provides a solid workout for the mind, body and spirit.  Check out the Sati schedule  for more information on its range of classes, schedules and leadership courses.  (If you’re in New York, intenSati leader Natalia Petrzela is also an exceptional instructor.)

PMhr1Choosing Gratitude.  I’m not teaching something that people don’t know. We all know it’s better to be positive than negative. But how do you become positive? Through gratitude. It all begins with gratitude. This is a conscious choice. You need to constantly remind yourself that you need to create greatness from a state of consciousness.”

Living Your Vision.  “The most important part of class is the end, when we visualize our final goal and sit in it as though it’s already done.  It can be hard to let yourself dream however big you want to dream; we naturally downscale and worry. But the game is to really immerse yourself in your final vision — to breathe it and to feel it. This is the creative process. You need to have the vision to get there and life reveals itself based on your vision.”

Believing It In.  Ask yourself, ‘What do I really want? If there was a magic wand and someone said you can have it, and that whatever you pick is going to be a huge success – what would it be? ‘ Stay in that vision and believe it in.

Stay up-to-date and inspired by Patricia Moreno here.

* Song For This Moment: “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”

How to K.O. Self Doubt

As William Shakespeare brilliantly put it, “our doubts are our traitors“.  Yet even while knowing this, many of us continue to let negative thoughts control our behavior and limit our possibilities in life. We may not even know we’re doing it, as an endless stream of thoughts runs throughout our brains each day; but the longer we hold on to self-doubt, the greater its power becomes.  It takes conscious effort to discard thoughts of self-doubt.  But we can and we ought to, because ultimately our mindset and attitude not only affect – but create – our life.

In order to become our best selves, we need to consciously let go of thoughts that hold us back and to embrace those that empower and inspire us.  Here are some useful tips to help you power through negativity and to armour yourself with positivity and strength.  You’ll find that with just a bit more self-awareness and practice, your inner light will shine that much brighter – and your potential for happiness and success (whatever these mean for you) will be that much greater.

How to Knock Out Self-Doubt:

1/ Acknowledge.   That’s right: own your negative thoughts.  (Ignoring them will just cause them to resurface and grow in importance.)

2/ Double Punch Back.  Think of 2 positive qualities or alternatives for each doubt, worry or negative thought.  (It’s always better to double up on the positives because sometimes it takes more than one of them to counteract a negative thought.)

3/ Remember The Two W’s.  In order for great things to happen in life, you need to understand two things at a deep level: you are worth it and you are working for it. Believing you deserve to be happy and successful is a must — and as long as you’re committed to continually working toward your goal, there’s no reason you can’t accomplish it.  Remind yourself of this when you begin to worry or doubt yourself.

4/ Consciously Let Go.  Once you’ve acknowledged your self-doubt, given each one a double punch back (#2) and reminded yourself that you are worthy and working for it — it’s time to actively let go of the negative thoughts. (Note: Don’t over think this: think of it as a simple exercise.  Once you’ve experienced positive results, you’ll be encouraged to continue and this process will feel more natural.)

photo: Miguel Bruna

Remember that you’re not alone in feeling weighed down by doubt at times.  It’s comforting though to realize you have the ability to decide how much importance you give negative thoughts.  As with most things, you’ll improve with practice; discarding negative thoughts when they pop into your head will eventually become second nature.

As always, positive change begins and ends with you.  It requires that you trust yourself and that you’re willing to do the work (for some, the above steps may feel strange but minor; for others it will be much more challenging).  You don’t need to dive into them with full blind faith but you do need to take sure-footed baby steps in order for them to be effective.  If and when letting go of self-doubt feels too difficult or overwhelming, just focus on #3 and remind yourself: “I am worthy and I’m working for it.”  💯

“Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.” –   Suzy Kassem

* Song For This Moment: “Worry” by Jack Garratt.  

Related Articles:

“Don’t Let Caution Turn to Cowardice”, article in Entrepreneur.

“Seven Strategies To Control Your Thoughts”, article in Mountain Moving Mindset.

“Do We Have Control Over Our Thoughts”, article.

Dare To Be the Greatest

“Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.” – Muhammad Ali

Reflecting on the life of one of the world’s most influential sports figures and humanitarians of the 20th century, it’s no wonder many of us feel heavy-hearted about Muhammad Ali’s recent passing.  I personally surprised myself by getting hooked on video footage of Ali in the weeks after his death, scouring the Internet for clips displaying his magnetic charisma, conviction and sense of humor. (It’s impossible not to smile in admiration while watching him speak, isn’t it?)  For a man to proclaim himself The Greatest and for the world not only to recognize it – but to applaud him for it – is beyond inspiring.

Muhammad Ali’s life story is as compelling as his personality. As a two-year-old, he knocked his mom’s tooth out and as an eight-year-old he told the neighborhood kids he would be champion of the world.  When others called him arrogant, he responded that he wasn’t conceited, he was convinced.  And being the greatest boxer of all time is only part of what made Ali so exceptional. Growing up in segregated Louisville, Kentucky, Muhammad Ali experienced a great deal of oppression that took years to overcome; yet he never succumbed to bitterness or violence.  He legally abandoned his “slave name” of Cassius Clay and converted to Islam, not because anyone else was doing it but because it’s what he believed in. He was an unapologetic game-changer and a messenger of peace.  For refusing to fight in the Vietnam War, Muhammad Ali faced federal prosecution, was stripped of his title and license to box, and was even sentenced to prison.  He stood by his unpopular decisions and faced their consequences, and years later won back love, respect and admiration from the world.  Muhammad Ali’s authenticity is nothing short of awe-inspiring.

This article was a bit challenging for me to write because it feels so important – urgent even.  As I’m writing, I’m reminded of and awakened to the reason I launched No Bubblegum: to inspire and empower others to live and be their best.  In a world full of distractions (from Instagram to Snapchat to Netflix), authentic connection and genuine inspiration are more critical than ever.  Muhammed Ali’s life and accomplishments remind us of two fundamental points that we’d all do well to remember: 1) we each have the power to change the world and 2) we owe it to ourselves and others to be our greatest.

6 Quotes to Live By: In Muhammad Ali’s Words. Nine days after Ali’s death, as we’re painfully aware, the United States experienced its most deadly mass shooting in history in Orlando, Florida.  One person is killed every seventeen minutes as a result of gun violence in the US today because, despite President Obama’s many efforts over the last 8 years, our gun control laws remain not nearly strict enough.  And although this tragic news has nothing to do with Muhammad Ali, it reminds us that the world is in dire need of courageous leaders like him. Like you, and like me.  Real change often requires struggle, perseverance, an incredible work ethic and unrelenting resilience.  We can not sit back and watch as life happens; we need to actively engage and be the change in order to create it.

  1.  Self-love.  I am the greatest.  I said that even before I knew I was.
  2.  Kindness.  Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.
  3.  Authenticity.  I know where I’m going and I know the truth, and I don’t have to be what you want me to be. I’m free to be what I want.
  4.  Resilience.  Only a man who knows what it is like to be defeated can reach down to the bottom of his soul and come up with the extra ounce of power it takes to win when the match is even.
  5.  Courage.  He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.
  6.  Vision.  The man who has no imagination has no wings.

As eloquently spoken by wife Lonnie Williams during his funeral service, “Muhammad Ali was a great man and he makes all of us proud. We need to take notes from his life as to how we can make our world better.”  Williams continued by beautifully pointing out that her husband believed in the boundless possibilities of love and the strength of our diversity, and that he was a work in progress — just like each of us.  When we tap into our higher selves and increase our self-love and self-awareness, there’s no limit to what we can achieve.

* Song For This Moment: “Glory” by Common and John Legend.



Knowing When To Quit (A Personal Story)

This article is dedicated to anyone who’s ever had a dream, totally gone for it and failed. It may be true that there’s no such thing as failure, only lessons; but in the moment, when your dreams feel crushed, those words sting more than they are helpful. Especially when pursuing your passion often means that you’ve already taken a risk few will understand and/or support, including those closest to you. It takes courage, tenacity and fierce will to go beyond daydreaming and into the actual building process.  And the more time, effort and heart you pour in, the more you become emotionally and financially invested – so when it all comes crashing down, it can be devastating.

While on the plane to Los Angeles last night, I realized that even though sharing my story still feels a bit painfully raw, my experience might resonate with, inspire and hopefully empower some of you.  So here goes.  My inspiration to launch an indoor cycling studio (a la SoulCycle) came in 2012, when I moved to Paris and noticed there was nothing similar, and that this could positively change lives.  At the time, I was also hard at work on a few music projects and was focused on releasing a personal EP.  Music and fitness have always been connected for me; as a singer-songwriter, I’ve had an on/off “side hustle” as a running coach throughout my entire music career because: 1) sharing my passion with others makes me incredibly happy and 2) having an additional source of income in an unstable career has been important.

photo: Jia Wertz

Fast forward to early 2013, when some major disappointments prompted me to leave my music manager (based in New York), to consciously step back from music, and to be “all in” in bringing the indoor cycling studio to Paris.  I spent three months back in New York studying, became certified to teach in London, located and secured the best out-of-the-box coaching talent in Paris and searched for an ideal space. Over my next two and a half years in Paris, this project (full of highs and lows) consumed me until the mid-July afternoon when I decided to make a change.

Rather than bore you with the details, I’d like to focus on the moment when I decided – without a doubt – that this project was over.  Most of my journey I’d kept private, thankfully, aside from a few vague posts on social media about ‘something coming soon to Paris’. (When my initial co-founder, one of Paris’ most known fitness coaches and bloggers, literally stole my work and was working with another company preparing their launch simultaneously, I learned that being too open and trusting is not always a good thing!) So, sharing the news for me meant telling my investors, closest friends and family.  Some understood and most didn’t, but I didn’t doubt my decision. I knew I needed to step away to re-build myself and that I would ultimately launch something even more meaningful and powerful (even though at the time I wasn’t sure what it would be).

Like you, I’m no quitter. But there’s a tremendous difference between giving up and reaching a point of clarity. Not everyone needs to understand and surely they won’t, so don’t expect them to.  Walking away is so f*cking hard and doing it without support is even harder, but if this is what you feel deep in your gut – trust it. My hope in sharing this with you is to empower – or even just remind you – to give your instinct and self-awareness the credit they deserve.  Leaving something you love because it no longer fulfills you doesn’t mean your journey is over or that you’ve lost – in fact, it’s quite the opposite; freeing yourself from something that continually causes you more harm than good is incredibly liberating.  And when you’re ready to open yourself to new possibilities, new doors will open to you.  I guarantee it.

photo: Jia Wertz

For me, closing this door inspired the launch of NoBubblegum six weeks later and led me to create something even more connective and meaningfully awesome than I could have known a year ago (TBA). Most of us recognize gratitude is an essential key to happiness. Almost as important, I believe, is living in our truth and facing it head on (especially when it’s painfully difficult). You can live the life you dream of; it won’t be easy and it’s not supposed to be, but it’s always worth it.  And you are always worth it.  Trust your journey, trust yourself and never give up on going for what you want.  Even when it changes.


The Painful Truth We All Must Learn

I’m forcing myself to write this article before I begin second-guessing myself and before my mind wanders back to politics (both of these things will inevitably have happened by the time you read this).  This piece is dedicated to all the hustlers, artists, entrepreneurs and dream-builders out there who have experienced that exasperating feeling of, “WTF.  I know I’m exceptional at what I’m doing – or the concept I created is phenomenal (or something similar), so why am I not moving forward fast enough?”

No one wants to talk about or acknowledge the event you spent weeks preparing for, when only a few people showed up — or when a potentially life-changing opportunity that seemed like a sure thing suddenly doesn’t pan out.  As an artist, a rollercoaster ride of career highs and lows is pretty much expected; and when I read about and speak with entrepreneurs from many fields, there are clear similarities.  To makes matters worse, it’s during our most challenging times that many of us learn that some of our nearest and dearest aren’t able to provide the emotional support and assurance we need (and even worse: that look of pity).

The most important thing to remember is that most people just don’t get it.  And that’s okay.  As hard as it is to let yourself down and to be let down by those you love, we need to remind ourselves of the wise words of Anaïs Nin: “We don’t see the world as it is.  We see the world as we are.”  I’m willing to bet that the same friends and family members who aren’t able to be there for you the way you hoped have been less than courageous in their own lives, making it harder for them to relate.  Don’t take it personally because it’s no one’s fault (this took me years to learn).  Rest assured, you will find other sources of support that will broaden your life in new and exciting ways.  Meanwhile, remember that many of life’s greatest success stories begin with failure and heartbreak and overcoming obstacles is a surefire way to develop extraordinary resilience, grit and inner strength.

My personal belief is that in these situations it’s very important to allow yourself to feel that sh*t deeply and process it.  Do whatever you need to do to express yourself and to experience a sense of release and relief – whether it’s journaling, working out or spending time with friends and family.  Trust your instincts when it comes to self-care.  Then, when you’re ready, consciously decide to remove the negative cloud you felt hanging over you and clear it from your system.  Stand in your light and own it.  I realize these words may sound a bit hokey, but I’ve personally experienced the powerful result of consciously choosing to transform a let down into something positive and I know it works.  Owning your feelings, your successes and your failures is incredibly empowering.

You are your greatest asset.  When we experience any type of struggle, we are forced to deeply connect with our most authentic self (whether we want to or not).  We need to make sure that even while we’re feeling down, we are still fully aware of the fact that we are our greatest asset.  And our greatness can’t be measured or changed by the result of an event, a failure or a success – but by how we live each day, how we respond to challenges, how we treat other people and how we move forward.  When we lead with our hearts and trust ourselves at a core level, there is no limit to our happiness and success.

Song For This Moment: “Remember Me”  by Daley & Jessie J :: unrelated lyrics but this song has a kickass and empowering quality that just works.

Related Articles:

The 5 Best Ways To Build Resiliency, article in Experience Life.

Get Gritty and Win“, article in NoBubblegum.

62 Business Leaders Answer What Does Success Mean To You?“, article in Under 30 CEO.

Are You Sabotaging Yourself?

I’ve always considered myself a pretty confident person, so when I recently discovered I’ve been limiting my success it shook me.  Even to admit it makes me uneasy because I’m embarrassed it’s taken this long to realize.  I’ve been hustling with heart (and hustling hard) for many years without enough self-belief that I can do better than just okay, and that I’m worthy of doing better than just okay (my heart sinks while typing).  On the surface, my major life decisions suggest otherwise; I’ve consistently prioritized passion and happiness over stability, pursuing a career in music without a plan, connections, money or emotional support from family (this was heart-crushing during my twenties) – not to mention major student loan debt.  My creative journey has always felt like a blessing and even when things have been tough, my desire, ability and need to connect have outweighed my fear and self-doubt.  To a point.  I’ve still managed not to notice as my subconscious (emotional) mind continues to masterfully impose boundaries to protect me from too much success.  My details and reasons aren’t important here though; the reason I’m sharing this is because my pattern of self-sabotage isn’t unique – it’s practically universal.


credit: Flavia Raddavero

So many of us  limit our potential for happiness, wellness, success and love by either consciously accepting and expecting less of ourselves and/or others, or by getting so caught up with life that we don’t notice it’s happening.  The irony in my situation is that I feel sooopassionate about connecting with, supporting and uplifting others.  It’s the reason I write and perform music, launched NoBubblegum and created  TNL 58‘ — so how could I be holding myself back? Anyway (sigh).

I hope this article sparks a few of you to look inward and explore your patterns of behavior;  if you recognize a self-sabotaging tendency (or two) that’s a pivotal first step.  Once we decide we’re ready and determined to do the work, we can absolutely make positive changes that will expand us in beautiful and powerful ways.  I’m personally committed to this and would love you to join me in stepping into your next level.  To start, see if any of the tendencies below resonate with you.

4 Common Self-sabotage Themes:

  • Procrastination & Inaction.Delaying or not doing what you need and even wantto do; feeling unable to move forward even when exciting opportunities present themselves; dreaming about doing something for months and years without acting on it.
  • Worrying Too Much.  Being afraid of what others will think of you if you fail or succeed; doubting yourself even though you know you’re super talented; needing to be liked by everyone (even people you don’t appreciate).
  • Feeling and Accepting Less.Allowing others to speak down or talk over you; taking others’ words to heart too much.  Accepting less than you’re worth in job compensation and neglecting to ask for what you want and deserve.
  • Lashing Out in Anger. Being aggressive rather than assertive with others in order to injure rather than heal and build strong relationships.

credit: Marcelo Matarazzo


What You Can Do About it:

Recognize it. Self-sabotage happens when your subconscious (emotional) mind and your logical mind are at odds with one another; for example, showing up 30 minutes late to a job interview for a position you really want or not responding to emails or phone calls offering you a fabulous new opportunity.  Even positive change is hard and requires work and courage; many coaches and therapists agree that we need to be uncomfortable to grow and expand.  Positive change can be terrifying and self-sabotage is our subconscious’ way of handling fear.  Become aware of your tendencies so you can “catch yourself” and turn things around.

Kindness.  If you feel ashamed about past self-sabotaging behavior, acknowledge it and then decide to release these negative feelings.  Experiencing self-doubt and regret simply make us human; it doesn’t mean we need to allow these feelings to overtake us and linger indefinitely.  Self-compassion is a must for moving forward. Much of our behavior as adults has to do with our early life experiences, so try and observe yourself from the outside and consider what advice you might give to someone else in your situation.

Accountability. Meanwhile, seek out a trusted and supportive friend and share what you’ve recognized in your behavior.  Ask this person to (kindly and honestly) hold you accountable when they recognize your behavior is leaning back toward self-sabotage.  Be extremely selective and intentional with whom you share this stuff.  Your heart is platinum and you’ve got to protect it.  (Side note: your accountability partner doesn’t need to be a close friend; a mentor or therapist may be extremely helpful.)

Explore Why:  Shifting away from self-sabotage requires deep personal commitment and continual dedication.  Whether it’s a professional issue (like imposter syndrome) or a pattern of behavior in your relationships (check out this insightful article) this will take time – and that’s okay.  Be patient with yourself and recognize that each positive step is significant and valuable.  Celebrate your progress and forgive yourself when you slip.  Above all, always remember that you are worth the work.

Listen to this Article here:

* Song for this Moment:acoustic cover of Michael Jackson’s classic, “Man in the Mirror”, performed by James Morrison.

Related Links:

How To Stop Self-Sabotaging“, article inVICE. 

“Beating Self-Sabotage”, article in Mind Tools.

“The Five Types of Imposter Syndrome and How To Beat Them”,article inFast Company.

“Am I Sabotaging My Relationship?”, article in Elite Daily.


Do It: Positive.

If you’re reading this, you most likely already know how important it is to have a positive outlook on life.  You know that being optimistic and believing in yourself and your future greatly increase your ability to reach goals, and make you a happier and more likeable person.   However, it’s not just about how you think.  It’s about you actand how you react. Because life is anything but a straight line; it’s full of ups and downs and unexpected twists and turns.  Your ability to adapt and to remain open to new possibilities is as important as maintaining a positive mindset — and arguably more so.

Here’s an example that may hit home.  In a recent study, around 80% of people reported themselves to be unhappy in their jobs, clear proof of just how difficult even positive change is.  Despite knowing we could be happier, most of us aren’t willing to face the challenge of starting something new, of walking away from what we know and feels secure.  So instead of working to create our future, we allow fear, self-doubt and others’ opinions to dictate our next move. (It’s frighteningly easy to continue living in a bubble of complacency when everyone around you seems to be doing the same thing.)  A positive attitude will help you manage life, but it won’t improve your life from good to great: that requires positive doing.


happily ever afterWe dare you to take things to the next level. To be courageous.  To empower yourself.  We believe in the importance of surrounding yourself with people who inspire you at a core level and make you a stronger, better and more confident person — who contribute to your happiness, and encourage you to work hard and be resilient.  People who get it. And you’ll naturally reciprocate, so everybody wins.  Whether your goal is to train for a 5K or your first marathon, to find a new job, to start a new company or to become a single parent by choice — whateverit is — it’s valid.  There are no rules.  This is just about going for what you want rather than convincing yourself you’re okay with being unfulfilled.


5 Steps Of Positive Doing:

1/ Set Goals.  Contrary to some of what we’ve seen published recently, we still believe goal-setting is a good thing when done right.  What do you want?  Think about it. Acknowledge it. Respect it.

2/ Ask yourself Why.  Think about why you want to achieve this particular goal. Your response should be quick and obvious to you.  Most likely, it will have something to do with feeling good about yourself or feeling accomplished.  It has to come back to something that will make youhappy.

3/ If Things Don’t Work Out.  This one is critical and may take time to consider, depending on your goal. Be honest with yourself: are you able and willing to handle the disappointment if things don’t turn out the way you want?  How will you respond if this happens?You need to be prepared to deal with the possibility of things going awry. This may not sound particularly helpful in the moment, but it’s comforting to know that many of life’s most beautiful and interesting doors open as a result of some sort of failure.  Not saying this should be your primary focus, but you need to be aware of this possibility.  Not everything is up to you, but how you respond is.

positive doing4/ Plan and Visualize.   Work on an action plan to achieve your goals.  Be realistic and simplify things as much as possible.  Write it down and put it somewhere safe.  Consult someone you trust and who believes in you.  Having the support of a loved one can make all the difference in helping us feel supported and accountable as we work toward our goals. However, you don’t need to tell the world; keep your energy and your circle tight on this one.  Before you sleep at night or first thing in the morning (or whenever you have a few moments to yourself) visualize yourself realizing the goal you’re passionate about.  Believe in this.

5/ Own It.  You’re ready.  You’ve considered the obstacles and are prepared to be resilient, knowing life may throw you some punches along the way (especially if your goal is very challenging). And that’s okay. Throughout your path, if you find yourself struggling to the point where you’re having trouble sticking to your plan stay flexible.  You may not believe in a Plan B or C (and we respect your determination!) but sometimes life opens up a Plan W or Q that’s even more incredible than your Plan A. Don’t be too single-focused to miss out on an unexpected opportunity.  Your positive attitude, actions and reactions will ensure your success. 

* Song To Get You in The Mood: “How Hard I Try”

“How Hard I Try”, by filous and featuring James Hershey.

A song about holding on to what matters and going after what you want. Now, go get it!


Related Links:

“How to Find and Do Work You Love”, Scott Dismore: https://youtu.be/jpe-LKn-4gM

Article about Passion:  “The P Word”

Article about Grit: “Get Gritty And Win”

How To Get Unstuck (featuring Dr. Laura Miranda)

I recently sat down with passionate fitness entrepreneur, physical therapist and coach Dr. Laura Miranda in New York to discuss strategies on how to get unstuck when we fall into negative patterns. Whether it’s losing motivation for your workout routine or neglecting some another aspect your self-care, Laura shares many insightful tips that will help you shift back to your strongest, most high-vibing self.

Among many other tips, we discussed the importance of positive connection, self-awareness and self-compassion.  Here is an inspiring excerpt from our conversation.

Connect on instagram: @drlauramiranda

Get inspired at www.drlauramiranda.com



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