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Too many ideas? Narrow down with this 60-second exercise

Too many ideas? Narrow down with this 60-second exercise

Do you suffer from TMIS? I do!

And no, it’s not the syndrome of sharing too-close-for-comfort details with those who aren’t ready to receive ’em, although I totally fit in that bucket, too. #thisonetimeatbandcamp #TMI

For this post, though, we’re talkin’ Too Many Ideas Syndrome.

Writers, creatives, entrepreneurs, aspiring entrepreneurs, dreamers and kids seem to be big sufferers of this. So, basically, we’ve ALL experienced this at some point, if not right now!

Recently, I stumbled upon an old article on how to overcome Too Many Ideas Syndrome. It’s geared toward writers and is packed with grrreat ideas on narrowing down. But something big happened for me when I read the following:

Award-winning screenwriter Cynthia Whitcomb, who has sold 70 screenplays and seen 29 come to the screen, puts on a chef’s hat [when she’s overwhelmed]. Her advice:

“Think of your ideas like pots on the stove in the kitchen of your creative mind. Lift the lids and look inside. One of them is always closest to being soup. Write that one first.”

Cynthia’s method for narrowing down topics is not only GENIUS, but it could be applied to *anything* that needs narrowing down.

And what if…instead of just visualizing, we put this to pen + paper?
And what if…we gave ourselves a limited amount of time to decide?

What if we gave our all-knowing, all-too-ignored intuition more of a chance?

Could a HUGE answer surface for us within 60 seconds?
Could it really be that simple?

It is.

Every. single. person. I’ve tried this with in real-time has had a BIG-time AHA. Whattt? Things like:

  • “Omg. Brilliant.”
  • “Perfect. It’s THAT simple. Wow.”
  • “This was SO helpful. I really liked the activity. Simple and easy to visualize, and makes things seem not so scary.”
  • “That was awesome.”
  • “YES! Loved this. Simple and easy.”
  • “So fun.”

So, if YOU have any form of overwhelm with ideas, tasks, thoughts, desires, [insert your plural thing here], I want you to try this, too!

(This is pretty geared toward those things you’ve been putting off, but you do you! Customize it if you want. Because you can!)

Ready?

LEZ do this!

  1. Grab a piece of paper and a pen.
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  2. Draw 4 circles on the paper like a stove top.
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  3. In each of those circles, write one thing you’ve been putting off/haven’t quite gotten to yet.
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    These should all be things that have some element of scariness to them — but in a good way. You know it would be good for you to do these things — but again — you haven’t quite gotten to them. It could be project-related or self-care-related. Write what IMMEDIATELY comes to your mind..
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  4. Pretend each of these four things are simmering in their own pot on the stove.
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  5. Then, visualize yourself peeking into each pot — one at a time — seeing which one is closest to a boil based on which one you DESIRE to move forward with the MOST.
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  6. Circle or underline that One Thing!
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  7. THERE you GO! You just narrowed down and got some clarity in 60 friggin’ seconds.
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    I hope this showed you that quite often, the answer is right in front of us, the answer is within us. Things are MUCH more simple than we THINK.

I’d LOVE to know how this went for you. Comment below, yeah?

And…if you’re feeling fired up and ready to move forward on that One Thing, join me in my next online program!

Let it be: Fall leaves, wise trees and a lesson in patience

Let it be: Fall leaves, wise trees and a lesson in patience

As I was finishing up a run in the RARE Dusseldorf sun on Monday, it was a perfect time to check the following off the PLAYlist:

Make a collection of FALL leeeaves.

Well, my simple intention of a leafy collection sprouted into something different.

When the first fallen beauty stopped me in my tracks, I reached down and…paused.

 


Something told me to just…let it BE.

:: queue The Beatles ::

The masterpiece had already been curated.
This leaf belonged where it fell.

And, well, let’s face it: A winged or drunken creature had likely dropped a not-so-special substance on this foliage. #eww

But back to the BEAUTY. 😉

Suddenly, I started seeing surrounding leafy combos from a color-palette lens. Like this:

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How a Turkish bath house visit exfoliated my self-doubt

How a Turkish bath house visit exfoliated my self-doubt

Warning: This post contains lots of talk about nudity and all kinds of vulnerable stuff. Can you handle it? Hope so…

Let’s GO!

SO.

As I was digging through emails for a draft I wrote about Europeans and how comfy they are in their own skin, I stumbled upon these words below. Sent ’em to my dear pal + collaborator Diana on Jan. 3:

the biggest thing on my bucket list for 2016 is to go to a bath house or just get naked at the local gym locker room. 🙂 there’s so much to this…acceptance, self-love, letting go of insecurities, etc…and i want others to experience this deeper meaning in some way shape or form…through skinny dipping…tanning topless…doing a boudoir shoot…standing naked in front of the mirror and ACCEPTING everything…having sex with the lights on….whatever works for THEM.”

Since moving over here, this whole idea of being unabashedly, mindlessly naked FASCINATES me, and I’ve got the ballsy (pun intended!) Europeans to thank for that.

I’ve seen more bits than I’ve bargained for at beaches, in locker rooms and, well, lurking in the grass of German parks. It’s undoubtedly uncomfortable, but refreshingly admirable.

To me, it symbolizes being REAL, confident and free from self-consciousness. There’s much to be said for this mindset and someone who can be one with their flesh.

How can this not trickle into our work and day-to-day lives?

How can this not influence how we think, feel and talk about sex in our relationships, friendships and parenting?

Thanks to an invite from a friend,

I finally sacked up and checked the ‘ol Turkish bath house box yesterday.

It was a women-only time and bikinis were actually required, so that made for an easy YES. And even though my end goal was to actually get NAKED, my fear was very pleased to keep my teets + hoo-ha covered.

The whole experience of attending a traditional Turkish hammam was going to be foreign enough, right?

After rinsing off, we entered the most powerful steam room I’ve ever been in.

It felt like Vegas and New Orleans collaborated on the thickest, wettest, hottest room possible with some Vicks VapoRub all up in there. Just kidding RE: Vicks. I think it was Eucalyptus and lavender.

After we steamed, we spread Moroccan Beldi soap on our skin like butta. We let it sit. We rinsed again. We steamed again.

THEN…the REAL adventure began: the scrubbing.

Not scrubbing yourself, no.
But another woman doing the scrubbing for you.

When I laid down, she said, “aus sein.”

In English, that’s “be off.” 

OH BOY…

I had to take my top off.

And so I did. (And I survived!)

What happened next?

Well, imagine getting a pedicure and during the exfoliation part, they decide to scrub EVERYTHING but your vajayjay…your fun hatch…your love box…your vagina.

(I’m an adult. I promise.)

She didn’t use an emory board, but man…she used FORCE with that peeling glove and went to places I didn’t even *know* could be exfoliated.

I was hoping there’d be T-shirts in the lobby that said:

“I got my nipples exfoliated at the hammam.” or “My hammam butt is softer than your baby’s butt.”

They didn’t have ’em. Weird. 😉

But in all seriousness, during this scrub-down, all I could think about was,

“This is me. This is ALL of me…the REAL me. There’s nothing I can do right now but BE ME.”

I went from frightened to embarrassed to FREED in about 30 seconds.

My bikini top soon became a soggy symbol of all the things that’ve been getting in the way of pure, genuine joy in my life. Had I kept that thing on, oooof, the experience would’ve been SO watered down.

Reflection: What’s YOUR soggy swimsuit right now? How GOOD would it feel to toss it to the side?

Then, as the dead skin was being peeled from my body, all I could think about was how I was shedding old layers and fictional stories. It was as if all the things that were weighing me down were let GO.

Thoughts like:

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the PLAYlist: Let’s get it started in here!

the PLAYlist: Let’s get it started in here!

Well, howdy, dance partner!
*virtual do-si-do*

Ready to *dance* along to the PLAYlist I’ve been drumming up?
Need a refresher on what the heck this is? Get down on it.

playlist-3
Then, put this song on if you want:
HandClap is my JAM right now.

SO…ready for the list?

In no particular order (Let’s put this sucker on SHUFFLE!), with full expectation that some “songs” may be deleted, paused, replayed, remixed or replaced, here’s what’s piquing my soak-in-the-moment SOUL right now:

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When the world overwhelms me, these 4 things keep me going

When the world overwhelms me, these 4 things keep me going

I have to share a little story with you.

Yesterday, I stepped out for a little jog, and wow, the temp was higher than I anticipated. After struggling to get my pullover to part ways from my T-shirt (WHILE walking) without showing my bashful American skin, I noticed that I’d passed an elderly lady standing at the bottom of her stairs.

I stopped, turned around, and saw her little head peeking around the wall. She had this smile on her face like, I was going to ask you to help me, but watching you was more entertaining.

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“How did you sidestep your doubts?”

“How did you sidestep your doubts?”

In a recent email blast, I recapped on the transformational journey this year has been for my biz, and some of the responses were eye-opening.

Abbie Rendle, the wanderlust-ing Aussie who led part 6 of the Dish + Wish Series, asked me questions that really got me thinking. And I have a feeling she’s not alone in her curiosities.

Feeling moved to respond here (thanks to her permission, of course!), I hope this inspires you…


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10 ways to take 10-minute breaks

10 ways to take 10-minute breaks

No matter where you’re at in life (building a business, raising kids, crushing your 9-5, taking care of your parents), if you clicked on this, you need a breath. You crave a pause that’s possible. BUT…

It feels selfish. It feels counterproductive.

Deep down, we know that breaks are as vital to our well-being as exercise is, yet we struggle to keep them top-of-mind or justified. When we’re under pressure (good or bad), in the zone and needed by others, of course “me before we” goes out the window.

But here’s the thing. All those people you’re helping? All those projects you’re hustling?

If you want to fully show up, you’ve got to put that oxygen mask on first.

And if you’re like every busy human on this planet, you’re hesitating. You’re too busy for a break.

But what if I told you everything could change in 10 minutes? It can. What if you told yourself you deserve those 10 minutes? You do.

Here are 10 mini breaks that will leave you more energized, focused, productive and even more creative.

1. Daydream on purpose

Contrary to popular belief, daydreaming can actually make you MORE productive. It can help you solve problems and realize your deepest desires, ideas and plans.

Have you ever had an AHA moment in the shower or while walking the dog? That breakthrough is a result of “diffuse mode” thinking. Our most creative ideas and powerful realizations don’t spark when we’re intensely focused. They emerge when we’ve drifted away from our task at hand.

Divert those eyes from your device. Tune OUT from what you’re focused on and tune IN to the power of mental time travel.

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‘Less TV, more FOCUS’

‘Less TV, more FOCUS’

This is the seventh installment of the Dish + Wish Experiment, an 8-part series led exclusively by members of the TBC community.

I’m SO excited to introduce you to Jaye Weber, one of our TBC regulars. She’s been along for every challenge and journey since the start. I’m pretty sure “adventure” is her middle name. And her heart? It’s gi.nor.mous. Take it away, Jaye!

11951843_10102531561816698_6525534441631989813_nCurrent life roles:

By weekday, I’m a practicing mental health therapist at a children’s shelter in San Diego.

I am also my program’s Clinical Quality Assurance specialist which means I’m in charge of auditing and reviewing clinical charts and documentation to make sure everything is in compliance with state, county, and organizational standards. It’s a good balance of working with youth (which can be draining due to the trauma and severity of some of our cases), and more monotonous and tasks that need more attention to detail.

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Our small steps are giant leaps

Our small steps are giant leaps

This is the sixth installment of the Dish + Wish Experiment, an 8-part series led exclusively by members of the TBC community.

The reason I started The Break Changer was because I needed accountability in taking breaks + continuing to care for myself. I craved community and knowing I wasn’t alone in my daily battles to breathe.

Then, hundreds of you came out of the woodwork, showed up for yourself + others, and continue to show up. While I LOVE being your guide in the online programs (and continue to be!), I’m turning the tables with this series. I want to be led by YOU.

I’m SO excited to introduce you to Abbie Rendle, a bright-eyed, brave-hearted, wanderlust-ing Aussie who’s living abroad in London. When I read part of Abbie’s wish, “I need to apply micro changes to my life to keep myself motivated to reach much larger goals,” I couldn’t help but think of Neil Armstrong’s famous line:

“That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

It really got me thinking. Our small steps truly are giant leaps, and Abbie nails it on topics we can ALL relate to. Let’s dig in, shall we?

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‘I need more sleep’

‘I need more sleep’

This is the fifth installment of the Dish + Wish Experiment, an 8-part series led exclusively by members of the TBC community.

The reason I started The Break Changer was because I needed accountability in taking breaks + continuing to care for myself. I craved community and knowing I wasn’t alone in my daily battles to breathe.

Then, hundreds of you came out of the woodwork, showed up for yourself + others, and continue to show up. While I LOVE being your guide in the online programs (and continue to be!), I’m turning the tables with this series. I want to be led by YOU.

For this stretch, the ‘ol break baton belongs to Cari Hemmingsen, who recently came along for the Femmepreneur Exclusive (a 4-week pilot program). She brought SO much to the journey with her unabashed honesty, vulnerability and SOUL.

As you’ll see, Cari is straight-up genuine. The real deal.

cariCurrent life roles:

This is strangely a difficult question. What is my story? I’m a human struggling with meaning/fulfillment in life. The ultimate human issue. 🙂 Trying to change aspects of this life to make it more fulfilling and rewarding and do things that you KNOW you can do. Creating those spaces for growth…not just growth, but extraordinary growth!

I work a corporate job that sucks the life out of me but I know there is more. I’m a co-worker, daughter, sister, aunt, and always looking to be a CEO, president or…soulmate to a wonderful guy.

2 truths and a lie:

  • I’m a sensitive daydreamer. Further explanation: I’m a daydreamer and I’m very sensitive (even when it appears that I am not). I learned from my mom that I’m also a powerful manifestor. I can manifest powerfully when I allow myself that space and my intention is focused just right.
  • I’m wanting to be on FIRE (like magnificently lit up about my life). It’s deep, it’s driving me…but I’m having trouble sustaining it at this moment in my life. I lack a lot of support in my world, and I’m trying to find what I need so I can light the world on fire.
  • I was an astronaut in a past life. And a doctor… and an author. OK, maybe someday.

Most impactful part of The Break Changer experience for YOU: To pay attention to the things that you need to do to take care of yourself because it is SO easy to blow it off or do it later. But you know that doesn’t happen so you are left depleted. TBC helps to halt the depletion and give back to yourself.

What’s one thing you’re personally practicing/mastering in your daily life…and why?

DISH it: Meditation – it’s key to getting through the day and finding peace and calm in that.

What’s one thing you’d like the group to hold you accountable to?

WISH it: I need accountability on going to bed earlier. It’s huge because it impacts your energy all day. If I’m not rested, I eat like crap to keep my energy and/or I have no energy to workout with. I need more sleep.

Got any tips for Cari on this topic?
Come connect in the main Facebook group.