Can We Do It All? Three Strategies to Help You Regain Momentum

Can we do it all? In this post, I’ll share why I took a blog break in January, how I balance my investment accounting career + yoga teaching + GirlGetOutside + fitness + friends, and?three strategies to help you regain momentum in all your pursuits.

I’m back! I missed you in January. I took a break from the blog the first month of 2017. January is the busiest month of the year for my team at work. Knowing this, I wanted to be fully present for my team. The first few weeks after 12/31, my team works a few holidays and weekends to meet our deadlines. (If you’re curious, the investment prices get locked in and that’s when my work begins.)

I spent some pretty long hours at work (thank God for my standing desk and Spotify premium). There were more than a few days where I skipped my morning workout because I had to get to the office early. The winter bod situation was getting pretty real. Haha! To add to that, there were days and weekends of rain, which made it difficult to create content outdoors. You can say I had moments of frustration.

I wanted to be working on my craft, creating, sweating at yoga and the gym, moving #GirlGetOutside forward, and so much more.?

In those moments, I learned a few things. When we experience feelings of frustration?or defeat, I discovered that mindset is everything. Your circumstances may stay the same but the way you frame your situation can make all the difference.

So here are three strategies that helped me get back to my flow and I hope you find these helpful too!

1. Zoom Out

To me, balance is achieved on a weekly, monthly, or even an annual basis. I had to tell myself-

Hey, when taken as a whole, you are still able to work on your passions and goals, it just won’t be for two hours a time. It may very well be 5 minutes a day.

I feel like it’s important to take a step back sometimes. Because when you’re in the weeds day in and day out, little setbacks and minor inconveniences seem so much bigger than they really are.

Think about your last three or six months, or the last year. Would you say you are experiencing?more and more balance, freedom, and fulfillment in your career, creative pursuits, and relationships? If you’re?on the path you want to be on and you’re taking the steps (even the smallest ones), that’s?what counts.

2. Think Abundance, Not Lack?

The earlier you learn that you should focus on what you have, and not obsess about what you don’t have, the happier you will be. – Amy Poehler

I 100% believe that living out of a place of provision is the key. It’s easy for me to access lack-driven thoughts. To be honest, those creep up regularly. My most predominant lack-driven thought is, I don’t have time. What would you say yours is?

In the beginning of this post, I talked about sharing how I balance work, teaching yoga, GirlGetOutside, fitness, and keeping up with family and friends. I think abundance is how. I feel like this season of my life is teaching me to trust in God and live in His provision. It’s really been an adventure so far and I’m truly grateful.

I also know that sometimes we can find ourselves in dark places where the last thing we want to do is think about abundance. I think our pain isn’t purposeless. Your resilient spirit won’t let you quit. Dig deep in those moments.

3. Create Silence

This week, a friend sent me a message from Reality SF about the practice of silence.

Silence humbles us to listen in a noisy world. -Reality SF

I find that it is so important to press pause. Because of my schedule, I find myself going most hours I’m awake and not around people. It takes conscious effort to stop and find inner stillness.

Silence helps us tune in. We meet ourselves where we are at that moment. Often times we’ll find some interesting thoughts or feelings bubble up to the surface when we’re quiet. Let’s try 2 minutes of silence before bed and see what happens.


So, can we do it all?

I would say yes.

Just not all in one day. 🙂

Thank you for reading! If you connected with anything I shared, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

??Bianca

Resistance Part II: Winning the Inner Creative Battle

In this post, I will share strategies to overcome resistance based on?The War of Art by Steven Pressfield. As promised, this post is the continuation of my first blog?where I talked about what triggers resistance in our lives. If you haven’t read it, I recommend you check it out here and then come back to this post.

The more you love your art/calling/enterprise, the more important its accomplishment is to the evolution of your soul, the more you will fear it and the more resistance you will experience facing it.

Have you ever put something off for months??The War of Art?has been on my reading list forever and I finally finished it yesterday. I think I procrastinated so long because I was slightly nervous to find out what?Steven Pressfield?had?to say about overcoming resistance. It’s like the point of no return, right? When you find something out, you can’t unlearn it. Haha!

Well I finally overcame my own resistance to finishing the book and I’d love to share with you what I learned from it.

How do we win the inner creative battle? The strategies below are from?The War of Art?by?Steven Pressfield.

Win?the Battle by Turning Pro

Steven Pressfield says we will overcome resistance when we turn pro.

The professional plays for keeps… To the pro, it’s his vocation.

Whatever your craft is, I think this is the turning point in your journey where you decide you’re all in. So how I interpret this is not necessarily quitting your full-time job (although it might be for you). I see this more as a mindset shift. To me, this is a lifestyle.

To share with you all, my craft is the integration of where I am at this moment: finance professional, yoga instructor, fitness enthusiast, and blogger. What is your craft??If you are currently reflecting on what makes you passionate in life, check out my post on discovering work that you love?here.

Once you have found your craft, there’s a decision you have to make. That decision is, are you ready to go pro?

If you’re ready, Steven Pressfield talks about the principles a professional lives by. He says that these are principles we already practice at our “traditional” jobs. You and I will apply these in different ways but I think the ideas behind them are valuable. Here are a few:

1. Show Up Everyday

I think everyone has that innate sense that tells us we can’t miss work or show up too late. We don’t really give ourselves a choice.

2. Show Up No Matter What

This is similar to #1 but this hints at showing up even when we don’t feel like it. We have to listen to our body. But sometimes we have to take the split second to ask: do I genuinely not feel good and need to rest or am I facing resistance?

3. Commit for the Long Haul

Your journey, interests, and creative pursuits will change as the seasons pass.?I love that life is a journey of learning to love ourselves, love others, and live well. Once you go all in, it becomes a lifestyle.

4. We Accept Remuneration for our Labor

We are here not only to have fun and contribute our gifts but to earn a living.

5. Resist Overidentifying with our Work

We must build our identity in something much deeper than our circumstances, resume qualities, where we live, the things we are surrounded by, and the list goes on.?It is worth asking the question: What am I building my identity on and is it shifting sand?

6. Master the Technique of our Work

Practice, practice, practice. This is where time and discipline come in.?Nothing comes overnight and many times you will work and no one will see anything for a while. But you know you’re working on your craft. We have to start somewhere and doing little by little every day counts.

7. Have a Sense of Humor about our Work

I think having a good time should be part of every moment. If anything, we should be professional fun-havers!

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How Do you Know You’ve Turned Pro?

Steven Pressfield says you know you’ve turned pro when the following qualities become a part of you (just sharing a few here but they are all so good):

Patient

We live in such an instant gratification world. It’s so easy to want everything yesterday. Once you turn pro, you almost always live in a state of delayed gratification. But you can’t let it frustrate you. Trust the process. I wrote more on the timing of life here.

Acts in the Face of Fear

I think pros just do it. From what I’ve observed, the more a thing scares them, the more they do it. It’s almost like a compass. We can prepare to our best abilities but then at some point we just have to do it, even as we’re shaking inside.

In the War of Art, Steven Pressfield shared a long list of fears we face daily. But you know what he said our biggest fear is?

Fear that we will succeed. That we can access the powers we secretly know we possess. That we can become the person we sense in our hearts we truly are.

I was mindblown when I read that. I’ve always felt that fear deep within?and it’s crazy seeing it articulated into words.

Asks for Help

Asking for help is something that comes from a place of humility. It’s letting go of pride and tapping into the wealth of knowledge and resources around you. It requires vulnerability.

Does not Take Failure or Success Personally

This one is so good. And really hard to do. It’s staying grounded and being one level detached from your work, so that if it is received well or poorly, your self-worth and identity won’t rise and fall with it.

Self Validating

This one is also one of my favorites. You have to cheer yourself on and I feel like you can’t live for the validation of other people. That’s our own job. It’s not about the number of followers, likes, or comments. It’s getting our validation from within and knowing your worth. This?goes hand in hand with our identity.

 


 

When I first read these concepts, I had to take a few days to simply absorb it. It’s a lot. That’s a high bar. But I’ll end this blog post with an excerpt from The War of Art that serves as an amazing call to action.

Thank you for reading. I hope this connected with you somehow. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments. Until next time!

??Bianca

When Lululemon Takes you on an Urban Adventure in LA

What happens when Lululemon brings Marcus Buckingham and 64 inspired souls together for a Snowball Party?in West Hollywood to celebrate the opening of their Melrose?location?

You’re about to find out!

What’s a Snowball Party?

I had the opportunity to?go on this adventure and I’m excited to bring you in on the fun. If you know me, you know I’m always up for new experiences and I love connecting with people so I thought this would be the perfect way to spend my Saturday night!

What’s a snowball party? Yeah, I was wondering the same thing too. Here’s how it works!

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So with the concept down, I was?ready to go. Lululemon emailed saying they would get in touch Saturday afternoon to tell me where we were supposed to meet?our fellow Snowballers. I love surprises!?Can you tell?

At 2:56pm I received this text.

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So fun! 🙂 I made my way to West Hollywood and got to enjoy golden hour on my drive. I arrived at the meeting spot and?quickly found the other two Snowballers. Yep, we actually did scratch our heads!

Our first mission was to go to a department store, dress up in Christmas outfits, and send the Snow Patroller our family photo.

We did just that! We sent our Snow Patroller a selfie of us wearing red and gold ponchos holding up Christmas garland and a sled. True story. Too funny.

Then our next clue came in and asked us to go to a sports bar where we had to say “snowball” to the bartender. The bartender led us to a booth with three other Snowballers. What once was three had become six.

We got to know our new friends over drinks, appetizers, and an icebreaker game that had us reveal a scandalous secret that no one would guess just by looking at us.?But we won’t talk about that here. 😉

When in LA…

Our adventure continued, which included but was not limited to: singing Christmas carols on the streets of LA with a red hat out (guys, I found my next side gig), giving genuine compliments and hugs to strangers as we walked by, competing in a relay race in a random parking lot (our team won of course), going to a climbing gym where hot whiskey cider was served, and enjoying the company of the other Snowballers as we multiplied in size.

I later found out that other groups were assigned different missions such as yoga at the park, decorating cupcakes, and other fun?stuff.

Our final destination was the Lululemon Melrose location.

We walked in and the first thing I saw was the incredible spread of small bites and juices (yeah, I kinda love to eat). It was pretty amazing. But once I zoomed out, I saw the design of the Melrose store. The store was sleek, modern, and elegant. Lululemon laid out a campfire-like scene. There was live music in the form of a passionate singer jamming out to cover songs. We mingled for a bit. It was great to see familiar faces and Instagram friends.

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Marcus Buckingham & The Love and Work Movement

Then we took our seats and got ready to hear?Marcus Buckingham speak. Here’s a quote taken from his website that provides a quick glimpse into his perspective:

?My hope and dream is that you find a life in which you get to express the unique spirit that is You, in the most intelligent, most contributive, most meaningful way possible.?

This perspective is so meaningful to me because lately I’ve been in a season of intentionally stepping into?the gifts and abilities I’ve been blessed with. Mr. Buckingham’s words resonated with me because of the journey I’m currently walking.?The timing of life can be pretty spot on sometimes!

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I sat there in stillness listening intently to Mr. Buckingham share his heart. Here were some of the things that stood out to me:

We all are unique

Marcus Buckingham shared that each person is unique. He said our uniqueness is the key to our contribution to the world. He talked about the moment he?realized how different he was from his brother and sister even though they were all raised in the same home. I was drawn in when he talked about his sister who danced for a prestigious ballet company, which was one of my?dreams when I was little.

Then I started to think about my own siblings and just how different we are too. My older sister?is softspoken, caring, and such a good mom. My older brother is artistic. He loves to draw and once pursued a career in animation. He also plays guitar and sings. My younger brother?seems to do it all. He is an entrepreneur, fitness enthusiast, and aspiring recording artist/music producer.

Take a few moments to reflect on your uniqueness. What moves you?

Weave your life and work using the Red Threads of Love

Let’s turn love into contribution – then we all win.

I believe that once you discover your unique talents and gifts, you have to find ways to share it. Moving beyond ourselves is the key to living a life of purpose. So when Marcus Buckingham started to talk about the Red Threads of Love, I was all ears.

He had us picture someone who was living their best life- someone who’s life was vibrant. In his words, what these people?had in common was that they took all the red threads of the stuff they love and decided to weave all of those things together until their whole life “blanket” was made up of red threads.

It was so cool to hear Marcus Buckingham describe these red threads?because it’s what I’ve been reflecting on and working towards these past two years.

You may not know but I have a career in investment accounting. I love how intellectually stimulating it has been to learn about the investment industry these past five years. But halfway through, I found yoga and realized that connecting with people was my gift. So since then, I’ve been on this intentional living journey where I use what I’ve been given and the place I’ve been planted to hopefully inspire those around me to live out their best life.

Take what you love and turn it into something useful.

I’m?learning every day and hearing Marcus Buckingham share his insights on this was confirmation that I’m on the right track.

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How Do you Find your Red Threads?

Have you ever been in love?

Marcus Buckingham asked us that. He said that people who are in love experience these feelings: time flies when you’re with that person, you think about them when you’re apart, and you can hardly wait to see them again.

Marcus Buckingham shared that we experience those same?feelings with the red threads of our work and creative activities.

He gave us a call to action. He said to do this for a week: every time you’re doing something and you experience those feelings of love, write it down. These may very well be your red threads.

It doesn’t mean every task or job we do will be life changing.

I think the hope is that over time, we can weave more and more love into our lives, and extend the love to those around us.

??Bianca

Thank you for reading! I hope this post sparked something in you today. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Thank you to Keb Doak of Lululemon LA for these photos.

Resistance: What Happens When you Pursue your Dreams

There’s something that happens when you start moving?in the direction of your dreams. You will experience resistance. It’s not one specific thing you can see or name, it’s mostly a feeling. In The War of Art by Steven Pressfield, resistance is:

an energy field radiating from a work-in-potential. It’s a repelling force. It’s negative. Its aim is to shove us away, distract us, prevent us from doing our work.

In this post, I’ll talk about what triggers resistance and how I’ve experienced it in my own life. My hope is that you’ll start to see it in yours too.

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I felt resistance a lot more than usual this past week. With every yoga class I teach, each Instagram post I share, and each project I work on, there’s a little voice in me that wants to shrink back, not share, not open up, not be vulnerable, and not put myself out there. It wants me to stay safe and not create.

Have you felt this too?

What triggers these thoughts and feelings?

The War of Art?outlines 11 activities that trigger resistance (in no specific order):

  1. -The pursuit of any calling in writing, painting, music, film, dance, or any creative art, however marginal or unconventional.
  2. -The launching of any entrepreneurial venture or enterprise, for profit or otherwise.
  3. -Any diet or health regimen.
  4. -Any program of spiritual advancement.
  5. -Any activity whose aim is tighter abdominals.
  6. -Any course or program designed to overcome an unwholesome habit or addiction.
  7. -Education of every kind.
  8. -Any act of political, moral, or ethical courage, including the decision to change for the better some unworthy pattern of thought or conduct in ourselves.
  9. -The undertaking of any enterprise or endeavor whose aim is to help others.
  10. -Any act that entails commitment of the heart. The decision to get married, to have a child, to weather a rocky patch in a relationship.
  11. -The taking of any principled stand in the face of adversity.

In other words, any act that rejects immediate gratification in favor of long-term growth, health, or integrity.

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When I first read this list six months ago, I was floored. It became so clear to me why some days felt like I was pushing a boulder up a hill or swimming upstream in a river. If you’re reading this, I know for sure you are engaging in three, four, or even five of these activities on a daily basis.

Once we are aware of the negative forcefield that prevents us from creating, we can look it in the eye and push through.

What ways do you experience resistance?

Resistance can be overcome. Stay tuned for a future blog post?on ways we can break through. Thank you for reading!

??Bianca