Decisions From Possibility
How to make decisions for the future you want
Why is it so hard to make decisions for ourselves that we’ve never made before? These are decisions that I would classify as "new decisions."
These can be anything from deciding to start exercising when you’ve never lifted weights in your adult life, deciding to use a calendar when you’ve never planned out a day in your life, or even deciding to follow a budget even though you don’t have a clue where to start. Or, investing in that course or that coach. All of these decisions feel really daunting and our immediate reaction is to say 'no.' Why?
We make decisions and we decide what’s right and what’s wrong. What’s “right” or “wrong” is based off of our belief systems from the past. Our brain looks to our past results to see what’s possible for us in the future. If it's something we've never done our brain clams up and says no. way. Not possible. Never done it before. Not interested! But why?
Our brain doesn’t like to create new thinking because new thinking, according to our lower brain, is hard and dangerous. Our lower brain really likes to be efficient. Thinking the same thoughts = efficient. A great example of this is: think back to a time you started a new job or took a class in school that was really challenging. You were probably very focused, grasping to make sense of things and at the end of the day - very tired. That’s because it requires new thinking.
When you go to make a new decision - ESPECIALLY one that you’ve never made before AND it involves money, time, effort and adopting a new identity, your lower brain is like lol no. This is definitely not a good decision. But the other part of your brain - the higher level, conscious brain that is thinking in possibility is saying YES.
Here’s where the pain comes in. In order to get new results you have to think new thoughts and make decisions from possibility, not from your past. Meaning you literally have to override your lower brain’s very well-worn way of thinking with your conscious brain to get to the new decision. Your lower brain will be telling you NO WAY. The whole time while you're considering your new decision AND in the aftermath if you take the leap and say yes to the "new decision."
However, if you say no, you'll feel relief. And that's where things get tricky. It feels good in the moment but what you're saying 'no' to possibility, to growth. Saying 'yes' to new decisions feels harder but it's so worth it. I firmly believe we are here to evolve and grow and become more of who we are. Notice I didn't say better. We're already 100% worthy - growth or stagnation doesn't change that fact, but that's for another post.
Making new decisions for ourselves is disorienting and scary, but it's unbelievably exciting, too. If you want to learn to get from where you are to where you want to be, schedule a consultation! It's totally free, fun and great practice at making new decisions for yourself!
“I need to do a good job.” “I’m responsible.” “It’s important.” These statements seem positive but they are some of the most common causes of procrastination for me and for my clients. These (and similar thoughts) are what I call high-stakes thoughts. High-stakes thoughts are thoughts that create a feeling of pressure. And not the good kind of pressure. This matters because your actions are a product of your feelings. Internal pressure (there actually isn’t such thing as external pressure, it’s all internal, but for the sake of clarity, the kind of pressure I’m talking about here is the kind that doesn’t come from an external deadline) shuts you down. This is why if you want to decrease the amount of time you procrastinate, you’re going to want to start paying attention to what you’re telling yourself about the things you’re procrastinating on. Because when you do, you can control the amount of internal pressure you’re putting on yourself. Low-stakes thoughts It’s no big deal. Let’s have some fun. I’m just here to help. Low-stakes thoughts are action-producing thoughts. And! They unlock the door to high-level problem solving. This looks like creative solutions that are super easy to implement and seem to just fall in your lap. You get work done quickly and easily: things just *work*. If high-stakes thoughts are a dam, low-stakes thoughts are a raging river. Shifting from high-stakes thoughts to low-stakes thoughts are your ticket to busting your procrastination habit. This is what I teach my clients how to do. You can schedule your free consult here.Read More
Ahh time blocking. The way we’ve be told is the best and most effective way to manage our time. The way that I tried to manage my time for 2 and a half years. And the way I could never get right (truthfully, I felt like I never even got close despite my best and obsessive efforts). I thought there was something wrong with me. I dutifully planned my week. Took a screen shot at the beginning of the week of my original calendar and compared to what I actually did. Week after week. I evaluated what went well. What didn’t. & create a list of things to improve upon next week. And what did I have to show for it? Anxiety. & listen. I get that this totally works for some people. If you’re those people – amazing. Seriously. Keep doing what works for you. If you’re not, read on. You are not alone. When I FINALLY gave myself permission to stop in October 2021 – I felt a mixture of complete terror and sweet relief. Terror that I’d never create another result again and that I was probably making the biggest mistake of my life. And relief because that shit was insane. And I could finally take a step back and truly see just how insane it was. I’d spent 2.5 years trying to act right. DO right. Follow my calendar perfectly. All for what exactly? I couldn’t figure out what the point was anymore. I’d lost the plot. I decided maybe, just maybe, there wasn’t actually anything wrong with me at all. Maybe it was the system. Because the last thing, and I do mean the very last thing, a perfectionist needs is more rules. We already live with the constant fear of “doing it wrong.” Someone appears mad? We did something wrong. Any perceived disagreement or misunderstanding? We did something wrong. Unexpected outcome? We FOR SURE did something wrong along the way. For me, the constant pursuit of adhering more closely to what I planned ended up creating minute by minute hyper-awareness of all the ways I was fucking up. Started late? wrong. Kept working on a time block past the time I was supposed to? Wrong. Pushed a time block off until later in the week? WRONG. Ignoring my entire calendar in shame? WRONG WRONG WRONG Could I have exercised just a *scooch* more compassion? Absolutely. But the conclusion that I came to was: this system + my perfectionistic brain don’t mix. If a system creates MORE drama AND you’re also not doing the things despite true, consistent, and best efforts? It’s not a match & it’s time to move on. If that’s you and you want hope and maybe a little permission that it’s safe to move on and try something new, that’s what I’m here to offer you today. My life and business thrived after I let go of that system. I had space to do what I wanted in the moment without scheduling it in. I could actually see what the few most important things were and I got them done, without stressing about arbitrary start and end times. And most importantly: the overall experience of my day was calm and quiet and easeful. All of the mental chatter around my calendar was gone. This what’s waiting for you, too. If this post resonated with you and you’d love nothing more than to learn how to manage your time without obsessing over whether you’re doing it right, I want to invite you to schedule a consult here.Read More
In order to spend your time the way you want, one of the most important skills you can learn is how to evaluate and adjust. This allows you to stop making the same mistakes over and over again & it helps you stop feeling stuck. This one skill of evaluating and adjusting is what will create not only a lot of progress in a short amount of time, but also a lot of confidence and self-assuredness. You’ll stop looking outside of you for answers because you’ll know how to find your own answers. Your own answers are always the best answers. It’s the difference between ordering pants online (a total crap shoot) and having pants created and tailored to fit you. There only 4 steps to evaluate: 1st: Compare your plan to what you actually did (or didn’t do) – pick ONE thing. The thing that bothers you the most that you didn’t do it. (If you don’t have a plan, there really isn’t much to evaluate. You need a plan first.) 2nd: Get curious about the discrepancies between your plan and the thing you didn’t do: This ONLY works from curiosity. If you’re judging yourself you’ll find only terrible and useless answers like: – I don’t know what’s wrong with me – I don’t know why I do this – I just can’t handle it That gives you nothing to go on because you think YOU are the problem. You are not the problem. Your THOUGHTS are. Thoughts like: – Ugh, forget it. – It’s too hard – It doesn’t matter These thoughts create emotions of resignation and hopelessness. And those emotions are NOT fuel for doing the things you want to do. These thoughts and feelings are the ACTUAL problem. Yay! You found them! (Very important aside: the way you plan it may very well be adding to the difficulty factor. When it doubt, make how you planned that one thing even smaller, even easier, and even more specific. Make sure it’s a VERY small part of the whole. It should not have multiple steps. If it does, bring your plan back down to ONE step.) 3rd: The next step is to identify when those thoughts and feelings are cropping up. What time of day? With what activities? In what company? Just this awareness can be super helpful. Because when you’re expecting those thoughts and feelings, you’re going to be a lot less likely to believe them. 4th: What do you want to counter those thoughts and feelings with when they come up? You’ll be tempted to swing too far the other way and think you need something extreme like, I love doing this! It’s so easy! Likely that’s WAY too far of a leap. My favorite questions to find a more useful thought are: – What would allow me to be willing to do this? – How could I feel more willing? – How could I? – What do I need most? – What would make it easier? Pick one thought that elicits a more useful emotion. You’ll know if a thought “works” if you feel a change in your body and/or you have the desire to get up and do something. & there you have it! Now you know exactly how to evaluate and adjust. If you loved this and you want to take this work deeper & master this process so you know exactly what to do when you find yourself procrastinating or feeling stuck, this is the work I do with my clients. We look at your mindset AND how you’re planning and I help you make tweaks to both so follow through becomes damn near effortless. To see if this is a good fit for you, I want to invite you to schedule a consult here.Read More
Procrastination and inadvertent inauthenticity go hand in hand. Which is why the fastest way out of procrastination is to be authentically yourself. Let me explain. When you tell yourself, “I have to get this right” or “I just need to do this the right way,” what you’re really saying is: I need to do it like someone else. This is why you research and ask around and compare. What you’re really looking for in those moments of doubt is safety and certainty. (To our brains, familiar = safe and certain) Now, to be fair: Copying is a part of the learning process: Interest Copy Reinvent Your own voice Or said another way: Where I see people get stuck (yours truly included!) is somewhere between copying and reinventing. It sounds like should. It looks like rules. And it feels like pressure. Pressure from rules and shoulds will lead you to shut down, shrink, feel tired, helpless, and very, very small. You’ll freeze and act like a straight-up weirdo because you’re hyper-focused on yourself and how you’re doing it wrong. And all of this leads to distracting yourself and hiding in checking email and “being productive” in every other area other than the thing you’re procrastinating on. When this becomes too much you give in and tell yourself, “I’ll just do it tomorrow.” Trying to stay safe has you creating a nice, little emotional prison for yourself. HARDLY the safety and certainty you were after. The way out is to allow yourself to be bad. To do it YOUR way. To feel scared. To let people not like you or what you created. To feel like you’re stepping into the wild unknown. To do it wrong. & ultimately, to fail. WITHOUT JUDGING, CRITICIZING, OR SHAMING YOURSELF. In other words, you have to create internal safety for you to do it your way. External safety = prison Internal safety = freedom The more you do this, the easier it gets. On the other side of this work is true confidence because you like your own ideas and you trust yourself – no matter the outcome. And when you have true confidence, like your own ideas, and trust yourself – no matter the outcome – you procrastinate a WHOLE lot less. It’ll be so much easier for you to get into action, quickly. You’ll show up boldly. And you feel like you know what you’re doing – even whenyou’ve never done it before. Because you know the process of creating safety in uncertainty. You can plug in any new task, situation or project into that equation. That’s when life and work get fun. Happy safety-creating my friends,Read More
“But what should I plan?” If you find yourself asking this question and then not answering but scrolling on social media for inspiration or doing research to find the answer, here’s why: What you’re actually saying to yourself when you ask, “but what should I plan?” is: I don’t know. I don’t know the right thing to plan. There’s so much to do – I don’t know where to start. I don’t want to. And instead of feeling the dread, defeat, overwhelm, stress, and pressure that come along with those thoughts (thoughts are what create your emotions) – you ask, “but what should I plan?” Because this allows you to avoid decision making. It has an air of responsibility. You’re looking for the “right thing” so you don’t waste your time on the wrong thing. But really, you’re hiding and avoiding. And you end up in the same place. Not making a decision. Putting things off until later. Waiting. You feel helpless and at the effect of your day. Yuck. Not the goal, right? Here’s how to move past that question so you can feel empowered and in charge of your day: What do I love about my options? What’s great about the choices I have? If every single choice would work out perfectly, which would I choose? What DO I know? Where could I start? What would be the easiest thing to start with? If I knew exactly what to do, what would I pick? There will be discomfort here. You may feel tired. You may notice yourself trying to distract and avoid. Your brain will continue to offer up, “but I really don’t know!” Your work is to keep going until you find an answer. You’ll want to judge that answer as the wrong choice. Ignore that voice. Do it anyway. The more you get in the habit of looking inside for answers the more self-trust you build. And the more self-trust you build, the easier it’s going to be for you to make decisions quickly and confidently. And managing your time well is all about making quick and confident decisions. Ready to learn how? Schedule a free consult here.Read More
You don’t need to carve out time. You need fewer and clearer priorities. What’s happening right now is you’re trying to cram more into an overly full junk drawer. And it doesn’t fit. The new thing keeps getting stuck or spilling out or you just forget it all together. Instead of taking everything out, sorting it, and keeping only what’s important, you just keep trying harder and harder to jam the drawer closed. And getting frustrated with yourself and thinking there’s something wrong with you. You don’t need more time. You need to take everything out, have a good look, & re-decide about how you’re spending your time. This is the work I do with my clients. We assess your capacity and take a good look your true priorities (not the shoulds, have tos and need tos), and make a plan so it all fits – easily. If you’re done feeling overwhelmed by all of the things you need to do and tired of never knowing how to fit it all in, I can help. Click here to schedule a free consult.Read More
How to plan your week: simply, easily, and effectively What are the 5 most important things for you to get done this week? Do any of those things need to be broken down further? I ALWAYS err on the side of breaking it down “too far” then not far enough. If you are breaking it down – what’s the first step? That first step will be one of your 1-3 daily priorities. Decide when you’ll do each by writing them down in a planner. This is the one I’ve used for 6 years.You’re going to want to write those things very clearly and with a high level of specificity (see examples below) Write a circle next to each and color the circle in when you complete each. That’s it! Simple. Easy. Effective. Examples of how to make vague planning more specific: Workout — Walk 1 mile Eat healthy — Eat 1 cup of vegetables at dinner, 3x per week Drink more water — Drink 64 oz of water by 6pm, Monday – Friday Prioritizing FAQ Q: Can I do more than 3 things? A: Of course! You just don’t want to do other things at the exclusion of your 1-3 things. Meaning, if you find yourself doing a bunch of busy work instead of your 1-3 things, get curious about why you’re avoiding your list. The most like answer is: your plan isn’t clear, specific, or easy enough. This is why I teach my clients how to plan in a way that works with their brain so they stop procrastinating on their priorities. Q: What if I already do more things each day? A: First, don’t include things you’re already doing or would already do even if they weren’t planned in your prioritized list. Second, are the things you’re doing effective? This would be a great time to evaluate what you’re doing. Q: But how do I pick the 5 most important things? A: Schedule a consult. You’ll get more clarity on what to pick on your consult, and if we decide to work together, you’ll gain access to your client resources – even before our first session. In your client resources, there’s a whole module on how to decide what to prioritize. Schedule your free consult here.Read More
In order to manage your time, you DON’T need a massive overhaul. Starting to manage your time intentionally is just like if you were to start to train for a marathon. Your first run wouldn’t be 26.2 miles. If your fitness level is anything like mine, you’d probably start with more of a walk/jog situation. Time management is the same way. Start with where you’re at, today. You can do this by picking the one most important thing to get done. Write it down in a planner. And get it done. This is all you EVER need to do. There is no “advanced time management.” Pick one thing – the most important thing (to you) – and get it done. Rinse and repeat. You’ll be SHOCKED at how much you get done once you realize it’s this simple. The more you do this, the easier it’ll be. And when planning and follow through is easy you will have developed the skill of managing your time well. & I bet you can already find where you’re doing this if you look for it. This is so important! BECAUSE. The more you identify as someone who plans and follows through, the easier planning and following through will be. – Keep it simple. – Pick the most important thing (to you – there’s no “right” or “better” thing to do – truly) – Be in it for the long game. See time management like a marathon that you’re training for. It ONLY gets easier over time because you get stronger BECAUSE you’ve been consistent (and you’ve made it EASY to be consistent). Remember: Consistency is NOT about giving 100% every single day. It’s about showing up every single day. Even if that showing up looks like the bare minimum. Every level of effort counts. Consistency compounds. Want to learn how to plan so it’s REALLY easy to follow through? Read this post. Ready to feel fully in control of your time? Schedule a free consult here.Read More
Doing what you say you’re going to do is a lot easier than you think. All you need is: A prioritized plan with no more than 1-3 things, written down very clearly and specifically When clients tell me, “I’m just not doing what I said I would” and I ask them how they’ve planned out what they want to do, 100 out of 100 times they tell me they have this big, long, vague running list of things to do. If you want to get things done, you have to start planning fewer things, more clearly and more specifically. Here are some concrete examples: “Eat healthy” ———– Eat 1 cup of vegetables at dinner, 4 nights/week “Workout” ————— Walk 1 mile/day for 30 days “Finish Project” ——– Outline brainstormed The easier, smaller, and more doable your plan seems to your brain, the faster you’ll get into action and the less you’ll procrastinate. The bigger, harder, more complex, and vague your plan is, the more you’ll procrastinate. Confused at where to start or how to make your plan easier to follow? Tell me one thing you’ve been avoiding in the comments & I’ll help you make it easy and doable! Want to learn how to always do what you say you will? Schedule a free consult here.Read More
“I used to have it. The morning routine. Working out. Eating healthy. I felt so confident. I don’t know why I can’t just get back on track. It wasn’t this hard to start last time. How do I get back on track?” Today you’ll learn: – Why it’s so hard to get back on track – Why you got off track in the first place – & How to get back on track – sustainably (this is key!). First, it’s so hard to get back on track because you’re waiting for that “first time” excitement and motivation to kick in like last time. But this is like walking in your closet and expecting yourself to suddenly be excited about the clothes you’ve owned for 3 years. It’s just an unfair expectation. Second, in order to understand why you got off track, you have to first understand what got you on track. The intoxicating aroma of: novelty + possibility + motivation + excitement. These are great starters but terrible maintainers. After those evaporated (as they do), then you turned to willpower. And willpower is finite. So when that rans out, you were left feeling depleted. The problem is, you can’t manufacture novelty, so this equation breaks. Which is why, try as you might, you weren’t able to muster up more motivation. Thankfully, you never need motivation (or excitement, novelty, or possibility) to maintain a habit or routine. Here’s what you DO need: 1. Sustainability (Plan on going slow and plan on starting small. Decide on ONE habit and make it as clear and easy and doable as possible. It should feel TOO easy. Write it down. Decide when you’ll do it. Get VERY specific.) 2. A willingness to work bored. (Commitment feels a wholllleee lot like boredom. But greatness is born through boredom and tedium. ANYONE can learn how to work bored. Promise. You just have to have a little willingness.) 3. Patience & keep the long game in mind. (Once you know how to build one sustainable habit, you can build MANY sustainable habits.) This is how you get back on track, and STAY on track, sustainably. Ready to do this work? Schedule a free consult here.Read More