It's about that time of year where we all begin to think of our new year's resolutions. On the top of my list every year is to take better care of myself, to fuel my body with nutritious meals,  move more and maybe loose a few pounds.  But this year I'm feeling motivated and am going to get a jump start on those goals by starting in December! December is a great time of year to start new healthy habits because you can set expectations for yourself that will help you to avoid indulging in too many of those holiday goodies. Plus, once January 1st rolls around you feel as if you are ahead of the curve and already going strong.  Whether you plan to join me in December, or plan to wait till the new year, I have you covered with five tips to starting your new Healthy Habits strong. And beginning Cyber Monday you can pick up our  NEW! Healthy Habits 12-week Workbook  to help keep you motivated and accountable along your journey. I'll be starting my Prep Week on November 28th and diving in to the 12-weeks on December 4th. I hope you'll join me!  So pick up your pencil and  press play now .

It's about that time of year where we all begin to think of our new year's resolutions. On the top of my list every year is to take better care of myself, to fuel my body with nutritious meals,  move more and maybe loose a few pounds.

But this year I'm feeling motivated and am going to get a jump start on those goals by starting in December! December is a great time of year to start new healthy habits because you can set expectations for yourself that will help you to avoid indulging in too many of those holiday goodies. Plus, once January 1st rolls around you feel as if you are ahead of the curve and already going strong.

     

  

    
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


     It's fairly easy to take ten minutes, sit down with a pen and paper, and create a list of life goals. A great big list of those exciting Bucket List adventures, those glitzy and glamorous possessions, and of course that sense of status you hope to acquire during your lifetime.  This is how many of us travel through life. Sitting down on a whim, brainstorming what experiences and things we want in our lives, and putting that list somewhere out there in the future to work towards. But many times. we find that our goals either become dreams or mundane tasks that we now feel obligated to pursue to say we've done it. On January 1st we set a goal of losing the weight, but by the time February 1st rolls around we've either given up or are doing the work out of obligation rather than energy. Setting goals in this way doesn't work because deep down we want more. In order to feel truly connected to your goals, they need to be born out of the  feelings  rather than the  things  you desire out of life.  None of this means you can't have a goal of losing weight, buying a boat, or traveling to far off lands. This exercise is simply a way of ensuring that those are goals you truly want, that they haven't been subconsciously added to your list by outside forces or that they are 'lingering goals' - goals that have always been on your list so you might as well add them to this year's list. Through this exercise it is my hope that you will create a list of goals that are bornn out of your actual desires in life.  So, in our creation of goals, let's switch things up and begin our list with the feelings and emotions we want to enhance in our lives. Today's worksheet will help you lay this all out.     


   
     
      
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   Worksheet 3 
   
     
      
         

        

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            
               
               Name  *  
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                 Email Address  *  
                
                 
               
            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

        

         

      

      

      
       
         
       
      

      

        Thank you! All the worksheets from the  Build the Life You Want  series will be emailed to you soon.  

        
     

   

 
      If you are following along with this series, you may be wondering why I am having you re-write your goals week after week. It's deep, scientific, and above my pay grade. But the bottom line is that writing matters - putting pen to paper matters. It creates an emotional connection to your work that simply brainstorming or even typing doesn't give you. So, print the page and write out your list!   If you completed the activity from our last post, you'll start off with the list of your Top Emotions from the bottom of your last worksheet. If you haven't completed our previous activities, take a few minutes to do that now. It will be super helpful, I promise!  Take each feeling on its own. First, you'll find ways you can infuse that feeling into your daily or weekly routine. What small actions or changes in your routine can you do to bring a small burst of that energy into your day? Then take that feeling or emotion and name a few short-term goals - goals that take a few weeks to a few months to achieve. Knowing that you are pursuing these goals because of the  emotion  and  energy it brings you  can be game changing. You'll grow that emotion into the journey of achieving that goal rather than hoping that it's sitting there waiting for you at the end. Lastly, what long-term goals do you have that match the feelings you've listed?  Some of your short-term and long-term goals may be found on your list of goals from previous worksheets. Again, we aren't trying to create an entirely new list of goals to pursue. We are simply trying to ensure that the actions we fill our lives with, the pursuits we spend our lives chasing, are fulfilling the emotional needs we have.  Looking at your new list of goals now, do you feel more connected to them? Do you feel that pursuing your goals can now change your life in a deeper way?  As new goals come up in life - as you see your house a mess and mentally add "afford a weekly housekeeper" to your list of goals - you now k now to take the time to ask yourself why? What deeper emotional need is this new "want" trying to fill? Does this goal, project, task bring me closer to growing one of these feelings in my life?

It's fairly easy to take ten minutes, sit down with a pen and paper, and create a list of life goals. A great big list of those exciting Bucket List adventures, those glitzy and glamorous possessions, and of course that sense of status you hope to acquire during your lifetime.

This is how many of us travel through life. Sitting down on a whim, brainstorming what experiences and things we want in our lives, and putting that list somewhere out there in the future to work towards. But many times. we find that our goals either become dreams or mundane tasks that we now feel obligated to pursue to say we've done it.

     

  

    
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


     Our list of goals in life, whether carefully crafted and written out in detail or simply floating around in our heads, tell us something about what we really want out of life. When you take a good look at that list, achieving a goal, attaining a possession or status, is less about acquiring that thing and more about the feeling - the emotion - we are are yearning for.  You may read this and have an initial reaction of "Hey, wait a second. This trickster is going to try and talk me out of wanting that boat because it's materialistic and not what life is  really  all about." Don't worry - you can keep the boat on your list and hopefully have weekends filled with sunshine, lake breezes and cool cocktails! This isn't about taking materialistic goals off of your list at all, it's just about taking a good look at your list and figuring out what each goal, each achievement you are seeking, is really all about.  Let's say you have a big house on a corner lot on your goal list. You may even know which house it is. You may drive by it every Sunday afternoon. Just seeing it gives you peace and an inner motivation to take on the work week ahead of you! What you may not realize is that you don't really want that house on the corner lot. That house may signify security when you are feeling unstable. It may signify status when you are feeling less than. It may signify pride of achievement when you are feeling weary from lack of progress. There are deeper emotions at play here and in order to really connect with our goals, we must find out what we are truly searching for and better understand what we actually want out of life.  If we can attach an emotion to our goal and focus on how to bring that emotion into our lives, a funny thing can happen - our list of goals may grow or even shift. We learn that there are a number of different ways to bring that emotion into our lives, and it can happen fast than we had planned for.  I read a quote a few years back that said, "You are responsible for the energy you bring into this room". It is so true! We cannot wait for outside forces to make us happy, to feel successful, to feel optimistic or energetic. We need to bring that energy into the room with us. So, if you have a goal of buying a boat so that you can have more adventure and freedom in your life - you can keep that boat on your list. I mean, who wouldn't want a boat, right? But don't wait for the boat. Find ways to add adventure and freedom into your life right now. Wake up on Saturday, put on your sneakers, pack a lunch and a bottle of water, and go for a hike. You can infuse the emotion you are seeking into your life TODAY.  We will never achieve happiness if we put it on the other side of achievement.  In today's worksheet, you'll rewrite your too big and too small goals and attach the emotion you are seeking by reaching that goal. If you haven't read  last week's post  on this, start with that post. For each goal, you may find that more than one emotion comes up, and that's okay. You also may find that a single emotion is feeding many goals. Once your list is complete, pull out your top 2-4 emotions you are seeking to heighten in your life. These will be used in next week's homework!     


   
     
      
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   New Form 
   
     
      
         

        

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            
               
               Name  *  
               Name 
              
                 
                    
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                  Last Name 
                 
               
            

            

            

            

            

            

        

            

            

            

            

            
               
                 Email Address  *  
                
                 
               
            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

        

         

      

      

      
       
         
       
      

      

        Thank you! All the worksheets from the  Build the Life You Want  series will be emailed to you soon.

Our list of goals in life, whether carefully crafted and written out in detail or simply floating around in our heads, tell us something about what we really want out of life. When you take a good look at that list, achieving a goal, attaining a possession or status, is less about acquiring that thing and more about the feeling - the emotion - we are are yearning for.

You may read this and have an initial reaction of "Hey, wait a second. This trickster is going to try and talk me out of wanting that boat because it's materialistic and not what life is really all about." Don't worry - you can keep the boat on your list…

     

  

    
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


     Welcome to  Building the Life You Want , our weekly series for this month. Each week we'll be covering a new step to help you uncover what it is you really want to focus on, what type of life you want to build for yourself. If you are wanting to follow along with the series, I'd suggest giving yourself 30 minutes a week to read through the post and complete the worksheet. A new post will be available every Tuesday.  I'm excited to see where we can go when we set intentional, mindful goals for our life!     Day One: Have you ever really defined what you want out of life?   Many of us are toggling between at least two type of days.  Option One: The day goes by filled with task after task until the day is done and we chalk it up to  just another one of those days .  Option Two: We get a wave of inspiration, become energized by the possibility of what the future could hold - if only we did THIS THING! But, we let that energy fade because we are either too scared to make that dream a reality or we let that list of tasks take over once again.  Unfortunately, neither of these options help us move forward and build the life we want.  I did this for years. Yes....years. I talked a big game - oh yeah, I had DREAMS! And usually I could tell you items 1-100 that I needed to do to make those dreams a reality. But, suiting up and getting myself out onto that playing field - that was another story.  I was scared.  I was scared that I'd get in over my head. Sure, I know how to do items 1-5, but that number 6 ... whew, people will surely realize that I'm not meant to be there by that point.  I was scared that because I had so many dreams that I wouldn't choose the  right  one. What if I get into it and it's not what I really want?  I was scared that the dream was better than the reality. As long as I kept it out there - out at some future date - it couldn't hurt me. I could make my dream as BIG as I could make it and I couldn't fail at something I was  planning  on doing.  I had friends and family cheering me on. People loved that I LOVED to dream and they just  knew  that I'd make it happen, one day.  And that was a happy place to be in - until it wasn't.  I don't think I'm alone in this. I believe many of us grew up with big dreams. We'd sit around our dorm rooms in college talking about what we'd become -  someday . And we believed it. Oh yes, our someday would come - after we achieve  this  and get  this thing  done. Then we'd have time to focus on ourselves and make our dreams a reality.  Then our lives become focused on those little things, on getting ourselves settled in life. Or, those wonderful little beings called children entered our lives and the idea that it was NOW time to focus on ourselves and OUR dreams - was laughable.  We have important, grown-up things to take care of now.  All of this puts us in a place where we might not know what we  really  want out of life. Those dreams that we made unattainable, for the fun of it or to keep us safe from ever having to actually pursue them - they aren't really want we want out of life. Few of us can stand firmly in proclaiming that what we really want out of life is a beach house for the summer, a housekeeper, nanny and chef, a lake house for those cozy fall weekends, a mountain cabin for adventurous winters, to travel to far reaching parts of the globe, and of course to support various charities.  We've created a dream life for ourselves that is just that - a dream.  So what is it that we tell ourselves we want? We create a realistic, achievable vision for what we want out of life that's so small or responsible that it's boring.  We aren't motivated by saying we want to save for our kids college, pay off our mortgage and have enough tucked away to splurge ever once in awhile. Few people wake up with vigor and energy ready to pay off that student loan.  And nowhere in either of these definitions of what we want out of life can you find anything about what your life actually  feels  like.  We are stuck between dreaming too big or too small.  You dream too big and you risk it remaining a dream, never to be pursued. You dream too small and yes, you may check off those boxes, but are you living a fulfilled life?  Luckily these too big & too small dreams can give us hints as to what we are really looking for out of life!  Today's worksheet will help you brainstorm around both visions you have for your life. Both the dream life that is so big it may just remain a dream and that responsible grown-up vision for your life where you achieve everything you are  supposed  to achieve.  When you complete these sections, complete them with the achievements or things you've always dreamed of rather than anything you think you  should be  dreaming about. What I mean here is that our society has a tendency to tell us what success should look like - you know those images of the rich and famous sipping champagne on a yacht off the coast of France. If that is a media-created dream and not a dream you have in your heart, don't include it. I want YOUR big dreams.  At the bottom of the worksheet you'll find a section to write what you want your life to feel like. This is an extremely important part of goal setting that we often overlook. Imagine yourself waking up and going through your Ideal Day and all the feelings you want associated with the different pieces of your day. Use emotional words like peaceful, energized, intrigued, fulfilled, proud, inquisitive, adventurous, challenged, soul-filled, connected. Make sure you can define these words for yourself. If you include "fulfilled", in what way? What does that mean to you?  We'll continue our Build the Life You Want series next week with  Why do we want what we want?      


   
     
      
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   Pick Up Your Worksheet 
   
     
      
         

        

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            
               
               Name  *  
               Name 
              
                 
                    
                  First Name 
                 
                 
                    
                  Last Name 
                 
               
            

            

            

            

            

            

        

            

            

            

            

            
               
                 Email Address  *  
                
                 
               
            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

            

        

         

      

      

      
       
         
       
      

      

        Thank you!  Your worksheet is on it's way to your email!

Welcome to Building the Life You Want, our weekly series for this month. Each week we'll be covering a new step to help you uncover what it is you really want to focus on, what type of life you want to build for yourself. If you are wanting to follow along with the series, I'd suggest giving yourself 30 minutes a week to read through the post and complete the worksheet.

     

  

    
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


     A piece of paper won't simplify your life. It doesn't matter how pretty it is, how many blush colored check boxes or beautifully categorized sections there are. As someone who spends their day creating pieces of paper that people claim will "save your day", I should know.   We all go through seasons in our lives when we feel like we don't have it all together. Our schedules are packed to the brim and we are trying to balance work, appointments, practices, school projects, feeding our family three times a day and keeping all the socks in the right drawers. As a mother to four young girls, that task of keeping the socks in the right drawers is actually more difficult than it sounds. For awhile wearing mix-matched socks was a thing and I loved it. Now they want matching socks and so I'm back at it again.  For many of us, it feels like most of our life is spent in this space, where we are just trying to get through the day without letting any balls drop. We tell ourselves that it's just today, it's just this week. If only I can get through this month, past this "event", then things will slow down and we can recenter ourselves. And then it comes - a small window of time where everything is finally  just right . We feel like we have space to breathe. Our tunnel vision is turned off and just for a moment and we can step back and look at the big picture. We see our kids playing in the backyard and their laughter and play fighting makes us smile. We take the time to pause when our spouse returns home from work - we walk over to them, really  see  them and ask them how their day went. We have a Saturday free of obligation and allow everyone to stay in their PJs all day and just BE with no agenda, no plan for the day.  I don't believe we can stay in this state, where everything seems to just flow the way it should, at all times. I know that there are times when outside forces tend to take over our schedules. And this is why a pretty piece of paper will not solve your hectic-life problems. If it's all just too much, writing it in neatly organized categories won't help that feeling of overwhelm. That feeling that life is passing you by while you are busy getting all the things done. What needs to happen is a mind-shift. You must look back at those days or weeks when everything just  worked , and you must want to make a change. You must want to live slower. This is where some tough self-love comes in. If your life is too busy,  you  are the only one who can slow it down. It's not difficult to do, but it does require you to set aside some time to take a step back, look at the big picture of what's working and what's not working, and create a plan to make a shift.  And  this  is where those pretty pieces of paper come in.  If you are ready to slow down, if you are ready to spend your summer with your kids doing some old-fashioned, back-to-basics animal-shaped cloud watching - well then it's time to start planning for that. It may sound counter-intuitive, but I plan so that I can have the freedom to let life happen. I plan so that I can walk away from my desk at 3:30 when my girls get off the bus and they can have me for the afternoon. I plan so that we can have those Saturdays full of nothing to do, no where to be. I plan so that things are either checked off or scheduled for later and I can BE with the people in the room with me.  If you are ready to make that shift we have a few pretty pieces of paper that can help you get there. Our 2017-18 planner collection is now available to order and will help to make July 1st your new January 1st. If you have any questions on which layout will work best for the way YOU plan please email us at hello@sheplans.com and we can help you choose your right layout.      

A piece of paper won't simplify your life. It doesn't matter how pretty it is, how many blush colored check boxes or beautifully categorized sections there are. As someone who spends their day creating pieces of paper that people claim will "save your day", I should know. 

We all go through seasons in our lives when we feel like we don't have it all together. Our schedules are packed to the brim and we are trying to balance work, appointments, practices, school projects, feeding our family three times a day and keeping all the socks in the right drawers. As a mother to four young girls, that task of keeping the socks in the right drawers is actually more difficult than it sounds.