Why you shouldn't get cozy this fall

November is upon us and as the fall leaves change color, I’m feeling the transition into the autumn spirit. 


With colder weather settling in, the desire to get cozy has overcome me.  I’m finding myself wanting to be comfortable.  And cruise into the Christmas season and New Year. 


Can you relate?


Now, there are times when feeling cozy and comfortable are essential. We can’t always be grinding, hustling, and exhausting ourselves. 


There are times when the desire and need to be cozy, comfortable and nest are very real. They allow us to recharge, reassess and reconnect with ourselves. 


AND there are times when we decide to get cozy because we’re scared.


We’re afraid to take the leap.  It’s easier to just keep the status quo because it doesn’t rock any boats or make us uncomfortable.


Your truth might be either one


And only you know whether your desire to get cozy is essential and necessary… or whether it’s keeping you stuck and living in fear. 


Here’s my truth:


I’ve got some big goals to achieve. I have an impact to makeand I’m on a mission


But my goals are terrifying. It’s going to mean doing things I’ve never done before. It means doing things I don’t even know how to do.


It’s going to mean owning up to my full potential.


There’s a very real chance that I could fail. And I’m probably going to piss some people off.



For me, my desire to get cozy is because I’m afraid.




But I’m deciding to NOT stay stuck in my fear.




I’ve got (awesome) work to do. I want to make a difference. And I can’t Netflix + tea all day, every day if I want to make a difference.


How about you?



Have you also got something you want to do with the 55 days left in 2017?



Are you willing to step into the uncomfortable, face your fears, and go after what you want in your life?



If yes, this message is for you.



Last weekend, I spent 4 days in Silicon Valley, California with Brendon Burchard at his Experts Academy Conference. 


For those of you who have heard of Brendon, you know he’s phenomenal. And if you haven’t, he’s a New York Times bestselling authorcoach extraordinaire (works with people like Usher!), and one of Oprah’s Super Soul 100. (Soak that in… this guy brunches with Oprah! Talk about #highvibe!)


Needless to say, I’ve come back from the event feeling re-inspired and ignited in my purpose and work.


This weekend, my fears came to light – and so did my reason for getting over the fear.


Now, there are always conferences you can go to as well to get energized. And I recommend going to at least two a year. 


But the reality isnot all of us can go to conferences or masterminds as often as we want between schedules, flights, costs and other commitments. 


The good news? According to Brendon, there are two things that change your life:


1) Something new comes in


2) Something new comes from within



Option 1 is to get changed from something that comes into your life (and this could be positive or negative).  Most people wait for this. 


But Option 2 is better – something new coming from within yourself.


The truth is, you have everything you need within you.




No matter how big your fears. 


So here are some ideas and suggestions that might work for you to create change in your life and get over the fears that are holding you back.


Commit to trying at least two in the next week and see how it helps re-invigorate you:



1. Choose a quote the uplifts you and put it somewhere you’ll see it AND pay attention to it for the next 30 days.

Perhaps it’s a new screensaver on your phone you need, or quote to add to the bottom of your email signature

Maybe you can draw it on your mirror at home or even put it up in your office. Find somewhere you’ll see it and reconnect to each and every day.


2. Create a playlist of songs that uplift and motivate you. You can easily do this in iTunes or Spotify. 

No time? Borrow my November motivation playlist here. It’s a random mix of everyone from Katy Perry to India Arie to the Glee Cast– and I hope it gets you as pumped up as it does me!


3. Record a quick 1 or 2-minute mantra for the month.  Choose a few sentences that represent who you are and where you’re going.


Use statements that are powerful and are in the present tense, like “I’m putting healthy, nutritious food in my body”,  “I’m building an empire that impacts millions of people”, or “I’m an incredible, loving mother.”


Record yourself repeating your mantra 8 times and listen to it each morning for the next 30 days.


4. Write down your commitments to yourself for the next 30 days.


How did it feel to do this? Did it excite you?  If yes, great!


If not, that’s ok – it happens. BUT it means your commitments have turned into “should’s”, instead of “want to”. And you need to reconnect to your goals & to-do’s.

  • To reconnect to your commitments, explore what it’s going to take to reconnect to the emotion of why you’re doing the work you’re doing.
    • Take a walk and reconnect to your vision and your “why
    • Journal or mediate on these questions:
      • What makes me excited?
      • What impact do I want to have?
      • Who do I want to be?
      • How am I going to make the world a better place?
    • Review your vision board or a previous journal you’ve made to explore this topic


*This is important: Do and explore until it EXCITES you to write your commitments. If you aren’ emotionally engaged with what you want to do, it won’t get done.


5. Get support. You can’t do it all alone (and in fact, you’re less effective if you haven’t told anyone what you’re planning on doing). 



I’m not saying to rely on someone else for your success. But having someone to check in with, someone who’s also looking to get over their fears and step into their power is an incredible privilege.


Find a friend, coach, mentor, boss, or create an accountability groupCheck in daily or weekly to move forward on your goals and accelerate your progress faster than you thought possible! 


Also, if you’re looking for more support, I’ve recorded this video just for you with a special surprise.



Feeling fall-cozy isn’t always a bad thing. But it’s not always a good thing either. 



And getting over your fearsfacing them and living up to your true potential doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy time with family during the holidays, sip your pumpkin-spiced latte/beer, or catch up on your favourite Netflix shows


(Yup, all those things are just common fears dressed up in fancy “rational”, or even “gentle” excuses). 


Finding your courage means that when you do get cozy, and comfortable, it will recharge you. It will reconnect you. Because you are clear on who you arewhat you want in your life - and you’re going for it, despite the fear.



And like those leaves around us, you’re a-changin’ too, into a more powerful, beautiful, impactful and courageous version of yourself. 


If coziness is what you need this season, I wish you every ounce of it.


And if getting uncomfortable, reaching higher, and crushing your goals is what you need this season, I send you powerful “go get it” vibes! 


Lisa Michaud

Success Coach, Speaker, & HuffPost Contributor


PS. Just skimmin’? I get it, you’re busy (and probably overloaded with emails).


If you’re feeling the desire to get cozy this fall, it could be because it’s time for you to recharge and restore before the new year. 


OR, if you’re like methe desire to bundle up and get comfortable can be because you’re afraid. (I share what I’m afraid of above…)


If you just read this and thought “oh crap, you’ve got me”, there’s a few things you can do to push through the fear and get what you really want this year. 


One of the best ways to do this is to get support. You can’t do it all alone (and in fact, you’re less effective if you haven’t told anyone what you’re planning on doing). 



Don't rely on someone else for your success. But having someone to check in with, someone who’s also looking to get over their fears and step into their power is an incredible privilege.



Find a friend, coach, mentor, boss, or create an accountability groupCheck in daily or weekly to move forward on your goals and accelerate your progress faster than you thought possible! 


And, if you’re looking for more support, I’ve recorded this video just for you with a special surprise.


Whether you’re looking to get cozy, or break free and crush it for the next 60 days, I hope your fall is full of glorious walks in the changing leaves, time with family, and holiday cheer. 


Here's how to change career paths. Even if you're afraid.

Is the career path you want to take unexpected?  UniqueUnchartered? Or unconventional?


Do you feel scared to take the first step?  Worried you’ll disappoint someone?  Afraid to take a risk?  Or nervous you’ll end up broke eating ramen for dinner every night? 


I truly believe you deserve to love your work and your life.


I believe it’s possible to enjoy what you do in your career


And when you love your 9-5, it spills awesomeness and joy into the rest of your life.


You’ve heard it from me. Now I want to share a story about the journey Kimiko Stella has taken to get to a place of real life career love.



A few months ago, I was getting my hair styled by the lovely Kimiko.  Mid-shampoo, I casually asked her “do you like your job?”  (It’s a habit – I can’t turn the coach off.)


Her eyes lit up. She grinned, threw her head back and said “YES! I love my job”. 


From that moment, I knew I needed to know more.  So I got the chance to sit down with her for some lunch (and bottomless mimosas) to get deeper into her story.


Kimiko has inspired me and I know she will inspire you.


Kimiko is a 30-something Japanese Italian woman who is feminine, strong and beautiful inside and out.   Growing up, she was surrounded by amazing women.  She has a very strong mother, a sweet and gentle aunt, and a Nona you don’t want to mess with (let’s be honest, is there any Nona you would mess with?!).
Life wasn’t always easy for Kimiko.  She struggled with depression.   She has been married and divorced.  She’s a survivor of sexual assault.  She took the unconventional path in her career and it put a strain on her relationship with her family.   At the age of 26, she came out to her family as a lesbian.

But all the steps in her journey have led her to become a seriously inspiring badass, and a force to be reckoned with!

Today, she’s a hairstylist in one of the top salons in Vancouver, Brush Salon (check them out!).  She gets to do hair for all sorts of glamorous events like Vancouver Fashion Week, and several TV shows filmed in Vancouver.  Somewhere in there, she does regular people hair like mine.

Every day, she goes to work and LOVES her job.  And she’s fiercely confidentShe’s uniquely herself

Here’s Kimiko’s journey to becoming a top stylist in the city.
Growing up, Kimiko was encouraged to take a traditional path.  Go to school, they told her.  We’ll pay for your education.  Do something that will make you money and be stable.  Needless to say, Kimiko’s family did not support her being a hair stylist. 
Their vision for her was one of an academic path.  So, she dabbled in kinesiology, counseling, nutrition, customer service and radio broadcasting – things she was interested in but not passionate about
Her family was supportive of her education, even going so far as to paying for her education as long as it was on their terms. 
Have you ever worried what your family might think if you quit your job?  Or if you changed your major?  Or went back to school?
Kimiko knew she wanted to be a hair stylist.  But she also knew they wouldn’t be happy with her decision. 
She needed to overcome this huge roadblock. For Kimiko, she came to the realization that she had to be ok with - and accept - that she was going to let people down.  This was not an easy journey
But she knew she wasn’t going to be able to follow the path others set out for her.  

She knew the journey she was on, easy or not, would be her own.
And she knew it would be worth the challenge.   

She took out her own student loan.
Made the decision to say goodbye to academics. 
And faced many difficult conversations. 

She shared with her family that as much as she loved themshe was going to follow her dream and passion to be a hair stylist.

Lesson #1 – Sometimes you have to walk the path alone.  Sometimes the path gets darker and more challenging, before it gets easy.  It will be worth it.  


Kimiko’s story is painful and strikingly honest.  It’s also one that I know isn’t only Kimiko’s.
Many of the men and women I know have grown up with similar messages.  Well-intentioned families, teachers and even friends tell us “you can be whatever you want to be”.   

But as soon as we step away from the classic “acceptable”and “stable” jobs, fearful comments and ominous warnings instantly begin. 

This is incredibly difficult.  As children, we want our parent's approval. As we grow up, we want our family and friends to support us.  To go against their cautions and wishes is counter to most of what we’ve been brought up doing. 
She persisted despite their growing fears for her.  One family member even told her “you’re going to be living in the gutter if you have that job.”  
For Kimiko, she knew her family’s worries and anxieties existed because they didn’t understand the business.  But she DID understand the business.  Kimiko knew her passion and creativity meant she would be successful!  She wasn’t worried about not making it.  Instead, she focused on following her dreams and has become a mega-successful hair stylist.  

Lesson #2 – People will project their fears onto you.  While they might mean well, know yourself enough to know if your fears are your own… or someone else’s. 

Kimiko wanted to be a hairstylist enough that she was willing to go through the challenges, the financial struggle, and family turmoil because it would be worth it.
For Kimiko, hair styling is about art. It’s about growing a business. It’s about connecting with people and genuinely making them happy.   It’s about relationships. 

And that is what she wanted deeply for herself – to have fun and make others happy.  

Lesson #3 – Your desire for your dreams has to be greater than your fear of taking a risk.

As you’re probably realizing, Kimiko is a deeply insightful, strong and intelligent woman (on top of being an amazing stylist).  Her wisdom is inspiring and beautiful. 
What Kimiko knows for sure:

  • Our choices are ultimately what define our personality. What we choose to do and our actions, are our soul being bare to the world.   Your words and what you say is one thing, but your actions are ultimately a reflection of your true colors.  So take action to create the live you want and need!


  • Societal pressures and expectations will shape us, without us even realizing it.   But your life belongs to you.  Get clear on what you want and be true to that.


  • Careers are an important part of our lives.  It’s what we do for 30 - 50 hours a week.  And the right career is nourishing. It feeds you (pay check, stomach, and soul).


  • Historically, femininity has too often been about being docile, submissive, gentle, quiet and small.  But now, there’s a chance (a need!) for women to be present, have a voice, and stand up.  It’s time for women to show the world who we are. 


  • Strength is having no regrets and no shame in what you believe in.”  Kimiko strongly believes that there are times that the situations we are in are uncomfortable. The setting hits a prickly nerve.  With friends or family, this is even harder - it’s icky, gross, nitty and gritty. And necessary.  Stick with what you believe in – it is the definition of strength.

Are you wondering how you could possibly create a career you love?
Here’s Kimiko’s advice for getting success on your terms:

  • Have a constant pursuit of happiness.  Happiness doesn’t come to you automatically.  Make it a mindful effort to chase and explore what brings you joy and delight.  It’s why we’re here on this planet.


  • Always be reflecting and growing.    There are so many people who live life on autopilot and end up drifting wherever life takes them.  Don’t do that. Be consciously living and critically making choices to take advantage of this short, beautiful life you have been given.


  • Learn. All the time.  Every part of your journey is building you to get you where you need to go.  It all happens for a reason and it will pay off. 


  • Take risks and make mistakes. Sometimes you get hurt. Sometimes you fall down pretty bad.  No risk, no glory. 


  • It’s not too late.  Even if you have no idea what it is you want.  If you know you’re not loving what you’re doing, take the first step. Be ok without knowing and get curious about yourself and what’s next for you.


I’m so honoured to share Kimiko’s story.  I am deeply grateful to her for opening up her soul and sharing her story with all of us.

I am humbled by her authenticity.  But most of all, I KNOW her story is going to resonate for so many of you.  




Her courage is palpable. 

She's courageous for standing her ground.
She's courageous for taking a risk.
She's courageous for following her passion.
She's courageous for sharing her story with us.
She's courageous for opening up to help you.

My hope is that you will also be inspired by Kimiko’s courage
My biggest wish for you is that if you are in a place in your career that you aren't happy, you start taking the steps to find joy in what you do. Today.  
My longing is that you explore your deepest desires and give yourself permission to want more. 

My dream for you is that you find the courage within yourself to create the life that you want. 
Because your life DOES belong to you.  To you and you alone. 
And you deserve to design your beautiful life into the one that you really, truly, madly, courageously and deeply want.

Thank you Kimiko, for your huge gift - reminding all of us that courage and strength pay off with huge bonuses of joy, purpose, and passion.
 - Lisa
Success Coach


PS.  My hair is also eternally grateful that you, Kimiko, a) followed your heart and b) I found you.  
PPS.   If you're not on my mailing list, you're seriously missing out.  If you are reading this on the internet (my blog, Linkedin, etc), you're not getting exclusive tips, products, contests, and gifts.  It's time to change that. Don't miss out anymore -  Sign up for my newsletter today!

Why your job title doesn't matter and you can throw away your degree

Ok so don’t throw away your degree.  It was probably a lot of work, pretty expensive and you likely had some fun times which you may (or may not) remember from buck-a-beer nights.



But a job title and a degree aren’t the end-all, be-all to your career.



There’s a lot more to a brilliant career



A few years into my career, I worked on a project where I helped relocate people from Fort McMurray to Calgary.  Ironically, through the project, it was decided that my job would also be moving. Troy (my boyfriend at the time) and I chatted about it. It was right at the 2-year mark of my time in Fort McMurray.  However, I still loved living in the city.   We were making great friends. We'd just bought our dream house. I wasn't ready to leave



But I couldn't stay in my current job AND stay in our community.


I needed to find a new job.  Within my current company. 



At the time, most of my work experience had been in HR.  And I really liked HR.  My degrees were in Accounting and Finance and I had zero interest working in either of those.  I wanted to stay in HR.  Unfortunately, there were only two options for me.  Recruiting or Advising.  And neither appealed to me. 



I was stuck.



What was I going to do?


I loved the company and didn't want to leave.


I didn't want to move.


I just wanted to work in HR.  


Why did things have to change? 



Completely lost, I sat down with my mentor. I explained my predicament and while I felt like my life was spinning out of control, he didn't seem so concerned.



"Why don't you look outside of HR?"



For a minute, I was confused.  Had he not just heard everything I said?  I wanted to stay in HR.  But I couldn't stay in HR.  But I wanted to stay in it.



Spin. Spin. Spin.



The advice that followed changed the trajectory of my career and life.  And now I want to share it with you.



My mentor asked me what kind of work I liked doing.  And I wasn’t allowed to answer “HR”. 



Needless to say I was stumped at first.  But then the genius came through.



He challenged me to think about what I enjoyed doing.  Not the subject, but the WORK itself.  What kind of WORK did I enjoy?



My career, he explained (and literally drew for me), wasn't linear.  He was (and still is) a mining engineer.  You'd think something like "mine engineer" would be pretty specific and a straight line to the top. 



But he drew out a map of his career for me regardless. I saw that even as a mining engineer, he'd worked in a lot of different areas of the business.  Some that had nothing to do with mining. Some that certainly didn't focus on engineering.  



And here he was loving his work.  In a very senior role.  At a young age.  Being a great leader.  And he was having fun doing it!



I had nothing to lose, so I took his advice.



Over the following few weeks, I started paying attention. I paid attention to what I enjoyed doing.  



(Side note:  You might remember me giving you this advice a few months ago.  I told you to start writing down what you enjoy doing.  If you haven't done it yet, do it now.  I swear it's extremely valuable!)


So back to my career crisis.  Here’s what my reflection came up with:


   Presenting at meetings - enjoyed

   Sitting at the computer analyzing spreadsheets - wanted to gouge eyes out

   Explaining HR metrics to senior leadership - wanted to gouge their eyes out

   Developing content and material for emails, presentations, stewardship reports – enjoyed

   Facilitating awkward, messy conversations to find awesome outcomes – made me forget to eat, drink, and pee (I figured that was a fantastic sign!)



I came back to our next mentorship session proud of my list. From there, he encouraged me to start looking at job postings through this new lens.  To start looking at job descriptions with the criteria I created, instead of only the jobs in the HR department, or that had HR in the title. 



Suddenly a world of job opportunities and possibilities opened up.



Soon after this critical mindset shift, I found an opening for a Learning Coordinator role.  I applied, and I got it.  And I got a sweet 20% raise and extra bonuses on top of it!


A year later, I had gained more insight into what I liked and didn't like in my work. I didn't like repetition.  I loved project work.  I didn't like fire-fighting crises every day.


I was ready for another change.  Looking at job descriptions through this new lens, I wasn't stuck on just HR or Learning jobs.  I changed completely and went to job in the "Engineering" category (can you imagine?!).   I was offered a job as a Continuous Improvement Specialist and it fit all my new criteria.  And I got another raise (YES!).


As you can see, opening my eyes to the careers I could do allowed me to:


   Gain incredible experience in diverse fields

   Rapidly increase my income

   Learn a new skill set

   Be continuously challenged

   Never get bored

   Network with people across the company and get sh*t done through great relationships

   Blow people's minds with how much I knew about other parts of our company and our business

   Successfully avoid ever being an accountant (Amen!)



Here’s what you need to know about your career:

   Most careers are not linear anymore

   The more experience you have in different departments, the more value you bring

   If you have experience in multiple areas, you can qualify for leadership opportunities in all of them

   Your career doesn't have to focus on what you went to school for

   Your career aspirations should not be about any title or department




Here’s what your career SHOULD focus on:


   What fires you up

   What engages you

   What you find interesting

   What you love doing

   What you are good at

   What keeps you doing what you want. Here are some examples.


       Focusing on efficiency



       Being challenged

       Working on the fly (fire-fighting, as I call it!)


So, if you are contemplating a change but you're stuck, like I was, consider a mindset shift. Maybe you need to re-think your career like I did. 


Track what you love.  Take notes of the work you've really enjoyed doing. All the times you forget to eat lunch, or you don't even want to get up to pee -- star those things.  And go find more opportunities to do those things!


This shift has made all the difference.  Each day, I focus on the type of work I enjoy doing.  I structure my business to do what I love doing.  Heck, maybe you even need to go rogue and become an entrepreneur like me! 


 Think about your career in terms of the TYPE of WORK you do, instead of the subject.  


And watch the options in front of your eyes expand  -- and your career to grow into what YOU want it to be!



Expand your horizon and watch the world of opportunities open up!



Time to go eat and pee (because yes, writing is on my list of loves!)



Success Coach




PS. It’s my mission to help women (and men!) like you from around the world OWN and LOVE your career.  If you know a friend who’s unhappy and feels stuck in her career, share this post!  If you have a friend who’s looking for another job because she isn’t satisfied, forward her the link.  And make sure you sign up on my homepage so you never misses my career tips, insights and tools.  

Crush Your Dreaded To-Do List By Doing This First

I always hated running as a kid. I was consistently the slowest runner in my class.  I just didn’t enjoy it.



All that changed a few years ago when I found an amazing running gang to join.  I had the pleasure of leading a group of incredible running men and women for 3 years in Fort McMurray.



Since then, I’ve done 5 half marathons.  Run many times in weather as cold as -30 degrees.  Celsius.  (In case you’re wondering, yup that’s as cold as it sounds and it hurts.). I’ve run hung-over.  I’ve given up mid-run to stop for frozen yogurt


It’s all been possible because I loved running.



Recently though, I started hating itDreading it.  Scheduling it and just ignoring the reminders that came up on my phone.



I finally started asking myself “why?”  



At first, I asked self-deprecating questions.  Like “why am I bailing on running?”  That didn’t help.  I would answer it with “because I’m lazy.  Or stupid.”  That kind of talk didn’t get me anywhere. Telling myself I’m lazy and stupid?  That’s just not nice.  Or true.



So I asked myself the different “why”.  I asked “why do I want to run”?  And “why is running important to me”?  And through this, I rediscovered my LOVE for running.






It’s such a powerful question




Pair it with WANT and you’ve exponentially grown the power of the question.




Here’s how it worked:




Why do I want to run?


Because I love being outside.


Because it feels so good to move my body.


Because I love getting sweaty.



Why is running important to me?


Because the thrill of a race is one of the most awe-inspiring feelings I’ve ever experienced.


Because there is nothing better than a great running conversation.


Because I want to be active and healthy during my whole, long life.




For the sake of what am I running?


Because each time I do it, I feel incredible afterwards.


Because I want prove to myself that I can do it!




Suddenly, running has become fun again.  I’m looking forward to it.  I am LOVING it again.





So, what's on your dreaded to-do list? What chore can you redefine?  Where can you ask yourself “why is this important”? 


What lame-ass thing do you “have to” do this week? 

What email are you putting off writing?

What presentation are you dreading creating? 

What awkward conversation are you avoiding

What errand are you procrastinating on week after week?   

What exercise commitment are you breaking to yourself?



I ask you:

Why do you want to do it?


For the sake of what are you doing it?


Why is this important to you?



Ask “why”.  Why do you “have to” do it?


Is it because you want the best work environment for your team?

Is it because you want to congratulate a colleague on their new job?  

Is it because you want to showcase the amazing work of your team in front of your superiors? 

Is it because you want nutritional food in your body to give you energy?

Is it because you want a passport to travel to a best friend’s wedding?



Suddenly, you’ll understand why you’re really doing something.  You will connect deeply to the powerful motivation, emotions and dreams you have within.



Charles Duhigg says it beautifully in his brilliant book Smarter, Faster, Better.  In life, “once we start asking why, those small tasks become pieces of a larger constellation of meaningful projects, goals, projects and values.”   You can start to recognize how small chores and tasks are a part of the bigger picture.  These tasks tie to the big emotional “what” in your life.  They prove that you have choices



Knowing the “why” reminds you that you are in control of your life.



Doing any of these small tasks and chores on their own often seem boringRemedialStressful.



Yet it is the every day that matters.  It is the small things that create the joy in your life.  The happiness.  The fulfillment. The satisfaction.  The memories.



You need to connect these to something you deeply want in your life.  Tie them to a DREAM you have.  Attach what you’re doing to what you most desire.



Once you make the “why” connection, everything changes. Doing that task, that chore, becomes a gift.  Ok – maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration. No amount of connection to my desire for hosting awesome guests makes me think cleaning a toilet is a gift.  But it certainly shifts my mindset.   And it makes what I’m doing a choice. 


It reminds me that I’m in control of my life



And you are in control of your life.



Connecting to your why sparks transformation. Suddenly your “to-do” is meaningful. It becomes an opportunity to create the life you want to live.  It’s proof that living a dream life is possible – because you’re DOING IT!


If you don’t have a good “why” answer, I challenge you to reconsider even doing it.  And in case you are wondering, “because I have to” is NOT a valid response.


If you don’t have a good reason as to “why”, I challenge you to not do that task.


It’s that simple.  It will make the difference. You’ll be living a life that is deliberate.   Living a life that is full of “want to’s”. 



Living a life that is created by YOUR choices! 



That will make you happier.  This will make your “to-do” list seem less overwhelming.  You’ll be more relaxed. You’ll be more grateful.  You’ll be more engaged as you do the things you do during the week because you are CHOOSING to do them.  You know WHY you are doing it (and it feels so good!) 



Ask WHY.  Know why it MATTERS.  Reclaim your power to choose



Create the life YOU want.






PS. On this cloudy Vancouver day, I had to ask myself the “why does this matter” question while writing this too.  Happiness, success, pride – it all takes discipline and it’s a constant journey.   I’m no exception. If you, like me, need to make asking “why you want it” a habit, here’s some suggestions:


·      Create a reminder in your calendar to ask “why does this matter” when you review your to-do list every morning. 

·      Put a sticky note on your computer to remind yourself. 

·      Share this newsletter with a friend or partner and commit to each other to ask each other “why is it important” the next time you’re lacking motivation. 

·      Turn on the “Wannabe” song and crank it when the Spice Girls ask you to “tell me what you want, what you really really want.”  After you’re done dancing around the house, make sure you say (or sing!) what you want, what you really really want.


 You’ll either find the spark you need to just do it or erase it from your list altogether


 Either way, consider that to-do list crushed! 

Zigazig Ah to that! 

Without these 3 letters, you'll never reach your dreams

It started with crying elephant tears in bed.   The kind of tears that you can hardly breathe through. Instead of taking in air, I was basically yelping. It was not my finest moment.


Those kind of tears don’t happen very often.  But when they do, you can bet it’s because something really heart-breaking is going on with me.



I.  Have.   No.   Friends. 



The words could hardly come out amid the yelping, panting, sobbing mess I had become.


This is how my year of no excuses started.  My own year of yes (even before Shonda Rhimes’ book came out). 


I pretence this story with a word of caution.  I believe it is important it is to say no.  Because we all have to say no at one point or another.  If you’re an economics person, you know this as opportunity cost.  If you’re a regular human, you know you have to say no because there’s only 24 hours in a day.


This isn’t a story to encourage you to become a type-A workaholic.  Or a people-pleaser.



This is about saying yes to YOU.  Saying yes to your dreams.  Saying yes to what you want.



So back to me being a yelping, sobbing mess. 



I had left all my friends and family behind and moved to Northern Alberta about a year and a half before.  I had found a pretty awesome job.  I was crazy-in-love with the man I had moved to be with.  We had recently bought our first house together and it was a dream house.  We had an incredible 15 friends come help us move which is incredible on it’s own. Things were good.  Things were great even!


But this particular Friday night, I laid in bed crying.  Troy was working early the next morning so around 9pm, we headed to bed.  (I know, I’m a wild woman).  As we lay there, snuggling, I suddenly found myself very unhappy.  I told Troy I had no friends.  I was lost.  I missed home. I wanted to move home.  Did I?  I don’t know.  I was confused. All I knew was that I was lonely. 


At the same time I was texting.  Modern attention deficit problems - exhibit A.


Through the tears, the words, me telling him how miserable I was, I was texting.


At one point, he asked me who I was texting. I told him I was texting Danielle.  My friend Danielle.


He asked “what’s she texting you about?”


“She’s heading to a patio for drinks and wants me too join.”


It wasn’t long after those words came out of my mouth that I realized my own fallacy.  Yet I can always count on Troy to bring it up.


Wait a minuteyou’re laying in bed crying that you have no friends? And at the same time, you are texting your friends and telling them you don’t want to hang out?

Lisa this is insane. 


Yup.  It was.  It made zero sense.  And yet it was the jolt that I needed.


From that moment, I committed to stop using excuses.  The excuse of being too tired on a Friday night.  The excuse of not being interested in a particular hobby or activity.  The excuse that I wanted to spend more time with Troy.   Because while they may have been true, they weren’t going to get me any closer to what I wanted.


If I wanted friends (and I really, really did), I was going to have to let go of the excuses and just say yes! 


So for the next year, I committed to saying yes every time someone asked me to hang out.  I said yes and just went for it.  I didn’t have to love everything I went to or tried. I didn’t have to be best friends with everyone I met.  Heck, I could even try to be home by 9pm if I really wanted.   BUT I was going to try and that made all the difference.


When I stopped making excuses, I had unbelievable experiences.

I joined a Couch to 5km group and started running.

I made some awesome friends of friends that became my friends.

I volunteered and helped grow my community.

I traveled to Iceland with 20 friends, 2 weeks before our wedding.   

I found my people. I built incredible, lifelong friendships.




Because I said yes. 


I said yes to my dreams. My hopes. My desire for friendships.


I said no to being too tired. To making excusesTo feeling sorry for myself.



I said no to having a pity party. I said yes to (a whole lot of) real parties. 



Now it’s your turn.



What are you saying no to that you should be saying yes to? 



What dream are you letting hide behind your fears?   What do you deeply desire that you are not getting in your life because you are saying no to it?   Where are you stuck in your life because your excuses are taking over



Say yes to hanging out with someone you don’t know.


Say yes to that project at work that excites you (even if you don’t know exactly how to do every step).


Say yes to booking that trip you’ve been dying to.


Say yes to going to that yoga class at the new studio.


Say yes to starting a blog.


Say yes to applying for a new job because you hate the one you’re in.


Say yes to starting that business.


Say yes to taking a night course because you know it’d bring joy to you.



Say yes to getting a babysitter and having date night.  Every Friday. Every month.  Whatever you need.


And say YES to continuing to say YES. 

Commit to saying yes to making friends and being in great company. 

Yes to doing work that excites and engages you. 

Yes to visiting the places of your dreams. 

Yes to a healthy body.

Yes to stretching and challenging your mind. 

Yes to nurturing love in your life.   




I can’t wait to hear about what you say YES to!





PS.  If you’ve been debating saying yes to coaching, it’s time to shed that fear too.  It’s up to you to say yes and contact me for a free discovery session.  There’s no pressure. No sales.  This is about us chatting to see if we connect and if we can make your dreams come true together.  If you’re reading this and have a nagging feeling that I’m talking to you, I probably am.  What do you have to lose?  (Hopefully my story has taught you – nothing).    Who knows – it could be the call that changes your life like my “yes” did!




Be Happier In Your Job By Friday!

You don’t need to quit your job, and run away “Eat, Pray, Love”-style to be happy. You can make some changes THIS WEEK to start loving your job more.  Keep reading and start waking up EXCITED every day!

Ok, so it’s only Tuesday but maybe the blah’s have already kicked in.  I don’t know if you are looking for a small change or huge change (like quitting your job, moving to Bali, starting a business and getting a PhD).  And maybe you don’t know what you need either. That’s ok!


If all you know is that you want to be happier, that’s great. 


The even better news is



Any change you want starts with you doing something about it.  So here’s 5 things you can do THIS WEEK to have happier work and a happier life.

1) Plan 3 Fun Breaks.

Having something to look forward to brings you joy before, during and after. It’s like triple the happiness!  This fun break can be a lunch break or a shorter mid-morning one.  Do something that’s fun for YOU.  Go for lunch with a friend or a coworker.  Close your office door and take a 10-minute stretch break (or have a dance party!).  Go for a walk. Book that massage you’ve been meaning to.  Watch a TedTalk you’ve been dying to see. Pull out your colouring book and make a masterpiece. Whatever it is, give your brain and body a chance to hit “refresh”.  It will make you more productive AND also give you a giant boost of happy!

2) Jot down what you love. 

Put a piece of paper next to your keyboard or start a note in your phone. Any time you find yourself enjoying what you’re doinglooking forward to doing something at work, or if you just lost track of time because you were so into what you were doing, write it down! This will help you learn about yourself and what you love to do. Once you understand this, it makes knowing what to do to love your career a lot easier. Start by tracking what you love. Then look for ways to do more of it in your life.



 3) Help and appreciate someone else. Share the happy with others! You can:

  • Help a colleague. Sure, you’re busy. We’re all busy. But you see a coworker drowning in work, or struggling with something you’re good at. Lend a hand. Giving encourages others to help and we all know what goes around comes around.
  • Recognize someone who’s made a difference to you. Consider how they would want to be thanked and do it that way. Say thank you to them at your team meeting, send a personalized thank you card, or email them and their boss, thanking them for something they did for you! It makes you feel good and creates a positive work environment. Create healthy relationships today. They will last for the rest of your career.   

4) Do that scary thing.

Take a risk. Do that thing that's been nagging you but you haven't had the balls to do.  Volunteer for that new project.  Speak up and bring a new perspective to the table.  Lead something you've never done. Share your opinion even though it's different than everyone else's.  Go to that networking event alone. You want an awesome career?  Of course you do!  Go get it.   Be courageous today and try new things. Don’t forget that you are unique. Whatever you choose to say, join or create will be better because of your ideas, leadership, and perspective.  So be bold and just do it!

5) Start an "I Rock” folder.  

Mine’s called “Lisa Rocks” but I recommend using your own name.  I have an email folder that I’ll put positive feedback in when someone sends me a flattering or appreciative email. Not only is it an awesome way to perk up when you’re having a bad day, but it’s also extremely helpful for your career. Stock it now and your performance reviews will be a piece of cake.  Run your own business? Share your “I Rock” folder as raving testimonials to new clients (don’t forget to ask permission first).  No-one else will take ownership of your career for you. You have to own your career. Take pride and keep track because it’s up to you to be confident about and share the incredible work you’re doing!

Challenge yourself to do all 5 of these things.  Try them this week.  Do them again next week.  I guarantee you will find yourself smiling more and feeling confident in what you are doing.


Do it this week because action is what it’s ALL about!


Let me know how it goes. I know you can do it!  And I love hearing from you. Reach out and share your thoughts. 


Here’s to choosing happiness!