Create Your Life Vision (Part 1)

In today’s episode of the Inspiration2grow podcast we are going to talk about taking a look at where you are in life currently and considering your life’s aspirations or values.  Everyone has different priorities as well as milestones which they want to achieve.  We refer to these goals as our ‘pillars of life’.

Pillars of life can be thought of as foundations that both guide us and provide stability while giving us balance at the same time. In today’s show, I hope to help you identify your pillars and gain clarity around what you really, truly want within each area.  That is the essential first part of creating your life vision.

Imagine you’re going to meet your friends at an amazing Hawaiian resort.  Sounds beautiful, right?

You land safely at the airport, grab your luggage and jump into a rental car.  Then you type in the address into the car’s GPS.
You know exactly where you are going, so getting there is easy.
However, if you didn’t know the address (or at least the name of the resort), it would be a completely different story, because there are a LOT of resorts in Hawaii that you could potentially end up at.

Well, it’s the very same thing when it comes to reaching your big, audacious goals and dreams.
You need to know WHERE you’re going if you ever want to end up there.

How?  By creating a life vision for everything you want to achieve.  This doesn’t have to be complicated…

In fact, I’ll help you get started today with Part 1 of how to create a life vision.

Once you have yours in place, success will come faster and easier for you.  Why?  Because “wrong turns” will be a thing of the past and your internal GPS will know exactly where to lead you even if the journey doesn’t go as planned.

So, let’s dive right into the practical part of creating your life vision…

The biggest thing that prevents people from taking action on their future dreams and goals is not having clarity around what that future actually looks like for them.  When you have extreme clarity, whatever fears, obstacles or distractions arise on the journey, it will be hard for you NOT to keep moving in the right, desired direction.  It is this CLARITY that will help your overcome fears and obstacles, be your guiding North Star and provide the necessary strength and conviction to stay the course.

Clarity itself is one of the most powerful tools you can use to accomplish the life you want, the goals you desire to reach and the big accomplishments you set your mind to.

Part 1 on this process is by no means complex or complicated but it does require some thought and deeper consideration.

This exercise can be done at the onset of a new year, or even every six months or perhaps quarterly just to assess whether you are on track or not.  Your course might need a few adjustments and that’s perfectly okay.  You will need to revisit and tweak accordingly.

So, I want you to imagine 5 tall, strong pillars holding up the roof of a building.  I came across the exact structure I always imagine when I do this exercise on a trip to Puerto Rico.  It was an open structure in the middle of a grassy area surrounded by tall palm trees, with the most beautiful marble inlay floor, no doors, no windows, no walls – just the white pillars and the roof.

In this exercise, each of these pillars are going to represent an important area of your life.  And to be clear, everybody can decide on the number of pillars they will have – some will outline 4, others perhaps 7, but there is not right or wrong number of pillars for your life vision.

Here are some common pillars people what to focus on:  love, happiness, health/wellness/exercise & nutrition fall into this category as well, wealth/financial, relationships, personal development, career/business, spiritual, charitable/volunteering and giving back pillars.

Time to time, you might need to shift your focus to some areas more than others to maintain balance, but essentially, all the categories or pillars you choose will receive the necessary attention and work they need to stay on course.

Which ones are yours?  Which ones do YOU want to improve on, set goals for, make huge achievements in?

I know one person who chooses 5 pillars:  financial, career/business, relationships, health/wellness and personal development.  For him, it is like 5 spokes of a wheel.  And he maintains that all 5 spokes need to be moving forward (meaning: being worked on and improved) for the wheel to keep turning and to prevent a bumpy ride.  If all of his 5 areas are balanced, then the ride is smooth.

Another person I know well has only 4 categories or pillars:  love, happiness, health and wealth.

So, as you see, this is very individual, and YOU, only you can decide on which areas are most important for your ‘ideal’ life and vision.  You are on a unique journey, so remember that your pillars might look totally different from those of a good friend.

In order to create your life vision, the intentions and goals you have for each area, I need you to picture or imagine your IDEAL life.  The key word here is ideal.  We are not making a 5-, 10- or 20-year plan with this exercise, we are zeroing in on one year and more specifically, one ideal year.

At this point it is time to become curious, deeply curious about what you want in each area and how you want things to be.  You are going to dig deep and be extremely detailed with each pillar.  Write down 3 – 5 bullet points or boxes to be checked off once accomplished for each pillar.  Get specific and curious in terms of how you’d like your ideal life to look in each pillar. 

Let’s look at a few examples to show you what I mean:

Some bullet points under the pillar of health might be –

1.       Limit alcohol intake
2.       Never sacrifice sleep
3.       Drink tons of water
4.       Avoid sugar
5.       Only eat when hungry

Bullet points under the pillar of wealth could be –

1.       Invest in the long term
2.       Have an emergency fund
3.       Live below your means for an extended period of time
4.       Start and set a budget

Bullet point ideas for the pillar of love are:

1.       Love unconditionally
2.       Practice gratitude daily
3.       Love yourself before loving someone else
4.       Spend plenty of time with close friends and family who lift you up
5.       Learn to forgive and accept forgiveness

Bullet points for the category of happiness could be:

1.       Exercise
2.       Never stop learning
3.       Have an open mind
4.       Complete fulfilling tasks
5.       Avoid all sources of negativity
6.       Choose progress over perfection
7.       Protect your mental health at all costs

Bullet points for the pillar personal development could be:

1.       Read non-fiction books
2.       Journal daily
3.       Begin breathwork as a form of meditation
4.       Try new things each day or week or month
5.       View failure as a learning experience not a setback
6.       Become strong from the inside out

Remember, don’t be vague when listing 3 – 5 bullet points under your pillars.  For example, if you want to drink lots of water, then get specific such as:  I will drink 4 full water bottles each day.  Or, if you intend on expanding yourself and your horizon through personal development, you might list “never stop learning’.  Well, that is not detailed enough to follow through on or even keep track of your progress.  You should be listing something like:  I intend on reading one new book on mindset or personal development each month.  See, that’s something you can keep record of. 

The points mentioned are mere examples to get your own creative juices flowing and to, perhaps, spark an idea of how you could level up your life.  You and I both know that there are endless ideas, but you have to choose what is right for you, aligned with your life’s vision and things that will light you up inside creating the best version of YOU.

There’s one pillar I believe EVERYONE should include, and that is the Fun/Enthusiasm pillar.  Life is too short to live a mundane, boring, unfulfilled life.  So, I strongly encourage you to add in this category to your life vision to increase the fun-factor, inject some adventure, ramp up the excitement levels and simply enjoy life to the fullest.

The pillars of our life’s vision help us to achieve balance by providing us with anchors to grasp on to when the waves of life rock our boat.  These pillars can and should be continuously developed and solidified.  A roof cannot be held up and supported properly if one pillar falls short or crumbles or isn’t as tall as the others.
Our goal is to create sturdy pillars and a solid foundation for our life’s vision.

As mentioned earlier, your pillars will evolve as your circumstances change and that’s okay. It may even take a lifetime to perfect your pillars, but the act of creating a path you deeply desire will give you the necessary clarity and confidence to keep moving forward and stay the course.

Just a few closing thoughts on your vision because, I bet many of you haven’t really taken the time to consider what your vision is or laid out a strategic plan of how to fulfill this vision.

Your vision of where or what you want to be is the greatest asset you have.  This vision I keep referring to is the ability to see your purpose, your dreams, your desire and your tomorrow.   And, I will leave your with two quotes:

“Vision with action makes a powerful reality.” ~Ron Kaufman

“Make your vision so clear that your fears become irrelevant.” ~Kerwin Rae

Keep in mind – this is only part 1 or 3 in the exercises of creating your life vision. By the end of the pillar exercise in Part 1 you should have complete clarity on what your ideal life vision looks like, with your chosen pillars including 3 – 5 detailed and very specific bullet points under each of these pillars.

Parts 2 and 3 will be coming to my podcast soon.

I would like to invite you to become part of the Inspiration2grow community on Facebook.  The group name is: Inspiration2grow for Female Goal-getters.  It is meant to be a community of like-minded women who want to grow strong from the inside out.  There will be daily journalling prompts, nutrition and fitness tips, exercises to try, encouraging conversations among the community and lots more.  So, be sure to join this group for support, new ideas and the necessary rocket fuel to propel your health and wellness to new heights.

You owe it to yourself to take care of yourself, show up for yourself and become the best version of YOU.

In case you haven’t heard it yet today, let me be the first to tell you…
You are incredible, capable and your potential is limitless.  Never forget that and I believe in you 100%.  Now, go out there and show the world what you are truly made of.

I hope to have inspired you to grow.

Til next time,

7 Limiting Beliefs About Losing Weight

In today’s episode of the Inspiration2Grow podcast we are debunking 7 limiting beliefs surrounding weight loss and fitness routines. 

As a mindset coach, I’m all about shifting those fixed, negative beliefs that are getting in our way and hindering us from making progress and being success.  In this episode we are going to take a look at some common beliefs holding people back from losing the weight they desire to and flipping the script or reframing the things we tell ourselves.  It’s a good one, so stay tuned.

I think we can all agree that losing weight is not strictly a physical endeavor.  Our mindset plays a very important role in whether our efforts are successful or fail leading us to quit and give up once again on our mission to slim down, shed a few extra pounds.

Weight loss can essentially be boiled down to a simple mathematical calculation -> calories in must be less than calories out.  Meaning you have to burn off more calories than you are consuming.  Easy, right?

Not when your mind gets involved because there are so many “stumbling blocks”, excuses and limiting beliefs about your body and ability that could get in your way of success and hold you back from reaching your goal weight.

Today, we are going to explore 7 very common limiting beliefs that play havoc with our attempts to shed those unwanted pounds and keep them off for good:

1.       “I can’t do it.”

This is the #1 limiting belief in many things we try to do, so it’s no wonder that it rears its ugly head here too.

Former unsuccessful attempts at losing weight will foster a strong belief within you that you can’t do it.  Perhaps you think you are only capable of losing just so much and not more, or you might believe that you can’t lose weight at all.  In any case, this kind of thinking will override your desire to eat healthy and exercise.  It will seem like an uphill battle that you have no way of winning.  Then, if little to no progress is noticed, this will confirm your belief of “I can’t do this.”

Action to take if this sounds like you:

-> Remind yourself that you are capable of doing anything IF you simply take the proper action steps.
-> Tell yourself that you are not alone and millions of people have already done what you want to do, so if they can do it, SO CAN YOU.

2.       “I’m not good enough.  I don’t deserve it.”

Suffering from low levels of self-esteem and self-confidence can leave you feeling like a failure, even after trying hard to move the needle forward in your weight loss efforts.

I’ve heard this from so many women and it just breaks my heart.  Why on earth wouldn’t you deserve to feel vibrant, energized, slender, sexy & feminine, happy & healthy in your own body?

-> Remind yourself DAILY that you deserve to live a very happy, vibrant life.  One that is filled with happiness and positive energy.  Repeat this to yourself day-in-day-out.  Because it’s true.

-> Tell yourself the actions you take today, regardless of how small or insignificant they may seem at the time, will benefit you tenfold in the future.

-> Show up for yourself every day of each week of each month of each year.  You are worth it.  Start believing in yourself and stop looking for outside validation.  Show yourself some true self-love by taking the necessary action steps toward your goals.

3.       “It’s no use; it’s hopeless.  This is just the way I am.”

It’s quite easy to feel like everything is working against you, regardless of how hard you put in the effort.  You feel like the entire universe has conspired against you and you are destined to stay the way you are.  It all seems quite hopeless. So, the pity party begins.

The truth is, you are stuck and will remain this way if you don’t take charge.  You may even feel stuck in other areas of your life as well even though you don’t have any logical evidence to support such a belief.  Constantly stuck, no forward propulsion in life, no improvement, no momentum, no moving the needle toward a favourable outcome – stuck, stuck, stuck is how you feel.

-> Remind yourself that YOU are the only one responsible for your life, your choices, your attitude, your decisions, your responses.  Side note ->  a great episode to listen to is #28 which is all about excuses and complaining.  It might help you with this limiting belief.

-> Decide to take back your power and take action.  Start today, start with small action steps, start ‘messy’, just start.  With every small action step you take, your self-esteem and confidence will grow.  That alone will ignite a spark and soon momentum will take over.

4.       “I was born this way. My family has always been on the heavy side.”

I think far too many people buy into this idea and then adopt it as their belief.  Just because other family members are overweight, does not mean you are destined to be as well.  The problem is that if you believe my family is overweight, so my genes dictate that I will also be that way – you have given up on yourself from the get-go.  You fall back on the “I can’t” mentality and you won’t feel capable or strong enough to even try.

-> Remind yourself that even overweight families have members that do not struggle with their weight.  Look around and find those examples.  Use them as fuel for your mission of losing weight.

-> Tell yourself frequently that HABITS are passed down through generations.  Bad nutrition habits and poor habits regarding exercise and working out contribute far more to people’s overweight problems than genes do.  Just know -> your genes are not working against you.  Your bad habits are.  So, change your habits to change your body size and weight!

5.       “No matter what I do…”

Have you ever thought:  I’ve tried everything, done everything in my power, but no matter what I do, I still can’t shed those unwanted pounds?  Allowing yourself this negative attitude is essentially giving up on yourself before even giving yourself a chance to succeed.

We need to flip the script, create a new anthem that you repeatedly say to yourself.  It could go something like this:

-> “I choose to be successful at everything I do from now on.”  Very simple, yet mighty powerful.  But you might not be convinced or really believe it wholeheartedly at first.  Just keep it up and over time you will definitely see proof with your own eyes.

-> Here’s a great tip, one that I talk about regularly in my podcasts – celebrate your wins, daily.  So, I want you to turn each day into a success.  At the end of the day, say to yourself, “Wow, look at what I did for my health today.  I ate healthier today than yesterday.  That’s a win for me!”  or “Wow, I made it to the gym and did a workout today.  I did it.  That’s success.” 

Essentially, we are altering the way we view success and also failure. Concentrate on the small steps you’ve taken and the small daily wins you’ve achieved rather than what you ‘think’ is working against you.

6.       “It’s too hard.”

Another limiting belief that comes up in many situations, it’s by no means exclusive to weight loss.  The truth is…changing your lifestyle habits in order to lose weight WILL NOT BE EASY.  Come to terms with that.  In fact, change of any kind is often difficult for most of us especially when this change is so strongly attached to habits that we have been practicing for a long time now.

The problem is that people get started on their weight loss program with good intentions and some motivation, but soon realize how hard it can be to make the necessary changes that will move the needle and facilitate noticeable success.  We begin to doubt our ability in ourselves. We ask ourselves whether we can keep going and stick with the plan.  Things start to crumble in your mind.  Excuses may start sneaking up in your thoughts.

-> Switch this limiting belief from “it’s just too difficult for me” to ->  “So what if it’s hard?  I can do hard things.  I’m going to keep going anyway.  I’m going to do my best and, even if I stumble along the way, I will still be making progress.”

This is the greatest example of switching from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset. 
7.       “I feel vulnerable.”

If you are overweight, you have to understand that it is not JUST because of your eating habits.  Most likely, there are some emotional fears or traumas causing you to gain weight as a sort of defense mechanism. When you start to lose weight, feelings of vulnerability might surface.  You feel exposed in some way.  Your extra pounds were protecting you. 

-> Remind yourself that extra weight does absolutely nothing to protect you.  Quite the opposite…it makes your life much more difficult in all three areas – emotionally, physically and mentally.

-> Be open and willing to rediscover your strength, that you didn’t even know you had.  Be willing to let go of the weight that is weighing you down both mentally and physically.
So, that’s a wrap for today’s show. 

I hope that I have inspired you to grow.

And…in case you haven’t heard it yet today, let me be the first to tell you…

You are the most amazing human, and your potential is limitless.  I believe in you 100%. Now, go out there and show the world what you are truly made of.
Til next time,

Xoxo Lisa

Ditch the Excuses and Complaining in Your Life

In today’s episode of the Inspiration2Grow podcast we are exploring ways to stop the most important thing that is likely holding you back – the excuses and complaints your mind thinks up.

Hey, everyone, welcome back to the show.  How are you doing today?  We are well into what some people think of as the busiest time of the year.  For many it is stressful, but I prefer to look at December as a reflective month.  It’s the time when I look back on the past 11 months and reflect on all that I have accomplished and perhaps some goals I haven’t achieved YET.

So, let me give you a moment to reflect on 2022…  What have you done/accomplished/achieved over the course of the 11+ months with your life?

Has it been a beautifully transformative year for you?

Has it presented challenges you have overcome?

Have you made the most of this one precious life you are living?

If you feel like you have fallen short of the mark or short of your expectations for 2022, what happens then?  Do you make excuses, or do you start complaining about your situation? 

I have a hunch the answer is yes for most people.  You see, our brains LOVE to complain and come up with excuses as to why we can’t do things we want to.
Complaining is a huge problem for us.  And, the fact that our brains love to constantly complain doesn’t help the situation for us at all.  Have you ever observed or taken note of how often you complain about things that take place in your everyday life?  I bet you haven’t.
Today I am challenging you to take what I have to say to heart and consider flipping the script on your complaining.

Let me first explain how this complaining habit plays our in our heads.  Your brain is always looking for problems because it is a problem solver.  That means, your brain is constantly looking for something to complain about.  We follow our brain’s lead and look at all the things that are going wrong – this is neither useful in the giving circumstance nor a pleasant mindset to have.

So, the first thing we have to do is become really intentional about how you look at things which are going right in your life instead of dwelling or wasting time thinking about all the things that are going wrong.  Trust me, you will immediately feel so much better.  This could also propel you forward to take more action on the things that are going well.

If you tend to complain about everything, that’s when you feel terribly stuck.  That’s when you feel like there is no forward momentum, no moving the needle forward. 

-> You’re not taking the action you know you should or that you want to.
-> You’re not getting up early to get a head start on your day.
-> You’re not eating the right foods that fuel your body and give you the necessary energy.
-> You’re not exercising or finding time for physical activity.
-> You’re not building health relationships the way you intend to.
-> You’re not managing your finances like you know you should be.
-> You’re not showing up as your best possible self to the world around you.
-> YOU ARE STUCK because of your complaining.

Remember, your life is created by the decisions you make on a daily basis.  You truly CAN take control of your life if you simply accept this fact:    EVENT  +  RESPONSE  =  OUTCOME.  It’s as simple as that!

Complaining is normal and we all catch ourselves doing it.  I could find a myriad of things to complain about in my life, but I have made a conscious decision not to.  Instead, I focus on all the good things.  Let me give you some examples:

~ I used to complain about all the pain I was in and that my body just wouldn’t and couldn’t do all the things I wanted from it.  Now, ->  I am grateful that my body carries me through my swim and gym workouts. 

~ I used to complain about how much work I had.  Now, ->  I flip the script and say to myself, “Wow, it’s amazing that you are able to help so many people.  You are able to impact so many lives with your work.”

There’s nothing wrong with us if/when we complain.  It is all part of the human experience.  However, I challenge you to create a slightly better mindset and set of thoughts when you feel a complaint arising in your head.

If we want to improve our lives, we need to get stronger.  If we want to improve ourselves, then we have to start paying attention to our complaining habits – whether they are loud or quiet whispers in our heads.

Pay attention to the complaints.  Start becoming curious about them.  Notice when you voice a complaint and just stop it.  Be aware of this habit and shut it down before you say it next time.

You can train your brain to focus on things within your control each day.  Remain steadfast and focused and aware.  Take it hour-by-hour or day-by-day.  Slowly but surely retrain your brain to stop thinking of all the things that might happen or go wrong.

Switch your thinking to situations you have control over.  Focus on:  things you love doing, things that are going well for you right now, your goals, something you can take action on today, focus on the small wins you have experienced lately.

Food for thought here…

Why complain, when you have the ability to choose?  Living life effectively and on your terms involves personal responsibility.  YOU are responsible for YOU, your choices AND your responses to situations.

So, as of today, right now, immediately, stop the complaining!  Take charge of your thoughts and accept responsibility for your situation.  Only you can alter it. 
I really want you to understand that you may not be able to change the EVENTS in your life, however, you can change your response.  That it something you have control over.

And, remember, it’s not the event itself that controls you, it’s your response to the circumstance.  It’s your choice how you respond to the event.

It’s December and we are undoubtedly going to be around family over the holidays.  This could potentially present some situations where family or friends begin complaining about something.  There seems to be a lot of criticize, tear apart and complain about in the world around us currently.  But here’s the thing, YOU can choose to take part in this conversation OR you can remove yourself from the situation OR you can choose to put a positive spin on the conversation by offering a more pleasant, positive outlook.  Do not let yourself get involved and invested in negative talk.  It’s not useful or helpful for anybody to complain about situations, events, things out of their control.  Be the change that needs to happen and feel darn good about it!

Let’s move on to the sneaky excuses your brain offers you that potentially hold you back from taking action on your goals.

·         I’m too old to do this.
·         I’m too tired, maybe later. 
·         I’m not good enough.
·         I don’t know how.
·         And so on…

Our wonderful brains make up all kinds of excuses on repeat that we are in some ways immune to them.  They are often so subtle, yet they hold us back – this is why we feel so stuck.

The truth is… deep down inside most of us know that we CAN do the thing (whatever that looks like for you – fitness, work or relationship-related goals).  The truth is, we know IF we have 100% and put in 100% effort, in return, we would get 100% back.  And, deep down, most of us know the BIGGEST think keeping us from our goals are the absolute BS excuses our brain comes up with.

It’s time, high time in fact, to take charge and reclaim your power within.

No one is actually making you do anything that you don’t want to do.

You have to realize or become aware that’s a choice you are making OR a story you are choosing to believe.

Excuses such as: having no time, no motivation, no energy, no strategy of how to move forward, or my children keep me too busy, etc.

I’m sure you know exactly what I’m talking about because it happens to ALL of us.  But, we have to be bigger than our excuses.  Don’t allow them to rule you and your decision making.

I’ll give you a real example from my life and this just happened yesterday by the way…

I was ready to leave the house for my lane swimming session.  My husband and I usually go 5 – 6 times a week.  But yesterday I was going alone because my husband was busy.  So, I got ready as usual, put my backpack full of swim equipment into the car and started to back out of the driveway.  Suddenly, excuses started to fill my mind.  Thoughts such as:  stay home with your sick dog (Charlotte was sick, yes, but well enough for me to leave her for one hour), you’re feeling good so no need for swim training today, take a day off – is what my mind was saying.  After shaking off those two excuses, I kept driving.

At the next stop lights, my mind was telling me to turn around and head back home because of so many reasons and ultimately trying to talk me out of going to my swim session.  I continued.  YOU have to be bigger and better than your own excuses! We are faced with these mental challenges every day.

So, I arrived at the pool, got my favourite lane, started to swim and then my mind was telling me to quit after 30 minutes saying, “You’ve done enough for today.”  “Don’t overdo it.”  But, I kept pushing myself. Pushing those sneaky thoughts and excuses away.  Focusing on the activity itself.  Staying true to my goal.  Not letting myself be talked out of finishing my swim session. IF YOU don’t push yourself, no one else will.

In the end, it was the most amazing swim training I have ever had.  I set my personal best in the pool yesterday.  I had never been able to swim more than 1.5 km in an hour.  But yesterday I managed to swim 75 lengths for a total of 1,875 meters.  I was thrilled with my accomplishment. 

“Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anyone else expects of you.  Never allow excuses keep you from reaching this high standard.  Always be bigger than your excuses.”

What excuses are holding you back?  Flip the script and ask yourself, “What can I do to improve?”

Well, let’s just take a good, hard look at the situation…

* No one forces you to drink too much coffee, wine or consume too much sugar.  Start by cutting out that extra cup of java or wine this season.  Cut back on the sugar and perhaps replace it with something healthier.  Take small steps at first and love yourself for doing it.

* Your lack of exercise begins with YOU and nobody else.  Start by taking a simple walk around the neighbour each day and build on that beneficial habit.

* Skipping means and choosing snacks you know you shouldn’t be eating, is your decision.  Take responsibility for your actions and choices, today.  It really doesn’t take much effort to prepare ‘easy-to-take-along’ snacks which are nutritional.  Start by cutting up an apple and adding a few almonds as a snack or pack a hard-boiled egg with a few cherry tomatoes to munch on when your feel hungry.  Put in the effort instead of making excuses!

* Not drinking enough water is nobody else’s fault.  I hate to say it like this, but it’s true.  Start the day by filling a few glasses or water bottles and set them or take them with you for easy access.  Always try to take 10 big gulps from your glass instead of gently sipping.  I like to add cut up cucumber and a bit of lemon to my water for a refreshing taste.

* Poor time management often comes when people spend/waste too much time scrolling on your phone taking a look at everyone else’s life or consuming too much TV.

* Blaming others for the situation you find yourself in is NOT taking responsibility for your life.

The time has come to take a good hard look at yourself and stop blaming, complaining and making excuses about why you can’t get ahead, move forward, reach your goals, improve yourself, show up for yourself.  Be honest about what you need to take responsibility for!  Nobody can change that except YOU and you have to OWN it.

Then it’s time to get excited.  Once you choose to improve and accept the responsibility of your life as your own, you can make a conscious decision to change things and move forward toward the results you want.

Make it your rule or mission from now on:

No more blaming.
No more excuses.
No more complaining.

Your new mantra is:  “I take 100% responsibility for my life.  Where I find myself now is due to my choices, and mine alone.  But, where I will be in the future is also up to me and my choices as well.”

Ultimately, it’s up to you to fix you!

And, that’s a wrap for today, friends.

In case you haven’t heard it yet today, let me be the first to tell you…
You’re amazing; you’re beautiful and capable.  I believe in you 100%.  Now, go out there and show the world what you are truly made of.

I hope to have inspired you to grow.

Til next time,
Xoxo Lisa


Mindset of Sprinkles’ Founder Candace Nelson

In today’s episode of the Inspiration2Grow podcast, you’re in for a real treat. Pun intended and you’ll discover why shortly.

I love following and diving into the success stories of remarkable women, who have achieved paramount success in business, life and the field of sports because there are many lessons to be learned from these women. And, something they all have in common and share openly in interviews they give is – mindset.  They wouldn’t be where they are today without a solid mindset that helped them through many tough situations, challenging decisions they had to make, setbacks they experienced, the nay-sayers, their failures along the road, their own self-doubt and self-sabotage.  They all attribute their success to a rock solid mindset that was developed over time.

In previous episodes, I featured the mindset of billionaire and founder of Spanx, Sara Blakley.  This was episode #12 by the way.  She was brought up to have a different view of failure, which helped her immensely in her early years of creating the brand of flattering undergarments for women that we all know and adore, Spanx. 

The other sports icon I have talked about was Serena Williams in episode #8.  This tennis legend had to adopt a “think bigger” attitude to overcome a hurdle in her career.  She was and still is a great example of how to stand tall and show up for yourself as the winner you want to be.

Be sure to check out these two episodes for lots of tangible mindset hacks that you too can implement for more personal growth.

BUT, today we are talking about the female founder of a business everyone thought was completely insane. This amazing woman is Candace Nelson – whose journey into entrepreneurship is an interesting one to say the least. It took an enormous amount of courage and conviction to follow her dream of opening the world’s first ever cupcake bakery in SoCal during the height of the low carb craze. 

Just imagine the journey of going from an investment banker in California to attending pastry school.  It was a complete 180-degree pivot in careers, but this passion and purpose-led woman wanted to fuel her soul by making something tangible people would enjoy.  She soon discovered that cupcakes needed a makeover and she decided that she was the one who was going to do it. 

After many months of developing her recipes, creating her brand, and amassing a social media following, she opened the first ever only cupcake bakery in California.  The success came quickly once word got out about how upscale, aspirational, and unique her cupcakes were. Candace knew she was on to something big when Tyra Banks ordered her signature cupcakes for her birthday bash and when she was invited to appear on the Oprah Winfrey show.

The rest is history for this Netflix star (Sugar Rush and Food Network’s judge on Cupcake Wars are two of the shows she starred in), serial entrepreneur and serial author, who has two books under her belt – the first one entitled “The Sprinkles Baking Book” including 100 cupcake recipes, and the other one entitled “Sweet Success”- a simple recipe to turn your passion into profit. With this book, Candace wants to inspire people to become entrepreneurs while demystifying entrepreneurship and offering a proven roadmap for budding entrepreneurs.

Her and her husband, who both put their hearts and souls into their bakery business “Sprinkles”, went on to scale to 11 locations across the United States.  It was a tough go at first with countless gruelling, exhausting days, sleeping on the bakery floors at night, but she always makes a point of saying that her business was founded with a strong sense of purpose and joy.

If you’ve ever heard Candace Nelson speak about her personal growth, you already know that she is a very charismatic person.  She is open and honest about her journey and offers some refreshingly new takes on the mindset you need to have in order to grow as a person – both in life and business.

In fact, she claims her secret ingredient to the success she has experienced thus far is MINDSET.

So, let’s sprinkle in some of her secret ingredient mindset tips into today’s episode…

1.)    Your mindset muscle can and should be exercised daily.  We are constantly feeding ourselves thoughts which in turn become our reality.  Negative thoughts weigh you down and throughout the course of the day, most people have too many negative thoughts.  So, we have to work on flexing and developing our mindset muscles to shift from negative to positive.  You hear me say all the time – flip the script.  Go from… I can’t -> I will give it my best shot.

2.)    Start thinking in terms of “What if….?” Release yourself from the role you think you should be filling and instead, view the world from a perspective of “What might be…?” and “What if…?” Believe in yourself and your potential more and try new things.  Take chances and make use of opportunities that come your way.

3.)    Craft your identity by pursuing many things.  Be open and willing to pivot and reinvent yourself at any point in life. Don’t remain stuck in one place and wondering what could have been or regretting not taking the chance.

4.)    Have a vision of where you’re going, BUT be nimble with the plan.  It is imperative to keep your focus and not to take your eye off the ball.  Eliminate distractions and don’t fall victim to ‘shiny object syndrome’.

5.)    Bet on your dreams. This one is pretty self explanatory.  Bet on yourself and go after your dreams, because no one else is going to do it for you.  You can’t outsource it, you can’t delegate it, you can’t hire anyone to do this for you. 

6.)    Think of yourself as a multi-faceted person (because you are) and remind yourself constantly, that – I am going to show up in the world the way I want to. Explore all the avenues you would like to go down. 

7.)    Inject joy, fun, surprise and meaning into the everyday.  Look inward and ask yourself what truly lights you up.  Be fuelled by passion and enjoyment – every day of your life.

8.)    Have a cheerleader by your side.  Candace had her husband, who told her that he believed wholeheartedly in her dream of opening a cupcake bakery even though people close to her as well as potential investors told her “This will never work.”  Find that special person who will say support your dreams with these simple words, “I believe in you.”

9.)    Don’t care what anyone else thinks about you or your decisions.  Listen to your gut and release yourself from the opinions of others.

10.) Learn to get back up when there are setbacks.  Dust yourself off and continue moving forward. This is an important part of the mindset piece – becoming resilient and confronting fear of failure.

11.) Don’t fall victim to imposter syndrome.  If you feel like a fraud or that you don’t belong ‘in the room’, this is what people refer to as ‘imposter syndrome’ and it holds many women back from going after what they truly want in life and business.  I believe we all suffer from it, and it doesn’t really go away, but we need to know how to deal with it when it arises.  Two things to keep in mind when you feel like an imposter:

-> Remember you are not alone in feeling this way.
-> Feel the fear and do it anyway.

These are two essential building blocks to confidence. When you are scared of something but go after it and achieve it, you build up your confidence situation by situation.
A quote be Candace Nelson, “Mindset is key and really is the jumping-off point to any sort of big goal.” And,  I couldn’t agree more.

I will end today’s show as I always do…
In case you haven’t heard it yet today, let me be the first one to tell you…

You are an amazing human being with so much potential.  I believe in you wholeheartedly.  Now, go out and show the world what you are made of.

I hope to have inspired you to grow.

Til next time,
Xoxo Lisa