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How Being YOU Is A Blissful Miracle Pill

You’ve got this in your hand right NOW!

Recently I’ve felt a bit “in demand,” my two words for a word I loathe …overwhelmed. Have you ever felt “in demand?” Actually, I’ve always felt that way to some degree. But I’m ready to be over it. Some things may change, others may not, but I’m still fabulous at what I do, have a passion for life, and I am, after all, Me.

That being said, my answer to getting over this feeling was to simply own it. If time was constantly going to be running ahead of me, I had to figure out a way to make life fulfilling enough that I could accept that there simply was too much of it for my little 24-hour day.

I sat myself down with paper and pen and started writing …what make me happy? Well, my hubby, doggies, and family for starters …not giving them up. YOU …assisting my clients to win at the game of life by handling finances proficiently. (Not giving that up either.) Food …clearly I have a talent for making great stuff with what’s on hand, and that’s my salve when life beats me up.

And then it clicked …I’m a holistic financial planner! Duh! Tell me something I don’t know.” I’ve been holding myself out as such since I first got licensed.

But now I actually get it! Have you ever had an “A-ha” moment when you realized what you’re striving to achieve you’ve already done? That’s what happened to me …I realized I’ve been doing what I love with passion and integrity for 16 years now, but I never allowed myself the pleasure of satisfaction; nothing was good enough. In my mind, I always had to improve.

Kaizen, a Japanese philosophy of constant improvement in business, has been my constant companion since childhood. Not that I knew I was practicing Kaizen, but that pressure to beat my best has always been with me. Even though I never considered myself a fierce competitor with others, I was ruthless with myself. I never met my own bar as I kept moving it out of my reach. Flashes of employee reviews where I could never attain the highest mark because my supervisor believed there was ALWAYS room for improvement so that mark could NEVER be rewarded come to mind. I always felt defeated after those reviews. Now I know it was simply a put down that fostered the WRONG belief that I would never be good enough.

Well, that stops NOW. This ridiculous pressure to top myself has back fired. It left me psychologically drained. It pissed off my hubby, family, and at times, associates. Most of all, I’m sure it disappointed God, my creator, the One who created me perfectly for my purpose.

So, from this day forward, I vow to share my God-given talents and passions with you. I’m a holistic planner. Holistic itself means relating to the system as a whole. In the context of financial planning, it means considering the mind and body in relation to money and finances. I’m stepping into that role completely, without reservation.silly

So what …right?

No. This IS a big deal, and that’s why I’m writing about it. I feel like I’ve lost 1,000 pounds. I’m free to share every nuance of my expertise with you so you can create the life YOU want too. I’m happy. No. I’m overjoyed!

From now on, I’ll be sharing blogs and creating more vlogs about the things that make life worth living, that relate to growing and building wealth. Remember, wealth isn’t just money it’s “the state of being rich.”

You may say, “Renée, you’ve been doing this all along.” And my response to that is, “I know it!” But the difference between today and yesterday, and every day before it, is that now I’ve jumped into the deep end of the pool, no more dipping in my toe or sticking to the shallow end.

So many of my coaches have shared their expertise with me and there are too many to name to thank now. But one does rise to the top. His voice has been in my head since we shared a precious 10 minutes on a break at CEO Space a few years ago. Greg Reid told me to Own it!. “Just own it, Renée! You know who you are. You know your expertise. You know your passion. Just own it and go out there and help people!”

And that’s the two cents I’m sharing with you this morning. Own your God-given talents, passion, and zest for life. That’s the key to peace, relaxation, and understanding in this world that flies full tilt. No longer will you feel like you have to hang on for dear life lest you fall off the tilt-a-whirl. Stand strong in your convictions of who you are—who God made you to be, because there is no better YOU!

I love you. I thank you for the gift of your trust, love, and support. And I look forward to continuing to show you how to be the money savvy man or woman God intended you to be. God bless!

And remember, it’s your money, your rules, your way!

Money Savvy Woman, Inc. © 2016

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Your Happiness & Overcome Fear of Success in 7 Powerful Steps

MaltzOne of my favorite mentors and coaches suggested I read Psycho-Cybernetics, by Maxwell Maltz. I’m a reader, so it wasn’t long before I got myself an audio version and started listening to it as I exercised. To cut to the chase, it may be the greatest recommendation she’s made to me. What I’ve learned, I simply have to share. It’s truly exciting stuff.

You know I’m all about mindset and having a wealthy mind, so this book, having originated before I was born, is a manifesto on self-image, self-empowerment, and success. It’s A-MA-ZINGLY simple. In fact, Dr. Maltz has an acronym of SUCCESS that truly spells out the basic steps and requirements, while all the while reminding us that we are all children of God and His plan for us is to prosper. What we believe about ourselves determines everything.

James Allen wrote “You are today where your thoughts brought you. You will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you.” Our habits of thought plant the seeds of success or failure. Here are the seeds to sow for SUCCESS according to Maxwell Maltz. I have found them to be true

direction-JeffYoungS = Sense of Direction. Keep your sense of direction. Set goals that keep you on track, not what others expect of you. Ask yourself what you want, what do you want to achieve, where do you want to go. Think of riding a bike… one cannot maintain their balance without moving ahead in the direction they steer the bike. Keep yourself focused on the future, acquire a nostalgia for the future. We are engineered as goal-seekers; keep your clearly defined targets in front of you.

U = Understanding. See the truth and accept it for what it is. When it comes to living as our real selves, living in truth can best be defined as choosing self-acceptance over self-rejection. He explains that when we “shoot the messenger,” even if it’s ourselves, we don’t want to admit to ourselves that we were wrong, mistaken, or have failed. Because we don’t understand or accept the truth, we lie to ourselves.

Sincerity is not telling ourselves rational lies. Who’s right doesn’t matter, but what’s right does matter. You are not your mistakes. Admit mistakes and errors, but don’t cry over them. Acknowledge them, learn from them, set them aside and move on without getting mired in them. Correct them and go forward.

C = Courage. Live courageously by strengthening your self-image. Be more assertive in asking for what you need or want. Bounce back from adversity. Bet on yourself. Take action. Try to see others’ points of view and consider their validity and worth.

Discover your options, pick the course with the most promise, and go for your goal. Take the risk of making a mistake. Modifying and amending–course correcting– as you go will keep you on track.

Be willing to make a few mistakes, suffer a little pain. Don’t sell yourself short. You don’t know how brave you really are. Caste your self-doubt aside and garner your self-reliance. Act boldly and with courage in the smaller, little things in life. When the big things call, you’re more prepared to respond boldly, yet appropriately.

C – Charity. Charity is symptomatic of people who are dealing with reality. Treating people with respect is charity as it isn’t instantly reciprocated. It isn’t transactional, but it can be our contribution to society.

Be kind when dealing with others. Offer them the respect we wish for ourselves. People are important and can’t be treated disrespectfully or simply as a means to our ends. When we begin to feel more charitable to others, we become more charitable to ourselves. Our own self-image improves when we start respecting others as unique, worthy and valuable individuals contributing to society, our society.

ForwardTake time to be considerate of others, to stop and think about what they must be feeling. Act as if other people are important and treat them as such.

E = Esteem. “It’s no use. I can’t do it.” is defeatism. The inner critic who holds a low opinion or low esteem of ourselves is the thief of happiness, self-esteem, self-acceptance, and peace of mind. We must be strong enough to chastise our inner critic especially when it begins to harp and belittle us. We must be able to say, “Stop!” And send it back to its dark corner properly chastised for doubting us.

S = Self-Confidence. Self-Confidence is the result of a series of successful experiences. Remember past successes and forget failures. It’s time we stop impressing failures into our brains, destroying our self-confidence.

We must be able to fail 99 times with the intention of succeeding once and not suffer emotionally in that process. Think of actors, writers, and sales people are faced with a ridiculous amount of rejection, however, they don’t take it personally, or own it as self-rejection. They develop a muscle of resiliency that keeps them in the game, keenly focused on their goals.

Successful personalities take failures, errors, and mistakes as ways of learning and then dismiss them. We need to call up feelings of past success and focus on those feelings to imprint confidence.

S = Self-Acceptance. Self-acceptance is accepting that God made each of us unique and in His own image, warts and all. When we change our self-image from a negative to positive outlook, we’ve opened the door to self-realization and self-actualization. Again, we are not our mistakes. It’s important to recognize them, overcome our ignorance, accept our weaknesses and imperfections of our real self, and move forward.

WomanBusinessFirst things first, accepting ourselves as we are and starting from there. Learn to accept our imperfections. We’re all perfectly imperfect. Differentiate your SELF and your behavior. Love yourself and nurture good behaviors. Focus on constant improvement in areas you can control.

When we keep a clear sense of direction, and remain steadfast in understanding the truth and reality of what is and where we are, and combine it with courage to take action and the charity to consider others’ opinions and feelings while holding our inner critic at bay, our experiences lead toward more self-confidence and self-acceptance, which in turn manifest as success.

It is my firm belief that any challenge is won or lost between our ears. I challenge you to practice these simple, yet powerful steps to success for 21 days, journaling as you go. Creating your own string of successful experiences will open the door to more happiness, less fear, and true self-respect.

Remember, it’s your money, your rules, your way!

Money Savvy Woman, Inc. © 2016

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Focus Change Celebrate Your Way to Success

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It’s been some time since I was able to post a blog to you. It isn’t that I didn’t want to, it’s that we were under attack and our website couldn’t safely be accessed. It’s exhilarating to be able to connect with you now, and we at MSW are very grateful for everyone who’s helped us get past this challenge.

We’re wrapping up February, which means we’re 1/6th of the way through the year already. Hard to believe, but yep, that’s the truth. Did you set goals for this year? How are you doing with them?

If you’re doing well, congratulations! Celebrate your success!

If you’re struggling, it’s time to recommit. Don’t let discouragement in the first 55 days of the year rob you of the rest of it!

Today’s blog is really me sharing with you my progress and how I’ve managed my intentions and actions around my priority goal for 2016: to get all my health markers within a normal range. The motivation behind this goal is I don’t want to take medication because of my bozo tendencies to over indulge. (Are you with me? What’s your motivation?) I must say, I seriously buckled down this time and made some significant changes. “Yay, me!” And like I’ve said so many times before, if I can do it, you can do it too!

Success doesn’t come from mindlessly doing the same thing over and over again because it worked once upon a time. It comes from keeping our eye on the ball and making daily improvements, no matter how large or small. Giving yourself the chance to make gradual improvements every day is what makes all the difference to your success.

What follows is a brief accounting of the steps I took, and continue to take, to realize this goal. And if you’re on the same journey as me, let me know and we can support each other in our joint efforts.

The first change I committed to was my eating. I knew my blood sugar and cholesterol levels were my main challenges and my eating habits weren’t helping matters. What my body needed was a chance to release some extra baggage and regain its balance so it could return to its own brand of self-healing and repair. (What one move can set up a firm foundation for you to build on?)

I set out to find an eating regime that was more of a lifestyle, easy, yet healthy. I found it in Dr. Alberto Villoldo’s book, One Spirit Medicine. There, I learned his method of regaining health and committed to it for a six-week time period.

I adopted a new way of looking at my food, fuel, and energy levels. I saw real improvement in just a few days which bolstered my motivation. But, getting my body to stabilize at normal levels after decades of poor eating was a MAJOR CHALLENGE and was going to take more effort and commitment, as I soon found out.

I added an exercise regime with my sister, and what a difference that made! I highly recommend getting a  buddy, one that you like and can talk to—it makes it so much easier to stay committed and get out of bed at o’Dark30 to do what you need to do.

And the rewards? For me, instantaneous! I got to chat with my sister and launch into my day feeling her love and support. I also got to support her and her commitment to her goals. For me, those walking talks created a shower of blessings throughout the day when temptation erupted and helped to keep my resolve firm.

The last thing I committed to was a sleep routine. I think this one was the hardest. Creating an environment for sleep and then a routine to induce it naturally took some time. Now I look forward to it. (About sleep deprivation, read Arianna Huffington’s book, Thrive, to learn about the consequences of withholding sleep.)

As you can tell, I’m committed to making some pretty big changes over here, and I’m very proud of my results. In fact, I’d celebrate my little wins often by literally closing my eyes, envisioning fireworks, and doing a happy dance.

By acknowledging my efforts, I’d gain more momentum to carry me into the next day. I know it sounds silly, but it worked for me. Maybe it has something to do with keeping our inner children engaged, or who knows? I just know I’m changing from the inside out and I loving it!

And just so you know that I know it’s not all a bed of roses, I’ve been down with allergies run amuck. Sure, it’s discouraging, but again, I decided to do something different than what I’ve done in the past… I’d stretch instead of doing my walk.

Did you start the New Year with a conviction of some sort, if not to improve your health, then something else? How’s it going so far?

022416_2240_FocusChange2.jpgDon’t underestimate your power to change. You are the master of your mind and your destiny. Choose what you want to put your efforts behind and commit to it. Commit to simply doing at least one thing all day. It only takes 21 days to start a new habit. Set yourself up to succeed! Then celebrate your successes and get a better game plan around what didn’t work so well for tomorrow.

Success is a journey no matter what you’re pursuing. Courage, faith, action, hope, persistence, determination …all lead toward your success. Whether the goal be about your health, wealth, or relationships, you’re going to have to do something different or else you’ll get the same thing you’ve already gotten. You’re going to have to change.

You can do it! I believe in you!

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3 Steps to Take Now To Put Yourself First Without Guilt


I know! Yes! It can be done …and you’ll see how it makes sense once I explain myself.

First, when I say “selfish,” I’m talking about the resistance to take care of ourselves FIRST because we feel it’s a selfish move. However, nothing could be further from the truth.

When I look at all the biblical references about money, they all point to the responsible management of it leading to an accumulation of wealth. And at that point, we are charged as God-loving people, to do what is responsible and right.

Now that last phrase means different things in difference cultures, and I want to be TOTALLY respectful of that. But truthfully, the Lord does not expect us to suffer from lack. He intends for us to prosper. Read more

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The Power of the Time-Out

TRUE CONFESSIONS! Years ago, when I was fresh out of college, I had difficulty controlling my fear, anxiety, and anger. And when it came to feeling anger, I’d made some pretty stupid choices and knew I needed to get some help. Fortunately for me, someone was kind enough to share the “practice the pause” method of staying calm, cool, and collected. I’ve used this tactic for decades and it’s a great way to control negative emotions that can steal our joy, happiness, and contentment.

The steps taught to me were simple, easy to remember, and I put them into practice immediately. In fact, I never looked back. The more I used it, it became easier and easier to stop …take a breath, and continue without even getting angry, let alone, losing my temper.

But, it’s true power was revealed while at the deathbed of my first husband. The feelings of loss and sadness bubbled up. Instinctively, I asked myself, “What is really going on here?” And in a moment, it all rushed in …”Richard is finally in heaven, whole, happy, without pain or struggle. He’d never have to stick himself again with a needle!” My mind raced with all the good that had actually happened in the last five seconds. And then it hit me, “what if he’s on the ceiling looking down on me and my friend before he leaves us?” And that was it. I knew those moments would be gone for forever. I thanked him for our marriage, and for my step daughters. I promised to love and care for them as best I could. And asked him to say, “Hi!” to those I’d already lost here on earth, but were up there in Heaven. As crazy as all this sounds, the specialness and rareness of those moments impacted me as one of the greatest blessings of my life.

I began to pause when the feeling struck me that what was happening in the immediate present was important, impactful, and something I didn’t want to forget. Practicing the pause in this way has made my life feel richer, more balanced, and calm.

It wasn’t until recently when I saw a post on Facebook saying, “Practice the Pause,” that I felt compelled to share my gratitude for this simple practice.

To practice the pause to control negativity, simply follow these steps:

  1. STOP yourself long enough to get still. Stop moving (step into a restroom if you must). Stop thinking.
  2. BREATHE deeply for five or six breaths to calm, center, and ground yourself.
  3. ASK yourself, “What’s really happening here?” This is a good time to pray, “Lord, help me to see with clarity what is really happening here.” Then, pause to objectively look at the scene as an observer.
  4. ASSESS the situation and draw your conclusions.
  5. TAKE action to move ahead (or at least get out of the bathroom!) while praising God for fast answers to prayer, keeping you calm, and bolstering your mood.

However, there’s a flipside to this little method. You can do so much more with it when you use it to enjoy where you are. Anytime while taking a break, practice the pause. It’s slightly different, but much the same.

  1. STOP yourself long enough to get still. Stop moving. Stop thinking.
  2. BREATHE deeply for five or six breaths to calm, center, and ground yourself.
  3. ASK yourself, “What gifts are right in front of me?” This is where you can pray, “Lord, help me to see with clarity what gifts I’m taking for granted.”
  4. ASSESS what you can be grateful for.
  5. GIVE THANKS and praise God for all He’s granted you.

You’ll find more beauty, grace, and joy in the world when you practice the pause. It gives you the opportunity to respond vs. react, to be fully present vs. blindly moving through life missing some of the greatest stuff.

Anger, amongst other emotions, can be a real downer, not only for the one feeling angry, but for those surrounding, near, or next to them. But it doesn’t have to be that way. There are so many options available, ranging from highly focused, individual therapy to self-help books. My personal favorite that I’ve found to help many friends and clients is The Anger Workout Book (btw, that’s a link to buy the workbook if learning to control your anger is something you need to do. If you decide to purchase it, I get a few cents. Just sayin’).

Take control of your emotions by practicing the pause and giving yourself the time and space to acknowledge and address, with clarity, what your response should be.

You can do it. I believe in you!

Money Savvy Woman, Inc. © 2015