Quit your - Bellyaching, Already!! 
(I'd never say what you thought...at least I wouldn't write it!)

Earlier this month I was in NYC, and I witnessed something fascinating.  On Monday, I was overlooking Central Park.  Coming from Chicago, where spring had barely shown itself at all, the park looked similar...dormant...until I walked through it later that morning.  Spring was actually a little further along with the daffodils and many other flowers already in full bloom.  However, the trees still looked bare.  Every morning, I looked over the park and every day I walked through the park.  By Wednesday, when I looked out the window, the trees had budded and many were in bloom.  What I found so strange was that in only 48 hours, I felt like spring had sprung...right before my very eyes!

I share this story because our own lives are very similar to the life of Central Park, and nature, in general. 

Some opportunities in our life seem to grow naturally and quite quickly, like indigenous plants.  Some things

in our life we work for by watering and fertilizing, for example…we cultivate relationships at the office and

work hard to receive the promotion.  And some things we want, but we feel, for whatever reason,

it is absolutely impossible for these things to ‘grow’ in our life. 


Many of us ask the question, "...but, how do I cultivate these seemingly impossible things?"  Great question!  Let's break it down...beginning with setting the foundation to cultivating what you want to grow in your life.
 
1)  Be Specific
For many of us, the main thing that gets in our way of 'growing' something in our life is that we don't know exactly what we want.  To keep my nature metaphor going...it's like standing over a parcel of land and wanting a garden.  But specificity is key.  Do you want tomatoes? Zucchini? Perhaps you don't want a vegetable garden at all, and you want a garden of wild flowers. Get as specific as you can.
 
2)  Understand Why
You may have never wanted a garden before, so why do you want it now?  Uncover your feelings of why you want it, as well.  What will you feel when you have this garden?  Healthy eating more vegetables? Accomplished that you worked hard to cultivate this garden to full growth?  Happy that you spent more time outside over the summer? Save money by growing own vegetables.
 
3)  Re-evaluate...over and over again
In order for our 'want' to grow, we must evaluate and re-evaluate over and over again...and checking in with ourselves, incorporating our personal perspective,  values and beliefs.  Maybe your perspective is that growing pumpkins is easy, so that's what you plant.  But you don't even like pumpkins, pumpkin pie, pumpkin soup, pumpkin bread, nor the seeds, nor carving them at Halloween!  So, although it might sound good in the beginning because it may be 'easy,' a pumpkin garden wasn't what you wanted.  By re-evaluating often, you can change direction, if needed. 
 
Now that you've tilled your soil and have your foundation, let's move into some strategies: 



1) Create New Habits
Create new habits that support your vision.  When things in our life aren't working out as we hoped, we fall into old  habits because uncertainty creeps in.  'I've never been able to keep a house plant alive, what makes me think I can grow a garden.'  So, it's easy to just give up.  Keep the faith.  If this is what you truly want, create new habits to support your garden.  Water every other day, fertilize once a week...you get the jist.  
 
2) Believe
If you think something is impossible, then it's going to be impossible.  Period!  But this is your old way of thinking.  Time to try a new way.  This is a skill to be honed...learning to truly believe it is possible.  You also want to learn to believe in your self.  (there's so much more to this, but I don't want to write a manifesto!!  Call me, I'll coach you through this process!)
 
3) Create a Bridge
To get from where you are to where you want to be, create a bridge.  You don't have to jump off blindly into the great unknown.  Look at your resources...who can you call upon for support?  Who has created a successful garden that you can talk to, etc.? 
 
4)  Baby Steps
We can't do it all overnight.  Although it looked like the park bloomed within days, the trunks, branches and roots of the trees and plants have been preparing themselves to bloom for some time. So, if you want your garden to grow, it's time to take action.  What's (at least) one thing you can do today to get your garden started?
 
5) Continue to Take Action
Each day, continue to ask yourself, what's one thing I can do today to cultivate my garden? And then DO IT!!
 
6) Patience Young Grasshopper!
Oftentimes, our timing isn't the same as the timing of whatever we are cultivating.  Some things take time.  Be patient and don't give up because it's not happening as fast as you want.  Like nature, things take time to grow.
 
7) Expect the Unexpected

Your garden might not necessarily look like you originally imagined.  Be open to that.  What does grow might surprise and delight you.
 
So, what do you want to cultivate? A promotion? Financial security?  New job? Love? Less stress? More fun? Better health?  What are you waiting for?
 
Quit your b#@*^%ing and do something!  Making excuses will not grow your garden.  The time is now to spring into action!  You might be surprised how quickly something can grow, but, you'll never know unless you try!
 
Here’s to you, growing your blissful garden!




Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.  

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Who Are You?
May 1, 2014, 2014 at 7:20 PM
Originally posted March 26, 2014


You're DEAD to Me!!


Fifteen days into the new year.  How many resolutions have you already broken?
 
Last month on HOLY SHIFT! we discussed preparing for the new year and how to truly set yourself up for success. But how do we really do that?  If you have had the same resolutions every January and have not yet been successful, or if there is something you want in your life that is eluding you, then read on!
 
I received many calls and emails regarding the 12/15 show, especially regarding our first tip to success in 2015, so I wanted to continue the conversation. 
 
But, let's start at the very beginning...a very good place to start. (For those of you singing here...I Love You!!)
 
Let's first define success.  It's a bit of a slippery word because many of us see it very black and white..It's either success or failure. No gray area. 
 
According to Webster, success is defined as:
1) the accomplishment of an aim or purpose
2) the attainment of popularity or profit
3) a person or thing that achieves desired aims or attains prosperity
 
That's all fine and dandy, but what really matters is how YOU define success. Say it's a year from now and you are reflecting on your accomplishments of 2015.  What would have happened for you to believe you had a 'successful' year?  Think about it and be specific.  In addition, allow for a gray area.  If you tried something new, that is a success, whether or not you mastered may be irrelevant. 
 
That brings us to the First Tip of your Fab, Fun and Fierce '15! 
 
1) Let it Die!
 
This triggered all the calls I received. It sounds harsh, and it is!  But this is what we want to do before we can begin to move forward in the new year.  Dying can be perceived  as a big loss, and it might very well be.  But it also allows you to release the excess weight, baggage, all the stuff that's sucking your energy in unproductive ways.  Energy that, if used to help move you forward instead, could be just the thing to make this year different.  What do you choose to NOT bring with you into 2015?
 
Perhaps you're holding on to an old relationship.  You may not even want this person in your life, but your thoughts

are still full of memories, regrets, conversations, etc. You may still look at their Facebook page just to get a glimpse

into their lives. It's understandable to do that, no judgment here. However, this is energy being used up with no ROI! 

This energy is also holding onto space that, if you were to let it die, would make room for someone new to come into

your life.  I'm specifically using the word die because it's more permanent than letting it go.

(Feel free to insert singing here!)
 
Here's another example...as many of you know, I spent over 15 years as a jazz vocalist and band leader.  Over the

past several years, I have moved out of that part of my life, but, I still had my website. I hadn't updated it in over 5 years,

but I was still paying for it.  Now, it wasn’t that much money yearly, but it was something keeping me tied to my past. 

A past I loved very much, so it’s not necessarily only letting things die that might be causing you pain.  It was simply

taking up space in my life for no good reason. I also still had every hard paper file for every gig I did those 15 years. 

Yeah, that’s a lot of files!  Why am I giving space, physically, mentally, emotionally, etc., when they no longer serve a

purpose?
 
WHY?  What was I afraid of to let these files and the website go?  It may have been because it was such a huge part

of my life, but it was time to ‘let it die.’  Truth be told, I had a friend of mine (Thanks Dee!) pdf my website pages so I have them to show my great grand nieces and nephews, or to peruse myself when I’m old and gray..well, older and grayer!  But, bottom line, I chose to create space for something new. And I wanted the file space!

Perhaps you are holding on to anger or regret?  How do you think you would feel differently if you let THAT die?  Seriously, folks, this can be a powerful exercise!  

To learn additional steps to move you forward in reaching your potential in 2015, click here to listen.
 
If you are already struggling with not sticking to your resolutions, or if you don't even like the thought of having any as they make you feel like a failure, here's something else you can try.  Pick a theme for 2015.  Identify what it is you want that is truly important to you.  Possible themes...love, peace, accountability, purpose, strength, fun, creativity, wisdom, and the list can go on and on.  As you make decisions throughout the year, you can simply come back to your theme and decide how is this decision supporting your theme? We broke this concept down on our 1/5/15 HOLY SHIFT! show if you want more explanation.
 
Where do you want your life (your health, your relationships, your financial and/or work situation, etc.) to be a year from now?  You CAN make it happen!     
 
Here’s to your blissful Fab, Fun and Fierce '15!





Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2015
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Merry & Bright or Harried and Fright
May 12, 2015, 2015 at 8:38 PM
Originally posted 12/14/14


Sempre Felice! Capisce?

Five years ago, almost to the day, I traveled with my mom and dad, my 4 siblings and their spouses to Italy.  My dad was taking us to see the Picchietti family home in Modena where his father grew up.
 
I had traveled quite a lot over the years, but this was my first time in Italy. 

It was weird how comfortable I felt there, even not knowing the language (except for my 'Italian for Dummies'

phrase book!) I truly felt like I 'was home with my people.' I am 100% Italian so I supposed that makes sense! 

In those 5 years, I experienced great loss and great strides.  My sweet beagle Bella passed in May. My father passed in September, exactly a year after our trip.  My best friend from college past away that following January.  I was ending a 17 year marriage. I was suffocating under a mound of debt.  Also in those 5 years, I completed my year-long life coach certification with iPEC. I moved from a staff job with Chicago Jazz Philharmonic to the Board of Directors, while starting my own coaching practice.  I became a coach trainer for iPEC.  I chipped away at the debt becoming debt-free (except for my house) in 2.5 years.  I severed relationships that were no longer serving me. I built relationships that were inspiring, fun and fueling.  I was now at the cause of my life (no longer at the affect of it!), having clarity of what I wanted and achieving it.
 
I just returned from spending nearly a month traveling through Italy.  Something that although I set the intention for 5 years earlier, honestly wondered how it would be possible. Even after I booked the trip, it didn't seem real.
 
Three of my dear friends joined me on this adventure, or avventura, if you will. ;)  But it was so much more than a trip to Italy.  I was overwhelmed with gratitude that my life had changed so much that I could even take this trip.  I was overwhelmed with gratefulness that I had friends that would take the time and spend the money to do this with me.  I felt my dad with me there, often, as we made friends at every turn. Everyone looked like a relative. 


(Yes, this is a selfie with nuns!! They were adorable!)
 
Although my actual birthday was in February, my friends, especially Megan, wanted us

to celebrate every day, and we did!  We had Italians and tourists wishing me Buon

Compleanno (Happy Birthday) and singing Tanti Auguri, which means, "Many Good

Wishes," throughout the country.  We met wonderful people along the way and

bottom-line, it was extremely joyful.

Welcome to my - Mid-Life Crisis!


When I turned 40, my life was pretty awesome.  I was singing full time and making a good living.  I was touring and recording and working with some of the best jazz  musicians, not only in Chicago, but from coast to coast.  I was even setting up my first tour in Japan.  I was married, had a dog, owned a home, and had wonderful family and friends.  But as my birthday approached, I was not embracing it.  I didn't want a party, (and I LOVE celebrating my birthday) I just wanted it to quietly pass. 
I couldn't figure out what was wrong.  I should have been happy and fulfilled. I should have been embracing all that I was grateful for in my life.  I should have wanted to celebrate.  Yep, I was should-ing all over myself!! (Say that out-loud quickly and insert giggle here!)
Some friends put together a last minute gathering, which was so kind of them.  But as I looked around, it was a random group that made me feel even less connected.  What was wrong with me?  I was a happy person, but something was missing and I couldn't figure it out.  I wasn't unhappy or sad, but I was not fully content.  I just chalked it up to the fact that I was having a mid-life crisis.  This feeling went on for several years.  I don't think anyone noticed (if they did, no one ever said anything!) and I never talked about it because I wasn't even sure how to articulate it. 
In 2008, I took a risk (because it was so far out of my comfort zone) and began working as a teaching artist forChicago Jazz Philharmonic.  I couldn't believe how much I loved it.  I loved working with the students and I truly believed in the mission of the organization.  The following year I took a staff position.  I felt a purpose I hadn't felt in a really long time.  I loved everything about the job and the people with whom I worked.  It was like the Universe wrote a job description of everything I loved to do and just handed it to me on a platter.  I was overflowing with gratitude.  I would even find myself just smiling for no reason when I was doing simple tasks like doing the dishes. 
I was fully engaged at work but not so much at home.  I was dealing with some stressors: a couple of rental properties in the city that were sucking my time, energy and money;  struggling a bit financially after the crash; and my husbands drinking was pretty prevalent.  None of these things were out of control or too terrible. You know, it's just life stuff.  Yet, I still felt like there was a part of me that I was losing and/or missing.
I was unclear what this even meant.  I was unclear on what I wanted.  But I knew I wanted more.  And that just made me feel guilty for wanting more when I was already blessed with so much.  Not everything can be perfect, right?  Who was I to want more?
I was faced with some choices.  They were the same choices I had been facing for years, but I finally realized it was time to stop making choices out of fear.  It would only be then, that I would get different results.  
So, in 2010, my husband and I chose to end our 17 year marriage.  And even though I was incredibly fearful of what would happen to me, what would happen to him, what would people think, how could I support myself on a non-profit salary, etc., this was the first time in a long time that I was extremely hopeful. I was choosing change. (YIKES!  Change...who wants that? I did!)
It was through my year-long coaching certification process  at iPEC (the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching) that I began to truly understand more of myself and uncover not only what I wanted, but who I wanted to be.    
If you've read this far, you may be wondering why the heck I'm even sharing all of this personal information with you!  It's because I don't believe I was having a mid-life crisis.  I believe I was having a mid-life awakening.  And, I believe many of us are having them!!  But we judge it and ourselves and don't know how to navigate through it alone. We just wait and hope something magically changes.  I easily spent a decade with these feelings of unfulfillment and guilt, if only in one area of my life. But this energy was holding me back from my full potential.
It is now exactly 10 years later since that fated 40th party.  Yep, his past Sunday, I turned 50 years old!  This is the first time I am sharing my real age! (I spent the better part of 8 years at 39!)   And ya know what, I feel great about it!  Because now I am very clear about who I am, who I choose to be, and what I want out of my life.   
If you find yourself asking any of the following questions...

Is this all there is?

Is this what I want to be doing?

What is my greater purpose?

Why am I not content with my life/work?

Why am I not happier and more engaged in my life?

Why am I not more inspired at work?

How did I get here?

Who do I think I am to want more?

Why do I feel like I'm struggling?

Why am I not having more fun?

What do I want to be when I grow up?

or feeling...
Blah
Disengaged
Disconnected
Isolated
Unfulfilled
Alone (even with people around you)
Unsure of what to do
Worried about what others will think
Guilty for wanting more out of life
Wanting to make some sort of change (big or small)
know that you are not alone!!  Know that it's perfectly normal to be having those thoughts and feelings at any age.  And know that you can choose to hop on the path to your mid-life awakening at any time.  It can be scary, and it is wonderful.  But you don't have to navigate it alone! Contact me, contact another coach, contact a therapist, but contact someone!  Let us help you uncover what it is you want right now...big or small.  Don't wait until it feels unmanageable or you become miserable.  Because quite frankly, WHAT are you waiting for?
Although I'm still on my own awakening journey, I can tell you with 100% certainty, this path is sunnier, easier and way more fun to be on!  Join me, won't you?  


Here’s to your blissful awakening at any age!!




Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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You're Dead to Me!!
May 12, 2015, 2015 at 8:40 PM
Originally posted on January 16, 2015

I LOVE Traffic?


If you know anything about me, you know that traffic makes me crazy!  But as I continue on my own personal growth journey, (seriously, does it ever end?) I am actually beginning to embrace traffic with an entirely new perspective.
 
I'm fascinated by looking at google maps to see where traffic is located whenever I get in the car.  (Of course, not while I'm driving!)  It shows the little yellow dots for slowing traffic and the red dots for when traffic is really backed up.  What I find interesting, is that oftentimes, it's heavy traffic...heavy traffic...heavy traffic...and then, as if magic, it completely opens up.
 
How can this be?  I understand when there's an accident or construction that 'blocks' our way, but how can it ever just be NOTHING!
 
This is a perfect metaphor for our lives.  I think back in my own life where I had some big time congestion and back up and things felt like they weren't even moving.  I couldn't get any traction with what I wanted out of life.  When we are in this place, we just want to get out of the car and walk away.  And that is absolutely normal to want to say, 'I'm done!'
 
But what we don't realize is that just up ahead could be the break in traffic we've been waiting for

and where it opens up allowing us to move forward with speed and ease. That's why it's imperative

for us to continue moving forward with an open attitude even if we feel like it's at a snails pace,

because at any minute, it could be smooth sailing.



Of course, there may be detours now and then, but when we're open, we see possibilities we wouldn't have seen on our original path.  When we have faith that we're right where we're supposed be, and yes, things do happen for a reason, (even the crappy stuff!) it's a little easier to take a deep breath when we feel stuck.  Then we can more easily be creative with this time.
 
But what about when we're stuck and there isn't anything actually blocking us!  Hmmm...we are so brilliant at creating blocks for ourselves. That's when we want to take a deeper look into why we are holding ourselves back, playing small, and not shining our light. 
 
Ask yourself, What am I learning here? What opportunities are being stuck (in traffic and in life) offering me?  How might I be getting in my own way of moving forward? (Hello fear!)
 
Certainly feeling stuck and blocked can be extremely uncomfortable.  But when we're speeding through our life, we might be missing golden opportunities that help us stretch out of our comfort zone, see a new perspective and get the heck out of our own way.  We can choose to NOT have an awful and stressful experience as we sit and wait for the path to clear.  Or we can choose to embrace the uncomfortableness.  Also, keep in mind that when we speed through life, we may reach our destination and wonder, what am I doing here? (Hello mid-life awakening!)
 
How do we find the balance?  When do we know to sit back and 'wait' for something for happen? When do we speed through life as fast as we can?  When do we take action and push for what we want?  And when do we choose to move forward in other ways?
 
Think about the places in your own life where you feel like you are stuck in traffic.  It could be your health, a relationship, finances, job.  Maybe you feel like you're not really having any fun in your life right now.  Anything.
 
Wherever you're feeling stuck, what would it take for you to get a birds-eye perspective?   Just like Siri showing you traffic, knowing that it's going to break up just ahead, or knowing you want to take action with a detour, What would you be doing differently and how might you BE different?  
 
If you're feeling stuck somewhere in your life, only you are in the drivers seat to decide.  But decide with purpose and passion. 
 
What is it you want...really want? 
 
How is what you are doing getting you what you want? 
 
What's getting in your way?
 
How willing are you do look at different perspectives and try something different? 
 
Sometimes we're too close to it to see the possibilities.  Try something different.  Really examine inside what you perceive to be holding you back. Hire a coach to help you navigate through the traffic!  Whatever you decide, move something forward...anything.  Think creatively.  If it's what you REALLY want, anything is possible!
 
Here’s to your next blissful traffic jam! 




Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2015
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________
 
Old Habits Die Hard...How true is that, really?
November 5, 2015 at 7:41 PM
Originally posted July 10, 2015

So, let me ask again...what scares you?

Here are 3 questions you can ask yourself to begin to uncover some of your fears:
 
1) What do I want...really? 
2) What's keeping me from taking action to achieve what I want? (By the way,

you can blame this on everything and everyone outside of yourself, but, spoiler alert...

you are the only one holding yourself back!) 
3) If I moved forward toward something, what's the worst that can happen? 
Having some clarity about what you want and the understanding of what's the worst that can happen, leaves you with 1 final question...What do you want to do? 
Do you want to move forward despite the fear of failing or looking stupid? Do you want to stay right where you are now and play it safe? Do you want someone to answer the question for you? There's no right or wrong answer here. It's just what do YOU want to do? 
Last October, in 2014, I held the Fearless Fall 31-Day Challenge (or opportunity, as I called it!!). Every single day in October, I faced some sort of fear, big and small.  It was an extremely interesting exercise. It forced me to look at those things I wanted and what was really getting in my way.  What would you if you took on this opportunity for yourself? 
What have you wanted in your life that you are currently not achieving? Less stress? A new job? More time for yourself? Once you identify the fear that's holding you back, it's your choice what to do next. 
Here's to uncovering, saying hello to and blissfully facing your fears!!
Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 




© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2015
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________
 

Sempre Felice!
November 5, 2015 at 7:43 PM
Originally posted September 30, 2015

Top 5 Reasons to Ditch Your New Years Resolutions!


5.    You're already anxious about failing...again!

It's too much pressure.  There's enough pressure in your life and now you've intentionally added more.  And it's winter, tons of snow and cold (for most of us!), so you might as well give up now, cause you just shoveled for 3 hours...you deserve to eat the leftover Christmas cookies.

4.    Cause it's the same one you've had for 10 years!

Yep, habit.  Did  you know that 80% of our behavior is habit?  Of course, you would think you're supposed to (fill in your resolution here), so every January 1st, you put it on your list.  But why?  If it's made the list for over a decade and you haven't had success, what's going to be different this time?  You just go with the same ole same ole.  You want to work out more...and by January 15th, you're back to being the best coach potato you can be!  You've made it through the last decade returning to old behaviors, so why even really try.

 3.   You have no Support and Accountability

You could have the best of intentions to meet your New Years goals, but it's important to have a support group. If your goal is to stop eating fast food and your spouse comes home every night with a huge bag of Big Mac's and Fries, it makes sticking to your goals much more difficult.  At the same time, maybe you didn't even share your goal with your spouse, cause then he or she might hold you accountable.  Damn straight!  You are WAY more likely to stick to it, if you have an accountability partner and if those closest to you know your goal so they can also support you!  You want to keep you office organized?  Tell a co-worker to stop in your office every Friday at 4pm to keep you on track!  Sure, it's scary to say out loud, I want to XYZ this year, because then if you fail, they will know about it.  But having someone in your corner will boost your success rate.

2.    It's unclear

Resolutions are often too broad.  I am going to eat healthy!  But as soon as you eat one cookie, or perhaps one entire package of cookies, you have now failed.  Be as specific as you can.  I will eat fish 3 times a week.  I choose to go to the gym 2 times a week.  Don't set going to the gym 5 times a week when you haven't been there in 10 years.  It's unrealistic and you're setting yourself up for failure.  The more clear the better...I will organize one closet per quarter,  I will take 2 professional development courses to learn new skills to help move me toward my promotion.  Be specific and make it reasonable.  (Yes, set S.M.A.R.T. Goals!)

1.    You don't really want it

Perhaps it's your significant other that wants you to stop smoking or start working out, but deep down, you don't really want to.  We often take on someone else's resolution as our own, but we have no buy-in.  Therefore, it's extremely unlikely we will accomplish it.

Want to get deeper into the why you should ditch your resolutions and also how to set and achieve new goals?  Tune in as fellow master coach and trainer, Barb Heenan, joins me for our new radio show, HOLY SHIFT! TM.  Join us every 1st and 3rd Monday at 1pm CST on International Life Coach Radio.  Next week we'll shed light on the Uh-Oh, Ahhh, Sshhhh, Meh and Ugh Factors that are keeping you from achieving your goals!!!  We'd love to hear about your craziest resolutions!  Call-in at 347-637-1960, there may be prizes!

So...what do YOU really want and what are willing to change to get it?

Here's to discovering your bliss in 2014!







Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com

© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. 
Comfort and Joy? Not THIS time of year!
February 25, 2014, 2014 at 8:51 PM
(originally posted 12/17/13)



What would you do if you were not afraid?



Oh, the possibilities!  Seriously, I want you to really mull this over.  What would you do if you were not afraid?
Asking myself this very question changed the trajectory of my own life back in 2010, so I know the power of this question first hand.
Since October is the month of all things fearful, I think it makes it the perfect month for...Drum roll please...the FearLESS Fall 31-Day Challenge Opportunity!
Here are the rules:

Every single day in October you will face a fear, big or small. It could be signing up for a dance class

where you fear you will look ridiculous.  It could be attending a new networking event.  Maybe it's

speaking with your boss on a new initiative you've created.  Perhaps it's trying the new style of wearing

mixed patterns!(I'm not gonna lie...this is a big one for me!!) It doesn't matter what it is, just do it. 

Face that Fear head on.  If it's really paralyzing you, ask yourself, what's the worse that can happen? 

Even if you start small, it will begin to build momentum and your confidence that anything is possible...

which it IS, by the way!  


That's it. Just one rule!  Now, I would love to hear about your FearLESS Journey.  So feel free (and fearless) to email me or join in the conversation on my Facebook page. 
And, because it's important to me to never ask of someone what I'm not willing to do myself, I, too, will be

stepping into my own FearLESS Journey, which I will share on Facebook throughout the month. 
What could possibly happen if you spent 31 days in Courage!  ANYTHING!
If you truly feel paralyzed by fear, then call me and let's work together to break through what's holding you back!


You can also join in my October 22nd HOLY SHIFT! workshop.  Details are below.
Here's to FEARLESSLY discovering your bliss!





Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. 

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Not Feeling Well? It's Your Own Darn Fault!
October 2, 2014, 2014 at 12:22 AM
Originally Posted September 5, 2014

So, I ask to you...what are you planting? 


Be aware of those seeds you are inadvertently planting.  We actually have that power to choose what we plant and here are 2 simple ways to get you started:
  
1) Watch your thoughts
When we spend time thinking about what we don't want, we create more of it.  Crazy, right?  If you want less debt, stop thinking about the debt.  Think about living in abundance and that is the seed you will be planting.  If you think about being alone because you can't meet someone, begin to think that someone is out there waiting to adore you.  If you hate you job, stop thinking about it.  Think about what you want!!
 
Sure it may sound ridiculous, but what have you got to lose?  Try it.  And tell me how it goes.  Our thoughts are creating our reality. If your reality isn't what you want it to be, what are you thinking about?
 
______________________________________
 
Watch Your Thoughts, They Become Words.

Watch Your Words, They Become Actions.

Watch Your Actions, They Become Habits. 

Watch Your Habits,
They Become Your Character. 

Watch Your Character,
It Becomes Your Destiny.

 
______________________________________


2)  Watch your words
Your words are simply your thoughts with more energy behind them, so begin to take notice.  If you are saying you will never get out of your debt, you never will.  If you say you are a flake, you will be sending that message to yourself and experiencing more flaky behavior.    If you tell yourself you will never find another job, I think you already know the answer!  If you continually say you are sick, tired, lonely, stupid, etc., that's what you're planting!!
 
That's it.  Watch your thoughts and your words and begin to choose differently.  That is the only thing you can control.  I can't tell you enough the power behind this.  Your life can look very different by summer if you begin to start planting now.  So, what are you going to plant?
 
 
As you look for opportunities to learn to 'plant' differently, I'm calling all women to join me at Beauty, Brains and Brawn, a networking and learning event where we will discuss how to spring clean your mind, body, soul and finances!!  And for men and women, I will be hosting a 2-part workshop, Uncovering Your Bliss, in June at Tumbledown Farm.  Please see the information to the right and click there to register!
 
 
Here’s to your blissful and bountiful seeding of all that you desire!  Happy planting!






Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
Say YES!!
May 12, 2015, 2015 at 8:48 PM
Originally posted March 31, 2015

It was an incredibly hot and crowded train ride on our 2nd to last day where the message became clear to me. 


The train was full of high-school aged kids in early afternoon.  It was so hot, we were sweaty, standing with our collective 400 pounds of luggage, and feeling a little bit claustrophobic.  Wanting a diversion, I asked a group of kids standing next to us (in my brilliant Italian! Of course, I'm kidding!) why they weren't in school?  We ended up chatting with this delightful group of kids for an hour.  They were adorable.  We were laughing and helping each other with language, and singing.  It was quite a moment.  I had said to them that they were very happy in Italian...'molto felice.'  And this girl looked at me with a warm smile and simply said, 'sempre.'  Which means always.  Sempre felice.  Always happy. On a hot and steamy train that was about an hour late and kept stopping...sempre felice. 
 
I giggled to myself thinking that it was a choice.  What I share with my clients, my students, the voice in my own head...it's a choice. And I choose sempre felice!  Is it that easy?  Is that why I was so comfortable for nearly a month, making friends wherever we went? I thought this was a trait of my immediate family.  We call it having good verve.  But it would certainly make sense that it goes all the way back to my ancestors.  














(September 2015, Italy Train Ride. FYI - I'm Mina!)
 
People often ask what is the key to happiness or to sempre felice.  And well...it is a choice.

Not to say it's always easy, but it can be.  Take a look at what's getting in your way of sempre felice. 

You can choose to complain and moan and sweat on the train, or you can choose to make new friends and spread some joy.  What you get in return is priceless! 
 
Here's to your Sempre Felice!




Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com


© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2015
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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I LOVE Traffic!!
November 5, 2015 at 7:41 PM
Originally posted August 20, 2015​

Energy Flows where Attention Goes

Move Over! Get Out of My Way! Step Aside!



Sure...this might be what you hear if you were in the car with me driving!  Perhaps you hear your own voice saying these words to the people around you.  But, if you're not achieving what you want out of life, then it's time to look in the mirror when you say these words. 
 
One thing that the Spice Girls did really well?  They asked..."Tell me what you want, what you really really want! I'll tell you what I want what I really, really want!"  (You're singing it!)
 
Once you know what you really, really want...then it's time to move over and get out of your OWN way!  You are the only person, place or thing holding you back.  Just you...not your boss, or spouse, or looks, or weight, or money, or car you drive, or co-workers, or teammates, or the fact you don't have a partner in your life. Yep, it's just you!  And I get it...that is one big, dry, hairy horse pill to swallow!
 
Let's think about this for just a second...How do you know you're in your own way and how do you step aside?
 
Great questions! Let's break it down.
 
 
Once you identify what it is that you want that seems to be alluding you, then you usually begin to make a list of the blocks you perceive as getting in your way.  But that's the list of all those things outside of yourself.  For instance, you may want a new job.  We can go into the resume updating, researching, etc.  But truly, we must first look at the 'why.'  Why do you want a new job?  Because you hate your boss,  the actual work, they aren't paying you what you believe you are worth?  Now, taking away all the 'outside' factors, why do you REALLY want a new job? We want to clearly identify why you're not satisfied, and quite frankly...it may NOT be your job at all.
 
This is where you can ask yourself, what do you want...really?  Not what do you think you should want. Not what do others want from you.  What is aligned with your core values?  These questions often take people a while to understand and come to any conclusion. Why? Because we aren't usually asked, 'what do we want?Really?'
 
We are masters at excuses.  I can't afford it.  My boss doesn't like me. It's not the right time.  I often hear people say, 'I know what I should do, but I'm not doing it.'  Well, our lack of motivation is telling us something.  It might be that you don't really want it.  It also usually stems from some sort of fear.  It's easier to complain about it, (or perhaps you are not even complaining...you are just coping because things are 'okay' as they are), than to take action and possibly fail.  What if we took the failure piece out of it?  If you let go of the possibility of failing, caring what others thought and the worry of looking stupid, then what would you want?
  
If you let go of the possibility of failing, caring what others thought and the worry of looking stupid,

then what is holding you back from going for what you want? 
 
I want to reiterate once again, this isn't necessarily a quick process. 

Our excuses can be pretty well embedded into who we are.  But know this for sure. 

The only person getting in your way of achieving any and all of your goals is you.  This is the power of coaching.  If you are not living your life full out, with purpose and passion and joy and fun, then think about hiring a coach to help you get there.  I'm not implying you can't get there yourself, but I can tell you, with 100% certainty, that you'll get there faster with someone with the tools to allow you to explore what you feel might be missing in your life, or if you love your life and what to kick it up even more.
 
Today, I simply want to challenge you to take a look at what you believe is getting in your way and open your mind to the possibility that it could be you.  Let me know what you find out! 
 
Here’s to your bliss while getting out of your own way!






Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Where the Hell is my EASY Button?
July 2, 2014, 2014 at 3:15 AM
Originally Posted May 23, 2014

I HATE RIDES!!
April 21, 2016 at 8:33 PM
Originally published April 1, 2016 


ld Habits Die Hard...how true is that, really?


Being in a new relationship is always exciting and fun and yet it’s also another way for us to learn more about ourselves. (I know, I know...haven't we learned enough!!)
I’ve never been in a relationship as who I am today.  I like to think of myself as having a high level of awareness and understanding as to how I am showing up to this relationship.  What’s interesting, is how old triggers can set us back years in just an instant. 
 
This is where it helps us to be more self-aware. Not judging ourselves for the default tendency that pops up, but to recognize it and know that we can choose differently in the future.  
What’s a default tendency? That’s when something triggers us and we unconsciously have a reaction to it.  When we become aware of our reactive behavior is only when we can choose to respond differently.  I had several triggers in my last relationship.  No fault of anyone and I take full responsibility for my own actions because I was not only allowing myself to be triggered, but I was pretty much sleep walking through much of my life at the time and completely unaware of how I was reacting.
The version of who I am now looks and behaves extremely differently and this does allow me to truly

choose who I want to be in every moment.  But what does that even mean?  Think of a time when you

do something like snap or react in a particular way just to later feel icky or guilty and have the need to

apologize for that behavior.  There’s no judgment here, we’ve all done it!!  And I continue to do it on

some level, but I am improving!  However, it feels crappy for us to send a message that we later regret

and it possibly feels crappy for the person receiving the message.  

Of course, there may be detours now and then, but when we're open, we see possibilities we wouldn't have seen on our original path.  When we have faith that we're right where we're supposed be, and yes, things do happen for a reason, (even the crappy stuff!) it's a little easier to take a deep breath when we feel stuck.  Then we can more easily be creative with this time.
 
But what about when we're stuck and there isn't anything actually blocking us!  Hmmm...we are so brilliant at creating blocks for ourselves. That's when we want to take a deeper look into why we are holding ourselves back, playing small, and not shining our light. 
 
Ask yourself, What am I learning here? What opportunities are being stuck (in traffic and in life) offering me?  How might I be getting in my own way of moving forward? (Hello fear!)
 
Certainly feeling stuck and blocked can be extremely uncomfortable.  But when we're speeding through our life, we might be missing golden opportunities that help us stretch out of our comfort zone, see a new perspective and get the heck out of our own way.  We can choose to NOT have an awful and stressful experience as we sit and wait for the path to clear.  Or we can choose to embrace the uncomfortableness.  Also, keep in mind that when we speed through life, we may reach our destination and wonder, what am I doing here? (Hello mid-life awakening!)
 
How do we find the balance?  When do we know to sit back and 'wait' for something for happen? When do we speed through life as fast as we can?  When do we take action and push for what we want?  And when do we choose to move forward in other ways?
 
Think about the places in your own life where you feel like you are stuck in traffic.  It could be your health, a relationship, finances, job.  Maybe you feel like you're not really having any fun in your life right now.  Anything.
 
Wherever you're feeling stuck, what would it take for you to get a birds-eye perspective?   Just like Siri showing you traffic, knowing that it's going to break up just ahead, or knowing you want to take action with a detour, What would you be doing differently and how might you BE different?  
 
If you're feeling stuck somewhere in your life, only you are in the drivers seat to decide.  But decide with purpose and passion. 
 
What is it you want...really want? 
 
How is what you are doing getting you what you want? 
 
What's getting in your way?
 
How willing are you do look at different perspectives and try something different? 
 
Sometimes we're too close to it to see the possibilities.  Try something different.  Really examine inside what you perceive to be holding you back. Hire a coach to help you navigate through the traffic!  Whatever you decide, move something forward...anything.  Think creatively.  If it's what you REALLY want, anything is possible!
 
Here’s to your next blissful traffic jam! 






Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2015
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
 
Old Habits Die Hard...How true is that, really?
November 5, 2015 at 7:41 PM
Originally posted July 10, 2015


Blog

TIME TO DITCH YOUR NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS!

I Ain't Kidding!

Here we are!  Two weeks into the New Year, 2014.  Personally, I can't believe it, but I'm certainly excited about it.  We're ready for it.  Some of us even waited until now to begin or quit something.  We certainly couldn't have begun to lose weight or stopped smoking during the holidays.  We were too stressed out, busy, and distracted with family and holiday obligations.

So, again, here we are.  Fired up about a possible new beginning.  We're gonna make some big changes and it's gonna be awesome.  We're open to the possibilities...or are we? 

Each year, millions of us make resolutions.  And each year, only about 8% of us actually keep them.  (Forbes) Why?  We're accomplished individuals.  Why is it so hard for us?

Oftentimes, we 'make' our resolutions out of habit.  This year, you're going to be more organized, lose weight, eat well, change jobs, have more balance.   And, in actuality, most of us have had these same resolutions every single year throughout our adult life.  (sound familiar?) And by February, we've already fallen off the resolution wagon.  And quite frankly, so what!  Last year was fine, you don't need to change anything.  This is your life so you can just continue to deal with it.  Change is too hard.

How would  you feel if you thought it was okay to intentionally fall off the resolution wagon?  Well, my New Year's gift to you...the


Comfort and Joy? Yeah right...



I'll give you comfort and joy!

Here we are...another December.  Another holiday season.  We thought we'd be better prepared this time...get our

shopping done early, have less to do.  Hmmm...that just never seems to happen.  We hear 'Happy Holidays' and think,'

yeah, I'll be happy when the holidays are over!'

When did that happen?  When did the holidays become the holicraze?  Certainly not when we were still young. 

I can remember the excitement and anticipation of everything Christmas.  Now, truth be told, I come from a huge Italian

family and we have a LOT of family fun and traditions throughout the season.  Even as I get older,  I don't want to miss anything.  Personally, I also love everything about the season...the meaning, the music, the lights, the bad holiday movies on the Lifetime, Hallmark and Family channels...20 years ago, I even had a Christmas wedding! (Photo below - me with 11 of my 13 nieces and nephews...aren't they soo cute!) 

But for most, it's a time of stress, overwhelm and obligation.  We stand in line on Thanksgiving night for the 50% off sale.  We push people out of the way to get the last Tickle Me Elmo (okay, that was years ago, but I don't know the current hot item!)  We say yes to parties and events we don't really want to attend.  We bake 10 dozen cookies for our kids school or that darn cookie exchange we do every year!  We have a Secret Santa at work...and we always pick the person we don't even really like!!  We HAVE to.  It's expected.  People count on us.  Sound familiar?

Of course we have obligations.  However, we DO have the freedom of choice when saying yes...or heaven forbid...NO!  We also have a CHOICE on how we respond to these obligations.  Yep, it's going to take you a full evening to bake 10 dozen cookies.  UGH!  You're so tired and now you have to bake.  If you feel you have no choice and HAVE to bake (choice, that's a whole other discussion for February!), ask yourself, 'what could make this 'chore' better?'  Could my kids help and make it family time?  Perhaps I can call some friends over and open a bottle of wine while we're measuring, folding and icing?  Maybe my friend will help me put together my kids new bike.  Yes, we may have obligations, but we can choose how we respond to them.  We can CHOOSE to moan the whole time or we can CHOOSE to create some joy around it. We can also CHOOSE  to take some things off our to-do list!  Do we have to have 5 different desserts? (That's for you JH!) Does our house have to be picture perfect?  Guess what, you don't have to be Martha Stewart.  (If you feel you do, the deeper question is, who are you trying to impress?  Call me and we can work through that!)

My charge to you is, what can you do to make this holiday season more enjoyable for YOU?  

Take your kids skating, enjoy your family (crazy and all), actually use some of the 20 hours of PTO and take a

day or two off work, take a bubble bath, have a night out with the guys!  Just pick one thing that's important to

you.  Something that will bring you more joy. 

Now for the comfort...what is your comfort?  Sitting by the fire eating Christmas cookies...watching 24 hours of A Christmas Story...wrapping gifts?  Since I'm offering the opportunity for you to create more joy, now it's time to get OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE!  That's where we truly stretch and grow.  And that can be an awesome gift you give yourself!  How about volunteering to serve dinner at a local shelter, take a boxing class, or be a part of the do-it-yourself (sing-along) Messiah.  Again, doesn't have to be huge...just something.


Remember the fear-factor from October?  This is another opportunity to laugh in the face of fear.  Over Thanksgiving,

I had the opportunity to take an aerial yoga class with some of my sisters and nieces.  I was full of fear, but chose not

to miss out on potential fun.  I'm also out of my comfort zone even sharing this picture!  But I will never ask my clients

to do anything I am not willing to do myself!  So, here I am!! 
 
This is me out of MY comfort zone at the OM Factory School of Yoga in NYC.   I was downright scared...will the harness hold me?  Will I break a hip?  Will I look like complete idiot?  The answers...no, no and yes! But I had the most amazing time!  I figuratively AND literally stretched myself! 


There are 14 days left in the year of 2013.  Prove to yourself that you are important.  Important enough to create some dis-comfort and then have some joy.  It CAN happen...even during one of the most stressful times of the year!  Say goodbye to the holicraze and welcome back the holidays!

Choose to CHOOSE JOY!  See what happens.  Even if you feel you were only able to choose once out of a hundred choices...you did it ONCE! You gotta start somewhere!  (And when you see how good it can feel, you'll do it more!)

So, how are you going to choose your dis-COMFORT and JOY?

Here's to discovering your Holiday bliss!   







 
Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com

© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2013

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
 
$#^&@* YOU!
November 22, 2013, 2013 at 1:19 AM

Happy Holidays


'Twas the 9th of December and all through my place,
the dog snores on the couch, all I do is pace.

The overwhelm of presents and family and job,
can't wait till it's over, hate shopping with mobs.

I'm cranky and tired and having no fun,
feeling guilty and worried with nowhere to run.

This year was to be different, I was gonna find peace,
with family, work, kids, the stress was to cease!

But it's all the same, it's just like last year,
2015 approaches and I'm full of fear.

It's time for a change and it starts with me,
I'll hire a coach, and learn how to be

more present, engaged and just have more fun,
say bye-bye to guilt, worry, hum-drum.



I'm ready to commit to the new year ahead,
get out of my rut, I'll jump out of bed!

A mid-life crisis, that's really not it,
just realizing some things aren't quite the right fit.

I want to find purpose and passion and joy,
to hop off the hamster wheel of overwhelm, oh boy!

I'm excited and nervous but ready to learn,
what's holding me back from all that I yearn.

I'll call Lesley tomorrow to set up a session
to start my year right, around I'm not messin'!

I'll ask her to coach with my work team as well,
be productive, empowered, inspired, that's swell!

Merry Christmas & Kwanzaa & Hanukkah, too,
enjoy celebrating whatever's important to you!

Here's to your bliss in the shiny new year.
May your life HOLY SHIFT! and your dreams become clear.

Welcome 2015 with all of your might,
Merry Blissness to all and to all a good night!

To your holiday Bliss!





Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com

© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Gratitude Schmatitude!!
November 15, 2014, 2014 at 12:12 AM
Originally Posted November 5, 2014

Where is your focus?


Are you focused on the fact your boss never acknowledges your contribution? 
Are you focused on your debt? 
Are you focused on the lack of a relationship? 
Are you focused on your less-than-perfect body image? 
Are you focused on a current pain or ailment? 
Are you focused on what you don't have?



Attention is energy, so when we focus our attention on something, we're sending energy to it and fueling that something. And most of the time, we have been programmed to focus on the problems and on lack... what's wrong and what we don't have. But we can't change the focus if we're not aware of where we are focusing our energy.
 
On one of my last flights, when I was having the realization that I was focused on turbulence, I instead moved my focus to the little old lady sitting next to me. We had a lovely conversation and when we actually hit a little bump in the air, I was fine, because my attention was elsewhere.
 
So, where is YOUR focus? And where do you want to shift your focus? 
I'm gearing up for more flying, and I'm excited to see what happens as I shift my own energy to smooth, swift and safe travels. 
Here's to focusing on and fueling your bliss!







Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2016
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.



Uh Oh, Review Time!
April 21, 2016 at 8:29 PM
Originally Published, Dec 29, 2015 


In the last 2 months, I have been on 16 flights. I love to travel, whether it's for work or play, but I have to say I hate flying. And the reason might not be what you think...
 
I don't have to wait in security lines because I'm TSA pre-check. I no longer want to shake folks to tell them to let people pass before getting their luggage in the overhead bin! I have learned to simply observe the antics of my fellow travelers, a big change for me. I'm racking up miles like crazy.  And even though the science of how a huge plane stays in the air freaks me out, I don't have the fear of crashing.
 
But every time I fly, I feel like I'm back in grade school when it is announced that we're having a day at Great America. I would stress for weeks over going to the seemingly fun amusement park. I HATE RIDES!!!! And as a kid, you don't want to be a wuss or miss out on any fun. Like flying, I'm not scared I'll get hurt, I'm scared of that feeling of losing my stomach and not knowing how long until it ends. Ever wonder who uses the exit door right before you get on the ride, after standing in line for 45 minutes...yeah, that door was for me!! But I didn't always take it.


You might be avoiding a difficult conversation.  Guess what...FEAR!!! Fear of the possible undesired outcome.  You can dress it in any costume you want...I don't want to hurt her feelings; I don't want my boss to think I'm ungrateful; I don't want to get caught up in the drama of my friend; but let's just call it what it is...fear!
 
Avoidance can be hiding your fear of failure...if I avoid signing up for the 5K, I avoid facing the possibility of not finishing. If I don't ask for the raise, then I can't be turned down.  If I don't reach out to that prospective client, there can still be an ounce of, 'maybe they'll hire me.'
 
Many of us struggle with not having enough time.  This can also be one of fears best disguises. You don't have time to go to the gym could translate into...You have a fear of being judged for your weight, or, you are fearful that people will think you're being selfish taking time for yourself.  We may even have fear around having to sign up to volunteer for our kids class for fear of being called out by the other parents.
 
Fear doesn't have to be huge, like my fear of getting sick, hurt, or even dying if I go parachuting!! It could be my fear of taking on more clients because then I might not have the time I want for loved ones.  I told ya, fear is a slippery little sucker!!



A friend's dad once told me that if I scream at the top of my lungs on the roller coaster, I wouldn't loose my stomach...and I'm not talking about getting sick. I never threw up...just that feeling like you might! So, I got on the roller coaster and screamed from start to finish. And it worked!!! That was my little secret every time I was in a situation where I was having some sort of anxiety and motion issue. As an adult, I sometimes mask this trick behind singing.
 
Unfortunately, when a plane hits turbulence, it's not really appropriate to scream or sing at the top of my lungs. But I have noticed over these many recent flights, that my focus is on turbulence even before I board the plane. What's most interesting, is this is a concept that I teach and that I put into practice in most of my life...Where focus goes, energy flows. I was so focused on the possibility of turbulence, that even the slightest little bump would heighten my anxiety. And my head knew I was making it worse by focusing on that. But this is how we also create turbulence in our lives.


4) Delegate.  What can you delegate?  This doesn't just mean in the workplace.  What can you delegate at home...to the kids, significant other, friends, family.  What can you farm out...ie: hire a cleaning service, a tax accountant, a personal assistant. What can you simply let go? (I'm pretty sure there is no loss of life that I never got my Christmas cards ordered and mailed! Felt good to let it go! Yes, you may all begin to sing now!)

​5) Set boundaries.  Did you know it's okay to say no? Well, it is! I know, I know, you have your super hero cape tucked away under your shirt! But we DON'T have to do it all!!  We also don't have to over-explain ourselves  when we do say no.  Start practicing this.  When you can begin to identify if you are saying yes out of guilt, fear or pressure, these are the first items to begin practicing no. Baby steps will get you setting healthy boundaries before you know it!! 

Not Feeling Well? It's your own darn fault!


Yes, those are harsh words, so let me explain!
 
I'm a firm believer that our health is directly related to our own thoughts.  Now, you don't have to believe this, but hear me out...
 
Hindsight is 20/20, right?  Think back to those times in your life when you were most stressed.  How were you feeling?  Did you have constant headaches, sinus infections, back pain, insomnia? 
 
When I look back on my own life, it's actually freaky to make this connection.  Right after college, I was working at a Chicago-based cable TV station.  I loved what I was doing but I was working about 70+ hours a week and completely stressed out.  My hair began to fall out in clumps.  After leaving that job, I never had that problem again.
 
When I was in a toxic business relationship in the late '90's, not only was I prone to accidents, (falling, tripping, running into things), I also had to have vocal chord surgery.  Was it was due to singing 6 nights a week and that's why my chords were over and mis-used?  Maybe.  Or, was it because I was so angry in that situation I literally couldn't speak?  Once I left that toxic environment, I never had the problem again, even with an equally heavy singing schedule.
 
A few years ago I found myself in another situation where I wasn't speaking up (I know, those who

know me are finding that hard to believe...but it's actually true!).  I wasn't speaking up for myself,

my thoughts, or my ideas.  Not only were my creative juices completely stunted, I actually developed

gall stones, which I was able to pass naturally.


It was at that time that I found the writings of Louise L. Hay, specifically the book, You Can Heal Your Life. In it she states, "I believe we create every so-called illness in our body.  The body, like everything else in life, is a mirror of our inner thoughts and beliefs.  The body is always talking to us, if we will only take the time to listen.  Every cell within your body responds to every single thought you think and every word you speak."  
 
The book actually lists Probable Mental Patterns that create illness in our body. Specific health problems are listed, along with the probable cause and a new thought pattern to help alleviate the disease your body is having.  Again, you have every right to call it poppycock, but it certainly is interesting.  Under gallstones is states the probable cause as bitterness, hard thoughts, condemning, pride.  Hmmm, that is what I was feeling and thinking at the time.  Coincidence?
 
Now, I'm not saying if you hack off a finger with a sharp Cutco knife your thoughts can re-attach that finger for you.  And, you could call it an accident (but that's a whole other topic!). I'm simply suggesting to take a deep look at how you are really feeling and see if your thoughts around something that's going on in your life is not the root cause.  I do recommend all of Louise Hays books.  I find them fascinating.
 
I'm also not suggesting you bail out of any stressful job or situation.  What I have learned and now understand is that we create our own stress.  How we are choosing to react or respond to situations in our life is us creating our own stress or peace. 
 
"We forget that we create the situations, then we give our power away by blaming the other person for our frustration.  No person, no place, and no thing has any power over us, for 'we' are the only thinkers in our mind.  We create our experiences, our reality, and everyone in it.  When we create peace and harmony and balance in our mind, we will find it in our lives." - Louise Hays, You Can Heal Your Life
 
Take a moment to see how your negative and stressful thoughts are impacting your health.  Before you begin to medicate the symptoms, see if you can't understand the underlying cause.  The power you have over your own body just might surprise you.
 
Here’s to your healthy bliss!






Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s
author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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This One Time at Band Camp...
October 2, 2014, 2014 at 12:21 AM
Originally posted August 5, 2014 


So what are we supposed to do now?


No matter what is causing your overwhelm, (It's actually your thoughts around it and not the circumstances, but we don't have time here to go into that!!) we actually CAN get a handle on it to move forward consciously.  
1) Stop and breathe.  Yes, most of us breathe regularly without even thinking about it, but our breath becomes shallow under stress.  Taking a moment to connect to your breath and slowly breathe in and out a few times brings you back to the present moment and can help clear your head.
2) Get it down on paper.  Whatever works for you, pen to paper, fingers to keys, if we're keeping it all in our heads, no wonder you're experiencing overwhelm.  Get it out of your head to begin somewhere.
3) Prioritize.  One of my favorite books about this topic is Steven Covey's, First Things First.  It helps us understand what is and isn't important and what is and isn't urgent. Understanding what is important to you (try completing a values assessment, that really helps you understand what drives you!) will help you be able to prioritize.  By the way, if everything is a priority, nothing is a priority.


With 2016 only 3 days away, it's time for YOUR year-end life review!

What is a end of year life review?  Many of us know this concept from work. We take a look at our yearly goals to see where we have not met, met, and/or exceeded what we laid out for ourselves (or that our boss laid out for us!).  But who does an end of year life review for our own personal and professional goals?  Those who want to move purposefully with clarity into the new year!

This does require a little time and thought.  If you don’t have personal goals from 2015 written down, no worries. Most of us live off of our calendars, so go back to January to look at all you have accomplished this past year.  We spend so much time looking forward…what’s next…what's the next goal…what do I do now? Until we turn around and look back, we don’t realize how far we’ve come.




So how do we do this year-end review? 

Here are 10 questions to ask yourself:
(Categories to help you reflect...health & wellness, personal development, finances, career, social and intimate relationships, family/parenting, spirituality, and fun & enjoyment.) 

1.  What went well?
Truly, what went well for you this year? Perhaps you made more time for family and friends? Maybe you took a vacation? You may have taken a new class for fun.
2.    What would you like to do better?
You may have had some goals you didn't fully accomplish.  What were they? What was getting in your way...time? Money? Setting boundaries?
3.    Where do you perceive failure?
You all know I very much dislike the word failure! But, where do you think and feel you fell short? Didn't work out as much as you wanted? Didn't clean out the garage for the whole year?
4.    What did you learn from these perceived failures?
Take an extra moment here. What did you learn? Maybe taking time for a new relationship kept you from the gym? What can you learn about your priorities, boundaries, setting up new expectations for the new year? Working out together?
5.    What goals did you reach where you didn’t find satisfaction?
This might be because it’s not what you really want? (It could also have been someone else's goal set for you.) Your values may have changed over time. This might be the time to re-evaluate your values through a values assessment. Maybe the goal for you was a 'should.' I should want this, but you really didn't want it.
6.  What goals did you reach but have not yet celebrated?
After I spent September traveling Italy, I barely even shared my pictures. I simply hit the ground running upon my return.  It was big deal emotionally, financially, psychologically and spiritually for me to take this trip.  I found I never really celebrated this achievement.
7.    What are you currently still tolerating?
Perhaps you haven't been feeling 100% but haven't taken the time to see a health specialist? Maybe you've been saying you will clean your office for the last 12 months and it still hasn't happened.  What relationships are you still tolerating? It doesn't have to be where you walk away from them, although it could be. It might be setting new boundaries for yourself. What are you tolerating at work, home, about yourself?
8.    What have you learned about yourself over the last year?
Maybe you learned to open your heart to love again. You may have learned that you really step up when pushed out of your comfort zone. It might be you learned you're not having enough fun. You may have had an awakening that you no longer want to be in your current profession.
9.    What would you like to let go?
How would it feel to let go of resentment? You don't have to forget, but how would your energy shift if you forgave?  What extra burdens have you been taking on that you want to release? Maybe you want to release extra weight physically, emotionally? What fears or old beliefs would you like to release?
10.    How would you like to celebrate all that you did accomplish?
Doesn't have to be huge. Maybe it's getting a message? Going to lunch with friends? Giving yourself time to

read a new book.
 
It's important for us to take the time to stop and take note. We usually just keep moving forward, so we don’t

take the proper time to check in with ourselves and with our life.  If we don’t know where we are going, any

path will take us there. If you want to create a more purposeful and powerful 2016, this review will set that

foundation and help set you up for true success.
 
When we take the time to get in touch with ourselves and ask and answer the above questions, only then can we really choose consciously to move forward into the new year. Having clarity of what it is we want more of, what it is we want less of, where it is that we actually WANT to go or want to achieve, and understanding and truly knowing WHO we want to BE, then we can truly manifest a new year that will be off the charts!
 
After you've completed your year-end review, feel free to listen to our December 21st HOLY SHIFT! show for tips on purposefully moving forward into 2016!
 
I hope you had a lovely holiday season.  Here's to your most inspired and blissful new year!









Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2015
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


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I'm Not Scared!
November 5, 2015 at 8:00 PM

Wh at I'm finding so interesting, is it isn't always that we are overwhelmed by 'bad' stuff...ie: debt, boss, responsibilities, worry, things to do. Overwhelm can also be caused by having too much of what we do want.  Too many opportunities, too many choices, too many experiences we want to have.  
Truth be told, this is what I am experiencing right now!  And quite frankly, even as I type this, I want to kick my own butt! How can we feel overwhelm when so many perceived 'good' things are coming our way?
With the feeling of overwhelm, whether it is being caused from our perspective of too much 'good' or 'bad,' it clouds our mind, keeps us from being present, and for me, it can shut me right down. (Thank goodness for NCIS marathons!)

I'm So Overwhelmed!!

I can't tell you how many times in a day I hear the phrase, 'I'm so overwhelmed,' from clients, friends, even in my own head!  It's not always those exact words. Sometimes it's, I have so much to do, I'm so behind, I can't keep up, I'm so busy. However we express it, the basic message is still the same. 


One definition of overwhelm is to “give a person too much of something." That something can translate into too much work, too many tasks on the to-do list, too many emails, too many family responsibilities, too many places to be, too many bills, too many 'bad' things going on, too many voices in my head telling me it's too much! It's just all TOO MUCH!! 


My New Favorite Book...

My new favorite book...it isn't on surviving corporate change.  It isn't on manifesting your dreams.  It isn't fifty shades of anything!  I picked it up in the children's section and it's written by Kobi Yamada and illustrated by Mae Besom, What Do You Do With An Idea?
 
The story tells it brilliantly...to always remember, a single idea can change everything.
 
As most beautifully illustrated in the book, we sometimes don't know how to move an idea forward. 

What would it actually look like?  What would we need to do?  We worry about what others will think. 

We try to push it away.
 
But what happens when your idea just keeps popping up? What do you feel when you

think about the idea?  What happens when others don't believe in the idea and shoot it down?  

We often listen to the nay-sayers.  But the idea follows us around, sometimes for decades.  We can't shake it. 
 



So, what do you do with an idea?  Most of the time, we do nothing. We have become almost trained not to share ideas anymore.  In the workplace, we get shot down...that won't work...why change it...what are you, stupid?  Personally, we may share an idea only to hear...that won't work...why change it...what are you, stupid?
 
 It's not surprising that our next move may include putting our tail between our legs, feeling ashamed and slinking away.  Perhaps we feel completely deflated. Perhaps we're mad that someone is squashing our dream.
 
It's not always easy for us to stand up for ourselves (what I like to call standing in our own power) and simply say, thanks for your feedback and continue pursuing your idea.
 
What would happen if you chose to fully embrace your ideas? 
 
One of my favorite lines in the book...


It encouraged me to think big... and then, to think bigger.
 
Sometimes the biggest ideas are the smallest.  And those small ideas (or big ones) can change the world.
 
Last Thursday evening, I attended the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic's 10th Anniversary Gala entitled...THINK BIG! We even had a THINK BIG! Honoree!  What's fascinating is that when Lauren Deutsch of the Jazz Institute of Chicago asked jazz trumpeter and music educator, Orbert Davis, and business partner, Mark Ingram, to perform at the 2008 Chicago Jazz Fest, she told them to 'think big.'  Well, these are two men who never shy away from an idea, so to them, think big meant creating a 60 piece jazz symphonic orchestra, and the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic was born, the only 3rd stream (equally combining both classical and jazz genres) orchestra in the nation and one of only two in the world!  I guess that's thinking pretty big!
 
If someone said to you to, THINK BIG, what ideas would you have? 
 
What might happen in this world if this book was required bed time reading for every single child?
 
Yep, you could say it's just a children book.  But read it.  Share it...with children and adults.  And embrace your ideas no matter how crazy they might seem. (Please don't hurt yourself or others with your idea!) Think big and then...think bigger! 
 
 
Here’s to all your blissful ideas! Can't wait to hear what happens!!




Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2015
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
What Seeds are You Planting?
May 12, 2015, 2015 at 8:49 PM
Originally posted April 28, 2015




Gratitude, Schmatitude!!


Of course, I don't really mean this!  I truly believe that gratitude has the power to change your life.  And, you can never over-do gratitude.  All the cool kids are doing it...gratitude journals, gratitude lists, posting their gratitude's on Facebook.  But this Thanksgiving month, I want to try something just a little different.
 
When we begin to discuss what we're grateful for this time of year, we often look outside of ourselves.

For instance, I am grateful for (in no particular order) my incredible family and friends and my dog, Ellie. 

I am grateful for being allowed to do work that I thoroughly enjoy down to my core. I am grateful for the

opportunities that have presented themselves in my life. I'm grateful for being a part of the Chicago

Jazz Philharmonic family.  I am grateful to be a trainer for iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in

Coaching). I am grateful that I have a warm place to sleep, clothes on my back and money in the bank.

I am grateful for my amazing clients, students and mentors.  I could go on and on.  You get the idea.

But let's take this gratitude thing in a different direction.  As with our lives, we often look outside of ourselves for happiness, IE: a relationship, more money, bigger house, better job, nicer boss, thinner body, etc.   For this month, what would it look like if we started making a gratitude list of what we're grateful for within our own selves.  Yes, you read it right...within our own selves!!  For some reason this list becomes much harder to create. 
 
It's interesting when I work with my clients and even for myself, it is so easy for us to rattle off what we're 

not good at, what we personally lack.  And yet, it's so challenging for us to come up with a list of our own

strengths and what we are grateful for that we have internally. (Yikes, does she want me to say nice things

about myself?  That's very uncomfortable.  Won't I sound like an egomaniac?)
 
I promise, you won't sound like you're bragging.  Just try it.  It IS going to be uncomfortable because this

is a muscle we just don't flex very often.  Add to the list everyday for the rest of the month and see how it

feels, not only while you're making the list, but  when you look at the entire list on November 30th.  Take it

one step further and share the list with someone!  There is plenty of 'good' stuff in all of us, but we seem to

forget.  So, since there's no time like the present...I'll start.

I am grateful for:

my ability to connect with people
my ability to see opportunities even in the most challenging circumstances
my humor
my kind and compassionate heart
my parallel parking skills
my ability to sing
my health and physical power to take my dog for a walk whenever I want (see how that's flipped from, I'm so out of shape!)
the ability to think quickly on my feet
my ability to create fun
my smile
my ability to create a safe space for people to confide in meSo, does that sound like bragging? It IS uncomfortable to be this vulnerable and share what I believe to be true about myself.  
 
Now it's YOUR turn.  What are YOU grateful for within yourself? 
 
Enjoy this exercise, enjoy learning to appreciate your strengths and gifts, and enjoy the season of Thanksgiving.
 
Here's to your grateful bliss!





Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com

© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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F*@%
October 2, 2014, 2014 at 12:24 AM







​​
Yep, FEAR!  To me, an even more nasty F-word than the one you thought I was writing about!
Every day, Fear holds us back.  It might be from trying something new.  It might be from walking away from a situation or person no longer serving our best self.  Bottom line, Fear keeps us from wholly engaging in our lives and living to our fullest potential.
Now, let's be fair to Fear...Fear can be useful.  It raises the hairs on the back of your neck to alert you someone is following you.  Fear can motivate you into action, getting that project done so you don't get called out by your boss. Fear of failure can also push you forward.  But this type of action isn't sustainable, and quite frankly, if Fear is the motivator, than it's not going to be very fun, either! 
So, here's one of my all time favorite questions...


This One Time at - Band Camp...(actually, 10 days at jazz camp...)


For the last 2 weeks, I had the honor and pleasure of being a part of Chicago Jazz Philharmonic's 6th Annual Summer Jazz Academy.  (It was my 5th year!) 
Everyday, Monday through Friday, 8:30am - 5pm, over 110 students from across Chicagoland came

together to make music, experience a variety of dance, art, writing and music classes, be exposed to a

variety of professional performances, and have a ton of fun.
People continually ask me why I do it...'It sounds like a lot of work.'  And it is!  I could write a manifesto

about why I am a part of this organization.  I won't go into that now, except to say that I learn so much

each year from the amazing and inspiring students, faculty and staff.

(CJP Jazz Academy 2014 L. Picchietti - Click on to see some cool video)
Bottom line...am I exhausted at the end of each day? YES!  Does it take me away from building my business for two weeks? YES!  (But I did take many client calls during camp!) Are there 100 other things on my to-do list that don't get to-done'd? YES!  Do I care? NO!
Why?  Why would I choose to put so much of my time and energy into these two weeks?  Because, to be honest, I actually do it for me.  Spending time with the students, faculty and staff fuels me.  It energizes me to the core.
We get so caught up in the doing of our lives...we have post-it notes reminding us to call the dentist; tones on our phone reminding us about that 1:30 meeting; supervisors reminding us that the report is due tomorrow; significant others reminding us that we have plans with friends and/or family this weekend; and notebooks and phone apps to check off all of our to-do's!  No wonder so many people are exhausted.  We are no longer human beings, we have become human-doings!
That is why I ask my clients, what fuels them?  What excites them, makes them laugh like a toddler, or allows them to recharge?  Many of us have gotten so far away from being, that we don't even know what fuels us anymore.

Last month on HOLY SHIFT!, Barb and I discussed how to identify what fuels you.  Ask yourself these three questions:
1.    What are doing now that fuels you?
2.    What did you use to do that fueled you or recharged your batteries?  (This is where the question comes in...what did you do as a kid that made you giggle?)
3.    What have you always wanted to do but were afraid to try?


You can listen to the show and topic in its entirety here at HOLY SHIFT! for a more in-depth explanation.
It's interesting how we treat our vehicles better than we treat ourselves.  We make time for regular check-ups (oil-change), annual maintenance, and we keep fuel in the tank, often the high-octane kind!  Yet, when it comes to ourselves, we put off our own maintenance (doctor, dentist, etc., appointments), we physically fuel ourselves with junk that is not at all nourishing, and we completely forget to fuel our souls.  The Jazz Academy fuels my soul.  The students are brilliant and totally crack me up!  Everyone involved teaches and inspires me.  It's not about creating world-class musicians, although we will have several sprout from our program.  It's about learning how to communicate, cooperate, take risks, build confidence, mentor others, forge new friendships, improvise in music and in life; and understanding that you can strive to be whatever you want to be, regardless of what others tell you.  By the way, that's not only for the students, it's a great reminder for all of us adults as well!
I know exactly what fuels me and I choose to incorporate as much as I can into my daily life.  Leading worship as a singer fuels me, spending time with family and friends fuels me, facilitating trainings and workshops fuels me, experiencing new things fuels me, working with my clients fuels me, traveling fuels me, and being a part of the CJP Jazz Academy fuels me.
Find out what fuels you and choose to make that time for yourself.  All the other areas of your life will be more fulfilling and satisfying when you spend time fueling up!  And by the way, this is the only time you have permission to top off the tank!!
Here’s to fueling your bliss!




Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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July 2, 2014, 2014 at 3:16 AM

I'm Not Scared!!


During the Halloween season, a lot comes up around fear.  We carve scary pumpkins, we watch scary movies, we play a scary soundtrack for trick-or-treaters, and some of us even like to have scary costumes.  But in our everyday life, many of us state that nothing really scares us. Well, I don't want this to sound rude, but, you're all big fat liars! 
 
Here's the deal...fear hides in many places with many masks.  So, unless you are achieving absolutely everything you want in your life in the areas of health, finances, relationships, career, fun, hobbies, joy, everywhere...then fear is holding you back...somehow. 
 
I have several clients right now struggling with procrastination and indecision.  That is often tided to the fear of executing something perceived as not good enough or making the wrong decision. It may seem easier to just wait. Perhaps the decision will sort itself out before you're forced to make a move. 
 


It's Simple...Just Say, YES!!



When was the last time you did something for the first time?  This is my favorite quote from Seth Godin and  something I often remind myself.  My personal goal is to try something for the first time at least once a month. So...when was the last time YOU did something for the first time? 
 
Now that it's finally spring, let's stretch out of our comfort zone, leave the status quo behind and try something new!  What have you got to lose?
 
How many of you are now saying to yourself, 'this sounds like too much effort.  I'm not creative enough to figure out what I should be trying.' 
 
Here's one way to get started and you barely have to do anything!  Start by saying, 'YES!'  It sounds so simple, but for many of us, it isn't easy.
 
A friend invites you to a mosaic class.  A Groupon comes in your email to try hot boxing.  A meetup group is going on a hike? Your significant other wants to try Ethiopian food.  Are you saying yes or are you, like so many of us, a master of excuses? 
 
We can be very comfy cozy in that zone of 'usual' and that's why it is so easy for us to come up with a million and one excuses NOT to try something new. 

  • I'll look stupid in a dance class.
  • I'm too old to get on a segway.
  • I'm too out of shape to do aerial yoga.
  • I have no artistic talent to take a painting class.
  • I'm too scared to go to that networking event alone.
  • I have too much work to take a 4-day retreat.
  • I'm not strong enough to take a bar class.
  • I can't go to (fill in the blank) cause of the dog.Truth be told, these were all MY own excuses...
  • until they weren't!  And when I finally said, 'yes,' I had two tons of fun in tap dance class; the segway tour was a blast; aerial yoga was surprisingly easy; and although I am no Picasso, I really enjoyed a painting class! I'm now on the speaking docket for two new networking events I attended; the 4-day retreat was one of my 2014 highlights; and I'm addicted to my Bar Method class and haven't been this strong in 20 years!



 

I would not have had these new and wonderful experiences if I hadn't said, 'yes.'  And I am truly unable to come up with any circumstances where saying, 'yes' had an adverse effect.
 
(To the left is the picture I painted last weekend!)
 
Say yes to meeting someone new.  Say yes to trying a new restaurant.  Say yes to taking on a new work project.  Say yes to checking out a new museum, or art gallery or live show.  Say yes to donating to a cause or volunteering your time.  Say yes to a new vegetable.  Say yes to wearing a new color.  Just say yes!
 
(Now, don't go jumping out of a plane and die and sue me, unless you really want to jump out of a plane!)
 
Saying 'yes' will quickly begin to move you out of that comfort zone.  And out of that comfort zone is where the magic happens!!  Come on...what have you got to lose?  Well, maybe your 'usual.'
 
So, that's it. Short and sweet.  This 1 little word can have an enormous impact on your life. Say 'yes' and see where it takes you.
 
Here’s to your blissful yes!







Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.



Mid-Life Crisis or Mid-Life Awakening
May 12, 2015, 2015 at 8:41 PM
Originally posted February 24, 2015

Uh Oh, Review Time

Here we are...December 29th, 2015. How does that happen? 
 
This time of year is extremely busy, for loads of reasons. Many of us spend more time with family and friends. Many prepare for holiday celebrations.  Many take vacation from work and are wrapping things up at the office.
 
Because December 31st marks the end of the calendar year, it’s normal to have mixed feelings of sadness that another year has passed, (or gratefulness that the year is ending if you have been struggling) as well as hopefulness for a new year to begin.



THANK YOU - Giving Thanks



(Originally Posted November 7, 2013)
Last Friday, on November 1, I was already thinking about when I was going to put up my Christmas lights.  (Go on, groan if you must, however, it's so much more fun putting them up before it drops to 20 degrees...but I digress!)  I was thinking about how quickly Thanksgiving was approaching and how truly grateful I am for so many reasons.
I make it a practice to keep my gratitude at the forefront of my mind, but I want to push it even further.   I also want to increase my use of what I believe to be two of the most important words...Thank You.  I thought you'd might like to join me as I take a ride on the Gratitude Express.
In her popular book, The Secret, Rhonda Byrne writes, "With all that I have read and all that I have experienced in my own life using 'The Secret,' the power of gratitude stands above everything else."  For my more practical readers, the University of California Berkeley has a newsletter, Greater Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life, which featured Robert Emmons, the world's leading expert on the science of gratitude.  Yep, that's what I said...the SCIENCE of gratitude. Check out this quick video clip of Emmons explaining how gratitude has the ability to heal, energize, and change our lives.
Being thankful and saying 'thank you' might have more power than you think.  A career coach on the Today Show advised job seekers to put the words, 'Thank You,' in their job search tool kits, distinguishing themselves from the masses by sending out a thank-you note.  (Those of us who remember Miss Manners already knew this!  But it is a lost art.) I find with my clients, working with teams, and even in my own life, taking the half-second to thank someone (and mean it, by the way!) can make a huge impact.
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Let us be grateful to people who
make us happy - they are the
charming gardeners who make our
souls blossom.    - Marcel Proust
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I realize that it's easy to be grateful when everything is going is our way.  But how are we supposed to be grateful and say thank you when we are tired and crabby, when we believe the people around us are stupid, when we don't get enough time with our kids, when we are dealing with a difficult boss, when we have health issues, or when we are grieving the loss of a loved one?  Seriously...How?  Isn't it during these difficult times that we're waiving our proverbial fist up to God, the Universe, or whomever or whatever we believe in, screaming out, 'WHY????'
But it's at these moments that gratitude can have its greatest power.  Even in our darkest hour, we can change our perspective and have gratitude.  And it doesn't always have to be something grand.  Showing gratitude for the simplest things in our lives can not only change our mood dramatically, but the mood of those around us as well.  
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Give thanks for a little and you will find a lot.   
- The Hausa of Nigeria
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So, join me on the Gratitude Express.  Each day, for the rest of the month, (see...you can be grateful that it's Nov 7th already!) stop for a quick second and say out-loud at least one thing you are grateful for at that moment.  'I am grateful for the spectacular fall colors.'  'I am grateful for my childs laughter.'  'I am grateful for my amazing team at work.'  'I am grateful for being able to bend over to put my shoes on.'  'I am grateful for my morning coffee.'  You get my drift here?  For greater impact...write it down.  Feel free to list more than one thing, if you want, (you'll see how good it feels and each days list might get longer as the month passes...just wait and see!).  But at the very least, proclaim one grateful statement a day.  In addition, say "Thank You' more often or others...the person holding the elevator door, your mail carrier, the IT Tech who fixes your computer, your mother!  (Let's see if my own mother reads this! Thanks mom for always believing in me).  Even say thank you to those who you really don't want to be thanking, like a call from a bill collector or a challenging member of your team or family.  Go on, just try it.  What have you got to lose?
By the time Thanksgiving rolls around in 3 weeks and someone suggests going around the table to have everyone say what they are grateful for...instead of rolling your eyes, you might share that you are grateful for being a little more grateful this whole month.
Me?  I'm grateful you read this whole darn article!  And THANK YOU for taking the time out of your busy day to do so!!
Now it's your turn.  For what are YOU grateful?
Here's to GRATEFULLY discovering your bliss!  







Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com

© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2013

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


Where's My Easy Button? Does it even exist in real life?


Why does it seem that some people go through life as if it's easy, while others seem to be perpetually swimming upstream?  We often go outside of ourselves for this answer.  It's usually someone else's fault: I can't get promoted because my boss doesn't like me; I can't take a day off work because I own my own business; I can't lose weight because my spouse keeps bringing home fast food....
 
How would it feel if you could just hit the easy button? 
 
The first step to 'easy' is taking responsibility that your circumstances are created by you and you alone.  This is usually where people start yelling at me.  "What? Are you crazy?  I didn't get us into that debt...that was my husband!"  or, 'How dare you say that because my boss is an idiot, it's my fault?"  Well, I am.  But before you swing a punch at me, let me explain.
We create our own reality.  Period. It's true.  Even through things that we seemingly didn't have a hand in.  I'm not even

going to try to convince you here.  I'm going to challenge you, instead.  Think of it this way, you have nothing to loose

and only 'easy' to gain!
 
Whether or not you're willing to take responsibility for everything in your life (good and bad), yet...here are some additional strategies:
 
1) Watch Your Mouth!!
What we say makes up our reality.  So, if you keep saying you're tired, you're going to be tired. If you keep saying you're not ever going to get promoted, you're never going to get promoted.  If you say you're too old to find love...you know the answer! Really, watch what you say.  It has a self-fulfilling prophecy effect.  If you wake up tired, yell out, "I feel great!" And keep telling yourself that all day long.    If you're passed up for the promotion today, say aloud, "there's something better for me!" You don't have to believe it...yet.  Just keep saying it!  And when the water cooler chatter becomes a crab session...walk away.  As you begin to change your words, make them as empowering as possible.  Using the words, have to andnee d to, have a very defeating energy around them.  But when we want to and choose to do something, there is just more power around it.  This also works with words you say to others.  Become aware of what you say to your family, friends, team at work, etc.  Again, I can't convince you here, try it!! (By the way...try is also a word that allows us not to do something.  So, don't try it...DO it!
Step 1 - Choose your empowering words wisely!
 
2) Re-Train Your Brain!!
This is actually where it all begins.  We think it, then we say it.  When you think, "this project is going to be hard," it's going to be hard, for the same reasons above. Begin to re-train your brain, and understand that this is a process to be practiced.  It doesn't happen overnight, so be kind to yourself.  When the limiting thought comes into your head, just nicely ask it to leave and replace it with an un-limiting thought. "I'm never going to get out of this debt. It's impossible!" Hmmm, well, that's not the thought you want.  How about, "I live in a world of abundance."  You don't have to know the how this is going happen. Just begin changing the thought around it.  Like energy attracts l ike energy, so if you're thinking about your debt, more debt will come!  It's physics, baby!!
Step 2 - Re-Frame Your Thoughts!!
 
 
3)  Feel It!
This is more than just positive thinking.  Really feel your outcome.  For example...having debt might make you feel anxious and worried (unable to pay bills), embarrassed and stupid (how could I have let this happen), even unworthy to be allowed to get out of the debt.  Ask yourself, 'How will it feel when I am in the black again?'  Hopeful, accomplished, joyful, happy, strong, peaceful, at ease, etc.  Begin to embrace these feelings as if it's already happened.  And once again, you can tell me I'm crazy, that doesn't matter.  Just try do it and make it a new behavior.  But, if deep down you truly don't believe, then it ain't gonna happen.
Step 3 - Feel the difference!!
 
 
4)  Become your New Reality
You're thinking it, saying at, and feeling it.  Now BE it!  This doesn't mean, "Hey, I live in a world of abundance so I'm going to go out and spend a ton of money that I don't have because Lesley told me to become my new reality!" But it does mean you are no longer living in fear of lack. Your attitude has shifted. You're given a new project at work where you used think and say, 'oh great...this is going to be impossible.'  And every second of it was hard.  Now, you're excited for the opportunity and you know it will be 'easy,' and maybe even fun!  
Step 4 - Believe it to be easy, it'll be easy!   
  
Yes, this may sound too simple to be true.  Hmmm, too easy?  Again, I'm not suggesting this can be done overnight (then again, I'm not saying it can't!). It is a process.  You are building up new muscles and there are days you are going to want to quit.  However, the only person with the power to teach you how to float with life's currents, instead of swimming upstream, is you! 
 
Here’s to your easy bliss!!






Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.  

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Quit your B^*#CHING Already!
May 1, 2014, 2014 at 7:23 PM
Originally posted on April 30, 2014

6) Decide what you want...Really. Bottom line, understanding what you want and why you want it can help you with all of the above steps.  You might think this would make more sense as step 1, but when you are experiencing overwhelm, it is challenging to know what you do actually want.
7) Stop choking!  Now that you have identified what you want, have a priority list, and are NOT trying to do everything, move something forward by taking bite-sized manageable pieces.  Oftentimes, the overwhelm comes from looking at the whole big picture. 
As I put this into practice in my own life, (shout-out to my  iPEC Jersey Mod 2 class for the coaching!), it's amazing how quickly the perception of overwhelm can be changed, because it is just that...our current perception.  We must be very clear, no matter what's going on outside of us, the overwhelm is coming from within and only we can change that. I know, it's so much easier to blame others. Sorry to burst your bubble, but you're giving your own power away if you are looking to others to blame or change it for you. Like everything, this is a practice.  Let me know how it goes!
Here's to releasing the overwhelm and harnessing your bliss!









Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2016
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


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Who Are You?Who, Who, Who, Who!(Admit it, you were just singing this song!)


A few months ago, something came across my desk…Can you remember who you were before the world told you who you should be?  Personally, I think it's better asked, Who were you before the world told you who you should be?
I love this question on many levels, but mostly, because I’ve found it to be so true, in my own life and in the lives of my clients.  Really think about it, do you have an answer? 
 
For some reason, when we become a ‘grown-up,’ we oftentimes become a little too serious.  Now, for those of you who know me, let’s just be honest, serious isn’t the first word (or even the 100th word!) that anyone would use to describe me.  And I am A-OK with that!  However, that doesn’t mean I can’t be serious nor does it mean I’m not taken seriously.  Let’s also not confuse serious with professional, because they are not necessarily synonymous, although this is where many people get tripped up.  
 
I often hear, 'I'm so stressed out.  I used to be fun.' or 'I know I'm being too serious, but I'm so worried about

(x, y, z).'  Yes, becoming an adult and having responsibilities  (mortgage, putting food on the table, keeping your boss

happy so you can keep your job, getting your kid into a good school, etc.), is important and therefore can cause a lot

of stress.  But how might that stress be 'changing' you?  Perhaps you are a new manager and now feel you should

be 'acting' a certain way?  Or when you're at a networking event, you suddenly change the tone or cadence of how

you speak to be taken more seriously?
 
There’s a TV commercial currently airing for Carnival Cruises.  One of the lines a mother says is…”or when Haley [daughter] realized vacation mom is different from mom-mom. “   Every time I hear it, I cringe a little.  Why do vacation mom and mom-mom have to be different?  Why is work self often different from home self?  Why can't we simply be OURselves?
 
We can't really answer these questions until we figure out who our 'self' really is? And how do we do that?  There are several ways to uncover who you really are... coaching, of course, but anyone can begin by identifying your core values, what drives you and what puts a smile on your face.
 
For many of you on the self awareness journey, you might be hearing the words, 'being authentic' or 'your authentic self.'  Authenticity by definition is being real or genuine.  When are you being most real and most genuine?  We're so worried about others judging us and how we are perceived, that sometimes we are so far away from our 'authentic selves' it hurts.
 
When we are truly aligned with who we really are, life is easier.  We are also more creative, innovative and productive.  I swear I ain't lying!
 
Now, as always, I must add a caveat here...
If you play a clown on the weekends, perhaps wearing the big floppy shoes, polka-dotted onsie and red nose to the office on Monday isn't appropriate.  But are you not telling anyone at work you play a clown on weekends for fear of being judged or not taken seriously? (Honk, Honk!)  For years, I was singing on the side of my 'day job.'  I didn't share this info with my co-workers as I wanted to keep that part of my life separate.  But bottom line, I really just wanted to be taken seriously at work and I was worried this information might be 'damaging.'  To what, I don't know, but the worry was real.   As I reflect back, was I worried about others judging me or was I simply busy judging myself.
 
Let's be very clear.  Being your authentic self isn't necessarily sharing your life story with your co-workers.  However, if you uncover that fun is a core value for you, and you realize you are not having fun in any areas of your life, then add more fun into it.  (How might you be able to add more fun at work?  We used to do a happy dance when a donation came into our organization! Hi BS!)  If it's connectedness with others, and you sit alone in an office with little human contact, get human contact some other way.  This might also help uncover some of your passions.  What were you passionate about as a kid?  I loved to horseback ride.  I just met a new friend who also loves to ride, so we're going to ride together. (Thanks AR)  That, to me, sounds super-fun. 
 
What am I even trying to say here?  Ask yourself how different are you in different areas of your life? 

Do you stifle your true self at work?  Are you always trying to impress others and 'acting' as something

other than yourself?  Are you so worried about your image, that you don't even recognize yourself in

the mirror? 
 
 When I began coaching within organizations, I was being told (by others and my own crazy voices in my head) that I had to be 'corporate.'  But that's just not who I am and it truly paralyzed me to try to be that corporate image.  When I finally allowed myself to be myself, I was then able to be a better coach, trainer and facilitator.  Do I incorporate some non-traditional methods into my trainings that I believe make it more fun?  You bet!  But so far, my clients, although sometimes hesitant at first, tell me they enjoy it!  Am I being inappropriate?  No.  Am I being unprofessional?  No.  Am I being 'corporate?'  No.  Am I being myself, yes!   
 
If you perceive that as a woman you must only wear black and gray because you work in a male dominated industry, how is that limiting yourself, especially if you're a color kind of gal?  And, if you're a director who does play a clown on weekends because you love to make kids laugh, put that picture on your desk and see what conversations come of it. 
 
As we begin to shed our coats and hats and come out of our winter hibernation, perhaps 'shed' some of the layers of what is truly not you. I'd love to hear what happens.
 
In the words of Reba McIntyre's song, 'I'm a Survivor,' "Who I am is who I want to be."  Who are you and who do YOU want to be?
 
Here’s to the bliss of uncovering who YOU are!





Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express & written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching & Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.  

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You, Me, Myself and I...
February 25, 2014, 2014 at 8:57 PM



You, Me, Myself and I!

February...the shortest month...sometimes feels like the longest!!  Not only is much of the country dealing with the Polar Vortex and one of the worst winters we've seen in years, but February also holds stress for a lot of people.  The stress of NOT having a Valentine, the stress of what to get your Valentine, the stress of do I even want a Valentine?  Lots of expectation, lots of disappointment...seriously, is it March yet?
 
This month on my new radio show, HOLY SHIFT!, (airing the 1st and 3rd Mondays of the month on International Life Coach Radio, listen and call in live or enjoy the archived shows at your leisure!) my co-host, fellow coach and trainer, and hilarious friend, Barb Heenan, and I have been discussing relationships.  Part 1 focused on the relationships we have with others. 
 
Oftentimes, people think they have relationships only with those closest to them…significant other, immediate family, etc.  But we have relationships with everyone with whom we come into contact.  We have a relationship with our dentist, the barista who knows our coffee order, our boss and our bosses boss, our team members at the office, our pets, our kids little league coaches, teachers, and other parents.  We even have a relationship with the person who cut us off in traffic this morning!
Obviously, each relationship has a different priority in our life.  The relationship with your children may

be more important to you than your doctor…that is, until you are sick.  Then, that relationship moves closer to

the top of the list. Hopefully, most of your relationships are working for you.  But what about those that aren't?
Take a moment and think of the relationships in your life that bring you joy.  We want to continue to nurture those

and make them a priority.  However, sometimes those relationships that are “easy” get pushed to the back because

our more challenging relationships suck up our energy.
 
Now, take a minute to think about those people in your life that are currently challenging you. Think of one or two things that specifically bug you about him or her.  This is where it gets interesting...and be honest...where in your life are you mirroring that behavior?
I know, I know, you don’t show that annoying behavior anywhere in your life! You're not that annoying/whinny/negative, etc.!  But this can be a super powerful exercise.  Really think about it.  If your boss is always criticizing you, who might you be constantly criticizing?  Your kids?  Spouse?  Co-worker?  It might be that you’re criticizing yourself all the time.  (BTW, want to learn to stop beating yourself up?  Call me, we can change that!)  You may have heard before that what you don't like in others is often a reflection of something you don't like about yourself.  That's a hard thing to hear...I get it!  But, I'm challenging you here...really think about this and let me know what you come up with!    
 
In our Relationships - Part Deux  show, we focused on the relationship we have with ourselves.  Our most important relationship is the one we have with our self, yet this relationship is often kicked to the back of the attention line.  If we look here first, although most people are very resistant to that, and create a more loving and supporting relationship with our self, we can then learn to make a conscious decision or plan on how we can improve our outward relationships.
 
In all of our relationships, we must look at what Barb and I called, bonding and boundaries. Bonding with ourselves and others and setting boundaries with ourselves and others.  How do you honor yourself and your own values?  We focus so much of our attention on others, we often don't have anything left for ourselves.  So what can you change?  How can you change?  And how will that effect your other relationships? 
 
We often don't set boundaries for fear of being thought of as selfish.  It can be uncomfortable.  But how are you setting personal boundaries and saying no to others and yes to yourself.  Then, we often spend much of our time bonding with others through negativity.  At work, do you commiserate (seriously, I want to write 'bit*h and moan' here) with your colleagues on everything that's wrong?  Do you discuss with other parents at your childs school all the reasons why something's not working? Do you find solice by talking with your siblings about your crazy mother?  Are you bonding...yes?  Are there more productive ways to bond with others...YES!!!! 
 
I just had a birthday.  I love to celebrate and I usually celebrate all month long.  My family and friends

kept asking me, 'what are we doing for your birthday?'  I was grateful they wanted to celebrate with me,

but I had been traveling, at the tail end of a cold, and had been really busy.  All I wanted was to stay

home all day, with the dog, and do laundry, run past-due errands, clean my house, etc.  That sounded

so delightful to me, but, holy cow, did I get push back!! I communicated very clearly to my family and

friends that this was truly what I wanted and that we could plan a fun-tivity for March.  I honored my own

wishes to take the day for myself.  Truth be told, one of my sisters wore me down, in a good way, so

we're going to dinner tonight to celebrate, but that was my conscious choice after having the weekend

to myself.  I set and held my boundaries and I will enjoy my time tonight of bonding.
 
Next week on HOLY SHIFT!, we will be discussing 'struggling' (personally and/or professionally) and ways to overcome.  If you'd like to be a guest on the show and want coaching on something you're struggling with, call in at 347-637-1960. 
 
For all of you struggling with something....and we all are...What are you willing to try to get different results?  We want to know!!     
 
Here's to discovering your bliss!






Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
Lesley@InspireBlissCoaching.com
 
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.  


Top 5 Reasons to Ditch Your New Year's Resolutions!
February 25, 2014, 2014 at 8:55 PM
(Originally posted 1/15/14)