woman's faceWanna know why it’s so hard to treat yourself nicely? (aka ‘do self-care’)

Self-Care implies that there is something “wrong” or “broken” about a person. Think about it… when you CARE for someone it’s because they are less than 100% in some capacity.

In my world that’s NO-NO #1!

BIG SECRET: There is nothing wrong with you.

The moment we think there is something wrong with us, that we are “incomplete” or “not whole” in someway, we judge ourselves, belittle ourselves, feel guilty.

It may lead us to make changes. But how often do those changes stick? Statistics show…not long.

But then comes a vicious cycle. You fail, you don’t feel good about yourself. You judge yourself and then give up all together. Right? That’s why self-care doesn’t work.

Do this instead…See Yourself As Whole And Complete.

So do that. Right now. Decide to see yourself as completely whole. 100%. If you sit down right now and take a deep breath, you’ll notice that you are alive. You can’t be alive if you aren’t whole.

Congratulations, girlfriend. You are WHOLE!

Now, the second step is to acknowledge this…

Everything is the way it is, NOT because you aren’t complete [read: good enough, skinny enough, pretty enough, smart enough], but simply because the choices you have made so far haven’t served who you want to be.

Let’s recap:
Step 1: Decide to see yourself as WHOLE. You are complete.
Step 2: Acknowledge that up until now a lot of the choices you’ve made in your life haven’t served who you want to be.

If you’ve gotten this far, you might be thinking, Okay, now what?…
The choices you’ve made up until now have served who you think you are. Not who you really are.

Here’s what it might have looked like in the past:

You decide you want to lose weight so you start to eat less and exercise more. Probably you’re also secretly telling yourself “Oh gosh, this is going to be hard. I’ve got too much to lose…it will never come off. I am SO not a healthy eater. I do NOT exercise. I’m going to hate this.”

You do really well for the first couple days…even the first couple of weeks…but then something happens and it all falls to pieces. You blame the holidays, your busy schedule, your family, or whatever. Am I close?

At first glance it may look like you were right… your weight will never come off. But let’s look at it again. Failure is built in from the start.

How? Motive. Most people’s motive to make a change in their life is based on who they are not…instead of who they want to be. We chose to lose weight because we don’t like who we are…

You’re not a skinny super model so you have to lose weight. You’re not the millionaire mommy so you have to make more money. You aren’t this so you have to do that.

No wonder people aren’t making changes that stick!
Here’s the new way…

Start with who you want to be (aka who you truly are) and go from there. Right now. Write down who you want to be.

Go on…I’ll wait right here.

beep…

bop…

boop…

Did you write down who you want to be DESPITE any “you can’t do that”, “it’s going to be too hard”, “that’ll never happen” talk in your head?

Yes? Great!

No? Don’t worry. I’m about to dish it up in bite-size pieces.

It’s important that who you want to be lines up with who you truly are. I learned this last weekend at a super powerful training on finding our Divine Purpose.

If you want to know more about what ‘divine purpose’ means, email me now: lee(at)leesirwin(dot)com

Check your motive before we move on. Is it naughty or nice?

Now… make a list of 10 things you’ll do once you have become that person.

Here’s what I mean…
Motive: “I’m moving toward having a healthy, strong body”
(so I can go on long walks with my husband and feel like going out with my girlfriends on the weekend)

When I’m a healthier, stronger woman, I’ll…
1) Be active 4 times a week with my children
2) Go on long walks with my husband twice a week
3) Play my favorite dance tunes (and wiggle) while I’m cooking dinner
4) Thank my body for all the ways it has loved me over the years
… all the way up to 10

Sweet! Look at the list. Which ones can you already do (be) now? Today? This week? You’ve got a List that has real Self-Care infused into it!

Nice! That’s your Brighten-Up Tip for this week. Pick one thing you’ll practice, based on who you want to be vs. who are think you are.

To knowing there’s nothing wrong with us, and never has been…

Lee

P.S. – Want to know more about “who you want to be = who you truly are”? E-mail me now: lee(at)leesirwin(dot)com

Holiday lightsOkay, last week week we decided to change “self-care” to ”brighten-up” and I told you I would tell you why…

Brighten-up? What in tarnation are you talkin’ about?!

 

 

First, it’s important you get what self-care REALLY is so when you learn why I changed the name it all makes sense. (Don’t worry, sistah…I will never leave you in the dark).

We tend to view self-care as massages, weekend getaways, chunks of time away from kids, etc. These are all good, but self-care can happen at any given moment no matter what is swirling around us.

That’s why we should replace the word self-care with something else. (Later in this post you’ll learn my #1 quickest method to rejuvenate yourself…no matter where you are).

You know what? Self-care is simply HONORING YOURSELF. It’s listening to your body, mind, and spirit. When any of those parts feel down we take action to lift it up…or “brighten-up”. Just like the phrase “freshen up” implies, “brighten-up” can happen relatively quickly with minimal effort and produce remarkable results.

Brighten-up, schmighten-up…what’s the big deal?!

All women know what happens when we don’t freshen up… we LOOK run down, exhausted, and overworked. Let’s tell the truth here. When women don’t brighten-up…we FEEL run down, exhausted, and overworked.

Zoikes! Have you ever felt that way? Especially during the holiday season?

Hey, no surprise here. I could go on for days about WHY we do that. But what really matters is HOW to quickly and easily turn it all around. Here’s the HOW…

The #1 Quickest Method To Rejuvenate Yourself…No Matter Where You Are

***This works best if you are feeling overwhelmed, frustrated, upset, scared, or any negative kind of emotion…

Step 1: No matter where you are, be there. Be fully present to you. Even if you don’t think you can be, you can.
Step 2: Ask yourself “Oh, Honey, it seems you’re getting frustrated (or whatever emotion you are feeling)…what’s happening in your body because of that?
Step 3: Notice any physical sensations that pop up in your body. It may be a heavy feeling in your chest, a knot in your stomach, or something completely different.
Step 4: Be present to the feeling without trying to get rid of it. Just notice it. (you may find yourself “breathing into” the feeling…that’s good too)
Step 5: Stay with it. You’re doing great…even when you feel silly or uncomfortable.
Step 6: Stay with it some more… that’s right. Stay with it just like you would your upset son who fell off his bike and hurt his knee. Just be present to it.
Step 7: Remember: you only think an eternity has passed. It’s really only been 30 seconds.
Step 8: Once the feeling is gone you will find you are much more peaceful, focused, and calm.

**BAM** INSTANT REJUVENATOR!!!

That’s my absolute #1 best “brighten-up” strategy…

Next time, we will be talking about how this can bring more than just peace of mind. I’m talkin’ $$$!!!

You feel like there’s never enough time every day, every week, every month, every year to get all your “shtuff” done.

Just when you think you’ve caught up, you burn out, put off all your tasks because you’re exhausted, and end up back where you started…needing to catch up.

Tired Woman

And the truth is…you may never feel like you have enough time.

The other truth is… you have all the time in the world. But that doesn’t really matter if you feeeel like you don’t.

You might have heard about “standard time” and “perceived time” and how “perceived time” IS the only real time.

You see, “standard time” never changes. Never. (okay, so there’s day light savings time but…other than that it never changes). On any given day, at any given moment you and I are given the same amount of time as Michelangelo had when he painted the Cysteine Chapel, Mark Zuckerberg has as he creates the Facebook empire, and Oprah has as she rules her queendom. So why have they been able to GET MORE DONE in the same amount of time?

Their PERCEIVED TIME is grounded in abundance not time scarcity.
They know, FEEL, and have faith that there is always ample time.

It’s important to note that you must have all 3 aspects in order to truly be grounded in abundance (and have all the time in the world). Here’s why…

1) KNOW: Understanding that you have all the time in the world is the simplest aspect of time abundance. It is “in your brain” kind of understanding. Once you know and understand that there is time all around you, you can move onto the other aspects which play even bigger roles…

2) FEEL: It’s good to know something but to feel it is even deeper. Your entire body begins to believe and understand there are oodles of time. Imagine being able to look at the clock, no matter what it says, and feel completely calm and relaxed. That’s when you know you have achieved the FEEL aspect…

3) FAITH: All religious beliefs aside, faith is the foundation of success. Faith is knowing, feeling, believing, and seeing what we want long before we ever get it. Faith is not to be confused with hope.

“Hope is walking through the fire. Faith leaps over it.”— Jim Carrey

In terms of time, having faith is knowing & feeling & believing all things will get done in the right time.

I could go on for pages on how to KNOW, FEEL, and have FAITH… how to be TIME ABUNDANT…and GET THINGS DONE… but that’s not what this article is about.

If you’re interested in learning more about how to easily and effortlessly have more time and get more done, I dive deep into that in my Time Abundance program. I will be sharing more info on that later.

In the meantime, I have 3 questions for you:

  • How does the flow of time seem to change for you during the workweek and during the weekend?
  • What do you think changes the flow of time for you?
  • What would you like to change about it?

Leave me a comment below. I’d love to hear how you and time are getting along these days!

We’ve all heard it before…

TimeIsMoney1

But have you ever sat down, gotten quiet, and thought about it? People say it, so it must be true, right?

During the last launch of my Time Abundance Program (Next one coming up soon!!!) it was shocking to me to learn just how  many women view time as an enemy. Do you?

If you resonate with any of the following, time may NOT be on your side (and it’s TIME to do something about it)…

You feel like your list is never ending
You are exhausted at the end of day, wondering what you even accomplished
You feel like there is a lot of “wasted time” throughout your day and wish there were a way to get more done

Any of that sound familiar? Trust me, I can relate.

My goal for this post is for you to come away with a better understanding of your relationship with time and perhaps a few time abundance tips and tricks!

First, let’s get a firm grasp on our relationship with time…
Let’s try something. It will only take a moment and you can do it while you read this post. (In others words, I won’t take up too much of your money…I mean time)

Here we go…
Imagine there is a bank account that credits your account each morning with $86,400. Some of you may find this easy, others may find it comical, or perhaps you find it down right unrealistic…whatever your feelings are on it, imagine as best you can $86,400 being deposited into your account.
It carries over no balance from day to day (no rollover bucks here) and every evening the bank deletes whatever part of the balance you failed to use during the day.

What would you do??
DUH! Draw out EVERY cent, of course!

Okay, here’s where it gets cool…each of us has such a bank, and its name is TIME.

Every morning, it credits you 86,400 seconds. Every night it writes off as a loss, whatever of this you failed to invest to a good purpose.
Are you adding up your money (I mean minutes) yet?!?
It carries over no balance. It allows no overdraft.
Each day it opens a new account for you. Each night it burns the remains of the day.

If you fail to use the day’s deposits, the loss is ultimately yours.

Are you SPENDING all your hard earned minutes or are you letting them go to waste?
There is no drawing against ‘tomorrow.’ You must live in the present on today’s deposit.
Invest it and you’ll get from it the utmost health, happiness, and health.

So….
Does time really equal money or does it equal something of even greater value?
Okay, by now you know what your real relationship with time looks like.

Let’s get on to your tips and tricks…
Reply to this post to let us know your favorite trick or technique that helps you stay present or just flat out GET MORE DONE.

The clock is running…
Make the most of today. And everyday. And every penny!

Recovering people pleaserThe key to failure is trying to please everybody. ~Bill Cosby

A healthy boundary is like an energy bubble that protects your mind, body, and spirit from negative influences.

Think back to a situation when you felt angry, frustrated, or resentful. Got one? If you’re human, you do.

Now look for clues to the kinds of boundaries you coulda-woulda-shoulda set in the past.

 

Did you feel a bit like a doormat in that situation?

 

To set a healthy boundary with another person you’ll need:
1. A friend to support you before and after the conversation

2. Language to set the boundary gracefully and honestly

3. To make a direct request

 

Remember, when setting boundaries you cannot control another person’s response or behavior.

You can only deliver the message with as much grace and compassion as you can.

 

And don’t forget JADE: You don’t need to justify, argue, defend or (over)explain your position. Your needs are always valid.

Start with the easy boundaries. It will probably feel uncomfortable when you first start setting them. As you get stronger, tackle the more challenging ones.

Back up your boundaries with action. If you relax your boundaries by giving in, you invite people to ignore your needs.

 

Some people think of boundaries as walls. I prefer to think of them as doors with the doorknob on my side.

 

What do you think of boundaries?

Comments welcome!

Have they made your life easier? Or harder in some way?

 

 

Easter dressThrough my childhood, my mother sewed all the clothes for her three daughters.

Our early Spring ritual was to drive to Hancock’s fabric store near our house. I’d look over Mama’s shoulder as she turned each page in the pattern books — McCall’s, Butterick, Simplicity — to find the dress I wanted her to sew just for me.

Then we wandered through the store touching bolt after bolt of cloth — lavender, aqua, flowered — until we chose the perfect one and took it to the ‘scissors lady’ at the counter. Two yards, please, I would tell her in my most grown-up voice.

My favorite dress is the one she made by hand when I was three. It was the palest blue organza, with a huge cloud of a  petticoat and a big bow at the back. She sewed impossibly tiny white lace on the puffy sleeves and collar. Little French knots dotted the hem.

She would always finish sewing our dresses late in the night before Easter Sunday. When I woke up, my new outfit would be hanging on my closet door. Freshly ironed and ready to be slipped over my head.

One year, she wrote a note and pinned it to my new dress.

Janice Lee,

This new outfit is for the outer you. I hope that when you wear it, you remember it’s what’s inside that is most important. Let your light shine on Easter Day and every day.

Love, Mama

A few years ago I was digging through an old cedar chest and came across a zippered plastic bag. Inside was the Easter dress I wore when I was three. The lace had turned tea-colored, but every French knot and ruffle was intact.

I realized two things when I washed and ironed that tiny, exquisitely crafted dress.

1)  It took my mother over an hour to press it.

2)  She was, and still is, an amazing woman.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You might be thinking, What the heck is Manic Compression?

Symptoms include>>cramming too much into a day, skipping meals, trouble sleeping, body aches & pains.

Sometimes it gets kinda cray-cray, right?

 

Never fear. Help is here! My friend, Cathy Fisher, is an expert at helping folks GET and KEEP easy eating, exercise and lifestyle habits.

Quick. Easy. Fun. We want that. Right? 

Cathy is the owner of New World Wellness Center in Charleston, South Carolina. She’ll spill her secrets in a private interview with me this week.

Grab your *fr*e audio here on Wednesday, April 9.


** 3 Essential Lifestyle Habits for Optimal Wellness **

 P.S. Take the survey now. Post a question for Cathy in the Comments. We’ll answer YOUR hot-button issues here.

My office makeover, using Feng Shui, the ancient Chinese art of keeping the ‘chi’ (energy) flowing. Katie Rogers took me by the hand and led me on a fun journey, helping me see the problem areas and the easy solutions.

BEFORE  – Smessy officeee how my desk chair faces into a corner? And the gold ‘earth’ color walls dam the flow of energy and money. Trust me, this is not ideal for a home office!

 

 

 

BEFORE  – I was a stacker.  Office - No creative flowEach project was in a neat pile, but my energy was constantly being pulled from one task to another.  (ugh) So hard to focus. I felt scattered. No wonder I avoided being in my office.

 

 

AFTEROffice - AFTER (2)

See the ‘water’ color walls? The paint is Artesian Well by Martha Stewart Living, at Home Depot. I took everything out of the room and only put back what supports me and brings me joy. Do you like the watercolor I did of an elephant family?

Now my office is like a 3-D vision board.

It feels great to have my desk chair face the front door of our house.  Katie, my Feng Shui goddess, calls this the Command position. And the leafy green tree is in the ‘money corner’ of the room.

I hung a crystal in the window so rainbows dance across the walls all morning. Pretty. Now I love-love-love being in my office and my creativity (and finances) are thriving. Yay for Feng Shui!

Connect with Lee at http://www.girl-friended.com

 

  1. You don’t realize the need to change. The biggest mistake women over 40 make? Doing the same things they’ve been doing for decades. Hair, makeup, and clothing that helped you look fantastic in your younger years no longer work for you as you grow older. It’s all about discovering and correcting those mistakes so they don’t sabotage you in your career or love life, or stop you from living your greatness.
I want for you what YOU want for you - to feel as fabulous as you truly are!

I want for you what YOU want for you – to feel as fabulous as you truly are!

2.    You’re wearing jersey fabric. Jersey fabric doesn’t create the best shape, in part because it’s as clingy as it is comfortable. If you love jersey, go for a draped or ruched option that grazes your curves and strategically hides any bulges. Another option: double-knit jersey, which is a denser quality fabric that still has a bit of stretch for comfort. Or choose a slightly more tailored piece, like a sheath dress, which gives the illusion of structure but is a forgiving cut for most women.

3.    You’re hiding your neck.

neckline

It seems like an easy fix: Cover as much of the neck as possible with a turtleneck. But a better choice is a V-neck or scoop neck, which draws the eye to your décolletage (as long as it doesn’t show cleavage). Collared shirts or an open ‘mandarin’ collar draw attention away from the neck area while giving a little more coverage.

necklace

You might also choose a statement necklace that sits a little longer.    Avoid chokers and pick a style that’s at least 22 inches long.

Are you ready to meet your most beautiful, confident self?

Lee Irwin is the Fountain of YOU expert. Treat yourself to more of Lee’s secret tips and tricks =>www.girl-friended.com/freegift

How big is your money mindset?

How big is your money mindset?

A few months ago, I had the pleasure of spending three days in California brainstorming new business ideas.  I was with a small group that included several millionaires and a billionaire.

What intrigued me was how kind, funny and generous they were. Hanging out with them blasted the old idea I had about rich people being “snooty”.

Even though I felt waaay out of their league, I rustled up some courage to ask each one of them:

“What’s the Number 1 thing that’s helped you have financial success?”

I thought they’d say something about years of hard work. Making smart investments. Knowing the right people.


What they DID say surprised me:

1.  Everything I do and every transaction I do is increasing the flow of abundance for everyone. You are doing a service to someone when you give them an opportunity to flow money to you.   Derek Rydall – The Law of Emergence

2.     2. I trust my intuition. I Trust that the Universe is providing what I need. I focus on service and love. Michael Stratford

M    3. My mind expands about money as I think about bigger amounts of money. I start accepting and receiving in bigger numbers. When I  take a leap of faith, the Universe conspires to help. Christian Mickelsen 

Are you aware of any limiting beliefs about money?

Do you believe that how you think and feel about money is just as important as how you earn it?

I’d love to hear your thoughts. Please leave a comment below.

I

Play for Life: A Feel-Good Guide to Boost Your Brain Power, Spark Your Creativity and Inspire More Fun

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