To share my story and be vulnerable isn’t easy. There are my parts of my story that are easier to share than others.

The parts that are hard are the ones that open me up and show a side of me that I’m afraid will be judged. A part of me that I worry people will think I’m crazy or stupid.

But at the same time a part of me knows this is where the value comes in. When someone shares a story about themselves that involves overcoming obstacles I’m drawn to them. I find inspiration in their story and I hope others (even if just one person) finds hope in my story.

Women for One is a place where truthtellers are given a place to be vulnerable. A place where women can see someone else’s story, be inspired, find hope, and see themselves in someone else’s story. I’m grateful to be one of those truthtellers.

Thank you to Women for One for sharing my story.

Check it out on their website here:
https://womenforone.com/taking-leap-faith-follow-passion/

You can take all the actions you want, but if your mindset isn’t there than your actions won’t stick.

Think of this like all those new year’s resolutions you’ve made that never stuck. You know the ones you repeat year after year.

This is because in order to change your habits, or break those patterns, you must first change your mindset. By changing your mindset I’m talking about changing your identity and breaking old patterns.

Let me share a personal example.

For years I have been trying to budget effectively and learn how to save money. Every time I tried and I failed. I always fell back into old patterns. My pattern is that we have lots of money, than we have no money. During times of high income we spend, spend, spend, and pay off all the big bills. Then all of sudden the money is gone and we attempt to pinch pennies. The latter part of pinching pennies comes with lots of regret and frustration. It also includes jealousy of others who don’t live like this.

I read books, I budgeted, we paid off debt. Yet, we have always accumulated more debt.

This was our pattern.

After years of living like this I decided to take a different approach.

For the month of February I went all in working on my mindset and my identity around money. One of my focuses was also manifesting more money.

Imagine my disappointment when the end of the month came and we were pinching pennies again.

Typically in this situation I would start by updating our budget looking where we spent our money, and deciding areas we needed to cut the budget. Then I would completely fail cutting those things because I was annoyed that we had to live like this.

Instead this time around I leaned into all the tools I have been using including meditation, affirmations, emotional freedom technique or tapping, oracle cards, and prayer.

Rather than focusing on action items like budgeting, I focused on being that person who is wealthy, abundant and grateful.

Suddenly I found myself learning a very big lesson! I didn’t receive more money, but I learned that I had to endure this situation of pinching pennies to teach me about sacrifice.

To find my limiting belief around spending money out of frustration, rather than accepting that right now I need to make a sacrifice. I also didn’t just learn the lesson, I was given an opportunity to put this lesson into practice.

During all of this mindset work, my car, which is 11 years old, was ready to say goodbye. So here we are pinching pennies and either having to dump a ton of money into an old car, or get a new car.

Well, we decided the best option was to get a new car, and to lease a new car. I came up with a max number we could afford to pay monthly. I really really really wanted an SUV. After some research we found an SUV that was advertising a lease price of $160-$180. My excitement was through the roof!

I was starting to feel better. That was until I got to the dealership and realized that this wasn’t actually an option. Essentially they were advertising 2018 model cars for lease, when in reality at this time of year they don’t have any 2018 cars in stock. Crap!!!

After 3 hours at the car dealership, trying to work the best deal I could, getting frustrated, feeling the pressure from the sales guys, I had to put in practice exactly what I had been working on the last month.

It was time to sacrifice what I wanted and put our budget before my wants and desires.

To accept this took me a few hours. I was definitely upset, but through all the mindset work I was able to make this decision, feel really good about it and reframe my thoughts really quickly.

I went from sad and disappointed, to really happy and excited. I’m upleving so big going from a 2008 car to a brand 2019 car!! No more worries of it breaking down and having to get towed.

That vision of the car I really want is still there, but I’ve realized that it’s ok to not have it right now. To sacrifice getting it now so that I can live peacefully, within our budget, and then one day getting that exact car I want will be even more worth it!!!

If I hadn’t done all this work on my mindset I can definitely say I would have went with the more expensive car because that was my pattern. Wanting something badly and being frustrated that we couldn’t afford it but buying it anyway.

I am breaking that pattern and creating a new identity for myself around money. That feels fantastic!!!!

Yesterday I got the car, and it just felt so darn good driving around in yesterday!

I learned such a valuable lesson in all this and my vibes are still riding super high!!!

Is there a pattern you see in your life? One that you keep repeating, but can’t seem to break. Is it around money? Your health and wellness?

Take time to look at this pattern, figure out why you keep doing this, and determine your limiting belief that’s holding you back. Then take the time to work on your mindset around this thing, then the actions will follow easily, and you’re more likely to stick with this new way if you work on your mindset first.

It’s never too late to change your mindset and your identity!!!

Hi! I’m Nikki!

It’s been a wild year and I wanted to take a moment re-introduce myself!

I went from a full-time employee desperately wanting to create a side hustle so I could leave work to a full-fledged entrepreneur with no idea what to do, to a podcast host, a consultant, a public speaker and a coach all in 12 months!!!

Not only has my day-to-day life changed completely, but who I am has shifted from lost and confused with no direction to living completely intentionally.

I meditate regularly. I journal. I listen to inspiring podcasts and I read motivational books daily.

I love to talk to other women entrepreneurs who decided to live a life they desired not the one they were told they were supposed to live.

I love to coach aspiring women entrepreneurs to live a life with joy and fulfillment.

I love working with non-profits to help them with fundraising, events, and marketing so that they can grow their mission.

I believe working moms are a powerful force to be reckoned with and our voice is getting louder and louder.

One year ago my desire was to be able to pick my kids up from school at 3pm, volunteer in their school, travel here and there for work, and do work that brings me joy!

Today I can say I am doing all of that!!!!

I have 2 boys, ages 6 & 3.

My husband and I celebrated 10 years of marriage in 2018.

Typically you can find me working at home in my yoga pants, at my local Barre3 studio or chilling at home watching Netflix!

I offer free 1:1 strategy calls for aspiring women entrepreneurs.

I offer free 30 minute consult calls for non-profits looking for help with fundraising, events and marketing.

Just want to learn more listen to the podcast, Stepping Up: Become who you are meant to be on iTunes, Spotify and pretty much anywhere podcasts can be found!

Did you know that things that happened in our past can shape who we are?

Did you also know that you change how those situations affected you?

You either are completely lost or think I’m absolutely crazy, so let me explain.

When I was in junior high I ran track, and I qualified for the championship race. What this means is that I ran a certain time that allowed me to compete in the championship.

Well, I ran that time once, and my fear of not being able to do it again kept from competing.

I told my parents how scared I was of running the race, and they gave me permission to not go to the race.

In hindsight, I can see now that they gave me permission to not push myself and to be ok with mediocrity.

This theme of being ok with things just as they are runs rampant throughout my life.

In school I could’ve applied myself more and received better grades, but I was satisfied with the grades I was getting.

In sports I was ok with how I was performing and didn’t see a need to push myself.

In my career I took the jobs that came to me, did what I was told and quietly would complain about the work.

As much as I was ok with this mediocre life, deep down I had a lot of questions. I wasn’t fully satisfied with a satisfactory life.

Yet, I had suppressed this urge for me for so long that I didn’t even know how to access it as an adult.

Fast forward to becoming a mom, and my drive just went through the roof.

My frustration with the way working moms are treated, and how being a mom isn’t accepted in the world just added fuel to the fire.

My actions started small with fighting for myself by proposing to work from home on both maternity leaves. Then to realizing that as a working mom I wasn’t respected in my office. It was looked down upon when I needed to leave early and pick up a sick kid, or I turned down a work trip to attend an event with my son.

My mind was whirling with questions!

I was beyond frustrated!!

So what did I do?

I started to looking for a new way to live my life.

To live life on my terms.

I learned that I’m not ok with mediocrity and it was time to change my story!

It was time to stand up for myself!

It was time to bring a voice to working moms everywhere!

I started to recognize that there is a better way to live life.

By listening to podcasts and reading books by people who were doing what I wanted, I started to see the possibilities.

These people gave me hope and permission to go after my dreams.

With this confidence and new voice I was able to take back all the years I thought mediocrity was the way of the world.

To see that it’s ok to be in the spotlight.

It’s ok to give a voice to the voiceless!

It’s ok to be who I want to be even if it means upsetting other people, especially those closest to me.

It’s ok to change who I was for the first 3 decades of my life, and become someone else.

This change did not happen overnight, but over the last few years I’ve been given permission time and time again to stand my ground.

I’ve learned valuable lessons along the way, that I take with me on this journey of life.

I no longer live in a world that if something is scary to back away.

I no longer live in a way that says avoiding frustration is ok.

Is there a story you are telling yourself?

Is there a fear that is holding you back?

What it is?

Recognize it. Write it down.

How would you prefer to live life?

Then start following people who are doing what you want.

Listen to their stories, read their books, and listen to their podcasts.

Fill your head with what you want out of life, rather than what you can’t have.

Just because you have lived one way for years, doesn’t mean you can’t shift or pivot. Because I’m living proof to say that you can!!!

Create the life you want, and step up to become who you are meant to be!!!

One of my priorities as a parent is foster my children’s natural interests and skills.

I want to ensure I’m encouraging my children to always explore, keep their minds open, and follow their own interests.

My oldest is about to turn 6 and from a very young age, probably around 2, we knew he had a natural skill for building and creating.

I remember him getting a train set for Christmas and he sat there putting the track together, taking them apart and putting them together again.

He sat in this space fully concentrating on the task at hand for quite a while.

Last year when he was in pre-k, his teacher commented to me, very strongly, that he is good with numbers. It was the first time, someone other than me or my husband saw this in him.

Before that we thought we were just being overly proud parents when it came to his knowledge of numbers and his love for building.

Just a few months ago my husband got him a lego truck that could be made into 3 different trucks.

Well, after working together to build it once, my son then went ahead and followed the pictures to disassemble and reassemble the truck to make all 3 kinds.

Legit my mind was blown!!

Now just a week before he turns six, he receives a circuit board. In less than 2 hours he was going through the instruction manual, found one he wanted to build, and built it without asking a single question or having anyone offer help.

He has continued to build boards, take them apart, and build another.

Again, my mind is so blown!!

I don’t operate in that realm of my brain so watching him is just amazing to me!!!

A few years ago on a business trip I found myself sitting next to a young man who was an engineer for a railroad company. We talked the entire flight and I remember telling him how my son has a natural interest in building and is very good with numbers.

Before we landed I asked him how he felt I could best nurture this interest in my son. He said to make sure we continue to challenge him. If he his naturally skilled then he could get bored easily.

As I continue to watch him, and his brother, naturally gravitate to the toys and activities that they enjoy the most I’m amazed at two things:

  1. How different they are, and
  2. How when they find something they enjoy the can do whatever that activity it is for hours, and with such concentration.

Our youngest is 3 ½ (FYI that ½ is very important, lol), and he very much follows his older brother. Yet, it is clear how different they are from each other.

He is still discovering what he enjoys, but he is much more active. He needs more stimulation and more movement. He cannot sit still and just do a puzzle for hours.

Figuring out how to foster these two different kids is a challenge for sure, but one I’m determined to make a priority.

Two years ago I asked a dear friend of mine, who is a photographer, to capture my family on a typical weeknight. We were two working parents with an 18 month old and a 3 year old who spent 50 hours a week at daycare.

In my opinion we were the typical middle class American family.

We got home at 5/5:30pm while it was still dark. Let the dog out. Made a quick dinner, then got the kids ready for bed.

Maybe my husband and I would get a minute to say hi to each other or even ask “How was your day”, but there was never enough time for a response.

I wanted to capture these moments because I knew they wouldn’t last forever. I knew that I’d forget what life was like when everything was so hectic and crazy. The nights when I’d go to bed praying to get a full night’s sleep for once.

In the moment it doesn’t seem possible that you’d ever forget, but those pictures just popped up on my memories the other day.

Guess what?

Yup, I’d forgotten so much of what that time in our life was like. As I rewatched the video she created for us, tears were streaming down my face and I was so grateful to have those pictures.

The days are long and the years are short.

This isn’t just a simple little saying. It’s a truth.

This was our life and the lives of the other parents I’d see at daycare.

We’d pass each other in the hallway while our child was being held by someone else screaming for us to come back and just share a look of “I get you.”

We’d wonder if our paychecks would cover daycare costs, groceries, and the mortgage this month.

We may not have spoken any words, but we understood each other.

This was real life and it was not the life I wanted anymore.

I was tired of picking my kids up from extended care in the dark. I wanted a different life, but this was the life I was living at the time and I wanted to remember.

So now I work from home, and I get to be pick my kids up from school at 3pm. Our life is still chaotic and messy, but I feel so much better about it because it’s on my time.

I discovered what I valued in life, and that was picking my kids up at 3pm.

This may not be the value for you, and that’s ok too. This life is not about comparing your life with someone else’s. It’s about living life the way that feels best for you, and knowing that what feels right now might change in the future.

So if you had all the time in the world what would do?

Would you work longer hours?

Would you spend more time watching TV?

If given the opportunity really think about what you would do with your time.

Would you cook more?

Would you take more vacations?

Would you sleep more?

Maybe read more books?

Go to the movies?

Whatever you would do, the first thing that comes to your mind is your priority. It shows you what you value.

We demonstrate our true values (whether we went to admit it or not) by what we do with our time and what we spend our money on.

How are you spending your time now? Are these your true priorities?

How does it make feel when you look at how you are spending your time? Do you feel good? Or does it give you an icky sinking feeling in your stomach?

If you get the icky feeling, it’s time to start shifting. To start really looking at how you are spending your time and how you can pivot and spend time doing the things you want to do. Those things that make you feel good.

Time doesn’t stop for us, it keeps moving forward.

Just like those pictures I had taken two years ago. I’ll never get that time back, but I’m so glad I have those memories!!

What is it you wish you would spend more time on.

More importantly what is keeping you from that thing you desire?

Here is a snap shot of just a few of the photos from that documentary photo shoot. 

I remember after having my first son in 2012, that I was back at my pre-pregnancy weight by 6 months. I wasn’t really doing anything special, my body just seemed to bounce back! Because of the amazing first experience I was banking on this happening again with my second kid.

Nope, not even close. My youngest is 3 and I’m still hanging onto about 15lbs (which was 20lbs just about 2 months ago – slow moving progress, but progress nonetheless).

This post isn’t about weight loss though.

What I want to share with you is the fact that I believe…no I know that the reason I bounced back so quickly the first time was because I under much less stress the first time around. When my son was 6 months old I was leaving my full-time job to work part-time. I was stressed while home on my maternity, but I only worked for about 6 weeks before I got this part-time gig. I didn’t spend a significant amount of time working full-time.

This post isn’t also to say that you need to work part-time in order to lose weight either.

But I promise I’ll get to why I’m sharing this story with you.

I returned to full-time employment when my first son was 18 months old and I was newly pregnant with my second son (great timing, huh? LOL). Don’t worry they knew I was planning to have another kid pretty quickly when they hired me, although I don’t believe they anticipated that quickly.

This time around I was in a job I enjoyed so after my second son was born I went right back into full-time work and was excited to go back. Yet this time my body did not bounce back as I hoped. I didn’t worry about it until he was about 9 months old and I was ready to do something about it.

I did a nutritional reset challenge which got me bloated and constipated from all the raw veggies. Got over that and tried some new workouts. T25 was huge for me a few years ago so I gave it another go, but just wasn’t feeling the intensity of it. Then I tried cutting back on the cardio and lifting more heavy weights. With this I definitely got stronger, but still no movement in weight or my figure (*ahem* I was waiting for the fat loss that never came).

After about a year and a half I was pissed and frustrated. I hired a hormonal nutritionist that gave me some great advice, but still no change. Then I started to notice that I was constipated and when I was constipated I looked like I was 6 months pregnant.

Finally the light bulb went off!

This wasn’t a weight issue, it was a digestion issue.

I got on a daily probiotic and saw minor improvement. I became obsessed with digestion essential oils, using them multiple times a day with only minor improvement. I turned to prunes and prune juice, then to detox teas. If there was a solution for constipation I tried it. They all helped in a minor way but nothing was solving the issue and it just kept returning.

My frustration only grew as each solution proved to work only temporarily. I began to realize that this is beyond what I’m eating or drinking or how I’m moving, it’s because I’m stressed.

I had been keeping an eye on a natural healthcare practitioner in my area, and decided it was time to make an appointment.

There I was desperate to make this go away, and here was my solution.

Let’s go!!

It was not an immediate resolution, but as I continued to go I began to notice minor changes in myself, not just physically but mentally as well. I was able to handle stress easier, I was breathing more deeply throughout my day and not just during meditation in the morning.

Then I decided to leave my full-time job and start my business. I continued going to the doctor and I continued to see improvement. Little by little I was getting better. My constipation was occurring less often and when it did occur, it didn’t linger for days like before.

I’m eating more cheese and gluten foods now, and am rarely constipated and bloated. I actually went for a lactose test today, even though I figured it was going to be negative. I made the appointment about 2 months ago so I figured I’d go through with it anyway.

Since August I have lost about 5lbs, but even more than that I feel better. I no longer look 6 months pregnant constantly. My clothes fit better and I can feel a waistline returning.

I’m still stressed, because trust me being an entrepreneur and giving up my income stability was not an easy decision. Living off of one-income for a family of 4 is tough, but yet that stress isn’t bothering my digestion.

My digestion is better because I am living in alignment.

My work/life balance is as it should be, as it was 5 years ago when I working part-time and felt amazing!

Our physical body reacts to our mental health. When we are in an unhealthy place mentally, our physical body will show us signs. For me that sign was in my digestion, and trust me when it creeps in I can tell it’s at a time when there is high-stress in my life. Luckily for me I continue to see my natural health care doctor, but I also have the tools on my own to recognize what is happening and correct it.

You would be amazed at how the mind and body are connected. If you are feeling ill, or not well, it might not be that sushi you ate (I mean it might be), but even a minor cold as I had this weekend can be a sure sign that your body is telling you to sit down and relax. It is your body’s way of forcing you to do what it needs done in that moment. If you listen for the signs early on, than you can avoid the much larger ones that will scream at you instead.

Yes, I quit my job, but I did not quit my job to be home with my kids.

When I decided to leave my full-time job and enter the world of entrepreneurship I knew that my kids would still continue to be in daycare over the summer. I was not quitting my job so that I could be with them 24/7. Does this mean I don’t love them? Absolutely not! It’s means I know myself well enough to recognize that to be a better parent I need my village.

Ever since my oldest was 10 weeks old he was in daycare. Yes, I cried my eyes out leaving him, but it was more about the fact that I didn’t want to return to the job I had than having someone else take care of him. I worked an hour away from home which mean I was leaving at 6:30am and coming home at 6:30pm. Squeezing in just an hour here and there of time with him wasn’t good for me, and then he was up all night so I would be resentful when I was exhausted the next day driving to work. It was terrible and I was miserable!

I did end up leaving that job to work closer to home and only 3 days a week. It was exactly what I was looking for at the time. I wanted to continue working, to stay relevant in my field and also be home just a little bit more. To alleviate the stress of driving to work every day and the stress of work itself. I took a lower position, but that’s what I was looking for at the time.

For an entire year I got to be home with him, and it wasn’t until he was 18 months old that I opted to return to work. An opportunity was presented to me and with a lot of thought I decided to accept the position. I said it multiple times and still do that if it were any other position in the office I wouldn’t have taken it. If I was going to work full-time it was going to be something I enjoyed, not something I dreaded.

So for 4 years I worked full-time, and in those 4 years had another son. Now I was a working mom with two young boys at home. I loved having this position, I loved having work to go to everyday, and serving a purpose in my life. Yes paying daycare was tough some months, and work would take me away on road trips here and there, but I still loved it. I love being the working mom.

That was until the work I was doing stopped serving me and no longer fulfilled me. I began to find myself resentful to be at work. I dreaded going to the office, my youngest started clinging to me at daycare and I caved to lingering a few extra minutes to make sure he was comfortable because I too was avoiding going to the office. I started looking for ways to get out of working late because I wanted to be home.

My priorities were shifting and I was once again searching for purpose. I still didn’t have the desire to stay home full-time, but I started missing t-ball games and kung fu practices. As a mom, I wanted to be present at these events, I no longer wanted to be the mom traveling everywhere and showing up to practices in my high heels because I was running late from a meeting.

When I graduated college I knew whatever job I did I had to love the work, I had to serve a purpose. Over the years I have clung to that and even though my resume looks like I can’t hold a job for more than 5 years, it’s because I’m constantly on the search for what will fulfill me in life.

A few years I started to work to build a side hustle, then network marketing, then search for a new full-time job, all without success. Then finally entrepreneurship entered my world. My time had come to leave work and take a huge leap of faith (you can read more about that in this blog post).

Still I did not quit my job and enter entrepreneurship to be home with my kids full-time. This summer they were in daycare 2 days a week because I needed time to work. My youngest started pre-school this year and even though I know people may judge me for this decision, I choose to have him in school 5 full days a week. I need my time to work.

For me work is important, it provides me with a sense of purpose. I love being a mother, and I would give my life for my boys. In order to be the best mom I can be they need to be out of the house in school and I need to work to fulfill my needs, to fill my cup.

This is how I choose to live my life and how I choose to raise my children. The teachers and friends they have met over the years through daycare and school are an extension of my village and why do it alone and strung out when I have a village of people willing to help me.

Everyone, every couple, every parent needs to take a vacation without their children!!

I say this after taking a 7 day vacation with my husband without our children!!!

Whenever I told people what we were doing, they always looked at me with such excitement and sometimes jealousy saying things like “That’s so awesome!”, “Enjoy yourselves”, “You’re so lucky”.

We’ve been married almost 10 years, and even before we got married my husband had been telling me about Estes Park in Colorado. He told me about how beautiful it was and about the amazing the views after the hikes in Rocky Mountain National Park. He had been about 3 times with his friends already, and we made a vow that for our 10 year anniversary he would take me there and show me all around.

Well, ten years went a lot more quickly than I imagined and our trip has come and gone. While bittersweet to say that it’s over, it was the most amazing vacation of my life. Yes, he was right the views were amazing, although for our trip we had to deal with smoky skies from the California wildfires – who would’ve thought that would be an issue so far away?! In all honesty the views, in my opinion, were still pretty darn incredible. This only makes me look forward to our next trip out there because this means it’ll be even better than the first. Yes, that’s right, I too have fallen in love with the town of Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park.

If you don’t know where Estes Park is then the easiest way is to tell you that it’s the same town as the famous Stanley Hotel where The Shining was filmed and yes we visited the hotel, and no we saw no ghosts.

We were ready!

The only other times we’ve been away from our kids overnight have been 3 other times and always for weddings. There it wasn’t time we got to relax and be with each other. It was always very hectic, we were running around and usually traveling about an hour or so away.

This vacation was truly a true treat for us. We had 7 whole days to be together!!!

To some an entire week without their kids may sound daunting and yes, fear crept in a few times, but I worked through it because nothing was going to keep me from enjoying this trip with my husband. We needed it, our marriage needed it and even our kids needed it.

We talked about our kids a lot! They were spending the week with my parents, which mean they also got lots of time with their cousins who live just a few minutes away. I got so many pictures of all the fun things they got to do like the zoo, the pool, and the parks. Although the number of pictures dwindled as the week went on. I think you can imagine way, lol!

We would stop and look at their pictures, laugh at things they say and talk about them. So yes, we missed them, but never to the point of regretting the trip. When the 7 days was up while we were sad to leave, we were also ready to go home.

I could tell you more about our trip and likely bore you to death with hiking stories, instead I’ll just tell you why I believe all parents need to take a childless vacation.

You deserve it!

You work so hard every single day caring for other people, you deserve even just a few days of thinking about nobody else but each other. This was probably the best part and I didn’t even realize how much this was affecting me until a few days into our vacation when my mom said it to me on the phone. Even though we were hiking and waking up early I was so relaxed because all I had to do was worry about myself.

That’s it! Just one simple reason. I could come up with a fancy list of 10 reasons, but honestly this is it. You deserve a vacation whether you travel thousands of miles to go hiking, or you go to the beach for a long week and just lay around, or you take a cruise. Whatever kind of vacation you enjoy take it and go without the kids. Rekindle your marriage, remember how to be alone and how to take care of each other.

Don’t wait until your marriage is falling apart to take time together, because by then it could be too late. Take the time now. Young kids take up so much of your time and energy that we forget how to just be alone. It took me a good 24 hours to actually relax because I just didn’t know how to do it. I didn’t know how to not take care of other people. I didn’t know how to just worry about me. When I finally did settle in, it was game on and I took in every ounce of that time away.

If money is an issue, start saving now! I made the decision to leave work just 3 months before our trip and yes, it wasn’t easy making this vacation work, but I wasn’t going to let anything stop us from going on it. We financed some of it and used our tax return for some of it. This vacation was an investment in ourselves and our marriage. It was worth it!!!

Sit down with your partner, set a date (or a time of year) and start planning now even if it’s years before your vacation. Even just knowing it’s coming can be good for you. Like I said we had this planned for 10 years, and in the 6 months leading up to it we spent so much time planning together. We had to figure out not only the dates and logistics, but we would sit down after the kids were in bed and look at cabins and my husband, always the scheduler, had planned our hikes for each day. It gives you something to look forward and boy did we look forward to this trip!

I hope this inspires you to talk to your partner and start thinking about how and where you would go on vacation without kids. Even more than just talk about it start planning it because you deserve it!!!!

Shout Outs

This blog wouldn’t be complete without the appropriate shout outs to the grandparents who kindly took care of our children (human and fur) while we were away. Without them this vacation never would have happened and we are so grateful for your willingness to open up your lives and spend one exhausted week taking care of your grandkids for us. We love you and we thank you!! Also, don’t worry we don’t plan on doing this every year, lol!

Listening to my intuition has served me well, even in the face of fear.

You know those butterflies you get in your stomach when something is about to happen, like a first kiss or going on an interview. Those little flutters deep inside your belly are intuition, it’s your gut telling you something.

Do you ever get those flutters looking at pictures, or thinking about an upcoming event? Even just the thought of doing something can bring them on.

Our gut is the place where we make the best decisions, it’s our body’s way of saying what you are doing is right. It’s like the cheering section at a stadium doing the wave. They are doing it just for you!!

Most times, and most people tend to ignore this feeling as if it’s nothing to be concerned with, it’s just nerves. I want to challenge that thinking and tell you that’s it’s something to listen to and really explore.

My intuition told me I was going to leave my job months before it happened. My intuition told me things were going to go awry and drastically changing my life would be the best decision I ever made. What’s interesting is that I could have chosen to ignore this gut feeling, to ignore my intuition. By doing so I would have stayed where I was, continued to be miserable and unhappy.

I could have easily come up with every excuse in the book to not make the decision I made, and trust me I’ve heard it from plenty of people. Not in a negative way, but in a way “wow I can’t believe you did that” and “that is so risky”. I could’ve told myself that it wasn’t possible, questioned what I would do, or say that I’d wait until my business was making enough money than I would leave work.

You know what, in my gut I knew that wasn’t going to work. If I was going to do this I had to make a big move. If you watch Survivor you’ll understand that in order to have a chance at winning the game you eventually have to make a big move. If you are the person that just skirts into the final three by tagging along someone else you don’t get any credit for the decisions made. You didn’t make a big move. Leaving my job with a steady paycheck was my million dollar move.

I don’t for a second regret the decision I made, and I don’t have a plan B. This is it and it’s going to work. It’s going to work because my intuition, my gut, my heart are all telling me it is.

Our intuition is an incredible thing, and if we just stop and listen to it we will make the best decisions possible to stay on the path we are meant to be on in this life. Unfortunately most people don’t take the time to listen to their intuition, they don’t take the time to sit and be still.

I urge to take just a few minutes every day to just sit still, to write, to take a quiet walk. Put your phone on airplane mode and just be still. At first it will be hard, but if you continue to do this every day and create a consistent habit you will tap into your intuition. Then once you’ve tapped in just start listening and then start taking action.

The more you sit in silence, the easier will become to listen to your intuition. It will also become easier to realize when you are swaying in the wrong direction, and course correct.

No longer ignore those gut feelings, because that is you being guided in the direction you were meant to go. Lean in, listen and act!!!