Unapologetically Me: Fearless & Flawed

Women and worthiness is one of my hot button topics. I can get really “passionate” when it comes to any debate on this topic, ask any of my close friends. But I get passionate because it’s important to me and it’s important because I used to not be able to see my own worth. I didn’t believe that we can determine our own worth. I was looking to every other resource but myself.

Want to know what made the light bulb come on above my head? A book I read called, The Shack by William P. Young. This book completely changed my view of myself, of God, and just about everything else. This book caused me to start to work on the spiritual part of myself and it lead me to my undergraduate internship at a church working with porn and sex addictions counseling. This internship changed my life for multiple reasons— my supervisor was one of those rare gems of a person who motivated me to dig deep, and to get outside my comfort zone. He was open minded, full of knowledge, good advice, and just the right amount of humor. And he taught me SO much more than I could have ever expected to get out of that experience.

The Shack was just the first step that lead to a domino effect in my life. Once I accepted that I hold the power of my worth everything changed for me.

The Shack book by William P. Young

But it wasn’t just accepting my power it was also a result of my effort to learn more about myself, to see where I was getting in my own way. I learned how I could feel even better by identifying all of the ways my own thinking and way of processing things was flawed. For example, I learned that I am really bad about “predicting” what people are going to think or say and I almost always was predicting negative outcomes. Which just isn’t realistic and neither is thinking that I know how people are going to respond to me in every situation or circumstance. Changing my thinking was a large part of what helped me become a healthier and happier person.

I also learned about boundaries and why they are important and necessary for life and relationships and for taking care of me! I learned the difference between a “safe” and an “unsafe” person and how to protect myself from toxic people who aren’t good for me.

But the most important thing here is that my passion for helping women to see their value comes from an honest place of understanding what it’s like to not be able to see my own value. And it’s also why I think it’s so important for women who are feeling shitty about themselves or doubting their worth, or if they can’t see it at all, or if they are just around people who constantly make them doubt who they are— to make the commitment to focus on themselves.

That’s why I created Unapologetically Me: Fearless & Flawed — which is a 12 week program focused on realizing your worth, building confidence, and understanding how your own thought processes are holding you back and causing you to fail.

Each week is focused on a different topic, for example, “self defeating beliefs” is one topic I Cover where participants will learn what self defeating beliefs are, and then will get a list of common self defeating beliefs to help them identify which self defeating beliefs they might have. Next, participants are given worksheets and exercises to help them change those beliefs to more realistic and healthy beliefs. Lastly, participants are given questions to help them reflect on what they have learned.

In addition, participants will be added to a small, secret Facebook group to discuss progress, problems, successes, etc each week. Plus I will be doing once a week group calls through Zoom to provide more support throughout the program. If you prefer to not work in a group and would rather work one on one, that is also an option, but there is limited availability. So email me ASAP if you are interested at thesmartlioness@gmail.com

I know that my course will help women because these exact tools helped me. I have always had a fear of public speaking, like a lot of people do. In college it took me three attempts at taking my public speaking class before I didn’t give up and drop it, because I was so terrified to have to give speeches in front of the class!

Fast forward several years, after I have done all of this work on myself (and continue to do), and I graduate from Graduate School with my masters in Clinical Mental Health. And then I find a job as a college psychology professor. I CANNOT tell you how nervous I was my first day of class! It was bad! My whole first semester of teaching was pretty difficult for me, mainly because of my fears, and my anxiety! BUT! I kept going, I kept teaching & showing up and I kept getting better, and less nervous each time. I stayed positive, and tried to be prepared, and I used the coping skills I learned in my personal development to keep myself from going insane or having a total meltdown!

Five years later I’m still teaching psychology and I love my job! Every new semester that begins I still get a little nervous on the first day but as soon as I get into class and see how nervous the students are as well, it relaxes me and reminds me, Nobody is perfect and who cares if I mess something up!

Now teaching has really become a place where I’m able to be who I truly am, believe it or not. I’m not a strict teacher at all, I like to laugh, be my goofy self, and sometimes I even sing! Which I never thought I would be comfortable or confident enough to do in front of anyone ever! But I’ve totally allowed myself to relax, let go, and whenever my inner critic starts up, I fight back!

I can’t express to you how important it is to work on you, that inner critic, and whatever it is that holds you back. If you don’t know what’s holding you back, what better reason do you have than to start trying to figure that out right now? You never know what that could mean for you. If I can face and conquer my fear of public speaking, You can overcome your fears too, and I can give you the tools to do that. Hell you could end up doing the one thing you were the most scared to do, and you could end up loving it!

Unapologetically Me: Fearless & Flawed gets started on June 3rd — Early Registration is open now!! Sign up with this link!

Feeling inspired and want to get to work now?? Do my free Dare to Roar Challenge to get a small taste of what to expect in June! Use this link to get started! http://bit.ly/2OMg7Ae

Respond, Don’t React

“When you react to something someone says or does, you may have a problem with boundaries. If someone is able to cause havoc by doing or saying something, she is in control of you at that point and your boundaries are lost.

When you respond, you remain in control with options and choices. If you feel yourself reacting, step away and gain control of yourself so family members, can’t force you to do or say something you do not want to do or say, & something that violates your separateness.

When you have kept your boundaries, choose the best option. The difference between responding and reacting is choice. When you are reacting, they are in control. When you respond, you are in control.” – Boundaries, Dr. Henry Cloud & Dr. John Townsend

So let’s take a minute to look at the difference between reacting and responding. Reactions are instant, they are driven by our beliefs, attitudes, biases, etc.

A response, however, usually comes more slowly. It’s based on information from both our conscious (aware) mind and our unconscious mind ( beliefs, attitudes, etc)

These two may look a lot alike, but they FEEL different. We all know the difference. The point is though, that the more reacting we do, the less empowered we are. When we do this, we are operating on unconscious beliefs and process that we aren’t even aware of, which, in all honesty has the potential to make us look really stupid if we aren’t careful.

“When I look back on my knee-jerk reactions now, I realize I should have just taken a breath.” -Fred Durst

On January 1st my new 40 Day Self Love Resolution Challenge will begin! If you need some help learning to love yourself, how to put “loving yourself” into action, and new tools and skills for increasing your self love, this is the course for you!

You’ll also get access to a “Private” Facebook Group with other women participating in the challenge for support and daily reminders, etc! If you are interested click here and send me a message!

Or learn more &/or sign up for the challenge here!

Sharing is Caring! If you LOVE this article SHARE IT!! 🙂

Look On the Bright Side

3 Simple Steps to Help You Look for & Appreciate the Positives

According to Rick Hansen’s Method – Taking in the Good, if we store more negative memories than positive memories, we start to see the world as depressing and/or threatening.

We as humans are mostly hardwired to remember the bad things and forget about all the good! Our brains tend to act like velcro for our negative memories and like “repellant” for positive memories. This is clearly not a good way to live life!

If you really think about it words, can have a “sticky” property to them, when someone calls us a name or makes fun of us or just makes us feel bad about ourselves, those things tend to stick with us more than the positive things that happen to us.

BUT! Not to fear! Hansen provides us with a way for us to make our positive feelings more “sticky” to us! Here are 3 ways to take in the good:

     1.) Actively look for the positive in every experience you have

2.) Hold those positive experiences in your conscious awareness             for as long as possible

3.) Savor the positive experiences- Remember the feelings you felt

If you’re not a part of my Smart Lioness Pride Facebook Group for women yet, what are you waiting on?! 🙂 You can watch a video on this topic that I did as well! If you are really trying to make some changes in your life, I have created a worksheet to help you to “see the good” in your experiences, or at least it will remind you that’s the goal, if nothing else! 🙂

Download the worksheet here:  Look on the Bright Side

Self Care Sunday

20 Things To Give Yourself Permission for:

1.) Rest
2.) To laugh
3.) To play
4.) Make mistakes
5.) To say “no”  to demands on my time that are simply draining
6.) To say “yes” to what I want
7.) To fulfill my childhood/lifelong dreams
8.) To ask for what I want
9.) To be who I am
10.) To try again
11.) To have fun
12.) To design my own life
13.) To ignore the haters
14.) To stay focused on what’s important to me
15.) To be whatever body shape I want to be
16.) To be imperfect
17.) To ASK FOR HELP
18.) To stop caring what others think of me
19.) To write a shitty first draft
20.) To create

Self Care Sunday!!

Happy Sunday Funday/Self Care Sunday!

Helloooo my Lovely Lioness Ladies!! How has your weekend been?  Mine has been pretty productive, which I”m pretty excited about!!

 

I’ve got ALL KINDS of new and wonderful things coming to the Site VERY SOON! SO GET EXCITED!!!!!!!!  Staring in October, which is today, can you believe it?!?! I SURE CAN’T!

So anyway! Our first order of business is a NEW posting schedule for the blog which will be as follows staring this month, not all at once so you don’t get overloaded and overwhelmed! But over the month of October ALL KINDS of new and lovely content will be right at your fingertips!::

  • Monday — Mommy Monday’s starting October 9th (Click on the “Mommy Mondays” tab to be considered as a Guest Mommy Blogger!

 

  • Tuesdays — Take a break Tuesdays, Something inspirational and short & sweet!!

 

  • Wednesday– Wednesday Wisdom ( I’ll post what I learned from the latest Research I’ve been reading, in an easy to understand kind of way!

 

  • Thursday — Bossfidence Column ( In case you didn’t know, I also write for another blog called Bossfidence —- “This generation of millennial boss babes refuses to fit that mold; they are bursting through the barriers with a rebel outcry with the need to have a seat at the table. Bossfidence is taking initiative and control of your destiny through entrepreneurship, thought leadership and relationship building.” -Ashley Dunham, Bossfidence Founder)

 

  • Friday – Feature Friday- For this day I will feature guest bloggers, plus reviews for TV Shows & Netflix reccommendations

 

  • Saturday – Saturday Stories will be guest blogging (open to anyone) If you need a safe space to tell your story and get encouragement in return. This will be perfect for you!!

 

  • Sunday – Self Care Sundays – Self Care Sundays will include suggestions from muah on how to take better care of yourself and some new and different ideas for accomplishing self care.

I Figured I would start today’s Self Care Sunday with the results from my “Quest for the Best Podcast” survey!!

I did a survey across many different platforms, asking for people’s favorite Podcasts. And BOY did I get some good responses!!

After getting so many suggestions, I decided to make a list of all the Podcasts I came up with to share with those of you who are just getting started in the Podcasts world and need some guidance on where to begin!! We’ll you’re in luck! I have come up with THE BEST list of Podcasts ever made EVER!!! 🙂

ALSO this evening in my Smart Lioness Pride group on Facebook (FREE) at 5:30 CST Laura Lee Stjernstrom from LL Yoga Online will be providing your with a FREE mini Meditation to get your week started off to a great start! One of the best forms of self care is Meditation! Make sure you join my group so you can tune in!! Just click here to Join my group!!

If you’re interested in joining Laura Lee’s online yoga group you can click here to contact her!

AND FINALLY, if you made it this far you deserve my list of the BEST Podcasts EVER! 🙂 Kidding, but there are all different kinds for all different folks!! Podcasts are good to help you relax as well as learn something new or just straight up entertain you!!

 

Now for your greatest list of Podcasts EVER!

 

1.) The Love Bomb                                                     2.) Anna Farris is Unqualified

3.) That’s So Retrograde                                            4.) Sword & Scale

5.) Brain Candy                                                           6.) How I Built This

7.) Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations                       8.) Girlboss

9.) Strong Opinions Loosely Held                             10.) Lady Gang

11.) Dear Sugars                                                       12.) Hidden Brain

13.) The Art of Charm                                                14.) Earn Your Happy

15.) Optimal Living Daily                                            16.) No Philter

17.) Goal Digger with Jenna Kutcher                         18.) Don’t Keep Your Day Job

19.) Dudesplaining                                                      20.) Gary Vee

21.) You Should Remember This                                22.) Chasing Glory with Lillian Garcia

23.) Being Boss                                                          24.) Off the Vine with Kaitlyn Bristowe

25.) Revisionist History                                              26.) Bare Naked Bravery

27.) Tim Ferriss                                                         28.) Melyssa Griffin’s Pursuit with Purchase

29.) The Model Health Show                                    30.) Brendon Burchard

31.) Tony Robbins                                                     32.) The Hilarious World of Depression

33.) My Brother, My Brother, & Me                           34.) Hello from Magic Tavern

35.) The Flop House                                                36.) She Did it Her Way

37.) Stuff Mom Never Told You                               38.) Pantsuit Politics

39.) Betch Slapped                                                 40.) Almost 30

41.) Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me                                    42.) Curiosity

43.) S Town                                                              44.) Casefiles

45.) My Favorite Murder                                           46.) And That’s Why we Drink

47.) From the Front Porch                                        48.) What Should I Read Next

49.) Bitch Sesh                                                         50.) The School of Greatness

51.) Celia Cavalli                                                       52.) Tiny Leaps Big Changes

53.) Women Wanting More                                       54.) The Grift

55.) You Need A Budget                                           56.) Marie Forleo

57.) Loveline with Amber Rose (Rated R)                58.) Up First (NPR)

59.) Teaching in Higher Ed                                       60.) The Thread

61.) The Divided States of Women                          61.) Cults

62.) The Kremlin Playbook                                       63.) Dirty John

64.) Every Little Thing                                              65.) Mindshift Podcast

66.) Modern Love                                                    67.) The Morning Breath

68.) Death, Sex, & Money                                       70.) Pod Save America

71.) Strange Indeed                                                72.) Rough Translation

73.) Hollywood & Crime                                         74.) Secrets, Crimes, & Audiotapes

75.) Lore                                                                 76.) The Breakfast Club

77.) Selfie with Kristen Howerton & Sarah James

78.) The Good Life Project                                     79.) The Way I Heard it with Mike Rowe

80.) My Dad Wrote a Porno                                    81) Small Town Murder

82.) Sleep with Me: The Podcast that Puts You to Sleep

83.) The Nerdist                                                      84.) On Being with Krista Trippett

85.) Where Should We Begin                                 86.) Brains On!

87.) Still Processing                                                88.) Pop Culture Happy Hour

89.) The Brilliant Idiots                                            90.) Mama Bear Dares

91.) Motivated                                                         92.) Meditation Minis

93.) Not Too Deep with Grace Helbig                      94.) Sexplanations

95.) Simplify                                                             96.) Serial Killers

97.) TED Radio Hour                                                98.) The Butterfly Effect

99.) The Lively Show                                               100.) The Minds of Madness

 

To download a PDF copy of my list of Podcasts you can click here->    PodCast Quest Enjoy!!
Let me know in the comments which are your favorites or which ones you plan to try out!!

 

 

 

 

 

Self Care Sunday’s

Lately I’ve been seeing a lot more on Instagram and in the media in general of the advocating for women to engage in more self care. This not only makes me incredibly happy but it’s catching on and becoming a trend to hashtag #selfcaresaturday or #selfcaresunday!! I think that it is great that our culture is heading towards a landscape that encourages women to take better care of themselves!

In honor of the hashtag #SelfCareSunday I decided to do this post on some different ways of coping with anxiety, stress management, and self care inspiration! And I even have a FREE downloadable PDF at the bottom of this page with FIFTEEN different ways to effectively manage stress!! Are you excited yet???

Self Care has notoriously been kept at the bottom of our to do lists for way too long now! As women we often believe that we have to take care of everyone around us, or anyone who asks! And most of the time, we are doing this BEFORE we even take care of ourselves! WE HAVE GOT TO START PUTTING OURSELVES FIRST LADIES! Look at it like this….

If you have ever flown on a plane ANYWHERE you know the whole process they go through about safety and what to do if your oxygen mask falls down, or what do to if you need to use it. They say something along the lines of.. “If you have children with you, you MUST FIRST place your oxygen mask on first, BEFORE putting the mask on your child. Why? Well if you are trying to put your child’s mask on first, and in the process, you pass out, before you even get your child’s mask put on them. NOW WHAT?? Who will take care of your child? NOT YOU!

This is how we need to start looking at our own self care! If we don’t take care of ourselves and rest, relax, take care of our own needs first, we aren’t able to fully and completely take care of others. “You can’t drink from an empty cup.”

If you have a difficult time with putting yourself first, there could be underlying issues related to why you think that you don’t deserve, to have your needs met. There are many numbers of reasons of what could have lead you to feel this way but, it is something that you need to start to explore.

One of the best, and easiest ways to do this is by meditation. Meditation is defined as “a practice where an individual operates or trains the mind or induces a mode of consciousness, either to realize some benefit or for the mind to simply acknowledge its content without becoming identified with that content, or as an end in itself.”

There are various types of meditation, each with different goals, and benefits. The one I most often use is for relaxation.

Research has found that 90% of people with clinical levels of anxiety, experience significant reductions in anxiety when they meditate. According to Neuroscientists, meditation can actually reshape your brain as you continue to meditate, consistently, without your awareness (clearly). AND it helps with stress management by activating the REST & DIGEST part of our nervous system.

Lastly, in 163 DIFFERENT research studies, scientists found that mindfulness meditation has an overall “positive affect on stress and anxiety.”

With all of these Facts about Meditation in mind, I thought it would be helpful AND enjoyable to provide FREE LIVE mini meditation videos on Sunday’s at 5:30 CST in my Smart Lioness Pride Facebook group!! So I asked My good friend Laura Lee Stjernstrom who is the Owner/Founder of LL Yoga Online and she graciously accepted to provide these FREE mini meditation Lives every Sunday out of the goodness of her heart! (And her love of Yoga/meditation/helping people) 🙂

Laura Lee is THE BEST Yoga teacher/instructor I have ever had the pleasure of taking a class from! She is so knowledgable, non-judgmental, and honestly one of the kindest human beings I’ve ever come into contact with. When I learned that she would be providing Yoga Classes ONLINE, I jumped for joy and literally let out a “wooohooooo!!”

Every thing that you do in yoga is beneficial for your body in some way shape or form and Laura Lee is SO GOOD about explaining the benefits of each pose, what the pose does for your health, etc. If you are new to Yoga or exercise in general, YOU CANT go wrong with signing up for an online class with Laura Lee!!

To learn more about Laura Lee’s online yoga classes, you can click here.

And to tune into our Meditation Live today, click here! 

If you missed my Free Mini Series “Get Ya Stress in Check Girl!” on Facebook you can download the worksheets below. This is one of the MANY reasons we should be friends on Facebook!!

Get Yo Stress in Check1

Get Ya Stress In Check2

Get Ya Stress in Check 3

Get Ya Stress in Check 4

FINALLY! You can download your FREE PDF with 15 Stress Reducers FREEBIE

What is Healthy Love?

Healthy Love, What is it?

 

Do you ever get confused about what is actually healthy in a romantic relationship? If so, you wouldn’t be alone, the media tends to blur the lines sometimes between what’s healthy and what’s obsessive, or just plain crazy!

For example, a guy who is OVERLY into you, like obsessed with you, that’s clearly not healthy. But also, a guy who wants to move really quickly, doesn’t want to share you with anyone, and tells you he loves you, within the first month of the two of you dating, may sound romantic or you may feel like he just is really super into you. But these are all signs of unhealthy love and what can lead to things much worse such as abuse.

I am thinking of doing a Free series on Healthy vs Unhealthy Love and I need your feedback!! Tell me in the comments if this is something you would be interested in hearing!! I would love to know what you would like to see more of here! 🙂

 

Click here Healthy Love Characteristics to get a Free PDF with a list of some characteristics of healthy love!

Also you can get in touch with me on Facebook here, or Instagram here, or SnapChat Here: @thesmartlioness

PS I ALMOST FORGOT! Catch me over at the badass Bossfidence.com website for my new weekly column on Thursdays called “Thursday Thoughts” !!!

[contact-form to=”thesmartlioness@gmail.com” subject=”Healthy Love Feedback”][contact-field label=”Name” type=”name”][contact-field label=”Email” type=”email” required=”1″][contact-field label=”Feedback: More of healthy vs unhealthy love?” type=”textarea” required=”1″][/contact-form]

Distorted Thinking Infographic

We all have ways of thinking about things that are distorted, like a funhouse mirror that makes you look super duper tall and skinny or super short and fat. But its just a distorted version of the truth!

Take a look at these different types of thinking and see which apply to you and start questioning your thoughts & that inner critic. Because THEY LIE!

 

Girl, Don’t Quit

(You can also click on the graphic above to download for your iphone wallpaper)

Don’t Quit

“When things go wrong as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill
When the funds are low & the debts are high,
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit—
Rest if you must, but don’t quit.

 

 

Life is strange with its twists & turns,
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a fellow turns about
When he might have won had he stuck it out.
Don’t give up through the pace seems slow—
You may succeed with another blow.

 

 

Often the goal is nearer than
It seems to a fair and faltering man,
Often the struggler has given up
When he might have captured the victor’s cup,
And he learned too late when night came down,
How close he was to the golden crown.

 

 

Success is failure turned inside out—
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems afar,
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit, —
It’s when things seem worst that you mustn’t quit.”

 

Author Unknown
Source: www.thesilverpen.com

Want your own copy of this poem? I thought you might say that :)Click here to download your own PDF version Don’t Quit

What motivates you to eat?

Psychological motivations play an important role in both healthy & disordered eaters. 

An eating disorder usually stems from consciously & consistently acting on coping, compliance, & pleasure motivations. Even those people who diet can see their eating as motivated by feelings of depression, or feelings of personal inadequacies or use eating as a way to comfort themselves.

We cope with our feelings and emotions in various ways and eating is one of the most popular. Eating to deal with our emotions although a popular method is not a healthy method. So the first step to changing your methods of coping is to identify what the problems are, or identify your motivations to eat currently. If you are in my July Challenge group, I will be posting the worksheet for this blog post in the group. If you have any questions please feel free to leave me a comment or send me an email at thesmartlioness@gmail.com

You can also find me on Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat & Periscope