On August 26, 1920, Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby signed the proclamation granting American women the constitutional right to vote. What we often forget is the sacrifice women made to earn that right. These brave women endured beatings and torture, and likely things we don’t even know about. I honor them. In fact, today the entire nation honors them, although there are many people who don’t even know that.
Today is National Women’s Equality Day.
As I sit here thinking about it, I honestly have mixed emotions. Why? Because we just aren’t there yet. The vote did not bring equality.
Yes, we can vote and we have made strides in what we can (legally) do, be, or have. (As a side note, a friend of mine in her 70s told me when she was in her 30s and wanted to start establishing her own credit, her ONLY option was to beg for a department store credit card. The only way she could get it was for her father to co-sign. She couldn’t buy a house or car on her own at all —she had to have a husband or father do it. Forming her own business? Nope. A man had to get the loan. That is not my experience, and for that, I am so very grateful.)
I admire the women who tore down those barriers, and more. They are smart, strong, resourceful, and amazing (hmmm…like most women I know).
The problem is, my generation came along and decided we were there. The work was done.
But you know what? As long as we collectively do things like:
call women who speak up (or speak their minds) b!tches,
judge each other for not doing things exactly the way we would ourselves…
…we are not there.
As long as we refuse to figure out our OWN dreams and aspirations and choose to live unfulfilling lives, we are not there.
As long as we use our precious vote to allow admitted sexual predators to hold public office, we are not there. (It BOGGLES my mind that women endorse such horrific behavior.)
The good news is, in the last few years, many of us have woken up and realized all of this. The energy among women working together and lifting each other up is amazing. It fills my heart. I’m excited for the changes that are coming. I’m excited about seeing true equality in my life and knowing that my stepdaughter and my niece have brighter futures because of it.
Thank you to all the women (and men) who have never stopped working toward a better future for all of us. Thank you to the women (and men) who have joined the movement. Thank you to everyone who makes this world beautiful and safe for all. Happy Women’s Equality Day.
PS: this is about as political as I will ever get, but women’s equality is an issue about which I have very strong beliefs.
PPS: That’s my niece Maya with me at the Women’s March on Washington. She was so excited that day. Her generation is going to change our world.
I should lose weight. I should wake up earlier. I should pay my credit card bill.
Let me ask you a question: have you EVER felt good about doing something you should do?
Should is an energy zapper. It is a low-vibe, low-frequency word that does nothing to lift you up or put you in a positive frame of mind. It is really just another word for guilt or failure.
I hear the word should a lot. Heck, I use it sometimes (always before some action I am not at all interested in taking). Yet I know it’s just another word for guilt, so I recoil a bit when I hear it.
Lately, I’ve been paying attention to the word should, and how I feel when I say it or think it. I realized that few things can kill my buzz faster than the word should. It sucks any joy out of what I’m doing.
I’ve decided to use words for happy feelings because I want to live a high-vibe life — and that starts with high-vibe language and feelings.
Reframing the shoulds of life is actually very easy. It’s a simple matter of reframing the conversation. Instead of thinking I should do something, I realize I get to do those things.
I get to go to the gym and exercise my body so it stays strong.
I get to eat healthy foods that nourish me.
I get to pay bills for the necessities that make my life enjoyable (like power and water).
I get to wake up early every morning to meditate and write.
I’m tingling from the energy of those statements! I can’t wait to do ALL of them.
What about you? What shoulds in your life would bring you joy if you just reframed the thought and used more words for happy feelings?
Do you struggle to find money to invest in yourself? If you do, you are not alone. Every day I talk to women who struggle to find the money to invest in themselves… the most important investment anyone can make.
I know from personal experience that if I know something will really make a difference in my life that I will find the money to invest in it. I’ve done this so many times, and I know I’ll do it more. I’ve done it for $100 products to $50,000 programs. In fact, I did it just a few days ago. If the investment will help me, the money will come.
The absolute truth is, I think about 70% of the time a woman says she doesn’t have the money for a personal development program, she does. I have said I can’t afford things many times because I either didn’t see the value or (and this is important) I was scared of the work. After all, what happens if you do the work and life still isn’t how you want it to be? I get it. That fear ruled me for years. I’m over it now, thank God.
Anyway, I digress.
For those women who really do want to invest and don’t see how they’ll find the money, I have a treat for you. I believe you do have the money. You just need to find it. To help you out, I created a money mojo tip sheet with my seven FAVORITE ways to manifest the investment you need to the thing you really want. Once you practice activating your money mojo, you will find that investing in yourself doesn’t seem so scary because you know you’ll be able to find the money.
Download the tip sheet today and watch your financial life transform!
Do you want more happiness in your life? I do! That’s why I have a strategy for getting it. I believe happiness doesn’t just happen; we are all active participants in creating our own joy. The first stop in pursuit of happiness is a vision board—a place to visualize your dreams and aspirations.
This is my happiness vision board for the year, and it captures all aspects of my happiness strategy — serving more women in pursuit of happiness, spending more time at the beach to feed my soul, and volunteering time and resources to save the oceans. All of these are HUGE priorities for my happiness.
What are yours? And how are you planning for it? If you are feeling a little bit stuck on that answer, watch my free webinar “The 5 Steps to Create a Mindset that Gives You Courage to Step Into a Life You Love.”
3 Pathways in the Pursuit of Happiness
There are three pathways to happiness, and I think the reason many people struggle with finding happiness is that they are focused on one with the lowest long-term impact.
1. Pleasant life
This is where most people land and stay. You get things (cars, vacations, a big house) and that makes you really happy… for a little while. The problem with this pathway is its kind of like a drug. You need bigger and bigger fixes to feel the same level of happiness. And thus, you stay in pursuit of happiness forever. You never really get there. So although you don’t feel unhappy in this place, you’re never truly happy either because you are searching for happiness outside of your self by acquiring things.
2. Good life
When you’re on the good life path, you are in the flow. You are totally authentic. You are self-aware and spending time working on your inner self. That brings you a lot of joy. However, in the long term, it’s not completely effective. Why? Because let’s face it, there is only so much focus on your own self and your own needs you can do (unless you are a narcissist). We are wired to contribute to the world, and living in the Good Life doesn’t meet that basic human need. It’s great work to do, but not the only work to do.
That brings us to happiness pathway #3:
3. MEANINGFUL LIFE
Living a meaningful life is all about contributing to those around you. This is when you are clear about your life values and mission, and you are focusing your energy toward fulfilling them. You are in the flow and you are making a positive contribution to those around you. You feel that contribution in your soul and it feeds your happiness and expands even farther. You’re in a state of gratitude, and you have long-term, sustainable happiness.
I happen to believe that if you are living a meaningful life, you will have all the things you need (pleasant life) and the self-love (good life) that you want.
What does living a meaningful life actually mean? Do you have to quit your job, sell your house and move to Africa to help install clean drinking water? No. If that is what you want to do, go for it. But you don’t have to give up everything. Living a meaningful life may come down to how you treat those around you (giving everyone you meet the same respect) or how involved you are in your community (like coaching a little league team or volunteering at the homeless shelter).
When I was in pursuit of happiness, before I launched my coaching business (which is 100% aligned with my life mission), volunteering at my local animal shelter gave me meaning in my life. I was burnt out and unhappy in my career and realized I needed to connect with something outside of myself that mattered. For me, that was fostering homeless dogs and volunteering at the shelter. The difference that has made in my life still blows me away. I believe that sense of purpose was a catalyst to give me the courage to launch my coaching business.
The other day, someone asked me what kinds of things make me happy. I always have the urge to think about the BIG things, or the things that sound like important. But at that particular moment, I had just returned from walking my dogs. So I blurted out that watching their cute little behinds while I’m walking them makes me ridiculously happy. And that led to thinking about all of the little things every day that make me smile. These things include:
Seeing someone break into a smile when my husband and I drive by in our old Volkswagon Thing.
Falling asleep to the sound of cicadas.
A hot epsom salt bath.
My dogs sitting on my belly while I try to do my should PT.
The first cup of coffee in the morning.
The reality is, my life is FULL of things that make me really happy. I’ve got some bigger goals for the happy life I want to live, and they’re going to take some time. Case in point: I really want to live at the beach. Every day, Rick and I assess whether the choices we make are going to get us there. But even though we’re working toward it, that dream is a ways off. In the meantime, there is plenty of happiness around me.