Archive for Goal Achievement

Beating Down Frustration in Your Home Business

Beating Down Frustration in Your Home Business

Yesterday a huge wave of doubt and frustration came over me. It came unexpectedly and rose to such heights that I found I was drowning in negativity and talking irrationally. I expressed it to Jim and Molly, my 13yo happened to be in the kitchen too. She had never seen me doubt myself in quite that way. She was worried and showed a side of sympathy and concern I had never seen in her before.

I feel so bad for Cutie,” she kept saying. That’s her nickname for me. “What are you going to do?” she asked me time and again. I didn’t have an answer.

Has that ever happened to you? Where you just couldn’t hold it in anymore and the demons of negativity started beating you down?

“You’ll never make it,” they say.

“You’ve totally missed the mark, why keep trying?”

“If this was the right path, shouldn’t it be easier?”

Typically, if you’ve hung around with me much on this blog or you’ve worked with me before, you’ve experienced the opposite. I believe you can do anything you set your mind to and cheering you on makes me happy. In my core I see the potential and good in everyone.

But sometimes, it’s hard to believe the same for me. That’s the truth.

So today I’m just being honest with you and working some things through on paper. If you’re feeling confused, write THROUGH the emotions and figure out why. Asking questions help. These are core coaching concepts I work with my clients and use on myself too…let’s see where they go…ready to hear some inner dialogue? Keep reading.

Why am I feeling doubtful?

Since I opened my life coaching practice I have always had this HUGE vision to help moms live happier lives. I’m an intense person in general and having small goals just doesn’t work for me.

I remember researching publishing companies within weeks of opening my practice, because I knew I had to ‘see’ where I was going. What would be better, Namaste Publishing, or Hay House?

Conscious Parent CourseIt was then that I found Dr. Shefali Tsabary on the Namaste Publishing website. I pre-ordered her book The Conscious Parent and loved the concepts so much that I incorporated her theories into my life and practice, developed a friendship with her and wrote a companion workbook which was approved by Namaste for use in my Conscious Parent Course.

Great. Or not.

I loved what I was doing and I was making a little bit of money doing it. But my vision was bigger. I kept asking myself HOW can I reach more moms?

So I set out to writing my first book April O'Leary - Ride the waveRide the Wave: Journey to Peaceful Living in which I share my own personal transformation from frustrated at-home mom and how I was able to let go of much of my reactivity. I wrote it in a week (the first week I had to myself in ten years since becoming a mom) and shared it with my contact at Namaste. They weren’t interested. So I found a way to make it happen for myself and learned the art of self-publishing.

I continued coaching privately and knew that with a one-to-one practice I would severely limit my ability to reach thousands of moms with the strategies I shared in my book. This led me to creating the 13-01-13-uofmoms-header3University of Moms, developing some online courses and eventually to founding the Happy Mom Conference Happy Mom Conferencewhich ran in 2013 and 2014 providing educational talks and mom-focused vendors in an atmosphere of support.

Great. Or not.

I loved what I was doing and I was making a little more money doing it. But my vision was bigger and I had put a lot on myself. This was WAY more work than I had planned and it was taking WAY more tip.

Yes the vision persisted. How can I reach more moms?

Looking through the photos from the conference I saw moms who were thriving in direct sales and network marketing businesses. Their tables lined the perimeter of the room and suddenly I saw something I had never seen before.

Yes! Here are the moms I’ve been waiting to reach.

That year I took a complete shift in my entire business and rebranded my practice to help moms, like you, to build your home businesses, but more than that, to experience happiness and feel recognized and valuable as you did it.

Now that I’m writing this through I can see where the frustration is coming from. Isn’t that interesting.

I’m not an expert in network marketing. Yes I wrote a book with Jessica Higdon, and we hit the best-seller list just recently. The fact is, I’ve only just begun incorporating the network marketing model into my coaching practice as an added source of revenue.

What I am an expert in is life coaching. I love helping people navigate their personal challenges. I love helping them examine their core beliefs about themselves and their world around them. THAT is where I have had a major life change and THAT is where I can help you.

Yes I have learned about marketing along the way, but truly that’s not my goal. It’s a sideline skill you need to build any business.

BUT if you are unhappy in your life, becoming a top-earner in your company is not going to change that. I know plenty of women who have achieved that level of success and are no happier because of it. And the truth is, often it brings its own unique relationship challenges that need to be addressed.

Being out of alignment!

That is the core reason I was feeling doubtful. When you are out of alignment in your life, your emotions will alert you. It’s that simple. Don’t sweep them under the rug dig deeper (in writing) and find out why.

For me, today, those emotions of frustration were simply alerting me to dig deeper and now I have a choice.

You see how writing can take you places you might not have otherwise gone. I could have chosen to let my mind continue to spin tales all day long. Beating me up. Telling me I’m not going to achieve my dreams. Now I can choose to shift and embrace the journey and get back on my course.

It’s why The Katy Perry movie is my favorite movie of all time (and there are plenty of other real-life examples to support this concept). During her rise to fame she was told to be more like Avril Lavigne, and she kept saying, I just want to be Katy. When she stuck with it, despite her car being impounded and having no money magic eventually broke through.

All it takes is one connection. All it takes is persistence and staying the course. Someone will rise up to help you. I truly believe that. The universe will not let your dreams fall flat.

Yes, you’ll learn plenty along the way. Yes, you’ll doubt yourself. Yes, you’ll want to quit. Yes, you’ll see in others what you don’t see in yourself. And YES you’ll have to decide are you going to let frustration beat you down or will you stay the course?

For me. I’m staying the course.

Now I have to go wake up Molly and tell her I’m not quitting.

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Conscious Parenting: Raising the next generation to new heights!

Photo Credit:  Matt, Flickr.com

Photo Credit: Matt, Flickr.com

Like so many other people, I have a dream.  This dream of mine began small…under my own roof in fact.  But, the more I learn and invest myself into the process and potential of this concept, the greater my desire to be an instrumental part of seeing the dream become a reality not only for my home,  but for homes throughout THE WORLD.  I firmly believe it can be done, I just wonder if it will be a reality during my lifetime…

What is this dream you ask?

My dream, along with a growing number of others, is the ability to experience what the world would be like to live in if the next generation of children were raised by parents determined to do so consciously.

How can those of us who are working toward conscious parenting build the momentum of this dream?

For starters it means regularly sharing the idea with other parents.  For example, I recently knew three babies born so I bought a copy of The Conscious Parent for each family as a gift.  The recipients will need to be open to take a risk and an  initiative to evaluate their parenting with an open mind.  They would ideally begin to understand much of our child rearing skill comes from what we have experienced in our own upbringing.  While our parents may have loved us very, very much, they were not raised in a way that honored their authentic being, therefore they were unable to raise us in a way that honored our inner self.

Instead, previous generations of people have been raised to believe it is the parent who carries the power, deserves all of the respect, and whom should be honored and obeyed without question.  As a result of many generations raised with those ideals in mind, there have been untold amounts of emotional wounds passed down.  If we choose to continue to ignore,  or to approach parenting the same way our elders did, those emotions will be given to our own children.  When we neglect to tend to our own emotional baggage and uncover, layer by layer, our own authentic life we are doing not only ourselves, but the next generation, a disservice.

And the emotional burden and unauthentic living will never end.

Our parents, grandparents, great-grandparents and all parents before them did what they knew to do to raise children.  We now have a more enlightened answer and path.  

When we know better, we must do better.  Therein lies the hope in the conscious parenting movement.

Having the courage to look at the relationship we have with ourselves, and with our children.  To look in the past long enough to recognize where we need to change in the present to positively affect future outcome. Easy, no.  Worthwhile, yes!

Because when we can look at our child as a teacher, rather than as our student, and we comprehend they were brought into the world to serve a purpose which can only be revealed through our attuned presence with them in tandem our encouragement, support, and unconditional love.  The power and practice of this idea will help make the dream of conscious parenting a reality!

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How Fear Can Paralyze You If You Let It

Photo Credit: BK, Flickr.com

Photo Credit: BK, Flickr.com

I stayed in a career for 20 years because of my fear of changing & doing what I love doing which I had lost sight of plenty of times but it never lost touch in me. However, after my daughter turned one, I consciously left my six-figure career 3 years ago with fear of so much (fear of what if, fear of money, fear of change, fear of the unknown, fear of not having control, fear of not being accepted for my decision). But you know what I knew for sure, I trusted my decision at the core of my being. I knew that being a stay-at-home-mom was where I needed my energies to be most. And ultimately through my daughter’s birth & all she has taught me, I was brought full circle, through The Universe, supporting my decision to do my life’s work both as a mom & life / parent coach & now blogging & serving others through my journey and helping them grow through theirs.

Rewind to the year my daughter was born (2011), I knew from that moment I was going to create and invite the opportunity for greater self -evolution. I was no longer going to allow the battle of the minds (so-speak) but instead I was going to manifest and put out into The Universe my desire to be at home with my daughter – pay heed and receive it in its due time. That September, my husband and I had a “meeting of the minds” (Labor Day weekend) to be exact and we discussed the “how to” plan so I could be a SAHM. Bottom line, we looked at everything from our finances, to our current situation to aligning our values (which we were already very much on the same page) and our understanding of what was going to need to change in order to make this happen. We literally created a “power-point” action plan. Then that December, just three months after I let go and let God, I had a call with my boss at the time and within that conversation when she shared much of what was going to “need” to happen the following year (from a sales perspective, travel requirements, etc) and I knew that this was my official sign from The Universe and my moment for departure. I was no longer going to serve a career that did not fulfill my inner being. I was not going to be “that mom” who came home from work – bitter, frustrated, worn-out all because it paid great. The cost was TOO HIGH for me to stay as opposed for me to leave.

After my call with my then boss, I called my husband and told him today is the day that I am giving my notice this week. Over the next five days, I called everyone one of our bill payers (reduced our bills where I could) and ended up saving us $500 per month (which although this was minimal compared to what I was making, it was a good determined start). Three years later, and through my conscious parenting journey, blogging, coaching, etc , God is providing me with many ways to earn an income again and doing the work I love and was called here to do.

So if this resonates with you in some capacity, I encourage you to take the steps, think through the process, lay out the plan, garner the support, be honest with yourself and follow your life’s path. You, your family and your children will all be better for it. I truly and whole-heartedly believe that God always provides. It may not be in the immediate way we perceive it or fantasize about but He provides in many others ways (money is the bonus) including our spiritual and emotional health being at the helm of the true value with bring into our lives and our children’s.

The transformation I’ve personally made plowing through fears & still plowing through them has been liberating & I think “what if” I never embarked upon my journey because of fear, I would not be here in this moment & what a disservice that would have been to myself, my daughter / family & others. This path & process to consciousness has allowed me to truly tap in, honor & trust my voice. I accept that as part of this ever-evolving journey, have a lot of self-talks and move through it. I look back at some of the fears I’ve come through & let them empower me for those that continue to arise.

What fears are holding you back from stepping into your true essence? 

How can you create more space to allow the organic flow for what is naturally ready to bare fruit in your light?

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Top 4 Ways to Make Your Yearly Vision A Reality

If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much. ~Jim Rohn

Photo Jan 01, 9 30 24 AM

So it’s officially 2014. The weather outside is a cool 70 degrees with a high today of 82.

Not to brag, but living in Florida is totally the bomb this time of year! Check back with me in 6 months when your weather is this nice and I’m dying with 90 degree temp plus 90% humidity plus 90% chance of rain daily forecast and the kids trapped inside all summer long because you can get burnt in 10 mins flat and they hate wearing sunscreen and see how I’m doing then. Yeah, that’s super fun!

But where was I? 2014. That’s it. My friend Julie Zeff has this amazing 40 minute visualization called Goodbye 2013, Hello 2014. I started to complete it yesterday on the ride home from our last-minute trip up to Disney (yes another perk of living in FL).

Photo Jan 01, 9 31 46 AMDisney Tip: GET THE FAST PASS to go on Buzz Light Year. This is a super popular ride and the line is super boring! So head to Tomorrow Land first thing and snag it, then come back later. I’m not a Disney expert but I do know that.

Well here I was heading home from Disney listening to Julie’s visualization and typing out my year -in-review notes. As I started scrolling through my calendar from early 2013 I noticed something.

1. List out your prior year’s accomplishments

What I noticed was that what I had planned out at the beginning of 2013 using Julie’s visualization last year (as I was doing now for 2014) was exactly what happened.

I started to fondly remember all the clients I had worked with back in that time frame that I had somehow forgotten.  I listed out the articles I had written and the courses I had launched.  It gave me a great sense of accomplishment to recount all that I had done.

You can do the same.  Go back through last year’s calendar and write down the highlights. What did you accomplish? What clients did you serve?

2.  Have courage to start something new despite a lack of crystal clear plans.

I started to see the courage I had to set up that first meeting with Mike Doltch, the catering manager at the Hyatt, on Jan 7th to start planning my first Happy Mom Conference even though I had no clue how many people to expect, what date I wanted it or how much my budget was, much to his chagrin. That’s a funny story for another time.

What new project do you want to start? What ideas do you have that seem feasible but aren’t all mapped out yet? Can you take the first step today?

3. Get out there and meet new people.

No one who accomplishes anything great does it alone. I started to see how I had gotten out there and set up lunches with new acquaintances who are now friends. I even joined a local women’s networking group in quarter one of 2013 and headed up their scholarship committee which then led me to a position as the new president. Who knew that would happen?

Who would you like to meet?  In person or online.  Make a list of at least 10 people you want to reach out to in this upcoming quarter and then make a plan to connect with them.

So you see my view of 2013 was only that…a vision on Jan 1, 2013. But I took some time to crystallize what I wanted and then I knew what general direction to head.

There were some failures along the way, a beach fitness/coaching program that never launched because only one person registered and a lot of lessons to be learned, like how to more systematically manage my business finances. But each step I took helped me to gain more confidence.

4.  Trust your intuition over the advice of others.

The biggest success, if I had to recount just one, was that I learned that I can do anything if I just listen to my intuition and act on it (tweet this).  I created the Happy Mom Conference only because I had the idea during an early morning run.  I felt it in my gut without much ‘proof’ that I could make it happen.  But I did a little bit each day, and a lot on many days and for a first year event had over 100 attendees and 37 vendors.  Not bad in my book!

What gifts do you have that you’ve been hiding? What dreams do you have that you’ve convinced yourself just won’t happen. STOP. Trust yourself.

Photo Jan 01, 9 15 21 AMTake some time today to reflect on last year. List what went well and what challenges you faced. Identify the mountains you climbed that seemed insurmountable at the time and congratulate yourself for completing the mundane day-to-day tasks that need doing.

And this year, be deliberate. Take YOUR life by the reigns and steer it in the direction of your dreams.

Maybe this is the year you start a business….

Maybe this is the year you finally lose that baby weight….

Maybe this is the year you forgive someone who hurt you…

Maybe this is the year you write that book, start that blog, stay home with your kids, or get back into your career….

Only you know.

Picture yourself on December 31, 2014 looking back on the year.  What one thing if you did it would make your year a success in your eyes?

Don’t let this year pass you by, spin you in circles and drag you down because you lacked a plan.

Photo Jan 01, 10 11 20 AMTo leave you with the wise words of my loving Papa “Ike” Eichhorn, WWII survivor, world traveler, IBM executive, missionary, father of 4 and this list goes on…

If you liked this blog comment below and share your success of 2013 and visions for 2014, tweet it or subscribe to receive updated blog posts here. If you want to join the University of Moms, access our library and get our signature video e-course free here.

April O’Leary is a Certified Life Coach, Author and Founder of the University of Moms. She happily resides in Florida with her husband and three daughters.

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How To Live Your Dreams Today

BYyauylIIAAEyTPOne of my favorite authors is Mike Dooley and this powerful quote is from his best selling book “Leveraging the Universe”.  Here’s my take on it.

It’s easy, too easy, to get stuck in the mindset of ‘when this happens…then this will happen.’  When they’re out of diapers, then we’ll start saving some money.  When they get past the terrible twos, then we’ll have a little more peace at home.  When they get into school, then it will be easier.  

But have you noticed that somehow that point in the future that you were dreaming would come just projects further into the future.  All it is, is a trap.  I can’t say I have ever heard any parent say, “Gosh now that little Bobby is out of diapers we are raking in the cash!”  Why? Because little Bobby now has toddler music class, eats more food and has more expensive clothing needs.  

Don’t wait until THEN arrives…it won’t.  

What is it that you really want to do? Open a business? Become a writer? Go back to school? Start a yoga studio? Homeschool your children? What would you need to do to make that happen?  Just step 1….

All you have to do is start with Step 1.  Not tomorrow.  Today.  Start today to live the dream you have for the future.  

Want to save some money?  Start with $5 this week in a shoe box.  Want to find more peace in your home?  Try implementing a sticker chart, or read a parenting book, seek out the help of a professional.  Want to make life easier, less rushed and more enjoyable? Then ask yourself what unnecessary tasks am I doing today that are sucking the life out of me and dump them.  

Stop rushing.  Stop cultivating unhealthy friendships.  Stop thinking ‘someday it will be different’.  It won’t.  Start by creating a dream list and then breaking it down into doable bite sized pieces.  Time order them.  What comes first?  What’s next?  Then what?  This is how you will reach your dream life.  One little step at a time.  Prioritize and focus.

So start with you.  Start today.  

===>Leave me a comment and let me know what your dream is and how you are going to take action to make it happen in the present.  If I can help you in any way, let me know that too.

For me? I am going to start focusing on reaching as many moms as possible through my blog, on social media and through the press so that they can learn how to be happy, live the lives they have always dreamt would be theirs and then raise their kids in an empowered and positive way not through words…but through actions.  Love you all!  April  

April O’Leary is a recognized life and business coach, author and speaker and the Founder of the University of Moms.  Join her today at UofMoms.com to get access to the free download library full of amazing classes, interviews and workbooks to help you be the mom you have always wanted to be.  You’ll also receive our Signature Video e-Course “Find Time for You and Be Happier Too” as our gift to you.

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