Category: Life Coaching

If you have had trouble staying focused and motivated in the pandemic era, you are not alone. COVID-19 has changed everyone’s routines, from going through government mandated lockdowns to changing the way that we visit the grocery store. But even in these uncertain times, we still have to work on our skills. The crisis isn’t going to be here forever, and we want to make sure that we’re working on developing our abilities so that we still maintain our competitive edge. Whether you are a public speaker, a social media marketer, a writer, or a team leader, continuing to work on your skills is a must. Here is how you can stay motivated during the COVID-19 pandemic:

Staying Motivated in COVID-19 Pandemic

Recognize That Everyone Is Going Through The Same Thing

Remember that you aren’t the only person going through this. Everyone in the United States and around the world has had their lives radically changed by COVID-19. Sometimes when we struggle with changes in our lives, we can feel as if we are the only people going through it. We can take solace in the fact that there are other people toughing it out in the same ways that we are. A great way to feel better is to vent with friends and family and share experiences. In lieu of that, you can join an online forum or group.

Focus On What You Can Control

Focusing on what you can control is key to staying motivated and improving your skills during the pandemic era. You can’t control the reopening process, you can’t control how the virus moves throughout the country. But you can control your reaction, you can control how you feel each day, and you can control the effort you put into getting better.

Work On Your Skills Every Day With A Purpose

When you are motivated to work each day with a purpose, you are bound to improve your skills. Just because you may not have any official public events coming up doesn’t mean you can’t work on your public speaking. Or your leadership skills. Develop a plan to work on your skills during the summer months so that you are ready to go for the fall. Set up some goals to reach so that you have something to strive for each day. The work that you put in during the summer will pay off when everything returns to normal.

Skill Development During COVID-19 Pandemic

Staying motivated during these times isn’t easy. Often, we know the exact events that we are practicing and getting ready for. In the same way an athlete prepares for a set date for training camp, a public speaker may know they’re preparing for an event on a specific date. Everything is in flux now. That’s why it is important to focus on what you can control. The guidelines might be constantly changing, and you may not know what to expect from one week to the next. But you can focus on developing your skills every day and becoming better at your craft.

Ready to go find that new job? Trying to get promoted internally? Switching careers? No matter what you are doing, you are going to have to learn how to market yourself. Marketing ability isn’t something that you are born with. Instead, it is a skill that is developed over long periods of time. You might see people who are tremendous marketers or salesmen and think that they didn’t have to work for their abilities. That couldn’t be further from the truth. They put in hours of work behind the scenes practicing their pitches and learning how to sell themselves. Let’s take a closer look at how you can be a better marketer.

Market Yourself

Nobody Is Going To Do The Work For You

It is important to understand that nobody else is going to market you. You have to learn how to market yourself. Once you drop those expectations, you can get fully involved in learning how to improve your own marketing ability. You shouldn’t expect an old boss or a co-worker who you considered a friend to make calls on your behalf. In some cases, you may need reference letters. But those are things you’ll have to work for too–not everyone is going to be willing to help you in this process. Accept that.

Acknowledge Your Strengths

One of the biggest problems that job seekers have is that they don’t understand their strengths. If you don’t know what you are good at, then how are others going to figure it out? Learn what your strengths are, and then highlight them when you pitch others. If you have a website or social media, make sure that viewers easily know what your strengths are. They need to have a reason for considering you for a position at their company.

Lean Into Your Past Successes

Leaning into your past successes is critical for marketing yourself. You need to take those past projects and put them in your portfolio. That will help to make you a more attractive candidate for hiring managers. Others want to see that you’ve had past success in roles similar to the one that they’ll be asking you to take on. By leaning into your past success, you can put yourself in a better position to get that next job or that internal promotion.

Confident Man in Interview

Learning how to market yourself is a process. You aren’t going to become an all-star overnight. However, you can improve bit by bit over time as you learn what your strengths are and how to minimize your weaknesses. Recognize that nobody is going to do the work of marketing you, you need to realize what you are good at and how to highlight those strengths across different mediums such as social media. Leaning into your past successes is a great strategy, especially for in-person interviews. You should be able to leverage your past successful projects with reference letters and additions to your portfolio. This is how you market yourself so that you can take that next big step in your career.

The power of repetition is immensely powerful. How do surgeons become elite? By practicing for thousands of hours in medical school. How do athletes become elite? By training for thousands of hours in the gym. The power of repetition is undeniable, but unfortunately it isn’t something that is highlighted in our society. Too often, we glamorize the idea that the gifted were simply born with their skills. We idealize the concept of being “born with talent,” and neglect to talk about the hard work that is put in. Let’s take a look at the true power of repetition and why you should believe in it.

Work Harder

The 10,000 Hour Theory

Author Malcolm Gladwell developed a theory based on the power of repetition, called the 10,000 hour theory. The 10,000 hour theory essentially states that it takes 10,000 hours of practice to master any skill. This 10,000 hours can come in any time frame, but it has to be completed in order to become elite at something. You may not need to put in 10,000 hours of work, but it is important to understand the amount of time that you’ll need to commit to in order to reach your goals.

You Can’t Become An Expert Overnight

You can’t avoid the need for repetition. You can’t skip the line and become elite at a skill in a day or even a week. It takes months and sometimes years of practice to truly master a skill and to reach your full potential. Thinking that you can become an expert overnight is only going to set yourself up for failure and frustration. Avoid this and instead focus on how and where you can get in your practice repetitions. If you need to work on being a better speaker, maybe you could take classes on public speaking. If you need to learn how to code in Python, you can take online workshops. But you need to focus on the idea of repetition, instead of dreaming of overnight success.

Man Climbing Mountain

Embrace The Process

To reach your full potential, you’ll have to embrace the process of getting reps. That means staying locked in on your reps, even before you are thinking about the outcomes of your work. Think of it like a basketball player. If you are thinking about how many jump shots are going in before you get your form right, then you are going to get frustrated. But if you put the process of getting the form right first, then it doesn’t matter how many shots you miss at the beginning. You know that eventually, you will get the form right and the shots will go in. It is the same way with other things that you have to practice in life. It is important to realize the power of repetition. Nobody is born successful. Talent isn’t innate. People put in thousands of hours of work to become elite at their craft. If you want to master a skill, then you need to be willing to put in that same amount of time.

In life, everyone faces some form of trauma. That trauma could be large, such as losing a family member, friend, or another loved one. It could be something smaller, such as losing a relationship in the form of a break-up. But there are other forms of trauma as well. Perhaps you had a tremendous job that you worked hard for and loved, only to be laid off. Maybe you were diagnosed with a physical injury that left you unable to perform your favorite hobby. All of these things are extremely difficult to deal with and can evoke complex emotions. It is important that we give ourselves time to feel those emotions, but also that we then focus on the process of healing.

Sad Lady

Understand That Everyone Faces Trauma In Life

When we go through a trauma in our lives, sometimes it can feel as if we are going through things alone. But it is critical to understand that everyone faces trauma, and that millions of people are going through something similar to you at this very moment. There are a number of groups that meet both in person and online that focus on healing from specific forms of trauma. It might help you to find a group where you can share your emotions and experiences with others.

Taking The Opportunity To Heal Is A Decision

Healing is not a given, it is a decision that you make to better yourself. Some people do not make the decision to heal from a trauma, and as a result, they often end up living a minimized version of their lives. They cannot get past the feelings of bitterness and anger. The choice to heal is usually a difficult one, but it is worth it for the long term. Healing comes in many different forms. What constitutes healing for you may not work for a friend or a family member. Some people heal through exercise and playing sports. Some people do it through writing a journal. Others may do it through creating music. For some people, it might be as simple as talking through their emotions with a close friend or a professional. But you must make the conscious decision to heal.

Man Heealing Through Music

When You Suffer Less, You Can Reach Your Full Potential

Healing from trauma is a process that is different for everyone. Some people can go through the process relatively quickly. For others, it can take months or even years. You have to learn to heal at your own pace. Healing is the step that you cannot skip if you want to get through trauma and come out on the other side with a positive mindset. Refusing to heal can leave you feeling bitter at best or broken at worst. But embracing the healing process can help you to get past your trauma and reach your full potential.

Have you ever felt as if you were lost in your life? As if you did not have a direction and weren’t sure what the next step in your life should be? Maybe you have a vague sense of what your goals are, but don’t have a strategy. Or maybe it is the opposite, you have a strategy for how you approach problems but you aren’t totally sure what your goal actually is. Clarity in life often brings a sense of understanding and of greater purpose. By sitting down and clarifying what you are actually working towards, you can become happier and make it easier for you to actually achieve those goals.

Clarity in Life

Are Your Goals Clear?

When your goals are clear, you often begin feeling a deeper sense of understanding and purpose. Many people have a vague idea of what they are working for, but an explanation of their goals lacks detail and nuance. For example, many people say they “want a raise.” But that isn’t necessarily clear is it? Do you want a promotion? Do you want to get a raise by getting an entirely new job? Some people may say, “I want to go back to school.” But similarly, the details are lacking. What do you want to study? What job do you want to get afterwards? How many years do you plan to spend in school? How much money are you going to invest in your education? Planning out the details put you in a better position for success.

Do You Have A Detailed Strategy?

Having goals isn’t enough. You need a strategy for reaching them. If you want a promotion—how are you going to go about doing that? Job performance is a part of that, but you may also need to network within your organization. You might need to show greater leadership by helping your co-workers with their projects. Figure out what your strategy is for your goal, and then stick to it. You’ll need a specific strategy for each individual goal you have, because you can’t attack two different goals the same way.

Man Thinking About Life Goals

Clarity Brings Understanding

Think about your own life. Have you ever taken the time to sit down and think about precisely what your goals are? Have you considered what your strategy is for reaching those goals? If not, you might benefit from thinking about how you can make those things more clear. Clarity often makes life feel simpler, and makes striving for goals easier. It removes the sense of a fog that makes it feel like we are wandering blind through life, without the ability to see the path that we need to be on.

When we think of forgiveness, we’re often thinking of forgiving someone else for wronging us. But we’re not thinking about forgiving ourselves for a mistake or an error. Everyone makes mistakes, but we often carry our own mistakes with us and remind ourselves of them internally. This behavior can be destructive, as the inner voice we all have is quite powerful in the way it shapes our thoughts and our behaviors. It is important to learn how to forgive yourself. That forgiveness can allow you to put your best foot forward and to move past your previous mistakes.

Inhale The Future

Most People Carry Their Mistakes Indefinitely

When you continue to carry your mistakes with you, you are holding on to a weight that is dragging you down and making it almost impossible to move forward. It is akin to wearing ankle weights and a weighted vest while trying to compete in a track meet. Holding on to your mistakes isn’t going to help you, all it is going to do is keep you living in the past, where you can’t navigate the challenges you need to address in the present. If you are someone who holds on to their mistakes, you aren’t alone. Most people have engaged in this behavior at some point or another.

Learning To Forgive Yourself Isn’t Always Easy

It is important to recognize that self-forgiveness is not easy. This is not something that happens overnight. This is a long process, where you are going to have your ups and downs. You must remain committed to improving your outlook over time.

Forgive But Learn The Right Lessons

Although it is critical that you learn how to forgive yourself, that is not the end of the journey. You also have to learn the right lessons. If you made a mistake, you want to make sure that you learn why and how it was made. Which factors led to the decision or outcome? Once you have a handle on the situation, you can determine how to avoid the mistake in the future. After you’ve figured that out, you can stop blaming yourself and move on with a clear conscious.


Self-forgiveness can be very powerful when it is applied correctly. You want to learn how to forgive yourself while not forgetting the lesson. That way, you can learn not avoid making the same mistake in the future. This isn’t an easy process, and it can take months or even years to learn how to properly forgive yourself for past mistakes and move on. But once you have the ability to forgive, it is like having a weight lifted off your shoulders. You can finally put your full effort into new tasks and projects without thinking back on your past mistakes. This sense of clarity and purpose can help you to focus on what is important, instead of living in the past.

* Inhale The Future image credit goes to: Toa Heftiba.

* Self-Forgiveness image credit goes to: Bryan Minear.

The way that you perceive yourself, others, and events affects your actions, your mood, and your emotions. Often, we think of events as having a clear meaning. If you made a mistake at work, for instance, maybe you felt that it was a problem that dragged down your performance. Instead of perceiving the event in that negative light, you could instead view that mistake as an opportunity instead of as a negative problem. By choosing to frame events positively, you can improve your long-term outcomes and respond better to adversity. Here are some ways that you can learn more about the power of perception.

Be the Buzz

Perception Plays a Big Role in Your Happiness

Happiness is all about how you feel about yourself. And how you feel is often tied to your expectations. Did you get that big promotion? Did you graduate on time? Did your relationship take the next step? If things didn’t go your way, how are you responding? Are you blaming yourself and sulking? Are you shutting yourself off from the world? Or are you responding positively and using what you learned to do better next time? If you perceive these events as a positive opportunity, then you can feel happier. You might even come to appreciate the fact that you didn’t get it right the first time, so that you can learn more and grow throughout the process.

Changing the Way You Perceive Events

You don’t change the way that you perceive events over night. After all, our perception is something that has been conditioned into us over years and years. You must be mindful enough to think about how certain situations make you feel. If you are feeling negative and upset, think about why. Is it a specific person, event, or action that you took? Think about reframing this event and considering what lessons you can learn. For example, if you didn’t get the promotion, maybe you can learn more about networking and improve your skills so that you’ll look even better next time.

Learning Not to Adopt the Framing of Others

Humans are social creatures, and one of the most common Be Happy things we do is to take on the emotions and feelings of the group. When there is a negative presence in the group, this can actually be detrimental for you personally and professionally. Make sure that you take the time to consider how you feel, and make sure that you aren’t perceiving events negatively because of the poor influence of others. After all, misery loves company.

Perception is all about choice. You choose how you perceive and frame events, people, and even yourself and your own actions. You might notice that people with poor attitudes often perceive themselves as failing at a task. Instead of feeling inadequate and having a poor mood, you would be much better off viewing that failure as a chance to learn and get better. Choose to be positive and choose to frame events in a way that is beneficial to you in the long-term. When you adopt the negative framing and perceptions of others, you put yourself at a disadvantage and make it easier to quit in the face of adversity.

* Be the Buzz image credit goes to: Tanya Santos.

* Be Happy image credit goes to: Alex Block.

We’ve all been there. You have an idea, and you’ve been kicking it around for a bit, but you haven’t really mapped out your end goal and exactly what you need to do to get there. Instead, you think that at some point you’ll have a “eureka moment.” That light bulb image, where you go “Ah-ha!” and suddenly have all of the knowledge that you’ll need in order to complete your task. Unfortunately, light bulb moments only happen in the movies and in comic books. In the real world, you’ll need to put in work in order to get the success that you want. Stop waiting around for a light bulb to appear over your head, it isn’t going to happen. Clarity comes from doing research and success comes from hard work.

Man Gathering Positivity

Waiting For A Eureka Moment Means We Don’t Put In The Necessary Work

Waiting around for the light bulb to go off means that you aren’t going to put in the necessary work to achieve success. It means waiting around for a moment that in all likelihood isn’t going to happen. Instead, think about precisely what you want to accomplish. Then write down what you need to do in order to get there. Map it out and write down the steps in chronological order. This will help to set you on the right path and break the problem down so you can handle it incrementally.

This Is A Process—It Doesn’t Happen Overnight

The eureka moment is all about an instant solution to a problem. But in real life, solving problems is a process that takes days, weeks, and months. Sometimes, solving a difficult problem can even take years. After you’ve figured out exactly what your goal is and written down what you need to do in order to get there, have a solid idea of how long it is going to take you.

Success Isn’t A Straight Line

Light Bulb One of the reasons why people wait around for eureka moments is because they have a misconception about success itself. Many people believe that the path to success is a straight line upwards. Nothing could be further from the truth. Success only happens after trial and error, after failures and recalibrations. That means putting yourself out there and trying new strategies and not being afraid to fail. A light bulb moment is all about an instant, miraculous solution to a complex problem. That doesn’t happen in real life. Be prepared to fail and try again.

At the end of the day, you can’t simply wait around and hope that you’ll think of a brilliant, instant solution to your problems. Your problem is likely more difficult and a bit more complex than you think. That is why it is important to make sure that you put in the work to solve it. Be ready to work during the weeks and months ahead.

* Light Bulb image credit goes to: Christian Dubovan.

* Man Gathering Positivity image credit goes to: Joshua Earle.

It is easy to say “learn from your mistakes”, yet it is a whole different story to actually do it. Learning from our mistakes isn’t always as straightforward as it sounds. Especially when we don’t recognize the mistake, or multiple factors led to a certain outcome. Had we known all the details, we might not have made the mistake in the first place. Being a “work in progress” and learning from our mistakes is an analytical process of carefully identifying what really happened, and the action steps we need to take to guarantee a better outcome.

Ladder to Sky

Success isn’t About Avoiding Mistake

Nobody is perfect, especially not the most successful people in the world! Avoiding mistakes is impossible, the most famous businessmen, athletes, and politicians make them, and sometimes those mistakes are major blunders on the public stage. Only “the Best” however learn from their mistakes and become better for it. Those that fail have not learned the lesson and either continue to make mistakes or quit. It is important to recognize that being successful isn’t all smooth sailing. It’s a messy process of wins, losses and persistence. Being successful is all about the ability to reflect, admit, and be courageous enough to do things differently than before.

Take Time To Think

Learning from our mistakes takes time. After evaluating what went wrong and why, it is important to think about the lesson. Was the learning that you were rushed and you need to take more time to prepare, or maybe the lesson was about who you can trust to collaborate. Whatever the lesson might be, everything happens for a reason. Learn to look for that reason, find the learning, and keep it in mind. Which brings us to my last point.

Learning To Be Mindful

When you are working, or simply cruising through life, stay mindful of the lessons that you learn. It doesn’t have to be the only thing that you are thinking about but keep your lesson readily available in the back of your thoughts. Maybe you need to give yourself more time to finish projects. If that is the case, expend more energy focusing on how you can give yourself just that so you aren’t rushing to finish. Being mindful at work and in life is a skill that will help you be happier and more successful throughout!


Learning from your mistakes isn’t something that you’ll instantly pick up on with no effort. It takes practice, and you most likely aren’t going to get it right the first time. But what you want to do is take responsibility and always evaluate your part in what happened. Don’t ever let things be just other people’s mistakes, this will not further your growth. If you can figure out your contributing factors that led to the undesired outcome, then you can figure out how to succeed in the future. Being mindful of the changes you need to make in life, at work and in your relationships will keep you on course to overall success!

* Ladder to Sky image credit goes to: Samuel Zeller.

* Mindfulness image credit goes to: Lesly Juarez.

Managing stress can be one of the biggest challenges in life, and dealing with anxiety typically makes it extremely hard to gain control over the direction your life is going! Everyone who has ever dealt with anxiety and stress will most likely agree that it feels like you are the only person in the world who has these problems. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Anxiety and stress are common issues that everyone deals with to some extent. Learning how to manage anxiety and stress successfully will allow you to live a happier life, improve relationships and be more effective and successful at work.


Stress Happens To Everyone

Stress often feels like something that nobody else is going through. Anxiety is the same way. It can feel extremely lonely when you are anxious. However, it is important to realize that you aren’t alone. You aren’t different, weird or less worthy for going through these kinds of struggles. Maybe you are anxious about a new project at work. Or maybe you are stressed thinking about changing careers. Whatever you are going through, other people are feeling it too. If you were to talk to other people you’d find that their experiences are similar and relatable.

Figure Out What Makes You Calm And What Brings You Joy

We all need time to relax and unwind. Figuring out positive ways to do so is key to your mental health. Plenty of people use negative vices (such as cigarettes, alcohol, gaming or social media) to alleviate stress. These ways of coping can create more problems than they solve. Instead, think about starting up a daily light exercise routine, or a creative hobby, such as painting, cooking, or writing a blog. Exercise as well as creative expression trigger chemicals in the brain, which make you feel happier and more relaxed.

Stay In The Present Moment

This one can be pretty hard. Staying in the present moment is a meditation technique. But it allows us to shed fears or shame from thoughts of the future or the past. Instead of worrying about what might happen in five days, or months or years from now, staying in the present moment allows us to stay focused on the here and now, so that we can accomplish the task at hand. Staying in the present moment is harder than it sounds because our minds naturally wonder off to specific moments and possible futures. But staying in the present allows us to maximize our potential and avoid worried thoughts about what could happen.

Practice Autogenic Training – A Deep Relaxation Technique from Europe

Autogenic Training, or AT, is a century old stress reduction technique to quiet the mind and reset the stress response in the body. AT is widely used in Switzerland and practiced at schools, universities and corporations to reduce stress and enhance well-being. Everyone can learn it in just a few guided meditative sessions provided by a certified teacher.

Open Book

Realizing that you aren’t the only one who has to deal with stress and anxiety will make you feel less alone, and figuring out new ways to respond to stress will make you happier, healthier and more effective at work and in life. Staying in the present moment and avoiding negative thinking will keep you grounded and focused on what is most important. While we cannot completely eliminate stress, we all can develop a solid plan to get the upper hand so stress is not controlling your life!

Feel free to email us or give us a call if you’d like to learn more about the power of the mind and how to beat stress once and for all!

* Sunset image credit goes to: Mikkel Jönck Schmidt.

* Open Book image credit goes to: Ben White.