All Posts by Jen Regan

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Jun 06

Little Known Ways To Stop Feeling Drained And Start Living Your Best!

By Jen Regan | What's Most Important

Last week I published a free resource on my website. In it, I made the statement “Living on track and living drained do not go together.” Ever since I hit the “publish” button, I have been thinking about that statement and asking if it is really true. I know what it feels like to be tired, and I know what it feels like to feel drained. What’s the difference and why does it matter?

This past October I went to a conference called Catalyst in Atlanta Georgia. The theme of the conference was “Fully Alive!” Going into the conference I felt anything but “fully alive”, in fact, I wondered if there was really such a thing. I sat in the arena for two full days and listened to amazing speaker after amazing speaker and slowly found my “tanks” filling. I did not realize it, but I was completely drained going into the conference and came out “filled up”. The day after the conference when my friend and I were traveling home, I wrote down a list of items in my life that were draining me. Today I can say that I get tired, but I am guarding myself against becoming drained.

What’s the difference?

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We get tired when...we know what direction we want to go, what we want to achieve and put our heart and soul into achieving it.

We get drained when...we don’t really know where we want to go and what we want to accomplish in life. Yogi Berra once said “If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll end up someplace else.” It’s like the frantic feeling while driving when you realize you are lost.

Knowing where you want to go and what you want to accomplish in life will take some time and energy, but it feels good to know you are on the right track!

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We get tired when...we put our time and energy on the things that are truly most important to us.

We get drained when...we allow ourselves to be continually pulled in the wrong direction by other people and what is important to them. When I left the “Fully Alive” conference, I had to come to grips with the fact that I did a lot of things, not because they were right for me, but because I wanted approval of others. Ugggh! I know. This one is a hard one, but here is the good news. We do not have to get everything perfect right now. Sometimes, once we become aware of areas that we need to improve on, we start taking baby steps to change it.

Starting to determine what is most important to you is a great place to start to live on the right track and feel less drained by others.

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When we are tired...we go to bed at night knowing we spent our time and energy on the right stuff. We may be physically tired, but we are ready for a good night’s rest and ready to hit the ground first thing in the morning.

When we are drained...we go to bed feeling empty, desperately looking for a way to fill our tanks. That is where I was back in October.

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I don’t want you to feel this way! It feels so much better to live with a plan and feel on track.

I want to swoop into each of your lives. I want to encourage and support you in the endeavor of living life on track. The way I have found to help as many AMAZING WOMEN as possible is to put together some resources to guide you on the journey. Here is what I have put together for you.

Module 1 of my Live Your Life On Track series:

  • Is a simple start to take a look at the activities of your life and decide whether they bring you happiness or not.
  • It helps us realize we are in control of our lives and sometimes some small tweaks can make a big difference.

Module 2 which you can sign up for next week! (Sign-up limited to June 14-June 23rd):

  • Will help you reconnect with the areas that are most important to you, but you get pulled away from.
  • Will help you take a close look at where you are today and where you want to be in the future.
  • Will teach you three key habits that will help you live on the right track for years to come.

Module 3 is where I bring my Life Planning Class online for you. In this class you will:

  • Dive deeper into the most important areas of your life.
  • Look at what you want those areas to look like many years in the future.
  • Create a plan that will get you from here to there, even when the twists and turns of life want to get you off course.
  • There will be a fee associated with this course, but it will be worth the investment in you and your future! Keep an eye out for more details in weeks to come.

But for right now, keep plugging away on Module 1 and if you have not had a chance to download your guidebook yet, sign up below and start to live our life on the right track!

May 30

Life Is Good… But I Wish It Was Better

By Jen Regan | Baby Steps

I don’t know about you, but my life has been pretty good. I’ve had great people in my life, a safe comfortable place to live and overall pretty good health. Life was good, but I wanted it to be better. I had an underlying discontentedness that I could not shake. I knew I wanted to live a fulfilled life, but I wasn’t sure how to get myself there.

I love to plan. The reason I love to plan is because it takes all of the miscellaneous thoughts rumbling around in my mind and sorts them out on paper. Getting a plan on paper, from a grocery list to a long term financial plan, calms my mind and brings a level of peace.

Seven years ago I came across the concept of life planning for the first time. It was an intriguing concept. I thought about what I wanted my life to look like when I turn 70 years of age. The idea was to look at the gap between where I was today, at 40 years of age, and where I wanted to be at 70 and figure out how I wanted to fill that gap of 30 years.

If you are starting to hyperventilate at that grandiose thought, you are not alone. Even though life planning is a great thing, you are more than likely so busy that:

  1. You just want to get through today in one piece.

  2. You do not have time to add any big task to your already loaded schedule.

I agree 100%!

Do we have any hope to remove that underlying feeling of discontentment?

Absolutely!

I have wrestled with life for the last seven years in the quest for BETTER. I have failed so many times, I don’t know how I kept going. The reality is:

I could not settle for my current reality!

If I gave up, I was stuck with my life the way it was. I couldn’t do it.

Do you feel the same way today?

Today I can look back and see that I have made a lot of progress. I want the same for you!

I have been asking myself “How can I help very busy women remove the feeling of discontentment in their life?” “How can I help you feel like you are living on the right track for your life?”

Whatever tools I created, I knew 3 things:

  1. They had to be something you could work on and finish in your own timing. I do not want to add any more stress to your life.

  2. They had to be broken down into really small steps that would take just minutes each day.

  3. They needed to bring some instant relief.

With you in mind, I have been building a series of resources called Live Your Life On Track, and the first one is ready for you RIGHT NOW!

Sign up and be one of the first to receive:

Module 1. The Busy Woman’s Way To Happiness PDF Guidebook!

Are you tired of settling and ready to feel like you are living on the right track?

May 23

4 Ways Amazing Women Rock Out Summer!

By Jen Regan | Uncategorized

We made it to summer! The cold, snowy days are behind us, and it is time to have fun in the sun! If you are from St. Louis, we get to have extra fun cheering on THE BLUES Hockey Team in the Stanley Cup finals! Life is filled with many great things!

Many of you have spent the last few years and months finishing up certifications and degrees. You have now graduated and I want to tell you how proud I am of you. You have worked hard and put in hours that no one else knows about. You have persevered one step at a time and made it to your goal. CONGRATULATIONS!

Summer seems to be the best time of the year to pack up and transition on to a new home. What a job! You make it happen though. One step at a time you pack up box after box, organize garage sales and donate the things you no longer need. You say goodbye to many people and hello to everything new. Moving is a big transition in life, and you make it happen. GREAT JOB!

Summer is also a beautiful time for a wedding. Many of you are putting the finishing touches on the beautiful day for someone you love. What a fun time, but also a time where you want everything to be just perfect. You make it happen one step at a time, and also work through your emotions in the same fashion. Excitement and sadness as you transition someone on to their new life. YOU ARE AMAZING!

Summer is time for VACATIONS. But vacations don’t just happen. They require schedule coordination, planning, planning, planning, them some packing. You make it happen one step at a time working out every detail along the way. You and the ones you love will never forget the memories you share together. Those are priceless and SO ARE YOU!

Whatever your plans are for the next few months, find some time just for yourself, tackle those projects, make great memories with the ones you love, and continue to go after whatever your heart desires one baby step at a time!

Here’s to a great summer!

I can’t wait to hear all of your stories, so don’t hesitate to share them with me in the comments section and on Facebook!

If you have not yet signed up for my personal email list, summer is the perfect time to get set-up! Click here to sign up! I will make sure you receive my weekly blog post, updates on Free Resources and my upcoming Life Planning Class. Sign up today!

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May 16

A New Perspective That Can Change Everything

By Jen Regan | Accomplishing Goals , Overcoming Obstacles , Perseverance

We love to learn, but we don’t like to fail. Unfortunately, most of the time the two go hand and hand. Would life be more enjoyable if we learned to embrace failure? Probably.

My husband, John, used to work in the IT field. He is very savvy with technology and enjoys staying up to date on the latest gadgets. I, on the other hand, struggle with technology. As part of any business, mine included, it is important to have a nice looking, functional website. I have opted to manage my own site, mainly so I can make changes whenever I choose. The down side to this should be obvious, I’m not good with technology! The process, from day one, has  been fraught with failure after failure and this week hasn’t been any different. I decided I was going to do a complete overhaul of my website. I started Monday hoping the changes would come smoothly. Spent two days figuring out everything not to do. Now it’s Thursday, and I hope my site is up and running so you can read this blog post. What I have come to begrudgingly realize, going through this process, is that I needed those two days of getting everything wrong so that I could learn. It was not a comfortable process, but because of those tough days, the rest of the week moved smoother. If everything would have fallen into place, I would not have the knowledge and experience that I have now.

We love to learn new things in life.

One of the most effective ways of learning is by failing.

Wouldn’t it make sense for us to change our perspective on failing and embrace it instead of fight it?

Holy Cow! Easier said than done, I know, but here are a few things to help you (and me) start to see failure in a better light.

  • Winning is great, but failing then winning is even better. Have you ever had a time when you worked towards something and it did not come easily or quickly. I think of all of the individuals who train for marathons or study for major exams. Wow, it takes so much time to train and learn, and I can guarantee that most people do not accomplish it without some setbacks. Finishing easily is great. The finish line is TRIUMPHANT when you have failed along the way and worked your tail off to get there. Whatever you are working towards, keep your eye on the prize and don’t give up.
  • Learning is great, but failing then learning is even better. Your time is never wasted when you are learning, would you agree? If you take a class or read a book, you learn alot and retain some. The way to learn and never forget is to learn by failing. You remember both what did not work, as well as what did. You tend to remember the lessons learned, and rarely forget them. Your time is never wasted by learning through failures.

I understand there are deadlines that must be met and people who are not very forgiving when it comes to mistakes. I also know we can be very hard on ourselves. As with so many areas in life, changing our perspective starts with us first. I certainly have been struggling with this perspective, just ask those around me earlier this week. I have to ask myself and I ask you “How would our lives change and become better if we could embrace learning through mistakes and failures?”

For me, I know the approach I have been taking regarding failures has not worked well. All it has done is lowered my confidence and drained me. Would you join me in working to change our perspective on making mistakes? I think we will enjoy each day more and have a party at the finish line because of it!

Failure propels us forward, it does not hold us back!

Do you have someone dear to you that has struggled with accomplishing an important goal? Have they failed and might be having a hard time getting going again? If this perspective change on failing and learning would help them, would you forward this post their way? I love living life together!

If you have not yet signed up for my personal email list, click here to sign up! I love sending out my weekly blog. I also have some free stuff coming soon and a Life Planning Workshop that you won’t want to miss out on. Signing up is super easy. I can’t wait to see your name on my list!

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May 09

5 Familiar Steps To Deal With Pain – How Do You Need To Move Forward?

By Jen Regan | Baby Steps

Life is a beautiful thing, filled with loved ones, gorgeous spring days and challenging adventures we can conquer. Life can also be very hard, filled with disappointment, hail storms and challenges that are not easy to overcome. Physical pain is one of those challenges that can drain you and have you wondering what to do next. What can you start to do today to feel better?

The last seven years of my life have been filled with physical pain. I have dealt with irritable bowel pain, back and hip pain as well as overall achiness. I have made many changes over the past seven years, but I still find myself in pain. I know this is not very encouraging, but somehow I still have hope. With every change I have made in diet, stress management and exercise, I have learned something that has moved me forward. I no longer deal with some of the issues I once dealt with because a lot has worked. I continue to learn, grow and change in order to continue to get better. My life has revolved around baby steps in this area of my life and that is why I am so passionate about it. I would have lost hope a long time ago if it weren’t for improving my life through baby steps.

There are many of you reading this today that do not deal with pain and discomfort, but there are many of you who struggle with it every single day. I want to share with you some of the core things I have learned over the last few years in the hopes of encouraging you to keep going.

I encourage you to:

  • Work to find a medical professional that listens and really cares about your success. Chances are, if you have long term pain and discomfort, you may not find a quick fix. Finding a solution will be a process. Finding someone who will patiently listen to you to find the core issue causing your pain is so important. If someone is not working well for you, know it is okay to find someone else. This is all a part of the process. When you find the right medical professional to help you, you will feel like a team as you move forward. You will work together to feel better.
  • Learn, learn and learn. Medical professionals can only spend a short period of time with you during your appointments. Take the time to learn and read as much as you can on your own. As you already know, there is good and bad information on the internet. The approach I have taken is to read as much as I can from different points of view. I read information from sites that I consider to be reputable, but I also read what others have posted. Through this process I have found many sites that I now trust both in conventional medicine as well as natural medicine. I have learned not to accept the first thing that I read. I continue to hear other’s experiences and perspectives. Learning has helped me move forward and encourages me when I am in pain.
  • Move forward, literally! Of course always follow the instructions given to you from your medical professional. What I have learned with my pain and discomfort is it only gets worse when I stop moving. Literally, get out of the recliner and off of the hot pad and move. It is amazing how quickly hospitals have people up and moving after surgery these days. In many instances, they have found that moving is so much better than staying in bed. I know it is so hard when you are not feeling well. Sometimes it takes everything in you to keep moving, but you will feel the positive benefits when you do.
  • Do something positive for yourself. It might be eating the right food. It might be spending time with friends and family. It might be working on a hobby you enjoy. Whatever it is, it helps to be intentional about adding positive things into our lives when we are not feeling well. Note that I said positive things. Sometimes we crave comfort, but sometimes those comfortable things are not actually good for us in the long run.
  • Know that you can take the smallest of baby steps to move forward. You can call to make an appointment. You can read one article. You can walk around the house. You can find one healthy alternative to eat. You can meet up with a friend who will love and encourage you. Even on the most painful days, you can do something to move forward, even if it is to say a short prayer. The only way I have found the relief I have is through baby steps.

Yes, I still deal with pain, but I have come so far and so can you. Years back I wrote down in my Life Plan that I wanted to be active and vibrant as I grew older. The only way I can do that is to keep going, keep growing and keep move forward one baby step at a time.

What baby step can you take right now to help with the pain and discomfort in your life?

Here’s to a beautiful life, even in the midst of pain and discomfort.

Do you know someone who deals with pain and could use an encouraging word? If you do, give them a call and encourage them today. If you feel like this blog post will help, then by all means forward it their way. We all need each other!

If you have not yet signed up for my personal email list, click here to sign up! I love sending out my weekly blogI I also have some free stuff coming soon and that Life Planning Workshop that you won’t want to miss out on. Signing up is super easy. I can’t wait to see your name on my list!

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May 02

What’s Your Plan?

By Jen Regan | Planning

Having a well thought out plan to execute feels great! The challenge, so many times, is we have so much going on that it is hard to find the time to create a plan. I wish I had calculations to tell you how much time a plan will save you in the long run, but I do not have that. All I know is that taking the time, even if it is 15 minutes, to lay out a plan bring many benefits.

I am a planner. When I have a trip coming up, I will start to write down and plan out what I want to bring, what I want to wear, and what I may need to purchase about a month before my trip. To me, creating a plan is almost a hobby. It feels so good to know what I need to do, when I need to do it and have it organized in one of my favorite notepads (using one of my favorite pens, HeeHee). Many of you who don’t like to plan like this will think I’m a nut, and I’m good with that, but let me share with you the amazing benefits of taking time to create a plan.

  • Planning frees your mind. Many times we know we have a bunch of things we need to get done in our day. We carry those things around with us in our mind and they continue to pop up and nag us throughout the day. Simply writing those things down in a safe place will get them off your mind and free up space. You might even feel a short period of peace when your mind no longer needs to juggle those things.
  • Planning allows us to flow through our day.  We have enough “to-dos” to fill each and every day. When our day is not planned out, it can feel like we are living in a pinball machine. Have you had a day like that recently? Bouncing all over the place, allowing life and others to dictate your time. When we think through a plan, we place items in the order that makes sense and flows. I don’t know about you, but the idea if living in a pinball machine gives me a headache!
  • Planning helps us make better decisions. Inevitably, something will pop into your life that was not on your plan. Last night before I went to bed our kitchen sink decided not to drain. Dealing with that was not on my husband’s or my plan. Because we do have a plan for the day, we were able to ask ourselves how urgent the matter was and make a decision as to where to fit it in. If I had not had a plan for the day, I would have allowed this inconvenience to derail my day.
  • Planning allows you to know you are on track. Whenever we have a big project that we are working on, it can be challenging to track our progress. The biggest project we all work on is our life as a whole. Take a deep breath and don’t let the idea of that overwhelm you. The entire point of a plan is to remove that overwhelming feeling. In my early thirties I came across the idea of Life Planning. I took my time to work through it and when I was done it brought all of the above mentioned benefits to reality. Most importantly, as life brought obstacles and detours, I had a plan to reference back to, insuring that I stayed on track. I LOVE MY LIFE PLAN! It gives me confidence everyday that I am on the RIGHT track for me!

I have found so much joy in my life plan that I use to teach a class on it at our local community college. As we speak, I am working on converting that class over to a four session online workshop with four month online access (allowing you all the time you need to create your plan knowing how busy you are). If you want to have confidence that you are on the right track in life, keep an eye out for more information in the next few months. I am so excited about sharing it with you and allowing you to find the peace of mind that I have found.

In the meantime, remember all of the benefits to taking a few minutes each day to get organized and write out a plan.

Here’s to living the best life we can filled with peace, joy and contentment!

Do you know a fellow planner or someone who would benefit from becoming a good planner? If you do, forward this post their way. We can be planning gurus together!

If you have not yet signed up to become a Jen Regan Insider, click here to sign up! I would love to send you my weekly blog, information on free stuff coming soon and the Life Planning Workshop that you won’t want to miss out on. Signing up is super easy. I can’t wait to see your name on my Insider’s list!

Apr 25

Stress Relief…Coming Up!

By Jen Regan | Baby Steps , Uncategorized

Regardless of whether you work outside of your home or work as a stay-at-home wife or mom, your day can be filled with stress. You have deadlines and constant demands of your time from your boss, co-workers, students, and family. Is it possible to find stress relief in the middle of your busy day?

Overloaded “to-do” list, cut-throat deadlines and challenging co-workers created a very stressful work environment for me. I enjoyed my job and what I did, but the fear of not meeting deadlines, getting called on the carpet for forgetting something or having to make-up for underperforming coworkers made my days very stressful. I needed relief!

My situation did not have an easy solution, and I suspect that your stressful challenges today don’t either. Two great questions to ask ourselves today are: What do I have control over? What can I change that would bring some stress relief?

One thing I have found to be immensely helpful is to take my “big project”, the challenge with my coworker/loved one, or overloaded “to-do” list and break it down into smaller pieces.

Breaking BIG things down into smaller pieces reduces stress by:

  1. Allowing you to look at and focus on a few “must do” items instead of feeling overwhelmed looking at ALL you have to do or get done. This allows you to give your full focus to a few items and not get distracted by the looming whole.
  2. I have especially found that taking a few minutes at the end of each day to line out my few “must do” tasks for the next day brings more peace and less stress. This allows me to leave work behind, enjoy my evening, helps me sleep better and allows me to hit the ground running first thing in the morning.
  3. Breaking things into smaller pieces, in a well thought out plan, also allows you to better negotiate when more tasks are sent your way. When more tasks are sent your way you can share your game plan with your boss/loved one and work with them to decide what is highest priority, knowing your limited time. Sometimes, they have no clue what is all on your plate. Sharing your game plan shows you are organized, very busy and ultimately allows them to give input on what needs to get done and what does not. I understand this is not easy for us perfectionist control minded individuals, but keeping others aware of our limits is important.
  4. Breaking our tasks down into smaller pieces also shows us the items that we could delegate or even eliminate. As deadlines get closer, we have to be realistic. Sometimes we find a few things that can get chopped or passed on.
  5. Breaking things down also helps us to see how much we really do accomplish in a day. When we are under stress, we need all of the “wins” we can get. Checking a bunch of items off the list feels great!
  6. If you are dealing with a challenging individual, try to take one small step to find out more about them or put yourself in their shoes. I will never forget what I was told a long time ago. “Hurt people, hurt people.” One of my previous co-workers would not trust anyone, including me. This drove me crazy because I work really hard to gain people’s trust. She never shared the stories of her past with me, but after working with her, I realized that she most likely was hurt badly in her past. She no longer felt as though she could trust anyone. This allowed me to give her space to be who she was and not take her lack of trust personally.

Our lives are filled with stress. Let’s take back the control we do have, make the changes we can make, and relieve some of our stress by breaking things down into smaller pieces (a.k.a baby steps).

Here’s to more peace ahead and lots of small baby steps to keep you moving! Never forget, you are UNSTOPPABLE!

Do you have a friend or a co-worker that could use some stress relief? If so, I would love for you to send this blog post their way. We are all in this together!

If you have not yet signed up for my personal email list, click here to sign up! I’ll send you my weekly blog, give you info about free stuff (something new is starting in June), and other classes and promotions I am working on for later this year. I can’t wait to see your name on my list!

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Apr 18

You Have A Can Do Attitude!

By Jen Regan | Can Do Attitiude , Uncategorized

Every single day, busy women live with a “can do” attitude! It may not feel like it all the time especially when motivations is low. I see women everyday doing what has to get done, even those last minute things that get throw on their plates. We get it done!

First and foremost, let’s celebrate all that we have accomplished in our day today, in our week, month and even so far this year. I don’t know about you, but I am not really good at celebrating my accomplishments. There is always more to do, so I keep plugging along. There really is so much to celebrate though. Think about each area of your life and all you have done to keep things running smoothly. You start when you feet hit the ground in the morning, or maybe even before that. You go strong all day,  juggling all of the areas of your life, and keep going until the lights are turned off each night. You accomplish so much in each day, it is worth celebrating! You truly are AMAZING!

How in the world do you get it all done? You use my favorite tool every single day without even knowing it. You deal with the things that come your way one small step at a time. You do it naturally. You ask yourself  “what do I need to do next?” without skipping a beat. Baby steps are how we move through life and get done what we need to get done. You are a natural at it!

How do we keep this “can do” attitude as our lives gets busier and busier? After all, others know that we are “get-it-done” type of a people. What happens is, you are, many times, the first person people turn to to ask more of because you are known to be reliable. As you and I well know, too much can get piled on, then we find ourselves no good at anything.

We naturally “get things done”. Let’s strive also to become pros at knowing when to say enough is enough. This is tough and I struggle with it all of the time. We are great at taking care of and helping others. When others ask more of us, let’s get to the point where we can instinctively ask ourselves:

  • Does this new request fall within what I consider to be most important to me?
  • Will this new request take time away from something else that is more important?
  • Do I have more time and energy to give it?
  • Will this new request be enjoyable and fun?
  • Should someone else really take care of this new request?

Being an amazing “get-it-done” woman requires amazing tenacity to graciously pass on requests that aren’t right for us, those we love and what is most important to us.

Make It Happen Action Step:

  • What can you do  in the next few days to celebrate all that you have accomplished? Do something to celebrate you!
  • Remind yourself of the questions listed above, so when more is requested of you, you can instinctively turn to them to know the right answer.

I celebrate YOU today, and I celebrate ME! We are in this life together doing amazing things. Keep going with your “can do” attitude!

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If you know someone who would enjoy today’s blog post, please share it with them. It is my heart to help as many women live the best life they can. I always appreciate your help sharing the word!

If you have not yet signed up for my email list, click here to sign up! I’ll send you my weekly blog, give you info about free stuff (something new is starting in June), and other classes and promotions I am working on for later this year. I can’t wait to see your name on my list!

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Apr 11

Be True To Yourself

By Jen Regan | Be True To Yourself , Uncategorized

It is my hope for all of us, this week, to live our lives true to who we are, so that we can be our best for those around us.What does that look like for you?

We live in this world together with a bunch of amazing people, all of which are amazingly unique. We all bring different gifts, traits and experiences that make us who we are. They make us pretty great. It is especially wonderful when we tap into our uniquenesses and allow them to fuel us to be the best we can be for others in our world. We become better neighbors, friends, moms, daughters, co-workers and leaders. Let’s take some time this week to reconnect with what makes us great, them turn around and share that greatness!

There are a number of strengths assessments that are available that bring wonderful insights into who we are. I remember when I took my first assessment called Leading From Your Strengths by Ministry Insights, I was a little freaked out. How could I answer a bunch of multiple choice questions and have a report generated that explained me better than I could explain myself? These reports never claim to be 100%, but mine was right on. My husband had taken the assessment as well, and we started to understand more about each other, and why we each act the way we acted. It was eye opening. Since then I have taken other personality and strengths assessments that have brought even more insight. The biggest thing I take away each time is that I have some pretty cool strengths, and so does everyone else around me. I have learned to appreciate myself, and just as importantly, I have learned to value to strengths of others. I will leave a list of some different assessments at the end of this post. If there is a book that accompanies the assessment, I highly recommend reading it. It will help distill all of the information in the assessment.

Long story short, when we work within our areas of strengths, we tend to feel more energized. When we have to work in an area that we are not strong, it will require a lot more energy and we will become drained faster. Sometimes we do not have a choice, but we also have a lot of control over how our days transpire. Here are a few things to get you started:

  • Are you a morning person, or a night person? When you start to embrace the time of day that you are the most awake, you can focus that positive attention to something that is important to you. I have found that mornings are a great time for me to do some heavy learning and thinking. Right after lunch is the best time for me to write my blog post, work on writing my book or other creative work. Afternoon is a great time for me to move around and get odds and ends done. At 9:00 pm every night I am in bed, much to the dismay of my night-owl husband. He on the other hand can be the most creative late at night. Recognizing the best time for you to focus and the best time for you to sleep will give you energy to be the best for those around you.
  • Are you fast paced, or do you prefer a slower pace? If you love a fast pace, it will drive you crazy to be stuck behind someone who is moving really slow. You love and feel energized by moving and going. If you enjoy a slower pace, you might enjoy taking your time getting ready in the mornings. You feel the energy being drained from you when you are forced to rush. If you are like me, I always forget something when I am rushed. When I am able to work at the pace that is right for me it just feels…right.
  • Are you energized by being around people, or do you need time to yourself to get refreshed? I have been quiet my entire life. I have never been the life of the party. I thought for many years that I was not as good as others who were more outgoing. I have now learned that I have amazing strengths in my quiet life, and one is that I get refueled in solitude. Whichever fuels you…fuel up!
  • Are you an idea generator, or an idea implementor? It is true, some people are great with coming up with amazing, creative ideas. There are others that are at their best making those great ideas a reality. This was the case for one of my favorite jobs. My boss came up with some really great ideas. Sometimes he had so many great ideas we actually started an “idea board” so he could tell me which ones were the highest priority. I was than great at all of the detailed work to make them happen. It was truly one of my favorite jobs because we were both able to appreciate and work within our own strengths.

Make It Happen Action Step: I hope this week, you can recognize a unique strength that makes you who you are…AMAZING!

  • Pay attention to the things that energize you and figure out why they do.
  • Pay attention to the things that drain you and ask yourself why.
  • If you have taken a personality assessment, pull it out and remind yourself of your great strengths and what you have to offer to our world.
  • Grab a book or take a new assessment to learn more about yourself. It is a great investment in YOU and the world around you.

I tell you every week, YOU ARE AMAZING, because you are! You bring so much to our world and the people around you.

Here’s to being true to who you are!


Some Assessments I Have Taken

  • DISC Assessment
  • Myers Briggs Assessment
  • Think, Learn, Succeed by Dr. Caroline Leaf – Book and assessment on the unique way you use your mind and process information. Her website also has great videos to explain the assessment. https://perfectlyyou.com/

Other Assessments That Have Been Recommended To Me

  • Strengths Finder 2.0 by Tom Rath –  Book and Assessment

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Apr 04

Utilize This Everyday Tool To Free Up Time!

By Jen Regan | Keep It Simple , Planning

We could all use a little bit of free time! You may ask “what is this mysterious thing you call free time, Jen?” I know right? Free time can be rare in our lives and feel impossible to achieve at times. Recently, I needed to make some changes to my schedule because it was simply not working well. I employed one tool, that we already use every day, to freshen up my schedule and do some much needed Spring Cleaning.

I never understood the big deal about Spring Cleaning. Yes, the weather is warmer, it’s great to open up the windows and get some fresh air, but why do we need to go ALL OUT when it comes to cleaning each spring? The answer was revealed to me one day in February when the sun popped out after it had not shown for days. Up until that point, I thought my house was plenty clean, but the sun revealed an entirely different picture when it streamed through my windows onto my dusty floors. Holy Cow! Where did all of that dust come from? It sure did accumulate fast and was in desperate need of some sprucing up!

The same accumulation can be true for our calendars. Slowly, we feel busier and busier and find that we have less and less free time. Today is the day to open the curtains and shed some light on how we spend our time. If you are like me, you get into routines that sometimes turn into ruts. I have found one simple, but very effective, tool to make space on my busy calendar. It’s called batching!

Batching is lumping appointments and tasks together on your calendar to then free up time somewhere else for the areas that are most important to you. The goal of batching is not to do more, it’s to have time to do more of the right stuff!

As busy women, I can guarantee that you already do some batching. You run by the pharmacy on your way to pick up the kids. You put in a load of laundry, get dinner going, open the mail and write out your grocery list before the garage door closed on your way in after work. But I want you to consider looking at your everyday schedule through the lenses of batching. Batching with intentionality can make a huge difference!

  • The key to batching successfully is to place items on your calendars at times that work best for you. That sounds obvious, but how many times do we “make a time work” even when it puts strain on our schedule. I know that I used to do it all the time. When you call to set up an appointment, take a minute or two to think about how you can batch it together with something else. Don’t accept the first appointment time they offer if it really does not work well for you. Think intentionally about how you can batch it with something else. You will be able to effectively batch items together when you work hard at accepting appointments at times that work best for you.
  • Batching also requires plan ahead. If we are living in “emergency mode” which is dealing with everything at the last minute when we “just gotta get it done”, it is very hard to batch intentionally. When we are in “emergency mode” we are willing to make appointments whenever THEY can fit us in. Appointments that are spread out all over your schedule can be a HUGE waste of time.
  • Batching helps with focus! Before I intentionally batched my schedule, I felt scattered. I was constantly having to start and stop what I was doing. Once I started batching items on my schedule I had time to focus on the task at hand. When the time would come for my batched appointments, I was off and running to get those all done one after another. I felt so much more clear minded!
  • We can find the same benefits in batching tasks at home and at work. Find the groove that works for you, but taking control of your time and schedule is key. If someone calls or walks into your office and wants something that is not essential at that moment, it is within your control to tell them that “I’m in the middle of something right now, can we talk in 30 minutes?” Constant interruptions take away our focus. Let’s take the control back! It’s also a good reminder that we do not have to drop everything when our kids or significant other asks something of us during the day. We love to help and serve others, but setting boundaries will help us to stay focused.

Batching is not an new concept in your life, but it is great habit worth revisiting. Always look at your calendar through the lenses of batching. Small changes in your calendar can make a big difference! Remember the  goal with batching is to free up time so that you can spend that time on what is most important to you. The goal is not to just fit more “stuff” in. We want to add more of what we love and remove the unnecessary clutter.

Make It Happen Action Step: Sometime this weekend, sit down with your calendar for the month of April and start to think about it in terms of batching. Place a post-it-note on your calendar as a reminder to batch, until it becomes a habit. Next time you set up an appointment, agree to a time that works best for YOU. At work, put a post-it-note somewhere to remind yourself to start to set boundaries with the people who “pop” into your office and want your immediate time and focus.

Here’s to making small changes in our calendars that will free up time for the things we LOVE!

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