How To Stop Being A People-Pleaser (At Least A Little)

Want to stop being a people pleaser? This post is for you. Click through to learn the one phrase that has helped me say no without guilt.

It’s 2010 and I’m 30 minutes into my flight between Newark, New Jersey and Mumbai, India. I’ve somehow angered the travel gods because I find myself in the middle seat, in the middle row.

On a flight that’s nine hours long.

I bend forward to dig out my copy of Skymall. When I return to my upright position I discover the men sitting on either side of me have each taken ownership of the armrests.

I look down and notice that they’re both slooooooowly man-spreading their thighs into my space.

Now, this is the part of the post where I’d like to tell you that I charmingly, assertively, diplomatically took back my armrests and personal space.

I’d like to tell you that in even in 2010, I didn’t care if I ruffled the feathers of these total strangers.

Instead, I’ll tell you what really happened. I spent the entire flight – all nine hours! – with my elbows tucked to my sides, my knees pinned together, dehydrating myself. God forbid I ask someone to stand up so I can go to the bathroom!

If you are a woman, from the Midwest, or a people pleaser, you probably have your own version of this story.

You let a friend-of-a-friend’s cousin crash with you even though you live in a studio apartment and you’re an introvert. You spend $$$ attending an out-of-state wedding for a relative you barely know. You agree to help a coworker move, even though said coworker earns significantly more than you and can absolutely afford to hire movers.

If you recognize yourself in any of the above scenarios, I’d like to introduce you to the phrase that has revolutionized my life and calendar:

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Web Time Wasters

How was your week, guys? I took myself on my monthly writing retreat and introduced a friend-of-a-friend to some of the glories of Minneapolis. This weekend, Kenny and the boys are away and I am glooooooorying in having the house to myself!

Links for you

Sometimes I feel like I’m not a ‘good entrepreneur’ because I always have (and always will) prioritize my Actual Life over my business. But Susan gets it.
Yes, absolutely, sit at your computer and write, coach, email clients, do your work, whatever your work may be. Work diligently for, say, 4-6 hours. If you focus intently, you can accomplish a lot in 4-6 hours. And then stop. Enough. Take a walk. Make a smoothie. Watch an episode of Outlander. Watch two. Drive across town to that museum you’ve always wanted to visit. Pack yourself a picnic basket and eat outside on a blanket under a tree. Remember what “outside” feels like? Remember trees? It’s nice out there. 

Have heard of Brandless? Everything is $3 and much of it is organic, non-GMO, or vegan! I’m intrigued!

If you’re in the Twin Cities and you’re affected by DACA, you should know about Navigate MN and the Volunteer Lawyers Network.

Real talk: How to become a grown up.

Does September make you want to hunker down and “get serious” about, well, everything? Did you know that I put together a secret library of ebooks and workbooks that will help you plan better trips, manage your money better, make more friends as an adult, etc etc etc? And it’s $0? Access it here.

A cookbook I’m excited about.

Related: I love this pin!

Fun fact! There was time in American history – not that long ago! – when the rich said no to getting richer.
Romney didn’t try to make every dollar he could, or anywhere close to it. The same was true among many of his corporate peers. In the early 1960s, the typical chief executive at a large American company made only 20 times as much as the average worker, rather than the current 271-to-1 ratio. Today, some C.E.O.s make $2 million in a single month.

What if we could solve our relationship problems by getting more sleep?

Related: “Is this relationship doomed or do I just need to put in more work?

Dream home: found.

An etiquette guide to receiving nudes without being an asshole about it.

I think this is true! We’d all be better communicators if we weren’t so afraid of embarrassing ourselves.

Hope you guys had a lovely weekend!

8 easy(ish) ways to build your ethics into your business

What are your business ethics? How do you build values into your business from the ground up? Here are 8 ways I've made sure my work aligns with my values. Click through to learn how you can do the same!


It’s an overcast Tuesday and my friend and I are busily co-working at a crowded coffee shop. I’m finding photos for future blog posts (read: procrastinating) and she’s designing an ebook (read: being productive).

I lean across the table to see what her book will look like, which photos she’s using. Here’s a man in a wheelchair, typing away on a Macbook. Here’s a Latina woman leading a meeting; here’s a black man pushing a stroller and leading a toddler by the hand towards the playground.

She sees me peering at her screen and nods. “Yeah, I realized that I talk a really good game on Twitter about inclusivity. Then I looked at my blog and noticed that I wasn’t really practicing what I preach. So I’m trying to do better.”

I glance back at my computer and the two photos I just favorited: a white lady doing yoga on a mountain top and two white ladies drinking lattes on a park bench. #basic

Maybe it’s time for me – for many of us? – to do better.

It’s always been a good idea for us to build our ethics into our businesses, but in 2017 it’s more important than ever.

8 easy(ish) ways to build your ethics into your business

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The Cheapskate Guide To: Madrid

Is it possible to do Madrid on the cheap? Even though the American dollar is 84 cents to the Euro? Yes! Click through for local travel tips on cheap lodging, cheap food, and cheap things to do in Madrid!

Is it possible to do Madrid on the cheap? Even though the American dollar is 84 cents to the Euro? Yes! I called in local expertise to learn about $36 Airbnbs in hip neighborhoods, $8 entrees, free museums, and amazing day trips!

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True Story: I’m The Caretaker For My Disabled Sister

What would life be like if you were the primary caregiver for your sibling who had disabilities? How would you juggle those responsibilities along with your career and other relationships? Click through for one woman's story
What would life be like if you were the primary caregiver for your sibling who had disabilities? How would you juggle those responsibilities along with your career and other relationships? Today, Sebene shares her story.

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