Category: life advice

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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How To Live In The World (Not In A Bubble)

Want to NOT live in a bubble? It can be hard and a little uncomfortable to seek out people and experiences that are different than ours. Here's how.
I’m clicking through one of those quizzes people share on Facebook, feeling preemptively smug.

Click. Click. Click. Self-congratulatory back pat.

My results appear on the page and I grimace. Apparently, that self-congratulatory back pat was not earned.

I scored a 35 on the quiz in question: “Do you live in bubble?”  And if I hadn’t worked as a teacher (“Have you ever had a job that caused you to be on your feet all day?”) or grown up in rural Minnesota (“Have you ever lived for more than a year in a city with fewer than 50,000 people?”) I would have scored a 14.

Good lord, it is easy to surround ourselves with people who look, act, and think like us. It’s so nice to meet all my college-educated, liberal, feminist friends for coffee and validate the ish out of each other’s opinions and life choices! It’s so comfortable to drive my Prius to J Selby’s and order a $10 Buffalo Soy Curl Wrap with my vegan friends!

But – and I know you know this – we don’t grow by surrounding ourselves with people and ideas that don’t challenge us.

We don't expand our lives, brains, or hearts by existing in a vacuum or echo chamber. Click To Tweet

So starting now, I’m trying harder to live in the world, not in my “liberal elite” bubble. If you’d like to join me in exiting your bubble, here are six things I’m doing.

6 ways to not live in a bubble

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What are the hallmarks of your best self?

What does your Best Self look like? How do they treat other people? How do they treat YOU? Click through for 5 questions that will help you identify your best self!

It’s an overcast spring day and my friend and I are walking our dogs around Lake Nokomis. We’re drinking takeaway coffees and engaging in one of those it’s-been-too-long-tell-me-evvvvverything conversations. To be totally honest, I was busy fiddling with Loretta’s poop bags when I tuned back into the conversation and heard my friend say:

“… and those are the hallmarks of my Best Self. That’s how I knew I’d made the right decision.”

I (rudely) put my hand up and said, “Wait. Just a second. The hallmarks of your best self? Tell me more about this.”

Friends, I spend a lot of time thinking about this stuff. About what makes us happy. About how to communicate our needs. About how to chase our dreams without hating our lives.

And I’ve spent exactly zero minutes thinking about what my Best Self looks like.  These ‘hallmarks of your best self’ – how did my friend know what they were? How did she know which people, places, and experiences brought them out?

Not knowing what your Best Self looks like is like planning a trip without a destination. Click To Tweet
Of course, we can’t be our Best Selves all the time. Sometime I just really want to eat rubbish and read snarky celebrity gossip. If I’m virtuous and intentional and productive for too many days in a row I get sick of myself.

5 questions to help you identify your Best Self (so you can be your Best Self more often)

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Yes & Yes is taking a Summer Vacation!


Friends,

It’s already August and – as per the usual – I’m haunted by the belief that I haven’t “Summered correctly.” I haven’t gone swimming enough, taken enough roadtrips, and I’ve eaten nary a snow cone. FAIL.

So I’m taking the next two weeks off to:
a) live out a life time dream of visiting Prince Edward Island
b) get a bunch of business-y stuff set up behind the scenes

I’ll be sharing some of my favorite vintage Summer-y posts over the next 15 days so if you stop by there will still be fresh(ish) content here on the Yes & Yes homepage.

I’ll still be on Instagram and Facebook during this break, probably overwhelming you with photos of beaches and Tim Hortons, so follow at your own risk 😉

See you on the 16th and thanks for making Yes & Yes part of your online life!

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

How To Make Habit Change Stick – For Real This Time

You’re smart. You already know that good habits will get you closer to the life you want. 

And you’re totally aware of the bad habits that are pushing you further from your goals.

But you just can’t seem to make habit change stick. You drink smoothies every morning for a few days and then fall off the wagon. You resist Netflix binges for a few weeks, but then you have a bad day and you’re back at it.

You see other people who seem to have all figured out. You wonder what they know that you don’t. 

“How can she go running every morning? Doesn’t she ever want to sleep in?”

“He never seems tempted to order a third beer. Why not? Where does he get all that self-control?”

“Every day she unpacks some impressive salad she brought from home and I’m over here with my mediocre $10 deli sandwich. Why can’t I be like that?” 

Make It Stick Habit School is your bridge from knowing to doing. 

You already know what you should be doing. You just need your brain and body listen. This 6-step system and self-paced course will help you understand how to make habit change stick – for good.

  •  Your good habits feel effortless and almost second nature
  •  You’re finally free of those bad habits that have dogged you for years
  •  You’re not tempted or easily derailed; you don’t waste energy struggling with self-control
  •  If you do fall off the wagon, you treat yourself with compassion and grace; then you get back up and keep going

“This course helped me realize that working out/being active every day is key to my happiness: I feel better, eat better, and look better when I do. With Sarah’s humor, humility, and science-backed strategies, I haven’t missed a workout since I took the class. I know I’ll miss a day eventually, but Make It Stick has also prepared me to lessen the impact of that by planning alternate activities and, most importantly, going easy on myself.” – Bobby S. 

 

This course really forced me to be honest with myself about why I’m doing or not doing things. Now that I understand my own motivations and triggers, it’s so much easier to change my habits!” – Geraline M. 

 

 

What you’ll gain in this course:

  • A specific-to-you plan for changing your habits
  • An understanding of why your attempts at habit change have failed in the past
  • Science-backed strategies for avoiding temptation and reinforcing good habits
  • Methods you can apply over and over again, to any habit you want to make or break

After you sign up, you’ll immediately have access to:

    • 8 self-paced modules
    • 9 video lessons
    • 9 audio versions of that same lessons so you can listen at the gym or in your car
    • 17-page workbook

You will be taken to an order form. Once your purchase is complete, you’ll receive an email with your workbook and access to the whole course!


“This is the magic formula. I’ve been trying to build a regular fitness habit for a decade, but I wasn’t allowing myself room for any deviation whatsoever. Now I have a whole collection of mini ‘bookmark’ activities that I love to do, so that when I can’t get in a ‘real’ workout, I’m still moving my body every day and maintaining my habit.”  – Erin G.

 

Where was this information all my life?!! Habit School helped my discover why my new habits haven’t stuck in the past. The suggestions to focus on how I feel when I do the bad habit, and then what I want to feel is mind-shifting!”  – Amy C.

 

 

We’re more than halfway through 2017. I’d love to help you make the second half of this year better than the first! You can read more about Make It Stick Habit School here or click below to join us right now!

The Unpleasant Truth Behind Why We “Can’t” Break Bad Habits

Think you can't break bad habits? You totally can! But it started by being really honest with yourself about why you think you can't. Click through for 4 tips that will help with long-lasting habit change!

It’s an overcast Tuesday night and it’s happening again.

I’ve been horizontal for two hours now, slowing eating my way through a bag of pizza rolls. The sheet pan lies on the floor and my laptop sits on the coffee table, both within easy reach so I can alternate between eating cheesy pillows of goo and clicking through 90s music videos on Youtube.

Pizza roll. No Diggity. Pizza roll. The Boy Is Mine. Pizza Roll. Karma Police.

This isn’t the first time I’ve done this. For a 1.5 year window, this pizza roll + music video binge became, well, a habit. Whenever the stars aligned (the weather was bad, Kenny was gone, and I’d worked too hard) I’d find myself on the couch. Somehow, there would be pizza rolls in my mouth and *NSYNC in my ear.

Did you notice how I phrased that paragraph? As though I was powerless? As though this bad habit ‘happened’ to me and I didn’t have any control over it or myself?  AS THOUGH A BAG OF PIZZA ROLLS IS SMARTER THAN ME?

Friends, it’s time to have a brutally honest conversation about bad habits and why we “can’t” break them.

Demoralizing but true: We engage in bad habits because - on some level - they benefit us. Click To Tweet

The Unpleasant Truth Behind Why We “Can’t” Break Bad Habits

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