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Five years ago, I wrote a book called Say Goodbye to Survival Mode.
The book chronicled my journey of hitting rock bottom and the steps I took to climb out of the pit of survival mode and start thriving again.
This book landed on the New York Times List, it sold thousands and thousands of copies, and it impacted many women’s lives in a profound way.
I’m so humbled and grateful and, honestly, blown away.
But here’s the thing you need to know: In 2015 (about a year and a half after my book, Say Goodbye to Survival Mode, was published), I found myself completely exhausted, spent, and burnt out again.
Only this time, the burnout had crept in so slowly that I didn’t even realize it. I was the proverbial frog in the boiling water. The heat had been turned up so slowly that I hadn’t even noticed — until I was almost dead.
Okay, the word dead might be a bit of an exaggeration, but it’s truly how my soul felt.
My inspiration was completely dried up. My motivation was zapped. And my zest for life had grown legs and walked out and left.
The Question That Changed My Life
Then one day in the middle of 2015, a friend invited me to go out for coffee. Over coffee, my friend asked me a question that changed my life.
“What are you excited about right now?”
I sat there and realized I had no response. Because, the truth was, I wasn’t excited about anything.
I was completely overwhelmed, overworked, and over-committed.
And I didn’t think there was a way out. This was just my life. This was just how it had to be.
Or did it?
My 18-Month Journey of Transformation
That question sent me on an 18-month journey of deep soul-digging and life transformation.
It wasn’t easy. In fact, it required me to make a long series of difficult decisions. It meant shifting my mindset. It was only the result of many, many tears and much struggle.
Since that pivotal day in 2015 when I had coffee with my friend, I’ve made massive changes in my life. Changes that have affected every area of my life — my emotional health, my energy levels, my overall outlook on life, and even my physical appearance!
These changes didn’t start with overhauling my whole life. I was too exhausted and spent and BUSY to even have time to consider doing something like that.
It started with tiny steps that turned into bigger shifts that ended up with me being here — over two years later — in an entirely different space and place.
Introducing… The Say Goodbye to Survival Mode Course!
For the past two years, many people who have watched this transformation online. They asked me if I’d share more details of this journey and what led to this complete shift they’ve witnessed in me.
In this course I open up about my journey in a very real, authentic, and vulnerable way. You could say this course is the sequel to my book, Say Goodbye to Survival. It shares what has transpired and what I’ve learned since I wrote that book.
It’s unlike anything else I’ve ever written before, but my desire is that exposing my heart and soul through this course, my story will give you hope and help. That it will encourage you that you can also break free from living stuck in survival mode.
When you purchase this course, you’ll get immediate access to all of the following:
- 7 video lessons with me sharing my 18-month journey — one for each day of the course.
- Daily personal reflection questions to help you process well on your own journey to break free from burnout.
- Some of my favorite recommended resources (links, books, podcasts) to go along with each day’s lesson.
- A PDF workbook including the entire course lessons that you can download and print.
- Plus! You’ll get 3 free exclusive bonuses!
The course videos and materials can be accessed via any desktop computer, laptop computer, smartphone, or mobile device. You can choose to print the workbook or download it to your computer or phone.
This course is self-paced and you have lifetime access to all course downloads. You can begin it at any time and go at your own pace!
Hurry! Get $10 Off for the Next 5 Days!
This course is regularly priced at $37, but to celebrate launch week, we’re offering it for just $27 for the next five days only (through September 5, 2017).
So, what are you waiting for? Click below to enroll for just $27 today!
Are you constantly tired and exhausted? Do you wish life didn’t feel so chaotic and crazy? Have you ever felt like it’s impossible to find breathing room in your schedule?
If you answered “yes” to any of those questions, I want to invite you to join me this week for a FREE online class I’m teaching called 3 Strategies to Stop Feeling Overwhelmed. I’ll be teaching this class on Wednesday and Thursday this week (August 30-31, 2017).
This class is not just for moms, but it’s really for anyone who needs some extra motivation, practical ideas, and down-to-earth encouragement to break free from burnout and feel more calm and productive.
In this class, I’ll teach you:
- My 4-step process for deciding what to say yes to & what to say no to
- The most important question you can ask if you want more calm & less chaos in your life
- My #1 trick to get more done every single day
- Plus, I’ll be hosting a LIVE Q&A at the end of the class to answer your burning questions!
If you need some inspiration as you gear up for a new school year or if you’ve ever wondered how I accomplish all I do or what my strategies are for getting more done, staying organized, juggling a lot of responsibilities, and not exhausting myself in the process, this class is for you!
I’ll be hosting three LIVE classes:
- Wednesday, August 30, 2017 at 1 p.m. CT/2 p.m. EST
- Thursday, August 31, 2017 at 11 a.m. CT/12 p.m. EST
- Thursday, August 31, 2017 at 7 p.m. CT/8 p.m. EST
Each class will be around 45 minutes long (plus the time for live Q&A at the end!).
P.S. Can’t make the live class? Go ahead and register because I’ll send you a replay link once the class is finished!
Welcome to my weekly post where we take a break from money-related posts and I share about what I’m loving right now and give you a little peek into our life from the past week.
What I Read This Week
Kaitlynn and I finished reading this book this week as part of her Sonlight curriculum in homeschool and really enjoyed it! Have you read it before? I’d never heard of it but it was such a fun read-aloud — especially since we’re studying ancient Egypt history right now.
What We Did This Past Week
On the way to school one morning this past week, I asked the question I try to ask daily: “What are you excited about today?”
“We get to paint our salt dough maps today!” Was his eager reply.
You guys. This boy! I just love how much he loves learning!
He has been studying about ancient Egypt in school the past few weeks. They made salt dough maps last week in Humanities and then painted them today to practically demonstrate their understanding of what they had learned.
My mama heart may have just swelled to bursting when he went over it in great detail with me all about the flood zones, the crops, the Sphinx, the pyramids, the Nile river, and the Delta.
Since Kaitlynn and I are studying the same thing in our curriculum (which I chose to coincide with what Silas would be doing at school), we’re having so much fun comparing notes and sharing fun facts and tidbits with each other!
I love that we are doing this hybrid educational thing this year based upon what we felt would be best for each child. They each seem to be thriving where they are at and I’m so very grateful!
We also enjoyed watching the solar eclipse on Monday. It was incredible — even though we didn’t have complete totality (it was about 99% where we live).
Had I known how cool it was going to be and how awestruck my kids (and I!) were going to be with it, we totally would have driven a little ways to see totality. Now we know for 2024!
While it didn’t get completely dark, we did get to see the sunset for about a minute — which was incredible!
What I’m Learning as a Parent
Lean in. Listen. Love.
These have become my guiding words in my parenting — especially as my kids are getting older, spreading their wings, and attempting to fly a little.
A few days ago, one child failed to follow through and do something they were asked to do. As a result, they lost a privilege of getting to do another thing they were really looking forward to.
This child was very upset and angry. And honestly? I wanted to be all, “I told you if you didn’t do X, you wouldn’t get Y. It’s your own stinkin’ fault.” Which would just anger and shame the child.
But instead, I stopped and resolved to lean in, listen, and love.
So, I sat with them while they cried about losing this privilege. I told them gently how I knew it was hard for them and how I was sad, too. I asked what was the hardest thing about it and let them express their frustration.
Once they stopped crying, I shared with them quietly about why we had made the decision we had. I told them how much we loved them and how much we wanted to spare them pain in the future by teaching them now that following through and doing the right thing is so important.
I then asked, “Do you want me to tell you about a time when I didn’t do the right thing and the consequences that came from that?”
They sat up and excitedly said, “Yes!”
So we snuggled together while I told them the story of a time when I had made a very bad choice and how I’d experienced *six months* of hard consequences as a result of that one choice.
When I got done with my story, this child had a look of deep understanding on their face. I could tell that they felt seen, heard, and loved.
It turned into such a beautiful time together. And it was all because instead of reacting or shaming or being frustrated, I leaned in, listened, and loved.
What I’ve Been Pondering + An Exciting Announcement
I’ve spent the last two years of my life untethering myself from being chained to a worth based on productivity…
I’ve shut out a lot of noise. I’ve said “no” probably a few hundred times every single month.
I’ve slept more. I’ve laughed more. I’ve developed a few new deep friendships.
I’ve stopped obsessing so much over things I can’t change.
I’ve tried new foods, new styles, new drinks, and new experiences.
I’ve started volunteering at church in the children’s ministry. I signed up to co-lead a women’s small group.
I’ve even given myself freedom to spend money on things “just because” — like discounted flowers and new shoes.
I’ve become a lot more spontaneous. I’ve stopped waking up so early. I’ve started getting 7-8 hours of sleep every night.
I loved deeper. I’ve trusted more wholeheartedly.
I’ve given myself space to feel instead of stuffing things. I’ve ugly cried.
I’ve let other people see the under-belly of who I really am without pretending. I’ve welcomed people into my messy.
And I’m happier and healthier and braver and more confident and more fulfilled than I’ve ever been in my life.
Many of you have asked me to share more about this journey and the specifics of how I’ve actually walked it. I wasn’t ready until now. Because I needed to quietly live it first.
But the past two months, I’ve been working on a course where I open up and share really vulnerably about my journey.
It’s called Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: A 7-Day Journey to Break Free from Burnout & it launches this coming week!
Instead of doing a big launch promotion, this time around, I’m offering a free webinar where I’ll share more about my journey, share some of the most important lessons I learned, do a live Q&A, and offer a special discount on the course for those who sign up.
I’m offering the webinar LIVE 3 times this coming week and I’d love for you to join me for it. Go sign up for it here (and look for more details on the webinar tomorrow!)
Links You Should Check Out
- Easy Individual Mini Meat Lasagnas — This is such a great freezer-friendly recipe idea from my younger sister, Olivia!
- Had a bad morning this morning? This might encourage you.
- Want to see a little peek into our mornings? Check this out.
- I have a new mantra for business and life. You can read all about it here.
Welcome to my weekly post where we take a break from money-related posts and I share about what I’m loving right now and give you a little peek into our life from the past week.
What I Read Recently
Books read this week:
- Life After — a great read suggested to me by Anne Bogel (You know it was good because I stayed up until 1 am to finish it!)
- The Unhurried Homeschooler — some of this book felt a little too legalistic for me and some of her suggestions/principles would not work well for certain of my kids because of their personality types, but I still thought there was some valuable information in this book and would recommend it if you are a homeschooler or are seriously considering homeschooling. (However, as always, remember there are no one-size-fits-all plans! Do what works best for your own family!)
What Our Schedule Looks Like Right Now
So many of you have asked for details on our current schedule. Because you’ve begged, I’m going to share it, but with this caveat: even though this has been working for us, I reserve the right to change it anytime if it stops working!
6-7:40 am — Up, ready for the day, breakfast, and family time.
7:40 am-1 pm — Drop kids off at school & go to work on blog/business stuff at my employee’s house while Jesse homeschools Kaitlynn (they usually make dinner together during this time, too).
1-2:30 pm — Homeschool Kaitlynn (Jesse leaves to spend the afternoon working/running errands/going to Crossfit, etc.)
2:30-4 pm — Pick kids up from school, cleaning/laundry/chore time.
4-6 pm — Free time (I usually hang with the kids, finish a few tasks, and have time to chill or take a nap).
6 pm — Dinner and family Bible time.
6:30-8 pm — Jesse hang out with the kids and I finish blogging work OR family time/evening activities.
8-9 pm — Kids to bed, hang out with Jesse.
9-10:30 pm — Exercise, shower, reading, to bed.
There you have it! Remember: this is what is working for our family, right now in this season. It’s subject to change when it stops working! 😉
What I’m Celebrating
Almost exactly one year ago, I gave up coffee.
I never thought I could do it. It was excruciating for the first few weeks and I actually cried during my detox because I missed it so much.
But one year later, I don’t even miss it. I still love the smell, but I have discovered I’m so much calmer and less anxious without it. Plus, I sleep so much better!
You guys. I never thought I could survive and THRIVE without my daily doses of caffeine in a cup.
But I did. I have. And I AM! And it makes me feel so empowered to try other things that I never thought I could do!
What I’ve Been Pondering
No matter what I say or do or don’t say or don’t do, someone is bothered, upset, offended, or disappointed. I’m sure you’ve experienced that, too, in your life!
Someone asked me the other day how I deal with negative comments. Here’s what has helped me:
1) Don’t be surprised or offended. Part of the nature of putting out words on the internet means that not everyone is going to like or agree with you. Accept this.
2) Look for the nuggets of truth. Ask myself, “Is there truth in their words that I need to pay attention to?”
3) Don’t defend myself. I have a policy to never defend myself on the internet. Sometimes, things need to be clarified or responded to — but I commit to wait to respond until I can do it with grace and love for the person.
4) Believe the best. Always assume someone is using a kind tone of voice when they write and have your best interests at heart. Don’t make up stories or read into things.
5) Remember the truth. When I stay focused on my identity in Christ and how much I am loved and forgiven by Him, I don’t have to feel stressed, upset, or hurt by negative comments from others. I can rest in His finished work on the Cross and the fact that I am enough in Him!
What I’m Learning as a Mom
The knock came on our bedroom door and I was instantly annoyed. It was after bedtime, it had been a long day, and I was really, really ready for the kids to be asleep.
I opened the door in a bit of a huff and almost said gruffly, “What are you doing?!? Don’t you know it’s bedtime? Get in bed!!”
But before those words could come out of my mouth, I stopped myself and looked into my child’s eyes. And I saw sadness and hurt written all over their face.
“Can I come in?” They asked sheepishly. All of my annoyance melted away as my child shared their heart with me while cuddled up on my bed.
About 20 minutes later, they headed back to their bed with a smile on their face. You guys. I almost missed this beautiful conversation and opportunity to love on my child!
Motherhood is exhausting, I get that. As an introvert, it’s easy to feel people-d out and just want space. And I think it’s important to take time to refuel and recharge — but not at the expense of our kid’s hearts.
Here’s what I’m reminding myself: really look into their eyes. Really pay attention to what’s going on in their hearts. And be willing to bend the bedtime rules a little sometimes in favor of communicating to a child how much they are loved.
What’s Been on My Heart Recently
You guys. I’ve waited to say anything because I didn’t want to just add noise to the online space. But after a very heartfelt conversation with our kids about the events of last weekend, the words came and they were this…
Ultimately, I can’t fix or change anything or anyone else but me. The racial divides and hatred and anger… I can’t magically take it away.
But here’s what I CAN do: I can look for those who are lonely, left out, and hurting. I can look into their eyes, let them know that they matter, and offer my friendship.
I can raise my kids to know that ALL people are worthy of kindness and love. That ostracizing and marginalizing is not okay. That it only hurts.
I can pursue peace, believe the best, love wholeheartedly, give generously, and extend grace willingly.
I can’t change the world, but I CAN go out and love my neighbor and encourage my kids to do the same. Will you join me?
Links You Should Check Out:
- I loved this beautiful podcast episode from Emily P. Freeman on becoming a soul minimalist.
- Like freebies? We posted a HUGE list of 50 legitimate freebies you can sign up for right now.
- Missed my FREE blogging class? I’m offering it again here. Sign up for the date & time that works for your schedule!
- Ever wonder how I deal with negative comments? I share my philosophy & honest thoughts on it here.
Welcome to my 14-day series on our East Coast Road Trip where I share our adventures along the way, how we’re doing this on a budget, honest reviews of attractions & restaurants we visit, and money-saving tips and ideas. If you missed it, read Day 1 here, Day 2 here, Day 3 here, Day 4 here, Day 5 here, Day 6 here, Day 7 here, Day 8 here, Day 9 here, Day 10 here, Day 11 here, and Day 12 here.
We had an amazing day in Cincinnati for day 13 of our trip… and by some sheer miracle, there was almost zero arguing or people who were annoyed at each other!!
Instead, the day was filled with lots of laughter, fun, joking, experiencing new things together, and just generally really liking being together. Which, ahem, wasn’t necessarily the case the previous few days.
(We’ve decided that the 10 day mark is where we all kind of hit a wall and were ready to be home and feeling grouchy and tired of sleeping in one room, spending so much time in the car, and being off our usual routine and rhythms. I was wondering if we were even going to like each other by the time we got home. So the turnaround in attitudes was such a gift!)
We started off our time in Cincy with lunch at Skyline Chili. I got a Greek salad… yes, I know that flies in the face of all that is good and true. But y’all, I just didn’t know how my stomach would take the chili!
My family (mostly) really loved the chili, though some of them weren’t so sure that they liked it the next day. Yeah, it does a number on your stomach if you’re a Skyline Chili newbie.
(I tried a few bites and I’m not sure what to think of it. It was different, that’s for sure! ;))
Then, we went to the Creation Museum and got to spend an hour with their cartoonist (who is a friend of a good friend). Not only did he get us passes so we could get in for free (!) and go to the planetarium show for free, but he also gave us a behind-the-scenes tour, and showed us how he creates his cartoon strips using Adobe Photoshop. It was fascinating!!
The grounds at the Creation Museum were so beautiful. We loved walking around the grounds/visit the petting zoo!
We waited to go to the special effects theater & main exhibits until 5:30 pm and it wasn’t crowded at all — unlike earlier in the day when we heard it’s usually packed!
We then headed to Jungle Jim’s and had a blast there! What a fun and unique store! We let the kids pick a few treats there and they were SO excited about getting some candy from other countries!
I was super stoked about the South African food, the entire aisle of tea, and the hilarious bathrooms (you just have to see them… people had told us not to miss them and they were so right!).
Just one more day in Cincy and then we head home.
To be continued…