The Thing No one Tells You About Growth (Stinger, I Tell Ya!)

From the outside, personal development either: scares the hell out of you, inspires you or scares the hell out of you.

See I get inspired by other's growth, but my own- errrr, can I get a pass until the next turn?

My favorite human nicknamed me Elephant at the start of this year and I hated it at first. Then loved it because it was true.

No it is not a reference to my thighs (for that he would've gotten kicked!) but being I am stubborn and cannot be moved.

Until, I am ready that is. There's an old saying you cannot move an Elephant you have to get them to want to move. True DAT.

That first layer of self growth is always the fun part because you have the adrenaline and excitement of the newness of everything. Ohh new books! New words to use! New gurus to follow and explore! 

I remember when I first fell down the rabbit hole of growth and I was actually like Alice in Wonderland.

I was so relieved to find out I was broken and it wasn't only me I couldn't learn things fast enough it was drinking from the freshest natural well.

Then I got comfy again. 

I was no longer in crisis mode so I eased up on the pedal and thought, cool, I've so got this and since I'm great helping other people I will focus ALL of my attention of doing that.

And forgot that little fact that I (and you) always have more to go. More things to face, more things to let go of, more things to understand at a different places. 

Most of our beliefs are engrained in us at a young age and then we live our adult lives by a 5 year old's perspective at best! 

My 5 year old was knocking things over and I needed to rewire my good old brain.

So I dove in yet again. I have changed more in the past 5 years and especially this year more than I ever thought I could.

But the lingering stuff AFTER that fun beginning part is always the stickier part.

Because you feel better and because you can count wins, it's easier to navigate around the residual mines. 

For me those mines are boundaries, being vulnerable to loving and being loved and abandonment.

I cringe even typing them.

So I just gave more and asked for less from everyone around me so I could avoid those suckers and live happily even after.

Not so much. Life doesn't go like that it seems.

For me, I was creating scenarios where my boundaries were being crossed- to test me. I failed then I won when I finally SAW. Next, I decided to trust again. I open myself up and then get afraid of being left on the curb so then I get macho and bounce between the two in my head. (Exhausting anyone?) And I didn't see them because LALALA I was busy being so proud of how far I came...and being an Elephant.

Today I felt the old stuff peeking up again and I realized it's time for another round of change.

So I cried. I punched a pillow. I yelled everything out loud. I didn't push it down and go macho.

Then I wrote a letter. 

To the parts that I have been avoiding.

To ask them to leave me alone and to stop handing me chances to get hurt on silver platters over and over. 

To forgive them for just trying to keep me safe and for doing so until now albeit very messily.

And then I burned the letters.

I remember I am brave and strong without those mines, and also really FINALLY  equipped to step on one if it pops up and know what to do about it without falling. 

I also remembered the advice I give my clients and turned it on myself. I have always been my toughest client to date so it was time to give it back to me in spades.

Always more to go but exercising what I know works, even on Elephant extraordinaire is yet another win I finally remember to count.

How We Mix Things Up!

I recently asked my audience in my FB group the question ‘what did you used to love doing as a little kid?’

Do you do any of the things that you liked to do as a kid, either as a hobby, as a practice, as a stress reliever.

Most of us don't, and that's the thing we are so missing in moving forward!

So many people pointed out they wanted more fun and frolics in their life, but then they don't go back to the things that they always loved to do.

People are afraid to want more play in their life because they aren’t sure where it fits with all of the responsibilities and ‘grown up’ tasks.

The more adventurous people will go and say, "Okay, I'm going to jump out of a plane."

That's awesome. There's an adrenaline rush for five minutes, and then you come back down and you're back down at your regular status and you're not creating an environment in your life where fun and frolics and adventure and curiosity can continue to come into play on a continual basis, but rather jumping from high to high, literally and figuratively.

Instead of us always looking for another new answer, we even do it not only in business and in life, but we do it in our own creativity realm thinking I have to go learn a new skill.

There needs to be a new hobby.

I need to go find a new exercise class.

I have to go read a book because that's what everyone told me to do. Instead of constantly looking outside of ourselves to find the answers for the things that we want, what if we built a habit in our curiosity of going back to what we used to like to do.

Because what we do when we do that, is we listen to our intuition whether you're ‘woo’ or not, you know automatically when you like something.

But as an adult, moving from when we were children, we forget what we like!

We forget to bring it with us and we think it's not okay or it's childish or it's naive or it's a waste of time because we have so many more important things to focus on, but then you're leaving your essence back there where our inner answer lay.

Then when you try to do new things, when you wanna learn new skills, when you wanna push forward in your business, when you wanna be brave in your relationships, you don't have your inner essence, which is what drove you when you were little, in order to accomplish those things.

That's why we get this adrenaline rush to try something and then we drop out of either overwhelm or frustration or we get bored very easily.

It's because we're trying to do something outside of our regular way.

I want to encourage you to take a look at the list that you wrote of things you liked to do when you were little.

Go back to what you liked when you were little.

Why did you like it?

Why did it mean so much to you and how can you bring it in now?

I always loved art, I still do love art, but there's certain things that I don't like.

I don't like fine art.

I found that out trying fine art and it felt forced and uncomfortable for me.

I don't like being in a class.

I don't like when it's supposed to look a certain way.

And I certainly don’t like being told what to do!

I took what I use to like and now at, almost 43, I do it my way.

If I'm in the mood, I'll go down to my basement where I have my art studio.

I'll go do something for ME.

It's not for anyone.

I don't have to sell it like I used to.

No one else has to see it, but to capture the essence of the fun and frolics that you used to have, find the feeling and recreate it in your life now.

What can that look like?

Because it's not about what it was.

It's not about, Well, I'm not good at basketball so I'm not going to play anymore.

We were taught in our societies as children, unless you can master something, move on.

If you're not the best chess player, you're never going to make the chess team, so don't bother.

You're not the best dancer, don't try out for the dance team.

It doesn't matter if you can master it. it's for you to enjoy, expand and create.

It's something that drives a spark in you to have more fuel to do things, to do things more your way, to stop asking permission from everybody else.

Use the feeling to go find what it is, create that spark in yourself and then use the spark to focus on your life, on your business, on your relationships, because it's not about the activity, it's about the feeling that lights up inside of you.

From that changed state, you can do anything, you can plow through the to do list, which you may find boring.

You can make the phone calls that you're scared of.

You can face the conversations that you may not feel ready for.

You can press publish on a live stream, in your high school cheerleading outfit like me, because I don't care anymore.

I finally remembered how I like to feel when I'm playful, which I had completely forgotten about!

So…. I was just being a regular grown up muggle, not well either, I might add, and then I wasn't really being me, and I certainly wasn't being like everyone else, so I was kind of like being nothing and that's when my body started aching, things were falling apart in my life, because I wasn't listening to any of it.

It's about re-routing and turning the mirror inwards and saying, forget what everyone else thinks if it's okay or not, if you can weave in what ifs and curiosity and adventure and playfulness back into everyday life, even for a few minutes a day, it changes all the tasks you think you're suppose to do to get where you say you want to go.

If I'm not good at something straight away, I usually give up.

I have to be the best, I can't help it.

We're all like that in different ways because it's how we were taught.

Why would you bother wasting energy on something if you're not gonna be good at?

We're taught that from a young age.

We do it to our kids.

If my son isn't good at trying out for the hockey team, to save him from pain, when he was little, I would say, "You know what sweetie? Why don't we try tennis instead."

You know what he did? He mastered both hockey and tennis, because he was a little kid and he didn't give a shit.

My adultness I put on him because I didn't want him to feel rejection.

Sometimes that rejection or that fear of not being good enough drives us to go do something better.

To better ourselves, to practice more, to test our boundaries, to find out what's behind it, to see what's stopping us, but yet we don't bring it into our adult life and that's why I think fun and frolics runs everything else, because you're being the most you that you want to be, without even thinking about it.

You don't have to plan it.

This isn't something that you can read 15 books and master, you just go back inside and remember who you are and then you turn it and use it in every area of your life.

Now, that doesn't mean it's going to affect your ROI day one, but it will certainly make you show up differently every day in your work, which will definitely magnetized people to your work.

It's not about worrying if it's going to change the last bit of the story, but it's about creating the most you that you can so you can bring yourself as fully to whatever it is you do.

I’d like to challenge you to start exploring this.

What could you bring in, what you could start doing in your life. Yeah, we all don't have time. Yeah, we don't have the money to go extra stuff. I hear all the excuses. I am spending my work day in my cheerleading outfit, okay?

That didn't cost me anything, it didn't change my schedule, it makes me laugh, my clients will either laughter or think I'm crazy and I don't really give a shit because if they have an issue with it, I mean this with love, they're not my people so the more me I am.

I promise you I'll be more on fire today, because I'm dressed like this, because I've been giggling for an hour that I'm wearing an itchy sweater and very excited by the fact that it's big on me.

I'm gonna go with this today.

I actually put lipstick on, which doesn't usually happen.

I brushed my hair, which doesn't usually happen.

It changes my state, whatever it is that you can do to bring more of your spark back in, make yourself a list, even if you do it once a week.

Can’t wait to hear what you come up with.



The Secret Sauce Strategy To Real Success in Life & Business- Clarity, Community and Cocooning

Here’s the truth of it….most people are on the forever search of the magic pill or secret sauce to succeed in their lives and businesses.

 Tens of thousands of dollars spent on research, books, ‘gurus’ and hacks (UGH) to crack the code on what it takes and how to shortcut the path to the promised land.

Websites created, programs launched, masterminds sold- all for the elusive feeling of belonging and ‘winning’ at it all.

Hours, days, months, even years, dedicated to the mapping out the Holy Grail just to sell and repackage that to the next unknowing soul on that search.

What if I told you all of it worked and none of it worked? Maybe it’s not about a balancing act after all.

Would it blow your mind if you could believe being all of the things in all different directions is the tried and true answer?

Let me explain.

 Success is not a one time goal.

Nor is it a one size fits all t-shirt to don and parade around town.

There are times on our journey that finding your people, a community of like minded powerhouses headed in a similar direction is THE exact thing you need to catapult you from where you are stuck.

AND there are also times when tuning out the outside noise and lists of should’s and have to’s while learning to tune into your OWN intuition, your OWN knowing, your OWN ideas is the only move you could possibly make to budge from where you are.

There are ‘answers’ that may work for you sometimes and complete opposite ones for other times.

So now that I have told you there is no ACTUAL path… on earth does anyone achieve anything?!

How are we meant to know what to do and when?

How can we distinguish the outside voices from this inside ones?

We first have to learn to LISTEN.

So many of us want to run away from something that is not working- relationships, jobs, self images that are less than fabulous, that we forget to slow down and understand what it is we are actually searching FOR.

Add on the shiny stage of social media that glorifies even your breakfast picture with filters and emojis, we have forgotten how to create what we want with intention. If we ever knew in the first place, of course....

We have forgotten how to build the courage muscle, how to sit in uncomfortable spaces and how to savor our growth, even the sticky spots.

What are you chasing after so hard? What are you wasting all of that hustle energy on if you have no actual destination?

As much as we like to speed up to feel busy and on purpose, we first need to SLOW DOWN and understand why we want what we say we want.

What would success free you FROM? What does success lead you TO?

It could be mindset, finances, shackles of the past.

Maybe it’s unfulfilled ideas and dreams of who you wanted to be.

Perhaps it’s something entirely different than you can’t even pinpoint yet.

The ironic thing is many times running towards success for the wrong reasons just adds more stress and pain, not less!

Here’s what I am proposing instead- and you don’t even have to like it but I promise it works every time.

First step- remember who you are. I don’t mean in some hokey ethereal way (although that’s awesome too at times- let’s save that for later)

What do you stand for? What do you believe? What do you value as absolute truth?

Next- what do you loathe? What do you stand against? What will you fight against over and over?

Now notice how foreign some of your answers may be to you.. We are not taught to grab those values and principles by the neck and have THEM lead our lives! Well, not until now.

Once you have your list fleshed out, now it’s time to understand WHY success matters in your life.

What has happened in your life that has made you feel less than successful?

What would creating that success change for you and why?

What will your life look like if you never get there?

NOW we have a real destination. An understanding of what has fueled you in the past and WHY you want what you say you want.

The last step before diving in is to determine WHAT is standing in your way.

Because, let’s be real, if we could just snap our fingers and create those dream lives wouldn’t we all be living them already?

So it’s time for real rawness.

What does NOT succeeding until now feed in your life- does it keep you safe to not grow? Do you have patterns and beliefs that need some digging into about what really having what you want would stop you from being/doing/having?

What would happen to your relationships if you became the best version of yourself?

Now, go easy here this is not about more judgement or fear gathering it’s about turning the lights on so you can see why you may be sabotaging exactly what you claim to want.

You are now armed with what you need to forge forward:

1.What you are walking away from and why

  1. What you are striving towards and why

  2. What roadblocks could be in your way

  3. And most important, a true sense of self to know how to proceed and why your unique desire for success means so much to you

So now armed with all of your new information and fuel- how do you ACTUALLY go achieve that success?

Here is where we blend an interesting and sometimes contradictory types of ingredients.

  1. COMMUNITY. Yes we have all heard the quote from Jim Rohn in some variation of “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”

Until you decide what type of environment you need to be in to foster these newfound seeds for your success, you cannot change- yes, I said that boldly.

If you could, you already WOULD have.

We need a pattern interrupt, a proof in the pudding, a visceral experience of seeing, feeling and knowing what you want is possible and doable.

How do we get that?

By surrounding ourselves with those people- mentors, friends, accountability partners  who are on a path we admire AND farther along actually living what we see in our mind’s eye as success.

Why is that so key? Otherwise, by human nature, we stay stuck together. We moan and groan about things never changing yet we don’t create the necessary environments for that change!

When you set your gaze out from where you are to where you want to be, we naturally grow towards that destination. In education there is a philosophy called scaffolding, which validates the idea that when we work in groups we rise together, an individual will show up more and push themselves more for a team effort and group plan than we naturally do on our own.

So finding your people and networks is of utmost importance.

And here’s where it gets tricky…..ready for my contradiction?

 1. You ALSO need solo time. Self care, processing, cocooning time. Time to remember who you are, what you want, how far you’ve come and how close you are to shifting it all.

HUH? I just told you to find your people, didn’t I?

The key thing people forget to do it check in with themselves.

They find their direction, connect with like minded others and they naturally start to rev up those engines again. This gives a great sense of belonging and motivation towards growth. And can also lend to marching in line, following other’s ideas AND forgetting yourselves yet again!

It’s imperative to take the time away from the noise, the ideas and the speed of what’s going on around to connect and reconnect to your pace, voice and soul.

We need to make sure other people’s ideas and dreams do not muddy up our own.

We need to honor our similarities YET honor and respect our differences in order to not blend into the crowd yet again.

We have to recalibrate our dreams, strategies and visions to make sure they still fit us.

We must give ourselves what we give to the people around us- be that family we care for, partners we love or clients we nurture.

Without recharging, refocusing and reminding ourselves that we are ever evolving and ever growing even as we make massive strides, we can easily trip on our own feet.

We fall into overwhelm, burnout and can even get lost on our way because we forget to check on our own needs, wants, and drain our own wells by giving all we have to everyone else.

Society glorifies over-giving, putting others first and not taking time for’s that working for everyone?

We are as a whole, a society of overweight, overly stressed and afflicted with over-consumption of media, material salves and background noise so we can’t possibly hear our own hearts and souls in the midst of the madness.

When we choose to give BACK to ourselves, we automatically create an inner environment that has even more to give to others because we are not so thinly spread.

So right when you fall back into that rev up, hamster wheelin’ race to ‘SUCCESS’, remember what it really takes to get there and start SLOWING down to catapult forward.

It’s a rinse and repeat game that Works.Every.Time.

Trust me on this one.

Shari is a soul explorer, transformational coach and creative business strategist. She helps her clients ditch their Groundhog Day living and find their unique path and voice to a sparked up soul and lit up life.

Shari also works with entrepreneurs and your everyday rock stars to verbalize their soul and vision, to find a calling instead of a I-really-hate-my-job and/or-my-life type of deal. As a multi-passionate rebel spirit, she also hosts her variety style podcast, The Creative Soul Lab.

Proud mama of 2 princes, Shari lives right outside of NYC.

To learn more about sparking the soul of your life and biz, come join the party HERE.

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Finding That Someone...No, Not That One!

We live in a society that has been teaching us some crazy things. I’m not even touching war and hate this round.

I mean these doozies:

Fierce independence is crucial, ‘taking it like a man’ gets you places and vulnerability makes people squirm.

Suck it up.

Never let them see you sweat.

Weakness is ugly.

Just Do It says Nike.

Needle on the record screech. STOP. I call BS.