About Me and Frequently Asked Questions

About Andrea (professional bio):

Andrea Owen is a life coach and speaker. She is passionate about empowering women to value their character and feel beautiful by manifesting respect and love for themselves first and foremost. She teaches women how to develop and access their 3 best selves: self-worth, self-confidence and self-esteem.

She obtained a Fashion Merchandising degree from Fashion Careers of California College in 1999, followed immediately by a fast-paced job as an Assistant Buyer for a large chain of retail surf shops. She has also worked as a visual merchandiser. At 25, she made a life-changing decision to go back to school and accomplish what she felt she was put on this earth to do: Encourage and motivate people to live their ideal life, now. Andrea also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology from California State University San Marcos and personal training certification from the American Council on Exercise. She received professional coach training through The Coaches Training Institute (CTI), the largest in-person coach training school in the world and the only to teach CTI’s ground-breaking Co-Active® model of coaching and is currently in the certification process. She will receive her CPCC in September, 2010. She is currently hosting workshops sponsored by the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty, helping young girls establish healthy self esteem and to help widen the definition of beauty.

Her direct, sincere style of coaching has motivated others to make positive changes in their lives, become “unstuck” and find what they were truly put on this earth for. She prides herself on her fun-loving sense of humor and being approachable to all. She has volunteered for the Special Olympics, Best Buddies and the Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego.

Andrea is a California native and resides in Oceanside, California with her husband and two young children.

About me (in my own not-so-professional words): 

I am a former conservative Republican gone modern feminist. I speak loudly from my soapbox and take action against discrimination against women. The day I started living my life authentically, without looking over my shoulder at who was talking about me and what they thought of me, was the day my life truly began and had immense meaning. I make no apologies for who I am. I write about and talk about my own struggles with body image, disordered eating and exercise, relationships and self esteem. We all have our stuff, and if I can help one person, the ripple effect that I will never know of, makes it worth while ten times over.

I am a fitness professional (see above bio), and will soon be a certified Professional Life Coach (September, 2010). This blog will soon move over to a fancy website called YourKickAssLife.com. (Stay tuned) I help women achieve their dreams and empower them to change their life. And, yes, it's really, really as cool as it sounds. I hope to someday go back to fitness and incorporate personal training and coaching, specifically body image work. It's my dream for every woman to love her body. Period.

I am also a semi-crunchy mom of two amazing babies. I love to educate women on their rights to birth, the importance of breastfeeding, and empowering parents on their many parenting style options. Oh, and my husband rocks.

So, my life pretty much kicks ass.


Why did you start a blog? Aren't there about 50 million already out there?

Yes, there are 50 million blogs out there. I started it because I felt like I had a lot to say. It took me a while to get my grove going, to figure out what best fit me to write about, but after some feedback from readers and certain posts, I realized my own life experiences and what I gained and learned from it was the most helpful to others and to myself.

What is life coaching and what are your qualifications?

Sometimes we get stuck in life. Sometimes we feel like time is passing us by and we know things could be better, but we just aren't sure how. Many of us make decisions based on fear or safety. We're afraid to make a radical change. We procrastinate.
Coaching helps you get unstuck. It gives you tools, perspective and structure to be able to live your best life, a life that you may not have even known you could live. Coaches are teachers, helpers and motivators. Coaching reminds you that YOU have the answers to what makes you truly happy and a great coach helps you find the answers and live it.
I have completed the core curriculum from the Coaches Training Institute and begin the 6 month certification process in April of 2010. CTI defines coaching as the following:
Coaching is a powerful alliance designed to forward and enhance the lifelong process of human learning, effectiveness and fulfillment. A coach is someone who will help you articulate your goals, define strategies and plans, hold a vision of you in full expression and success, and challenge you to achieve that vision. So you and your coach become powerful participants in a team that is committed to deepening your learning and forwarding the progress toward your dissertation goals.

CTI is accredited by the International Coaching Federation.

You have a B.S. in Kinesiology. What does that have to do with life coaching?

I'm a firm believer that you can be in the best physical shape of your life but still not be living your best life. I know from experience. With my BS in Kinesiology (Exercise Science) and my personal training certification with the American Council on Exercise I can combine those with my life coaching certification to help my clients live their ideal life.

Why do you have a sunshine on the main page of your blog?

The sunshine represents new beginnings. When I had a bad day my mom always used to say, "Well, tomorrow is a new day and you get to start all over."

A little background and where I am right now...

You may have noticed I've been posting lately about body image and self esteem and some people that know me personally may wonder where the heck this came from. Others may be confused if sometimes I post about something that isn't about body image or self esteem so I thought an explanation is appropriate.

Originally I started this blog because I knew I would have a blog link on my coaching site (still have yet to get that up and running), but wasn't sure what exactly I would write about. After a few months I feel like I got my groove and the writing became easier. But the more I wrote about body image and self esteem, coupled with doing the Dove Self Esteem Workshops, I felt a true calling to the issue. Writing about it also forced me to face my own issues and begin healing them. I've have never felt such a strong calling to an issue such as this and I intend to do my best to reach one girl or woman at a time. I'm just beginning in this journey and there aren't enough hours in the day for me to read, research and talk to others about this. I try my hardest to detach myself from the feelings that these girls have about negative body image, low self esteem and/or the relentless quest for perfection and not internalize them, but it breaks my heart to pieces to meet yet another girl who is smart, beautiful and full of potential who doesn't see herself for how beautiful her soul is. I can see the pain in her eyes, the shame, the embarrassment and sometimes the denial of her issues. How? Because I have been there.

I have been that girl that growing up everyone said, "Oh, you're so pretty!" I grew up thinking that's what I was supposed to be: Pretty. As if it was who I was. Along with that came "thin" and "perfect". I did my best to be all of those and eventually added "smart" to the list. Years went by as I tried to be all of these things. The worse things went in my personal life, the harder I tried to be pretty, thin, smart and perfect. Unconsciously, I knew I could control these things when I couldn't control other people (enter codependency) so the cycle continued and continued.

I often say metaphorically that I "stood out on the ledge and looked out on anorexia" as if it called out to me. I may have dipped my toe in to check the water but never fully jumped in. I never fully categorized myself with other girls that have suffered from this disease because well, to be honest, at 5'4" tall the lowest I weighed at my worst point was 117 pounds. Although at that time when I told people that, they said I looked 100 pounds. And there was as sick part of me that smiled. But looking back, it was worse than I thought. I was completely obsessed with food and exercise and what size I could fit into. I remember laying in bed at night and could feel my heart racing. I was so hungry I would just pray that I would fall asleep so I wouldn't feel the hunger anymore. I would be so tired on the treadmill I thought my legs would collapse from under me. I kept telling myself one more mile equals 100 more calories burned. I reveled in the fact that my hip bones jutted out along with my collar bone. The thinner I got the more powerful I felt. Luckily for me, it stopped before it got any worse. I grew tired of starving and my mom saw me after not having seen me in months. Her mouth fell open and she said something about me being so thin. We went to lunch and she commeneted about how little I was eating. I knew I had to stop, but it didn't for another few months. Bottom line is that regardless if I was diagnosed with an eating disorder or not, call it disordered eating and exercise, whatever you may, it's all dangerous.

Now I know what some people are thinking: "Oh, poor you. The pretty girl that grew up in the suburbs, had it all and was smart too. How could you even complain about anything." Which brings me to another point...

Girls like me, I believe, are afraid to talk about their body image issues. Instead, it's easier for us to come together to obsess over calories, diets and negative self talk. But if we tell it to the outside world there is a sense of shame that accompanies it. The world frowns upon "the perfect girl" who worries about her weight, or anything else for that matter. It's as if we're committing the cardinal sin of womanhood by not loving ourselves fully, because everything looks so good on the outside.

My intention is not to sound like a narcissist, I by no means think or have ever thought I was perfect (far be it from that), but in my teens and 20's the positive feedback I would get from being thin (and I gave it to others as well) and attractive further fueled my unrelentless desire for perfection. My point, and perhaps my mission is to be a voice for women like myself. The thin girls who for many years have either hated their bodies or weren't happy and couldn't exactly figure out why. The girls that are ashamed to talk about it because they think people will look down on them because they seemingly "have it all". To the people that say, "How dare you complain or feel bad about what you have, you skinny bitch" I say it's okay to flip them off and take care of yourself. Let's figure it out and fix it. I can't stand by and see the next generation of girls, my soon-to-be daughter included, obsessed with food, fitness and perfection. It's careless, wasteful, and sometimes deadly. I'm not sitting around anymore just being brokenhearted about it.

So there's my explanation.

What I'm reading right now

Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters by Courtney E. Martin.

From the inside cover:
"Why does every one of my friends have an eating disorder, or at the very least, a screwed-up approach to food and fitness?" writes journalist Courtney E. Martin. The new world culture of eating disorders and food and body issues affects virtually all-not just a rare few-of today's young women. They are your sisters, friends and collegues-a generation told that they could "be anything", who instead heard that they had to "be everything". Driven by a relentless quest for perfection, they are on the verge of a breakdown, exhausted from overexercising, binging, purging, and depriving themselves to attain an unhealthy ideal.

Courtney E. Martin is the voice of a young generation so obsessed with being thin that their consciousness is always focused inward, to the detriment of their careers and relationships. Health and wellness, joy and love have come to seem ancillary compared to the desire for a perfect body. Even though eating disorders first became generally known about twenty-five years ago, they have burgeoned, worsened, become more difficult to treat and more fatal (50 percent of anorexics who do not respond to treatment die within 10 years).
In Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters Martin offers original research from the front lines of the eating disorders battlefield. Drawn from more than a hundred interviews with sufferers, psychologists, nutritionists, sociocultural experts, and others, her exposé reveals a new generation of "perfect girls" who are obsessive-compulsive, overacheiving and self-sacraficing in multiple- and often dangerous-new ways. Young women are "told over and over again", Martin notes "that we can be anything. But in these affirmations, assurances and assertions there was a concealed message: You are special. You are worth something. But you need to be perfect to live up to that specialness."

With its vivid and often heartbreaking personal stories, Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters has the power both to shock and to educate. It is a true call to action and cannot be missed.

Photo courtesy of ruminatrix

Letter to my body

As promised, I am posting the letter I wrote to my body. I mentioned it in my interview with Jenny Ferry, that writing this letter has been the single most powerful thing in healing my body image issues. I encourage you to do the same. Maybe you don't feel the need to apologize to your body like I did, but the experience of talking to my body as if it were a person was profound. I realized that if my body were a real person that I cared about, never in a million years would I think about, talk about or treat someone like I have to my body. I haven't filled my body with drugs, smoking or excessive alcohol, but I feel this abuse I have done is terrible.

Making peace with your body isn't as easy as just saying you are going to do it, at least not for me. It's taken work and commitment. I never want to pass on body image issues to my children and needed to make a change. This letter forced me to take responsibility for my actions, forgive myself for what I had done, and move on.

Dear Body,

This feels really strange and awkward writing a letter to you, but I think it’s necessary and long overdue. It just came to me about 40 or so minutes ago that I owe you an apology. So here it goes.

I’m sorry that I’ve hated you. I’m sorry that I’ve cursed at you for being fat when 99% of the time you weren’t, and even if you were, it wasn’t your fault. I’m sorry that I wished you were different when all you ever were was good to me. I’m sorry that I compared you to others.

I’m sorry that I starved you when you needed food. I'm sorry for punishing you by going without food as a trade off for not exercising or being a certain weight on the scale. I’m sorry that I pushed you to the limits with too much exercise when you needed rest. On the treadmill I would run miles and miles, not in the name of fitness, and you said you couldn't take anymore. I didn’t listen to you when you were trying to tell me to stop. You asked me for more calories and I said no.

You’ve always been there for me, even when I let you down. I’m so very lucky to have you. Legs: You’ve always been strong and taken me wherever I needed to go, even when I hated the thighs. Arms: I haven’t been too mean to you, but hands; lately I’ve been hateful by saying you look old and worn out. But you’ve been wonderful. And belly: I think I’ve been the worst to you. I’ve hated you since puberty. When you started to stick out and I realized I would never have a completely flat stomach like so many other girls did. I have loathed you for that and I’m sorry. You gave me the most precious gift I could ever ask for: my son,and soon another baby so go ahead and stick out all you want. And to my skin: I’ve been mean to you too, comparing you to others, wishing you were different. I’m sorry, you’ve been great too.

So I now say “Thank you” with all of my heart and soul. Thank you for doing your best all these years while enduring my negativity. Thank you for loving me back when I didn’t love you. And thank you for staying healthy. You are beautiful.

I love you. I really, really do. I love you now more than ever.

Love always,


Photo courtesy of soartsyithurts

Action Steps for Healthier Self Esteem

"You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection" -Buddah

If you were on the call this evening with Jenny and I, you hopefully gained some great information about self esteem and how it effects other parts of our lives. There was also some background about me and how I've become passionate about empowering others to attain their best self esteem as well as how I've come to have my own healthy sense of self worth.

As promised, I'm posting the list of action steps I have come up with to assist you in attaining healthier self esteem and to be on the road to your best life. I can't emphasize enough that how we feel about ourselves is foundational for your true happiness. I'm also including in this post how I define self-esteem.

What is self esteem?

In a basic definition, self esteem is how we feel about ourselves. That we understand and accept that we are unique, special and worthy human beings just for being born. But there is a foundation to our individual self esteem that needs to be thought about and reflected upon before we can really evaluate our self esteem and then try to take the necessary action to improve it. Here I have outlined three foundational guidelines:

1. Ask yourself the following questions:
What am I committed to? What do I believe in? What is important to me? This will tell you your values. The list may be long and if you want, you can star or number them in order of importance to you. Once you have made this list, go back and ask yourself if you are living up to these values. Be careful here, make sure these are YOUR values, not things that you think you SHOULD value. For instance, for me, one of my values is giving back and making a difference. Once I starting truly living this way and honoring this, my self esteem skyrocketed! It was like I starting living with integrity from my soul.

2. Teddy Roosevelt said, “Do the best you can with what you have, where you are”. I think this helps when we compare ourselves to others. Sometimes I get hung up about the plans I had 10 years ago for myself, that it’s not where I am today. But remembering that as long as I do the best I can with the current tools I’ve accumulated, there is really no possible way things could be different and it truly is the best for me.

3. Listen to your intuition. If something in your gut is telling you something about your life that makes you uncomfortable, I can almost guarantee that it is negatively effecting your self esteem. I wish I would have listened to mine a few times when it was not just whispering, but screaming in my ear. My self esteem suffered greatly during those times. This goes for resting too. So many of us, go, go, go constantly, never taking the time to honor ourselves with rest.

And now on to the action steps...

I encourage you to spend some time with this list and really think about your answers. Get out paper and pen or pull up a Word document and get to work. Be prepared to maybe become emotional as you think about and document your answers. Be honest with yourself.

1. Recognize your level of self esteem
This may need to be broken down into categories instead of one lump sum. You can rate it on a scale of 1-10 in general, or break it down and say “my self esteem about my body is a 6, but about how smart I think I am is a 9”. There’s a good chance you feel better about certain charactersitics about yourself. Be realistic.

2. Write down ways that you think your self esteem has affected other parts of your life. 
You may need to take some time to think about this one. Like for me, shopping was a big one as I was doing it to try to build myself up. Or maybe you didn’t apply for a particular job or ask for a promotion because you didn’t have what it took to make it could happen. Or maybe that your boyfriend or friends or family has confronted you about the way you talk about your body. In that instance you are bringing other people that you care about into your storm of low self esteem.

3. Reflect on times in your life when your self esteem was good and healthy
What were you doing? Where were you? Who was in your life? Are these things still happening? 

4. Take inventory of people in your life that may be affecting your self esteem negatively, other than yourself. 
This one may be difficult because these may be family members and people you care about. Is it a boyfriend who encourages you to dress a way that makes you uncomfortable or makes jokes about your body? Or a parent who pressures you to be an over-achiever? Or a friend who constantly talks bad about herself and wants you to commiserate with her? Or it may be someone in your life that is toxic that you don’t even realize is holding you back from being your best true self. Don't just list these people, write down situations to bring realness to it. Take some time to think about that one.
5. Take inventory of the people in your life who have effected your self esteem in a positive way. 
These are people that believe in you, and accept you no matter what.  Same as the previous action, list these people and write why they have encouraged you to have healthy self esteem. *Note: This may mirror some of the same people that have effected your self esteem negatively. If this is the case I encourage you to have a constructive, non confrontational heart-to-heart with that person.
6. Define what being beautiful means and looks like to you
This is my favorite because it taps into your own personal values. I’m not talking about weight, the way you look or the clothes you wear. I’m talking about what you think a beautiful person on the inside looks like. What are the attributes? What do they stand for? What are their attitudes and beliefs? 
An example of what I think is beautiful is someone who stands up for what she believes in, even if it's against the norm. Someone who is educated on subjects she is passionate about. Someone who lives with integrity and tries to bring out the best in people. This may not be what you think is beautiful and that's okay!  I really encourage you to make your own definition that is unique to you.
7. Make a list of 100 things you love about yourself
Yes, I said 100. It's possible! This one is really important and I encourage you to give yourself an hour or 2 to do it in one sitting. Don't worry if you have some repeats, keep them and look back later for patterns. You may see some of your values emerging. If you are having trouble; list your strengths, things you admire about yourself, your greatest achievements, even your favorite physical attributes. Read this list out loud to yourself. You may feel embarrased, or awkward or even get emotional when you read it. That’s okay, this may be the first time you have ever said these things out loud!

8. Make a list of positive affirmations about your self esteem
Carry them with you or I like to put them on post-its and put them on my bathroom mirror where I will see them and say them out loud. You are putting these ideas into the universe when you say them out loud. It will come back to you. Here are some examples that I got from my Twitter friend Ray Davis:
I am beautiful in mind, beautiful in body, beautiful in spirit.
I am a unique and worthy person. I require no more justification than that to be exactly who I am.
Those that told me I was unworthy were wrong. I AM worthy. More sure of it today than ever before.
My beauty flows from inside to out. As I recognize my inner beauty, my outer beauty blossoms.
I am making peace with my body. I accept its flaws, celebrate its beauty, and work to improve what I want to change.
I am an immaculate being of light; perfect in form and function.

We didn't have time to get into body image during the call, but I think that it's integral when talking about self esteem, especially for women. This next part focuses on body image and how it’s connection with our self esteem. Studies show that often, perception of our bodies goes hand in hand with self esteem and self worth, playing a powerful role in how you see yourself as a whole person.

9. Make a timeline of certain beauty milestones in your life. You may need to look at old pictures to try and jog your memory.This exercise is to get you thinking critically about how your self esteem was shaped. I want you to try and remember the following times: First time you remember a friend or relative whose appearance inspired you growing up. First time you remember receiving a compliment about the way you look or act. The most critical comment you ever received. The first time you felt proud of the way you looked. When you first started to worry about the way you look. Go back and try to recall how you felt during these times. Was it easier to remember the first critical comment than the compliments? If you would like to take this exercise further, create a visual timeline by adding pictures like your favorite baby picture of yourself, you in your favorite outfit, your all time favorite picture of yourself, no matter how old it is.

10. Write a letter to your body.This one is optional, but I did it for myself and I can’t tell you how empowering and freeing it was to do this. Mine turned out to be an apology letter, which I will post on my blog in a few days. I think a key to freeing ourselves from having a negative body image and to accepting our bodies for the way they are, is to at least for a moment in time treat our bodies with the kind of respect we would treat someone that we care for and love tremendously. When I did this, when I looked at my body as if it were a person that I loved, it suddenly occurred to me that I needed to apologize for the way I had treated it. Writing that letter has been the single most powerful action I have done for my self esteem and body image. I cried my eyes out when I wrote it and I read it every week and still get emotional, but it’s getting easier to read. So in a way, I’m forgiving myself for hating my body. And that has been an amazing feat for me. I hope it's powerful for you too. 

I'll close with this: It's been my experience that self esteem is effected by this unending pressure and quest for perfection. A wise friend told me “Perfectionism is negative self-talk disguised as something positive. It is a greedy master that demands more energy than it yields results.”

Exercise benefits the self esteem of cancer patients

I recently read a study out of Canada where 242 breast cancer patients while on chemotherapy were randomly put into three groups: Resistance training, aerobic exercise training and a control group that did not exercise at all. They measured physical changes such as body mass, percent body fat, etc., all the things you would expect. But more importantly, they reported changes in the patients quality of life, fatigue, anxiety, depression and self esteem. And wouldn't you know it, both exercise interventions significantly improved the self esteem of the cancer patients. 

Big surprise. 

I was so happy to see this. During my undergrad studies in Exercise Science I have read countless studies involving exercise. Its effects on hypertension, diabetes, weight control, pregnancy, asthma, exercise on caffeine, no caffeine, exercise while standing on your head, wearing a Santa suit, while drinking a margarita. Basically I've read a lot of research pertaining to exercise. But HOORAY for this study that looked at something so important: self esteem. Now, I can't even begin to imagine how first of all being diagnosed with breast cancer must effect ones self esteem. But then to have to endure chemotherapy and most likely lose your hair AND possibly lose one or both breasts (41% of the patients in this study had a mastectomy) would  be horrible. 

So, to see the outcome of this study further manifests the message that exercise is medicine. Image what it can do for people who don't have cancer? I have seen what healthy, safe exercise can do for not only people's bodies, but their minds as well, especially self esteem. I have experienced it myself and seen it happen in others. 

And if you are a science nerd like me and would like to read the article, please contact me and I would be happy to email you the PDF version. 

With respect to the researchers who conducted this study, here is the formal reference:

Courneya, K (2007, September 4).Effects of aerobic and resistance exercise in breast cancer patients receiving adjuvant chemotherapy: A multicenter randomized controlled trial. Journal of Clinical Oncology. 25(28), 4396-4404.

Why I think having a life coach rocks

For the past four months I have had the pleasure of having my own life coach.  I was feeling stuck and overwhelmed with my life, not to mention apprehensive about my future as far as my career was concerned. It was like I was running on empty, day after day, with no fire underneath me. I knew a woman who I went through life coaching training with, Annamaria Poluha, was entering the certification portion of her training and I knew she was just the type of coach I wanted. One of the beautiful things about hiring a life coach, is that you get to choose the type that you want. Yes, there are business coaches, spiritual coaches, relationship coaches, etc., but what I mean is the personality of the coach is also what you get to chose. Since I knew Annamaria pretty well, I knew she was soft spoken, yet firm, nurturing, intuitive and brilliant. 

When we have our phone calls every week, part of me is very excited, but I have to admit there is a tad bit of dread. The reason for this is because when you have a life coach, you are held accountable for action in regards to YOUR life. This can be uncomfortable sometimes. A lot of what we want in life is attainable but we just have to step out of our comfort zone to get it. Yuk. So, I put on my big girl panties (metaphorically) and stepped to it. 

The past few weeks I have been feeling really, really great about the direction of my life. Sure, it may be euphoric pregnancy hormones (although morning sickness is no fun), but I honestly attribute it to having a life coach and what it has done for me. It's like something clicked. Like a door opened up in my brain and a "let's get down to business" attitude started. It took a couple of months, but once the wheels started turning, I was on the ride of my life and I was in the drivers seat, no one else. That's the beauty of coaching; your coach doesn't hold all the answers for you or give you advice about what to do (if you want that, hire a consultant).  A great coach can pave the way for you to unlock your inner strength and courage which may be a side of you that you haven't met yet. Or, that you have been holding back in fear.  Also, coaching doesn't concentrate on your past. If you have issues here, you may need to see a therapist (and a coach may refer you to one if there are some barriers that are just holding you back), but coaching is more about the present and future. What you are going to do next and how are you going to get there. 

I have talked a little bit about the importance of self-care, and how imperative it is to treat ourselves with respect and put ourselves first in order to be our best selves to others. Especaially for women, we are expected to do so much; have a career (along with this is the battle within ourselves to keep it or stay home if we choose to have kids), be a good wife (difficult job), raise children (even more difficult job) all the while keeping up our figures and always with a smile on our face. I used to believe that living my ideal life was the hardest thing I ever had to do. It's not easy, no, but it's not as hard as I once thought. It takes effort, and I still get knocked down from time to time but having a life coach has given me the tools to make it easier and more fun. It's like before I had a flip flop and was trying to hammer a nail into a piece of wood, and now my life coach has given me a hammer. I get so excited I do a little happy dance thinking about how much coaching has opened up for me. My coach has encouraged and motivated me to do some things I was too afraid to do, or maybe I was too lazy, I don't know. I had excuse after excuse. Now I'm doing things and making plans for things that make me happy. And I did it all myself. My coach didn't do all the work in between our sessions, I did. During our calls she challenged me, had me look at things from different perspectives, called me out on my bullshit excuses and sometimes found bits and pieces of barriers that were holding me back that I didn't even know were there.

The ripple effect that this has caused is immeasurable. I don't think I am imagining it, but now that I have opened the flood gates to live my own better life, I think people around me see it and are motivated as well. Even if they don't have their own coach they can feel my positive energy. And the best part, is that I believe this is making me a better wife, friend and mommy. For that, I am eternally grateful. 
I'm not writing this post because I think you should hire me or my life coach. If you want to, that's great, but my point is STOP TRYING TO GET THE NAIL INTO THE BOARD WITH A FLIP FLOP WHEN YOU CAN USE A HAMMER! And yes, I used all caps because I was yelling. But if you do decide to hire one, please take into consideration the following: 

1. Have sample sessions with several different coaches. They are usually a half hour and almost always free with no obligation. Find the one you click with the most, the one you feel the most energy with and most comfortable with. Listen to your gut instinct. 
2. Look at the coaches credentials. Anyone nowadays can call themselves a life coach. It has become one of my biggest pet peeves when I see or hear it and the person has no formal training. Yes, there is something to be said for true life experience and age old wisdom, but let's face it: no one would trust a "doctor" who never went to medical school just because they had been sick and gotten better a bunch of times. Check out your coaches schooling and in my opinion, stick with someone whose school is accredited with the International Coaching Federation. 
3. Commit. When you're being coached, you can be there, but not really be there. If you don't commit you are wasting your time and money. By having a great life coach you are giving yourself the best gift ever: Your best self. 

Photo courtesy of curly_exp(l)osure

I'm going to be interviewed!

Update: My interview has been moved to Monday, April 13th due to scheduling conflicts. Same time 5 pm PST. 

I am very excited to share with you that on Wednesday, April 8th I will be interviewed by my good friend, Jenny Ferry as a guest expert for her I Thrive Experience tele-seminar series! It's at 5 pm PST. If you can't make the call, a link to the audio will be available and I will post it on my blog. My topic is "Build Real Self-Esteem: Discover Your Inner Beauty & Worth" How cool is that? I'm so excited about this, if I could happy dance and type at the same time I would, but instead I am typing so fast I have to keep going back to correct spelling. 

Breathe, breathe, breathe. Okay. 

As you know, I am passionate about this topic. But first I want to tell you that some things have changed since I last wrote about this workshop. Originally my portion was style/self concept. Yes, I have a background in the fashion industry, but upon deep thinking about this (and getting some great coaching on it) I realized my heart just wasn't in it. I wasn't fired up about talking to girls about fashion and as I worked on my presentation I noticed it kept morphing into something else. I had to admit to myself that I wasn't be authentic if I kept this topic. I could do it, and I think I could do it well, but I felt like I had something more important to say and teach. I talked it over with Jenny and she agreed that my topic should change to self-esteem, self-care and self-worth. Hooray! 

Also, the original plan of a 3 day extravaganza workshop, was shortened to one, action packed day on June 6th. You can bet your bottom dollar it will still be an extravaganza though!  

So please, please sign up for the call if you haven't already!