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Sep 16 / Janelle Evans

Guest Post: Noga’s Love Bite: Give it a handwritten touch!

A Note from Janelle: Our guest writer today is an amazing woman who, every new & full moon, gifts her community with something so awesome it can hardly be called an “ezine.” Reading her Love Bites, as she calls them, feels more like a warm chocolate cookie hug mixed with a playful samba dance party. Know what I’m sayin’?

I’m sharing Noga’s guest post with you today because I believe it’s important to make doing business fun, and to bring a personal, handwritten touch to our so-very-digital lives. While Noga’s article is geared more towards sending these fun personal surprises to your friends and family, I invite you to think about how this sweet form of connection can be used in your business. I know many of us entrepreneurs can get nervous about approaching potential clients or strategic partners because we’re afraid of looking pushy or salesy. If that’s one of your fears, try a handwritten letter packaged with love — who wouldn’t enjoy receiving something like that?! :)

So enjoy today’s post, and be sure to join the thousands of people in 52 countries who are part of the Noga’s Love Bites community!

A Little Birdie Told Me… You Might Get Something Special in Your Mail Box! ;)

By Noga Vilozny

Something you may or may not know about me is that I love to be sneaky! ;) … sneak fun things into places that people don’t expect, hide gifts for friends, share surprises, play sweet tricks… And that’s what this Love Bite is about!

So, below I’m going to let you in on one of my favorite sneaky and sweet things to do… AND it means you get to have fun in YOUR mail box!

So dear one, besides a bird, what TWO things fly?

#1 – Mail does! (Par Avion, remember?) :)

#2 – So does time! When was the last time you got something in the mail that wasn’t a bill, catalog, or junk? How about an actual *letter* from someone? Or maybe even a gift?

Think about it for a second.

Imagine getting something fun in the mail:

You’re walking up to the mail box…
Feeling the fresh air on your skin…
breathing in “ahhh” ….
Opening the little door and hearing the hinge squeak…
Finding something fun! :)
Reaching out, taking it in your hands,
seeing the HAND-writing addressed especially to YOU,
feeling the envelope in your fingers,
trying to guess what’s inside…
Getting excited and opening it up,
hearing the sound of the paper tearing,
then looking inside!

It’s just surprise after surprise if you really get into it! :)

And I LOVE the feelings both of getting and sending sweet surprises in the mail!

So, in today’s Love Bite, we’re going to do something extra-special ;) With all the email and voice messages today, you might even wonder where you used to keep your stamps… But get ready: This is going to be fun!

… Because giving and receiving are both sources of PLEASURE, and both acts are gifts in and of themselves. Plus, you never know what you’ll find in your mail box after you do this exercise! ;)

❤ ❤ ❤

Did you know that someone’s thinking about you right *now* ?? It’s true. And I’ll bet that there’s someone you love, who you’ve been thinking of…

Today, I invite you to send something little and fun to someone you care about – And I’ll show you how! This will be easy, and I encourage you to jump in and DO it right now :) Because it will feel SO good!

What to send?

You can send a simple postcard, or a note in an envelope, and include a little treat! Something THIN and LIGHT, like:

~ pressed leaf/flower
~ paper money from any country
~ stick of gum or small piece of candy
~ a drawing
~ friendship bracelet
~ confetti!
~ Valentine (so what if it’s not February?)
~ sticker
~ fortune from a fortune cookie
~ make your own fortune! :)
~ picture
~ feather
~ dime (especially if you’re sending it to a lady you love! “dime” is symbolic of “perfect 10″ – gorgeous lady!! :)

Remember: Anything THIN and LIGHT is easy to send.

Now, who do you want to surprise? ;)

I invite you (I challenge you!) ;) to get it in the mail today!

Send this surprise to someone you know and love! Someone in your family, a friend, someone you miss, want to re-connect with, or someone you see all the time, but they’d never expect you to send them a note in the mail… ;) You might have to get creative to find their mailing address, or just ask for it!

And I’d LOVE to hear back from you: What was it like to prepare and send your surprise? What has this inspired in other parts of your life?

In fact, before you send it off, take a picture of the inside-contents and/or envelope, and share your digital picture with me! (Subscribe to my Love Bites, then email me the photo!)

I’m so excited for you to get this experience, so jump in now. :) And I wish you a day full of magical and sweet surprises!

Love, Noga

About Noga Vilozny

Singer/Dancer & Speaker/Coach/Healer, Noga Vilozny, publishes her “Noga’s Love Bites” twice a month, in which she shares her music & film updates, plus delightful tips on releasing stress and bringing more serendipity, joy, and ease into life! If you’d like to receive these notes of love & fun, sign up for “Noga’s Love Bites” at http://tinyurl.com/NogasLoveBites.

Sep 16 / Janelle Evans

Cheap Easy Ways to Get What You Really Want

In my most recent blog post, I talked about how many times we get so caught up in working really hard so that someday we can have what we really want, AND that often times what we really want is actually free! (Like pleasurable time with family, being out in nature, having a sense of freedom, a sense of security, and/or a sense of belonging…)

The great thing about acknowledging what you really want, is that then you can see two things:

1) What you really Really REALLY want… is probably FREE.
2) You can give yourself a soul-satisfying taste of it TODAY, right now.

What DO you want, anyway?

First, how to uncover what it is you really want? (Especially if you a preoccupied with simply making enough money for rent.) Ask yourself, “If I was handed a check that covered all my bills and expenses for the next 6 months, would I be able to give myself a break?” (I hope the answer is YES! If you answered No, tell me why in the comments below.)

If you answer YES, then ask yourself, “What would I want to do or experience in my free time during this break?” This question will help you tap into what all your work really is for. And remember, you don’t HAVE to do what other people think you should do or what you even think you SHOULD do with your free time. Get truthful, get honest — it feels reallllly good.

Leave a comment to let me know what you really really want and what ways you can give yourself a taste today. Here are some ideas to get you started:

If you really really want…

Pleasurable time with loved ones, try:

- A quick phone call to catch up with someone you care about
- Making weekend plans to go out for tea/coffee
- Writing a letter and fill it with fun surprises (a’la Noga Vilozny!)
- Snuggling your pet
- Watching an episode of the Shaytards
- Saying I’m sorry to someone you’ve lost touch with

To spend time in nature or to see the world, try:

- Taking a 15 minute walk in your neighborhood and see how many different plants or animals you can spot
- Going outside for 5 minutes, shutting your eyes, and listening deeply to all the sounds
- Viewing your town as if you were a tourist; what fun things are you overlooking that your town has to offer?
- Going on a day trip
- Having a weekend getaway in a nearby city
- Going camping
- Visiting a local plant nursery or orchard, or….
- Next time you’re at a big box store with a garden department, take a detour and admire the plants
- Stopping to smell the flowers at the grocery store. Bonus! Buy yourself a bouquet and put it on your desk

To take a freakin break and just relax without feeling guilty (gosh dang it!), try:

- Listening to one awesome song on YouTube and dance your heart out to it
- Taking a 6 minute stretch break
- Working for 45 minutes, then taking 15 minutes off
- Giving yourself an ear massage
- Reminding yourself that you are valuable, whether or not all your projects are done or you’re making as much money as you want or your body looks the way you want it to. Really, you are valuable. You are awesome. No more self put-downs, they waste your time and energy you can put towards being even more awesome
- Going to a positive church and listening to a message of love with an open heart
- Taking the day off to play hooky. (One way to do this without guilt is to honestly ask yourself “Do the things on my to-do list REALLY need to happen today?”) Don’t do this one half-assed, if you’re gonna play hooky, do something you think is SUPER FUN and make the day worth it!
- Starting or working on an art project for 20 minutes
- Watching a funny video on YouTube, then watching one more

What do you think?

Is this helpful for you? What do YOU really really want? In what way are you going to give yourself a taste of it today? Tell me about it in the comments.

Love,
Janelle

Sep 16 / Janelle Evans

Is the thing you’re working so hard to get actually… FREE?

What is the thing that you are doing all your work for? I’d really LOVE to know!!! (Comment, comment, comment & share your thoughts please.) What I mean is, are you working and striving so that you will have enough money to do ________?

For me, what I really want is to have the money (sense of security) to spend time out in nature, on a walk, appreciating all the life and beauty. I want to have unhurried pleasant time with my loved ones to play and connect and share life’s challenges and funny stories.

Sometimes I forget that these things don’t cost $. That these things are things I can do NOW! Even though I haven’t hit six figures, even though I haven’t booked a speaking gig, even though my latest project isn’t complete.

How wonderful to remember that the things I want are free and that I can have them now! Today, I spent the most wonderful morning walking and connecting heart-to-heart with my amazing, beautiful mother. Bonus: I now feel that satisfying, filled up sense of love and super motivated to do my work! Woohoo!

SO! What are the things you’re doing all this work today for, so that you can have them tomorrow? Are they actually free, like my things are? If so — take 20 minutes RIGHT NOW and give yourself a taste. Leave me a comment and let me know!

Love,
Janelle

PS. Not sure how to give yourself what you want in a small, simple, inexpensive way? If you feel like what you want isn’t possible to have without lots more time and lots more money, take a look at this list of ways that you can feed your desires today, without needing years of work or thousands of dollars. Take a look at the list HERE and add your ideas, too!

Sep 14 / Janelle Evans

You don’t need permission.

You don’t need permission from your mentor, parents, coach, spouse, friends or peers to DO YOUR THANG.

I’m happy to say that in the past year or two, I’ve taken this lesson in so that it comes natural most of the time. Before, I used to ask (usually of my boyfriend) if my outfit was okay, if my hair looked okay, if my latest business idea was really any good (even though he isn’t an entrepreneur himself…).

And I wasn’t asking from a place of genuinely wanting feedback; I was asking for approval.

Today when I feel the urge for approval from an outside source, I pause. Then I ask myself — what do I really think about this? Am I willing to defend it’s awesomeness? Do I think it could use improvement? I’ve found it very satisfying to come to my own conclusion rather than seek outside approval first.

Once I have my own opinion, often I don’t bother asking for approval. Instead, I enjoy myself and sometimes invite others to enjoy the awesomeness too. Another option is to ask for genuine feedback after I’ve come to my own opinion. I’m able to hear the feedback, even if it’s negative, because I’ve got my own approval to hold me steady.

Two caveats:

1) As an entrepreneur, there’s one group of people you ALWAYS want to get feedback from. Your ideal clients. Ask them good questions and listen well. Keep your finger on the pulse of what they are looking for next in order to best serve them and have a steady flow of clients.

2) You never need permission to DO YOUR THANG when your thing is rooted in real pleasure. (Real pleasure does not come at the expense of others.) If you’re not operating out of real pleasure, I highly recommend you choose a different THANG. ;)

What do you think? Do you find yourself seeking outside approval before gifting yourself with approval of your own? If you’ve got any additional tips, share them in the comments!

Love,
Janelle

Sep 5 / Janelle Evans

Take a freakin break!!!

Howdy y’all! I am super re-invigorated to work on my business projects so I’m gonna keep this short and sweet. Basically, all day today I was sludging through work at my desk at home, and feeling like nothing really was getting accomplished. I know this isn’t true, because I did check some stuff off my list, but sometimes it just feels that way… do you know that feeling?

It took me all day to realize that trying to push through my to-do list, “figure it all out”, and BE PRODUCTIVE wasn’t working. So I grabbed my notebook and strolled down to my favorite coffee shop. I felt so naughty, walking away from work like that! My coffee shop has this gorgeous back patio that has long-been my own personal work oasis. Big tropical plants, beautiful sparkly white (year-round) christmas lights, yummy lattes, and the magic of internet connectivity.

It’s not hard to imagine that a place like this provides an instant breath of fresh air. It only took me one cup of joe and 30 minutes of journaling to feel re-inspired, re-connected to the bigger purpose of what I’m doing, and HELLA motivated to get some effin’ work done, baby!

Of course, I had to share this hard-earned lesson with you. So in short, don’t waste away the hours pushing through your to-do list, trying to be a good worker when your brain and energy just are NOT up to the task. Instead, think of something fun that you can do to take a break, get out of the house, and go do it! You will feel much more energized and rarin’ to go.

Love,
Janelle

PS. Was this blog post helpful to you? Let me know in the comments!

Jun 11 / Janelle Evans

How to Crop a Picture using PicResize.com

Ever wished for a quick, easy, free way to crop your photos online? PicResize.com is a great resource, and doesn’t even require that you provide an email address or create an account before using it.

I found this little gem of a video from a couple years ago as I was perusing my Screenr account a couple days ago. I posted it to my YouTube account so that hopefully more people can benefit from this quick little tutorial!

Watch the video to see how easy it is to crop your photos using the online tool PicResize.com instead of a program on your computer. This website also allows you to resize your photos, shrinking or enlarging them as your need may be. You can also apply some fun effects, like black & white, sepia tone, borders & frames, gaussian blur, and a few more.

Was this video useful for you?

Please give it a thumbs up and comment!

Jun 10 / Janelle Evans

What’s WRONG with me?!

Have you ever heard this evil gremlin roaring in your head?

It’s a pretty common one when you’re starting your own business, and trying to be successful in whatever it is you love to do.

I heard my own mind muttering it today when I discovered that Scarlett Johansson and I are basically the same age. She’s beautiful, talented, famous, AND known for her charity work?!?!?!

What’s WRONG with me?!

Why haven’t I got all that?!

While there are some benefits to experiencing jealousy,* asking yourself “What’s wrong with me?” is never helpful. It’s a leading question that grabs you by the wrist and yanks you down a nasty shame spiral.

What to do if you find yourself asking
“What’s wrong with me”?

New question:

What’s RIGHT with me?

Stop selling yourself short. I know you’ve accomplished some pretty freaking awesome things in your life. Make a list of at least 3 things that are amazing about you and your life RIGHT NOW. If you have to start small, (“I’m… breathing… that’s a plus!”) then so be it. Simply getting your brain on this train of thought will help you raise yourself and your mood higher and higher. As this happens, your motivation and confidence increase as well.

Did you make your list of 3 things yet?

Don’t leave this page until you have!

Share your list in the comments so I can celebrate how amazing you are. :)

Love,

Janelle

 

* Marie Forleo has done an awesome job of describing the benefits of jealousy. Check out her videos here and here. Love me some Marie! Tell her I sent you!

SOUNDTRACK: Havana Brown: We Run The Night (Explicit) ft. Pitbull