reflecting + creating

Creating 2014

Creating 2014

It always blows my mind that the universe knows how to give you exactly what you need in each moment. It’s New Year’s Eve, I’m sick as a dog, and couldn’t be more pleased about it. The past few years I’ve gotten away from the NYE hype, and spent quiet nights in the cave of Loft 5H reflecting and dreaming of what’s to come. And I’ve loved it. Waking up with no hangover to start the year is super fucking rad, and I usually have a few drinks the  day of to celebrate anyway. Not to mention this new tradition has made for some of the most epic years of my life so far.

So hear I am living in an amazing new place where people from all over the world come to celebrate the end and new beginning. Obviously, the choices of what to do are pretty endless. Ride the Minturn Mile to the saloon for Apres, yoga flow with champagne toast, dinner party + cards of humanity NYE throw down, typical bar scene spending scary amounts of money doing wild things with people I’ll never see again, house parties where you get stuck walking home, waiting for a bus that never comes or sleeping in your car…the list goes on. And if you know me at all, you know how easily I can be persuaded to participate in as many of these shennanigans that I can possibly squeeze in.

And deep down, all week, I’ve known that all I wanted is a quiet night to myself. Cue the universe!

-Wake up with a scratch in my throat that I know is not good. Check.
-Go to breakfast with an amazing new friend who blessed me with a gems of excellence body integration and magic potion used to hyper speed me through whatever sickness is coming my way. Check
-Hyper speed magic potion kicks in and my scratchy throat has escalated to ball of sickness that I can’t seem to hawk up and I realize no amount of snowboarding on catwalks to have a few beers will heal it. Check.
-FedEx makes a NYE miracle happen and is able to deliver lost packages after hours that give us a fighting chance against the angry southerner tourists in town for tomorrow…but only if I can go meet them in the village in the smack dab middle of yoga. Check.
-I head to the bar to feed my hungry traveling mate, and order hot water with lemon and soup for dinner; lame. I’m officially sick. Check.
-Dropped off my mate (he’s British) to head to the party, endured some begging and pleading to please come, or at least wait 30 mins and drive us there, and immediately suffered a coughing fit which finally started my ball of sick on the way out and convinced everyone else that maybe it is best if I just go home. Check.

So here I am, post most amazing bath ever, sipping tea and magic potion, spending time on my blog sharing (a big goal for 2014) and reflecting + creating my 2013/2014. CHECK!!!!!!

I’ve had a lot of people ask about the questions I recently posted online, and if you’ve made it to the end of this post your reward is that you can now have them for yourself (: And I must give credit where credit is due: no, they are not my creation. They are some of the amazing content and support you get after creating your Lifebook, some of you may recall it as the game changing program I went through at the tender age of 24 and later brought me back to Chicago to work for them. I can’t say enough about this program, and hopefully these questions give you a small taste of the value they provide to help you create your ideal life. Click on the link below for the full worksheet and enjoy!

I hope you’re having as much fun this NYE as I am! Looking forward to a wild ride in 2014!

xox -sj

Remember+2013%2c+Creating+2014-2

Advertisements

Take Yourself On.

Life isn’t about finding yourself, it’s about creating yourself. #georgebernardshaw #myalltimefavoritequote You’ve probably heard this one before, but have you ever considered what it really means?

All too often in life we settle and wait. Wait for it to be the right time to move, quit your job, break up with him. Settle for someone else’s actions to decide our fate, define what we’re capable of, or tell us what’s possible.

Or we point the finger. That elusive finger, saying if she would only listen, or if he could just understand me, THEN things would be better. It’s a vicious, passive aggressive cycle that we’ve gotten ourselves into.

But what about the four little fingers pointing right back at you? When’s the last time you decided to investigate those a little bit deeper? Have you ever considered what the common denominator of the things not working out for you in life is? (Hint:  you’ve got 4 fingers pointing right at it.)

One of the scariest and most rewarding things you can decide to do in life is to take yourself on. It goes against the norm and what society teaches us, it’s incredibly uncomfortable at first, it’s really hard to remember why you’re doing it once you get balls deeps but the light at the next stop is sooooooooo worth it.

What is it that’s holding you back but you’ve been too afraid to confront? Are you being selfish? (I’m raising my hand) Maybe you’re judgmental, or unorganized, perhaps a hypersensitive Sally? Maybe it’s YOU who needs to start really listening. To be honest I have no idea what it is, just throwing a few things out there to get you thinking…you’ll have to do the work yourself to reap the reward.

Now the trick is to get down and dirty with yourself.
Be brutally honest.
Ask people what you’re not seeing that’s holding you back.
And then LISTEN.
Don’t fight it.
Take a deep breathe and realize that this is who you’ve been.

And now forgive yourself.
We’re human, it’s our nature to be all of these ugly things. Don’t beat yourself up over it, but get present to those things that are keeping you from being a better version of yourself.

When you begin to take personal responsibility for things in your life, your job, your relationship, your spirituality, your finances, your friendships, then a beautiful thing starts to happen. It’s no longer on anyone else’s terms. It’s now your turn to create what you want for yourself. You get to define what that looks like. You get to decide how much you love your job, how you’re going to react in that moment, who you want to be for your friends.

So what are you waiting for? #gotakeyourselfon

-sj

sharing = scary = good

So I’m starting this post off with an admonition: I’ve been super inauthentic with my blog. I’ve been scurred. Scared to write my next blog post, scared to share what’s really going on with me. Scared of what it means to get really vulnerable, scared to share because what if it’s not worth it? What will people think of me? Why will they even want to read this? The list of self-doubting tag lines racing through my mind had me paralyzed.

Then I looked at my 10 year vision, where I have a monetized blog that’s helping to fund my non-profit and realized that I better getsta steppin’.

These past 3 months have been epic for me. A tipping point along my journey of transformation, self exploration, and redefinition. The rebirth of Shenna Jean if you will. I’ve been busy flipping over every little rock of my being and closely examining what my beliefs and visions are to see if my behaviors are in line with that. My health & fitness, my spiritual life, my career, my family relationships, my friendships…nothing is safe from my scrutiny.

However, in this process, I’ve realized that I’ve completely guarded myself. I’ve come to this awareness that I’m holding myself back, which is so un-Shenna Jean that it’s a little scary. Scratch that, a lot scary. Usually I’m full on out there in the world. My friend MB recently pointed out that I am currently not out there at all.

Normally, I wouldn’t think twice about asking out a guy I’m interested in, now it’s been over 3 months. Usually you can’t get me to shut up, I’m constantly “sharing.” In fact it’s one of my overused strengths. Now I go immediately to “what is new with you?” to avoid opening up to everything that’s changing in my life. Yikes bikes, who have I become?

I used to hate butterflies and enforced a strict no butterfly policy in all areas of my life, but now I’m beginning to see the beauty in them.

Life isn’t about finding yourself, it’s about creating yourself. If you don’t take the time to distinguish what it is you want out of life and who you want to be in life, there is no possible way that you’ll ever achieve your dreams. In fact, it’s more likely that you’ll let someone else decide what “success” looks like for you. (I just threw up in my mouth a tiny bit at the thought.)

Some times we need to go hide in our own little cocoon to take some time to figure things out, but that doesn’t mean I need to loose myself completely in the process.

Last night at my Being Extraordinary class (heck yes I’m taking a class on being extraordinary) we explored the idea that you aren’t fully alive and transformed if you aren’t sharing yourself, your experiences, and your transformations with others. You can transform in your head all you want to, but until you start sharing yourself, letting people know what you’re up to, enrolling them in the new possibilities you’re creating for yourself then it’s all for nothing.

What’s the worst that could happen? Do I really care what you think of me anyway? (It’s taken a while, but I no longer give a sh*t.)

Bottom line: it’s time for me to get back to being full on out there in the world and sharing all the dirty deets.

So here we go, as promised: My 10 year vision, complete with 10, 5 & 1 year goals in health, career and personal. #onethingadaythatscaresyou

Consider this your Christmas card (:

Greetings from Shenna Jean!! It never fails to shock and amaze me how quickly a year flies by, yet here we are again. 2011, you were quite good to me….but 2012 is lookin’ even betta!! I got after it in 2011, in fact my theme of the year was “Make It Happen” and that’s exactly what I did. So without further ado, here is my 2011 Recap!

Highlights


In a nutshell, I had some big things happen with Lifebook at the beginning of the year as we released an online version of the program, took some trips that allowed me to meet some great contacts, I was fortunate to grow my knowledge in the world of online marketing and learned one of my best lessons of the year: never have your head so far up someone else’s dream that you forget your own!

Walking away was by far one of the scariest things I’ve done all year, but lead to one of the best events of 2011: The Summer of Shennaigans. Oh yes, we’re talking a summer break in the Chi folks, and it was super badass. A few weddings of the season, yoga (almost) everyday, my first flashmob, Trapeze lessons!, lots of beach days, stand up paddle boarding, baseball games, a new bike, pool time, parks and ambitions of frisbees, patio drinking, planking galore, porch club, co-ed softball, Cali, Maui, Michigan and La Porte!! This girl was truly blessed. Word from the wise: when life hands you a summer break, TAKE IT.

Swinging for the fences with the Big Hurt during The Summer of Shennanigans

Throughout the entire summer I had one main objective however: get in with lululemon athletica. I was focused, I meditated on it every day, I had my eye on the prize and after 3 months and 7 interviews later, I began my dream job 😀 A place where I can wear yoga clothes and my nike high tops all day and dance around the store to sweet jams? Talk to complete strangers, brighten their day and turn them into repeat guests? Lead an amazing team of like minded people to kicking ass and taking names at one of the coolest stores in the infamous Gold Coast of Chicago? Work for a company who promotes personal development and goal setting, provides opportunities for it at every bend and wants to see you be a better person above all else? Um, yes please!!!

The past few months have been a whirlwind, gettin’ in where I fit in and lovin’ it. And I can’t begin to tell you what this job has done for my “Get it Right, Get it Tight” goals!! Hellllllllllo Crossfit!! If you haven’t heard about it, read up here and find your closest box. It will transform your body in less than 2 months, no joke. (You must obvi go, all the time for at least 2 months, don’t half ass it.) Not to mention all the fun new types of yoga I get to try, although my heart is and always will be at The Lab.

So the last half of my year has been focused on sweating a lot, working at the wal-mart (when retail is your family business, that’s the kind of inside jokes you get) and doing me. Little love update for ya: We’ve got Single Shenna in the house and we all know how much fun she is! After 10 months of dating a great guy, I gained some valuable insights about the person I still need to become in order to be in my ideal relationship. Puttin’ in the work now, so when he shows up on his horse I’ll be ready (;

Goals

Get it Right, Get it Tight
Overall idea here was to get into a solid sweat routine; check. My health and fitness vision is to be a healthy, athletic size 4 that has more energy than she knows what to do with. I haven’t tried non-strechy clothes on for a while I can’t verify the size 4 yet, but the main objective is to feel comfortable and confident in my own skin, which I very much do.
-Run a 5k each quarter (Done, thank goodness for 15k catch ups!!)
-Practice yoga at least twice a week (Next time you see me ask to see my forearm balance and my handstand)
-Clean up my eating habits, as they are often likened to that of a 6 year old. Made some progress, but not nearly as much as I’d like, but that’s what 2012 is for.

Hot Chocolate 15K in November

My Personal Brand
Whether you realize it or not, you (yes you!) are your own personal brand; what you put out into the world, how the world perceives you, is essentially who you are. And, you own 100% of the shares in your company, so do what you must to get the results you’re looking for! This past year I had a few things I set out to do in this bucket:
-Update my wardrobe with quality pieces that reflect who I am and are functional for my lifestyle. (Thanks to lulu, I’m very much overachieving in this department, so much so that I might need a new goal in 2012 to not “update” as often.)
-Design and update my studio apartment at Loft 5H. (New bedding and throw pillows make a world of difference peeps, I suggest switchin’ it up soon if you haven’t already! A memory foam mattress is a great addition too.  I did not however complete my frame gallery project which is disappointing and will be in 2012 Q1 goals.)
-Create my Lifebook V2.0 and complete an update in each category. (Started off SOO strong and made it all the way through My Personal Life, I will soon post the PDF’s once I figure out how to do that. 2012 I will be tackling the last 6 chapters!)
-Update my online brand and get to postin’ regularly on my blog. (A big round of applause, as I’ve blogged more in 2011 than any other year of my life. However I’m not completely satisfied with the results and will be posting weekly in 2012, hold me to it!!)

Glimpse of the Studio @ Loft 5H

Debt Free is the Way to Beee!
This one is pretty explanatory, who wants to spend their life owing peeps money when you could be doing way cooler shit with it? Not me, so this was the year to eliminate all the debt that my 20’s blessed me with. With the exception of my student loans, I am happy to report that this goal has been knocked out of the park. **Special thanks goes out to my nerdy accountability partner, this free spirit would not be nearly as successful without you xx**

Feed Me! Says the Brain
Plain and simple, I like to learn. I like new concepts, music, places, ideas and the intellectual side of me has to stay busy for me to be the best version of myself possible. 2011 brought some amazing new things into my life!
-Take at least 5 trips a year, 1 international, 4 domestic, at least 2 must be strictly pleasure. (Maui is overseas at least?? Colorado, Cali (x2), Vegas, DC, Grand Canyon, Michigan, and La Porte. I got around in 2011.)
-Minimum of 2 books a month. (Read some great ones this year: entire Hunger Game series, The Help, Like Water For Chocolate, Tales from a Yoga Studio ((I was on the beach for that one)) Tribes, Good to Great, Leadership Pipeline, Body Confidence, The Witch of Portobello, and currently nearing the end of Atlas Shrugged ((FINALLY!!)) to name a few.)
-Must digest at least 5 new albums a year and attend one concert per quarter. (SO MUCH GOOD NEW MUSIC RIGHT NOW!! However, the defining albums for me this year were: Adele “21” Foster The People “Torches” Gramatik “Streetbangerz Vol. 1 & 2” Jay-Z & Kanye’s “Watch The Throne” Common “The Dreamer, The Believer”. Dropped the ball on shows this year, but did see Watch the Throne at United Center and that shit cray, obvi.)

Black sand beaches in Maui

My Fairytale Relationships
Knowing that I’ve got people all over the world and knowing that I’m not the best at keeping up with my phone book and knowing that we’re all growing up, going separate ways and making it even harder to keep up, means that I have to put in a little extra work with the relationships that I want to maintain.
-KIT Project: Reach out to one long distance friend each week and one family member each week via phone/Facetime/Skype to catch up. (Dani, Madison and I smash this goal…have grown so much closer to her since that little squirt came along and Tangpuz I’m not sure where I would be without our skype sesh’s. Tiff, you’re on the list to conquer on the reg this year and so is my pops.)
-Create a viable love strategy, regular date night routine and needs list for my man. (Well, I don’t currently have a man, so the love strategy is a little tough, but it’s not something that my last partner and I were good about so maybe there is a clue. I am going on dates, which keeps my options open and I did create my list of needs in a relationship so that the expectations are clear with the next lucky fellow.)
-Be the best “Pseudo Maid of Honor” a girl could hope for in her wedding. (Awesome concert themed shower for your closest friends, check! Super baller Vegas bachelorette party, check! Surprise flashmob to a song you would have never expected at the reception, check!)

Me, Madi & Dani

So there you have it folks! 2011 was filled with growth, experience, awesomeness, learnings and fun…and more to come in 2012! Look for my official 2012 goals to be posted by next week (:

Here’s to you and yours having the best holiday season and a very happy New Year xx