063: Go on a Joyride, Aimee DuFresne, writer, traveler, joy catalyst

“It’s about being happy, it’s about living your life- not anyone else’s life. But it’s the life that YOU want to live, the life that makes you happy, that makes you share with the world what it is that you want to share.” ~Aimee DuFresne

Trust the unfolding…

Do you ever find yourself dangling the proverbial carrot in front of yourself? “I’ll be happy when I…” or “If only I could just…” or “I’ll take a break once I…”

Aimee DuFresne is no stranger to this trap, but through decluttering (inside and out), focusing on joy and doubling down on self-care and travel, she’s found a way to spring that trap and live an unconventional life.

In this episode, we talk about:

  • Aimee’s big “Joy Ride” and what it’s all about
  • Her adventures on her book tour that brought her to the west coast, and her time house sitting
  • What self-care really means (not just the buzz-word version) and some of Aimee’s favorite practices
  • How Aimee balances EVERYTHING out in her life
  • The day that her life completely changed
  • How the impostor voice shows up for Aimee especially around entrepreneurship and being an author
  • Aimee’s view on success

Aimee’s top life tip: Trust the unfolding.

“This is really exciting, but does it give me freedom?” ~Aimee DuFresne

Connect with Aimee


Connect with Andrea


Podcast Envy: Podcast Launch, Craft & Coaching Services
Chicago Women’s Creative Collective

Links and Resources

The Creative Impostor Magic page! Get a special gift from Andrea here.

Power Your Story — Created by my high school student podcast mentees!!!

Support The Creative Impostor

Andrea’s Patreon Page — where you can support the show, get cool gifts from me and can become an active participant in the creative community!

Free Audio Book & 30 day trial membership with Audible.com — support The Creative Impostor when you sign up!

About Aimee DuFresne

Aimee DuFresne is a Joy Catalyst and soul-shifting creator, writer, traveler, and latte-lover. She is the proud author of Keep Going: From Grief to Growth, a memoir about love, loss, living in the moment and the power of perseverance. With no home base, she travels the world with her wine consultant hubster, house and petsitting while working on writing projects, including her next books.

This episode was mixed by Edwin R. Ruiz of Mondo Machine.
The Creative Impostor theme music was created by JoVia Armstrong.

I’d LOVE to hear from you!

If you’re listening in Apple Podcasts, PLEASE subscribe and leave a review. It’s how Apple decides which shows people find when they are searching for specific topics like this one.

060: Reduce the friction, David Kadavy, writer, producer of Love Your Work podcast

“If you’re brave enough to follow your curiosity, then that place that you end up will often be a place that nobody else has been.” ~David Kadavy

Here’s what I tried, here’s what happened, here’s where it might be wrong.

I’ve been binging David Kadavy’s podcast, Love Your Work, ever since I discovered him on Jennifer Gardner’s podcast, RoamHowl. And then I read his new book The Heart to Start AND now it’s available as an audio book on Audible.

David’s work is the gift that keeps on giving — and yet, I haven’t paid for any of it. Yet. And that’s one thing we talk about in this episode — the challenge of being a content creator, following your curiosity and figuring out how to make a living doing it WITHOUT selling some kind of $1000+ online course.

Get The Heart to Start for Kindle here, or the audio version on Audible here!*

We also talk about:

  • How David got from Nebraska to Silcon Valley to Chicago and now Colombia — where he’s discovered how to reduce the friction of daily life, variable weather and decision making in order to optimize creative productivity
  • Creating what you like to consume
  • Creative routines, efficiency and the mix of neuroscience research and self-study he employed to come up with his process
  • Crowdsourcing the editing of his new book “The Heart to Start” and the process by which he tested his ideas via his blog on Medium to help get over any feelings of self-doubt
  • Why it’s important to allow ideas the time and space to incubate by disconnecting from your work
  • PODCASTING – David’s inspiration and why audio over video
  • Asking for money — where, when and how
  • How posturing as an “expert” can trigger David’s own impostor feelings and how Seth Godin’s advice — reframe what you have to offer from a place of generosity — is the remedy for that!

*Bonus! Affiliate links — support The Creative Impostor at the same time as getting this awesome content.

“Audio is even more intimate than video is… your voice becomes the voice in their head.” ~David Kadavy, on the power of podcasting

Connect with David

Love Your Work Podcast
David’s Patreon (where he humbly asks for financial support based on the value you receive from his work)

Connect with Andrea


Podcast Envy: Podcast Launch, Craft & Coaching Services
Chicago Women’s Creative Collective

Links and Resources

The Heart to Start for Kindle or the audio version on Audible*

Predictably Irrational (mentioned in the episode)

NEW! 2018 Creative Collective Studio Memberships available in Chicago AND globally

The Creative Impostor Magic page! Get a special gift from Andrea here.

Power Your Story — Created by my high school student podcast mentees!!!

Support The Creative Impostor

Andrea’s Patreon Page — where you can support the show, get cool gifts from me and can become an active participant in the creative community!

Free Audio Book & 30 day trial membership with Audible.com — support The Creative Impostor when you sign up!

About David Kadavy

I’m David Kadavy. I’m author of The Heart to Start and Design for Hackers: Reverse-Engineering Beauty (which debuted in the top 20 on all of Amazon). I also host a podcast called Love Your Work (iTunes), where I’ve interviewed entrepreneurs and creators such as Jason Fried, Dan Ariely, James Altucher, Ryan Holiday, Laura Roeder, Noah Kagan, and many more.

I used to be a product designer in Silicon Valley, but I’ve since doubled down on my love for writing, after accidentally becoming an author. My writing has been featured in Observer, The Huffington Post, Inc.com, Quartz, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Upworthy, and Lifehacker. I currently do most of my writing and thought experimentation on Medium, and I’m very active on Twitter, and have a Facebook Page.

I worked with behavioral scientist Dan Ariely to reinvent Google Calendar. The company we worked on, Timeful, was bought by Google, and many of those features are now in Google Calendar.

I currently live in Medellín, Colombia, which I chose as my home base after extended stays in many places around the world. I’m originally from Omaha, Nebraska, and have also lived in San Francisco; Chicago; San Jose; Kearney, Nebraska; Ames, Iowa; and I’ve done month-or-longer stints in many other places.

This episode was mixed by Edwin R. Ruiz of Mondo Machine.
The Creative Impostor theme music was created by JoVia Armstrong.

I’d LOVE to hear from you!

If you’re listening in Apple Podcasts, PLEASE subscribe and leave a review. It’s how Apple decides which shows people find when they are searching for specific topics like this one.

043: Have your ice cream first, Ruth Humphreys

“If I start the day with my inner child playful activities, I’m a lot more productive, I’ve been able to entertain my inner child so I can later on get on with the ‘work’ and also I’m more joyful and then other things come from that as well.” ~Ruth Humphreys

Just hit “play” and start your day…

What did you LOVE to do as a child? Something that you could do all day and it would be as if time stood still…

Ruth Humphreys, former librarian, is a storyteller for children and a coach for grown-ups who want to find their playful mission in life through connection with your inner child. This phrase, inner child, typically would make me roll my eyes, but in this case, I’m inspired and energized by Ruth’s imaginative approach to re-discovering wonder!

“When children are playing, they’re processing emotions — they’re processing what’s going on… and as adults we’re the same… it’s very therapeutic.” ~Ruth Humphreys

Connect with Ruth

On the Web
Wonder Led Leaders Circle on FB

Ruth on Facebook

Ruth’s Ice Cream Video 

Ruth’s Inner Child Morning Music Playlist

Connect with Andrea

Chicago Women’s Creative Collective

Resources & Links

The Creative Impostor Magic page! Get a special gift from Andrea here.

Support the Creative Impostor

Andrea’s Patreon Page — where you can support the show, get cool gifts from me and can become an active participant in the creative community!

Free Audio Book & 30 day trial membership with Audible.com (support The Creative Impostor when you sign up!)

“We come into this world knowing who we are and what we’ve come here to do.” ~Ruth Humphreys, on the time in our life BEFORE impostor feelings begin to set in

About Ruth

Ruth Humphreys is a storyteller, inner child Wonder Shop leader and facilitator of play, curiosity and courage for kids and inner kids.

The Wonder Led Leaders Circle is a safe and nurturing space to help us connect with and listen to our inner child. The inner child which loves to play, has so much wisdom to impart and is hidden under the adult bit.

This circle is a playful and sacred space to share what you loved to do as a child and explore joyful and magical ways to find the essence of these activities to nurture and bring more of what lights you up into your life.

We share playful suggestions, reminders to look at the world in the eyes of wonder and support each other in being courageous in our creativity”

“When we play, we relax, so the more playful we can be, the more we can relax.” ~Ruth Humphreys

This episode was mixed by Edwin R. Ruiz of Mondo Machine.
The Creative Impostor theme music was created by JoVia Armstrong.

I’d LOVE to hear from you!

If you’re listening in Apple Podcasts, PLEASE subscribe and leave a review. It’s how Apple decides which shows people find when they are searching for specific topics like this one.

028: Heal your heart, Lysa Black

“I believe the role of an empath is that of a healer, a bringer of truth. someone that has reclaimed their own truth and can create space for other people to be able to more deeply connect with their own truth as well.” ~Lysa Black

Emotions are communication from our own soul.

I met Lysa through the Singularity Circle, a mastermind of creative feminine entrepreneurs facilitated by Isabelle Rizo from episode 026.

When I first received Lysa’s 2nd book Divine Purpose, I was thinking okay… here comes the “woo woo,” but it’s actually so grounded in her personal experience AND the experiences of clients with whom she has worked over the years.

And then when we did our interview, we had so many technical difficulties with Skype connections and internet and microphones and delays, well, I wasn’t sure what we were going to end up with AND it took me a long while to edit the interview. It turns out the timing was perfect. I re-listened post-U.S. presidential election, during which I had a disturbing and unusually intense emotional response (which you’ll hear about in the episode) and what Lysa shares helped me to figure out what the heck was going on with me!

In this episode, you’ll learn about:

  • How to know whether you are an empath or highly sensitive person and what to do with that
  • Repeating patterns and habits that stem from past trauma and how they show up in our present lives
  • Heart healing to move beyond those traumas and habits
  • Lysa’s own struggles with disordered eating, anxiety, attracting romantic relationships, and impostor syndrome
  • Using our shadow side as a guide, a friend to point us in the right direction
  • The difference between ego and intuition
  • Lysa’s path to stepping into her own power and path as a healer and author of two wonderful books

Connect with Lysa…

Facebook * Twitter * YouTube * Website

Resources, Links & more!

Lysa Black

Heart Healer & Author, Highly Sensitive Empath.

Lysa broke down at 23 as anxiety induced binge eating forced her to leave her job. Unresolved pain from the past flooded her awareness, leaving Lysa unable to deal with her own emotional volatility and high level of sensitivity. Lysa’s heart ache was her initiation into self healing, as she opened to her intuition she was guided to heal her anxiety, binge eating and pattern of break-ups to find deep self-trust & self-love.

Lysa is devoted to serving the highly sensitive, deeply feeling intuitives and empaths who are seeking experienced guidance to support, soften and speed their self healing journey.

With an undergraduate degree in world politics, Lysa has been devoted to global peace from an early age. She completed her Life Coaching Certification in 2008 and for 8 years she has coached and guided women to create in reality what their hearts long. Lysa’s first self-published book “Heart Healing: 13 principles of emotional self healing” debuted at #4 in its category on kindle amazon. This book marked a monumental shift in her work as she came out of the ‘gifted’ closet to utilise her high sensitivity, intuitive knowing and empathic awareness to discern wounding and offering personally calibrated strategies for healing shifts. Lysa has an innate gift to re-unite others with their truth. Healing miracles always manifest for Lysa’s clients to confirm their healing within.

In 2016, Lysa released her second self-published book: “Divine Purpose: 13 principles of ascension” debuted at #1 in its category on kindle and amazon. In this book Lysa uses the chakra system to illustrate the power of emotional healing through inspiring real life client stories. Lysa lives on an orchard in the rich lays of northern New Zealand with her loving husband and two beautiful children.

Sponsored Partners

This episode is sponsored by Betsy Bash, a social media agency who can help make you the talk of the town (in a good way!)

betsy-bash-logo-copyCEO Lauren Ramsey is generously offering FREE 30min strategy consultations (for a limited time) for listeners of The Creative Impostor Podcast.

Book your call with Lauren here!


This episode was mixed by Edwin R. Ruiz of Mondo Machine.
The Creative Impostor theme music was created by JoVia Armstrong.

I’d love to hear from you!

If you’re listening in iTunes, PLEASE leave a review. It’s how iTunes decides which shows people find when they are searching for specific topics like this one.



016: Trust yourself, Amy Segreti

“Why do I have to go to this place where I’m called to write something but it hurts to do it because I’m really digging around in this tender place in my heart? I know that it’s me and that it’s authentic when it’s hard to publish, when it’s scary to publish.” ~Amy Segreti

In this episode, I talk with Amy Segreti of Live All of You, an online resource and coaching business designed to guide you on a creative path of self-inquiry and awareness.

Amy is also the creator of The Abundant Host, a resource for cultivating lifestyle freedom by successfully hosting travelers via Airbnb.com.

Things you’ll learn about…

  • how the secret to manifesting what you want in life is desire + belief + action
  • getting out of comparison and creating authentic work via self-inquiry & truly knowing yourself
  • the importance of surrounding yourself with teachers, partners and practices that can provide compassionate perspective and function as a mirror for you
  • holistic day design for productivity and authenticity
  • finding freedom and connection — welcoming magic into your life!

Get the full episode in iTunes!

Or listen on Stitcher (I’m looking at you, Android users…)!

Amy’s Websites: Live All of You * The Abundant Host * Purdy Purity (on Instagram)

Facebook  * Instagram * Twitter

“Knowing yourself and knowing where you’re at right right now in every moment as much as you can by doing your own self-work or self-inquiry… will help you manifest or help you create your reality way easier than if you’re trying to push yourself to do something that doesn’t feel like you” ~Amy Segreti

Links & Resources

Holistic Day Design with Amyproductivity packet

Cleaning Up!Amy’s book on successful hosting via Airbnb

Amy’s interview with John Lee Dumas on Entrepreneur on Fire!

Creative Space Retreat to NOLA with Andrea!


“If something heavy is going on in my life and I need an outside perspective, my teacher will always give me one that I have not thought of… which continuously amazes me because I like to think sometimes that I can think of everything!” ~Amy Segreti

Still not sure how to launch your new idea? 
Check out my e-course (new Spring 2016!):
This e-course designed to help you take those first few bold steps on your creative path no matter what!

Amy Segreti 

I’m Amy Segreti, and I help people communicate, expand and invite magic into their lives.

I’ve been a writer and editor rooted in the blustery world of journalism for 12 years. Fluent in Spanish and AP style, I’ve worked as everything from publisher to managing editor to news editor to reporter.

I’ve published hundreds of pieces internationally in print and online publications such as The Huffington Post, New Worker Magazine, The Baltimore Sun, elephant Journal, Thought Catalog, The Globe (NC), InMadrid (Spain), The Daily Camera (CO), Yellow Scene Magazine (CO), Maryland Life, Rooster Magazine (CO), Fortnight Journal (NYC) and The Washingtonian (DC).

I’m the founder and editor of Twine Magazine. “Twine” comes from a root desire: to intertwine play and purpose in our lives. The magazine showcases and supports storytelling as an integral part of our experience in the world.

I started Twine in Boulder, Colo. as a print magazine in April 2012 and grew it to an audience of 20,000+ readers in 40 cities—from San Francisco to New York City to São Paulo to Madrid. I moved it online in April 2013, to reach a wider audience and become more of a reflection (particularly in my personal life) for what it stands for—sustainability, creativity and freedom.

My #1 passion is writing. Whether I’m working on an investigative story, a narrative feature, a poem or a pun, I strive to be the conduit for a genuine connection between subject, reader and self. It’s a love-triangle hit for me.

I’m also a 200-hour certified yoga teacher, in addition to being Level 1 certified in Reiki. I love exploring different modalities for healing and diving deeper into our Selves.

If you still want to know more about me, here are other things:

I have been known to sneak avocados into restaurants if I notice they do not have them on the menu. I have been reprimanded for this. And yet, I continue my life of crime.

I adore dance and authentic body movement; it is an integral part of my  self-expression. I’ve been on a salsa dancing team and love playing with different aerial dance modalities, including aerial silks, pole and cyr wheel, aerial hoop, in addition to hula-hooping and general booty shaking.

Movement is a huge part of my life; I’m a bicyclist, rock climber, Rollerblader, yogini, hiker, runner, and am working on activating my “Athlete” archetype. I have a Goddess pole in my home and I’m not afraid to use it.

I am a life connoisseur and believe that pleasure, breathing and dropping in are more important than grinding through anything. Creativity comes to those with soft space to receive it.

The work I do revolves around enhancing and beautifying communication—with ourselves and with others. I believe that self-inquiry is the way through to full self-expression—and that self-expression is the key to our happiness and vitality.

I highly dislike crappy writing in the “lifestyle entrepreneur” industry. I hate writing for SEO, and I hate when everyone sings the same song with no difference in rhythm, tone or beat. We all believe the same thing? Gorgeous. Groove to it in your own way.

I don’t understand when people have an answer that is not where they are currently living when asked the question: “If you could live anywhere right now, where would it be?” Go there. If you think you can’t because you have kids, read this. Have pets? Read this. No money? How about this. I’m going to be a brat about this one.

I’m a hipster-snob with foodie tastes best described as: “gourm-casj” (“casj” pronounced like the beginning of “casual,” drawn out for snooty emphasis). Quality is most important to me, irregardless of price. Therefore, you can potentially find me at Frasca one night and the Halal cart on 53rd and 6th the next.

I’ve thought about starting a coworking space many times because it is the brick and mortar equivalent of what I believe can change the world—a community of people with strongly aligned value systems around creation, receptivity and sharing. In the end, I joined one instead… and media-partnered with the Global Coworking Unconference Conference… and wrote a magazine feature piece about coworking…

This episode was mixed by Edwin R. Ruiz of Mondo Machine.
The Creative Impostor theme music was created by JoVia Armstrong.

011: Resistance

“Where there is a Dream, there is Resistance. Thus: where we encounter Resistance, somewhere nearby is a Dream.” ~Steven Pressfield, The War of Art

Andrea PoutI have a huge impostor confession to make.

This one was big and it’s embarrassing to admit to you… You should know that as I was recording it in my mini recording studio, in my bedroom closet, I could feel the blood rushing to my face and my sweat glands kicking in.

This episode was inspired by my conversation in Episode 10 about authenticity and learning to trust yourself with psychotherapist, musician and one of my mentors, Ellen Katz.

Listen to my conversation with Ellen “Radha” Katz here!

Facebook * Twitter * LinkedIn * Periscope * Instagram * Tumblr 

“Every day, every creation involves a certain amount of struggle for me. And the struggle really is in committing, just sitting down to do the work and trusting the process. Once I jump that hurdle, the rest is flow.” ~Andrea Klunder

You should also know that before sitting down to write the notes for this episode and scripting what I wanted to say, I allowed nearly 7 days to go by after the original idea for the topic came into my head, and on THE day that I determined I absolutely MUST write it…

  • I watched an hour of educational programming on business and branding on CreativeLive.com
  • I listened to 4 episodes of one of my new favorite podcasts, Strangers with Lea Thau
  • I spent 30minutes researching “urban chic business fashion” on Pinterest, 
  • I cleaned out my email inbox
  • I mapped an entire new strategy for my AndreaKlunder.com website (but held myself back from logging in and actually implementing it)
  • I made 2 different pots of tea (one black and one herbal), took one shower and did 1 carefully sorted load of laundry.

Quit Slackin CollageAnd then… by 6:30pm, I was ready to write my episode (and even in that moment, my fingers desperately wanted to type netflix.com into my web browser instead).

So what the HECK is that about?

Well. It’s a little friend I like to call “resistance.”

Have you ever felt that? 

The feeling of inertia when you know you need to do something, and you just can’t.

And I’m not talking about having that conversation you’re dreading, doing your taxes, or even going to the grocery store on a Sunday afternoon. I’m talking about something you actually WANT to do, that you enjoy doing, and that you know will have a positive net outcome. And yet, you find yourself doing everything imaginable under the sun except THAT.

I think clearly this feeling of resistance is what leads to procrastination (which I talked about in Episode 5) and procrastination stems from perfectionism, one of my favorite symptoms of impostor syndrome.

But In my conversation with psychotherapist Ellen Katz in Episode 10, Ellen said…

“You’re not an impostor if you’re doing what you love.” ~Ellen Katz

So, if I love writing and I love podcasting and I love thinking about the topic of impostor syndrome and coming up with creative ways to share my own experiences in a way that I think will help you, then WHY couldn’t I bring myself to sit down and do it?

Listen to this episode to find out AND hear my big impostor confession!

Yoda PumpkinI wonder if it ever gets any easier, if resistance can be overcome or defeated with time, consistency, momentum, and experience.

Will I ever be able to create something with full confidence that my work is good, and that it’s valuable to someone else?

Or is the dragon of resistance always lurking just around the corner for the creative professional? 

In fact, I’d love to hear from YOU! Does this challenge resonate with you? Do you come up against resistance when you have something you want to create? 

Or have you reached that idyllic state of perpetual flow that I dream of where you have an idea, you map it out clearly and then you create it with ease? 

Send me a voicemail and tell me a story about a time when resistance came up for you or how you’ve learned to slay it!

Just click the tab on the right of the screen. A little window will pop up and once you hit record, you can leave me a 90 second message that I can include on a future episode of the creative impostor. Include your name, business and website if you have one or you can just say you’d like it to be an anonymous story.

And if voicemail isn’t really your thing, you can also email me by clicking the contact page.

Links from the episode:

Procrastination & Perfectionism: The Creative Impostor Episode #5 

Money: The Creative Impostor Episode #7

Ask your inner wise person with Ellen Katz: Episode #10

Steven Pressfield – The War of Art

The Accidental Creative podcast with Todd Henry

She Podcasts Facebook Group


Strangers Podcast with Lea Thau


NOLA Jazz!]


Our first Creative Space Travel Retreat to New Orleans is in the works! Get the inside scoop…


Are you feeling overwhelmed? Don’t know where to begin?

My How to Start e-course is designed to help you take those first few bold steps on your creative path no matter what! Truly, I’ve taken all the wisdom from my podcast guests, past teachers and a whole lot of experience with failure AND success. Coming soon…

This episode was mixed by Edwin R. Ruiz of Mondo Machine.
The Creative Impostor theme music was created by JoVia Armstrong.

I want to hear from you. If you’re listening in iTunes, PLEASE leave a review. It’s how iTunes decides which shows people find when they are searching for specific topics like this one.

Also send me a message! What do you think so far? What’s your greatest impostor moment? Email your written comments or leave a voicemail using SpeakPipe — and when you do, I just may read the message or play your voice on a future episode.



How to get back on the wagon

Despite our best creative and entrepreneurial intentions, sometimes we get off track.

I’ve had many projects I’ve started and then fell victim to distraction or discouragement or disillusionment and allowed them to fade away… meetup groups, book clubs, an anonymous humor blog I started after my first Pitchfork Music Festival called “I want a hipster boyfriend…”

The problem is we start out strong and excited and then at some point, we miss a post, a deadline, an issue, an article… and the world doesn’t end, which makes it easier to miss the next one, and the next, until we realize any momentum we had in the beginning has come to a complete standstill. We wonder if anyone was even reading, listening, following, watching, using our creative work at all.

The thought emerges, “will anyone really even care if I just don’t do it anymore?” The mental response, “probably not.” And then we’re in real trouble. 

This JUST happened to me.

When I launched The Creative Impostor, my intention was one post per week with a newsletter. Consistently. No matter what. And for weeks that I got too busy to dedicate a half-day to that endeavor, I would create an archive of content in advance schedule.

You may (or may not) have noticed that it’s been over TWO weeks since my last post and newsletter. That archive has never gotten built. And I have been beating myself up mentally over it every day for the last two weeks.

How can I even call myself a blogger or business owner if I haven’t touched my blog in two weeks?!

My bridesmaid bouquet handmade by my sister!

My bridesmaid bouquet handmade by my sister!

Truthfully, I had LEGIT reasons. My sister got married last weekend in Michigan and I traveled for the weekend, was her maid of honor and reception MC, helped with setup and clean up, A/V, etc. It was an awesome wedding! Really sweet, fun, beautiful — I didn’t even realize how much energy it was taking until driving back to Chicago the next day when my boyfriend had the explicit job of keeping me engaged in conversation for the whole 3.5 hour drive just so I wouldn’t fall asleep behind the wheel!

Plus, those of you who’ve been following the blog or know me personally, may know that I’ve been experiencing a particularly challenging financial period, cleaning up some of the debt that I accumulated over the course of my 5-year stint as a boutique yoga studio owner and trying to make the transition to more of an online business model via blogging, podcasting and online trainings.

I’m writing a post that goes more in depth on financial specifics b/c I think it’s important to pull back the curtain from time to time if it can be helpful for others who are thinking of starting a business.

In the meantime, suffice to say, that I also just started a new part-time job this week that is super fun but more physically exhausting than I expected and am picking up odd jobs like cleaning and pet sitting just to ease the strain on cash flow.

I’ve been too busy and tired to write. And I didn’t want to publish something half-baked. So I sent nothing.

What’s wrong with taking a couple weeks off? Why is it so important to get posts and newsletters out on a consistent schedule?

I have heard time and again from entrepreneurs, creatives, bloggers, podcasters that I admire that the key to success in the online business space is consistently delivering quality content over time:

Quality + Consistency + Time = Success!

Quality, I believe is my strong suit. I have worked really hard and invested in a lot of training on how to create quality content that is enjoyable and useful (I hope) for my readers and students.

Where I struggle is with consistency and time. I want this venture to be different.

So, how to get back on the wagon once you’ve fallen off?

Just start. Begin again.

Not so simple? Try the following to kickstart that creative mojo and get you back into the groove:

  1. Take a Meditation Break. Schedule some serious me-time, even if it’s only 5-10 minutes. Have your notebook and a pen nearby. Light a stick of incense, ring a bell, chant a mantra… something to indicate to your brain that you mean business. Take 3-5 deep breaths to settle. Be still and find some relative quiet in the midst of the chaos of busy-ness.
  2. R&R: Remember & Refresh. In your journal or notebook, jot down the answers to the following questions:
    Why did I begin this project/blog/podcast/collection/story/film in the first place?
    How was I initially inspired?

    What do I love about it?
    What’s my vision for what
    could happen next?
  3. Schedule some time for Deep Work. Todd Henry has a GREAT podcast on this topic on The Accidental Creative. Listen now!
  4. Create accountability. Tell someone what steps you’re going to take to get back into creation mode and by when. Ask that person to hold you accountable. (hint: I’m doing that RIGHT NOW with YOU!)
  5. Pat yourself on the back and get into action! Don’t worry about what you did or didn’t do over the last few days/weeks/months. Just focus on what you are doing now and how that will move you forward.

That’s it. Follow these simple steps and I promise you’ll be back on the wagon discovering new territory in no time!

I just don’t feel like doing anything today.

Well, that’s not entirely true. There are so many things I could do, that I would like to do, that I should do.

Uh-oh. There’s that word “should,” and that’s what gets me into trouble.

As a self-employed entrepreneurial creative, my Mondays frequently start out this way. I’ve often had a busy weekend (this weekend, I presented at my first virtual conference and sang at a kirtan event in the suburbs,); and I have no fixed appointments until I teach yoga late in the evening. I have the whole day available and many, many projects and tasks to follow up on and complete to continue to grow my business forward.

And yet, I find myself sitting on the futon, snuggling with my kitty, listening to podcasts, staring at a very long checklist, deciding what to do first… for 2 hours!

And I wonder, “what is WRONG with me?”

Well, nothing is wrong.

Sometimes, we need that mental downtime in order for the creative brain to do whatever mysterious things it does to regenerate after some solid output.

AND I think it’s important to acknowledge when one of these “brain breaks” occurs and then make a plan for how to maximize what comes after (hopefully a period of inspired creativity and productivity!)

Here are 3 things I like to do to bounce me out of my regeneration mode and into creative flow:

InfuseStudioTwist1) I listen to something inspiring – usually a podcast from someone who really makes me feel like I can do anything.

Some of my favorite “fire starters” are Seth Godin, Danielle LaPorte, and Marie Forleo. Some of my favorite podcasts for this are Entrepreneur on Fire, The Accidental Creative, Smart Passive Income and Online Marketing Made Easy.

Bonus points if I can do this while going for a walk outside or moving my body through some yoga postures!

2) I chant some mantras. This is cheating by combining 2 strategies in one: music and meditation!

One of my creative passions is singing kirtan, sacred mantras set to music in order to evoke a certain energetic state of being and connection to the Divine. This practice can be an incredible source of fresh ideas and perspective. It gets the breath flowing through my body and stimulates my brain synapses in ways I wish a neuroscientist could explain to me!

(BTW, if you are in the Chicago area and want to learn more about opportunities to do this together in a group setting, go here!)

3) I start writing. 

It could be a blog post (like this one), a journal entry, morning pages (from The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron)… really anything to get my brain into creation mode.

Usually by this point, I’m back on track and, even if it is already well into the afternoon, I can still manage to do the work that needs to get done and feel successful at the end of the day.

So tell me, what’s YOUR solution for the “I just don’t feel like doing anything” blues?


Discipline with Mary Oliver

The #1 challenge many of us are facing in our creative lives is finding time/staying motivated. I always have SO MANY ideas and then get frustrated by how long it takes for anything to come to fruition… or I get bored living with my idea before it ever sees the light of day.

I recently listened to an amazing interview with poet Mary Oliver by Krista Tippet on the On Being podcast.

Check out this excerpt (edited) in which Mary talks about the creative process AND/OR listen to the whole episode here.

Ms. Oliver: …as I talk about it in the Poetry Handbook, discipline is very important… The habit — I think we’re creative all day long. And if — we have to have an appointment to have that work out on the page. Because the creative part of us gets tired of waiting, or just gets tired. And It’s helped a lot of students…To have that meeting with that part of oneself because there are, of course, other parts of life…

Ms. Tippett: … And also when you write about that — the discipline that creates space for something quite mysterious to happen. You talk about that “wild, silky part of ourselves.” You talk about the “part of the psyche that works in concert with consciousness and supplies a necessary part of the poem—a heart of the star as opposed to the shape of the star, let us say—exists in a mysterious, unmapped zone: not unconscious, not subconscious, but cautious.”

Ms. Oliver: Where? What is that from?

Ms. Tippett: That’s from the Poetry Handbook. [laughs]

Ms. Oliver: [laughs] It’s been a while.

Ms. Tippett: It’s great. But you say — you promise — it learns quickly what sort of courtship It’s going to be. you’re saying that the writer has to be kind of in courtship with this…

Ms. Oliver: Yes.

Ms. Tippett: …elusive, essential, but elusive, cautious, as you say, cautious part. And that if you turn up every day, it will learn to trust you.

Ms. Oliver: Yes, yes, yes, yes. I remember that… That trust is very important.

Ms. Tippett: And That’s the creative process.

Ms. Oliver: That is the creative process.

So Mary Oliver, whose poems seem so effortless, advocates for the necessity of discipline. I’ve recently been disciplining myself to make space in the beginning of each day for creative input (more on that later) and output (rather than spending an entire morning checking & responding to email…)

The result is, well, this blog! It’s still a work in progress… Recently a mentor said to me, “Don’t wait until it’s perfect. Just launch!” So here it is.