Passion Led Us Here

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When I was pregnant and afterward, I stopped feeling a connection to Source...

You'd think it was the opposite? That in the midst of my body doing this completely miraculous thing of BRINGING NEW LIFE into the world, that I'd feel absolutely bonded to my sense of spirituality.

Nope. Not at all.

I was so ill during that time that I had to have an IV placed into my arm at some point, filled with anti-nausea medication, to simply give me a little bit of reprieve from the constant throwing up day and night — all 24 hours long.

After she was born, I still felt far from Source. I couldn't get connected. None of the tools that I had used thus far in my life, to create absolute MAGIC, worked...

Why hadn't any of my spiritual teachers told me this?

That along the way on my path, I might have to completely revamp everything I thought about myself, about life, about how I approached my practice of faith?

I was angry.

I was mad at the Universe.

I was furious at whatever my interpretation of the Divine was.

"WHERE HAVE YOU GONE?!" I pleaded inwardly and, sometimes, outwardly.

This morning, while my husband, daughter and I sat side-by-side to breakfast on the long bench that makes up our dining table, positioned in the ways we usually are (me on the left, her in the middle, my husband on the right), I realized...

"OH, THIS is Divinity."

I pulled her hair back from getting into the jam on her gluten-free toast, and in doing so, told her, "We never imagined we would have anyone as brilliant as you."

My husband tells her this often, that he had a feeling she'd be awesome, but he could never have imagined how incredibly she truly is — that she goes beyond anything we could have comprehended.

And that, right there, has been the Divine in front of my face all along.

The feeling of being separate, of being far, was actually the fact that my belief in BIG MAGIC had suddenly become so truly tangible, that I can hug her.

I can kiss her.

I can help soothe her when she's hurting.

And sometimes, she gently draws my hair back too, saying, "You can do, you can do it."

Whatever you imagine for your life, know that there are possibilities beyond what you can comprehend right now. There is a whole scope on the edge of what you know, what you can conceive, what you can see, that is beyond any grand notion you may ever have had.

I just realized in writing this, that I always sit on the left... which what I've learned in yoga, is the feminine.

The yin.

My husband always sits on the right, which represents the masculine...

The yang.

And our daughter?

She sits in between us. The perfect balance of it all.

A mix of light and serious, impulsive and patient, faithful and faith-filled... pure wonder.

Cowboy boots and taking risks

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Aloha!

I used to hate garage sales and second-hand stores. Now, I love them, because they're where I can find absolute one-of-a-kind gems that speak to my personal style. 

This past weekend, I found a pair of new Frye cowboy boots for $40. 

Size 8 1/2. 

Made for me. 

But...

'Am I really going to wear these?' I asked myself, as Wilder played with a stuffed animal from another table beside me.

Here's the thing — I'm so TIRED of the ways that I've been.

I'm tired of my style. I want to be more free-flowing, more bohemian, more gypsy, but when I put these clothes on, I feel like I'm playing pretend, that I look more like a pirate than a whimsical woman.

And, this isn't just about my clothes!

It's about the entirety of who I am...

I'm tired of relying upon my intellect to succeed. I want to dive more into the touchy feely, the heart bits, the ways that a quiet and doubting voice in the back of my mind says, "You can't really make money at that."

I'm tired of allowing the imprints made upon me when I was a kid to still make such an impact on my life now, as an adult. It's time to tell the adults in my life back then, "You were wrong," and to give myself permission to stand in my own truths.

I'm fucking tired of feeling tired at all! And, struggling only because the whole reason I'm struggling at all is because I keep getting in my own way and making things harder for myself, since UP UNTIL NOW, I've been used to the hustle rather than the ease.

When I worked with Herbalife's corporate offices, I was not a big fan of their saying, "Fake it 'til you make it!" 

Now, I get that in certain elements of your life, you DO have to take action before you start feeling it as truth.

So, I'm making up my own saying: "Work it 'til you twerk it."

When I was living in South Carolina, my friend Rebecca (who came from a family of therapists) said to me, "If you don't want the same results you're getting, you've got to do the opposite of what you would normally do."

That's what I'm doing.

That's what you can expect from here on forth.

I want to spearhead a kick-ass revolution for millennial women to be authentically you, and it truly starts with me showing up.

Ruffling feathers.

Being more provocative.

Speaking my truth.

And, being the best guide that I can be, by growing and sharing along the way. 

If it's not for you, that's totally okay. I get it. I've gotten to the point where I accept that I don't have to please everyone. And, I send you love as you pursue your own path.

If it does speak to you, then HELL YEAH, SISTA.

I'm so stoked you're here.

Have a beautiful rest of your week,


Judy

#TruthBomb: I've been playing it small.

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Aloha, !

Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.

'She's right,' I thought over the Zoom chat. 

The ever astute mindset expert, Heather Grey, had just called me out on why I feel stuck in catapulting my business that's on the precipice of monumental growth. What I thought was something misaligned about my intention or a hidden fear was actually rooted in the ever so simple truth:

It's about my mother. And, it's about control.

Surprise surprise... the whole reason I developed an eating disorder almost two decades ago returned.

"Have you given yourself permission to understand that your mother was wrong?" she asked.

"Well," I reflected, "I guess not. I guess I've never said it to myself in those words."

"It's time," she encouraged.

Being a 'good Chinese girl,' I knew that not honoring the elders in my life was complete blasphemy.

Yet, the old stories playing in my head about being selfish by putting my needs first or being disrespectful if I had a different opinion than the adults are now holding me back.

It has felt safer for me to control keeping myself small than breaking the chains to my past and truly grieving the thing I did not get: 

The kind of unconditionally loving parent every person deserves.

Instead, grieving the wounds is how I will finally heal and find my own way, the way where I can bring that little girl within me, the one seeking approval and hungering for freedom and joy, into the present that I am creating.

It's time to rewrite the narrative about scarcity, about how I'm too big for my britches, away from this constant phrase my mother would say on refrain:

"Ni yi wei ni shi shei?"  Who the hell do you think you are?

"At some point, you'll have to acknowledge that your mother was limited," Heather added. 

"She would've given you the kind of love you needed if she could've, but she couldn't, so she didn't. You have to grieve that you never got the mother you wanted, but once you do that, the good news is that now, as an adult, you can go out and find the precise people in your life who can give you what you NEED... And, I say 'need,' because that's absolutely what it is — it isn't a choice or a luxury. That would be a WANT. Being loved? That's what you NEED. And, I bet there have been PLENTY of people in your life who would've been happy to play that role for you, but you couldn't see it at the time."

I sighed. 

I thought I had already processed ALL of this for all the years I'd been in therapy. 

I thought I had moved past all of this already and still, I hadn't. 

It was then that I backed away from my desk and looked up at the wall calendar posted beside me. Down, in the bottom right corner in tiny 6 point font, I noticed for the first time these words: www.bluesky.com.

"Ohmigod," I said aloud to Heather.

"What?" she asked.

"You will not believe this, but as we're talking about my mother, I see on my wall calendar bluesky.com. I put this calendar up over ten months ago. I can't believe I've never noticed it before."

Heather waits, uncertain of how this all fits together...

"Blue Sky," I tell her, "That is my mother's name translated from Mandarin into English. Literally. Her name is Blue Sky."

Once again, the Universe is pointing me forward, showing me that I am precisely where I need to be to take that quantum leap forward.

 

 

Now for the #truthbomb

 

 

Heather also called me out that I've been playing small...

I haven't been living up to the whole ethos of what my business is about.

I haven't truly let myself be WILD and FREE — the words I even have tattooed on my wrists!

She's challenged me to show up in a bigger way, because if I'm planning on leading a truly revolutionary movement for millennials to live more authentically and to not be afraid of ruffling any feathers, then I have to do the same.

There's a time to play nice and a time to STAND OUT.

To stand up.

To stop using "consciousness" as a reason to always forgive, because sometimes, in order for other people to grow, they need to be called out in all honesty.

So... I'm taking that stand.

And I'm here to challenge you, too.

I'm not doing my job as a coach or a leader if I let the people around me stay small. It's time for me to give you permission to grow, baby, grow...

To be more provocative with your beliefs and the ways in which you're showing up in your life.

I have been discounting my SELF and my services for too long — not acting fully empowered even if I put on a show of being BIG and BOLD. 

There are quiet, itchy beliefs in my psyche that I haven't wanted to scratch, because that's not what a polite girl does in front of the world.

That. Stops. Now.

No more discounts on services. 

No more playing nice.

Pushing back with healthier boundaries.

No more hiding behind the "sweetness" and instead, doing the harder thing, which is speaking up in ways that I've been too fearful to do, ways that'll likely garner raving fans, as much as potential haters.

That's why not everyone becomes an entrepreneur.

Why not everyone pursues their dreams.

Why so many of us know what makes us happy, yet when you ask what's keeping us so "busy" in the day-to-day, it's all this work on trying to figure out how to be happier, rather than moving away from the struggle and giving ourselves permission to be brave and courageous, because what that requires is real vulnerability.

The chance to be truly seen.

To be truly loved.

And to be truly hurt.

Will you join me in making your life and business more beautiful?

After all, who needs cajones when you've got #badass ovaries?

Have a gorgeous rest of your week,

Judy

P.S. There's one person in your life right now who you know needs to hear this message. Be a real friend. Share this post with that one person in your tribe.

Hacking The Miracle Morning a.k.a. The Cliffs' Notes Version

Miracle Morning

Ah, Blinkist would be proud, because here I am, giving you the Cheat Sheet to Hal Elrod's The Miracle Morning

If you haven't heard about this, it's "the not-so-obvious secret guaranteed to transform your life before 8am."

I'll caveat this with the fact that he's not talking about what parents can do... since, if you're like me, life absolutely changes after having a kiddo and it's not so easy to structure routine in your personal life with a toddler.

While many gurus tout "discipline" as the way to success (and don't get me wrong, I don't disagree with this), I do feel like we have so many reasons to shit on ourselves all the time that I don't want a journey towards self-improvement to become another reason to feel guilty or shameful.

Instead, I encourage you to approach these tips with compassion, to do the best that you can with these tips and to love on yourself with grace.

Now, here we go!


Take 60-min from the moment you wake up to do the following (you can rearrange the sequence to your preference, as well as the timing of each section):

  • Silence – 5 min
  • Affirmations – 5 min
  • Visualization – 5 min
  • Exercise – 20-min
  • Reading – 20-min
  • Writing – 5 min

TOTAL = 60 min

If you're looking for help on any of the above items, reach out to me! 

I'm happy to share my favorite affirmations or visualizations, as well as my go-to resource for yoga classes from home. In a future post, I'll share my favorite reading list for 2017.

  • To get you started, check out these meditations I recorded on YouTube.
  • Or, here's a Chakra Journal I created with awesome prompts and beautiful designs.

If you're short on time (and really, who isn't?), here are the essentials broken down in 6-minutes a day — while still getting all the benefits!

  • Minute 1 – Sit in silence. Calm your mind & relax your body to dive deeper into peace & purpose.
  • Minute 2 – Pull out your daily affirmations to remind you of your unlimited potentials & your greatest priorities. Read them aloud for greater confidence to take the actions necessary to live the life you want!
  • Minute 3 – Close your eyes to visualize (or look at a vision board). Visualize your day going perfectly and how much you're having fun doing what you're meant to do and all that you're accomplished. Feel into it.
  • Minute 4 – Write down a few of the things you're grateful for, what you're proud of, and what you're committed to creating that day.
  • Minute 5 – Grab your self-help book to read and discover a new tool you can implement into your day.
  • Minute 6 – Stand up and move your body in a way you love for 60-second. Get your heart rate up to approach the day.

My husband and I are committing to the Miracle Morning starting this month — want to join us?

Dating.

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Aloha,!

You might be thinking, "Wait, I thought Judy was married? What's she doing talking about dating?"

I am married, but I recently tried to connect two of my friends together on a blind date. 

They actually spoke on the phone (gasp!) before meeting and upon getting to know one another, talked about how awful the dating scene is when it comes to Tinder, Bumble, and the like...

My friend relayed that the man I was trying to set her up with told her a story about how he recently went on a date and literally got up and walked out in the middle of it.

"Stop it!" I told her, aghast.

"No really," she responded. "And, if you had told me that story a year ago before I tried all these dating sites, I would've had the same reaction as you, but now having been on them, I'm not at all surprised."

"What?" 

I wanted to know more.

"People flat out lie in their profiles, and really, you just get to a point where you're over it and you're not going to make excuses about it," she continued.

The next day, I relayed this anecdote to my husband and told him:

"Y'know, it just got me thinking how business is a lot like dating — why would you put yourself out there claiming you're this or that, fully knowing that people are going to see you for who you are as they get to know you, and then have them be disappointed, because you can't follow through with what you promised? Why make those claims in the first place? Why not be authentic from the start, rather than wasting anyone's time?"

To that end, I've been continually asking myself how I can show up in business and in life to stand apart from all the NOISE that's out there online these days...

There are so many tips and tools from online business coaches, so many tidbits that aren't proven or are regurgitations from another source, so many ways we can feel overwhelmed or behind, but you have a choice. 

You have a choice of where you invest your time and energy, because time truly is the most valuable commodity any of us have.

I want to do things differently. 

I want to help create a revolution of authenticity. 

And, I hope you'll join me by living your life and creating a dream business you love with that same kind of raw, honest, heart.

It's the way to love.

It's the way to success.

It's always been the way to everything.

 

Actual Responses I've Sent to Clients

Tetsuya Tomomatsu

Last week, I had two opportunities with different clients to share a bit about my philosophy and what I feel is my role as a coach...

One was to talk about patience.

The other was to talk about guarantees.

Here, I'm including the responses for you to read, because when I read them aloud to my husband before I clicked "send", he said, "You should post both of those. They're messages more than your two clients need to hear."

My Email Response 1: When a client wants to see big results fast. I mean, don't we all?

 

Hey {AWESOME CLIENT},

I wanted to send you this episode of Gary Vee's podcast in response to your last email about monetization. Now, please keep in mind that I've been hesitant for years to jump on the Gary Vee/Tony Robbins bandwagon, so I listened to this reluctantly, but then realized there were incredibly valuable elements that were perfect to share with you now...

First, lemme say that I hear you. I hear you've invested a lot and that you want to see a return on your investment of time, energy, intention, and money!

Now, it's time for a little reality check and a tiny bit of tough love, because I'd be doing you a disservice as a coach if I didn't offer this info...

Social media makes it seem like fortunes are super quick to have and attain. What those business owners aren't telling you is how much they invested or how long it took to get there — in my one year of launching this iteration of my business, I've spent over $20K on coaches and business programs alone, not to mention my operational costs, so I know it hurts to "bleed money."

What you're doing now is building your dreams to life. And, given that I don't know your personal financial situation, here's what I can speak to and that this podcast episode also speaks to:

You've gotta make a decision if this truly is your passion. If it is, you've gotta commit to both the hustle and the surrender. 

Right now, you get to decide if this is a hobby you want to monetize or if this is a bigger vision of you truly taking a stand to bring back art in all its amazing glory for the greater public and the greater good, as you've told me.

If it's the former, then it's going to be easy to get knocked off course when results don't seem to materialize in the ways you want them or as quickly as you do.

If it's the latter, then you have to have a long-view, rather than a short one, because every entrepreneur (even in this podcast) will share how they failed and kept at it until they got it right.

You'll make offers people won't respond to. You'll put things out there and hear crickets. And then you'll find your flow, serendipity and magic start to appear in greater volume, and then you're off and running.

You have a platform right now. We're building you a bigger one. We're getting you opportunities for relationship-building, because the best success isn't necessarily continually attracting more and more people, but in optimizing the audience you have. Smaller investments with your existing audience bring bigger ones. People are more likely to buy from you, if they've bought from you before, which is why the small online course or another "tripwire" to start with.  

The more exposure we get you on interviews, YouTube tutorials and press (which mostly involve your time and energy rather than getting paid), the better the platform we build for you speaking your truth about what you love and why you love it, and then more amazing opportunities come, like getting PAID to speak and teach, getting PAID as an influencer, getting PAID to share your skills and knowledge.

There are big audiences you haven't yet tapped into, and if you already knew how everything was going to turn out without leaps of faith, your dream isn't big enough.

Listen to this podcast, especially the part about the business you have now and the one you're building. Hear what they say about how they structured their businesses, especially at the 30-min mark, and what it took, with everything from real gratitude to visualization to being the tortoise with patience over being the hare.

Let me know what you think. I hope this is helpful and know that I'm championing your BIGGEST dreams and the visions you may not even have stepped into yet, but that which I hear your soul is calling for.

I'm always here with an open heart, willing conversation, and accepting mind.

Big love (in tiny and big portions),

Judy

 

My Email Response 2: When a client asks about what kind of guarantees I can offer.

 

Aloha {AWESOME CLIENT},

Thanks so much for reaching out for clarity!

First, I want to say that I genuinely appreciate the questions you're asking — they're elevating my integrity in growing my business, and I'm beyond grateful for that.

Now, here's what I'd like to say to your question about what kind of return I tell my clients they can expect...

You're right that there isn't something as cut and dry in that I can guarantee you'll get featured in various publications within a certain timeframe. In fact, I make it a point in my business to not guarantee anything that involves factors beyond my control, which in a partnership such as yours, range from editorial timelines and various media requirements, all the way to client participation. To do so would jeopardize the foundation of my business, because there's no way I can control all of those moving parts.

What I can indeed guarantee is that I commit to my clients' success wholeheartedly. I put more than 100% of my effort, and the results my clients experience – from personal growth to professional outcomes – are stellar. I personally went from being out of the publishing, marketing, and PR world for two years to be with my daughter and when I came back into the work force, I began to earn six figures from marketing & branding consulting within three months, as well as offered a full-time position from one of my marketing clients in ATX.

What I can also tell you are experiences my past and present clients have had:

  • My client, Kara, got a personal response from Arianna Huffington after I shared with her my pitch templates.
  • My client, Silke, got onto a podcast interview after I taught her how to pitch, as well as got her articles published in elephant journal after my edits. She also received a personal response from editors at The Washington Post, as well as a response from Arianna Huffington to become a relationship expert contributor in Thrive Global.
  • My client, Cheryl, earns almost half a million dollars annually as a healthcare consultant and used my branding suggestions to book herself an interview on EOFire.
  • My client, Karleigh, took my strategic suggestions to reframe her business offerings and is now attracting new clients for her coaching practice.
  • A client from six years ago recently sent me a video text message to say that working together was one of the best times of her life and she thinks of me often, for the profound healing effect it had on her life — she was able to navigate her anxiety and panic so much that she could become a mother.
  • My latest client, Kate, called two of my existing clients to hear their honest feedback, after which she immediately signed up.

These clients invested in me and are seeing phenomenal results they're all willing to share testimonials on.

Most importantly, all my clients can expect real integrity and absolute honesty — if I don't know something, I'll tell you, and even more so, I'll do my damnedest to figure it out, because I'm a perpetual learner and I thrive on being as capable as I can possibly be.

While I'm absolutely championing your success, I also wholeheartedly believe that every agreement I enter into should be done so with the fullest of confidence. I hope I've answered your questions and look forward to your decision. Any offers I make with special customized pricing expire within a 7-day timeframe to ensure that both parties have the clarity and energetic freedom to move forward either way.

You're welcome to take as much time to reflect, because I'm definitely open to working together so long as I have the bandwidth!

Mahalo,

Judy

 

What are your philosophies on rapid results and guarantees?

3 Tips to Show Up More Authentically Online

Judy Tsuei writer

When it comes to sharing authentically online, I don't tout "oversharing."

I know that once you post something online, it pretty much lives in infamy, so you better be darn sure that what you say is content that you're okay having out there forever.

(In the days before I realized the power of the Internet, I did a photoshoot with a friend where I posed in suggestive clothing and for the life of me, I cannot get those photos deleted, so... if you google me, yes, you'll find the countless pieces I've published or the yoga videos on YouTube with tens of thousands of views, but you might find that, too. #confession)

There are even entire articles about how when you "break up" with someone, you never actually break up with them online, since you'll be in a photo tagged somewhere in another friend's feed and your former romantic history connection to exist.

Here are my 3 tips if you'd like to show up more authentically online:

1. Check in with your gut.

As a woman, you have more intuitive powers than you realize and you CAN USE THEM TO YOUR ADVANTAGE IN BUSINESS, so use them. Your intuition can steer you to the path of the greatest good for all.

2. Ask yourself, "Is this helping someone?"

You're a conscious individual. You want to create more good vibes in the world. Then ask yourself if what you're writing or sharing is actually contributing to elevating the energy around us. Trust me, I have had PLENTY of Taylor Swift moments where I could've really shown my scorn towards people in the ways I was wronged, but the thing that actually proved the best was acting in grace over revenge. 

Is what you're writing true to you (because in the end, all we can ever share is the truth from our own perspective) and will it help another soul?

3. Have you come through to the other side? 

Awhile back, I read an article from a writer who said that too many people publish too early. As in, they're still going through the life experience and they're already sharing about it before it's completely unfolded. Let me be clear that writing is an amazing tool to help you heal, but sharing it with the world while you're healing? Maybe not so much.

Can you come through with a valuable lesson, even in the midst of what you're going through, so that people can be emboldened by what you're going through? 

Here's an example:

The ever amazing IMO comedienne, Ali Wong, shared in an interview with Terry Gross, that when she had her miscarriage, she immediately started using it as material in her stand-up. Unfortunately, no one was laughing, and she couldn't understand why. She reached out to her colleague, Chris Rock (yep, THAT Chris Rock) who told her that, "It's too early, yo. Your audience is uncomfortable and don't feel that it's okay to laugh, because they can see that you're not really through it yet. When you've fully processed it for yourself, that's when they'll feel okay to laugh about it, too."

You've got to make sure you're okay with where you are, so your audience will feel okay, too.

How do these tips resonate with you? What have you learned in sharing online? Have you ever suffered from a "vulnerability hangover"?

Abraham Hicks Manifesting Exercise

Priss Enriquez

By now, you've probably heard me say that I'm not super "woo-woo," but I am definitely spiritual. That's why I've loved learning about Abraham Hicks, a team of divine entities channeled by Esther Hicks... (YouTube "Abraham Hicks" and you'll find epic meditations).

I know, how could I not be "woo" if I'm talking about "channeling"?

Well, I'll have to share the story when I was co-teaching a yoga class in San Diego with a woman who was channeling Kwan Yin, but that's a story for another time...

For today, I'll simply share with you an exercise from Esther & Jerry (her hubs) Hicks' book, The Law of Attraction, to bring you into alignment before action, so you can make your greatest dreams come true.

Step 1: Get 3 sheets of paper. 

I highly suggest you get a super cute journal you love to dive into the art of handwriting again... it'll slow you down, give you a moment to reflect, and simply encourage more presence.

Step 2: On one sheet, write down one thing you want.

Once you get the hang of this, you can repeat this exercise with more dreams you'd like to manifest. Abraham Hicks recommends that you initially select only three things you really want, because as you practice, you'll eventually be able to create simultaneously and continuously.

Step 3: Turn it over and write down the reasons you want this!

Doing this step will enhance what you want...

Step 4: On the next sheet, write down reasons you believe you will have what you want.

Doing this step will enhance the beliefs that you will have it, so you can truly receive it!

All of this leads to intentional deciding, because in every moment of your life, you'll always have a choice.

Choose what'll bring you life versus what'll detract your energy. 

Choose to live in love over fear.

I've always liked learning that everything, every action, every exchange and experience, is either an act of love or a call for love...

What are you calling in?

Make Your Story Beautiful — And Get Seen

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Aloha, !

We sat around the living room floor of the expansive house in my neighborhood, scattered around on couches and cushions with glasses of wine in our hands, discussing Jenny Lawson's book, Furiously Happy.

"Well, I didn't love it," one of the women said.

"Really?" I responded, completely shocked. "I was totally laughing out loud at so many points!"

Other women in our neighborhood book club chimed in, the room divisive in people who absolutely adored Lawson's book and others who couldn't get through it.

"Y'know, having gone through postpartum depression recently," I added, "I think I've been especially fascinated by people who can describe such a completely individualized experience, especially given the fact that I'm a writer and I find myself grappling with being able to express how I've felt."

I continued to share why I loved the book, and why I felt it was a compelling read. 

Finally, she looked at me from across the room and said, "Y'know, YOU should've narrated the book." 

I laughed.

"I could have totally listened to the whole thing if it came across the way that you're expressing it to me now."

That's when I realized that when you're passionate about something, sales is completely organic.

It doesn't have to feel pushy. 

It doesn't have to feel inauthentic or scripted.

It can be an experience where you come ALIVE in sharing the things you love and your ideal client is attracted to your energy, your perspective, and how you can help them transform their reality by being in the presence of yours.

Because...

I've TRIED approaching sales the way numerous coaches have told me.

I've tried doing it the way I've read in bestselling books.

I've tested different methods until it came back to the simple truth that you have to show up as authentically you.

I think it's vital to know all the tips, tools, and resources, but at the end of the day, your intention and alignment create much more of a profound and beneficial impact on your business and your life than any of the "sales scripts" you might be told to practice online.

Here's to boosting sales the way you want to,

Judy

Getting Real About Relationships

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Aloha, !

"Can I give you a piece of feedback?" I ask my husband.

"No," he says, solidly. 

I know why he's so adamant...

He continues to explain to me the crux of the online program he's building for teaching children's book and fiction authors. 

Finally, after a few minutes, he looks at me.

"Okay," he says. "Now I'm ready to hear your feedback, but I want to preface this by saying that in the past, whenever I've shared my ideas with you, you've always seemed not very supportive."

It's true. 

In my way of giving constructive criticism, I realized that all of my words sounded much more like simply criticism than anything else.

I put my hand on his chest. 

"I hear what you're saying," I explain to him. 

"And, I totally believe in you! I simply want you to charge an amount that honors your knowledge and your time, and where you have it now, I feel like you're pricing your services too low."

"Okay," he responds. "I hear you. I also want to act in integrity that I'm newer to this, and I know that my target audience isn't the same as yours — most of these people are writing a children's book as a passion project, not as a means to get rich. So, they likely don't have the resources to invest. I want to teach them differently than all the programs I signed up for, the ones that were such a waste of time and money, yet sold themselves at price points that really took advantage of people."

"That's amazing," I respond. "I really see your approach."

And there it is. A completely different interaction than we could have had, even a few months ago.

How have things changed? 

I went to a female entrepreneurial networking event here in Austin, and during the dinner, I met a woman who said that she leads a conscious couples program. 

I immediately wanted to learn more. 

At the time, my husband was out of town with our daughter, and I realized that something needed to shift substantially between us.

When my husband got back from his trip, I approached him about scheduling a session. I was hesitant, because we'd already tried a couples' counselor on Kauai, then another one when we got to ATX, to little avail. Yet, he agreed to it. 

Just yesterday as we were both working from home, he shared:

"In one session with Brave & Megan, we've gotten more out of all the people we've tried to see about our relationship."

It's absolutely true.

Here's the thing: 

Throughout your life, you MUST find what works for you. 

I believe in counseling and therapy wholeheartedly, but I also believe that sometimes, you need to find a different way.

What's beautiful about Brave & Megan's approach with The Alchemy of We, is the fact that there are two of them working with us at once. 

They're a couple and they have looked back at us to say, "Y'know what? What you've gone through is mirrored by what we've gone through."

That alone normalizes things. 

It removes the guilt and shame that there's something wrong with us, that we're completely abnormal or unable to be saved.

It's not to say that everyone will have a happy ending. 

But, it is to say that if you're willing to show up to do the work, things can be remarkably different.

What does any of this have to do with business-building? 

It's simple — no matter what stage of your business or how big or small you'd like the profits to be, you will always be dealing with relationships.

The relationships with clients.
The relationships with your team.
The relationships that are impacted by the work you do, both personally and professionally.

If you can't get your relationships right, your life suffers. Simply think about how crappy everything else feels in your life, when your homefront is falling apart.

That's how much relationships matter.

Here's the healthiest of relationships for you,

Judy

Make Your Story Beautiful- Writing

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Aloha, !
 

"Well, of course you'd be nervous," my Mindset Mentor said to me over the phone. 

"You've already pushed your boundaries beyond what was acceptable in all of your past, and now, you're looking to go even further!"


I sighed. 

In one single sentence, she precisely captured the struggle I'd been going through...

What I'd been journaling about, emailing my Higher Power about (yes, I created an email addy for my connection to spirituality, because it's one of the ways I stay connected), and meditating on.

And, I'm still not there yet.

But, I don't think that a lot of us give ourselves the compassion to take time to learn. 

Especially not if you're a recovering Type A perfectionist personality. (Ahem, me.)

We want to see epic results QUICKLY and, when social media makes it look so easy with people hosting big launches like "no big whoop", then we think there's something wrong with us if we're not doing the same.

Alrightie, here's the thing: building a business/brand/empire isn't a sprint, it's a marathon.

Or, here's a better analogy I prefer: 

Building a successful, lasting, and sustainable business isn't a buffet feast, where you walk away feeling kind of sick and not even really able to enjoy the savory bits or sweetness on your tongue, because you're overloaded.

Building the kind of business you can feel proud about, one that makes a positive impact and reflects your core values, is part of the slow food movement, like they live in Italy, where you're expected to enjoy the first course, the second, the main, the dessert, the apertif, the espresso... and you're expected to make connections along the way that matter.

Memories worth sharing, because you were present in the forming of them. 

Lastly, I've always been one of those people who hates reading instruction manuals. 

I'd rather dive right in and figure it out on my own, rather than spend the five minutes actually glancing over the guide, so that I won't be frustrated or struggling later on. 

When we first moved into our home, we got a few pieces of furniture from IKEA (this was a luxury, because we had been living on island for four years, so stores like Target and IKEA weren't around, and it was fun to make a house a home).

But, when we got back and I opened the box, I'd see the many pieces, then turn to Jules and give him the instruction booklet and say, "Here. Could you help?"

I'm learning now to temper my impatience and to enjoy the connections I'm forming along the way with one client after another.

I'm making mistakes, investing in some great areas of business, then realizing that hey, maybe that last place I spent money wasn't the most profitable.

We don't show the underbelly of entrepreneurialism, as though there's guilt or shame if we make mistakes. 

But y'know what? 

After battling with postpartum depression, then opening up about it and seeing HOW MANY OTHER WOMEN also go through it, but did not let others know when they were, then this whole guilt and shame bit is bullshit.

It only makes all of us feel crappy that we're not living up to some ridiculous standard. And, if I've learned anything from the beautiful community created online by Jess Lorimer (follow her on Facebook if you haven't yet), then I've learned that only by standing up for what you believe will you truly find your tribe.

If you're building a business or going after your dreams, you're doing something so BRAVE and BOLD. You deserve to be celebrated for all the vulnerable, authentic, purposeful, and unyielding ways you are showing up.

I celebrate you, !


Here's to being wild and free,


Judy

Finding the words to describe mental health.

meditation

I've been incredibly interested in mental health as of late, diving into any narratives about how people describe depression and isolation. (Case in point: I just finished the book, What Made Maddy Run: The Secret Struggles and Tragic Death of an All-American Teen, which I highly recommend, especially if you want to dive into what it's like to grow up in a social media obsessed culture.)

This diving into such literature and podcasts is likely because, as a writer, I'm startled by the fact that I don't have the words to describe the depths of postpartum depression that I experienced earlier this year.

And yet, I've noticed that the more I open up about this in my Facebook group, the more engagement I find with other like-minded members of my tribe who can't help but feel called to respond with their own experiences.

This is the kind of connection we're craving. This is the kind of belonging and authenticity we're searching for...

I can feel it coming. A sense that my purpose is unfolding in a greater way. And, it's a lot in part to Heather Gray, a former licensed therapist and now a mindset coach, who helped me understand that what I need now is to become acquainted with myself again.

It's not about grief or grieving the person I was, because yes, there was a time for that. But, in the midst of my becoming a mother and an entrepreneur, moving our home from an isle in the middle of the Pacific to the middle of a giant state like Texas, there's been a LOT of change.

A lot of catching up I'm aiming to do and a lot of things that I'm surprised don't mean the same to me as they used to.

This journey of entrepreneurship is an unfolding one, because we are unfolding ourselves, as well. To put all of our heart and mind into our endeavors means that there will be shifts and realizations, letting go and surrenders, aha moments and utter breakdowns.

There are plenty of things that I'm good at doing, from writing to connecting to pitching to podcasting, but what is it that I REALLY want right now? What makes me thrive NOW? What makes me come alive now that I'm the woman I've become?

That's what I'm figuring out. And, the way that I'll do that is placing one intentional step in front of another.

Let's see where we go.

The World Needs You Right Now!

 

Aloha !
 

What got you through your first half of your life, won't get you through your second...


That's a quote I heard in the book I've started listening to, Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living, by Shauna Niequest.

It's #109 in Amazon Books right now, with a forward from Brene Brown. 

So, there's obviously a hunger for precisely what she's talking about, this need for less rather than more.

And, it's the way that I'm moving forward with my business and my own life.... 

Discovering this quote, originally stated by American Friar Richard Rohr, "The skills that take you for the first half of your life are entirely unhelpful for the second" also invites a questioning, as Niequest muses, of whether those skills you learned in the first half did indeed serve you, or whether you were simply fumbling around to figure yourself out, and now you have an opportunity to get real like never before.

I've been having this feeling as of late, this utter need to redefine myself, because so much has happened in the latter half of my third decade on this planet, that I need this.

Perhaps it's also why I've been addicted to books about mental health lately, as I'm trying to figure out how to express what I went through during my postpartum depression.

As a writer, I find it a bit ungrounded not to have the words to really wrap my understanding around what I went through...

That's probably why I was also drawn to the book by ESPNw commentator, Kate Fagan, that I recently finished during my  trip to Cali: What Made Maddy Run: The Secret Struggles and Tragic Death of an All-American Teen.

The story details the suicide of a 19 year-old track athlete at Penn, and the rising and crushing consequences of living our lives on social media, like Instagram, as though we were a brand needing to cultivate a beautiful magazine over genuine connection.

The book came about after Fagan published an article in ESPNw, that became the most viewed article on the site, which was then made into a short video, that became the MOST WATCHED video EVER on ESPN.com. 

That's right, ESPN.com.

So again, there's a hunger there. 

A need to figure out what's happening to us, and how to be truly healthy in a world that's asking us to go faster, to go harder, to grow bigger, when perhaps, what some of us really want is to have those heartfelt conversations over wine with good friends, wishing the night would never end.

We NEED authenticity. More, than ever before. The problem is, so few of us are getting it.

Fagan expresses the fact that we have NO IDEA what impact social media is having on our psyche for the long-term. That already, we're all exhibiting signs of this crisis of consciousness, of feeling like we need to show up superficially to be accepted and comparing our inner lives to someone else's highlight reel on social media, that we're all falling into greater states of depression, anxiety, and possibly even hopelessness.

I'm passionate about all of this — being healthy mentally. Removing the shame from asking for help. 

Being authentic in a way where you're empowered to thrive, and knowing how to straddle that line between being open versus oversharing or worse, expecting someone else to fix your problems.

You've likely seen so many ads for coaches who are having five figure launches, who make success look so easy... 

But the truth is, and let me say it again, THE TRUTH IS, success takes commitment. 

It takes hard work. 

It takes moxie and a willingness to show up in a bigger way than you believe capable of.

And, it requires such REAL BRAVERY, because maybe you need to stand up and say, "Hey Society, your definition of success doesn't work for me. Success for me is living up in the mountains with a fresh cup of coffee and my children running naked through the meadows."

If you need encouragement with learning how to be more authentic, in your life, or in your business, just hit reply. This is my jam. It lights me UP to see you tap into your heroine's journey and your unique story.

Being authentic is the only way that you'll truly connect with others in a way that is meaningful and uplifting. 

It's the only way you can differentiate yourself in the online world or in anything you do, because there is only and ever will be, one of you

Go, be you.

Please, be you.

The world NEEDS YOU RIGHT NOW.

More than ever before.

Here's to being wild and free,

Judy



 

You're entitled to the privacy of your own thoughts.

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Aloha, !
 

When I was growing up, my parents never allowed us to have any of our doors closed.

The only door in the house that was allowed to be closed AND locked was my grandmother's, out or traditional Chinese deference for the fact that she was the matriarch in the family.

Yet, simultaneously, my parents never held healthy boundaries — they fought ceaselessly in front of us, asked us (directly and implied) to navigate the waters of their relationship), and help mitigate the challenges of being immigrants in America.

It left me without any feelings that privacy was okay.


It wasn't until decades later  that a boyfriend at the time finally said to me, "Y'know, you're entitled to the privacy of your own thoughts."

"What?" I asked.

"You don't have to tell me everything, just the same as I don't have to tell you everything. Some things, we can keep to ourselves."

Now, that had never – EVER – occurred to me.

I thought that in order to have a healthy relationship of any sort, you had to be a completely open book or that...

You had to divulge until there was no more to share.

You had to answer every question that was asked of you.

You had to do what was asked.

But, that's not healthy.

Instead, it's healthy to acknowledge that you can have an inner world that's all your own. One where you're allowed to explore fantasies or dive into desires that maybe only you have to know about.

It's okay to have a space of your own. 

In fact, Virginia Woolf espoused it with feminist literature by writing a whole narrative about having A Room of One's Own.

When it comes to sharing authentically online, I don't tout "oversharing."

I know that once you post something online, it pretty much lives in infamy, so you better be darn sure that what you say is content that you're okay having out there forever.

(In the days before I realized the power of the Internet, I did a photoshoot with a friend where I posed in suggestive clothing and for the life of me, I cannot get those photos deleted, so... if you google me, yes, you'll find the countless pieces I've published or the yoga videos on YouTube with tens of thousands of views, but you might find that, too. #confession)

There are even entire articles about how when you "break up" with someone, you never actually break up with them online, since you'll be in a photo tagged somewhere in another friend's feed and your former romantic history connection to exist.

Here are my 3 suggestions if you want to share more authentically online:

  • Check in with your gut.

As a woman, you have more intuitive powers than you realize and you CAN USE THEM TO YOUR ADVANTAGE IN BUSINESS, so use them. Your intuition can steer you to the path of the greatest good for all.

  • Ask yourself, "Is this helping someone?"

You're a conscious individual. You want to create more good vibes in the world. Then ask yourself if what you're writing or sharing is actually contributing to elevating the energy around us. Trust me, I have had PLENTY of Taylor Swift moments where I could've really shown my scorn towards people in the ways I was wronged, but the thing that actually proved the best was acting in grace over revenge. 

Is what you're writing true to you (because in the end, all we can ever share is the truth from our own perspective) and will it help another soul?

  • Have you come through to the other side? 

Awhile back, I read an article from a writer who said that too many people publish too early. As in, they're still going through the life experience and they're already sharing about it before it's completely unfolded. Let me be clear that writing is an amazing tool to help you heal, but sharing it with the world while you're healing? Maybe not so much.

Can you come through with a valuable lesson, even in the midst of what you're going through, so that people can be emboldened by what you're going through? 

Here's an example: the ever amazing IMO comedienne, Ali Wong, shared in an interview with Terry Gross, that when she had her miscarriage, she immediately started using it as material in her stand-up. Unfortunately, no one was laughing, and she couldn't understand why. She reached out to her colleague, Chris Rock (yep, THAT Chris Rock) who told her that, "It's too early, yo. Your audience is uncomfortable and don't feel that it's okay to laugh, because they can see that you're not really through it yet. When you've fully processed it for yourself, that's when they'll feel okay to laugh about it, too."

You've got to make sure you're okay with where you are, so your audience will feel okay, too.

Mahalo,
Judy

Make Your Story Beautiful: BIG NEWS

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Aloha !
 

I knew that things were going south.


Even though I had been a stellar student in math for 12 years, by the time I got to "logic" in 7th grade, I was screwed.

Mr. Kravitz called on me, his hand resting on the projector. 

Every day, I'd watch him write in a dry-erase marker on the magnified lens, and every day, I would struggle with not knowing anything he was talking about... not the x factors, not the symbols he would use, and I still can't help but cringe every time I hear the word "tautology."

He waited for me to answer his math question, hand poised to write my response.

I dwindled in size, my shoulders collapsing, the silence of 29 pairs of ears waiting for me to answer amplifying in volume.

Finally, he called on someone else. 

And, when report cards came that semester, I got a C with a star, which was his way of saying that I had failed, but he felt that anyone who at least gave his logic class a try, didn't deserve anything less than a "C."

That's when I realized that math was no longer my thing. English was.

Much like that day in math, I'm doing another pivot!


It's become abundantly clear that in order for clients to feel they're getting real results, you've got to get super specific in what you're offering.

In my own business-building journey, I've wanted to offer MORE, because I felt like I had to prove my importance in some way.

That's no longer the case. I know I'm exemplary at what I do, and to that end, I want to say...

From here on out, I'm focused on two specific services: 

  1. Getting you published!
  2. Getting you booked on podcast interviews!

If you really want to rock it, you can check out my signature, Six Figure Storytelling Program that combines both my offerings in a strategic way. 

Remember, you're the #BossBabe, so you can do what you want with your business. Take all the smartest of advice into consideration, do a gut check, and follow your own Light. You always know the way.

Alrightie, here's to exciting pivots in your business, too! 
 

Mahalo,
Judy

P.S. If you're serious about getting on podcast interviews, I'm featuring an incredible opportunity in my Facebook group right now.

How Can Getting Published Lead to a Book Deal?

For anyone who knows me, you'll know that I absolutely believe in magic. 

The magic of serendipity. Synchronicity. Believing beyond... and allowing for yourself to receive it.

Thanks to Amanda Montell for posting this video in a writing Facebook group I'm in, where I watched it today and reveled in reassurances that yes, pursuing your passion can lead you to places greater than you can imagine.

By getting published, you get seen — not only by your ideal clients, but also by potential book publishers and agents!

And, that it can happen with the power of women.

Why Do I Love Podcasts?

Podcast Research

According to my Stitcher app, I have over 1035 hours of listening — that doesn't include audiobooks or stations on Audible OR the countless CDs I listened to before podcasting became a thing.

I love podcasting... and it might be for the pure fact that I am a multi-tasking fiend, so that I can do other things while listening and being immersed in knowledge and great storytelling. The worlds that open up are incredible!

But, I also want to dive in to why podcasting is great for your business, if you're curious as to why you even need to pitch yourself to be a podcast guest in the first place.

The 2017 Edison Research report on podcasting is compelling:

  • 60% of the population — that's an estimated 168 million people — are familiar with the term "podcasting" and in fact, 40% of the American population (an estimated 112 million people) have listened to podcasts.
  • Every month, 67 million people listen to podcasts!
    • Currently, podcast listeners skew slightly more male, at 56% versus 44%.
    • Monthly podcast listeners are primarily 18-34 (44%) or 35-54 (33%).
    • Monthly podcast listeners are also mostly affluent and highly educated, with 45% of listeners earning anywhere between $75K annually to $150K annually or more.
  • Every WEEK, there are an estimated 42 million people listening to podcasts!
    • Weekly podcast listeners are even more devoted, spending up to 5 hours a week actively listening! In fact, they listen to an average of FIVE PODCASTS PER WEEK and are subscribed to an average of six.

And, when it comes to listening behavior, podcasters love instant gratification, with 77% listening immediately.

Best of all, podcast listeners are incredibly engaged, where 42% listen to the entire episode and 44% listen to most of the episode. Compare this to the teeny tiny conversion numbers you're supposed to celebrate when it comes to getting subscribers to open one of your emails or, more importantly, take action by clicking through! MailChimp reports a dismal 3% on average depending on your industry...

Let's take it another step further — if you want to talk about powerful word-of-mouth social sharing, 64% of active podcast listeners are also active on social media at least several times a day!

Podcasting continues to rise from 21-24% year after year. This particular report shares that there are huge underserved potential audiences for new forms of spoken word media and that the "audience is king", so the opportunities for your message to stand out to your ideal client is substantial.

And, your episode continues to live on in organic search results, further building yourself as an expert in your field. When showing up as a featured guest on a relevant podcast, you suddenly reach thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of new ears, ready to receive what you have to offer.

So... have you been featured on a podcast lately? Is there something holding you back? Are you ready to rock it in live interviews?

If you're curious about how we can work together to get you booked — and how to come off amazingly when you're being recorded — connect with me today.

Using "prompts" for engagement? Nope, you don't need them.

Writing Prompts

In a lot of the current info out there on social media about how to create greater engagement in your Facebook groups, email lists, or posts is to write a prompt.

In other words, they're suggesting you ask a question to get the conversation going.

I've tried this. It hasn't worked.

What HAS worked?

Me. Just writing. Openly and honestly about my human experience, my triumphs and challenges, my most vulnerable moments (even the ones that bring guilt and shame).

Because it turns out, that connection with depth, when you're open and vulnerable, leads others to automatically be inclined to become open and vulnerable with you.

Case in point? 

I opened up in my Facebook Group recently about how I've tried so hard to make my marriage work, and I'm not sure if it will. 

I shared things in this post that I had kept hidden for some time, because I was afraid that people would judge me as failing.

I worried, before clicking "post," that maybe people wouldn't view me as the professional I want to be seen as, yet I keep encouraging my clients to foster that genuine and authentic relationship with their tribe, so if I'm going to lead the front, then I have to do by example.

What happened? 

Comment after comment after comment thanking me for sharing. Telling me they'd gone through something similar. Texts and private emails offering support. All these women inspired by me, because of my truths.

I never got this kind of engagement with any prompt question I was taught to ask.

Throughout my life, friends have always been surprised by how quickly people open up to me. At the store. Waiting in line. At a press retreat. Strangers divulge intimate details about their lives and even say beforehand, "I never usually tell anyone about this, but..."

And I know it's because I invite them in with my own vulnerability.

This is how we form bonds we remember. 

This is how we make the most meaningful impression.

This is why clients come back to me year after year, even if there are long gaps (one of them after 10 years!), because I'm still the one they want to work with when the need arises.

Go. Be you. Be all of you. And watch as the world responds with more attention. In a time of falsehoods represented by the highlight reels online, your tribe needs you more than ever to be real.

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You could hire a copywriter, but it's not the same as what I do.

copywriter

I used to be a copywriter. In fact, a very good one. I've done it since I was interning as a sophomore in college, so it's been about 20-something years.

But, there's a difference between what a copywriter does and what I do. Because there's more to compelling writing than simply pretty prose. 

In order to differentiate yourself in an online space, you've GOT to know how to connect with your ideal clients. And, what ultimately fosters connection in the digital and real worlds? 

Emotions.

Your story has to connect on a profound level, where your ideal client reads your narrative and says, "Ohmigoodness, is she living my life? How does she know me so well??"

When I started writing for MindBodyGreen, I'd get emails from readers all around the world who said, "Thank you for giving me the words to express what I didn't know how to say."

To be so powerfully impacted by a stranger's words to the point that you want to reach out to them to express gratitude? That's a big effin' deal, especially when you consider how passive and distant today's society can be.

So yes, you can hire a professional copywriter to make your website and marketing sound pretty, but is going to connect in such a way that people actively want to reach out to you? 

Is there smart strategy behind the story, too? I want to make sure you're not simply communicating for vanity's sake, or because you know you have to, but because what you're saying is purposeful and unbelievably heartfelt that you'll form meaningful relationships with the people you serve... for life.

The next time you're contemplating hiring a writer, ask them:

  • Can you help capture my essence?
  • Can you intuitively feel into what I want to express, even if I may not have the clarity to share what it is I want quite yet? 
  • Can you truly understand my ideal client's pain points and challenges? 
  • Do you know what my tribe desperately wants in their greatest hopes?
  • How much "marketing speak" will you infuse versus words I would actually use?

Let me know what your experiences with writers have been! I'd love to know what you've loved and what you wished was different!

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