Reflecting on the No Spend week

Finances

So tomorrow brings the close to my first No Spend Week as inspired by Melissa McGagh and her No Spend Year!

Goodness! I thought it would be super duper easy, and not at all a challenge.

While on the whole, it wasn’t really a big deal, it definitely made some days more difficult than others.

The tough bit

Since starting up as an online health and wellness coach , D and I have been spending a lot more time going to various cafes in town. Which has been GREAT. It gets us both out of the house, provides a stimulating environment, and helps us separate work-life from home-life.

The trouble is, who walks into a cafe and buys nothing? No one!
Who walks into a cafe and has the will power to saying no to their home-made-deliciously-yummy-oh-so-tempting cakes!? No one!

So we either went in, and ordered water which was cheeky to say the least, or I spent a lot more time working at home. And when it came to the cake bit… I had to use a lot of will power, and ended up baking way more than usual.

On the flip side,

doing this No Spend Week has been fun as it’s given D and I the want to be more flexible with our schedules.

While we normally don’t go out during the week as D is up at 5am (and I’m slowly starting to repair my sleep pattern to join him), we’ve managed to sneak in a few mid-week dates that we likely wouldn’t have done before – but because they were free and we were keen to stay on track and not be tempted to walk to GoGos for some yummy cocktails… we went!

That free event was a motivational talk about an Autistic Person’s journey through life, and how they have succeeded not despite being autistic but BECAUSE they are so.

It was incredibly inspiring, and a great way to spend the evening.

The takeaway

So I’ve gone through the bank statements…. and I don’t see anything.

What do you mean? You avoided 3 hot beverages, the urge to shop and go get a leather jacket AND a pair of jeans, you said no to the yummy-delicious cakes, you didn’t go to GoGos for cocktails…. You’ve saved tons this week!

Only… I didn’t, not really. I didn’t save anything because I didn’t put any money aside to be put into savings. I’ve just left it in my bank, and put off these things to spend money on until next week.

The adjustment

It’s time I get real.

If I want to reach my financial goals then I have to start making some real changes – not just putting off those small purchases for a week; that won’t make a real difference.

I’ve spoken to many people about it, and I’ve done quite a bit of research and here’s what I’ve found and what I plan to do:

  1. Have a weekly budget
  2. Work with cash only – let’s you see the money physically depleting
  3. When it’s gone, it’s gone!
  4. MEAL PLAN, MEAL PLAN, MEAL PLAN.
  5. While I’m going through and recycling/getting rid of a lot of our stuff, see what I can sell, and take the time to put it up.
  6. Whatever is leftover at the end of the week goes STRAIGHT into a savings account
  7. Have automatic withdrawals from your main account to your various savings
  8. Put up a board of what you’re saving for so you don’t lose sight

And most importantly of all, Remember:

Buying something new, yes, will give you a thrill; but it will not bring you happiness, not long lasting happiness any way. So ask yourself before you purchase, is it a NEED or is it a WANT?

 

I’m dying to hear what you’ve done to help you save x

Happy saving.

Instagram: sl_hodder

 

Lessons from the Dirt Road

life lessons, Self-Love

A few weeks ago, I was given the opportunity to drive David and I through some pretty muddy trails on the quad. This would have been my first experience driving the quad outside of a backyard enclosure and I was honestly terrified that I’d flip the thing or lose control – I know, a bit dramatic, but I WAS worried!

Luckily, I breathed myself through the anxiety, told myself to get a grip, and actually had the best time splashing through massive puddles and feeling the back and forth rock as we went over big bumps (or small hills??).

Since then, I’ve gone on another ride only this time as the passenger.

Again, I was nervous… probably moreso than last time. It’s odd because I never thought this would make me uncomfortable, but my head was just spinning with everything that could go wrong:

  • the quad could tip and trap my leg
  • I could flip off the back going up a hill
  • I could flip forward going down a hill
  • The metal bit I was holding onto for dear life could come undone and I could go flying

…. honestly I sometimes wonder if I should make horror films as my brain tends to jump to these possibilities BEFORE the possibility of fun and exhilleration.

Again, thankfully, I managed to breathe myself through the anxiety and relaxed into.

Here’s what I learnt (some good parallels to life)

  1. I prefer being in the driver’s seat. I like the feeling of control and choosing which bump to attack, which to avoid
  2. If you relax into it, going over the bump doesn’t have such an impact
  3. It’s going to get muddy, you can either avoid the puddles and get dirty, or you can speed it up and blast through them enjoying the mess!
  4. Travel with someone who talks to you when you’re nervous, but helps push you outside of your comfort zone
  5. Sometimes it’s nice to let someone else take the wheel so you can explore your surroundings from a different perspective
  6. The road might be the same, but the seeing it in the dark makes it unknown territory

All in all I’d say it was a huge success! Though I haven’t grown used to it enough to no longer feel the butterflies building, but I’ve grown consistently stronger in my ability to control my anxiety and breathe through my dramatic and paranoid thoughts. Progress, not perfection !
xo Sarah-Lynn

Let’s make it sustainable

Boss Lady, DIY, Fitness, Freedom, health, mindfulness, passion, Self-Love

Beginning a new program

Starting anything new brings about a surge of emotions. From nervous to excited, to doubtful,  apprehensive, questioning, eager… I can go through each of these emotions within a split second!!

One thing I’ve learned to be SO important whenever I try something new is to introduce it into my current routine so it fits seamlessly making the transition period less agonizing.

As a creature of habit I know that any big changes need to be introduced in a way that makes going about my day easy, without too much hassle of trying to fit it in.

For instance, when I started working out 7 years ago – It was an on again off again process (I thought I would just magically feel motivated to go to the gym after a long day classes because I had decided I wanted to get fit – HA!) It wasn’t until I had made plans with a friend to meet them every second day for a workout session then dinner plans that I became consistent. The plan was two tiered. I had someone holding me accountable, and I was rewarded with the dinner after a good sweat session!

Find a way to reward yourself

One thing I’ve realised, is I am very goal oriented. If I know that there’s something I’m working for, I will give it my all, but for general reasons, or general betterment and a theoretical betterment in health.. it’s not enough to keep me on track! shock! I know!

So I’ve devised a plan to help me stay motivated, and engaged — yes I pay myself to workout… what of it!? It works! And I get cute leggings and better health… it’s a win on all fronts!

But when even that’s not enough….

Make it easy for yourself! When I decided in June to do an at-home workout program (BEST decision ever!!) I had to find ways to introduce it into my routine so it became second nature.

Here’s what I do:

  1. I plan the time for every workout – put it in my phone and once it’s in the phone, it’s a commitment!
  2. I pick out my outfit the day before (I love cute workout clothes, so this is always exciting!)
  3. I have a playlist ready!
  4. I have a pump up song from my workout playlist wake me up and act as my alarm – that way when it went off, I was signaling to my brain that it’s time to get up and MOVE!
  5. I have all equipment ready and waiting
  6. I cross off a calendar when I workout which means I get 2.00 per workout towards my active wear fund :D:D
  7. I post on social media to help keep me accountable
  8. I reward myself with my FAVOURITE breakfast of champions ❤ (post coming soon!)

Sounds easy, but it HELPS! It’s not meant to be earth shattering changes… those are hardly ever sustainable!

But making a commitment of 1 hour to include my warm up, and my workout, every 3 days, then slowly increasing until I’m at 6 days a week – that’s nothing! I can do that 😀

Making it sustainable is key!

One thing I’ve learned is that if I expect great big changes, I have to take my time, do small things CONSISTENTLY in ways that don’t feel like I’m changing my entire routine.

Because let’s face it, If I want results I’ve never had before, I have to do things I’ve never done before, and for that to happen, I need to prepare my routine to let those actions happen consistently and over a long time period.

Do you have any tips for how you ensure you can stick to your plan?

 

 

 

Don’t Forget the Basics

Boss Lady, DIY, Freedom, health, mindfulness, Nutrition, passion, Self-Love

Since becoming an at home boss-lady I’ve found myself slipping on really important things.

For instance, yesterday I had breakfast, a small snack, then NOTHING until after 8pm. WHAAAAAAAAAAAAATTT!!!??

Now I mean not to be dramatic – I eat… a lot! and consistently. And so to go more than a few hours without eating is not only alarming but so gotta change!

Rules to being an at home boss-lady (version 1)

  1. Still meal prep – you’re going to be busy so if you meal prep, you’ve still got a nutritious, yummy meal for lunch!
  2. Don’t wake up and IMMEDIATELY check your phone – big NONO! Find a routine that works for you – at the moment I love waking up, stretching, then reading for a bit
  3. Don’t just sit there….. all… day! I know you’re busy girl, but you gotta move!
  4. GO outside. You have the ability to work from anywhere! Don’t get house-tied and stay in at all times
  5. Drink more and more and more water. Drink lots. Don’t stop Drinking
  6. Monitor the screen time. Just because your phone’s blowing up doesn’t mean you need to be glued to it 24/7
  7. Start each day with intent: Give yourself a priority to do list and get those done FIRST. Then take a break. If you feel like it or you have the time, then tackle the rest. Otherwise you’ll never stop, and that’s NOT the point!
  8. If your man has a 2 hour lunch break and is sitting at a cafe reading… thank yourself for taking this very courageous step, and go spend some time with that handsome stud ❤

What about you? Any other thoughts or rules you have in place for remembering to stay focused and productive?? I’d love to hear them 😀

 

Emotionally Charged

Fitness, Freedom, health, mindfulness, passion, Self-Love, Uncategorized

‘Will she come back?’

Immediately tears fell from my eyes as my worst nightmare was realised.

Ever since I can remember I’ve had people telling me that there are two sides of me;
1- the fun, outgoing, confident, empowering, loving, HAPPY side,
2- the quiet, reserved, closed off, cold, distant, unapproachable side.

This week I’ve slowly turned into the latter Sarah-Lynn.

Now I’m going to be honest, I’ve been to therapy to talk to someone about this, because in a particularly bad relationship I was convinced that I was ill: that I was mentally unstable and in need of serious help and medication.

The diagnosis: I’m human! I’m going to experience different moods, feelings, and emotions!

The truth

It’s taken a long time to reclaim my life from that bad relationship, and  an even longer time to rebuild my self-awareness.

Humans are blessed with the double-edged sword of being able to feel numerous emotions at any one time – sometimes even experience more than one emotion at once!

emotional range

The Emotions:

Depending on which research you go with, there are 7 human emotions that are considered ‘root emotions’  (some say 4, 6, 8… it’s hard to get to a consensus on something so personal)

  1. Joy/happiness
  2. Anger
  3. Surprise
  4. Trust
  5. Grief
  6. Fear
  7. Love

By looking at this list I’m reminded that as a complex being I’m bound to have a range of emotions, and I’m going to exhibit an array of them as circumstances around me develop and change.

Regaining Control

The thing is, emotions are subjective. You may feel strongly about something that someone else does not; You may feel the need to cry after Dunkirk in a packed movie theatre because you’re overcome by the grief, and pride, and pain, and glory; You might become overwhelmed by a never ending to-do list and a deadline that’s racing closer.

You’re going to hit rocky points where things just seem unbearable.

You’re going to face hardship, and heartbreak, and grief, and fear, and uncertainty, and embarrassment; you’re going to feel it all.

And that’s okay.

It’s okay.

It’s okay to feel emotion.

It’s okay to feel so happy you want to cry,

So excited you have butterflies,

So in love you can’t stop smiling

It’s okay.

The lesson

The lesson here, is that emotions are internal, and we control them. We choose to feel an emotion, and let it shape our perceived reality.

So feel your emotions, but don’t let them take control.

If you’re feeling stressed take a breath, do something that makes you refocus your energy, smile even though you feel fake and goofy, and talk to someone or journal it out.

You are stronger than your emotions.

They do not control you, they help you perceive the world – the key word is HELP.

If your emotions are not helping you, you need to choose a different emotion so you can move forward.

It’s not about ignoring emotions that bring us pain.

It’s about acknowledging them, feeling into them (time appropriate), thanking them for reminding you of what you stand for, and letting go.

It’s only then we can become stronger and realise that you have the power to change any bad day into a good day.