Can you really have your cake and eat it too?

In the modern world that we live in, with so many amazing opportunities, it’s so easy to overeat at the success buffet, biting off more than you can chew and then being overwhelmed and unsatisfied.

Social media shows us everyone’s wins and amazing accomplishments. In magazines we read all about how celebs have it all: looks, successful acting careers, hot husbands and kids, etc… If you’re an ambitious cookie like myself, all of this may create some internal pressure to start saying yes to any and all opportunities.

That’s normally where it all goes ‘tits up’ as my British broker friends would say. In my last blog entry with Diane Daly, I loved her honest tip: “My advice to working moms or working women who are thinking of starting/expanding their family is that you can have it all – just not all at once.”

Her advice also got me thinking about a few of my favorite topics: goals, choices, balance and of course opportunities. How do you measure the right quantities of each to bake your perfect success story?

 

If you’re going to have your cake and eat it too, you first need to know exactly what kind of cake you’re baking. Get crystal clear on what you want for all parts of your life: your career, friends, family, fitness, health – what are all the ingredients?

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Being crystal clear on what you want will help you to stay focused on your own path and stop you from comparing yourself to others. It will also be way easier to figure out what opportunities to say yes too and which ones to let go.

Here are a few questions to help you get clear and figure out your unique life cake:

What is your definition of success?

What kind of work-life-balance are you looking for?

What are your personal and career goals?

How many hours a week do you want to devote to work, fitness, family etc?

Knowing the answer to these questions will help you seek out specific companies or career opportunities that will help you land the balance you’re looking for.

Try to get as specific as possible and take time regularly to evaluate where you are, where you want to be and adjust accordingly. Remember you can have your cake and eat it too by making choices and saying yes to opportunities that are in line with your ultimate career and life goals.

Now I’d love to hear from you: are you struggling to figure out what the right steps are to take for your career? What’s making it difficult for you? Have you cracked the code to striking the perfect balance between your life and career? Tell me your insights in the comments below. Your question/comment/answer could help someone else!

Positive or negative: It’s your choice.

A few months ago my skin was totally acting up. As in, “Hello again, teenage acne!” I had been to a few dermatologists, spent $400 on prescriptions, and still the nasty intruders kept showing up to have a little party on my face.

Fed up, I turned to Google and discovered much more than I had been looking for. I found this thought-provoking sentence that got me thinking about much more than just clear skin.

“Let’s get real: Strategy really means nothing if you don’t have the mindset to back it up.”

That came from “The Love Vitamin,” a blog by Tracy Raftl, who teaches women how to heal their skin naturally.

Bingo, Tracy. You can have all the plans and tools in the world and come up with all the necessary action steps. But if you’re not in the right frame of mind, you won’t achieve a thing. There are also studies that suggest about 70 to 80 percent of our daily thoughts are negative.

But how on earth do you sustain a positive mindset that’s also focused?

Here are my top three tools to combat negativity and achieve anything you dream of:

1.   Meditate. Taking only 10 minutes a day to be quiet and center and ground yourself works wonders to move you to a headspace conducive to success.
2.   Be grateful. Rather than think about what you don’t have, focus on what you do have and appreciate those gems. “Trade your expectations for appreciation, and your whole world changes instantly.” – Tony Robbins
3.   Stop talking smack. Lose the gossip and hurtful talk about others. Instead, praise people more for their achievements. When you give compliments and you see how much people appreciate them, you, too, will instantly feel happier and more positive.



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Remember: “ We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle

Oh, and my skin? It’s much better now, thanks to a few supplements recommended by “The Love Vitamin”: more water and sleep.

Now I’d love to here from you: what are your top tips to combat negativity? Leave your comments below!
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Soul Sister Scoop: Q & A with My Pilates with Purpose Partner-in-crime.

Today we feature a very special lady: Kristen Scanlon. Kristen is an attorney who started her own business, specializing in Alcoholic Beverages, Food & Entertainment Licensing, Zoning, Permitting and Land Use Development. She’s also my Pilates with Purpose partner-in-crime. I first met Kristen in my Pilates classes a few years back. We quickly realized that we had a lot in common and were both trying to grow our respective businesses. In September 2014 we started the philanthropic networking event: Pilates with Purpose.

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Today Kristen’s shares some of her wins and challenges of working for herself with us.
 
Hanneke: What was the scariest part about leaving the formal law firm setting?
Kristen: It’s a tie between 1) not knowing how or when I’d get clients and 2) realizing that every decision now rose and fell on me. It was very nerve-racking to go out on my own and led to a lot of sleepless nights trying to figure it all out at once!
 
H: What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned about working for yourself?
K: I’ve been able to gain clarity on my strengths and weaknesses really quickly. There isn’t a ton of room for ignoring weaknesses! For instance, I’ve gotten a lot better at time management and organizing my day because I have to. There is no choice. I have to fit it all in and make my schedule work for me, for my clients and for the growth of my business. It’s different from working in a firm and being told where to be and what to do all the time.
 
H: What’s been the most rewarding part of working for yourself?
K: Successfully completing a task or approval process for a client and knowing I made it happen, not a partner above me in a big firm. Also, being able to build my own relationships directly with clients and the community because a lot of what I do depends on the input of the community.
 
H: Where do you see your business in 5 years?
K: I like that meme that says: “5 year plan: not looking at price tags when I’m shopping.” haha. Maybe with a few employees, I’m really not sure to be honest. I just take it one day at a time with the hopes that the decisions I make have potential to turn into something greater in the future. It’s kind of like a long game of chess. But ultimately I want to be successful in the industry that I’m in.
 
H: What advice would you like to give others who are thinking of starting their own business? K: Be very clear on the mission of your business. Never be too proud to accept help when it’s offered. Make sure you’ve got the personality and intestinal fortitude to really take a stab at it alone.

 


JOIN THE SOUL SISTER SERIES:
Go from sole sister and flying solo in business to a supported soul sister in my Soul Sister Series: A mastermind for sole proprietors & entrepreneurs.

This series is perfect for you if you’re a passionate business lady who absolutely love what you do, but lately you’ve been feeling:

  • Isolated and overwhelmed and wish you had someone to bounce ideas off of.
  • You’ve hit a ceiling and can’t seem to figure out how to take your business to that next level
  • You feel like you’re missing something and you’re stuck.

A little background about me: I am Hanneke – a certified Life Coach and I am here to help you grow your business with my Soul Sister Series. My Mastermind series has been designed to help you grow your business and take it to the next level. Before we get there:

I used to work as a money broker for 4 years before I started my own Pilates with Hanneke business in 2011. I quickly grew it to an award winning brand. Today I still teach Pilates and also have 6 workout videos available for download online, co-founded Pilates with Purpose, the philanthropic networking event to empower women in business and run my own coaching practice.

I have also worked with different coaches to help me grow and succeed and take regular continuing education courses to serve my clients at the highest level.

Now I’m here to help you grow and succeed in your business with my Soul Sister Series.

Who is this mastermind for:
Women entrepreneurs who have been in business for 2 + years and want to grow their business to the next level.

Benefits of joining this Mastermind Group:

  • Help grow your business with expert advice
  • Support from like-minded women who are going through the same wins and challenges as yourself
  • Find the inspiration and motivation you need to grow your business.
  • Gain perspective and find new ways to take your business to the next level.
  • Accountability partners at your fingertips ready to serve and help you overcome any challenge you may have.

If you’re interested in participating in a program like this, please take this quick 2min survey here. Also feel free to contact me at hannekeantonelli@gmail.com if you have any questions, comments or feedback. Thank you! Please note that if you don’t live in Boston or these times don’t work for you – I will also be offering this mastermind via Skype! Email me if you’re interested.

New 4 part video series: How to find your perfect next position

I completely understand how hard and confusing it can be when you’re not happy in your current situation and don’t really know what to look for next. I was in this very situation when I left my Wall Street job and started to teach Pilates. You see – the first time around as Pilates instructor I panicked and quickly jumped back into an institutional sales position. My very first week at that job, I just knew I had made a mistake. I’d like to help you avoid these mistakes.

In my new 4 part video series I take you through 4 quick tips on how to get your dream job, without wasting time or making silly career miss steps like I did. You’ll get one tip per video, once per month.

Get your first tip now:

Here’s what you can look forward to in my newsletters every Tuesday to help you navigate career & life transitions:
1st & 3rd Tuesday of the month: A blog filled with tips & action steps.
2nd Tuesday of the month: A short video with more tips & advice.
4th Tuesday of the month: The Soul Sister Scoop – a Q & A to help inspire you to create your dream career & life.

Have you ever been in this career changing boat? How did you go about in finding your next position? Your comment can help & inspire someone else! Join the conversation in the comments below.

As always, if this was helpful or if you have a friend who could benefit from these tips, be sure to forward and share it with them on the social buttons below.

ps – Are you busy growing your career & family? Join me on May 7th at the Boston Harbor Hotel. I’ll be sitting on a panel with other experts at Tufts Medical Center & Boston Magazine’s “It’s your time baby! Starting a family, while growing a career” event for more tips on how to navigate your new and exciting challenge. Sign up here.

xo Hanneke
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Heads or Tails?

Heads or tails?

I recently had to make a tough decision: Do I teach more Pilates classes? Literally in just one week I had four teaching opportunities show up in my inbox. And I was so tempted to say yes to all of them.

In the past I would have been very torn and might have said yes simply out of fear of missing out on something good. Later I would have regretted my decision or realized I took on too much. This would have led to dealing with the next set of emotions of failing, letting people down, or being viewed as unreliable and flaky.

Although I was flattered by all the opportunities, it ended up being quite easy to decide which ones to pursue and which to let go of.

Here’s how I did it:


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1. Clarity. At the beginning of the year I set very strategic goals for myself. As you know, I’m trying to ramp up my life-coaching business, and as a result I’ve set clear guidelines of when and how much I should be teaching Pilates. Anything beyond than those guidelines is a big “no thank you!”

2. Abundance. I believe opportunities are a little like buses: There will always be another one. No, it won’t be the same one, but if you really want something and work for it, other ventures will come your way. So if you let this one go and realize later you should have taken it, manifest a new possibility for yourself. This also pulls you away from the “what if I make a mistake?” mindset.

3. Trusting my gut. If an opportunity doesn’t excite me, I don’t go for it. Yes, initially I was thrilled by the variety, but then as time went by, the excitement for some of them wore off. I immediately scratched them off my list and moved on. I literally set them free for someone else to have, knowing that the right opportunity will come my way when it’s ready.

Now I’d like to hear from you. How do you decide whether an opportunity is right for you? Or perhaps you struggle to know which is the best one? What’s making it hard to decide? Tell me in the comments below.

Introducing the Soul Sister Series: The scoop from women who succeeded in career & life transitions.

I’m so super stoked about today’s entry. It’s been in the works for months, and today it’s here and ready for you. Starting this month I’ll be running this series every last Tuesday of the month.

As you know, my main focus as a life coach is to support you while you navigate career and life transitions. I am here to help you build a career that lines up with your ultimate definition of success so you can take action and start your own business or get that next big promotion.

As extra inspiration, I’m launching the Soul Sister Series, a new monthly Q&A feature with amazing women who have already gone through these transitions. I hope their success stories will motivate you to start achieving your own.


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We kick off the series with Kristin Quinn, who writes the Boston-based blog Misadventures in Mommyhood, which has led to TV appearances. In addition to Kristin’s interesting thoughts, we thought we’d make it even more fun and give you a chance to win a copy of Kristin’s book. So make sure you read all the way to the end to see how you can win.

For those of you considering starting your own blog or improving the one you already have, Kristin is going to give us a few tips and honest truths about running your own business as a blogger.

Hanneke: What made you decide to start your blog?
Kristin: About a month into nursing my first child, I started writing down all of the funny thoughts that would come to me in the middle of the night. That “journal” turned into my first-ever blog entry, “Tales From the Boob.”

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H: Did you ever think you’d turn it into your full-time job?
K: Not right off the bat. It was more of a way to document my navigation through new mommyhood. I didn’t want to forget a thing, and I wanted other new moms to know they weren’t alone. I have a background in baby-product marketing, and as time went on, I realized I could make a business out of it!

H: What’s the best tip you’d give someone who’s wanting to start a blog?
K: Have something interesting to say and then say it. It’s really as simple as that. People want to read about real-life experiences from your own voice. And don’t hold back! The entertainment value comes from the brutal honesty.

H: What’s been the hardest thing about working for yourself?
K: Knowing when to put down my work. When I had a job in an office, the boundaries were there. The hours were set in stone. Now there is no end time. My work is always right there, staring me in the face and waiting for me to finish. It doesn’t matter if it’s Saturday at 3 p.m. or Monday at 9 a.m. There are deadlines and new opportunities always popping up.

H: What’s been you biggest accomplishment so far?
K: My children, 100 percent. I put everything into raising them. I want to provide the right balance of letting them figure things out on their own and guiding them the best I can. It’s the hardest job I’ve ever had – and the best. The second biggest accomplishment I would say is my TV appearances lately. I never, ever thought I would gain that type of recognition. It feels really good to have someone trust you to represent their product or brand on TV to a larger audience.

To enter and stand a chance to win Kristin’s book – we’d like to hear from you: Are you toying with the idea of starting a blog? What’s the main thing that’s stopping you from doing it? Tell us in the comment section below to be entered and be sure to follow Kristin’s blog here. Winners will be announced on Facebook on Wednesday April 1st so head on over!

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