Thoughtful Thursday

Fear. Dreams. Opportunity.

Setting goals can sometimes feel like a chore and sometimes we will find everything else to do (procrastinate) so that we don’t have to actually set them.  Why we do this?  I could get into the psychology behind it but ultimately, many of us get comfortable in our discomfort and don’t want to disrupt the flow that’s not serving us well.  So we do nothing.

photo credit: Jasmina Photography

But let me ask you something.  How does it feel when you accomplish a goal?  Especially one that you had in the back of your mind but never really made a plan for it to happen?  That happened to me last year when I was asked to be a dancer in Dancing with the Easter Seals Stars.  Turns out that this event was like one of the highlights of my life.  I know, sounds dramatic, but it was an experience of a lifetime!

I have always been a fan of the TV show Dancing with the Stars and I ALWAYS felt like I wanted to be a dancer.  However, I will have to admit, gracefulness and Jen Slay are not words that are often put in the same sentence.  I remember a time when I was in highschool when I was walking through Centerspot (a place where all the grade 12s/Seniors hung out) and I just fell.  No reason.  I just fell.  I had tripped over my own feet.  I can still hear the laughter and screams of shock the seniors made towards me – a ninth grader.  I can actually laugh about it 25yrs later.  I remember another time – actually a multitude of times – where I will be walking with my boys and I will stumble.  No reason.  I just trip myself.  My eldest tells me I walk too fast but I’m a woman with a mission (most days) and have somewhere to be!  So, like I wrote, gracefulness is not a word to describe me.  But I would dream of being a dancer on this show.  Literally, I’d dream it and visualize it and feel it.  Then – IT HAPPENED.

One day I got a call from the organizer, Stace, of the Easter Seals fundraiser called Dancing with the Easter Seals Stars.  Easter Seals is a charity that works with physically disabled children to help them experience the joys of life that most of us able bodied people take for granted.  Here’s a link – check it out:  But back to the story.  Stace said “Jen, we think you’d make a fabulous dancer and a great addition to the cast for this event we’re putting on.”  Now, I can see why she’d say that.  I’m a great actress.  Most people THINK that I’m well poised and graceful.  Only my immediate family knows the truth.  Well, and now all of you!  But anyways,  I immediately started to laugh when Stace said this to me because I know that I stumble and fall with no provocation.  Then Stace, likely sensing my hesitation and hearing my laughter, said, “I’m serious”.   I stopped laughing.   I had to give this some thought.  It was one thing to know that I’m a little clumsy but a whole other thing to provide evidence to a group of people that I didn’t know that I am not as “poised” as I let on to be.  However, Stace is persistent – which is why she is good at what she does.  And I agreed to be part of the show!

Can I just say that this was the BEST DECISION OF MY LIFE.

For three months I was trained by a professional dancer.  I learned grace and poise.  I trained hard and developed a deeper appreciation for what I was capable of doing.  I learned to trust my coach.  I relearned that with a goal in mind, hard work, trust, and belief, ANYTHING is possible.   I became my own biggest fan because I was pretty damn proud of myself for pulling off a waltz and a Chacha – WITHOUT FALLING OR TRIPPING!  And when I danced, it was magical.  I’ve attached the link to the home video my son took of me dancing.  It was something that I will always treasure.

So you may be asking – What does any of this have to do with goals?

Well, here’s the thing.  I am committed to helping others while uplifting myself and providing individuals with tools and strategies to empower themselves.  That’s who I am.  It’s what I do.  But I want us all to remember a few things.  Setting goals is more than just figuring out what you want and creating a plan to make it happen.  It is also about being aware of the opportunities as they present themselves.  It is about taking a pause when situations come up to think about how the situation could further you along and potentially meet a goal/dream you have tucked away in your brain.  It is about dreaming.  My experience with Dancing with the Easter Seals Stars allowed me to help a worthy cause while fulfilling a dream that I had tucked away in the back of my brain.   It was a win-win.  But I almost missed it because my immediate reaction was to say no out of fear of looking silly.

What are you worried about/scared of/apprehensive about that is making you say no to opportunities that could potentially enrich your life in ways you can’t even imagine?  You may want to rethink your position and actually go for it.  It may change your life.

While you’re thinking, this blog is also to ask you to support this year’s Dancing with the Easter Seals Stars on September 29, 2017.  I will be there – not dancing though – but I’d love to spend the evening with you!  The poster is below.  Check it out and get your tickets today!  If you are not able to make it then please share the poster.  We want this to be the best year yet and we need your help to make that a reality.

If you have any trouble getting through for tickets let me know and I’ll hook you up with the organizer – Stace.  She’s great!  See you on the 29th!

Love and belief in you always,

Jen

Be sure to SUBSCRIBE to the YouTube channel.  Fun stuff happening this fall!

If you liked what you’ve read and it has helped you in some way please like, share, and comment below.  If you didn’t like what you read – share it anyway – someone needs to read this today.

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Remember to subscribe!  We have a Finesse private Facebook group where we interact daily to encourage and support one another.  Please join us:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/FinesseYourLife/

Slay Your Day!

P.S. I wrote a book called Finesse Your Life – Mind, Body and Spirit AND the Finesse Your Life Journal is also available!  Check it out on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca!  Paperback and Kindle versions available.  For an autographed copy please go to the website under the “shop” tab.

https://www.amazon.com/Finesse-Your-Life-Mind-Spirit/dp/1548117080/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499282890&sr=8-1&keywords=Finesse+Your+Life

 
Want to hang out with me 365 days a year?  Check out the Finesse Your Life Journal.  This journal will help you to focus on gratitude, see yourself in a positive light, and allow you to totally and completely express yourself with no judgement.  https://www.amazon.com/Finesse-Your-Life-Journal-Jennifer/dp/197431720X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1504891247&sr=8-1&keywords=finesse+your+life+journal
P.P.S I was a featured author in Dreaming Big Being Bold and made the International Best Selling Author status.  Message me at info@jenslay.com to get your copy today!
http://ow.ly/ipjk30eUSXU
Dreaming Big Being Bold 3: Inspiring Stories From Visionaries, Trailblazers & Change Makers by [Morand, Paula, Craig, Victoria]

Visit Jen on:

Twitter:  www.twitter.com/JenSlayvision

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/jenslayvisionary

Instagram:  www.instagram.com/coachjenslay

Email:  info@jenslay.com

Linkedin:  https://ca.linkedin.com/in/jenslay

website:  www.jenslay.com

Youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeP-4bcglXNL2_FVoCr0PdQ

This is MY experience

In a time of racial tension in the USA and around the world, when I get into conversations about race and discrimination well-meaning friends and acquaintances will often say to me – “Jen, when I see you, I don’t see color.  When I see you I just see you and love you for who you are”   When I hear that, I get it.  I understand.  They are trying to be inclusive and they’re trying to say that they love me the person – my spirit, my mind – and they don’t care about the physical appearance.  So I am thankful because I know their intention.  But let me be clear, when someone says that they only see me and they do not see color, they are squashing that piece of me that ultimately makes me who I am.  They are not actually seeing me.

Being a black woman means that I have the unique issues, challenges and gifts every woman has in addition to this whole other world of being visibly different from the majority that live in my world.

Photo credit: Your Story Photography

 

As a child, I felt like I fit nowhere.  I was rambunctious and mouthy – full of energy and really, really smart.  Due to my vivacious personality, I did not fit in with my well-mannered black girl friends and I always felt like I did not quite fit in with my white girl friends.  And so, I lived in my own world.  Luckily, I had parents who always told me that I was beautiful, smart and could do anything with my life if I worked hard and studied hard.  They taught me the art of discipline and focus.  As a result, these characteristics made me a strong woman.

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As a black girl growing up in a place where I was often the only visible minority in my class and 1 of 4 in my school of 200+ – when images of black people came up on the screen on movie day I felt like all eyes were on me.  When we discussed issues pertaining to the black community in history, like slavery, it felt like all eyes were on me.  And when black people were treated unfairly in the world, like when Rodney King was beaten in the streets by police, it felt like all eyes were on me.  It’s a feeling that really cannot be described by any one word.

I’ve never been militant.  I’ve never marched anywhere, but I have always known that being black is part of my identity.  It makes me empathetic to unfair treatment.  It makes me understand the person who feels left out or like they do not fit in.  It makes me understand the importance of having pride for where you come from and the unique cultural practices that comes with that.  It makes me understand the youth whose parents don’t get what it’s like to grow up in a multicultural community because they grew up back home.  It also allows me to understand the fears of parents raising their kids in a multi-cultural community because they grew up in a community where the village literally raised the child.

photo credit: jasminaphotography.com

I get what it’s like to be different and have to navigate teenage years not looking like everyone else.  BUT this is my experience as a black girl and as a black woman.  Not everyone’s experience is the same.  So, I’m not simply a woman.  You cannot know me and not understand that my blackness, my black experience makes me who I am.  It has shaped me.

So when you see me, if you say you do not see color you are essentially saying you do not see – me.

NEVER be afraid to speak your truth or share what’s in your heart.  Be respectful, be authentic and come from a place or love.  You got this.

Be sure to SUBSCRIBE to the YouTube channel.  Fun stuff happening this fall!

If you liked what you’ve read and it has helped you in some way please like, share, and comment below.  If you didn’t like what you read – share it anyway – someone needs to read this today.

jen-pic

Remember to subscribe!  We have a Finesse private Facebook group where we interact daily to encourage and support one another.  Please join us:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/FinesseYourLife/

Slay Your Day!

P.P.S. I wrote a book called Finesse Your Life – Mind, Body and Spirit AND the Finesse Your Life Journal is also available!  Check it out on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca!  Paperback and Kindle versions available.  For an autographed copy please go to the website under the “shop” tab.

https://www.amazon.com/Finesse-Your-Life-Mind-Spirit/dp/1548117080/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499282890&sr=8-1&keywords=Finesse+Your+Life

Visit Jen on:

Twitter:  www.twitter.com/JenSlayvision

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/jenslayvisionary

Instagram:  www.instagram.com/coachjenslay

Email:  info@jenslay.com

Linkedin:  https://ca.linkedin.com/in/jenslay

website:  www.jenslay.com

Youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeP-4bcglXNL2_FVoCr0PdQ

Hope in the Face of Hopelessness Part II

Last week I wrote about the similarities and differences between a person with hope and a person who felt hopeless.  Quick recap.  Both the person with hope and the person who feels hopeless experience the three F’s – Fear, frustration and failure.   The main difference between the two is that the person with hope puts action behind theirbelief/hope.  A person who is feeling hopeless does not or feels they cannot make changes to their situation.  I must remind you, the law of physics says that change is inevitable – nothing can remain the same.  The only constant in life is change.  If you can start with that belief, that can be your first step to building the hope muscle.

Please do not think that I am shaming anyone or blaming anyone for their situation.  That is not my intent.  My intent here is to show you that one of the main differences between a person with hope and the person who feels hopeless is that belief/hope in action.  There are MANY reasons as to why a person may be feeling hopeless and feels they are not able to get out of their situation.  I’m not minimizing that many people who are feeling hopeless have a number of other things going on in their lives that feed into the hopelessness like mental health concerns for example.  However, I am saying that with the right supports and by implementing F.A.D. you can strengthen that hope muscle.

What is F.A.D.?

Focus on the positive

Adopt an attitude of gratitude

Daily Affirmations

Focus on the Positive.  When I say focus on the positive, what goes through your mind?  Most people say it means focusing on the good and not thinking about the not so good.  However, one thing that is important to note, is that acknowledging the negative is not a “bad thing”.  Actually, no value judgement needs to be placed on it.  When something bad or negative happens to us, in order to effectively move past the incident/issue we have to feel the emotions as they are, acknowledge the feeling and then move on.  We don’t stay there.  Focusing on the positive means focusing on what you have understanding and accepting where you are and developing a plan to move forward.

 

The other day I woke up thinking “Oh, man I have so much I have to do today” and I quickly corrected myself and said “Oh man, I get to do so much today”.  Perspective is everything!  I get that there are situations that happen in life that seem unfair like the death of a loved one for example.  How do you find the positive in that?  Especially if the loved one is a child or someone who has passed suddenly and tragically?  How do we reframe that?  My suggestion is to feel the sadness, acknowledge that it’s not fair but don’t stay in the trenches.  What did you learn from having that relationship?  What did you love about knowing the person?  What can you do to honor that relationship?  This is how you focus on the positive.  Focus on what you have and not on what you don’t have.

Adopt an attitude of gratitude.  An exercise that goes hand in hand with focusing on the positive is adopting an attitude of gratitude.  I would encourage that every day before you start your day, you look in the mirror and tell yourself three things that you are grateful for.  Ensure to do the same thing in the evening before bed.  When we focus on what we have as opposed to what we don’t have, something happens in our brains and we subconsciously work to maintain or get more of that which makes us happy.  Essentially, when you exercise gratitude the universe works to bring you more.  The result is abundance.  Again, unfortunate events in life can and do happen, but if we can be grateful in the face of those times, we are setting ourselves up for more positive things to happen in our lives.

Daily Affirmations.  Some people actually laugh at the idea of saying daily affirmations because they may think it’s silly or feels weird to affirm daily what you want.  I say – do it anyway.  It can’t hurt!  Research has shown that when we say daily affirmations, it enhances our mood which helps us to accomplish more and helps to increase our confidence levels.  There is also research that shows that people who use positive words and surround themselves with positive messages increase their muscle mass while those who speak negatively of themselves show a decrease in their muscle mass and are more fatigued.  Interesting right?  However, positive affirmations by themselves, in isolation, is not recommended.  Putting action behind the words is important.  Putting yourself on a plan to make the affirmations your genetic truth is vital.  If I say “I am a great motivational speaker” but I do not practice speaking, I read pure negativity and essentially do nothing to make myself great I am setting myself up for disappointment.  If you say “I’m healthy and strong” but you do not do any exercise, eat only fast food, and surround yourself with negativity – that affirmation is likely not going to work because you are not putting positive and purposeful action behind it.  Please, do not misunderstand me – I’m not trying to condemn anyone – but I am trying to set you up to win.  Put positive and purposeful action behind your affirmation and watch it happen.

So how do you find hope when you feel hopeless?  You recognize that one of the main differences between a person with hope and  a person who feels hopeless is that the person with hope is putting purposeful action behind their belief in self and ability.  A person with hope will also implement F.A.D. – Focus on the positive; Adopt an attitude of gratitude; and say Daily affirmations.  Putting F.A.D. into action will help build your hope muscle.  Try it.  Let me know how it goes.

In addition, if we make an effort to remember those top great moments in our lives then that will help foster putting a smile on your face.  Here are my top ten.  I hope they put a smile on your face.

If you liked what you’ve read and it has helped you in some way please like, share, and comment below.  If you didn’t like what you read – share it anyway – someone needs to read this today.

jen-pic

Remember to subscribe!  We have a Finesse private Facebook group where we interact daily to encourage and support one another.  Please join us:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/FinesseYourLife/

Slay Your Day!

P.P.S. I wrote a book called Finesse Your Life – Mind, Body and Spirit!  Check it out on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca!  Paperback and Kindle versions available.  For an autographed copy please go to the website under the “shop” tab.

https://www.amazon.com/Finesse-Your-Life-Mind-Spirit/dp/1548117080/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499282890&sr=8-1&keywords=Finesse+Your+Life

Visit Jen on:

Twitter:  www.twitter.com/JenSlayvision

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/jenslayvisionary

Instagram:  www.instagram.com/coachjenslay

Email:  info@jenslay.com

Linkedin:  https://ca.linkedin.com/in/jenslay

website:  www.jenslay.com

Youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeP-4bcglXNL2_FVoCr0PdQ

Hope in the Face of Hopelessness

It can be absolutely amazing to work with people with the intent of helping to improve their quality of life through the manner in which they think.  It can also be absolutely exhausting – lol.  I’ve spent nearly two decades helping people take a look at their situation and try to help them view it in a different light.  I’ve tried to really encourage people and show people that what they see in front of them right now does not have to be what they see in front of them six months from now.  What I have found is that sometimes people are not ready for change for whatever reason – it could be because they are comfortable in their discomfort, they don’t know a different way or, most often, they don’t believe their situation can change.  They have this deep rooted sense of hopelessness.

Image result for hope pics

Last week I had an opportunity to speak at an event about hope in the face of hopelessness.  I provided the individuals in my breakout session with three key ways to grow their hope muscle.  However, before I share that with you, I want you to know that in my experience there is only one main difference between a person with hope and a person who is feeling hopeless.  Let me explain in the form of the three F’s.

Both the person with hope and the person who feels hopeless feel FEAR.  In other words, there is not a person on the planet that does not experience that feeling of fear at some point in their lives.  It could be fear of failure, fear of embarrassment, fear of change – no matter what the cause of the fear we all experience it.  BUT the person with hope has a belief that the situation will change and will feel the fear and will press forward.  The person who feels hopeless, may also feel the situation can change but they’ve allowed the fear to paralyze them and feel as though they can’t move forward.

Both the person with hope and the person who feels hopeless feels FRUSTRATION.  We tend to feel frustrated when things do not go our way.  We feel especially frustrated when we take chances or risks and they do not succeed or turn out the way we imagined.  We tend to feel frustrated when people disappoint us and do not follow through with what they say they’re going to do.  We tend to feel frustrated when we find ourselves in the same situation over and over again and know in our hearts that things need to change but we don’t know how to change them.  In other words, we all feel frustration sometimes.  BUT the person with hope has a belief that the situation will change and eventually something will have to give and the frustration will subside.  They will look for opportunities to help create the change.  The person who feels hopeless may also feel the situation can change but they are so entrenched in the feelings of frustration, it has stopped them from believing anything else is possible.

Both the person with hope and the person who feels hopeless experiences FAILURE.  A common definition of failure is that we do not get the expected result we want.  That is a simple definition.  Did you know that sometimes that can be a blessing though?  Did you know that sometimes when things don’t pan out the way we expect them to there is a lesson to be learned to help propel us even further?  At some point, we all have experienced some level of failure in our lives.  BUT the person with hope has the belief that they can learn from the situation and try again.  The person who feels hopeless sees failure as yet another acknowledgement that they are not good enough, or confirmation that they are not able to succeed.

So what is the common denominator here?  Both the person with hope and the person who feels hopeless experience, fear, frustration and failure.  Both have a belief that things could possibly change.  The main difference is that the person with hope puts action behind the belief/hope.  A person who is feeling hopeless does not or feels they cannot make changes to their situation.  I must remind you, the law of physics says that change is inevitable – nothing can remain the same.  The only constant in life is change.  If you can start with that belief, that can be your first step to building the hope muscle.

Image result for hope pics

Please do not think that I am shaming anyone or blaming anyone for their situation.  That is not my intent.  My intent here is to show you that the one of the main differences between a person with hope and the person who feels hopeless is that belief/hope in action.  There are MANY reasons as to why a person may be feeling hopeless and feels they are not able to get out of their situation.  I’m not minimizing that many people who are feeling hopeless have a number of other things going on in their lives that feed into the hopelessness like mental health concerns for example.  However, I am saying that with the right supports and by implementing F.A.D. you can strengthen that hope muscle.

What is F.A.D.?

Focus on the positive

Adopt an attitude of gratitude

Daily Affirmations

Before this blog post turns into a book I’m going to stop here.  HOWEVER, if you come back next week, I will expand on F.A.D. and show you exactly what you need to do in order to grow the hope muscle and turn from someone who feels hopeless to a person with hope.  BUT if you really need expansion on this RIGHT NOW contact me and I will elaborate.  Y’all know I love you!  You got this!

Believing in you,

J

I know that our mood plays a huge role in our feelings of hope and hopelessness so please check out this video on ten ways to help enhance your mood.

 

If you liked what you’ve read and it has helped you in some way please like, share, and comment below.  If you didn’t like what you read – share it anyway – someone needs to read this today.

jen-pic

Remember to subscribe!  We have a Finesse private Facebook group where we interact daily to encourage and support one another.  Please join us:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/FinesseYourLife/

Slay Your Day!

P.P.S. I wrote a book called Finesse Your Life – Mind, Body and Spirit!  Check it out on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca!  Paperback and Kindle versions available.  For an autographed copy please go to the website under the “shop” tab.

https://www.amazon.com/Finesse-Your-Life-Mind-Spirit/dp/1548117080/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499282890&sr=8-1&keywords=Finesse+Your+Life

Visit Jen on:

Twitter:  www.twitter.com/JenSlayvision

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/jenslayvisionary

Instagram:  www.instagram.com/coachjenslay

Email:  info@jenslay.com

Linkedin:  https://ca.linkedin.com/in/jenslay

website:  www.jenslay.com

Youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeP-4bcglXNL2_FVoCr0PdQ

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Real Deal in Learning to Finesse Your Life

Finesse – to be skillful in managing a sensitive situation.  What situation could be more sensitive than your life?  We only have the one life and a friend of mine said to me once – Life is short but the longest thing we’ll ever do.  Better enjoy it right?  That has forever stuck with me.  Life does seem to quickly go by.  Especially as I get older, time seems to be flying!  I mean, it will be Christmas in less than five months!  It seems like we just celebrated Christmas a few weeks ago!

 

In all seriousness though, here’s my thing, it is possible to live life all haphazard like, meaning, it is possible to just live and let things happen as they may.  But that is like playing poker.  If you’re lucky then you may get the result you want and if you’re unlucky then you’ll get some results you don’t want.  All in all, you just take things as they come.  I mean, you can live life really laissez fair if you want to but I choose to live life with purpose and direction.  There are pros and cons to both but as you have likely guessed, I’m for team finessing your life.

 

Like anything in life, I believe that there is a time and a place for letting things happen vs creating a plan, executing the plan, learning from the execution and then living off the fruits.  I know I make this seem simple, and in reality it is fairly simple but that does not mean it is easy.  There is an art to the creation and execution of the plan.  Let me share with you four steps that I think are vital for this to happen:

  1. Determine what you want the end result to be.  What is your objective?  In the end, who do you want impacted?  The answers to these questions may change along the way, but to go in knowing the answers to these questions will at least give you a blue print to what you are doing and will allow you to accomplish step #2.
  2. Build your team. Nothing is done in isolation.  As much as we want to admire the people who say I built this empire/accomplished this goal all by myself – it’s not true.  I guarantee you that there was help along the way.  Whether that help was simply in support and motivation or actual hands in the pot helping to stir, someone helped along the way.  When you are building your team, remember to choose members that are strong where you are weak, who are not afraid to tell you the truth, and who operate in integrity.
  3. Be courageous. With accomplishing any goal, you will need to be ok with taking risks.  I’m not talking about having to take HUGE risks, but risks that are going to push you out of your comfort zone.  Risks that will make you stretch.  Be smart, but be courageous.
  4. Most importantly believe. This is your dream.  You have to believe it.  Your belief and determination to accomplish the dream will be what rallies your troops.  This belief will be what gets you going when you feel like quitting.  You have to believe that your dream is possible and then go for it!

What I’ve shared with you are the beginning steps to the creation and execution of the plan.  Believe me when I say there is more to each of these steps.  However, these four steps or strategies will get you started.  Know what you want, bring on people to help accomplish what you want, be willing to take risks to get what you want, and most importantly believe in what you want.  This is how you Finesse Your Life.  You are strategic in the moves you make to accomplish what you want.  and carefully/purposefully manage the moving parts to propel you forward.  You got this!

I believe in you,

J

P.S. Having an accountability partner or a coach can help you to accomplish the above.  Check out this video re. why a coach is important and how to select a good one!

If you liked what you’ve read and it has helped you in some way please like, share, and comment below.  If you didn’t like what you read – share it anyway – someone needs to read this today.

jen-pic

Remember to subscribe!  We have a Finesse private Facebook group where we interact daily to encourage and support one another.  Please join us:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/FinesseYourLife/

Slay Your Day!

P.P.S. I wrote a book called Finesse Your Life – Mind, Body and Spirit!  Check it out on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca!  Paperback and Kindle versions available.  For an autographed copy please go to the website under the “shop” tab.

https://www.amazon.com/Finesse-Your-Life-Mind-Spirit/dp/1548117080/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499282890&sr=8-1&keywords=Finesse+Your+Life

Visit Jen on:

Twitter:  www.twitter.com/JenSlayvision

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/jenslayvisionary

Instagram:  www.instagram.com/coachjenslay

Email:  info@jenslay.com

Linkedin:  https://ca.linkedin.com/in/jenslay

website:  www.jenslay.com

Youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeP-4bcglXNL2_FVoCr0PdQ

 

Mental Health – Helping to Lessen the Stigma

Over the last few years mental health awareness has been on the rise with the hope that the more we talk about it the less stigma there is on the issue.  With big companies like Bell Canada making their initiatives nationwide it certainly is helping.

Mental Health is one of the if not the most judged condition that I know of.  Having worked in the social service field for nearly twenty years, I will admit that when I was doing front line child protection, my least favorite cases were those that involved impaired mental health.  Let me explain.  I am a really good negotiator and reasoner.  I can go into a very heated situation and help to calm it down and come to a shared understanding.  I am pretty gifted with that.  But when you are trying to reason with someone who does not have the capacity to reason and a child’s well being is at stake it can sometimes feel that you are forced to punish one of the victims in the situation – the parent/caregiver.  I have to tell you, it was not the greatest feeling for anyone involved.

Impaired mental health is like a disease.  The stigma should be no different then if someone was diagnosed with cancer, the flu, or dermatitis.  There are treatments but no cure for those conditions right?  Well, depression, bi-polar disorder and anxiety are also conditions where there are treatments but no cures.  The effects can be equally as devastating.

The brain is a very complex organ.  Doctors and scientists are making huge strides everyday and the research is showing that many mental health diagnoses are due to chemical imbalances within the brain.  It is still not fully understood but as mentioned, doctors and scientists are learning more and more everyday.

As I mentioned above, big companies such as Bell have started initiatives in increase awareness, but it’s not only the big companies that are doing things to help educate and make the public aware.  There are people locally like my friend, Nicolle Stevenson, who are doing things right here in our own backyard to help  make a difference for people impacted by impaired mental health.

On August 13, 2017 Nicolle’s event, The MAMA (Mothers Advocating Mental Awareness) Project will be hosting an event to support, educate and encourage mamas who are on a journey to mental wellness.  Nicolle has advised that mental illness will affect 1 in 3 Canadians in their lifetime and the MAMA project was created to walk alongside those who need a hand along the way.  I will be a speaker at this event and I’m honored to be there to help.

It will be a great day.  Please plan to join us if you are in the London, ON area.  If you are not in the area, consider making a donation whether it be in volunteering information, supporting the members in the private group, or making a donation.  https://www.facebook.com/theMAMAprojectcanada/

See you there!  In the meantime, check out the video that Nicolle and I created with the help of Andrew Stephenson from Shake Media where we talk about our top ten tips to help take care of your mental wellness.

 

 

Believing in you always,

Jen

#SlayYourDay

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Slay Your Day!

P.S. I wrote a book called Finesse Your Life – Mind, Body and Spirit!  Check it out on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca!  Paperback and Kindle versions available.  For an autographed copy please go to the website under the “shop” tab.

https://www.amazon.com/Finesse-Your-Life-Mind-Spirit/dp/1548117080/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499282890&sr=8-1&keywords=Finesse+Your+Life

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Living Your Truth

When you hear the phrase “Live your truth” what does that mean to you?  For me, it means being your authentic self no matter what other people may think, say, or do.  But what happens when you don’t really know who you are anymore?  What happens when you have lived your life being who you are expected to be and doing for others that you no longer know who you actually are?  It’s weird to think that you don’t know yourself but so many of us do just that – walk around like we got it all together when in actuality we don’t even know who we are!

The other day I asked a client, what are things that you like to do?  What puts a smile on your face?  After some thought the response was – “I don’t know”.  See, she had spent so much time doing and achieving that the time to simply just be was lost resulting in her no longer knowing the basics of herself.  And she’s not alone.  I remember a friend of mine asking me the same question a while back and I could not answer him.  I could not say what I enjoyed doing.  You would think it would be an easy question to answer and the answer would come as easy as it is to breathe air.  But no, not for all of us.  So while we think we are being authentic and living in our truth, we are actually living in the truths of others because we don’t know what our own truths are.  Hmmmm…

This is not to shame anyone or point fingers.  In fact, the point of this is to get you thinking about who you are and who you want to be.  My personal strength is helping people to ask themselves the hard questions to get them to face the reality of who they are.  Then I help and support them to continue to be who they are if they choose, but more often their choice is that I  help and support them to become who they want to be – a person of purpose, a person who serves, a person who is genuinely happy from the inside.  Please keep in mind that feeling happy and being happy are two different things.  I help you to BE happy.  It’s a journey but it’s a good journey to be on.

Now, in any journey that we go on, it is so important to equip ourselves with the right travel tools.  If you’re going on a hike maybe you need sunscreen?  Maybe you need snacks and drinks?  Maybe you need a map?  Well, when we are going on a journey of self-discovery many of us will need some support and it is really important to know where that support is coming from.  I’m an advocate of coaches and counselors.  I believe they can help guide and navigate through some of the rough patches whether it be in our life, our business, or whatever else you may need some support to achieve the level of success that you want. To find the right coach/counselor for you, there are some questions that you should ask and maybe even some research to do.  Check out the video below to understand why a coach is valuable and more importantly, what to look for in the right coach for you!

Thank you to Jenna Goodhand for joining me to help you determine why you may need a coach and what to look for in a coach.

Enjoy the video and leave a comment.  We would love to know your thoughts and read any suggestions you may have that may help someone reading this today.

 

If you liked what you’ve read and it has helped you in some way please like, share, and comment below.  If you didn’t like what you read – share it anyway – someone needs to read this today.

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Slay Your Day!

Believing in you,

Jen

P.S. I wrote a book called Finesse Your Life – Mind, Body and Spirit!  Check it out on Amazon.com!  Paperback and Kindle versions available.

https://www.amazon.com/Finesse-Your-Life-Mind-Spirit/dp/1548117080/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499282890&sr=8-1&keywords=Finesse+Your+Life

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Renovations of the Mind

When we think about renovations, we think about taking something as it is and renewing it, updating it, or changing it to make it newer, fresher, and more appealing right?  Well, if you’ve been watching me for a while, I had a series of posts about my recent experience with renovating my basement.  The whole reason I wanted to renovate it was to have a really cool, safe, and warm space for my boys to play and hang out.  A ‘boy-cave’!  What we found when renovations started was surprising.  When walls came down, there was evidence of major past issues.  It delayed the process by weeks.  It ended up costing more than expected and there were times where I literally wanted to scream.  But you know what?  Now, the basement is a BEAUTIFUL space and I’m so thankful we went through it.  In my posts I would equate my renovation process to the renovation of our minds.  Check them out.

Basement Renovations

Posted by Jennifer Slay on Saturday, November 26, 2016

 

Renovating our minds is necessary sometimes.  We have to change the old thoughts for new thoughts so that we can grow.

Renovations part two

Posted by Jennifer Slay on Sunday, December 4, 2016

 

Sometimes when we go through changing our mindset, we are blessed with amazing blessings but it can take a bit more work than expected.  It could end up being a bit more work than expected and we may want to give up.  But keep the goal in the forefront of your mind.  Keep the vision in front of you.  You got this!

 

https://www.facebook.com/jenslayvisionary/videos/375774596107770/

So you are making progress with your renovations.  You are starting to feel good and you are finding that you are more energized and thinking more clear and then BOOM!  Hit with a roadblock.  Something has come up that you were not expecting and you have to get through it.  Keep the goal and vision in the forefront of your mind.  Take care of yourself and keep moving forward.

https://www.facebook.com/jenslayvisionary/videos/392347794450450/

 

The inconveniences, the extra cost, the craziness WAS ALL WORTH IT!  We now have a beautiful space and have come to the finish line.  When we are in the process of renovating our minds it is VERY likely that we are going to encounter issues we were not planning to come across.  Unexpected pitfalls happen but don’t let it stop you!  Persevere.  The end result is AMAZING.

SLAY your day!  Believe in you.

If you liked what you’ve read and it has helped you in some way please like, share, and comment below.  If you didn’t like what you read – share it anyway – someone needs to read this today.

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Jen

 

Christmas – Fun! or STRESS!

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Christmas is the time of year where we see jovial Santas, Christmas bells, and people talk about Christmas cheer.  For kids they make their Christmas lists (well adults do too!) and have you noticed how children suddenly become little angels because they know Santa is checking his list twice for who is naughty and who is nice?  BUT to me, Christmas had become a time of stress.  A time where I felt pressure to buy gifts to give to not only my family, but also my friends, and colleagues and acquaintances.  It became a truly expensive, draining, and stressful time of year and I know, I’m not alone in this feeling.  So, I personally, took the pressure off of myself and stopped buying gifts for everyone under the sun.  I now buy gifts for the children in my family and my parents.  I do this because I cannot help but watch the fun kids have opening presents on Christmas day BUT the gifts are not extravagant and likely something they need (keep reading, you will see why).  For everyone else in my life they will get a smile, hug and maybe a card.  Don’t get me wrong, I am a generous person and I give people gifts throughout the year when I WANT to bless them with something, and I figure if you are in my life and you are going to get upset because you did not receive a gift from me defriend me if you must!

www.jasminaphotography.com
www.jasminaphotography.com

Why do I sound Scroogish?  I’m really not, but here’s the thing.  Christmas to me, is supposed to be a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ who was born to be a savior to us all.  His birth marks a very significant event.  It’s God’s gift to us.  So for me, to celebrate the significance of this event by incurring debt, stressing about who will get what and – let’s just be real – keeping up with the Jones’ , is dishonoring the significance of His birth and actually creating a situation where I am going to contribute to bad behaviors – primarily my own!

Now, you might be saying “Jen, you are just being cheap”.  But I’m really not!  My inner circle knows I will give them anything and do anything to help them anytime I can but after spending a considerable part of the year a few years back, having to repay debt incurred at Christmas only to see the gifts purchased remain in a box or if out of the box, watch kids play with the box and not the toys – I had to really rethink this Christmas giving thing – LOL.

Then – EUREKA!  One day I heard a really smart lady, Kathleen Mundy, say the words that have stayed with me since I initially heard them “I don’t buy gifts for my loved ones – they are perishable and forgotten, I now provide them with experiences – memories, they will never forget.”

I’ve adopted this way of thinking.  I now provide my family with experiences – memories they will never forget.

I now take my kids on trips, or create a really exciting outing – do things they love and will remember.  And they do! I love when my son says to me – “Mommy, remember when we went to that place with the really big fish?” – Chicago museum.  Or “Mommy, remember when we went to that Cousin Vinny place we went with Miss Rita?” – Niagara Falls.  Or “Mommy, remember when…” and we talk about it and laugh.  I find these times much more fulfilling, rewarding, and treasuring than just giving them the latest gadget.  That’s how I choose to invest my money.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-ww1uazvFjmE/Tn8fhTbzQbI/AAAAAAAAAVo/FWXyaDrTpoU/s1600/nostalgia.jpg
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-ww1uazvFjmE/Tn8fhTbzQbI/AAAAAAAAAVo/FWXyaDrTpoU/s1600/nostalgia.jpg

BUT if you are going to buy gifts this season AND you were more forward thinking than I used to be and actually have a budget (lol) here are my top ten thoughts to thoughtful and economical gift giving:

https://www.facebook.com/jenslayvisionary/videos/380794785605751/

  1.  Give an experience
  2. Think about what THEY want, not what you want to give them
  3. Give from the heart
  4. Expensive does not necessarily mean good
  5. Homemade is not always good
  6. Listen for the hints and if they hint enough get what they want
  7. Give without wanting
  8. Give yourself a budget
  9. Go to a small business – local
  10. Give an experience (so important I said it twice)

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!

Wishing you and yours a wonderful Christmas and most prosperous New Year!

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If you liked what you’ve read and it has helped you in some way please like, share, and comment below.  If you didn’t like what you read – share it anyway – someone needs to read this today.

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Your Most Powerful Tool

What is the most powerful asset or feature or tool that you have?  Your body shape?   Your legs?  Your arms?  Your smile?  Your hammer?  Your screwdriver?  Your pliers.  Your pocket knife?  Your looks?  Your brain?  Your toolbox?  What is it?  Well, I can almost bet you it’s none of these.  Before I tell you the answer, let’s take a look at the definition of power:

Power:  the capacity or ability to direct or influence the behavior of others or the course of event

 – having the ability to control or influence people or things

How can one exert this control and influence?  Do you realize that we ALL have this power?  The power to directly influence behavior.  We all have the power to influence.  Ok, so we can rule out the toolbox stuff – that was just thrown in to throw you off – lol.  But this tool/asset/feature that I’m talking about, it has the power to express love, to express hate, to start wars, to keep the peace, to tear down the soul or to lift up the soul.  This asset that I’m referring to is your tongue.

YES, YOUR TONGUE!

Not the actual physical tongue, but what the tongue does or represents.  It allows you to speak and express yourself.  It allows you to communicate.  Do you know that you have FULL control over your tongue?  As mentioned, you can lift someone up or tear someone down.  Your words can have the power to move a generation like the “I Have a Dream” speech by Dr. Martin Luther King.  Or on the opposite side of the spectrum, they can influence a nation to do horrific things such as Mr. Adolf Hitler did in Germany decades ago resulting in a World War.

But I bet you are thinking that this blog post is going to be a call to action to lift someone up.  It kind of sort of is but I’m not talking about just anyone.  I’m talking about lifting up the most important person in your world – YOU.

See, the words that you tell yourself out loud or in your head each and everyday are vital to who you are and how you plan to move forward in your life.  Let me ask you something, when someone gives you a compliment, do you accept it?  Or do you minimize it in some way?  When you get an idea to do something unique or different, do you get excited at the prospect of doing it or do you talk yourself out of it before you even start?  For example, do any of these statements sound familiar for why you have not moved forward with something you want to do?  “I don’t have the resources”, “I’m not as smart as so and so.”, “I don’t have the time” “It’s not a realistic goal”, “Right now isn’t the right time”, “I will look into it next week” and the list goes on and on.  You know my father says something to my sister and I all the time and I’m sure many of you have heard this too “Do not put off what you can do today for tomorrow because tomorrow you will just put it off again.  Just get it done”.  My dad is kind of a smart dude.  But truly, in order to accomplish anything in life you have to tell yourself that you can, believe it and then go for it.  Imagine if Henry Ford decided that the automobile was not “realistic”?  Imagine if Bill Gates said right now isn’t the right time for the home computer?  Imagine if Edison said he didn’t have the time to do experiment number 1000 on the first commercially viable lightbulb?  Just imagine if these people – who are just like you and me – did not follow their dream/gift/calling.

What do you have that you are holding back from the world?  Look, it is not for you to figure out the how.  Leave that to the universe.  You just have to believe that you can.  Once you have the belief, then you are half way there.  Allow me to start you off – YOU ARE FREAKIN’ AMAZING!  Now go out there and do your thing.  As Ghandi said “Be the change you want to see in the world”.  That change starts with you.

Believe in you.

 

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If you liked what you’ve read and it has helped you in some way please like, share, and comment below.  If you didn’t like what you read – share it anyway – someone needs to read this today.

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