Author Archives: LaniPhoto

Re-Entry Checklist

Re-entry checklist

A re-entry checklist is a powerful tool to build momentum after a business break or vacation.

The concept is simple.

Before you take a break from your work, create a checklist of simple, quick, or important things that need done the next time you sit down at your desk.

This allows for a couple really good things to happen:
You can remind yourself that you’ve got a checklist, so your brain can relax a little when you’re away from work.
You waste zero time getting momentum going after a break – no more sitting at your desk wondering what you *should* be doing. You can just sit down, pick a re-entry checklist item, and get back to work.

Here’s a sample of what types of things often show up on a re-entry checklist:
A list of people to contact when you return.
A copy of your marketing checklist, and the next items on the marketing calendar.
A blog post that needs reviewed/edited.
A list of blog titles you want to write about.
A couple drafts of emails or Social Media posts that you want to use that first week back.
Your 30/60/90 day checklist.

Plus, anything specific to your immediate response/action needs – like bills that need paid, invoices to check on, or feedback you need to follow up on.

You can even write a quick summary of where you left off on a project, so you don’t have to carry that in your brain while you’re away from work.


Next copy

After things in my business slowed down so that I could deal with some family and personal health issues, it was time to re-focus. It was time to take some action steps.

Normally, when I take a business break, I’ll create a ‘re-entry’ checklist – a list of things to do when I next sit down at my desk, so that the momentum gets moving again really quickly, and I’m not sitting there wondering what I’m supposed to be doing, then clicking over to FB for a while. With the re-entry checklist, I’m able to start taking action right away.

(check back next week for what a re-entry checklist looks like!)

This time, though, it kinda all rolled in super quick-like, and I didn’t take the time to do this very important step – write out the checklist BEFORE I took the break.

So, I’m meeting with my accountability partner today, and I’ve got nothing.
No checklist, no list of things accomplished, no next steps outlined.

I did have frustration, and a complete lack of clarity.

Lucky for me, my accountability partner is brilliant, and by the end of our meeting I’ve got some amazing clarity.

Here’s what we realized together.

Of course, the main goal is to bring in some new clients – find people who are stuck and/or ready to take their business to the next level and start building clarity and momentum.

Yep – but how?

Conventional wisdom says I need to start marketing – I need to be sharing more things on social media, I need to be pushing, cold-calling, etc.

There’s not one thing there that felt like the next right step.
All of that felt like large heavy weights and like dragging myself through sand up to my waist. Good exercise, but tedious, sweaty and un-natural.

For me, right now, the shortest path to new clients is going to be re-connecting to my why. Finding that space of excitement and enthusiasm. Allowing myself to tweak an offer, find a new mindset about the work I do, and create a new way to connect me with my work again.

This needs done on a semi-regular basis during normal business operations – but it felt essential for me to do before I move on any marketing plans or strategy calls.

Here are the 3 questions I’ll be spending time with tonight:

Why do I do business coaching?
What lights me on fire about my work?
What value do I bring to the business coaching experience?

When the time comes to re-connect to my WHY, I find that journaling/free writing about these 3 questions brings my focus back into natural alignment with my purpose, my super powers, and my inner knowing.

Then, when I make an action plan, it’s one that feels amazing, exciting and powerful – the complete polar opposite of how I felt at the beginning of the meeting.

How do you re-connect to your WHY?

The Art of Allowing.

I’m going to be honest here.

I haven’t figured out how to allow, not in a way that I can communicate it.
Not yet.

I’m practicing it hard lately though, and I think there are a few common elements.

Trust in a higher power.
Releasing perfectionism.

It’s also about creating space. Finding your inner guidance. Being present, and choosing how you want to feel.

That sweet space where I’m doing the work and seeing the results can be frustratingly fleeting, but I’m working on allowing that, too.

This is the death of who I am.

Right now, I’m tired, annoyed, itchy and frustrated.

This year has been a really interesting balance of amazing and heart-breaking.

I don’t know how it’s going to turn out.

Because I’m revisiting points in the past where I had to make a change, where I had to face the old beliefs and old systems that were literally killing me, I’m curious what all of these new experiences mean for my future.

All I know is that I’m (mostly) dealing with them better this time, because I know one thing for sure:

This is the death of who I am.

This is a natural progression of growth and expansion. It’s part of my path, it’s part of my journey, and there is absolutely something here for me to learn.

I’d love to be the person who can kinda take a gentle turn, who can recognize what’s coming and slow down before it arrives, but it appears I’m only able to make the kinds of changes needed once everything else comes to a complete standstill, and I’m left without direction, bruised and torn up from colliding (yet again) with a brick wall.

Now that I’m emerging from the chaos, there is light and breath and air.

That’s really all I need to be born again.



There are things I’ve been trying to do lately.
Finish the websites.
Write the course materials.
Balance life and business.

That’s a lot of trying.

Guess what’s not happening?

Getting much done.

When I’m trying, I’m putting in effort – but really, I’m using the word ‘trying’ as a justification in my head:
I’m trying to finish the websites, but I don’t know what to say.
I’m trying to write the course materials, but I’m just not feeling it. The timing must not be right.
I’m trying to balance life and business; it’s not my fault I’m running in circles! Life be crazy, yo.

I’m trying to create this amazing life, but it’s not my fault it’s not going right.

Today, I woke up to what I’ve been TRYING to do – I’ve been trying to stay where I am.
Where it’s comfortable, and I know how things go.
Where I know what’s coming each day.
Where dinner is done and clothes are clean, because that’s how it’s supposed to be, not me off *creating*…
Where, frankly, things are pretty boring.

I’m a master at the art of discraction.

Walk Your Talk

Right now, all of my clients are working on building something new.

I’ve had the conversation with each of them that goes something like this:
“So, how are you going to share this new thing with the world? What’s your strategy for taking to people about it?”

Each of them, without fail, said:
“I’m going to spend some time researching how others are talking and sharing about similar things.”

My response?


No, you’re not.
That’s not research.

Part of you is stalling.
Part of you is insecure.
Part of you is curious.

But the part of you that needs a turn at the work table is the part that knows exactly what to do next, and exactly what to say.

When I tell them Nope. No research! – mostly, they feel busted… but also, relieved.

They dig in – and find out they really do have the answers – and they don’t need to go look elsewhere.

What tends to happen next is astonishing for them. They’re sending me some outstanding ideas, some clarity, and some powerful sales copy written from an inner knowing that’s magnetic.


One of the ways I want to reach out and share my coaching work is through blogging more.
I’ve got lots of resistance.
I’ve got plenty of my own blocks I’m working through.
Guess what I just caught myself doing?

Legit. I stopped myself, and sat my butt down at my desk at 10:30 at night and wrote this out, because I *almost* clicked on one of those articles that will give me 99 blog ideas* so I’ll never be at a loss again.

That’s not at all what I teach!

Not to mention I’ve got a backlog of half finished posts and a long list of blog titles I haven’t written yet.
(did I mention my resistance yet?)
I don’t actually need more ideas!

What was the lure then?
What made that post so tempting?

For one – someone else must know more about this than I do.
For two – stall. stall. stall.
For three – there’s a vulnerability to  sharing my work, my ideas, my way of creating success and turning inside for guidance and clarity. It’s… intimidating.

So, it’s easy to get sucked in to what seems like an easy answer, a shortcut.

But the work is almost always about getting out of your own way, and the shortest way is to go through.



*FWIW: I bet that article was phenomenal.. I bet it’s the perfect solution for someone out there, and will be a lifesaver for someone and allow them to move forward.
That’s not what would work for me, and I only know that from trying it repeatedly in my last business. Other people’s blueprints don’t move me forward at the rate I need to move because it’s simply not aligned with how I work best.


(Learning how to walk your talk includes shedding old stories. We do a lot of that in my FB group – I’d love for you to join us in The Distillery.)


Celebrate your Achievements – A 3 Step Process

Celebrate your Accomplisments


How do you mark your business accomplishments?

One of my clients just had a HUGE WIN.

She messaged me to share that her proposal was not only accepted but it was doubled – they want her to share her genius at two different locations, over two days.



But what followed that was a conversation I have far too often.

I asked:
How are you going to celebrate?

The response from her was pretty typical:
I’m going to have to think about that….

Which means several things to me.
1. She’s not planning for the win.
2. She’s got no reward system in place.
3. She keeps moving the bar of what success looks like.

Let’s break this down a little.

So, why would you want to plan for the win?
First, let’s acknowledge that the win is special. The first client, the first YES to your program, the first share of your blog post. These are signposts – indicators that our efforts are being rewarded, that we have something valuable to share.
And, they feel GOOD. They feel amazing. The win is addictive – but it’s also a space where you can self-sabotage.
Because once you’ve got that first client, it’s easy to start looking for the next, before you acknowledge and reward yourself for the first.
Moving on too quickly dulls the shine. It makes it harder to recapture the kind of high you get, and really – that’s part of the reason we put in the effort – to help people, to create success for ourselves, and to win.
What’s a reward system for, anyway?
Oh, so many things!
It’s important to acknowledge your success. Breaking down goals into manageable steps is a sure-fire way to build momentum and not get overwhelmed, right? So each of those steps is a win… and rewarding yourself when you’ve accomplished a win creates even more momentum – all leading you in the direction of your goals.
But – let’s talk for a moment about the days when there isn’t a win. 
Let’s talk, just for a moment, about all the NO’s you’re likely to get, all the times that it seems like you can’t catch a break, and you’re slaving away and wondering if you’re making an impact or being heard.
Those days are HARD.
Time stretches, thins, and so does your patience and tolerance.

Now – let’s assume you have a little book of WINS….
You’ve just slogged through another day, and you find yourself saying:
I’m not sure I can keep going.

We have all been there. The difference between success and failure is how long you stay there.

So, you find yourself at the end of a long slog of a day (or week) and your hopes are low and you’re feeling pretty discouraged – now, you take out some kind of talisman. Something that you used to reward yourself for a WIN. A special necklace, or a piece of artwork. Hell – even a book of stickers! This talisman, this reward plugs you right back in to knowing that it’s worth it, knowing that the success you’re working toward is just around the next blog post or around the next networking event. It bolsters your confidence, and it helps you re-focus and KEEP GOING.

Rewards aren’t just for celebration – they’re powerful reminders of our own power.

What happens when you move the bar?
I love being a part of FB Business Groups. In these groups, I’m interacting with all different levels of businesses. Recently, I saw someone post their ‘goal list’ – a list of things they’re working on bringing into their life. Here’s the shocker for me: On her list of 5 things, I already had 4 of the things she’s working hard to create.
That made me pause big time.
In these groups, it’s easy for me to assume I’m ‘behind’ – people come there to celebrate their big wins, and if you’re doing these groups right, there are some BIG WINS in there, things that aren’t even on my dream board yet. (Ok, they’re on my *real* dream board – the one I haven’t even created because it feels too big, too far away.) 
But since I’m essentially starting over here, it honestly never occurred to me that I might be AHEAD of someone in the group.

And, it made me realize completely how much I’m moving the bar on myself.

Which means, essentially, I’m not acknowledging any of my own wins, my own success accomplishments. I’m not capturing the feeling of the win. I’m not creating talismans. I’m not developing my own success reward system.

So, I’m off to do that now.


Here are few ideas to get you started:
Buy a set of fun stickers and a notebook. Label each page with something you want to reward yourself for: Posting a blog, sharing a newsletter, getting a new client inquiry, building your list. Then, fill those pages up with fun stickers each time you win at that.
Create a pinboard of things you want to use as rewards.
Buy a new book.
Schedule a massage or salon appointment. (ManiPedi!)
Celebrate with friends – go out to lunch. Even take a 15 minute break and call a friend to celebrate.
Send yourself an email with the subject line: WINNING. Keep adding as you keep winning!
Big win? Purchase a piece of art or jewelry to create a talisman.

When you’re building momentum, it’s even more important to celebrate all the wins.

Here’s your 3 Step process for Celebrating your Accomplishments:

1. Plan for the win – choose your *prize* and how you’re going to celebrate before you start.
2. Create a reward system for smaller wins and being consistent.
3. Don’t move the bar! Write down your goals, and allow yourself to feel the success when you hit them, instead of moving it, or telling yourself it’s not good enough now that you’ve gotten it.


The secret to renewing (or creating) more passion in your work

Passion Secret

I’ve been testing this theory out with several clients – what kind of daily practice helps them align with the excitement they once felt for their work? What simple step is needed to begin to maximize the passion that lives inside each of us for the thing we do in the world?

We do a short Q&A back and forth – I ask them about what makes a great day. What’s a perfect client? How do you know you’ve done a good job?

Then, it’s a process of distilling the answers down to one thing that lights them up when they work with or interact with their clients.

Here’s the big secret – it’s kinda the same for EVERY.BODY.

It’s helping.

Think about it….

When you finish off a great day, one with a sense of accomplishment – what’s one thing that’s a common thread throughout the feeling of satisfaction?


Either the progress you made was helpful to YOU, helpful to your future clients, or specifically helping your clients – the main thread that runs through a sense of achievement is helping.

How can you create a daily habit that re-connects you to how you help people?

(Join my Facebook Group The Distillery for more ways to change the stories holding you back.)

This week: Quotes, Joy, and Identity


This week in The Distillery:
We talked about Joy. Identity. The importance of the words we use.

I shared this quote:
“If being hard on yourself was going to work, it would have worked by now… Go Easy On Yourself.
-Jamie Smart
We discussed the spaces in which we are hard on ourselves – and what tools we could use to go easy on ourselves.

And, as always – we acknowledged our Gratitude.

(Join us here, anytime: The Distillery on Facebook – where we break down the stories you tell about yourself, shed your illusions, and find the truth of who you are.)