How to set ‘Non-Negotiables in your life

I watched an online training from Chris Ducker last year where he graciously shared with us how he begins each year. It included a practice of setting ‘Non-negotiables.’ If you read my post about choosing a guiding word, then you know that resolutions are not my thing. Just like choosing a guiding word appealed to me so too did Chris’ practice. It was simple, intentional and a chance for me to affirm the changes I wanted to see in my life.

More than affirmations

I knew these ‘Non-negotiables’ had to be things that were going to make significant transformations in my life. So I began to reflect on the habits that were holding me back. Habits that, if different, would cause a ripple effect of change in all areas of my life. In no time at all, I had my list of things that I would no longer do, say or tolerate from myself or others. I choose three to five and posted them, so I could track them as the year went on. 

They were more than affirmations for me. I gave them the power of commitments. I listed the change that adhering to them would make in my life. Next, I created an action plan for each one of them. I listed the immediate steps that needed to be taken to start seeing my ‘non-negotiables’ take flight. For example, if you’re ‘non-negotiable’ is to no longer compare yourself to others online, then you would start by unfollowing everyone and everything that caused you to do that.

Once I started taking small actions, I would cement them into a habit over 21 days and check in on my entire list once a month. When I could honestly say that one ‘non-negotiable’ was no longer an issue, I would take it off and up my game on others.

Setting your own ‘Non-Negotiables’

My wish for you this year is that you take the time to create your own list. Here’s what you need to do:

1. Reflect on your everyday and identify 3-5 things that, if you no longer tolerated them, would create a ripple effect of positive transformation in your life. 

Maybe it’s the excuses you use to NOT drink more water everyday. Perhaps it’s all the reasons you tell yourself that you need to hit the SNOOZE button every morning. Or maybe it’s saying ‘Yes’ to help everyone else before taking time for yourself on a regular basis.

2. Create an affirmation around each of them that completes the sentence ‘I will no longer tolerate…’

Remember that these are things that you will no longer tolerate from yourself AND others. Don’t feel the need to beat yourself up in all 3-5 affirmations. There are likely a few things you need to stop tolerating from others in your realm.

3. Underneath each affirmation, take a moment to briefly outline what change no longer tolerating this thing will make in your life. 

I generally use bullet points when completing this step.

4. Outline the immediate next steps you need to take to start seeing these ‘non-negotiables’ begin to really work in your life.

This is always a bullet point list.

5. Make a daily date in your calendar for at least the next 21 days to check in on your progress. 

After you feel like you’ve created a habit around consciously checking in and taking action on your ‘non-negotiables,’ then you can move this checkin to once a month.

6. Get to work!

Remember when you feel like you’ve cemented this ‘non-negotiable,’ you can remove it from your list and double down on the remaining ones snowball effect style. Do not add more until you are confident you’ve accomplished the initial list first. No need to overwhelm yourself, and you picked these 3-5 for a reason. Trust that and see them through.

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Overwhelmed by the transition to entrepreneurship?

I’ve been there. When I left the corporate and small business worlds to start my own business, I didn’t know what I was in for. I saw other women living lives that I wanted to be mine, and wondered, “How are they doing it?” Knowing something had to give, I totally changed the way I’m running and building my business.

As a mother, blogger, mentor, speaker and business owner, I am used to balancing the demands of many roles. It is hard to “do it all,” and I have learned how to adjust to those expectations. Stick with me and you’ll be diving into your business with fresh eyes and a growth-centered mindset faster than you ever imagined!

It all came to a head in the Fall of 2015. With my daughter’s autism diagnosis and my postpartum depression following my son’s birth, my Spring/Summer that year had been pretty rough. I was feeling pretty kicked around — to say the least. As I was crawling out of the dark and twisty places life had cornered me in that year, I knew that everything had changed.

For many reasons, I couldn’t go back to my corporate life. One of the biggest reasons was that my perspective on how I was going to live my life had changed. A shift had happened. My time away from my children was going to be spent doing things that I was passionate about. Doing things that got me pumped about life. In May of 2016, I went out on my own and started my business. It was great. I was finally doing things that had me pumped about my time away from my kids. I had the flexibility to spend more time with them. At the end of the day, I had the energy to work in my household and my marriage.

But, while I was living my passion and excited about my life again, it wasn’t all sunshine and roses. Previously, I was a teacher, a sales professional, marketing leader and client services manager. By setting clear objectives, I succeeded in each role, even though they were in different industries.

But being an entrepreneur was a whole new world. I felt the loneliness. I had self-doubt. I didn’t know where to start…and I wasn’t the only one in this boat.

Whether I’m out speaking to a room full of female entrepreneurs or leading a workshop, one of the things that I hear over and over again from these amazing women is how great it is to be out from behind their desks and surrounded by a group of like-minded women. And as our conversation continues, it becomes clear that they are looking for a tribe of women that they can connect and collaborate with regularly in an environment that is welcoming, encouraging and safe enough to let their walls down and share. I needed a community like this too. One that encourages fellow members as they conquer fears, overcome obstacles and achieve their dreams. A tribe that leaves me with a new comfort level and the confidence I’m craving to expand my growth and limits — both personally and professionally.

And most importantly, I wanted a place that would offer me more than inspiration. One that would give me the actionable advice, education and mentorship, support and accountability that we all need.

And from these conversations and my own needs, Fempire Builders was born.

You see, it’s not just me. And it’s not just you. We are not alone. And when we come together, it’s a powerful thing. With the Fempire Builders community supporting me and holding me accountable, I have experienced the business growth that previously I had only dreamed about.

Just as it has been for other Fempire Builders, it will be the same for you, too. Wait and see!