The best productivity hack for computer-based to-do lists

Carrie JordanFeminine Leadership0 Comments

pomodoro app

Is your productivity suffering as your to-do list exponentially expands to the point where it’s almost unmanageable?

As I like to say with the Life Design Method, adding things to your “to-do list” like “organize the closet” and “empty the dishwasher” are important because our surroundings influence our lives…but they don’t belong on the to-do list.

These kinds of tasks can lead to perfectionism. As Dr. Clarisa Pinkola Estés says in Women who Run with the Wolves, women tend to put cooking and cleaning above their creative, spiritual, professional, and personal pursuits.

Here are some tips for prioritization:

Prioritize 3 of the most important things you have to complete in a day.

Ask yourself if those things are projects or tasks. If they are projects,  you’re going to need to break them into smaller tasks in order to take the first steps.

Complete those first priorities and then you can move on to the ones further down the list.

My favorite productivity technique is the Pomodoro Technique.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Decide which task to complete
  2. Set a timer to 25 minutes
  3. Work until the timer buzzes, and record the work session on a scrap piece of paper with an x
  4. Take a 3-minute break
  5. After four 25-minute work sessions (4 xs), take a longer 15-30 minute break

This method works so well because we can see the time ticking and it creates a competition with oneself to see if we can finish the task in time.

And of course…breaks. Usually I get up and walk around for my breaks, or during the longer ones make a cup of tea.

I recommend the app Pomodoro One, which you can buy in the app store, to keep track of your time.

Do you use this method? How do you prioritize and decide what to do first? How do you get through your to-do list?

The key to unleash your sparkle and self expression

Carrie JordanCreative Self Expression, Feminine Leadership, Womb Wisdom0 Comments

emotional self expression

Do you struggle to be seen how you want to be seen? Do you struggle with expressing yourself in a way that truly honors your being?

You may be repressing emotions which is preventing you from fully expressing and shining your brilliance in the world.

If you think you’re not repressing emotions, I bet you’re wrong! That’s because I thought that I didn’t have repressed emotions…until I realized how much I hold back tears, laughter, excitement, and my human experience.

My story of repressed self expression

When I was a freshman in high school, my mom was diagnosed with cancer (she is doing great now!). I decided that I needed to keep it together. I thought that I needed to be strong so that my mom wouldn’t know that I was sad or scared.

I over-compensated for my sadness at school by acting manically happy (which was great for my social life). I spent a lot of time at friends’ houses. If I wasn’t at a friend’s house, I was cleaning or helping around the house and mothering my brothers.

Later in life I realized that I blocked out a lot of those years from memory because it was very hard for the family.

Do you ever cry at “inopportune” times?

There are more instances when we’re not allowed to emote or express than there are instances that we can. Emotional repression is rampant in our society. For example, I had a story that it was embarrassing or the “wrong” time to cry, laugh, smile, emote, so I would hold back from expressing myself. In other words, I was not welcoming myself.

I realized that my repressed emotion was coming through during the slightest of triggers: a happy (or sad) commercial; a touching moment with friends or family; nearly anything could happen and I could cry at the drop of a hat. My theory is that a lot of emotion that wasn’t allowed to be expressed in my past finds sneaky ways to express itself in my life today.

Access life force through emotional expression

I was able to access more range in my self expression when I started to release the story that self expression or emoting is embarrassing or bad in some way. When I released that story, I was able to just be with myself as I would be with a close friend or family member who was crying or expressing.

In other words, I started to welcome my experience in every moment and this has drastically changed how I relate to self expression. Truly feeling and expressing every emotion, “good” and “bad,” can help us to access more range of ourselves. It can help us to be more human and most of all, more aliveness.

Watch the video to hear more about how this works. Emotional repression is a pattern in our society, often in our DNA and family lines that we need to address and reset. Are you welcoming your human experience?

The pervasive nature of emotional repression

Carrie JordanCreative Self Expression, Feminine Leadership, Womb Wisdom0 Comments

Emotional repression is rampant in our society. Think about it: What scenarios is is “ok” to have a big emotional experience? In a therapist’s office behind closed doors. Maybe with your best friend or a family member if you’re lucky. Maybe with your intimate partner. But still, in my experience I have often been “shushed” and “fixed” in these scenarios so that I feel “better.”

As a result, a pattern asserted itself within me that I need to “shush” and “fix” myself to feel “better.” Now I didn’t even need another person to tell me! I would shush and fix myself.

There is no “better.” Emotion is just emotion. It passes over us and it moves along. However as a society, we have managed to forget that fact, and to only be accepting of certain emotions, or of what I call “the constant 3.” The constant 3 is balanced with very few highs and very few lows. It is a muted self expression.

I started working with emotional repression because I entered the world of authentic relating. I didn’t think that I was repressing emotions because I am a “crier” and a pretty emotional person.After shushing and fixing myself for years and years, repressed emotion started to build up within. I would cry at a commercial with a dog or a grandma in it.

Through this work, I was able to access more of my internal, emotional, and somatic experience.

The constant 3 of emotional repression

I realized how much I was holding back, holding in. Even happy feelings. I was trying to be a constant 3, and I discovered that it was sucking a lot of my life force and energy to constantly control my emotions and appear “pulled together.”

Emotional repression is repressing our whole and complete human experience. We often tend to do this more when we are experiencing those emotions that we label as “negative.”

However, being emotionally expressed can help us express more in the areas where we want to shine and be our full expression of ourselves.

Welcome everything

For me, the question became, Am I welcoming myself? Am I welcoming my experience? 

The answer was no. Especially in times of sadness, crying, and anger, I was not welcoming of myself because those are “negative” emotions in our society. In contrast, if I were supporting someone having a big emotional experience, I would be witnessing, comforting, and welcoming their experience.

Now when I feel like crying, I shut my eyes and I let myself cry instead of trying to hold back the tears. Instead of trying to pretend I’m not angry or trying to calm myself down, I reveal that I feel angry and pissed off to my partner. Now I welcome myself.

I invite you to ask yourself, Am I welcoming myself and my experience?

In service of ancestral and descendant healing

It’s important for us to be part of communities where we can explore these questions together in a safe place. That’s because it’s something that’s deeply embedded in our society and in our DNA. By expressing our emotions, we are changing the patterns in our DNA and we are making it ok to have an emotional human experience in service of future generations. It’s a form of ancestral healing.

The 3 keys to building your business

Carrie JordanFeminine Leadership, Womb Wisdom2 Comments

keys to building your business and marketing

On a few occasions, I have received frantic phone calls from potential clients in the midst of launching a business. They are speaking super fast and asking me all kinds of questions:

Hello?! Do you do websites? I am so overwhelmed! I need to launch this business and I need all these things! How much do you charge?!

…Needless to say, I don’t answer any of those questions (I schedule a consultation for another time, instead). Reason being, that to fuel a fire of anxiety and desperation for my clients’ businesses is not what I aim to do.

These phone calls point to a deeper issue in the world of entrepreneurship and marketing:

The silver bullet for a profitable business

These women calling are often looking for a quick fix—a way to use the internet and digital marketing to sign clients out of thin air; a way to magically not have to do any work and somehow market an amazing program or service.

There are dozens of blog articles out there on Pinterest and other content marketing sites that give out free, half-assed information about how to market your business and create a six-figure business.

However…There is no quick fix.

The keys to marketing your business

I see a lot of people making the mistake of reading hundreds of nearly worthless blog articles about how to do this and how to do that. Meanwhile, they could save a lot of time and energy by working with a coach who is on their team and who can help them learn about business and marketing to develop a sound and profitable strategy.

Here are the keys that I give my clients:

  1. In-person interactions. When your friends, family, and colleagues know what you do, they will be more likely to refer potential clients to you. When you stand in your power and speak knowledgeably about what you do, people will begin to know, like, and trust you.

2. Create content. I’ll sometimes get emails from clients telling me: I need to create a launch platform! I need to make a webinar! I saw an article that said I need to run Facebook ads!

I love my clients and these are all great ideas and strategies that work. However, when (a) your list is dismal (b) you’re not creating any content for your list, who are you going to send the webinar to? To whom will you launch?

When that’s the case, you’re putting the horse before the carriage. The first step is to build your list and create relationships where people can begin to know, like, and trust you.

I tell those clients: When in doubt, record a video. When in doubt, ask for a referral. When in doubt, write a guest post. When you don’t know what to do next, CREATE CONTENT. CREATE VALUE. BE OF SERVICE. DRIVE TRAFFIC to your opt-in. This is how you build your list, and build trust with your leads.

3. Focus. Choose three marketing strategies that work for you and be consistent. It’s harder than it sounds, and it takes energy to focus your attention. Choose your most productive time of month (as women we have about 2 weeks that are highly productive in the follicular phase right after the period. It could be different for you depending on your hormones and cycle). Plan ahead, set goals, and schedule in your content-creation time.

That’s it!

Running a business can simple if you’re focused and consistent, but isn’t as easy as some blog articles make it sound. It takes true dedication, planning, systems, organization, knowing yourself, and knowing your audience.

How to respect the wilderness

Carrie JordanEarth Wisdom, Feminine Leadership0 Comments

As contemporary humans living in cities and walking around on mostly pavement, we have desensitized ourselves to being mindful of nature. Do you look where you’re stepping? Are you careful of the ecosystems beneath your feet?

We are usually wearing thick-soled shoes, heals, boots, and the like so that we can’t feel what’s under our feet.

In contrast, in the wilderness, there are ecosystems everywhere beneath our feet. This requires a different mind set from that of being in a city or town. It requires more mindfulness.

This mindfulness can help us to be in right relationship with the earth. This is one of the requirements for living a shamanic lifestyle.

Right relationship with the wilderness in practice

In a recent backpacking trip, I was in a group that was moving very quickly, taking branches right off the trees and fixin’ to build a fire in a fire pit where a rose bush was growing. Meanwhile, I like to move slowly in the wilderness. I like to for permission, and to gather what has already been released (dead branches, leaves, and grasses on the ground) instead of snatching branches off of living trees.

Moving in the city is not the same as moving in the wilderness. The wild requires a relationship of reciprocity and respect. It requires moving slowly and intentionally.

Walking in a sacred manner is taking the “leave no trace” philosophy of National Outdoor Leadership School to the next level in service of being in right relationship with Mother Earth.

The big picture

I believe that creating this respectful relationship with Earth can help us with our relationships with other humans. Specifically, asking permission and being respectful can help us to walk the talk of “consent culture.”

5 language shifts for leadership

Carrie JordanCreative Self Expression, Feminine Leadership0 Comments

language for leaders

Empowered and straight-forward communication is one of the first ways that we can start to up-level the ways we relate because language has nuance that we often don’t realize or consider. We can make implications or statements that we don’t mean to make when we use filler words, or phrases that allow us to skip creating more connection and vulnerability.

Honing our communication skills it can open up opportunities for leadership and connection.

Consider these empowered language shifts as a way to become empowered in personal and professional areas of your life.

After watching the video, do you have any language shifts to add?

What is a shaman? Cultivating right relationship

Carrie JordanEarth Wisdom, Feminine Leadership0 Comments

What is a Shaman? Rise Collective

Shamans live by a set of complex and deep spiritual principles where Spirit and ceremony is integrated into every moment. Most of all, a shamanic lifestyle involves being in right relationship with oneself, with the earth, and with the spirit world (including ancestors and descendants).

The ancient shamanic way of life is the way of the healer. Specifically, healing the earth and its creatures in stewardship of right relationship with all things.

A shaman is in right relationship with oneself

The foundation of shamanism is to be in right relationship with oneself. When we say right relationship with oneself, we mean that one is practicing the foundational shamanic skills of:

  1. having strong boundaries
  2. clearing practices, and
  3. grounding practices.

As Michael Harner says in his book The Way of the Shaman, “In shamanism, the maintenance of one’s personal power is fundamental to well-being.” In all, this means taking 100% responsibility for one’s life experience as a spiritual adult.

Yet, many adults in our contemporary society are still embodying the archetype of the powerless wounded child.

Wounded children often cannot welcome their own experiences or accept what they find within themselves because they are holding on to behavioral or emotional patterns and beliefs from childhood. Wounded children often continue to blame their parents and others for how life has turned out well into adulthood (into their 40s, 50s, 60s, and beyond). 

As a result, they can find themselves stuck and unable to move forward in life. Additionally, they may interpret events in their lives and shamanic journeys through that distorted lens.

If that sounds like you, it’s ok, and you’re not alone. Since our society lacks traditional rites of passage, this is now the norm. Now that you know you are acting out the wounded child script, you can shift: Wounded children must step into spiritual adulthood in order to live a shamanic lifestyle.

A spiritual adult is committed to becoming like the hollow bone.

Have you ever seen a hollow bone in the wilderness? It has been picked dry by the insects and scavengers. It is completely smooth and flawless. Gaining the perspective of the hollow bone is no easy task. It can take a lifetime.

To be like the hollow bone is to have let go of the ego, of doubt, fear, and concern. With this humble approach and pure heart, spirit can come through you.

A shaman is in right relationship with the earth

Shamanic cosmologies are usually derived from the land. For example, the mountainous topography of the land is a big part of the cosmology and shamanism of the Peruvian Ándes. If you are from the plains, it would be challenging to apply this cosmology to your daily life. Instead, cultivate a relationship with the spirits of the land where you live.

The cosmology of shamanic cultures also usually cultivate a relationship with the four directions, the elements (air, earth, fire, water), the cycles of nature, and deep listening to the voices of nature.

A shaman acts as an intermediary between nature and society. She spends time in deep listening to the thunder beings, the wind, rain, elements, animals, and the spirit world. Her duty is to bring the information back to the village so that wellness may be restored or maintained.

A shaman is in right relationship with the spirit world

Journeys are a divination tool that give you robust information and medicine to heal and choose your path. Being in right relationship with the spirit world requires that one visit often. However, entering this territory before you learn to maintain your personal power can be harmful to you and those you aim to heal.

Anyone can journey to the other realms and have an experience with the unseen forces. This ability is part of the human experience.

But in order for those experiences to be meaningful and to interpret them appropriately, one must be in right relationship with oneself and others first.

Committing to disciplined personal practices builds the relationship with the spiritual world and also help us move toward the idea of becoming like a hollow bone. Without the personal practices, commitment, and movement toward being like the hollow bone, journey interpretation would most likely be incorrect.

A shaman is a healer

Relationship with the spirit world and unseen realms is in support of health and healing of the earth and its creatures. A healing in another realm translates into the realm where we live.

Today’s shamans, priestesses, witches, and magical folk

In many cultures, the community chooses a shaman before birth, at birth, or early in childhood. Then an elder teaches the youngster the ancient ways which have been passed down from generation to generation.

Consequently, as modern people practicing a shamanic lifestyle, most of us cannot claim to be “shamans.”

However, we can go back to our own lineages and find out what could have been the traditions of our ancestors. Another approach could be to journey to our ancestors and ask for guidance. For women who are descendants of European lineage, the word may be “witch” or “priestess,” or “Druid.”

Actually, it doesn’t matter what you call yourself. The people and the spirits will name you what they will.

What matters is that you walk in a sacred manner in alignment with your reason for traveling to this earth.

Earth Wisdom // Moon Magic

Our program is specific to the religion of the goddess, of earth worship. Presently our society is at a crossroads. We we can choose to re-incorporate the path of the priestess, the witch, the shaman, the seer; whatever name suits your fancy. Or we can choose to continue down the same road we have been traveling for hundreds of years: taking advantage of the earth’s resources and causing destruction.

Our path is in service to Mother Earth and the Divine Feminine, and in service of you remembering why you came here. In this program, you will learn to hone your personal power and shamanic skills, and become a feminine leader and healer in your community.

This is a wholistic and intimate program where we move from approaching life as a wounded child to empowered woman. If it’s time to take 100% responsibility for your life and your personal power, this adventure is for you.

We would love for you to join us on the 2-month journey!

How to enter the flow state of life

Carrie JordanCreative Self Expression, Feminine Leadership, Womb Wisdom0 Comments

At many times in my adult life, I have tried to live according to my own desires rather than what I had been taught by society or familiar patterns.

For example, when I graduated from college, I had every intention of owning my own business and freelancing, but without a mentor to help me, I was lost and baffled on how to sign clients, so I decided a steady full time job would suit me better.

There was the time I launched my jewelry business to crickets. There was the time I tried again to freelance when I moved to Seattle and again decided the ease of working full time at an organization would suit me better.

All of these decisions I made were influenced by my beliefs, values, and my emotional state. This is how we humans make decisions.

I believed that I was too young to have my own business; that I was not good with numbers; that there was a scarcity of opportunity.

I valued security, hard work, and predictability.

My emotional state was stressed out, anxious, and doubtful of my own abilities.

All of these conditions created the perfect environment within, for me to lay back and depend on something, an entity, a company, to pay me. To me, this was the safe thing to do.

However, I distinctly felt that I was not in flow or aligned in my life. My time and energy was being spent in ways that did not align with my deeper foundational values of connection, vitality, play and expression, community, and nature.

Instead of being in a state of self authorship and being conscious of what I was creating in my life, I was making decisions by default, on autopilot, based on beliefs, and values that were deeply ingrained in me, and by default emotional states that I went to in times of uncertainty.

What you can do to enter flow state

To enter the flow state and true alignment with our deep core values in our lives requires quite a bit of self reflection and courage. It requires self reflection so that we can see what we’re dealing with in terms of default states, default decision-making, and patterns. After the self reflection comes taking small steps to creating feedback loops that accelerate the process of our stepping into new patterns and therefore potential.

To approach repatterning your life in a passive way is futile. New learning is experiential, so the self reflection and creating new feedback loops requires active engagement. Here are some steps:

  1. Notice when you feel that you are in flow and alignment, and document those times.
  2. Examine your values, beliefs, and default emotional states so that you can make shifts that support expansion. Remember that small shifts can have a big impact on your experience.
  3. Notice when you are not in flow or alignment: this can look like resistance, judgements, doubts, fear, wounds, sabotage or limiting beliefs coming up. As you become more aware of these thoughts coming up, ask yourself, “Why am I having this thought?” so that you can understand yourself.
  4. Shift from using your mind to make decisions to asking for guidance from your guides and your intuition.
  5. Prioritize joy in your life.
  6. Shift your language and be careful to use generative language, excluding phrases like “I want” and “I hope”
  7. Recognize when you are a “fuck yes” to something versus a maybe or a no–in my experience this is felt as an overwhelming desire and can often be a somatic experience of excitement.
  8. Restore your personal power and take 100% responsibility for your life.

What it takes

Over time, I repatterned by values and beliefs, letting go of what does not align with my highest version of myself. Now I hold the beliefs that I have 100% responsibility for my experience, that I have all the tools I need, and that everything I want is available to me.

It took a lot of personal development and deep core commitment to growth to repattern what I have learned throughout my life–which has served me and kept me safe in various ways.

It took a major traditional rite of passage of sitting on the mountain for me to let go of life as I have been taught, and guidance and support from confidantes and mentors.

It has often been painful. The urge to go back to those default emotional states was often strong. Now it’s not.

What will become possible for you when you let go of society’s and familial patterns?

How to honor your moon cycle

Carrie JordanWomb Wisdom0 Comments

what are your period cramps telling you?
For me, recognizing moon time as sacred is an essential part of being a healthy woman. “Moon time” has this name because menstruation usually lines up with the new moon, and our bodies are heavily influenced by the phases of the moon.
I have suffered from cramps at the beginning of my moon for years, and finally I got the message that my body is signaling me to rest, slow down, and relax.
Here are some ways that I love to honor my cycle with moon time:
  1. I track my cycle and mark when each cycle is so that I can anticipate when it is coming, and to acknowledge, celebrate, and honor this time.
  2. I make sure I have what I need—diva cup, chocolate, and Healthy cycle tea.
  3. When I know it is coming, I start to go to sleep earlier and rest more. I take the escalator at the bus station instead of the stairs, sit whenever I get a chance, I don’t plan travel for that time of the month, and ease up on rigorous exercise. When I worked at an office, I would bring heating pad to work, and drink Healthy Cycle red raspberry leaf tea. I take my Cal-Mag vitamins. I don’t make plans after work—I go home and read or relax.
  4. A few days before moon time begins, I do a yoni steam with lavender, rose petals, red raspberry leaf, and chamomile.
When my moon comes, I make very good use of my heating pad, get cozy, and relax. I light ared candle to honor this time, drink tea, eat warm soups, and of course dark chocolate or cacao nibs (which have no sugar but still quell the craving). My favorite thing to do is lay with the heating pad on my lower back and put massage oil on my womb area.

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How to know it’s time to move to the next level of your career

Carrie JordanCreative Self Expression, Feminine Leadership, Womb Wisdom0 Comments

Carrie Jordan Rise Collective Career Coaching

Right out of college, I worked at an amazing organization that I believed in deeply. I felt so aligned with my work there, truly feeling I was making a difference by being part of this wonderful organization. I felt an insatiable desire to learn everything about my work and the work of my colleagues, and I learned so many skills during those five years.

Unfortunately, I left with a sour taste in my mouth when the honeymoon ended. The work environment became toxic at the same time as the leadership announced a new project to help a huge company do something really bad for the environment. Not to mention, it was extremely unethical for the organization to take on this work because of its commitments and promises to donors.

Additionally, this was a secret project that employees were not to disclose to donors or to the public.

I recoiled when I heard this at a staff meeting, and for about five months after, I squirmed at meetings and at my desk. I felt nauseous. About three nights a week, I had nightmares that the building was burning down, or that there was conflict on my team. I literally couldn’t sleep at night. My body was telling me, this is not right.

This was so not my people, so not my place, and completely misaligned with my values and my mission on this earth. How could I be part of this? How could I stand by and let this happen?

I felt in my bones I could no longer be a part of this organization. I struggled for months trying to figure out what I would do next. All I knew was that I could not be there any longer. My integrity, my alignment, and my intuition were screaming at me to GTFO of there.

Of course I was scared. I had all kinds of stories about what would happen if I left my job without another one in place: I would not be able to pay my rent; I would have to move in with my parents back on the east coast; I would have to….and on and on and on.

And yet I did it anyway. Soon a new opportunity revealed itself. I turned away from my fear, I stood for my values, I took steps in a new direction, and I made a courageous choice which helped me evolve in my career and in my life adventure.

That experience taught me that sometimes when it is time to move on, life will give you a kick in the butt. In hindsight my career had become stagnant at that organization, and I wouldn’t have continued on a growth trajectory with my skills and development had I stayed there.

I needed a reason to leave, and life gave it to me.

Here are 6 ways to know it’s time to move to the next chapter of your career, or more broadly, your life:

  1. It is more and more challenging for you to reach the “flow state,” where you feel like you are aligned with your purpose and experience effortlessness.
  2. Your growth is stagnant; you aren’t learning.
  3. You are having nightmares about the situation.
  4. You perceive omens and signs that communicate it’s time to leave.
  5. You consistently feel uncomfortable and on-edge in the situation.
  6. You perceive that you are out of alignment with your values.

With self documentation, you can notice when these things are happening, note them, and look back to see how often life is trying to send you a message about your current state of being. Self documentation helps you recognize the pattern much sooner instead of going for months and months with a situation that isn’t serving you.

Sometimes life gives us even more harsh reasons to move on to the next phase; the next chapter. This can mean ending a friendship; a relationship; or a marriage. It can mean getting fired. An illness or death of a loved one. It can mean destruction or an accident. These disastrous endings will eventually morph into a new beginning, a new phase of life for us.

Have you ever had life give you a kick in the butt to make a change and move on?