now things

by Joanna on July 20, 2014

There are so many things we want to do in life: jobs we want to have, vacations to take, relationships to have, things to own. And we tend to want all of the things. Right. Now.

Pressure to have and do all of things makes life so much less fun. Takes away from the joy of right now.

Learning to decide what’s a now thing, an idea or a goal that you want to pursue in this season, and which are visions for the future is one of the most powerful and freeing things we can learn.

Often things we want from a well-meaning, genuine place become “shoulds” and we beat ourselves up for not having enough or doing enough. When our desires become our self judgements, they lose something. Their power becomes evil. When this happens it drains our mental, emotional, creative energy that we could be using to fuel our now things.

So tell me, what are your now things and what are your future things?

For me, my now things are living fully in DC, learning to take really good care of myself, and paying off my student loans. My future things are being a mom and a full-time coach.

P.S. You don’t deserve to feel shitty.

P.P.S I’m looking for few twenty-something women to help me test a new service for my coaching business: group coaching. Perfect for someone that feels bogged down in “shoulds” this group will meet virtually on Wednesdays starting July 30. If you’re interested email me: joanna {at} cupofteacoaching {dot} com. Or leave a comment below and I’ll shoot you an email.


step away from the problem

by Joanna on June 25, 2014

Sometimes you don’t need to work to figure it out.

The amazing thing about the human brain is that it doesn’t need to be consciously thinking about things to be working on solutions.

I was a math major in college. We frequently had take home exams — some proofs couldn’t be completed in a 1 hour time window. I worked on this one proof for hours and just wasn’t getting anywhere. No kidding, I woke up at 4am knowing the answer. I scribbled down the proof and went back to sleep. When I got the test back, it was right!

I’ll sit in front of a blank screen at work trying to write a letter. The second I get to the bus stop at the end of the day, the words come pouring out. Luckily I carry a notebook with me everywhere and jot down a full letter while it’s fresh in my mind. And usually it’s pretty much good to go after that.

Moral of the story — stop worrying and focusing so much on the problem at hand. I’m sure you’ve churned this over in your brain enough already. Have faith that your brain is working on it and go do something else. The answer will come soon enough.

Has this ever happened to you?

Where could you benefit from a mental break and letting it work itself out?


it’s ok to want what you want

by Joanna on June 17, 2014

Deep down you know what you want.

It’s OK to want that.

In fact, it’s more than ok. It’s amazing. It’s necessary. There will be less tension and stress in the world if you do.

Give yourself permission to want that.

When you want what you want and own it, you give the universe permission to bring it to you. And when you get it, everybody wins. Because you’ll add a little more joy to the world.

Can you imagine if we all did that? If we all gave ourselves permission to want what we want? That little bit of peace from each of us would change the world.


just a random life update

by Joanna on June 5, 2014

walk to work 2A recent walk to work.

I haven’t really written much about what I’m up to lately so I thought I’d a share some random things I’m up to lately.

We’ve been in PA a lot recently. My sister graduated from college, we took Mike’s parents out to a nice dinner for their 40th wedding anniversary, we’ve got a wedding and wedding shower coming up in the next month and then our 10 year high school reunion in July!

Gayle, my future sister-in-love, asked Mike’s parents the secret to 40 years of marriage. Mike’s mom said a sense of humor, walks, and fight fair.

Proud big sister moment: Becca graduated from college as I mentioned above. She had an interview for a teaching job in FL and went down to teach a lesson in person to a live class. They hired her on the spot! And, one of the students, a boy that’s tough to engage told the head of school “you have to hire her.” Yep, she’s awesome.

And THEN, same day, she texted me and said “if I’m making $X, how much can I spend on rent?” Of course I immediately sat down and whipped out a budget spreadsheet for her. Getting her financial house in order right out of the gate: so proud!

I’ve been having a bunch of epiphanies lately and usually I feel like I have to/want to tell everyone I know about every realization/decision I’m making. But, I haven’t been doing that lately. I’ve been keeping a lot of things close to the chest and I kind of like it and I kind of also want to BURST. I’m sure I’ll be writing about a bunch of these things soon enough.

I’m into podcasts lately. Some I’ve been enjoying include The Lively Show and The Eventual Millionaire. I’ll listen as I make dinner/do dishes (makes it so much more pleasant–we don’t have a dishwasher). We’ve also started listening on our ride to or from Pennsylvania because the drive is really starting to wear on Mike. We listened to two episodes of The Nerdist Podcast: Jon Favreau and Alex Trebeck. They were both really interesting. We liked the Jon Favreau interview so much that we went to see Chef in the theater about a week later! I’d highly recommend it. A feel good movie with depth.

Did you watch About a Boy on NBC? It’s a feel-good show that totally warmed my heart and made me laugh. By the executive producer of Friday Night Lights and Parenthood, two of or favorite shows. Now we’re watching Undateable–the newest comedy on NBC. I’m into it.

Are you a podcast listener? What are your favorites? Any good TV show recommendations?


One of the best things I’ve done for my mental health in the last year is unsubscribe from the business building newsletter mailing lists I was on.
I’d read these emails and think I’m not good enough, I’m not doing enough. I don’t want to do that. I can’t do that. It just made me feel really shitty.
I knew I wasn’t going to build a successful business from that place of lack and I’m not good enough so I unsubscribed. And it made me feel a million times better.
If you’ve subscribed to something meant to be helpful and motivational but instead makes you feel small and shut down, it’s not doing it’s job and could possibly even be slowing you down from your goals.
If the dating sites are reminding you of how single you are and make you think “I’m never going to find the love of my life” take a break, don’t login for a while.
If listening to podcasts and reading articles about money make you feel hopeless and sad about your financial state, take a step back and don’t listen to those things for a bit.
If fitness pages on social media make you feel fat and inadequate, change your settings so those things don’t pop up in your news feed.
If reading blogs about positive psychology and your mindset overwhelm you, set up your reader so they’re not the first thing you see.
Step away. Unsubscribe. Funnel it into a folder where you don’t have to see it unless you choose to.
You do not deserve to feel shitty about yourself. I personally believe that you’ve got to love yourself into change. Approach it with hope, optimism, and love for the possibilities ahead.
If there are things that are coming across your screen that don’t allow you to feel good, inspired, and expanded, please, please, please, take the action necessary so they don’t come across your screen.
If they’re going to make you feel less than, get them out of your inbox.
You’ll be amazed at what mental creative energy will be opened up to you when you do.
What do you need to remove from your screen?
P.S. I sent this to my email list this morning. If you want to get things like this right in your inbox, subscribe here.