An Easy Trick to Putting an End to Your Favorite Excuse for Not Getting Fit

Pounding out hours on the treadmill is NOT my idea of fun. But someone said I had to do it, so I did it. Every. Day. And I hated it. Every. Day.

What happened to that routine?

I walked away from it. And didn't look back - until I had to.

Walking Away

We walk away from things we don’t like to do. So if you're not enjoying being fit, you're not going to tough it out. No one wants to live punishing themselves day after day. If the treadmill is torture or the your spinning class makes you want to run to the dentist instead, you're not going to continue. With the demands of keeping up with the house and dinners and marketing, we have enough stress on our heads as heads of our businesses and our homes. We don't want to push ourselves for something we don't love.

So if you don’t enjoy your fitness routines, you assume it isn’t for you. So you walk away from it. And you abandon one of the major things that makes you better at what you do - being healthy. Being healthy is the basis for any successful business.

Check out these top Tech dudes and dudettes that Mashable featured this weekend. They didn't walk away from being fit. They did what they love in fitness and it empowered them to do what they love in their business.

Fit begets profit. (Click the link to Tweet - thanks!)

Doomed

The nature of our passions - writing, designing, freelancing, tech, whatever - dooms us to sedentary lives and we love to use the excuse that we don’t have time to exercise because we have a major project due or our families need something or or or...How many times have you opted not to put on your sneakers and hit that treadmill that sits conveniently in your office with the intention that you were going to finish Project X? (Did you really finish it then?)

So we give up the chance to torture ourselves in favor of doing the things we love. Our excuses become our crutches. Crutches splinter.

Cultivate Love

We didn’t start out running successful businesses. We started scared and nervous. Wondering how and if we could make it. But because we loved it, we stick to it. We stay up working hours after everyone is asleep. We  dedicate every possible waking moment bettering our businesses. We're determined to make our freelancing successful because it makes us feel good to do it.

We cultivated that love of freelancing, of entrepreneurship, and nurtured it. We made our businesses grow into something that we’d rather do than eat, drink, or even sleep. Because we found happiness when we sat to write, design and run our businesses.

Cultivating that same love for fitness will make sure you stick to it with the same tenacity that superglues you to your will to become a successful freelancer. Work through those tough fitness times to find that Sweet Spot. The spot where you can let go, relax and be in love with what you’re doing.

Trial and Error

That means you have to suffer through that same period of trial and error that you suffered through when you started your business. You remember the lean times of no clients when your bills were due and instead of going out to get a job, you clung to your freelancing because you believed you could do it - that's the same dedication you have to apply to your fitness so you can persist, grow and conquer the freelancing world. You have to try new routines and throw away the ones that don't speak to your Sweet Spot. You also have to throw away the notion that you’re going to see results right away - just like you did in your business.

You didn’t see results from your business efforts until months - maybe years- after you started, right? Clients didn't come flocking to your site as soon as you got it up and running, did they? You had to earn your results. Just like you do with your fitness regime.

The Plan That Gets Results

Make a plan each week to try a new fitness routine. Try new things until you find that love, that Sweet Spot.

Jamie Raintree of Everyday Fairy Tale Love Stories wrote me and told me how much she loved doing a postnatal rehabilitation video. And she’s finally found something that she loves that she can do without feeling punished everyday. It fits her needs and her fitness level so she was seeing results because she loved doing it and she persists at it - saying that she has the energy to write more now, even with two little girls in tow.

Likewise, I’ve always known I loved lifting weights and hated aerobics, but I tortured myself to the point where I didn’t want to do it anymore. Though I loved lifting, I hated the way my body turned out because of it. It didn't fit me anymore. It no longer spoke to me. So I quit.

Three children in three years and 60 pounds later, I found Zuzana’s workouts and fell in love again. I fell in love with the power I felt when I lifted, only I wasn’t lifting anything but me. Then, I tried shadow boxing and fell in love again. It’s the power of the adrenaline coursing through my veins that keeps me coming back. (That and the sweat rolling down my brow.)

And I do it religiously. As a result, just like Jamie, I have more energy. I feel good. I'm more confident. And my freelancing game has changed because of the RESULTS I get from working out. My marketing is more confident and more successful. I've increased my client base. And I earn more since hitting my fitness routine seriously again.

It's not like fitness is a magic key to success - but it is the key to unlocking the power that's in YOU so you can succeed.

When you do what makes you feel good, you want to stick to it. You want to succeed at it. When you can succeed at doing your body and mind good, then you can sustain your freelancing success.

So what can you try?

Everything.

HIIT Zumba Belly Dance Boxing Tae Bo (Yeah, he’s still around) The Brazilian Butt Workout Hip Hop Dancing Weight Lifting Running Walking Elliptical Training Pilates Yoga Tai Chai Bodyweight exercises (Push ups, lunges, etc.) Barre Biking Crossfit Jonathan Bailor’s Eccentric Muscle Stimulation

And the list goes on for miles! If you're a beginner to working out, any of these can be tailored to your fitness level so don't be afraid to try something because a pro makes it look like something out of your league. Just find the movements that make you feel good.

Choose 4 workout types to fit your interests and level and do each one for a week for a month until you find the Sweet Spot your mind and body crave. If you don’t find it, move on to another 4 and try it for another month.

Try. Fail. Try. Fail. Try. Succeed.

The goal is to find the fitness moves you love. And do them. Every. Day.

Because when you love it, like your freelance business, you WANT to do it. You NEED to do it. And fit begets profit.

What 4 exercises will you commit to for the next 4 weeks? 

Thanks for reading and have a super week!

Tania

PS

Don't forget to sign up for content to be delivered to your inbox and get your Fit Freelancer Focus Book to help you reign in the chaos of life so you can love what you do again!

 

Is Your Freelance Income Growing?

Your client list is a little a thin and your income isn't what you'd hoped it'd be. But you work hard. Really hard. And you can't figure out why. The answer may not be in the tone. It may not be in your marketing efforts. It may not even be in your poor organization.

But it may be an easier fix than you think.

Why Aren't You Making More?

Your goal this year was to increase your client base so you could earn more with your freelancing. But you’re doing everything you thought you were supposed to do and it's just not working.

You've approached every magazine you read, but the editors aren't digging your ideas because they've all been done before.

The one or two potential clients that you do manage to make contact with don’t respond to your emails or cold calls.

And your letter of introduction isn't getting the attention you thought it would. And you’re tired.

So you try to produce more, to produce better, newer content, but it doesn't happen. No matter how much you schedule, you can't focus long enough to do all you hoped to. And it's frustrating.

Too Frustrated To Focus On Fitness

That frustration doesn’t lead to better or more creative work, does it?

Instead of working harder to meet your cold-call quota or to increase the numbers of queries you send out, you crawl into bed - and hide - hoping that tomorrow will be different.

But Freelance Frustration is something to be taken head on - running away from it doesn’t solve it and it doesn’t give you the tools to deal with it. Without facing it, you risk losing your business.

There is a way that’ll help you battle it and WIN.

Take Up A Income-Enhancing Hobby

Exercising daily  probably isn't an answer you want to hear, but it is one that gets results. And before you roll your eyes, there’s scientific evidence to back up that exercising will help you earn more.

A study done by Cleveland State University found that people who exercised 3 times per week earned a whopping 6-10% more than sedentary people. And as a freelancer that increase translates into an increase in your client base, your rates, or BOTH.

https://twitter.com/TaniaDakka/status/222003258691026945

As a freelancer, your business success is based on your fitness because how fit you are ultimately determines how focused you are, how rested you are, how well you manage stress (ahem, let me say that again - your fitness determines how well you manage stress! - but you don’t have to deal with that, do you?). It also keeps you healthy so you don’t spend time in bed wishing you felt well enough to design or write.

Being fit also makes you more productive and creative. Increasing your fitness level boosts information processing up to 68%. And your time and productivity output are improved by 15%. In short, exercising makes you smarter and more efficient - could your business could use numbers like those?

Fitness is the answer to making you more by earning you more clients and more money.

Finding a way to get fit so you can rock your freelance career is paramount to your success as a freelancer. And here’s how you can do it today.

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Action Steps To Take Today

Take these Action Steps and increase your fitness and start earning more. Implement them now, but gauge your progress in 6 months to see just how far fit has taken you.

1. Do what you love. Since working out is going to be something you do every day, you’ll want it to be something you love and can deal with daily. Make a list of those activities and rotate them so you don’t get bored.

My list includes shadow boxing, ZWOW’s by Zuzana Light, high intensity interval training, dancing, walking/running on the treadmill, sprints, walking/running outside, supersets of anything, swimming, soccer, and lifting weights.

2. Commit to taking 15 minutes every day to push your limits. As a freelancer, you’re used to being sedentary, so this may not be easy to start with. But put it in your mind that you’re going to spend the MINIMUM 15 minutes every day and log it in your Day Planner just as you log project work for clients or marketing.

3. Forget it. Set your appointment time to workout and don’t think about it again. Don’t dwell on the fact that you don’t really WANT to get up and expend energy that you don’t have. Don’t think about how tiring it'll be in the beginning. Don’t even think about how good it’s going to feel when you’re done. Set an alarm on your phone on your calendar, anywhere, but when it goes off, do it - without thinking about it.

4. Write about it. At the end of your 15 minutes of whatever you did, write it in your journal, but don’t just write what you did, write HOW YOU FELT. You’ll be hard-pressed to find someone who was miserable while they worked out. Those little endorphins tend to take over and help you forget your stress and frustration to make you feel good. Look at what you wrote often and engrain that feeling of bliss that comes when you work out. Eventually, working out will become something that you NEED mentally and physically.

5. Get a partner. Virtual or otherwise. Working out with someone that has the same goal - to be fit - is easier and more fun. Make it a competition or a co-opetition (working together to support each other). With someone to cheer you on and discuss your ups and downs with, you’ll be inspired even when you don’t want to work out and they’ll remind of how far you’ve come when you want to give up.

Use these tactics, hit your peak and increase your freelance income starting TODAY! What stops you from improving your business by improving your fitness?

Thanks for taking the time to read and I'd love to get to know you, so leave a comment before you go! Have an awesome day!

PS If you enjoyed this piece, please share it using the share buttons above or below the post. Freelancing is hard and every time you share things that help you, you could help someone else that needs it, too!

 

3 Steps to Creating Enough Energy To Become A Freelancing Powerhouse

creating energy for freelancing Another day. Another slew of assignments you happily tackle. Come day's end, you've pushed your workout to the last minute. But your energy's gone.

You just don't feel like it. I know how you feel.

Day after day, I fall back on the reasoning: "I have to work!" (And I'm not sure anyone loves that excuse more than I do!)

Waiting for "Enough Energy"

Our minds tell us we need to fit in a work out. Our bodies tell us they want it, too. But, our energy levels just don't let us.

Working out every day should be a natural part of life. But it isn't. We feel like it's a chore. And you remember being a kid - your mom said, "Go clean your room!" The last thing you wanted to do was clean up!

That's the rebel in you. It's how way we're wired. We don't want to do what we SHOULD do. We want to do what we WANT to do - as freelancers, that's usually working!

So we reason with ourselves that it just never "fits" into our schedule. We're swamped with projects and by the time we're ready to take on the one thing we should do, we don't want to.

So we call it a day - with the intention that tomorrow we'll start all over - workout and all. But you jot down the things you want to do the next day and working out is nowhere on the list.

And as with all good intentions, there's a trap.

It's us.

Sabotaging Ourselves

We sabotage ourselves when we listen to our inner demons who keep telling us it'll be fine to wait and work out later. We fall into the trap of thinking we'll get to it tomorrow because it's the one way we can make ourselves feel better about not doing it right now.

We know the pattern well, but we ignore it and listen to those not-so-nice voices that tell us what we want to hear.

But we have to beat ourselves at our own games if we want to succeed at being powerhouse freelancers!

Creating The Energy You Need

Enough energy will never appear from no where. Remember the Law of Conservation of Energy from science class? Energy can be neither created nor destroyed. But you can redistribute it.

There's a line in t he Mechanic that says "victory loves preparation."

https://twitter.com/TaniaDakka/status/219840221389406209

There are three things you can do that will help you beat you at your own game.

3 Steps To Creating Enough Energy So You Can WIN

1. Rebel against the devil inside. When you hear that whisper that says, "Go ahead, work now, you can exercise later," do the opposite. Do your workout before you even start and get it out if your way. You'll reap the rewards of a better mood, clearer thinking, and more - get this - ENERGY!!

2. Stop waiting to have enough energy. It will never happen. Working out gives you energy. It makes you feel better. And it let's you sleep better. When all of these balls are on the court, you prepare yourself for victory and you give yourself the one tool you need to do it again the next day. And what's that tool? Say it with me,now! Energy!! (Wow, you're getting really good at this!)

3. Set a schedule and don't dare veer away from it. Whether "schedule" means doing it at a certain time of day or doing at a certain juncture (like before work - whenever that may be), don't skip it. Especially in the beginning when you're trying to establish the habit. What is the BEST time for you to get it done? Set it and forget it. Never think about whether or not you "want" to do it. It's not an option. Just. Do. It.

Once you've developed the habit of working out, you'll find that you've created the energy that you've been waiting for; you've found the route to clarity in your freelance work; and you no longer have to be a slave to yor own self sabotaging ways.

What's your biggest excuse for not working out?

Want help getting up and getting it done? Interact with me on Facebook and Twitter. You CAN thrive where life, fitness and productivity collide!

PS If this post resonated with you, I'd be honored if you'd share it by using the share buttons - let's give all freelancers (writers, startups, and all!) the chance to thrive, too!

Have an AWESOME day!

3 Warning Signs You're Not Fit Enough For Your Freelance Business

Fit FreelancerRunning a freelance business is NOT for the faint of heart. You wear so many hats, you have to look in the mirror to know what you're doing next. There's marketing. Billing. Networking. Planning. Scheduling. Contract negotiations. Studying, practicing and honing your skills. Oh yeah, then there's the writing.

Don't forget the sitting that slowly kills your body. Working all hours to get it all done because you either have a day job or  family needs to take care of.

To be a freelancer, you've got to be TOUGH.

Giving into the temptation to skip your workout's not only going to kill you. But it's going to kill your business.

Don't Ignore the Signs

Confession time.

How many times have you gotten up from your desk with pains in your back?

How many nights did you take Tylenol to ease your stress headache?

How many bottles of Visine have you been through for your dry, tired eyes?

If you notice any of the following warning signs, consider rethinking your business plan.

Warning Sign #1: Physical Pain and Discomfort

When you "end" your workday in physical pain and discomfort, that's your body screaming for help. Ignoring these signal leads to greater problems like heart disease, chronic back problems, obesity, diabetes, and a whole array of health problems that prevent you from carrying out your day-to-day normal activities as a freelancer.

Can't keep clients happy, if you aren't healthy.

Warning Sign #2: Fatigue

Constant exposure to stress, working every moment of every day, staying up late, getting up early to work before the house wakes up wears you out and depletes your energy. And energy levels plummet just when you need to be at your peak. Now you've got a high dollar project on your desk and you can't focus to get it done because you're too tired.

Think that copy's going to shine?

Warning Sign #3: Writer's Block

When you need your best ideas to flow and you can't get anything from the well, you've got a serious blockage. Now, we all know that writer's block's a figment of our imaginations, but not being able to think clearly is definitely real. You can dig into the depths of your soul, but if there's no clarity, you'll only pull up an empty bucket.

Clients don't hang around for muddy copy.

If any of these warning signs sound familiar, take action before it's too late.

Put yourself on the right track now, rebuild the foundation of your freelance business and start moving upward.

Rebuild It One Brick At a Time

Your foundation didn't start crumbling all at once. It took time to get to this point. And we all know that relearning and instilling new habits takes time and effort. So start rebuilding yourself and your business. By accepting where you are and taking the time to focus on what will benefit you most now.

Exercise.

Fitness isn't the be-all-end-all fix for everything, but it does improve the strength of your body and your mind. With exercise you get: increased strength, increased endurance, increased confidence, improved sleep habits and better focus. And I bet exactly zero of those sound beneficial to running a freelance business, right?

You don't need to focus to bring your clients your best work so they keep coming back. You don't need to be strong to be able to sit for hours and hours at a time trying to crank out jammin' copy that earns them (and you) money. And you certainly don't need your self-confidence to bleed through your words, right?

Yeah, I didn't think so.

Here's What You Do

Commit to 15 minutes everyday of the fitness fun of your choice. I don't care what it is. It could be hopping on one foot trying to chew gum while patting your head and crossing your eyes.

But what I do care is that you do whatever you want to do to the best of your ability (i.e. kick your own ass) for 15 minutes everyday. You don't need a gym. You're all the equipment you need. And I'm a FIRM believer in the fact that everything that can be modified. No matter what your fitness level there's something you can do.

5 things you can do RIGHT NOW:

Turn up Eminem's Cinderella Man and box for three "rounds."

http://youtu.be/lgrtmYbulQo

Hit a Zuzana Light vid and crank it out.

http://youtu.be/SmoGQX1XvJc

Walk/run/jog for 15 mins.

DANCE!! Don Omar's station on Pandora R O C K S for making you want to shake your groove thang.

Do high knees (or jump rope) for 15 mins.

 

Yep. Don't make it complicated. Don't make it hard. Don't think about it.

Just do it now. 

 

What stops you from making fitness part of your business plan?

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