Tools Creative entrepreneurs can use for mind management and balance

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Solopreneurs often feel like they’re being pulled in a million directions. Most days, (outside of client work) it’s hard for me to discern what I should be working on in order to move the business forward. I know there are all sorts of posts out there talking about tactics with different software or programs. And this post is sorta like that… but not really. I’m not talking about a new project management program or the latest “bullet journal” craze. I’m talking about learning how to manage your brain.

Managing my brain is the #1 thing that keeps me focused, avoiding overwhelm, and seeing real results in my life and biz. So what are some of the tools I’ve used to do this? I’m glad you asked! Because I’m sharing my top resources today.

Self Coaching Scholars

This is the life coaching program run by Brooke Castillo, and I couldn’t say enough good things about it. Hands down the number one thing that has shifted just about every aspect of my life- including my business. It’s not cheap, but I don’t regret a penny I’ve spent on it. If you’re not ready to take the plunge, you can always start with Brooke’s podcast (see below) or her book, Self-Coaching 101.

Google Calendar + a notebook

I know this seems like a weird one to put down for brain management, but I’m notoriously bad with time management. I procrastinate, let deadlines go to the last minute and then perform under pressure. I always thought that was just the way I worked. Yeah, no. It was leading to all sorts of stress, overwhelm and wasted time. Now, I constrain by putting every single thing I want to accomplish in a week (this includes, eating, resting, hanging out, exercising, etc. in addition to work stuff and meetings) into my google calendar. (You can read more about it here) Then, because, I don’t know, maybe I’m a ludite, or maybe there’s something chemical happening when we put pen to paper, I write my tasks out daily in my notebook and then mark them off. I also capture random thoughts and notes here as the week goes on, and add any of that stuff to the next week’s agenda.

My Kindle

Books, books, books. Books are SO important to my personal growth + ability to manage my mindset. So my kindle is always nearby. I try to read for at least 30 minutes every day. (Usually in the morning, because at night time I have a tendency to just fall asleep.) Even though I have an iPhone and iPad, I still prefer the stand alone kindle. First, because I’m not distracted by other things. On my kindle app, Instagram, email and other temptations are just a swipe away. Also, it’s easier on my eyes + easier to read- especially outdoors. Ever try to read something on your iPhone at the beach? Forget about it.

Some of my recent + all time favs are: You Are A Badass + You Are A Badass at Making Money, The War Of Art, Playing the Matrix, The Compound Effect, The Big Leap, Real Magic, Girl Wash Your Face, The Power Of Joy.

Podcasts

What a world we live in… Podcasts are like having a mini coach, in your pocket, wherever you go, for free. I mean… srsly. The 3 I’ve been listening to regularly for years are:
The Life Coach School (Brooke Castillo’s podcast)
The LIvely Show
Mind Your Business

I also tune into The Goal Digger, Being Boss, and The Influencer Podcast from time to time. All great, but I feel like they focus more on tactics vs mindset. Nothing wrong with that though.

Meditation

Full disclosure: I’m an on-again, off-again meditator. I for sure am not one of those people who have an ironclad meditation practice on lock down. But when I am doing it on a regular basis, I see a tremendous difference in my life. Headspace is a great app to get you started. Also “Bliss more: How to succeed in meditation without really trying” by Light Watkins is an amazing resource. I know it sounds weird- a BOOK on meditation, but I learned and eased more into the practice of mediation from this book than from any other resource I’ve ever tried- including apps and guided meditations.

Now it’s your turn. Do you use any of these resources or techniques for balance and mind management? If so, what do you think? Are there other things or resources you use that aren’t on this list? Please share!