bloopers

Ep 115: Trial and Error: Ways I Tried to Simplify My Life

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This episode is fun to share. I don't try to simplify everything, but sometimes when something is taking a lot of time or feels a little bit too much, I'll ask myself, “How can I simplify this?”. I thought it'd be fun to see the “bloopers” side of simplifying because there are definitely some things that I've tried that I thought would simplify my life that just didn't. In this episode I’m sharing some of those things and talking about what I learned and how I adjusted. So, let's jump in!

 
 

In This Episode Allie Discusses:

  • The beauty product meant to simplify that turned out to be super complicated

  • How delegating too much in her business has had negative consequences

  • The adjustments she has made to her laundry routine

  • Why prioritizing exercise in the morning wasn’t a good fit for her

Mentioned in this Episode:


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Mom life. We are surrounded with the message that it’s the tired life. The no-time-for-myself life. The hard life. And while it is hard and full of lots of servitude, the idea that motherhood means a joyless life is something I am passionate about putting a stop to. I’m on a mission to help you stop counting down the minutes till bedtime, at least most days. I want you to stop cleaning up after your kid’s childhood and start being present for it. Start enjoying it. I believe in John 10:10 “that we are called to abundant life” and I know mothers are not excluded from that promise. Join me in conversations about simplicity, minimalism and lots of other good stuff that leads to a life of less for the sake of enjoying more in your motherhood. I’m Allie Casazza and this is The Purpose Show.


Hey friend! There are things mentioned in this episode that I know you're going to want to look up and links you're going to want to click. So just so you know, you can find anything mentioned in this episode at alliecasazza.com/shownotes/115.

This episode is fun to share. I have been thinking a lot about this. I don't try to simplify everything. I think that the world thinks I try to simplify everything because I'll get questions like, “Where does minimalism and simplicity come in when it comes to this?” And it's like it's my job and I've never even thought about that.

So sometimes you guys are way deeper into this than I am, but I just sometimes think when something is taking a lot of time or feels a little bit too much, I'll try to think how can I simplify this?

Sometimes I do that with something and it doesn't work out, so I just thought it'd be fun to see the “bloopers side” of simplifying because there are definitely some things that I've tried that I thought would simplify my life that just didn't. And then just kind of talking about what I learned and how I adjusted. So, let's jump in!

One of the first things that came to mind when I was thinking about this episode (actually, this is what sparked this episode) is eyelash extensions. Have you guys heard of these? I thought they were super creepy, scary, and would hurt to get put on when they first came out and I was just like, “No! Get away from my eyes!” But then I learned how it works and I saw people getting them and their lashes looked perfect all the time.Somebody told me what a timesaver it was, they don't have to wear mascara, and it was so great. And so, I thought, “Hmm, what the heck? My eyelashes are pretty dark and they're not super short or anything, but I definitely have to put mascara on in the morning and like, that might be cool.”

One girl, this blogger that I follow, she told everyone that her lashes keep her from wearing mascara and she likes that because it's a little bit more natural. She didn't have to wear so much makeup right around her eyes, and they're so dark and full that she doesn't have to wear eyeliner. I don't really wear that much eyeliner or I just do one brush across to make my eyes look a little bit more open. So I was like, “Okay, cool. That might simplify. If I didn't have to do eye makeup that would be great. I’d just do my face, my eyebrows and that'd be great.”

And so, I went in and I got them done. I was all excited and...it was just kind of a bummer. If you sleep on your side or stomach, which I do (I sleep on my stomach usually), your face smashes into the pillow and my eyelash extensions would get all bunched up and weird. I'd have to get this really light cleanser and put it on one of those little eyelash brushes and try to brush it out and it just wouldn't really work right. They looked kind of funny.

And they fall out. Obviously, your real lashes fall out on a regular basis so when they fall out, the extensions fall out because they're attached to your lashes. It definitely didn't hurt or anything at all to get them put on. But the eyelash extensions themselves, they just weren't really working out. They bunched up and they fell out.

There's some that are super intense, like they're really dark. They're just a lot. I just had regular, more natural eyelash extensions, just a little bit darker than my regular lashes. That's what the place that I went to offered. I just didn't really like the look of the other ones because they seemed really fake and just a bit much.

But there were times for date night or if I was going to be on TV or film something that I would want more of a pop and the extensions wouldn't get the job done, so I'd add some, extension-safe mascara. And I was thinking, “Well, now I'm doing mascara.” I don't know, it just wasn't great.

Also washing my face…I love washing my face at night, getting my makeup off, getting in the shower and just washing my face. I'd wash my face and splash it with water to get all the wash off. And what's the next thing you do? You dry your eyes off. I'd have to be really careful not to wipe the extensions too hard so they didn't come off. It was just a lot. I don't know. I didn't like it.

I also noticed that because I got pretty natural-looking extensions (just because that fits my style), my real lashes looked about the same. It just looked like I had a great mascara day and that just wasn't worth it to me. And the cost of the extensions, it just wasn't worth it.

The only good thing that really came out of the extensions is that I now know that they don't work for me. But I also got to know the girl who did my extensions and I really liked her. We became friends and I would look forward to our conversations. She's a really great girl, so that was cool.

But I don't know, I dropped them. I let them fall out. And the girl that does the lashes, she went on a vacation for three weeks and while she was gone, I just decided not to go and find anyone else cause I wasn't super jazzed about the extensions anymore. I just let them fall out.

And while my real lashes were growing in, I wore those magnetic ones (once I figured out how to put them on right. I'm glad that no one was filming that because that was a process). I really liked them and they looked great. I found some natural ones that looked like my real lashes and they were fine. So, now my eyelashes are back and I'm just wearing mascara like a normal person.

But what I learned from this was not everything that seems like it will simplify your life actually will. And that's okay.

Another thing that I have done, this is kind of a general one, but another thing I've done to simplify my life that sometimes doesn't work is delegating too much in my business.

So, I know some of you, we've worked together. I've got some business coaching clients now and I love working with you guys. It's amazing. And I've been talking more and more about business here on the show, on my platforms, and on Instagram and stuff.

One of the biggest core beliefs I have about being a business owner is that I believe that your business should be built around your lifestyle and not the other way around. So, I like to think, “What life do I want? What lifestyle do I want?”

I want to be present with my kids. I want to be able to drop everything, go grab lunch and go out for a midday drive. I want to be able to have Legoland days with my kids and have fun in the summer, fall or winter, no matter what the school schedule is, no matter if they're taking a break from school or not.

I want to be able to take trips and vacations. I want to have the freedom to be a mom and to be present and have fun. And I want my business to support that both in terms of my schedule and my money. So that's how I view things. And because of that, I delegate a lot.

I basically have the perspective in my business of, “Why is this on my task list? Does it have to be on there? Does it have to be done? And if so, does it have to be done by me?” And if the answer isn't, “yes, yes, yes, yes and yes,” then I remove that item from my task list and either give it to somebody on my team or remove it completely because sometimes we think things need to get done and they don't actually need to get done.

Delegating is amazing and I really believe it's the key to having joy, happiness, and honestly, success as a business owner. The more I delegate, the more successful I am. And I think that's because I have more white space in my brain. I just feel happier. I have more space to come up with fresh ideas, come up with new product ideas, and new marketing ideas.

No one really talks about this but I think it is possible to delegate too much of certain things in certain seasons to where it leads to a disconnect. Here are a couple of examples that I'm willing to share with you guys about this.

One area where I found myself delegating too much in order to try to simplify my life and my schedule was with my finances. I delegated basically everything in my finances.

I have a CFO. She's an accountant and she watches everything. She makes sure that everyone gets paid. She's in charge of payroll. She watches what's coming in and what's not. She knows what our bottom line is. She knows when to tell me that we're getting too close to that or otherwise it’s okay if we're getting way above that or whatever. She just watches the finances.

Then I have two other people who are along with her because I don't think that you should have just one person in charge of your money. I think that that's where things get scary, people get hurt and stolen from and all that nasty stuff. (Not that I don't trust my CFO—if she's listening, you're amazing! You're doing great).

But you don't want to be stupid, right? You want to be smart.

I've shared before, Brian and I have had quite a money story. If you have not listened to episode six of this podcast, go back and listen, because it is the story of our business and how we went from our past life to our new life through the business that we started.

I have struggled with money and looking at it, even if there is a lot of it or a little of it. It triggers me. I've shared a little before in the past that I had been diagnosed with PTSD by my therapist a couple of years ago. I was having night sweats and recurring nightmares about the repo guy banging on our door and taking our car away—the panic attacks that I used to have. Money and me have been through quite a process.

And even though I had healed from a lot of the money stuff and a lot of money blocks and issues that I had, I just really didn't like dealing with money. So, I delegated it pretty much completely. And then I would check-in and we'd have monthly meetings about what's going on. I looked at the profit and loss reports and just saw what was going on. 

But then I started to cancel those just because I knew everything was fine. I knew everything was going well, but I just didn't want to look. I just didn't want to look at money at all. For a good chunk of time there was this season where I wasn't connected to my money at all. And that disconnect led to a disconnect from my money and a drop in revenue.

I wasn't connected to the cause and effect. I wasn't connected to the fact that I'm sharing a message and that message is helping people. And people are paying me to honor the fact that I helped them and to dive deeper into what I can teach them. I'm seeing that money create jobs, create revenue, and take care of my family. I got disconnected from that and that had negative consequences for sure.

It wasn't healthy for me to delegate all the way in that area because I have had a difficult money story. I needed to be connected to it. So, I learned from that. And now, I'm in my personal bank account and our business bank accounts every single morning and I am very involved in what's going on. I check in with what we've made each day.

I listened to a podcast that my COO sent me. It was an interview that Tim Ferriss did with the CEO of Walmart and the CEO of Walmart checks in on what they made the day before every single morning. The CEO of Walmart. I think it's pretty safe to say they're making a lot of money and he checks in every single morning. And so, I realized that if the CEO of Walmart is looking at the finances, then obviously looking at the finances doesn't mean you only look if you don't have any money or if you don't have enough money.

I was lying to myself subconsciously because of my issues with money and saying, “Well I don't have to check cause we're okay. Everything's okay.” I used to have to check all the time because I needed to know if I could swipe for gas or not. But now I know that we can swipe for gas and everything's fine, so I don't need to check. Like checking your bank account equals you're poor and broke and you have nothing or you don't have enough. And so, by not checking, I was not only avoiding money and comforting myself in that way, but I was also comforting myself with this lie—this subconscious lie that I was telling myself—that if I didn't check our bank accounts, it was because I didn't need to, because we had everything that we needed.

The money is there whether I'm looking at it or not, and the disconnect that I had from the cause and effect of how I make money caused a drop in revenue, caused a lack of connection. It caused just a big disconnect. It caused a gap in my business, in my mindset, and in my energy.

I really believe that when you are a creative business owner like I am, your business and your revenue is a reflection of where you are personally. So, when I was avoiding money and pushing it away, delegating all of it, delegating too much in that area to other people, I was not connected to that flow of money into my life. And I really believe that it caused a negative drop. So, that is what I learned there.


Hey guys! Okay, so in this episode we're talking about how not everything that you will try to streamline in your life will work out. I have had multiple things that I tried to simplify in my life that didn't work out, right? That’s normal. It's just trial and error, but you've got to be flexible and try, try again.

One thing that has always been the answer for me in simplifying my life, making things easier for me to maintain, and creating more space for me to focus on what really matters to me is setting up simple rhythms for my days and my weeks. 

I have daily rhythms and weekly rhythms in my life. Rhythms are basically what happens when routines and habits have a baby, and they're perfect for people who tend to not stick with routines. You say you're going to live a certain way, stick to a routine, and then it falls away. You fall off the bandwagon and it doesn't stick. Rhythms are so much easier because they're attached to things that you're going to do anyway.

If that doesn't make any sense to you, but you know that you like me, you trust me, you want to learn from me, and typically what I say works really well for you or makes a lot of sense to you, you're going to want to check this out.

Rhythms keep things running. What has to get done always gets done. They are the secret. This is what I teach in my second course, Unburdened.

Unburdened is only available twice a year and it is currently open. I'm so excited!

Unburdened is basically Step 2. If you have simplified your home, you've simplified your stuff and decluttered a bit, and you're really wanting to simplify your life, your calendar, your schedule, get some boundaries in place, start living a healthier life, have things that need to get done just on autopilot, set up your life and your schedule to work with you just like your home works with you when you follow my process and philosophy of minimalism, then Unburdened is going to be perfect for you.

Go to alliecasazza.com/unburdenedlife. Alliecasazza.com/unburdenedlife and check it out while it's available.

It's going to go away again for over six months, so now's your chance!


Also, another time I delegated too much in order to try to simplify was in different areas of my business. I was really scrappy when I started my business. I had to be because I didn't have any money even for bills and food, let alone to hire somebody to help me with my business that I was starting.

In the beginning I learned everything about everything. I knew everything about Pinterest marketing, Instagram and Facebook marketing, and the backend of everything. I learned how to code my own website. I learned everything about creating opt-ins, web pages, lead pages, and growing your email list. I knew everything by myself and I didn’t hire until I absolutely had to because I was scared to. So, I knew everything back in the day.

That helped me a lot because I could know when somebody was screwing me over or trying to charge me too much for doing a job that I knew how many hours that would take. I knew how much effort that would take. It really helped me.

But that was years ago and as the years went by and I grew, Pinterest changed, social media changed, the rules of tech and the way things work changed. I was delegating things—which is good, you need to delegate things—but some things I delegated a bit too much and didn't check in enough.

I believe that knowledge is power. So now I'm reading books about all the different things in my business—even if somebody else does them—because I want to know the latest and greatest tips for running Pinterest, running social media, doing Facebook Ads, growing your email list, and all these things.

I don't just read about what I'm doing. I now read about everything that has to do with my business so that I have a hand on what is going on. And I do that now because I delegated too much and it led to people getting lazy and not doing their job well. Then they would be the ones that knew how things worked and I wouldn't really know how that area of my business worked, so I would feel a little trapped in the relationship with them and like I didn't have control. That lack of control, it just wasn't good for me. It caused panic and it removed peace from my life and replaced it with stress.

So, I do think that delegation is one of the things that I believe in the most for anybody, but especially a business owner. I think that it's the key, like I said, to freedom and living the life that you love while also having a business that you love. But I do think that you can delegate too much in the wrong areas and no one really talks about that.

Another thing that I've tried to simplify in my life that didn't work is my laundry routine. I actually have an episode about my laundry routine. It's awesome and it's super helpful. If you haven't listened to it, I will link to it in the shownotes so that you can listen. I had a great laundry routine but, as life does, things shifted and my season of life just kind of changed. I was looking for ways to create more peace and more time in my mornings so that I could do enjoyable things in the morning. I was moving out of this time of waking up and getting things done and really wanting to just simplify everything that I could.

I had hired a couple of girls from the youth group at our church to do some things around the house for me. They were thankful for the money and I was thankful for them saving me an hour or two a day. And so, I said, “I want you guys to start doing my laundry for me. And I was so excited. I thought I was going to simplify my life so much and it actually didn't.

They were only able to come for an hour a day, so they weren't able to wait for the load to finish, switch it and follow through on a load of laundry. So, me delegating to them and giving that to them led to the laundry sitting and it was just kind of messed up. It just wasn't going well. I don't know. It was weird.

I was also really worried that they were going to shrink my stuff. And girls, if you're listening, I love you. You're doing a great job. I know you never shrunk any of my stuff. But I was just worried. I'm thinking about my Free People tops that I use for speaking engagements that are so delicate and dainty. I was terrified they were going to shrink stuff, bleach stuff, or mess something up. This was an afterschool job that they just had an hour or two a day, so they weren't able to really complete a full load of laundry and it made things worse. It just made things harder.

So, I adjusted. I realized that this wasn't helping. I realized that it was just making things harder. I didn't even really need to get my laundry off my plate. I was just looking to up-level as a woman and as a CEO, and if there's something that you can have done for you so you don't have to do it, then why wouldn't you? Why wouldn't you simplify?

But, my laundry routine was so good to me and I ended up going back to it. Go listen to that episode. I ended up going back to it. The only thing that changed is I do my laundry, but I have the girls fold it.

When they come over after school for an hour or hour and a half, they do a couple of things. They dust, pick up, and do a couple of deep cleaning things for me. And then they fold the laundry that I did the day before. That's it. They're just folding it and putting it away. And that saves a little bit of time, a little bit of effort for me. My kids put away their own laundry, but they put away mine. I have to hang up my delicate shirts so when they're dry, they come over, get them and hang them up for me. They put Brian's clothes away. They put my clothes away. They put Emmett's clothes away because he's little. But that's it for the laundry. 

What I learned from this is sometimes simplicity just needs an adjustment. Maybe the thing you simplified isn't working. That doesn't mean that it's a trash idea and you're stupid and you don't even know how to simplify. It just means sometimes it needs an adjustment.

The last thing I tried to simplify in my life that didn't work was getting my exercise out of the way first thing in the morning. 

Now this is just me talking to you guys and sharing. This isn't even fully thought through. I'm just sharing some things with you. This might be a thing that was a problem in my season of life. It might not be a “this-sucks-permanently-thing,” if that makes sense. 

For a while back in January—I think it was the end of January—I decided that I wanted to work out because I was eating really well and not feeling healthier. I was feeling really sick. I was definitely not at a weight that was healthy for my height at all. I was just not feeling good. I was not fitting into my clothes and I just didn't feel good at all.

I was having weird pains and I was just like, “You know what? Maybe I'm over 30 now and I just have to work out more.” So, I signed up with a trainer friend of mine and I started going to her in the mornings. I would get up really early in the morning (which I was already doing anyway), and I would go immediately and work out. It was good for a little while, but over a couple months’ time, after the ‘honeymoon phase,’ I started to feel really, really unhappy about it. I started feeling really resentful—not of my trainer or anything, she's amazing—but of doing this thing. It was sucking my joy away from me.

Every night when I'd be going to bed, I would start to dread the next morning and that is not where I want to be. That is the opposite of what I believe, what I teach, and what I want. That was when I knew like something was off.

Side note: I did not lose any weight from working out. I did not feel much better at all. I came to find out that my ovary syndrome that I've had since a teenager was back and flared up really bad, and I was sick. I needed to balance my hormones. That's a side note. Story for another day.

But anyway, it was so frustrating that I was doing all this work and not feeling any better, but also my mornings were ruined. I realized that I missed my mornings and my morning routine. You guys know my morning routine, my morning ritual, I missed it. And so, this wasn't serving me.

So what I did was, I switched to doing my exercise in the middle of the day or just at some point in the day. It was something that was on my to-do list, not on my schedule. Does that make sense? My schedule is like, “Hey Allie, you have to be here at this time. You have to go live with Kendra at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday. And then, after that, you have a doctor's appointment.” There are appointments, events, things that are on my schedule, but my to-do list is things that need to be done when I sit down to work or when I decide I'm going to do them. Make sense? So, moving my body became a thing on my to-do list. 

At some point in the day, I'm going to be ready for a break. If I'm homeschooling the kids, I'm going to want to break from that at some point. If I'm working, I’m going to want to get up from my desk and take a break. Whatever it is I'm doing, I going to want to take a break. When I take that break, I grab a water bottle, I get my tennis shoes on, and I go outside. I take a long walk, or a really short brisk walk, or I'll sprint with the kids in the backyard, we'll play kickball at the park, or I'll just do some squats and pushups while I wait for my snack to be ready or whatever it is.

I moved that there instead of making it this big hour-long thing—plus the drive time, plus the waking up and getting ready time–first thing in the morning. By the time I got home, it would be 8:00 a.m. and I'd have to start to get ready for my day because my work day normally starts at 9 or 10, depending. My whole morning ritual had to get nixed because I had to get up and go exercise and it just was a joy-suck for me.

I was trying to simplify life by feeling better and getting my exercise done right away. But what happened was it backfired and it sucked. I'm glad that I did it for a little while because, first of all, I learned a lot about how to work out and work my body really well, and my trainer taught me some really great moves to do. I definitely felt empowered by getting that done for a short season of time, but then it started to drain me.

What I learned from this is that it's okay to change. That’s another podcast episode to go back to. It's okay to change. It's okay to change your mind. It's okay to need to pivot. (Pivot! If you don't get that, I'm sorry. It's a “Friends” reference).

I also learned from this that sometimes simplicity is fitting things in when it works day-by-day and not being super scheduled and rigid. And you guys, I've talked about this so much because I am generally not a super organized, scheduled, rigid person. I love being spontaneous. I love being able to do what I want as things come and go and fly by the seat of my pants.

And pretty much every time I get super rigid I get out of it because it doesn't make me happy. It just makes me feel stuck. And I think there is a way to balance the things that need to get done and having rhythms and routines that serve you without feeling super rigid and stuck.

So, those are some things that I've tried to simplify in my life that didn't end up working, and what I learned and how I adjusted.

I hope that this makes you feel super known, understood and seen. It's okay. Life is real.

Sometimes you see somebody online talking about something and you think that they're perfect in that area and in every area of their life. And that's just not the case. And if they say it is, they're lying. I'm not saying that it’s perfect. I'm being honest with you and sharing the behind-the-scenes simplicity bloopers.

I hope this helps, makes you giggle and see that you're not alone, and maybe feel a little inspired to adjust in the area of your life that hasn't been working for you.

Love you guys!


This was an episode of The Purpose Show. Did you know there is an exclusive community created solely for the purpose of continuing discussions surrounding The Purpose Show episodes? And to get you to actually take action and make positive changes on the things that you learn here? Go be a part of it. To join go to facebook.com/groups/purposefulmamas.

Thank you so much for tuning in. If you are ready to uplevel and really take action on the things I talk about on my show, and get step-by-step help from me, head to alliecasazza.com. There are free downloads, courses, classes, and ways to learn more about what the next step might look like for you and to focus on whatever you might need help with in whatever season you are in right now.  

I am always rooting for you, friend! See ya next time!

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