Ep 137: What I Do When I Lose My Drive

I’m a very ambitious person. I’m really goal-oriented and I’m really good at looking ahead and casting vision for what I want to do and what I want our life and my business to look like. But I can’t say that this energy doesn’t ever fail me, because it does. There are times when I just lose my drive and I have to get it back. 

If you’ve ever felt like you’ve lost your drive and you don’t know why or how to get it back, get out your notepad, girl. I’m laying it all out for you. I’m telling you exactly what I do when I lose my drive and how I get it back. You’re going to want to take notes! 

 

 

 

In This Episode Allie Discusses:

  • A Recent Time When She Lost Her Drive

  • Brain-Dumping Your Feelings

  • Solving Your Problems One Domino at a Time

  • Creating Your Own Energy

  • Setting Up Bumpers to Help Knock Problems Down

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 guys! Okay, I’m going to give you a warning right now. This is one of those episodes where you’re going to want to take notes, jot things down, type things out in your phone notes, whatever it looks like for you, but if you relate to this topic, if this content resonates with you, you’re going to want to take notes. I’m just giving that to you right now so that you can know.

Maybe you’re driving right now and you can’t take notes and you come back, listen again, and jot things down. Or maybe you don’t listen right now, you press pause and you listen later when you can jot things down.

I’m going to outline what I do when I lose my drive. I’m going to explain what that means and give you examples. I’m giving you an outline of exactly what I do in my life when I feel like I have lost my drive to keep going.

I talk a lot about how I’m a very ambitious person. I’m really goal-oriented. I am a vision-caster. I am really good at looking ahead and casting vision for what I want things to look like, where I want my family to go, and talking it out with Brian to where he catches that inspiration from me and we’re dreaming together. I can name exactly what it is that we want, where we want to go, when he was kind of struggling to find the words.

In my business, I am the vision-caster. I am the one that paints the picture of where we’re going, where we’re headed and then I can also break it down and map out exactly how we’re going to get there. I have this energy in me that I’m so grateful for and that I’m very protective of. But I won’t lie to you and say that it’s perfect and it never falters or fails me.

There have been times where I have just lost that drive. And honestly, it makes me depressed when that happens because I really identify with my drive. I love my drive. I love that momentum and push that I have inside of myself. And when I lose it, it’s really hard for me.

Really recently, like really recently at the time I’m recording this, I lost my drive and I sat in that for too long. I let it be lost. I was really struggling, not feeling like myself, kind of just in a lull. I normally don’t procrastinate. I don’t really struggle with that. That’s not my thing. I just don’t. I just get stuff done. I get it done a lot. I get it done pretty quickly.

And so, when I lose that drive to keep going and knock stuff out of the park all the time, sometimes if I’m honest, it’s just because I need a break. I just need to rest. But other times it’s just because I lost my drive and I need to get it back. I want to just share today how I deal with it when that happens and what my process is.

I think it is so important to know intuitively when do you need to rest and when do you need to slap yourself around a bit and keep going. I wish I had better words to describe the difference, but for me I just can feel it. When I’m thinking through things, processing what I’m feeling, when it started, where it came from, when I’m praying and talking to God about this, I can just feel I need to rest. I need to take a week off. I need to get my groove back; I’m out of it.  And that’s what happened here. I noticed that I had lost my drive.

This is how I deal with it when I lose my drive. At first when I noticed it, I let it be for a little bit. I didn’t try to fix it right away. I gave myself time off. I took almost a month away from work. And I took over a week from everything. I didn’t even open Instagram. I really disengaged and took a break. I didn’t work for, like I said, almost a month and that’s a long time for me. I was like, “Okay, I’m tuning into this. I’m realizing that I’ve lost my drive and I feel like I need a break. I’m going to take it.” But then I didn’t come back and that’s not normal for me.

After I did those things I realize that I’m the boss of myself and I can take that time off if I want to. I think the first sign of a red flag for me is that I took that much time away. I normally don’t want to do that, so the fact that that was even something that I chose to do was like, “Hmm, this is deeper than I need a little break, I need a weekend or whatever. This is more than that.”

Anyway, once I came back and I was like, “Okay, I have some more energy but I still don’t have my drive back. I’m working on something new, some new projects. I’m actually starting a second business. Where is my drive when I need it so much?”

So, I didn’t try to fix it right away. I did those things and let it be. Then once I recognized that I was wallowing in this and not getting up and figuring my ish out, that I wasn’t just needing rest, I was dragging my feet and not being myself, that that fire was just out, that’s when I did something about it. And here is what I did about it.

The first thing I did was brain dumped out in my journal. You know, this is my thing that I do. You can do this in your phone notes. You could do it in a physical paper journal. That’s what I did. First, I brain dumped out what the things are that I want to have drive for.

What are the things that I’m wanting to get done? What are the goals I’m supposed to be working toward right now? The things that I was going to work to, that I want to work to? What are the things that I need my drive for? And so, I wrote out several things so I can see them on paper.

I wrote out some personal goals that I have for myself, some physical goals I have for myself. The big one right now is getting this second business to have some legs, to really start it. Choosing branding, starting the process of the new webpages for it, creating the first couple of courses that will be available through it, making decisions and really giving it legs. That was the biggest one.

Then on another page I brain dumped out…And by the way, you guys, I’m saying ‘brain dump’ like you all definitely know exactly what it is. I say it so much so I’m assuming. But if you don’t know, if you’re like ‘brain dump’, that sounds gross? Well, it does sound gross, but a brain dump is basically when you have a lot going on and you just need to get something out of your head and look at it on paper. I think there’s so much power when we just look at something on paper. And so, brain dumping is getting all of it out to where you feel like you don’t know what else to write on the next line because it’s all out.

This can take one page; it could take half a page; it could take 28 pages. It doesn’t matter. Your brain dump will be whatever size it needs to be. (Anyone else thinking of turds? Great. I’m a boy mom, obviously. Actually, why did I say that? My girl’s the one that makes the most turd and fart jokes, so I’m just winning at mom life.)

Anyway, I brain dumped out that first page about what are the things I want my drive for and then on another page—right next to that—I brain dumped out what are the things I’m feeling? What are the problems here? What’s going through my mind? And I wrote out a whole bunch of stuff.

I wrote out that I’m frustrated. I am frustrated with my family. I’m frustrated at the level of noise the kids produce. I literally wrote that. I am overstimulated. It’s too much. I’m feeling really cranky all the time. I’m feeling like I don’t have a lot of energy. I’m feeling like I want to eat a bunch of junk food. And I am, so now I feel bloated. Now I’m breaking out. Now I don’t feel like my best self. Now I feel like everything just sucks. I feel like a victim and I don’t want to not feel like a victim. I want to stay here for a bit. I want to just stay in victim mode because it feels better than being an action-taker.

I was really honest—ugly honest—and just got everything out of my head and my heart and onto paper so I could look at it for what it is. I wrote things like, “I’m feeling a little depressive. I’m feeling yuck, blah.” I wrote out noises because sometimes noises are the only thing that can describe feelings better than words.

I wrote, “I’m feeling weak. I’m feeling scared. I’m feeling afraid of failure. I’m afraid of failing at this new business. What if people are watching how fast I can make it take off and they’re defining if I’m good at business or not by that?”

Things like this started to flow out of me and I just got it all out. I wrote a really full two pages in a large journal of just brain dumping out what was in my mind that, honestly, I didn’t even realize all of that was in my mind. All I could see was I lost my drive. Where is my drive when I need it so badly right now? I need to get these things done.

After I did that, I looked at it, I processed what I had written out, I realized and I made myself look and say out loud, “Yes, this is all true. These feelings are my truth. This is how I feel.” And then I went on to problem solving. I didn’t stay there. I really wanted to, but I didn’t. I think it’s important that you know when you need to just be still and when you need to get up.

And so, I got up. I needed to get up from that place, that mental space, and mentally stand up and start to pace and problem solve. I problem-solved on my own and I also problem-solved with a partner, with my husband, Brian. I want to say that because that’s how it looks for me and I want to give you those options. I kind of processed through some stuff on my own. I ended up instinctively grabbing a highlighter and highlighting the things on my brain dump list of problems that were related.

The feeling depressive, feeling no energy, that’s related to my eating habits. When I am not myself, when I feel like this, I don’t eat healthy. And I have a hormone disorder, so when I don’t eat healthy, I really react to it more than a normal person does. And so, all those things were related, and the energy is related to that, and the mindset is related to that, me being tired…All of that is related to me eating. And then the eating is related to how I’m feeling and my fears. It’s all related so almost everything had highlights on it.

And so, I started to problem-solve on my own and just think through, “Okay, whenever I am dealing with a friend, or somebody on my team, or anybody in my life that’s just having a hard time, when their life just feels like a cluster of problems, I ask them the question (actually I think Kendra Hennessy said this to me years ago and I think that that’s where I’m taking it from, so credit goes to her) “What is the domino that will knock over all the others, or a lot of all the others?”

And so, I looked at that list and I was like, “Okay, if I were to just change my physical health—nothing else, not working on the business, not anything else—if I were just to work on my physical self right now, that would knock over a lot of other dominoes. Maybe not all of them, but it would knock over a lot of them. Because if all of these highlighted things are related the food choices that I’m making are making me not move. Because I don’t want to go for a walk or hit the gym when I’m eating bagel bites or driving through Taco Bell. I don’t feel like working out and then that makes me not have energy. That makes me not sleep very well. That makes my back hurt. That makes me have cramps because I have a hormone disorder and my ovaries act up. This all is connected. If I can just make an improvement to my physical health and that’s the only thing I focus on right now, then that will be one of the first dominoes to knock other ones over and that’s really simple.

I don’t even have to look at my procrastination right now. I don’t need to fix everything. I don’t need to go and brainstorm my new business and get it started finally. I don’t need to do any of that today. I just need to fix one domino, knock over that one domino. And so that’s what I did.

And it takes discipline, you guys, to not sit there and look at all the things in the journal and fix all of them. It takes the discipline to say, “You know what, I don’t need to be perfect and I don’t need to look at all of this right now. What I need right now in this moment, in this short season of my life, is to only look at one domino and not even worry about the others.” And I gave myself permission to only fix one small thing on the list, not all the things.

And that is really hard, but I want to give you permission to only fix one of the things. If that’s what you need to do, then that’s what you need to do. And in that moment, that is what I needed to do. So, I decided that that was the thing I was going to focus on. And I went for a walk with my husband, as we do, and we talked it out. And I shared with him how I was feeling.

And I have to say before I talk to Brian about these things, I have to give him a disclaimer and say, “I need to talk something out and this is me being an external processor. It is not me being your wife. So, can you separate that in your head and not try to come in and fix everything or take anything personal? Nothing that I’m saying is me blaming you or wishing that you did more.” I’m telling you guys listening, even if I do kind of feel that about some of the things that I’m venting the point of the conversation is not to tell him what I wish he did better. The point of the conversation is to externally process and get these things out and then explain to him what I’ve decided to work on so that he can support me.

So, I give him that disclaimer and show him what my expectations are because I can’t expect him to read my mind. And so, I give him that disclaimer. We went for a walk and we were talking it out and I just shared with him, “This is the domino that I think needs to be knocked over: my physical self. So that’s why I invited you to come and walk with me. I’m just starting right now and taking this walk. I need to be more mindful. I need to be more mindful of what’s going in my body, what’s going on my body, what is around me, what I am doing, how often I am moving, how much I’m sitting and what I am eating and drinking.”

While we were on our walk, we ordered some organic green juice from Pressed Juicery, which is my favorite, and that was delivered to us that night. I put it in the fridge and we made some almond milk so that I could have some really good healthy fats in the morning with my coffee. Brian makes me Almond milk lattes sometimes and they’re amazing, so we went back to that. We got some stuff for some really good salads to have for lunch. And that’s what we did. We knocked over that first domino.

The next day, that’s all I did. I did the work that I had to do because it was time sensitive and my team needed me to do those things, but I didn’t jump back into a bunch of work or anything else. All I did was that first domino. I took myself for a really long walk. I didn’t even go to the gym. (We have a gym in our garage, we just turned it into a gym). I just went for a walk.

Then the next day I went for a walk, and I went into the gym for 20 minutes and did a CrossFit style quickie workout that I fricking hated. I did not want to do it, but I pushed myself a little bit. I was continuing to focus on just that first domino.

The other thing that I want to point out is that I didn’t wait for Monday or for the next ‘fresh start’ or even the next morning like, “Okay, I’ll start tomorrow.” I started right away. When I was brain dumping out the problems, it was late afternoon, early evening.

I saw right away that I’ve caused these problems to get worse for myself. I’ve had increasing anxiety and all these things because of not taking care of myself, so I immediately initiated more wellness.

I immediately figured it out, talked it out with myself, talked it out with my husband, went for a walk, ordered juices, made a better dinner choice that night. I immediately knocked over that first domino. I did not wait. I think that’s really hard and really important.

Once I spent a few days knocking over that first domino, that’s all it took. I immediately felt better on the first day, but I really felt good on day three or four of being more intentional and mindful about my physical wellness. And sure enough, that domino knocked over the other ones and I started to feel like, “Okay, I have a little bit more energy. I am still overwhelmed and intimidated by this new business idea that I need to start, but I need to just start somewhere and not be perfectionistic about it.”

And I started. I outlined the first piece of this new business that I’m working on starting and it was really productive, really good and I had energy for it. And in seeing the ideas mapped out, I felt like my energy and my drive was coming back.

And you know what I did before I even did that, you guys? After a few days of that first domino of physical wellness being knocked over, I contacted my COO, my right-hand girl, Hayley, and I said, “Let’s get on a call and just talk about this new business. I need to talk it out with you.” And then after that I made an appointment with my designer to talk about the new branding for the new business.

So, I did small things, one domino at a time, knocking over the others that led to me taking better care of myself, me getting back in my gym, me getting back to drinking green juice, having salad, chicken breast & vegetables, and making good choices. Of course, the occasional cheeseburger and beer, but you get what I’m saying?

Balance. Not not taking care of myself and going way off the deep end because I feel like crap so I’m eating like crap and that’s making me feel like crap even more. Then that led to everything else looking up.

I think another piece of this is that when I lose my drive I remember that we create our own energy. There’s an episode of Chris Harder’s podcast. His podcast is called For The Love Of Money and there’s an episode that he did months ago called Choose Your Energy, Choose Your Outcome or something like that. I’ll find it and link to it for you guys. It’s a really short episode and I’ve listened to it often over and over again. I remember that we create our own energy and that that’s my right and my power. That’s my super power that God created me in, is creating my energy. And I decide what I’m going to do to create more positive energy in my days.

For example, going back to the juice, the green juice, this is just my little thing. I’m not saying you have to drink green juice, but having a green juice is my little thing that creates positive energy in my days because it’s pretty hard to drink a bottle of green juice and know that you’re loading yourself up with apple, cucumber, celery, lemon, spinach, kale, and parsley, all organic (it’s the $7 bottle of juice) then you go and have a Chalupa—that’s pretty hard to make that jump. So that green juice is putting positive energy in my day and making a good choice that leads to another good choice, and then another good choice.

Do you see how that energy starts to flow through your decisions and your day? So, I remember when I lose my drive that I create my energy and I just need to get things out of my head. I need to look at the problems. I need to pick one to start solving right now. I start right away. I don’t wait for tomorrow. I don’t wait for Monday or the first of the year or July 1st, whatever it is; I don’t wait. I do it now.

I decide to immediately make a high energy choice that will lead to another high energy choice and another high energy choice because that’s how energy works. When you go down, you go down usually pretty slowly. There are some things that can happen in your day that will take you down in one fell swoop. But usually it’s a slow, gradual slide down and getting to positive energy, it just takes one choice. The green juice, the walk, talking it out with my husband. Those are all small positive energy choices that I made that led to another positive energy choice.

So that’s, that’s it so far. I’m going to go over it one more time with you before I get to the last one. When I lose my drive, I let it be for a bit. I don’t fix it right away. I just recognize when I’m wallowing in it and then I decide, “I’m going to get out of this. I don’t just need rest. I need to slap this out on myself.” I brain dump out what I need my drive for so I can remind myself of my purpose, what it is I’m trying to accomplish, and why I need to get it back.

Then I brain dump out what the problems are. What are the things that are bothering me right now because those things are probably the things that stole my drive from me in the first place.

Then I problem solve on my own and I look for what is that one big domino that can knock over some of the other ones, most, if not all of them. I might talk that out with another person—my husband, a friend, my mom—I talk it out with somebody else and then I start right away. I don’t wait for Monday or the next day.

Then I remember that we create our energy and I’m in charge here and I make a positive energy choice that leads to another, and another, and another to where my energy is generally really high and it would take something to take me back down.

And then what I do is I set bumpers—like in bowling—around myself to make sure that the things that I need to do to keep myself on track and to keep my drive up, I make sure that those things happen. Bumpers are things like setting alarms in your calendar as reminders to go off to remind you like, “Hey, go for a walk. Hey, hit the gym for 20 minutes. Just set a timer. 20 minutes is better than no minutes. Hey, stretch. Breathe. Take a walk. Take a break. Take a work break.” They might also be post-it notes around my home or my office.

These are bumpers. In bowling, when you suck, there are bumpers you can have put up that keep the ball from going in the gutters. And this is what I’m looking for when I’m struggling. When I’m coming out of struggle, I’m vulnerable. I am tender and I need to take care of myself. I need those bumpers, those little alarms in my calendar going off on my phone, reminding me like, “Hey, remember where you’re going? Remember what you need. Remember to drink your juice. Remember to drink water. Remember to move your body. Remember to pray. Remember to meditate for 10 minutes. Remember to be grateful. Remember to breathe.”

Those post it notes, those reminders, I also will use an expo marker to write on my mirror. All the mirrors in my house, basically, have expo marker written on them. The one on my bathroom right now currently says, “Hey, you choose your energy. It’s your choice.” I literally do my makeup behind that message and I’m looking at it all morning as I get ready, and every time I use the bathroom. Those are bumpers.

I want to share with you too that after I did that first domino of physical wellness and just knocking that first domino over, then that led into me having the energy to stop procrastinating this new business idea and to start creating it. Starting somewhere with this big massive product. Starting somewhere with it.

Something else came up for me and I realized one of the things I wrote down in my journal that first day was that I was really frustrated with my family. I shared that in the beginning of the episode that I had written that down. I was frustrated with my space. I was frustrated with our home. I wrote out, “This is not working. This house is not working for us. It’s too small. It’s not working. I don’t like the flow here. I don’t like how things are going. I don’t like that I’m having to shush the kids and shush my family when I’m trying to work in my office upstairs. I’m not happy with this, but I do not want to move. I know we’re not supposed to move right now. I know one day we will move, but today is not that day. And I don’t want to leave this house. I love my house.” I’m sitting here with my journal, thinking, “Do we need to move? God help me, give me peace about this. What do we do?” And I just knew moving is not the answer, but what is it? Because this is not working.

And so, I got more detailed and then I brain-dumped out the problems. I don’t like that the kids don’t have more space. Our house is only three bedrooms and there’s six of us. We have had quadruple bunks setup where they’re all in one room together. They asked for that. They enjoy it and it’s fun, but it’s not working. It’s just not. It hasn’t been working. It hasn’t been serving us.

I want my daughter to have her own room and then the boys to share. The kids have their stuff in the loft. That’s where the toy bin is. That’s where the video games are. And I want the kids to be able to play there and not have me shushing them all the time because it’s right outside the door from my office. This is not working.

I was talking that out with Brian about a week and a half after I brain-dumped all the problems out because I had knocked over a couple of dominoes. I had my momentum. I was in my physical wellness momentum, in the momentum of starting to not procrastinate getting this new business started anymore, and that was the next domino that I needed to knock over that just wasn’t really knocking over from the other things.

But you know what did help knock it over? I had mental clarity because I was taking better care of myself and I had unclogged my brain and started getting those ideas that had been pent up in my brain about this new business I’m starting started, started getting them flowing. And with that mental clarity, I realized, “I’ve got it! I need to not work in this home anymore. If we had a bigger home, I could work from home, but we don’t and I don’t want to move. This is not our time to move. This isn’t working. I need to rent office space.”

And it hit Brian and I like bricks on the head and we were both like, “Oh my gosh, how have we not thought of this before?” So we called around, we figured it out and I have a little one bedroom apartment right across the street from my house that is serving as a recording studio and an office. No more shushing the kids and feeling the stress of I’m being a bad mom while I make videos helping other moms be good moms. I just don’t need that. It’s not serving me. It’s not serving my family. It’s not serving you guys. It wasn’t serving anybody.

My season of working from home is temporarily over and I’ve got my own office space. It’s right across the street from the house. It’s right across the street from Starbucks. I am a happy, happy girl. And you know what? I’ve been working here for a little bit now and my gosh, what a difference in me as a person, in my content. I feel like people are noticing, messaging me, complimenting, “I don’t know what it is but the last four things that I’ve seen from you have just been so spot on, so helpful, and your energy is high. It’s contagious and I just appreciate that.”

And I’m like, “Yeah, I have my own office space.” I’m not sharing anymore. I’m not shushing anymore. It’s quiet here. I’m on the top floor so I don’t have to have somebody above me. It’s beautiful. I’ve got my stuff, my office stuff in here. I’ve got this faux living room set up to record all my courses and my videos. It’s so good and I can still go right down the road and record things at my home when I’m showing you guys inside our house, showing you guys where we actually live. But for work and creating, I’ve got a separate space.

And you know what guys? Because I solved that problem, because I made that choice, the energy flows through this space so much. I feel like creativity, good ideas, energy, love, and profit are just flowing through my office because I am in the space that I need to be in as a creative entrepreneur, as a boss, and a mom of four.

All of this to say when you lose your drive, check where it’s coming from. Let it be for a little bit. See if you just need a break or see if you need to slap yourself out of it. Get it all out of your head and onto paper. Remember your ‘why.’ Why do you need your drive? Why do you need that motivation? Why do you need momentum? Why do you need your energy? What is possibly taking it from you? What are the problems? What’s bugging you right now?

Get it all out on paper, problem solve. Pick the one domino that’s going to knock over a bunch of other ones. And start right away. You don’t wait for the next day. You don’t wait for Monday. You start right away and do one small thing to knock that domino over.

Remember that you create your own energy. You’re in charge of that. Once you make decisions about what you’re going to do to get that drive back, set up bumpers in your life to make sure those things actually happen.

I hope this helps 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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