Moving beyond motivation to create and stick to healthy habits

habits over motivation
Model: Me Photographer: Aaron Schomburg

Motivation is great in the fact that it gets us inspired and excited to get going. However, it has its limitations. Motivation is the first step in the process of achieving but it’s not the only step. Equally, if not more important is creating healthy habits. Let me explain the reasons why…

When we create healthy habits we improve our weak areas. We thrive in new areas. We move beyond the idea of doing something to actually doing it. If you did a serious heartfelt inventory on where you fall short what area(s) would that be?

You might be saying no way Dani, it’s too much work and I don’t even know where to start. It’s natural for a person to not want to do the same repetitive cycle over and over again. But what you need to ask yourself is…what’s really important here?

Thriving in new areas can bring us back to motivation. We start making healthy habits a consistent routine and we get to see the positive progress it makes on our life. As a result this can bring us back to motivation.

The freedom in this habit journey, is that you get to choose for yourself. You can chose to live a shallow, meaningless life with little to no positive outcomes or you can chose to live a meaningful, purposeful life with joy and positive impact because you consistently put the time and energy into an amazing outcome.

Hopefully I have convinced you now to start creating healthy habitsūüėČ. Start by making a list of all the healthy and important things you want to start changing.

If you haven’t started tracking your habits, you can download the Habit Tracker I’ve created to help you. Simply go to my blog post “Establishing goals to help you succeed.”

Here is what you need to know and keep telling yourself as you get going on this:

Habits are 100% your responsibility. When we blame others or whatever is hurting our habit process, we need to realize it’s up to us. No one else can take responsibility to make our healthy habits happen. There is no improvement when we excuse ourselves and blame people or things. Click To Tweet You come across a challenge-brainstorm how to fix it in order to make it better.


Our self image predicts whether or not we follow through on doing our habits. How you view yourself and the thoughts you feed yourself, will determine whether you do your habits.

habits over motivation
Model: Me Photographer: Brad Malmgren

You will get restless and want to quit at times. Our brains are wired to protect us and can easily talk us out of something difficult. When this happens and you tell yourself “I don’t want to do it” tell your brain the opposite. Get up and moving right away on doing your habit.

Say no to short term pleasure- things that distract you from your mission. This is a tough one. We live in a world where That is very me focused and very “please me focus.” Discipline is a tough word to put into action. Clear yourself of those things that vie for your attention and don’t contribute to attaining your healthy goals.

habits over motivation

Schedule your habits for a specific time and place. Use your phone as an alarm or reminder notifications so that you don’t forget. Putting a time/place on it will help you get into the routine of doing your habits. Plus it will make it easier on you as you go about your day.

Be blessed and bless others,

‚̧Coach Dani

How to Self Care during the holiday season

If you are anything like me, you have tried just about every self care regime you can think of. How to self care during the holiday season takes intentional, consistent motivation and discipline. The more you do self care, you will exercise the discipline of it. Be patient with yourself- this could take time.

So why not start small? No need to overwhelm yourself with all the things you “oughta do” just because people or yourself expect it or because the giving makes you feel good temporarily. We want and need to feel good about ourselves. The giving we do should be an overflow.

How to properly self care:

Take a break. Whatever this may look like to you. This might mean taking a 15 minute power nap. It could mean going for a walk. Make this apart of your routine Рeveryday. Take a break and take a step back from all the noise and distractions.  You are too important not to make yourself a priority.

Give yourself positive affirmations. Go around your house writing positive messages about you, as an encouragement. Grab some post it notes and write down what you need to hear. Say those things out loud and believe them!

A famous motivational speaker once shared that this is what broke her out of the depression she was in. This was in the misdt of her motivational speaking career. You have too much to offer as a one of a kind individual. Don’t just waste your time not caring about yourself. Then as a result not caring or giving your best to you or someone else.

Give after you have received. No it’s not selfish…just in case you were wondering. How do you expect to give if you haven’t first taken the time for yourself? You can’t give something that you don’t have. No fake substitutions help anyone. They just feed other problems.

It’s like if you haven’t taken the time for a full night of sleep- the chances of you acting like a grump are slightly high. That is, unless you are one of those rare types that don’t need much sleep. Your body isn’t fully ready or functioning at your normal speed.

Invest in you.¬†Do something healthy that sets your soul on fire. This could change with time and circumstances. Look for opportunities to invest in your well being. Set up a time to go to the gym or fun workout class. Spend the afternoon reading a good book. An even better option- learn a new dance at the nearest studio. Yep, you active readers know that I have to talk about dancing in almost every blogūüėČ

Whatever gives you joy and makes you feel alive from the inside out, are things that are important. These things need to be put into your schedule.¬† I don’t care how many excuses you have. If you need to completely re-do your schedule to fit in- do it. The people that surround you should care about you and your well being. Ask for support in this journey.

Nobody in this entire world gets to be you. Take full advantage and go be your awesome self. Read, write, dance, laugh, chat, run, walk, relax.

Be blessed and bless others,

‚̧Coach Dani



21 days of Thanks: why 21 matters

We could all use a big, fat thankful heart. For this reason, I have made it my goal to research gratitude- why it matters and how to implement it so that it becomes apart of us every day. Being thankful is a process not an event.

It’s no surprise that we all go through tough seasons in life and it can be a struggle to find something to be grateful for. We experience painful things that take a toll on us and put us in a state of negative thoughts and behaviors. This can be paralyzing if you don’t look at what there is to be grateful for.

I have entitled this message 21 days of Thanks: why 21 matters” for a couple of reasons…

  1. 21 days has been proven to be a start where changes and new behaviors and habits start to form. This is not to say that it will automatically just happen after 21 days. Research has proven that on average it takes more than 2 months for a new behavior to become a habit.
  2. 21 days is a doable goal. When we focus on a number that isn’t too big and scary then we are able to commit to the process. It is my hope that you continue this journey with me and are encouraged/motivated to keep going, even if you have a bad day, or two or threeūüėČ

If you happen to miss a day, don’t feel bad. Pick yourself up and remind yourself you can do this.

Photo by Lydia J

Now if you’re wondering whether or not you want to embark on this journey, I have a few encouraging facts. Being grateful has many proven benefits. Studies show that gratitude can do the following:

  • Improve health
  • Increase happiness and reduce depression
  • Reduces toxic emotions
  • Improves self esteem and mental strength
  • Improves quality of sleep
  • Promotes optimism
  • Have a more positive outlook

In addition to this list, gratitude reduces entitlement and makes us more giving.

Now that we have established why and how being grateful matters, I would like to leave you with some ways to start putting it into practice. For the next 21 days (minimum and please go longer) you will keep a gratitude journal.

  • List one thing every day of the week that you are grateful for. You can write why or meditate on it throughout the day.

Another great idea I’ve heard done before is to create a gratitude jar. This can look many different ways…

  • ¬†Fill it with money everytime you think of something you are grateful for. Then at the end of the day/week/month (however long it takes you to fill it) give it to a family in need.
  • Another option is to write down something you are grateful for with your family. Each of you will take a turn reading them on a family night at the end of the day/week/month.

I’m incredibly grateful to do this with you. We were made to encourage, inspire and motivate each other to even more greatness. Joy, impact, meaning, purpose- these are words you thought you knew. We are going to seek to understand on a deeper level in the journey ahead. Prepare yourself, the journey ahead is about to get really good. Adventure here we come.

Photo by Johnny Rodriguez
IG yoloing1234

One favorite way to unwind after a stressful day is to take a bath or shower. I personally love taking baths. Throw some in epsom salt and lavender essential oil into it and it will help calm you down.  Not only soothing but it will help release toxins in your body. Detox baths have been know to strengthen our immune system and prevent disease. All around you can feel the difference emotionally and physically when you take a detox bath.

Set the mood.  Play some light jazz music that has positive messages attached to it.  Remember to light some candles.  This will help you get into the mood of taking a bath, in case you are not a bath person.

Spending time with a good friend is a great way to unwind.  A good friend is a friend that makes us laugh, is trustworthy with our vulnerable life messes and challenges us to keep moving forward. They can help us find clarity through helpful insight.

Friends that give us a new perspective can open our minds to see possibility and opportunity.  They can allow us to vent about our day or push us to go out and have a fun night of adventuring.  Be picky about who you choose to hang out with. Friends that are helpful are essential.

Read a book that encourages, challenges and inspires you.¬† This can be a great way to¬†unwind after a tough day.¬† Reading isn’t for everyone but it should be.¬† There are many health benefits to reading.¬† It has been known to strengthen your memory, helps with your¬†vocabulary and it boosts your mood.

Go to bed early or a reasonable time.  Sometimes in life, what we need most is sleep.   If we can shut off the bad day through sleep that can be helpful for our mental clarity. Having a consistent, set time each night is important because it helps us think with more understanding and clarity. Hopefully, if  you have done any of the things I mentioned above, you will  be in a more relaxed mood and ready for bed.