Autumn Hachey Blog
Places, Travel

#EscapingtoMyrtle Beach 1/3

ESCAPING1GIRLS TRIP!

How much fun is it to go away with one of your girlfriend’s to Myrtle beach? I’ll tell you. It’s the most fun. And I’ll also tell you, we definitely packed more than enough pairs of shoes. #girlstruggles.

Our itinerary for our trip was absolutely packed, so I thought it best to divide up my posts by day. Three totally jam-packed days full of everything from beaches to basket weaving, to cocktails and seafood.

Our trip started off with a sleepover party at mi casa. It was actually Valentine’s Day, so lucky Kass got to par-take in some Valentine’s Mcdonald’s and Bambino with me and my boo. ;).

We headed to Porter bright and early to catch our flight around 11AM.

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I kind of feel like a Billy Bishop master after my trips with Porter to Pittsburgh and last year during a shoot to Montreal.  You could say I know my way around the Porter lounge at this point. ;). It’s never too early for Porter cookies. (Confession: Last time I flew Porter I chain ate like 5 cookies and hid the wrappers because I was embarrassed that I lost my self control. It’s cool..)

Kass and I took at trip to Chicago with our girlfriend’s last year for a bachelorette party last year. (Yeah, it was pretty okay, wink.).. So it felt like old times hopping on another flight with her. I am liking this travelling trend here.

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A quick 2 hr flight to Myrtle complimented by my favourite in-flight reading material (RE: Porter) and always complimentary drinks… and we made it!

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First things first, LUNCH. When we arrived at the airport, we were whisked away by our first Southern Gentleman of the trip, Keith.. who helped us put together our itinerary for our trip. (Shout out to Keith!) On the drive in to the Market Common I was mesmerized by all the colourful houses on the way.

Lunch at Tupelo Honey

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Within our first hour in Myrtle, we headed to Tupelo Honey Cafe, where  I tried gritts for the first time. For some reason, (maybe my sheltered hamburgers and hotdogs childhood).. I thought grits looked like waffle fries. Nope.. Looked more like oatmeal, but tasted great! We also had fried green tomatoes (Another first, you’ll notice that is a trend on this trip).. They were AWESOME. If you’re in Myrtle, try them! Annnnd,  we were told if you’re in Myrtle shrimp and gritts is THE THING to try, but be careful- because the quality is apparently allover the place. We recommend asking a local to get the good stuff ;).

I had the Carolina Grilled Chicken Sandwhich at Tupelo, and it was delish! If the weather was a bit more cooperative we would have for sure headed to the roofop balcony for lunch.

Get your Shop On.

We were freeeezing after lunch because it had been rainy and not-so-typical-Myrtle weather, so we headed straight back to our hotel to warm up, check out our new pad + get ready for a night on the town! However- had it been much nicer weather we would have definitely strolled the shops at the Market Common. There’s a giant Anthropologie which I am sure we would have gotten lost in.

We then made our way over to the Hilton Doubletree.. Ocean view room with a private balcony, holla.

Nothin’ like waking up, opening the drapes, and seeing the ocean- let me tell you. Also, not sure how many hotels give you hot cookies upon arrival, but that was definitely a a big old check mark for the Double Tree. Not to mention the morning buffet that included both a DIY omlette, and a DIY pancake station.. with chocolate chips. *impressed face nod*.

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BTW, the beach is literally walking distance from the hotel, so of course we made a trip down to the water!

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Gotta love Porter Escapes!! If you’re ever looking to hop on a plane and not have to worry about a thing- look into booking an Escape. Porter does all the dirty work so you can head straight to the chemist for happy hour.

Happppppy Hour at the Chemist

Science Rules! F’real.. I was never one for science class, I mean.. except that one time I won gold at the Science Fair. <– click that link for a treat.  *cry laugh emoji*

But  mixing chemistry with drinking might be my new favourite thing (And had Ms. Mcgeachy included this in the course curriculum I may have went on to become a molecular biologist). Jokes.

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Phil from The Chemist definitely made our night (We sure kept him busy!) Phil was like a mad-scientist behind the bar, concocting the most delicious drinks- many of which he served up to us with liquid nitrogen, making us squeal with excitement haha. My favourite drink of the night (if I had to choose) was the Professor’s Punch.

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“Faculty meetings just got a whole lot more interesting with grapefruit-infused vodka, freshly squeezed lemon juice, cranberry juice, validated with with Sprite and varied with grapefruit peel-infused ice and lemon wheel.”

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AKA. Yum. I also loved the Flux Capacitor- which doesn’t just sound cool, it tasted amazing with it’s  house-concocted blackberry simple syrup.

Dinner at Art Burger Sushi Bar

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Now this is where sh*t got adventurous. For me that is. Like I mentioned previously, I’ve lived a sheltered life when it comes to food. I mean I only tried poutine for the first time in my 20s. (I know.. now I wish I hadn’t tried it because I am a gravy addict.) Up until this point, the only sushi I had tried was avacado rolls, and spicy salmon rolls. Here’s a great tip. If you’re a picky eater and have any reservations about trying new foods.. just have a little warm-up session at The Chemist. Post- drinks at the Chemist, my food inhibitions were a little low… and I. Tried. Everything. (Mom, I know, I can’t believe it either).

And, I am happy to report.. it was AMAZING..and I promise that’s not just the professor’s punch talking. I’ve come home a new woman, a new sushi loving woman. Kass and I decided as soon as we got there, that we couldn’t possibly come to Art Burger and Sushi Bar, and only order sushi. Heck no. We ordered both the sushi and the burger. *laughs*  What’s funnier is we ate it all. Travelling works up quite an apetite people. We both tried the Art Burger, because if it was named after the restaraunt it has to be one of the best choices. (It was)..

And.. the coup the gras.. after MUCH deliberation (Aka, me being like, why don’t we try this vege sushi option?..) And Kass standing her sushi ground- as she should have.. we decided on the Tiger Rolls (more so for me).. and the Omakase- which, if you aren’t aware.. is a SURPRISE DISH. Guys.. The pickiest eater on the planet let Kass coax me into having the chef prepare us a SURPRISE SUSHI DISH.

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……and it was the best decision ever!!

I wish we had better lighting in there because these dishes were served up SO beautifully. BTW- there were so many other cute aspects of this restaurant like the art gallery when you walked in, or the way the menus were in the shape of paint palettes. You should probably just go ;).

+ for all you fashionistas, here’s a link source for what I wore Day 1:

Moto Jean Jacket- Topshop | Black Leather Baseball Cap- Topshop | American Apparel Disco Pants | Blondie Crop Top | Blush Runners- Topshop | Yellow Floral Chiffon Dress | Blush Western Buckle Booties | Floral Kimono-Zara | Yellow Hat H + M | BF jeans TopShop

Stay tuned for posts 2 and 3..

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GET A ROOM: Hotels, Travel

GET A ROOM: The Walper Hotel in Kitchener

Walper Hotel

Bo and I have two Valentine’s Day traditions. 1: McDonald’s on actual Valentine’s Day… and 2: We try each year to book a hotel for a night on one of the weekends surrounding V-Day. As a hotel lover- it’s a way to explore our neighboring cities, sleep in a King size bed (yahoo).. and tour around! Since it’s not totally feesable to go on vacation all the time.. like we would like to.. Grabbing a hotel for a night serves as a much needed mini getaway. You’d be surprised at how trip-like just getting a hotel for the night actually is. A couple years ago we hit up Hotel Ocho in Toronto-  it was quaint and cute. We try to find new and interesting hotels each time to spice it up, see something new, and ogle beautiful design.

So when we heard about The Walper Hotel in Kitchener, we just had to check it out. Kitchener was actually our old stomping grounds, where we *kind of* went to college.. *snickers. So to be back in our old hood- so many years later, it was pretty fun.A 1893 landmark, the Walper has really stood the test of time. And, I was actually surprised to find out that many years ago we had actually stayed at the Walper Hotel- but that was pre-renovations.. it’s definitely stepped up its game.  Lighting game specifically!

 

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We checked in on Saturday afternoon and cheersed over some Autumn Ale that was gifted to me from my friend Bethany. Thanks Bethany!! The entrance to the lobby was small but packed an elegant punch. Long stretching brass sputniks that complimented impeccably styled bookcases and lovely large scale art- it was a beautiful first impression of the hotel. We were greeted by the cutest receptionists ever- wearing matching bowties. Of course I loved the mustard yellow polka dot one.. Considering getting one for myself!

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Our first glance at our room we were pleasantly surprised.  We didn’t realize, but all the rooms are actually a little bit different- and not all are posted on the website. The real show stopping feature of our room was the exposed beam that divided the sleeping and work areas. We stayed in a Cityside King. 

We are all checked in! @thewalperhotel is so cute! We were greeted by impeccably dressed concierge wearing mustard polka dot bow ties. I like this place already . We're staying in a city side King- incase you're looking to book a room yourself! ❤️ #getaroomON #thewalperhotel #walperhotel

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Giant matte black sputnik chandeliers on either side of the room was a nice touch. I love me some sputniks.

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And how about those hanging sconces beside the bed? Dreams guys. 16710495_10155184438607573_85798554_o

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Perched next to the window was the possibly THE most perfect reading nook. The chair was incredibly comfy, and was in the perfect position to get some natural light. You know me and chairs.I just finished unpacking from our lovely Valentine's weekend @thewalperhotel- blog post coming soon! As I unpack, I'm creating little piles to re pack for my girls trip with @kassandradekoning to @officialmyrtlebeach with @porterescapes - EEEK! Seafood and beaches and basket weaving workshops and gardens! It's going to be a blast. Also, we're going to be giving away a trip to Myrtle when we get back! So stay tuned and follow along to find out how you can win :)! Now, back to the couch to try to finish nursing this hangover away - big week next week with a TV shoot on Tuesday to boot! #flyporter #porterescapes #pixelsplacesthings

We only stayed for a night, but we went for some lovely drinks at The Berlin– which was walking distance from the hotel. We met up with some friends at TWH Social – which had a cool-casual environment and really awesome lights hanging over the bar. We then- relived our golden years by taking a trip down memory lane to Dallas. Nothing like walking into a college bar to make you realize you are no longer in college haha. It seemed that the playlist also hadn’t changed in the 5 years since we worked there together. To be honest, we went a little ham on the drinks and our Sunday morning excursion plans were replaced with couch cuddles, but had I been more responsible. ;).. We would have also hit up Goodvibes Juice + The Belgian Nursery. Do as I say kids, not as I do.

Okay, 12 years in.. @mcdonalds - when ya gonna sponsor our Valentine's Day? . So happy we got a little weekend away. Excited to chow down on Jr. Chickens with you later. Love you way too much my heart explodes. Happy Mc Valentine's Day. @bolouther

Anyways, wishing ya’ll a super happy Valentine’s Day! We’ll be chowing down on Jr. Chickens and Bacon cheeseburgers, paired with only the finest grocery store bambino. Cheers!

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#Life, Biz

#52 COFFEE DATES

Allo mate!

You maaayyyy have noticed the influx of coffee shop photos on my IG feed. If you haven’t, you must not be on Instagram because my feed is drenched in caffeine rn.

 

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One day, while riding the bus to my freelance job, I was struck with an idea.

Why not.. combine my love for visiting thoughtfully designed coffee shops, with my passion to help people? One of the things I’ve come to realize while doing my “NY Reso” planning.. was that in past years I haven’t yet put much emphasis on giving back. My goals have always been, well.. I guess sort of self centered, mostly focused around my personal career goals and travel plans. (Which don’t get me wrong, I still have lots of goals for both  of those categories ;)!)

And while I would really love to volunteer at say.. an animal shelter, or something to that nature.. I felt.. why not help people with what I am really great at? And then, literally without planning a thing.. while I was sitting on the bus.. I made a Facebook status. The status read:

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Let me mention too.. that I am a planner. I like to be methodical about what I am getting myself into. I like to make detailed lists, look at the big picture.. holistically get an idea of what I want to do.

This, was completely spontaneous and spur of the moment. Before I was able to talk myself out of this idea, and before I was able to think about all of the “What-Ifs”.. the post was published.. and I already had 8 comments from people who were interested (without very much information on what exactly I was even offering).

It’s funny.. I had my second of 52 coffee dates yesterday with an old friend Soph.. And as soon as we got on the phone she asked “So, what is this 52 Coffee dates things?”.. To which I replied “I’m not really sure yet!”.

I think I have a natural knack for inspiring people. I think that I’ve always kind of had a bit of a go-getter-anything-is-possible attitude..and sometimes it rubs off on people, and sometimes it inspires people to chase after their own dreams.. or at least think about it. And like I said in my status.. I do not know it all.. Not even close..

But.. I do find that my inbox has a steady stream of people reaching out with questions related to blogging, social media, and business. And I do think that over the past 4 or so years though, I’ve crammed quite a bit of great information into this noggen of mine, and I have no reservations about sharing it. I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again.. There is more than enough room in this world, and on this internet.. for all of us to be wildly successful.

So.. Alas.. #52CoffeeDates was born.

So what exactly is #52CoffeeDates? Well. I am not sure yet. So far.. I’ve skyped with two super-awesome gals. In both cases, it was a bit of a friendly catch-up conversation.. followed by some chat about dreams, ideas, goals.. and in both cases, I shared a few small pieces of advice based on what I was hearing, and based on what I was noticing or seeing from an outside perspective into their digital footprints.

And you know what? I feel like every one of these conversations is going to be completely different. I am not going in with a master plan, or an agenda.. I am really just shooting the shit over a coffee, and hopefully.. in some form or another, I am bringing my coffee dates a tiny nugget of value. I’m sure over the year it will evolve as I am really just feeling it out, but I can’t wait to revisit all my coffee dates and take a vested interest in their businesses and ideas.

And if you’re wondering why 52.. this is because I want to talk with one new person every single week.. all year. (Boom, how’s that for goals?) So far I’m 2/2.

Here’s a couple high level goals I have for this series..

More meaningful connections/Put the SOCIAL back in Social Media:

I hope to make deeper connections with “acquaintances” I have on social media. Be it an old friend from highschool.. someone I’ve crossed paths with through work.. or even people who found me in the depths of the internet who I don’t even know yet. I want to talk to, and get to know you all.. and offer my help however I think I can. I’ll tell you.. there’s not much that lights me up more than watching other people succeed. I love giving people that tiny push in the right direction and watching them just take off, full force towards what they love.

Get out of my house and meet people IRL

IRL, for all of those who don’t live on the internet, means In Real Life. Any time I can physically meet someone in a cute coffee shop downtown.. I am going to do just that.. I’m actually going to try to do this for my Skype dates too. I live in an AMAZING city with endless options for coffee, and this year, I am going to cross as many of those adorable establishments off my must-see list as I can. Not only that.. for such a big and bright personality, you would be surprised at how much of a genuine homebody I am. I am quite content just bundling up and hanging out on my sofa.. but this is an opportunity to put on some makeup, pull on a cute outfit, and get out of the house. Win, Win Win.

Explore my amazing city

Toronto is amazing, and for being here 5+ years already.. I feel like I have explored 1cm of it. I have a, kind of gigantic.. list of AH-MAZING coffee shops I want to check out. If you’ve been following along on IG you would have seen that I’ve already checked out Oretta– which was high on my must-see list.. and I am already making plans to go back for dinner. I also made it over to Sorry Coffee Co– which is inside a Kit and Ace. By the way, the decor in that shop was impeccable. Copper details EVERYWHERE. And, over the weekend I went to visit my dear Nana- I hit up a Hamilton coffee shop called Cafe Augusta.. and it was also so beautiful. I had a salted caramel latte.. a little bit sweet, but oh boy do I love salt in my drink! Anyways, point is.. I want to be more of an explorer in my own  city. I probably won’t live my entire life in Toronto so I want to make the most of it!

Drink lots of coffee.

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I’ve opened this up on both IG and Facebook.. if you’re interested in joining my #52CoffeeDates project, please drop me a line below! I have a running list of names and I will contact you to pencil you in :).

Looking forward to meeting and getting to know a bunch of you this year!

Cheers!

 

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#Life, Biz

2017: The Slight Edge

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I’m not sure I’ve ever been so amped for New Years.

I am not sure what it is about this year, but I am pumped. Like, real pumped. This year is the first time that I am actually planning. I write New Year’s resolutions every year.. I am a list writer. Lists are my jam. But this is the first year I am taking a much more strategic approach. (It’s funny. I help brands build their strategies and I give advice left right and center, but do I give myself advice?) I am ready to stop putting myself last and put some time into what I would like to accomplish.

So here I am. Ready to rock a new year. I’ve got new ideas. Audacious goals. And more so- I would say I have a new leading philosophy that I know will help me achieve great things. I have a zillion things on the go, so more so than ever- I need to better manage my time. And instead of just saying to myself day-in-and-day-out “you should.. this, you should..that” I am making a strategic plan to make shit happen. Boo ya.

I’ve purchased a few tools to help me stay on track, and I have a few exercises planned to really hone down.. why am I here? What stories do I have to tell? How can I make a difference? What is my natural advantage? What are my ultimate dream goals? What fires me up? Where can I improve? And most importantly, how do I get there?

A good friend of mine Fran, sent me this link earlier this week– and I plan to do these 5 steps this weekend with my boyfriend.. who, unbeknownst to him. has been dragged into my entire planning process this year. *evil smirk*. I think so far it’s been really great for him too. Sometimes it’s hard to say your dreams and goals out loud. But saying them, and writing them, and seeing them.. it’s all part of the planning process. We are now able to hold each other more accountable, and cheer eachother on. (I mean, we do always anyways, but somehow, this is different. It’s really really awesome actually).

The Tools

I didn’t actually go out looking for any of these tools, they all just sorta fell into my lap- but I’m super grateful that they did.

1: The Slight Edge as my guiding 2017 Philosophy

This, I would say is the biggest one. The Slight Edge– really really changed the way I am approaching everything. Does anybody else F*cking love reading? I am a chain reader. For the past two, maybe three years, I have been really into reading marketing/self-development genre books. I just checked, and my Amazon wishlist has 114 books on it right this second. Essentially any time anybody recommends a great book, or an awesome book is referenced in another book I’m reading- I automatically add it to the Amazon Wishlist. Then, it’s kind of like mini-Christmas when I finish reading a book because I get to go to my Wishlist and order another one. #AmazonAddict. I had a library card but I would always get late fees- and I love to have my own collection to reference, highlight if I feel like it, dog ear, carry around, lend to friends. I love my little marketing library!

Anyways.. For Christmas I asked for a pile of books (And I got a few awesome ones, thanks Santa!) I read The Crossroads of Should and Must in one day. It was a cute/fun read. And then, I started reading the Slight Edge.. and it has changed my life. If there’s any book you should read. It is this. That, and Crush it by Gary Vaynerchuck. Read the Slight Edge first, and then go Crush it.

You know how sometimes you read something, but you need to hear it said another way for it to really sink? This was the Slight Edge for me. It’s such a simple, easy to do theory that I’ve definitely heard before.. but the way it was presented in this book, it just clicked and it was kind of like a “eureka” moment.

Here’s the concept:

Some projects are massive. Sometimes the things on your to-do list seem unachievable because they are just too-big. Maybe, reading 30 books sounds intimidating to you. Or maybe, cleaning that desktop that has gotten completely out of control- seems like way too big a job. Or maybe creating that blog series. Saving money. Cleaning your closet. The list goes on and on.

So here’s the magic. The slight edge is essentially just taking all of your biggest goals and breaking them up into the tiniest micro activities that, over time, will help you achieve greatness.

30 books sounds intimidating? How does ten pages a day sound?

Cleaning 40 folders of photos from your desktop sound tough? What about 10 minutes cleaning your desktop per day?

Going to the gym 4 x a week sometimes never seems to happen? What about just 20 minutes every day.  **Which, update.. 11 days in, going strong!! side note.. I am counting walks on weekends as my 20 minutes. 

Basically, chipping away at big projects, slowly.. will help you achieve many more great things.. as opposed to letting things build up and get out of control to the point where you’re intimidated to even start. Those three points above are actually three of my personal Slight Edges. The book breaks your life down into all sections. Health, Happiness, Relationships, Career, Finances, Positive Impact. It was really interesting to sit down and evaluate how I actually felt about all of those categories and start to plan out tiny happy habits that I can do daily to improve these sections.. Because, to be quite honest.. In past NY resolutions I’ve never made a list under the word “Relationships” 0r even “Family”.. And family is the most important thing to me in the world- so it’s funny that whenever I’ve sat down each year to roadmap for the next year- it’s always only been focused on my career. Why not make family goals? Friendship goals? Positive impact goals? (Which, btw.. I have a really cool/fun 52 week project I started last week called #52CoffeeDates.. stay tuned!)

(Goal planning is real this year ya’ll).

I’ve been sharing some snippets of my Slight Edges on my Instagram story– and I hope to update you all on my progress over the year!

2: The Five Minute Journal

Funnily.. One of the “slight edges” mentioned in the book, was practicing gratitute. Then, not even a few days later- Amy posted this photo on Instagram. Precisely what I needed!! I am very greatful for a lot of things in my life- but often I would get caught up with wanting more. Wanting to be better. Never slowing down and enjoying, right here, right now. Life is busy. We all know that. The purpose of the Five Minute Journal is to practice gratitude, every single day. To slow down.. and appreciate what you already have right in front of you. It helps you focus on the good in your life, become more mindful, and live your life with intention. The Five Minute Journal helps you start AND end your day, every day.. with gratitude. There is nothing but positive side effects to this. When you revisit positive memories in your mind, it helps increase your over all happiness. Bo and I have been using it since New Year’s Eve, and we love it. Our mornings are slower. We have a new nightly routine. And it’s something really positive we can do, together.

3: The Day Designer

Everybody loves a good planner, amiright? I for one, need to write things down. The act of writing on paper is meditative to me. The Day Designer is a strategic planner to help you live a well designed life. Like I said before, in order to achieve your goals you need an action plan to support them. The Day Designer is a simple and easy system to help you find balance, focus, and productivity. I especially like the “Today’s Top Three” section.. where you can write your top three tasks for the day. I also like that the page is divided up into two sections, Today and To-Do. I use the To-Do section for my freelance work “after hours”.. So I know what I need to accomplish at night when I leave my desk at work. There’s a also a “Notes” section at the bottom where I’ve been writing in my Slight Edges each day. Today, looking at my planner in that section I have: 20 minutes at the gym. 10 minutes writing for my portfolio. 10 minutes cleaning the bottom shelf of my desk organizer. I also find it really fun to highlight items from my list when I finish them, but that’s just me. A quick little victory stroke ;). SImilar to the Slight Edge, the Day Designer also helps you establish your core values. What is most important to you? There’s also a pretty eye opening little activity at the front of the book where you give yourself a rating on how much time and money, you spend in different areas of your life… And how you would like to see that number change.

A goal without an action plan, is just a dream.

What I have come to learn about my own life, is that planning is essential. Having a plan, or even a rough guide or idea- helps make everything possible. Think about when you need to get somewhere. We rely on a map. I am intentionally mapping out my life.. Doubling down on what matters most to me. Finding my real purpose, and what I want to say.

Are you a NY resolution planner? Got any good books to add to my 114 book list? If you read the Slight Edge, let me know! It’s a life changer! Happy New Year everyone!

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