Plan Simple with Mia Moran
Ditch the Diet Drama with Lia Pinelli

Ditch the Diet Drama with Lia Pinelli

September 3, 2020

“I felt like if I wasn't thinking about dieting, and my relationship with food, so frequently, I would be able to produce and contribute so much more in the world.” –Lia

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Lia about one of my favorite and most dreaded topics—weightloss. Lia helps women ditch the diet drama and lose weight from a place of love. With a background in education and life coach training from Martha Beck, Lia has a lot to share about reframing how we think about weight loss. 

Both of us have a long history of dieting and struggling with weight, and we know many women struggle with this. Changing our approach can help so much. We talk about starting from understanding what's going on when we eat—hormonally, psychologically, in our brains in general—and how we can use that knowledge to empower ourselves to change our relationship with food. 

Lia shares her experience jumping from diet to diet, trying all the things and never getting results. She talks about how she just gave up and decided she was the weight she was going to be. She was teaching about body diversity and self love… but she couldn’t quite shake being uncomfortable in her body and her relationship with food. And she felt like she was wasting so much potential by spending so much time thinking about weight and food. That’s when she shifted to mindset tools. 

We talk about: 

  • Losing weight by focusing on mindset and getting curious
  • Counting cash not calories—and not letting relationship with food get in the way of doing big things in the world
  • Understanding the difference between physical and emotional hunger
  • The hunger scale and knowing our physical cues of hunger
  • How our hormones respond to hunger and fullness (and how we get unbalanced)
  • Finding what works for you (it isn’t the same for everybody)


Lia Pinelli is a weight loss coach who focuses on helping badass women ditch the diet drama and lose weight from a place of love. Her clients are women who achieve at the highest levels.

They do it all: run companies, excel at their careers, raise children,  manage their households (a full-time job in itself!), squeeze in time for exercise (or at least try!), and stay abreast of current events.

They quite literally do it all. Except for one thing. Stop overeating. And that is where Lia’s work begins.


Doable Changes from this episode:

  • GET CURIOUS. Start with curiosity. Ask: What happens if I eat this? How do I feel when I eat ___? How do I feel if I change when I eat? Use what you learn to start to make changes about what you eat or choose not to eat or when you eat or how much. Stay curious about how it feels.

  • NOTICE HUNGER CUES. Do you know what hunger feels like? If you are used to eating at specific times or even eating throughout the day, you may not know your hunger cues. Are you eating because you are physically hungry or emotionally hungry? Before you eat, ask, “Am I hungry?” Stop carrying snacks around. See what happens. Instead of looking at the clock for meals, see what happens if you wait and listen to your body.

  • TRY TWEAKING. Our bodies change. They change throughout our cycles and throughout our lives. If you feel like you have something that works for you and then it doesn’t, don’t be afraid to make tweaks based on what you are noticing about your body. Not sure you know enough yet, try something, see how it feels and then adjust.

What to Do with the Brain Dump

What to Do with the Brain Dump

August 28, 2020

The first step in planning — or just shifting out of overwhelm is to get everything out of your head and onto paper.
It is fall.

A new season. A time for new goals. 

We are in the midst of a planathon to get your fall goals set up and working for you… You can still join in and self pace the material. It is so worth having a plan in hectic times!

Every time we are setting a 90-day goal or choosing the 3 big rocks we will focus on for the week, I always start with the same tool. I get everything out of my head and onto paper. 

The purpose of this exercise is to clean out our minds and clear a way forward.

As women, we hold entirely too much info in our heads. The fact that the dry cleaning is at the dry cleaner, the dinners we want to cook, the forms that need to be filled out for the kids, the classes we would like to enroll them in, who each kid is getting along with and who they are not, the fact that you saw the spare sock behind the bed, all the big dreams and aspirations that we are waiting for the right time to create, a list of books we want to read, the three times you will exercise this week … 

It is too much.

It does not leave any room for creativity, innovation, or ease.

Holding all this in your head actually creates quite the opposite — stress.

Get it all on paper

So the first step in planning — or even shifting out of overwhelm is to get everything out of your head and onto paper.

Here is how it goes down: 

  • You set a timer. Start for 15 uninterrupted minutes.
  • Ask yourself what need to happen “this fall” or “this month” or “this week”
  • And start writing. You might put little things like call mom, do laundry, fill out school form. You most likely have big things in your head, things you always wonder if you can figure out, like write that book, start my own business, make x amount of money, I want to fit in those jeans, I need to find a weight loss mentor, I want to help my kids get more friends, I want to plan some daily fun, we need a beach day, want to go apple picking, need to set up the house for learning, need to order some school supplies, check-in with IKEA on the desk, remember the pillowcase in basement… and on and on.

Get it all from your head onto fresh, crisp paper.

I get asked a lot if it is good to make as you go. I find that makes the process take a bit longer and makes important items stay in your head instead of making it to paper.

So do your dump in the random order of your brain.

If you stop writing before your timer goes off, ask yourself, what’s missing. What’s just for me? What’s so big I am scared to add it?

If the timer goes off and you are feeling in the middle of the process, ask your self how much more time do I need? And recommit to the timer.

Make sure you are FULLY committed.

Once it’s all out on paper, what do you do with your list?

Then organize your list

I feel like this is the equivalent of cleaning out the closet. First, you get everything out. When you look back at the closet (which is now empty) you might feel a sense of space, relief, calm, joy. When you turn around and look at the pile on the bed, you are going to feel a brief moment of dread.

I want you to put the piece of paper aside for a moment, maybe even a whole day. Enjoy that empty brain of yours. Feel what it feels like to have done that.

This is the part of the FLOW planning process where we decide how we want to feel for the time ahead — your fall, your week, or today. 

With a clear mind and your newly defined feeling pulling you forward … let’s organize the braindump.

In our cleaning analogy, organizing the braindump is taking the clothes that you have dumped onto your bed from the closet, deciding what you want and what you don’t and putting them back in an order that supports you better than before you took everything out.

This part can be done with interruption. A bit different than the energy behind actually emptying your brain.

  1. Find a notebook, get some fresh paper, open a note on your phone or a google doc. 
  2. Cross something off the list. Go through your brain dump master list. Is there anything there that is not yours or just does not even resonate with you right now? Cross them off. Feel your body let go. I challenge you to cross off at least one thing.
  3. For anything that has a time, get it in your calendar and cross it off the list.
  4. Get a colored pen or your kid’s markers or have fun with digital colored text.
  5. Categorize the list. Move each thing to a category and cross off master list. Make choices. Create lists to organize your ideas. Here are some ideas:
    • Could delegate
    • Systems or Projects that Need Design (toilet paper, front hall, grocery list)
    • Pebbles (FLOW categories, work, house kids, food)
    • Rocks (FLOW categories, work, house kids, food)
    • Next Season
    • Don’t want to forget (Maybe subcategories, vacations I want to go on, dinners I want to try, books I want to read)
      • Next week

Listen to the episode to hear me flush out these categories and give examples.

In the challenge, we are figuring out goals and time blocking our days to get them done – the brain dump is step one to clear your brain and make the space to see what is that your heart is calling you to do this fall... You can do the challenge and plan your fall here. 

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • DO A BRAIN DUMP. Set a timer for 15 uninterrupted minutes. Ask yourself what needs to happen “this fall” or “this month” or “this week.” Start writing. Include little things and big things. Don’t organize or edit the list, just put down all the things swirling in your head. 
  • DECIDE HOW YOU WANT TO FEEL. How you want to feel will help you prioritize things that happen in this season (week, day) and decide what things might wait for another time. What word will define your season? If you want ease, how you handle your list will be different than if you want to feel connected or energized.
  • CROSS SOMETHING OFF. I love a to-do list because it feels good to cross things off, but when our list is too long (like a whole-brain dump) it can be overwhelming. Start by crossing something off. Look for something that isn’t even yours that made it onto your list. Cross it off. Delegate something and cross it off. Put something on a list for another season and cross it off. Find a 5-minute task, do it, and cross it off. Doesn’t that feel good?


Align with Your Goals with Sharon Wilson

Align with Your Goals with Sharon Wilson

August 20, 2020

Put your goal out there and find everything you can possibly find to align and feel good and feel happy.  –Sharon Wilson

In this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Sharon Wilson, Founder, and Chief Inspiration Officer for over 22 years at the Coaching from Spirit Institute about attracting your ideal clients. She thinks of your ideal clients as your soul clients and says they are already here and are called at a soul level for you to serve them.

Sharon started her own business and replaced her corporate executive income with a newborn baby. How did she make the leap? She was miserable in her job, dealing with her misery by shopping, deeply in debt, and in a struggling marriage. She asked that if there was anything up there it would be a good time for something to show up. The powerful spiritual experience that followed set her on the road to becoming a spiritual coach. 

While she was still in her corporate position, people started showing up and saying they had a dream they were supposed to talk to her. People kept showing up for help, and she started honing her life coach skills. Then she got pregnant and really sick and had to leave her job. Her husband thought it would be temporary, but her journaling and meditation showed her it was time to take the leap and launch her spiritual coaching business. 

We talk about: 

  • How she replaced her corporate executive income within three months
  • Getting really clear on the stories we tell ourselves and letting go of guilt
  • Being really careful about who you tell your dreams and goals to so that people don’t dissipate your energy
  • Episode aligning and adjusting vibrations
  • Understanding your relationship with money
  • Writing a partnership agreement with your inner guidance


Sharon Wilson is a co-author of "Intentional Change” and Mastering the Laws of Attraction with best selling author and human potential expert, Jack Canfield. 

Sharon has worked in executive roles in both profit and nonprofit organizations in sales, management, marketing, human resources, organizational training, and much more.

She has worked as a mindset mentor and consultant with Fortune 500 companies to support empowerment and increasing employee productivity and a sense of happiness with mindset training and an appreciative inquiry approach.

Sharon also mentors individuals to create online businesses turning their passion into a prosperous business.

Sharon’s passion is supporting people to empowerment in all aspects of their lives and work.

Sharon lives in Pennsylvania with her loving husband of over 20 years. They are blessed with an amazing daughter, who has as one of her goals to be an acclaimed film director and humanitarian, She is one of the greatest joys in their life!




Doable Changes from this episode:

  • NOTICE THE STORIES YOU TELL YOURSELF. What are you telling yourself about your situation? Do you think you have to do it all? Be super mom? Never make a mistake? Really examine the stories you tell yourself and how it affects you. Can you start to tell a new story?

  • TRY EPISODE ALIGNING. State your intentions for an upcoming episode, a podcast you will be on, a dentist appointment, hanging out with your kid. Then surrender any worries or anxiety.

  • REWRITE YOUR MONEY RELATIONSHIP. Take some time to examine your money story. Then rewrite it. Say what you want out of the relationship. Be clear and direct.

On Being with Amy Pearson

On Being with Amy Pearson

August 14, 2020

Start being okay with wanting what you want, and decide that you are worthy of it.   –Amy Pearson

In this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Amy Pearson, who is a life coach about how she gets so much done. We talk about focus and time management strategies that help her see time as a gift.

We start out talking about mornings. Amy talks about becoming more of a morning person and what parts of her morning set her up for a good day. Plus we consider the challenges of alone time when we are all stuck home together. And we recognize that we all have different daily rhythms and how working with your own rhythm (including going to bed on time for you and getting up at the right time, again for you) can make a huge difference. 

Amy says she is her own best mentor, and that talking to herself nicely in her head is really important to what she gets done. She’s replaced her inner critic with an inner mentor. This paired with her outer strategy of time management helps her accomplish a lot. 

We talk about: 

  • Being willing to forgive yourself and how that helps you be compassionate and talk kindly to yourself
  • Setting boundaries
  • The big rocks, small rocks, sand idea of time management (the FLOW planner is built on this idea)
  • Scheduling time for yourself so you don’t burnout
  • Work hard/less work cycles and honoring your real intention
  • A willingness to be uncomfortable to succeed as an entrepreneur


Amy Pearson, founder of Being Amy, is a Master life coach, a coach mentor and instructor for Martha Beck’s life coach training. She’s a teacher, coach, writer and speaker. A former approval addict (with the occasional relapse), she is now addicted to success. Her mission is nothing short of world peace by empowering every woman on a mission to magnify their tribe and make an epic impact doing their own unique thing in the world. Based on years of research into what she calls “Approval Addiction,” she created a personality assessment called “The Approval Quiz.” 


Doable Changes from this episode:

  • KNOW YOUR OWN RHYTHMS. We talk about rhythms in terms of when we go to bed and when we wake, when we need rest. Start paying attention to what your body wants. When do you want rest? When does your body want to go to bed? What happens if you honor that instead of resisting? Play with different waking times and see how it feels.
  • SCHEDULE YOUR BIG ROCKS FIRST. Your big rocks are the most important things that move your toward your goals. Schedule those first. Then schedule you smaller rocks around that. Your sand or least important things, will fill in the gaps.
  • PRACTICE WITH AN INTERNAL MENTOR. Start by noticing the voice inside your head. Try switching it to a kinder voice, one you might use with somebody else. When you start to hear the critic voice, see if you can stop, accept yourself as human, and forgive yourself for any mistakes. Then try speaking to yourself kindly. This is a work in progress and starts by stopping that critical voice when you start hearing it. 
Conscious Clothing with Anita Costello

Conscious Clothing with Anita Costello

August 7, 2020

You don't need a lot to look good, to look put together.  –Anita Costello

In this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Anita Costello, the designer at Bacah, a sustainable clothing company, about minimalism, fashion, and making conscious choices. 

She was always, even as a child interested in fashion and credits her mother with that interest, but she says minimalism is really connected to parenting for her. Having go-to, simple outfits that made her feel good made things so much easier. She realized that you don’t need a lot to look good and put together. It’s about being true to your style. You can look nice, not frumpy, by choosing pieces that look good AND feel good. 

We also talked about sustainability, because it’s easy to buy clothes without even thinking about what you are supporting. I think this is especially true if you spend a lot of money on your kids and put your own closet last or when you are pressed for time and want a quick choice. 

We talk about: 

  • Being honest with yourself about what your style is
  • Knowing your core colors and understanding your silhouette and what is flattering
  • Questions to ask when shopping to maintain a minimalist closet
  • Making trendy things the smallest portion of your wardrobe
  • Questions to ask and things to think about when it comes to sustainable style
  • Knowing who you are supporting when you purchase clothing


Anita Costello is the founder and designer of the eco-aware brand Bacah. Her mantra, “Life is complicated enough, what you choose to wear doesn’t have to be.” Click here for styles to help you uncomplicate your closet.


Doable Changes from this episode:

  • LEARN ABOUT YOUR STYLE. Understanding your style means having clothes that look and feel good. Start with Anita’s sheet on vertical body shape to understand what is flattering. Pay attention when people tell you to look amazing in a cut or color. Notice what colors you are drawn to again and again. Do you love jewelry or shoes or other accessories? Notice which pieces in your wardrobe you gravitate to. Ask yourself what it is about these pieces. 
  • READ LABELS. Start to understand your clothing by reading labels. Notice what materials clothing is made from. Pay attention to where things were made. As you look at new pieces, pay attention labels. Ask why the t-shirt only costs $3. Ask yourself if you really need 10 t-shirts or if one or two more sustainable tops would serve you better. You do not have to revamp your whole wardrobe, start to notice and make a choice about one item. Then another.
  • DECIDE AHEAD WHAT YOU ARE GOING TO WEAR. If mornings are hectic, try planning advance what you will wear for the next day. (You could even set up several days in advance.) Layout each outfit in a convenient place or hang it together in your closet.

Keep What You Want with Kristyn Ivey

Keep What You Want with Kristyn Ivey

August 3, 2020

"When you shift your focus to what you want to keep, it's a much more interesting exercise and not as stressful."  –Kristyn Ivey


On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Kristyn Ivey, a professional organizer and certified KonMari consultant about organizing and decluttering.


Decluttering and organizing is about examining the things we surround ourselves with. While a lot of us want a decluttered and organized house, getting there feels daunting and like a huge chore. We talk about remembering the benefits of a decluttered space, and Kristyn points out that the KonMari method gives permission to keep what you want (and let go of the things you don’t—but the focus is what you want to keep). 


The process starts with examining your ideal lifestyle and living environment, with questions like: What is your why? What do you love? How do you want your home to feel? How do you want it to look? What would your life be like if it were clutter-free?


We talk about: 

  • Planning your tidying event, keeping in mind three things: the size of your home, the level of clutter, the pace of your decision making
  • Working with other people’s priorities and conversations about decisions 
  • Digging in and making decisions instead of doing a little tidying here and there
  • Do the whole process for yourself and focus on your own stuff before you even think about kid’s or partner’s stuff
  • How the process changes your consumption patterns 
  • Adjusting the KonMari method order (clothes, books, papers, miscellaneous, sentimental items) to fit your current needs—start with what is causing you stress




Kristyn Ivey, is a professional organizer who is dedicated to teaching busy families, professionals, and creative entrepreneurs how to let go of “stuff” and attract a truly abundant life. She’s the founder of For the Love of Tidy. With over 1000 hours of tidying experience, she’s been featured in Good Morning America, Bloomberg, HuffPost, Vox, and the Chicago Sun Times, with live appearances on ABC7, FOX32, Windy City Live, and more. She also co-hosts the weekly podcast Spark Joy celebrating the transformative power that comes from surrounding yourself with joy. She is also the author of the #1 Amazon Best Seller The Tidy Home Joy Journal and regularly chats about clutter with packed audiences, eager to shift their understanding of what it means to be organized in their home and life. 


Doable Changes from this episode:

  • THINK ABOUT YOUR WHY. Before you start going through your stuff, set aside time to think about why you are doing this. Get clear on your ideal lifestyle and living environment. Ask yourself: What do I love? How do I want my home to feel? How do I want it to look? What would my life be like if it were clutter-free?
  • SCHEDULE YOUR TIDYING EVENT. Commit to digging deep and doing the work in large chunks. Think about 3–5 hour tidying moments. Put 6 of these on your calendar. Plan for what you will tackle during each. (KonMari method usually moves through categories in order—clothes, books, papers, miscellaneous, and sentimental). 
  • WORK WITH WHAT YOU CAN HANDLE. If you’ve read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, you know that it suggests pulling everything that is in a category out at the same time, (so for example, pulling out all of your clothes from every closet and bin and drawer. Kristyn recommends working with what you can handle and saving your energy for decision making. So doing all the books on one level of your house, rather than moving them all into one central space. Be realistic about what you can go through in a given tidying “moment.”

Get Access to the Art of 90 Days »


This episode is an excerpt from the Art of 90 days, where 25+ experts in wellness, mindfulness, relationships, parenting, decluttering, and entrepreneurship share how to reach specific goals in 90 days. Check out how to get access to all the talks, plus 3 AMAZING bonuses here »

Mindfulness Simplified with Shahin Najak

Mindfulness Simplified with Shahin Najak

July 16, 2020

“Mindfulness is a very simple practice, but it's not easy. It's taking in what we're doing or feeling at the moment and really going down into our body and asking, ‘where am I feeling this?’” –Shahin Najak

In this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with mindfulness and mediation coach Shahin and really get into what mindfulness and mediation mean and why actually tapping into these practices means so much. 

We start by really defining these terms because they have become such buzz words. Mindfulness is an awareness of this moment without judgment. Noticing where you feel things in your body is a piece of it. Both mindfulness and mediation are practices. The more you practice, the more you feel the effects.

So many people I work with set 90-day goals of becoming more mindful of developing a mindful practice, which is wonderful. But these are often the first things dropped. People stop practicing because a kid gets sick or it’s stressful about work. We talk about how to make it work—working on other practices before you start meditating. 

We talk about: 

  • Starting with the question, “How do I want to show up today?”
  • The peanut butter resource—pause, breathe, respond
  • Coming to your sense—notice 5 things you see, 4 things you hear, 3 things you feel, 2 things you smell, 1 thing you taste
  • Mindful journaling about the thoughts that come up during meditation, noticing habitual habits of behavior
  • Turning a mediation practice into a habit by tying it to something else. 
  • Using a breath with longer exhalation to help calm fear. 


Shahin Najak is a mindfulness and meditation coach, speaker and educator, based in West Vancouver, BC.  She supports parents and kids with private coaching sessions; teaches workshops at community centers, schools, and speaks at business organizations across Canada. Her work revolves around supporting parents & children, teachers and other employees working in corporations big and small, in accessing and incorporating Mindfulness strategies in our daily lives as a pathway to create and craft a life of inner peace, love, compassion and self-acceptance.




Manifestation Masters


Doable Changes from this episode:

  • KNOW HOW YOU WANT TO SHOW UP. Ask yourself each morning, How do I want to show up today? Throughout the day as you go about your life, notice if you are showing up the way you wanted to.

  • PRACTICE THE PEANUT BUTTER RESOURCE. You can do this wherever you are—at a stoplight, waiting in line when something upsets you. Pause, breathe, respond. What happens if you commit to doing this throughout the day? 

  • COME TO YOUR SENSES. When you feel fear or are upset, try coming to your senses. Take the time to come back to your body and notice: 
    • 5 things you see
    • 4 things you hear
    • 3 things you feel
    • 2 things you smell
    • 1 thing you taste
Your Dream Life with Jen Mazer

Your Dream Life with Jen Mazer

July 9, 2020

Commit to your decision and see it through until you have received the physical results of your intention. –Jen Mazer

In this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I can’t wait to share my conversation about manifestation with Jen Mazer. 

Manifesting might sound like a buzzword, but Jen says that we are manifesting all the time. People come to her when they want to be intentional about what they're creating instead of just letting things come to them. We talk about setting the stage for what you want and really being clear with what your intentions are. 

A lot of us may have an intention or a vision, but we wonder: How do I go from this current life that I have to this dream life? How can I get there? We talk about these visions, the dream life as using your imagination to tap into your desires, and imagination allowing us to tap into our intuition. 

We talk about: 

  • Moving from “I’d really love to, but” to “I’m going to” but why mantras and affirmations can be a problem 
  • How doing something that makes you feel good on a daily basis raises your vibration and moves you closer to your big dream 
  • Putting your big dream first, even if it is a small action before you get buried in your to-do list
  • The difference between fake it until you make it and embodying what you want
  • That we made a choice that got us into our current situation and we can make a choice to change it
  • Stepping out of our comfort zone
  • How manifesting is like GPS when we hit obstacles—we can still get there, but we might need another route


Jen Mazer is The Queen of Manifestation®. She is a sought-after transformational speaker and coach. She teaches people how to manifest their biggest dreams while making an impact on the world. She is known for her signature Manifestation Masters program and Private Success Coaching.  Jen is the author of Manifesting Made Easy, and Co-Founder of the board game, Sparked.


Doable Changes from this episode:

  • PRACTICE GRATITUDE. Notice the good in your every day, even the parts or situations you do not love. Try looking at your whole life with rose-colored glasses. Think about what you are proud of in your day. Switch the focus from I don’t want to I get to or from guilt to pride.

  • ACT LIKE IT IS A DONE DEAL. Block off time for your dream vacation. Schedule the triathlon you plan to run. Commit to it. Then take a step. Find a running coach or beginner's plan. Whatever your vision is, act like it is reality.

  • COMMIT. Instead of saying, “I’ll try,” commit to your vision. State it in present terms, not maybe terms, not future, but as it is. Start simply by owning and sticking to your vision, not second-guessing it. 


Self Care for ALL with Melissa Mueller-Douglas

Self Care for ALL with Melissa Mueller-Douglas

July 2, 2020

I'm a strong believer in incorporating mindfulness and gratitude practices into what you're already doing because none of us are going to create time.  –Melissa Mueller-Douglas

In this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Melissa Mueller-Douglas, the founder and facilitator of MYRetreat about self-care and retreats. Melissa started MYRetreat on her 30th birthday to support herself and the other mothers in her life. 

These retreats are 90 minutes long, which means in the time you could watch a movie on Netflix, you could do something important for yourself. Melissa says that the moments of silence in the retreat are powerful because it’s the first time in a long time women are sitting intentionally with their thoughts and themselves. The pause helps women realize everything and everyone they are putting ahead of themselves. It helps many people start to put themselves first. Creativity bubbles out of it and they become better caregivers, mothers, wives. They understand themselves and their purpose better. 

Melissa shares a mindfulness and gratitude practice that can be part of what you are already doing. 

She has a great planner tip — make a Got Done list. Make a list of things that are important to your self-care, like exercise, play, family and friends, mindfulness, and gratitude. In your planner, write down any time you do something related to one of these areas. You can even color-code it with one color for each area. Look back and reflect on your week. See what you got done!

We talk about: 

  • Making a got done list
  • How to incorporate something new into something you already do to avoid overwhelm while exploring new interests
  • The idea of rotating to avoid burnout—so some people can take a break while other people step up
  • Saying no to things that don’t serve you or your purpose
  • Using chocolate (or another treat) to engage the senses and help you be mindful


Melissa Mueller-Douglas, LMSW is the founder of MYRetreat, the retreat where mindfulness and gratitude meet. She is celebrating her 9 year wedding anniversary and is the proud mama of two enthusiastic and creative kids. She believes self-care is a necessity and with chocolate mindfulness it’s luxurious.


Doable Changes from this episode:

  • MAKE A GOT DONE LIST. So many of us make endless to-do lists. We’re good at writing down the things we need to do. But what if we started giving ourselves credit for the things we got done? Use your planner to write down things each day you got done—especially the things related to self-care. Use categories like exercise, play, mindfulness, family and friends, or whatever categories are important to you.

  • SAY NO TO SOMETHING. Next time you are asked to do something, pause. Ask yourself if the task or project serves you or your purpose. If it doesn’t say no. Look at your current commitments. Which serves you or your purpose? You can step away from the others. 

  • PRACTICE CHOCOLATE MINDFULNESS. Get a piece of good chocolate. Feel the weight in your hand. Notice the sound of the wrapper opening. Notice the color, the shape, the texture. Bring the chocolate to your lips, notice changes happening in your mouth or body. Take three deep breaths. Take a bite. Notice the flavor, the texture, the feel. Savor it. (Melissa walks you through the process here.)


Summer Plans

Summer Plans

June 26, 2020

“When change is big we have to reimagine the systems at work in our lives.” – Mia Moran

This summer is not at all how you may have pictured it in January.

I am hearing a lot of “I wish it would just go back to normal,” and I get it because there are many things about last spring and summer that felt easier — there was camp, it was relatively easy to go for a swim, go camping, go to the beach, get gas in the car, my kids all had excursions with grandparents — I had moments of summer bliss and moments of focused work.

But, I have been thinking A LOT about what normal was. Everything I do here is at some level to disrupt “normal,” because many of us are eating too much food that is not nourishing us, doing too many things each day which causes us to be in a constant state of busy, very rarely have time to just be, and working really hard and while our kids are at school and beyond for hours that were set for us by factory workers during the Industrial Revolution.

What if we really need a new normal?

What if the biggest health crisis and racial justice movement are here in front of us so we can make some real changes?

When women decide to step into FLOW, our accountability program, It is because they have decided to make a big change in themselves — the food they eat, the work they do, way more balance, some actual self-care.

We always start with a plan because when change is big we have to reimagine the systems at work in our lives. This is big, and big needs a blueprint.

You may have some big changes you want to see in your life, or you may be just trying to survive in the current state of the world, which is asking us to change — the current state of healthcare and racism are two systems built to keep us small.

So let’s make a plan.

This is not a heavy plan.

I will be talking about a 90-day plan again real soon where we can tackle some big goals.

But for now, this plan is meant to keep us moving forward in little but meaningful ways.

It is subtle but conscious.

It may not be the planning of a revolution, but it is the grounding you may need to see your part in a revolution.

It is not camp, but it is a few little things that will give you a few hours to get work done, knowing the kids are not drowning in video games.

When life gets so big and heavy, my people tend to do one of two things — take it all on and stand pretty motionless because “taking it all on” is debilitating, or putting blinders on and getting something done, but that focus is dependent on the world working in predictable ways and having kids in school (or camp), and that's not our reality right now.

So let’s find that middle ground. 

Let’s take in what’s happening all around us.

Let’s understand what we can do about it right now.

Me, I was to get my perimenopausal body feeling better, so I am a strong and healthy version of myself today.

I also want to do my part in being anti-racist, and right now that is about learning.

I want to be super connected and have fun with my kids while they are home — I also want them to pitch in at home at a new level. 

I want to get good work done efficiently.

I want to pay attention to how we use resources as a family.

And from this, I make my summer plan. As a family, we do a family plan — and each kid can do their own.

I made you some planning sheets! But I will also tell you what’s on them in case you just want to think about these on your own paper.

Here are some of the things to think about (and that make up the planning sheets)...

A plan just for you

  • books to read
  • self-care rituals
  • food goals
  • make the world better
  • work projects
  • around the house
  • learn
  • fun
  • things that can wait until August


A family plan

  • rainy day activities
  • sunny day activities
  • cloudy day activities
  • ways to make the world better
  • trips
  • food
  • new rituals
  • just because it's summer


A plan for each kid

  • books I will read
  • projects I want to do
  • healthy habits to practice
  • ways I will make the world better than I found it
  • activities just for me
  • activities with my family
  • chores around the house

Answer these Qs yourself or have fun with our three planning sheets. Download them here »

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