My 48-Minute Morning Routine For A Creative Day

 

1. Write in a gratitude journal (5 minutes)

Tim Ferriss swears by The 5-Minute Journal, and so do I. Using this thing transforms my day. It has 3 prompts for the morning: (1) List three things you are grateful for, (2) List 3 things you could do today that would make the day great, and (3) Who are you as an affirmation. Then in the evening, you quickly review what worked and didn't work. As an over-thinker, training myself to focus on the wins has been massively effective at empowering me during the day. It's the first thing I do when I wake up. I urge you to get the paper version, but there is an app available.

2. Create empowering affirmations (15 minutes)

Let's get real: your thoughts become your word. Your words become your actions. Your actions become your results. Every morning I listen to at least 1-3 audio recordings from Abraham Hicks. Abraham is "source energy" channeled by a woman named Esther Hicks. Out of the hundreds of thousands of free recordings on YouTube, every single one of them charges you with the mission to feel good above all else. Start with this morning affirmation: Today Is Going To Be A Very Good Day.

Your goal? Be as amped as Jessica by the end.

3. Create an action plan for the 3 things you want to accomplish today (7 minutes)

You started to create this in your gratitude journal, but actually sit down and flesh out the literal action steps you are going to take today. Usually I do this while sipping on a cup of Bulletproof Coffee.

The important thing:  never have more than 3 action steps. I often break this rule -- but when I keep it to only 3 actions, I always feel accomplished. More than that, then I'm overwhelmed and disappointed in myself.

4. Move my body (20 minutes)

This is just common sense. Don't be chained to the computer or your instrument all day. Make sure you're moving. It will clear your head and keep you focused.

5. Turn off my phone (40 seconds)

Don't let anyone interrupt your deep work. Seriously. You've committed to handling 3 things today, and your phone cannot dominate the workspace. This is sacred time to create. People, Facebook, and Snapchat can wait. A friend of mine doesn't even accept calls until after 3PM every day. Why? Because 7AM-2:45PM is his sacred time to create.

If you have any tips that have transformed your morning, leave them in the comments. I'd love to hear them all!

 

Learn This Song With Your Pre-Schooler (Like, Today!)

Learn This Song With Your Pre-Schooler (Like, Today!)

If there's anything that bothers me, it's getting frustrated when I'm trying to learn something new. 

I'm the kind of lady that likes to learn things INSTANTLY. And for a long time, that worked against me.

I wrote off so many things in life, claiming, "Oh, that's not for me," or "I'm no good at that."

Truth is, I was just terrified of failing. So I pretended I wasn't interested, but when I'm insightfully straight with myself... I know I really wanted to learn.

Dozens of parents have told me they feel that way about learning guitar or ukulele. I hear things like:

"Oh, I'm no good, I only know like, 3 chords."

"It just looks too confusing to me."

"Nothing sounds very good when I play it. I can't keep the damn thing in tune."

Flocks of parents telling me how terrible they are at guitar, and how they've always wanted to learn. 

So I decided to do something about it. 

Find The Perfect Guitar For Pre-K Kids

Find The Perfect Guitar For Pre-K Kids

True life: standard guitars aren't built for 4-year olds.

Just for a minute, picture yourself studying music at a university. You wouldn't bring an audio engineering textbook to songwriting class, right?

No. You need your songwriting textbook (yes, they actually have those).

If you brought the wrong textbook, it would be useless. Even though songwriting and recording are related, they have two totally different methods with different information.

The two textbooks are not the same thing. And the same goes for guitars.

5 Tools I'm Using To Be A High-Performing Artist

5 Tools I'm Using To Be A High-Performing Artist

To kick off "My Year Of Travel," I'm ringing in the new year away from frigid Brooklyn and relaxing in sunny Florida. My man and his 9-year old are with me and we're hangin' by the beach and mixing my latest album. 

Last year I got obsessed with productivity and transformation. I got really curious how to, as Tim Ferriss and Dave Asprey put it, upgrade my life:

  • How can I travel the world and still run a thriving business without burning out or feeling guilty?
  • Who can help me discover which foods give me a boost of energy vs. brain fog?
  • What time of day does my creativity peak? Can I make sure nothing stops me from making art every day at that time?
  • What's the quickest way to leave someone empowered to their own greatness in a single conversation? I'm tired of debates or flat conversations.
  • Instead of being confined by whatever mood drops into my lap, how do I want to feel every day? How quickly can I create that feeling so I can stop feeling random bursts of crappiness?

I moved in with my two boys and started juggling how to be a creative person while parenting. Nobody's died yet, and I've birthed 3 massive projects (not babies). Not bad.

Here are my top 5 productivity tools with you to upgrade your life and be the a high-performing Mamma, Pappa, artist, human being, etc. you want to be:

A Songwriting Crash Course for Kids and Parents

A Songwriting Crash Course for Kids and Parents

Music theory is a complex language. It often left me cross-eyed all through high school.

Despite being the first chair flutist, lead vocalist in the jazz choir, and bandleader of a 7-piece funk band, I had no freakin' idea how to unpack the depths of Music Theory Land. 

Now that I run Free Spirits Music, I've devised a super-easy way to deliver this information to my students in our first lesson together.

The Busy Parent's Guide To Getting Your Kid To Practice

The Busy Parent's Guide To Getting Your Kid To Practice

For five days straight, I tried to get my boyfriend's son to practice the drums.

Oh dear god, it was like pulling teeth. And this is my job.

By Day 5, he was rockin' his drum part like nobody's business.

Mammas and pappas, I feel your pain. Parents flock to Free Spirits Music, desperate for coaching around getting their kids to practice at home.

I've spent some time exploring the psychology of practicing and what I've realized is: it starts with you.