Driving & The Power of Personal Development

You know the scene… You overslept, stubbed your toe getting out of bed, you spilled your coffee all over the place and in places you never even thought there were, and you’re sitting in a shit ton of traffic. All on the day you were supposed to be in work a half hour early.

You’re growing increasingly annoyed by the minute and would you look at that! You come up behind a school bus. But not just any school bus. A school bus who is stopping at every other intersecting street to pick up giggling elementary schoolers. I don’t know if you have ever waited for an elementary kid to get on a bus, but they don’t do it with any hustle whatsoever.

You’ve had enough and let out a giant, annoyed SIGH. Maybe a curse or two.

And from there on out, your day spirals into the pit of misery (Dilly Dilly). That Manic Monday-ish morning is now running and ruining your day.

What if I told you that the perfect place to practice all of those personal development tools you’ve learned along the way is smack dab in the middle of alllllllllll that chaos.

Laugh all you want, Karen, but it’s YOU whose peace is at stake here.

So, what exactly can you do to flip the script when all you want to do is Hulk Smash your way through the drive?

First and foremost, remember that just because you’re in a hurry, doesn’t mean everyone else is too. Yes, you may have the most important meeting of your life the second you walk into work, but the driver in front of you may be driving for the first time on their own after getting their license. So they’re taking their time because they’re just getting the hang of this whole driving thing.

Or maybe you’re the one who is driving at your own, merry pace and there is an aggressive driver behind you. They’re swerving in and out of traffic and you automatically assume this person is just an asshole. Some of you may flip them the finger, some of you may speed up to try and cut them off from cutting YOU off. But what if that driver is racing to the hospital to say goodbye to a loved one who may not be able to hold on until they get there?

What if you being stuck in that traffic, or behind that bus, or at a never ending red light is actually saving your life? Because just down the road, a horrible accident just occurred.

Yes, these are all “what if” scenarios. But seriously, WHAT IF?!

So now that I’ve (hopefully) stopped you in your tracks, what are are some things you can do when you start to feel that anger or anxiousness behind the wheel?

  1. Tell Yourself The Rush Is Not Worth It: Maybe you ARE heading to that most important meeting of your life or maybe your loved one is the one fighting for their life. But it is not going to do anyone any good if something happens to you. If you get into an accident, you’re not getting that promotion (at least not at that meeting). If you get into an accident, your loved ones will have someone else to worry about. If your boss can’t understand traffic and would rather you risk your safety to make a meeting, do you really even want to devote your time to someone so careless? You are valuable so that means no rush is worth your life.

  2. Put On Some Fun Music: I have been known to shamelessly rock out to the Moana soundtrack in my car at an alarmingly loud volume. Seriously, no shame. It really helps you calm the fuck down* if you have some tunes on that get you singing along and forgetting why you were even annoyed or anxious in the first place. Some days that may be Spice Girls. Other days it may be Celine Dion. Whatever floats your boat. I suggest making a playlist, though, so that when you feel yourself getting to that place of road rage, you can switch on the music at the snap of your fingers and be on your way to the road concert of your life.

    * Sorry for the extreme language. I felt it necessary since we’re talking about road rage.

  3. State Ten Things You’re Grateful For: Gratitude is so calming. It really is. Maybe you’re thankful for the car you’re driving because it gets you where you need to go in a safe and comfortable manner. Maybe you’re grateful you were able to make another cup of coffee after that epic spill earlier in the morning (Nothing beats the Epic Milk Spill of 2012… Ask me about it). Whatever it is you’re grateful for, let the peace fill you and do not work to build the anger/annoyance back up. And if you can’t keep track, use your ten fingers on the steering wheel. Tick one finger down each time you state something you’re grateful for. Ah, the simple tools we have available to us.

  4. Talk Out Loud To Yourself or a Higher Power: Driving is the best time to talk out loud to your guides. Is there some outcome you’re hoping for? Talk to your guides about it! Maybe your prayers are answered in the form of your boss being stuck in that same exact traffic, so the meeting you think you’re missing isn’t even happening. Even just talking to yourself and giving one hell of a pep talk can do wonders for your spirit. Maybe state some affirmations out loud. The best part of today’s world is you won’t look like you’re talking to yourself because you can play it off like you’re talking on your Bluetooth. PERKS. So talk it up.

It really isn’t that difficult to turn around your thoughts and feelings when it comes to driving and road rage. You just have to be WILLING to do so. And it’s your choice. It definitely doesn’t do your blood pressure any good to fly off the handle at anything happening on the road (or really anything for that matter).

Next time you’re out on the road and feel yourself getting heated, try turning the tables on that heat! Give one, or all of these tips a try! You may not always catch yourself right away, but you’ll start to notice it gets as you continue to practice them.

Drive safe & peacefully, my friends!

xo, Staci

Open Letter to the ladies of Siesta Key:

Maybe this sounds weird coming from someone who is older than you, but you ladies could have been my students my first year or so of teaching, so I almost feel protective over you. I so feel for you all as I read the comments on your Instagram pictures and Tweets. Some of them are great, but then some of them are downright HURTFUL. I want to jump in and just make people see how hypocritical they are being, but it’s the internet. No one wants to be held accountable for their actions (which is funny because they LOOOVE commenting on yours). 


So I wanted to give some advice. Not that I’ve been on a reality TV show for my early adult years to be shown for the critics of the world.. But I’ve been in some of the positions you guys have been in and I want you to feel like you’re understood by at least SOMEONE. Us WOMEN have to stick together 😘


1. Pay Attention to the Love, Forget the Hate: Easier said than done, I know. Especially when you are being bombarded with comments of people who think they know exactly what happened because they saw a CLIP (that goes through editing.........) of a TV show. But love on the people who support you and build you up. I always see you guys explaining yourself and I think it sucks you feel you have to do that. Because you don’t. If people can’t wrap their minds around the FACT that you are on a REALITY TV SHOW, that’s on them. That’s them being close-minded. Nothing against your producers, but if people can’t see that they get to manipulate what gets shown and what doesn’t, then is it really worth explaining yourself to them? The scene between Kelsey and Jacob was PROOF of editing, in my opinion. I looked at my husband after that scene and said “Did that seem HEAVILY edited to you? No conversation flows like that.”  In my opinion, the producers of the show throw you guys out to the wolves, but I guess that comes with the territory of being on TV. 



2. Find SOMETHING to Do That Helps With Your Mental Health, If You Don’t Already Have It: I can’t even imagine the anxiety that courses through you as the show is airing. My heart broke when I saw Chloe’s tweet about it being 8am the next day and she still hadn’t slept. That’s not good!! And it’s not fair to you. Again, I know it must be the territory, but this is a chapter in your life that is already so stressful with figuring out your life and what your future looks like. To add a TV show on top of that, one that more often airs your dirty laundry than show any good you may do, has to be kicking your psyche’s ass. You’re all so beautiful so please, please, please make sure you are taking care of yourselves in healthy ways! Yoga, meditation, reading, shoot even just soaking up that Florida sun! You matter and so does your mental health❤️

3. Be So Strong in Who You Are, But Know That Can Change, Too!: Who you are in this moment is not who you will be in 5, 10, 20 years. Don’t let comments or even the show in general define your lifetime. I think sometimes it’s hard for young women to really stand in their truth, because we have learned that to break the mold is to break into a danger zone, so to speak. It’s safer to be ordinary. None of you are ordinary and that draws a lot of jealousy and negative attention. Remember that no one can make you feel a certain way without your permission! 


There’s a million more things I can say but it all just boils down to one thing: Be you and pay no mind to the keyboard warriors. I’ve wanted to write something to pep you guys up for a while, and after last week’s episode I knew I just had to do it. 


Stay strong, love life, have FUN, and let go of anything/anyone that drags you down! There are people out there that want this for ALL of you! 


Love, Staci 




Be The Change. Be The Solution.

It’s no secret our country is far from getting along right now. All you need to do is open Facebook and see about 20 debates going on, as if furiously typing on your keyboard is going to change someone’s perspective.

 

You know what gets people to change their mind even more? Name-calling.

 

I’m obviously being sarcastic, but it’s sadly the reality of these Facebook debates that occur every. Single. Day.

 

I see friends on both sides of the political spectrum and their passion to defend their beliefs. Passion is such a great thing! I admire that about my friends. I admire their intelligence, their participation in freely expressing themselves, and working to make a difference.

 

 But I can’t help but feel that their passion isn’t being utilized as well as it could be. 

 

Maybe, the solution to a lot of our society’s problems is to stop FIGHTING. Stop fighting with one another, stop fighting against what we dislike, and start presenting solutions.

 

I would never tell someone to stop believing in what they believe in. I do not have that authority, nor would I ever want that authority.

 

But I want to present a POSITIVE challenge.  But before I do, I want to very briefly go over the Law of Attraction (hang in there with me).

 

The Law of Attraction, in its simplest definition, means like attracts like. Plain and simple.

 

So, let’s put this Law to use in a problem that is very prevalent in today’s society: racism.

 

When an incident occurs, rather than come together as a society and form a solution, we divide and fight a social war. One side stands their ground and believes whoever the victim was deserved it in some way or another.  The other side is usually in an uproar, fighting against the first side. The “racist” side (I use quotations so as not to place judgement or labels on anyone). When you go at someone, angrily trying to change their beliefs, you’re usually not met with peace and harmony.  Some people will argue back with you, some will taunt you, and some will simply not care.  You feel like the better person because you do care. And your intentions are good!! No denying that. But you are entering the battlefield without even trying to understand another’s perspective.  You want them to understand yours without trying to understand theirs.

 

That goes for the other side as well. You will show up, push buttons, and sometimes laugh at those who are passionately trying to explain themselves.  You write them off as being “wrong” and can’t understand how they could be so “dumb”… You’re not even trying to understand them. You’re not even trying to see how words and actions can hurt other people.

 

It becomes a fight, an argument. When you fight something, more “fight” appears. Like attracts like. The Law of Attraction. When you put your focus and energy into the fight, don’t be surprised if that’s what you get back in return. Resistance is met with more resistance.

 

Solution? Put your energy and focus into the people who are willing to spread the message of whatever it is you are wishing upon this world. 

 

If it’s equality, focus on sharing articles or messages of ways we can truly reach equality. Many people fight against the white man. Women fight against the Men’s’ Club. Want to know how you take away that power? You stop putting your focus and energy into your supposed “enemy”, and start getting out there and changing it yourself. BE THE CHANGE. Ever notice how some of the most admirable people in history did things in a peaceful manner? They recognized the Law of Attraction, or at least the science behind it. Martin Luther King Jr… One of his most famous quotes focuses on LIGHT and LOVE. You cannot take away darkness with more darkness. You cannot drive out hate with hate. So many of you, on either side of the political table top, share that quote as if it means something to you, and then you do the exact opposite. Fighting a cause cannot drive out the fight from the other side. Only peace and the willingness to show up as solution can do that.  

 

Show up with a solution without an undertone of accusation or anger. Truly show up with a solution with the intention of SOLVING a problem. Treat others with respect if that’s what you want, no matter their political party, the color of their skin, their gender, their sexuality, etc. It’s really so simple. The majority of us learned that simple rule as kids. You can say that there are those out there that do not treat others with respect. Stop putting your focus on that one person and put the focus on the five others that DO. Be the example of what you want to see in your reality. It’s not you being complacent. It’s not you turning the other cheek.  It’s you showing someone a new way of being.

 

Are there bad people out there in the world with some twisted views? Yes. But in the words of Luke Bryan (had to lighten the mood somehow), I believe most people are good. I believe most people show up every single day and try their best.  Your best may not be the same thing as someone else’s. Our best doesn’t make us better or worse than anyone else, either.  

 

If you can look at your supposed enemy and see the scared, little child in them, I think you’d be shocked at how your heart softens.  Because sometimes, we all have that scared little kiddo in us, too.  Hurt people HURT people. Is that fair? No. But this is where you get to use your good. This is where you get to show up, be a GOOD example of how to treat people regardless of circumstance, and maybe make a bigger impact on them than you would by calling them a deplorable or a snowflake.

 

You cannot show up to an argument, wanting to be understood without the willingness to try and understand someone in return. You cannot show up with anger in your heart and expect love and peace to be the end product.

 

One of my favorite sayings a former teacher of mine would say (although it was NOT my favorite at the time in my life when it was being said) is this: You catch more flies with honey.

 

So simple.

 

I recognize this may not be received the way I intend it to be received by everyone. You may answer like Sandra Bullock’s character in Miss. Congeniality wanted to answer and I may be Cheryl (again, lightening the mood). But I’m putting my money where my mouth is by showing up and offering a solution (and probably some horrible pop culture references), with the intent to help us all remember one simple fact: We are all doing our best as we know that best to be.

 

My ideas for moving FORWARD in this country?

1.     Recognize we all have the right to believe in what we do, even if you don’t agree with another’s specific beliefs.

2.     Focus your energy on what is going RIGHT in the areas you want to see improved.  Is someone being a positive influence (meaning no anger, aggression, etc) in that area? Share THAT article. Put the energy THERE. You’ll be shocked when you start to see more of it.

3.     Show up in life how you wish the world would show up. Be the person who treats others with respect. Show equality to everyone you meet. Attempt to understand someone else’s perspective.

4.     Recognize when you are placing judgement on a person, a group, an idea, and do your best to replace that judgement with curiosity. What makes a person believe that belief? What makes them tick that way? Again, attempt to understand. Even if you don’t think they deserve your understanding, do it anyway. You are being the solution when you do.

 

Our country may be a long way from recovering from years of hate and narrow-minded thinking (on every side) but it could also be just one step away.  It all depends on how we choose to show up.

 

I choose to show up, trying my best and being willing to see into another’s point of view.  I recognize that I will not always be right and that I am not perfect. But I promise to do my best and make sure everyone I interact with feels loved and validated, despite any differences.

 

No one said it better than Gandhi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

 

Xo, Staci