All posts by Jen Bickerton

Are You Living a Fake Life? 6 Signs That You Might Not Be Living an Authentic Life

If you are not being true to yourself or to your beliefs, you are being inauthentic. A fake life is one that is led to please others, but does not make you happy. If you want to live more authentically, just make the choice to accept yourself just the way that you are, and then be yourself. I used to feel like I needed to pretend to be a certain way to fit in with my peers. Then one day I made that choice to be unapologetically me. And life is certainly much happier living the way I want, regardless of what others are thinking.

If you want an authentic life, you can have it! Allow yourself to express in a way that delights you. Live in a way that upholds your beliefs without judging yourself or comparing yourself to others. So how can you tell if you are living a fake life?

Here are six signs that you may be:

  1. You need to spend money on things that help you fit in.

It might be new clothes, manicures, make-overs, or expensive dinners out with “friends”. If you feel like you have to spend money so that others will “like” you, then chances are you are not living very authentically. And if this false representation of yourself is not aligned with your personal values, then you will create a lot of stress for yourself.

  1. You find yourself always just waiting for something.

It could be waiting for 5:00 pm. Or waiting for the weekend. Or waiting for your next vacation. Most likely if you are waiting for something you are not living in an authentic way, doing what you would love to do with your life. If you are living a fake life, you may find that you have the urge to always get away from it. Whereas if you were living a purpose-driven fulfilled life, then your days would be in flow and joyous. Stop for a minute and ask yourself if you spend time imagining a happier time and if you are always trying to escape your days?

  1. You never have time for yourself.

Do you feel like you never have time to do what you want? When you are living a fake life, you may find you’ll never have time for yourself, to do those things that really matter to you such as work-out, enjoy your own hobbies, or just to sit and read that book. If your fake life has you wishing you could do the little things in life that make you happy, then stop and realize you are probably projecting yourself as you think you are supposed to be instead of living life in an authentic way.  You don’t want to just survive, you want to thrive.

  1. You lack joy in your life.

 Do you find yourself envious of what others have? If you see only what you lack, you will not find joy in your life. This is a sign you are focused on what is missing and not able to be grateful for the wonderful things you do have. Take a step back and look for the blessings in your life, and you just might find the opportunities you seek instead. If you are living a fake life, then you are focused on what you don’t have, and you will miss out on the joy and happiness that is right in front of you.

  1. Your health may be suffering.

This is a biggie. I found myself here years ago. I was so stressed, mostly self-imposed mentally, that I couldn’t enjoy my life. When this happens it is definitely a good indication that you are not living an authentic life. If you can’t sleep, or need regular massages just to keep you functioning and help you cope, then you may be living a fake life. Here also lies the danger of emotional eating in an attempt to fill that empty void of not being your true self.  But the good news is once you recognize this, you can take measures to turn your life around, health and all!

  1. Others’ beliefs are more important to you than what you believe.

Unfortunately, this sign is very prevalent with those living a fake life. Why do people put emphasis or respect more so on what others think, instead of trusting that their beliefs are really what they need to abide by to be happy? For some reason many of us think others know best for us. This is just not always so. You know your own heart and deep down you know what would make you happy. When you learn to focus on what is important to you, you will finally be able to start living an authentic life.

If you’ve identified any of these signs in your own life, perhaps it is time to make a U-Turn and Conquer Your Reality to start living a life you can love!

I’m here for you. You have choices.

Hearts & Hugs,
Dr. Jen

5 Signs You Are Stuck: How to Enlarge Your Comfort Zone

Are you stuck in a rut? Same old day after day? If you have lived it once, you live it again? I used to feel this way. Being in your comfort zone isn’t a bad thing. But if you have a hard time leaving that comfort zone, you will limit your growth and may not be able to move out of it when advantageous. Moving outside of your comfort zone isn’t always necessary, but sometimes it can allow you to take advantage of new opportunities. Sometimes it can be hard to tell when you are just resting in your comfort zone and when you are stuck there. Here are 5 signs that you might be stuck:

  1. You Pass Up Opportunities

If opportunities for career advancement keep passing you by, it could mean that you are stuck in your comfort zone.

Being comfortable in your career can be a nice feeling, but it is also natural to want to move up in your career path. Unless you’re working at your dream job, chances are your current position was meant to be a stepping stone to something greater. If that’s the case, and you have lost sight of that goal, it could be because you became complacent and stopped testing the limits of your comfort zone.

  1. You Have A Fixed Routine

It is normal to have some kind of a routine, but if yours is identical from week to week or day to day and deviating from that routine unsettles you, it could be that you have created your routines in order to avoid leaving your comfort zone.

The good news is that gradually deviating from a routine can be a good way to work on expanding your comfort zone.

  1. You Avoid Meeting New People

If the threat to your comfort zone is so great, that you avoid meeting new people to save it, you are likely to become increasingly entrenched in your comfort zone and more likely to continue to pass up opportunities to meet new people and try new things.

This can severely limit your opportunities in the future. When it comes to personal growth, relationships and new adventures are important. Even if you don’t have a job, you likely need to interact with healthcare providers, service providers, and other people from time to time.

  1. You Avoid Trying New Things

Everyone has activities that can make them uncomfortable, that they know that they would never try. For most people, however, these are dangerous activities that they are unlikely to ever need to do, like skydiving or bungie jumping.

Once upon a time, I couldn’t talk on the phone or drive on a highway. These things terrified me. But I stretched my boundaries in order to change the diameter of my comfort zone so I could be, do and have more in life. Otherwise I would not be where I am today.

  1. You Don’t Like Going Outside

For some people, staying within their comfort zone becomes so important that they are reluctant to leave their homes.

There’s nothing wrong with enjoying being in your home and spending time there, but if it’s difficult for you to leave your home because you are easily shaken by new or awkward experiences, you should consider expanding your comfort zone.

Consider talking to a therapist to uncover why you avoid leaving your comfort zone. If you can overcome it, you will open up your life to so many more opportunities for love, joy, and excitement. Give yourself permission to live today!

5 Unhealthy Mindsets That Block You From Success

Changing your mind is paramount to Conquering Your Reality! Mindset is half the battle to any success. Your mindset can make or break you along your journey to success, allowing you to succeed with confidence or causing you to fail with self-doubt. I have seen the evidence of this in my own life many times.

But I’ve learned that before you can change your mindset, you have to be able to identify the problem areas within the mindset you have. Here are five key unhealthy mindsets that can block you from achieving success in life:

1) Blameless Mindset

We all are guilty of blaming other people for our mistakes at some point or another. Excuses come easy, after all. But most people grow out of this as they come into their maturity. Making excuses will cause you to become stuck in life because you don’t take personal responsibility, which keeps you from moving forward and succeeding.

Stop making excuses for your mistakes and own them; you cannot succeed if you think you’re blameless in life. Praise yourself for the good work you’re doing, and the efforts you make to learn how to fix what you’re doing wrong. This will improve your performance as and help keep you from making the same mistakes in the future.

2) Approval Mindset

Another sign of immaturity that will hold you back from success is seeking approval from your colleagues and superiors. If you do nothing but seek their approval, you often tune out conversations, missing vital information because you were too worried about how best to respond.

Psychology Today said it best: “Every second you spend seeking reassurance is a second you aren’t focused on the task at hand.” You have to stay focused on doing your best and remind yourself that you can’t control how others will respond to you or your work. Stop seeking approval and prove to yourself that you are capable!

3) Hyper-Negative Mindset

You can easily cause yourself to choke up or jinx yourself into a bad performance/bad work by focusing on the negative. Having a hyper-negative mindset is never good; it’s the one sure-fire way to be on a path destined for failure.

Unless you’re deliberately planning solutions to dealing with worst-case scenarios that may occur, leave the what-ifs behind you. Predicting disastrous outcomes only leads to increased anxiety and nerves.

4) Second-Guessing Mindset

Second-guessing is like poison to your decisions. While reflecting on the decisions you’ve made in the past can be good, second-guessing is different altogether. Second-guessing is usually the major indecisiveness of minor decisions. Most of the time we are spending time on small things that won’t make a difference in the big picture.

Second-guessing can weaken your confidence, and ability to make decisions. While it’s frequently thought of as a way to catch errors or be absolutely certain, it usually does far more harm than good.

5) Self-Doubt Mindset

Confidence is needed in order to achieve success, and confidence cannot exist where self-doubt thrives. You have to have, and display, confidence in yourself and your decisions to succeed. A person who is confidently wrong is more likely to succeed than someone who is doubtfully right.

You can’t go into anything doubting yourself, thinking yourself incapable of handling it. This type of thinking can cause you to mess up where you otherwise would have done fine.

Mindset is half the battle when it comes to achieving success. You have to put yourself in the right mindset to push past any negativity or wrong decisions. It really takes diligence and time to work out of an unhealthy mindset.

It’s essential to try and keep a positive mindset when trying to conquer your reality. Focus on the positives, what you’re good at rather than where you’re failing, and where you’ve improved rather than what you’ve done wrong. This can help to ensure you stay in the right mindset throughout your journey.

Remember I’m here for you.

Hearts & Hugs,