How To: Be Ambitious (While Dealing With Anxiety)

Abandon the expectations and you’ll be free. Free to rest, free to express, free to heal. Anxiety is a response to expectations that are resounding in your mind, crowding the thoughts that desperately want to grow and become plans that sprout brilliant ideas. Sometimes, it’s difficult to dream because it’s difficult to sleep and it’s difficult to sleep because the expectations induce anxiety. Laying awake replaying decisions that haunt you won’t lead to a billion dollar idea or brainstorming breakthrough. Trust me.

Anxiety untreated causes the kind of exhaustion that causes dreams to become little unchecked boxes on a list of things that you meant to do but couldn’t find the strength to complete. There’s a better way to get where you’re going. And, while I’m no doctor, I am a survivor. I know what it is to want success so badly that I sacrificed everything to get where I am.

I want you to get there, to taste the sweetest success, without all of the exhausting sacrifices.


Step One: Sleep More. Regardless of what you’ve heard and in spite of what they’ve told you, rest is the gateway to the most awe-inspiring moments of your life. It is in the quiet moments that you’ll have the energy to imagine a life of wealth and opportunity. I have never met a person suffering from burn out who effectively inspires their team and serves as a healthy partner and friend.

Step Two: Stop asking judgmental people for advice. Sometimes, the people you hope will help you are not equipped to help you heal. They’re not effectively dealing with their own issues so how could they possibly help you navigate your personal emotional obstacle course? Find the courage to express yourself to someone who is healthy enough (and certified) to hear you and, more importantly, encourage you as you do the work required to get through this difficult time.


Being ambitious is only impressive and admirable if you’re healthy enough to enjoy the journey. Focus on one moment, one step, one task at a time. Those who tell you to think five years out are giving ancient and antiquated advice. Millennials know how fast things change in the current job climate. Nothing is guaranteed. The only constant is change. Know where you want to go without obsessing over the details. There’s no way to avoid the potholes, the detours, the delays, and the inclement conditions.

The only way to stay sane is to let go of the obsession with being in control. The details really aren’t up to you. The sooner you accept that, the healthier you’ll be and (above all else) you’ll be free to design a life with limitless possibilities without constantly feeling imprisoned by anxiety.


Need a little more inspiration? Tune in to the NNL PODCAST.

Boss on a Budget|Articles for Millennials #1

Life Hack: Just Order the Venti Water

During the first year of freelancing, if you’re really exceptional and undeniably purposed to change lives through offering services that no one should live without, you’ll be broke.

Not just regular broke. You’ll be broke and optimistic which is a terrifying combination. Cold sweats will greet you in the midnight hour and the chime that indicates an email snuck in to your inbox will induce anxiety and excitement and hope and paranoia.

Not everybody is about this life. This- following your dreams while struggling to pay your bills and explaining what you “do” to your parents twice a week-life isn’t for everybody because most people are too prideful to make the lifestyle changes required in order to live through year one.

For those who plan to make it to and through year one of full-time dream chasing, the “life hack” shared below will serve as a survival map to help you blend in with the rest of the world on days when the world, as you know and understand it,  is falling apart.

Being a freelancer is festive because we work anywhere (as long as the wi-fi is free and the coffee is strong). For some, walking into their favorite coffee shop and not ordering a huge mocha latte with extra caramel sounds like punishment. What’s the point? Right?


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Your local coffee shop is a breeding ground for good ideas and potential clients. Novels are being handcrafted and perfected in those dimly lit corners, young love brews timidly,  secrets are told over espresso, and dreams are shared with journals. 

Your clients live in places like this and, if you linger long enough, you’ll have a roster of clients that pay you to do what you love to do. Just don’t waste money on coffee you can’t afford and don’t waste time talking to people with a lot of dreams and no intention to pay you to help make the dreams come true.


It takes special skills to hang out somewhere all day and not spend any money. But, because you’ll be broke and $5 for coffee is unbearable, you will learn how to order water instead of a macchiato. Sounds simple right? It’s not. It’s torture. But, the ability to order something and have a cup in front of you as you work, may be the habitual satisfaction that you need in order to survive. I’ve ordered water before meetings just to make sure I had something to wet my whistle with throughout pitches worth thousands of dollars. I had vision. I just didn’t have enough money for my favorite Fall drink.

Don’t be discouraged. The hack I’ve shared with you today won’t always be an essential part of business practices but for now, don’t spend $30 a week on coffee when you could be adding that $30 to your Facebook Ads budget and gaining more visibility.


Just order the Venti water.