Challenging you to GET YOUR HEART PUMPING~

It can be so easy to make excuses, no matter WHAT we want to accomplish. Because it’s TRUE that there REALLY IS only so much time in a day… and yes… things REALLY DO come up!

But why is it that it’s easiest to come up with excuses when it’s time to do something for ourselves? Particularly when it comes to NOURISHING and RESPECTING ourselves PHYSICALLY.

So, this week, enough is ENOUGH.

Today, I DARE YOU to see that YOUR EXCUSES — as seemingly justified as they may be! — are only hurting YOU. 

And I dare you to start where you are … and go OUT OF YOUR WAY one more time than you usually do this week to get those healing, FEEL-GOOD ENDORPHINS flowing through an exercise or activity that feels joyful and FREEING to you. 

And when you do, I dare you to notice how GOOD it feels to get your heart pumping… and to be curious about the happy side effects that you experience afterwards, such as feeling more grounded and clearheaded… or feeling more capable and upbeat.

So today and throughout this week, I CHALLENGE YOU to see what you GAIN when you choose to LOSE your excuses and instead, commit to GIVING WHOLEHEARTEDLY to yourself and relishing in the revitalizing benefits … so you can truly start FEELING GOOD again.

–> If you need motivation, this tip will get you going~

You DESERVE this, and so does everyone else in your life!
Let’s MOVE,

Nicole

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Challenging you to PRACTICE R-E-S-P-E-C-T~

MOVING like you love yourself — wholeheartedly– is joyful and deeply cathartic. Last week’s challenge primed you to see just how much you can reduce your suffering and increase those feel-good endorphins through mindful, nourishing exercise that actually detoxes your mind-body-spirit, too.

But it’s SO MUCH MORE THAN THAT. I’ve had a rough month with my health, and the resulting physical restrictions have made me yearn for the mental clarity, physical strength and JOYFUL release that my regular exercise routine gives me. 

Because EXERCISE, to me, is SELF-CARE and an expression of self-love and -support. It’s not about being bikini-ready or having 6-pack abs; in fact, that’s MISSING THE POINT ENTIRELY. 

Instead, joyful exercise is the best kind of MEDICINE — it NOURISHES us, empowering and allowing our bodies to be able to heal from the inside-out and become stronger and more powerful each day, inspiring us to feel more self-confident and -assured in who we are and what we can accomplish, no matter WHAT the obstacles.

So this week, I DARE YOU to be grateful for your physical health and appreciate that without it, you physically COULDN’T be living the fast-paced life you’re living today… never mind living your life to its FULLEST POTENTIAL.

I dare you to stay true to your commitment to MOVE joyfully throughout the week, proactively taking control of your own care with the utmost respect and LOVE.

And what’s more, I dare you to STOP JUDGING YOURSELF and begin to appreciate your body for its STRENGTH and beauty, instead of obsessing over what needs to be “fixed” or hidden. 

So today and throughout this week, I CHALLENGE YOU to EMPOWER YOURSELF to be your own DOCTOR, a proactive AUTHORITY committed to respecting and NOURISHING your mind-body-spirit ONLY with HEALING energy and activities, and soon enough, others will begin to FOLLOW BY YOUR EXAMPLE, and treat you with greater respect and kindness than you’ve ever seen before.

Because you DESERVE NOTHING LESS.
With so much gratitude,

Nicole

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Challenging you to HONOR YOURSELF UNAPOLOGETICALLY~

When you want space instead of a hug after a long day of work, you’re NOT WEIRD or UNGRATEFUL. 

When you tell the waiter you want water with lemon but NO ice because it hurts your teeth, you’re NOT ANNOYING or a JERK. 

And when you would rather read a book instead of accepting a spontaneous invite to meet up with friends, you’re most definitely NOT A LOSER.

Not. At. All.

All this actually MEANS is that you know what you want! and you are committed to HONORING your own desires to create the life that feels best for you!

And isn’t that the point anyway?

So this week, I DARE YOU to give yourself special permission to quit judging yourself and choosing to make your decision to live with honesty and integrity feel so PAINFUL and SELFISH.

And instead of forming an opinion about what your needs and preferences say about you as a person, I dare you to CONGRATULATE yourself for HONORING your desires AND your body-mind-spirit and doing all that you can in your power to nourish yourself in the way that feels best for you.

And today and throughout this week, I CHALLENGE YOU to STAND UP and start advocating for yourself/providing for your OWN needs for a change, so you can reduce your own POINTLESS suffering, and instead, start being your own HERO UNAPOLOGETICALLY, now and throughout your future.

Because, after all, being “SELFISH” is the single most SELFLESS thing you can do. ;)

Here’s to inspiring others with your BOLD declaration of self-RESPECT and -LOVE!
Let’s do this,

Nicole

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Challenging you to SPEAK UP~

Throughout this challenge, you’ve gotten to know yourself better, and you have a clearer picture of what really matters to you in your life. You’ve begun to RESPECT yourself and ACCEPT yourself for these things, and maybe you’re not as quick to judge yourself or put yourself down.

—> If you haven’t already — CELEBRATE how far you’ve come! You DESERVE it.

As you’ve noticed, most of our challenges have focused on doing the inner work… in order to create a foundation solid enough for what’s next: creating lasting changes EXTERNALLY — outside of your head! for everyone to SEE! in real life! — that better reflect who you actually are NOW, after such intensive and extensive self-growth and -empowerment. 

Oh. Yeah.

So this week, I DARE YOU to open your mouth and SPEAK UP for yourself and what’s genuinely important to you

I dare you to give yourself SPECIAL PERMISSION to ADVOCATE for yourself, out loud!, with the same VIGOR, ENTHUSIASM and COMPASSION as you do for your respected friends and colleagues.

And what’s more: I dare you to OWN that oh-so-elusive THING that you want so much and use this opportunity to courageously and respectfully ASK for it, knowing that the worst thing that can happen is that you don’t get what you want today. (And that’s no different from where you stand RIGHT NOW, is it?)

So today, and throughout this week, I CHALLENGE YOU to push aside your fears, step into the CONFIDENCE you’ve been so courageously and PROACTIVELY cultivating, and FOCUS that inner faith and perspective into more honestly and meaningfully expressing your re-discovered inner self OUT LOUD, empowering YOU to pave your OWN way to a more deeply fulfilling life.

Speak YOUR truth, “even if your voice shakes!”
They’ll still hear you~

Nicole

Challenging you to SEE YOUR POWER~

Throughout this challenge, you’ve grown and evolved, you’ve faced your demons head-on and you’ve stepped up in ways that you didn’t even know were possible before. And it was all because of YOU and your disciplined and wholehearted efforts.

I bet YOU DIDN’T KNOW how capable you already were.

I bet you didn’t know how STRONG you could really be. 

And I bet you didn’t know how much CONTROL you actually have overEVERYTHING.

But you know it now.

So this week, I DARE YOU to take at least a few moments each day to truly APPRECIATE how far you’ve come — because of your own self-discipline and GRIT — with the support of these challenges and on your own.

I dare you to make a list of HOW MUCH YOU’VE ACTUALLY ACCOMPLISHED, in your personal evolution and outside of your head, in your real life!, so you can begin to comprehend the STAGGERING RESULTS of your deliberate intentions and efforts.

Here are some questions to consider:

  • What, internally and tangibly, have you MANIFESTED in your life through your CHOICE to better your own life, on the inside and out? 
  • What have you BROUGHT ABOUT through TAKING ACTION or SPEAKING UP that you are proud of?
  • What valuable information did your not-so-successful attempts, STRUGGLES or missteps wind up providing on your journey? 
  • How did you choose to use this information to UPLEVEL your life?
  • How has the quality of your life improved or SKYROCKETED just because you decided to stop beating yourself up and start SUPPORTING yourself?

And today and throughout this week, I CHALLENGE YOU to start ACTING like the competent, POWERFUL and CAPABLE person you are RIGHT NOW, choosing to have FAITH in your UNSHAKEABLE ability to handle anything and EVERYTHING that comes your way in the future…  because you’ve ALREADY PROVEN that you can successfully take OWNERSHIP of your life and STEER IT in the direction of your choosing, no matter WHAT stands in your way. 

You ARE your own HERO. 
It’s time you BELIEVE IT.

Nicole

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Challenging you to PLAY like its your JOB~

It’s CLEAR that you’re one of those special people who always strives to be better, in everything that you do. And that’s probably one of the reasons you joined this challenge and have been committed to applying these practices week to week.  (Have you celebrated this simple fact about yourself yet?)

But it’s also possibly one of the reasons why you haven’t had that much FUN — just for FUN’s sake! — lately.

Don’t get me wrong… I know you’ve been working each week to create more happiness, JOY and FLOW in your life. Which has made you FEEL so much better, provoking excitement that is nearly IMPOSSIBLE to contain about the direction your life is now headed. And maybe applying these challenges has even allowed you to feel more gratitude or experience RANDOM BOUTS of happy tears for your ability to create such positive changes. 

But when was the last time you ACTUALLY laughed out loud? 
When was the last time that you actually PUT SOMETHING ON YOUR CALENDAR, just for FUN?
When was the last time you PRIORITIZED PLAY like IT WAS YOUR J-O-B!?!

So this week, I DARE YOU to be willing to break from your usual routine to consciously CREATE opportunities for GENUINE, unfiltered laughter, unapologetic SILLINESS and imaginative play, on your own or with others.

I dare you to spend some time thinking about the things that made you LAUGH SO HARD you almost (literally!) PEED YOUR PANTS in your childhood and CHALLENGE YOURSELF to BEAT THAT.

I dare you to set the intention this week (and SHARE IT WITH YOUR FRIENDS, so they can hold you accountable/join in on the fun!) to have the MOST FUN you’ve ever had in your adult life, in whatever way feels best for you.

So today and throughout this week, I CHALLENGE YOU to give yourself a break!and be willing to let loose, releasing all the tension you’re not even conscious of, and in its place, invite tons of HEALING laughter and SILLINESS into each moment, EMPOWERING you to reawaken those parts of yourself that allowed you to SHINE BRIGHTLY, experience GENUINE CURIOSITY and have ENDLESS reasons to BELIEVE in the good in this world.

Oh yeah. Let’s have some FUN this week~

Nicole

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Challenging you to FORGIVE YOURSELF~

Throughout this challenge, we’ve deeply practiced self-kindness, and hopefully you continue to apply whichever method you chose, whenever you need it.
  —> If you haven’t yet, see our “self-kindness” challenge to help you more effectively tackle today’s challenge.

But how do you treat yourself in moments when you can’t pay your bills? Or when someone else is promoted to the position that you were next in line for? And how do you treat yourself in instances when you make a mistake or behave in a way that makes you feel so ashamed, you physically shudder when you reflect back on it?

And it happens, doesn’t it?

We don’t like to admit it, but I bet, just like me and all the other HUMAN BEINGS on this earth, you’re disappointed in yourself sometimes.  You’re ANGRY at yourself, too. And you feel like you should’ve done better more often that you’d care to admit.

Well this week, I DARE YOU to exchange your self-judgment for SELF-ACCEPTANCE, no matter WHAT.

In those uncomfortable moments when you USUALLY turn your back on yourself, I dare you to DEFY that instinct and SEE that you are (unconsciously) CHOOSING to perpetuate your own PAIN by holding your perceived OFFENSES over your head instead of FORGIVING and moving on.

So, I DARE YOU to TAKE BACK YOUR LIFE through devoting some quiet time in the privacy of your own home (or sacred place) each night to DETOX YOURSELF of all SHAME, ANGER, RESENTMENT and GUILT that you’ve been so stubbornly holding onto, in whatever way feels best for you.

And this week, as the leaves change colors and fall to the ground, I CHALLENGE YOU to SEE how you can change your life, just as vibrantly and BEAUTIFULLY, through FORGIVENESS, as you choose to release your perceived NEED to punish yourself and see that it is BRAVER to learn from your past, using that knowledge to EMPOWER your future.

It’s time to MOVE ON with your life and BE FREE again,

Nicole

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Challenging you to SEE what you WANT to SEE~

After beginning to integrate your self-kindness practice into your life, you are probably beginning to really understand that the way you feel, day-in and day-out, IS and HAS ALWAYS BEEN under your control.

But you may be surprised to hear that you ALSO have the beautiful PRIVILEGE and POWER to choose what you actually SEE and experience.

And what you choose to SEE in your life is what you end up GETTING… and getting… and getting.

Get it?

So this week, I dare you to intentionally CHOOSE to focus your thoughts and attention ONLY on what you WANT to see and experience, so you actually have a SHOT at getting it.

I DARE YOU to start by choosing to SEE and appreciate the AMAZING things that happen to you, in even the most ordinary moments. Like when…

  • You’ve had a really long day, and you absentmindedly answer your phone when it rings, suddenly hearing your best friend’s voice say “Hey. I miss you,” right when you needed a boost.
  • Or when you accidentally miss the exit you were supposed to take and instead wind up finding a secret route (with no traffic!) to your vacation spot, ahead of schedule.

Things like this happen EVERY DAY, but if you’re still obsessing about what what wrong at work or beating yourself up about missing that exit, then YOU’LL MISS OUT on EXACTLY what you keep telling yourself that you want: to feel truly, deeply and wholeheartedly confident, capable and in control of your AMAZING life!

So today and throughout this week, I CHALLENGE YOU to GET OUT OF YOUR OWN WAY, and instead choose to OPEN YOUR EYES to see ONLY the GOOD in your life and begin to EXPECT even more of it. Because if you go looking hard enough, I PROMISE YOU that you’ll keep on finding it~

Here’s to believing in something BEAUTIFUL again,

Challenging you to DETOX your LIFE~

Forgiving ourselves for our past mistakes and shameful moments is a MAJOR challenge. But forgiving others? That can feel MUCH MORE complicated.

Let’s be honest, though. We all have a few people from our pasts who STILL trigger our emotions as if it were yesterday…and it kind of pisses us off to admit it. 

Maybe it’s that mean girl in middle school who always made you feel left out, or that annoying co-worker who had the AUDACITY to take credit for your idea, or THE ONE who got away and never gave you an explanation why they left!

But no matter who it is or what happened, we’re ashamed to admit to ourselves that this person — who doesn’t deserve to have any lingering significance in our lives, and who might not even be in our lives ANYMORE!– is still affecting us so deeply! So, we judge ourselves and beat ourselves up for having these feelings, making ourselves SUFFER even more.

And in doing so, we deny ourselves the ability to HEAL and to give ourselves the very closure that we need in order to let go and move on!

No.
More. 

This week, I dare you to give yourself SPECIAL PERMISSION to admit the truthto yourself and to stop judging yourself for it. 
I dare you to OPEN YOUR EYES to see that how you feel IS NOT silly or ridiculous; it just IS.
I dare you to validate and HONOR your feelings like this or through journaling or inwhatever way feels best for you to give yourself the closure within yourself that is long overdue.

And today, I CHALLENGE YOU to be willing to FORGIVE the people from your past, TAKE BACK YOUR INNER PEACE, and choose to DETOX yourself from the POISON of the past.

Let it go. It’s time you were FREE~

Nicole

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Success Stories

“I was surprised at how quickly you got to the source of the problem…You were able to uncover it with tact, grace and TLC. I was happy to divulge it all to you because you made me feel this sense of unrushed comfort. I always feel so relaxed and accepted in your presence even though we are usually having one of the deepest conversations of my life! You really make it seem like I’m the ONLY person in the room, always. After working with you for a few months now, I truly know I’m worthy of that kind of attention in all areas of my life.”
Chloe Dancer and Performing Artist, NYC

“Nicole Bernardo is a wonderful, fun and fully committed coach. She encourages you to let your freak flag fly and to own your professional potential fully. She passionately cheers you on, mirroring back your strengths to you, and gently assists you in taking the next necessary steps. Her inspiring coaching approach will help you to dig up your inner superpowers that are already waiting for you, probably just out of sight, hidden under heaps of old beliefs. Plus, the techniques she teaches and the books she recommends will help you to overcome those old habits you are more than ready to let go of. Her thorough feedback after each session is priceless: Intuitive insight, hands-on homework and lots and lots of love on top. You might hire Nicole because you wanted the “Martha-Beck-trained-coach” experience. But you will continue to work with her because she’s so much more than that. I highly recommend Nicole to anyone who needs more enthusiasm, optimism and joy in their life.”
Lilly Mackuth Transformative Coach at www.yourworldisyou.com, Germany

“It’s so refreshing to work with Nicole. She really listens, and she GETS what I’m saying. I always feel so pumped up and positive after our sessions. Since I’ve been working with Nicole, I’m actually beginning to accept and love myself for the quirky rule-breaker that I am. I feel like I can do anything, and I’m actually taking risks that feel so good and true to what I want! FINALLY!! I’m so grateful to Nicole for that.”
Elizabeth Television Producer, NYC

“I couldn’t have asked for a better experience while working with Nicole.  By creating a confidential, non-judgmental forum for dialogue, Nicole uses her keen intuition and understanding of human nature to pinpoint the issues that ultimately keep you from being the best version of yourself.  While Nicole possesses all the characteristics of an effective life coach – empathy, support, and encouragement – what differentiates her from others is her sense of humor and “no-nonsense” approach.  Nicole uses her creativity and experience to equip you with meaningful, effective tools that will empower positive thinking and improve your quality of life.”
Laura Financial Underwriter, NYC

“Before I began working with Nicole I had really bad luck with my career. I was laid off and unemployed for a few months. I took a position that was chaotic and made me miserable because I just needed a job. For months I was trying so hard to change my situation. I was applying to countless jobs and going on so many interviews. The interviews began to stress me out and I began to lose hope and feel really bad about my self. Then, I began talking to Nicole. She is easy to talk to, a great listener and encouraging. After every session I felt so much better about my self, my career and my skills. Nicole showed me a different way to view my situation and gave me the confidence I needed during interviews. I ultimately have a wonderful new job within my desired field, a salary increase and a more peaceful work environment. I am pleased to say that Nicole was an important part in making that dream come true.”
Dominique Fashion Industry Professional, NYC

“Nicole Bernardo is an intuitive coach; she has a strong sense of picking up on thoughts that prevent forward movement. Her genuine personality is to the point and she is always transparent with her clients. Her authentic questioning helped me see past some of my formed beliefs, and she was able to give me small tools to work with on a daily basis to work beyond those beliefs. If you are looking for a focused coach who is as kind as she is strong then Nicole Bernardo is your coach.”
Chad Gilham Adventure Leader, Mt. Vernon, Indiana http://ascentlifecoaching.com/

“What I have discovered while working with Nicole is a great amount of trust in her abilities. There are many times where I am floundering in my thoughts and approaches to my own life and relationships and Nicole will know exactly where to go and how to narrow down the confusion in my head. Often during a coaching session, I will discover more about myself than I ever imagined. Nicole helps me find my own internal wisdom. Our sessions help clarify my feelings and help me be more confident in knowing what to do and how to go forward. Many times after a session, I will shake my head and just say, “Wow, that was a very powerful experience and I didn’t know that was in me.” I always feel gratitude for Nicole’s competence and intelligence and compassion.”
Cindy Zullo Bozeman, Montana