figure out what you want Archives - Page 2 of 15 - ⚡️Kristen Kalp

Posts in "figure out what you want" Category — Page 2

Let’s talk about goals, baby…

I was interviewed on a major podcast and this morning they announced some big goals. My thoughts went like this: ‘Yay for you guys! I don’t give a damn about being #1 in any iTunes category with my podcast.’  Then I tried to make the women wrong for having a goal, and that didn’t feel right, so I tried to make myself wrong for not caring about being number one, and that didn’t feel right, either.

They’re just sharing an external goal, and right now I’m focused on internal goals.

Internal goals are those marks you want to hit within yourself that cannot be noted or measured by any obvious external standard or by any observers.

Internal goals aren’t something that I’ve seen talked about, since we assume that every internal goal has an external result (i.e. ‘Do 10 minutes of meditation every day’ is the external goal for ‘breathe more deeply.’)

Internal goals might come with external aims, like reading more books, writing more poems, and eating more vegetables, but they might not.

Lemme give you some examples of my present goals so this concept makes a little more sense.

I want to expand my ability to be in my body. That means that I’m drawing my attention to my body and my breath over and over again throughout the day. Since no one else is in my body with me, no one else will know when I’m in tune with my own physicality and when I’ve drifted off into my head.

I want to expand my capacity for pleasure. That means more expensive lotion, more orgasms, more clean sheets, and more noticing of all those things as they’re happening. It’s not the having of clean sheets, it’s the taking note of and reveling in the clean sheets that’s the internal, impossible-to-measure-outwardly goal.

I want to increase my capacity to hold space for people who are feeling big feelings, whether at work or at home. That means that I don’t cry simply because other people are crying or get angry because other people are angry. Instead, I’m working on breathing through big feelings and figuring out where to draw energetic boundaries that allow me to support the person I’m listening to in real time.

I want to learn to control my energy more easily so that I don’t dump all my magic out on the person I’m talking with and leave nothing for myself. Basically, I wake up with X amount of magic each day, and if I have 3 coaching calls, then each call gets 1/3 of my magic. If I have 2 calls, they get 1/2, and if I have 1 call, that lucky soul gets all of it. All my magic for the day. I’ve only recently noticed this ‘dump it all out’ tendency and don’t yet know how to hold some of it back for myself while still giving my best. (Because in past iterations of Kristen, ‘best’ meant ‘everything you have without holding anything at all back for yourself.’)

There’s no 8-part system for making those internal things happen, nor are there any big flashing external indicators that I’ve achieved them. Tim Ferriss and other productivity hackers could not remodel my life with a revolutionary holding-space-and-feeling-big-feels-while-better-controlling-your-magic program.

Internal goals are only marked by your own presence and awareness, like noticing, ‘hey, that worked,’ and ‘nope, that didn’t work.’ They might have a daily practice associated with them, and they might not.

These goals are every bit as valid as the usual ‘make X dollars’ or ‘have 5 servings of vegetables each day’ type goals. I’m not knocking the other kind, I’m only saying that these goals count, too.

Internal goals count, too.

They’re quieter, and they’re not as splashy or sexy or likely to be turned into a bestselling program of some sort, but they make us better humans.

Possible internal goals might be:

– Feeling intense emotions without shutting down, whether those emotions are in yourself or in those present with you
– Feeling emotions in real time fully instead of turning to screens, food, or alcohol to shut ’em down
– Sitting with not-knowing or uncertainty for a few more seconds at a time
– Acknowledging your bodily sensations when faced with a decision, a new situation, or an emotion
– Noticing asshole brain thoughts and choosing not to listen to them
– Stopping asshole brain loops or spirals at shorter and shorter intervals (i.e. you used to have six spiraled thoughts that started with fear and then boop-boop-boop-boop you end up homeless, but now you can catch the spiral by thought number three and you’re only living in your parents’ basement)
– Dancing or moving with less uncertainty and fear (i.e. the cliched ‘dance like no one is watching.’ I still dance to Qoya with my eyes closed most of the time, in my room, with the door closed. ‘Dance each day’ is an external goal, but ‘dance more freely’ is an internal goal that no one else on earth is capable of assessing.)
– Feeling more deeply connected with your self: your breath, your mind, your body, your thoughts, your feelings, your presence. (Again, there’s no external machine to pop you into and get a reading. There are only your own measurements against your past selves. Does 3% less of your body feel like it’s been dipped in concrete today? Then you’re making progress.)
– Less judging or criticizing of other people and their actions internally (you know, where no one else can see you or knows what you’re doing and you make people wrong all the time ::cough I never do that cough::)
– Expressing more gratitude daily (YUP it counts even if you don’t write it down in a pretty journal!)
– Feel more connected to your partner and/or the most important people in your life (I have a secret e-mail address with my partner — as suggested by the brilliant Kim Anami — and we only send inspiring or uplifting articles, things we want the other to read, and notes on our thoughts, experiences, and the relationship to that shared address. No marketing, no opt-ins, no other communications. It’s like having a back door channel to another person’s heart.)

These are the sorts of goals that make you a more connected, attuned, and wise human, but they certainly don’t get much press and they get less than zero air time in the media.

Will they have external consequences of some kind? Most definitely.

Do you get to control how those results show up? Not really.

You’ll just be softer in your soul, more rooted in your body, and more capable of being grateful for whatever happens.

This is an episode of the That’s What She Said podcast!  I’ll read this whole thing to you below, or you can listen in on the other 100+ episodes here.

P.S. How to claim freedom from all kinds of bullshit.

A Note From Your Future Self.

When you narrow yourself and your work to solving one specific problem or creating just one product or offering just one service, you naturally sell more because you have clarity.

Clarity is vital to your mission and helps people make easy assumptions about what you do.

You’re a carpenter and you make benches.

You’re a photographer and you photograph weddings.

You’re a real estate agent and you sell homes.

The whole ‘what do you do?’ question gets complicated (and far more interesting!) when you decide to use the word “and” followed by something we wouldn’t expect.

You’re a carpenter and you sing songs.

You’re a photographer and you rebuild motorcycle engines from scratch.

You’re a real estate agent and you go offline to work with a nonprofit agency for months at a time.

Most people tamp down their most interesting ‘and’ bits in the name of being clear, direct, and not-confusing.

‘Most people’ includes me. For lots of years, I didn’t find it interesting or relevant to share my poetry because I was writing about business. For lots of years, I didn’t find it relevant to share my thoughts about life because I was writing about business.

Only of COURSE I’m allowed to be a poet and a business coach and a lover of all things Harry Potter and a part-time traveler and part-time hermit.

Of COURSE you’re allowed to embrace your contradictions and your seemingly irrelevant but wildly fascinating bits instead of trying to box them out of your business and pretend that all you think about is your wood for benches or your brides for weddings or those homes you’re selling.

Of COURSE it gets more messy when you do this, since you don’t have a nifty tagline that instantly hits people’s pain points and solves their problems. In theory, poets don’t have advice that helps your business grow, and carpenters don’t show up at open mic nights to share their new songs, and artists don’t take on new mediums when they’re already achieving commercial success in their chosen field.


The less you try to ignore, cut off, kill, deaden, or nullify your varied interests, the more likely you are to grow as a human.

The more you grow as a human, the more likely you are to bring your voice and your work into the world, and to…in the ultimate universal checkmate…sell more of the work you were sure belonged in a small, safe box that was clear, specific, and that was easy to sell with bullet points.

Your worth to the world doesn’t lie in bullet points.

Your life is not so easily fenced or caged.

Your soul is not rooting for your tightest and clearest Unique Sales Proposition.

Your best, highest, and most alive self is waiting for you to bring all of you to the table.

Give what you needed to get.

⚡️Registration is closed until the next round, in 2020! In the meantime, check out KK on Tap!

Need dibs when registration for 2020 opens? Pop your name in the box!

Steer Your Ship 2020 First-to-Know List

Sometimes you make things because they live deep within you and you simply must.

And sometimes, you make things because you are trying to give what at what point, you needed to get. The photographer with no images of her father who creates family portraits for others. The musician who only wants others to feel understood without the need for words, and so he channels everything he has into making dance floors pulse with life. The comedian who makes jokes about misery and suffering and depression because without bearing a torch for others, he would creep back into alcoholism or drugs or despair.

Often — so often — we give what we needed to get.

It’s only recently that I realized I’m giving what I needed to get a few years ago, when I wanted a true, honest-to-God-not-just-Facebook-community about as much as I wanted to breathe, and when I felt crushed by the profound loneliness of owning a business while working from home.

I wanted someone to hear me and say, “I know.
I know you can’t do it the way everyone says you should.
I know how hard your heart pounds against your chest and begs to be felt.
I know how much it hurts to be alive. Just to be breathing, some days. I know.”

I wanted someone to answer my questions about the next step
without just doing quick math
and saying I should do the most profitable thing.

I wanted someone to tell me I wasn’t broken.
I wanted someone to tell me that losing weight wasn’t the answer.
I wanted someone to hold me accountable for doing what I said I was going to do.

I wanted someone to look me in the eyes and love me as I was in that moment
without mentioning my potential or my future or my accomplishments.

I wanted someone to listen deeply
and ask profound questions
without any vested interest in my answers.

I wanted someone to help me see myself.

I wanted to be heard.
I wanted to be heard.
I wanted to be heard.

I was screaming inside and terrified,
and all I wanted
was someone to come and sit beside me and hold me while I cried:

some other human to look me in the eye and understand
without running from it or shrinking it
or trying to make it fit into a more comfortable box of some kind.

Steer Your Ship at sunset
I needed someone to feel with me,
and sit in the murk with me,
and face the truth there with me, too.

I needed someone to rub my back
and whisper “it’s okay”
in the way of mothers holding newborns,
with nothing but love.

I needed to be held, just then.

…and all THAT is why I created Steer Your Ship.

Yes, Steer Your Ship includes six months of working with me, and yes, there are coaching calls and two live retreats and amaaaazing art encounters and profound realizations and quite often, doubled to tripled income for participants, but those included things are very, very small when compared with the intangible things you get.

You get a sense of yourself again. (We’ll find you, wherever you went missing.)
You get to put down all the masks and walls you carry, and show yourself to someone who won’t judge you or make you feel less than or push you in any direction except the one you find most interesting.
You get someone who understands about shutting down and then coming to life again.
Hell, you’ll get someone who understands. Period.

It would be my honor and my delight to help you sort through the tangled threads of your own life, to see you fully, and to give you what I so needed to get.  Further…

Growth takes other humans.

As much as I don’t like to admit that — as part hermit, part empath, part highly sensitive person and supremely shy introvert — growth takes other humans.

You need people to see you so they can reflect yourself back to you in an honest and loving way.

I’m happy to be that human mirror and to help you find wild and lovely, deeply surprising and ultimately delightful new ways of being in the world.

This isn’t like buying another $XXXX class and hoping for the best. On the other side of making this particular investment, you’ll have seen more of yourself than ever before.  Further  — it costs more to stay where you are. To stay stuck or lonely, confused or telling yourself you’ll figure it out on your own costs not only dollars in lost revenue, but YEARS. You say you’ll work on that or do that or figure that thing out next month and next month and next month until you find yourself hiding, stuck, exactly where you were years ago.

By the time we’ve finished working together, you’ll have grown in ways you can’t possibly anticipate right now, and you’ll get to know the joy that comes from being at least 30% more YOU in the world.

No more hiding, no more wishing things would just get easier without your putting in any effort to be seen, no more reading and consuming endless information without actually putting any of it into practice.   (Yup, I see you, and AYUP, I know how scared you are, and I also know the pain that comes of not taking action while hiding behind ever-growing barricades of worst-case scenarios and anxiety.)

Indriana Irawan Bravo
Indriana Irawan Bravo

I've never felt more powerful than I do now. And I don't think I've ever accepted myself the way I do now.

You will grow in ways you cannot imagine.

Tina Heinnickel
Tina Heinnickel

I felt a huge shift within myself. I had felt really closed off and numb coming into this experience, and I just felt like I could breathe again after. And feel open. And good about myself. And hopeful. really is crazy amazing and beautiful how close you can feel to a group of women after only knowing them for 72 hours. How in some ways I can feel closer to them than some of my friends I’ve known for years. But we were all open, real, and vulnerable with each other – which can be an extremely magical thing. We were all in a puddle of tears when we had to leave each other at the end of the workshop.

Jackie Hutchinson
Jackie Hutchinson

Before the workshop, I looked at business as this thing that I HAVE to do so we can survive. Now I look at business as this thing that helps us live our lives to the fullest in order for us to enjoy our lives.

Nicole A. Hershey
Nicole A. Hershey

I went from feeling like I sort of kinda of a project thing I'm working on, but it lives in the ether and someday maybe it will come to fruition... to carving out time each day to work on my deepest work, to managing my time and energy in order to make sure that work happens, to finding stillness instead of numbing it, and making a plan so that my business will definitely be a real thing with a real date of starting. When people ask me what I do, I don't feel the need to shift my feet back and forth and look sideways and raise my voice to a question mark at the end of each sentence.

It's nice to feel like my truest work is always right under the surface, rather than like I need to go hunting for it because it's been so long since I've been connected to it.

Meera Mohan-Graham
Meera Mohan-Graham

In just over four weeks since Steer Your Ship, I've more than doubled my wedding bookings for next year.

On the personal end, for the first time in my life I'm making active decisions about when to rest, and using my "off season" to rejuvenate and reflect. For years, I've planned to do that, but always failed - feeling like there was "too much to get done" and never actually resting.

I feel the disjointed parts of me, my life and my business have all finally locked into alignment to become unified and whole and strong.

(as shown, with crazy-ass otter accosting swimsuit)

Alicia Bruce
Alicia Bruce

I was surprised at how much we were able to dive into both personal and business issues and really get some problems solved. As much as each of us struggle with problems in our business and personal lives, we feel like solving them is going to have to be a long, drawn-out experience. But really, all it takes is a person who gets us, who will listen, and who will ask the questions that need to be asked.

Nicki Behm
Nicki Behm

I’ve had more fun in the past 4 days than I have in the past 4 years.

Meera Mohan-Graham
Meera Mohan-Graham

I have literally never felt so open and safe with a group of people in my entire life. Not a "group of strangers." Literally ANY GROUP OF PEOPLE.

Lauren Guilford
Lauren Guilford

With tears in my eyes I say this (happy tears of course), I WOULD NOT BE WHERE I AM WITHOUT THE ADVICE, LOVE AND SUPPORT YOU HAVE GIVEN ME. I am amazed that in a few months time I have gone from being lost, confused and unhappy with my business to confident, excited, and joyful!! I truly am forever grateful! 

Crystal Colon
Crystal Colon

…one of the most enlightening experiences I’ve ever had.  I came away with an amazing sense of clarity, a new sense of direction to seek in my business, and friendships, not too mention a fantastic marketing roadmap and a spirit animal.  Kristen Kalp, you are a genius who lights up the world of those who know you.  So thank you for finding your talent, being you, and sharing with others who you are.

Laura profile pic
Laura Harris

Growth comes from having someone hold your feet to the fire, and from that someone doing it with love and joy and in the spirit of watching you unfurl in whichever direction you choose.

Often, the growth others experience with me is financial — oh hey, I doubled my income, I quit my day job, hooray! — but it’s so so so so so so much more important to me that you experience the utterly terrifying soul growth that means you’re being fully YOU in the world. Because that, my friend, has no price tag, can’t be taken away from you, and leads to roads you can’t even glimpse from where you are, let alone imagine. (But they’re gorgeous, and they’ve been waiting far too long for your footsteps already.)

I can’t wait to walk those roads with you, friend.

Steer Your Ship means you’ll have six months in which to unfurl — in business and in life, personally and spiritually and financially and emotionally — and I’ll be with you the whole freaking way.

All my love —

⚡️Again: this program doesn’t happen again until 2020!  In the meantime, let’s do the KK on Tap thing.  You and me and your business, together for a whole year. 

P.S. Got a question, need to clarify, or want to know if Steer Your Ship is for you?  I’m on it. Just fill out the form below and let ‘er rip.

Idea/phrasing credit to this truthbomb by Danielle Laporte, photo credit to Love Knot Photo, Steer Your Ship San Diego.