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Badass Is The New Black (Season 3) Episode #12 Overcoming Overwhelm Through Steady, Bite-Sized Steps With Amanda Krill

business clutter debt knowing yourself mothers overcoming overwhelm Apr 07, 2021
BNB 12 | Overcoming Overwhelm

Grand ideas can feel so overwhelming that they take away that confidence in us to put them into action. It is time to let go of that small feeling and pair these grand ideas not with grand actions but with steady bite-sized steps that will get you farther than overwhelmingly big jumps. In this week’s podcast episode, Amanda Krill, author and boldness coach, shares with us how we can start figuring out what to do next without getting overwhelmed—especially for mothers out there who are finding it difficult to find time to do things. Through it all, she reminds us of how powerful learning about yourself can be for your business. Amanda gives us more insight as to how our business can thrive when we become more in tune with who we are and how we operate, AND how to use this to our advantage. Join this conversation and see the amazing things personal development can do to take over your grand goals and ultimately, your business. 

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Overcoming Overwhelm Through Steady, Bite-Sized Steps With Amanda Krill

Author And Boldness Coach

Calling all my creative friends out there. Do you ever find yourself with all of these grandiose ideas, big picture goals, and then you get so overwhelmed by all of the things that you want to accomplish, that you find yourself less consistent in your business and not creating anything? Yes, been there, done that, so guilty. That's why I'm excited to have Amanda Krill on the show. She's going to teach you how to get out of that zone and into taking action.

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Let's welcome, Amanda Krill. She is an author, speaker, and a boldness coach. Her book, Mom Vs. Debt: How I Paid Off $64K in Credit Card Debt in Under 3 Years Without Becoming a Stripper, is an Amazon bestseller and has been featured on NPR, ABC, NBC, FOX, and CBS. She has a passion for helping overwhelmed moms who are tired of living mediocre lives by teaching them how to tame the chaos of their everyday existence so they can start living a life they can't wait to get out of bed for every single day. What an intro. I love the, "Without Becoming a Stripper," part.

If you have clutter, you got to declutter because it opens up space for more new exciting things to come in.

No shade to strippers. If that's what you want to do, that's fine. When I first told my story, I was interviewed by a website called The Penny Hoarder. It's an unbelievable story, "How do you pay off $64,000 in three years just from running your own business?" Everybody was like, "She was a stripper. She's lying." I thought that was hilarious, so I incorporated it into the title.

Taking real-life inside jokes and turning them into the title of your book. It's eye-catching, grabbing, and funny. I imagine that your personality is a little bit funny, maybe sarcastic. I love that you can put that in there. It's so awesome. We're going to dive right now to get to the juicy stuff. For everyone that is reading, thank you so much for being here. I want to start with your background. How you got to where you are right now? As with most of the readers, you're going to tell us if entrepreneurship was in your blood from the day you were born or that just evolved. Let's hear your story a little bit.

To be honest, it is in my blood. My grandparents were all entrepreneurs. My dad was the first one in the family to have a real job. He hated it and ended up starting his own business, too. This is in my blood, but it's not something that I was planning on doing at all. I have an English degree, but I've never used it for anything. I had kids. By the time I was 25, I pretty much planned on being a mom. I had no other real goal than being a mom, and then I got bored. There's nothing wrong with being a mom if that's your only gig. For me, a little bit of ADHD going on, and I need other things to do. I can't sit around and play with kids all day.

I can relate to that. I've gotten in trouble on Instagram saying, "Just a mom."

For some people, they don't take it very well. I don't mean it in a negative way at all, but some people need to do other things with their lives. That's just what it is.

I'm not knocking anyone here. If you're reading this, let's be honest, you have a desire for more. You have other passions. Keep going on.

I had three kids in four years. My kids are all close together. By the time my youngest was born, I had my oldest, had the next one, super bored just changing diapers and everything. I started mystery shopping, which is real. It's an absolute thing that people do. I had shopped all over the place, banks, Staples, all kinds of cool places. They only pay you this much for the job plus this much to buy something in the store or whatever. I would get like $2 or $10 to spend at Staples. I have a weird addiction to office supplies, so I would spend $80, which is way more than I'm getting paid. My husband thinks that I'm making okay money because I was, so I start paying for the groceries. I don't have enough money for the groceries because I'm spending the money on stupid other things. I was trying to overcompensate for my childhood in which I didn't get to do everything that I wanted to do because my parents never had any money. I'm buying things for the kids that they don't need, but I don't want to say no. Anyway, I ended up in $64,000 worth of credit card debt that my husband didn't know about.

You were like, "But these staples are new. I have to have these things."

God gave us maps about ourselves, and most of us ignore them because we don't know anything about it.

Everything needs to match. I have to get this and I have to get that. It's ridiculous. Anyway, I still have it, but I stay away from Staples and places like that. It's not so bad anymore. My husband is a teacher. I have no real job. I'm just doing mystery shopping and staying home with the three kids. He hates his job at this point. He hated being a teacher. He only did it because that's what his parents did and they pushed him into it. I was like, "How can I even tell him about this debt? This is half of what we owe in our house. How could I ever put this on him?"

I could not imagine in my stomach that you must've had.

I stuck my head in the sand for a long time about it, like I would just pay the minimums and keep it going. At some point, I was like, "This is probably way worse than you think it is. You have to sit down, figure out how much you owe, and let's make a plan to get rid of it." When I realized it was $64,000, I was like, "Shoot, what am I going to do? There's no way to do this. I have three little kids. The oldest is three years old. I can't get a job. Childcare is so expensive. What am I going to do? I have years before they even go to school." I got creative and started looking online. We had the internet. The internet was big by that point. It's 2006.

I started looking at ways I could make money online. I have this English background. I started writing for some different websites, getting paid here and there for stuff. In my previous life before kids, I had worked at a TV station. I was a producer and an administrative assistant for the director of the station. I had heard the term virtual assistant, and I was like, "I have no idea what that means, but I can do that." I started looking for things. My first client, I found on Craigslist, which I wouldn't recommend doing that now. At the time, it was like an actual place where you could find work. I started working for him. He only paid me $8 an hour, but I could stay home with the kids. I could make it work.

I found more clients, started working with some more people, ended up working with some big names in the internet marketing world, and learned all kinds of awesome things. At one point, my main client was Marie Forleo. She was like, "I can afford you, or I can afford a web designer. I cannot afford both. Do you think you can do this?" I was like, "I have no idea. I don't know what WordPress even is. I have no idea how I'm going to do this," but I was like, "Yes, I sure can. I can figure this out." I did and I ended up designing websites for other people. Eventually, I put the virtual assistance behind me, went all-in on web design, and I still do that. I've been doing that for years. It was paying my bills with just web design for a long time now.

I've moved into the boldness coaching and decided to write the book because debt sucks. It's not something to have shame about because everybody does. Everybody gets into debt in some way. Even though it was $64,000, I don't look at it as a mistake. If I hadn't gotten into debt, I wouldn't be where I am now at all. I would never have gone down this road. It was a catalyst that I needed. I needed that kick in the butt to get going in a different direction. It's turned out amazing. I met all kinds of awesome people. I've been to Italy, France, and Norway for clients. It's awesome the way things have turned out. My husband ended up quitting teaching and has his own business now, too. One good thing.

The key to getting an accurate result is being honest with yourself.

We have to know, how did you break it to him and how did he take it?

It was a long time before I told him. I had it paid down to $48,000 before I finally told him. We go to church on Sunday. We're sitting in church every Sunday.

This is the best time to tell him in God's house.

I didn't tell him in church. Every Sunday when I would go to church, I'd be sitting there, and God was like, "You're going to tell him." I was like, "No, I'm not. I'm not going to do it. I'm not telling nobody nothing. Mind your own business. I'm taking care of it." Eventually, it was like, "I have to tell him." I finally sat him down and told him. He was pissed and so mad. He was like, "We're getting divorced. This is ridiculous." I left and spent the night at his parents' house to give him some space and came back the next morning. He was like, "We can figure this out. It'll be fun." I paid it completely off myself.

In the book, I talked about, it was more about me paying for what I had done. A lot of people told me I should have gone down the bankruptcy route. I was like, "I did this mess and I have to clean it up. That's my responsibility. I can't put it on my husband and somebody else. I did this and I'm going to fix it." Eventually, though, he got to thinking. He was like, "How much money are you making?" I told him, and he was like, "Why am I still teaching?" I said, "Quit. I don't care. It's fine." It took him a two-year process to finally get out of teaching, but he's been out for years now. He's much happier doing the stuff that he loves doing and working way less. It all ended up working out, even though it was scary. I didn't want to tell him, but it all worked out.

Thank you for sharing that view of the story. It must have been hard. As you're telling your story, I'm getting an idea of probably what you're good at or what some of your strengths are and whether you've been good at this your whole life. I don't know. Maybe you can tell me. You said, "I had to take responsibility," so taking responsibility for your actions. You said like, "I don't regret it." I'm this way, too. Lots of crappy things in my life, been divorced, all that. I don't regret any of it because it's taught me things. It's molded me into the person I am. It's given me drive and passion to do what I do now. I see those similarities and maybe some of our readers can relate to that. Taking responsibility for your actions, not being ashamed of your past, and letting it fuel you is amazing.

When you were talking about working for Marie Forleo and she said, "I can't afford both," and you were like, "I'll just learn how to do it." Having that growth mindset versus a fixed mindset is so important. Those of you who are reading right now, if you don't know what a growth mindset is versus a fixed mindset, it's time to go read about it. Make sure that you're on a growth mindset path and not a fixed mindset. You can't make it in entrepreneurship if you're fixed at all. We are telling you right now as your mentors, your coaches, your boss babes, you have to have a growth mindset. We're going to get into this topic of steady, bite-sized steps that will get you farther than big jumps. Before we do that, let's share a little tip with our audience on something like a system or a process that you implemented that was a game-changer for your business.

It's going to sound strange. It's going to sound like it doesn't apply to your business at all, but it works every time for me. There are two things. The first one is that I have a morning ritual that I do every single day. When I don't do it, I haven't been doing it super regularly through COVID, and I see the difference. People talk about self-care, taking care of yourself, and that helps with your business. Sometimes you're just like, "I don't know how to do that. I don't know what to do." This is a process that I accidentally stumbled upon. I started doing it simply because I like to be up before the kids are up, because then I'm less cranky when they come getting in my face in the morning. It's so that I have a better start to my day.

I get up early, whatever early is. I have time to work out, talk to God, do a devotion, write in a journal, whatever it is that I feel like doing that day. Take a shower, start the coffee, then people start getting up, and I'm already in a good mood. I'm already up and ready for the day. I find when I don't do those things, when I wait and just get up five minutes before the kids do, or even I hear them up and that's why I get up, I'm cranky, mean, and nasty. It sets the tone for the whole day. When I do the ritual, everybody is in a good mood as they leave the house, and I'm in a good mood as I start my day. When I don't do it, everybody is cranky. Nothing goes well. It's not a magical answer. It doesn't work like magic every time, but it sets a better tone for the day. Across the board, it works.

I cannot say that I have one or mine doesn't sound as glamorous as yours. There are certain things I do every morning. My kids are usually in bed with me at that point. When I wake up to the sun, they're still sleeping. I grabbed my phone. I start to work. My routine is a little bit different. Many people I hear that have a routine are more like you where they're doing these things, where they're reflecting, writing down in their gratitude journal, and things like that. They rave about it. I think it's finding what works for you, what you're in, and then sticking to it. If you don't have a morning routine, find one that's better than mine. Find one more like Amanda's and stick to it. It does make a difference in how you function and with your relationships, with your people in your inner circle, with your customers, and with your support staff that you have. It makes a huge impact on your business, so figuring out how to start your day right. Was there one more that you wanted to share?

Yes. My second thing is keeping clutter away. You cannot have clutter anywhere. If you have clutter, you got to declutter. It opens up space for new, more exciting things to come in. My office is clean right now. I pay a cleaning girl to come, and I cleaned up before she came. When my office is messy, I can't be in here. I can't even come in here to work. I work in another part of the house, which is ridiculous because I have an office space. Why am I not using it? When it's cluttered, it makes me feel like all mucked up and gross inside. I try to keep it clear as often as possible. It keeps your head clearer, and your work is better.

I am not the cleanliest person if you come over to my house. I don't pick up after the kids every second. When you got kids, it's a disaster.

That's hard. That's why I just focus on my office because the rest of the house can be messy and I don't care. If I'm in here trying to work and get stuff done, if it's cluttered in here, I can't focus at all.

I wouldn't say I'm the best at it. Behind me, it's very clean. I agree and can relate that when I do clean it up and it's clean, even that much more, it's like, "I want to be in here." When I want to be in here, I'm more creative. When I'm more creative, my business makes more money. Let's just be honest. I love that tip. I'm going to remember that. I'm going to clean my office, the left side of my desk, inspired by you. Thank you, Amanda. Let's dive into the topic that we're going to talk about. Mentioned in this topic, steady, bite-sized steps that will get you farther than big jumps. What does that mean for our readers?

It's easy to get overwhelmed by, "I'm starting this new project. I know where I want to end up, but how do I get there?" A lot of times, I know a lot of women who have this great, amazing idea, but they get overwhelmed by how to get there. They either just give up or it takes them ten years to get there because they're trying to do it in big chunks. I try to encourage people to set a goal at the beginning of the year, even if it's right now. It doesn't matter if it's the beginning of the year. Set the goal and then do something towards it every single day, every day, doing whatever it is.

One of the things that I have going on right now is I'm writing a book. It's in segments. Each segment is about a different bold woman throughout history. I haven't written about it since December. I know these things. Sometimes, you get overwhelmed by the whole project. You let it overwhelm you to the point that you don't do anything because you don't know what to do next. I was talking to my friend Elle about it. She was like, "Why don't you just dedicate 15 or 30 minutes a day to writing parts of it? You don't have to do a full bio every day. Try to get some done every day. In 60 days, you'll be that much closer."

That's exactly what I'm trying to help women understand. You don't have to bite off big bites every time that you work on something. Little pieces add up. Eventually, you'll turn around, look at it, and be like, "I can't believe how much I've gotten done on this just by doing a little bit every single day." As moms, it's hard sometimes to find time to do things. My kids are older now, so I have more time than I've ever had to work on stuff. There was a time when I had no time because the kids needed attention all the time and had activities after school. I had to be the chauffeur. Fifteen minutes could push it along.

I was reminded of this working with one of my private clients. We created her sales plan for the whole year and went over her product suite. Right there, that can create a lot of overwhelm. She sent me a message, she was like, "I'm feeling super overwhelmed. I think I need to skip the next meeting." I was like, "The worst thing you could possibly do is skip the next meeting. I'm your coach. I'm here to help you get through this." I was like, "We have to remember, we have to zoom out for our business to look big picture to make that plan of where you're going." As you said, set your goals. We have to zoom back in, or we're going to get overwhelmed and distracted by all of the things.

As you said, "I'm writing a book." Zoom back into that one thing, and then figure out what is that next step. Your friend is on point with, "How many words is your book?" I'm working on writing a book, too. It's daunting. I'm working with an actual, amazing ghostwriter, who I wish was ghost writing my book, but I was like, "I can't afford you. You're amazing." She gave me this tip, "How many words do you want your book to be? When do you want to release it? Take that number of days, divide the words by the days, and then you know that's how many words you have to put on paper a day."

Maybe you're not writing a book out there, but what is that one project that you're working on? There are things in that project that might take you two hours to get in, get focused, and get the work done. I'm sure there are little things that can be done in 30 minutes that you could zoom in and be like, "I'm going to work on this little thing right now to move forward." If you aren't doing that strategy right now, you should look into that. You had mentioned in our notes of chatting like, "What are we going to talk about?" You said, "Understanding who I am and how I was created has made a huge difference in my business." Let's dive into that a little bit.

It sounds a little strange and not everybody buys into this. Something that I've implemented in my coaching practice, and I have a program that I'm running where we talk a lot about this stuff, is astrology in human design. I know that people are going to be like, "That's weird." I grew up in a Christian home, which made astrology a big no-no like that's not a thing. I've written some blog posts about, how even if you're a Christian, it's in the Bible. God created the world this way. They're stars. He gave us maps about ourselves. Most of us ignore it because we don't know anything about it. We're told it's a bad thing. We stay away from it. The more you dig into your sun sign, rising sign, and things like that, you realize things about yourself that you didn't necessarily understand before.

It's so important to know who you are so that other people can know who you are.

Same thing with human design. One of the things that I talk about a lot with my coaching clients is your sun sign. I was born in December. I'm a Sagittarius. That's who I am. My rising sign, which I didn't even know what that was before a couple of years ago, it's where the sun was on the horizon when you were born, that's how you show up in the world. That's how people see you if you're. When you understand those things, it can help you show up more authentically. People understand you a little bit better when you understand yourself. There's also the aspect of understanding what you're not good at and finding ways to support those things.

If you've ever done the StrengthsFinder test that is by CliftonStrengths or something like that, you learn the things that you're good at. They always say like, "Stop trying to fix the things that you suck at. Go after the things that you're good at. The things that you suck at drag you down and keep you from being successful. You have to put things in place to support those things." I know that I am terrible at being consistent with my business. I made an entire plan of blog posts for a year. I was like, "I'm so excited about it. I'm going to write every Sunday. These are going to go out on Tuesday," and then I get there. Even though I have the plan made, I still struggle to do it. It's because I'm not good at consistency. It's not what I was created to do. I had to hire somebody to help me get those things done. Otherwise, it's not going to get done. I know that about myself.

I'm finding more and more that entrepreneurs typically tend to be the more creative people. I can't remember what the book was. I haven't read it yet. When I was reading the back of it, I was like, "That's exactly it." It was like, "There are two different types of people. There are the creatives, and then there are the people who like to go out and implement the plan." Us as entrepreneurs or creatives, we're the idea, but it's much harder for us to make it happen. I feed into that philosophy all day long that you've got these strengths.

We talk about it in the show, "Feed into those." That's what I love to do. That's why we talk about systems and support. How can you support yourself in the things you're not good at? Likely, it's setting up a system, creating more automation in your business, or hiring support. We don't have to be good at everything, but we need to find that support. What would you recommend in terms of the first steps to going to figure out and learn more about yourself and these things? Would you read your blog posts?

Yes, that's one way. There are a lot of different things that I've started using to learn more about who I am, what I was created to do, what I suck at, and all this stuff. It's mostly like the Myers-Briggs stuff and finding out what your type is. I'm an ENFP. I'm very outgoing. I can make friends easily and get people to listen to what I'm saying. The Enneagram. We talk about that a lot and with the StrengthsFinder. I'm a 7 wing 8. It always comes up like 97%, seven, 96%, eight. I'm right there with both of them.

I'm a three. I think I'm either a wing 2 or 7. It's been a while. I don't know if you or anyone out there can relate. When I do them, they feel super on point. I'm like, "Now, that's me 100%." I've found that the key to getting an accurate result is you have to be honest with yourself. There's no like, "I wish I were this way. I'm going to put that." You got to be honest. You got to be like, "Shoot, dang it. Yes, I'm this one." It will give you the correct result. Like you said, it's so important to know who you are so that other people can know who you are better.

When I read the ENFP stuff, I'm always like, I love the parts that are positive. They're straight with you. They tell you all of your bad stuff, too I was like, "Yes, I do that. What can I do to be better at that? What can I do to fix that?"

What are some of the things that you've done?

Hiring somebody because my consistency doesn't matter how hard I try. I can make a plan. I can start going. Even with writing my book, when I wrote that book, I started it in January. I wrote two chapters in four months because I wasn't feeling it. I forgot I was even writing the book. I completely forgot about it until June. At which point, somebody said something, they were like, "Weren't you writing about a book?" I was like, "Yes, right." I went back and looked at it, and then I was like, "That's not bad. I'm going to finish that." I finished it in two weeks. It was like I have these bursts of being able to get tons of stuff done, but I can't maintain it for a long period of time. I have to understand that about myself, not beat myself up about it, and let it make me feel like I'm a failure. "Why even bother? You're never going to finish that." I do finish things. It's just in my own time, not necessarily when I think it should be done.

It makes sense that you realize this topic of, big jumps aren't necessarily as effective as small steps because you're living that out. You're realizing that about yourself when you are trying to do these big jumps or whatever. It gets you lost and then you just forget about it. It's like you shut it out. If someone was like, "I'm at that stage. I'm feeling overwhelmed with all of the things that I need to do. How can I even figure out what that first next little step is?" What's your advice for that person?

First of all, don't panic if you don't know what the next thing is. You have to let go into it in a calm way. You can't be freaking out or anything because you'll never be able to figure it out. Be calm about it. What is the first thing that you can do next? One of the things that I stalled out on forever was getting an email funnel set up for something. I don't even remember what exactly it was. I was overwhelmed by the idea of, "I need to set up and write all of these emails. I have to do all of this stuff." I had to stop and be like, "Let's just write the first email. Now, we're going to write the first email. Tomorrow, we'll write the next one." I ended up writing three of them in one day because it started flowing. It was like, "What is the smallest thing that I can do first?" I'll then do the next thing. Break it down into steps.

I know you've helped someone, if not, many people out there reading who are feeling overwhelmed with all the things that they want to do. We all have so many ideas. We want to do all of these things. I literally have to write them down and then be like, "Wait, don't even think about those again. Hello, no shiny objects over here. You have to finish this one thing." I'm guilty of that as well. I love those tips. I think they're going to be super helpful for our readers out there to take that next little step in your business so that you can keep moving forward. That's what we want for you. That's what brings you joy and happiness if you can get to that end point creating those things that you're doing and not being overwhelmed in the process. Thank you so much. You've got a freebie for our readers. It's called Five Simple Steps to Help You Create a Life You Love. Do you want to tell us a little bit about it? Why do we need that in our inbox?

As a mom, I think it's easy to lose yourself in your kids, get overwhelmed by life, and do the raising of kids. The freebie is designed to help you start where you are, figure out to start moving towards that life, taming the chaos in your life, and opening up space so that you can chase the big dreams that you have.

Thank you, guys. Before we go, are you open to a little game?

Yes.

This is like a little rapid-fire would-you-rather type of game to get to know you a little bit more. I don't even remember what I put for these questions on here. We scheduled this so long ago. We finally made it happen. I'm going to shoot them out. Without even thinking, you answer them. If you don't like the two options that I gave you, you have full authority to say something else. Favorite meal, breakfast, lunch, or dinner?

Dinner.

Theater or concert?

Concert. No, theater. I changed my mind.

You can mix it up. Maybe a musical. Would you rather have Ed Sheeran or John Mayer sing you to sleep?

Ed Sheeran.

Dine-in or delivery?

Dine-in.

Would you rather be in a feud with Kanye West or Nicki Minaj?

Probably, Kanye. I don't think I could take Nikki.

Favorite season, winter or summer?

Summer.

Are you just saying that because it's cold right now?

I hate winter. The only good thing about winter is that sometimes it gets cold enough in Northern Michigan to create ice caves. That's fun and awesome. Other than that, I don't like winter.

It's like snow for a purpose. That's why I moved South to get out of that cold weather. Would you rather be friends with Jennifer Aniston or Jennifer Garner?

Jennifer Aniston.

Mug or thermos?

Thermos. I can't drink it fast enough.

Toilet paper, over or under?

It’s over.

The last one, would you rather watch Keanu Reeves or Nicolas Cage?

Keanu Reeves, for sure.

Amanda, thank you so much for being here for taking the time now to chat with us, share your knowledge with us, and give us all of your tips. It's amazing. You guys can connect with Amanda. Where do you like to hang out most? Instagram? Facebook?

Probably Facebook most, but I am on Instagram quite a bit, too, so both.

Will we find you both there as Amanda Krill?

Yes.

We have a link for her podcast, Just Boldly Go. I got the privilege of being on that show. That's it. Thank you so much for being here. This was awesome and super fun.

Thanks for having me.

We'll see you guys later.

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About  Amanda Krill

Amanda Krill is an author, speaker and boldness coach. Her book, Mom Vs Debt: How I Paid Off $64k in Credit Card Debt in Under 3 Years (without becoming a stripper), is an Amazon Best-Seller and has been featured on NPR, ABC, NBC, FOX and CBS.

She has a passion for helping women face their fears, set bold goals + take imperfect action towards creating a life + biz they can't wait get out of bed for every. single. day.

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