Do you recognise this scenario? You have a whole list of important things to do for your business, and you’re ready to do it, but instead, you decide that it would be an opportune moment to… start cleaning out your closet, Marie Kondo Style, putting all your spices and herbs in alphabetical order, getting the vacuum cleaner, the duster, etc. etc. So you’re basically doing a lot of busy work and not so much the brave work that will help you realise your goals

One of the biggest questions in my life, at this moment: Why do I, all of a sudden, decide that I need to clean something to make my life better?

Probably because

“When you are “busy”, you don’t have to do the things that scare you.”

In those moments, it feels imperative that I clean, even though I HATE cleaning the house.

Normally, I’d do ANYTHING else but cleaning. ANYTHING. But when I have important stuff to do, and I’m nervous about it, cleaning all of a sudden sounds like a good idea.

And don’t even get me started on emails… When I sit down to work on The Ecotourist, I can spend hours, getting my emails sorted out. HOURS! These are minutes, turned to hours, turned to days of my life that I can NEVER get back.

Productive work, Brave work vs. Busywork

It seems very productive at the time, but, in all honesty, we’re just filling the time with busy work, when you could actually:

1 – Take yourself and your art/ business seriously

Which means that when it’s time to work, you work. In your 9-5 job you can’t just take out your vacuum cleaner if you have to do something difficult for you, so don’t do it at home when you’re working on your business either.

Although I have to say, in my corporate days, I did spend some time at the coffee machine and going through emails. :p

2 – You do the courageous things that will get you to fulfil your dream, like:

  • writing & posting a blog post consistently- even though not too many people read it yet.
  • picking up that paintbrush or 2h pencil and just starting to draw.
  • Creating an email nurture sequence – even though you don’t have anybody on your email list just yet.
  • Asking for EVERYTHING, for the sale, for the subscription, the testimonial, the … [fill in the blanks].

Do the BRAVE work so that you can get PAID!

Ain’t nobody going to pay you for cleaning out your closet, unless you’re Marie F-ing Kondo. If you could, well I would be a millionaire already.

So how to change the pattern and go from doing the busy work to the brave work that’ll actually get you somewhere:

  • Set office hours, or a definite time you’re going to stop working that day, so there’s also some time left for PLEASURE. Trust me, it’s essential!
  • Work somewhere else than your house if working there triggers your busy work (Think of: cafés, the library, a co-working space, outside in the park).
  • Set your one thing and one corresponding starter action during your morning routine.
  • Make the big project that scares you smaller and cut it up into small actions that take a maximum of 15 minutes.
  • Focus on the first 5 minutes. You only need to work for 5 minutes. Chances are good that you’ll keep on going.
  • Remind yourself that your dreams matter and that you deserve to set time apart to work on them.

Every time you succumb to busywork, you’re disempowering yourself, you’re undermining yourself and slowly sucking the life out of your dreams.

You deserve more than that.

Slow down. Breathe. You got this, chica. You wouldn’t dream this dream if you weren’t ready to make it happen!

You do the BRAVE work, not the busy work.

Adventure comes to the brave and bold chicas.

Where in your business have you been focusing on the busy work when you should put your big boss babe panties on and work it, girl?!

Adventure Awaits!



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p.s. this picture was taken on my honeymoon in Lisbon. Being brave doesn’t mean you have to go at it alone. Being brave can also be admitting that you need some help (so that the wind doesn’t blow you off that high rock while trying to take a picture with the Palacio Nacional da Pena, Sintra. #instahubbies to the rescue 😉 ).

The Mangrove Concept