21 Day Challenge

Welcome to the 21 day Allegria Challenge! 

I am Leslie Bartlett, of Allegria Coaching…here to share with you a short vlog each day highlighting one simple thing that you can do to create more joy and meaning in your life. Nothing you haven’t heard before, just a daily reminder to choose to live with more intention, to create vs. react.
Join me! Invite friends! Put to practice these simple and important things…and please share your experiences! We want to hear from you.

Day 1 - Say Yes

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to just ‘Say Yes!” 
I invite you to say yes to this 21 Day Challenge! and…
Is something being presented to you today that is calling you forward to more?…..Say Yes!

Day 2 – Get Out In Nature

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to get out in nature
Nature connects us to something bigger than ourselves. It is grounding, beautiful, and opens us to gratitude and awe. For many people, nature is where they feel closest to God. 
So today, I invite you to get outside and inhale….take off your shoes, wiggle your toes in the earth, smell a flower, watch the sunset…just take a few minutes to bask in the beauty around you. 
What, in nature…brings you joy?

Day 3 - Give

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to give. Give of your resources, your time and energy, your heart.One way I do this is by volunteering and supporting Mount Saint Vincent Home in north Denver, a residential and day treatment center for emotionally challenged and abused children. www.msvhome.org .  My efforts have come back to my heart a thousand fold and have brought so much joy and meaning to my life. It sounds cliche, but there truly is a gift in the giving. 
So today, I invite you to be generous and give. Connect to a cause that you believe in by donating or volunteering, or simply give a smile or a compliment to a random stranger! There are so many ways! Please share and inpsire our community with ideas…How did you give today?  And how did your giving make you feel?

Day 4 - Love an Animal

Welcome to Day 4 of the Allegria Challenge!
Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to love an animal
Josh Billings once said “A dog is the only thing on earth that will love you more than you love yourself.” Ok dog people, isn’t it true?! I have a silly dog named Luna. She smiles. Seriously, watch the video and you will see. Every morning I am greeted with a smile and love that brings me so much joy (except when she greets me before 5am!). My sister’s cat gently paws her nose to wake her up. I wonder..love or hunger? no matter! It brings her joy.
So today, I invite you to love an animal, or better yet let an animal love you!! Don’t have your own? Find one..they’re everywhere! And, please share your stories and pictures of animal love!

Day 5 - Appreciate Others

Welcome to Day 5 of the Allegria Challenge!
Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to appreciate others. I received a gift years ago that was a bright red plate with the words ‘You Are Special Today” written on it. At the time, I thought it was kind of corny, but through the years it has served as a cornerstone of connection at many family meals. Every so often I take it out, and surprise a member of our family with dinner on the plate. We go around the table and everyone shares what they think is special about that person. This simple ritual has created many treasured moments and memories in our family.
So today, I invite you to appreciate someone…you don’t need a special plate, just tell them 3 (or more) things that you think make them great!

Day 6 - Collaborate

Welcome to Day 6 of the Allegria Challenge!
Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to collaborate. In Tom Shadyac’s documentary film I AMwww.iamthedoc.com , there is a message that states the very basis of nature is cooperation and democracy, it’s in our DNA. Science shows us that we are interconnected at a fundamental level. I love working with others, cooperating and collaborating on projects.
I am co-facilitating a program this fall called the Wise Women Journey with Jen Whalen of True North Adventures www.seektruenorth.com . Not only has it been exciting and fun to work together, but combining our creative energies is producing a powerful result….way juicier than what I could do on my own! 
So today, I invite you to ask for help on a project, or offer your help and expertise to someone who needs it. Work together and collaborate!

Day 7- Blessings in Everything

Welcome to Day 7 of the Allegria Challenge!
Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to recognize the blessings in everything. Easy to do when the blessings are obvious…life is going great, everyone around you is kind and loving, but more challenging when you are going through a tough time or dealing with a difficult person. Here is a way to do this….instead of asking “Why is this happening to me?”, change one tiny word in that question to “Why is this happening FOR me?” This helps to shift you from feeling and acting like a victim to accepting what is and looking for the blessing in it. What is this person or situation here to teach me? Could this be a gift, and opportunity for me to learn and grow? Wayne Dyer says, “Change the way you see things, and the things you see change.” Everything is a blessing.
So today, I invite you to consider a difficult situation or person in your life and ask, “Why is this happening FOR me? What is the blessing here?”

Day 8 - Discipline

Welcome to Day 8 of the Allegria Challenge!
Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to practice discipline. I used to cringe at the word! It brought up negative feelings of restriction, rules, and parental control. But, I’ve learned that discipline is necessary to achieve great things. Take the root of the word,disciple and consider that you can be the disciple to your higher self. You are the boss. You get to choose and commit to something, and discipline is just the way to get want you want. A few months ago, I committed to a 30 yoga challenge. Not easy for me, as there were days that I didn’t feel like getting on my mat, but with discipline, I pushed through the excuses and went anyway. At the end of the 30 days, I felt such a sense of accomplishment and inner strength. I was honoring my self and the commitment I made to me. 
So today, I invite you to choose and commit to something you want. It may be as small as eating a healthy salad for lunch or getting to the gym or taking the next step on a project you are working on. Befriend discipline, and feel good about doing what it takes to have what you want! What area of your life requires discipline?

Day 9 - Gratitude

Welcome to Day 9 of the Allegria Challenge!

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to practice gratitude.
This one goes without saying, but I’m going to do it anyway…just a little reminder to give thanks today (and every day!) Nothing shifts negative energy or a bad mood into a positive one faster than gratitude. If there were only one prayer, let it simply be “thank you”.
Here are five things that I am grateful for today: I’m grateful that I got to spend last weekend up in the beautiful Colorado mountains flyfishing, canoeing, and hiking. I’m thankful for my boys, Parker and Griffin, who make my heart smile everyday. I’m grateful for my fun friends and loving family. I’m grateful for my comfy cozy home. I am so grateful that I get to do this work everyday…it is a privilege to coach people to lead intentional lives and align with their purpose and passion. 
So today, I invite you to take a moment and ask yourself, “What am I truly grateful for?” 

Day 10 - Slow Down and Get Present

Welcome to Day 10 of the Allegria Challenge!

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to slow down and get present.

It’s not often that we give ourselves permission to just slow down (let alone stop) and get present with our thoughts and feelings. Today I encourage you to take a moment, slow down, quiet your mind, and then ask yourself “Am I ok with this moment?” “Am I conscious in this moment?” “Am I choosing and creating a life I love in this moment?” Oprah shared a profound thought on one of her last episodes that has stayed with me since I heard it. She said, ‘You are responsible for the energy you bring to your space…your work, your home, and your relationships. What energy are you bringing to your space today?’
So today, I invite you to slow down, get present, and be aware of the energy you are bringing into the world. Is it conscious and loving?
Day 11 - Music

Welcome to Day 11 of the Allegria Challenge!
Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to crank up the music.
Music in itself is healing and we are all touched by it. Listening to great music can shift our mood, and help make the mundane things more enjoyable, like driving or cleaning the house. I can actually make cleaning look fun when I listen to the Pandora Radio Madonna station! Music can relax us, enliven us, and even connect us. Lyrics can evoke feelings and memories. When you hear a familiar song, doesn’t it just take you back to a time or place where you had an experience listening to it? 
So today I invite you to crank up the music, sing, and dance..let it move through you!
How does music bring you joy?

Day 12 - Spiritual Practices

Welcome to Day 12 of the Allegria Challenge!
Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to have a Spiritual Practice.
This one is so important to me that I could do an entire program on it alone. Nothing has brought me more joy, meaning, peace, love and a feeling of wholeness than my spiritual practices. Meditation is a way to get quiet enough to hear what your deepest knowing and highest self wants to reveal to you. Prayer is talking to God, meditation is listening to God. Doing both will bring you a sense of connection to something bigger than you, and more clarity of who you are and why you are here.
So today, I invite you to dedicate a part of your day to your spiritual practice, whatever that may be for you…prayer, meditation, church or temple…just open your heart to God!

Day 13 - Create Your Day

Welcome to Day 13 of the Allegria Challenge!

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to create your day each morning.
Here’s how you do it…each morning before you even lift your head off your pillow, think about how you want your day to go. Connect with your core values, all the qualities that make you who you are at your best, and then imagine your day from that place. I’ll share my version for today…My day is filled with joy and love, adventure and connection. Every conversation I have, and action I take is steeped in Allegria (meaning full of life). I fully express my Authentic Self in all that I do. I allow spontaneity, fun and playfulness. This is going to be an exciting day! 
Do you know what your core values are? If you’d like to find out, call me to schedule a session for a personal CVA (Core Value Assessment). I guarantee you will come away with a deeper sense of self and purpose. 
So today I invite you to create your day from a place of who you are at your best..make sure all the great values and characteristics you embody are expressed in everything you do! 

Day 14 - Exercise

Welcome to Day 14 of the Allegria Challenge!
Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is through exercise.
I know I know, this is a no brainer…but discipline and commitment to exercise can only be executed by you. If you are on the fence at all today…consider this a nudge to get into the gym, yoga studio, pool, whatever way you like to move your body.  
Yesterday I was feeling kinda blah, tired and unmotivated. I was judging myself for not getting to the yoga studio in the past few weeks. I knew that I would feel better coming out of a yoga class, and at the same time it was the last thing my body wanted to do. I mustered up all the energy I could, grabbed my mat and I went anyway. I seriously wondered if I could even get through the class. We began in childs pose…and then I couldn’t believe my ears…the instructor said, ‘Why don’t you dedicate your practice to joy today?’  I took that word into every cell of my body and to every movement throughout the class. Everything shifted. I floated out of the studio feeling so much better.
So today, I invite you to move your body, ignite your cells and feel energized and alive through exercise!

Day 15 - Receive

Welcome to Day 15 of the Allegria Challenge!
Todays simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to receive
In your busy life of doing and giving and taking care of your family, employees, and clients…Are you taking care of you? Taking care of yourself includes letting others care for you. Create a mobius – a flow…you care, you love, you give…let it come back…accept the care and love from others. Maybe it’s a compliment or a hug, a gift of service or a dinner out. Take it with joy! Let it fill you up. When you are full, you have more to give others. Keep it flowing. 
So today, I invite you to open your arms and your heart wide and receive the gifts that are on their way to you!

Day 16 - Laughter

Welcome to Day 16 of the Allegria Challenge!

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is through laughter! 🙂
Laughing is a mechanism we all share as human beings. It is a language in and of itself. And though there are thousands of languages on this planet, we all understand and speak laughter the same way. It connects us in joy and to each other, and it even creates a physiological shift in our body when we laugh. When you can laugh at your self..ha!..that is the best! You have the ability to change a potentially upsetting or embarrassing experience into one that is lighter and more positive by finding the humor in it. Last week I took my car into a drive through car wash. I’m sitting there on my phone checking messages waiting for the car wash to do it’s thing, when all of a sudden water came pouring in on my head, all over my clothes, drenching me. Apparently I had not closed my sunroof all the way..aagghh! I started to get upset, and then stopped and realized the total hilarity of it all! I busted out laughing…and laughed again when I sloshed into my house and saw my boys faces looking at my sorry soaking self! It made for a very funny experience.
So today, I just invite you to let loose and laugh, make someone else laugh, or find the humor in the next upsetting or embarrassing situation and laugh at yourself! 

Day 17 - Express Yourself

Welcome to Day 17 of the Allegria Challenge!  

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to more fully express yourself. 
The world needs more of YOU.
Trust that what you have to say is important, that your creative ideas make a difference, and that the world is a better place with you in it. Share your gifts.
It’s been my intention to more fully express in my life and work, and this Allegria Challenge is one way for me to do it. I had doubt and resistance to putting myself out there in this way, when a friend of mine said, “Go for it! You can’t do it wrong.” So, I let go of the attachment to the outcome and focused on expressing what I wanted to share. 
Today, I invite you to share more of you in your life, your relationships, and your work. You are important, what you have to say matters, your ideas make a difference, and the world is a better place because YOU are in it!

Day 18 - Be Curious and Keep Learning

Welcome to Day 18 of the Allegria Challenge!

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to be curious and keep learning. This came to me this morning as I was watching my boys get ready to go back to school next week. Seeing their excitement and anticipation for the year ahead and all that they are going to learn just brought me back to the energy of that time. Children have a great sense of wonder and curiosity about everything around them. It’s magical and fun! and it’s something we do not have to lose as we get older. Learning keeps us alive and engaged. So what is it for you? Is there something that you are curious to learn? Maybe a class or program that you have wanted to take? Have you thought about partnering with a life coach to learn more about YOU? Self growth and development can transform your life and give you the practical tools to create a life you love. If this is interesting to you, please contact me, I would be honored to have a conversation with you about it. 303-638-3132 cell or leslie@allegriacoaching.com
So today, I invite y

Day 19 - Clean Up the Clutter

Welcome to Day 19 of the Allegria Challenge!

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to clean up the clutter.
Whether it’s a pile of papers on your desk, a disorganized closet or garage, or a draining person in your life…it’s all clutter, and taking up space and energy in your life. When we clean up and clear out things that no longer serve us, we make room for the things that do.
Call me weird..but when I feel stuck or unproductive…I like to clean. Somehow cleaning up the space outside of me clears and opens space inside of me. I feel productive, and have more energy to do the things I want to do.
Is there a person in your life that is draining you? Maybe it’s time to cut the cords of the relationship. I had a friend who would call me often and complain about every little thing in her life. It didn’t seem to matter what I said or did to try to support her, nothing changed and her story stayed the same. I got to the point where I wouldn’t pick up the phone if I saw her number pop up on Caller ID. Eventually I told her how I felt. I said, ‘I love you and care about you but I don’t feel good after we talk. It just feels negative, and I’d like to focus on the positive.’ She hung up on me. But, two months later she called back and said, ‘Thank you. I needed to hear that. You weren’t the only one who felt that way about me, and I’m sorry.’ Wow. I felt so relieved and happy.
So today, I invite you to clear the clutter in your life. Tackle that pile of paperwork on your desk, clean out that closet or drawer (you know the one I’m talking about) , or cut the cords to a relationship that no longer serves you.Clean up and clear out to make room for something new and better!

Day 20 - Seek Wisdom

Welcome to Day 20 of the Allegria Challenge!

Today’s simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to seek wisdom.
I’d like to dedicate this segment to my father, who was the wisest man I’ve ever known. He passed away last year, and the night before his memorial service, I was given this list of five ‘house rules” that he had written and posted years ago at the family cottage in Michigan. 
It reads: 
Rx (for whatever ails you)
1. At least one half hour seated on front porch early each morning watching mist rise from river and meditating on “God’s World” while sipping coffee or chocolate.
2. One hug (minimum) for and from each person at the cottage each day.
3. An afternoon nap (minimum 45 minutes) daily.
4. Tea and cookie each day between 4 and 5 pm.
5. Occasional tin-roof sundae in the evening. (Turtle sundae is suitable substitute. Occasional means not more than one per evening). 
signed: Dr. (Know-It-All) Bartlett.
Humor aside, these were simple pleasures that created joy and meaning in his life.  I call that wisdom.
So today, I invite you to seek wisdom, and then apply it into your life. 
And, I‘d love to hear…What great piece of wisdom have you already received?

Day 21 - LOVE!

Welcome to Day 21, the LAST day of the Allegria Challenge!

For those of you who have been with me the past 21 days…way to go! You did it! 
And, thank you! I’ve appreciated all the wonderful comments and I hope you have enjoyed your journey. This will be here for you to do again or to pass along to someone you know who would like to create more joy and meaning in their own life.
Todays simple way to create more joy and meaning in your life is to LOVE!
This the simplest of all….just be what you already are, which is love. 
As I was thinking about writing this today, I became overwhelmed with ideas on how to share a simple message on love. It encompasses so much! So I asked for signs, and for Spirits assistance in coming through my message. And a few things came forward that I’d like to share with you: 
Reverend Cynthia James, an amazing teacher and minister, shared a post last night that touched my heart. She just lost a dear friend of hers yesterday, and she reminded us to love deeply and consistently everyday, because nothing is guaranteed. So simple, so true.
My courageous friend Sue Parker, who is ferociously fighting cancer shared in her blog this morning that she is gathering loving friends and family around her as a ‘posse of support’ to assist her through chemo treatments. So valuable for all of us, at any time of our life to be open to and receive love.
In a book I recently read (and recommend), It’s Not Just Who You Know, author Tommy Spaulding shares that love is a choice. You can choose to take your loving beyond friends and family and into your business to transform contacts and colleagues into lasting, genuine relationships. Love and business….seriously? Absolutely. 
So today, I invite you to try this…
In every conversation you have, action you take, and decision you make…ask yourself, 
“What would LOVE do here?” <3