How to ADD to Your Life

If you’re excited by every new idea, jumping from one project to the next, you’ll never get what you want.

Instead, the outcome will be many small projects, some completed, and others abandoned; or jumping one job to another. You will be no closer to achieving your goals and creating the life of your dreams.

But, once you know what you want to do – with clarity and on your own terms – you can then establish systems and structures that will keep you on the path to accomplish your goals.

The ADD To Your Life Group Program opens for registration October 29, 2018. Click the button below to book a discovery session with me and find out if this program is a fit for you.


Living OUT theme music: “Summer” by Bensound.com ~ Photo by Clark Tibbs on Unsplash

Pretend that you recently accomplished a really big goal.

I’m talking the big-kahuna, significant life goal: a major promotion at work; a $30,000 sales target reached; you’ve moved into your dream home; you lost over 20 pounds of body fat; or whatever you have in mind as a meaningful, impactful goal.

Now that you find yourself in a much better place than you were before achieving that goal, you feel uncomfortable. You might even be experiencing fear. That is not what you expected!

It’s time to re-frame and adjust how you see yourself, here in this new state of being.

You have to let go of the old you and transform.


Want to finally get absolute clarity on your problems and struggles, purge what’s draining your focus and attention, and accomplish your dreams and goals on your own terms?

In November, 2018 I’m opening the doors to a small group program to teach my ADD Methodology – Assess, Dream, and Design your Life to accomplish your goals and dreams with ease in the next 3 years.

To get details about the ADD Coaching Program, sign up using the form below, or click this link: http://eepurl.com/dKDIBk

* indicates required

Living OUT theme music: “Summer” by Bensound.com ~ Photo by Robert Baker.

Have you ever said (or heard others say) something like,

“Is that for me? Oh, you shouldn’t have!” Or, “I don’t deserve this.”

Too often I hear this from those of us who serve others in capacities like coaching, personal training, massage, teaching, blogging, and so on.

For some reason we depreciate ourselves, as if we shouldn’t be proud of our accomplishments, including our gifts, skills, talents, products, and services.

When you give something that is of value to others, you are entitled to receive something in return for your service.

In other words, you deserve it.


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Living OUT theme music: “Summer” by Bensound.com ~ Photo Rachel.Adams

You have to know what you want to get what you want.

When you know what you want to accomplish in life, you can establish systems and structures that will support accomplishing your goals.

There’s this little challenge though, and it’s called distraction.

If you’re easily excited by every new idea, jumping from one project to the next, you’ll never get what you want. Instead, the outcome will be many incomplete projects – some large and some small – or jumping from one job or opportunity to another. You will be no closer to achieving your goals and creating the life of your dreams.

This has been a challenge in my life and something I’ve seen other creatives and entrepreneurs struggle with. For many creatives, like myself, it’s easy to come up with ideas about what we want to make, and goals we want to achieve. Yet the problem is that we often have too many ideas.

This is the big problem of beautiful, shiny objects.

“Oh! What’s that?” You say. “Let me drop everything now and follow this cool, exciting new idea, right down the rabbit hole! Hmm, maybe I’ll start writing a book. Oh wait! This idea would make for an awesome new program. Heck, while I’m at it I might as well help my friend with their project – I have those skill and it will give me some quick money.”

Do any of those statements sound like you? I’ve thought, said, and DONE every single one!

There’s nothing wrong with following a “shinny object” per se. Sometimes there’s great value in doing so for the creative process. You might learn something new. You might realize you need to add that new and “shiny object” to your work flow as a system. Or it’s a valuable addition to incorporate into what you’re making.

After a while, as exciting as those distractions are, we no longer feel fulfilled. We went off the map and now we realize that we’re lost. We find ourselves asking questions like,

“What’s my mission in life?

Am I actually making any progress on what I want to accomplish?

Do I know what I want to accomplish? I mean, do I really know?

Am I playing it safe, even though I know I have something much greater in me that I want to explore and bring into this world?”

How do you discover – with certainty – what you most want to accomplish on your own terms?

After facing the challenge of distraction and lack of focus for too long, I did a deep review of the productivity tools I’ve used over the years. I read notes I made from programs, courses, and personal correspondence with past coaches. I saw that I had the tools and the means. I was only lacking a complete systems to organize and optimize the individual parts.

From this investigation I created the ADD Coaching Method. This is a systematic process that helps you to Assess, Dream, and Design your life with clarity, purpose, and direction. The ultimate result is that you will chart your own path to – once and for all – create and live your dream life.

Isn’t this what life is all about? We want to create something meaningful.

We want to work with people who excite us and help us thrive. We want to share a message that positively influences other people’s lives.

We want to do all the above, not only because we want financial security, but because doing that work will provide satisfaction, personal engagement, and a powerful sense of well-being. We will feel worthwhile! Not because we felt worth-less before, but rather because we have finally manifested something of great value, and thus worth to ourselves and others.

When we know our mission, what drives us, it makes it that much easier to get up every morning and get to work. Earning a living almost becomes secondary. Making money almost becomes a default because working won’t feel like work.

How do you stay on track?

Let’s say you have the answer to the question, “What do I most want to do?”.

You’ve connected your answer – your mission – with your values and goals. You’re in alignment, but how do you stay on track and avoid those pesky distractions (because let’s face it, we can’t avoid them)?

Setting up your life and workday to win.

We all need structures, systems, and a schedule to best manage what needs to get done so that we can be highly efficient and effective. These last two qualities of work make the rest of your life much easier.

We need a “life plan”, one that offers flexible solutions that provide adequate time for your health and fitness, your relationships, and your ongoing personal growth and happiness.

If you neglect any of those core aspects of your life for too long, it becomes difficult to sustain meaningful work. Prioritizing work above all other aspects of your life is a downward slope to illness, high stress, and a lack of life satisfaction.

Meaningful work feels valuable and important in some way.

We do our best work when we are happy and fulfilled as a result of having taken care of other areas in our life. It’s from this state of well-being that we can achieve the greatest amount of personal satisfaction, and thus financial security.

Isn’t this what living a successful life is all about, taking pro-active steps towards accomplishing your dreams?

When your mission, values, and goals are in alignment, distractions are few.

When you apply the ADD Method to your life, you’ll develop effective systems that support your daily actions and choices. This in turn will make it easier to continue on the path to get what you want.

You will have the means to diagnose problems or struggles that will always to show up. You will be able to come up with solutions so that you can stay on track and keep moving forward.

Reinforcing the links in the chain of events of your life help to support every aspect of what you want to accomplish.

Develop a user manual for your life.

To create something meaningful in life – something that excites and compels you to do the work day in and day out – you need a well-oiled machine to facilitate the process. Your actions and choices are like the “gas”, and the “machine” (the system) only works well if the parts (the structure) are in order.

The term productivity is thrown around a lot. I like to positively frame the word productivity as this:

Optimal self-management to be efficient and effective in working on what we want to create.

When you get off track, when something doesn’t seem to be working, you can review the core steps of the ADD Method to get un-stuck and back into doing the work to create the life that you want by design.

Want to finally achieve your goals and start living your dream life?

The ADD Group Coaching Program starts in the first week of November, 2018. Click here to apply for a Living OUT Discovery Session to find out if the program is a good fit for you.


Photo by S O C I A L . C U T on Unsplash

One of the core steps of my ADD Method to Live OUT the best of who you are is to keep a journal.

We journal for self-awareness to work through our problems and struggles, to get clear on how to solve those problems, and to give form to our creative inspirations.

When we journal regularly we stay connected with who we are.

No one else has the power to assess, dream, or design our lives. You get to divine your own truth – by your own hand – and write your life’s story going forward, page by page.

Read the post, Divining the Depths of the Well of Self-Awareness:

 https://darrenstehle.com/divining-the-depths-of-the-well-of-self-awareness/


Living OUT theme music: “Summer” by Bensound.com ~ Photo by Aaron Burden

The following is a meditative, flow-of-consciousness writing that I did as part of my morning journal practice.


To Live OUT the Best of Who You Are, you begin witn an investigation into your identity to un-closet the stories of who you are.

Once you begin to see the plot lines of your unique story, you can decide which ones have served you, which ones you can let go of, and how to plot the next chapter of your life.

It starts with your words.

The best way to “know thyself” is to journal — by hand. This is about the connection between psyche and physical expression. When you write by hand, you impress upon your brain the experience.

To journal for self-awareness and personal growth is to dive into the depths of who you are and to discover your essence through your own words.

Deep journalling is not about how you slept the night before, or who you slept with. It’s about divining your purpose, your truth, your sense of self in the now.

Journalling is the most spiritual experience I know of.

A self examined life is anything but status quo.

Deep journaling shifts away from rules and dogma, forcing you to look inward and decide if you’re doing the right thing, to question your actions and motives.

Going deep forces you to see you for who you really are.

Not through the eyes of others, not as a reflection of what others expect of you, but of you looking inward towards what only you can see — your true self.

This is the truth of who you are that no one else has access to.

You might not even be aware of that part of yourself. You may have never fallen that deep into the well of your self-awareness.

A well is a perfect metaphor for self exploration.

It can be dark and unexplored, frightening and isolating, exciting and surprising — especially if you’ve never looked, or only ever casually glanced from the safety of the surface.

Going deep within is risky, but its not abandonment.

You divine your depths with a safety line — a pen and notebook.

Self-reflection is not about depth.

It’s only observing what’s currently bubbling to the surface, rippling across the mirror that both absorbs and reflects your surrounding environment.

Choosing to go deep — to divine who you are — is a conscious exploration, an acceptable risk of the possibility of temporary loss of direction, or of losing one’s bearings dependent on grounded tradition and surface planning.

Your investigation into the caves and crevices of your well of history — your psyche — represent a tether to who you were, and reaching the foundation of what shaped you.

This tether allows you to explore, yet return to safety.

With each deeper dive you seek to retrace past steps.

You might discover something new, or find yourself lost in the awareness of a story that has been hidden from the light.

But the depth of time and locked memories have not diminished your forgotten story’s potency — the reality of your experience illuminates your awareness when displayed on your psychic projector.

The truth of your memories are not physically measured.

No embellishments are required to make yourself look or feel better in the projection of your past experience, if that is the truth you seek.

What do you do with what you discover?

What matters is what you now do with what you have learned — what you have re-learned and un-forgotten about who you are.

In your journalling will be the clues about your purpose, your calling, your mission, your passions, and the way in which you’ve seen and see the world.

Those are the many pieces of the puzzle that make up the landscape of who you are.

You get to choose what to do with the pieces that shape your identity.

Looking back and diving deep are necessary risks required to move forward.

There is no physical key that will open the treasure of your greatest gifts, your talents, skills, or desires. 

There are only your memory clues, manifested as patterns of desire, states of being, and past actions.

It is in this private moment of “journalistic” review that you make the choices to be who you believe you are meant to be.

Whenever you feel off course, uncertain, or lost you can dip into your well of self-awareness with with fountain pen and paper. Divine your own truth with your hand, to write your own story going forward.


Photo by Tom Sodoge on Unsplash

ADD To Your Life

How many times have you sought out someone’s opinion, or wanted someone to agree with you?

Maybe you didn’t know how to resolve a difficult situation and you asked what they thought. Or perhaps you were working to solve a problem and you wanted someone to tell you that you were doing the right thing.

The truth is that other people’s opinions do not matter.

They are simply their opinions and have nothing to do with you. Usually we are seeking validation in seeking people’s opinion or agreement with what we want to do. The problem with validation is that it’s not who we are.

We are not other people’s opinions, judgements, or agreements with us. 

What we need instead of other people’s opinions or agreements is insight.


My ADD To Your Life Group Program starts Monday October 29 and runs for 12-weeks (with a short break over the Christmas holidays). Click here to request a discovery session with me and find out if this program is a fit for you.


Living OUT theme music: “Summer” by Bensound.com ~ Photo by Kyle Sudu on Unsplash.

This past weekend I was a guest on the Shaun Proulx Show on Canada Talks on SiriusXM Canada, channel 167.

Shaun and I went deep into the discussion that you are not your problems or your past stories. We talked about what you can do to reframe your problems, and how to come up with creative and empowering solutions. 

Enjoy this special edition of the Living OUT Podcast and be sure to check out Shaun’s website here: http://www.shaunproulx.ca.


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For many years I held onto my past. I thought about people who made me feel bad and unworthy.

I reacted to how heteronormative culture boxed me in and made me feel shame for being a gay man. I felt like a loser graduating high school with a 51% average. My past became my identity and I was stuck in the drama of that tired old story.

What actions can you take to let go of what’s holding you back?

How would it feel to move forward with ease, to live out the best of who you are, to explore what you’ve hidden away in the closet, and to finally get what you want?

In this episode I share some of my journey, and some of my “baggage” to explain how a single shift in focus can dramatically improve your life.

Read the accompanying post, If You Can Leave Your Baggage Behind, Then You Can Increase Success.


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Living OUT theme music: “Summer” by Bensound.com ~ Photo by Jessica F on Unsplash.

Do you stick to the appointments you make with other people and compromise or cancel appointments that you make with yourself?

What self-care habits are routine in your life?

What do you do on a daily or weekly basis to take care of yourself that never appears on your calendar? What always gets done with consistency and without argument or resistance?

Conversely, what appointments or habits do you NEED to book in your calendar?

For example, in my past I would compromise many of my “self-appointments.” I shrugged them off as unimportant, but these were important habits like writing and meditation. Writing allows me to express my creativity and helps me build my business. Meditation helps me with clarity, focus, calmness and peace of mind.

If it’s an appointment you make with yourself, why is that of lesser importance than a booking made with a client or a meeting at work? Why do we let ourselves off the hook, so to speak?


This episode is based on the “Life By Design” Step in my ADD Coaching Methodology. I will be launching a series of small group coaching programs to help creatives and entrepreneurs get the absolute clarity they need to take consistent, frequent, and efficient action to build the business and the life of their dreams.

Want to be notified when the program becomes available?

Click this link to get a free copy of my Get Clarity Process and get on the list: https://darrenstehle.com/clarity.


Living OUT theme music: “Summer” by Bensound.com ~ Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

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