This episode shares the system I use to get everything done in my personal life, my career and my business — things like 5 blog posts in 2 hours and a month of social media content in 3 hours.
What the eff does that even mean? It’s one of those words that marketers and social media gurus use on the internet to confuse us.
It’s something life coaches use when they don’t know how to describe the “high vibe” life they’re living.
It is a word that has no meaning.
Except, it’s also a word that has the most meaning in the world.
Stay with me here, I promise this is going somewhere.
If you don’t know me, I’m Victoria Reitano, CEO and Founder of CreatiVix Media. Everyone calls me Vix because I’ve got the fix for… well, everything. I’m a digital dynamo with a decade of experience doing everything from shooting and producing YouTube Live videos with Michelle Obama, Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan (on an iPhone) to creating content for entrepreneurs just like you and I. I’ve built brands to 20K followers in four weeks for under $30 a day in ad spend and I’ve helped more life coaches, influencers and brands get verified on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram than I can count on both hands.
I LOVE the work I do. I’ve loved it for a decade and I know I will love it for decades to come… but it wasn’t always so easy.
The hustle, as I like to say, is not a struggle but that wasn’t always my mindset.
Mantras, wishes, hopes and dreams (and prayers) have always been part of my life… I’ve always believed that if you hoped enough, the right path would present itself to you. And then, if you did the work on that path, you’d get to the end of the rainbow.
While I still believe this, I also find that being in tune (or in alignment! There’s that word!) with my body, mind and soul is one of the best ways to actually see the signs for the road you’re supposed to take.
I am a woman and leaning in to my womanness has always been an asset for me… I am born, built and bred to be strong… I didn’t have to find my path to strength, I have always had that fire inside of me.
And that’s a wonderful thing — but not everyone has that or feels that. I’ve been the rock for friends, colleagues, clients and coworkers. I am the Fixer in most of my circles — that’s where Vix comes from.
And while I spent all of my life, literally, doing this for everyone else (including speaking for my brother until he was 5 years old), I often didn’t allow myself to the take the time for MY brand, for MY self-care or for MY personal projects.
In January of 2017, that all came to a screeching halt. I declared it the year of The Vix and focused on treating myself and my brand like a client. And BOY OH BOY did it work — I got more press, made 6 figures in 6 months, took on two new team members, grew my audiences (over 11K on Instagram, what whatttt) and honed my system for success.
Which is what I’m going to share with you today in this podcast.
The fast track to success is the road to alignment with yourself — body, mind and spirit. To doing all of the things you love so you can tolerate the things you hate. To finding a system that works for you so you can effortlessly succeed in your unique success story.
Vix of 3 years ago would have laughed out loud at that statement and called bullshit… except… deep down, she knew it was true but she was so out of alignment and just going through the motions to survive that she couldn’t see how to thrive.
Do you ever feel like that? Do you ever feel like you’re standing outside of your own body, watching yourself go through the daily motions of your life?
Well, if you haven’t been there, good for you — it is AN awful feeling. And if you have been there, I can help you. I can help you because I was you… always yearning for the time freedom and financial freedom to do life on MY terms. Stubbornly fighting, pushing and pulling, yelling, kicking and screaming for it to be MY effing way.
And then? Then I started tracking my productivity.
I stopped taking calls in the morning because that was — and continues to be — my most productive times.
I stopped working out at 6am to give myself the rest and recovery I needed… I even started working out at 8:30 in the morning on some days… to give myself the creative time I needed.
I developed a ritual for when to check my social media — for myself and for my clients — so I could avoid the digital depression that comes with being bogged down by too much bullshit and bad news.
I started to see when my cycle (yes, I’m talking about my period, aunt flow… whatever you want to call it) needed me to focus on the recovery instead of the productivity…
And I started to turn myself into a creation machine.
Here’s how I did it:
Honor the Post-Period Surge
I literally hate talking about my period. I hate having to use tampons and pads in public because it’s like a big scarlet P on your body, telling the world you’re fertile and feminine. Now? Now that I’m going through the process of freezing my eggs at 29 to actively choose when to start my family on my terms (something you can read about in the link to my personal blog in the show notes), now I really don’t give a damn who knows that I am a healthy woman in her childbearing years. So let’s get into it.
Getting informed about the cycle of your cycle as a woman is the quickest way to align with your body. I took myself off birth control for 5 years because I believe it is a way to control us. To dull our senses and keep us aligned with what SOCIETY wants rather than what our cycle says.
This isn’t the case for everyone but I had such great mental clarity when I put myself in alignment — so much so that every June to July for the last four years, I have a 45-day cycle. LIKE MOTHER EFFING CLOCK WORK. If that’s not proof of alignment, I don’t know what is.
Two days after my cycle ends I start my favorite week of the month. It is the post-period surge. I feel like WONDER WOMAN ON STEROIDS. Like Helen Reddy’s “I am Woman” is the soundtrack to my life mixed with a little Beyonce’s “Girls Run the World” for good measure.
I can get by on 4 hours of sleep, my mind is running on all cylinders and my creative juices are flowing.
This is the time when I write as much content as I can. This may not be something you experience but I bet if you track your month, you’ll see that your body will tell you when it can create and when it needs the recovery and by tracking your business goals to these portions of your month, you will see greater success at what feels like an effortless pace. Try it for one month or two, what do you really have to lose?
Be About the Recovery
I’m built like a brick house. I used to box, I do SoulCycle 6-7 times a week, I have been known to literally fall off a treadmill and get up to finish a workout (true story, it happened at Barry’s Bootcamp and I laughed my way through it.) I am a Taurus (which is also part of this alignment we’re talking about) and I am the embodiment of that sign — a bull who never stops.
But even Bulls get tired — BE ABOUT THE DAMN RECOVERY. Recovery and rest is as important as the sprint. Do not believe that you can just keep going forever. Rise in love of self, love of the recovery and love of rest. Do not allow yourself to wallow in setbacks BUT do take the time to recover when (because it’s always when) you experience them.
Being about the recovery — taking time off during your day, taking a cat nap, figuring out when you are best able to take calls around your personal life and your productivity levels, asking your spouse or partner to help you manage the parenting workload — is the most courageous thing you can do in a world on fire… and it is not selfish to make sure you’re in balance, flow and alignment with both the hustle and the recovery.
Your Calendar is Your Guru
When I first started my big girl job as a Digital Producer at Live with Kelly and Michael, I was managing a national brand for the first time, ever. Sure, I had helped manage the digital audiences at This Old House magazine in college but… I was a paid college intern. They let me write (published me within the first week of my internship), let me create content on social platforms and let me create contests but the buck didn’t stop at my desk. In my role as the Digital Producer, it was a much smaller team (of two) and I was the expert, the one charged with revamping our 360 digital program to get the results we needed.
I read Laura Vanderkam’s book, 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think, and it changed my thoughts on time which put me in alignment with how I produce and how I work.
Working for someone else, I wasn’t always able to produce on my most productive time table but once I started working for myself, I could really put my Vix of her recommendations into action.
I block out my Google calendar with EVERYTHING. With my bills, money I spend on big purchases (I used to legitimately track everything I spent as I learned to budget; that’s something I shared with Farnoosh Torabi on her podcast in 2016), payments to my team, vacation… and so much more. I even created an editorial calendar to do this for my marketing efforts at the beginning of the year (you can grab that in the show notes too!)
The point of this is that using a calendar — digital or physical — to track your content, your to-do items, your budget and your goals is one of the most effective ways to be in alignment with your mind, body and soul and it will allow you greater clarity to truly see when it’s time to turn right, left and make a u-turn on the road of life.
Stolen Moments and Sacrifices
You can have it all and you can have it all right now — if you choose to allow yourself to have a different view of success than the fairy tale we’re all fed.
I firmly believe every, single one of us has had, or will have, a #fairytalefail — it could be a fairy tale you were fed about your job, your living situation or personal life. It could be a relationship that failed, a partner that didn’t live up to your expectations or something that YOU tried to do that just didn’t align with all of your goals.
The moral of this story? YOU write your happily ever after on YOUR terms. And it most certainly doesn’t have to be a fairy tale.
On the road to success, there are many choices you will have to make — for me, one of the biggest choices was choosing to stay single to focus on my career. I only had to worry about keeping my mind, body and soul safe and nourished while building my career and business.
And that worked, for a time. Until I felt out of alignment with that choice — that was the day I decided to bring Fiona the Frenchie into my life.
One of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I also have decided it’s time for me to focus on my personal life a bit more — egg freezing, dating and, eventually, a relationship.
Women often feel sacrifices must be made for success — I get it, I did it, I survived it… but it doesn’t mean we have to sacrifice ALL the time.
Can I go out every night like I did when I was 22 and still function? Hell, no. Can I go out 2-3 times a week and still function? Yes! I believe it is more about compromising than it is about sacrificing and about knowing your limits.
In order to know when and how to compromise to stay in alignment, you have to also know — and hold — your boundaries. A dear friend of mine, Jessie Lynn, refers to this as beautiful boundaries and this is a term that has always been in alignment for me. It is hard to hold your boundaries but this is one of the most important tips on getting to the alignment you need to succeed. I get the success I ask for when I am clear about what I am not willing to compromise on.
That’s where your calendar comes in too — for example, for me, SoulCycle is non-negotiable. I prefer to go to morning classes but my schedule (with clients in London and Europe) doesn’t always allow for that. A year ago, I would have skipped it and sulked about it. Now? I find a way to get the class in without being MAD at my choices.
We can’t control every single part of our day BUT we can control every single reaction we have. Think before you speak harshly to yourself and think about the VixFix for your problem before you write it off as unfixable.
Love of Self Without Judgment
As a millennial woman, I’ve had body image issues in the past. I literally hate to eat food in front of people I don’t know. And I think that’s probably the first time I’ve said that publicly.
Because it sounds weird as hell. But, for me, because I am in alignment with my body, I know it is more about HOW I eat than what I eat. I’m allergic to gluten, dairy and soy — so I’m on a gluten-free diet… which is much more trendy now than when I started.
For years, I believed eating meant you were supposed to feel sick. And that the best way to avoid that was to simply not eat too much when you weren’t home.
I also believed that when you looked like me (a healthy, fit woman) you shouldn’t be eating anything more than a salad in public because you should be carb free.
What kind of bullshit is that? That’s the kind of bullshit you say to yourself when you’re out of alignment… when you’re thinking about the shoulds instead of about what YOU want, when you’re unclear on your boundaries and willing to compromise who you are to make others comfortable.
It takes time, but as a 29-year-old woman who is more in love with herself than she’s ever been, I can tell you the time spent on getting in alignment with THIS concept, more than any other, is WELL WORTH IT.
I am not a size 2 but, you know what? I love my body and the more I say that? The more it loves and supports me… because loving yourself is in alignment with success.
Loving yourself is the key to getting everything you want.
Because love, as wonder woman says, IS the strongest power in the universe and LOVE will always win.
Love yourself, your quirks and your quest for alignment… honor all parts of you, all of your energies and you’ll see… it will be easy and effortless for you too to do all of the things you need to get the life you want.