Take regular walks throughout your work day! On my walks, I don’t bring my phone and simply observe what’s around me — the flowers, the people going by, the river. Connecting with nature in this way always makes me feel more grounded.
As a part of our series about “How to slow down to do more”, I had the pleasure to interview Mona Lisa Ondevilla.
Mona Lisa Ondevilla is a success coach and podcast host who made her mark on the internet for her love of the Universe and by being the top business coach for new introverted, intuitive and empath women. Through one-on-one consulting, programs, and free resources, Ondevilla has garnered international attention for helping women create both a business and lifestyle that feels rewarding and successful.
Thank you so much for doing this interview with us! Can you tell us the “backstory” about what brought you to this specific career path?
I became a success coach for introverted, intuitive women by following what felt good in my career journey, and not settling for less than that.
After college, my heart was set on a career in publishing. After some initial success, I felt like something was missing. I started to meditate, do yoga, and develop my personal relationship with the Universe. It was then that I realized I wanted a career that felt more meaningful, and allowed me to do work that made a bigger impact in people’s lives.
From there, I discovered life coaching, and absolutely loved witnessing the huge changes that my clients were having — I especially resonated with my introverted women clients, who wanted to start their own businesses in the online space, but simply didn’t know how.
Today, nothing is more satisfying than being able to guide my clients to discover and develop their own inner strengths and assets, and using them to build a thriving business online. You can learn even more about me at monalisaondevilla.com or by following me on Instagram @monalisaondevilla.
According to a 2006 Pew Research Report report, 26% of women and 21% of men feel that they are “always rushed”. Has it always been this way? Can you give a few reasons regarding what you think causes this prevalent feeling of being rushed?
I think that our society has idealized the idea of being “busy.” Being “stressed out” and “tired” are perfectly acceptable answers when someone asks “how are you doing?” Whenever I say, “I am doing AMAZING!” people are pretty taken aback, especially nowadays! So I honestly think that many of us have learned that being busy, and by extension, being “rushed” means we are productive (I definitely have felt this as well!).
Based on your experience or research can you explain why being rushed can harm our productivity, health, and happiness?
When we’re rushed, we’re not present. The present moment is really all that we have, and where we experience joy, love, satisfaction, connection to others, and creativity.
The repercussions of not being present? Not feeling connected to others, not feeling connected to our bodies, feeling creatively blocked.
On the flip side, can you give examples of how we can do more, and how our lives would improve if we could slow down?
When we slow down, we tap into our inner power. We can hear ourselves more. We can hear our desires, we can dance with our creativity, we can get clear guidance on what to do next.
Whenever I make decisions from a place of feeling rushed or tired, it never turns out how I envisioned it, and often leads to more stress (it’s the law of attraction!). But when I make decisions after practicing self-care, meditating and being well rested, I always end up making the best decisions.
We all live in a world with many deadlines and incessant demands for our time and attention. That inevitably makes us feel rushed. Can you share with our readers 6 strategies that you use to “slow down to do more”? Can you please give a story or example for each?
- Start a garden, or adopt some houseplants. Seriously, I’m one of those people who sing to their plants! Taking care of a living thing really makes you slow down and pay attention.
- Start your day with a simple intention-setting practice that takes 5 minutes or less. All you have to do is check in and ask yourself, how do I want to feel today? What would feel most amazing to do? It makes a world of difference.
- Buy great coffee (or tea). Whatever you drink, make sure that your morning choice of caffeine is something that you can savor and appreciate. I find that when I’m drinking the good stuff, I slow down and enjoy it more.
- Ritualize mealtimes. This is something I’ve learned recently from Alice Waters. Preparing a meal with your full presence, setting the table for yourself and loved ones (with attention to small details, like bringing in a candle or nice napkins) is a comforting act that brings you to the pleasures of the here and now.
- Carry your favorite essential oil or crystal in your pocket. This one is so quick and easy, and the practice I do most often throughout the day! Any time I need a moment to myself, I rub some essential oil in my palm — often, it’s peppermint to wake myself up! — inhale, and exhale. It’s one breath that brings me back to the present.
- Take regular walks throughout your work day! On my walks, I don’t bring my phone and simply observe what’s around me — the flowers, the people going by, the river. Connecting with nature in this way always makes me feel more grounded.
How do you define “mindfulness”? Can you give an example or story?
Mindfulness is doing things consciously and with your full presence… as opposed to doing things by default or on auto-pilot, without even paying attention to it.
An everyday example is drinking your daily cup of coffee. Do you scarf it down, barely paying attention to how it tastes, before moving on to the next thing you have to do? Maybe even burning your tongue? Or do you savor each sip, delighting in the warmth of your beverage, grateful for the moment to yourself?
Mindfulness is really as simple as being with the present moment — it’s not indulgent, it’s actually necessary to your productivity and happiness!
Can you give examples of how people can integrate mindfulness into their everyday lives?
I gave a few examples above on my list of 6, but one I’d like to add:
- This is one of my favorite practices from Abraham Hicks. Every time you walk through a door, notice that you are going into a new segment of your day. In that moment, set a small intention for how you want that next segment to feel.
Do you have any mindfulness tools that you find most helpful at work?
Taking those regular walks, breathing in essential oils, having a favorite crystal or two around me, lighting a candle… for me, it’s about surrounding myself with things that remind me to slow down and savor the moment.
What are your favorite books, podcasts, or resources that inspire you to use mindfulness tools or practices
I love all of the teachings of Abraham Hicks, especially the book “Ask And It Is Given.” Also, all of Wayne Dyer’s books. I always come back to “The Power Of Intention.”
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
I have so many! But right now, what’s coming to mind is “Whatever you want, wants you, too.” I don’t remember who said that, but it’s influenced me a lot to realize that the things I want in my life aren’t random — they are there for a reason, and can in fact, become reality. It might sound out there, but I really do sense that whatever I envision for myself in the future has a kind of energy that pulls me toward it — and when I follow that energy and guidance, it moves me closer to it.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
My whole company’s mission is to empower introverted, intuitive women who don’t feel like they belong in the more extroverted entrepreneurial space. Before, there was a very defined version of what a successful entrepreneur looked like, what they did, how they acted. It’s very different today, with all of us being able to access potential clients through our computers, at home, through social media. Now, more than ever, we can define what success looks like for us — and we can design our businesses to support our desired lifestyle.