Ah, New Year’s Resolutions. They come but once per year, and cause quite a stir. Indeed, people talk about their New Year’s Resolutions quite freely. A small portion of people even write them down. But how many truly achieve them? The number is probably dismally small. Why? Because most people do a great job of talking about their resolutions, but don’t do such a great job of taking action on them. They often set themselves up for failure by biting off more than they can chew!

2014_goalsTake, for example, the most popular New Year’s Resolution: to lose weight (get in shape, exercise more, achieve greater levels of fitness, shrink a few sizes… any version will do!). What most people do is come out swinging. They join a gym and try to exercise 5 days a week, when they were formerly a couch potato and led a sedentary lifestyle (not only is this setting you up for failure, but it can be dangerous too!). They deprive themselves of every food they love, instead of eating a little bit of everything in moderation or learning their trigger foods and slowly replacing them with better choices. In other words, they try to do too much in too little time. They experience set backs, or fail altogether, which then leads to a defeatist attitude and they say “See, I knew I couldn’t do it.” They then give up.

Does this pattern sound familiar? If so, try a different approach this year. Try taking it slowly, one step at a time, and actually taking action throughout the year. How? Here are some tips:

  • Start Small & Grow Your Goal Little by Little
    Instead of looking at your goal or resolution as a major project, think of just the first step. For example, instead of thinking that you have to get your entire life organized, try keeping your appointments for the first week, clearing out your email inbox the second week, saying no to some tasks and events you can’t handle the third week, etc. Get the picture? Take it step by step so each smaller goal feels, and is, more manageable.
  • Reinforce Goal Setting in Various Ways
    Use different learning styles (visual, auditory, kinesthetic, and tactile) to reinforce goal setting. Perhaps you can journal about your New Year’s Resolutions (one of my favorite activities!). Maybe you prefer to set up a vision board to see your goals. Or you can listen to podcasts and audio programs that reinforce your resolutions. It doesn’t matter which you choose, only that you choose a way to reinforce goal setting that works for you!
  • Ignore the Naysayers
    Often, you are making actual progress towards achieving your resolutions or goals, but someone tries to sabotage you. Try not to let this derail your efforts! You need to stay the course, despite what they say. The famous life coach Martha Beck talks about surrounding yourself with people who can be your “believing eyes.” I love this idea! Adopt it and use it as your own. Stay away from the Negative Nellies right now, and surround yourself with people who believe in your goal and will help you achieve it.
  • Be Accountable
    Some of the world’s most successful behavior modification programs are successful partly due to the strong accountability celebratefactor built into the program. Find an accountability partner, join a mastermind group, or hire a coach. You need motivation and someone to share your trials and successes with. Having accountability systems in place can be a powerful aid in accomplishing the goals you set.
  • Celebrate Success
    Make sure to reward yourself along the way for achieving success, no matter how small. Set up milestones, and as you achieve them, figure out ways to motivate yourself to keep going. The more successful you feel at each step, the more apt you are to keep moving on the path towards achieving your full goals.

Happy New Year!!

Most people this time of year are making New Year’s Resolutions. But for many people, just that term conjures up negativity as they recall years of making, but not keeping, passed resolutions.

There’s a better way! Let me show you how during my complimentary teleclass:

Don’t Just Make a Wish & Blow It Into the Wind:
Make Your Goals a Reality in the New Year!

21938068_sI’ll be sharing some tips, tools, and strategies to help you with Goal Setting in the New Year without it feeling like just another To-Do List.

I’ll also be sharing another New Year’s ritual that many people, including me, have adopted called The One Word Theme, which is very powerful.

So join me for an insightful call that is bound to get you thinking, and acting, in the New Year.

Date: January 22, 2014
Time: 4:30 pm PST / 5:30 pm MST / 6:30 pm CST / 7:30 pm EST

This call is complimentary and will also be recorded if you are unable to join us live. All registrants will receive a link to the recording within 24 hours.


iStock_000020928328XSmallI will also be sharing details on my exciting new La Dolce Vita 6-Week Group Life Coaching Program, which starts on February 20, 2014. But don’t worry, there’s lot of thought-provoking, actionable content that I will be sharing too. You know me, and this won’t be a pitch fest. 🙂

For those of you who just can’t wait to learn more about the La Dolce Vita Program and know you want 2014 to be your best year yet, click here for a look at the details!

Hope to “see” you on the call on January 22nd!


La Dolce Vita


La Dolce Vita

Sign Up Below to be Notified of the
“Do It Yourself” Version Launching in 2016


Do you long to live a life of purpose and passion,
that reflects your values AND desires?

Do you need permission to make your
well being, happiness, and self care a priority?

Is fear still holding you back from going after what you want?

Are you tired of living your best life “in your head”
and want to finally make it a reality?

Then you are in luck! Come learn how to live “The Sweet Life!”

Introducing the La Dolce Vita

6-Week Life Coaching Program
from LMG University

This isn’t just any life coaching program. It’s based on content taken from my concept of La Dolce Vita (The Sweet Life), and will help you bring the passion and zest back to your life.IMG_0210-300x300

The content is based on my research (and background!) of Italian culture, positive psychology and happiness, years of coaching clients holistically to integrate life-work balance, and my own personal lifestyle. My life is a work in progress, and sharing my own personal experience, and that of the hundreds of clients I have been privileged to work with, is part of the La Dolce Vita process.

Stop settling for good enough because you are worried if you go for great that people will think you are too big for your britches. It is time to step into your power and claim the life you know you are truly meant to live!

How much longer are you willing to wait? How much time are you willing to sacrifice? When will you decide that you deserve to be really happy and live The Sweet Life?

If you are committed to making regular “deposits” in areas of your life that have been neglected and feed them what they need to grow and prosper, then join me for La Dolce Vita.

michaelsmithLisa lives up to and surpasses expectations by being a very good listener, organized, detailed and creative. Her law background is unusually unique and one of the reasons why Lisa works well in providing solutions when you it need it most.

Michael A. Smith, President, New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce, Inc., New Paltz, NY

What’s YOUR Version of The Sweet Life?

The La Dolce Vita lifestyle is about following your dream, deciding not to play small anymore, living your life to the fullest, and allowing the real you to shine through!

IMG_0206Maybe for you this means:

  • Saying no to a toxic relationship that doesn’t serve you.
  • Cultivating a hobby or passion that you have always wanted to try.
  • Adding a little romance (or a lot!) into your life.
  • Taking better care of your body or spirit.
  • Going to bed at night feeling peaceful and waking up looking forward to the day.
  • Changing careers.
  • Enjoying quality time with your family and friends.
  • Writing a book (it’s been on your bucket list for years).
  • Running a marathon or some other type of active pursuit.
  • Traveling – finally giving in to that wanderlust!
  • Saying ‘No’ more often.
  • Saying ‘Yes’ more fully.

Whatever that larger vision for your life is… that’s what La Dolce Vita is all about.

“When I stand before God at the end of my life,
I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left,
and could say, ‘I used everything you gave me.’”

~ Erma Bombeck

Why Take a Life Coaching Program With Me as the Facilitator?

Many people believe that they have one true vocational calling. That may be true. But for some of us, we have multiple areas of expertise and talents and a thirst to share them all with the world. It is this sense of adventure and drive for reinvention that ultimately led me to become an entrepreneur, and that allows me to live a La Dolce Vita kind of life!

I grew up on stage as a “triple threat” — singer, actress and dancer

theaterlisaAs a young adult, I had to make the difficult decision whether I wanted to devote my career to performing (read: starving actress waiting tables in NYC…) or to make performing a hobby and pursue a different career. This was a significant choice and is the core of some of my coaching/teaching about being a “shadow artist,” choosing a path for a career, and incorporating your passions into your life. I never gave up performing but, rather, turned it into a wonderful hobby that continues to this day

I am a lawyer, who “defected” from the practice of law after becoming disillusioned with the negative side of how it is practiced and the constant fighting involved in the profession.

Upon graduation from law school, I practiced employment, labor, education and disability law for 9 ½ years. Although I had a profound respect for the law, I did not appreciate the way it was practiced in our society. It became too negative in the hands of those that wanted to use it to fight.

The more I practiced law, the more I realized that the nature of the practice did not suit my personality or my career goals. I started to become restless and knew that there were other ways I could share my talents and expertise with people and organizations to improve the world.

I did a lot of soul searching and arrived at the conclusion that I needed to leave the traditional practice of law and become an entrepreneur in order to truly make a difference.

While I highly value my legal education and experience, the practice of law was simply not for me.

I made a conscious decision to use my experience as a trusted advisor and a counselor to help people in a productive and collaborative way. That’s how I found coaching, consulting, speaking, and writing, and it is exactly what I love to do and what I was meant to do. I use my legal analysis, critical thinking, problem-solving, and counseling skills in a positive manner now to help people on a daily basis.

SheilaDelsonLisa, working with you these past months has s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d me beyond what I knew into a realm of possibility because the journey allowed me to break out of my own self-imposed shackles. It was hard work; I did a lot of kicking and screaming! Yet you were always there to support my every challenge with the comfort of your knowledge and expertise. You helped me to do what I needed to so that ‘my work’ could continue and grow. There is a lot more to do, but I now have a road map so I know how to get there. Fabulous! Thank you!

Sheila Delson, CPO-CD, FREEDomain Concepts, LLC

I was an instructor and interpreter at the NY School for the Deaf and am proficient in American Sign Language.

My cousin and his wife are deaf and I grew up obsessed with Helen Keller and the Miracle Worker. In order to fulfill my dream of teaching the deaf, I worked as an instructor and interpreter at the NY School for the Deaf for 3 years while attending law school in the evening. It was one of the best experiences of my life and helped solidify that the teacher archetype is strong within me. To this day, I feel that no matter what I am doing, it involves, at its core, some aspect of teaching. Sign language and deaf culture remain a great passion of mine, and I am constantly figuring out ways to incorporate them into my business and life.

I studied abroad in The Netherlands focusing on government, culture and art, with an emphasis on international law.

This was a significant experience and started my life-long love affair with Europe. It is one of my dreams and intentions to live in Europe at some point in the future with my husband, specifically in Italy! For now, I enjoy traveling to Europe on vacation and am hoping to book a speaking engagement there soon, and hold my first Women Entrepreneurs and Leaders Retreat in Tuscany in the next few years. To prepare, I am taking Italian language classes. Fantastico!

I have been coupled with my husband, Sean, since I was a freshman in college!IMG_5546

We met when I was a swim team coach and instructor, and he was a lifeguard, at the town pool where Sean grew up. I still consider him my soul mate, best friend, and partner in life and love.

I am child free by choice.

I love children, am a former special education teacher, and have many nieces, nephews and God children, but chose to focus my maternal instincts on animals (I have two awesome dogs and am married to a veterinarian), other people’s children, my clients, my business, and the Earth. I think being a parent is a calling and have a profound respect for those that choose to have children. But I also truly feel it is a choice that not all of us make. (And yes, I had/have a wonderful relationship with my own parents!)

I am an avid active enthusiast.

I love to mix it up and move my body with dancing, kickboxing, running, walking, hiking, bike riding, rock climbing, and many other active pursuits.

I have completed a marathon, a half triathlon, hiked the Grand Canyon, and biked through Provence. Exercise and outdoor activities are so important to me that I make an appointment with myself on my calendar to get my exercise and outdoor activity on my schedule, and then treat those appointments with as much respect as the ones I make with others, meaning… I keep them!

SusanChitwood2Lisa is top notch! She is inspiring, encouraging and cuts to the heart of the issue to offer right on solutions. And she’s entertaining (and organized) to boot!

Susan Chitwood, Maypop Design

I lost my beloved Mom in 2010 to pancreatic cancer when she was only 63 years old.

Losing my Mom was the hardest thing I have ever had to bear. We were best friends in addition to being mother-daughter. This tragic loss has made me even more determined to live life to the fullest.

The view out of my office at my last law job was of the Twin Towers, and I lived in Manhattan at the time.

The terrorist attacks of 9-11 affected me personally and served as a catalyst for jumping ship from my law career and becoming an entrepreneur. They also serve as a reminder that we only get one dance so it is important to seize the day and live your best life on a daily basis!

MaryStephaniePasqualettoI have Lisa now as a mentor and coach for a women entrepreneur mastermind program that I am doing…And it is truly the best experience I have ever had.

Mary Stephanie Pasqualetto

I incorporate my passions into my business.

A defining moment in my journey as an entrepreneur came in 2008 when I was voted Number 1 Speaker of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) Conference in Reno, NV, and won the talent show for doing the number “All That Jazz” from the Broadway show, Chicago.IMG_0208

Here I was in fishnet stockings singing and dancing on a Wednesday night at the casino, and then wearing business attire and presenting business and legal issues to entrepreneurs on Friday morning. Talk about your worlds colliding!

It made me realize that in order to love my business and life, I needed to stop compartmentalizing everything and just be my authentic self.

What a difference it has made in my business and life!

My clients respect and admire that I am able to live a life of passion and creativity, while running a thriving professional and successful business. They tease me that I am like an explosion of right brain and left brain… and I take that as a compliment. So I call 2008 the year I fully embraced my Renaissance spirit and allowed it to infiltrate my business in surprising and refreshing ways!

Now my business is a wonderful combination of assisting clients with being more productive, successful, profitable and improving personal and professional development and effectiveness.

Lisa is the most inspirational, influential, and motivating coach to experience. I have had her coach me as a mastermind mentor for the WED/PEP Program, and now for her own La Dolce Vita Program from LMG University. She is the only one that I trust as a mentor, and have found that as an entrepreneur my ideas for all of my passionate pursuits became both clear and organized after attending her lectures. Lisa uses real hands on approach to work within so that you will empower yourself, and also will be able to dig deep within in order to pursue your true passion and turn it into a future filled with profitable benefits. Being that I am also now presently a law student trying to get through my law degree, and also being affiliated within entertainment and coaching women artist in this industry, I feel 100% confident with her coaching since she herself also has knowledge within these three areas. In conclusion, I would highly recommend Lisa, and give this testimonial as a true fact that upon completion in one of her sessions, you will then become aware that anything that you may have previously found to be out of your reach or you may have thought to be “impossible” will now and always become “possible.”

~M.S. Butler

I relocated 3,000 miles across country in 2012 and started a whole new life on the West Coast.

I am always one to live life to the fullest, so when given the opportunity to move clear across the country from New York to California in July 2012 for my husband to advance his career as a veterinarian by doing a 3 year residency in veterinary internal medicine, I said, “Let’s go for it!”

The move allowed me to expand personally and professionally on so many levels: geographically, yes, but much deeper than that. We sold our house, left behind family and friends (whom we, of course, miss!) downsized, and embraced a new life out here on the West Coast. It prompted me to rebrand and expand my business, make new friends, cultivate new hobbies (and reconnect with old ones too!), and prioritize and simplify in many ways while I support my husband through his demanding 3 year residency.

“He who does not get fun and enjoyment out of everyday…
needs to reorganize his life.”

~ George Matthew Adams

I Live a La Dolce Vita Lifestyle

IMG_1047I am Italian-American and grew up in NY in a large Italian-American area. My family is made up of opera singers, poets, chefs, tailors, artists, and more. I guess you can say that I come from a long line of passionate Italians!

In 2005, my husband and I visited Italy. Ah, Bella Italia! There is nothing like it in the world. The people, food, culture, art, architecture, language, and attitude of Italy is special. I felt like I had literally come home. We realized a life long dream of visiting Italy this past summer 2015 for an entire month and loved every minute of it! And I have been taking Italian language classes to finally learn how to speak the language of my ancestors.

But in the meantime, what I do on a daily basis is bring the best of Italy to me by living a La Dolce Vita kind of life. I make time to enjoy my passions and hobbies, cultivate my relationships, maintain a positive attitude, break through my fears, and practice self care in all of its forms. I try to bring the passion and spirit of Italy to me!

And that’s what I want to share with you… how to live a La Dolce Vita kind of life no matter where you live geographically. La Dolce Vita is more of a mindset, attitude and lifestyle than a place.

Christine-SinclairWhat a fantastic class last night! I always get so much from your classes, but this last class blew my socks off. Everyone was changed last night. We all stayed after you left and talked about what happened for quite a while afterwards. I’m so sorry to see the classes coming to a close. Thanks so much for everything.

Christine Sinclair,
participant in 6-month Women’s Enterprise Development Center (WEDC) Mastermind Group

Isn’t it time you fell in love with your life again???

CIMG0173You might think that it’s selfish to invest in yourself… (we will nip that in the bud with the No Negative Self Talk Rule!)

But your happiness depends on YOU…and you deserve it.

Join me for this amazing 6 session program that will help you:

    • Evaluate what’s working and not working in your life, and identify areas for transformation.
    • Develop realistic and fun techniques to help you grow.
    • Use productivity in a proactive and positive way to set boundaries and better master your use of time and resources.
    • Overcome Cinderella’s Ugly Step Sisters: The 3 Blocks to Success (The Perfection Trap, The Comparison Trap and the Impostor Syndrome)
    • Get real about things you’ve said you really wanted to do and have in your life but never give yourself permission to implement.
    • Adopt a positive mindset and learn about cutting edge research on the power of happiness.
    • Learn effective tools for dealing with difficult, toxic or negative people (including you!).
    • Stop giving away your power to the Negative Nellies and Neds.
    • Recognize and exploit your own greatest assets.
    • Get comfortable with who you are vs. keeping up with the Joneses.
    • Learn to live within your means while still maintaining an abundant mindset.
    • Balance preparing for the future with living well today in terms of financial wellness.
    • Get your house in order – literally and figuratively!
    • Learn the power of commitment and consistency.
    • Tap into your passions, figure out what they are, and how to enjoy and manage them.

Lisa is an amazing Renaissance Woman of many talents. She is passionate about her work. She makes her work FUN. Lisa is the ultimate problem solver. I love listening to Lisa during our group coaching sessions where she skillfully listens and then offers her suggestions, ALWAYS with respect, kindness and CLARITY.

The first time I spoke with her on a one-to-one basis, I already started to feel more organized. Being a part of her online group has helped me in so many ways to make even the smallest changes to make my life more efficient.

In Lisa’s online group coaching program, she acknowledges each person’s concerns. She points out the positive things that they do and helps problem solve how they can do something different. There is no criticism. Lisa is warm, caring and passionate about helping others do and be the best that they can. It is helpful to hear others tell their stories of paperwork pile ups, stresses with family and business/work, etc. as it makes you feel that you are not alone. Also, to receive encouragement from others is helpful — we are all in this together.

I am so pleased to have been a part of her group coaching program and look forward to joining one of her programs again in the future.

Mena Messina Genetti, Warwick, NY

Schedule & Description of Sessions

Session 1

Crazy Busy Is Not a Badge of Honor: Positive and Proactive Productivity

  • Productivity Tips and Strategies
  • Prioritizing Self Care: Let Go, Say No, and Make You a Priority

IMG_6055Session 2

Become a Passionista!

  • How to Tap Into Your Passions & Manage Them
  • Hobbies & Interests
  • Volunteerism/Philanthropic Endeavors/Legacy
  • Don’t Be a See-Saw Anymore: Go Beyond Balance and Engage in Life-Work Integration

Session 3

Mind, Body & Soul

  • Health & Fitness
  • Personal Spirituality
  • C’Mon Get Happy: The Power of Positivity

Session 4

Get Your “House” in Order – Literally & Figuratively

  • Home Projects
  • Financial Wellness
    Preparing for the Future, While Still Living Well Today
    Living Within Your Means but With an Abundant Mindset
  • Rethink Your Definition of Retirement
  • Your Exit Strategy: It’s Not Morbid to Prepare for — It’s Smart!

Session 5

Connection & Relationships

  • Family & Friends
  • Passion & Romance
  • Dealing with Difficult People
  • Say No to Toxic Relationships and Negative Nellies & Neds

Session 6

Putting it all Together: Living Your La Dolce Vita Life!

  • Tools for Ongoing Support
  • Consistency & Commitment
  • “Believing Eyes”

“There are two things to aim at in life:
first, to get what you want,
and after that, to enjoy it.”

~ Logan Pearsall Smith


kathythrasherI first met Lisa at the Interior Redesign Industry Specialists (IRIS) annual conference in Denver, CO where she presented a seminar on how to add Organizing to your Redesign Business offerings. I was truly impressed with Lisa’s knowledge, professionalism and energy. I then participated in Lisa’s six-week DECIDE to be Organized on-line group coaching program.

My goal was two-fold in that I was looking for tips for my own personal organizing challenges as well as looking to gain more expertise to pass on to my clients. I found the six-week program to be very beneficial on both fronts. Sharing stories and challenges with others on the call helped to inspire me to tackle the things I had been putting off. In turn, being able to offer encouragement and understanding to others on the call was rewarding as well.

As I go through my old boxes of ‘stuff’ or work with others going through the same process, I continually ask myself Lisa’s three key questions – “Do I Love it? Do I Use it? Do I need it?” If not – then out it goes! Thank you Lisa for your inspiration and for offering this on-line coaching program. It has been an eye-opening and rewarding journey!

Kathy Thrasher, Alameda, CA R3Redesign.com

MelanieSerraI just want you to know how happy I am to be working with you on business and life coaching. I feel like I have a new lease on life! I wish I had worked with you years ago. You are awesome, and the perfect fit for me. We accomplish so much in our coaching sessions. Thanks again.

Melanie Serra, www.interior-revivals.com

This program will force you to take a cold hard look at your life, dissect it, and put it back together in La Dolce Vita style so that you can fall back in love with your life (or maybe fall in love with it for the first time ever!)!

If you want results and are ready to live The Sweet Life, then join us!

Lisa is wonderful! Her tutelage, calming influence, and goal-directed persona have allowed me to achieve optimal performance. I highly recommend her to anyone, especially those interested in taking their organizational work and home space, as well as pursuits of goals, to the next level. Great person, easy-going personality, and inspirational support.

S.L., Major, United States Military Academy,
West Point, NY

MichelleOSullivanTaking the “DECIDE to be Organized” 6-week coaching program with Lisa Montanaro was a business and personal decision that has been so motivating and empowering! It has changed me in so many positive ways.

I am also a Professional Organizer and help others all the time with their organizing dilemmas. I took the DECIDE program to help myself, and learn from Lisa both personally and professionally.

Over the six weeks, I had a sense of direction and was able to focus more on the areas that needed help, as I felt accountable. The weekly calls were a time to share and get feedback from the other participants, and for Lisa to share her knowledge and expertise. Lisa was so understanding and encouraging, and had a way of inspiring each of us to be better.

I learned so much from this program and would recommend it to anyone who knows they want to make changes, and just needs some help to get there!

Michelle O’Sullivan, Saving Spaces, Burlington, Ontario, Canada

La Dolce Vita

Sign Up Below to be Notified of the
“Do It Yourself” Version Launching in 2016

If you have any questions, email lisa@lisamontanaro.com.

BrittNewmanHere’s the difference between you and others:

You give CONTENT. I could end the call and be sooooo much better off than when I started and have true ideas and pieces that I can use.
Many others are teases – it’s all about marketing for the next venture, and nothing to walk away with.

I have always known that there is more to you than just finding the next client. Thank you for really sharing things that can be implemented.
I really believe your passion is about helping people and businesses to become their best, not just about promoting your own business and finding new clients.
Thank you for truly sharing from your wealth of knowledge.

You are a whirlwind of energy, innovation, and authenticity. Thank you for sharing and thank you for caring.


Britt Newman, Britt Newman Design Concepts

ASTD Sacramento Handout

DECIDE to be Organized:
An Empowering Process to
Boost Productivity & Change Your Life

ASTD Sacramento Chapter
November 18, 2013

Thanks for attending my presentation for the ASTD Sacramento Chapter. It was a pleasure to present to you, and assist you with becoming more organized and productive.

Below is the presentation handout.


I hope our paths cross again…

Warm Regards,


NAWBO Handout


Thanks for attending my presentation, “Let Go to Grow: Delegating & Outsourcing for Your Business” for your NAWBO group on Tuesday, October 29, 2013!

As promised, you can access your handout here.


Warm Regards,


Hi there!PowerUp

You are now on the Priority List to be the first to hear all of the details of my new upcoming PowerUp! Mastermind Program, which starts January 7, 2014.

I can’t wait to share all of it with you!

Stay tuned, we will be in touch very soon.

If you have any questions in the meantime, email lisa@lisamontanaro.com.

Warmly – Lisa

use_technology_wiselyWith all of the technology devices at our fingertips these days, it is easier than ever to stay connected 24-7. But, how do we balance the need and desire to stay connected with the danger of technology taking over? By continuing to be the master of technology, not the servant!

I travel a lot for business in my role as a productivity consultant and professional speaker. Indeed, I am writing this column on my IPad at an airport, and will then email it to my online business manager (how’s that for 21st century technology?). When on the road, it is vital for me to be able to stay connected. But it is a constant balance between using technology to stay connected and get my work done, save time and be more productive, while not letting technology take over my life. To that end, here are some tips to help you stay connected, but maybe not exactly 24-7. Just because you can b e glued to your device doesn’t mean you should be!

Protect Yourself – Consider allowing only select people to break through to the inner sanctum. Just because you can be reached 24-7 doesn’t mean everyone needs to have access to you. Don’t share your itinerary and contact information with everyone. Use voice mail and email wisely to protect yourself by choosing when and how to reply back to people (see next point!).

Choose Times to Check In – Instead of constantly checking your email and voice mail messages, choose times of the day to check in. That way, you do not interrupt the flow of work (or play). This will help you be more proactive and less reactive. Studies show that email is a huge time bandit. It also creates an unnecessary need to continuously check it, which is a major interrupter in most people’s day. Plan your check-ins so that you are not reacting like Pavlov’s dog, salivating whenever you get an email.

appsThere’s an App for That – Choose which applications you will use on a regular basis and download only those apps to your smart phone or tablet. Yes, there are a multitude of apps available today, but the average person only uses 5 on a regular basis. Choose wisely, as apps can become electronic clutter and use an enormous amount of memory space on your device.

Use “the Cloud” – With today’s cloud-based technology, it is so easy to maintain information in a safe and easily accessible location so that you can access it when you need it on-the-go. From your contacts and client database, to your calendar and documents, everything can be stored in the cloud. Take a good, hard look at Google. It offers a lot more than people realize and can be your best friend when you need to stay connected away from home or the office. I also personally love Dropbox and Evernote, both great cloud-based tools for accessing notes, documents, and other data.

Be Courteous – You may be a technology junkie and love the idea of not only being accessible 24-7, but using your devices constantly to make phone calls, dictate reports, etc. If you are in a business setting, this is perfectly acceptable in this day and age. In fact, many commuter trains look like a technology explosion took place! But if you are in a quiet setting, or perhaps one that is not focused on business (some restaurants for example), be courteous to others and do not over-use your tech tools to the dismay of everyone around you. There is a time and place for using our technology to stay connected, and sometimes abstaining is the polite thing to do!

Coaching Challenge: Try to use the above tips to practice staying connected in a way that allows you to be more productive without feeling like you are addicted to technology. Let technology be the servant, not the master!

ASTD Conference Handout


Thanks for attending the 3rd Annual Northern California Training & Development Conference on Friday, September 13, 2013. I loved being your keynote speaker, and hope it helped motivate you into taking action to get off the see-saw of life-work balance and start practicing life-work integration!

As promised, you can access the content from my keynote here.


To help keep you inspired and reinforce what I shared, please visit https://www.lisamontanaro.com/toolkit/ to access your complimentary digital toolkit, consisting of an audio program on boosting your productivity, an audio program on passion management, and an ebook called Create Your Purpose, Live Your Passion. You will then receive my free ezine, which offers tips, articles, and advice on how to be more passionate, purposeful, and productive. I would be thrilled to have you as a member of my online family. However, if at any time the e-zine becomes “clutter” in your inbox, you can remove yourself from the list by hitting the unsubscribe button at the bottom of every e-zine issue.

Please connect with me on social media if you are active on LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter. You can click the handy little images at the upper right hand corner of my site to visit my profiles.

I will be conducting a presentation for the ASTD Sacramento chapter on November 18th at 11:30 am called “DECIDE to be Organized: An Empowering Process for Change.” I will share ways to be more organized and productive. I’d love it if you can join me. Be sure to let me know that you were an ASTD Conference attendee and say hello.

I hope our paths cross again…

Warm Regards,


Last week, I sent an email with details about my awesome new 12-week group business coaching program, Successfully Self Employed Semester. Some of you took quick action and registered. Welcome!

Many of you emailed, called or connected with me on Facebook to ask questions and let me know that you are seriously considering joining us. Thanks for your interest!

A lot of people are asking for more time to consider the program, but still benefit from the Early Bird Rate. I know a lot of you are on vacation these last few weeks of summer, or dealing with kids going back to school and off to college.

early_bird_extendedWell, I have a nice surprise for you!

I’m extending the early bird rate for a week until Monday, August 26th. As this program is geared towards newer entrepreneurs, I want keep the program affordable so that you can get access to the help you need and crave. The early bird investment is just $697 for the entire 12-week program. (And there’s even a 2-payment option to spread things out a bit if that helps).

Who Is the Perfect Candidate for this Group Coaching Program?

  • Those that learn well in a group environment. Participants will have the opportunity to interact with each other, and share challenges and solutions with the group. All calls will be open line and you will be able to ask questions and get coaching on the spot!
  • Those that are on a budget and cannot afford one-on-one coaching services. Many of you have expressed interest in accessing my private coaching, but couldn’t invest at that level. This is the perfect answer for you! You get me for 12 weeks in a small intimate group setting!
  • Those that crave structure in order to reach their business goals. There is a robust curriculum that we will follow which is great content. But we will also have a lot of fun, and go off syllabus when we need to!
  • Those that benefit from an accountability aspect. You have the opportunity to report your progress each week, as well as have access to me and other participants on our private Facebook group.

Join us. It’s going to be a great “semester!”