Remote Hack No.4 _Watch Your Back: But more importantly watch your health! Check out 4 simple things to keep in mind when setting-up your new work space.
(1) Make your health a priority. Take advantage of this freedom to create a work set-up that considers your preferences AND your health. Don’t settle for whatever desk and chair you have hanging around the house. Be good to yourself and take the time to select office furniture that suits you and your physical needs.
(2) Set up your equipment where it’s best for you.
Position your computer screen so it’s at eye-level. Adjustable desks can help, but a stack of books or a box will work in a pinch. Set-up your keyboard and mouse low enough that your wrists are angled down. Selecting the right chair is crucial, but chairs aren’t one-size-fits-all. Remember there isn’t a single “right” chair for everyone. Look for a chair that adjusts to fit your natural posture and allows your feet to be flat on the floor.
(3) Don’t settle for an inappropriate set-up. If you’re going to spend a lot of time in front of the computer, consider the downstream consequences. Poorly designed work spaces can lead to higher risk of carpal tunnel syndrome along with increased neck and back pain. No thanks! Theses sorts of injuries don’t simply happen all at once, they develop over time due to poor posture and prolonged sitting.
(4) Don’t forget to move! Get up! Walk around! Take your conferences calls while on a stroll. Do squats at your desk or calf raises in the kitchen while you make lunch. It’s all about the regular intervals and switching things up throughout the day.
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Have you ever wondered how some people manage to have it all while you’re struggling to keep up and feeling exhausted at the end of your day? The answer is to slow down, so that you can speed up.

Society has taught us that to be successful, we need to be out in the world accomplishing, achieving, and acquiring during every moment of our waking day. Whether you learned it from your parents or your peers, this is likely a pattern you’re familiar with and it’s at the core of today’s epidemic of overwhelm, exhaustion, and burnout. Are you ready to break the mold?

Part One: Being Mindful With Yourself

  1. Get Restful Sleep

An evening wind down routine is essential to promoting rest and restoration. Disconnect from the busyness of your day. Try turning off the television by 8 p.m., dimming the lights or turning off the blue light on your phones and devices.  Run a hot bath, do some light reading or journaling. Using essential oils to calm your mind, playing some chill music, and getting to bed with lights out by 10:30 p.m. will help you ease into a nice restful state of sleep.

  1. Rise Early

“The early bird gets the worm” -and the early riser gets clarity of mind. The early morning hours, before the rest of the world is awake, are some of the most peaceful hours in the day. Spend this time doing contemplative practices like prayer, envisioning your goals, and connecting more deeply with your purpose. Setting your alarm for between 5-6am and washing the sleep away leaves you time to get quiet before the noise of the day sets in.

  1. Meditate

Committing to spend 20 minutes with your breath each day, whether that’s mediation or another form of mindfulness practice will help you develop and cultivate a greater level of self-awareness. Awareness is critical for getting out of your mind and into the present moment. Taking time to sit in stillness and silence each day connects you more deeply to who you truly are—outside of your positions and possessions—and shines a light on what’s truly important to you.

  1. Get Physical Exercise

Getting the body moving increases your circulation and does wonders for improving your mood, spiking energy levels, and even combating many common health issues.

  1. Spend Time In Nature

Find time each day to connect with nature in whatever way you’re able, and begin to notice the calming effects it has on you throughout the rest of your day.


Part TWO: Being Mindful With Your Business

  1. Eliminate Distractions

Be intentional in your choices so that you do things the right way rather than just try to complete them as quickly as possible. All the little things you figure you can — or want to — get done in a hurry can distract you from the underlying journey. Take care not to create bigger distractions, such as taking on tasks or projects that might deviate from your overall goals.

  1. Choose Opportunities Wisely

Be opportunistic about what you’ve learned in practice rather than forcing yourself into spaces that aren’t the right fit. For example, taking on clients outside of your practice area when you’re already busy, then becoming frazzled when you end up devoting disproportionate amounts of energy towards them. By sticking to and building on what you know, rather than attempting to expand at the wrong times, you can avoid creating an artificial need to go fast.

  1. Focus on Quality, Not Quantity

Resist the urge to bring on new clientele just because you can or the money looks good. Not all money is good money. Quality clients generate more long-term revenue and better align with your long-term goals. Moving slower doesn’t mean turning down revenue but rather being more purposeful to generate that revenue.

  1. Simplify

Streamline processes and technology and develop an automated workflow for you and/or your team. Doing so will free your team to pursue the right opportunities and focus on what’s more important than the busywork.

  1. Run because you can not because you need to
    Running and rushing may feel like the same thing, but businesses and business professionals that can distinguish the difference between them — and the difference is big! — can better zero in on their goals. Rushing implies desperation. If you are hurrying home, you are trying to get there as fast as possible, drifting through stop signs and ignoring yellow lights, because the destination is the only thing that’s important.

Running retains urgency, but with control and intention. Rushing through a stop sign is inherently dangerous, and by doing so you risk never reaching your destination. You can progress quickly, but you should recognize there will be times when it’s better to slow down and readjust your speed.

When making important decisions, walking is the best choice because it gives you time to consider every option and every angle. When you are ready to execute the decision you’ve walked to make, you can and often should run. Again, you aren’t rushing the action, but rather approaching it with enthusiasm.

For inspiration, motivation and outside-the-box ideas for living a healthy and happy remote work life follow me:

Instagram @SahmraStevensonEsq or

Instagram @OfficeWithoutWalls


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Everyday there is enough information flowing through your brain and your business to sink a small ship. Staying on top of things requires you making sense of it all and staying organized. Don’t drown. Keep yourself afloat by writing things down.

I was the post-it note queen for years, but over the past year I’ve transitioned to taking notes digitally. Fortunately there are a host of applications to streamline that process. Some of those include Microsoft OneNote, To Do, Day One, Evernote, Notes + and Notability.  Digital note taking takes time to get used to but will save you tremendous time in the long run.

Set up systems that work for YOU, to help you keep track. Think about the information you need and how you want to use it. It doesn’t have to be complicated. You can use a single notebook, a series of notebooks, some sort of filing  system, or if you prefer digital options, productivity apps. (Read more about digital workflows and productivity application options here)

Organize your day the night before by writing things out so you can work with purpose straight out the gate. Include details, stray thoughts, ideas to mention, names, numbers and anything else you might want to have at your fingertips during the day. Don’t waste time searching for what you need later. Add notes throughout the day, updating for easy reference.

Flag your deliverables and mark your priorities for easy view during meetings. A million things will try and interfere with your memory, getting it down in the moment eliminates that risk. It’s also a good idea to follow up on calls and video conferences with a digital message outlining deliverables agreed upon, deadlines and next steps to make sure everyone is on the same page.

Get the most from your notes. Listening engages one part of the brain while reading and writing engage other parts. The more of your brain you use, the more likely you are to remember. As you review your notes later, you’ll see patterns and connections between things. This can give you new insights and ideas about how to improve, grow and stay on track as a remote professional.

Be detailed. As you take notes, note the date, subject and persons associated with what you’re writing about. Full sentences ate necessary and it does not need to be perfect. Just get enough down to jog your memory later. You may even find yourself developing your own hacks for simplifying the note taking process.

For inspiration, motivation and outside-the-box ideas for living a healthy and happy remote work life follow me:

Instagram @SahmraStevensonEsq or

Instagram @OfficeWithoutWalls


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Setting up an automated workflow for your business is a personalized process.  There is no right or wrong way when it comes to getting something in place. It’s more like trial and error. But have no doubt, digital and automated workflows are quickly becoming the new normal.

Workflow automation is the simplification of an operating process that can be applied to tasks or projects. 2019 saw a dramatic increase in the number of businesses that are turning to automated workflows for increased efficiency and productivity.

Automated workflows are all about designing and implementing rules within a digital asset management system related to tasks, data, and files that reduce the drain on people resources for monotonous, repetitive tasks. Consequently, automation improvements are achieved in accuracy, efficiency, timeliness and even teamwork. That’s a good look for any business model.

With workflow automation, a digital asset management system can prevent teams from doing the same job multiple times – or even from missing a task completely. A tight workflow takes time to develop, but there are tools that can help.

Before I jump-in to a few of the most popular apps and digital workflow options available today, there are a couple of things that are important to keep in mind regardless of which one you end up choosing.

Be Consistent. Transitioning to a digital or automated workflow will come quickly to some and slowly to others, but they will increase your productivity if you work hard and stay consistent.

Integrations are key. Digital workflows work best when they are accessible from multiple devices, and their utility increases when if you choose ones that have the capability to integrate with your management, and other software.

Be detailed. The more detailed you are when setting up your workflow automations, the better your experience will be. Workflows work FOR you, but only as well as they are set-up to.

Include your team. An automated team experience is a beautiful thing. Include your team in making your plans. Find out what works for them and your tribe as a whole.

Asana organizes everything from company objectives to routine tasks in one place so teams are clear about priorities and responsibilities, and you can monitor progress in real time to keep projects on track. Asana pricing starts at $9.99 per month, per user. There is a free version of Asana.Asana does offer a free trial.
If you like visuals, pops of color and fun interactions, might be the choice for you., an award-winning workflow management tool, streamlines everyday business processes for optimal productivity and efficiency. does offer a free trial. There are plans starting at $8/month. There is no free version available for use.

If you’re comfortable working in spreadsheets, Smartsheet might appeal to you. While it brags multiple user content views, it’s organization as a platform is rooted in spread-“sheets” as it’s name alludes to. Those just getting started will find it less user friendly than some of its competitors. Users who like generating detailed progress reports and tracking start and stop times for work being done will appreciate its functions. Sheets does offer a free trial. There are plans starting at $15/month. There is a free version available for use.

Trello is great for beginner workflow masters. It’s set up is so simple it’s hard to imagine that it offers over 100 integration options with other business applications, software and web based programs. Tello has a free version. Paid plans start at $9.99/month. There is a free trial available for use.

Rindle Workflow Automation
With digital workflow options, the visuals matter and Rindle does not skimp in that department. It’s boards are similar to the ones used in Trello, but it allows for changes in how you view your automations that is more like Smartsheet.  Rindle Workflow Automation pricing starts at $39.00 per month.There is not a free version of Rindle Workflow Automation.Rindle Workflow Automation does offer a free trial.

Microsoft Teams
File sharing, collaborating and team communication are what Microsoft Teams does best. Some of the interactive components available with Asana, Monday and other options are lost here, but there is an increased synchronicity for users across all of the Microsoft platforms, and file sharing is a breeze. (For pricing options visit

There are literally hundreds of digital workflow options to choose from. Do your research and take advantage of free trials before committing to anything. The best workflow option will consider the following features:

  • Calendar Management
  • Access controls/permissions
  • Forms management
  • Mobile access
  • Third-party Integrations
  • Task Management
  • Documents Management and sharing

For inspiration, motivation and outside-the-box ideas for living a healthy and happy remote work life follow me:

Instagram @SahmraStevensonEsq or

Instagram @OfficeWithoutWalls


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As a remote professional, you can create your perfect work environment. When you work from home (or the road) having a work space that makes you happy to work helps with your productivity. It should be inviting, comfortable and suitable for you so it’s easy to work without distractions.


Personalize your work space. While the space you’ve chosen dictates the set-up of your office to a certain extent; consider this as a unique opportunity to get creative and personal. Think about the work that you need to do and the equipment you need yo do it. Consider your style and what helps you to get going and keep going. Sometimes that’s the basketball hoop on the back of the door, and sometimes it a bunch of windows allowing natural light in (for me it’s access to a treadmill and my standing desk). It’s entirely up to you.

Be deliberate. Put stuff where it it’s easy to use and least disruptive to your work flow. Think convenience, function and style. Do you make frequent trips to the printer? If yes, why is it all the way across the room or in another one entirely? Make things easier for you to automate your day.

Think visuals.  Besides a computer screen, what do you look at all day? Your surroundings matter.  Uplifting quotes, pictures or even a vision board are great ways to create positive focus in your space.

Think like a minimalist to help reduce clutter and mess. Pay attention to the things that frequently pile up on your desk and then decide whether it needs a permanent home or if it’s something like a paper file that can be eliminated all together. (For more about going paperless check-out my tutorials on YouTube here –

Adapt the space to your style rather than adapting style to the space. If the power outlet isn’t in the right spot, get an extension cord. If the best place for the desk is in a darker part of the room, get a great lamp. The only way to set up the office is the way that allows you to do your best work.

Get into action! Use the following questions to jump start your changes.

  • Are there things that are slowing you down or disrupting your workflow regularly?
  • What are your style preferences? What feel aids your productive spirit.
  • Does everything have a place? If not, decide where it should go.
  • Do you have what you need within reach? What do you store elsewhere to make yourself move every once and awhile?
  • Does your work space inspire you?


For inspiration, motivation and outside-the-box ideas for living a healthy and happy remote work life follow me:

Instagram @SahmraStevensonEsq or

Instagram @OfficeWithoutWalls


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Whether I like it or not, many people are skeptical about other people working remotely. Some even think it directly correlates with decreased productivity. But that’s not the case. Remote work is so much more than the stereotypes of Netflix binging and pajama lounging. It’s a workstyle that encourages a balanced, flexibible and healthy lifestyle. Just as importantly, when applied and executed well, it’s a business style that allows companies to do and be more.

In case you haven’t figured it out yet, I’m a big fan of this lifestyle. And, honestly, it’s not going anywhere anytime soon (sorry, haters).

The percentage of people in the United States who work remotely full-time has increased 159% from 2017 to 2019. And some people even predict that remote work will soon be the new normal. It’s a cultural shift, and it’s here to stay.

Despite its increasing popularity, though, it’s not an easy adjustment for everyone. These shifts don’t happen overnight, you know? And you can’t let your preferred lifestyle interfere with your team’s productivity or morale. The bottom line is you’ll need to put a little bit more time and effort into making sure that communication and projects run smoothly. That’s okay and it is certainly worth the effort. After awhile it will just be your new normal.

Based on my experience of running a remote/hybrid office for the past almost four (4) years, and managing a team that is 100% off-site, here are some quick and easy ways that you can be nip stereotypes in the rear end and rise to the occasion to be the kind of remote employee your boss and teammates love and love to work with.

Ramp-Up Communication! It’s all about the quality and consistency of communication.

  1. Schedule Regular Meetings
    Regular meetings are crucial but so is their timing. Remote teams should have at least one set check-in day and time each week. Monday mornings work for my team but there’s no rule as to what day(s) of the week to go with. (Check-out my article on keeping remote teams motivated and mindful)
  1. Be Incredibly Detailed
    The more details you can exchange the better. I sometimes give my full-time paralegal play-by-plays as I’m moving around throughout the day like, “leaving courthouse A now, headed to the post office and then courthouse B.”  She doesn’t necessarily need to know my every move but I imagine it giving some sort of structure to our virtual work environment. After all if I was in the office with her she would know what I was doing and when I was coming and going. Providing extra details like this contributes to our level of connection throughout the day.
  1. Respond Promptly
    Be aware that not everyone is going to be happy about your new workstyle and they will find any chance they can to point out issues with communication. Responding to emails and phone calls promptly is the best way to cancel that. Do set boundaries though. My staff aren’t scared to tell me when they aren’t taking calls outside of regular work hours. I expect and respect that.
  2. Provide Progress Updates Via Work Flow Software
    We utilize Asana for our team workflow and I turn to Trello for my own personal boards and task lists. There are plenty of options, I’ve tried most of them (free trials or free versions) to get a feel for what I liked best. It’ll be a personal choice but also think about your team and what will be best for them. Other Workflow technology that is effective and affordable include platforms like Basecamp (for larger teams), (specific industries, check the website), Slack and Microsoft Teams.
  1. Hold Yourself Accountable
    Take the initiative and set regular check-ins with your boss or supervisor as well as the teammates you collaborate with. Add more detail into all modes of communications (with reason—no one cares that you’re taking a bathroom break). Be responsive, proactive, and reliable. If you do all these things, it’ll feel like you never left the office.


For inspiration, motivation and outside-the-box ideas for living a healthy and happy work life follow me:

Instagram @SahmraStevensonEsq or

Instagram @OfficeWithoutWalls


Facebook: @OfficeWithoutWallsTM

Facebook: @SASLawOffices


For mobile/virtual business owners meeting clients in public is pretty common practice. This article will introduce the discussion of protecting your client’s privacy in the process.

Whether you own a mobile/virtual business or not, you’ve likely taken advantage of a coffee shop or other public venue to meet with a client. NOTE: If you have done this then you have whether knowingly or not, utilized the convenience of a mobile office and an Office Without Walls™).   Starting out I did this exclusively to keep my overhead down and more and more this the preferred method of avoiding costs for office space where it’s not necessary.

Cross those widely known points with one of the most common questions I get after presentations which is “aren’t you concerned about violating client privacy in public?” and you get to what inspired the topic of this article.

Although client privacy, the Model Rules and fiduciary duties for business owners are commonly addressed topics especially in a digital age, most literature on the subject points to concerns with things like electronic data and data breaches, and there isn’t much written content available on the topic as it relates to client meetings in public, and public disclosures specifically.

  1. Physical Positioning & Awareness

Awareness of your surrounding should begin before you even arrive at a meeting location. Visit in advance if possible or look for photos online if you are not already familiar with the venue set-up. Arrive early and position yourself in the ideal location so you’re not asking the client to move or rearrange themselves.

Plan to place yourself in a seat with your back to the wall. Be mindful of what is on the wall behind you when you do this and make sure that an unintentional reflection of what is on your laptop screen doesn’t undue your efforts at maintaining privacy. Be mindful throughout the course of the meeting with your client. Share tangible and digital information with an awareness of who can see it other than the client and yourself.

  1. Presentation Styles

Choose the presentation style you want to utilize with a consideration for how it will not only impact actual privacy concerns but also your client’s perception of your interest in those concerns. Your client should feel comfortable and that you are being mindful of their information and privacy.  Consider how you might be able to address perceptions while at the same time contributing to the overall client experience while in your mobile office.

For example, think about using tablets to present Power Points, Spread Sheets, PDF files and more. If you are proficient enough keep a stylus and use it as a note pad to jot notes. Save the work for future reference or easily share it with team members later. Tablets sit flat on a surface and minimize the risk of unknowingly broadcasting information to third parties.

  1. Noise/Voice Volumes

Use noise canceling headphones for over-the-phone meetings in public. You will avoid distractions while keeping hands free and protecting others from hearing your conversation. Be mindful that the volume of your own voice doesn’t defeat the purpose of your efforts.

  1. Privacy Screens
    A computer privacy screen, sometimes called a privacy filter, is a thin piece of plastic that’s placed over your monitor or display panel in order to prevent wandering eyes from absorbing confidential information. You may have seen a similar device at the bank if you’ve ever tried to peek at your account balance when the teller walked away. Privacy filters use the same type of technology.Strong passwords, anti-virus software, data encryption, and heightened awareness go a long way toward keeping your information secure, but they can’t defend against visual hacking. Computer privacy screens protect against this serious security threat by simply adhering to your laptop screen or desktop monitor to restrict the device’s viewing angle so that only the person in front of the screen can see what’s on it. Anyone attempting to steal a glance from the right or left will only be able to see a blank screen.In my Office Without Walls™ Wednesday video from last week (August 7th) I mention privacy screens and you can find examples on my Amazon list here:


  1. Monitoring the Presence of “Guests”
    When meeting in public the presence of “guests” should be treated the same as in a traditional office. They should generally not be allowed. If privacy and confidentially is an issue (or if you’re not sure of a potential harm) ask that a client’s guests find their own place to sit or maybe that they leave and return at a time when it is most appropriate for them to be there.
  2. Secure Virtual Connections -virtual meetings and virtual collaboration
    Does the application you are using to connect with client virtually have security capabilities that meet your needs? Client controlled tools include selective meeting invitations, meeting details and application security and E2E chat encryption. Session keys should be generated with a device-unique hardware ID to avoid eavesdropping and/or data being tampered with or read from other devices.

When choosing a provider or software for your virtual meetings ask about the following options

  • Host & Client Authenticated Meetings
  • Open or password protected meetings
  • Edit or deleting records of meetings
  • Host controlled joining meeting
  • User Authentications
  1. Take Your Trash With You!

This is an easy one but one that is also easily overlooked. Make it a practice to not throw away notes or documents of any kind in public trash cans or receptacles. Tearing the page does not solve the problem either. Take it with you and dispose of it in a controlled environment. When appropriate make a point of showing your client that you are doing so that they are aware of your efforts. It will increase trust and put you both on the same page with one another about protecting the content of your meeting.


  1. Communicating Internal Policies/Procedure With Clients

There is no better cure for misunderstanding than communication in advance. Address your business policies with regards to privacy, the use of technology, public meetings and all other aspects of managing a mobile, virtual or hybrid office. This should be done as soon as the client is brought on board in a welcome letter. An informed client is the best kind and having things written out will keep everyone in the case on the same footing as to what to expect, how and when.

Communicating expectations early on  and in a manner that is complete and easy to understand will build your client’s confidence in your abilities. Clients might also be more forthcoming with sensitive information that helps you do your job is they know that it will be handled in a way that meets their expectations.

  1. Know Any Venue Requirements Beforehand

When utilizing meeting rooms and more formal public spaces, find out if there is a sign-in required and if your client will be expected to give his/her name, show ID or the like. Some clientele may not be on board with creating a record of your meeting. Find out in advance to avoid an embarrassing interaction. If he meeting is of such a variety you might go as far as to heck for the placement of security cameras and other security equipment in lobbies and parking lots. You should of course be billing for those kind of efforts and your client should be aware of the lengths you have gone to if you do (wink-wink).

  1. Use Good Judgment

No matter how many steps you take to protect yourself and your client in advance, the use of good judgment is your best defense against unintentional breaches.



By, Sahmra A. Stevenson, Esq. (“Your Happy Family Law Attorney”)

S.A. Stevenson Law Offices, LLC


For inspiration, motivation and outside-the-box ideas for living a healthy and happy work life follow me on Instagram @SahmraStevensonEsq or @OfficeWithoutWalls

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Traveling with a reusable water bottle is a great way to reduce your environmental impact (and save you from having to spend $5 at the airport just to stay hydrated). But there is a downside: Carrying around an empty bottle in your already tightly packed travel bag is different kind of wasteful.

Thankfully, collapsible water bottles have recently grown in popularity. They’re generally made with lightweight, flexible materials like silicone that allow you to fold, flatten, or twist them down to become compact enough to fit easily into your bag (or even your pocket in some cases) and then expand again when it’s time to fill up.

Below, we bring you FIVE of the best collapsible water bottles to pack for your next trip. If you’re worried about the bottle collapsing while you’re trying to drink from it, that’s not an issue with these structured picks. And they all cost less than $40

1.    Biaggi “Let’s Roll” Space Saving Water Bottle

*SINCE MY LAST POST THIS HAS SOLD OUT ON THE WEBSITE* ($11.99 on the Website and $19.99 on Amazon)

Keep healthy and hydrated wherever you go with this convenient, versatile, and foldable water bottle. The bottle is made from break-proof silicone which is BPA free and of high “food grade” quality which keeps drinks cool for hours. The roll-up design allows you to easily stow it in your pocket, your purse, or hooked onto your backpack or carry-on.


-Dimensions: 17 fl oz (500 ml) capacity, 9″ tall 3″ wide and 4″ x 3″ x 4″ rolled up. Weight = .18 lbs

-Attached elastic band wraps around the rolled up bottle, keeping it compact and secure

-Includes metal clip, allowing you to hook it onto a bag, bike or belt loop

-Extremely durable silicone material, withstands temperatures from -40ºF to 212ºF

-Dishwasher safe, and easy to wash by hand as well

-Leak proof cap and snap-down dust cover, keep the bottles contents secure and clean

-Perfect for travel, camping, hiking. Store it in your carry on bag while going through security, then fill it up and enjoy a cool drink for the duration of your flight!


2. Nomader Collapsible Water Bottle

This foldable water bottle was a best-seller this past Amazon Prime Day, so you know it’s good. Other perks? It has a leak-proof cap, is dishwasher safe, and is made of durable, shatterproof silicone.

To buy:, $24


3. Vapur Element Water Bottle

This flexible bag-bottle comes with a carabiner so you can hook it onto your bag for hands-free carrying.

To buy:, from $12


4. Hydaway Collapsible Travel Water Bottle


This top-rated, 21-ounce bottle shrinks down into a compact disc that you can fit into your carry-on, purse, or even your pocket.

To buy:, $25


5. Que Collapsible Bottle

This spiraled bottle collapses into half its size with just a simple push.

To buy:, $26


For inspiration, motivation and outside-the-box ideas for living a healthy and happy work life follow me:

Instagram @SahmraStevensonEsq or

Instagram @OfficeWithoutWalls


Facebook: @OfficeWithoutWallsTM

Facebook: @SASLawOffices







How you start your day can have an incredible impact on how the rest of it goes. How much energy you have, how efficient and productive you are, if you achieve the right things, and how much you enjoy the journey. There are millions of others out there trying to beat you. There are only so many days to make progress. So, while many workers see morning routines as a luxury, top performers are very mindful of what they do.

If you’re anything like me you have fully grasped the importance of a morning routine but putting one together and sticking to it not so much.  There are SO many opinions out there about how to do it and what works best.  A google search alone will leave you feeling overwhelmed and ready to abandon the whole bit if you’re not careful. It took me two years of searching and sorting and trying other people’s methods before I landed on my own and started practicing a morning routine consistently. There are a few things that I wish I hadn’t had to learn the hard way. If I had realized these three (3) simple principle I probably would have found my way faster:


It’s easy to overcomplicate what can really just be a simple and gentle process as you’re starting out. I was the queen of going overboard when trying to kick start myself into a new routine or habit. “Drive it home” was the thought process. It turns out that approach contributed as much to my success as it did to my failures at times. Forcing things doesn’t last.  Being kind to yourself and allowing a gradual transition is the best way to approach long term change.

In my challenge groups and with my one-on-one coaching one of the things that I suggest is starting with a glass of water in the morning. Setting out a glass on the nightstand before bed is a great way to prepare. Make finishing that glass that the first thing you do every day for 3 weeks before adding on another practice and continue to build from there.  I like the glass of water routine as a starting point because its so simple that messing it up is virtually impossible, and because it encourages preparing for a good morning the night before, which I’ve come to learn is an essential tool to incorporate over time.


Your morning routine is YOURS. Whatever it is that you end up designing should be for YOU and you alone. No incorporating daily tasks like making lunches for the kids, or making breakfast for the spouse. Those might be daily routines but a wellness morning routine really should be centered around you, mindfulness and awareness. You can’t get the full benefit of those with others in the room. If you spend part of your mornings with others, make sure at least one of your rituals is a solo gig.


What works for you is going to work for you and nobody else. You can read thousands of examples of morning habits and rituals online (and try them all) but the only ones that will stick are the ones that really fit who you are as a person. Who we are as people changes over time as we grow and evolve. Be open to your morning routine growing and evolving. Embrace that it will as you start. There is no need to be wed to one practice forever. Its routine practice that matters, not what is looks like.

[4. *KEEP IT GOING UNTIL SOMETHING HAPPENS] Don’t quit on your routine before the miracle happens. You wouldn’t be reading this if there wasn’t some desire o create change in your life. If you’re willing and you want change then it will come so long as you keep showing up.


For inspiration, motivation and outside-the-box ideas for living a healthy and happy work life follow me on Instagram @SahmraStevensonEsq or @OfficeWithoutWalls

Or tune in for video content at….YouTube:





Taking that initial leap into entrepreneurship is just the first step. Staying out here, as one of the many blessed-to-be self-employed, dream chasing, adventure loving business owners takes real work. And doing it while protecting your happiness?! Oh boy! I’m not just talking internal work like billing, management staffing struggles, blah blah blah. To stay actively growing and happy as a business owner you need to tap into that nitty-gritty personal and professional development work. Business owners that stop seeking new growth personally and professionally are at a greater risk for falling off, into a rut, or tapping out all-together.

The hard work is ultimately worth it. Happiness. Freedom. Living. I mean, that’s why we all keep doing it right? Living a happy and healthy balanced life as an entrepreneur is an intentional practice, and living your BEST LIFE is the natural side effect that comes from pursuing and improving that practice every day.

Over the past year I’ve been playing around with keeping a list of 5 daily goals as a way of providing some baseline structure and balance for my everyday growth as a business owner and an individual. I write out all five in my journal every morning. These are the things that I need to try to achieve on a daily basis to guarantee I keep moving forward in life and in business. I’m open to my list growing and changing just like I will always be, but for now these are my bottom-lines for a successful day. Do you have a list of daily goals? How do they guide you?

1. Insist On Self-Expression

The benefits of active self-expression are often times subtle and work “behind the scenes” in our lives. When practiced regularly, intentional and active self-expression promotes self-awareness, self-knowledge and self-control.

What does active self-expression look like? Active self-expression is different for everybody at different times. That’s the beauty of it! There aren’t any rules to how you do it because it’s yours! Singing, dancing, drawing, writing a blog article, journaling, speaking to others, designing a new workout… these are just a few that I rely on, but the possibilities are endless.

It also looks like healthy communication and boundary setting with others. Both in our personal and professional worlds. Being able to clearly articulate your feelings, needs and limitations is a core asset to healthy living and happiness.

2. Get In Action. Stay In Action.

Yes I’m talking momentum. On days when I have it the goal is enjoying the ride, not getting carried away but also not blocking that blessing.

On days when I don’t, the goal is finding it. Procrastination is frustrating, It can jack-up a whole day. Procrastination is usually rooted in fear, but knowing that isn’t always helpful in the moment because, “hello” we have things to get done. Pausing to evaluate our hang-ups, anxieties and inner struggles when there is a deadline to meet is not going to work.

What is helpful when I’m stuck, or can’t get started, is reminding myself to just do SOMETHING. Anything really. I’m not always convinced of that at first, so sometimes I practice breathing or singing to myself as I just go through rote motions of folding clothes or organizing papers until my workflow and clarity return. I’ve decided that’s my own form of “active meditation.” It works for me when I am willing.

3. Seek Gratitude Awareness

“When I am grateful, I am grace-filled.” I love this goal because gratitude is truly a game-changer and more importantly it’s a choice. I usually have to apply this at the end of the day when I’m doing inventory because I am quick to put myself down for not getting one or two things done in a day. Never mind the twelve things I did do (sheesh). If I don’t actively make myself aware of my flawed perspective it can carry-on into the next in the form of worry, fear and guilt.

The point is that what we focus on throughout the day (and at night) magnetizes in our minds. Choosing to focus on gratitude and positive takeaways keeps us MOVING FORWARD and attracts more good things into our lives. For that reason, gratitude is a core component of a healthy life and lifestyle.

4. Try To Help Someone Everyday

Helping others should be a natural extension of every business leader’s responsibilities. Working in a service profession I’ll admit this one did not become a regular daily practice for me for some time because, well, I thought what I was doing professionally was enough.

Going out of your way to help others is different. It forces us to get out of our own head and shift our focus away from self, and all the things we can’t control in life. It helps me put into perspective my own concerns and problems.

It doesn’t have to be complicated. If you’re fresh out of ideas try picking up the phone and calling someone to just ask how they are doing. A simple “how are you?” can go a long way.

5. Move The Body. Feed The Mind.

The most direct way to change how you feel inside is to change how your body is moving on the outside. Think about how our moods are reflected in our body language. When were tense or stressed we carry ourselves like it. When we are feeling free and loos we move like it too. It follows that creating movement in the body can move the brain as well. Maybe not as quickly but I like to think just as effectively.

Movement is also a great way to get unstuck and jump start my brain for doing work-work. I’m talking a 15 minute walk or sit-ups and squats by your desk if that’s where you’re stuck for a the day. It can lift you right out of a poor state of mind, or some form of procrastination, when you’re willing to let it. It creates the momentum you need to get in action and stay in action.

Feeding the mind goes hand-in-hand with moving the body. I believe that negative emotions like anxiety and fear are allergic to things like sunlight, fresh air, mediation, prayer, self-election and movement. If I’m insisting on being happy, it makes sense that those things are a part of my daily. Most importantly, exercise has helped me build confidence and self-esteem over time which are essential to living my best life, happy and free!

For inspiration, motivation and outside-the-box ideas for living a healthy and happy work life follow me on Instagram @SahmraStevensonEsq or @OfficeWithoutWalls

Or tune in for video content at….YouTube: