the whole cake


lisa fabrega

It’s my birthday this week and I’m taking the week off to spend some time with friends and family.

But more than anything, I want to say I’m grateful to celebrate with you and have you in my community. 

2021 has been an impactful year of growing my own capacity, and I’ve learned a few lessons already only just halfway into the year. I wanted to share the biggest one that’s been coming up for me over and over.

Personal development work is worth every penny you invest in it, even more than strategic work.

We tend to value the tangible over the intangible. It’s just what society has taught us. 

And that’s actually one of the reasons why we can find ourselves in a capacity plateau. 

Whether the plateau be about money, getting the right team together, business growth slowing or feeling dissatisfied with your work, it’s hardly ever the strategy alone that gets you out of that plateau. It’s almost always the deeper work.

Business is hard. So many challenges come our way as business owners or professionals. The more we grow, our revenue increases and our star rises, the higher the pressure and the more difficult the challenges.

Not only are more eyes on you, more people depending on you and bigger decisions to make…

Business is a spiritual and personal expansion process, too. Just like marriage, having children, or relationships, having your own business or career will test you and bring up all your sh$t to help you grow and heal. 

In June I took a vacation to see my family after being in self-isolation for over a year. My family dynamic is complicated to say the least. It’s partially why I developed the Capacity Framework™. Everything I teach I’ve learned and worked on myself.

I’ve had to set boundaries with certain family members over the years who have some very harmful and abusive behavior. But I wasn’t going to allow those few select members to keep me from seeing the rest of my family who I get along wonderfully with. 

I was already anticipating these family members would create drama when I arrived (they always do), so I went in prepared with all my capacity tools at the ready. 

Sure enough, a drama EXPLODED within a week of me being there, even though I never even spoke to or saw those family members. This happened just because I prioritized my own emotional health and upheld a boundary that I had set weeks prior.

Abusers don’t like it when you set boundaries and take good care of yourself. They always raise a stink. 

Then in the same week, I was sitting in my car in a parking lot, when I was hit by another car (their fault, not mine) by a man who didn’t look at his rearview mirror when backing up. He exploded into a rage, calling me a “piece of sh*t” and the police had to be called. 

A quick trip to Florida for only two weeks now extended my stay in a less than ideal environment as I had to wait for my car to be fixed.

My nervous system definitely felt “slimed” by both of these instances, but I was most amazed at how all the capacity work I’ve done over the last twelve years paid off like never before. 

I was able to navigate and handle these challenges feeling really calm and collected. I didn’t get hooked into the drama. I still had a wonderful time with the other family members who didn’t want any part of the drama. 

And I didn’t feel fear or totally thrown off my equilibrium by the incidents I experienced. I was able to process them well, get the support I needed to remove them from my muscle tissue on a somatic level, and kept going.

The result was a great time with some family members I hadn’t had the time to connect with in years. I got to do a deep dive into my ancestry and for the first time visit the graves of my maternal ancestors, which was healing on so many levels. And many, many fabulous 25 mile bike rides along the ocean, which filled my soul with inspiration and motivation.

I kept saying to myself over and over “I’m SO glad I’ve done so much personal development work these last 10 years and that it’s been my biggest priority.”  

It was a profound confirmation of what I’m always telling you: yes, your strategies are important, but your capacity is the foundation for everything and matters most.

The world is FILLED with people struggling with low capacity to handle challenges. They’ll explode on you and do pretty sh&tty things. 

This is why Capacity Work™ is my life mission. I want a world where we have the capacity to have difficult conversations without abusing each other and where we have the capacity to meet the challenges we face as we perpetually grow. 

I want you to feel like you can HANDLE anything you want to create in your business or life because you KNOW you have the capacity to handle it (because you’ve worked on it.)

I don’t want you to ever feel like you “can’t handle” your deepest desires. If you have the desire within you, it’s because it’s part of your path and your purpose. You’d never have a desire placed on your heart you can’t handle. 

When I think of how many people I’ve spoken to over the years who told me, “I KNOW I need to do this work, but first let me go pay someone to set up this funnel” or “I feel so stuck but first let me join this business mastermind to make my book a bestseller” I always feel sad, and I want to shake those people gently and ask them to care better for themselves!

I know there’s always something that feels “more important.” 

Maybe you feel like moving out to the country will fix that plateau you keep hitting. So you do that first and postpone investing in a personal development mentor, thinking a month in the country will be all you need to do. 

Maybe you feel like you’ve got to get a divorce, or break up with that person, quit your job or pay off your house before you can invest in yourself and start working on your capacity. 

There will always be things that you think you need to do first. But that month or two in the country only offers a temporary fix. That divorce, loan payoff, or job exit may get you away from the problematic spouse, loan or job….but the same capacity issues you had before will still be there after. 

Unresolved capacity issues will always follow you no matter how many people, jobs or situations you run away from

When you have capacity you can navigate your divorce in a way that protects you and doesn’t derail you completely. 

You can decide whether the job is actually the problem and not quit prematurely, perhaps you can even make some deep change that will allow you to love that job again. 

When you have capacity that month in the country can ACTUALLY penetrate deeper when it comes to healing and truly replenish you long term.

That’s what I want you to get. 

Applying quick fixes to decompress is like trying to make a luscious double chocolate cake with only one tablespoon of cocoa powder, when the recipe calls for a cup. 

The cake may taste good because of the sugar, butter and eggs, but it will be the best cake of your life if you add the full serving of chocolate.

Why do you keep treating yourself, your goals and your life like a chocolate-less chocolate cake? Don’t you deserve better?

If there was anything I want to say to you, it’s to stop dancing around the work you know you must do. 

Stop short-changing yourself and making decisions and investments that de-prioritize your wellbeing as a leader or only offer temporary quick fixes. 

You are the vessel for your work. Treat that vessel with the respect it deserves. 

Because that vessel creates the life you will live and it also creates the business that you impact others with. The state of that vessel matters. Especially the internal state. 

Give yourself the deeply loving gift of doing some real, long term changing work on your capacity. Work that will deeply nourish your vessel and provide premium fuel to create your dreams and make your impact for years and years to come. You will NOT regret it. 

Do NOT put off the best of your life for “later” because you had “other things you needed to do first” before you worked on having the capacity to create everything you ever wanted. 

Every time a challenging situation arises for me, I’m whelmed with tears of gratitude for this work and how it helps me navigate this big life I want with a feeling of security and strength, no matter what. No strategy in the world can touch that.

I hope you can feel the love and best wishes for you in my heart as I write the above words.

Now with that being said, I’m going to sign off to nourish my own vessel and expand my capacity for birthday fun!