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Have you ever felt like you just couldn’t get something done?

Like no matter what you tried, you just couldn’t stick with it, and you just couldn’t reach your goal?

Do you feel like there is something more for you… some greater purpose and happiness that you just can’t find?

I have been there.

I am here to help hold you accountable to your MIND & BODY – they are connected, ya know. You can’t just work on one…

I look forward to hearing from you and I hope you enjoy your time here.

Xo, Jessica

Fix your Mind

The way it thinks, reacts & operates.

Self-esteem, development & healing, goal setting, messages of positivity, personal development & book reviews.

Fix your Body

The way it works, feels & functions.

Healthy, full-flavor 71.4%* recipes, 21 day fix, Paleo & Whole30 recipes, and most importantly your connection of body and mind.

Accountability

Stay accountable to Mind & Body.

1:1 coaching & accountability group opportunities, benefits of connection & success stories and a focus on the here & now.

Recently on the Blog!

  • Instant Pot - Pot Roast

    Pot Roast [Instant Pot]

    Instant Pot – Pot Roast

    I love pot roast – it is one of my all-time favorite comfort foods. Normally I make pot roast in my dutch oven – seasoning and searing the chuck roast in my stove top first, then adding the rest of the ingredients and slow braising in the oven at about 275 degrees for 3+ hours then make gravy from cooking liquid. All in all, between prepping, searing and braise and gravy time, it takes me about 4 hours to produce. It’s always worth it! But, not something I can do on the weekday-fly for sure.

    My husband got me an Instant Pot on Black Friday – thanks Amazon Prime, lightning deal!

    I was excited, but nervous, to use it today. People that own them talk in this “Instant Pot” lingo (I plan to crack the lingo soon – stay tuned). From the lingo to the comments and posts you see online, it can be easy to get intimidated. But, I faced my pressure cooker fear, and made one of my favorite meals — Pot Roast! Needless to say, I was really hoping for as good if not better results from my Instant Pot pot roast trial run. Well… good news!

    Total SUCCESS!

    Here is how I did it – I included the ingredients in sections based on steps, and also included the time it took to complete steps in directions below:

    Ingredients:

    Roast:
    2 T. olive oil
    2.5 lb chuck roast, thawed
    1/4 t salt
    1/4 t black pepper
    1/4 t paprika
    1/2 packet onion soup mix

    Deglazing liquid:
    1/2 cup dry red wine (may substitute beef broth)

    Braising liquid:
    1 1/2 cups beef broth
    2 T. Worcestershire

    Vegetable Aromatics for braising:
    1 large onion, peeled and cut in half
    4 stalks celery, left whole
    2 carrots, peeled and cut in half (you can sub 5-6 baby carrots)
    4 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
    1 bunch fresh thyme, about 8 sprigs

    Vegetables (added later per recipe):
    8 small baby red potatoes, left whole
    1-2 large onion, quartered, depending on how much onion you prefer
    1 large sweet potato, cut roughly into 2 inch cubes (optional – if omitted, add 4-6 additional baby red potatoes)
    16 baby carrots

    Gravy thickener:
    3 T. corn starch
    2 T melted butter
    1-2 T cooking liquid

    Set Instant Pot (IP) on sauté, leave lid off and allow to heat. While IP is heating, season roast with salt, pepper, paprika and onion soup mix – make sure to rub in. Once IP display says “HOT”, add 2 T. olive oil and roast. Sear for 2-3 minutes each side (about 5 minutes total).

    Add wine, and use IP spatula to scrap bottom of pan to deglaze for about a minute, carefully moving roast around to get all the bits. All those bits are FLAVOR – and you don’t want to leave them stuck to the IP insert or they may burn.

    Once deglazing is done (2 minutes), add beef broth and Worcestershire as well as vegetable aromatics for braising – onion, celery, carrots, garlic and thyme. Place lid on IP and close, and turn vent on lid to “Sealing”. More IP lingo… refer to picture below this step. Press “manual” button, then “+/-” to adjust cook time to 45 minutes. NOTE: it will take about 5-10 minutes for IP to pressurize – don’t let this make you think you’ve done something wrong! Once pressurization is complete (5-10 mins), the timer will begin it’s countdown.

    instant pot vent

    Instant pot vent

     

    Instant Pot - Pot Roast

    Instant Pot – Pot Roast ready to cook!

    Once manual cook time is complete (45 minutes), IP will beep and automatically change to “Keep Warm” setting. Carefully turn vent to “Venting” to release the pressure (about 3-5 minutes). This is known as Quick Pressure Release (QPR) in IP lingo! I cover the vent with a towel while QPR is in progress – less noise, less steam on my cabinets. NOTE: IP will not allow you to open the lid until pressure is released – this is for your safety!

    Once pressure is released and steam no longer comes from the vent, open the lid. At this point, your work could be done. You could cook veggies separately to go with your roast, or omit if desired and serve over rice perhaps. However, I like my pot roast more “traditional” with the veggies to pair. If you do too, follow the next section – if not, skip to removing roast and making gravy.

    Quickly but carefully remove as many of the aromatic veggies as you can & discard – these will likely be rather mushy by now, but have served a very noble purpose! Add additional fresh vegetables: baby red potatoes, onion, sweet potato (optional), carrots (2 minutes). Replace lid on IP, making sure vent is turned to “Sealing”. Press manual and “+/-“ to change cook time to 8 minutes. Again, it will take some time for IP to pressurize – once pressurization is restored, countdown will begin and when over IP will beep. Press “cancel” then turn vent to “Venting” to de-pressurize – aka QPR! (Removing aromatics, adding new veggies, cooking and depressurizing takes about 12 mins total — remember to place a towel over the vent while venting, if desired).

    You’re now at the gravy making process. Transfer roast and vegetables to serving platter, but leave all juices – meat will be so tender, it will likely fall apart (YUM!). Cover with foil to keep warm. Using slotted spoon, remove any chunks of veggies from cooking liquid. Press “saute” button on IP. In separate small bowl, whisk corn starch, melted butter and 2 T cooking liquid to create what’s known as a thickening “slurry” – make sure to remove all lumps. Whisk “slurry” into remaining cooking liquid in IP, whisking every 10-15 seconds for about 5 minutes, or until slightly thickened (5-6 minutes total).

    Finally, serve pot roast over veggies, smothered in savory gravy. This pot roast would be delish served over ANYthing – rice, egg noodles, baked potato, a shoe…

    Instant Pot Pot Roast

    Instant Pot Pot Roast, served with potato, sweet potato, onion, carrot (under my meat!) and gravy.

    YUM-E!

    All in all, the entire process took me less than 1 1/2 hours. Definitely an improvement from a 4 hour oven braised pot roast process, no cleaning my glass top stove (score!), and a much more tender, delicious result!

    Instant Pot WIN!

  • breakfast

    Breakfast: Pancakes vs. Donuts

    Relationships are all about choices, even before breakfast on a Saturday!

    Choices during Breakfast

    Last night my husband joked about bringing home a dozen donuts after picking up his daughter Marley from a sleep over. I told him I would make a big breakfast. He joked again about the donuts, but I thought we were on the same big breakfast page.

    This morning we woke before 8a. He went out to get Marley. I started making breakfast. Before he left, he lovingly requested the bacon to be fried by the time he got back. I was on it!

    Bacon, eggs, pancakes, coffee and juices – I hustled to make sure they were all ready to grab and eat by the time they got home.

    Who thinks he came home with donuts?

    Well, they got home around 8:45a when I had just flipped the last pancake – low and behold, he had a box of a big dozen Dunkin donuts in his hand. I glared at him, hard, while holding the plate of pancakes for what seemed like a solid 60 seconds.

    Husband: “What?! I told you I was getting donuts. All I asked for was bacon hunny.”

    Me: “Yes, but I thought you were joking!”

    H: “Um, no, I wasn’t… want a donut?”

    Me: look of despise

    H: “Are we really gonna argue about donuts?”

    Here is where the choice comes in, and you really only have 2 options:

    1. Be pissed. You spent time and groceries making pancakes, cinnamon vanilla pancakes mind you. You made sure butter was softened for easy slathering. You put a spread of different types of syrups out for dousing the ‘cakes. There was a dozen pancakes, warm and ready. And now there was a dozen competing donuts. Ugh.

    Or

    1. Enjoy your breakfast. And, tell your husband to enjoy his. Hand him some bacon, pour him some coffee, and tell him to enjoy his donuts.

    By the way, if you ask most 7 year olds what they want, donuts or pancakes, they will probably choose donuts, too – yep. I was eating pancakes, 12 of them, solo.

    On the bright side, since Eggo and McDonald’s can freeze their pancakes, reheat and serve, why can’t I? I now have 4 servings of pancakes all to myself – 3 gladly eaten this morning (yum!), and 3 for 3 more mornings (yum x 3!).

    Pancakes vs Donuts = pancake leftovers for me

    Pancakes vs Donuts = pancake leftovers for me

    I chose option 2. I thanked my husband for making sure I had breakfast for the next 3 mornings. I thanked him for the recently gifted griddle I used for the first time ever to make the pancakes. And, I ate my gourmet, homemade breakfast while they ate their donuts (and bacon). We all enjoyed our breakfast and we all enjoyed our morning. Subsequently, we went on to enjoying the entire weekend.

    In the words of Mark Manson, author of “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck”,

    In my life, I have given a f*ck about many things. I have also NOT given a f*ck about many things. And, like the road not taken, it was the f*ck not given that made all the difference.

    How many of you could have used a not-gonna-give-a-f*ck attitude adjustment if you were faced with the pancake vs donut episode?

    Bottom line: it’s a choice.

    Simply decide: Are pancakes REALLY worth ruining your morning over? And, over time, are things like pancakes REALLY worth potentially ruining your relationship over altogether? I choose no (I choose hell no!). And, if you love your husband like I love mine, the choice will be the same for you, and it will be the easiest decision of the day.

    I love my husband. I love my family. I am blessed beyond measure. Pancakes and donuts ain’t got nothing on love.

    Pancakes/Donuts – 0; My marriage – 1.

     

  • Fear: keeping us from what we REALLY want

    Fear: keeping us from what we REALLY want

    I recently attended a conference call about FEAR.

    FEAR

    It’s such a negative word. Unfortunately though, it has such a presence in most of our lives.

    We fear so many things. Things we can control, and worse, things we cannot.

    Take a minute to yourself, and think of something you fear. I want you to use this as an example as you go through the rest of this reading.

    I’ll use my greatest fear as an example: FEAR of Failure [it haunts me like a plague].

    There is a HUGE difference for most people between what they really (like REALLY) want and what they are actually doing. That rings totally true for me.

    If you think of your fear, can you think of something in your life in which fear is keeping you, maybe even holding you hostage from? I can.

    3 years ago (to the day!), I walked across a commencement stage earning my Master of Arts in Mental Health Counseling. It was phenomenal. However, one challenge… I didn’t know if I wanted to be a therapist anymore… Fast-forward to over a year ago, I decided a great way to use those skills and fuel my passion could be becoming a Life Coach. I took courses to become a Board Certified Coach. I earned enough credits to sit for the certification examination. End of story.

    Yeah… that end of story was not a typo. That’s where that ended. You know why?

     

    FEAR.

     

    OMGosh, I fear failing so badly that I froze. Geesh. I spent a couple thousand dollars (that I don’t just have laying around by the way) on courses just to ditch obtaining what the courses were for. I know. It’s ridiculous, right? Well… is it that ridiculous? I’d actually venture to say its quite common. We do that kind of thing to ourselves all the time. Are you with me?

     We get super pumped and fired up about something, we dive in, we fiercely and confidently navigate the waters and then… BAM! We let a little water in our nose allow us to feel like we’re drowning. Exit stage (or pool steps) right.

    Then, we deal with time. Time can seem to move so slowly at times, like when you’re at work waiting for clock out time. But if you look back on pretty much anything in your life, doesn’t it seem like yesterday?

    Graduating with my Master’s degree seems like it was literally just yesterday, but at the same time, I CANNOT BELIEVE the reality is that it has been three years. What have I even done with my life in three years?

    Truly, I have done a lot in 3 years… I still can’t help but think I have cheated myself of 3 years (1,095 days!) without taking risks I need to REALLY fulfill my divine, deep purpose. Why am I here – on this Earth – what am I MEANT to do?

    Why haven’t I chosen to be ALL IN and LIVE BY my true, undeniable, unfaltering PURPOSE?

     

    FEAR.

     

    Take a minute to look away from my story and my path, and think about yours. You might feel sad. You might get emotional. I am sorry if you cry. However, its real and really deep stuff! It is normal to feel emotion. Allow yourself to feel it for a few moments, and then come back to this reading… we are almost done.


    I want to give you an example from my recent life that you may or may not resonate with – either way; I hope it serves some insight.

    Because I KNOW I want to inspire people; I KNOW I want to help people; I KNOW I want to change lives and even the world; I recently made a career decision I thought would help serve that purpose.

    This story begins with what isn’t the beginning… I was on a team call with other Beachbody Coaches and my “up line Coach” 2 weeks ago. The topic was, believe it or not, FEAR! One of the things she asked us to think about is, what is your WHY, like your unshakeable WHY for doing this – Beachbody Coaching. The purpose in her context was to allow that WHY to keep you from allowing FEAR to break you down. Very great message she gave us that night.

    The super ironic thing about this message for me though, was the epiphany I had. I say epiphany, but if I am being honest with you and with myself, it really wasn’t THAT much of a surprise to me.

    Taking a couple steps back… in February 2016, I decided to become a Beachbody Coach. Ever heard of Beachbody? Yes. It is one of those pyramid things… direct sales/multi-level marketing. When I joined, the purpose I recited to my fiancé was “I just need to get back into a community of women – I need to be empowered and provide empowerment. I need to get back into the realm of inspiration”. This is what I formed as my WHY my up line Coach was referencing.

    Back to that call on fear… my not so surprising epiphany… hah. I have to laugh because sometimes that’s the only thing that keeps us from crying, right?

    FEAR.

    God forsaking FEAR. FEAR is truly WHY I joined Beachbody. I FEARED so badly starting my own business, and putting myself out there, developing my identity and branding as a Life Coach – I feared no one would want to listen to me, or that no one would be impacted by me, or that I wouldn’t help anyone, or WORSE, that I might make something worse for another because well, I might totally, flat out fall on my face FAIL at Coaching. The answer was to abandon my desire and passion of becoming a Life Coach, and substitute that with joining a pyramid-style business model. Why? For me, working in something in which I had nothing to lose was FAR LESS intimidating.

    Have you ever done something thinking it was with good intention but realized that in reality, you did it because you let FEAR keep you from doing what you really, REALLY want? I am as guilty as you.

    The Coach I mentioned said something else that night during our call on fear that was super impactful. She talked about a quote by Jim Carrey, “you can fail at what you don’t want, so why not take a chance on something you love?”

    I shall put my own spin on the same message.

    “You can fail at anything.

    Why not take a risk at something you REALLY want

    rather than on something you really don’t.”

     

    Yeah. That.

    This does NOT just go with jobs, folks. This goes with anything in our lives. Relationships, parenting, friendships, sports, fitness goals, anything!

    Yes, failure is a real thing. HUGE DISCLAIMER on that though y’all. Who defines failure?

    Webster defines failure as lack of success. I URGE YOU to reconsider what success means – when you do, you can redefine failure.

    My example:

    Success = taking risks that allow myself to feel worthy of doing the things I love and am passionate about, no matter the result.

    Therefore…

    Failure = NOT taking those risks

    Perspective shift, anyone?

    Don’t let FEAR keep you from asking the universe for what you really want. You CAN ask for it. You must ask for it. ASK FOR IT.

  • Relationships – love and respect

    Relationships – love and respect

    Relationships are special

    I am incredibly blessed with mine.

    My hunny and I recently went out of town Easter weekend – from Bradenton area where we live down South to Boca Raton. My plans for us were to have a Friday night alone to do whatever we pleased, then spend Saturday at my Dad’s for my brother’s at-home wedding that started at 5p. Sunday was the travel-home day. We have the best relationship and I was so excited to spend time with him.

    On the 3 1/2 hour drive down, hunny mentioned desperately needing a new laptop – he has been doing complex web designing amongst other things on the side, outside of his 50-60 hour a week full-time “real” job, bringing in more money to support our home, and really does need a updated machine.

    He also mentioned having researched buying one and found a discount for one a guy was currently selling just South of where we were going to be staying and was interested in trying to make the purchase. Before our trip, I mentioned the possibility of hanging at the nearby casinos – hunny was agreeable, and even said “well I guess I know where were gonna be!” As far as I was concerned, that is the plan and I was excited for date night. Relationships with no itinerary are great if you ask me, but I was happy to have something in mind he was already digging!

    We arrived at the hotel around 7:30p, both hungry and ready to be outta the vehicle. I immediately broke out my make up bag, my array of outfit choices and started getting ready. I recently lost almost 10 pounds and couldn’t wait to show it off to him. I wanted to look good for my man. Its great for relationships to go outside of your normal dating “territory”, and no matter what we did, I was happy to be with him in a location other than home field.

    I did my make up, my hair and put on a sexy black dress – and he immediately looked in my direction, seemingly perturbed, wearing his already traveled in under armor shirt and jeans… “you over there dressed for prom and I am in a gym shirt… I didn’t bring clothes for that… why didn’t you tell me… and are we going to go meet this guy for this laptop or what?!”

    Ugh – insert sinking belly feeling and a moment or two of the “he doesn’t love me, he doesn’t want to be with me’s” – dramatic, I KNOW! But I immediately felt unloved and shot down.

    I retorted quickly and with nothing short of an attitude with my thoughts of the laptop being the last thing I wanted to do and how I didn’t think I had to tell him we were going to spend a night on the town because DUH, he loves me and he should KNOW. Again, insert sinking, overly dramatic, he doesn’t love me belly feeling (i.e. the mind-body connection).

    He retorted just as quick, and in that moment all I hear was babbling… about how he needs the laptop, and he told me the guy was selling it, and we are only here this weekend, and he might only be available tonight, and why didn’t I tell him to bring clothes to go out?!

    I crawled into my he doesn’t love me or want to spend time with me, dramatic, female shell. He got offended, but in retrospect he did a fairly decent job at hiding how pissed off I believe he was.

    Do you see what happened here?

    He felt disrespected.

    I felt unloved.

    It doesn’t get any more complicated, or uncomplicated, than that.

    He has been working his ass off… 50+ hours day job, working through the night getting slim to no sleep on his “side” job, bringing in money and the potential of more in the future so he can continue to go above and beyond in supporting his family – me included, obvi. Getting the laptop wasn’t a social event for him. It wasn’t a “fun” plan. And it wasn’t a cheap one either… it was a NEED.

    What else was he supposed to do when I was getting ready to go out, drink, eat & spend money… while he is thinking about MAKING money… my biggest concern was having fun.

    Humility is tough. Humility is especially tough in relationships.

    Perhaps I didn’t explain the plans, or that I didn’t really have any other than going out, drinking, eating and spending money – and he needed to be able to dress for that! Perhaps he didn’t explain his plans, that the laptop purchase was a for sure thing, and it would be smack in the middle of our Friday night.

    Humility was needed on both sides as it usually is in successful relationships. Luckily, we are quite good at that. I won’t say we didn’t argue, and that I didn’t have a tear stroll down my cheek, but what we did NOT do is continue the misery of pushing each others “disrespect” and “unloved” buttons. We humbled ourselves equally, I put on some jeans and a fitted tee, we ended up not going the extra 30 minutes South to meet the stranger for the laptop, and we DID drink, eat, and spend money – most importantly, we had fun, we loved all over each other, and we were definitely not short on humility, love and respect.

    relationships love and respect