Stress Less, Connect More: A Recap of Colette Carlson's Hilarious and Engaging Presentation from Our San Diego Annual GROW Keynote Event

SAN DIEGO, CA, April 4, 2019 – Deep breath in...slowly breathe out. Deep breath in…slowly breathe out. Yes, breathing, while focusing on something that brings you joy, is one of the many techniques famed speaker and author Colette Carlson shared with MMA colleagues, clients and business partners at this week’s Annual GROW Keynote speaker event in San Diego. Slowing our breathing is a tactic most of us know to manage stress.

But what else could we be doing to keep stress from getting in the way of us collaborating and working with people more effectively? In a world where we’re “task rich but time poor,” it’s easy to be overwhelmed and throw our relationships out the door. That’s why we invited the very funny and relatable Colette to share practical tips we can all apply to stress less and connect more.

  • Plan Your Day and Work Your Plan. Get real about how much you can truly accomplish in a day, and as Colette suggested “get comfortable with the undone.” It’s not realistic, or necessary, to do it ALL. Identify your priorities, calendarize and work your plan.
  • Take Control or Let it Go. Manage your personal expectations. Prioritize what really needs to be done with an eagle eye and let the other ones go. If you start to realize you’re stressed, ask yourself “Is this in my control?” If it’s not, then reset your mindset, take that deep breath, and let it go! Otherwise, taking action on a matter that IS in your control is the fastest way to reduce anxiety, worry and stress.
  • Breakthrough vs. Breakdowns. Colette’s case for this: “Breaks create breakthroughs. And, breaks are better than breakdowns.” If you take a break, this will allow you to compose yourself and take on a challenging situation, or a project, with a fresh perspective. Avoid getting to the point of complete meltdown by incorporating a few small breaks in your day.
  • Speak Your Truth, Not Your Mind. Experience authentic alignment when you speak your truth by communicating with clarity, sincerity and respect. Not only will you deepen your connections, but you will lower your stress when your thoughts, words and actions are aligned.
  • Be Self-ISH. Colette suggested we all should become a little more self-ISH. Now, the “ISH” in Colette’s version of selfish stands for “I Stay Happy” and “I Stay Healthy.” She shared that it’s okay to say “No” to others and say “Yes” to yourself and priorities. After all, we can’t have any balance without boundaries. And, if we need help, we should ask. Doing so will lower our stress, show some vulnerability, and help us connect with others who we will learn to trust. Ironically, they will also trust us more as a result.

For more information about Colette Carlson, visit

Thank you to our keynote co-sponsors, KPMG and Latham & Watkins, who share our dedication to support, educate, and celebrate women in the workplace. To learn more about MMA’s GROW initiative, visit: