Make Every Minute Count

These past few weeks have been as crazy busy as ever for me and I’m trying to figure out why. It’s August, shouldn’t everyone be on vacation?! Of course, I won’t ever figure out the Universe and how it works, but I have given myself permission to stop and make every minute count – something that was a powerful lesson when I decided to take a last minute trip to New Orleans to visit my Dad.

I wasn’t expecting to write about this week, and because I’ve been SO busy, I haven’t posted a blog in a long while…so as I’m sitting here trying to figure out what to write, this whole stream of consciousness came to me—my recent last minute decision to visit my Dad.

The sad truth is I haven’t seen him in over 2 years, which I felt really bad about. I’m a victim of just letting my life get in the way, which I so regret now. You see, my Dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. I knew he was struggling, but he still called me every week and we still had our chats until recently when he fell and I got a call from my step mother. It was then I made the last minute decision to book a plane ticket and leave the next day for New Orleans to see him.

I wasn’t sure what to expect. Thank goodness I had some books on Alzheimer’s and I had this wonderful book my incredible Executive Coach Debbie Phillips recommended called Final Gifts. I was able to skim over a few and bring a few with me for the long plane ride to where I grew up, my home town of New Orleans.

I don’t want to bore you with all the details of my visit. But what I do want to say is when I arrived late that night it was then that I so got how precious each moment is and how I just don’t want to waste them anymore. In fact, it was my Dad who said to me once during my visit that he just takes each minute as it comes, that’s all he could do.

And so my journey continues with my Dad. And when I was there visiting with him, I just made each minute count and focused on the little glimpses of him and the memories that we’ve shared over our lifetime. My Dad is an amazing man and a wonderfully talented doctor, a gastroenterologist who built an incredible practice. I just remember how his patients loved him and the joy he got from helping people heal.

So I went from New Orleans with my Dad, to our summer home in Maine where I flew my Mom up to spend some time with us at our lake house for her birthday. She’d never been to Maine before and has had the most amazing time of firsts, from going on a jet ski to riding an ATV…

This month has been one of healing, grief, joy and focusing on making every minute count, not just with my Mom and Dad, but with my own family as well. I forget how fragile life can be and honestly, when I die, I’m not going to wish I had worked more – I’m going to wish I had made more memories with my family, and laughed more and had more fun…. So this week’s message isn’t about work at all, it’s just simply about life… I hope you can stop and enjoy every minute and make them count. We all need to laugh often and spend quality time with those we love… and to anyone out there with a family member suffering from Alzheimer’s, my heart goes out to you.

Is resistance the “real” dream killer?

Much debate goes on about what kills dreams these days, and of course there are many things.  But, how many of these things can be directly attributed to the person themselves?  What I mean is, instead of blaming the world, money, people, competition and everything outside of us, why not look within us first.

I just finished this book, The War of Art, Break Through The Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Steven the-war-of-artPressfield. It was given to me at a Dan Kennedy workshop called the 7 Figure Academy.  The sole focus of this workshop was on the 7 ways to take your 6 figure business to 7 figures.  It was fascinating to me because a lot of this stuff I already knew and was using to help my clients.  Yet, it was assembled and explained to me in a way that I really got it on a whole other level too.

There was a lot of discussion and time spent on overcoming resistance.  Let’s face it, in order to be a successful entrepreneur and business owner, we have a lot of obstacles we need to face and overcome.  The biggest one I think is that huge internal one, you know what I’m talking about, those little voices inside of you that try to stop you from being successful. The ones that say you’re not good enough, or you don’t deserve this, or you’re going to fail, or instilling huge fear in you so much so that it freezes you right in your tracks and stops you from getting what you want and being successful.  These same voices that unfortunately have taken some great people from us like Michael Jackson, Marilyn Monroe, John Belushi and others… they suffered from their inner demons and in the end couldn’t over come them. In fact, Oprah just had Whitney Houston on her opening show, wow, talk about demons and resistance.  Hers kept her from singing for almost 7 years.  Thank goodness she has a wonderful mom, who stepped in so she could find her incredible gift again, get past her demons of resistance and share her voice once more with the world.

I call them my little internal demons.  They rear their ugly heads when I least expect it.  In  Pressfield’s book, he talks a lot about how resistance shows up in your life and gives you some really great concrete ways to handle and push tcat_eyes_animationhrough them.  Here’s a great quote: Rule of thumb: The more important a call or action is to our soul’s evolution, the more resistance we will feel toward pursuing it.  Wow, that is so true. And another truth is we’re not alone in our resistance, we all struggle with it. Like when I was sitting down at the computer to write this, I could thing of a million other things I had to do and got up and did a few of them because I was “resistant” to writing this blog!

So my advice to you, is to be aware and pay more attention to yourself.  When you don’t want to do something, stop for a second, see if this is resistance calling and keeping you from doing something really great.  Make a daily plan where you’re focusing on core actions that will bring in more clients and more money each day.  Don’t fill your days with too many activities that will leave you feeling empty and like you have accomplished nothing. Face your internal demons and chip away at them so you can be the success entrepreneur that you came here to be.

One last thing that I have found really helps, join a group of like-minded entrepreneurs that meet on a regular basis. I”m in 2 different mastermind mind groups which were and still are awesome in helping me grow my business.  Nothing beats having like-minded entrepreneurs, who are incredibly successful, all working together to help you ensure your success as well.  This helps keep you stay on track with your business and make bigger leaps of  progress in shorter time frames. Remember isolation is a dream killer, that’s when the resistance demon strikes best.

I’ll leave you with one of my favorite quotes, “a rising tide floats all boats.” So work on overcoming your resistance and even helping others with this a long the way. We are much stronger together than we are separately.  There’s much power within in us.  Don’t let your fear and resistance take you away from being the incredible successful entrepreneur that you truly are and came here to be.

Choose Life, Choose a Job, Choose a Family, Choose Your Future…

What do you choose? This title of my blog is actually from a song that I love from the second soundtrack from the movie Trainspotting- called “Choose

Soundtrack 2 From Trainspotting
Soundtrack 2 From Trainspotting

Life” by PF Project. (As an aside this is a great soundtrack, yet the movie was a little disturbing.  Both of these CD’s, if you grew up in the 80’s and have a hankering for the British pop and techno stars of that era like Iggy Pop – you’ll love it!). I started this year with a bang and pulled out full throttle to accomplish my very ambitious goals for the year. This song kept playing in my head, because I had to choose what I wanted out of this year. My last blog started the year with my plan, (check out that post here) I then had to take steps for some action, to make things happen.

Me and Debbie after My Vision Day Birthday Celebration
Me and Debbie after My Vision Day Birthday Celebration

So what I did next was make a decision to do something completely different and inspiring for my birthday. I contacted my Executive Coaches, Rob Berkley and Debbie Phillips to see if it was possible that I could do a Vision Day for my birthday. I thought it was so appropriate to take the day I was born and use that day as a jumping off point to create an amazing year for me.

The awesome news is it was one of the most coolest, fun and productive birthday’s I’d had in a while. Ok, I know some of you may not think that “working” on your birthday would be fun. Yet, being with Rob and Debbie, it’s really not “work” at all. I’ve known them for over 13 year, so

Rob and I in his Porsche off to Corkscrew Swamp
Rob and I in his Porsche off to Corkscrew Swamp

our day went quite quickly. And Rob and I were able to squeeze some time in to take some inspiring photos at the Corkscrew swamp and nature sanctuary with my new Nikon D90. I have a photo I took in this post.

The upshot of my Vision Day Birthday, was I left that day with a wonderful plan all laid out for my business, and plan for my personal life and for my inspiring “hobby” of photography. I’d totally recommend taking some time out to plan out what you want your year to look like, it’s not too late!

My good friend Janet, Me and My Mom eons agon at Mardi Gras
My good friend Janet, Me and My Mom eons ago at Mardi Gras

The month of February is my favorite month of the whole year (and not because it’s my birthday). All sorts of cool things happen in February, it’s Mardi Gras in New Orleans (I grew up there and spent many years celebrating this festive holiday.) It’s many close friends and family members birthdays that I love to celebrate. And it’s s wonderful time for me to give thanks and be very grateful that I was born and have had such amazing experiences in my life that have gotten me to this wonderfully special moment.

Mr. Lizard in Corkscrew Swamp, Naples Florida
Mr. Lizard in Corkscrew Swamp, Naples Florida

Take some time out for you now – choose your life, your family, your future – put your plan together of what you want to accomplish. Make some time for fun, doing things you love, and also take some time to be really grateful for all the wonderful people and things that you have in your life. Choose your future now…

 

Do You Ever Long to Feel like You Belong Somewhere?

I’m writing from the train, heading home to New Jersey. I’m on the way back from a business training meeting that was in Baltimore. (As an aside, riding in business class is the best way to ride up and down the east coast- no worries of gas or traffic!) To be honest, I wasn’t totally looking forward to working the whole weekend, yet I was so pleasantly surprised at what happened.

Going there, I honestly had no expectations. I was ready to learn and discover new ways to help promote a business I’m working on with one of my clients. The weekend of discovery and training turned out to be one of the best meetings I’ve attended in a while.

At this meeting I had the best sense of being a part of a wonderful organization. It was a small meeting- only about 70 people. I was surrounded by incredibly smart, funny, and the nicest people you could ever want to spend a weekend with. In fact I was able to have some great chats with Bill Glazer, President of Glazer Kennedy Insider’s Circle, and was inspired by Karen Schaefer, who has a fast-growing info-marketing business involving real estate investors, real estate brokers and agents, and consumers: ‘Simple Appeal’, the premier nationwide “staging company” assisting homeowners in presenting their homes to obtain top dollar from buyers http://www.simpleappeal.com/

I’m leaving my meeting with such great connections and this wonderful feeling of belonging to a group of like-minded, motivated and successful people. Most, if not all of the people in the room, were incredibly successful entrepreneurs. I discovered a lot of great ways to promote my client’s business and things I can even use in my own. Yet the biggest lesson for me was how much I so enjoyed feeling like I belonged with these people. I knew being an entrepreneur was going to have its ups and downs. And for the most part I’ve very much enjoyed my ride to date. The only things that gets in my way at times is spending too much time in my home office and not enough time with like-minded entrepreneurs.

My suggestion to you it look for ways to join some like-minded groups of people. Don’t miss out on belonging somewhere and collaborating and brainstorming with fellow like-minded business people. Seek out a Ladieswholaunch or a local Glazer-Kennedy Insider’s Circle Chapter or Mastermind Group. This group is all around the country and you can check out this map to see one that’s closest to where you live. Don’t wait. Do this now- schedule an event, go check out a new meeting. You’re not alone. We’re all seeking out friend, colleagues and ultimately our own financial freedom. [digg=http://digg.com/business_finance/Do_You_Ever_Long_to_Feel_like_You_Belong_Somewhere]

What do you do when you have a roadblock in your life or in your business?

This past week I was driving to Boston for my Mastermind meeting. I was running a little behind schedule. I really don’t like taking the George Washington Bridge and going through New York because of traffic. However, my traffic radio station said it was the quickest route.

GW BridgeAs I was just passing the toll booth going onto the upper level of the bridge, I saw this rather large pothole and swerved to avoid it. Unfortunately my tired nipped it and then – “boom.” My tire blew out, just as I was getting on the bridge-yikes. I tried not to panic. In fact I was on my wireless headset speaking with a colleague when it happened. I quickly got off the phone, took control of the car, took lots of deep breathes, and severely slowed down and contemplated my options. What would you have done if you were in this situation?

holosyncBefore I started doing some personal work on myself like usingeckhart-tolle.gif Holosync (Centerpointe Institute) to meditate and reading Eckhart Tolle’s book, A New Earth, Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose, I’m sure I would have panicked and been pretty freaked out about the whole experience. (Did I mention how I really loathe the GW Bridge and driving through New York?)

Thank goodness I knew I had to keep driving and that I couldn’t stop on the bridge. If I did, I’m sure I would not be here writing to tell my tale. What was more important, my BMW 330xi or my life? Well, certainly I chose my life.

flat tireI finally saw this emergency place and quickly pulled my car over. I cautiously got out to inspect the tire- yikes, as the trucks and cars whizzed by. I called AAA and they were stupendous. They had someone out to get me within 20 minutes. I was a bit anxious because where I was pulled over was not the safest place. The AAA rep told me that I was safer in my car than outside of it and she was right. Instead of thinking about all the atrocities that might come, I practiced my new skills of being in the moment, not worrying or panicking about the next one. I called my loved ones and dear colleagues to explain my mishap and tell them I was ok. The nicest thing was the AAA rep called me back and stayed on the phone with me until the truck got there. I

Tow truckWhen the tow truck came he said he couldn’t change my tire here. He said the last person who changed a tire here lost his legs. I was so incredibly thankful that he told me this story after me and my care were safely in his big tow truck. He was kind and very helpful. He dropped me at a tire center close to the highway. As I was shaking his hand and saying thank you I asked his name. He said his name was “Angel.” I said that was wonderfully ironic because he certainly was my angel that day.

Then at the tire center, the person who fixed my tire was named Gabriel. I knew for certain right then, that this whole experience had happened for a reason. That’s when Gabriel told me not only was my tired flat, but my rim was cracked. And the bad news was that I wasn’t going to make it to my Mastermind meeting in Boston which I was really sad about. Yet, I knew there was a reason for this mishap. My sign was that I needed to slow down and use this extra time to take care of myself and use it wisely, so I turned around and went home.

Has anything like this every happened to you in your business? Have you ever hit a roadblock that prevents you from where you want to go or simply takes you off course? How did you recover, or did you? Did you pick yourself up, dust yourself off and do something differently? This is what I would want for you. Don’t ever give up. Surround yourself with a success team and/or a support system and rely on them to help you get through the difficult times. We all can persevere, we just need to keep moving, find a different path, look at things differently and don’t ever give up.

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