A Personal Note to the Non-Believers

Many of us are beautifully optimistic in our New Year expressions. I can’t count how many Facebook posts I “liked,” tweets I “re-tweeted,” and Google+ status’s I “1+’d” over the last week.  They all spoke, in various verse, of how many great changes the New Year was going to bring into each person’s life. And while I want everyone whose path I cross to be wildly successful in 2012, we all know that the odds are against most. Once you have signed off social media, and set down to make the real work happen, do doubts start to creep in?  Does “reality” hit when you look at what’s got to be done to meet your online business goals?  By the end of January, are you back in the frustration of not making it happen? Obviously, there’s a huge difference in saying you’re going to make it happen in the New Year, and actually making it happen. Unfortunately, I think the reason most people don’t find the success they are looking for is that they don’t take the time to really believe they can do it. Today, I’m going to share with you 3 examples from my life that you can use to push yourself past your doubts and back into belief. 1.  You Decide What’s Possible Most of your doubts are the result of what society ~ including your friends and family ~ defines as possible and proper.  But you do not have to believe in “impossible.” When I decided to have children, my doctor told me there was only a 2% chance that I would ever get pregnant....

How to Make a Difference in 60 Seconds or Less

Earlier this week, my friend Norma Doiron shared this with me: “Every one of us is either a plus or a minus in people’s lives,” says John C. Maxwell. The positive people usually know it — wake up each day and consider, “Who can I add value to today? It’s an intentional lifestyle…” And it got me thinking about how easy it really is to make a difference in other people’s lives. IF you live intentionally. With most things in life, we get feedback.  And we’re usually motivated by some external outcome. We publish a newsletter for our clients because they will read it, benefit from it, and do business with us.  We fix dinner because we’ll hear about (and potentially feel bad) if we don’t.  We excel at work so that we’ll get a promotion or a raise.   And so on. To make a difference in someone’s life requires intentionality because it often comes without much, or any, feedback. Let me share a story with you. A couple of weeks ago I was at the baseball game with my kids, who are 3, 4, and 7 years old.  My boys (3 and 4) were anxious to see the fireworks, a St. Louis Cardinals’ tradition when a player hits a home run.  My 3-year-old, Justin, had asked the man sitting in front of us where the fireworks were before the game even began. When the first home run came, of course the crowd came to its feet.  I lifted Justin up in the air so he could clearly see what he came for. When the next home run came,...

Inspiration and the Art of Bug Flipping

Not every day inspires us to be or feel our best.  To recognize and appreciate the many ways in which we are blessed. Some days, we need a little help. Recently, I was at the gas station when I noticed a beautiful little bug on the concrete island around the pumps. Maybe “beautiful” and “bug” don’t go together for you.  But this bug was a nice lime green color and in the shape of a small leaf. She was flipped over on her back, all of her tiny legs flailing wildly in a futile effort to right herself. I wondered how long she had endured this struggle as I took my thumb and gently flipped her over. She resumed her journey, and I imagined a look of relief on her face and a thank you on her lips. For some reason, I felt really good about my little act of kindness all day. The next evening, I was at the skating rink for my daughter’s lesson.  My boys were being energetic, to put it nicely. I was at my wit’s end with them.  On the brink of forgetting all those lessons I try to implement about good parenting. A woman who I know casually from skating approached me.  “You are such a good mom.  You are so patient with them,” she said.  “I wish I could be more like that.” I immediately thought – she just flipped me over. Her comment of course made me feel good, and put things back in perspective for me.  Of course she had no idea what a difference she made in my day. ...

How to Make Your Bad Day Good In 60 Seconds or Less

You’ve dealt with people who “woke up on the wrong side of the bed.”  You’ve probably even been one of those people before. And while it’s an easy explanation for having a bad day, it’s an excuse that needs to be eliminated from your life. Because really, there is no “wrong side of the bed.”  I know that’s obvious, but once your day starts off wrong, most people are all too eager to write it off as a “bad day” well before it’s even half over. Isn’t it curious that some days though, everything does go wrong? You oversleep.  Your kids don’t like their breakfast, can’t find their shoes, dog ate their homework.  You’re late.  Great start. And of course, today just happens to be the day that everyone on the road is driving especially slow.  You’re low on gas.  Forgot your debit card.  Your lunch date with a potential new client or business partner is cancelled .  Your website’s been hacked. And on and on. Of course, the more things go wrong, the easier it becomes to set you off.  Under normal circumstances, being put on hold when you call to ask a question about your cell phone service would be a minor annoyance.  Today, it’s causing you to declare that the entire company is full of incompetents and you’re changing providers immediately. It doesn’t have to be this way.  And it shouldn’t.  Each day is way too special and full of potential to waste.  And that’s usually what we do — write it off as a bad day and hope for better tomorrow. Fortunately, you are in...

Memorial Day: Lessons on Life and Business

The origins of Memorial Day call upon us to remember those military men and women who have lost their lives.  The tradition of the day has become for us to also remember friends and family members who have died. I enjoy this holiday for at least three reasons.  First — at least the way we’ve come to do it — it’s a celebration.  I much prefer celebrating life rather than mourning the loss. Second, it signals the “unofficial start of summer.”  And I love summer.  I love any time that signals rebirth, growth, and change.  Summer says all of those things. Third, it gives us a chance to stop and think about what’s important.  To remember that people and relationships are temporary.  That the time to be present with each other and enjoy the people that are important in our life is NOW. Since I began on this journey to transfer my offline business success to online business success, Memorial Day causes me to reflect on my business as I do my life. I never get used to how everything in life seems to parallel business.  For us entrepreneurs anyway. So here is how the joy of Memorial Day provides you with some positive business messages too. First, on the choice to celebrate.  Swimming pools and bar-b-que are so ingrained in how we celebrate Memorial Day, that we do it without thinking. You don’t have family meetings to discuss whether you should spend this Memorial Day crying over the loss of our loved ones, or having a fun-filled party. You respond the way you’ve been taught.  The way you’ve...

5 Things I Learned During a 5 Hour Airport Delay

I should be home right now.  Having snuggled my precious babies to sleep.  Doing laundry or some other ever-present household task. But as 10:30 approaches, I sit in the airport, gazing  wishfully at the 5:30 departure time that still displays at my gate. Ugh. Being a strong believer in never wasting a moment, and in seeing the lesson in everything, I share with you the 5 things I’ve learned in the last 5 hours. Besides, what else do I have to do right now. . . First (in no particular order), it’s easier to just be nice.  Your attitude is one of the few things you have complete control over.  No matter what the circumstances, you can always choose to be nice. Every order amoxil flight in this terminal is at least on a 3 hour delay.  Tensions are running high.  As I sat down to eat dinner in a packed restaurant at 8:30, I was greeted by a particularly friendly waitress.  We exchanged sentiments about the long day. I noticed that some of the other tables, who were short or unfriendly, didn’t receive the same smiling attention I did.  I also noticed this as I observed people interacting with the gate agents. Without a doubt, I was in a much happier place than those who chose the grumpy route.  And more importantly, I helped put others – who were just trying to do their jobs – in a better place. Being nice has a positive ripple effect throughout the universe. Second, it really is all about you.  Let go of the judgments people make about you. I have...