I want to start by saying thank you for your patience, the blog has taken a back seat to life and if you are reading this now - I appreciate you. So let’s start with the adventure that we are calling 2020, businesses are re-inventing themselves, consumers are changing habits, working from home, child care, work efficiency, and safety of one and all. Amongst all of the changes to life, how do we decide on what needs to be done first, what needs to be set aside, and how to keep track of it all to ensure productivity does not plummet - acknowledging that it will certainly go down? How to know what to do first…
Putting aside things that need immediate attention - your health, family needs, breathing - the items that need to be completed first and foremost are the ones that keep the food on your table. So, for example, you are in sales and rely on the client base then you will need to stay in touch with your clients first and foremost. Reach out, see how they are doing, do they need anything, be genuine, and care for others - that should be the best use of your time. Another example, for the 9-5 crowd, if you need to attend meetings for work - then schedule around that and make it a priority. If you rely on completing paperwork and submitting reports, make that your first task of the day. You need to decide, what is THE thing that keeps your bank account flowing and then work around that.
Next are the tasks that compliment your work, like a blog for example, that will need to be set aside for the time being. Now, these secondary tasks should be put in a to-do list, you need to acknowledge that they are a priority when you are able to address them - maybe after kids are asleep, instead of tv time, or Sunday afternoon. Also keep these items in order of importance, instead of our usual chronological order, because we are being honest with ourselves and realizing that some of the items at the bottom of the list just may not get done during these challenging times. This list is ever fluctuating and as our environment changes, we need to continue to prioritize the list and address as many tasks as possible. Efficiency, right, the list of must-do items and then a list of to do in order of importance.
Finally, some you time because let’s face it this year has been abnormally stressful and we need to manage that as well. We will do our best to have time set aside to decompress, hopefully, step outside and enjoy the sunshine and turn off work. Rule #1 - the work will still be there after you take some time to relax and enjoy an activity-hobby-family. It is also important to get back into, or maintain, an exercise at some point in the day - does not have to be intense, a walk, a jog, some push-ups, (a punching bag) anything physical will help tremendously. Most experts tell us to block off a time to schedule your break, but we are not in usual times, I would humbly recommend keeping your priority list at hand, get the most vital items addressed first, let the time to yourself be used when and as long as needed, then jump into the to-do list.
In the end, we need to maintain a new balance between work life and mental life to ensure that 2020 does not get the best of us. This year has been a testament to how resilient we are, how dedicated we are to work and family, and it is time to embrace it and enjoy the challenge...and local food take out. So to sum it all up, decide what is vital to succeed and make that top priority, keep the to-do items on your list in order of importance that is ever-changing, and then include the downtime because the work will still be there. Finally, once again I appreciate you sticking with me and this blog, I hope you find it useful, and as always feel free to comment or share with a friend!
Bob Prince, sport announcer for the Pittsburgh Pirates, calls it Hidden Vigorish. The idea that someone who is either not performing to their ability or overachieving for a short amount of time; whereas, we know that at some point they will return to their true form in due time. We have all personally experienced moments of hidden vigorish and at these moments we have to decide if whether THIS is who we are now or make the decision to slump or un-slump ourselves. Currently, I am in a professional slump and this week is a perfect opportunity for me to review the things that I am doing in order to get back out and on track again.
Let’s start with the most important element of the un-slumping process - mindset. Let’s double down on the positive content that we surround ourselves with, the people, the podcasts, the music we listen to, the news we hear - positive vibes only. It does not have to be the fluffy, you are good enough and smart enough type of positive content (however if it works…), but inspiring content from successful people that are reminding us that we are capable and with focus we can get back on track. During a slump, we need mental reminders of the mindset that helped us become successful so we can get back into that same frame of mind.
Reflection is step two, we need to look at what we are doing in our business, our daily routines, and our goals - sometimes the slump is subconscious, sometimes it is our mind telling us that our goals need realigned, so we need to spend some time listening. Look back at some of the projects that were started, review some of the activities that we have always wanted to start or try, during the slump may be a good time to get into these and see if we may be in need of a pivot. Now is a good time to write, reflect, journal about what is important to us, what do we value and whether our actions are leading us to our values effectively. Slumps are not always bad, sometimes they are necessary to refocus.
Finally, the slump requires more work, which is what I commonly find myself doing during a slump - working more to get back on track. More phone calls, more letters, more hours to get back where we want to be - as long as we reflect first and ensure we are still working towards the right goals. Slumps are professional Darwinism, weeding out our actions that we do not need to be successful. I know, even as I write this, that re-framing a slump from a terrible thing to a life changing moment is how we most effectively get out of a slump and come out stronger than before. Have a successful week, we will see you back again next week - feel free to comment and suggest new topics to cover anytime.
I enjoy when the weather person says, with a straight face, that there is a 90% chance of rain as the water splashes on the windows. I know that nothing is absolute, but it would be a safe bet to go all in on the precipitation prediction AS it is raining. I also find myself moving a little slower, a bit grumpier when it is all rain clouds, something about the sun is inspiring and motivating. And we all have these kinds of days, onces that you are just in a funk, you just can’t get yourself moving no matter how inspiring your mission is. The good news is, everyone has uninspiring days and when you find ways to stay on track it will separate you from all the others. But how is the question - what things can we do to leverage the days we don’t want to do anything in order to get an advantage when others take days off?
First and most important is to have that checklist handy, if you have been following the blog then you know and have a list of daily activities, our calendar ticks, that need to be accomplished each day. Every other day we start with the toughest objective first and get the day underway by taking down the elephant; but not today because it is an uninspired day, so today we start with the easiest on the list. Start with making that flyer, or answering 5 emails, or cleaning up the meeting notes, which means we are getting ourselves moving forward.
Now that we have ourselves moving in the right direction, you may need to give yourself more frequent breaks, but be sure to put a timer on those breaks. For example, a five minute timer to stop and goof around on YouTube, then back to the checklist taking on the next easiest task. Even a timed afternoon nap can help recharge, supported by the American Psychological Association, when held to ten minutes or less, then back to the checklist. Again, all we need to focus on is moving forward - little by little.
Final one we will review today is coming up with a reward system on days that we need to self-inspire. If we get through checklist items 1-4 by noon then we get some of those Girl Scout Cookies that have been eyeing you up; on a diet, no worries we can allow ourselves to finish and watch that movie we have wanted to check out. The reward system is meant to help inspire you to get the checklist done in a timely fashion, to inspire some form of productivity on an otherwise lazy day.
Self inspiration is a mental game, we covered just three different strategies to try and get your mind in the right place - there WILL be days you do not want to move forward, so we need to find ways to get that left foot in front of the other. Remember that the checklist is the key, as it will help ensure that you track your progress. Once you know that you have to get the checklist done, then it is a matter of tricking your brain into motivation, it may not be your best work, it may need some review the next day, but seperate yourself from everyone else that takes uninspiring days off. Good luck this week and move forward!
We are in that phase with our seven year old son that anything that he is not good at right away turns into a moment of breaking down and giving up, “I’ll never be good at math, NEVER!” Even as I type this though, I can picture adults that maintain that same mindset - can’t do it right away, then it isn’t worth doing. So as we (mostly my wife and her teaching degree) agonize over reading the words “script,” adding 8 + 2, and not forgetting to punctuate a question, this is the moment that we have to establish the foundation of a growth mindset with him. And this week, it is a perfect chance to review some mindset truths:
Firstly, and most importantly we want to teach him growth. I don’t need him to get all A’s, to get every answer right, that is not only unrealistic, but adds a lot of pressure unnecessarily. What we want him to do is get better each time, to learn from incorrect answers, and limit the times he gets a specific skill wrong. In our daily lives, we are not often put into a professional situation that we are expected to be handed a job/task/skill and then get them right every time from that moment onward (and if that describes your job, you are either getting paid handsomely enough to deal with that stress or you are miserable at work). We put our new knowledge to practice, figure out strategies for efficiency and improve with each repetition - which is why you know what 8+2 is. Therefore, growth from mistakes is skill one.
From growth, I have found one of the most vital skills that naturally comes next is competition. No, not with comparing yourself to Bob in sales who has the brand new car, mansion, and jet skis - that is never going to work. When we compete from growth it is with ourselves, push ourselves intrinsically to be better than you from yesterday. Self competition is the only healthy version because as soon as you catch up to Bob, have the car and the girl, you will discover that Roger has it better than Bob and now you have a new shallow person to aspire to. Chasing goals, especially superficial ones, hardly ever works for more than a short period of time. However, when you compete with yourself then it is healthy growth, you find fewer excuses - I was able to do x yesterday, no reason I can’t do x and now z today. This becomes our second lesson today - compete against yourself for growth.
Finally, embracing the failures is our third mindset lesson today. Do not read into that incorrectly, embracing failure does not in any way mean accepting it as truth, but rather accepting that failures will happen so embrace it and then move forward. Once we can get Keegan to realize that he will not win every time, that along the way he will stumble and lose, and that those are the lessons to be learned for growth in avoiding the same failures over again. Such a simple concept, but probably the most difficult because in our culture we do not like losing. It is instinctive to get angry when we lose whether it is a card game, being passed up on a promotion, or a significant other leaves us. I am not saying don’t get angry, we certainly can’t help our reflects, but after the anger there are lessons to be learned, ample growth to embrace from such losses. Making embrace the failure as lessons for growth our final mindset for this week.
Recapping, we are doing our best to teach Keegan that after his initial meltdown over his homework to try and learn mindsets that will become habits for life...we hope anyway. By teaching him the value of personal growth, competing against yourself, and then embracing the failures as lessons he can get more from school than how to read and write. Same for ourselves, if we don’t currently practice these mindsets, take some time this week and think on how to create the habits necessary for growth - it will help reduce stress, improve your skill set, and make life overall more enjoyable. Good luck with the positive, growth mindset this week...and wish us luck with Keegan’s homework.
I can best describe this week as professionally brutal. Whereas, the blog this week is going to be vital in turning things around, and I am going to do so by re-framing my situation. It can sound hokey to think that everything can be positive, let’s just agree that there are just some situations that flat out suck - it is completely true. However, if we let these negatives grow and become our habitual response then we slowly grow into Eeyore, and make the negative become our default personality. So let’s start by explaining the term re-framing: essentially it is the act, the habit, of looking at a loss and thinking about all the ways we can put ourselves in control of a win in the future. As they explain it in Psychology Today, it is not the naive mind set that everything is going to be alright, just be patient and everything will work out just fine. No, re-framing is just the opposite, that if something positive is going to come of a bad situation, we need to stop, reflect, and think about how we can grow and improve because of it. Plants grow best after it rains, right?
So let’s move this into an example, let’s say that you get passed up for a promotion, your car won’t start on Monday morning, and then someone hacks into your email which locks you out. Rough week, especially since once a few things important to you go array, inevitably you notice all the little things not going your way as well. Re-frame and reflect, the promotion means that either you have not been putting in the efforts necessary to move up the ladder or that there are factors involved that are out of your control and it may be time to start searching for a new job. By re-framing the situation, we put ourselves in charge, we are the center of both problem and solution, which means we are going to either A. Start coming up with a clear plan to stay on task, be it checklists, adjusting some habits, or even meeting with the boss for feedback. Or B. jump on LinkDin, searching for job positions you would enjoy, budgeting for the possibility of no salary for a set amount of time, or even starting a little side hustle to see if something can become of it. Once you stop blaming outside sources that can not be changed, start looking to yourself on what growth can be made - we can re-frame a frustrating situation into a positive step in the right direction. We can do the same for the car not starting, right? Do we service it enough, should we be checking the fluids more often, perhaps time to start budgeting for a new car - put yourself back in control. Finally, the email one can also be re-framed - rather than why is a hacker picking on poor little me, instead change your password more often, keep your new passwords someplace habitual and safe, or just delete that account if you don’t use it often. We can re-frame any of these type of negative situations to develop a growth, positive mindset.
Now, is every situation something that you caused - I mean a meteor can hit you in the head, your car can get rear ended, you can get food poisoning at your favorite restaurant, some things are just the universe seeing how tough you are. Continue to re-frame rather than sulk, how can a bad situation be viewed and reacted to differently to build yourself. Again, this is not a sunny side, everything will be alright, just let karma do its thing - no, act, but choose to act with purpose. Reminder this week is to re-frame, the next time you drop your phone in the toilet, lose a big sale, or find out that annoying Uncle is coming to visit, whatever is trying to set you back, stop and reflect on how it can be used to help you improve and grow. Take control, be the problem and the solution - it is a welcome form of freedom for sure.
Almost every idea can be developed into a good idea, with the proper motivation and a clear why to guide it - thoughts can become actions. Now, let’s compare that thought to the numerous, hundreds, thousands of ideas that splatter into your brain and we quickly realize that we need to narrow the concept of “good” idea down to “MUST” idea. With our business and life planning fresh behind us from January, our action plans are now in place, but the moment we start the act of doing we are also evaluating, assessing, and reassessing the effectiveness of our action plan...is this really working? So this week, let’s unpack the “MUST” idea and then ways to assess the effectiveness to ensure you are on the right track!
First things first, we decide on the must ideas - ones that clearly support your one goal, that you know are easily actionable, simple, and you believe you can complete with consistency. For example, a must idea could be to donate to your local charity every month with proceeds from your business. Simple. Actionable. And good for the community. Plus, in this example, it will support your one goal which is to grow your sphere to fifty people in the community. Some things you will need to do for consistency is add it to your calendar, on a date that you know that there will be proceeds for the charity donation, and ensure that the calendar has a loud alert set up that will remind you for sure. Next, be sure that the amount you plan on donating is realistic to support consistency - you know your budget, so plan accordingly. Good start, it is a simple action that you can set up a plan to remain consistent, triggers in place to remind you, and will help achieve your one goal.
Now, let’s talk assessment - this is key to your simple action plan and keep the MUST ideas effective, as we need reassurance that it is in fact helping your one goal. To further our example, we want to grow our sphere to fifty people, right? Therefore, a way to assess whether our action plan of donating to charity has given the opportunity to meet new people - track it. A vital part of your action plan and the results is whether it is something that can be tracked, can you keep score of how you are winning. In our example, we simply put our new contacts into a CRM, even mark anyone that you already know but get to speak and interact with on a more regular basis. You should be able to physically see the scoreboard and know in a moment if the actions are positively affecting your goal. If you can not track it, adjust the goal, the wording of the goal, OR accept that you are taking action for your own well being (which is also fine if that supports your goal).
Reassessing is not just tracking though, if you are looking at the numbers over an extended period of time and do not see the results you want or expect then it is time to review. Is this action still supporting your one goal? Are you giving it enough time, not every action will breed results in a month - how much time will you give it, IF you feel it is a MUST action such as charity donations? What are some of the unintended results that you are seeing, perhaps your action plan is on the right track, but you may want to branch out with it, adjust the path it is taking a bit. For example, you are donating to charity, not meeting new members for your sphere, but there is a local business that also donates and now you have some co-branding opportunities with that business - awesome, let’s adjust the MUST actions to include supporters. Stick to your simple action plan, adjust, and then take it in a new direction of donation and branding. You should be reassessing weekly at minimum, review the plan, what actions are working, and why.
To wrap up our thoughts on the simple action plan this week, and do remember that this can apply to personal as well as business, we have our one goal, we have a simple and consistent action plan, now we are working on reassessing it continually to ensure we are on the path to success. Remember, be sure the plan is simple, that you have put in place the triggers to help you stay consistent, and then track the results to ensure you are doing things that support your goal and may need adjusting. Mark your calendars for this Friday to review (or set up) your tracking and we will talk to you next week.
According to Wikipedia, the American Top 40 radio show at one point was played by over 430 radio stations across the world. Countries such as America, Canada, China, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Australia, and many more would play the best music from that week and it was hosted by none other than Shaggy from the original Scooby Doo cartoon, Casey Kasem. We look at that number now, 430 countries, and that is not so impressive with our ability to reach every country across the world; furthermore, radio stations have had to share their space with Pandora, Spotify, IHeartRadio, and podcasts leaving a small space for world famous Dj and radio hosts, such as Casey. This week, I want to focus on podcasts, they have become our most popular tool for learning on the go and entertainment. In fact, the website Podcasts Insights tracks the data and according to their research there are 850,000 podcasts as of January 1st and an estimated 51% of Americans have listened to a podcast (144 million people), but I don’t need to convince you...trendy, up to date, reader (Insights). Let’s dive into some of the podcasts that have been helping me get my life in order!
I think it is best to go in influential order here, so let’s begin with Donald Miller the creator of Story Brand. I have consumed all of his content, but focusing on the podcast, he helps people through narration - by helping the audience tell and shape their own story. It is imperative that we know our story, that it is clear, that it is POSITIVE, and that this self actualization helps us make decisions that are in our best interest. I buy into the idea, with my fancy English degree somewhere in a closet, because I love the idea of living our lives through story - better yet that we are in charge of that story and have so much control over what happens and our own mindset on our journey. On the show he brings on experts in negotiating, in conflict resolution, on charity, and so many other experts that will help us build on our own story. Therefore, I have built much of my business and life around these concepts, even before I got hooked on his content I was practicing the story concepts, but now I have the ability to actualize the concepts with clarity.
Next, if you don’t mind the F-word then the Gary Vee show is amazing for life and entrepreneurship. The way I explain Gary’s show to people is that he has slippets of content to change your mindset, putting you in charge, letting you be as comfortable with losing as the wins, how to reframe your every situation to allow you to accept yourself and actions. He will go on a rant, it will feel random, just passion and life lessons - then - BAM he will hit a line that will perpetuate him into content that will change your lifeset. You have to dig in, really listen, sort through the raw language and rants to get to the juice that will impact you in a positive way. I usually listen to him at the end of a tough day, Fridays, weekends because it puts me in the right mindset to be successful but also has more of an entertainment factor than the more straight educational tone that some of the other podcasts that I tune into.
Let’s do one more review, Tom Bilyeu and the amazing interviews that he has on Impact Theory podcast. I can not always buy into what he preaches, cold morning showers, bake pizza in front of me when I am fasting, and other masochistic habits, but what I will say is that he brings on the show some of the most influential and inspiring people I have heard speak. Also, his interview skills are some of the most effective than any podcaster as well, digging deeper into the more meaningful topics of conversation - most importantly letting his guest be the star and talk most. I often find myself consuming the guests content right after the show as well, not just listening and then moving-on.
There are certainly more, Brian Buffini, Pat Flynn (also excellent!), Tim Ferriss, TedTalks, et cetera, but this week I want to focus on the top three. It is becoming the trend that the podcasts that you follow reflect who you are, what you want to learn, surround yourself with and consume - so I hope these three we reviewed today will help you try something new. Nearly gone are the days of radio broadcasts who dictate what you hear and when you hear it, a DJ playing their favorite tunes or covering topics that they enjoy. Podcasts and online radio have put us in control, we get to learn and grow by choosing what we want to consume...just another amazing aspect of technology. Finally, of course, if YOU have some favorites please feel free to share and we will be sure to check them out as well!
For the record, I am a big fan of black and white movies and Rolo Candy! Wait, no, that’s not the transparency on tap for today. The focus today is on the explanation, the meaning of transparency as it pertains to business and growth. We are all constantly walking the line of transparency and boring our audience with the manusha of the tedious elements of our job - as we know there is always a fun and boring side to every job. For example, we want to explain how signing on the dotted line will affect the warranty of their new purchase, but there is no need to go through the contract line for line and explaining the legal jargon of how lawyers define the word warranty. So this week, let’s discuss the importance of transparency and how to decide what the client needs to know...for FREE as Gary V will tell you.
Educated clients are the best kind of clients - just think, not having to explain the entire process of how something works, wasting time on longer meetings, how to buy the item, best use practices, and the general cost - basics. Skipping past the basics with an educated client will give you a chance to expound on the product, go into detail, really dig deep and challenge yourself when helping your client - fun. Fortunately, we have public and free platforms available for you to cover the basics of your product (take your pick: Facebook to Pintrest and then some), educate an entire mass audience, build trust so when you have that face to face meeting, when it is time to make the purchase, it is a better experience for you and the client. Plus, let’s face it people that are interested in your product are going to find out about it, educate themselves regardless whether you are the one putting the content out - so the information may as well be coming from you. Plus, they are much more likely to make the purchase once they feel comfortable and confident that they know what they are getting themselves into and how it can benefit their life. So there is no need to keep secrets around here.
Sure, it is important and easier for us to have educated clients - but what do they NEED to know versus what will put them to sleep? First place to start is by making a list of the most popular questions you get about your product and service, simple right, those are the things that your audience needs to know. Next, make a list of benefits or reasons why your clients need your product, also good for transparency. However, let’s do another list that you may be thinking of and come up with some of the negatives, some of the things that your audience needs to be careful of when experiencing your product. Don’t fear a reduction in sales, do not believe that this will talk people out of reaching out to you, but just the opposite as it helps create trust with your client. They need to also know the down side, no product or service is perfect, and by educating them on the possible negatives then they are prepared and you are less likely to get that complaint call to come put out a sales fire. You can even take it a step further and go over ways to help limit the down side, how to deal with the negative features to help maximize the client experience with you - embrace it. Quick review on how to keep your educated client’s attention: most frequent questions, benefits of the product, and the down side with steps to deal with that. Full transparency means an educated client that understands how your product or service can make their life better.
Finally, as we wrap it up let’s talk about free education. This week we are not getting into the details, I mean you have unlimited ways to reach an audience (flyers, pictures, videos, memes, testimony, holograms - endless options) and on various platforms (facebook, Instagram, Pintrest, Tic-Tok, lots), so the advise this week will consist of two things: find a platform that your friends/family/clients are on, and produce content that you find FUN. Simple. We have already reviewed what content to use, frequent questions, positives, down sides, so you have plenty of material to educate. Also, be sure to have a call to action somewhere in the material, such as how to get a hold of you, for when the audience is ready to take that next step and sit down with you. As we wrap it up this week, transparency means when you sit down with the client they had the opportunity to learn all about your product, they are knowledgeable, and they are ready to ask you detailed questions about how it will make their life better...and you can help them as their trusted consultant and local expert. I see you there transparency!
It is common in our culture to use the phrase “Yin and Yang of life” to mean that there is balance, for every uphill there is a downhill on the other side. However, the true meaning is that one is part of another and that to be whole they must be ingrained; for example, the yin of an ocean wave is the trough as it builds speed to the yang which is the crest of the wave before it crashes - you can not have one without the other or else it is merely water. To apply yin and yang to the New Year, we have goal setting and habits to set in place during the slow January as our yin, if we want to reap the benefits and enjoy the hustle of December which is our yang. It is difficult to not have one without the other, and if we fail to set up our positive habits in January then we are setting ourselves up for a less prosperous year. So, how do we take advantage of a slow January…?
First of all, if you have been following my emailer you know that there is no such thing as New Year’s resolutions, we don’t do them as they set us up to fail. Instead we set up our one goal to achieve this year (it is a good idea to set up personal and professional) and then the activities to obtain that one goal. Therefore, January becomes the time to set up the activities you believe will help you reach your goal and then start setting up the productive habits. So, for example, if your goal is to get a 5% raise at work and you believe by getting to work 30 minutes early, volunteering to run a difficult project per month, and tracking your weekly productivity will help you get that raise then January is the best time to put those habits into place. Sounds easy right...well...good. If you need to wake up 30 minutes earlier, set the alarm sooner, in fact you can even put your television on a timer to shut off at a certain time in the evening - a stern reminder that the zombie box is not as important as getting to work early. Then a checklist of what activities you need to complete first thing in the morning when arriving to work, as I doubt getting there early is all it takes for that raise, you need to do something with your time. Therefore, we are going to spend time this January setting up our alarm, the television timer, and the checklist of morning activities - creating the habits we need to achieve our one goal (similar process for the other activities- set them up, how are they done, create habit steps with physical reminders). Boom, done.
Some humble tips to creating the habits we need: incorporate technology to automate as much as possible. Your phone has an alarm, your television has a timer, and your computer has apps and calendars to make checklists. I take it one step further with calendar ticks: putting reminders in my checklist app to do an activity at a certain time of day with a loud bell reminder, then if the task can not be done at that moment, it stays on my checklist until it gets completed. Keep it simple: do not make the activities so arduous that it is easy to talk yourself out of doing them, it should not take a lot of effort to achieve your one goal...setting up a television timer takes three minutes, then once it turns off, go to bed. Give yourself cheat days: if you remain consistent, stick to the plan, even the strongest willed people slip. So set up times, like Saturday and Sunday, to sleep in a bit, finish watching that show, whatever you choose to miss can be made up. Under the same category, things come up in life, a friend visits from out of town, your parents invite you to dinner, PLEASE attend your kid’s baseball game, there is a play you really want to see - do it. You will have the systems in place to get right back into the habits that you believe will make you successful - your alarm is still set, the checklist is still at work, get on it. Remember that success is a choice.
Mid-way through January at this point, do not fret if you have not made the goal clear, if you have not set up the habits and activities yet - yesterday is the best day to start something, next best day is today. Again, start simple, make the activities that support your goal routine, which will give you the opportunity to build on them later. There is absolutely no reason to sit around January waiting for St. Patrick’s Day to roll around before you start becoming productive. One goal, activities to support it, and what habits do you need to act - done - start. Enjoy your week, stay successful.
The odds that you get struck by lightning is 1 in 700,000, getting hit by a meteor is 1 in 3,000, only 12 of the 18,300 NASA applicants became astronauts in 2019, and I won’t dare dash your hopes for the lottery. And I would venture to guess the odds that you, at this moment, need the services that I help provide are pretty slim as well - maybe not meteor in the head slim, but not too far off. Therefore, I find other ways to help people, to contribute to my community - there are options such as charity and volunteer work, of course my favorite form of community work is helping local businesses market and succeed. So how does that look exactly? I got started by volunteering to help local businesses make short commercials, interview style, that gave them a platform to talk about themselves and their passion. These short videos made for excellent advertising on social media, in email marketing, and to share with family/friends/clients when they were looking for someone personal and local.
At first, I was just techie enough to know how to make a video or two, but not enough to make them look professional...such as this one: https://youtu.be/ItqcqySJro4 (wow, pre-grey hair!), then as we got better and did many more, such as this one https://youtu.be/MOn1BcpPvBU, the videos became a useful marketing tool for local businesses all over the area. What I love the most about helping local businesses is their passion, they could easily spend hours talking about what they do and why they do it, who they help and how they got started - such positive energy!
Then, as my team grew and I had a chance to get even more organized we took the video concept to the next stage, which we started to call business pop-ups. We have started going into local businesses each month, bringing all of our friends, clients, anyone in the community into a business to try it out. Oh, you did not know there was a tea shop in the beach -- WELL come try it out on us! You have never been to the brewery before -- WELL let’s do a crabcake event there! And here is where we take the positive energy, mix it with gratitude and make volunteering as rewarding as possible. I don’t mean gratitude from the business, but that I have towards the business for letting us into their “home,” for the trust that the show as we are help them bring in people that will benefit from their services - that’s a leap of faith. Imagine, you spend countless hours, no such thing as overtime, you dug real deep into the savings account, put your sweat into your idea, and then someone you just met wants to fill your house full of guests...that takes trust.
I know you might not need me right now, that you have the similar odds of finding a lost dog today, but I still want to bring value to your life somehow - by bringing some of these amazing people, their products and ideas to you to enjoy the local community...that is my favorite way to give back. Being able to meet the entrepreneur who made your food, to talk with the owner face to face and see their passion; people that have children in your school, that volunteer at the high school football games, donate to Project Echo, give their time to the Marine Museum - those are the people I want to support in any way I can...and that is part of my mission: to support the community and help our local businesses grow. See you at the next pop up!