What’s Going On With Your Cup?
Can I be completely honest with you?
The end of 2012 was one of the roughest periods in my life. Between the business and family challenges, I was completely out of steam. But when you’re an entrepreneur, you can’t fly under the radar and collect a paycheck without anyone noticing. You have to bring your “A” game.
Ironically, it was during the period when I felt my cup was the emptiest that I seemed to be making the biggest impact in the lives of others. The businesses of my clients were growing. Dreams were being realized. People were breaking through the fear and uncertainty that had held them captive for years. Nearly every day I received an email or Facebook message from someone (including people I had never met) telling me something I said or did changed their lives.
Even if I wanted to quit, I couldn’t. Why you ask? Because it’s not about me.
If I asked you why you haven’t made progress toward that dream you have tucked away in your heart, there’s a good chance most of your reasons will begin with “I”.
I don’t have enough time. I’m not smart enough. Why would someone want to listen to me? What if I fail?
I, I, I, me, me, me. But just like it’s not about me, it’s not about you, either (sorry if that sounds harsh, but it’s true).
We’re nothing more than vessels used to accomplish a purpose. A thirsty person could drink from Waterford Crystal or a plastic cup from the dollar store. Either way, the vessel only has value if it serves its purpose. Ask yourself, “Am I serving my purpose?”
This year, I really want to encourage you to think beyond the perceived challenges and focus on the people who need to drink from your cup. Once you decide that you want to move forward, the resources you need will appear.
So what’s your first step? It’s probably not as risky or life-altering as you think. It may be as simple as making a phone call or sending an email. Chances are, your dream won’t be realized next month, so stop trying to figure out all of the details right now…just take the first step!
No matter how bumpy the road, don’t you want to be on the path that leads to awesome? Don’t allow your legacy to simply be the years of service engraved on a gold watch. Go for the ripple effect. If my gift inspires you to activate yours, think about the folks who will reap the benefits of your awesomeness. And who will benefit from their awesomeness? As hokey as it may sound, we really can change the world.
No more settling for mediocrity. You were made to be awesome.
Check out this must-see video (you’re gonna love it)and reply to this email to tell me what your Space Jam will be…
Need help unleashing your awesomeness? That’s where my awesomeness comes in. Maybe your first step is to email me.
Have a wonderful week…ON PURPOSE!
What To Do When Success Isn’t Happening Fast Enough
How much time do you spend daydreaming about what your life will be like when you’re successful – however it is that you define it? Most of us are excited to get to the end result - a thriving business, nonprofit, ministry, book, speaking career, or whatever it is that you’re after. Here’s the question: Are you just as excited about laying the groundwork needed to get there?
In Proverbs – the book of wisdom – chapter 24:27 tells us to finish our outdoor work and get our fields ready BEFORE we build our house. Building a professional life that you will enjoy isn’t all fun and games. And although it’s a wise practice to focus on the aspects that you’re good at and enjoy, that doesn’t excuse you from other critical steps of the process.
As a professional speaker and trainer, I’m often approached by people who would like to do what I’m doing. When I hit the stage, people may see a “great speaker that taught us life-changing information”. But what they don’t often consider is the years that went into building my brand and acquiring the knowledge that I’m now able to share with people around the world. I’ve invested thousands of dollars in coaching and training, read hundreds of books, and spend numerous hours each week creating and sharing valuable information with the people connected to me online. There were also countless changes I had to make personally, financially and spiritually to be where I am today. The process didn’t always feel good, but it was necessary.
I don’t say all of this to discourage you. In fact, it’s just the opposite. Right now you may be feeling like things aren’t happening fast enough. Success seems to be sprouting up all over the place for people around you and you’re wondering when it will be your turn.
Don’t give up.
This is the place where most people throw in the towel. It feels too difficult. It’s happening too slowly. You may even be questioning if it’s what you’re supposed to be doing at all. Perhaps things aren’t moving as fast as you expected because you still have more outdoor work to do.
YOUR ASSIGNMENT IS TO ANSWER THESE TWO QUESTIONS:
1. What is your outdoor work? Is it researching the industry you want to move into or clients you’re looking to serve? What are you doing now to build relationships with people who could be vital to your success?
2. What do you need to do to get your fields ready? As you anticipate how success will impact your life, what do you need to do now to prepare for it, personally, professionally, financially and spiritually?
Watching the walls of the house go up is exciting, but the prep work will make sure you can move into and enjoy your house once it is built. Don’t despise today’s “grunt work”. Keep your eyes fixed on the end result and remember that you’re working ON PURPOSE!
Passion: Is it Really Critical to Business Success?
Passion, smassion…just give me my paycheck! Some may tell you it’s one of those touchy-feely concepts reserved for artists and activists. But how important is passion in business?
The Power of Passion
Passion stirs the fire in the belly that drives you to do what most people won’t. It’s why individuals devote their lives to causes that will change the world. And also what compels a scientist to spend 16-hour days in the lab hoping to get one step closer to the solution for a customer. When we lack passion, we lack an authentic drive to succeed. We may be temporarily motivated by money or a fear of consequences, but that will only last for so long.
Carrots and Sticks Just Won’t Do
My teenage son was an above-average student until high school. Suddenly, it was like his brain became disconnected from the rest of his body. Semester after semester, he teetered on the borderline of failure in at least one class. We enlisted the help of tutors, offered financial incentives, and took away every privilege short of eating and breathing, with mediocre results.
No matter how hard we tried, we just couldn’t get Deon to see the long-term implications of his actions (or inaction), mainly because he doesn’t possess a strong passion for anything. So I had to lay down my high scholastic aspirations for him in exchange for the hopeful realization that when he discovers his “thing”, he’ll be okay. Just this week, he mentioned that he thought it would be cool to live abroad. This just may be the thing that will turn life around for him.
Did I Answer Your Question Yet?
Is passion in business important? You bet. Leadership expert John Maxwell said, “A great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from his passion, not position.” If the team you’re leading isn’t performing to your expectations, ask yourself, “How can I make them passionate about what we’re trying to achieve?” Short-term incentives and scare tactics will only go so far.
So what can you do if you find that you’re losing passion for your work? Here are a few questions to ask yourself:
1. When was the last time I was really excited about my work?
2. What existed then that doesn’t exist today?
3. What can I do to get it back?
Maybe your business was really exciting in the start-up phase, but now it’s gotten dull and mundane. Or your last position involved lots of customer interaction, but now you’re stuck behind a desk. You may not be able to able to bring the passion back to your day-to-day routine, but maybe there are activities you can get involved in outside of work to fill the void, like volunteering. I’ve helped people launch side businesses that reignite their passion and allow them to earn extra income. Or maybe it’s time to start considering a bold shift.
You Owe It To Them
Whatever the right answer is for you, you owe it to yourself to thoughtfully pursue it. Simply hoping things will change is a lot like hoping to win the lottery when you didn’t even buy a ticket. When you’re passionate about your work, greatness happens. And the impact of that greatness is bigger than just you and your happiness. Living with passion isn’t a selfish pursuit; it’s your personal responsibility.
Will you live up to it?
Make Plans, Not Excuses!
Whether you’re thinking about quitting your job to start a business, planning to launch a ministry or nonprofit, write a book, or any other ambitious goal, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all of the things you don’t know or have.
But here’s a little secret – there aren’t too many obstacles that you can’t get over, under or around with proper planning. My advice to you this week?
Make plans, not excuses!
In a previous article and video, I talked about identifying the missing ingredients to your success. But what I’ve noticed from lots of folks I talk to – even some of my coaching clients – is that you may know what to do, but you still aren’t doing it.
If I called you out on it, you might have plenty of seemingly good reasons for not moving forward. Not enough money, the industry is too hard to break into, you don’t have the time to get the training you need, your kids are too young, your parents are too old, etc., etc., etc. Those could all be valid reasons, but if don’t develop a plan to clear out those barriers, they become excuses.
Have you ever noticed that some of the most successful people had to overcome the greatest barriers? R.H. Macy, the founder of the beloved department store failed seven times in business before he struck retail gold. Oprah Winfrey grew up poor, was fired from her job as a news anchor, filed bankruptcy, and was told to change nearly everything from her name, appearance and even her personality. There were plenty of people who wrote me off when I got pregnant at 17. But after juggling a baby with going to college full-time and working three jobs, I started to feel like there wasn’t much that I couldn’t accomplish with the right plan, diligence and focus.
This week, I want to give you a free, downloadable action guide to begin developing your plan so that you can keep moving forward. I also work with a very select group of individuals who are serious about creating the professional lives that most only dream about. If that’s you, schedule a Test Drive & Thrive coaching session with me.
Are you ready to start making plans instead of excuses? The sooner you figure out how you’re going to get there, the sooner you’ll arrive. And I can tell you from first-hand experience, the destination is even better than you can imagine!