An Open Discussion About Your Failure Story

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It’s not typical to openly talk about how roadblocks are a natural part of the entrepreneurial journey. This is especially true when you’re trying to sell the idea of entrepreneurship giving you access to tons of fun in the sun, 4 hour work weeks, and 6 or more figures in as little time possible. Yet, we do each other a disservice by not sharing the reality of what most of us have to do…which is work our butts off. This usually means gaining an inch just to be pushed back a few feet before we have our “overnight success”.

I’ve been studying movements this month. As a result, I currently view movement creation as a form of entrepreneurship. Movements are a lot of work, they take time to catch fire, and they meet opposition from people who haven’t a clue about the fire starter or what said fire starter went through to even get to a place where her name is on their lips. I also know that to create a movement and keep its legacy alive, you will need fierce dedication, you will need to keep yourself from losing your mind, and you will need support from other people who empathize with you, who get what you’re fighting for, and of course who will fight the good fight alongside you in some capacity (even if that means as a mentor or an adviser).  After all, we all need somebody to lean on.

And so, I love this movement happening within the entrepreneurial communities. It’s full of compassionate advocacy. Here, in certain circles, the word vulnerable is not a catch phrase, and authentic isn’t a gimmick.

Here, we Toast to Truths about being Homeless while Running our Businesses.

Here, we talk about how other women who are supposed to guide us and look out for our best interest tell their fellow sisters that they won’t amount to anything and yet, still we rise.

Here, we talk about the fact that entrepreneurs are committing suicide because we are not adequately addressing the mental health care needs of those who organize and manage enterprises in our society.

Here, we talk about how there were some, who despite tremendous obstacles, namely systemic oppression simply because of the color of their skin, fought for their own financial independence and opened the door for women like me and you.

Here, we fall down and get back up and fall down and we get back up again.

“Impossible is just a big word thrown around my small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.”-Muhammad Ali

Until Next Time…Peace!

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Be The Change Series Interviews- Featuring: Vincent Ogutu

Be The Change Series Interviews- Featuring: Vincent Ogutu

If the video didn’t show up here’s the direct link: https://youtu.be/RjxkAIts5RM

 

How You Can Help

1) See how Vincent gives hope to some of the most demoralized people on the planet, and take a page from his book: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yH3Ornhn6yk

2) Contribute to research that will help entrepreneurs connect better with what they do, here\’s a link to Vincent\’s 15 minute survey targeting entrepreneurs: https://rutgers.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_3aCmC58oDR9yeTr

Here\’s a quick summary of what Vincent talked about during our interview. (He was kind enough to email it over  )

“I talk about the coincidence of being asked to talk to prisoners and my then finding out that my training so far has positioned me to inspire people like that and give them hope. I wanted to run away from any such endeavor since I wouldn\’t have time, and then I realized I couldn\’t tear myself away. For the first time in my life, I had found a problem I could solve. I\’ve always wanted to solve problems (poverty, disease, war, etc) but never really thought I had anything particularly unique to offer. Now suddenly I was confronted by a problem I\’d never worried about before (people languishing in despair, in prison), and I realized my training in the psychology of meaningful work, and my experience as a teacher (public speaking skills) combined wonderfully to enable me to inspire hope in people.”

About Vincent

Vincent is a Doctoral Candidate (ABD) at Rutgers Business School, NJ and is making the world a better place by helping people create meaningful work experiences. His dream is to turn his students into social entrepreneurs. After getting them to propose solutions to problems in society as part of a social entrepreneurship course, he would challenge them to actually do it. Not just to shelve it as a finished course assignment, but to take the dare – as he had to, kicking and screaming  – and actually turn their ideas into reality. Be the Change!

Until Next Time…Peace!

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5 Simple Steps to Activate A Purposeful Year

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There are many goal-setting techniques out there to choose from. I’ve personally read about so many different kinds I got serious information overload. So what I try to do now is create structure around purpose while leaving space to color outside the lines. Here’s how I set my art in motion.

1) Reflect. History isn’t there to remind us of our failures. It’s there to teach us how we can succeed next time around. We reflect on what was, how we showed up to our lives, how we created more purpose so we can determine where our adventured will take us next. One way to make this process is to keep a record. I prefer to journal, my best friend knows that she knows that she knows journaling ain’t happening, so I suggested that she use the voice recording app on her phone and make audio journal entries. If she ever wanted to read it transcription services would be well worth the investment.
2) Dump. During my reflections I begin formulating tons of thoughts and creative ideas. Words come to mind. Images come to mind. Songs play in my mind. I record or collect them all. I don’t care if words pop up in my head that feel so far-fetched I write them if not for now then later. The key is to just let it flow. Don’t think about where you’ll place the items on a vision board or how the words are supposed to represent an income stream. The aim is to dream and let your imagination soar.
3) Choose. Out of that dump find one word, or a few words to create a phrase or theme for how you want to show up to your life for the year. It can represent what you want to see happen, how you see yourself at the end of the year, or the gifts you want to share while being a work in progress. Don’t get hung up on this step, you’ll find yourself making excuses to keep from action so keep it moving because it may come to you after the fact. This year my word, BREAKTHROUGH came during my reflections when I was journaling about how I couldn’t think of one word. My theme song, Go Get It came a few days later. I believe it flowed easier to me this year only because I’ve been actively practicing getting quiet and listening to my innersuperhoine speak to my heart.
4) Organize. Since the whole of my life is made up of several slices. I organize my dump into slices. Personal, Social, Spirtual, Physical, Professional, and Financial. By this time I try to pull 1 to 3 sentences together to align with each slice. If I accomplish it or the essence of it before the year is out I simply pull something new from my dump to work on next. So for instance, under Physical I knew a breathrough year beckoned me to feel good about the environment I slept in and worked in as well as to take care of my health so that I could have the energy to work towards my success. So under my Social slice I found myself writing: Light a scented candle before I do creative work each day. Why put this? Because it calms me and helps me write without editing at the same time. If you want some deeper insight and methodology into what goes into each slice, check out the Joy Equation. (One of my very 1st and best experiences with the coaching realm).
5) Astonish. When I set out to astonish myself, I don’t always set a SMART goal. Instead, under each slice of life I set out to simply to rock my own socks off for the year and obviously every year after that. The exception to this rule mainly falls to my professional and financial slices, only because I’m programmed to and am still actively learning to bring a more authentic take to these areas. But even now I’ve recently learned about having a one sentence business plan and just letting the how flow from it. The point is take action, and I do it so I feel alive because only then can I truly nourish others with the overflow.

This system (because that’s what it is) works for me and every year I learn how to improve upon it which in turn improves the results I see. I’m a firm believer that a simple, proven system done consistently works miracles and wonders. How you activate is entirely up to you.

Until Next time…Peace!

Flickr Credit: Restlessglobetrotter

Moving from Good to Great

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When you set out on a journey to define and refine success on your own terms, you will find yourself at crossroads from time to time. I think one of the most difficult crossroads you’ll come to, is the point where you have to decide if the path you’re on is truly in alignment with the calling on your life. This can be an especially difficult decision to make when the new path that has opened up means exploring uncharted territory and the familiar path is a road you can confidently travel with your eyes closed.

I haven’t read the book “Good to Great” by Jim Collins yet, (it’s on my to-read list) but, I do recall hearing the phrase “good is the enemy of great”.  So, I began to wonder how many of us cling to what we’re good at because well…we’re darn good at it only to miss out on that something great even if it meant completely changing the path we were on.

How many assessment tests will we take to finally be satisfied with the results that somehow consistently tell us pretty much the same answer?

How many coaches and accountability buddies will we rant to about the same thing over and over again so that we can avoid facing our fears of success.

How many coffeeshop meetups with our besties will we go on only to hear them tell us what we already know to be our truth?

And what is that truth?

Well, for one, there are no magical answers. I’m a practical person and I like very concrete answers but as much as I’d like things clear cut in black and while, the world is colorful and I believe the same is true about life, and it’s a beautiful thing.

Though there’s no easy button perhaps if we start with the belief that we already are what we’re searching for we can trust that we are equipped to be the greatness that dwells inside.

And finally it’s not too late to find the door that leads to life because that’s what we’re all here for. To Live. To Live Purposefully.

Until next time…

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Flicker Credit

Say It Out Loud

speakI’m not sure why, but I had the movie Akeelah and the Bee playing on repeat inside my head over the week. There are so many teaching moments in that movie, I’m almost embarrassed to say that I almost passed it up.

There was one particular scene, “You’ll Be A Champion” that really drove home the learning moment I experienced as an ever evolving business woman.

After reading the inspiring words of wisdom from Marianne Williamson about not being afraid of herself, and all that she was capable of, young Akeelah still struggled with being afraid to fail in front of others. She also struggled with outside influences and had a hard time admitting the deepest desires she held within her heart. It’s funny how so many of us can relate to that…

There was a point in this scene that she started to settle for good enough, (because that ruthless inner naysayer always wants to rear her ugly face at you).  So her coach, (even she had a coach) made her say out loud what she really wanted, to admit it to herself and release it out into the universe.

In the Get Clients Now program it’s referred to as the straight face test. The test is simply you declaring a goal, or your mission, or your vision, or your purpose out loud, so that it becomes real to you, so real that you feel it deep in the pit your belly until it overflows and erupts out of your very being, and you own it like you know you should.

What will you say over yourself this week, this month, this year?

“If you can’t say it, then you can’t win it, so say it.”

 

Flickr Credit: rick

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