|January 17, 2013||Posted by krista under Be Inspired, Community, Leadership|
I recently came across this great video of a TEDtalk by Shawn Achor. He studies the science of happiness. The video is about 12 minutes long and I highly encourage you to watch the whole thing, however, I’ve simply included the last 4 minutes below because that’s my favorite part. He shares how many people assume that our external world is predictive of our happiness levels, when in reality…if we know everything about someone’s external world, we can only predict about 10% of his/her long-term happiness. The other 90% is predicted by how your brain processes the world around you. Amazing study here…take a listen…
If happiness is on the opposite side of success, your brain never gets there. We think we have to be successful, then we’ll be happy. Not true. In fact, our brains work opposite of that. We need to focus on being positive in the present. When we do that…our brain is not stressed and we have the ability to perform better…thus these “happiness advantages”:
They also found that after 21 days of practicing a few of the following activities, the individual’s overall happiness improved because his/her brain was focusing on the positive versus the negative…thus leading to longer term happiness – encouraging behavior that looks for the positive in life or one’s environment instead of focusing on what is negative or what isn’t ideal.
Just making these small changes in your day-to-day life can create HUGE happiness advantages for you. And I can attest to this personally. In my previous post I shared about my faith and how I’ve started a daily quiet time. This quiet time includes several of these activities – writing what I’m grateful for, journaling and prayer/meditation. Just this simple change has made an incredible difference in my life outlook and how I handle my day.
Do you practice any of these activities? If so, please tell us how it’s impacted you.
If not, then I have a simple step you can take that will have a huge impact on you and the person you share it with. Choose a contact that you haven’t spoken with in quite some time. Send them a brief message simply to say you were thinking about them, you’re grateful for their friendship and you’d love to reconnect in person soon and catch up on life.
Most people are “too busy” to take the time to do anything like that…when in reality, in only takes 2 minutes, tops. Do this a few times a week…and you’ll watch not only your happiness level change…but you’ll be inspiring those around you as well…and that’s what our world needs more of.
|January 16, 2013||Posted by krista under Be Inspired, Business, Leadership|
Hello and happy Wednesday, friends! We’re going to have some straight up, heart-to-heart talk about a very important subject today. FAITH.
Although I do consider this a “business” blog, I also consider this my personal space where I can share personal experiences, thoughts and beliefs. So today’s chat about faith isn’t going to be a surfacy, “you need to have faith in yourself” (which is important), conversation.
Today we’re going to talk about faith on a deeper level and I want to share a snippet of my own personal faith walk with you. I think you’ll see why this is an area I’ll be addressing more and more as we move forward.
If you’ve read my story, you know I’ve been running my network marketing business for just over three years now. My first year in business was a HUGE year of learning and growth. I’d started this business alongside my full-time job, while also planning our wedding…so I had to be VERY strategic with my time. My employer had started down-sizing, so I saw this as a great Plan B and that’s what pushed me to get this going.
My second year in business was the year my husband and I committed to creating an exit strategy from my job so I could solely focus on growing this business. Again, this was another HUGE year of growth and personal development. I was seeing radical changes in my business and knew that with continued effort, I would be able to fully pursue my desire of self-employment. Mid-way through this second year in business, I gave my two weeks notice at my job and fully entered the world of entrepreneurship.
This last September marked the close of my 3rd year in business. As I reflect on this last calendar year…it was, yet again, an enormous year of growth. I’m not who I was this time last year. And when I say that, I mean that I feel I’m a better, improved person. What’s changed? Where I put my faith.
This is where we need to rewind a bit. See, I was raised with an “I can do anything” attitude. My parents are incredible people who raised me in a loving environment and instilled unlimited belief in me. They were always fair, disciplined me accordingly and passed on high values and morals to me. Although I attended church services somewhat regularly as a kid, the whole God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, faith thing always confused me. It wasn’t until I went to a youth summer camp that I started to wrap my mind around faith, forgiveness, etc. It was at this summer camp that I accepted Christ and was baptized the following week.
Now, of course, this was a very exciting time for me, however, I was also still very young and confused. I knew that I’d been “saved”, but I still didn’t fully understand what that meant or what this “daily walk” was supposed to look like. So, for the next several years…on into my teenage years and even into early adulthood…while I’ve always held myself to high standards and “done unto others as I would have them do unto me”…I certainly wasn’t maintaining a daily relationship with God or partaking in any “daily bread” from the Bible. My life was all compartmentalized into separate boxes. I checked off my “God box” for the week on Sunday mornings when I would attend church. Then throughout the week I would check off my “business box” as I would make calls and schedule meetings. Next I would check off my “husband box” when he and I would do dinner and a movie. And so on.
Now, this brings us to Summer of 2012. A few things happened that both personally and professionally utterly confused me. Looking back, I realized this was God saying “Hey Krista. I’m in control here. Why don’t you turn to me for counsel? You seem to turn everywhere else but to me.” Situation after situation, I realized God was slowly and gracefully drawing me to Him. And it was at this point that it hit me…what I have isn’t mine. It’s His. And even this business…I’ve done it on my own for so long…but He can do more in two seconds than I could ever imagine doing in two lifetimes.
I will tell you…since I’ve given it all over to Him, committed to a daily quiet time (which consists of a brief inspirational devotional reading, a few Bible scriptures, reflection, prayer and listening) and simply acted on faith, some miraculous things have happened. Things are occurring that I truly never could have done on my own. In the past I was a closet Christian. I kinda knew what I believed…but not enough to really share it with anyone. Now, I’m not saying I have all the answers…not at all…but now I know who does and I’m not afraid to ask Him…or encourage someone to ask Him.
Whatever your beliefs, your background or upbringing, I truly believe life all boils down to one thing. Love and service. We must love and serve others, just as we love and serve ourselves. That’s why we were created.
And you…you were created with a purpose way larger than anything you can imagine. So whatever your dream or desire is…it’s there for a reason. You need to explore it. Step out in faith and God will meet you there. I have and He has.
In closing, I hope my VERY condensed faith journey thus far has inspired you. In the coming weeks and months, I will be sprinkling in more and more bits of wisdom and inspiration, scripture that has encouraged me and will be sharing more about this great guy named Jesus that I’m finally building a relationship with. He’s been chasing me for awhile.
Make sure you come back on Friday for this week’s W.O.W. interview series. I’ll be introducing Kia Jarmon, owner of The MEPR Agency. You’ll be inspired! Until next time…have a wonderful day!
|January 8, 2013||Posted by krista under Be Inspired, Books, Goals, Leadership, Solopreneurship|
When I started my business just over 3 years ago, I never imagined the personal development that would be triggered, nor the obstacles I would encounter. As I reflect on the last few years, yet anticipate the path ahead, I can’t help but smile and pause to share a few very important lessons with you. If you’re a business owner already, I’m certain you agree. If you’re launching a business (or considering it)…take note.
To succeed in business, you MUST commit for the long-haul. Rome wasn’t built in a day…so I find it absurd when someone is disappointed if his/her new business is not generating the tens of thousands of dollars that s/he may have imagined it would be generating in 6 months. It all comes down to one thing…the decision to commit to hard work.
I see it happen all the time in the network marketing and direct sales industry. A new person launches his or her business, sets shallow goals, “dips their toe” and “waits to see if it will work”. Here’s the problem with that philosophy. You will always get what you expect. So if you’re “waiting to see if it will work”…it probably won’t.
See, multi-level marketing (MLM) is a tried and true business model. It works for those who are willing to work it. It’s unlikely that Bill Gates “dipped his toe” when he was initially launching his computer business. He committed to doing what it takes – failing, risking and ignoring the naysayers. And he’s now the brains behind one of the world’s most well-known technology empires. He had a big vision and no one was going to take it from him.
That’s what running a successful business requires…a commitment to yourself and to the dreams and desires you have to make the world a better place…and not letting anyone or anything diminish that. Here are a few reasons why you absolutely must make a long-term commitment to achieving success with your business:
1. Success doesn’t happen overnight. This is important enough to state again. Commit to your new business for AT LEAST a year. In fact, Robert Kiyosaki would recommend sticking with it for a minimum of THREE years. He is a HUGE proponent for network marketing and I highly recommend his book The Business of the 21st Century.
2. We all have our own set of odds. We’re all connected to different networks of people. We each have different talents/skillsets that may need to be refined. We all have different confidence levels – some that may need to be more empowered, others that may be overly confident, etc.
3. You can’t fire yourself. Truly, the only way to fail in your new business is to give up or quit. You report to yourself, (which can be a double-edged sword for those of you who aren’t disciplined) so you’re not in jeopardy of layoffs or downsizing. The speed of your success is dictated by the rate at which you produce consistent revenue-producing activity.
Don’t you owe it to yourself? Besides, if you take a look at the job market, the stats are grim. According to a recent message I received from well-known network marketer Todd Falcone, individuals over 25 years old who have a bachelor’s degree and are employed full-time have an average household income of $56,078. His message states that for an individual who is employed, yet never went to college, the average income is about HALF that. As I did research for these stats, I couldn’t find the exact report, however, I do consider him a credible source and ran across some other findings that offered a similar outlook.
Why is this important? Because $56,078 as an average household income for an intelligent, educated person isn’t much, is it? It’s a number that doesn’t represent much choice or chance for financial freedom…which is why I highly believe in entrepreneurship.
In closing, I encourage you to think deeply about where you are and where you want to be in the next few years. Your success truly is up to you. Your dreams and desires are within reach if you’ll simply commit to putting in the hard work and effort it will take to achieve them. There will be obstacles. There will be trials and failures. Just. Don’t. Quit. Tests come to those who are bound for bigger things.
I’ve made my decision to commit. It’s exciting to know my business is building a legacy that will impact our kids, their kids and future generations for years to come.
So I must ask. Which is more important? Your dreams? Your excuses? Negative Nelly’s criticisms? Feed your dreams and those fears will starve to death…
Thinking of starting your own business? Have a great business story that would inspire others? I’d love to hear about it.
|January 2, 2013||Posted by krista under Be Inspired, Goals, Leadership, Productivity, Solopreneurship|
We all know the importance of goal setting…especially those of us who are self-employed.
As I train new business partners in my company, one of the very first things we do is set short-term and long-term goals. Coming into the new year, however, I’ve set my goals a bit differently.
I’ve realized that while business goals are important, long-term life goals are even more important. At the end of the day, what good is a successful business if one is simply living to build a solid business? We all know there’s more to life than that. And that greater life purpose is what fuels business success – for it’s through the flourishing of my business that my greater calling will also pursued.
I often compare this to taking a vacation. If you don’t know your ultimate travel destination, how do you prepare to get there? It’s rather silly to book a hotel or research sight-seeing activities if you haven’t decided where you are going.
In the past, I’ve simply set month-to-month business goals, adjusting them as necessary…not necessarily taking into account the larger picture at play. As 2012 came to a close, however, I took several weeks to reflect on where I’ve been, where I am now and where I desire to be. A guide that REALLY helped me accomplish this was Michael Hyatt’s Life Plan. You can get yours here. (Yes, to access it you must sign up for his weekly email. Remember, you can always unsubscribe…although, I really enjoy his weekly emails.)
Thankfully he explains the process well because drafting this life plan was not easy. It really forces you to into deep thinking about your priorities and where you see yourself in the future. Most people don’t think this way. And we’re certainly not taught to think this way. Society teaches us to go to school and pray we find a job. Hope it pays us what we feel we’re worth. Pray we’re spared during layoffs, etc. I don’t understand why we put so much more hope and faith in Corporate America when applying even a small portion of that energy into personal development would pay exponentially more.
In closing, I have to admit that my 2013 goals make me giddy. As I look back at the last two years, I see that, even with the puny goals I set for 2011 and 2012, my business doubled. Thanks to the time and effort I’ve put into drafting this life plan, I’ve created some big personal/professional goals that really excite me…and I’m on pace to triple my business this year. What a great feeling. If that’s what I’m planning for, then I can only imagine where my faith and hope will lead…
What is your experience in goal-setting or visioneering? Do you have an accountability partner to help you stay on task with your goals? I’d love to hear about your experience in this area.