January 9, 2018 – Do…or Do Not. There is No Try.
Luke: I don’t. I don’t believe it.
Yoda: That is why you fail.
Luke: All right, I’ll give it a try.
Yoda: No. Try not. Do…or Do Not. There is No Try.
The Empire Strikes Back
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been inundated with emails about creating business plans, becoming a break though speaker, new and innovative marketing techniques, as well as special offers. Although I peruse the emails, 99.9% are deleted never to be seen again. So, when a client asked me if I had any words of advice for 2018, I was taken back. I was not prepared for the question because as 2017 ended, I was in the mist of recasting the business and my 2018 direction.
After a few seconds, here was my reply:
Do what you love and be happy. Find joy in your work and be passionate about what you do. Many of us focus on surviving and making money but we are not happy. Your emotions are reflected in how we serve others and work with people. Enjoy your life.
Listen to your intuition. If something does not feel right in your gut, normally it is not right for you. Don’t be afraid to discard or, if necessary, fix it because it is important that you align what you love and what you are doing. An annual task of mine is to declutter and reset because it helps me align and focus on what I love. Your intuition tells you there is a problem. Listen to it.
Put fear behind you. Don’t let fear stop you from moving forward. You know what you want and if dedicated, you will get there.
In 2018, believe in yourself and achieve your potential. Don’t doubt that you can be successful because if you trust in yourself you will be successful.
November 14, 2017 – A Little Help From My Friends
“Oh, I get by with a little help from my friends with a little help from my friends.” – John Lennon, Paul McCartney
With the holidays upon us, we can be bombarded with requests for donations to help others. Most of us donate money, food, toys, and clothes, but after the holidays is the giving still there?
I expected an easy flight. An early Sunday morning arrival into the Atlanta airport allowed plenty of time to spare before connecting on the next scheduled flight. I would arrive home by early afternoon. I couldn’t ask for anything more.
As I approached the gate for the connecting flight, it became clear the flight was overbooked. I found an out of the way spot to hover and started watching the interesting mix of people—families with kids, a handful of traveling business people, a mix of languages, and the smell of food as people grabbed something to eat. As it got closer to boarding time, the attendant announced “We are looking for volunteers” and “there is limited space overhead…”. Finally, the most important call “we will be boarding”. Sounds like a typical flight, but this is where “typical” ends.
As I stood in line, my eyes connected with a woman who asked in a meek voice with a heavy accent “right line?” However, before I could respond there was a new announcement—”Boarding is delayed due to mechanical problems”.
The woman’s apprehensive facial expression indicated she was clueless as to what was occurring. As she spoke in her native language–Portuguese, I realized we had a communication challenge. She kindly provided me her itinerary enabling me to see she was on the third leg of her journey from Brazil. Arrangements had been made to escort her to each gate. After a discussion with the attendants, I realized she was now on her own. The airline would not provide more assistance.
Using hand gestures and drawings, we communicated. She knew a little Spanish. Earlier I noted a business woman who spoke Spanish and recruited her assistance. Over the next four plus hours and two gate changes, the traveler and I became “friends.”
Oh, there is much more to this story but I would like to highlight two take-a-ways. Communicating, whether in business or in your personal life, can be a challenge but if there is a will there is a way. Communicating effectively can be hard but if both parties try, communication obstacles can be overcome.
The other take-a-way is this. Take the time to observe what is going on around you and listen to the world around you. In my business, I tell consultants that they need to listen and analyze what their clients say. But we also need to do the same thing in our daily lives. I know we get busy, but a silent, quite neighbor or coworker might need a helping hand. Or maybe it is an elderly person in a store or a kid struggling with school work that could use that hand.
A final note about the Brazilian traveler, as she exited the plane she gave me a big hug and Thank You. You see she was a mid-wife on the way to help with the delivery of her first grandchild. She just needed a friend to help her in a strange county where she knew no one and did not speak the language.