How To Get Unstuck

We are at the end of the first “J” month.  In direct sales, June is one of those dreaded months where business can slow down.  Does it really slow down or do we loose our focus?  For those with kids, the summer means juggling activities and keeping them busy.  For others, it means nice weather so trips to the beach, barbecues and just enjoying time with friends and family.

Did you know, when you allow a summer slowdown, you are really forecasting what your business will be like in September and October?  What you do now will effect your business in 90 days…….It will be like restarting your business all over again when everyone else is gearing up for the busiest shopping time of the year.

Here is a simple three step process from one of my favorite business coaches, Julie Anne Jones. to get you unstuck.

Step 1:  Focus On What You Want

I know I am not alone because as  human beings, we naturally focus on what’s wrong and try to fix it, when things aren’t going our way.  The key to changing your mindset is you need to look for a solution instead of focusing on the problem itself.  I have talked about positive affirmations before – bringing the “good” into your universe, right?  One of the easiest ways to do it is to use these to get your mindset working for you.

Grab a sheet of paper or a journal and answer this question:

If the perfect outcome to your problem magically appeared, what would happen (be as specific as you can. Add details and remember to stay focused on what you want to happen, not on what you don’t want to happen). Doing a thorough job during this step will make the next two easier.

Step 2: Activate Gratitude

When I am feeling down or on the “pity pot”, I take a gratitude walk.  Sometimes it is outside enjoying nature but when it isn’t possible, I start writing a list.  Gratitude is the quickest, and easiest way to change your mindset from the negative to the positive. It’s hard to stay stuck when you’re focused on everything in your life you’re grateful for.

This step is fun…create a “Gratitude List” of at least five things you’re grateful for RIGHT NOW.  It can be as simple as “getting up this morning”, or having a roof over your head.  Keep writing for about 10 minutes.   See what happens when you focus on what you’re grateful for and how quickly things turn around for you.

Step 3:  Create Affirmations

Affirmations are positive “I am” statements about the outcomes you want.  You state them in the present as if they have already happened. Here are some examples:

  • I am attracting the perfect clients in my business and love helping them succeed.
  • I am making enough money to pay my bills
  • I am booking parties and love helping people get FREE products
  • I am at my goal weight and am enjoying eating healthy

Can’t wait to hear how your summer turns out…. Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

How to Convince Someone to Change Their Ways

When I entered recovery over 26 years ago, I heard a zillion times “you can’t keep doing the same things and expect different results”.  So, when life throws me a curve ball, it is time to make a change.  With a little bit of effort and commitment, we can make the change in our life

BUT what happens when we want to help someone change their behavior?

I was social worker whose clients were addicts, chronically unemployed, and those who had a hard time seeing life could be different.  As long as they couldn’t see their life as any different, there was no reason to change their behavior.

There are two elements which are an absolute requirement for trying to convince someone to change their behavior:

  1. They need to understand the effect change will have in their life.
  2. They need proof beyond a reasonable doubt change will help them.

There was one young lady who I had the pleasure of working with and still keep in touch with today.  Let’s call her D.  She was a heroin addict who also had an AIDS diagnosis.  At our first meeting, I knocked on her front door to find her and her dealer getting high.  I opted not to go in and told her I would be back in an hour to talk with her.  Of course, an hour later she didn’t answer her door.  As someone who was early in their recovery, I knew I couldn’t save her, she would have to save herself.  She would have to want to change her behavior.

Over the next year, we had many run-ins over her drug use but every step of the way, I was able to show her glimpses into the positive effect not using would have on her life.  Would it cure her AIDS?  No but it could prolong her life.  She could feel better. The medicine wouldn’t make her sick.  With each little milestone – a few days clean, not sharing needles to not using needles – we celebrated.  With each little milestone, she saw glimpses of how her life could be different.

First, the restored relationship with family.  Was it easy?  No.  Did she slip?  Yes.  Each time she did, she remembered the positive impact the change had on her life.  Today, she still continues to fight the AIDS battle (27 years and counting ), has fought cancer and even went back to school to get her GED.  She is living a life she couldn’t even imagine 26 years ago.

Believe it or not, I use the same social work tactics in my business.  From helping team members reach their goal to working with colleagues to help them move forward when they are stuck.

The misconceptions about change are:

  1. It takes time to change.  Yes, it is a process but can happen as fast as you are willing to work to move forward
  2. Someone has to want to change.  We all talk a good game when it comes to making changes BUT are you really willing to reach down to the depths of your soul to make the change?
  3. Someone needs to hit rock bottom before they change.  I believe each person is different and for some, yes this is VERY true.

When you are ready to apply the two elements to the area of your life you want to change, AMAZING things can happen.  Want to make a change in your business?  Want to make a change in your relationship?  All things are possible when you embrace these two elements.

What do you want to change?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

 

What Does God Want From You?

Thank you Sharon Jaynes for today’s message…

Sometimes I think we’ve made our relationship with God far too difficult and confusing. We strive so hard to draw closer to the heart of God. And all the while, God’s outstretched hand is reaching to draw us in.

For more than half a century, I have been striving, pursuing, and seeking God. And like a cat chasing her tail, I’ve been going in circles.

Circling in the wilderness with the Israelites, if you will. Saved from slavery, for sure. Headed to my own personal Promised Land, hopefully. But somehow stuck in the wilderness wandering ever circling but not quite reaching Jordan’s shore.

And I am not alone. Statistics show that one of the top desires of Christians is to grow closer to God. During a recent poll, 65 percent said they were declining or on a plateau in their spiritual growth. On the other hand, Peter wrote: “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3).

We have everything we need to experience the ever growing, continually maturing, abundant life, so why aren’t we? Why are most of us languishing on the desert plateaus of mediocrity and complacency? Why are most of us satisfied munching on the predigested truths of teachers rather than pulling up to the banquet table and feasting with God at a table set for two?

“God, what do you really want from me?”

I’ve pondered that question since the genesis of my relationship with Christ. Perhaps you have too. When you boil down all the water from the diluted soup of questions men and women have simmered in their heart through the centuries, this is the one question left in the pot.

And somehow, we feel that if we could answer that one question, we would discover why that glory ache persists and how to satisfy our yearning.

I had asked the question a thousand times, but one morning, I got quiet enough to listen. And then, in the stillness, He showed me that my busy sisters and I have been asking the wrong question.

Rather than ask God what He wants from us, we need to ask Him what He wants for us.

I meditated on Acts 17:28 throughout the following year after the day God whetted my appetite with the possibilities wrapped up in those eight little words: In Him we live and move and have our being. I came to realize that what He wants for us is to sense His presence, experience His love, and delight in intimate relationship as we live and move and have our being in sacred union with Him. And when we do, He opens our eyes to His glory all around and the ache for something more is soothed.

So today, I encourage you to be still. Just get quiet. Breathe deeply. Jesus in. Worries out.

Don’t make your faith about what God wants from you, but what God wants for you.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Systems Verses Sitting

Thank you Kathi Lipp for today’s message:

I am a systems girl.

Give me a new system, whether it’s in my house, on my computer, or for my calendar and I’m in my happy place. I feel deeply that if I have a good system, along with enough Post It Notes, I could rule the world.

So, when I signed up for the course on developing a devotional system, I thought to myself, “This is it! This is the secret sauce I’ve been missing all these years. If I just had a devotional system that really worked, my quiet time will be so much deeper.”

I got my system all organized (my inner Office Supply Geek was leaping for joy). There was a place for my Bible notes, my sermon notes, my prayer requests, Bible memorization and more. I loved all the tabs, lists and fill-ins. Loved each and every page of that devotional.

And then I sat down to use it.

Oh, it was fun to flip through all the pages and tabs, but after a little bit, I realized that this new system was not making me go deeper with God. It was a great tool, but the system wasn’t what I was missing.
Systems are great to help us establish routines to get us into the practice of quiet times, but when it comes down to it, what I need are exactly two things:

1. My Bible

2. A chunk of time

For some reason, I thought that the system would get me where I wanted to go, spiritually, more quickly. But God is not interested in our speed.

I realized I was trying for an instant connection, instead of giving myself, and God, time to truly linger with each other.

What I’ve come to understand is that my way of practicing the presence of God needs to be less about systems and more about sitting.

Sitting and anticipating the slow, faithful hand of God.

Sitting and waiting on his voice, even if I can’t hear it right away.

Sitting quietly and expectantly.

While systems are great, and can give me a false sense of presence. I need to take steps to go beyond the system, so that I can truly meet with God. Here are a few things to consider if you are struggling:

1. Pray for desire and grace.

If you know you should be having a quiet time, but it feels like a struggle each and every time, ask God for the desire to meet with him, and then ask him for the grace when it comes out less than perfectly.

2. Put your phone in another room.

When things feel dry in my quiet time, I want an instant hit of connection – and that’s what social media offers. Instant connection. Put the phone out of reach so that you wait on your connection with God.

3. Anticipate.

God is not hiding from you. Persistently linger in His presence. He will meet you there.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

What is Your Purpose?

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During a recent conversation with a good friend, I had an AHA moment.  You know the moment when you realize what your purpose is?  Or at least you think you do!!

As I get closer to my 6th Anniversary with Thirty One, I wonder how is someone’s life better because they crossed my path?  Why now?  Because I love to inspire, encourage and do things for others to make them smile.  Hubby said “you should have married a wealthy man so you could just do what you love – helping others without having to worry about bills or money.”  Would I change my life – NEVER.  Although I do want to fulfill my purpose.

So, do you know why are you here?  I don’t mean right this second, I mean in the BIG picture.  The why are you here on this planet at this time, born into the family you were born into, with your unique gifts and talents, with your experiences? There is indeed a reason we are here.  I struggle with the answer sometimes.

Many would call this our purpose or our mission in life.  We all have one. For many years (okay most of my career) I defined myself as my job.  I was a Social Worker, and a single mom.  As time passed, I became a wife and a “retired” Social Worker.    The truth was there was more to my purpose on this planet.

My deepest desire is to discover my purpose and live it. When I get to the end of my life, I want to be able to say, “Mission accomplished”? My mission gets fuzzy, what about you?  I tend to feel lost, despite the rest of the world thinking I have it all together.  I have been blessed with awards and honors not only in my previous career, but also in my pink bubble yet I long to know if I am really making a difference.  Not necessarily a huge footprint on the world but just in each person’s life I come in contact with every day.  External accolades of success are wonderful, but some times there is an empty place in your soul longing for true fulfillment.  The true fulfillment comes when you are living your purpose.

So, can you answer this one question? “How is someone’s life better when they cross your path?”  Without a lot thought and hunting for what you think the answer should be.  Don’t spend hours analyzing it – just answer from your gut.

We are all here for a reason – leaving the world a better place is our purpose. The fun part is we get to do this by using our own uniqueness – our gifts, strengths, passion and experiences.  Your mission does not have to be unique.  You do not have to be the ONLY person in the world with your particular mission.  The difference is you are the only one who can accomplish it the way you can.

God placed people in our lives who we are uniquely able to impact. They connect with you. They are around you. They are impacted by you.  I was blessed this past weekend to see this in action.  I was at an event, sharing the gift of Thirty One when I began talking about Thirty One Gives and Girl Talk. This wonderful woman explained how her school could use this program.  I have always wanted to start a Girl Talk Chapter BUT have always hesitated thinking it was beyond my gifts and talents.  God opened a door and I am running through it.

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I’m not the only person whose mission is to encourage struggling women to live fulfilling lives.  For some reason, right now, something caused us to connect. Whether it be to let you know you are not alone? Or to make you smile.

In this moment, I get to live out my mission. I challenge you to write your purpose in one simple sentence.  Answer the question:

How is someone’s life better because they crossed your path? 

Thank you for letting me continue to share my strengths, hope and experience with you in the hope it sill make a difference to you or someone you know.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

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