How Do You Define Success?

positive thoughtsIn the dictionary, success is defined as : the fact of getting or achieving wealth, respect, or fame; and the correct or desired result of an attempt.  

I love when someone asks me this question because on any given day, I don’t FEEL successful.  The “no’s” have out numbered the yea’s.  The goals set seem unobtainable.  Satan is having a field day and Doubtful Debbie has crashed the party.

Most days my success is not about the exterior things, it is about the interior changes I am making as I walk the road of recovery.  Don’t get me wrong, all of the “stuff” is great but I find when I get into all of the material aspects, I forget about the interior success I am making in my life. I lose focus and the world begins to spin.  For some, a success journal or gratitude list help them to celebrate keep their success – large and small keeping it in front of them on a daily basis.

Here is a fun tip from Party Plan Divas:

Keeping a success journal  will help to motivate you when Doubtful Debbie comes to call.  Takes only 10-15 minutes a day to write down your achievements and the tasks you’ve accomplished. I bet these 15 minutes a day have the power to transform all your life.  I know you are saying – “When do I have 10 minutes to myself?”. Find them – sitting in the car as they fill your gas tank, waiting to pick the kids up from school or an activity or even in the bathroom.  I know that may sound crazy but for some, that is the ONLY place to get a few minutes of peace and quiet.

By writing down your achievements you will be able to feel the progress. You will see how by small steps you’re moving closer and closer to your goal.  Remember that writing things down makes us accountable and keeps us on track.  Just like tracking your food when dieting – a success journal will help you to eliminate temptation.  A Success Journal will also help you to keep Doubtful Debbie and Negative Nellie from paying an unwelcome visit.  Believe it or not, it will help to simplify your life (that is what they say – but I am not so sure about that).

However you should be aware of three rules of keeping a success journal:

1. Write only what you’ve done.  Don’t write what you still haven’t done and what you still have to do tomorrow.  List only accomplished tasks and achievements.  Keep with the POSITIVE and a voice the NEGATIVE.

2. List even small things.  Everything counts! A phone call, an email blast, or your decision to pass by the chocolate cheesecake.  This could help on so many levels.

3. Make it a daily habit.  Don’t skip days! Even if you’re exhausted make sure you write at least 1-2 sentences in your success journal. Even if the only thing you did that day was think about your goal.  In 30 days you wouldn’t possibly be able to live without it.  Remember that it takes 21-days to make it a habit!

Who has a success journal?  How has it helped you?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

#TBT: YOUR Bag-Holding Technique

I decided to pull out one of my OLD blog posts and update…Today is the LAST day of Thirty One’s Fall/Winter Catalog and any of our favorite products are going away… WHY?  Because the NEW Spring/Summer Catalog starts tomorrow.

Since joining Thirty One I have been carrying a variety of purses.  Some I fell in love with while others were not my cup of tea.  But everyone has a purse style and a way to carry it which tells a lot about them….

Let’s have some fun…Did you ever think that someone can tell what type of person you are by the way you carry your bag?  Which one of these are  YOU?

 

THE SCHLEPPER: You’ve got 2, 3,4 or maybe even 5 bags to worry about so you’ve got a “whatever fits” strategy going on.  You’re fatigued, exhausted and in a rush.  The bags suggest you’re a little spaced out and have a hard time being present.

THE ARM CROOK HOOK: Favorites of paparazzi-chased celebs, this limp-handed style just screams power. You are wearing the bag as if it’s a badge of honor or an award.  You feel as if you’ve got a sense of superiority.

THE HANDS-FREE: The girl who wears a hands-free bag willingly covers up her silhouette and outfit.  It’s useful, but it also shows you’re slightly dorky.  Tends to be a favorite with young women.

THE TWOFER: usually done with a coy smile and a leg cross, the two-handed twofer clutch denotes a shy, defensive person.  This creates a fig leaf position as if you were protecting your goods.  If you find yourself dong this on a date, it’s because you feel weird about where it’s going.

THE BAGUETTE: a recent favorite of street style stars, the baguette style is a scoop-up, on-the-go method.  It’s a utilitarian look and you don’t really care about the bag but rather what’s in it. You are goal oriented.

THE THIRD ARM DRAPE: The move usually involves a bag with a long strap – but instead of crossing it over, you choose to wear it over your shoulder. Since the bag is prone to slipping around, it shows a lack of awareness and says “I don’t have power over my world”

THE ARMPIT VICE: Clutches are hard to hold, but this move keeps your bag in place while leaving your hands free.  There’s an awkwardness about it, and I see if happen a lot with women who are carrying a purse that doesn’t fit her body.

THE BRIEFCASE: There is a certain type of woman who chooses to forgo the shoulder strap for the top handle.  She’s in business mode.  She’s going fas and her bag has a lot of weight – she cars less about her appearance and more about where she’s off to.

THE THUMB-TO-PIT: There is a resin this move’s associated with Carrie from Sex and the City – women in cosmopolitan cities are doing this.  They remember their mamas telling them to protect their bags.  They don’t want to get them pulled off while they are walking.  They are street smart.

So ladies, which one are you?  I  am usually a cross between the “thumb-to-pit”, the “third-arm drape” and the “briefcase” depending on where I am going for the day.  I am not sure I agree with all of these description so please don’t shoot the messenger. The next time you pick up YOUR bag, think about the message you are sending….

Share with us your thoughts… Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Happy No Brainer Day

its-a-no-brainer

No, I’m not kidding!  Today is actually “No Brainer Day”

Have you ever wanted a day dedicated to doing something simple, easy, obvious, and/or totally logical?  For me, I usually need make every morning start like this as a result of the MS.  But I also get to have days like this because I love what I do.  Working for myself, loving the work I do all make it so much easier to have this kind of day.  Don’t get me wrong, I  have days where I think, plan, and analyze but they are scheduled to keep life simple.  So, if you have a project which requires thinking, studying, or analysis of any kind, today would NOT be the day to do it.  LOL!

Having my own business, I love finding simple solutions for my customers using our amazing Thirty One products.  My office systems are simple and make things easy for me to stay on top of things.

Yes, it is one of those random holidays but here is the origin as posted on holiday insights

This day was created by Adrienne Sioux Koopersmith, ‘America’s Premier Eventologist’ – per Insight Magazine – Washington, DC – August, 1995, and ‘The Premier Eventologist in the History of the World – per The Chicago Tribune – Chicago, Il – January 2001.

So today I will be a billboard for my business as I shop, run errands and drive around town. I will be creative as I work on some new angel designs.  Are there really a “no-brainer”? As long as I don’t stress about numbers, sales and the end of the month crunch – it will be simple and easy.  The systems I have in  place to make this purse gig totally logical.  Plain and simple – maybe every day should be a no-brainer day.  What do you think?

What you will be doing on “No Brainer Day”?  Share how you will be spending your day.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

How To Handle Difficult or Demanding Customers

Let the Fall party season begin!  September is the Fall kickoff for many direct sales companies – new products, new styles, and a fresh look.  For many of us, this starts the busiest time of year in our business.  Did you know most direct sales consultants make 70% of their business from now till the end of December.  In just 4 months, we make 70% of our income, does the math work for you?

Whether you are in the party plan business or work for someone else, we have all met those customers who are just plain grumpy.   As we all look forward to helping our friends gather for a Girl’s Night Out, we begin to think about the guests who will be attending – moms, career woman, travelers, crafters, and the list goes on.  We want to be sure we are highlighting products which will be useful for them but what we don’t think about are the “hecklers” or the “difficult customer”.

Picture this:  you start your presentation when one of the guests begins making “side” comments just loud enough for you to hear.  Or, you talk about a product and they begin to tell you why XYZ company’s product is so much better.  Have you ever had a guest like this?  If not, consider your lucky and know at some point in your selling career, you may come across them.  If you have, did it throw you off your game?  I will be honest, I don’t do well with confrontation even after 7 plus years with Thirty One….I am grateful for these tips from Deb Bixler and Sherri Campbell:

  1. Spotlight the Difficult Customer at the Party.  A great way to stifle a difficult person is to answer all of their questions and offer not to go on until they are answered.   I have asked them to repeat their question or concern so I can answer it because there may be someone else in the group with the same concern.  As difficult as it may be I try to demonstrate empathy through eye contact, body language and smaller verbal cues showing concern.  This is REALLY tough since my face always gives me away.
  2. Rally the Interested Customers.  If someone is not cooperating at all with your presentation, participating or aren’t even being courteous enough to stop talking while you are; Debs suggests, simply say “The rest of the group is interested in this information”.  WOW!  I could not see myself saying it… it seems confrontational which totally scares me!  Remember the other guests are watching and will follow your lead (hopefully).  Stay calm and remain in charge of the interaction. You can also go with the difficult customer’s energy.  If nothing you are doing or saying is satisfying the customer/guest, disarm them by surrendering and granting agreement to the difficult customer.  Chances are the customer will probably start defending the you.  Believe it or not, it’s natural when someone is allowed to win they will be more open to what they were fighting against.
  3. The Wise Guy is Your Party Side Kick!  Difficult customers may think they know more than you do about your product or company.  Here is where knowing your products AND your company is a definite PLUS.  If you can show the “wise gal” the correct information, they tend to stop being a problem.  Don’t be forceful.  Come across soft and don’t talk over them even when it’s obvious they are off base. Let them talk themselves  out. Keep in mind the needier their behavior, the more power you have since neediness comes from weakness. By listening, you have a chance to build trust, empathy and rapport and ultimately, calms them down.  On the other hand, if they have good information, invite them to help out with the presentation.

Every party is not going to run smoothly.  I have to admit, I have been left speechless a few times due to a difficult customer.  I have even taken a 2 minute break in the middle of a party to “help” a difficult customer so she could be on her way.  By doing so, the customer actually booked a party and the group appreciated the fact the difficult customer had left.  Hopefully, you will never have a heckler or a difficult party guest BUT be ready just in case.

When a customer or party guest is never satisfied, it’s natural for us to lose motivation for working with this person. Sticking it out requires a strategy for dealing with difficult people, self-restraint and an ability to keep power in the relationship. we need to learn when to be hard and when to be soft in conflict. Something I am still working on….

The toughest thing for me is to remember to NOT take it personal….
When dealing with an unsatisfied customer, we need to remind ourselves this is a business issue and not a personal one.  Chances are,  this customer knows very little about you on a personal level, so keep this in mind guiding the conversation back to the pressing issue and how we plan to solve the problem for the customer.

Next time you encounter and angry person imagine they as a 2-year-old since it is the maturity level they are showing you.  Remember, you have the power as long as you remain calm, flexible, patient and mindful.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

What Dream Do You Need to Revive?

Are there dreams you have given up on?  I don’t mean the one you had when you were a child to be a ballerina or a super hero?  I mean the ones you had as an adult. Maybe FEAR and doubt got in the way.  Maybe life got in the way – taking care of everyone else so you let the dream fade.

I will admit, I have let dreams fade over the last few years.  Life definitely got in the way – health issues caused me to struggle and doubt whether any of it was possible.  But the dreams are slowly starting to resurface.  I have faced some of my fears and am struggling through a vision casting process.

Vision casting is when you place yourself in the moment of the dream becoming a reality.  You let go of all fear, doubt and negativity while you enjoy and FEEL the moment.  My director did this with me many years ago – the year I promoted to Director.  As she shared the story with a hundred other women on a call last week, the tears came back to me.  I remembered the moment we broke through and I could actually feel what the moment would be like.  It was a miracle on many counts because I actually remembered the conversation AND I was inspired to dream again.

Think about this for a minute:

You are the only person who can decide to pursue your dream. Books don’t write themselves. Businesses don’t launch themselves. You’ve got to take the first step and keep stepping.

So, let’s talk about how YOU can dust off the dream and bring it back to life…..

1. What dream is sleeping in your life you wish were still a possibility?

Have you buried your dream so deep you forget about it?  Think about it for a moment. The dream which needs to be awakened could be connected to your professional life, your finances, a relationship,  your health, or your personal life. What is the dream for you right now? Write it down!

2. What do you need to give yourself permission to do it?

We bury things which are important for a variety of reasons.  Whatever reason made you bury the dream, it’s time to give yourself permission to dream again.  It’s okay.  Were you hurt and decided it was safer not to go down a certain road anymore?  Did naysers convince you it wasn’t possible?   Did responsibilities in life dictate it was better to let your dream die?  Or did the dream seem impossible to achieve, so you gave up?  Whatever your reason, use the past as a learning tool to recast your dream. Have the faith to believe nothing is impossible.

3. What do you need to say about it?

Speak life into your dream NOW!  Remember “The Secret” and positive attraction?  Say your dream out loud.  Hear the words, I mean really hear them!  Attract the positive, not the negative!  Share your dream with someone else!  Then observe how you talk about it.  When you state all the reasons you can’t have what your heart desires, you speak negativity (death) to your dream.  Each negative word is like a shovel, digging the grave and then piling dirt onto it until you can no longer see your dream. Negative words will steal your vision.  Are you going to let “words” steal your dream?

4. What action will you take next?

Did you know we kill our dreams with inaction?  When you don’t make any steps, even baby ones, towards the dream, you have sentenced it to death.  The best way to revive your dream is to take some action.  Never stop believing your dream is possible,.  As long as you are taking steps towards it, it is!  Don’t put a time frame on it.  Just continue to step towards it and things will start to happen. Start with one small step, then another. Even baby steps, when taken consistently, will get you to the finish line.

I challenge you to dust off your old dream and give it new life.  Whether you use the questions above or vision cast – let yourself dream again.  My dream is to promote to Senior Director with Thirty One and be a member of the Gives Council.  TWO BIG dreams which are really scary but I’m not letting go of them this time.

Share your BIG scary dream with us!  Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!