Do You Want to Fall in Love with Your Business?

I know you are thinking…. “why be in business, especially direct sales, if you don’t love your products and your company, right?”  Most of us get into direct sales because we fell in love with the product, not because it was “easy money”.

Several years ago, I wrote a blog post about “Parent Your Business” where I shared what I learned in a seminar with Caryn Chow.  She talked about the need to parent our business with the acronym meaning:

P = Patience

A = A lot of Love

R = Resilience

E = Endurance

N = Nurture

T = Time Out

During the month of February our theme is LOVE, in all areas of our life.

 

Today we are going to talk about how your business is much like a marriage or a relationship (if you aren’t married, there are still some good tips so keep reading). Not only do we need to PARENT our business but we sometimes we need to fall in love all over again.

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On a leadership call this past week, I was taken back to a time when I had a vision of my goals.  An emotional link to them.  As the story of my journey to leadership was shared, I remember the passion and the emotions tied with reaching the desired goal.

So, here is how your relationship with your direct selling business mirrors a marriage. You have a passion for the products and the company. You are committed for the long haul. You are emotionally attached to the vision and the people. BUT just like a marriage, it’s easy to take your eyes off what you fell in love – maybe the company changes their compensation plan, discontinues your best selling product or your team stops producing which effects YOUR paycheck.  Life happens and the road gets bumpy….

Some will jump ship to another company thinking the “grass is greener” on the other side. Others will continue a downward spiral until their sales are gone, their team is lost and they just quit.  Then there are those who desire to find the spark.  Those who want to ignite the passion in their business.  Those who want to cast their vision into the world and see what happens. Those who want to fight for their business, no holds barred.

Staying in love with your business requires the awareness and determination. How often take stock of how you ‘feel’ about your business?  Negative Nellie is a sneaky devil and she usually shows up when you least expect it.  When the shine begins to dim in your love affair with your business, it’s time to take intentional action.

Here are five things you can do to fall in love again:

  • Create a list of 100 reasons to be grateful for your company. I know it sounds like ALOT.  It is BUT if you push all the way to 100 – you will see something happen.  Believe it or not, the final 25 will be the ones which truly touch your heart.
  • Make a list of all the people who have come into your life through your business. No matter what your reason for joining a direct sales in the beginning, the “sisterhood” is what is a big part of why people remain with their company.  It is a blessing many of us never expected or thought of.  Take time to ponder what “the sisterhood” has added to your life.
  • Review the income you have earned.  Remember, you are in this to make money.  So make a list of all the things it has provided for your family or you were able to pay as a result of the income you earned.  Kids activities, credit card debt, school loans, household bills… get the picture?

  • Look around your home and notice all the places you find your products. Consider how they make your life and your family’s life better.  Remember you are a walking billboard of your business.

  • Make one more list, “How I have grown and changed through my business.”  This one is HUGE for me.

Take time, preferably an entire day, to appreciate your business. When you do, you will remember WHY you fell in love.  Then you will be able to count the many reasons to renew the love affair. You will be refreshed with a renewed passion and ready to get back to work!

My love affair with my business may waiver when Negative Nelly stops to visit.  BUT I am cashing my eyes on my vision and ready to put a plan in place.  What about you?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Got A Pay Raise?

Thank you to Julie of The Hallway Initiative for the inspiration for this post which appeared in MoneySavingMom.

“Nothing stimulates creativity like a good crisis.”

Living on a budget has never been a strong point for me.   I can remember very short periods of time in my adult life when I was credit card/debt free.  Then those addictive traits reared their ugly head and it was back.

Finances were almost always tight as a single mom.  As my own boss, my income depends on me which means it is sometimes inconsistent.  I have been  reading books on personal finance, working on a detailed budget (YKES!), and always on the look out for money-saving ideas. I ran into MoneySavingMom.com awhile ago and am eating up every penny-pinching post.  My initial thought is always to go back to work full-time then the realities of health struggles and age (everyone wants young social workers) hit me.  I will admit, I am great at managing money for others but when it comes to my own account it is a totally different story.

I don’t know about you but when I used to get a pay raise at work, my spending increased.  I mean now I could pay the bills (at least the minimums) and have extra money in my account.  The truth was (and still is) despite how much money is in the bank, I need to remember how I budgeted during the lean times.

I love these four strategies to maintain a frugal mindset:

1. Think in terms of stewardship.

I often forget everything I “own” is a gift on loan from God. When I remember it’s all His, no matter how much or little He’s given me, I am challenged to be a better steward with His things. I need to work with my money the same way I manage other people’s money.  Even during lean times, I found ways to help others in need.  It may not have been in cash but it may have been in groceries or time.  It is when I do things like this, the blessings come back in multitudes.

2. Keeping a budget.

This is probably the hardest thing for me.  I don’t remember much talk about budgeting when I was growing up.  I have tried to stick to a budget off and on for years with limited success.  I think I was the most successful with a budget when Elsie managed my money and bills in my early days of recovery.  I couldn’t trust myself to have cash laying around so she monitored it all.  Bills got paid and money got saved.  sticking to a budget is one of the best ways to maintain control of your spending.  It helps you keep track of your expenditures and reminds you to be wise with what you have. And, if finances permit, it’s perfectly okay to increase certain budget categories, such as giving, saving, and splurges! Just make sure you’re doing it deliberately rather than on a whim.

3. Keep up with penny-pinching resources

There are a lot of them out there…. I don’t necessarily mean “Extreme Couponing” unless it is something you love to do but I do have a few favorites besides MoneySavingMom.com.  I am always scrolling through financial blogs, keeping up with new frugal tips and making sure I am remaining a good steward of my money.

Some of my favorite resources include:

4. Save for the next crunch

This is where I made my mistake years ago.  When my finances were Just because your freed up for a moment, I didn’t plan for the next squeeze.  I didn’t listen to Dave Ramsey and other financial giants recommend building up 3-6 month’s worth of living expenses. If you’ve never been able to do so before, do it now while you have money left over at the end of the month (even if it is $10).

I haven’t done a perfect job of thinking in terms of stewardship, continuing to keep a budget, keeping up with penny-pinching resources, and saving for the next financial crunch, but those are the four strategies I’m working toward at this time.  I tried to keep in mind it is progress  not perfection.

What are some of you favorite money saving tips or resources?  Share them with us.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

 

Is it Possible to Budget on an Irregular Income?

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Budgeting – I cringe when I hear those words.  I used to say “don’t know how to budget” so guess what, budgets never worked.  The funny thing is as a grant writer, it was one of the things our funders loved about me.  I was always on budget or under budget.  Now, I am learning to apply it to my personal life……..

As a full-time direct seller, my income can be irregular.  There are months when sales are AMAZING and there are months when sales are less than desired.  I have always used the fact my income was irregular as an excuse not to stick to a budget.  I mean the key to getting and staying out of debt is a budget, right?  So I went on the hunt for some tips to help me (any maybe you) manage your money better when you don’t get a regular paycheck.

Budgets are easy on a fixed income but are a challenge when you aren’t 100% sure how much money you’ll bring in every month.  Honestly, the budget challenge is the fear factor which kept me from working my business full-time.  Not having faith in myself or in God to provide for my needs.  I have monthly bills to pay – old credit card debt and school loans along with the monthly cell phone, cable bill and our grocery bill.  Sounds basic enough, right?  I mean how tough can it be?  Here are some tips I found…

STEP 1: SET YOUR MINIMUM MONTHLY BUDGET

Your monthly bills stay the same, no matter what your income.  The first step is to figure out what your income and expenses were on an average for the last three months. You have to know there the money goes every month to build a budget.

List the bills you pay every month like rent or mortgage; car, house, or medical insurance; groceries, gas, and utilities.  Figure out the minimum number it would take to balance your bills.

STEP 2: SET EXCESS MONEY IN A SEPARATE ACCOUNT

Now you know the bare minimum amount you need to stay afloat each month.  On pay day, pay the necessary bills first, pull out cash for groceries and gas to last the month, and put the rest into a separate account.  Sounds easy right?  The cash system (or envelope system) by Dave Ramsey is a great way to get started.12141871_626490764164659_208335335_nBuilding up a reserve of cash from your “feast” months, you’ll have funds to rely on during the “famine” months.  I have set up separate savings accounts for my business and personal to “save” for those famine months.  Transferring money “excess” amounts over or even a minimal amount every month allows me to save for those tough seasons.

STEP 3: DON’T GO CRAZY ON PAY DAY

It is going to be tough to not go crazy when you get a large paycheck, especially after a famine month. Resist the urge to spend.  You won’t have money to set aside in your separate account for famine months if you spend excessively on unnecessary things. I’m not saying don’t enjoy a night out, just don’t make it a habit so your account drops to zero.

STEP 4: TRY TO LIVE WITH LESS

There are lots of ways to strip down spending to reduce your budget. We reduced our cell-phone bill, and cut got our cable bill.  I negotiated a lower payment rate on outstanding school loans which reduced the monthly bill.  I found when I went into saving mode, I wasn’t tempted to spend money on things I don’t need.  Now, I am not putting out to the Universe “I can’t afford this” because negative thoughts bring negative actions. BUT what I am saying is “I have plenty of money in my accounts” to bring more positive into my Universe.  When you save, you widen the gap between your minimum monthly budget and how much you have to use during your lean months.

STEP 5: BRING IN MORE INCOME

I know this sounds like a no-brainer, right?  If no matter what your try, you are still having trouble paying the bills in your famine months, it’s time to bring in more income.  Now for those of us in direct sales, it may be working our business a little harder or helping our team reach their goals.

Want something a little bit more concrete?  You can pick up a side job to bring in extra income and pad your bank account for when you need to rely on your savings. Find a way to monetize your skills, gifts and talents to earn some extra income.  Maybe it is being a freelance writer, or if you love graphic design, market your services to websites and bloggers. Maybe you are great at organization and secretarial skills, so become a part time virtual assistant for businesses and websites.  Extra income will help during the famine months and it will help to make them go away faster.

Do you live on a feast or famine income? What is your advice to people struggling to make a budget?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Why Join Thirty One Now

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Wouldn’t you LOVE to be a part of all of the excitement as we kick off a NEW YEAR with Thirty One?  What if I told you that you could spend $99 and have a business that would help you earn an income all year long?

Let me show you all the things going on right now at Thirty One and why NOW is the best time to join! The Spring Summer catalog is AMAZING. Plus we have Jewell by Thirty-One, AND the JK by Thirty-One jewelry line… there is SO much more that will make your experience as a new Thirty-One consultant AMAZING!

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Take a peek below to see all the great things you need to know about becoming a Thirty-One Consultant in June!

#1 The Enrollment kit awaits! You get over $400 in product (plus all the order forms, catalogs, and more to get started) for just $99.

enrollment kit

#2 Host your launch party and enter $600 in June, you’re also going to earn your 1st Start Swell! You get to choose ONE kit when you submit $600 in your first 30 days. Which one do YOU want?! And in your first 4 months, you have a chance to earn FOUR of these kits!

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#3 Ask a friend to join you on your journey. If they join you in your first 4 months, and they they qualify within their Start Swell period, you earn $100 BONUS! There is no limit!!!!

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#4 The June customer special = a GREAT start for you!

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Everyone will want to host a party because they  can get ALL of this for just having a few friends over for a little get together.

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#5 The BEST part is that when you enter that $600 launch party in June, you’re going to earn $150 in cold hard cash!! WOOHOO for starting the new year out with a new ADVENTURE, a new YOU, and a new Thirty-One BUSINESS!

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Did I mention that you get ME too.  I am the one in the PINK cowboy hat along with some of my team at Thirty One’s National Conference last year.

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I am here to help you on your journey. Let me know if you have an questions about joining Thirty-One. I LOVE to answer questions.

Here is how you can reach me:

Website: www.partywithHope.com

Facebook: Hope’s Thirty One Gift Closet

Email: HopeWs31@gmail.com

#31 #RaysofHopeteam #jointhirtyone #lovemyjob #celebrate

The Thirty-One Spring 2015 Enrollment Kit

I LOVE the NEW Thirty-One Spring Enrollment Kit! I wish it was the one available when I first joined. So here are some of the basics….

First, for just $99, you get over $400 in product plus business supplies!  Of course, I tell my team they get me too!  I am here every step of the way to help you reach your goals – LARGE or small.

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In addition, new consultants can also purchase an optional Expander Kit. This is a great way to get your hands on some additional Jewell products to show your potential customers.  You get over $220 in product for just $59!

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Now, I know it may seem too good to be true but there are MORE FREE products that can come your way.  We have a Start Swell program. This rewards NEW consultants for entering orders during their first 4 months.

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Month 1 (days 1-30): Enter $600 and choose any kit you want for FREE

Month 2 (days 31-60): Enter $600 and choose any kit you want for FREE

Month 3 (days 61-90): Enter $600 and choose any kit you want for FREE

Month 4 (days 91-120): Enter $600 and choose any kit you want for FREE

There are EIGHT kits you get to choose from for FREE!  Don’t worry, $600 is actually what an average party has in sales. So, that means just 1 party a month.  Oh, did I mention that in addition to all of this, you will receive a commission check of $150 for that $600 in sales.

I am sure you have a lot of questions, right?  Here are some are the ones that I get asked the most:

I have a busy life, do I have to do home parties?  

Home parties are the best way to share Thirty One.  People like to see and touch the products BUT you can JUST do catalog and online parties.  This is YOUR business and you can do what works for you. Some of my team, simply use their products and collect orders when they are at their children’s activities.

Do consultants have a monthly quota to stay active?

To stay active with Thirty-One, consultants only need to submit $200 in sales every rolling three months. A qualifying party for Thirty-One is only $200! Very easy to stay active!

Are there any additional costs?

NONE!  Thirty One does not charge you any other fees throughout the year.  Thirty One will provide you with a website and a newsletter FREE during your first three months.  Then the cost is $12.95 per month.  And you can cancel that at any time. 

How often are Consultants paid at Thirty-One?

We get paid by direct deposit on the 10th and 25th of each month.  You control your paycheck depending on when and how many orders you submit.

Is there training for Thirty-One consultants?

Thirty-One has AMAZING training for ALL consultants online.  There are Facebook groups.   My team group is called Rays of H.O.P.E. as well as our upline which is Beacon of Hope.  It is in these groups where you find marketing ideas, fliers, and everything you need to run your business!  

WOW!  Are you excited?  Do you want to know more or are you ready to join our Thirty One family?  Feel free to reach out to me – I would love to talk more about the opportunity with you!

Hope Wissel, Director

http://www.partywithHope.com

JOIN NOW! 

Celebrate, Encourage and Reward the special people in your life with Thirty-One!

This is a re-blog from Melissa Fietsam, Senior Executive Director, Thirty One Gifts. 

#jointhirtyone #newthirtyoneenrollmentkit #new #thirtyone #enrollment #kit #thirtyone #31 #31 bags #31bag #join #jewell #jewellbythirtyone #becomeaconsutlant #partywithHope #RaysofHOPE