Your life is what you create it to be!

The New Year is approaching and you may be thinking of New Year’s resolutions. On average, the success rate on follow through it quite low. So instead, start thinking about where you are now and where you want to be. You still will be making a plan of action, but don’t call it a “resolution”. Set measurable and achievable goals to get on track and keep on track.

Plan – then take action to make it happen!

Don’t you find that it’s easy to sit down and make the plan of action, but then implementing and following through each day, you start to lose steam or have “make up task” days?

Written goals provide you clarity of direction that set you, your business, and your movement towards your goals up for success. But, it’s your commitment to take action and to keep following through to actually make things happen. One of the biggest areas where people de-rail their efforts they wrote down on paper, is setting to LARGE of a goal or task item to-do list each day. Best advice, is to break it up!! Big pie in the sky dream goals are good to have for the upcoming year, but break it down to week by week, and then day by day to-do list. General rule of thumb, is to create a TOP 3 list each day, and do that no matter what!! They all don’t have to be extensive and elaborate, but just a step in motion moving forward.

You may know where you want to go but realistically, without taking time out to make a written plan or map of how to get there, you are losing valuable time to actually reach it!

Below are my TOP tips on making a plan of action and to-do list that will actually have you feeling successful as opposed to as a guilty failure.

1) Make your plan something you want to do!
Too many times people make a list of what they SHOULD be doing because someone else says they should or they think that is the right thing to do. Define, what you are most passionate about, what you are most talented in, and set the plan to focus more on tasks that involve those things. You will be more likely to follow through.

2) Pick Something You Can Do Easily
Ask yourself if your plan is realistic and achievable for you right now. Evaluate realistically where your current obligations are in your life, and how your new action items can fit in for success. If you think it’s going to be too hard to stick to your plan, change it so that you’re likely to succeed.

3) Be Action-Specific
Specify exactly what is it that you’re going to do. Measurable action goals are a way for you to actively keep working on them in motion. You feel yourself doing and completing it as opposed to a wish list of “I’m gonna”. Set your action goals with measurable notches.

4) Set Measurable Goals
Defining a goal without a mark of deadline, quantity, or risk is still a wish list. There is no gage or mark of achievement. Be specific with your goals when you have them broken down in years, months, and days. For example, in business you may have a monthly goal to sign up 10 new customers. Breaking that down even further into the weeks will help you keep a measurable rate as the month nears it’s end. So your goal for the week may be to speak with 20 people. We all know the law of averages with success rates. If your goal is 10 new customers a month, you surely need to speak with almost 100 people to nail that goal as achieved.
If you have a goal each week of 20 people, then now break it down to your working days, and how many people will you be speaking with on those days to ensure you at least hit your 20 per week.
Weight loss works the same way. You may have 50 lbs you want to lose, but you can’t say at the start, I’m losing 50 lbs. You have to break it down into what will you achieve that month and that week etc.

5) Celebrate and Evaluate
Celebrate and recognize your achievements no matter how small they are! It’s forward progress in reaching your goals!
A strong tip I have suggested to many of my team through the years is to create a note book log. Record what action items, steps, programs etc.. you did during the measurable timeframe. Write down what you didn’t feel went well or was good effective use of your time as well as write down how you can really improve and do things differently or even better next time.

It’s easy to say you will be a huge success, you will lose 50 lbs, you will make the highest award level you can achieve. But, when it comes right down to it, your goal setting, you to-do lists, your action, your commitment and confidence, and your follow through will prove you got what it takes.

How to Start Conversations

When you come from a place of genuine interest and warmth, almost anything you say will be well received and appreciated. What you actually say doesn’t have to be clever, how knowledgable you are, or how much you can “save” them will actually create alienation and a loss of connection. People appreciate others showing genuine interest, and everyone appreciates and treasures those moments when we drop our “presentations” and become authentic.

Conversation and small talk isn’t easy and natural for everyone, but it’s a skill that can be learned. The more you practice, obviously, the easier and more spontaneous it will become. A tip to start “training” yourself to be better at it, is to put yourself in a non threatening comfortable situation. This will mean different things for each of you as some of you might be a very comfortable parent chatting on the sidelines to other parents, while others may be very comfortable walking up to someone to help them in the grocery store. You can easily start by making small talk with the clerks where you shop and the waiters/waitresses when you are out for a meal or even your morning coffee. Oddly enough, this tip may be VERY helpful…..Practice with telephone solicitors! Why? Because it will challenge you to keep the conversation going with asking leading questions and the caller will stay on the line for obvious reasons!

Initiating a conversation with a stranger might not be easy, but we can’t let fear or our anxieties run our lives and keep us from growing. You only grow when you put yourself in challenge uncomfortable positions, and learn some lessons along the way. Additionally, you never know what kind of day the other person may be having, and just your friendly banter may brighten their day or even make them smile. Others may even be flattered! In general, we all love to be noticed and appreciated for our efforts.

So what do you say? It really doesn’t matter as long as you say something. Start be getting comfortable with opening the door for communication with a simple SMILE and a warm “Hi,” “Hello,” “How are you?” or “Good morning,” and see what happens! If you know the person’s name or something about them say, “Hi, Nancy. How are you doing?” or “Hey, how is potty training that new dog of yours?” the next step is VERY important, Listen and respond appropriately. Some people need that nudge to keep the fire of communicating going. You may need to drive the conversation a bit. Always pay attention to body language though. If someone is darting their eyes, pulling away from you, seems rushed, let the conversation close. You may find some of your conversations may be a bit out from left field while others open a whole new world of things in common and the conversation can go on and on. Additionally, some conversations you wish you never started and others might be the high point of your day. It’s all a lesson, and sometimes a risk we have to take on opening the lines of communication.

What you really want to get into the habit of doing is asking open-ended questions as opposed to yes/no questions. If the person can respond with either a yes or a no, that’s not a good question you should ask. Again people always like to be complimented or feel of value. Starting with a compliment or asking for their opinion even on something you may be an expert about, will open up for a back and forth dialogue. It gives other people the permission and opportunity to talk. You may need to memorize some cliche open-ended questions that can be used as ice breakers in different social settings. At a party you might ask how they know the people who are throwing the party. Or at the grocery store, you may ask for some help on picking out the best beef for your stew. You can even ask for directions or recommendations to some great local restaurants or shopping areas. (even if you know them all!)

One of the best tips to finding out someone’s name is to introduce yourself first or introduce someone else in your party so they can offer up their name to them. People always value the sound of their name, especially when someone else remembers it. So at the close of the conversation, if you have completely forgotten their name, don’t be ashamed in asking for it again. If it’s a name that warrants spelling, ask them how they spell it.

The only way you will get better at socializing and communicating is to get out there and do it! Follow me on Facebook for more free advice, tips, motivation and training! http://tinyurl.com/christinedwyer

IT’S NEVER ABOUT WHAT YOU SAY, IT’S ALWAYS HOW YOU COMMUNICATE IT.

Conversations occur constantly in every area of your day-to-day life. Sometimes we don’t even notice how many interactions or conversations we had by the days end, but they are happening. What may start out as workplace small talk could potentially become a huge step and growth in your career or even a new opportunity.
When promoting your services or business, a higher level of professionalism may be expected. So being authentic and genuine should be your number one skill but also having a balance of being forthright and directive.

While we can’ t have every possible interaction or conversation you may have or encounter, here are some key points as you look to polish your interpersonal and communication skills and, at the same time, become more authentic in your delivery.

1) Get more information before making a statement. Don’t jump in too fast with your “I know for a facts” and Statements to prove their point is incorrect. Careful not to jump to conclusions. Pause, and ask another question to either get more information for a full understanding of their position or to have them expand so you can gain more understanding.

2) Keep everyone focused on the point, goal and intention. Create common ground on which to share your perspective. This will help people maintain understanding, stay on point with the topic, and to not hit any “hot buttons” that may turn the conversation into a spiraling combustion!

3) Be sure to inquire more than advocate for your position or view!Many times conversations can steer into the wrong direction, or completely in a way you didn’t have planned. Many of the times this can happen if you take a strong stance advocating your position rather than taking the time to ask questions and to see their position or their needs. Stay humble. You may be right, but right in your own mind. There’s always two sides of the coin.

4) Lay it on the Line. Be REAL and authentic! Telling people that you are new, you don’t know all the details yet, you are a work in progress, etc..only shows your authenticity. Honesty shows you are humble, and the conversation will allow people to connect more with you when you come across “human”.

5) Develop a reputation of being a good listener. Be careful to not jump in with the “me too’s” or “you gotta hear when this happened to me”. People are interested in one major person when speaking, and it’s always themselves. To develop better relationships with your clients or soon to be clients, bite your tongue. No need to jump in and fill every pause. Really listen to what they say and respond with a question which will develop and stem off of their previous statements.

6) Be a problem solver. You don’t always need to get a result, sale, or a paid service in your conversations. Listening to your customers needs, and being a problem helper or solver will create a strong bond and relationship. Your solution may not even be one that you can provide for them. Just be that person who is genuine and will recommend or help even if it doesn’t directly benefit you.

7) Develop your Small Talk. “Nice weather we’re having” can get old real fast. Start to develop your initial small talk more than the obvious. You can use your surroundings, kids, something in common, or a compliment. Everyone likes to feel valued. Even if you know everything in the area, maybe ask for their opinion, or suggestions, or advice on the situation. I.e.: Have you eaten at this restaurant before? What is the number one item I should not miss?

Developing your conversational skills is just that, a skill. To some people, it comes a lot easier. Even chatty Kathy’s aren’t always successful at this, just because they are outgoing and chatty. Having a point, directing the conversation with leading questions, and having a genuine interest in helping them in their needs will help you develop stronger relationships and a new following.

Working Out Your WillPower

We are faced with battling our willpower everyday. As soon as the alarm goes off, you are faced with many choices of will. Do you hit the snooze alarm, do you skip choosing a quick sugar filled breakfast for something healthy, do you skip the double mocha latte with whip and go for the plain coffee, Do you finish following through this major task for work or jump on facebook, and Do you choose to get a chicken salad hold the dressing or get that Turkey club complete with bacon! The list goes on! All day we are battling our will just to make better choices, ones that should be moving us towards our goals, keep us healthy, as well as form to what should be the best decision according to society standards. Does it make you cranky? Sure can! It’s exhausting at times to constantly be fighting temptation. Over and over again, it surely can start to chip away at your willpower and before you know it, BOOM; you’ve given in by allowing your priorities to crash and good choices fly out the window!

 

But great news is that research as proven that willpower works just like a muscle! Overtrain/work your willpower just like a muscle, it falls into fatigue. But, on the opposite scope of it all, it can be strengthened making you more productive and happier with your choices and results. Below are some habits you can use to help create strength in your willpower and not allow yourself to hit that wall.

1) Write it Down!– Keep a journal that you can keep daily notes and tracking on how you perform or scheduled your day. Whether it’s for weight loss and keeping track of your daily meal plan and exercise to following through on business building techniques for your business. This is a way to track back. So if in times where you start to fall short or hit a wall, you can track back to when things were good and progressing.

2) Don’t Procrastinate! – When you procrastinate on a task or get anxious, research has shown we tend to give into an urge to improve our moods by doing something else. One suggested book to read is Eat That Frog, by Brian Tracy. Suck it up, and get the hardest most daunting task done first!

3) Be on the OFFENSE team! – Many people are successful at making good choices and not constantly battling their will because they put themselves in situations where temptation isn’t even a choice. If you can proactively arrange your day and your life to avoid problems or bad choices in temptation, you will have a much smoother day with sticking to your plan in action. If you are trying to lose weight, plan your meals for the day and don’t fall into the lunchtime crew heading out to the all you can eat buffet! If you are working on habitual for jumping back and forth between email, twitter, and facebook to avoid a work assignment, close those programs or shut the computer down if possible! People who are proactive avoid risk. Just like taking your car in for check up and maintenance.

4) Pick your Battles! – You can’t control every situation or every temptation in front of you. It’s easy to fall into a trap where everything just goes to “pot” because you are stressed out with too many situations, obligations, and tasks! Choose your timing! If you are just starting a new job, trying to lose weight, and trying to quit smoking, maybe lighten up on how strict your efforts are while you take on such a major change in your life. Keep that forward progress but maybe put the breaks or slow down on the pace.

5) Reward yourself often! – People love incentives. Your reward doesn’t always have to be like a kid in a candy store. Making good choices on your rewards can be as simple as doing something you normal don’t have the chance to do, like a massage or pedicure. Or even schedule a babysitter so you can go out for a couple hours and do anything you want. It can even be having a day or meal where you take in some of the most desired treats you have been cutting back.

Success in your goals and achievements is planned. It’s a plan laid out like a blue print. You can’t build a house, unless you have a blue print. Work on creating habits that won’t leave you agitated and fighting with yourself every day. Find a way where it’s reasonable, takes maybe a different pace than you initially wanted, but will lay out a plan for success.

In this interview with Carl Daikeler, CEO of Beachbody, I have the opportunity to answer some questions that many small business owners struggle with in getting started and growing their home businesses.
Getting started in a home business does require marketing, scheduling, and following through on business building tasks that will grow your business daily. It's easy to let a day go by, and fail to make motions in your business. Managing your schedule as well as following through with your follow ups is two pivotal steps in growth.
In this interview you will hear how I personally got started in my multi level marketing home business.  Putting this business in front of the people who are closest to you, that you have had relationships with for years, as well as just know by acquaintance or referral.
The more people you can interact with, even if you don't know them, is the only way to grow your business as well as to impact other people's lives. The impact you can make on someone else's life in helping them reach their goals is a step that many people don't take advantage of or see they have the ability to do. But, we are all the same. We all just want to have companionship, accountability, support, and a pat on the head to know that we are valued and that we are doing a good job.

Follow me on facebook if you want to have daily motivation and business building tips for your own home business http://tinyurl.com/christinedwyer
Please also comment below on what your best TAKE AWAY is from this video and what you would like to see more of.

Why is consistency important in small business growth? Especially a small home business? It’s not only the important but the cornerstone! It also translates into all areas of your life!

Being in the health and wellness industry, I am guilty of the exact same feelings of discouragement and wanting to throw the towel in when I don’t see immediate results!  All that focused planning of my food, intake, and exercise, why can’t I be at a lean ripped up machine in just a matter of a couple days?  Honestly, I always notice that my body doesn’t change much, weigh different, or really “see” the efforts of my labor until the 14th day!  Weird, I wake up on the 14th day, and boom, I can see it!

Or how about the time where I started washing dishes in a my hometown restaurant when I REALLY wanted to be a “bus girl.” Even though I didn’t get tips being a bus girl, it just allowed me to have that feeling of success and not being the one trapped in a hot kitchen scraping uneaten food off of plates and throwing them in the wash. My time did finally come to graduate into the main dining where I could finally dress in a black skirt and white shirt, and the white shirt would actually stay white!  But I had to put a ton of effort, prove my skills, prove my work ethic, prove my determination for growth, prove I am the girl to move!

Why is your home business any different than any other venture of growth in your life?

There is no difference! Why would you decide to make a big change in your life, one that will improve the quality of your life, invest time, money, and stress in the efforts of getting started then do nothing or drop off because the growth of your business isn’t happening when you want it to?  Only you can answer that question for yourself, yet so many people do just this.

No business should be treated like a hobby and especially your own business you must take it seriously and be consistent on a daily basis.  Don’t think that things will happen overnight it takes time and committing yourself.

I hear many times from people working on developing their business say, “I tried that it didn’t work” or “I don’t have upline support.” Most often time it’s easier to put the blame on someone else or even put the blame on the business model itself.

But what it really boils down to is consistency. Doing the right activity over and over.  Now we have to be realistic!  You can’t expect to see life changing results in a matter of a couple months.  There is no possible way but you must be persistent and consistent. Because just like riding a bike, it’s tough to get the bike rolling as you start to pedal, but once you are rolling it’s rolling with less effort! But as soon as you hit the breaks and stop, to get rolling again is tough! Sometimes you may even be caught in the middle of a steep hill!

I run with the motto, “Things always work out in the end”. I’d be honest in saying I don’t stress out about meeting deadlines, meeting challenges, and even meeting the personal quota and goals I set each month. Even when the month starts to near it’s end, my stress level starts to rise and I start working even more on activity to produce the results I’d like.  But what I find happens, is that because I was consistent, never putting the breaks on for the months leading up to the end of this month, the breadcrumbs and efforts I was laying down the whole time turns around and pays off.

Here are some suggestions to ensuring your activity is productive and not just a matter of busy work that you keep fooling yourself with.

1) Set a 90 day activity journal.  Record your activity for 3 months, as well as the productivity.  If you are failing to see the fruition of the efforts you laid down in the beginning of the 90 days come around at the end of the 90 days, time to re-evaluate your activity.

2) Re-Evaluate your Daily/Weekly/Monthly Schedule – It’s easy to be busy. But being busy with activity that fills your time producing no results will only frustrate you.  Use a calendar to schedule out your appointments of work and activity on each day and follow it! Be sure to move on to the next scheduled task that is on your schedule.

3) Don’t be Scared to Ask for an Honest Opinion! – After being diligent in your efforts of work and activity, find your mentor, sponsor, or direct manager and ask for some constructive feedback.  As hard as that pill is to take, someone that you have in this position above you should be able to deliver just the news you need to hear while giving you that drive and determination to make those changes for a better result.

As more is learned about your efforts, schedule, and areas needed for improvement, more of the inefficiency is removed, exposing that still more can be learned — and so on — creating an ever increasing spiral of productivity and results. But that can’t happen without consistency.

 

I am NOT a runner and by no means, will I claim to be an expert! BUT, what I will have to share is the aspect of just getting out there, no excuses, and just following through.

When it comes right down to it, when I am sitting comfortable in my chair, and I say in my head, “I’m gonna go running”, there’s a SMALL window that can easily derail my efforts.  Being careful to not sit down at my computer, if taking too long to figure out how to get Pandora to work on my iPhone, or even just not finding the perfect pair of sneakers, all can be an easy excuse for me to say- Oh well! I just won’t go. I WISH I established that “runner’s high!” What is that? HOW do you actually get that, can I buy it so this becomes easier???

I have decided to start my days at least with a quick jog around the block. Cross Training is very important, especially when your body gets used to doing the same type of work outs all the time.  I’m normally not a runner, I really should be saying jogger. To be very candid and honest, most of the time it’s because I just hate getting those shin splints and so sore!

So in my ventures to stick this out and start “jogging” more, I started to do some research on how to avoid those shin splints. I have found I tend to be a heel strike runner. Eh, that’s what I get for being a novice! And after watching many training videos on how to land more on your ball of your foot and roll onto your toes, it just doesn’t come that easy. I could have SWORN my high school track teacher says long distance runners run heel/toe and sprinters run on their toes. Well, we know I’m not going out for any records, so feel comfortable on the heel. But, those darn shin splints come fast!

So I watched videos, read articles, and they suggest landing on the ball and rolling off to toes.  I understand this will take practice, just like everything does, but the morning I ran this way I felt slower, it was harder because I had to keep thinking, “Stay off your heel”, “don’t point your toes” “just land neutral” “just be loosey goosey”….seriously, everything was rolling through my head to try and make that happen.  Eh, not sure if I succeeded or not, but I did wake up the next day with my shins and calves more sore. Could it be because of 2 days running in a row or because of my challenge in foot position?

My 3rd day, I snapped some pics while running, and what do you know, the proof is in the picture. 

I’ll keep working at it. It’s something I know I just have to keep practicing. As with everything, you will get better with practice, and I may just find that I might practice this so much, I may actually start to enjoy this!

Well, to tell the truth, I should whisper and tell ya, It’s actually been kind of enjoyable!”

I grew up in a small country town in upstate NY. To find myself in a place where I have been able to actually enjoy my scenery, and put myself back into the world of nature that I actually enjoy, has been nice!  I have been able to figure out that Pandora account on my iPhone, take in the lush scenery around me, get some sun in which I enjoy, and feel good about actually following through with doing what I said I would do!

What is really cool is living in an area that brings me joy! All the things that I have been building up to, and finding a moment of peace in my day to take in the scenery, enjoy the sun, listen to my favorite tunes, and not feel the pressure of constantly feeling like I should be doing something for work or for someone else.

I enjoy that the park across from my road and is the same name as my father’s name. I look forward to seeing that everyday as a mark of completion.

These are my moments, and I should protect them.  Who know’s if I’ll ever become a “runner”, but just to enjoy something different for a moment has been nice!  Being able to step out of my comfort zone and to be vulnerable as a novice.  There is no excuse.  Even if you only have a spare moment in time to do something quick for your work out, those 10-15 mins is better than nothing.  No excuses! You have your gym equipment. You have your gym membership. It’s free.  Just open your front door and go! Squats, walking lunges, and push ups are an extra BONUS!

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