By mid January, Merriment will have slowed down. We will all be in a different mind frame and looking ahead to more work, travel, or exercises. Are you ready for that change? Meantime, gaiety and fun is all around and I am taking it in. I love the colors, the music, the tinsel, and the smell of freshly cut evergreen boughs around!
I have yet to go into a floral shop to smell the life giving earthy fragrances given off my flowers and plants of all kinds. It is a gift to myself that I do around this time of the year. For the most part, the gifts are purchased, made, or in some cases mailed out to family and friends. The focus in the next week will be to do baking and preparing the house for company. There is the usual cleaning, pulling out the serving trays, and phone calls to friends who are unable to get out.
Advent has been preparing us the the arrival of Jesus. We have a tradition of having a Black Forest Cake with Whipped Creme for His Birthday Cake. It began when our children were young and continues to be a favorite. Like so many of the things we do, traditions bind us together and stretch from one generation to another. Along the way new ideas and practices grow. Sometimes they just happen and other times, they develop with intentionality.
Take this concept of tradition into your business or job. What are you doing to make your work fruitful and joy filled? Are you able to laugh and engage with other people? Are you happy with the disposition you sew? I have been thinking of the many options we turn away from when they could be so profitable to myself and others. How about you? What have you wanted to gift yourself? Is it time away from the hustle and bustle? Is it a mid day break with a walk around the outside of your work place?
I welcome your thoughts as I begin preparing the schedule for upcoming workshops. If you have ideas for one day workshops, please let me know. I hope you’ll be checking to our website here for them. They will be so worthwhile!
Let the many minor moments bless you with revelations and enjoyment.
Planning Ahead is Really Worth the Effort. Some of these things I have learned firsthand and want to offer them to you.
- Succession Planning is a must for businesses. A sudden death leaves a business in shambles under the best of circumstances and can leave everyone it serves in a state of need without help.
- Disability Insurance. An accident incapacitates the breadwinner in a family. Where does the money come from as things begin to stabilize? It can be months if not years until things go back to “normal.” Small disability insurance policies are a blessing. I can attest to this firsthand.
- Getting things done in advance. The power goes out and the ability to print out a much needed assignment or transaction is due with the hour. Now what? Just in the recent week a large store had their credit card system go down and the whole store was in jeopardy of much needed sales. Planning ahead is wise and backups are necessary.
- A simple backup is a lifesaver or business saver! Although everyone is saving things virtually, have things on backup systems or printed out is a good plan.
- Alternative speakers or plans can become a placeholder. Collaborating with others becomes a blessing when suddenly an airline cancellation postpones a speaker. Having a variety of acquaintances with skills around us is often a blessing. And sometimes it is a glitch that lets another person come forward to be known.
- Clean as you go. What I mean by this is that when you replace an article, a file, or a list at the office, discard the old one so that it isn’t mistaken for the up-to-date copy. You’ll save time and mistakes won’t happen as frequently. Shred old documents and tidy up before you leave the office or work space.
Have a great weekend. See you next week. Let the minor moments in your life lead you up the escalator of success.
Are you present and focusing on an agenda? Your child is calling you to come play with them. Are you able to shut down and focus on the short playtime? I always found it hard to stop doing one thing and focus on another, but I am learning that it is not only healthy, but also so fulfilling to do one thing at a time.
I literally just shut down a CD I was listening to and decided to write this blog. I had been writing one every day for over 18 months, but in the past 6 months, my time and attention has gone to establishing care for people over the phone and online. I do well when I can concentrate on one task. I don’t misplace files or forget details. I used to do a dozen things at the same time. This was particularly true at home as a mom, but I also had to do that with children and chores. Multitasking seemed natural.
As the year winds down, I am staying present and focusing on one thing at a time. I have a better retention of what has transpired and feel more accomplished as well. I am going to carry this effort forth into 2018.
How are you focusing these days? Are you feeling scattered? Perhaps you are lonely and not connected? Many of my friends are retired and free to glide through a schedule of their own, and even though I have my own business and can schedule in special events, I am being careful about not committing to too much outside of this office. For many years I used my extra energy in that way, but now it is more intentionally directed.
I watch Rosy and notice that she will run to her kitchen pillow when I walk in with groceries. Our dog Lord used to do that too. He’d perch himself at the top of the staircase and have a view of the whole family room and french doors. I think dogs know when to separate themselves when things get too crazy. They aren’t in the way and still they have control.
When we are with other people, we want them to be focused on what we are saying. We have all had the experience where we are talking and the other person either blanks out or answers inappropriately. It is all too obvious that they are not present nor focusing on our interaction.
As we flow into the Advent Season and all the merriment around us, do take the time to be cordial and present. Worry less about the gifts and the peripheral decorations. Focus on the people you are talking with and listen. You’ll feel contentment and pride.
Look forward to our Podcast later this week when Kate Halma joins me on using “Domestic Arts”. It should be a down-to-earth look at some wholesome, old-fashioned, and needed skills. We don’t want to lose them!
Here at Mini Miracles from Minor Moments we try to link people to their destinations. We are an affiliate for Amazon and hope you find their services as wonderful as we do. Just snap on the following banner.
To overcome your self doubt begins now. Taking an active participation and being awareness that doubt is affecting our lives is the first step in making a change. As we go through life, we accumulate something that will help remove the act of over questioning ourselves. It is called Portable Equity. It is that skill set that goes into our toolbox and aids us whenever we are trying something new. It can be a job, a change in schools, a moment traveling in a new city, or learning a new craft. Our ability to achieve greater things means setting aside self doubt and believing in ourselves.
In other posts I have noted that Portable Equity is something we have already achieved. It is a learned skill set like being detail oriented, a self starter, or being well organized. We may have excelled in a subject like accounting back in college and yet never implemented those skills. The accounting knowledge is still portable and can be used when it comes up with being on a Board of Directors for a not for profit group. It can be used in setting up a new business; the skill is not wasted. Portable equity removes self doubt, because usually we have felt and come to believe in ourselves.
So where does self doubt come from? Is it a message you have placed in your subconscious? Has the doubt been affirmed by someone you admire and now it is something you have come to believe? Are you questioning how to proceed or when to act on an important issue? Have you given up trying new things for fear of failing and moving forward?
Doubt can keep us from advancing when you need to move forward. Working with someone who is skilled can help one to a new level otherwise, a person may do nothing at all. For me, I learned awhile ago that I did not know who to trust. I didn’t know who to ask for certain needs I had. I began to just ask anyone and voila eventually you get an answer. So here are a few tips to proceed.
- Ask for help. Psychotherapists and teachers are great resources.
- Listen to experts in the area of learning you want to master.
- Don’t beat yourself up for doubt, just march forward. Mel Robbins would say, “5,4,3,2,1 go”
- List all the areas of competence you already have achieved.
- Work along side someone you admire. Do it free! In giving away, we receive.
- Be your own cheer leader and marvel at your own accomplishments.
Our own negative self talk can be the very thing you need to remove the self doubt that has held you back. BE well, listen to your own healthy values, and meet with continued success. Just on step can put you on the escalator of success.
Check out www.delightinliving.com for groups. You’ll be glad you did.
Welcome to Mini Miracles from Minor Moments as Kate Halma and Linda Gullo discuss the essence of being productive. Can you ditch the hamster wheel syndrome? It’s a lively and fun discussion that helps the small business owner and individual move on to the next level. Join Us! Sign up for up and coming information on Mini Miracles from Minor Moments.
PRODUCTIVITY isn’t about how much you get done, but what you’re doing and why! It is about following through with our agendas and trying to grow as an individual. It doesn’t have to be hard.
Here are a few clues that Linda and Kate share:
1- Create a worthwhile focus and follow through with your goals.
2- Ditch the hamster wheel; get off of it and be productive.
3- Start managing time. Shut of the phones, the emails, and the extra things that interfere with us
4- Stop multitasking- everything will get done better.
5- Keep things orderly to keep you on task.
6- Start developing systems that will provide for us to be consistent and regimented in daily tasks. Michael Hyatt suggests designing a morning and evening ritual that sets you up to win.
Systems (sweet systems)
7- Get rid of the Office Monster! You’ll have the opportunity to hear about a Webinar on him!
8- Put a DO NOT DISTURB sign on your door.
Turn off your cell phone.
Unplug you office phone.
Shut down your email and social media apps to focus better.
Increase your ability to focus on things things are important to accomplish.
Suggested readings and websites:
YOUR ONE WORD by Evan Carmichael
5 SECOND RULE by Mel Robbins
In two weeks, join us for Continual Learning! The ladies conclude with:
“Remember just one step can put you on the escalator of success.” and
“No matter how you feel today, get up, dress up, show up, and never give up!”
Until next time, this is Linda and Kate wishing you a super and productive week!
Intro: This is Mini Miracles from Minor Moments with Linda Gullo and I welcome you to Podcast #61 on Topic of Reading Books
As a child living in Brookfield, Illinois, our family lived close to the Public Library. I began walking there early on, and that is where my love of books began. I had a special shopping bag my mother had made for me to carry the books in and at home it hung on the doorknob of my bedroom. Ironically, I still have that bag and feel attached to it! I would be there daily; checking out all kinds of books that looked exciting. Some were picture books and others written with words. The best part was all the neat bookmarks that you could have FREE with your books. I think the local schools and groups donated them. Each was so different and I recall having a collection of them. The kids section was in the lower level and sometimes is was damp down there, so we’d be allowed to sit in the sunny upper study room. When I was ten, we moved from there and we didn’t have a library nearby anymore. I felt a loss of friendship and began drawing and looking to our local grade school for books. Thankfully that helped.
Books are the friends that don’t talk back to us. They empower us to do the things that come naturally and help us engage with people who are able to express themselves in writing.
What encouraged me to talk about books today was the frequent rains and flooding that are taking over certain areas. I do hope people have plenty to read during these times of stress and when they are locked into their areas by rising waters.
As for me, I don’t feel locked in when books are available. My money has always been spent on books. I no longer go to the library since I am out the boundaries for our local one, but as I write this there are 3 different books that I want to share with you and the impact they have on me.
The first one is by Mel Robbins, who I recently rediscovered. Her first book that has been on my shelf is Stop Saying You’re Fine. It was aimed at getting through depression. As a counselor who is concerned with helping people suffering from depression, I bought it back in 2013 to read. It addressed issues that Mel, who is educated as an Attorney, was addressing for herself. She is upfront and authentic in talking about her struggles with feeling insecure, anxious, and unhappy. Here is a marvelous woman with a loving husband and children, who had so much going for herself and still expected more. In the way any one of us who is an achiever could relate to her. She took herself into a different place and helps others to do the same.
So fast forward to now when I have been reading The 5 Second Rule. I am one over 8 million people who are making her rich by reading this book. I love it and keep rereading sections. I am a sales woman for her. She teaches us to not procrastinate and encourages us to become self starters. I feel recharged to say the least. Having read the book and taken her courses has help escalate me to a new horizon.
The next book is by Alexandra Stoddard. I first began reading Daring to be Yourself many years ago and just continued reading her writings. I attended one of her presentation at a Creative Arts series at the Woodstock Opera house and fell in love with her thinking. She believes in values and putting yourself in the center of good things that are transforming. She helped me blossom with interior designing elements when I was younger and still have a love for the beautiful things like flowers, music, color, and life giving resources all around us. Choosing Happiness, which I am currently reading is similar in format with her other books. It is written in blue ink with colorful pink sidebars. Just heavenly to indulge in and enjoy without feeling guilty. It is great summertime reading. I actually read it and stop to pray as I do. It helps to relax me.
Finally the 3rd book that I am digesting is Finding Your One Word. I am reading this slowly as it asks many questions and has one doing introspective work. I am not sure I can boil my personal motto down to one word but I am trying to focus more so who knows. In sharing this with a friend, she tells me that she selects a word to focus on for each year. I am thinking I may do that quarterly. It is by Evan Carmichael and aimed at helping to create a healthy business. This one I will also be working on for awhile to glean out as much insight as possible.
At my daughter’s home, she is reading a book from 1945 about our country to her daughter who is 6 years old. It is a good way to learn some history about the USA. Of course, the child sees this as way back in the day. Pretty funny.
Reading is something to encourage early and although not every one of us likes reading, it is a great companion to many or us.
Signing off until next week. Take just one step, it may put you on the Escalator of Success!
Books Resources: The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins
Choosing Happiness by Alexandra Stoddard
The Secret to Success Lies in Just One Word
Do you have to wait until someone wakes up? Sometimes you have to just wait. Wait for that perfect job offering. Wait for the break in being recognized. Wait to heal after treatments or a broken leg. Wait until you are able to reach the new level and earn that long awaited raise you have wanted so badly. Wait for the next expert can be reached. Wait until there is enough money. Wait for the appointment to get your questions answered. The waiting game isn’t easy, in fact, it is hard but necessary.
Whenever I am stressed with waiting, I try to remember Ecclesiastes 3. It says that “There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—.” (Taken from the NASB) Of course, the verse is longer and more clarifying, but those words help me to put things into perspective. It also puts my needs in perspective with a greater world of other people and businesses. It calls into mind that we are just one culture and need to be open to time changes.
In a fast moving world, we don’t always let things naturally develop. We want to rush things along. The down side of rushing is not always good. Things are lost and forgotten in the rush. We miss out in important information and resources.
When we are in school, we have to wait until we have met all the criteria to graduate. We keep learning skills;we learn how to deal with other students and the faculty. It is the experience of coming on time and passing tests that make us more conscientious and will to work. It is putting value to our work and to the people we are trying to serve.
When we enter into the job market, there are procedures to follow. Sometimes if we have allowed ourselves to be patient, it all works on our behalf. Today is the beginning of a new week and new vision. Look for the mini miracles that come from the minor moments that you don’t think are important. They really are relevant.
Welcome to Mini Miracles from Minor Moments where our lives bloom in small ways from seemingly insignificant moments.
This is Linda Gullo and every week I bring to you a few thoughts to help you navigate through life. I want you to love life and live it with joy and a feeling of fulfillment.
How to Be Happier & Advance! STEP Outside Your Comfort Zone
Today’s message is about stepping outside of your comfort zone. Are you comfortable with stepping outside of your comfort zone? The practical side often locks us into what we feel is safe and easy. Think about your approach to seeing a new doctor, traveling to a new place, trying a new job, or learning a new profession.
Do you approach life with fear and trepidation? or joy and confidence? Where does your confidence come from? Do the people around you help or hinder you? Are you empowered from a deep faith? Are you secure in your own talents and education?
So much of how we approach life begins in the early years with our parents or care givers. We may start out adventuresome and get stymied along the way. Our genetic makeup certainly chimes in as to how we react. As adults we are often set in our ways and don’t branch out into new territories unless we are pushed. Some people feel they can go the road alone; they do not feel a community around them is a big help at all!
I watch a dog that resides across the street from us. He is a small Shepherd who sits under the trees and looks like a statue. He keeps an eye on the squirrels above. He will keep watch fearlessly, as if it is his duty. Sometimes I wonder if that is his only purpose.
Unlike this dog, we are not all that patient. We do not get so focused. We don’t see things clearly. As a result we procrastinate and go for long periods of time trying to find clarity in our decisions.
We have a “dogs life” of leisure. Our needs for shelter, food, and family insurance cause us to hesitate so we don’t jeopardize our income. So often we have jobs that we don’t like, but we feel locked into them.
Opportunities for growth are like stepping stones. As children we progress one grade at a time. Each year the curriculum pushes us further until school no longer is our guide! Then it is up to us to find hobbies, meet new people, and explore the world of opportunities.
Pathways of traveling or jobs may lead us to new and exciting places. Sometimes our way is smooth and easy to navigate. At other times a divorce, loss of money or illness seems to take away our stepping stones. There appear to be no bridges to carry us over the hurdles.
Where are the elevators to raise us up? Where are the escalators to help us move upward? As a child walking a mile to school each day, I’d play games hopping over the grooves, reading the engraved signatures of the cement company, or counting my steps. I knew the path took me to a destination; namely school. I’d often walk with other friends, but when I was alone, I walked fast and with a purpose.
I still do walk with intentionality and a drive. Just ask anyone who walks with me and they will tell you that I leave them several steps behind. I don’t do it purposely, but I have learned that walking clears my mind and refocuses me quickly.
In the last two weeks, I have been taking the Power of You course with Mel Robbins. She is so authentic and fun to follow. I’d love to hear her speak in person. Mel is one of those dynamic speakers and so very relatable. She has done TED talks, and presents herself so well. She has pushed herself through periods of self doubt and fear. It is her journey that she shares with the world.
She wrote the Best selling book called The 5 Second Rule. I have been reading it with enthusiasm and following a closed FACEBOOK group of hers.
Her book The 5 Second Rule has made me aware of some of my own moments when I hesitate to do something, because I am not clear about the direction to take.
Obviously, I am among many people, who hesitate to ruin with an idea. So I took the step of learning and using the 5 second rule and I love how much it has helped me. I hope to replace a few habits and refocus my energy on a few projects.
Life experience, reading books, and knowing people creates pathways to help us. We forge ahead through obstacles like health issues or loss of family members. Our jobs change sometimes or are eliminated without sufficient warning. Instead of seeing that as a blessing, we start to panic. There are the unexpected expenses that come from hikes in taxes, cracked septic fields, broken appliances, or the medical costs. Our attitudes get warped and it is hard to flatten them out to work properly.
The direction of where we step next becomes unknown. There are times when we feel ourselves going in circles. We do the same chores repeatedly, visit the same stores, make the same appointments and feel unappreciated by our bosses and family members. So, who can help you break the cycle of feeling this way?
You can. I can. We can all have everything we want, but we need to use this tool, namely the 5 Second Rule as one approach. Obviously it is not the only way, but trying it can’t hurt. It’s a simple process and worth the effort. Along with gratitude and volunteering some time, we can all share the things that we love, and this book is one of them I’m sharing with you.
Thanks to the windows of opportunity that come along the way, we are able to rebound. Recovery comes along with advancements in careers, money from inheritances, information from the internet, or a professional that can direct us on a new and better track. That passage to another walkway gives us motivation and a new direction. We can become more confident and, as Mel says, “develop a powerful mindset!” I am not paid to promote her book, but you can tell I am enjoying it!
Have a great week of capturing the value of the minor moments in your life. Listen with an open heart to your friends and family. Dose yourself with acceptance and forgive those that have offended you. Take the one step that may put you on the “escalator of success!”
This month my husband and I celebrated our 49th year of marriage. I must admit the time has passed us by too quickly. I recently heard a radio show host talking about successful, long lived marriages. A common element shared when these people were interviewed was that they remembered and shared the difficult moments as times of growth. They did not talk about the vocations or other events unless there was an obstacle they had grown from at that time. That has been true for us. We don’t always talk about the great 15th Anniversary Party or the fun family times. Instead, we think of things in context of some struggle or period of growth! We remember dates by the trying times that almost crushed our relationship.
Good relationships develop and get stronger through experiences that are challenging and moments of trial. Enduring these times secures a tighter bond. The couples became more resilient. Just listen to individuals share in the next few months and you’ll hear some fabulous stories about struggle and the pride of living through those times. When health is good and income is great, things may be so simple! It was when we survived the illnesses and loss of our parents that things became difficult. It was when my spouse survived a major skull fracture that things I thought were important became relative to the bigger issue of just staying ALIVE.
It made me think in term of business too. My father-in-law had a successful business in Die Casting. He was an attorney who turned his skills into a profitable business adventure. His health suffered from the stress of it business in the years of its growth. Several fires that occurred in the plant over the years were difficult for him emotionally and physically. While he was actively involved growing the business, other pressures weighed heavily on him. He was the first to tell you of the struggles in building the business. Even though people would not have known from its success that there were so many growing pains. His health radically improved after he retired. Thankfully he had many good years following.
Or the time we owned a Franchise of a major oil company. Plagued by bad weather, broken fuel pumps, and a robbery, our decision to stay in this business was unanimous. As newlyweds we had no reason to even try this, but we learned the hard way. We put our marriage on the top of the priority list and closed it down. The lack of time together was a big factor!
Lately in business, I have heard CEO’s and Managers share how they became stronger as leaders through the tougher times. There reflections helped me understand why their marriages survived. We suddenly relish our spouses in a different way as they stand by us or help us mature. They may have changed jobs along the way or tackled financial loss. These people have become mentors and examples for the “up-and-coming” people in business. During financial set backs, dealing with employees, or problematic times, they also struggled and their companies grew.
Can you relate? Have you experienced and grown during difficult times in your personal life and/or business? What seasons in business have resonated into making you a better person? Perhaps insight and understanding the dynamics of forging on will be beneficial if you are aware of your times of growth.
I am grateful that we have been able to conquer and forge through some difficult years and moments of sadness. May you too grow and have meaningful lives both personally and in business settings. Relish the people and the relationships in your circles.
Blessings and “Delight in Living!” May the small moments bring a harvest of Mini Miracles your way!
Success in business and life is spelled out differently for each of us. In today’s Podcast, Linda welcomes Kate Murauskas Halma on her first visit to Mini Miracles from Minor Moments. Kate shares the beginning of her journey as an entrepreneur and businesswoman in McHenry County. Listen in to hear some of her stories and enjoy the adventure. Here she is with her dog Chance! Now that’s a smiling dog!