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I could be wrong, but my hunch is that most people who are reading my blog are not in mourning for Michael Jackson or Farrah Fawcett. I am truly sorry for their untimely passing and respect their hard-earned celebrity stature. There are many places where this topic will have wide readership and opportunity for discussion. That said, I’ll move on.
I got a new action partner last week as the result of my visit to Provincetown. My good friend Doreen and I participated in a Mastermind Session during my short visit. In her share, Doreen mentioned wanting more accountability. Since she’s one of my favorite people on the planet and someone whose opinion I regard highly and seek out regularly, it made sense to ask, “Want to be my goal buddy?”
I asked without being attached to the outcome. I knew that it would be delightful to be in touch with Doreen frequently and share our visions and action steps. But I also knew that it would be equally okay if she said no. I’m already in a local monthly Mastermind Group, in addition to another that meets weekly. Both record goals. I enjoy being challenged and held accountable whenever I see an opportunity that feels like the bar is being raised.
In accepting my offer, Doreen said, “My feet are already hot.”
I do have a reputation for holding my clients’ feet to the fire. That’s why most sign on and also why many don’t. I like it that way.
I’ve been staring at two vision boards that hang on the inside of my closet door daily for several years now. The very first one I ever created, before these two, came to fruition within a short time. I made it by cutting and pasting images of the places, people and things I wanted in my life. I visited Japan, renovated our master bath, created a forum for high-level artistic women, entertained good friends and emulated Julie Morgenstern.
These two newer boards are taking longer to manifest. I’ve been gazing at yoginis in impossible postures, lap pools and exotic locales. And Oprah. I realized just how long I’d had these boards in my closet when Oprah’s picture fell off. The glue which had been holding her attached to my vision had dried up. I lovingly placed her image in my jewelry box so I could continue to envision having her in my life. I’m still not sure what I’m looking for–hence the vision board–I just know it includes Oprah in some form.
The reason I’m writing about this is that I believe it’s important to know what you want and to place your ad with the Universe. Clients recently have told me what they don’t want: aggravating clients, too little income, work that bores them. Among other recommendations I always suggest a vision statement or board so that they will become crystal clear and focus on what they do want.
I arrived in Dublin before 7am (2am EDT) yesterday, grabbed a cab and arrived at Linda’s doorstep before 8am. After a quick tour of her magnificent apartment and a short welcoming chat, I went right to sleep.
When I got up, it was bright and sunny–not typical Irish weather–and we walked for miles around the city.
Our conversations, after discussing her adjustment to living abroad, were about our families and then our businesses. Linda has always been a role model for me as well as a sounding board since we met in the late 70′s. We talked at length about where we were going in our companies and offered perspectives to each other. We each took into account the economy and technology and how to operate and thrive within those parameters.
John joined us for dinner where we reminisced about the old days. I used to stay at their house in Guilford while exhibiting my work at the handcrafts fair there each summer. I admired their values then and I admire them still.
Vacations in our house have always been affectionately referred to as vaycos. Not sure how you’d spell it, but it’s pronounced like the title of this post. Being married to a public school administrator (English Department Chair–retired since 2001) for all these years, the closer the calendar got to spring vacation, summer break or the winter holidays, the more joyful the household became with the impending promise of time off.
Since my calendar is no longer defined by school breaks but by my own decision making, I have declared these last few weeks in June “time for fun.” So many people, who are more school calendar based, are in transitions–graduations, reunions, weddings, etc. I know it’s a good time to plan time off and not frustrate myself waiting for prospects to get back to me or lining up meetings.
I started my vay-co status last Friday accompanied by one of my closest friends. We trained into New York City to a Korean spa for an afternoon of massage, body scrub, facial, shampoo, sauna and steam bath ($130).
On Sunday I traveled to Provincetown with another good friend (Nancy Moon, who did the video clip above) where two more good friends own the Inn at Cook Street. We enjoyed each others’ company, great meals together (the breakfast at the Inn is awesome!), a walk up and down Commercial Street and the fresh Cape Cod air.
Tonight starts the most ambitious leg of vacation as I fly to Dublin to visit my dear friend Linda Carr, the woman who gave me the biggest boost in my early days as a craft artist. Now, 30+ years later, she’s living in Ireland for two years and has invited me to play tourist with her. I’m so excited to travel there for the first time and have nothing on my schedule but exploration, friendship and relaxation.
Since entrepreneurs create their own futures all the time, this is a reminder to establish vay-co time on your calendar. When I say, via my tag line, that I lead remarkable women to uncommon success, I’m simply doing my job by practicing self-care and sharing the journey with you.
I took my second one-on-one Mac class at the Stamford Town Center Apple Store last Friday at 8am, before the mall even opened. I love that! I didn’t get caught in the middle of rush hour traffic, I didn’t have to hunt for a parking space and there wasn’t much activity in the store. I could concentrate on my lesson better than the afternoon session I’d gone to two weeks before when it was noisy and crowded.
I learned two very cool things that I hadn’t figured out on my own–how to download a photo without going into my picturetrail.com collection (6 steps) and how to download video into i-movie, edit it, bring it into youtube.com and upload it onto my blog. Years ago, this would have been a semester-long course.
I had a staff member click this image of my hair stylist, Donna Lysobey of Noble Salon, and me before Donna fixed me up for my new headshot. You’ll see the afters as soon as I get the proofs back from Kate Eisemann. Deryll, my one-to-one instructor walked me through the uploading steps. Voila!
One thing I know for sure is that I want to work with professionals when it comes to my image. I’ve got Scarlett Debease of Scarlett New York styling my wardrobe and Donna to do my hair and makeup for the photo shoot. That helped me to relax and look my best when smiling for the camera.
Last month I received the NEWBO Woman of Distinction Award. Right before the awards presentation portion of the meeting, I handed my digital camera to Don, my client Jill’s significant other, and said, “Could you record this?” I didn’t even know how to instruct him to zoom in, but he did a valiant job. Deryll taught me how to zoom in while uploading this to youtube, so the quality isn’t perfect. I’m most pleased with the audience’s reaction. I’d love you to watch this first minute and let me know if it translates.
Thirty-five women filled Artifact Design Gallery Wednesday night–my 3rd Remarkable Women Networking event. The place was abuzz with the energy and enthusiasm of these amazing women. Photo – Owner Elizabeth Clark (right) above with ASID-CT Past President and remarkable woman Terry Scarborough both in attendance.
The recipe for success is simple and straightforward.
- I open the event to my database
- Find a woman-owned business location
- Provide light food and beverages
- Keep a tightly focused agenda for strategic networking.
Each person has the opportunity to introduce herself to the group as a whole. We then break up into smaller groups for ‘speed networking.’ After each of the women in those groups has had her time to share and get feedback, we rotate groups. By the end of the night, every attendee has interacted on a personal level with at least six other women.
I came home that night thoroughly exhausted. I was so tired that I canceled plans for an early morning beach walk thinking I’d never get up. Without the aid of my alarm clock, I naturally woke up before 5AM and was filled with excitement and energy.
Paradoxically, the more energy I use doing what I love, the more energy is restored to me. Help me out on who said this (I’m thinking Maya Angelou, but couldn’t find the quote on google)–I want God to use me up. I am so clear that my purpose here on earth is to empower women, particularly women who are following their passions. I am serving that cause with every fiber of my being. While I may get tired (standing on line at Stew Leonard’s to pick up the catering order and schlepping bottles of Pellegrino from my car to Artifact), I am fully restored by the rewards of this work.
My kids are tweeting their hearts out. They were born to this technological age. In nursery school, Laura was in the dress-up corner playing grocery store and scanning bananas over the toy cash register. I didn’t understand why she was waving the fruit over the keys in that particular way rather than just punching in the dollars and cents amounts. Our next trip to Stew Leonard’s revealed the answer as the check-out clerk there used the same motion. “Smart kid, my daughter” I thought.
I’m trying! We of the Baby Boomers have adapted to answering machines, computers, cell phones and the like, each time protesting, “Who needs that?” before adapting and proclaiming their benefits.
I know I will master this new technology. I know that it’s important. I know I will make great connections and learn lots. But right now, I still don’t get it and am whiny and annoyed. However, I recognize that that’s my style and move forward anyway. I had a wonderfully generous twitter lesson on Friday from Miraim Salpeter who introduced me to tweetdeck. Now there’s a chirping sound coming from my laptop every few seconds as tweets come through along with notification of new followers and those I’m following.
This morning’s reading in Courage to Change, a daily inspirational book, ends with a quote by Confucius: It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop.
Unstoppable is my middle name.