It all Boils Down to Courage- Do You Have What it Takes?

May 30, 2013

Pic-courage-quoteOne of my favorite quotes is “Fall down 7 times, get up 8” by Buddha.  It’s such a subtle quote and so much where I’ve been these past 8 months. I can’t believe I haven’t written since October of last year!  Or maybe I can after I tell you all I’ve been going through—and it really does “all boil down to courage…”

Have you ever had the rug pulled out from under you? Like really pulled hard and you land smack on your rear end in shock of what just happened.  Well that’s what happened to me… My relationship of 12 years ended back in September of 2012, and that was the beginning of the rug pulling.  Then we sold the house in February, and I had to move out and find a place to live, and then I was just simply exhausted from it all.  I had no energy left to work, so I decided to leave the job I was in…  I so just needed to take some time off to get my energy back and just simply take care of me—so that’s what I did.  March 8 I quit the job and took some time just for me.  It had been SOOO long that I took any time for myself, I had no idea what to do.  The good news is it didn’t take me long to figure it out. I traveled to Big Sur and did an amazing workshop at the Esalen Institute on Callings- How to figure out what you really want to do with your life, lead by the inspiring Gregg Levoy. It was life changing, and I traveled to be my family and hiked a ton with my dog and read, and read and read- the library was my “go to” place. (Some of the books I read- Broken Open by Elizabeth Lesser, When the Heart Waits by Sue Monk Kidd, Wishes Fulfilled by Wayne Dyer, Soul Money by Lynn Twist and Sacred Contracts by Carolyn Myss.)

So why am I tell you all of this— there are a few reasons— one, I wanted to share with you why I was absent from my blog, and two, the real reason is I want to inspire you to check in with yourself- to inject you with some courage to look and I mean really look hard at your life, your work, your relationships, your spirituality- Are you fulfilled? Are you happy? Is something missing? Does something need to change?

Do you have what it takes to really give a hard look at your life and have the courage to make the changes you need to live a more fulfilled life?

I know it’s not easy, take it from me, it’s REALLY hard. However, I had a really amazing support system I put into place to help me with all of these changes that happened in my life.  I had an inspiring and gifted therapist, a wonderful coach, and so many supportive friends.   There’s no way I could have made it these past 9 months without them and I’m forever grateful.

So don’t wait until it’s too late, take a good look at your life and make some changes for the better. We all deserve to live a wonderfully, supportive, happy and inspiring life, filled with people who love, care and support us.


5 Steps to Daring Greatly and Living Authentically

September 13, 2012

I was totally shocked when I realized I hadn’t written in my blog since July—yikes! I thought for sure I had written something in August— nope!  So I thought this post would be PERFECT to get me back on track.  It’s interesting how life throws these curve balls at you and even more interesting how you respond.  One thing I know for sure is that life is ALL about CHANGE—you have to simply just expect it and realize you absolutely have NO CONTROL What we need to do is simply prepare ourselves well with riding the waves… And that’s how this post came to be… the 5 Steps to Daring Greatly and Living Authentically…

It’s funny how things happen—because I certainly don’t believe in coincidences…  The whole month of July I was away traveling— only home for 5 days, and they weren’t even consecutive days!  And on my last trip working a very stressful 8 day event a friend showed me a TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) video by Brene Brown—  it was so PERFECT—I laughed out loud and even dare I say—cried too…  And that’s where this title of  my article came from—Brene Brown who just wrote another book called Daring Greatly, How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead

I was lucky enough to be in the audience to see Brene on the new Katie Couric Show which is premiering this week.  Her focus is on how we can be vulnerable and how this will transform us.  Her background is a researcher and she’s a professor at the University of Houston Graduate College for  Social Work School.  She’s spent years studying, shame, and vulnerability.  She tells her story in the TED video, so check it out I won’t bore you with it here… She also did a follow-up TED talk which was equally inspiring and funny too. Her video is in the top 10 most watched video on TED.

What was even cooler is I was there because a good friend works on the show and surprised me by bringing me backstage to meet her. She was so gracious and as wonderful in person as on the show. They gave us all a copy of her new book, which I had her sign for me and I took a photo with her as well…  This was an inspiring experience for me, one that I will always treasure. I connected with her because she’s so left brained like me- we just want strategies and tools, we don’t want to have to deal with emotions, feelings and being vulnerable- yikes… As an aside—If you catch the episode of Brene, you will see yours truly for my 15 seconds of fame in the show- They did a man on the street and asked me a question—I had to answer the question- I feel vulnerable when…. So check out the show to see more…

Well guess what, this is the key to living a full and joyful life, not numbing or stuffing my feelings, but giving them space.  In fact I started rereading some terrific books by Pema Chodron, Start Where You Are, The Places that Scare You and When Things Fall Apart. All of her books are about being present, meditating and feeling and being with your emotions, but not letting them run your life…

So here in lies the real core message— these are the 5 things I learned from Brene on Daring Greatly and these are the things I’m striving for in my life so I can live it more fully, not matter what challenges I’m facing or going through…

1)    Overcoming Self-doubt

2)    Being more Authentic

3)    Practicing Self-Compassion

4)    Finding More Gratitude and Joy everyday

5)    Nurturing creativity, play and rest

If you can work on mastering one or two of these, you will live a much more joyful and full life. Of course mastering more than one, would be ideal. But you don’t have to be that ambitious, just take one step forward and tackle one of these today and let me know how you do!


First Steps You MUST Take to Creating Your Information Products

June 14, 2012

One of the many services I offer is working with clients to help them create their products and then launch these products for them.  The question I always get over and over and over again is—“How do I know what product to create?”  This is an incredibly important questions and often hard to figure out and most of my clients before they worked with me used all sorts of Google algorithms and some even used the pasta method, which I wouldn’t recommend.  The important note here is most guessed and did many other things. The funny thing is THE best thing they could have done to find this out was right under their nose and I was the one that pointed it out to them…

Want to know what it is?  It’s doing a quick survey to your list and ASK THEM what they want. Alex Mandossian calls this an Ask Campaign.  Why note go out there and ask the very people who will buy from you what they want.  And even if you don’t have a list, you can still use social media and post your survey online and drive some traffic there or you could find a JV partner who would be willing to mail the survey to their list for you.

Here are some terrific questions to ask:

What’s the one must have product you would buy from me if I was smart enough to create and sell it to you?

What format should we offer this product to you so you can consume and learn from it effortlessly and easily?

  • Online course- videos, audios and transcripts viewable and downloadable
  • Printed Physical course that’s mailed out to you
  • Live webinar that was a 6 week course
  • Live teleseminar that was a 6 week course
  • Combined online course and live Q&A coaching calls
  • Other- (Please specify)

What price point would be you be willing to invest in this product? (Choose one)

  • $0 – $100
  • $100 – $250
  • $251 – $500
  • $501 – $1,000
  • $1,001 – $2,500
  • $2,501 – $5000
  • $5,001 – $10,000
  • $10,001+

This is THE best way to figure out what next product you ought to create for your list. And again if you don’t have a list, you could use social media and simply as one question—“What’s the one big challenge you’re facing today in your business?” and you’ll get some cool answers that will help spin you in the right direction to creating your next product.

If you liked this article, please leave me a comment. And if you want to discover more about surveys, check out this page– http://www.createamazingsurveys.com/gkic/


What Do Your Customers Want to Buy?

May 24, 2012

I’ve been asked this question over 1,000 times— what do my customers want to buy? And another questions I get is– how can I figure out what product or service to create so that they will buy it from me?  And I get a gillion more.  Here’s the real scoop on what people want to buy and I want to give you as much information as I can so you can be incredibly successful with creating the best products and services for your clients and customers.

I stumbled upon this book years ago—7 Steps to Freedom II: How to Escape the American Rat Race, by Benjamin Suarez. It’s a rather dated book, published in 1994, and a very BIG hard back book, so I wouldn’t travel with it.  This book is awesome if you’re considering doing direct mail and if you want some real insides on how people buy, and what to sell, how to make money formulas to be profitable, it’s a really good step by step- albeit dated.

What I want to share with you was the ONE thing that I got out of this book and it was his whole discussion and presentation of “Why people buy.”  So here are some key takeaways for your business:

Generally speaking people buy to spend money, be affluent, feel good and to avoid and solve the problems they’re having.  They don’t want to buy things that are hard work, cause risk or that are time consuming. I’m talking about the majority of people, not the 5% of entrepreneurs like you and me. The key is people want “Quick and Easy” solutions.

Here’s a list according to Benjamin Suarez of what people want to buy for:

  1. Immortality and Survival
  2. Power
  3. Love
  4. Money
  5. Recognition
  6. Acceptance
  7. Parental Success
  8. Career Success
  9. Marital Success
  10. Health
  11. Success in Competitive Games
  12. Avoidance of Hardships
  13. Recreational Fun
  14. Avoidance of Unpleasantness

Knowing this list above is hugely important. This gets into the psyche of the REASONS people buy and the “things” they buy for.  After I read this list, it made so much sense to me.  So the next time you’re gearing up to sell or promote a new product or service, take note of these things above and in your promotion and copy address one or some of these that fit.

Also, take a look at this list and it might also help you figure out which product or service to create. We already know the popular markets like Health and wellness, weigh loss and physical fitness, and of course love.  But don’t forget about recognition, immortality, acceptance, fun, and making money!

AND if you need any help with trying to figure out what next product or service to create or offer, check out my latest presentation on the 17 Ways to give your customers exactly what they want—Never Guess Again what your next product or service will be.


Discovering How to Add Some Disney “Mouse” Magic Into Your Business

May 17, 2012

Here are my two favorite quotes from Walt Disney:

“Think beyond your lifetime. If you want to do something truly great. Make a fifty year master plan. A fifty year master plan will change your look at the opportunities in the present.”

“If you can dream it, you can do it!”

These quotes do an awesome job of giving you a birds eye view into Walt’s psyche and how he was able to accomplish so much in a given period of time. He was the epitome of driven and going after his dreams. After reading his book, “How to be like Walt,” I certainly was able to view how when you have a dream, you go after it and let NOTHING stop you or get in your way.

I had the recent pleasure of spending 3 days in Orlando and two of them I spent at Epcot, touring and learning all of what was in Walt’s plan and how his little city in Orlando came to be. It was a fascinating adventure for me.  I got an amazing glimpse into his mind of how he accomplished his dreams and the flip side, of how he wasn’t able to see his dream of his Orlando parks come true. Yet, how his brother Roy and his team made sure it came to fruition.  When I stood there, it was hard to believe that— he actually died before any of the parks were even build in Orlando—wow…

So I knew there were some lessons that not only I could learn, but that I could share with you… The one thing Walt was through and through was a salesman and here’s how he succeeded as one:

  1. Honesty- He was so honest and forthright and sincere, you couldn’t help but believe in him and his dreams. So how can you be more honest, sincere and forthright in your business?
  2. Enthusiasm– This is one I’ve got covered, when I’m enthusiastic about something it comes through my pores, people can see it written across my face and the same for Walt.  He was enthralled with his ideas and he was infectious and it was contagious, don’t ever forget that in your business.
  3. Confidence- Walt exuded confidence, even when his business was failing. It’s about having unrelenting faith in what you’re doing.  His confidence, like his enthusiasm was contagious and infectious.
  4. Courage- This is a big one- this biggest fear is the fear of failure and the fear of rejection, Walt faced this daily. After all his company was the first one to create cartoons as feature films, which was unheard of in Hollywood and his won his first of many Oscars for doing so.  His first cartoon feature film of Snow White, blew the critiques and audience goers away… He had courage for his vision and his belief in creating cartoons as feature films.
  5. Persistence– according to Walt, nothing that was worthwhile comes easy and he had to have perseverance and faith in his own abilities. So must you—don’t ever give up—or my favorite saying from my amazing Coach Debbie Phillips, (and Founder of Women On Fire) is “Don’t give up before the miracle.”

There are hundreds of more lessons to be learned from Walt Disney, I just hope you can grasp these few and implement them into your business and your life.
And don’t forget to tell me how you do!


What’s Holding You Back From the Success You Deserve?

April 26, 2012

This question I’ve been asked countless of times from coach’s, mentors, therapists, and many an event speaker. In fact, I just got back from listening to Larry Winget speak at the Glazer Kennedy Super Conference in Dallas and his approach was more like a baseball bat to the forehead, but I think it worked.  I know I GOT it- what he was saying… let me explain…

If you don’t know Larry he has several best-selling books out there- one called- Shut Up, Stop Whining & Get a Life, my other favorite is- You’re Broke Because You Want To Be. He has an interesting no holds bar approach to success and creating a better life for yourself. His approach for me was very refreshing and different from other personal development type folks out there.

The real thing that’s holding you back from your success is honestly, well— YOU!  I know that, I’ve known that about myself for a while.  If I don’t like my life, I have no one to blame but myself, I’ve created it. And I KNOW I will get a lot of people who won’t like this post, but guess what I’m ok with that.  I want people to either love me or not. I’m not crazy enough to want everyone to like me, I know that’s not possible, and I’m really ok with that.

So if you’re still reading—here’s a transformative exercise you can do right now to kick your success in high gear— Take about 20 mins and get out 3 sheets of paper.

  1. First piece of paper-  Write down where you are in your life right now—in specific areas like finance, physical, spiritual, relationships, business, etc.
  2. Next, write down where you WANT to be
  3. Last, write down what you have to GIVE UP in order get to where you want to be—

The real key here is STEP 3—Writing down what you will GIVE UP.  Most people create a plan of HOW they will get there, not realizing that they may need to give up some things in order to get where they want to go. This is how you will reach true success—giving up whatever is making your broke, unsuccessful, unhealthy, and whatever is keeping you from being financially successful.  This is huge.  Don’t want, do this exercise now and let me know your thoughts and how you do.  The last key is you have to really want success bad enough to do WHATEVER it takes to get there. Come join me, let’s do that in 2012 together!


It’s All About the Questions

March 22, 2012

There is a quote by Albert Einstein that says “If you can’t explain it simply, then you don’t understand it well enough.”

This quote says it all when it comes to the topic of this week’s blog.

It’s ALL About the Questions!

This is actually STEP 2 – AFTER you figure out your goals and outcomes of what you want from doing your survey. Creating questions for your survey products is incredibly important because it will shape the answers you will receive and ULTIMATELY what you will be able to do with that information.  Through this questioning process you will step closer to finding success in your business.

Step # 2 –It’s ALL About the Questions!

When you are coming up with questions, there are SO MANY types of questions to choose from. So let’s start with this— phrase:

“Short, Sweet & to the Point”

One way to keep questions “Short, Sweet & to the Point” is to use open-ended ones. These are the questions that will bare the most fruit for you in your surveys.  A lot of researchers and statisticians don’t particularly like open ended questions because they are the most difficult to measure because each answer is unique, so when sifting through 10k open ended answers, it can be overwhelming in going through all of them. So I highly recommend using open ended questions when you:

1.  Want detailed information in the respondent’s voice

2.  Don’t have good solid answers to create a multiple-choice—because a lot of times you can miss an answer because you didn’t give them one they would have chose. (When you create multiple-choice you’re forcing them to answer your answers that you’ve created.)

The real key to using open ended questions is they can really help not only shape your business, products, etc.; they can also shape YOUR MARKETING.  They write the answers in their voice and will give you key words and key phrases that you can use when you market to them.

Here are some guidelines for you to keep in mind as you create your questions.

1.  Are you questions short or wordy?

  • Simple and concise words are the best to use

2.  5th Grade is your target when it comes to the understanding level.

  • Do not make assumptions
  • Everyone needs to understand them

3.  Stay Away From Complicated.

  • Complication will lead to people not wanting to participate in your survey

4.  Keep your goal and the main thing you want to achieve in mind.

Next week, I am going to take you deeper into how to create those easy and inviting questions that will give you the answers to help shape your business.