Heather Stouffer Founder & CEO, Mom Made® Foods on Women Entrepreneurs Radio™

Show #362

 Heather Stouffer created Mom Made Foods because she believes in convenient meals that do not sacrifice quality or nutrition, and that kids should be able to eat delicious foods without added junk.

Inspired by kids and the familiar recipes they love, Mom Made Foods uses only the freshest quality ingredients, such as organic products and meats raised without antibiotics, all sourced in the USA.

Prior to starting Mom Made® Foods in 2006, Heather managed sales and marketing teams in the technology industry in the US and abroad.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts from Denison University.  Outside of running Mom Made®, Heather serves is a member of the Committee for a Healthy Alexandria and leads preschool cooking classes. In her free time, Heather enjoys outdoor activities with her family, cooking, yoga and sailing. She lives in Alexandria, VA with her husband, Craig, and children, Emory and Audrey.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MomMadeFoods
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/mommadefoods


Listen on Podomatic:
http://dbcoach.podomatic.com/entry/2016-02-03T04_00_00-08_00


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Break Through Your Barriers and Do What You Love

by Chris Atley
I read a great quote this week. If You Don’t Love What You Do then What the Hell Are you Doing? T. Harv Eker wrote that on his blog and I absolutely love it! It’s so true.

Yes, you could have a gazillion different excuses for not doing what you love, but really when it comes down to it all of your “excuses” are just coming from your fear of actually going for it.

What if you had the confidence AND finances to really go for it? What if you didn’t have to worry about anything else? What if the universe just aligned for you and showed you the path? Write down all of the reasons why you think you can’t do it. Now realize they are completely false and are your own personal limiting beliefs standing in your way. Work hard on changing your perspective about what you are capable of, as this sis the ultimate turning point for you and the key to your success!

One thing I know to be true is that the first and probably hardest thing to do is make the decision to actually go for it. Most people become debilitated during the decision process. It seems so scary and overwhelming.

Here is a tip: just make the decision and don’t try to figure it all out. If your trying to figure out how you will do what it takes to make it happen you will feel overwhelmed and become stuck. Whatever you want to do will seem even further away. One thing about the law of attraction is that you don’t have to figure out HOW things will happen. You just have to decide to go for it. Once you decide to go for it things WILL fall into place :)

Another tip that will help you get on your path of purpose and passion is knowing it doesn’t have to be ALL OR NOTHING. For instance, if it’s a new direction in your career, you don’t have to completely stop what you’re currently doing and start something new. You can transition into your new path. Think about what you can start doing today that is in line with your new direction. What can you commit to doing?

Know this. If you’re passionate about doing something, you will have the energy to see it through until it’s complete. You will be excited and motivated. You will leap over any obstacle that pops up. That old saying “Where there’s a Will there’s a Way” is completely true. Take it from me. After 3 years of visualizing, having faith and taking inspired action, I am now living my dream of existing (in every way) in California. I continue to pinch myself on a daily basis :)

Get Support. It is so important to surround yourself with positive people that support your new direction. I learned to be careful about who you talk to and get your advice from. It’s important to realize that the people you confide in have their own fears, limitations and experiences.

You may be accustomed to talking to your parents and getting their guidance on particular instances. BUT if they have never taken a risk or taken themselves out of their comfort zone, you can bet they won’t be supportive of you trying something new. Especially when it’s a career change. Be mindful of who you talk to, and start building a positive support system.

Have faith that everything will work out. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, know that everything will happen at the right time and under the right circumstances. The more you can stay positive and have faith, the more you will be able to handle anything that comes your way and will be able to move closer and closer to your goal. Good Luck and I would love to hear about your successes :)


Written by Chris Atley, Success Coach for entrepreneurs. Join Chris to discover your true worth to increase your personal wealth. Create your ideal business by grabbing my Live Limitless Guide for free at: www.chrisatley.com.

Overcome ANY Obstacle with 3 Simple Questions

by Jack Canfield

What stands between you and what you most desire?

Your answers might relate to a lack of money, time, support from family, or all of these. Obstacles can seem so numerous, so obvious, and so tough to change.

You can relate to obstacles in many ways. Typical responses are to explain them or resist them.

Both responses take a lot of time and energy. And both anchor you firmly in the past, keeping your focus on areas of your life that are not working.

To immediately generate alternatives, remember a simple analogy...

Imagine that you’re driving down a scenic highway. Suddenly you come to a huge rock in the middle of the road.

At this moment you have several options. You could try to explain how the rock ended up there. You could also go into resistance mode, complaining about the carelessness of highway construction or the lack of state funding for rock removal.

Or, you could bypass all this negativity and remove the obstacle from your life at once. Instead of explaining the rock or resisting it, just drive around it.

When faced with obstacles, people often respond with questions based on explanation and resistance, such as:

- Why am I so alone?
- Why does this always happen to me?
- Why am I such a failure?

However, you always have another option. You can ask questions that help you drive around any obstacle in your life.

Questions have uncanny power. Questions direct your attention— and along with it, how you think and how you feel. If you want to create different thoughts, feelings, and results into your life, then ask different questions.

Start now by skipping the why questions and begin asking what questions, such as:
 
1) What’s the lesson here?

There’s an old saying about learning from experience: Beware the person with twenty years of experience. This may consist of one year of learning and nineteen years of repetition.

The point is that experiences do not come prepackaged with empowering lessons. Everything hinges on how you interpret experiences, and your interpretations can change over the years. A single event can take you a step closer to emotional contraction or expansion. It all depends on how you interpret that event.

Psychologist Martin Seligman has made a career by studying how human beings interpret their experience. He notes that each of us has an explanatory style. People who chronically feel helpless tend to explain events in ways that are:

    Permanent: “I always get confused when trying to learn something new.”
    Personal: “I’m just no good at meeting people.”
    Pervasive: “I’m just the kind of person who fails to follow through, no matter what kind of goals I set.”

Optimistic people use a different style. They explain events in ways that are:

    Temporary: “When I feel confused, I ask questions that lead me to understanding.”
    External: “I find it hard to talk to people in bars, so I invite them to quiet restaurants instead.”
    Specific: “I find it challenging to meet long-term goals, so for now I will focus on achieving short-term objectives.”

You should interpret these obstacles as yield signs rather than stop signs.

These are signals that the world is expanding to accommodate your growth. Instead of resisting a challenge, just lean into it. Ask yourself: How can I interpret this event in a more powerful way? What’s a positive lesson that’s waiting here to be learned?
 
2) What’s great about having this problem?

There’s an easy answer to this question: “Nothing!” However, looking beyond that knee-jerk response can quickly open up your perspective.

Tony Robbins offers an example in his book Awakening the Giant Within. He recalls a time when he’d been on the road for nearly 100 days out of 120. Returning to his office, he found a stack of urgent memos and a list of 100 phone calls that he needed to personally return. Before making these discoveries, he was tired. Now he felt exhausted.

Tony managed to shift his internal state simply by asking: What’s great about having this problem? He then realized that just a few years ago he would have been grateful to get calls from twenty people—let alone one hundred people with national reputations.

This insight was enough to break his pattern of frustration. He found himself feeling grateful that so many people he loved and respected were willing to connect with him.
 
3) What’s my next action?

This question shines a spotlight on solutions. No matter what happens, you can choose what to say and do in response. Rather than manifesting resistance or explanation, you can choose your next action.

Successful people hold a bias for action. Add inspiration and intention to the mix, and you gain an unstoppable momentum. Jack Canfield, America's #1 Success Coach, is founder of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul® and a leading authority on Peak Performance and Life Success. If you're ready to jump-start your life, make more money, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get FREE success tips from Jack Canfield now at: www.FreeSuccessStrategies.com.

Are You Stuck In Neutral?

by Kendall SummerHawk

Admittedly, nothing can feel more unbalancing for a woman entrepreneur than being stuck in neutral.

This phase can happen for a variety of reasons:

You’re ready to take your business to the next level…only you’re not sure what the best steps to take are that won’t upset the apple cart with your current clients

Your current business model is leaving you stressed out and hyper-busy… but without the income to make it worthwhile at this pace

What you thought would be the perfect niche…is proving to be more difficult to get going than you expected

You keep hearing, “I need to hire you”…only they don’t

You have a ton of ideas…but they feel jumbled rather than feeling like a clear plan of action

If any of these sound familiar then take heart! Not only is this a phase (and yes, like all things, it too, will pass) but you’re also probably closer to a solution than you might think.

My advice? Follow my 3 simple tips to help you find your footing again. Once you do, you’ll have all of the clarity, vision and steps to move forward quickly. And you’ll begin to see the income streaming in as a result.

Step #1 Clarify Exactly Where You’re Getting Stuck


When you’re in the midst of feeling stuck, everything can seem like a mish-mash of unclarity. Your best bet is to first identify exactly which decisions you need to make, and in what order. Then, you can move forward making these decisions quickly.

For example, let’s say you’re attracting clients randomly, making it difficult to feel any sense of security regarding your income. This is a common problem for many women entrepreneurs.

For starters, in this situation, the decisions you’ll need to make are:

    evaluating your niche
    Is it clear, specific and easy to market to?

    determining if you’re marketing is reaching enough of the right people

    Are you hiding out behind your computer, hoping prospective clients will magically flow in when you should be creating massive visibility in-person by speaking and networking?

    getting an outside expert to review your offers and your pricing
    Are you investing in mentoring or are you trying to figure everything out alone?

Step #2 Recognize What You May Be Afraid Of

Women entrepreneurs are much more likely than men to get stuck right at "the moment before the miracle" of up-leveling their businesses. Why? Because growing your business stirs up old patterns of self-doubt.

The solution? Recognize an old pattern for what it is: the ego (or what I call, the “guardian mind”) trying to do everything in its power to keep you small. Recognizing this gives you the key to freedom, because with this awareness you can make a new, empowered and thoughtful choice.

At first, moving forward is going to feel more uncomfortable than staying put. So don’t let common excuses such as “It doesn’t feel right” or “I’m waiting for a sign” keep you stuck. Remember, you can consciously direct your self-talk, using phrases such as, “I can do this” and even “I refuse to give in or give up!”

Step #3 Practice Making Decisions Quickly

I learned a vital success strategy from one of my favorite mentors (this guy took a company from $2 million per year to over $100 million so clearly, he knows what he’s doing). The strategy is to put a timer on your decision making.

Any decision you need to make can get done in 30 minutes or less. Most can be accomplished in 15 minutes or less. Speeding up your decision making will re-energize you and begin to give you the momentum you’re seeking.

Here’s a great exercise you can use to help you get unstuck and moving forward…

Grab a pen and fill in the answers to these simple questions:


I’m in neutral (stuck) because _______________.

The decisions I need to make are ____________.

The mentor who’s going to move me forward powerfully is ____________.

Getting out of neutral feels awesome and yes, you can do this!

Would you like to learn simple ways you can brand, package and price your services, quickly move away from 'dollars-for-hours work' and create more money, time, and freedom in you business? Check out my web site, http://www.KendallSummerHawk.com, for free articles, resources and to sign up for my free audio mini-seminar "Money Blocks & Breakthroughs.

Award-winning, million dollar marketing coach Kendall SummerHawk is the leading expert in women entrepreneurs and money.

“Build that Buzz: How to use Media Coverage to Promote Your Business” with Kerry Heaps on Women Entrepreneurs Radio™

Topic: “Build that Buzz: How to use Media Coverage to Promote Your Business”

Show #360

Can media really benefit your business? What are the mistakes business owners make when reaching out to media outlets? What are the top 5 things business owners should have before they contact an outlet?

Kerry and Deborah discuss the ways you can get major coverage and how to make it work for you.

Kerry Heaps is the Founder and President of Kerry's Network, Inc., a membership-based organization that provides exposure for business owners with access to the media and association directories. She's also the publisher of Strictly Marketing Magazine and the host of Strictly Marketing Talk Radio.

Kerry has an extensive background in Sales, Networking, Recruiting, and Training. Her marketing development book, Marketing Ideas that Make Sen$e covers networking, cold calling, establishing yourself as an expert, creating your own media, marketing ideas and sample scripts. http://www.strictlymarketingmagazine.com

Sign up special on our Strictly Women in Marketing  - SWIM - site for a free download: ttp://www.strictlywomeninmarketing.wildapricot.org

Listen on Podomatic:
http://dbcoach.podomatic.com/entry/2016-01-20T04_00_00-08_00

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Martin Luther King Jr Day - A Day of Service

"Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality." -Martin Luther King, Jr.


Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a vital figure of the modern era and a pivotal figure in the Civil Rights Movement. His lectures and dialogues stirred the concern and sparked the conscience of a generation. His charismatic leadership inspired men and women, young and old, in this nation and around the world.

After a long struggle, legislation was signed in 1983 creating a federal holiday marking the birthday of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

In 1994, Congress designated the Martin Luther King Jr. Federal Holiday as a national day of service and charged the Corporation for National and Community Service with leading this effort. Taking place each year on the third Monday in January, the MLK Day of Service is the only federal holiday observed as a national day of service – a "day on, not a day off."

It's part of United We Serve, the President's national call to service initiative. It calls for Americans from all walks of life to work together to provide solutions to our most pressing national problems. The MLK Day of Service empowers individuals, strengthens communities, bridges barriers, creates solutions to social problems, and moves us closer to Dr. King's vision of a "Beloved Community."
- from http://mlkday.gov/index.php


Selma Movie & Trailer Site on Facebook
http://www.selmamovie.com

Newly Discovered 1964 MLK Speech on Civil Rights, Segregation & Apartheid South Africa
http://www.democracynow.org/2015/1/19/exclusive_newly_discovered_1964_mlk_speech


MLK biography on Nobel Prize.org
http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/1964/king-bio.html

The King Center
http://www.thekingcenter.org/

MLK Research and Education Institute
http://mlk-kpp01.stanford.edu/

The "I Have a Dream" speech audio and video
http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/mlkihaveadream.htm

The Corporation for National and Community Service
http://www.nationalservice.gov/

United We Serve
http://www.serve.gov/

The Greatest MLK Speeches You Never Heard
http://www.cnn.com/2014/01/19/us/king-speeches-never-heard/index.html?sr=sharebar_twitter

The "Beyond Vietnam -- A Time to Break Silence" Speech
http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/mlkatimetobreaksilence.htm

"The Drum Major Instinct" Speech
http://mlk-kpp01.stanford.edu/index.php/encyclopedia/documentsentry/doc_the_drum_major_instinct/

MLK Day on Twitter
https://twitter.com/mlkday


Clearing the Way

by Christine Kloser

“How did you do it?”  

“How do you do what you do?”  

These are questions I hear often when people hear my story about losing everything less than 3 years ago and then quickly building a new, purposeful, impactful and profitable debt-free business.   I love hearing these questions from my community!    (Actually, its questions like these that inspired me to create my new Soulful Messenger program.)

The simple answer is I cleared the way for what wanted to be brought to life through me.   Uh, let me be more honest about that.   I didn’t pay attention to the nudges along the way, and the Universe took a two-by-four to my life and cleared the way for me.

What it looked like externally was complete and total failure.  Bankruptcy, foreclosure, difficult business partnership dissolution, a troubled marriage… and nearly paralyzing fear.

What it truly was from a Soul perspective, was a massive realignment.  It was a clearing of everything I thought I was, everything I though mattered, and every way I measured my “worth” in the world.  

Finally, I got it!  

I woke up to who I truly am as a Divine being and someone who was born to bring more light and love into the world, and catalyze people into seeing THEIR greatness and liberating that for others to see/experience.

The path was cleared alright!   But, I really don’t want anyone to go through the challenges I did to “wake up.”  You can voluntarily clear the way for your own greatest gifts to shine through!  The two-by-four (while painful and effective) is not a necessity to move forward powerfully and purposefully in the direction of your dreams – your soul’s true calling.

So, here are a few tips to help you clear the way for your next evolution!

1) Accept What Is
As long as you resist what’s happening in your life, the path ahead can never be cleared.  

Resistance keeps you stuck in what’s happening now rather than creating an opening for what CAN happen.   Acceptance of what’s happening, and looking for the gift in the middle of the challenge is one sure way to break you free of paralysis and procrastination so you can move forward.  

The next time you want to “fight” what’s happening, remind yourself to accept, surrender and seek the gift as quickly as you can.  You’ll see the path forward emerge!

2) Do Less, Not More

When you’re frustrated, stuck, procrastinating, etc. it's easy to think the solution is to DO more - to take more action. 

One more class, one more strategy, one more thing on the never-ending “to do” list.   Because, you hope that maybe that one more thing will be THE thing that busts possibility open for you.  In my experience, nothing is further from the truth.  

Doing things solely for the sake of being in action is a waste of energy.  It’s essential to first do less, so you can stop the frenzied cycle of activity that gets you nowhere.  Then, you’re in a better position to consciously choose the best next action to take - to lead you down the right path.  

Clearing the way does not mean you’re out there busting your behind to make the path appear.  It means you allow yourself to see the path that’s already cleared for you.

3) Trust

Trust.   This has been (and continues to be) one of my greatest areas of growth… deepening my trust in myself, in those around me, and in God.  

It’s also one of the most powerful gifts my clients receive from me… reminding them to trust the process of transformation, and trust themselves on their journey.  One of the keys to developing trust on every level is to understand that everything occurring in your life is happening for your highest and best good.  (You may want to write that down and post it somewhere in your home/office.)  When you truly “get” that everything is happening FOR you (not “to” you), it allows you to be at peace with the unfolding of your incredible life.  

There’s so much more I could write on the topic of “clearing the way.”  Because it’s time for us – as a species - to release thinking we have to do it all ourselves and figure it out in our head.  We’re living in times where the HEART is what’s needed; the clearing of everything between you and your hearts truest expression is the order of the day.   And I’m here to help guide you on that journey.  

 
Christine Kloser, “The Transformational Catalyst” is an Award-Winning Author, and Transformational Book Coach whose spot-on guidance transforms the lives of visionary entrepreneurs and authors around the world.  Her passion is fueled by her own transformation when she let go of the last shred of stability and security in her life – and discovered her truth.  From that place, she fearlessly (and faithfully) went on to quickly create the most abundant, impactful and joyous success of her life.  She now blends her passion for personal and global transformation with her gifts as a transformational book coach – and as a result she's impacting tens of thousands of messengers across the globe.  Get her free transformational author training at www.ChristineKloser.com.

New Year’s Resolutions are Like Going to the Dentist

by Chris Atley

Most people set New Year’s resolutions and they fail. This is my take on why that is. Shame discussion follows.

1. Their expectations are too high.
They start of with great intentions, but they aren’t realistic. For example, to say you are going to work out 5 times a week when you haven’t been doing it all is a recipe for failure. The lofty goal becomes overwhelming and then you likely won’t go at all! Choose what is manageable and reasonable for you now. You can increase it later. Once you shift your environment to accommodate your workouts, it will be easier to shift more and add in more.

2. Most people aren’t even doing the above. They say they want to do something or achieve something and don’t map out what they need to do monthly / weekly / daily to make it happen. You must make a plan to achieve your goal. If it’s hitting an income goal, what do you need to do every day to make it happen? What is going to throw you off course and what will help you stick to it? What support do you need to have in place?

3. Making goals from fear. Check-in and look at why you’re really setting your goals. Are they based on “shoulds” or “have to’s” or maybe even coming from a place of Keeping up with the Jones’? If any of these apply, you’re coming from a place of fear (ego) not love (source). Check-in and make sure any goals you set are truly coming from your heart and are based on what you want to achieve.

My absolute favourite way to set goals is to take some time looking at the ideal lifestyle you want to have. Allow yourself to dream big and hand write (connects more powerfully to the subconscious), everything you would like to be, do or have in 2016. This will then help you to then set meaningful goals. Also note that I said BE in 2016. Who do you want to become over the course of the year? How do you want to feel? This is the most important piece. The material stuff doesn’t matter in the end. For example, if it’s freedom, how will you know you’re free? How does that feel? What needs to happen?

I promised to circle back around regarding shame. You’re not a bad person if you don’t floss or hit your goals. Don’t listen to your ego. It just means something needs to shift internally in your decision making process in order to achieve your goals. Go curious instead of judging. Where did you get off track? How did you talk yourself into it? What resources do you now need in order to stay on track? What beliefs do you need to add in or let go of in order to be the person you need to become who does achieve their goals? You can do this. I know with all of my heart you can.

Keep me posted xo


Written by Chris Atley, Success Coach for entrepreneurs. Join Chris to discover your true worth to increase your personal wealth. Create your ideal business by grabbing my Live Limitless Guide for free at: www.chrisatley.com.

Building Resilience to Thrive and Succeed

by Jack Canfield

Taking charge of your future entails undertaking and assessing risk. It involves facing a myriad of challenges and setbacks while forging the road ahead towards your goals. We often stumble through challenges, and somehow we find a way to overcome turmoil. 

However once we reach our goals, we rarely take the time to reflect and remember the challenges that we faced. We need to be able to ask the tough questions, such as, what caused the setback or how did we react when it happened? Most importantly, how could we avoid a similar situation in the future?

My Success Principles are designed to empower you and give you the tools you need to build strength and find your inherent greatness.

Become Self-Aware
Think of the trials in your past, and allow yourself to experience how you felt when confronted with negative events. What was your thinking pattern? What was your emotional reaction? Carefully observe your reactions – nonjudgmentally. What were the feelings and sensations you experienced during a period of high stress? Reflecting on your reactions and coping mechanisms will allow you to understand yourself better, so you can find helpful techniques that can literally change the way your brain works and reacts when faced with strife.

Develop Self-Confidence

When facing great challenges; we tend to focus on all of the negative feelings from previous experiences. We have a predisposition to remember what went wrong rather than the things that went well. Focusing on your failures affects your self-esteem, and a great way to dispel your negativity bias is to retrain your brain to recall the simple successes in life.

Start a “success journal”, listing small and large victories as they happen, so you can revisit them when you feel stressed and overwhelmed. Create an affirmation and visualization for each goal that you have and practice it on a daily basis. This will recondition your subconscious to accept what’s possible, as if it has already happened, allowing you to see opportunities that you would otherwise ignore.

Change Your Outlook and Cultivate Your Relationships

Part of changing your paradigm is accepting the circumstances that cannot be changed, and coming to the realization that you can still be optimistic. Avoid seeing crises and stressful events as unbearable problems. Take daily steps -- no matter how small -- to move you closer towards your dreams. Be inspired and become an inspiration to others. Take the time, unfailingly, to engage in relaxing activities with family and friends. Focus on living by your highest standards so you can become a role model for others, while allowing others to inspire you.

Take the time to understand your reactions against adversity. Learn to dissipate tension and negative feelings and let my Success Principles help you build strength and resilience, so you can withstand the worst storms ahead.


Jack Canfield, America's #1 Success Coach, is founder of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul® and a leading authority on Peak Performance and Life Success. If you're ready to jump-start your life, make more money, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get FREE success tips from Jack Canfield now at: www.FreeSuccessStrategies.com.

5 Ways to Simplify Your Goal Setting

by Deborah A. Bailey

This year, how about skipping the resolutions and setting some goals instead?

Setting goals doesn’t have to become an exercise in frustration. Once you have your vision in place (and that can take a bit of time) you have to take action. But what  trips us up is taking action that doesn’t line up with what we want.

I used to have pages of goals. It was really too much. What I needed was to focus on the things I really wanted. Instead of expecting to work on everything at once, I needed to take it step by step.

So, forget about being overwhelmed when figuring out what to do next. There’s no need to put that pressure on yourself. There are ways to make goal setting easier and much less stressful.

Here are some tips:

1. Decide what you don’t want. We often spend more time focused on what we don’t want, but here’s a way to make it work for you. Has your business hit a wall? Or do you wish you could get in shape? Wish you could stick to that budget?

Make a list of the things you don’t want in your life. Write them down so that you can refer to the list as you go forward. Be honest about the things that really irritate you. Ready to come to terms? Great. Use that list as a starting point for what you do want. Use it to release the things that are holding you back.

2. List your accomplishments so far.
When we get frustrated, it’s easy to forget how far we’ve come. What have you already done that you’re really proud of? Stop beating yourself up and take a good look at what you’ve already achieved.

3. Keep it simple. As I mentioned,  we can overwhelm ourselves with too many goals. We can’t change everything in a day. So don’t try! Take it step by step. Consistent action is what counts. If impatience is a problem for you, just relax. You will get where you want to go, even if it’s just one step a day–or a week. As long as you keep moving forward, that’s what counts.

4. Picture your ideal result. Where do you see yourself in 6 months, 1 year or even 5 years from now? Will your goals help you to get there? For instance, if one of your goals is to make healthy eating choices, but you can’t picture yourself getting regular exercise or living a healthy lifestyle–what small steps can you take right now to get started?

5. Write it down. If you’re not into journaling, make a list on paper or online. Writing down your goals will make them real.

Taking action steps will get you results. If you don’t take action, your vision will never be realized. While you’re taking action, don’t try to do everything at once. Stay focused and take it step by step.

Copyright © 2014 Deborah A. Bailey

Deborah A. Bailey is a writer, coach, blogger and author of several non-fiction books, novels and a short story collection. She's the creator and host of Women Entrepreneurs Radio™ , a weekly internet talk show. For more information about Deborah and her books visit her Soul of an Entrepreneur blog: http://dbaileycoach.com or her site: http://DeborahABailey.com


Photo Credit: nicola.albertini via Compfight cc

3 Tips For Making Space and Opening the Flow for the New Year

by Alicia Forest, MBA
The Business Shifter™

I’ve been spending time lately getting ready for the new year – planning, organizing, strategizing, visioning, and more. There are many transitions and transformations on the horizon for me and my business, and much to do to prepare for them, so I’m making space and opening the flow.

Here are some of the ways I’m doing this in my business that you can do too:

1. Clean Up Your Business Time


Time is your only non-renewable resource. If you’ve ever experienced days when you don’t know where the time has gone, but you do know you haven’t accomplished much, then you need to take a serious look at just what is eating up those precious minutes.

My coach’s request of you is to track your time for the next two weeks. Like a food diary makes you intensely aware of what you’re eating, a time log will allow you to quickly and easily identify where you’re frittering time away.

Most likely culprits? Email and TV (yes, I know some of you are ‘watching’ TV while you’re online, and no, that’s not multitasking, that’s just pure distraction).

Once you are aware of where your time is going, make a conscious effort to redirect it to more productive – or even more restful – activities. Turn the TV off (or TIVO/DVR whatever it is you must watch and give it your full attention later).

And don’t leave your email open all day long! Allot specific time to read and respond to it instead.

You’ll be amazed at how just doing this simple exercise will free up the time you want for more important (and fun!) things.

(Be sure to read Part 2 of this article next week where I’ll share more specific and effective tips for handling email overload.)

2. Clean Up Your Business Space

Now is a great time to go through your files – computer and physical – and delete or organize them for moving forward to the new year. I spent several hours going through my physical files recently, shredding lots of documents (I love to purge!), and setting up new files for my new private clients as well as empty files for the ones yet to come. During this process both online and off, I also found a lot of gems I’d forgotten about – pieces of content, systems and processes, tools, resources, audios, and more.

And now that I have a recent visual in my mind of what’s in my files, it’s literally at my fingertips as I move forward in building my business. Energetically and electronically, I can feel how much more open the flow is by doing this.

3. Clean up Your Business Circle

This one can be a bit difficult, but it’s necessary to prune the people you surround yourself with from time to time. It doesn’t mean you have to completely disconnect from them (unless they’re just weighing you down energetically), but do make a conscious choice to spend more time in the company of those who lift you up.

Let me give you a simple example. If you’re on someone’s ezine list just because everyone else is or you feel like you should be, but you either a) don’t read it or b) don’t feel good when you do read it, just unsubscribe and allow the space for something that resonates with you to take its place.

Or maybe you’re part of a mastermind group that you feel you’ve outgrown. Now is the time to graciously bow out. Once you do, you open the space for a new group to form around you that better supports where you are now.

How are you making space and opening the flow for the new year? Share with me here.

© 2014 Alicia Forest International | All rights reserved.

Alicia Forest, MBA mentors women entrepreneurs on how to build a priority-based, highly profitable business, in less than part-time hours. Get her FREE series on how you can do this too at http://aliciaforest.com.

What To Do If You're Struggling to Grow Your Business

by Sydni Craig-Hart

Reach for your goals

Whether or not you are a person who makes New Year's resolutions, one thing is for sure. You'd like your business to be more profitable and more successful than last year. As entrepreneurs, we all want to be progressive and accomplish our goals.

It takes more than good intentions to do that. Success as a small business owner requires that we be willing to make adjustments, work through challenges and improve our habits. For many, the new year provides an opportunity for a fresh start. So how do you ensure that you follow-through on your good intentions and achieve your goals?

Here's how:

    Commit to building better habits - Make the decision to identify and act on your marketing priorities EACH day. Tomorrow you will be gifted 24 hours. Let's say 8 of those are dedicated to your business. How will you spend them? Will you give in to distraction or focus on ONLY your priority tasks. Will you allow email, the Internet, unimportant tasks, phone calls or other distractions to consume your day? Or instead can you, WILL YOU, take complete responsibility for how you choose to spend your time? Of course there will be things that pop up that are out of your control. Even so, you can still take control of your time and choose to focus on taking the necessary action to grow your business.

    Stay in your POWER zone - Perhaps you are great at networking, but the thought of writing a blog post or an article makes your head hurt. Maybe it's the other way around. You love to write but you'd rather eat nails than go to a networking event. If you are looking for a quick way to jumpstart your marketing efforts and increase your profits, focus on these three things:

  •         What you enjoy doing
  •         What you're good at doing
  •         What has generated the best results

    That's IT! If you aren't too excited about a particular marketing strategy, don't force it! Trying to convince yourself to do it creates unnecessary pressure and drains your energy, which guarantees that the strategy won't work well anyway. Instead, strive to ENJOY (wow, what novel idea!) growing your business and focus on the things you do best.

    Ditch your "superhero" cape and get some help! - A lot of entrepreneurs find a sense of satisfaction in being a business martyr. If you have ever found yourself thinking:

        "If I want it done right, I have to do it myself!"
        "If it's not hard, it must not be right!"
        "If I'm struggling, I must be on the right track..."
        ...Or something similar.

     You may be guilty of trying to be a business martyr. I have one thing to say to you about that. STOP! :)

    There is no glory in making your journey more difficult than necessary. And there is no shame in reaching out for help. It's simply what smart entrepreneurs do.

    Have you been working solo for a while and find that you consistently don't have enough hours in the day to get through your task list? Hire an assistant.

    Are you not sure what step to take next to get more clients and increase your profits? Hire a coach!

    Did you have a coach before, and then decide you could "do it" on your own, but now find yourself floundering? Hire a coach ... again!

    Investing in yourself is the BEST investment you can make. It's guaranteed to pay off. How much more would you get done if you had someone truly holding your feet to the fire and guiding you by the hand? Wouldn't you be more focused and less distracted? What kind of affect do you think THAT would have on your bottom line? Choose today to leave the excuses behind, and reach out for the help you need. It's the one thing that all successful entrepreneurs have in common, so come join the club!

Achieving more success in your business doesn't necessarily require a massive overhaul. By taking charge of your time, focusing on what you enjoy doing to market your business and getting help where and when you need it, you'll get further than you've ever thought possible! Isn't it time to end the struggle and start thriving in your business? Yes, I think so too!

What first step will you take to break through your current marketing struggles? Share your thoughts with me on the blog!

YOUR "TAKE ACTION" PLAN FOR THIS WEEK:
    Take control of your time - Plan out your work days so you know exactly what you'll be doing and when. Minimize distractions by only checking your email at specific times each day and turning off your phone when it's time to focus on your work. Tackle one project at a time and resist the urge to multi-task.

    Make a list of what you enjoy doing to market your business. Plan out time each day to work "in your power zone."

    Get help in your business in the one area where you need help the most. If you are struggling to get everything done each day, hire an assistant. If you need direction and accountability, hire a coach. Invest in yourself to make sure the important, profit generating tasks in your business are being handled properly.

Sydni Craig-Hart, The Smart Simple Marketing Coach, is founder of SmartSimpleMarketing.com. Known for her easy, strategic and results-focused approach to marketing, she also has the unique ability to find untapped profit centers in her client's businesses so they can create money NOW. Visit www.SmartSimpleMarketing.com for your FREE training course, "5 Simple Steps to More Clients, More Visibility and More Freedom" and apply for a FREE "Profit Breakthrough" session with Sydni!