Monthly Archives: April 2012

Sharing Is Achieving. To Succeed, Tell Others About Your Goals

Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: “What!  You, too?  I thought I was the only one.”  C.S. Lewis

Which is why, regardless of your goals, it’s good to find a friend, maybe even several! Experts say sharing your goals with others is vital to achieving them. Electing your own personal goal-related “board of directors” can give you important tools—knowledge, insight, moral support and even humor—to help you get results.

How important these words have become during The Book project!  Almost each and every step of The Book has been new territory for me and I’m so very appreciative of the many who have shared their wisdom, lessons learned, and experiences as well as contacts and connections.

However during this process, I believe you should carefully consider how (or who) you turn to for advice.  Picking buddies can be fraught with danger; implicit in the concept is the level of trust and confidence you seek. Will you ruin a long-term, otherwise healthy relationship by pressing your spouse, neighbor, or friend into a new role that really doesn’t suit him?

Don’t be afraid to share your goals with family and friends. Having those closest to you in on your plans can mean daily, invaluable support and assistance. The fact that you’ve confided in them is a powerful motivator for helping you remain consistent and persistent.

Avoid naysayers. Some folks just have the habit of belittling or ridiculing the goals of others, whether because they feel inadequate and threatened, or are simply mean! You‘re under no obligation to discuss your goals or action plan with anyone.

If someone close to you is unsupportive, either tune out the negativity or distance yourself from that person. If that person is your partner or lives in the same household, the problem’s a bit more complicated. As far as possible, try to understand the motivation behind the negativity; is the person critical of your particular goal or of goals in general?

Remember the old adage: to make a friend you have to be a friend. Make your friendships win-win situations by making sure to give something back.

Yesterday I sent out an email to 26 smart people asking them to pick their favorite two titles from a list of 15 or so proposed titles for my “speech”.  Not only did I get their picks, I got such good logically thought out input as to why they picked the title they picked.  Their input is very much appreciated and I hope I soon have a chance to reciprocate for them.

Sharing your goals with others is a powerful step towards both clarifying and fulfilling them. Not only are you more likely to follow though once you’ve voiced them—you’re more likely to have fun along the way!

And so life goes…on and on.

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The Wisdom of Listening

Wisdom has two parts:

1) Having a lot to say

2)  Not saying it

One common trait to nearly every great person is the art of listening. Many times, the best leaders can be among the quietest in the room. They know their time is well spent in hearing new perspectives, ideas, and thoughts. It’s how they grow personally and build visions. The wisest leaders know that hearing themselves talk is no way to build trust and goodwill.

You can do the same thing. When a friend needs to talk, resist the urge to give advice right away and just listen. Ask questions, and really try to understand the answer.

I got to put this into practice yesterday with a new business client.  Quickly I knew I was dealing with someone who had years of credible experience and I felt like just listening taught me a great deal yesterday.  This isn’t always easy for me to put into practice.  I love people and I love to talk with people.

Over time, you can develop that leader-like sense of when to open your mouth and when to keep it clamped firmly shut. My natural enthusiasm can quickly take over a conversation, but man oh man…am I ever glad I sat back and listened yesterday!

And so life goes…on and on.

 

 

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Do you have a design for change?

We can’t become what we need by remaining what we are.  Max Dupree

Do you have a desire try something new?  I’ve always used Dream Boards to visually put my inner desires in front of me.  By keeping my dreams within my view, my actions and thoughts are guided by my real-life dreams all day long.

My Dream Board is a constantly changing “work of art”.  It reflects my goals and aspirations. As I achieve old goals, new goals take their place on my Dream Board.  My board has quotes, pictures, sketches, photographs, and some fun icons representing my specific goals, desires, and dreams.

I’ve used my Dream Board to represent both my professional goals as well as my personal dreams. Some years ago, I was making a product presentation at Target Corporation in Minneapolis. I took up my “wall of ideas” which was on a long brown sheet of butcher paper which wrapped nearly an entire wall in her office.  I also took the actual concept boards I had used to arrive at the products I was asking her to buy.

My buyer’s jaw dropped.  She had never before seen the actual physical design process laid out in front of her.  Without saying many words, she could see exactly why we arrived at the products she was considering.  She loved what I showed her and said she had never before been shown the design path or process companies used to “dream” up their products.  Not only did it win me an order from Target, I made my presentation visually and with very few convincing words.

Well, that was then and this is now.  Times have changed. Who ever would have dreamed of a digital dream board?  Now it’s possible with Pinterest.

Pinterest has 11.7 million unique users, making it one of the fastest sites to break through the 10 million unique visitor mark.  Everyone is jumping on the Pinterest bandwagon.  I suggest you use the capabilities of that site to keep your dreams and desires in your consciousness.  Pinterest success can be chalked up to the ease of display of inspiration.

With Pinterest you can “pin” onto different boards according to interests or categories.  With this electronic Dream Board, you can bring your network into supporting your Dreams in a way never possible with a real-life Dream Board.

Without putting your desires on a real or a digital Dream Board, you may never reach your goal. The reality of life is that we need to change something old in order to get something new.

Whether you use a real life Dream Board or the digital Pinterest board, start one TODAY.  You will soon start to see your dreams come true.  I know for me, I will stick to my tried and true and continue to use the old cork board standing up right beside my desk in my office.  It’s my constant reminder of why I do what I do and what is inside my heart.

If you want something you’ve never had…you have to be willing to do something you’ve never done.  Maybe you’ve never experienced the power of a Dream Board.

If you’d like me to help you learn more about the power of Dream Boards and help you design yours, please email me.  I’m very happy to help.

And so life goes…on and on.

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Have you heard? The Millennials are taking over…

As I have been working on best ways to market The Book, I have been reading lots about the Millennials; you know, that “loves to spend money on electronic gadgetry” generation born between 1981 and 2000.  There are 56,000,000 of them and they are the second largest demographic behind us aging Baby Boomers whose spending power is shifting into reducing, passing down, and preserving.

We Boomers used to get all the focus from companies marketing products and services because there were so many of us and we loved to spend money. And while we had tremendous buying power, they have $170 billion in buying power and that will grow as they continue to advance in their careers.

So, I’ve done a little digging and here’s what I’ve found.  I think these statistics might also help you as you target your book and speaking topics and marketing strategies:

61% are white; 19% Hispanic; 14% African American; 5% Asian American

and the famous 1% of Others

62% of their household incomes are below $50,000

Only 19% have graduated from college; 44% plan to graduate; and an amazing 37% have no college plans.

Affluent Millennials (earning more than $100K) love the internet and spend almost 40 hours a week there, visiting an average of 15 sites per month. 81% access Facebook daily. 63% use social media to engage with brands and more than half say that FB, blogs, and brand videos on You Tube affect their product opinions.

Now, here are more jawdropping stats:

They say they only spend 14.6  hours a week spent watching TV!!!!  What a change from the Baby Boomers!!

They read 10.2 magazines per month and listen to only 5.1 hours of radio.

42% watch TV shows on line and 27% watch movies online.

Only 21% of this group is married; only 36% own a home and 41% still live in their parent’s home.  And since they don’t have a mortgage, they love to spend on fashion, home decor and luxuries.  This group is still put off by marriage.  For this group, career, networking, and personal fulfillment is #1. For the most part, they group up affluent and have high expectations about spending.  Because of the internet, they have very informed buying decisions.

So, how do we reach this group?  Doesn’t seem like our tried and true old marketing techniques will be very effective.  I don’t own a Kindle (yet!) but they do and they own them in droves.  This group has short attention spans and have a constant need for stimulation.

They don’t seem to me to be a generation ready to read Catherine the Great or War and Peace.  But, we marketeers are a savvy group and we know they can be had through the wizardry of electronics.

Keeping these stats at the forefront of your mind as you write and bring materials to market might help move you towards success.  As I think back over the CIPA meeting, I don’t believe there were any Millennials there and I chuckle as I remember so many of us Boomers trying to understand the nuances of social media!  But, we’ll figure it out…we’re a clever generation, we aging Boomers!!

And so life goes…on and on.

 

 

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Colorado Independent Publishers Association ~ CIPA

This past Saturday, I attended my first CIPA meeting.  I was expecting the usual “dry donut – boring content meeting and WOW was I ever surprised, pleased, and over the top happy I spent 4 hours of my Saturday with CIPA.

For all following my blog journey on becoming a first time author (notice I don’t say Writer anymore), and for those of you who are currently writing/authoring, joining this group is worth your time and your money.

8:00 a.m.    +

Saturday    +

South Denver drive time    +

equals an early wake-up, get out of bed and go type of Saturday morning.  Usually, I’m an early bird (evidenced by this 5 am writing time), but I had just returned late Friday evening from Mexico, so an early Saturday morning wasn’t on the agenda.

Our speaker, Orvel Ray Wilson, of Guerrilla Marketing (www.guerrillagroup.com) fame gave a great, informative talk on the power of social media.  In spite of my 30 years of successful marketing background, this new-fangled social media is a learning curve for me.  Orvel gave a high-energy, funny, intelligent presentation which was followed up with the kind of question and answer/comment session which leads to lots of note taking.  Slowly, social media is becoming a beast I think I can tame.

The group then broke up into 6 different roundtable groups each covering a specialized aspect of social media marketing.

Networking with the CIPA member and guests rounded out a perfect Saturday morning!  Thanks to all for making this first time author feel so welcome.

I also was lucky enough to sit next to Ellen Sears.  Ellen is the kind of lady who only comes around in life a few times.  She is an accomplished lady “of a certain age” who has walked the walk, can talk the talk, and her energy, expertise, and experience are awe-inspiring, to say the very least.  Her warm, sparkling eyes, her easy smile, and her intelligence are only the beginning of her list of attributes.

Now, how can I have had all of this packed into  Saturday morning.  It’s always better to be lucky than smart.  I was at the right place at the right time.

And so life goes…on and on.

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See you soon

Sorry to report that life got in the way of blogging the past several days.  Thanks to so many who tapped me on the shoulder and asked where the postings were.

I will be leaving tomorrow (Monday) and going to Playa del Carmen and will not be back in the States until next Saturday; so you get a week’s rest from the daily updates.

All is progressing nicely on The Book front.  Talking and working with the group now involved on the project is a joy all in and of itself.  What talented people.

Have a wonderful productive week to one and all.

Cheers,

Marcia

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Taking Responsibility for Your Success

The best place to find a helping hand is at the end of your own arm.

We all need support from other people. Love, encouragement, words of advice and friendship will help you get through the important stages in your life. When people are in your corner, you feel like taking on any challenge. As important as help from others may be, though, it all has to start with you.

Writing The Book has certainly found me turning to lots of people and places for suggestions, advice, and help.  However at the end of the day, the decision is mine ~ especially since the ramifications of those decisions has a direct bearing on my checking account and no one else’s.  At some times the choices are daunting and it’s not always easy to know which way to go…but my gut instincts remain a great, trusted, and reliable resource.

I spent most of the day today playing sort, file, and toss out.  I had gathered too many stacks of stuff, research, reading materials and the like.  So today, they have all been tossed, filed, or cataloged so I can find them when I need them.  It’s nice to start with a clean desk.

During this process, I have been amazed to see all the progress and small successes I have already achieved in writing The Book.  It’s been a wonderful journey.

So, while it would be nice to turn over the tough decisions to someone else, or if you’re waiting for someone to solve your problems, or wondering when someone is “going to do something about that,” you may be waiting a long time.  As usual, look to yourself first. Take responsibility for your own situation and think of what concrete steps you’ll take today. If you’re going to need help, it’s only fair that the person with the most at stake (you) is willing to make the most effort. When someone is pulling you out of a hole and has grasped your hand, you still must take the first step to climb out, or you’re just going to be hanging there.

My Buffalo Herd has been really busy helping one of our friends this week, and we all wish her smart decisions and the right choice For Her ~ she’s the only one who ultimately will be affected.

And so life goes…on and on.

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