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Archive for the ‘Un-Business Stuff’ Category

6 Life Hacks To Make Your Life Easier

In Un-Business Stuff, What You Need To Know About Small Business on June 6, 2017 at 3:08 pm

Hindsight is 20/20, isn’t it? There are tons of things I would have done differently if I had just known then what I know now. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t regret what I’ve done and the experiences I’ve had in my life, but being able to make some decisions a little easier or being able to avoid some experiences would have made things so much easier.

But that’s how life goes. Our experiences make us who we are. Being able to share those experiences with others is one of the great things about going through them in the first place. Maybe we can help someone be just a little more informed, help someone avoid a mistake we made, or even help some choose an entirely different path for their life.

I consistently mentor and coach my employees to help them move to the next level professionally based on my experiences, their interests, and their current level in their career.

I don’t often have a chance to share my experiences as a blogger. But I was recently approached by Joseph Hogue, author of My Work From Home Money, to get my ideas on what I would have done differently if I could start my online business over, and I was thrilled. My ideas, along with six other successful bloggers, are shared in the article 7 Successful Bloggers Share How They Would Start Over. I highly recommend this great read, especially if you blog or have ever thought about blogging!

While I’m at it, here are a few life hacks that I’ve learned over the years that I hope will make your life just a little easier:

  • When it comes to kids, pick your battles. If you don’t, you’ll fight with your teenager all of the time.
  • Always keep either an electronic copy or a second hard copy of your car registration and insurance cards in a safe place at home.
  • Always try to make it to the big moments – awards ceremonies, graduations/promotions, sporting events, weddings, etc. – for your kids. Those are the ones they will truly remember.
  • Never stop looking for learning opportunities – classes, books, articles, mentors, coaches – from anywhere and everywhere.
  • Stop stressing over the little things. They won’t really matter in the long run.
  • Take time for you.

Sometimes the best things in life happen when life happens, when you’ve made it through the rough patch and the sun starts shining again, and when you’ve made someone else smile.

This post may contain affiliate links.

Gratitude

In Un-Business Stuff on November 24, 2016 at 3:50 pm

gratitude

Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire,
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don’t know something
For it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge
Because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes
They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary
Because it means you’ve made a difference.

It is easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are
also thankful for the setbacks.

GRATITUDE can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles
and they can become your blessings.

~Unknown Poet

Thank you, Andy Restivo, for sharing with our organization.

What I Love About Traveling

In Un-Business Stuff, What You Need To Know About Small Business on August 5, 2016 at 6:09 pm

I have been doing some extensive travel over the past few months and, as I like to do in many aspects of my personal and professional life, I want to focus on the good parts. Anyone who has traveled, at least as extensively as I have, will have travel-horror stories. I know that I have more than my fair share. But, life isn’t always fair, is it?

Meeting New People

I love meeting and talking to new people, hearing their stories, finding out what they do for work, hearing about how much fun their having on their vacations…just learning about new people. It helps me put my life into perspective at times, it helps me appreciate what I have (I already do, but it just helps a bit more), and it increases and enhances my view of the world.

Whether it’s a complete stranger that I meet and talk to for 10 minutes (sometimes even only 2 minutes), or it’s a team member that I’ve spoken with and am meeting in person for the first time, I do my best to make the best of the time I’m interacting with them. And I hope that I’m able to give a bit of light and positivity to those I meet as well.

Sometimes I even get to meet some amazing animals!

AZ 2

This is an amazing cat who knows he’s beautiful, loves to fly, and loves to be petted!

Architecture and Nature

I absolutely love seeing the architecture in different parts of the U.S., and hopefully world eventually. Every place I visit is so very unique in how they develop their cities or towns, the way the buildings look, placement of homes and buildings, bridges, beaches…everything is unique to that specific area. Sometimes I even get to experience weather that is the polar opposite from what I’m used to in Southern California.

Boston

The snow in Boston was beautiful!

Seattle 3

Sometimes you find an amazing work of art in the most unusual places ~ Seattle

Seattle 4

The view from the ground can be amazing, too ~ Seattle

AZ

Even the cacti in Arizona can take your breath away!

The View from the Sky

There are tons of things to absolutely hate about flying, but this is about being positive. So, in the light of being positive, I absolutely love the view from the airplane! Even when I end up flying to somewhere I absolutely wasn’t planning to, the view always ends up being absolutely amazing!

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The view when you’re flying can be the most amazing thing you’ve ever seen! ~ Flying into Boston

NM

Even when you end up flying into a state you never thought you would, the view can be breathtaking! ~ New Mexico

New Foods

I thoroughly enjoy trying new foods, especially foods that are authentic to that area. When I travel I try to find new places to eat and to try new foods. Some people don’t like to try new things, but I absolutely do! I’ve had some amazing seafood in both Boston and San Francisco, to-die-for walnut pasteries in San Jose, authentic BBQ in Dallas, and amazing southern comfort food in Atlanta! I will, someday, eat at Wahlburgers in Boston!

San Jose

The most AMAZING walnut pasteries – walnuts wrapped in a delicious chocolate and covered in a sweet pastry! ~ San Jose

The Feeling of Accomplishment

When I travel for business, I (obviously) am going on the trip for a specific purpose with specific goals to accomplish. These goals don’t always get accomplished, though. Sometimes plans change to based on the needs in that market, unexpected weather, etc. However, in the end, I (at least so far) have left each of my business trips with an amazing sense of accomplishment. I always go back to a ton of work, but I know that the work I’m doing in the field is making a difference because of the feedback from those I work directly with, the sales numbers, and the traction of ideas and processes and coaching implemented while I’m in the field. It’s one of the best things about being in the field.

customers

Sales and sales training is exceptionally rewarding when you see excited customers walk out with your product! ~ San Francisco

I try to find something really great in every trip I take and sometimes I’m lucky enough to experience all of the above in just one trip!

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Sometimes you can find the most beautiful views! ~ San Francisco

SF

I love the ‘old’ look of the trolley’s in San Francisco!

Three Compelling Stories You Can Blog Right Now

In Un-Business Stuff, What You Need To Know About Small Business on July 7, 2016 at 6:05 pm

Bloggers are essentially storytellers, even if we don’t always see ourselves as such. Whether you’re running a niche business online or simply want to share the experiences of your day-to-day life with others, we all have some sort of story to tell. From overcoming hardships to taking the leaps of faith that led us to where we are today, a personal touch can separate your blog from the pack and grow a readership that’s eager to hear your story.

Blogging guru Neil Patel stresses the need to create blog topics that capture your persona. Many bloggers are afraid to let their personalities shine; after all, revealing the intimate details of our lives may make us feel vulnerable in the face of anonymous criticism and comments. However, having a unique voice and perspective allows you make connections and build relationships with readers. These relationships ultimately result in dedicated followings.

Regardless of your niche or blogging goals, consider giving your blog a personal touch through three topics unique to you.

How You Made Your First Dollar

In the world of entrepreneurship, we love to discover how a success story got from point A to point B. When we look at the humble beginnings of successful businesspeople, from Bill Gates sewings the seeds of Microsoft in his garage to Warren Buffett selling chewing gum as a young boy, we are able to relate to the experiences of billionaires whose wealth is difficult to comprehend.

Likewise, your readers are interested it how you got from point A to point B. Whether you stocked shelves at the grocery store or tore tickets at the dollar theater growing up, understanding the progression of one’s career is often a compelling and rarely typical tale. Such a story makes you more relatable to your audience and provides perspective on why you blog in the first place.

Phone

Your Biggest Setback

Most audiences today could use a daily dose of inspiration. From an increasingly cutthroat economy to the constant influx of negative headlines, readers today are accustomed to bad news. On a similar note, readers are able to empathize with hardship and tragedy as they encounter it rather regularly through the news.

In order to inspire your audience, consider a setback in your lifetime and how you managed to overcome it. Perhaps losing your 9-to-5 drove you to try your luck at online entrepreneurship, or a family illness forced you to relocate and start all over. Again, providing perspective to your readers is huge when it comes to building an audience. Let readers know that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel when it comes to overcoming obstacles.

Someone Who Inspired You

Inspiration comes in all shapes and sizes, especially when it comes to bloggers. Perhaps your inspiration to write came from a teacher who nurtured your love of the craft. Maybe your parents encouraged you to find a creative outlet and, well, here you are.

Tales of inspiration remind your readers that you are a person just like them, in search of guidance in a realm where we often feel lost.

The path to blogging is never a particularly straightforward one: consider the experiences that got you started on the course of establishing your online presence and use them to build your own readership. In short, don’t be afraid to tell your story.

This post may contain affiliate links.

Business Travel: It’s Not Always So Great

In Un-Business Stuff, What You Need To Know About Small Business on March 27, 2016 at 10:24 am

I’ve traveled quite a bit over the last couple of months, and it hasn’t been all roses every time. But, that’s what I get for traveling so much I suppose. Sometimes things happen while traveling that you just have to laugh about (because there’s really nothing else you can do).

**Please ignore the black spots in some of the photos…my iPhone suffers from something that apparently many do…there are specs of dust in my camera**

At the end of February I had the pleasure of going to Phoenix, AZ to do a ride along with my Phoenix rep. This trip went very well, thankfully. And I got to meet one of my best friends I went to college with face-to-face (college was online)…after almost 10 years of knowing her!!

AZ

The view while flying into Phoenix

AZ lottery

My hotel was right across the street from the AZ Lottery office

cactus

Some pretty big cactus!

gym

I had the hotel gym all to myself. I love it when that happens!

Joanna

My beautiful, amazing, and awesome best friend, Joanna…and me! Love her!

sunrise

The gorgeous sunrise as I was leaving the hotel for the airport to go home. My days start far too early when I travel!

At the beginning of March I attended an Entrepreneurship Pathways workshop in Fresno, CA. I was honored to have been recommended for and able to attend this amazing workshop! I teach an Small Business Entrepreneurship class at my local junior college and our head of the business department recommended I attend. I met some really amazing individuals and I learned a great deal about small business, entrepreneurship, and really great ways to present information in my class!

Entryway

Beautiful decorations in the entryway in one of the Alumni houses at Fresno University!

chandelier

Absolutely amazing chandelier in the same Alumni hall! I’d love to have this hanging in my mansion (if I had one)…

business activity

I had the pleasure of working with some really amazing people on a great project at the workshop! I met a lot of really great minds!

Certificate

I successfully completed the workshop!

Okay, here’s where my travels started taking a turn for the worst. The second week of March I was supposed to go to Houston and then Dallas, TX. However, instead, I ended up in Albuquerque, NM and then San Francisco, CA! You’re probably looking at a map of the U.S. in your head, and you are very correct, neither of those are anywhere near Houston or Dallas.

It all started when I was trying to fly out of Ontario, CA. First, the plane was (somehow) overfilled by 4,000 lbs of fuel. Not a great start! Then, there was a delay due to weather in Houston. This was supposed to be a direct flight from Ontario to Houston. Someone at the airlines felt that it was a great idea to fly us into Albuquerque, NM to refuel so we can fly into the east side of Houston, around the storm. I knew I should have just canceled the trip, but I really wanted to salvage the trip, so I went.

NM

Flying into NM was a bit scary…there was no sign of life or civilization for the longest time!

NM 2

Then there were signs of LIFE!!

We were supposed to stay on the runway, refuel, get our new flight plans and then head out to Houston. That didn’t happen. They decided to let us deplane while they got everything ready for our continuing flight. As we were deplaning they let us know that there was a delay due to weather. Then the flight was canceled altogether due to weather in Houston. Okay, no big deal. I could salvage the trip if they could get me to Dallas that night or the next morning. Nope. Didn’t happen.

So, instead, I told them to just get me back to Ontario, CA so I could go home. The whole trip was a complete bust.

bathroom

I got the airlines to comp my room for the night, which had an amazing vanity that I am thoroughly in awe of. The lighting was perfect!

The next morning I was set to fly to San Francisco, CA to sit in the airport due to a 5 hour layover. No bit deal, I could get tons of work done (which I did).

Boarding pass

And they got me a window seat! That was probably the best part of the whole day…other than finally getting home.

Then, we were delayed because one of our pilots called in sick. Luckily, the delay was only a little over an hour before they got approval for one of the passengers (a pilot who was flying home) to co-pilot the plane. I was excited! I was going to get home!

Then, a storm rolled into San Francisco and I was really worried that we would be delayed…again.

SFO 1

SFO 3

Once on board I looked out the window and saw the guy sitting outside with our luggage on the cart…just sitting there for a good 10 minutes in the rain. Really?

We were finally able to fly out and head home!

CA

It was SO GREAT to finally be back in SoCal after 2 FULL days in airports!

My next trip was to Orange County, CA, thankfully because I didn’t have to fly anywhere!!

Sensei

I got to start my day with having breakfast with a wonderful friend!

flooring

Once I finally got to the first location with my rep we got to build a flooring shelf for the Roomba. I love DIY projects!

BBB

Before and after of the display that we rearranged and fixed up. So much better!

Kohls

Our next location proved to be a great visit as well as we spoke with the manager and got them to allow us to move our product to the endcap!

training

Our third stop of the day proved to be successful as well as my rep was able to fully train a couple of employees!

My last trip was to Miami, FL. And while I did have some challenges with flight delays, planes not being assigned to the flight, change of gates, missing my connecting flight due to delays, having unexpected layovers, etc…it wasn’t nearly as bad as the non-trip to Houston!

kitchen

I was pleasantly surprised with my hotel…I had a full kitchen! It was a cute suite!

view

The view from my room was gorgeous!

hotel courtyard

My courtyard view was gorgeous as well!

training

My rep did very well at our store visits as well. I got to watch him do quite a bit of training!

That’s all for now…I have quite a bit more travel planned for the rest of the year. I’m hoping and praying that my travels go much more smoothly going forward!