Best Way to Learn

…is to just jump in and do it. There are many people (myself included sometimes!) who are more comfortable taking their time, thinking about things, planning, and preparing for a situation.

And that is great. But honestly, the best way to learn how to do something is to just do it. I’ve seen this personally this month with a few things like tennis and snowboarding – and have seen this play out in business multiple times over.

I think it’s because the pressure makes us step up with a higher level of focus. When we do not have to “perform” or compete, we can be a little more lax with ourselves. In addition, reality is the best teacher. Everything is theoretical when we are in practice-mode. You discount real-time feedback or the various new emotions involved that can steer a situation.

Sure, there is that moment of fear or feeling like we are not ready yet – but once we get over that feeling, it really isn’t as difficult as we may have imagined. And really, what have we got to lose? Only much knowledge and new skills to gain!

 

Loving the Variety

I am privileged to engage with such a variety of reading and experiences each day as we creatively walk through this blended life of businesses, school, and life.

Today was one of those days – Podcast Recording, doctor’s appointment, running outside in 20 degree temps, newsletter publications, sent off some Arbonne samples to friends, tennis lessons for kids, speech & debate practice and tailoring a suit for Gabe. And in between those activities, I was able to enjoy audio books during the drives and great reads with the kids.

Here’s what stuck from what I read:

The Miracle Morning

Whether it’s our routines or our relationships, it’s our responsibility to actively and continuously make them the way we want them to be.

There are so many ways to make excuses or blame our circumstances on others. But if we take full responsibility, then we tend to have greater creativity, perseverance, and attitude to weather the difficulties. It’s up to us to make experiences and relationships meaningful.

This book has been a fantastic catalyst for waking up a couple hours before the family and taking care of the important things in life, while enjoying the quiet moments of silence and serenity. It’s really added a new, keen focus to business and life.

The Nightingale

These questions are not about them, but about us. Don’t think about who they are. Think about who you are and what sacrifices you can live with and what will break you. p 126

One of the characters in this book was working through deep regret during the time of Nazi occupation. She had shared a list of names, including her best friend’s, with a German Nazi. The above response was from her mentor as an encouragement on what was most important to focus on. I can only imagine being in her shoes and the internal conflict with every decision.

I think much of life is like this though – we cannot always control the circumstances or the people around us, but we can control our decisions and responses to it. “Who am I?” is the main question to always ask. Continue reading “Loving the Variety”

Morning Routines

How do you start your day?

As for myself, I had been pretty unpredictable over the last several years of life, and would just jump into a work/homeschool/life juggling act each day. Often times, before mid-morning, I’d feel like the day had “gotten away from me.”

Over the last month or so, I’ve returned to a beautiful new habit – waking up earlier than everyone in the house and enjoying an intentional morning routine. I’ve found that it helps me to more eagerly actually get out of bed, as I look forward to those precious quiet moments. I don’t check my phone or email. But I spend some time reading, meditating, journaling, and even stretching or doing some simple exercises. It centers me for the day and helps to give me perspective. I feel more prepared and focused to tackle the variety of tasks and appointments that fill each day.

I began this as a way to get out of an emotional rut I had been in for a few weeks, and found it to be critical for change. But now that I have been practicing it for over a month, I see how it is great for continued growth in all areas of life – business and personal. I’d recommend to people in both situations – those who feel that life is out of control (in any particular or all areas) or those who are content in life but wanting to push towards new growth and bigger dreams.

One resource to start with is The Miracle Morning which gives some practical ideas for how to fill those first minutes of our day. I’d love to hear what your mornings are like and if any questions you have about kick-starting your days more intentionally.

 

Belief

I’m enjoying a new book, You Are a Bada** by Jen Sincero, with a group of other Arbonne Consultants this month. It’s both hilarious and inspiring. Basically it’s a wonderful kick in the pants to step into the meaningful, amazing life we have an opportunity to live.

This book is for those who want more out of life and want to go after big things. Or for those who aren’t even sure – but have an inkling – that they do. Why not?

There are so many lies that can keep us from this and that we can get stuck believing if we don’t take time to step back and evaluate them.  Some are subconscious about money or success that we learned as kids. Sometimes, we just let the traps of the regrets of the past or fears of the future taint our present awesome reality and keep us entangled. No good.

While I’m not necessarily on par with her all her beliefs on Energy, I have seen and do agree with the reality of attracting what we “seek” (usually subconsciously). When we see the world through a negative lens and get stuck there emotionally, that’s the world we tend to live in. I’ve seen the opposite happen as well – great things tend to come when we are looking for and expecting them in healthy ways. Continue reading “Belief”

Risk

I’m not naturally a risk-taker, I’ve learned. I need a certain dose of adventure and variety, but often I stick to the tried-and-true, and actually seek out certain measures of social validation before jumping in to something. Sometimes that is wise. Sometimes it’s just fear, likely.

Don and I spoke today about the importance of the habit of risk-taking. Risk is a natural reality of any growth curve. When you start something new, at minimum, you risk losing the time you choose to invest. In other circumstances, you could risk injury (like with snowboarding!), loss of income (starting a business) or social status or even just a bruised ego (just going against the grain).

BUT what you gain is the confidence to step into the unknown – to new things. And not only that, but you learn the new skills that help you to become an expert. An expert in something actually lowers her risk because she’s more aware of all the possible downfalls – either from her own experience or from keen observation when digging down deep into something.

Perceived risk is what we should actually avoid. Not risk.🙂 I’m learning.

Writing Every Day

It has been months since I’ve put fingers to keypad and poured out my thoughts and reflections. It’s a part of the way I process life, and so I’ve really missed it.

As we teach and lead our kids, we’ve been encouraging them to think about everything they read and experience. We expect them to write and publish regularly as well.

I never like being hypocritical- I need to model it for them. Don loves quoting, “You cannot give what you do not possess.” This is a gift I want to pass on to them for sure.

So, here we go!

Another thing Don always says to people is, “Write For Yourself.”

My life is a mixture of business, family, education, friendships, and adventure, so my writing should reflect the blended experiences of it all. This is for me….and maybe some of you may enjoy it as well.

Perspective

Our family loves to hike. We have hit hundreds of trails, throughout multiple cities and National Parks. Each is unique and memorable in its own way. Sometimes there is gorgeous scenery along the entire path. Sometimes, we invest the steps and hours to arrive at a particular destination such as a huge waterfall or rocky cliff. Most of the time, our hikes are out-and-back, along the same trail.

And every single time, I’m struck with the same surprise: The experience always looks different going back the other way!

Granted, the experience IS different. When passing the first time, everything is new – twists, inclines, foliage, ponds, crags, etc. are fresh discoveries because we are seeing them for the first time. So, on the way back, we tend to know what to expect. And YET, I’m still surprised at some views or observations I missed because I was looking at it from the other side! Perspective changes everything.

I think this is so true in business and in life. The first times we travel any road, everything is new, so there are bound to be both pleasant surprises and unwanted challenges. If we are lucky and get to have a second-go at something, whether it’s another sales call, another trip to plan, or speech to give to a new audience, we are bound to notice and do things differently because we are coming at it from a different perspective. We see more and can have a bigger return.

There are other times in life, when we have to nail something the first time – perhaps because we only get one shot, or because the investment has been so great. In these circumstances, it is helpful to bring in your trusted few who have walked that trail before who can offer you that necessary different perspective. I seek it out often from my husband in business and homeschool veterans for schooling our kids. It’s always proved invaluable.