I'm not going to lie. 2013 was a challenging year for me and my family. Personally. Professionally. Spiritually, emotionally, physically. And any other "ly" you can come up with! But here it is the 2nd day of January, 2014. Another new year. Another chance to start over. And that is just what I am doing.
Even though there were some - shall we say interesting - times in 2013, there were also some great times. And even the less than spectacular moments had some positive turnout. A lesson learned. One door closed but another opened. I know you are thinking I am some sort of Pollyanna that sees good in everything. And you'd be right. I truly believe that God works all things for good in the end. But I do have plenty of evidence of that this year. Although there were some spectacular fails, there were plenty of awesome successes.
I share this because I know that plenty of others are struggling too. Many of my family, friends, and clients are facing challenges of their own. Health issues. Family concerns. Financial worries. I want to encourage each of you not to give up. No matter what - get up, get moving, have faith, and know that you are surrounded by an amazing group of people that are willing to help and support you.
I always like my first blog post of the year to be a sort of look back. Lessons learned. People met. Successes and failures applauded. Hopefully, someone will find something of value in what I have experienced. So here we go!
Lessons learned in 2013!
1. Training and speaking are two different things. Being good at one does not mean you are ready for the other. I know there are those who will not understand this but trust me - it is true!
2. Be careful who you engage with on social media. Enough said on that.
3. When MapQuest says it's an 11 hour trip, plan on 15.
4. Voice recognition software is awesome! My mind moves faster than my mouth which moves way faster than my arthritic fingers. At last, something that can ALMOST keep up!
5. Family is a gift from God. Cherish it!
6. Disney World is magical. Key Largo is beautiful. Daytona is Bike Week and that's always an experience! Denver was a blast. Vegas is - well Vegas! But in the end, there really is no place like home.
7. Losing a pet you've had for 16 years leaves a hole in your heart. Still miss you rubbing around my ankles in the morning, Iris Kitty.
8. No matter what the doctors say, there are still miracles. All you can do is live each day to the fullest and trust that God knows best.
9. No matter how bad the situation, a good friend, a glass of wine, and lots of chocolate will make it better.
10. 19 degrees in NW Arkansas is colder than 19 degrees in NE Pennsylvania. Really!
Thanks to some fabulous friends!
To my dear friend PopArtDiva, aka The Martini Diva, aka The Diva of Tiny Foods, aka Terri - for all the time spent on the phone listening to me bemoan the latest crisis, fiasco, and various other moments of negativity. Thanks for being there to listen, to cheer me on when I succeeded, and to slap me upside the head when I needed it.
To Ken McArthur for giving a little (alright not so little) gal from Arkansas a chance to speak at your event. And even though I suddenly came down with the worst - and only - case of stage fright I have ever had (something about looking up and seeing you and David Hancock in the back of the room suddenly made me feel like I was playing dress-up in my Mommy's clothes), the encouragement and positive feedback I received from everyone was amazing. I definitely learned much from that experience and am proud to say I am a much more accomplished speaker because of it. (Of course, a little coaching from Felicia Slattery didn't hurt either)
To Joel Comm who took time during a one-on-one call to stop doing business and pray with me while I was going through some difficult times. You may never know what that meant to me.
To Heshie Segal, who believes we can do something amazing together. The book is just pages away from being finished, and then I will be able to devote my full attention to you. Can't wait! And for teaching me that I don't have to type anymore! You can blame her - or thank her - for my new found productivity!
To Charlie Thacker for his continuing inspiration. I can be in the most horrible mood, and then you will post something on Facebook and remind me what it's really all about. Love you for that!
To my husband Dearl, for surprising me with an iMac for Christmas! I love it! How did you know? (Oh wait - was the drooling over the Apple display every time we went to Best Buy a dead giveaway? Thanks for noticing!)
To my family for believing that I really could write a book. It's almost finished! And although it took a bit longer than I had originally planned, I can finally say I wrote a book. Couldn't have done it without your support!
To Linda Gracy for always being ready for an adventure. Who else can I call on a moment's notice and say "Do you want to go to Denver? Ken is hosting his latest event." And she says "Sure! You drive!"
To Janna, aka The Lemon Cat. You made Christmas wonderful for me - and the recipients of your gift baskets. From making baskets to fit my specifications, enclosing my cards, shipping them, tracking them, letting me know when they had been delivered - you took something I hate (shopping and mailing) and did it to perfection. Everyone loved the baskets. I loved that I did not have to make them, or wrap them or mail them. You rock! See you next Christmas!
And here's to some new friends!
A shout out to some new friends (or old friends reconnected). Don't know what we will do together but I believe that people are brought together for a reason. Can't wait to find out what that reason is: Brian Basilico, Andy Shepherd, Rob Canyon, Loretta Hendricks, Joe Frus, Elaine Tayrien, Larry Hochman, Brian Johnson, Lora Jones, Onno van den Bovenkamp, Gwen Weiler (wait - I know why you came into my life. The book will soon need an editor!)
2014 is going to be an awesome year. Yes I know I tend to overuse that word but it is one of my favorites! AWESOME!!!! Finishing my book will mean I have achieved a major goal of mine. And I already have plans for a second.
I have struggled with my weight for several years now but I have finally discovered the only thing that has ever worked for me. 15 pounds so far and counting! I will be sharing that discovery with everyone very soon. Meanwhile, I am looking forward to a much healthier and trimmer me in the future.
I like to take something from the lessons of the past year and make it my focus for the new year. And the one thing that has seen me through all this past year was family and friends. They are truly priceless gifts. And so my focus for the 2014 is going to be family and community. I will be trying to work that concept into much of my business. I already have some ideas! Exciting, spectacular, and dare I say it - AWESOME ideas!!!
Boomer Business Ideas will continue to grow. There is such a need right now for support and encouragement as more and more "boomerpreneurs" step up to take the challenge of starting their own businesses. And that fits right in with my Family and Community focus. So watch for upcoming events and announcements.
During a call with Joel Comm and other members of his inner circle (by the way, if you are not part of this, you need to be!), I mentioned "The Adventures of Traveling Bob" blog. It has been sort of sidelined for a while since, to be honest, I really didn't know where to take it. But after our conversation, I have a whole new concept. It Should be a Dog's World and the Bad to the Bone Motorcycle Club have been rejuvenated. Expect to see launches before April. Why April? Because I want Joel and company to see what they inspired. And what better place to show them then at jvAlert Denver in April!
I will be in Denver in April for the last jvAlert event ever! And of course, I will be calling my sidekick, Linda, to see if she is ready to go with me. If you have never attended, now is the time! It may be the last event, but it will not be the last time you will interact with the people you meet there. Ken likes to say that once you join the jvAlert family, you can never leave. He's not kidding. I will be sharing dates and info in the near future. If you are already part of "the family," I hope you are planning to attend the reunion.
What lessons did you learn from 2013 that you would like to share? What are your goals and plans for the coming year? How can we help?