What’s Love Got to Do With It?

My week in pictures… (L-R) Creative & inspiring Winterlicious lunch with Jenny McKaig & Dan Blackburn, DivaGirl event ‘La Tease’ with performance by High Society Cabaret, posing with founders of My Femme Crush (AMAZING jewelry!) Shirley & Laura, Laura Furtado & I (DivaGirl Founder), SheEO Mixer with other fab female entrepreneurs, bestie & oysters at La Societe, group selfie at Million Dollar Speaker with James MacNeil, Ontological Coach & colleague Jenna Smith & I, group selfie with Shane Culls at Oakville Chamber YPEG event, catching up with The Extreme Bean founders Matt & Steve (we used to work together at Sharkey’s way back in the day! HA!) 

Happy Friday! Happy Friday the 13th! And Happy Valentine’s Day Eve! (at least, for those of you who prescribe to the somewhat Hallmark Holiday!)  from where I sit overlooking the deceiving sun (let’s be honest, it is NOT warm out there!!!) and the freezing mist above the lake. Brrr… I’m getting shivers just looking at it!

Good thing I’m nice and cozy with a warm cup of jo at my bedside table.

So tomorrow I’m going to make sure I indulge in a few extra chocolates… who’s with me?!? I may even treat myself to a massage. Even if it is an excuse to show ourselves or our partners a little extra love, why not, right? (although I actually think you should be doing that everyday…!!!)

So, what’s love got to do with it, anyway?

Well Tina Turner, a lot, actually.

Allow me to explain. (I know, it’s true… I’ve fallen prey to the whole idea Valentine’s Day should take the lead ~ however I promise this is not going to be your soppy love story! So stay with me.)

It’s been said that love makes the world go around. That all you need is love. That love is a many splendored thing. Now I may very well agree. AND, I think love extends far beyond our the traditional two-people-in-love scenario.

This past week alone I have enjoyed four powerful days of training. As I am working now with James MacNeil and the team at EQ Communications, we had a two-day ‘Verbal Aikido’ training (pretty powerful content and experience overall) and then his Million Dollar Speaker program. Both, at the core, are about effective communication ~ whether it be effective communication in your one-to-one connections, or in your one-to-many.

James has an acronym (and you know how must I love acronyms!!!) to explain his viewpoint. If you want to be an effective communicator, you must strike the right CHORD. Communicate Honestly, Openly, Respectfully, & Directly. It goes a long way.

You must also be true to yourself. And you must put your partner, or your audience, before yourself.

I’m going to let you in on a million dollar secret.

Ready?

It’s not about you, it’s about them. 

That’s it.

  • You want to be more effective in your relationships? Make it about your partner.
  • You want to be more effective in your speaking? Make it about your audience.
  • You want to be more effective in your writing? Make it about your reader.
  • You want to be more effective in your workshops? Make it about your participants.
  • You want to be more effective in your marketing? Make it about your Avatar.
  • You want to be more effective in your work? Make it about your clients.

Are you noticing a trend here?!? 

It’s all about YOU. Well, for me it’s you. But for you, it’s not actually you, it’s the you that is is the other person or people you are engaging with. Does that make sense?!?

The moral of the story here folks, is that you can show a little love by givin’ a little love. Make it about them… listen, show you care, treat them honestly and with respect, and they’ll feel the love.

What’s love got to do with it? Well, actually, a lot. Show some lovin’ by making it about others, because it ‘aint about you! (Click to tweet it out!)

Now for those of you who are planning on celebrating Valentine’s Day, have a blast! And for those of you who prescribe to the idea everyday is Valentine’s Day, enjoy another loving Saturday! (although maybe allow yourself to indulge in a few extra chocolates… I know I will!)

Have a FAB & loving week!

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Are you still breathing?!?

HAPPY FRIDAY! …

from where I sit at my reclaimed barnwood dining table, with a sunny view of the CN Tower ahead and the snowy dog park below. I can imagine the crunching sounds of boots and the sniffing sounds of dogs as they enjoy the fresh, winter air on this fine Friday morning.

 I know I said last week I would make Colette my writing spot from now on, however as I have two meetings there later on today, I thought starting first thing in the morning would be a tab overkill! However, don’t you worry, that Americano Misto is waiting for me! (just may have to make it decaf at that point!) HA!

So, this week was a fun and fruitful and yes, busy one. Although I must admit I’m not such a huge fan of the word… I mean we’re all busy. Any suggestions?!?

 

Fish use their gills to breathe. Insects use their tracheal system to breathe (although to call it breathing may be a stretch ~ it’s more of a gas exchange ~ but I digress!). And humans use their lungs. And yet I sometimes wonder, if breathing wasn’t automatic, would we ever forget to breathe?!?

This week I attended an amazing annual networking conference, Networking Connects, put on by my friend and mentor Jennifer Beale. It was so lovely to see so many familiar faces. Even though we can easily stay connected on line these days, there is nothing like face-to-face interaction.

An amazing woman, Christine Douglas, who mentors, always gives back, is a part of numerous organizations including Women in Aerospace (how cool is that?!?), came up to me at the event. ‘You’re doing so many things! Good for you! But what are you doing for you?’ She asked. She has been a huge supporter since we first met, always willing to help, and a religious reader of my Happy Fridays. She continued to explain she thinks it’s great I seem to be busy, however she was curious as to what I was doing for me.

It’s true, I like to be busy. And it was one of those weeks where I had quite a few days of one meeting after another session followed immediately by a phone call and then a workshop to run to… I mean if breathing weren’t automatic I may very well have forgotten to do it!

Ironically, I made a declaration this year I wanted to do less and be more. And I do. This week won’t be my norm ~ as I am realizing more and more now that busy is not only not necessarily productive, but also if it’s nothing but go, go, go how can it be fun, fun, fun?!?

Although I’m definitely a work-in-progress, I’m implementing a few ideas to ensure I am being (and breathing!) more. For instance, a few simple morning habits. (Have you watched my February Living BIG challenge yet?!? If not, you need to get on it!) Even if I realize I pressed snooze one too many times and need to really bust a move out of bed, I still have enough time for at least a 1-minute morning ritual. Taking the time to slow down and breathe first thing in the morning has become important before my day gets going. Although not a member of the 5am club yet… (ha!) I am adding one thing I can do at a time. It’s the small victories after all.

Are you giving yourself the space and the time to breathe first thing in the morning? Throughout your day? Before you go to bed?

All things need to breathe. Our schedules need to breathe (have you heard of buffer time? You need it… trust me! I’ve learned the hard way!) Our work needs to breathe. Relationships need to breathe. Good wine needs to breathe.

Are you giving yourself the time and the space and the permission to really breathe? (Click to tweet it out!)

I remember listening to a yoga teacher once say that life is not about inhaling. It’s true. It needs to be tasted, it needs to savoured, it needs breath. Have you perhaps been guilty of inhaling life?

I’m going to make more of a conscious effort to allow for more breathing room in all areas of my life. And I hope you’ll join me!

Have a FAB week, everyone!

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 P.S. This weekend is Verbal Aikido with James MacNeil! If you haven’t already gotten your ticket, visit the link HERE. Communication is at the heart of everything. Learn how to build genuine rapport, handle any conversation with ease & confidence, and master the moments that matter most. See you there!

What do you and an elastic band have in common?

My audiobook du jour is John C. Maxwell’s “The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth.” And yes, in case you’re wondering, I have indeed been ‘reading’ it for a while now. I can’t help it ~ it’s a goodie! So I’ve re-listened to quite a few sections (it’s hard to really retain it all whilst I’m getting anxious in traffic! Not to mention take notes — which I don’t do while driving by the way — unless I’m at a long stoplight!)

Aside: I have two recommendations for you:

1. Listen to audiobooks. It’s true I do sometimes miss and need to get my fix of the top 40 hits every once in a while, however I love the convenience. See as a wannabe reader who simply can’t schedule in regular reading time this is an excellent option…

2. Join your local public library. That way you can listen and read to your heart’s content! Even with the $5.60 I’ve racked up in late fees on this book alone it’s SOO worth it!

Okay back to the book. Of all the invaluable laws I have read about so far, one from a more recent chapter stood out: the law of the rubber band.

So get this: Mr. Maxwell and I actually have something pretty neat in common ~ he and I have both used elastic bands in our keynote presentations! (Come on, you have to admit that makes me kind of cool, no?!?) Now I use mine when explaining the 3 zones of human experience, and have colour coated the inside to be green, half of the outside to be yellow, and the other half red. (I remember the first time I did this I had colourful pen all over my fingers! Ha!) However he uses them a tad differently.

Having previously placed one elastic at every seat, he then asks the group to brainstorm all of the different ways in which an elastic band can be used. People can get pretty creative. At the end of the exercise, he then points out the obvious: a rubber band is useless unless it is stretched. He then goes on to say the same is true of humans.

“Growth doesn’t happen by staying in your comfort zone,” Maxwell asserts. And I happen to agree.

He then goes on to say if you are not stretching, you are not living.

Now I know I have previously spoken about the fact you should do something every day that not necessarily scares you, but that stretches you. However, this book shed light on this idea in a whole new way.

Maxwell believes that growth stops when you lose the tension between where you are and where you want to be. And he also believes most people lose this tension over time ~ especially if they start to experience some success. However, if you’re growing (which we’re all doing, right?!?) what was once your stretch zone now becomes your comfort zone. And so in order to continue your growth, it’s time to stretch yourself again.

The more comfortable you are the more complacent you become. The less tension you experience the less productive you are.

The less comfortable you are the more you stretch. The greater the tension, the greater the growth.

Humans, like rubber bands, are useless unless they are stretched.  (Click to tweet it out!)

Are you still with me?

In what areas of your life have you lost your stretch and settled in? Don’t get too comfy where you’re at, and don’t expect growth to magically happen. It won’t. You have to be intentional (one of the other laws… perhaps for another week?!?) about your growth, and intentionally stretch yourself outside of what’s comfortable.

l admit I’ve said it before (and will likely say it again!) your stretch zone is where the magic happens ~ it’s where creation reigns and growth abounds – it’s where the game of life really gets played.

SO ~ how are you going to stretch yourself today? In what areas have you maybe lost your stretch? What will you do to remedy that this week?  I want to hear from you in the comments below :-).

And, speaking of stretching, by the time you read this I may already be on stage presenting part of James MacNeil’s ‘Sales Mastery’ course! He asked me to teach a section only yesterday ~ talk about going outside of my comfort zone!!! Well, at least I’m growing, right!?!

Have a FAB week, everyone!

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p.s. My first full-day event ~ ‘IGNITE’ ~ is selling out quickly!  It takes place on Saturday, Nov. 8th! Register HERE today!