Tag Archives: inspiration

Start With I

We all know the saying there is no “I” in team. We’re told not to be selfish. We’re encouraged to focus on others. Women, especially, can find themselves putting everyone else’s needs in front of their own because we are born to nurture – it is innate in us – and we are afraid of being seen as selfish. But there’s something fundamentally wrong when we never put ourselves first. We can’t be the best for everyone else when we don’t take care of ourselves and our own needs.

Sometimes, we have to start with I:

I know I feel valuable when…

I want to accomplish…

I started this company because…

I know I can…

I don’t feel comfortable with…

I need…

I expect…

When we “start with I” we can identify what we need, what we like and don’t like, and how we stay motivated. We can set clear goals, expectations and boundaries. We can discover our purpose. We can then better communicate this to important people in our life: spouses, friends, children, bosses, colleagues, business partners. When we communicate what our tolerances are, what we need and what we believe we can give, relationships are healthier and ideally, happier.

startwithiThere is nothing wrong with saying, “I need this” or “I want this in my life,” or “I don’t want this in my life.” Oscar Wilde said “Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.” Starting with I is not selfish – it is clearly stating your expectations and how you want to live, and giving others the choice to be a part of that or not. It is accepting friendships, romance and business relationships that align with your values. Starting with I is often courageous – it can go against our gut feeling that focusing on ourselves is wrong. It is giving and communicative. It improves relationships and mental well being and can eliminate stress. Starting with I is the setting of boundaries, expectations and goals and ensuring that you’re surrounding yourself with like minded people who can appreciate or even admire them. It is generous and wise to let others know what you expect.

Work every day to become comfortable with starting with I. Embrace it as the best starting point to your best life and best relationships. Mind you, I said start with I. It doesn’t mean to solely focus on just yourself but rather that you know yourself, that you trust yourself, and that you’re honest with yourself – and with others – about what you want and need and what your life direction is. Only then can you begin to focus on enveloping others into the life you want to build in a healthy and mutually beneficial manner.

Stubborn, much?

stubborn_I love this quote. I’ve always been told that I am stubborn as though it is a negative thing, but this Josh Shipp quote puts a positive light on that stubbornness. For entrepreneurs especially, stubbornness is necessary. Well, most of the time.

Stubbornness paid off when I insisted I was moving from the midwest to Boston after college, despite naysayers telling me I’d be a “little fish in a big pond.” Stubbornness paid off when I insisted there was a better way to run a marketing agency with senior talent and everyone said I didn’t have enough experience to make it happen (my agency is turning 21 this year, so…!). Stubbornness paid off when I fought a legal battle and insisted on taking it all the way to court because I knew in my heart that I was right. (I won, twice.) Stubbornness is paying off as I listen to my heart and my body to train again, instead of the doctor who told me I wouldn’t likely run another marathon after breaking my foot in three places last summer (three months into training for the Chicago Marathon – heartbreaking!).

Using stubbornness as a way to get where you need to be is a good thing. It takes chutzpa to get what you want in this world. No one is here to do you any favors. Without a stubborn will to make new things happen, we would never see change. Change and growth are what makes the world great. We need stubborn people.

Certainly, we have to know when to not be stubborn – like when the new startup isn’t working and it’s time to pack it up, when Mom and Dad tell us they’ve had enough of our ‘tude, or when we’re fighting with our spouse over something really not worth fighting over and we know we just want to be right. You learn to recognize when stubbornness will get you into more trouble than it’s worth. If it isn’t helping you persevere to something more positive, let it go.

Happy Monday – go forth and persevere, my stubborn friends!

 

Changes to Change Your Life

“Ordinary people seek entertainment. Extraordinary people seek education and learning.”

As I grow older, I’m constantly on the lookout for ways to improve my life. I get the “itch” to do something drastic and different. But maybe it’s about changing more of the little things rather than just one big thing.

This is undoubtedly one of the most inspiring posts I’ve read this year. I’m going to strive to follow the advice here, (although I already do a few of them). Check it out and let me know the changes you see if you take these on! I’ll be sure to share my experiences as well.

50 Ways Happier, Healthier, And More Successful People Live On Their Own Terms

Greatness Is Just The Other Side Of Uncomfortable

greatness

This is what I tell myself when I’m in the middle of a tough run, defending myself in a dispute, or getting anxious about my startup and our progress. I think about how great it feels once I’ve pushed through the pain, the fear and the challenge. Accomplishing a goal when I was scared – and kept going anyway – is a reward like no other.

Keep going! You have to go through the challenge to get out on the other side – you can’t go around.

You can do it!

25-36 of #365LifeLessons – Music, Exploration, Apologies

25) They say business isn’t personal, it’s just business. But when it’s such a major part of someone’s life, it is indeed personal. Remember this both when you’re employer and employee, and act accordingly.

26) Learn to say you’re sorry but don’t be overly apologetic (you know those people who say “sorry” about everything they do… yuck.)

27) Explore before settling down. There’s always time to settle down.

28) Pack light and bring a credit card.

29) Learn to play the guitar. It can bring you solace when you’re alone, entertain a group of friends and warm up a campsite, a party or even a date.

30) Send her flowers for no reason at all.

31) Call your Mother weekly. 😉

32) Plan to learn a new skill every year. Even if you never again apply it.

33) Create something with your hands – a tree house, a go kart, a desk, a house… something that will always make you proud when you look at it.

34) Learn how to be alone.

35) Write it down. Visit it again in a few days, months, years… you’ll be amazed at your perspective.

36) Don’t keep up with the Joneses. It’s a boring game that no one ever wins.

What I’ve Learned, What I’m Learning – #365LifeLessons

12 – 22 of #365LifeLessons – I missed a few

I never promised I’d keep ’em coming daily (did I?), just that I’d post at least 365 😉 So, to catch up, here’s 12-22.

12) Admit your mistakes – it’s the only way to truly improve from making them.

13) Don’t “Over-Google,” – some things in life are best learned from actual people – like your spouse, your Doctor, scientists, etc. Social insights only go so far.

14) If you keep people guessing, they’ll never be able to reproduce what you do. Stay the course, YOUR course. Even if others don’t quite get it, criticize it or wonder just what the hell you’re doing.

15) Believe in you. It’s the best investment you can make.

16) Know when to walk away. There are many times in life you’ll need to do so for your best interests.

17) Stop listening. Sometimes you have to ignore what the haters say and keep focused on the good things in your life.

18) Exercise. Always.

19)  Find champions. Not just those that you admire, but those that admire you and can inspire, lead and direct you as you navigate new challenges in life.

20) Be honest. It isn’t always easy, it’s often uncomfortable – but it’s always the best way (even if a little white lie right now seems the easiest way out).

21) Don’t underestimate yourself.  If you think you can’t, you can’t. But if you try, you’ll likely never regret it – and will always learn something new.

22) Turn the TV off. Or the computer, the iPod, iPad, whatever. Invest in people, books, music… learning – at least more than zoning out in front of the boob tube. You don’t want to be a boob, do you?

What I’ve Learned, What I’m Learning – #365LifeLessons