While vacationing in Park City this summer, I was enjoying my morning coffee on the deck overlooking the majestic mountains when all of a sudden, several hot air balloons “popped” into my view. The colors of each balloon were bright, vivid, and unique. Some were like rainbows; others were bright red, yellow and gold. They rose to varying heights in the sky, each one navigating their own unique path around the valley. This got me thinking about how Smart Women’s Big Ideas, Dreams and Goals are a lot like hot air balloons.
Like millions of people all over the world, my family watched the Academy Awards on Sunday night. People watch “the Oscars” for different reasons. Some people watch because they enjoy the fashion show and like to see the costume choices. Some people watch because they can’t wait to see who won which category. I watch for one reason: I like to listen to the acceptance speeches. You learn a lot about people by listening to what they say in their acceptance speech. This is a moment that may or may not ever come again and it is one of the most watched events of the year, so you have a big audience in which to share your message.
Although I don’t often go to the movies, I was fortunate enough to see the movie that won best picture, “Slum Dog Millionaire.” As I listened to the acceptance speech for this amazing film, there were some really valuable “golden nuggets” that were shared that reminded me of my work with Smart Women who are ready to re-invent themselves and take their lives to the next level:
During the acceptance speech, the director used a few key words to describe their journey to realizing their dream of making this important film:
Recently, while on a family vacation in Park City, Utah, I was helping my 8-year-old son, Jack, get ready for a day of skiing. It was sunny, 35 degrees and gorgeous outside. I handed my son his face mask and he looked at me puzzled and said, “Mom, there is no way I’m going to need this today–have you looked outside?”
I replied, “Yes, I have and you always need to be prepared for a quick change in the weather when you are on the mountain.” As I prepared myself to leave for skiing that morning, I began to reflect on how being prepared for snow skiing is a lot like preparation for success as a woman entrepreneur.
When you desire a successful day of skiing, there needs to be some planning before you get on the chair lift. You need to stop and think about all of the things that you will need in order to have a great day. (This is why ski wear has about 19 pockets located inside and outside the clothing!) If you are a woman who skis, then you know that the weather can change at any given moment so you need to pack accordingly. If you choose to go skiing without thoughtful preparation, you may be in for a challenging day.
If you are a woman with a Big Idea, Dream or Goal, realizing your big vision can be similar to a woman getting prepared for success in a day of skiing.
As I rode up the chair lift that morning, I thought of 4 solutions to help you have a great day of skiing and realize your Big Idea, Dreams, and Goals as a woman entrepreneur:
A few days ago, I was cleaning out a backpack that my daughter used last summer when we were in Park City, Utah on vacation. This backpack was one that she wore every day to her skateboarding class. At the bottom of the backpack, I found a piece of crumpled paper and pulled it out. It was an evaluation form from her skateboarding instructor, Drew, with these comments: “Learn to relax and face fear. Trust in Yourself.” This got me thinking about how Smart Women learn to face their own fears.
We all have fear about something. Fear of heights, fear of snakes, fear of roller coasters. Many times these fears are related to childhood. I’m fearful of snakes. It was a big deal in our family when I was young. We lived on a farm in the mountains and in the summertime, my grandfather, “Pop,” would continually share with us the danger of snakes and to be careful at all times. You hear that “message” enough and your fear begins to grow. As a young woman, this fear began to alter my life experiences. For example, I would not go hiking with a friend on a hot summer day for fear of snakes. However, when my children got to the age where they wanted to go to the zoo, I had to face my fear. Why? My children do not know that I fear snakes. And guess what? I do not want to create that fear for them so I oblige them when they want to go to the “reptile center.” Do I feel anxious? Yes. But it’s something that I must move through.
The other day, while standing in a very long line at a coffee shop, I struck up a conversation with the woman behind me. We began chatting about everyday topics–the weather, the holiday rush, and then we stumbled on to that dreaded topic of the moment–the economy. I asked her a question: “What do you think would be the most important thing you could have in your life right now to support where you are, given the economy?” She was a little surprised by this question, but her reply was very telling. She said, “Having an abundant source of constant cash flow.” My next question was, “And what steps have you taken to secure that?” After a long pause, the reply? “Not much.”
We all want an abundant source of constant cash flow in our lives. We all want to be healthy and fit. We all want to live in favored neighborhoods and send our children to the best schools. We want quality vacations and to dine in restaurants that serve refreshing drinks and delicious food. Here’s the Big Question: What steps have you taken to secure all of your “wants” in life?
Last week, after my husband Greg read my article “Smart Women Are a Lot Like Rocket Ships,” he had an interesting question: He said, “Every week you write about the same thing—making your Big Idea happen, Reaching your Goals and Dreams, getting the right support, blah, blah, blah… when are you going to write about something else?”
Being a woman who encourages new ideas and new perspectives, I went off to take a bubble bath (a nightly self-care ritual!) and to reflect on his question.
In my work with women, the foundation is always around passionate and purposeful living. In order to live a life full of unlimited energy filled with passion and purpose, you will be making big things happen in your life. You will be connecting with your Big Ideas, dreams and goals. You will seek and find the proper support to help you achieve your goals. This becomes a way of life for women who choose to live without boundaries around what they can and deserve to accomplish.
Last week, I was having lunch with my mom and my children at an outdoor café and all at once we were shaken by this rather large “KABOOM!” After a few minutes of shock and silence, everyone in the café started to speculate on what caused such a sound.
Later that day, we found out that it was the Space Shuttle Endeavour touching down at Edwards Air Force Base, which is about 100 miles away. This got me thinking about how Smart Women have Big Ideas, dreams, and goals that are a lot like rocket ships.
Taking your life or business to the next level is a lot like preparing to launch a rocket ship. It means you have made a decision to take yourself to a whole new level of being. Can you imagine what that would look like?
Does it excite you? Does it frighten you? I would imagine you might feel both emotions. It can be exciting and frightening to think about taking your life and your business to a whole new level. It’s powerful, courageous, and strong.
Women who create the space in their lives to build and launch their own Big Ideas, dreams, and goals are women who have raised their hand to say “Yes, I want to get clear about what I want moving forward and build a strong foundation so I can live the life that I was meant for!”
So what might be involved in the process of launching your own rocket ship? I invite you to ask yourself the following key questions—the Where, What, and Who:
Recently, my family attended a western-themed fundraiser to benefit our children’s elementary school. It was a fun-filled afternoon with various booths for the children and adults to participate in. Each booth had a different activity where you could try your skills. Walking around the event, I noticed that some booths had more activity than others.
After awhile, I realized that the people running the booths with the highest energy and excitement levels drew the most people. This got me thinking about how Smart Women know that it’s not the service or the product that will make you successful in life. The key is You, the person behind the product or service.
Every day we are met with lots of choices about different products or services that we can use to benefit us in some way. I’m always curious to learn why people choose one product or service over another. Time and again, I learn that people choose to purchase products and services from people that they Believe, Like, and Trust—the BLT Factor.
I’m 48 years old and I have never been on ice skates. That is, until yesterday. My 5½-year-old daughter, Jenna, has taken an interest in ice skating and I typically take her to the ice arena here in Park City where we are on vacation. I watch her skate while listening to the most incredible music they are playing on the sound system (CC Revival and the soundtrack from The Big Chill).
Every time we go, Jenna always asks me, “Mom, when are you going to ice skate with me?” And my answer has been, “Oh, maybe next time.” Yesterday, Jenna asked her usual question and as I prepared myself to give her the typical answer, she quickly spoke up and said, “Mom, please, please, skate today!”
I finally admitted to Jenna that I had never been on ice skates before. Jenna’s answer: “Mom, it’s easy—I’ll teach you!” And so there was nothing left to do but rent the skates and prepare myself for what I thought would be a dreadful outcome.
My heart was racing as I approached the ice on unsteady skates. Another woman could sense my apprehension. The absolute look of terror on my face was probably also a clue! She shared with me that there was another entrance to the ice rink that had “wider rails to hold onto.” And hold onto the rails, I did! Clutching every step of the way in the beginning!
When you are faced with something new in your life, you have two choices: Yes, to learning something new and getting out of your comfort zone; or No, I’m going to stay exactly where I am. Being uncomfortable or unsure of yourself and your abilities is no fun. It holds the possibility of making mistakes that others can see and being unsure of the outcome—two things that we want to avoid at all costs. Let me ask you a question: What is it costing you? What is your unwillingness to explore and discover something new costing you along the way? I can tell you that if I had not rented those skates and joined my daughter on the ice, the cost of not having the experience would have been high—possibly priceless.