Boldness, Passion and Genius

15 Mar

Along time ago, when I got married in 1994, my fiancee at the time and I invented a possibility for our marriage.

Boldness, Passion and Genius.

Unprecedented Adventure,

Living the Unimaginable.

It was great for a while.  And then it disappeared for about 24 years.

What I did today, reminded me of the first line……………I’ll tell you why……….

I have had an agreement with an associate to share my bonus with her.  We were “partners” in achieving it.  She helped me and me strategized and made sure it happened.

And it was great for the first two years.  But she has since moved down south.  She comes back to work now and then, but she no longer helps me, strategizes, or seems to care whether we hit our numbers.  I haven’t felt like she is my partner for about 8 months.

But I didn’t say anything.  I shared my bonus in the 3rd quarter, and didn’t even hit what I needed to in the 4th because I was counting on her help and she was more interested in her new home.  It am responsible for the failure, and for not speaking up.

But now, it’s a new year.  And today, when I tried to engage her in how we were going to hit our numbers for this quarter, she did not offer to help or to do anything much.  We discussed the weather and that it was going to be a nice beach day tomorrow.

After we hung up, I texted her that I wanted to have a conversation about the bonus.  There was no response as there often isn’t.

So I emailed her my proposal.  That I felt that the partnership was great for two years, but that the arrangement has changed.  I no longer felt it was appropriate to share the bonus.  I asked for her feedback and told her that if she feels that we are back in partnership, to please suggest we resume the agreement.

It was bold.  It was passionate.  It was genius.  And, up to now, I have been afraid to get people upset, to get in trouble, and to alienate people that I might need.  I have not spoken up on my behalf, somehow thinking I was inferior and didn’t deserve to be treated well.

But those days are gone.  I have discovered my value.

I am proud of myself.  I did it.  And, I did it before I earned the bonus so I don’t have to share this one.

If she wants to discuss it, great.

And if she doesn’t respond, then I have a record of what I proposed.

I’m a little nervous, but it has been bothering me for a while and I hated the fact that I was too chicken to bring it up.  And, I was afraid she would get mad.



The Only Way to Fail is……..

13 Mar

It’s the last few weeks of the quarter in my sales job.  As of last week I was on target to hit what we call in my business, FAME.  Hitting FAME qualifies me, as a manager, for a bonus.  And, each quarter that you qualify, the bonus is exponential.  And if you hit 4 FAMES and your quota, you can get a very big bonus.

Each quarter counts.  This is the first quarter of the year so it sets the tone for the rest of 2018.  And, not hitting it results in a lot less potential bonus money.

Last year, I was way behind the first quarter because my father passed away in January.  My team had a lot to make up for, but we did it.  We hit FAME quarters 1, 2 and 3.

But in the fourth quarter I missed it.  I had counted on some people that got sick or went away during that time.  In the end, I was $36,000 short.  And missed out on a big bonus.

I learned my lesson.  Don’t count on anything or anyone.  Expect the best, but have back-up plans for the unexpected.  Have a plan B, C and D in place so you are not left in the hole.

This year, I am struggling again.  A big account that we were counting on was postponed until next quarter.   I am creating my back up plans every day.  I am visualizing success and contacting all of my clients.  I am in touch with my agents and plotting out the numbers and where the premium can come from.  I am not letting my thoughts of resignation or dispair take over my brain.  I breathe at night to release the anxiety that keeps me awake.  I go over and over the numbers and see us winning in my mind.

In my workshop over the weekend, we discussed success and failure.  “The only way to fail is to stop playing.”  Focus on the game rather then winning or losing.  OK.  I am playing.  I have not given up.

Another game I play is “weight watching”.  Today at our local WW meeting, Zach, our inspiring leader, did not make it in because of the snow.

When I was walking in, I saw one of the other customers getting into her car.

“There’s no meeting,” she muttered.  She didn’t look happy.

“Come back,” I said.  “We can have our own meeting.  Where two or more are gathered,……….., it’s a meeting.”

We sat down and started talking.  Pretty soon there were five of us.  I got up and stood in front of the room.

We discussed issues that we were having and thought of possible solutions.  The half hour passed quickly.

“What are your closing words?”  Lynn asked.  Zach always has an empower quote at the end of our meetings.

“Hmmmm,”  I thought.  “Let’s see…….You all are fine just as you are.  You don’t need to be fixed.  If you don’t like something about yourself, don’t make it wrong.  Then you will be stuck.  Just choose one different action you could take this week.  And try it.  The only way to fail is to quit.  And you haven’t.  Acknowledge yourselves for just showing up!!!!!”  We gave ourselves a hand.

My daughter had come in during our “meeting.”  She is home on spring break.  She needed to get weighed to maintain her lifetime status.  She was sitting in the back of the room, watching.

“Mom, I’m proud of you,” she said when we left.

“For what?” I asked, distracted while I sipped my coffee.

“For running the meeting.  You didn’t have to do that.”

“It just seemed like the right thing to do.”  I told her about the girl that was going to leave.

“You did a great job.”

“Really?  I didn’t know if I was saying the right stuff.”

“You did.  It was great.  You could be a leader.”

I’ve thought about it.  But I never did anything about it.   Cause I made up that they didn’t make alot of money.

But I love to make a difference for people and inspire them to live their dreams.  So I will think about it.  Because it was fun.  And Haley’s words made me feel good.

And while I could get down on myself because I’m not at the numbers for work that I need yet and I’m not really happy with the number on the scale, I can still feel good if I want to.

I’m boldly playing both games AND, leading from the front.

And that to me,  means  success!!!!!



My Biggest Mistake Wasn’t One at All

12 Mar

While in a workshop on Money and Success over the weekend, I had to name my biggest financial failure.

For me, it was not being able to change my ex-husband’s attitude about money.  He liked debt and I liked to save.  For 20 years I tried to tell him why I was upset and stressed out about the way he did “money ” and what would work for me.  He’s not stupid, but he just couldn’t seem to understand what I was talking about.   I didn’t know back then that I was waiting for him to change so that I could be happy.  It wasn’t a fun or powerful way to live.

At some point, I realized that he shouldn’t have to change.  And that I didn’t need to stay married to him.

We got divorced about 2.5 years ago.  And I have been able to return my finances to the way I had them when I was single and comfortable financially – saving towards retirement, money in the bank, an emergency fund, and positive cash flow.

But I couldn’t forgive myself for living my husband’s way financially for 20 years.  I felt that I should have “known better” or been able to do something other then be stressed out, always checking for negative balances, and feeling like I was drowning by the increasing debt.

Over the weekend I saw that I have been avoiding relationships for fear of making the same mistake again.  It seems a lot less painful to just be safe and comfortable and alone.  I couldn’t imagine living with that kind of stress and upset again.

“Why would you have to experience that again?”  Christine, the instructor asked.

I thought about it.  “I don’t know.  I guess I just assumed I would.  I seem to have a bad picker.”

She just looked at me.  “And why is it your failure if you couldn’t change someone who was unwilling to change?”  she asked.

A lightbulb went off for me.

“You’re right,”  I said.   “Why did I even think it was my job to change him?  And why did I marry someone who liked debt and thought so differently then I did?”

I knew the answer to that one.  I had just assumed that everyone did money like I did.  Why would anyone have debt?  In my family, you were “an idiot” if you had debt.  It was for stupid people.  And, my husband was an Ivy League graduate and a lawyer.  It never occurred to me that he would have a different set of values about money.  He was an intelligent man.

“We were just playing different games,”  I said.  “He played the spend what you want and accumulate debt and I was trying to play save for the future.”

I had failed to identify the games before I got married.  And then I tried to change him so that he was playing my game instead of his.

Well, wouldn’t it be easier to start with someone who is playing the same game?  Who wants the same kind of relationship and partnership as I do?  What a concept?  That I could enjoy the relationship instead of suffer over it.

I have forgiven myself for my failed attempts to change my ex.  And, realized that leaving him may have been one of my best successes ever!!!!

What a new world I have created!!!  I am very excited for what the future holds.  And that’s a miracle.  Because just a few days ago I was suffering over my stupidity, upset and craziness.  Now I am embracing them and the fact that I am a GENIUS for doing something so smart!!!!!

Who knew?




Playing Full Out

11 Mar

I have been afraid to play full out.  I’ve been afraid of just about everything.  I’m afraid to get in trouble.  Afraid of getting criticized.  Afraid to make a mistake.  Afraid of getting it wrong.

Well, the gig is up.  I just finished two weekends of transformational courses.  I saw that I am “the rattlesnake.”  I have made myself wrong for many, many, many years.  It prevented me from seeing any good in myself and not allowing myself to really be happy.

I would say the following:  How could I say I have a great life?  What if things change tomorrow?  What if they find out I don’t have my shit together?  What if people know I’m messy?  What if someone finds out I am pathetic and needy and need reassurance?

No one could love that.  I don’t even like myself.  I had to keep it hidden and when I let it out, I got anxious and insecure and stressed out.

Well, those days are gone.  I was afraid that I really was just crazy.  Something really wrong with me.  Sure I annoyed people.  Sure no one wanted to listen to me.  I was afraid if I was upset, etc.

I’m not going to try to get rid of those thoughts.  But I am going to just write them down.  AND, I am going to dial up what I’m afraid of .  I’m going to own my craziness.  Yes, I’m crazy but it’s a wonderful crazy.  I love people and want to do great things in the world.  I have BOLD IDEAS and BIG AMBITIONS.   But I have let fear and doubt stop me from staying in action.

So I am declaring a moratorium on BEING CAREFUL!!!  I am going to make messes and get into trouble by being bold, self expressed and IN ACTION!!!!!

And, even as I type this I am wondering if it will last.  And maybe I’ll forget.  But I can return to it and just keep going instead of making my inactivity wrong.

So, there it is, world.  Who wants to play with me?


I’m A Genius

23 Feb

I was working with a friend of mine who goes into your subconscious and clears out emotions, and other things that can get stuck in parts of your body.  It’s a little strange,  sounds weird.  I know.  But, since all I have to do is stay on the phone and listen to him, I do it.  I figure, in case it helps, it’s worth it.  It’s not hurting me.  I barely even have to pay attention to him.

One day he told me he asked me if I wanted him to change my core belief.

“What does that mean?”

“Well, I changed mine from I’m a fool to I’m brilliant.”

“That sounds cool,”  I said.  “Why not?  It can’t hurt me, right?”

“No,”  he said.

The first step was to figure out what my current core belief  was.

He did his little questions and I was shocked by what he came up with.

“I am worthless” was the answer.  It didn’t make sense until I thought about it.  It was sort of a theme underlying everything I did, thought, said or acted. I didn’t trust myself and listened to others.  I was insecure in certain areas and always needed validation.

I mean, not all the time.  When I’m confident, I am great.  When things are good, you can’t mess with me.

But there was my other self.  The one I hid.  That one thought she was worthless.

“What would you like to change it to?”  he asked after I adjusted to my worthless feelings.

We talked about it for a while.  I was lying on my blue couch in my furnished rental cottage on the beach.


It felt right.  I said it and the world shifted.  I became confident and sure of myself.

“THIS IS AMAZING,”  I said.  I was on a high for a couple of days.

And then I forgot all about it.  The world became familiar again.

About a week later Brazos called and asked how the genius was.

“Oh,”  I said.  “I forgot.  I’m a genius.”  And then everything I did and said and thought became different.  My decisions were great and the world was good.

It’s kind of amazing that one thought about myself can change how I look at everything.  And it’s also crazy that I forget that thought and revert back all the time.

I guess the world is a crazy place.  So, we might as well have fun.

ENJOY!!!!   Thanks for listening.

At a client – no on is coming to see me

22 Feb

So I decided to write.

I have been on such a high for the last few days.

And today, I am tired since I got in late from a seminar and still got up early to work out.

I am sitting in a beautiful library in an architect’s office and not only is nobody coming to see me, they are not even looking at me as they walk by.

I am all dressed up and have my computer ready, but ….. apparently for nothing.  And my biggest challenge is trying to stay awake.

When it’s been an hour I will leave and go to the next place.  And, if I have time, take a quick 5 minute nap in the car AND get a large coffee.

All I can think about is going home and going to bed.  If I didn’t have the second appointment, that’s where I would be.

OK – 25 more minutes here.  I have been very nervous lately.

Apparently, excitement and fear feel the same.  For me, it’s a jittery feeling in my chest.  With that is sometimes an upset stomach, and today, I feel like my skin is breaking out.

But, if fear is the same as excitement, then I am wondering if calling it excitement instead will also come with the side effects.  I’m going to try it.  When I feel the nervousness happeneing, I will call it opportunity and excitement instead and see what happens.

But for right now, I have to admit that I am just feeling tired and sick.

I have a purple circle under my eye that isn’t attractive.

My back is starting to hurt.

I just want to go home.

22 minutes left.

I really want to put my head down and go to sleep.  Would that be professional?

OK, after editing this blog I now have 16 minutes.  In 5 I will start to pack up.  I can do this.  No premium here, no claims, no nothing.  NADA!!!  Embarassing, but no one has to know I wasted my time.  Glad the associate who was supposed to come could not make it.  I’d hate for her to know how much this sucked.

Well, that’s it.  It amazes me how I could go from everything being great yesterday to SUCK today.  I guess that’s life and why it will never be boring.  Isn’t that exciting?

Thanks for listening.


A guy to read my book?

21 Feb

I asked three friends to read through my book as part of the editing process.  We wanted to get some feedback before it went final.   One friend has read through the whole thing so far.

She liked it.  It made her think.  But she was “shocked” by a couple of things that I wrote.

Hmm, I wondered.  Which things?

Two different epidodes with two different men.  She was surprised at how honest I was.

I passed her comments on to Maryann, the copy editor I have hired to help me get the book ready for publishing.

“Have you asked any men to read the book?” she asked me.

“No,” I answered.

“Why don’t you ask one to read through it?”

“I can’t think of who I would ask.”

“Do you have any male friends in any of your courses?”

I didn’t answer her.  And now I’m thinking this is a bad thing.  If I’m too embarrased to ask a man to read my book, how do I think I can publish the damn thing.

So now I’m thinking the whole idea is really stupid.  Maybe it is too incriminating and I’m an idiot.  Maybe I shouldn’t do it at all.  How much would I have to change so that no one recognizes anyone?……  I’m exhausted just thinking about it.

OR, (after I take a breath and calm down a little), maybe people will relate to it and I am being brave by going public.   Maybe it will help other women who are suffering from the same fate and I will empower them to live THEIR dreams, too.

I don’t know.  I guess I will sleep on it.  I am tired.   So I will stop for now.  And just breathe.  And deal with these thoughts tomorrow.

Thanks for listening.


I contacted Oprah

5 Feb

I just sent a linked in inmail to Oprah.  Yes, Oprah Winfrey.

Over the weekend, we discussed what was urgent.  Where did we hear the knock?

My connection to the eternal is through spirituality and truth.  I get moved when people are real.  When they experience emotions.

My memoir is real.  It is meant to inspire people.

Who else inspires people?  Oprah.

So I googled how to contact her.  It said to go throught linked in.  So I signed up for premium which is free for a month.  And I sent her an inmail.

I am so excited that I did that.  I am thinking BIG.  I am doing BIG.  It was bold.

If I never hear back, I am still good.  YAY ME!!  I reached out beyond my little world.

Ok, watching the superbowl.  Gotta go.


Being bigger than my thoughts

29 Jan

I was in a seminar all weekend and I kept thinking I didn’t belong and I wasn’t up to what everyone else was up to.

And the funny thing was that other people said the same thing.  That they didn’t think THEY belonged, either.

I’ve decided not to listen to my thoughts.

My thoughts keep telling me that what I shared was stupid.  And I’ve been feeling like it was true all night.  Going over and over what I shared.  But I just I realized that it’s just my brain trying to protect me from getting hurt.  Thanks, brain!!!!

What I realized over the weekend is that I have kept my self separate from people all my life.  I was so afraid of getting hurt, criticized, made fun of, condemned, etc that I got rid of people before they could get rid of me.

But if I can love my children unconditionally, then I can love everyone else that way, too!!  If someone snips at me, then they are upset and need comforting.  Instead of taking it personally and starting a fight and badmouthing them, I can turn things around.  I can take care of them since they are obviously hurting.

I can live in a win/win world instead of a win/lose, elevating the other person and not being afraid that if they win, I have to lose.

I can listen to people from strength and success, instead of what they are doing wrong and how they are not fulfilling MY agenda.

It all sounds good, right?  I just have to remember this!!!!  Please remind me!!!  Good night!


25 Jan

In my old Amway days, they would say people had “HUB.”  It stood for Head Up Butt.  Anyone who didn’t get “it” had HUB.  Or anyone who didn’t listen to “good” advice, etc.

And I have been suffering from HUB for a few good days now.  Obvious from my last few blog entries.

Today I was still suffering.  Then I got on our daily “Wisdom” call.  I “got into communication” as I talked about yesterday and told them that I couldn’t see any miracles in the last year even though I know I’ve had many.  I couldn’t remember ANY!!!  NOT ONE!!!

And Joyce, our wise leader said that sometimes not killing someone is a miracle.  True, I thought and in my case, not killing myself.  (Don’t worry I’m not suicidal (Suey – we used to call it(Wow, double parens, let’s go for triples))).    OK – I know, it’s not excel where the parens have to match in the equations.  I’m having fun here.

But I digress………..Our challenge was to write to someone from each decade who had made a contribution to our lives.  They had to be alive so of course all I could think of was my dead piano teacher.  He told me I had talent.  I never knew that and never practiced until the day he said that.  I memorized my 4 pieces for my senior recital.  You never saw a girl practice so happily after those 3 words.  So, thank you, Richard, may you rest in peace.

For the live people, I decided to call my mother.  She’s the one that always believed in me no matter what.  She never stopped loving me despite my various moods.  When I interviewed her 20 years ago for a course, all she had to say were kind words.  I was waiting for the bad stuff.

“What about my moodiness?” I asked, cringing and waiting for the negative.

“I don’t even give that a second thought.  I think you are wonderful.”

“Are you sure you’re not just being nice?”  I asked.

“Nope.  That’s all I see is the good.”  Wow!!!!

And so I called her this morning and acknowledged her for each decade of my life.

The first decade she took care of 4 kids under the age of 7.  Enough said.  (And still kept it together when she had number five a few years later).

The second decade she carted me to all sorts of music lessons.  Piano, flute and harp.  Unbelievable.  Each private lesson cost money, too.  And my parents were very frugal, so it was even more special.   And she never stopped believing in me and didn’t admonish me, even when I didn’t practice.

Third decade:  When I got rejected from Wharton the first time I tried to transfer in from the liberal arts school at Penn, I called her crying.  I was done.

“Try again,” she said.  “You can do this.”

“You sure?”  I asked, not wanting to get rejected again.

“Of course,”  she answered.

I decreased my class load, got the grades required, applied again and got in.  Thanks to her encouragement, I graduated from one of the top business schools in the country.

Fourth decade:  She supported me through the horror of trying to nurse my first child.

“Bring him to me,” she said.   I did.  She held him while I could get my s—t together.

Another time I called her at wit’s end.

“Jesse fell and broke his arm.  He’s downstairs.  Haley (the newborn) is crying upstairs.  I just got out of the shower.  I’m naked and can’t move.  I can’t even figure out what clothes to wear or who to help first.   HELP!!”

“Put on the clothes you wore yesterday and I’ll meet you at the doctor’s.”  And she did.

She was always there.  She never complained.  She just gave and gave and gave.

And now, in my 50’s, she is still there for me and my family.  Our house is being rebuilt so there is no home for the kids.  She graciously took them and their father in.  No complaints.  Happy to feed them, help with their laundry, support them and love them.  No bitterness.

So there you have it.  My mom.  And you know what, just by focusing on her and all she’s done, my head was removed from my butt.  I feel grateful instead of thinking I need to be fixed and what is wrong with me.

Yet another technique for moving to the “right” side of life.  Acknowledge someone.

So I will now take the time to acknowledge the three women who have made a difference for me this year in Wisdom.  It is coming to an end and I will miss Saturday’s completion in New York.  So here goes:

Thank you, Joyce, for your genius in creating these challenges and all the other things you do to further the Wisdom conversation.  You have made a difference for me by believing in me when I can’t believe in myself.  Your generosity, discipline and creativity among many other wonderful traits are inspiring.   Your ability to tell one on yourself keeps me smiling and able to honor my own humanity.

Ana Maria Garcia is a gift to me as well.  Her courage, generosity, love, and compassion are also inspiring.  I am blessed to know her and to be able to be in communication with such a wise and amazing person.  She enables the phrase “never give up.”  Kudos to her and her ability to source the program no matter where she was.

And, Nina, my little red headed bundle of wonder.  Her unfaltering dedication to our team is also a gift.  She never gave up and always believed in me despite what I was saying about myself.

Thank you to the 4 amazing ladies in my life.  I love you.