Archive for the ‘Saving Time’ Category
The beauty of being a professional speaker is the opportunity to meet and interview great people. I recently spoke with Don Jackson, founder, chairman and CEO of a 42 year old Central City Productions, Inc, a national television production, sales and syndication company based in Chicago , IL .
I had no idea that I would speak with him and I was honored to do so. I always say it is better to be prepared for an opportunity, than have an opportunity and not be prepared. Therefore, I was ready to seize the moment and speak with him.
We spoke about the state of the television today. Although there is nothing wrong with reality television, it has taken over in the worst way. Most people defend reality television by saying it is for the entertainment value. What a paradox of words entertainment and value? I have blogged about this before. In most cases, reality television has given us degrading, pretentious, irresponsible, unrealistic, cat-fighting individuals who are only concerned with high ratings and sensationalism. However, Central City Productions focuses on inspiring and uplifting programming. Wow, how unusual and relieving! If you want to see a different quality of shows on national channels, Mr. Jackson gave me coveted advice that I must share.
Until we take the reigns and demand changes, Central City Productions will continue to have responsible programming, like The Black College Quiz that will air the end of January to the first week of February 2013. The ripple effect of the Black College Quiz is a positive example of African American college educated students that attend Historically Black Colleges and Universities competing in a “Jeopardy” like show for the chance to win tuition dollars. Now that is positive! Watch the show and be apart of positive television.
We are usually less than grateful, not because we are ungrateful individuals but creatures of habit. A habit is a recurrent, often unconscious pattern of behavior that is acquired by frequent repetition. Create a pattern of behavior of gratefulness.
Let’s look a typical day… You wake up in a slumber or late, stub toe and blurt out some choice words. After getting dressed you can’t find your keys. Late for work you have more choice words. You decide to take your morning coffee with you, which you spill on your crisp white shirt. You begin to imagine the day being terrible. What else could go wrong?
The effort comes in when you instead take a deep breath, be thankful for waking up, being in your right mind, having a job to go to, having the ability to pour coffee or drive. Let’s look at this day differently.
1. Waking up. We take waking up for granted. It’s no guarantee, no age requirement, no particular race or income qualification. Being able to wake up is a privilege denied to many.
2. Your Mind. Be Grateful for your mental capacity. Have you experienced a loved one with dementia? I can only imagine that is difficult to know that you don’t know.
3. Having a job. Do you know someone looking for a job, needing a job or wanting a job change?
4. Having the ability to pour coffee or drive, means you have the physical capabilities. Be thankful for your limbs. Have you had back pain, chest pain or the flu? Those went away with medicine or a visit to the chiropractor. Well what if that pain you experience for a short term was all the permanent?
How many times does your heart beat in a day? How many times do your eyes blink? They happen without any conscious effort on your part. It’s all been taken care of for you! Life is short lived and so are your bad days, obstacles, and issues and heartaches. THEY ARE ALL TEMPORARY. Learn to adopt an attitude of gratitude today! What are you grateful for?
I have owned a business that did not survive. I can vividly remember when I was desperately looking for customers. The experience allowed me to understand what some business owner’s experience. I love to assist to start and ways to grow and stay in business.
Knowledge is power so let me drop some knowledge on you. There are many certifications that will help you not only survive, but thrive in business.
The Small Business Administration provides a wealth of information, including helping you find resources. There are small business development centers located around the region. Contact www.sba.gov to find a local office to help you find local resources, like finding women’s business centers and help maneuver through the certification process.
Find support and a knowledgeable resource called SCORE. It is a non- profit organization that provides mentoring and counseling organization made up of retired executives with a broad range of experience who donate time to assist business owners. Go to www.score.org for more information.
There are contracts and monies awarded to businesses with particular certifications which are a great growth opportunity. Certifications such as…
- MBE – Minority Business Enterprises means a business that is at least 51% owned and operated and controlled on a daily basis by one or more minority.
- WBE- Women’s Business Enterprise means 51% or more is women- owned, managed and controlled. The business must be open for at least six months.
- 8A (Disadvantaged Business) is a certification for a small business which is owned and controlled by one or more socially and economically disadvantage who are of good character and citizens of the United States.
- SBD (Small Disadvantaged Business) or DBE (Disadvantaged Business Enterprise) means your business must be owned and controlled by one or more socially and economically disadvantaged persons.
- HUB Zone (Historically Underutilized Business Zones) program helps small businesses in urban and rural communities gain preferential access to federal procurement opportunities.
I hope these will be used as an opportunity to grow your business. B.FREE to grow!
I came to TOASTMASTERS with no preconceived ideas. For many years I have been invited to attend a meeting, but I didn’t think I “needed” to attend, because I was not afraid to speak in front of others and I was already teaching classes. However, I like to quote Oprah Winfrey when she says that things speak to you, first in a whisper, then an audible voice then a smack to the head. That is how I felt about the experience. Over the years several people mentioned the organization that creates leaders and better speakers. The deciding factor was a mentor who told me I can’t go wrong with improving my speaking abilities and I could receive speaking designations. Since that was the smack in the head, I decide to attend my first TOASTMASTERS meeting.
The organization has been around for many years and it’s amazing how many clubs currently exist. There are over 120,000 clubs in 160 countries. There must be some merit to the phenomena. What I have come to love about TOASTMASTERS are the meetings are timely and organized. I don’t like to go places where there is no agenda and it drags on and on from unnecessary input and conversation. Of course, I am the time and money saving guru, so I don’t like waste valuable time. There was an agenda and time allotted for each item. Also, it is a safe and nurturing environment for constructive critiques on how to improve your speeches, as you are evaluated after each speech given. As I attended more meetings, it became a spiritual awakening as topics discussed at the meeting seemed to be exactly what I needed to hear at that moment. For example, I was thinking about re-creating a mission statement for an existing business and the meeting for the evening was about vision statements. How timely! Lastly, the reason I love TOASTMASTERS was the cost versus benefit. The benefit outweighed the money it costs to participate. There are many places to get speaking designations, but a session and/or certification could cost thousands and TOASTMASTERS is a nominal fee every six months. Therefore, I already declared this journey is going to change me from being a good speaker to a great speaker and a great speaker to a phenomenal speaker. Watch out world, here I come, but there is room for you. Why don’t you join and attend a meeting.
Happy Mother’s Day! I’m sipping on a small glass of wine and reflecting on the day. I know that I have a wonderful family and support system to include my husband, children, mother and mother in law. Although I am more than grateful and blessed, I am actually upset (a better word for pissed off). I mad about how many moms neglect themselves and get one day a year. One year has 52 weeks, 365 days and 8,766 hours. Can my mother’s get more than 12 hours in a day (I know there are 24 hours, but only 12 waking hours for most).
My charge for women is to become selfish instead of self less. We hear it all the time, take time for you, so you can take care of others. My message is much more than that. Follow the advice of your ancestors who said always put money aside for yourself. Pay yourself first and then everyone else. Learn from your celebrity counterparts who usually save a little nest egg, which tells you that regardless of your status, make it happen. You will feel so differently when you do. Putting money aside can be for no reason at all, but merely that you deserve it.
This is a tough love post, but it is in the effort to get you to a point of empowerment. At the very least you will create a nest egg. At the very most, you will start a business with all of your extra money! You can start small by this Mother’s Day, save money for you! Go to the bank tomorrow and make a deposit with some of your Mother’s Day money.
Actually, I don’t like the word “diet”, just like I don’t like the word “budget”. Both words sound too restrictive and limiting. You have heard of the Lemonade Diet (also known as Master Cleanse), Miami Diet (no starch, cut out white stuff and eat meat), 21-day Detox (raw, fresh fruits and veggies, no meat days 1-10 and limited meat consumption days 11-21) and liquid fast (juice everything). Well, I wanted to make a paradigm shift, a natural progression toward healthy living and the diets I named can’t be followed for the rest of your life. What I found is a nutritional program called the Paleo lifestyle and diet. Paleo is short for Paleolithic which refers to the Paleolithic era where man hunted and gathered their food. In short, the premise is fresh or raw and lean meats, pretty simple, right? Nothing fried, no processed sugar, no dairy, and no foods that have been modified, altered or tampered in anyway. Don’t misunderstand me I like things that crunch (chips) and it is hard to pass up a FREE ice cream with your meal, because I do like FREE. However, I vowed to stick with it for 30-days and then make changes if needed or continue on.
I am in the baby stage because I am on day 7 of the program and hopefully I will get to weeks, then months, then years. It’s amazing that I have lived in America all my life and I am trying foods that I have never tried before like coconut milk, tomatillos, red Thai curry paste, almond meal and black rice. WOW, I love the new recipes and challenges, experiences and tastes that I have never had before. I discovered a website about healthy eating (http://www.mananaherbs.com) and I like what she said about heart disease and high blood pressure and high cholesterol. These things are not hereditary, the way you eat is how your parents ate and that’s hereditary. So, by eating the same way, developing the same habits, you get the same diseases. It is NOT hereditary. Let that marinate (pun intended).
I teach financial workshops and I begin each class with how the mind must change to get the body to act differently. Well, eating is no different. Get excited about the process and how your body will change and be better. Expect great results; otherwise your negative thoughts will produce negative results. In either case, you get exactly what you expect. So, join me on this journey toward a healthy lifestyle and healthy living. Salud!
I took a trip to Costa Rica. I always feel armed and dangerous with my Sprint HTC EVO phone, but this time I was stripped of my powers when I landed on Central American land. My phone did not work at all in Costa Rico. So, I had to work something out, as I was getting weak just thinking about not having a phone, ugh! First option – Buy a phone for $30, which inlcuded100 minutes. Not bad, but I wasn’t sure about the service, connection and I wasn’t sure I needed that many minutes for a four day trip, so I decided to look for alternatives. One down, what’s my next option?
Actually the cheapest option was to buy a temporary sim card for $6 which also includes 30 minutes. Problem is my phone does not have a sim card. Plus you must make arrangements with your cell phone provider BEFORE you travel to unblock the phone to allow a temporary sim card. On to the next option – Skype! Well, skype is free and works great, but it is only free for skype to skype users. I have two people using skype, so that didn’t seem like the best plan.
The option that worked for me is using Google Voice/Google Chat. You input the information of where you are calling and it will give you the charge before you pay. Then, you arrange payment and you are able to make calls through an internet connection. You are left with a smooth as silk sound quality with no hesitation. The bonus after four days, I still have 8 minutes to use for my next destination. Que bueno!