Monthly Archives: May 2018

True Meaning of Success

What is the meaning of success? The dictionary says that the meaning of success is the accomplishment of an aim or purpose, and the attainment of popularity or profit. Seems pretty cut and dry – but success means different things to different people. For some, success means having a 6-figure income, for others, it means becoming a millionaire. Others view success as building their own company, making it on Oprah, being invited to the royal wedding or buying a house. The only true meaning of success … is what you view success to be in your life.

If you take away the money and the material possessions, what does success mean to you? Success is a mindset. I’d love to see a study where they take a look at the happiness levels of a person who set income goals vs. a person who set outcome goals. For instance, Subject A sets a goal of making $10,000 per month whereas Subject B sets a goal of helping 100 people.

I’m a curious person and am often fascinated by the lives of others and how and where they find success and happiness. At the end of the day, I think being happy is the true meaning of success. So remember, if you are working hard towards success don’t forget to ask yourself … what will truly make me happy?

I hope you have a safe and wonderful Memorial Day weekend!

 

Managing Work-Life Balance This Summer

Summer is almost here and you know it’s going to be a crazy, busy time of year. The kids are out of school, summer vacations are in full swing and everyone has ball games, golf outings, beach days, family reunions and more! It’s a time to enjoy the beautiful weather, take that vacation so you can come back to the office renewed and ready to move mountains, and it’s a great time of year to grow your business!

With everything else going on don’t just put your business on auto-pilot to get through the summer. Take advantage of the tips and tricks below to make the summer of 2018 your best summer yet.

*Get organized! Take a few hours and get organized for the entire summer, yes it’s possible! Get your schedule on your calendar for the next three months! Carve out some time in your schedule and get it done.

*Prioritize! Now that your calendar is booked solid with everything BUT work, prioritize. Do you really need to do EVERYTHING you have on your calendar? What are the most important things? Leave those and either put the rest as optional or better yet, forget the rest.

*Outsource! Summer is a great time to start outsourcing some of your time consuming tasks. Most people don’t realize that there are several things they do that can be outsourced. The beauty of working with a highly skilled virtual assistant is they will help you manage your days and weeks. They will help take a lot off your plate. They are NOT another thing to manage, they will tell you what they need to be successful and they will keep you on task. Get more done this summer by hiring a virtual assistant that can do the dirty work while you take more time for yourself doing what you love whether that’s growing your business or a day at the beach or on the golf course!

*Take time off! I recently read in Inc. magazine that 42% of American workers do NOT take their vacation days! Everyone needs to take days off to relax the mind, body and soul, these days are extremely important if you want to continue to succeed. Your mind and body need rest. I am so relaxed when I go on vacation that it is typically when I come up with some of my best ideas. Take a journal with you on your vacation days and write what comes to mind, then continue relaxing. You won’t stress about forgetting your great ideas and you can truly relax. You don’t have to take a week-long trip somewhere, you just need to get away from work for a few days. Working vacations don’t count – many employers are starting to frown upon those anymore.

*Just do it! You know that thing you’ve been planning and researching and finding every reason in the book why not to pull the trigger? Just do it! Many people waste time just hem-hawing around and never really do anything about it. There comes a time when you just need to pull the trigger. Why not now?

*Have fun with marketing. People are in better moods in the summer – they might get your humor so try that fun marketing campaign you’ve been wanting to try. Summer opens people up to wanting to try new things so why not your product or service, get out there and make it happen!

*Throw an event! If you need something fun for a client appreciation event and a way to advertise your business, have a fun open house, beach day, golf outing, clam bake or outdoor BBQ. You can always have live music, family games and drawings for cool stuff. Everyone loves free entertainment in the summer! Enjoy your summer this year and grow your business! You can do both!

Danae Branson is the Founder of Elite Scheduling Services. They provide professional scheduling services to external wholesalers in the financial industry.

What Do People Want In Life?

As salespeople one of the main things we have to do is offer a solution to a problem. And in offering that solution we also have to figure out what it is that people want. I realize that everyone’s business is different and we offer different solutions to different problems. We try very hard to give our clients want they want. I came across an interesting article about what – in general – it is that most people want. Kathy Caprino conducted a survey that had one question. The question was – “If you could say in one word what you want more of in life, what would that be?” Out of the 700 people that responded the top 10 things are below. Is it possible that your business offers a few of these to your clients? If so, start marketing that!

#1: Happiness

Biggest challenge: “Not knowing what I want to do.”

The #1 mentioned missing element – Happiness — has become so hard to achieve, and even harder to maintain. Many people just don’t know themselves well at all. Secondly, they search outside themselves for happiness – in a job, a husband, a family, a title, a paycheck, a fancy house. As a result, Happiness is constantly out of their control and a perpetual moving target that never stands still long enough for them to grasp. I’m not saying that these things don’t bring happiness – of course, they can. The key point is that if everything you’re searching for remains outside of you, you’ll always be scrambling and chasing.

 

#2: Money

Biggest challenge: “Not having enough money or time to accomplish the things I want to do.”

I’ve worked with millionaires, as well as people who earn mid-six figures and far, far less. Isn’t it fascinating that no matter what we earn, we somehow feel we never have enough? I know people with literally over a million dollars in their retirement accounts, yet they live in such a constant fear state around money that they never have a moment’s peace. The question is: how much money do you really need to bring about the life experiences that will truly fulfill you? And if you want more money, do you understand the key principles and behaviors required to generate it?

 

#3: Freedom

Biggest challenge: “Having the freedom to find my ‘true purpose’ or being lit up by the day-to-day at work.”

Ah, freedom. We all want it, yet so many people I meet are resistant to doing what’s required to get it. They want to “feel” free, yet are scared to muster the courage to do what’s necessary to “become” free.

What is necessary to experience freedom? I’ve seen that it requires making yourself right (not wrong), following your own authentic values and beliefs, and building strong boundaries to protect yourself from what others will tell you is right for you or try to force on you. And it takes forging your own path in life and work, despite the challenges and the nay-sayers. It requires BOLDNESS and courage to make yourself your own highest authority on life and work, and that’s no easy thing today. Sadly, most of us aren’t taught or trained (particularly women) how to stand up powerfully for what we want and believe in, and to go after it with undying passion and commitment.

#4: Peace

Biggest challenge: “Lack of clarity about who I am and my purpose.”

We long for peace, desperately. Peace from noise, chatter, pressure, responsibilities. We also want peace from the pain and thumping inside our own heads – the conflicts and strain we inflict on ourselves every minute to be better, stronger, smarter (prettier, thinner, better parents, _______ [you fill in the blank]).

Peace, I’ve found, doesn’t come from being better at anything, or even figuring anything out. Attaining peace is a practice that we need to cultivate and commit to. We have to carve out space within ourselves and in our lives to bring forward the experience of peace, then do the work to expand peace as a feeling and experience that we’ll commit to daily, regardless of what’s around us.

 

#5: Joy

Biggest challenge: “How to find the right role or position for me now that will bring joy in my work.”

In working with thousands of women to build successful, rewarding careers they love, I’ve witnessed how the process of stepping up to our highest potential and honoring our best visions for contributing to the world in a meaningful way does indeed pave the way for more joy. I believe (and have lived) that we simply can’t feel joy in our lives if the work we do pains us. We’re not able to effectively separate who we are from what we do (and why would we want to?). So when you’re stuck in work you hate, with people you don’t respect, supporting outcomes that feel wrong to you, then your life as a whole can’t help but be joyless, even if your personal or family life brings you happiness.

 

#6: Balance

Biggest challenge: “Balancing my need/desire for flexibility while making enough money and having the benefits I want.” I’ve researched work-life balance extensively, and believe that it’s doable only under one condition: that you understand clearly what your top life priorities are, and you defend and honor those priorities fiercely, every minute of the day. It takes understanding your non-negotiables (what you won’t compromise on, what you won’t say “yes” to), and then living from that knowledge, and making the right decisions that align with your top life priorities. If you can’t do that, you can’t create or sustain balance.

#7: Fulfillment

Biggest challenge: “Utilizing my potential in the best possible way, for myself and for others.”

Fulfillment can be defined as this: “Satisfaction or happiness as a result of fully developing one’s abilities or character.” We simply can’t experience fulfillment if we’re not living up to what we know is our highest and best potential. Have you ever settled for something much less than you know you want or deserve? It hurts – a lot.

But to live up to our highest potential, we have to leave our comfort zones behind, and perhaps even leave behind the definition we’ve crafted of who we think we are, and the stories we tell ourselves about what we’re capable of, so that we can become the person we dream to be.

Fulfillment comes when you take bold actions that say “yes” to the future vision of you, even well before it’s “hatched.”

#8: Confidence

Biggest challenge: “Feeling like I have something to offer now, rather than feeling constantly as if I’m not ready and need more training.”

I’ve seen in working with thousands of women over 10 years that we humans only see what’s at the tip of our noses. And when we’re in situations that are hurtful, demeaning, challenging and worse, we lose confidence. We get rocked. We forget who we are, and what we are capable of, and see only the boss in front of us who’s yelling or the colleague who’s tearing us down.

It’s a tough world out there, but there are many ways we can stay true to our gifts and capabilities, and build our confidence. For that, we need support from others who believe in us without fail. We need to build our “tribe” of people who will do anything for us. And we need to believe in ourselves without fail, despite the evidence around us that says we’re not “ready” to soar.

 

#9: Stability

Biggest challenge: “Figuring out what to do next, to keep me afloat and be a bridge to my later years and retirement.”

I think that some of the worst advice many of us have ever received in life falls under the category of “Do the stable, secure thing!” As one who followed the “stable” path for 18 years, and pursued a corporate life that was, in the end, very wrong for me, I know that “stable” can be the kiss of death. After experiencing a brutal layoff in the days following 9/11, and feeling as if my whole life and career came crashing down around me, I now know this – NOTHING outside of us is “secure or stable.” Only YOU are stable – your spirit, your intelligence, your capabilities, your gifts and what you have to offer others and the world. And how you choose to react to what comes your way – that’s what brings stability. These are the only aspects of life that are truly stable and secure in this world.

#10: Passion

Biggest challenge: “Overcoming feelings of ineptitude and negativity because of career setbacks.”

Finally, passion – it seems that everyone talks about wanting to be passionate about their work. Yet passion is something that can demand a high price – the price of wrapping your entire entity around a certain direction (including risking your checkbook, your marriage and even your health) because you can’t NOT pursue it.

What people often mean when they say “I want to feel passionate about my work” is this: They want to feel alive, not exhausted, beleaguered and demoralized. They want to feel that there’s a reason they’re on this planet, a reason for the talents and abilities they were given at birth and have cultivated. They want to believe that they’re here for a purpose and finding that purpose will give their lives the meaning and passion they’re missing.

Passion can be tapped and uncorked, for sure, but only when you allow yourself to believe that your life and your work mean something more than merely existing for a paycheck, or doing the “secure” thing.

For the entire article by Kathy Caprino please check here.

Danae Branson is the Founder of Elite Scheduling Services. She offers professional appointment setting services to external wholesalers and financial advisors. You can learn more about her services at http://www.eliteschedulingservices.com.

Make A BOLD Change!

Have you ever heard the quote from Albert Einstein, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”?

Some of us are afraid of change, yet we want great things to happen. We want to increase our sales, grow our businesses and increase our wealth – but at the end of the day we aren’t always willing to make the necessary changes to make these things happen. So what can we do to jump start a much needed or wanted change?

*Try something outside of your comfort zone. Forcing yourself to do something new causes personal growth. Maybe try something you never imagined like taking a sabbatical from work to travel or starting your own business. Take a leap of faith and go for it.

*Once you’ve decided to try something new just do it! Don’t spend a year researching and re-examining – those are just excuses not to do it. Getting bogged down by the data sucks the fun out of your decision so just do it already.

*Do not give yourself a deadline for success. When you make a bold choice decided to do it for the long-term and enjoy every aspect of it. It’s easier to move forward when you aren’t missing a bunch of crazy goals you set for yourself.

*Have fun! You only live this life once, so why not have fun! Don’t worry about what everyone else will think – the best success stories are of those that marched to the beat of their own drum. You aren’t a cookie cutter person so don’t follow a cookie cutter life. Ask yourself what you want out of life? What would make you happy? And then do what makes you happy.

As a little reassurance people who made big transformations such as leaving their jobs or going back to school, were happier six months later than those who stuck to the status quo, according to a survey by the National Bureau of Economic Research.

If you are serious about making some bold changes one of the best things you can do for yourself is to network with those that have the same mindset. At the end of the day we do need encouragement and the people that are doing big things surround themselves with others who do the same.

So be bold, be brave and embrace your life. If there is something you’ve always wanted to do, do it now because tomorrow is never a given.

Danae Branson is the Founder of Elite Scheduling Services. They specialize in scheduling services and marketing for financial professionals.