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May 10, 2022

Intentionality: Pretty F*cking Feasible

There is a word that can change everything. Your marriage, your company’s future, your day, your workout routine, your EDI (Equity, Diversity, Inclusion) efforts: INTENTIONALITY.

If you don’t have it, you end up someplace strange…unintended…dissatisfied.

I’ve got a little pet peeve: I hate it when people say “urgh, you’re so lucky, you get to travel to all these amazing places and set your own hours.” Uh…I BUILT that, thank you very much. For two years, brick by brick, flight by flight, client by client, decision by decision.
Now, absolutely, I’ve been born with many privileges that gain me access to certain treatment, resources, education, etc. Just to spell it out, I'm talking about the color of my skin, my passport and nationality, my sexual orientation, etc. These are all things that I did nothing to earn or deserve. I absolutely (unfortunately), got lucky here.
What I can choose, however, is how I use that privilege … yup … intentionally. And so, I choose to inspire, unite, uplift, and kick-a*s. Related, what I did have something to do with is the type of lifestyle I’m living. And the singularly most important thing in building it was this: Intention.

Click here to read on.

April 13, 2022

Leader! Do your team members have a vision?

As a founder, keeping your team members happy and thriving is crucial to realizing your company’s vision…here’s why and how you do it.

One of your biggest responsibilities as a founder or leader is to help your team members see a place for themselves within the vision they help you realize. In other words, the vision every single one of your team members has for themselves is just as crucial to the success of the company as is the vision you have for the very company itself.

Early on in my work with clients, I help them develop a vision of their Future Self. We give them names, like Beach Tony, Dr. Caitlin, or Resort Anna. And then we put the Beach Tonys of the world to work:

With that vision at the forefront, every day, they’re becoming their future Self, and ultimately, take emboldened action in the present.

Living from that future place opens up a lot of potential. For you as the individual. For your company. For your team. And for the members of that very team.

As a founder, you’ll have your own reasons for going into business. Your business is, in some ways, the vehicle that helps your call forth your Future Self. Similarly, you'll also want to clearly define your envisioned future for the company. Ultimately, you want to help your team members define their own future vision and, collaboratively, create a vision wherein the company's future can support the individual team member's future, and vice versa.

Click here to read on.

April 6, 2022

ONE moment: What are you waiting for?!

A friend of mine teaches a class, “Getting good at getting old”. A soul as old as time, a spirit as young as a newborn, agility as fresh as that of a 7 year old, and a body around 70, she has the students of the course contemplate how everything they do might be the last time:

Blow a kiss to your grandchildren, walk down your favorite street, have dinner with your best friends, say good night to your loved one, etc.

What becomes utterly clear towards the end of a long and blessed life is, in fact, a universal truth: everything we do at any point in our lives might just be the last time.

 

I say this in celebration of life!

All we ever have is the moment at present. We don’t know what next year, month, week, day, even hour looks like. We don’t know if or how we’ll experience the next moment. Or where we’ll be. All we ever have is the moment at hand and it’s time to cherish every single one – and make the most of it...

Click here to read on.

March 30, 2022

Priorities - do you have them?

Or are you just busy?

What is it that you really want? What is important to you? And are you putting your money and time towards what's important? Or are you a victim to your own circumstances? Whenever I coach clients, especially entrepreneurs and leaders of organizations, we look at this one universal truth:

Ultimately, a leader’s ability to realize the vision they’ve so carefully laid out comes down to two things:

how they spend their time

how they spend their money.

Click here to read on.

March 23, 2022

Are you the sacrificial lamb of your dream?

Something I ask my clients is “How would this dream of yours turn into your personal nightmare?” Typically, a list of things they would no longer be able to do unfolds. A look of horror settles in on their face. And yet, by the time the list feels complete, they discover what it is they have to protect with all their might while building their dream.

Personally? If my dream of traveling was stolen from me and you’d instead place me in a grey cubical at a 9-5, that’d be a scary nightmare for me. As I’m writing this, I’m sitting near the beach in Lisbon, in a beautiful Café, eating Pastel de Natas.

My business and my lifestyle are, by design, intricately connected. This is something I’ve built over years with the help of strong intentions, clarity on what I wouldn’t trade the world for, and a loving commitment to myself.

Are you the sacrificial lamb of your own dream? Or do you live while building the dream?

 

Click here to read on.

March 9, 2022

I'm opening up my calendar

I'm opening up my calendar. Times of crisis, especially of war, are times of reckoning, times of introspection, solidarity, and ultimately, they are times when creativity levels will rise. These are trying times for all of us. You may have read more of my thoughts in this article on Home, Love, and War – thank you, truly, to all those that have reacted to this.

Sometimes, there is but one thing we can do at any given moment...

I’m opening up my calendar to YOU: In being with my clients this past week, I’ve realized that we all are in need of a Being With someone. So, I want to extend the invitation to Be With someone to you, as well, at no charge.

If you are grappling with your civic responsibility as an artist, entrepreneur, business owner, human,
are suddenly asking BIG questions,
or are committed to fueling anger into creativity,
and if you think it would be helpful…
…then I invite you to come and sit with me for 90 minutes in a private coaching session. This will be a complete, deep-dive session where I won’t hold back. A space for you to just Be.

 

Click here to read on.

March 3, 2022

About War, Home, and Love

This blog post was supposed to be about my recent change in lifestyle, my move to Portugal, and the start of a nomadic chapter in my life and business. I was going to write about the contradictory feelings I had on the flight here – the excitement and wonder: Is this the right thing to do?!, and my plans for the business. It was supposed to be a lighthearted message along the lines of “if you can believe it, you can make it happen”.

Then, war broke out, threatening the very sovereignty that enables so many of us to follow our dreams of not only a country but the individual. Writing about aimless nomadic travel while there are hundreds of thousands, soon-to-be millions of people being uprooted and forced to flee their home country, Ukraine, isn’t right.

When US President Biden offered to evacuate President Zelensky, he responded: “I need ammunition, not a ride.” And he shall receive - literal ammunition and that which can’t be measured in numbers: love, support, belief…and the strength and actions that love, support, and belief can unleash.

And he shall receive, for love is the ultimate weapon.

 

Click here to read on.

March 2, 2022

Welcoming Fear with Open Arms is Daunting, but Establishing a Relationship With it is Essential for Your Growth And Fulfillment

Fear. That stifling, deafening, defeating feeling of paralysis.

You can’t do anything. It keeps you from proposing to your partner, deciding to quit your tedious job, or applying for your dream job. It keeps you from climbing the mountain, going bungee jumping, or scuba diving.

But does fear always have to limit you?

Wait, Should I Settle?

A dear friend once begged me, as I was driving him to the airport to send him on his way to live in a new country, “whatever you do, promise me you won’t settle.”

What he meant by this was the decision to settle down and getting complacent might feel good for the moment. However, long-term, it’s dangerous for the mind. It’s the exact opposite of growth and fulfillment.

 

This article has originally been published on the MAPS Journey. Click here to read on.

February 23, 2022

Getting unstuck - can't you or won't you?

I recently went over to my mom’s for coffee. A treat, as always. My brother came in with his chemistry homework and asked something-something about potatoes. (my last chemistry class is way too far in the past for me to still speak that language). He basically said "I can’t do this. I don’t know the answer to this."

I asked: "Well, have you checked the companion book?" No, he hadn’t. A resource at his fingertips...unutilized.

The conversation with my brother wasn’t too different from how some client conversations start:

Client: "I don’t know what I need to do to be a leader. I don’t know how to network in this new field I’m trying to break into. I don’t know how to set up an email marketing campaign. I don’t know….."

Typically, I don’t buy that. Of course, when I know the ‘how to’, I’ll happily share or offer a resource. However, the "how to" isn't the core of the matter. Instead, I ask a few questions that relate more to the BEING than to the DOING:

Click here to read on.

February 16, 2022

Networking during a career pivot - ultra-hard or easy?

Having played Simba for four years – ages 6 through 10, Pumbaa and Timon left a serious impression on me. Particularly, a version of “leave your past behind, Hakuna Matata”. The pre-2010 version of YOLO or Eff It.

Well, neither Simba nor I have much followed that advice in later years. However well-intended Hakuna Matata might be as a motto, there are lessons in our past that will keep hitting us over the head until we turn around and not only deal with them, but integrate the value past connections have to offer into our presence and future.

Put differently, at one point or another, especially the people of your past will become the secret key to unlocking the next level of success in life. And by people I mean business partners, clients, speaking opportunities, new job engagements, and referrals, that’s mentors, web designers, etc.

Let’s talk about networking when you’re switching careers/industries.

 

Click here to read on.

February 9, 2022

Are you a playwright yet?

Have you ever found yourself wallowing in the stories your favorite characters live out so fiercely on the big screen, or on Broadway; feeling inspired by how they rose to the challenges while tirelessly pursuing their objectives? I like to think of good storytelling as being synonymous with building your own life, career, or business. In fact, I submit that the exact same things are needed to make either, the story on screen or of your life, a fabulous creation of the mind. So, instead of wallowing in some character’s life, why not choose to learn from what goes into great storytelling and start writing your own script?

 

Click here to read on.

February 4, 2022

What's your story?!

Finding truth in a change of perspective

What’s your story? More importantly, how do you tell it? DO you tell it? Or are you reiterating how someone else has passed it down to you? A parent or a mentor, maybe? When telling your story, or when contemplating which decision to make in your company, a change in perspective can be pivotal. A change in perspective can reveal solutions, offer insights, and pave the way not only to better outcomes, but forgiveness, empathy, and compassion.

How often do you stop and examine your own personal story?

 

Click here to read on.

January 31, 2022

How to turn into the person you want to be - right now

Our past and present is here to inform, not determine our future. To help achieve this, I’ve created a process that calls forth your innermost leader and, in doing so, supports in you creating a future goal you’re coming from, not hustling obsessively to reach achievement.Once we make a shift from describing to creating our reality, we are then also designing our future. Ultimately, stress levels go down as a sense of fulfillment and purpose settles in.

 

This article has originally been published on the MAPS Journey. Click here to read on.

January 28, 2022

CEO - A Title or a Choice?

Lately, I’ve found myself in a lot of conversations with friends and clients that consider their next move in their career, some contemplate leaving one career path in order to pursue another career path, some think about their next move within the same career. Either way, they’re yearning for a big change. I admire their bravery and see something oh-so-familiar in their eyes: The clash of excitement and terror that seems to set in the minute after they’ve made a pivotal Choice:

 

To become the CEO of their lives.

This article is for all those that are at a crossroads in their career. It’s for those that are thinking about pivoting, changing their career path, becoming freelancers, or leaving a perfectly “fine” career to start their own business. You might even see yourself in anyone of these stories:

Click here to read on.

December 14, 2021

Forgiveness – When Your Business Becomes a Mirror of Your Soul

During tough times in business, many of us tend to grind harder, work longer, and make “I can sleep when I’m dead” their new motto.

Before long, we have completely abandoned any attempts at self-care: that morning walk, the phone-less coffee after lunch, or the two hours of brainstorming with your inbox put on pause.

This typically leads to burn-out and doesn’t do a thing to the bottom-line — nothing good anyway.

Once you set out to found your own business, it becomes a mirror of your soul, with all those wounds, limiting believes, and sabotaging behaviors you’ve picked up over time. If you’re not careful, before long your self-worth is in-toe with your net-worth.

My mom grew up in the former GDR, East Germany, and self-development and personal growth pretty much granted you a spot in jail at that time. If you weren’t careful, voicing judgments and claiming your own opinion would lead to the denouncement of the harshest kind. It could come from anywhere: your best friend, your neighbor, your colleague at school.

The forgiveness process I’m about to share would have been illegal in East Germany (it still is in some countries these days). This process is about freeing your mind from triggers and acknowledging when work triggers a private memory – and working through it.

 

This article has originally been published on the MAPS Journey. Click here to read on.

November 2, 2021

For An Entrepreneur, Traveling Can Be a Wealth of Resources and Connections. Here Are Three Key Ingredients to Building Transformational Relationships While On The Road

If you love the idea of working from the same office five days a week and enjoy your once-a-year vacation, that’s great. This article isn’t for you.

If, however, you consider the world-wide-train-and-flight-connection-web to be your office, you’ll want to keep reading.

I built my business on the fly. Literally, I built it on flights, on trains, in hostels and hotels, in foreign cities, and at conferences. Every time I pack my backpack, inspiration jumps out at me, hugging me like an old friend.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about networking and building relationships while traveling, and that’s what I’m going to share with you.

Take the Leap. Buy The Ticket.

I needed an escape from traditional nine-to-five so much, I booked myself on an around-the-world ticket and came up with my business.

 

This article has originally been published on the MAPS Journey. Click here to read on.

September 21, 2021

Cultivating a Business Plan That Offers True Freedom Might Sound Like a Fantasy. This Coach Shares the Secret Recipe Learned From A Margarita-Artist Named Lemon.

If you’re building a business, you probably started with a business plan or at least guiltily remember that you were supposed to have one. But what if the traditional way we think about a business plan is actually the thing that is holding you back from achieving lasting success?

I work with classical musicians that are building community-based businesses. Each of them seems to believe that they need to grind, sweat, and sell their souls to be successful. But as they learn pretty quickly, that just leads to a failed business and burnout.

In my work, I’ve found that there is only one real reason people quit their 9-to-5:FREEDOM.

They want financial freedom and the freedom to work where, when, with whom, and wearing whatever the heck they want.

But by the time they’ve filed all the paperwork, lost years of their lives creating a website, and find themselves surrounded by vision boards and oughta-dos, it starts to happen: money worries creep in, and friends and family cast worried looks their way.

They realize that they’re anything but free...Learning from Lemon: How I Learned to Create True Freedom...

 

This article has originally been published on the MAPS Journey. Click here to read on.