Monday, July 12, 2010

Choose not to ask "What if...?"

Hi Wonderful Ladies!

I've had some really great conversations with a couple of work-from-home leaders (gals who help mentor me) in the last week. We were talking through how much life has changed for our families in the last few years.

We were talking about "why" we decided to work from home and why we've "stuck with it." What drove us in the beginning to keep going? College money, taking a vacation, paying off debt...those kinds of things.

As the conversation progressed, however, we realized that we had no idea how much our "why" would change from the day we decided to stay home and work with the freedom of being more present for our families. One of the gals had serious heart problems and her husband shocked her by completely walking away from the family. Suddenly she wasn't thinking about college savings for those kids of hers...she was thinking about food, shelter, and doing parenting on her own. Today...she didn't have to ask "What if?" She knows she made the right decision to push forward.

Another of the ladies I was talking with originally joined to pay down debt. That was it. However, about 2 years ago her husband was diagnosed with a lifetime condition that has made it so he can no longer work. Their family never dreamed this would happen. It did happen. In fact, she learned this the same week she realized she was a Senior Director and her income was very close to being able to entirely replace her husband's  The news was so sweet and so timely. She didn't have to ask, "What now?" because she had chosen 4 years ago to never give up.

I'm the third gal. I just had my two year anniversary of choosing to work from home. My first "why" was to just be able to tell my kids "yes" once in a while, help save for a down payment, push myself to "have a life" after being diagnosed with chronic illness. However, the day our family home burned down (we were renting and it totally flipped our family upside down), I knew my "why" would never be the same. Then my husbands hours and pay were decreased drastically, and today, we are putting our home on the market with absolutely no idea what is next. To be honest, although I cry a lot lately, I am also rejoicing that I don't have to ask, "What if...?" No, I haven't advanced as quickly as some (it's tough when your phone and computer disappear in a fire)...but I know that those advancements are just around the corner. It won't be long and I'll be joining my two mentors with a new car, because two years ago I determined that I'm not going to stop. That my alternatives are slim and this has to work.

So, what am I saying? Well, each one of you is very important to me. I listen closely from the very first call we have and what happens to you and your family matters very much. So, I guess what I'm saying is that I want to encourage you to not step into a place where someday you will be asking, "What if...?" Instead, push forward, bug the crud out of me so I can help you, look around and open your eyes and heart to those around you who need to know that there are healthier, safer alternatives to what they purchase every day, and join my mentors and me in changing not only the lives of your family, but the lives of so many other families as well.

What's your next step?

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Love and Skill - A Masterpiece

When love and skill work together, expect a masterpiece.  ~John Ruskin~

There was a time when, although I enjoyed people, I also found them rather cumbersome.  They often disrupted what I was trying to accomplish, and honestly, at times, I would rather have been alone.

Then one day I had a paradigm shift.  I don't remember at all, actually, what created it.  I simply remember that it happened.  There was a choice made, in the deep places of my heart, to love the people with whom I came in contact.

Life has never been the same.  Woven delicately, I am seeing, the beginnings of a masterpiece.

Never hold back what you can give to another in need, especially not love.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Who To Study First...

When it really comes down, who we choose to study in order to learn about leadership is of the utmost importance.  Here are some of my favorites:

1.  Jesus and other Biblical leaders.  You have to admit, their message has transcended time!
2.  Our Founding Fathers (in the USA).  These men, with God's help, created the most incredible experiment of all time.  My desire is to follow in their footsteps in leading with integrity, compassion, and absolute commitment to doing what is right!
3.  Beth Moore - She is a leader of women.  She makes it her loving duty to invest so much in women so they too might come forth victorious.
4.  John C. Maxwell.  Good guy with incredible insight about being and developing leaders.

So, not only study much, but those who deserve to be studied.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Learning to Lead

Of all the lessons I have learned about leadership, the most important one is that great leaders never stop learning. Sometimes they are learning to cultivate their own skills, but most often they are studying the lives of those they lead to know how to be a better leader for them.

We can have the best motivational skills, organizational skills, or presentation skills, but without genuine care for others, the rest will have no results. The empire begins to crumble the moment you forget those who have chosen to follow your leadership.

What do you think?