Saturday, June 21, 2014

Top Ten Ways NOT to Follow Your Passion

There's a lot of talk about discovering your gifts, and finding your passion these days. This week I attended a networking meeting and talked with a great group of women who have not only found their passion but are actively following it. I met Ann Casey who just finished a mystery novel and is all set to launch it.  I met Osa  Marten who owns a driving school. She has just started blogging and is so excited about the results.  I met  Laury Beesley founder of Widows GPS Inc.  She lost her dad at sixteen and then her husband passed away seven years ago.  She's created the kind of support for others that got her through. It was inspiring just talking to everyone.


Are You Following Your Passion?

I also talk with a lot of people who complain about not following their dream.  Most of them are waiting for something to happen so they can really start living. I hear a lot of  'if onlys' or 'somedays'.  Here are the top ten ways guaranteed to make sure you don't wind up in the energetic networking group that I just mentioned:

Top Ten Ways NOT to Follow Your Passion

  1. Decide you don't really have one.  You must have been napping when God was passing out the talents and gifts.
  2. Decide you don't have the money or resources.
  3. Decide you don't have the time... maybe someday when you win the lottery or retire or the kids are grown.
  4. Decide your circumstances have to be perfect before you move ahead and of course you aren't any where close to that.
  5. Decide the critics who discourage you must be right and put more faith in them than in yourself.
  6. Decide to give in to your fatal flaw: depression, poor health, attention deficit disorder, dyslexia-- we've all got one.
  7. Decide the one half-hearted try that failed was surely a sign that you weren't meant to succeed and give up.
  8. Decide the past ten+ years you've put into researching your passion aren't quite enough yet to pull the trigger and go for it.  
  9. Decide you're too old to go for it now.  Maybe if you'd started when you were younger.
  10. Decide you're too young to go for it now.  Maybe when you're older and more experienced.
 Have I left anything out?  How am I so familiar with all this excuses?  I've used them all at one time or another.  At one point in a mastermind group that I was a part of, I voiced my concern that following my passion was going to take a long time and I was already into middle age.  What if it didn't work out?  Wouldn't I have wasted my time?  Know what my brilliant coach said? "You're going to be doing something for the next several years anyway, right?  Why not follow your dream?"

So what about you?  Which excuse are you using?  You're going to be doing something for the next several years anyway, right?  Why not follow your dream?

Want to a guide to help you discover your passion and start the journey?  Check out my coaching packages:  Coaching for Success

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Start Where You Are:  Use What You Have

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Monday, June 16, 2014

Oliver North and the Three P's of Career Transition

Saturday evening I visited the BEST Bookstore in Atlanta, Foxtale Book Shoppe, in order to meet the delightful Oliver North and get a copy of his latest book Confederate Lies.  What an experience!  First of all the crowd was amazing.  My friends and I arrived one hour ahead of time and there were already about thirty people in line.  While it continued to grow, we chatted with local folks about everything from great local restaurants to who they were giving the book to (many were father's day gifts).  Foxtale did a great job of keeping everything organized. Once North arrived and started signing books, the line moved quickly.  Despite the long line, North spent a few moments asking every person who they were purchasing the book for and inscribing a special note for each recipient.  He was warm and personable, posing for numerous pictures and chatting with everyone.  What a warm and special moment!

Later, I got to thinking about the transition that North made from retired military to political commentator and television host, writer and author. Whether you agree with his politics or not you have to agree that he has successfully transitioned from one career to another. As someone who has recently retired from a school counselor career of 20 years in order to pursue my new career of author, speaker and coach, I'm interested in what it takes to successfully move from one career to another.  Here is some advice  that I would have for those in similar situations:

The Three P's of Career Transition

  • Plan ahead--Develop a plan on several levels; financial, career and social/emotional. 
  • Practice your plan: Begin working the plan before you retire.  This means develop a budget and start living on that budget.  Begin your new career on a part-time basis and develop the necessary connections to prevent feeling isolated.
  • Procure ongoing support:  Connection is important.  For many people who leave an organization to become an entrepreneur, an author or a part-time employee, there is a loss of the social atmosphere and culture of the workplace.  Create a new support system through networking and joining groups in your field.   Find a coach or mentor who has already successfully made the leap and have them work along side as you create the life you want.
Are you in transition from one career to another?  Are you looking to discover your passion and reinvent your life?  Need help with the Three P's of Career Transition?  I'd love to help!  Check out my coaching packages here:

Need a book that will walk you through discovering your passion and reinventing your life?

Here's what Dan Miller says about The Call:  Perfect Dream, Imperfect Life

I urge you to do something special for others and yourself-read The Call. The investment of your time will come back multiplied with more personal insight, joy and victory and will illuminate the way for others whom you touch along the way.
~Dan Miller,

Monday, June 9, 2014

Your Story Matters--Tell It!

One of my favorite gifts that I received when I retired last week was this lovely canvas designed by Kelly Rae Roberts.  She is a favorite artist of mine since she began her career as a social worker and does this extraordinary art that combines quotes and collage.  Even though I don't know her, I feel we share something in common and her art pieces always speak to me.  This one says, Your beautifully, messy, complicated Story Matters, Tell It.  Don't you just love that?  Do you believe that your story matters?  Are you telling it?

My Unremarkable Story

One of the reasons that I failed to tell my story in the past was because I believed it was not extraordinary.  After all, the story of a shy introvert who was so afraid of her voice that she tried to live under the radar while she waited for permission, waited to be discovered/rescued and waited for her life to be "just right", isn't a story worth telling... is it?  To have a story to tell, you need one that's remarkable, don't you?  You need to have scaled mountain peaks, and overcome great obstacles, and slain a few dragons.  I hadn't done any of that so what was there to tell?

It's All in Your Perception

It wasn't until I started telling my unremarkable story that I learned that telling my story could be an inspiration to others.  It could bring comfort, hope, and challenge to someone else who felt the same way. And then this amazing thing happened.  As I told my story, it became a remarkable story because through telling it I was no longer the shy introvert who tried be invisible and didn't make a difference or take a risk.  I became the shy introvert who moved beyond the story I told myself to the confident, capable, make a difference in the world person that I am (most of the time!) today.  That's a remarkable story isn't it?  It's a story of overcoming personal challenges, scaling seemingly impossible mountains of doubt and slaying some internal dragons.  Turns out there's a lot to tell.  And there's a lot of people who need to hear my story to give them the encouragement and the strength to slay their own dragons.

What's Your Story?

Do you believe that you have a story to tell?  Are you afraid that it's too unremarkable, too messy, too imperfect, too shameful, too embarrassing to tell?  Who needs to hear your story?  Begin today to share your story.  Maybe you only share it with one person at first.  Maybe you start slowly and cautiously, but please start.  Because your story does matter.  Tell it.  Someone is waiting to hear.

Want to read my whole story?  You can find it on Amazon:

The Call: Perfect Dream, Imperfect Life

Want to discover and tell your story?  Need help finding your passion and reinventing your life?  Sign up for my Thirty Day Challenge.  You get a download of my workbook:  Dream Achiever:  Simple Steps to an Extraordinary Life and two one hour coaching calls so that you can put the workbook into practice and tell your story!  You can sign up here: