Apr 252016
 

golf club egg

What if you had a beautiful gift to give away? Let’s pretend it’s a brand new set of golf clubs. Instead of “going viral,” you have the feeling people are avoiding you like a contagious illness. It’s  around us, every day, in e-mail blasts, Facebook posts, and tweets; since I follow a bunch of authors, I call it the “buy my book bug.”

Some authors post about their topics, their writing process, their pets, their partners, their projects and their progress. I love reading their stuff. I feel connected to them, and, because of that, I enjoy their success. When they post about a new release, event, or sale? I gladly retweet it or share it on my page. There’s a relationship.

Then there are the others. I “like” or “follow” someone new, hoping to find some good, fresh content. But sometimes get the automatic, one-size-fits-all private message “inviting” me to connect with them somewhere else. Ugh.

The second group doesn’t get it: social media is not for selling. It’s for creating and developing relationships. And, as Bob Burg says, “All things being equal, people will do business with, and refer business to, those people they know, like and trust.”

I’ve taught social media basics to authors and other small business owners for a while. It breaks my heart to tell them, “Nobody cares about your _______ (book or product).” I feel like I kicked a puppy. It’s not personal: most people don’t care about mine, either.

What do people care about online? The same things they care about in real life: themselves, their families and their own lives.

So why should authors and small business owners have an online presence? That’s where our readers are. Part of our job is to make it easy for them to find us. Another part is to let them know we care about their lives, too. Writing, tweeting or posting on Facebook… it can’t “be about” you.

What about the golf clubs?

golf clubs

A lot of people would be thrilled to get a brand new set of golf clubs for their next big occasion. I’m not one of them. I don’t play golf and have torn both rotator cuffs; my chances of becoming a regular, happy golfer are pretty slim. If you offered me golf clubs I’d know you don’t know me well…  But, if you kept trying to give me  golf clubs? I’d start to wonder what was wrong with you.

There’s nothing wrong with you; in fact, I appreciate your generosity. There’s nothing wrong with  golf clubs, either. They’re just not something I want or need right now.

And, if you stop trying to give me golf clubs and, instead, try to find out what I DO want? I’m a lot more likely to stick around… and share your message with the golfers in my life.

Do you have a social media pet peeve? Or, better still, a tip? Please share in the comments.

 April 25, 2016  Posted by  Social Media 13 Responses »
Apr 192016
 

Ahhh, April…  While most are waxing poetic about showers and flowers, some of us are up to our eyeballs in awareness activities. April is Alcohol Awareness Month, Child Abuse Awareness Month, Autism Awareness Month, Sexual Violence Awareness Month…

For a time in my life, I was privileged to work with people who were experiencing difficulties as a result of one or more of these devastating circumstances.  Since starting as an advocate I’ve had many opportunities to learn about courage, resilience, and healing.  And, while I realize not everyone is touched by addiction and violence, we all have issues, injuries or illnesses from which we hope to heal. Here’s a little encouragement for anyone on a healing journey.

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Did I offer peace today? Did I bring a smile to someone’s face? Did I say words of healing? Did I let go of my anger and resentment? Did I forgive? Did I love? These are the real questions. I must trust that the little bit of love that I sow now will bear many fruits, here in this world and the life to come. – Henri Nouwen

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Love one another and help others to rise to the higher levels, simply by pouring out love. Love is infectious and the greatest healing energy.  – Sai Baba

Healing is a matter of time, but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity. – Hippocrates

“The trauma said, ‘Don’t write these poems.
Nobody wants to hear you cry about the grief inside your bones.”
― Andrea Gibson, The Madness Vase

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Allopathic doctors used to laugh condescendingly at those who posited that psychological, emotional and spiritual factors were important contributors to the sickness as well as healing of the body. – Marianne Williamson

There is so much division in this world. So what is really the path of healing? It can begin in this moment, by embracing the life that’s here. – Tara Brach

Please feel free to add some of your favorite healing thoughts in the comments.

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Sometimes our thinking is what needs to be healed.  The Inner Critic Advantage: Making Peace With the Noise in Your Head….  a little book full of big ideas about how — and why — you can learn to love “that voice.”   The Inner Critic Advantage is now available on Amazon.

 

 April 19, 2016  Posted by  Happiness, Inner Critic, Self care 16 Responses »
Apr 122016
 

Reach High

 

I love to celebrate. I’m pretty sure that growing up as part of direct selling family had something to do with developing this part of my emotional DNA. In addition to “regular” holidays like Thanksgiving and Independence Day, I got to see people celebrate whenever they would reach certain goals and milestones.

That early learning came in handy when I went to work in human services. Many aspects of that work involve helping people assess their current situation, set life goals and identify the smaller steps needed to get there. And nobody gets from where they are to where they want to be without discipline and hard work. What may look like baby steps to one person can be monumental to another, so recognizing and celebrating even the tiniest bits of progress can help sustain momentum.

The size or the type of goal doesn’t seem to matter much. Maybe you’re chasing big ones like competing in a triathlon, raising confident kids or earning a whole lot of money. Or you could be after lifestyle improvements such as learning a new language, making time for creative outlets or committing to an exercise program.

Whether the focus is health, wealth or happiness, I’m pretty sure humans are hard-wired to improve.

Can you imagine my delight when I discovered “Reach as High as You Can” Day, celebrated on April 14th? I like the idea of having a day dedicated to personal growth: what better time to check in with your dreams and goals, to honor your progress and set course for the next step.

Since releasing  The Inner Critic Advantage, lots of people have told me that the biggest obstacle to achieving their goals is that critical inner voice in their heads: the Inner Critic, Inner Editor or Inner Saboteur telling them they’re not good enough… or at least not ready. So, I’ve decided to reach high: I’m celebrating #ReachAsHighAsYouCanDay by giving away electronic copies of The Inner Critic Advantage: Making Peace With the Noise in Your Head.

You want to help me out? Help me reach one of my dreams? (I want to help as many people as I can by getting this little book into their hands… I want to do it so much, I’m giving it away.)  Share this post. Or one of the tweets. Or the Amazon link. Or the link to my Reach as High as You Can Day Celebration. (I put it on Facebook to make it easy for you to invite your friends.)

Dreams can come true… but none of us will ever know unless we try. What will you be reaching for on April 14th? Please share about it in the comments. Maybe making peace with the noise in your head will help. I sure hope so.

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 April 12, 2016  Posted by  Happiness, Inner Critic, Self care 15 Responses »