Friday, July 06, 2007

We've Moved To a New Blog Home: GaiaHart.com


We've packed up and moved this blog to a new host at GaiaHart.com. The dust hasn't settled yet and we're still re-arranging the furniture and hanging pictures on the walls. The paint hasn't dried and the drop cloths are still crumpled on the floor, but we're inviting you over there anyway. Just because we're friends and you can grab a paintbrush and help me spruce it up with your suggestions as we go. I'm always open for new ideas, because the biggest room in the house is the room for improvment!

Come see us at our new digs: GaiaHart.com, catchy name, eh?

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Claim Your Independence

Ten years ago this holiday week, I put myself on house arrest to write my first book. It was Independence Day and I decided to claim my independence from the shackles of a tyrant boss and a job from hell by writing the first of many books and articles on how to energize your life. That book was the springboard to my career and financial independence as an entrepreneur, professional speaker and author. My life was never the same after the book was published by Labor Day - quite possibly the fastest book to be written and published on record in just 2 short months. I was determined to get on the fast track of working for myself.

Now I'm working on the third edition of the book, it may be turned into a workbook so it's more interactive...it's been on the back burner while other ventures are bubbling over. It's been an exciting ride and there's lots more to come. Many different ways to claim independence: from administrivia, from housework, from yard work, from running errands in order to reclaim my time for the things that matter. Outsourcing is a wonderful thing.

How can you restake your claim on your independence this holiday? What can you do to outsource some of your time so you can reclaim that time back for the things that matter? Can you start a new side business that will earn passive income so you can claim independence from a j-o-b? Call me at 480-802-0103 and I've got some ideas for you to create your own cash machine to get you on your path to true financial independence. There's nothing more energizing than feeling your freedom and knowing you can fly. Freedom is a wonderful thing. In what other ways can you claim your independence and also celebrate your interdependence with those who matter most?

Happy Independence Day!

Monday, July 02, 2007

Celebrate Your Point of Enoughness

Americans seem to be on the treadmill of always striving and never arriving. The deal it, that you've got to know when you reach your point of "enoughness" so you know when you can celebrate your arrival. When do you really arrive? Where are you arriving? Have you taken time to actually know what you want to accomplish in order to know you've arrived? Once you're there, do you move the finish line?

Some say that they'll keep moving the finish line as long as it's still fun to achieve. Some say they'll never reach it, or else what's the point after the finish line, death? Or retirement? What's after retirement? What's after death? Another finish line?

Having goals keeps up energized. It's not even the fact that we reach a particular goal, it's just having something just out of our grasp that we keep reaching for that keeps us motivated, excited and keeps us moving forward and also keeps our energy up. What are you looking forward to? Are you putting enough things into your life to look forward to? How do you know when you have reached your point of enoughness? Authors Vicki Robin and the late Joe Domenguez stated in their book Your Money or Your Life, that after your point of enoughness, there is a dimishing return of satisfaction and the way to fulfillment is through giving. Giving to your community, giving to others, giving of your knowledge, giving some of your share of the pie. How are you giving of yourself to keep yourself and other energized? Take stock of what you really need to energize your life and to be at your point of enoughness, then take the time to celebrate.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Time = Money = Life Energy

Forget the Euro, time is the currency of the new millennium. Unlike money, which can be earned back and recreated after it's spent; time cannot be earned back once we spend it. So we need to spend it wisely and in alignment with our values, goals, wants and needs. Be purposeful about the use of your time and guard your time as you would guard your vault, it's more precious.

We all know that time = money. But it also equals our life energy. When we spend time doing something, like work, we are exchanging our life energy for money. Being aware of how we are spending our life energy will help us decide whether or not we are making good choices with our time and with our life.

Rethink your spending habits of your time and your money. For instance - if you make $10 per hour and want an item that costs $100, then you would need to exchange at least 10 hours of your time for that item. Is that item really worth at least 10 hours of your life to have? In essence, you make far less than your official hourly wage, when you consider the time it takes to commute, buy lunch, buy work clothes, buy gas or subway tokens to get to work. It really boils down to maybe half of your official hourly rate, so that item for $100 realy is costing you about 17 hours of your life....is it worth it?

Make wise choices on how you spend your time and how you spend your money and you will reap richer rewards in the area of your life energy. Be very aware of your boundaries for your time and spend your time on the things and with the people that matter.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Your Transitions, Your Calling, Your Energy

In the past two weeks I've received a dozen phone calls and emails from others telling me of their life transitions and seeking a bridge from what they've been doing to what they want to be doing for the next phase of their life. Many have been doing what they think they 'should' have been doing, they either studied it in school, they were good at it, or they just got very comfortable, but now bored with it. Three of these people just quit their jobs and others told me they couldn't believe how much energy they felt after their last day. It's called FREEDOM. I just received an ezine that stated: employees commisserate and entrepreneurs brainstorm. Enough said on that one.

Note to self: just because you are good at something doesn't meant you should be doing it as a career.

How do you know you are doing what you should be doing or to stop doing what you've been doing? It can be summed up from a passage from The Seat of the Soul:
"When the depest part of you becomes engaged in what you are doing, when your activities and actions become gratifying and purposeful, when what you do serves both yourself and others, when you do not tire within but seek the sweet satisfaction of your life and your work, you are doing what you were meant to be doing. The personality that is engaged in the work of it's soul is bouyant. It is not burdened with negativity. It does not fear. It experiences purposefulness and meaning. It delights in its work and in others. It is fulifilled and fulfilling."

As a person experiences "flow", where their knowledge, skills, abilities and talents are met with the appropriate challenge, all time and space stand still - they are in the zone. That is when you know you are on the right path. When you take the Tingle Test - when you think about your profession and you get chills and tingles just thinking about a career move or an experience, you are on the right path. If the thought of that experience doesn't move you or thrill you, then you are probably not moving towards your calling.

When you get antsy with your job, then start researching and journaling and finding the delicious intersection of what you love, what you're good at and what the world needs and will pay for. When you're on target, it will ignite your energy like you never dreamed.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Fear vs. Power in Your Energy System

Are you living in fear or are you living in your power? You lose power whenever you fear. Be remaining in your power, you don't become a static energy system, you become a stable energy system, capable of conscious acts of focus and intention. You also become a magnet for those who are illumined and those wh want to be.

When energy leaves you in any way except in strength and trust, it cannot bring back to you anything but pain and discomfort. An authentically empowered person doesn't release it's energy except in love and trust. When a person releases their energy in fear, then they are not authentically empowered, they are acting in fear and have loss of power.

Authentically empowered people have a humble spirit and walk in a familiar world and knows that its authentic needs will be fulfilled. A being that moves through the world in fear and in false empowerment is restless, nervous and has a need to envelope themselves in external powerful things to make up for their lack of authentic power.

Those who move through the world knowing of their powerful energy system are free to be who they are and experience the world as they wish, and not be chained to the needs, obligations, excesses or expectations of others.

What type of energy system are you embracing and putting out to the world? Are you moving through the world sharing your positive energy system and light? Or are you claiming false empowerment through artificial means? Living a fearful life at any level doesn't promote an energy system that attracts the right things into your life. Living above the line and living authentic to yourself does attract the light and give off a powerful energy source, creating a powerful life. How are you moving through the world, in fear or in power?

Monday, June 25, 2007

Lighten Up: Your Energy, Your Light

Continuing with this light theme and how your energy and light are intertwined, I found a passage from the book ">The Seat of the Soul that is paraphrased below.

You are a system of light and the frequency of your light depends upon your consciousness. When you shift the level of consciousness, you shift the frequency of your light: negative feelings bring on a different frequency of light than positive feelings. Emotions are energy in motion and are currents of energy with differnt frequencies. When you choose to replace a lower-frequency current of energy such as anger with a higher-frequency current of energy such as forgiveness, you raise the frequency of your light.

When you choose to feel negative feelings, despair, worry, or other lower-freqency emotions, then your body feels physically depleted because it has merged with an energy current of lower frequency. Whereas a joyous person abounds with energy, feels bouyant and is running with a higher-frequency current of energy pulsing through their system.

Your thoughts create different emotions, thus different energy and a different light through you. Lower-frequency system pull energy from higher-frequency systems. If you are unaware of your emotions and your thoughts, your frequency will be lowered by and you will lose energy to a system of lower frequency than your own. By choosing your thoughts and by selecting which emotional currents you will release and which you will reinforce, you determine the quality of your light. You determine the affects that you will have upon others, and the nature of the experiences of your life.

Light represents consciousness - are you walking around unconscious or fully aware? Are you on auto pilot, commuting to the same work day after day and not feeling that it matters or that it's not making a difference. Or are you completely conscious of your energy, your activities and the meaning behind them? Are you consciously attracting the things you want into your life and giving thanks for them with your attitude of gratitude, or are you just showing up for life each day? What kind of light is radiating from you? What are you doing to illuminate more in your life? What would it take for your light to shine brighter?

Sunday, June 24, 2007

You Make the Call - Gruntled or Disgruntled

We always have a choice - a choice to be an energy radiator or an energy drain. We also have a choice to either accept or reject somebody else's energy they are projecting onto us. We have a choice to take it personally, or to mirror back their energy, or to let our own light shine onto them whether it will be connected to their own bright light or overshadow their dark light.

Light opens up darker spaces, so I choose to let my light shine into some of the shadows that may come into my life. For instance, I just returned from a blissful holiday in Santa Fe at a B & B that fell a little short of the expectations for the room, but the breakfasts were aaaaaahmazing. Their chef on the first day was simply charming, had incredible food and was a delight to be around. It set the tone for a perfectly heavenly day with devine company on a glorious sunny day in their courtyard. Her light shown onto her food, her guests, and in the air.

The next day the different chef put a decidedly negative flair to the whole affair. Her demeaner was much more of one who had to be there for her job, rather than one who delighted in serving her artistic creations to others and bask in their delight. And her edgy attitude tried to sneak into my deliriously happy day and get me cranky. We have choices to be either gruntled or disgruntled, to live our life and invite work into our life we are leading anyway, or to make work out of life. One chef shared her love of life through her cooking and the other just worked at it and it showed.

When you have a choice, why not choose between being happy and deliriously happy instead of happy or grumpy. We don't always have control over what comes to us (in fact, very little control over what comes to us.) but we do have a choice in how we react to it. How are your reactions lately? What do you choose to be... gruntled or disgruntled...it's up to you. You can make the call and you decide on your energy level and what to do with it and how others affect it. You can mirror back their light or let yours outshine the darkness.

Monday, June 18, 2007

What Can You Edit in Your Life?

I was at a trade show recently when my coach walked by my booth and told me I needed to edit my banner and my business card. She said it was too busy. That's pretty much how I've gone through life with as much activity, information, and stuff crammed into time and space that I could muster. I'm realizing that I need to edit some things out of my life, edit the noise and distractions, edit the things that don't bring me joy any more.

To that end, I'm editing out my monthly ezine, Live Wire, which I've been writing and publishing for 10 years. It's time to move everything to the blog...and by the way I'm working on a new website/blog combination to make things easier for everybody. I will publish just one more Live Wire announcing the big change, then there will only be archives of some of them on my website. I've noticed that it didn't bring me joy to sit down and write it any more, it became more of an obligation and once it doesn't make me happy, it's outta here.

I'm working on my new banner and biz cards as we speak and I've jettisoned even more stuff from my garage. I've decided to take on new business strategies that will allow me more time for the things that matter and allow me to have more control and balance on my timeline vs. somebody else's timeline. New strategies and ways of moving through the world that are streamlined and purposeful to who I am today, not who I was years ago when I first created them.

What can you edit from your life to make room for more energy. When you get rid of old, tired energy, you make room for more energy. Freeing up time, energy, space and emotional room, creates space for new things to come into your life. Pick a lane and go with the flow of your intentions. If you feel overwhelm, you haven't yet made a decision. If you are dancing between ambivelance and action, move towards action and watch what happens. Go ahead and actively edit some of the things that don't fit your lifestyle any more. Change things up and see what good comes of it and see what newfound energy arrives at your feet.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Flipping the Switch: Fast Gear vs. Nepali Time




Bouncing back and forth between high-octane conferences in fast-paced cities and then returning to my home in an "active adult community" - read retirement resort; it strikes me that there must be a balance between living life in 6th gear and going in reverse.

My 'hood is not nearly active, or young enough for me - hence my move to the mountains with vital, active, outdoor adventurous types, but I'm feeling I don't fit in with the uber pace of those I left in Washington DC. It reminds me of trekking through Nepal with my buddies and our pack of Sherpas carrying our load. We had just flown in from our home in Germany - still a slower pace than the US, and we were on European time on the hiking trail. Our Sherpas would fix us lunch and then we would lounge for an hour or two and then quit hiking around 2 or 3 to lounge some more.

At first we were a little aggitated that we were burning daylight and we wanted to hike further down the trail and not waste time sitting around. That thinking lasted only a couple days until we settled in to their rhythm of life and began to relax and bask in the lounging amidst the Himalayan peaks surrounding us. We played campfire games, showed our Sherpas skits from our camp days and taught them how to do shadow puppets on the tent walls by firelight. We had time to create, laugh, lounge and just be.

Now I'm feeling that schleping suitcases through airports umpteen times a month and chasing airplanes isn't the pace I want or need any more. Security lines aren't as fun as they used to be and so I'm making major changes to my life to support more of the Nepali Time and allow more free time. I'm setting up business systems, hiring Virtual Assistants and other life support to free up my time for more play with the people that matter. I'm feeling more energized by the mere thought of not continuing the pace I've lead for a decade and anticipate with eagerness the slower pace of the mountains...although not so slow as my retirement community. Maybe I'll gear down to 3rd or 4th....I don't want to hit reverse just yet.
On our recent cruise, my mom (who has never napped in her 80 years) decided to take the slower pace and nap twice a day and bypass the poolside festivities. It was a respite from the drunken masses and the sweet escape felt sinfully delicious.

What is your pace? Is it serving you well? Is your pace energizing you, boring you, or irritating you? How does it settle with you and does a slower pace invite relaxing or aggitation? Take a high-level look at your pace and your life and see what you can see. And see what you can change for the better. Take stock of your pace - maybe it's time to switch gears to something that suits your better for this time of your life. Now I'm going to go play squeakie with my dog, Madison....

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Clearing the Clutter

Have you ever noticed how much your clutter can weigh you down? There's a physical negative energy dragging you down with your clutter. It weighs on your mind and it fills up your life space so that new energy cannot enter into your life. I've been in major purge mode lately, from the physical clutter in my life to the mental clutter and other noise and distractions. It's such a freeing feeling to let go of things and stuff that are just not working for you any more. Get clear on what to do and what do drop, then take action and move forward to get things moving in your life.

If you're feeling stuck, then change something in your life to get things moving. Having moved at least 15 times in the past 25 years, I'm getting good at letting go of what's not bringing me joy in more and what I don't absolutely need. I also don't want to pay to move stuff. Just think about how much money your stuff is costing you in larger homes, storage fees, moving fees etc. Is your stuff really worth all the financial or emotional cost?

I've found that once you make a decision to take action, the rest falls in to place, it's the hemming and hawing and miring yourself in the decision making that takes time. It's the DECISION that's the turning point. Once you DECIDE that something is no longer offering personal or professional growth, it may be time to move on. What is weighing you down in your life? What can you purge to get your energy unstuck? What isn't serving you any more? What is your internal or external clutter costing you? External clutter is the stuff you can trip over, give to charity, or give to the dumpster and internal clutter is the stuff in your mind, your old belief systems, old ways of doing things or other behaviors that don't serve you any more. What else can you clear out of your life that is holding you back to unclear the bad energy? Decide to take action and see what happens!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Energized Entrepreneur


I wanted to get this message out to you before I take off on a cruise with my mom for her Mother's Day present. She's 80 and after taking her to Vegas for her birthday, I realized she's never been on a luxury cruise, so off we go. I wanted to share this note and photo of me doing biz in Cabo in one of those fabulous personal palapas - there's no better way to go than to be able to mix fun and effectiveness as an entrepreneur.

Having just received Barbara Winter's latest newsletter for the Joyfully Jobless and having just returned from Cabo where Stedman Graham was one of our keynote speakers, the topic of imagination came up in both instances. I think imagination is one of the most overlooked ways to energize your life and help solve business and personal problems. Sometimes you need to access the right side of your brain to get creative when meeting your challenges. Stedman said that imagination is more important than information. It can take us much further and open more doors.

Here's what Barbara Winter has to say from her newsletter. She's the author of Making a Living Without a Job - one of my first books on mulitple profit centers and turning passions into profits.

* IMAGINATION IS A POWER TOOL. There was a time when I was ridiculed for being a dreamer. I realize that I was cultivating one of my most valuable resources-my unlimited imagination. Our own business is the perfect place to exercise that on a daily basis.

* SELF-DISCOVERY IS ALSO ABOUT ELIMINATING WHAT DOESN'T FIT. Mistakes, wrong turns and unsatisfying projects also offer important lessons in what isn't right for me. Often there's no other way to learn those things than through doing.

What doesn't fit for you any more? What can you imagine your life to be if you had no barriers? What is stopping you from attaining what you imagine? What would happen if you turn off your TV and do your own imagining instead of watching somebody else's story? What do you want your story to look like? As an entrepreneur, I use my imagination daily - I dare you to use your imagination more in your daily life and see what happens.

Virtually Energized

Do you often feel like you just don't have enough time in your day to finish your "To Do" list? Is the thought of getting all those things accomplished dragging you down? Or do you wrestle with the thought of advertising, interviewing, and hiring an assistant only to have it be a hassle with payroll, number of hours you need worked or finding the right personality fit?

Enter the amazing world of Virtual Assistants who are lifesavers in this age of project management and fast-paced changes in what we need to get accomplished. I met Katie Gutierrez, President of www.AssistantMatch.com briefly in San Diego in January. I kept thinking that I really needed to retain the services of her team. Then we met again in Cabo a couple weeks ago and I decided I NEEDED to start immediatly in order to get my life back in balance as I scaled up my businesses. Within 2 hours of calling, a new record in hiring somebody, she had my VA ready to go. If you want to get back some balance and not feel overwhelmed, I would highly reccommend Katie and her team at Assistant Match - tell her I sent you. Her rates will be going up on June 15th, so I would do it now if you've ever been thinking of it and gain more time for yourself by hiring your life support team. You will be glad you did.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Are You Crazy or Lucky - How's Your Energy?

I just returned from an amazing week in Cabo - among some of the finest minds I've ever witnessed. The energy in the conference room of 250 entrepreneurs, wealth builders and investors was palpable. Most of our guest speakers commented on the energy in the room. Being a professional speaker, I could relate to what they were saying about feeling the energy of the room. It's electric in some crowds and void in others. The reason why this crowd was vibrating on a higher fequency was that we all knew that we are in charge of creating our own future and we have a plan to get there.

Unlike so many other audiences who are joined together because of an employer, this group was there by choice and they were in tune because they have the wealth road map. It's amazing how much more energy you have when you are on the path to wealth and life's riches - not just money riches, but prosperity in all forms.

One of our speakers was a developer in Los Cabos - on the Baja Penninsula - owning a reported huge percentage of the land down there. He said when you do things against the norm of the masses, you are considered crazy. When it begins to see that things are working out for you, then you are called a visionary. When all is said and done and your pathway has lead to success, you are considered lucky. So are people calling you crazy? Are they calling you a visionary? Or are they telling you that you're lucky? That may just be the evidence you need to show just how far you've come. When you're on your right path, your energy will soar. My hair stylist today said now that she has her own shop, she bounds out of bed and comes to work early. She said her old co-workers would never believe it because she was always late when she worked with them. It's amazing the energy you find when you work for yourself and are in charge of creating your own future. Here's a link to your own wealth roadmap, so you can catch the train to financial freedom and be a very lucky, energetic individual: http://www.LiveOutLoud.com

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Energize Employees Through Appreciation with a Twist

When supervisors dole out praise, it's often very vague and focused on the entire group such as "You're doing a great job, keep it up." Sometimes managers just don't know what to say or how to say it. After all, you don't want to say the exact same thing to each person - it can sound contrived. Take a clue from the flight attendants who have mastered the many ways to say hello and goodbye to hundreds of passengers a day. Put a twist on how you praise. These sentence stems should get your brain jump started:

I'm impressed with...
What I particularly liked was...
Our team is better because of your...
You're on the mark with your... (or the British would say, "You're spot on with your...")
You can be proud of yourself for...
I've noticed the quality of your work, specifically...
Your contribution of......on that last project was amazing
One of the things your customers rave to me about you is....
Your colleagues have sung your praises about.....
I've been noticing your attention to detail and in particular....
How awesome are you to do.....
You rock! Would you like to share some of your trade secrets with our managers....
You really made a difference by....
Our top management has been noticing your work and have commented on....
Take the rest of the day off for your fantastic effort with the.....
One of the things our team enjoys most about working with you is.....
I appreciate your....
You make my day by....
You're quite a role model because of your....
I'd like to acknowledge your specific role in doing...
This place would not run as effectively if it weren't for you and your...

That should get your started - go ahead and print this out for your cheat sheet and then write down each of your team member's names on a day of the week in your calendar and use one of these sentences with each person on their day. Make it a habit.

Now goodbye, see ya, bye now, bye bye, so long, thanks for flying with us, tootles, adios, ciao, auf wiedersehen, see you soon, see you on your next flight....

Monday, April 23, 2007

Beat Boredom at Work

Have you ever been bored at work? I can't remember being bored for the past decade since I became psychologically unemployable and started my own company. But I do remember those days in my W-2 job where I would be chomping at the bit to do something meaningful, take action, talk to customers or just have some forward motion. I'm thrilled to be interviewed for a recent article in Vitality Magazine - www.Vitality.com on the topic of how to beat workplace boredom.

My article isn't shown on their website, so if you want a copy send me an email with the subject of Vitality and I will send you a copy of the article to help you energize your workplace environment. I would also suggest my card deck 51 Winning Ways to Have Fun at Work. It's a real card deck that has a fun tip on each card, so you can play Go Fish and select an idea to improve workplace morale. And if that falls through, then you can always win some cash by playing a rousing round of poker with the cards.

Here's a tip to beat boredom - find work that is in alignment with your authentic self, your values, your beliefs and the big picture you envision for your world. What is your big picture and how do you fit your knowledge, skills, abilities and talents into that big picture? Where is that delicious intersection of what the world needs and wants and your special gifts? Find that intersection and you will never be bored, in fact, there won't be enough time in the day to do everything you want to do to move your vision forward. You may even find it hard to sleep because your mind is racing with new ideas of expanding and growing your dreams and desires.

Check out my other articles on fun in the workplace and improving motivation, morale and meaning at work at: http://www.funcilitators.com/resources.htm. Let me know what else you are doing to beat boredom at your workplace. I'd be delighted to hear from you.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Laughter, Levity & Longevity

As a Certified Laughter Leader (Yes, that's an authentic credential!), I've been researching the benefits of laughter for over 10 years and using it with success with my clients. The field of laughter and fun are eeking their way into the mainstream of industry and society. Today is a milestone, as we make headlines with a 2-minute video as well as 3 articles on the benefits of laughter on the popular website WebMD: http://www.webmd.com/video/laughter-heals.

Laughter connects us, and that alone has health benefits. Victor Borge said that shortest distance between two people is laughter. Average adults laugh around 15 times per day, while studies suggest that children laugh around 350-450 times per day. Laughter energizes us and no wonder children have so much energy. When you see that laughter is draining from your daily routine -take stock of what is going on in your life and plug those drains. Laughter builds resiliance to stress and will help us cope with our challenges. Not that we are laughing at our stressful situations, we are laughing through them - it's a coping mechanism.

What have you laughed about today? What are you doing in your life to bring on more laughter and bring on better health? Laughing helps boost our immune system, decrease the stress hormones of adrenaline and cortisol and stimulates the blood flow and heart and decreases pain. It's like internal jogging and easier to do. Check out my card deck - 52 Ways to Have Fun at Work for one tip per week on putting more laughter and fun into your workday. I also have Zip Kits: Fun Aid Kits for Stress Rescue and Recognition on the ParaFUNalia page at http://www.Funcilitators.com.

Laugh Long & Prosper!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Energize Your Life Through Job Satisfaction

How happy are you in your job? What is your job satisfaction? Duke University’s study found that job satisfaction was listed as the #1 factor in living a long life. Job satisfaction beat out 788 other factors as the key to longevity – beating out good health habits and good genes. Now there’s more evidence. The 2006 General Social Survey (GSS) at the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago cites the most satisfying jobs are mostly professions, especially those involving caring for, teaching and protecting others and creative pursuits after interviewing over 27,000 workers.

Top 10 most gratifying jobs and the percentage of subjects who said they were very satisfied with the job:

Clergy—87 percent percent
Firefighters—80 percent percent
Physical therapists—78 percent percent
Authors—74 percent
Special education teachers—70 percent
Teachers—69 percent
Education administrators—68 percent
Painters and sculptors—67 percent
Psychologists—67 percent
Security and financial services salespersons—65 percent
Operating engineers—64 percent
Office supervisors—61 percent

10 least gratifying jobs, where few participants reported being very satisfied:

Laborers, except construction—21 percent
Apparel clothing salespersons—24 percent
Handpackers and packagers—24 percent
Food preparers—24 percent
Roofers—25 percent
Cashiers—25 percent
Furniture and home-furnishing salespersons—25 percent
Bartenders—26 percent
Freight, stock and material handlers—26 percent
Waiters and servers—27 percent

How satisfied are you with your job? What can you change if your current position if it’s not the most satisfying? What do you love to do and how can you incorporate that (appropriately) into your work? How about not having a job at all? How about making a living without a job? More on that topic later…..

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Big Picture or Little Picture View of the World

Do you have a big picture or a little picture view of the world? Are you stressing over the administrivia or are you focused on the big picture of your life and your career? Take a look at what types of things stress you out - are they the small details, the perfectionism, the imperfect people, the gray areas on the outskirts of the black and white? Sometimes we make our own stresses and create our own energy drains by focusing on things that have less impact than the power we are giving them.

It's tax season and focusing on numbers is something we all need to do, but getting crazed if your account is 94 cents off isn't such a big deal in the scheme of things. Of course waiting until the bitter end and not leaving yourself wiggle room can also make you crazed. Step back from some of the situations you find yourself in and see if you're stressing out because you're focusing on little picture stuff. Perhaps you need to take a look at the big picture and if the stressors that are affecting you now will really matter in the scheme of things a few weeks, months, or years from now.

The big picture sometimes can pull us through the little picture stuff when things get tough - keeping our eye on why we are doing what we are doing can keep us going. Are you focused on big picture stuff or little picture stuff most of the time? Are you drowning in details or do you have paralysis by analysis? Is it taking your eye off the main goal and draining your energy? You may want to hire out your little picture stuff and have someobody else who loves doing it do what they love and allow you to keep your energy focused on your big picture. It can sure help your sanity - especially at tax time. We can all use a little energy boost at this time of year.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Energizing & Empowering the Women's Workplace

Working with many entrepreneurs lately has been an enlightening experience. The raw energy, sheer joy, purposeful passion and commitment to do what it takes to follow their dreams is an enticing and energizing change from working with employees who are burned out, rusted out and just worn out from the corporate climate.

It revitalizes my spirit to know that the transition can be made from endangered exec to enthusiastic entrepreneur, but it does take a mind-shift and a different way of thinking to move from employee to renegade entrepreneur. Many of whom are women seeking heart-work now that they've brought home the bacon in some not-so-fulfilling career. The U.S. Census Bureau and Bureau of Labor Statistics cite the number of women-owned businesses grew by 20% betweeen 1997 - 2002. They generated $16.2 billion in revenues, while businesses owned jointly by women and men generated $18.3 billion in 1997. Women also make 80% of the buying decisions in a family.

So forget the glass ceiling and find a skylight, then open it up and create your own culture in any type of business you dream of. If you are looking for somebody to lend a hand, lend a step up or step out, then give me a call at 866.Fun.at.Work or drop me an email at Gail@Funcilitators.com and I can help you get your life energized and empowered by sharing resources for creating a life you love and setting up your safety net for that transition into your own business.

To Your FUNomenal Success!

Friday, March 30, 2007

Corporate Kindness

There are a couple books out on the topic of corporate kindness and how being nice can actually be a competitive advantage. In The Power of Nice: How to Conquer the Business World With Kindness by Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval, they explain how friendliness and common courtesy along with how you look affects people’s moods and attitudes towards you. Cheerfulness and being polite and respectful spreads more easily than irritability and facial expressions and body language convey more relevant information than a sales pitch.

It’s all about the notion of consequences and karma – people may forget what you say, but they never forget how you made them feel. They remember acts of kindness as well as rudeness. After all, isn’t business and all of the world about relationships and how we connect with others be it inside or outside our organization?

Another book, The Kindness Revolution: The Company-Wide Culture Shift That Inspires Phenomenal Customer Service by Ed Horrell identifies how companies with stellar street reps for service excellence practice extreme kindness, respect, fairness and genuine niceties. He notes that the opposite of kindness isn’t being mean, it’s indifference. When indifference sets in, then it gives people a bad experience and in a world of choices, the customer (internal or external) chooses to walk. In fact, you can say that about any relationship – when indifference and disrespect and unkindness sets in, most people walk.

With a little more corporate kindness and consideration, I would argue that we would have many more gruntled workers than disgruntled workers. And we could actually save lives…one statistic form the Department of Labor cites that the #2 killer of workers on the job is homicide by a disgruntled colleague or customer. What are you doing to impart kindness in your daily activities? What are you doing to add light to the world? What are you doing to save a life today?

Friday, March 23, 2007

Energize Your Administrativia

There are some really amazing free virtual office tools available to us! It’s worth checking out. When you sign up for a free user account with Google you get the following: Gmail: Users agree the unique way message threads are displayed, the thorough email search function, and the option to archive rather than delete messages have them hooked. The gigantic storage space is a bonus, and any email address to which you send is automatically entered into your address book for easy retrieval. Gmail is also easy to use from mobile devises.

Calendar: It’s simple to create entries, allow an assistant to add appointments for you, view multiple calendars as one (work/personal/spouse), and set alerts. You also have one-click options to add an event to your calendar if it’s mentioned in an email message, and to create a map to the location.

Google Docs: Save, edit, and share documents and spreadsheets in this portion of your account. They have great collaboration tools, and you can access the documents from anywhere. Bloggers can publish directly from Google Docs to their blogs.

Google Talk: Allows for instant messaging and voice calls between users.

Picasa: Another way to store, edit and share photos online.

Adwords: drive traffic to your site and gain more exposure with this service where you can purchase words that show up in Google searches. Click on the button to the right under Energizing Links to sign up for your Adwords.

Groups: Join or create your own online interest group.

Adsense - monetize your marketing and earn money from your website while you sleep with Asense - click on the button to the right under Energizing Links to sign up for Adsense and start earning income every time somebody reads an ad from your site.

YouTube - Of course when you just can't handle one more minute of adminstrivia - check out their entertaining videos for a few minutes until you need to check back in again and get back to work.

Have a great weekend and take a look at systematizing your administrivia to make your life easier!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Embrace Imbalance

I know I'm supposed to be living a balanced life, as I walk my talk showing others how to lead more simplified, balanced lives and prioritize the things that matter. I find myself inundated lately with a symphony of things that seem to command my attention all at once. It's at this time that I believe we need to embrace imbalance and go with the flow while letting go of some things for the time being.

Perhaps we can't balance on a daily schedule, maybe it needs to happen over a span of a week or a month. When you know you need to gut through things or a plethora of projects for a month or two, then you brace yourself for a little imbalance during that time, as long as you can reward yourself with new balance at the end of the sprint. Having balance is all good and well, but sometimes it just isn't possible and we need to get clear and what to do and what to drop.

What do you need to do and what do you need to drop today or this week in order to come back to center, regroup, re-charge and re-energize yourself. Get fiercely focused, get ready for a sprint and then find some fierce fun at the end of it all and reward yourself for your accomplishments. My reward for these past 2 months is a cruise and a trip to Cabo to mix some fun and effectiveness. What's your reward?

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Take the Tingle Test - Career Choices & Dynamic Decisions

When you're in the midst of making career choices or other decisions about your job, your lifestyle, your surroundings or other business decision; of course you can write out the pros and cons and do a comparative analysis. I'm all for the using a visual to help sort out thoughts and see them in writing. It may make your clear choice jump out at you.

Trying what I like to call The Tingle Test is what really cuts to the chase and gets down to how you feel about a decision. Saying your decision out loud or just holding that vision clearly in your mind should give you a gut check and either make you tingle with excitement or leave you lack-luster. It's truly getting quiet and listening to your body and how it reacts to a decision as if you already made that decision. After you visualize your decision or say it, how do you feel? Does your hair stand up, do you get tingles down your spine, does a smile appear on your face, do your eyes light up, do you stand taller? All these are signs that your gut says yes to that decision.

If your body doesn't react positively, then maybe you need to tweak your decision - figure out what isn't exactly feeling right about it an make some adjustments in order to pass The Tingle Test with flying colors. Stress is what happens when your mouth says 'OK' and your gut says 'No Way' - that's when you know you need to regroup and feel energized with a better decision.

Make your decisions dynamic and involve all aspects of yourself to know if you're OK with that decision. Take The Tingle Test on your next decision and see what happens.

Now I've got goose bumps just thinking about my future and opportunities coming into my world.....how about you?

Monday, March 19, 2007

Corporate Kindness: A Competitive Edge

There are a couple books out on the topic of corporate kindness and how being nice can actually be a competitive advantage. In The Power of Nice: How to Conquer the Business World with Kindness by Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval, they explain how friendliness and common courtesy along with how you look affects people’s moods and attitudes towards you. Cheerfulness and being polite and respectful spreads more easily than irritability and facial expressions and body language convey more relevant information than a sales pitch.

It’s all about the notion of consequences and karma – people may forget what you say, but they never forget how you made them feel. They remember acts of kindness as well as rudeness. After all, isn’t business and all of the world about relationships and how we connect with others be it inside or outside our organization?

Another book, The Kindness Revolution: The Company-Wide Culture Shift That Inspires Phenomenal Customer Service by Ed Horrell identifies how companies with stellar street reps for service excellence practice extreme kindness, respect, fairness and genuine niceties. He notes that the opposite of kindness isn’t being mean, it’s indifference. When indifference sets in, then it gives people a bad experience and in a world of choices, the customer (internal or external) chooses to walk. In fact, you can say that about any relationship – when indifference and disrespect and unkindness sets in, most people walk.

With a little more corporate kindness and consideration, I would argue that we would have many more gruntled workers than disgruntled workers. And we could actually save lives…one statistic form the Department of Labor cites that the #2 killer of workers on the job is homicide by a disgruntled colleague or customer. What are you doing to impart kindness in your daily activities? What are you doing to add light to the world? What are you doing to save a life today?

You can find these books at the link to Amazon in this publication.

Friday, March 16, 2007

The Energized Executive

For several years now I've been hearing similar feedback from my audiences: how can they energize their health, wealth, well-being and their workplace. For many they have been in the same field for most of their career and are seeking something extra...something I like to call heart work. Sure, they are competent and maybe recognized in their field and many are fairly compensated, although everyone seems to feel they are overworked and underpaid. I like to think if it as under-played when they are burned out, rusted out and worn out from their dull routine of the commute and the same old, same old at work. I have found that many people have retired several years ago, yet they keep clocking in and coming to work - retired in place.

Enter the Energized Executive Retreat, the Energize Your Life Retreat or the FUNomenal Life Retreat. These programs are in the design works right now to answer the cry for help from my audiences. I'm seeking more input from readers to help crystalize the vision and the content for these retreats. We will be looking into ways to create your ideal life, how to envision your lifestyle and build systems to support your dream life. We will have personal assessments for discovering the motivations behind your behavior and how and why you do the things you do and how that attracts the things you have in your life. We will take a look at your current and future ways of having, doing and being and we will have some fun. After all, I was an Outdoor Recreation Director for a decade. We will most certainly be treated to outdoor frolic as well as treated to professional spa treatments and luscious, healthy meals. These will be holistic retreats to address your personal energy at every level.

Drop me a line with your suggestions, ideas, insights and vision of what your ideal retreat to refresh, renew and relax. What would you need to be a more Energized Executive - to come back to your position revitalized and ready to go? I'm also working on home study courses for those of you who can't make it to the retreat center. What kinds of things would you like to see in your home study course and how would you like it delivered? Totally digital, MP3, audio CD with workbook - you tell me and I will surely consider it.

Until I see you at a retreat - make a list of all the things you like to do to have fun or that makes you smile. Then make a date with yourself to do at least 1 thing per week on your list and work up to more things - make time for fun and you will make your life more energized.

Cheers!
Gail

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Planning Playtime to Increase Your Energy

Geeze, where has the time gone? I didn't abandon you - just been up to my eyeballs in deadlines, projects and building a new house. In the midst of it all, I guess there was a slow news day or something, but Stephen Covey's people notified me that I would be the cover girl for one of their other magazines in the Executive Excellence Publishing family of publications: Health & Fitness Excellence. Visit http://www.EEP.com. For a copy of the article on Planning Playtime to Organize and Energize Your Life, send me an email to Gail@Funcilitators.com.

Other news is that this blog will be moving in the near future to another site. I plan on revamping my current website and making the front page a blog so you only need to visit one place. Stay tuned for more changes to the new and improved Energize Enterprises, LLC.

Here's a question for you: if you could plan a girlfriend getaway as part of your playtime planning, or just a personal escape to refresh, renew and recharge your batteries; what would be some of the things you would like in your escape haven? What types of activities would you like to do? What types of food? What types of environments? Would you want any guided facilitation or just to "be" in an inspirational place? Let me know your thoughts of what you would like for a FUNomenal Woman Weekend or an Energize Your Life Retreat and I will send you a free report on energy gains and drains.

Thanks for your insight!

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Energizing Your Service Experience

Happy New Year to everybody. I'm thrilled to be able to share another article on Customer Service that was published in the December Parks and Recreation Magazine; called Bringing Customers Back. The article was based on the experience that my friends Dr. Diane Blankenship and her family and I had dogsledding in Wyoming. About our adventures and mis-adventures with services that were lacking and how it could have been better to make it a more positive once in a lifestime experience. Those who are members of The National Recreation and Park Association can read it in their magazine and others can visit http://www.NRPA.org and look under publications.

Take a look at the article if you want to learn more about facilitating the 6 phases of the customer experience.

To Your FUNominal Success!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Organize Your New Year


Start your new year off right and get organized to energize your 2007. Get your copy of A Tip A Day To Keep Clutter At Bay perpetual calender with 365 tips to organize your life.


Give me a call at 866.Fun.At.Work for your calendar.

Gail

Friday, December 15, 2006

Happy Herd or Mad Cows at Work


Happy Holidays!

I hope this finds you well and enjoying the wind-down of the season and the many festive office parties that are sure to abound. In appreciation for your support and adding light to my world, I wanted to share this pdf version of the new issue of Stephen Covey's Sales and Service Excellence magazine that features Fun*cilitators and our article on Contented Cows - How to Create a Happy Herd at Work through mixing fun and effectiveness. It hits the bookshelves in January and I wanted you to have a sneak peek - I thought you might like to get a jump on your competition and be the first on your block to get the inside scoop on building a better team.

If you want a copy of the magazine article in a pdf version, send me an email at Gail@Funcilitators.com to get your own copy and share it with others who may be just chewing their cud at work.

We've stocked up on our 52 Ways to Have Fun at Work card deck to prepare for the upcoming publication date. If you want 52 more ways to have more fun at work in addition to the article, send me an email or give me a call to order your own card deck chalked full of ideas, tips and tidbits to practice safe stress at work. 866.Fun.at.Work or Gail@Funcilitators.com.

To Your FUNominal Success!
Gail

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Change Your Mind, Change Your Energy, Change Your Life

When you change your mind, you change your energy and when you change your energy, you change your life. As we enter the holiday season and I see all kinds of news stories about the stresses of the holidays, it reminds me that much of the energy drain and stress is something we create for ourselves. When we change our mind about something and made a decision to think or not thing about it in a certain way, our entire energy about that thing changes. We can also change the energy of the people around us. After all, we are part of other people's environments.

Make some decisions about salvaging your energy this holiday season and set guidelines for yourself that make sense to you and your family. It's too late to make a decision not to cook a huge Thanksgiving meal, but not too late to make a decision about how to handle holiday parties, family, gift giving or experience giving, new traditions you can start, old traditions you can change or ditch all together and how you can improve your situation, your sanity and your energy in the coming year.

Try making a written 120-day plan and then keep it handy to keep you focused on what you want to be doing with you life, then celebrate when you see all the checkmarks after 4 months. It will certainly change your mind about what you decide to do with your time. If something isn't serving you well, make a decision to change it for the better and keep moving forward.

Cheers!
Gail