Can You Help Yourself?

This is a fair question, and we would like to think that yes, we can take care of ourselves and help ourselves when we get into a pinch. Everyone wants to look as though he or she is in control. And sometimes we are willing to put on false airs to pretend everything is okay.

Pretending everything is okay, though, just doesn’t help as things start to stack up against us. As problems and worries stack up, we end up having tunnel vision and lose sight of the full picture, especially solutions. It’s hard to see anything except for the problems.

This is the best time to have someone else in our corner that we can turn to for help. Working with someone else is often essential because, we see in a nearsighted fashion, often being able to identify problems and not able to tell whether there even real or not. With someone else by our side, they may be able to look a little more far afield, and they are much more likely to be able to see in a 360-degree range. They can help us decipher what the real problems are and even help find ways to overcome them.

This person could be an accountability partner, a mentor, or a life coach. It is better to have someone that we talk to on a recurring basis who knows us. If we only show up and talk to someone when we’ve got a problem and are worried or scared, it is much harder for them to help because they don’t know the whole us.

Even having a life coach and spending $70 once or twice a month to meet and discuss plans for the future is well worth the money. Just by being able to talk to someone else you can often hear what works and what won’t. Discussing concerns and problems has a magical way of reducing stress and worry on us. And by thinking things through, we could probably even save more than what the coach costs just by being able to discuss things in advance and have someone else to help you find solutions.

I have come to learn that having a coach, a mentor, or someone else who work with and be honest with me is an excellent idea.

Thanks for being with me today, I look forward to being with you again tomorrow.

Back in the Electronic Age

I often make a joke about what would happen if all of our modern electronics suddenly stop working. Do you know what would happen? We would be thrown back all the way to the 1970s.

Some people feel that modern electronics is more of a hindrance than it is a convenience. I was able to decide for myself this week as my incredible four-year-old phone’s battery died. As I began to miss important calls, and meetings with my accountability coach, I started to feel the years melting backward.

 Four years is not a long time, yet I started by looking at getting a new phone. Because I was in the middle of a plan change, I was not authorized to purchase a new phone online. I was told to go to a local store.

I went to a store in the mall, and the clerk advised me to go to the repair center for a new battery. The repair center was amazed that the phone’s battery had lasted the four years and they asked me what I wanted to do. It turns out four-year-old phone batteries are not always available, even at the repair center.

The people at the repair center were very kind though.  They checked out my account online and helped guide me to a phone that would do what I needed and fit into my limited budget.  They made the transition fast and even transferred my apps and data from my old phone to my new one. 

I truly appreciated the folks who helped me, and I am in a far better place than I was two days ago.  For now, I am comfortably back in the electronic age and ready to move forward into Tomorrowland.

If you have a chance, please give me a call.

I hope we can be together again tomorrow.

 

Break Your Wall

Have you ever felt alone in the middle of a crowded room? You have something useful to share and no one to share it with. And, you feel stuck. You are stuck in a rut. That’s okay, I’ve been there, and I do know a way out.

Look around you. You have an opportunity for chance encounters everywhere. And yet, it’s hard. We do not know who’s who. We probably don’t know who could use what we have to share with them. We probably think that others are in their own world and we are right.

For protection, we build an invisible wall around ourselves, something to keep people out of our personal zone. We do this because we fear what they may think and we worry about what they may find if they come within it. I’m not saying you have to invite people into your deepest darkest secrets. Yet, people need to know those they are going to work with at a business casual level.

How do you do that? I would suggest a little remodeling. In other words, lessen the walls between you and the other person. Before you get the hard hat in the sledgehammer out, let’s set up a plan.

People like to be complimented. People also want to hear positive words. If you start off negative, this is what others could remember about you. You can start off by saying something nice about their tie, or you like their glasses, or someone is wearing a beautiful pendant. Or you can say something nice about the location or that so many people came to the event. Introduce yourself and shake their hand. Asked them a question about themselves. What do they do? Have they been to something like this before? Or some other topic. Keep everything positive. Stay casual, and don’t appear too pushy.

Not everyone will want to share, yet more people than you think will be happy to talk and are grateful to speak to someone for a few minutes. Why? You have just helped them to ease the restrictions on their invisible wall. If you have not done this before, just be casual, do not try to sell them anything. If asked, tell them about the things you’re working on, keeping it brief and positive.

If they seem interested, invite them out for a cup of coffee at a convenient coffee shop sometime in the next week. You want to buy the person a cup of something to drink and talk with them. One thought to remember, is that if you have something good, you want to share with your friends. What you doing here is making friends. Also, you are showing generosity which is an essential trait in friendship.

I have seen this done on an airplane jetway, in a room with 250 business people, and a small gathering of eight or 10 people, at a coworking center and many other places. Slightly modified you can do the same thing on a blog. You can do it on a social media site. The whole idea is, there are 7 billion of us. People are everywhere. All we have to do is remove the invisible walls.