Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Expectations

Can we please just talk about expectations for a sec here?  I was talking with a friend recently and realized that expectations play such a vital role in our lives.   Yet, we might not realize it.

For example, when someone tells you they will do something, do you EXPECT they will do it?  I do.  I'm the type of person who when I say I will do something, I do.  As a result, I EXPECT others to do the same.  When the expectations are unmet, that is when frustration and hurt can enter the picture. Unmet expectations.

Sometimes, I will tell people what they can expect of me, and in return, what the expectation is of them.  This works well for adults and children.  It appears to me that a lot of frustration in life and in relationships are caused by miscommunication and/or unmet expectations.  Think about the last time you experienced frustration...what was the cause?

The expectations may or may not have been communicated, which can also cause the problem.  This seems to happen a lot in marriage.  Have you ever expected your spouse to be able to read your mind?  I have. And, truth be told, it's not fair to either of us.

Anyone relate to what I'm sharing here?

My encouragement to you today is this ~ be clear with your expectations; being upfront and honest is never a bad thing.  Treat others the way you want to be treated. Communicate.  


Have a great day!


Sunday, June 26, 2016

Ch-ch-ch-changes....Are A Comin'!!

Truthfully, I'm not sure where or how to begin this post, but I do know that God gave me a download this morning and I need to process it.  Funny thing is, God speaks to me when I'm doing things. {Maybe because He knows slowing down is a struggle for me, but I'm working on it.}  This morning as I was making some banana blueberry muffins for my family, He spoke.  So, here goes my processing of what He said.

Let me rewind a bit for you, so we have the whole picture here.  For the past few weeks, I have been in a funk.  Not sure why until now. Perhaps it was the reset, I've thought?  Or summer?  Or no margin for me, which I DESPERATELY need?  What is it that has had me in a funk?  I've been unable to put my finger on it until now.  It's been to the point where I have been looking for part time jobs. That's usually my first key that something is "off."  See, it's easy for me to justify working ~ it would be good to work part time, be out of the house, have a "place of my own," have boundaries from home/separation, something to DO.  Yes, I'm a coach and I love coaching and believe it's been a great fit for me for the time being, but like I said I couldn't quite put my finger on what was up.  As I've looked for jobs, they have been too confining ~ full time, no thanks, I don't want or need to work full time currently.  Part time ~ there are very FEW part time jobs that 1. are flexible {think hours of 8-12; 1-5.....I have children to drop off and pick up at school people!} 2. that are a good fit for my skills, abilities and passions. Which leads me to the realization that my theory of working part time doesn't match my current reality.  Then, I feel stuck.  Ugh. Melissa doesn't like to be stuck.  If you know me well, you know that is true.  


A few weeks ago, I started to read a phenomenal book by Lara Casey about fear. It's called "Make It Happen: Surrender Your Fear, Take the Leap, Live On Purpose." Highly recommend it!  One of the exercises in the book makes you list your fears.  One of the ones I listed is "fear of missing my life." To be honest, I don't know where that came from, but I wrote it down and didn't really think much of it.

Fast forward to yesterday, I came home from teaching Cize Live and started to work on my facebook like page.  As I was working on it, I could feel the irritation rising, but didn't know the root of it.  The irritation continued throughout the day and Chad and I had a nice long talk last night about where I'm at, what I'm doing, what I feel God is calling me to, etc. To be honest, I don't know....there are a lot of question marks right now so I'm pressing into Him and asking Him to show me His plans for me and my life.  

I think part of it too, is come fall, I will have 2 kiddos in school full time, which will be a first for me in 8 years.  I think that's an underlying part of all this.....There is a goal I've wanted to hit for sometime now that hasn't happened that has me frustrated, I think I am learning I care more than most people do about themselves, which is frustrating because you can't make people care.  So, there are all these tiny little irritations adding up, it seems.  And, of course, that fear of missing my life........

So, now that we have the backstory covered, this morning as I was making muffins, I heard God say "you are afraid of missing your life, and your fear of missing your life is making you miss your life," or something to that effect.  WHOA.  See, I'm striving so hard and working so hard on all these goals and things that I can't control, and they are kinda making me miss my life.  In my spirit, I know I need to have better boundaries and be more focused during work time.  I need to be INTENTIONAL. A plan needs to be in place for me to follow and get the "a priorities" done so that when the kids are awake/active/home/ready, I'm all in.  I want to be fully present and engaged with my family, but haven't been.  And, that is my own fault.  I've been too worried about missing something online and in someone else's life, that it's taken away from my own.  Ouch. These are hard words to type.

So, now that the realization/awareness is there, what do I do with it?  That's really what matters and makes the difference, right?  Is that the action is taken in the direction we want to go.  Since accountability is key with anything we want to achieve, I'm writing out the following and asking you, my friends, to please hold me accountable for these things:

* I am committing to not spend as much time on social media/my computer each day.
* I am committing to set office hours and work in those pockets of time.  They will be morning before the kids are awake, a check at lunch/afternoon time, and after they are in bed.  If you message me, please know I will reply in 24 hours.
* I am committing to not be a "johnny on the spot" reply type of person anymore!

* I am committing to being more present for my family and friends in person than I am online.

Anyone else struggle with this, or is it just me?  Thanks for helping me with this, friends! We need each other in this life, don't we?

In closing, this quote from Mother Teresa has been showing up a few times and it's resonating with me.  This:



Friday, June 10, 2016

Let's Talk About Fear.....What the Heck Are We So Afraid Of? And, Why?

Can I just be really real, honest, transparent and vulnerable with you?  If you've said no, go ahead and stop reading, it's ok.  My feelings won't be hurt, I won't be offended.  I'm sitting here in tears this morning.  Know why? Because of fear.  I am grieved by how many people let that stupid f word hold them back from living.  In so many ways!  {And by f word, I mean fear.....hope ya know that!}  I know because I've been there.

God has really opened my eyes in the past few months to 2 things that have held me back from reaching my potential for Him.  They are shame and fear.  Ironically, "fearless" was my word for last year.  "Unashamed" is my word for this year.  Yet, there is still so much fear in me I'm realizing. Here are some of my fears, to be really honest {see, here I go!!!!}

  • Fear of leaving the house with things out of place.  Why does that scare me?  Not sure, maybe it's more of control and not wanting to come home to a mess?  Still processing that one.
  • Fear of what people think of me.  This is big.  I don't ever want to be "that girl." Who the heck is "that girl," anyway and what did she do to anyone?  Part of what God is showing me is to be ME.  For someone who has had identity issues for most of her life, this is new for me.  But, I am learning that He has made me with a huge heart to help people, with a heart for business, with a desire to see lives transformed by Him and His power, but also by food and nutrition . Our bodies are temples for His glory, after all, so don't we need to learn to treat them as such? But why don't we?  For me, my issues were fear and shame {this may be another post, friends, I'm digressing here}. Back to what people think of me....I am His child, passionate about helping others be their best selves.  I'm not going to hold back from posting who I am or what He has called me to.  Learning to accept that if people don't like me or my posts and choose to unfollow me, that is ok.  I'm not here for their purpose or glory, but for His.
  • Fear of my success being selfish.  This is a big one for me.  Still praying and asking God to reveal the root of it.  Work in progress here!
  • Fear of not being liked/approved.  Yup, people pleaser in remission here.  Pretty sure I'm aware of the cause/root of it and have worked and will continue to work on this.  I do think that the core, everyone does want to be loved and accepted, right? {Maslow's hierarchy of needs?}
  • Fear of the loss of control.  Now, this one is just dumb, I know because I'm not really in control!  Yet, I feel {ugh, those feelings are deceptive, friends!} that when my "ducks are in a row" and I'm prepared for the next thing, I am.  When that isn't the case, fear rises up.
  • Fear of the unknown.  Ugh, this might go back to the control issue mentioned above.

    So, now that I have bared my soul here, what are some things you are afraid of? I'm learning to ask myself "where does this fear come from," and "what is the WORST that could happen if these fears happened?" Normally, it isn't that big of a deal, in the worst case scenario.  The root of the fear is the hurdle it seems, because that's work. It's work to go back and figure that out, there might be pain involved, but from someone who is starting to come out on the other side of the fear, it's so worth it!

    If you struggle with fear, I recommend the book "Make It Happen, Surrender Your Fear, Take the Leap, Live on Purpose," by Lara Casey.  Life changing, friends!  Please don't let fear hold you back from being all God called you to be and all He has for you. "It is for FREEDOM He set us free.  Stand firm, then, and do not LET YOURSELVES {it's a choice, my addition here....} be burdened again by a yoke of slavery."  ~ Galatians 5:1.

    What is slavery?  "A condition compared to that of a slave in respect to exhausting labor or RESTRICTED FREEDOM."  Not sure about you, but restricted freedom sure doesn't sound like what Jesus came to give us, does it?  Step out of your fear friends, I'm doing it right alongside you as well.  It's time to get the noose of fear off of your neck and WALK IN YOUR FREEDOM, without shame, without guilt, without fear. Let's do this!!!  {Phil. 4:13}

    Blessings,
    Melissa

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Looking At A Home Based Business, or Way to Earn Income From Home? Can I Help?

Hiya!  Are you looking to build a home based business, or a way to earn income from home?  Can I help?  You might be thinking "well, you've had how many businesses, how can you help?"  Exactly.  I have done several different businesses and offer a unique perspective of things to consider before you decide.  They say "make your mess your message," so hopefully my mess will help you!

It might be helpful for you to know some of the various businesses I've tried.  Are ya ready?  {You might need to take your socks off to count on your toes too, LOL!}


                   

Mary Kay
Taste of Home Entertaining ~ trip earner, top recruiter for the company, Director status

Send Out Cards
Jockey Person to Person
Initial Outfitters
Boresha Fat Burning Coffee

Neal's Yard Remedies

There might be more, if there are, I honestly forget at this point, ha.  I've been a Team Beachbody Coach now for 2 years and if I had known then what I know now, I would have joined this opportunity much sooner.  Here are my tips/things for you to consider:

1. Does the business model fit my life? Meaning how do you share the products?  Is it at parties? Through social media?  If social media, do you have to take a lot of pictures to upload?  What does the company encourage you to do to share the products and the business?  If it is a party plan model, does that work for this season of your life with your family and other responsibilities?  Definitely think that through.  That is ultimately why I stopped with Taste of Home Entertaining.  I had a newborn baby and was nursing, so being gone for hours at parties in the evening wasn't conducive to our lifestyle at that time. {Post partum may have had something to do with that as well.}


2. What is the mentality of the company? What is their focus?  Does their mission and vision align with who I am and what I am about?  If not, it would be wise to consider what you like about them and why you are attracted to them.  This is key, in my opinion. "Everything rises and falls on leadership" as Bill Hybels says.  It's true.

3. Is the product something people need &/or want?  That's a key question to ask.  This will help you determine who your market will be. If you love a product, but your friends and family don't, who will you share with to get your business off the ground?  {A lot of times, we start with family and friends and branch out from there.}  It's important to look for something that there is a need/desire for in peoples lives.

4. Is this a product that people will continue to order, or is it a one and done type deal? Another important question to ask.  Is it a business that will generate reorders?  Is it a consumable product, that people will use up and need/want to get more?  There are lots of products out there that people just don't need a lot of.  Once they have it, they have enough. So consider that as well.

5.  Price point.  Is the product affordable for those I know?  Another thing to ponder.  :)

6. Is the product something I believe in and am willing to share?  This is also crucial because you are going to hear "no."  However, when your mission, vision, passion and belief in the product are solid, it doesn't matter. You keep going!  Trust me, been there, done that! You could also ask "is this something I am passionate about?"  If the answer is yes, that's a good sign!

7. Ask and think about things like inventory. Do you keep product on hand and have to send it out?  If so, do you want and are you able to spend a lot of time at the post office? If you have inventory, how much does that cost?Will that cost be a deterrent to others from joining you?


8. Start up cost and other fees.  How much does it cost to join?  Is it something that most people can afford, or could work to afford in a short time frame?  What are the recurring fees, if any?

9. Company return policy.  If people order and don't like it, are you responsible for that? Or does the company take care of it?  All of these details and little questions are so important.

10.  Training.  What type of training will you receive?  It's important to have a solid foundation laid as you start a business, as well as opportunities for continued growth.

What other things are important to consider or ask, do you think?  Did I miss anything?  If you have questions or I can be of help, please let me know.  At the end of the day, my best advice is pray about it, do your homework and talk with your spouse about it.

Blessings,

Melissa

Saturday, June 4, 2016

How Riding A Bike Brought Up FEAR In Me, Yet Made Me Feel Alive

A few months ago, our daughter learned to ride her bike without training wheels, which is a pretty big deal!  It's also special because one of her friends from school helped her to learn how.  As a mama, it's been great fun watching her "get it."  Watching her embrace her fear of getting on, falling, yet getting back up and going again.  I have loved every minute of it.

Yet, it's funny how becoming a parent has brought all these fears out in me.  See, I used to ride bikes when I was a kid.  But, one time I had a pretty bad crash.  It let fear set it and deter me from riding again.  Until, the one time Chad and I were camping with his family and I decided to try again. Picture me, not having ridden a bike in years {due to fear}, trying to ride again.  At a campground. On a dirt hill going up.  In high heel sandals.  You can probably picture how this went.  {And, I don't know why I was wearing heels camping?!}  So, I got on the bike, rode up the hill, quit pedaling, got to the top and literally fell over on the bike.  It was great.  Yet, once again, fear with a bike was created and I haven't ridden since.......Until, our sweet daughter asked me to ride with her.  I tried using the "I don't have a helmet" excuse for about as long as I could, then just bit the bullet.

With a new helmet in hand, my excuses were gone.  A few weeks ago, we went to a local park with trails.  I posted this picture on facebook and asked friends to pray for me.  I secretly hoped the saying "it's like riding a bike," were true.  Only picturing the times I rode the bike successfully without injury! {No, that's not my Ninja Turtle one!!}




I prayed as I got on the bike and told my daughter to lead.  And, lead she did, with me following behind.  But, I did it!  It was exhilarating to get over something that held me back for so long and just DO IT!  It was amazing!  As we were riding, my heart was filled with gratitude and thankfulness for so many things.  I felt ALIVE.  Like really alive and it was incredible!    I was so thankful for the opportunity to have this experience with our daughter and do something together active that we both enjoy!  It was truly a win win and there are many more rides in our future together!  Friends, my advice to you is this ~ If there is something you are fearful of, do it afraid!  Don't let fear continue to control and shackle you, as it did me.  You've been given a life, so go LIVE it!!!