Purpose


“The miracle is this – the more we share, the more we have.” – Leonard Nimoy

This is the most challenging blog I have ever written.  It is very close to my heart and still very raw and emotional.  Mainly, it is a challenge because I don’t think I can ever do justice to the subject.

The subject is the passing of a dear friend of mine.  I met Jerry Tagami when I was 17 years old.  He was my teacher, my role model, my husband for 12 years, and ultimately, he was my dear friend.  He was one of the most extraordinary people I have ever known, in that he seemed to live every day just happy to be alive and able to contribute to someone else’s day.

Although he was too young to remember his first years of life, I am sure they were embedded in his soul in some way.  He was born on May 13, 1943 in the hot, bleak spot of Gila River, Arizona. Through absolutely no fault of their own, his American-born parents and relatives and many other hard-working US citizens of Japanese ancestry who lived on the West Coast were rounded up and sent to internment camps during WW II. This was due to the US government’s unjustified fear that they might want to aid the Japanese in conquering the only country they had ever known.  Jerry’s father, Kay Tagami, fought in Europe as part of the highly-decorated 442nd battalion and eventually his family was released from the camp to start life over in the Midwest.

But this isn’t the topic of my blog.  I just wanted to make it clear that Jerry began his life in the most difficult of circumstances.  When he was old enough to realize that, he could have felt justifiably bitter.  Instead, he emulated his parents, who forgave what was done to them and made the very best life they could for him and his sister in their new home of Chicago. When Ronald Reagan’s administration eventually gave him $20,000 in restitution, he did a very Jerry-like thing: He bought a big Harley Davidson motorcycle.  I guess he thought that living well really IS the best revenge!

Jerry loved English literature, and planned to get his PhD at the University of California, Irvine and then teach at the university level.  To sustain himself, he got a “temporary” job teaching English at Newport Harbor High School, beginning in my senior year.  Soon, however, he realized that he could have more fun and make a greater difference for young people at this impressionable age than he ever could in the university system. So, he quit the PhD program with an MBA and settled into the life he really loved.

After 34 years of teaching and just six months into his second, very happy, marriage to his soul-mate, Diane, the most unimaginable tragedy befell them – Jerry suffered a brain aneurysm, which nearly took his life.  Skillful doctors saved him, but he suffered profound short-term memory loss.  Thank God, he still knew who Diane, their family and most of his friends (including me), were. He could even recall with precise detail events that happened back in his early days at Newport Harbor High.  He loved to reminisce about his classes, fun travels and good times with Diane and his friends, who were mostly other teachers.  But Jerry could not be left alone while Diane was at work, or he would wander down the street and forget where he lived. So reluctantly, she had to entrust him to the daily care of loving nurses at a nearby home facility, where she and his old friends visited him regularly and took him on outings as much as his deteriorating body would allow.

On September 11, 2016 at age 73, after 13 years of being lovingly and loyally cared about and for by his amazing love, Diane, Jerry succumbed to a second unfair tragedy – lung cancer.  Two days ago, I attended his memorial celebration in Newport Beach, along with 100 or so old friends, nurses, former workmates and students who loved, admired and were grateful to have had him in their lives.

I have to admit, the tragic side of Jerry’s story is the one thing in life that has ever made me question my belief in an all-loving, all-powerful God.  Still, I have come to accept it as just one of those great mysteries of life – Why do bad things happen to good people? We won’t have the definitive answer until we are wherever Jerry is right now.  I’ll bet he wishes he could prepare an amusing and enlightening lecture on the topic, to save us the anguish we are all feeling at the loss of him.

Since I know that we always have a CHOICE of what to focus on, I choose to focus on what I DO know for sure: Jerry Tagami’s life, while far too short in duration, was filled with more joy, enthusiasm, impact and meaning than 10 lifetimes would be for most of us.

Sometimes as I watch the evening news, I feel helpless about the huge problems that appear to beset just about every part of the world.  I wonder, “What can I do… What the heck can one ordinary person do about all of this?” But as I sat there during Jerry’s life celebration, listening to his friends and family members speak about his legacy – the enormous influence he had on their lives — I realized that there is a LOT each of us can do to make a difference for our fellow human beings.

For me, the most impactful memories were shared by Diane Tagami.  She read an email that was sent to her recently by one of Jerry’s former students.  The writer said she felt isolated and alienated during her high school years and her English teacher seemed to sense this intuitively. On the last day of class before Winter Break, Mr. Tagami took her aside and gave her a little book of poems by Edna St. Vincent Milay.  He told her those poems had helped him get through some tough times and he hoped she would like them, too.

The woman confessed in her email that she had been planning to commit suicide over the vacation, but when Jerry said to her firmly, “And I look forward to seeing YOU after the break,” she changed her mind. If Mr. Tagami cared about seeing her again in his classroom, that was proof that she was worth something.

We rarely appreciate the profound impact our small daily kindnesses – a word of encouragement, a smile, a listening ear, spare change — can have on someone else.  The thousands of students Jerry taught and  the friends and family he will always have were forever changed for the better by his gentle, wry wit, wise insight, unflagging encouragement, enthusiasm, love and quiet compassion.  I know that these little “pebbles” he dropped into our lives created ripples that will continue to expand outward to bless many, many others through us.

Thus, the impact of Jerry Tagami’s life far transcends his death, just as the unique gifts that YOU bestow on others will live on long after you depart the planet.  I leave you with this little poem. Shine, on, Jerry.  Shine on!

“Use God’s Gifts”  by Hilda Lachney Sanderson

“If you’re blessed with a loving heart,

If you’re caring, good and kind,

With many strengths and talents,

And a smart, clear-thinking mind,

Consider these as gifts from God

For you to use each day;

Rely on them as you begin

The chase of fortune’s way.

Do not forget to use God’s gifts

In what you choose to be,

Mix success with peace and love and generosity.

Acknowledge that strong voice within

That tells you right from wrong;

Console, encourage, lift others up,

And keep a faith that’s strong,

Use wisely all God’s gifts to you;

Stay true to what you are,

And you will prosper in this life

As God’s own shining star.”

If you would like your own free subscription to receive A Cup of Caroll three Sundays a month, just go to my website at http://www.practicalprosperitycoach.com and click on the Prosperity Tips button at the top.

****************** Give the Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to give a friend, colleague or loved one a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching.  It is absolutely F*R*E*E* with no obligation and no strings attached!  You can give this to as many people who will really appreciate it as you wish.  (If you haven’t been in coaching with me for a while, feel free to claim it for YOURSELF, too!) 

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help them clarify their Big Goals and get into ACTION to make this their BEST year yet, have them email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com to schedule their session.

“The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” – Steven Covey

When one of my clients didn’t call at our appointed time this week, I texted her, thinking she might be absorbed in some task and had lost track of the time. Instead, her reply confessed that she was sitting in the doctor’s office and had completely forgotten our appointment.

Just the day before, to my chagrin, I had double-booked a coaching slot.  Fortunately, I discovered my mistake well in advance and one of the two clients was gracious enough to switch times. Nevertheless, I was quite annoyed because I take pride in being well-organized and detail-oriented.  (My husband and friends probably have less-flattering terms for this tendency!)

Living an “abundant” life doesn’t depend on how much money you have in the bank, although money is certainly a good resource to have.  Abundant living depends on how much you are enjoying your life.

All of my clients are very busy people.  Some run a full-time business from home while juggling a full-time family life.  Many have a day job AND are working hard to build a thriving business on the side, often with families to look after, as well. It’s understandable that they sometimes feel exhausted and overwhelmed, so I share tips and techniques I have learned to help them take control of their schedules.

Here are five keys to mastering your own busy schedule and living a more abundant, enjoyable life:

#1 Write it down. The only way you can remember all of the “To Dos” that come up daily is to write them down in ONE place. You can break the list into categories if you like, under the headings “Work” “Family” and “Personal.”  Keep ONE list you carry with you everywhere and review it at least weekly. Trying to keep To Dos in your head over taxes your brain and creates stress.  Once you write it down, your mind can relax and focus on what needs doing NOW

#2 Schedule it. The items on your To Do list are not going to get done unless you transfer them onto your scheduling calendar. You must keep ONE scheduling calendar that has EVERY appointment and action item from all categories on it – work, family and personal. If you keep multiple calendars for your work and family events, you are inevitably going to double-book yourself or miss some important meeting.  The reason I double-booked my two clients was that I noted the appointment change in one client’s file, but must have gotten distracted and forgot to change it on my actual appointment calendar.  You MUST write appointments on your calendar the minute you make them.  Don’t rely on scraps of paper or sticky notes to remind you.

I recommend taking a quiet 30 minutes each weekend to sit with your To Do list and appointment calendar and plan the upcoming week. Schedule up to three of your To Dos each day AROUND the appointments you already have.  Recurring appointments include your morning personal development time, exercise time, kids’ sports schedules, etc.  If you don’t write all of these down, you will think you have time for the three To Dos, but will quickly discover that your day actually is already full of unwritten items that you overlook until you have to do them. If you have blocked time in advance for them, you will accomplish at least 15 important To Dos each week.

#3 Plan ahead. Years ago, one of my dear friends had to wait by the side of the road for AAA to rescue him when his car ran out of gas on several occasions. When I asked him why this kept happening, he said, “I was late for work and didn’t have time to stop at the gas station. I thought I could make it.”

Haste truly does make waste, so instead of flying by the seat of your pants, practice looking ahead 24 hours on your calendar to see what you are going to be doing TOMORROW. Make sure you have everything you will need: Gas in the car, clean clothes, cash, meeting supplies, etc. This habit will de-stress your life tremendously.

#4 Focus. Men’s brains are designed to be single-focused, while women are born multi-taskers.  I know how easy it is to go into a room for one thing and end up doing three other things while I’m there.  Many of my clients use social media as a vital tool to market their business and make new connections. Most of them confess that they plan to spend just 10 minutes posting something,but end up being mesmerized by others’ posts for hours.

If you have your schedule blocked out in detail each week, you should know how much time you plan to spend on a particular task.  Set a timer for doing the task and when it goes off, STOP and proceed to the next item on your schedule, even if you didn’t finish the first task.  That “stick” will teach your brain to FOCUS next time so you can have the “carrot” of proudly accomplishing everything you planned for the day.

#5 Do it NOW. Most of us are born procrastinators.  If we don’t want to do something we must do, we often postpone it until the last minute. But more often than not, our well-laid plans for tomorrow get interrupted by unexpected “fires” to put out that may cause us to miss the deadline.  A client declared her New Year’s Resolution to be “Don’t delay; do it NOW.”  She has stuck with it and it has made her much more calm and productive.  One of my favorite quotes from life coach Mel Robbins’ great book, Stop Saying You’re Fine is “If you only did the things you don’t want to do, you’d have everything you want.”   

Here’s a final piece of hard-won wisdom from this recovering People-Pleaser: If you can easily fulfill another’s request, by all means, do so. But if it will suck up your time or resources so that your OWN dreams, family or personal well-being are likely to suffer, just say “NO!”  Many things we are invited to attend, join, buy or facilitate aren’t things we truly want and keep us from our own purposeful pursuits. If you firmly, respectfully decline, the requester will appreciate your honesty and will then ask someone for whom it will be a purposeful opportunity.

If you implement one or more of these tips, I am confident that you will soon experience more ease, productivity, joy and success in your life!

NOTE: A Cup of Caroll is taking the next week off and will return on Sunday, April 24.

****************** Give the Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to give a friend, colleague or loved one a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching.  It is absolutely F*R*E*E* with no obligation and no strings attached!  You can give this to as many people who will really appreciate it as you wish.  (If you haven’t been in coaching with me for a while, feel free to claim it for YOURSELF, too!)

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help them clarify their Big Goals and get into ACTION to make this their BEST year yet, have them email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com  or 888-503-8145 to schedule their session.   

“When I chased after money, I never had enough. When I got my life on purpose and focused on giving of myself and everything that arrived into my life, then I was prosperous.” – Wayne Dyer

When I read my favorite Los Angeles Times column this morning, I got a huge shock. Chris Erskine writes humorously about his adventures as the dad to a family of four kids. Today, he announced that the youngest — “the little guy” –just turned 13.

I can distinctly remember when he announced that his wife had just told him a “surprise” baby was on the way — 11 years after their youngest child was born. I could not believe I have been reading that same column for almost 14 years now, since moving back to Orange County after living in Northern California for 15 years!

It took me back to the time when I was hit by a car while riding my bike to school. As I flew through the air in what seemed like endless slow motion, major events from my life flashed through my mind in rapid succession. While I was not seriously hurt, I learned that day that highlights from your life really do “flash before your eyes” when you are in physical danger. Only I had a lot LESS life to flash at age 13 than I do now.

But as Erskine’s column brought back to me in vivid flashes, my most recent 13 years of life have been filled with many ups and downs in some very important areas, notably love, career and finances. Where I was 13 years ago and where I am today could not be more different.

Then, newly single, having amicably split from my second husband the year before, I decided to move back to the area where I grew up. My closest friends at the time lived elsewhere, so it was uncharted territory for me to be completely on my own for the first time in my life.

I took a job I thought I would love in fundraising for a therapeutic horseback riding organization that served people of all ages with a wide spectrum of emotional, mental and physical challenges. I love horses and I love helping others, so it seemed that my Dream Job had been delivered at last! But one year into it, I got the rug pulled out from under me, so I decided to go back to community college to enhance my skills and try for a career in my second love, writing and editing.

I learned a lot from my wonderful professor, who helped me get a job as a magazine editor right after I completed the class. I thought that was going to be bliss. But my daily scenic commute to the office in San Diego was 100 miles a day and my bosses were difficult to work for, so I quit after another year, feeling I had really lost my way. What in the heck was I supposed to be doing with my life? What was my purpose?

Ask and ye shall receive! I asked God to show me what He wanted me to do and very soon I was guided into coaching. I won’t go into the many twists and turns of how that came about, but suffice to say that while my Ego thought I was doing one thing, my Higher Self was actually listening to Divine direction and I was being guided to exactly where I belonged.

Since 2004, I have never regretted one single minute of my time spent as a professional coach. I can’t wait to get up each day and help others reach their Big Goals. It is both financially rewarding and emotionally fulfilling AND I absolutely love being my own boss. At last, my Higher Self and my Ego were BOTH happy.

As I slowly built my client base, I didn’t yet make enough to pay all my expenses, but I still felt the need to invest in and travel to workshops that would further enhance my coaching skills. Thankfully, this was during the real estate boom, which enabled me to take money out of my house, or else I would have been forced to go back to work for someone else. (Perhaps my BIGGEST life lesson learned during the past 13 years is that when you truly are on a purposeful path, God/The Universe always provides whatever you need to continue the journey.)

Then, as if by magic, I met and fell in love with Rick, a handsome widower, who was also a happy and successful Realtor. I was part of a two-income family again and I imagined that, having survived the greatest financial challenge of my life, it finally looked like smooth sailing into Dreams-Come-True Land for us!

Not quite. Soon after we married and bought our big new Dream Home in 2007, the real estate market tanked and Rick’s income evaporated overnight. We held on for dear life as my coaching career and Rick’s temporary part-time job at Home Depot put food on the table and gas in the tank, but couldn’t cover the mortgage. We ran up considerable debt trying desperately to hang onto our home, thinking the Great Recession would surely be over “soon.”

I wasn’t. In 2010, we filed for bankruptcy and lost both our Dream Home and Rick’s original home that we had kept for rental income. As the final blow, Rick’s car was repossessed just a few months before being paid off.

Talk about ups and downs, huh? Over a five-year period, as we miraculously found ways to pay our rent and bare-bones expenses, every dollar that came to us was deeply appreciated. Before this financial trial, I used to think anything less than $20 was not “real” money. Now, if I find a penny on the sidewalk, I pick it up, smile and say, “Thank you, God, for this Penny from Heaven You sent as a reminder of all the abundance You rain down on us daily.”

I vividly remember two Christmases when there was literally NOTHING under the tree. Nevertheless, we grew more and more intensely grateful for our greatest blessing — a loving, healthy family (including my now 24-year-old stepson Matthew and our little dog Samantha, who just turned 15).

Two years ago, our story shifted dramatically yet again. The California real estate market finally made a comeback and Rick was very busy again. At almost the same time, my dear friend, Leslie Zann, a fabulous trainer and motivational speaker, introduced me to a few independent consultants in a direct sales company who soon became my wonderful coaching clients. They, in turn, began a non-stop flow of enthusiastic referrals to others in the same company. My client base quickly tripled and today, almost every coaching slot I have is full. Where we are in our careers and finances today would have been unimaginable to me just three years ago.

But I don’t credit just the end of the Great Recession or generous referrals for our dramatic turnaround. I know that the outward changes that have happened for us reflect the shift that occurred internally — a shift we might never have made if adversity had not forced us to.

First, we became much more truly, profoundly aware of and GRATEFUL for all the good in our lives, even the not-so-good challenges that honed our faith in God’s help and our own strength.

Secondly, with a strong attitude of gratitude, we made the same inner shift that Wayne Dyer so beautifully describes: When we stopped worrying about chasing money, and instead focused solely on what we could GIVE to others, avalanches of abundance began to flow to us. Realizing we could never have survived without the help of many kind and generous people, we became intent on paying it forward by helping othersregardless of any apparent return.

By God’s grace, via the Law of Attraction, the giving energy that we put out returned to bless us 100-fold. This Holiday Season, we are so grateful for the many financial and emotional gifts that have been bestowed on us. We are especially grateful for all the wonderful clients and friends we have been blessed to assist with our time, treasure and talents.

My special wish is that, if YOU haven’t already done so, you will be able to make your own internal shift in a much easier way than we had to. I hope you will use your special and unique time, treasure and talents to help as many people as you can, without worrying about “What’s in it for ME?” If you do, I promise there will be far MORE in it for you than you can now imagine!

NOTE: A Cup of Caroll will take the next weekend off so I can enjoy my annual Girls’ Weekend in San Diego with two of my dearest friends. Then, right after Christmas, we will begin the two-step process of first completing 2015 and then beginning to create all the GOOD that you desire to come to you in 2016! Happy Holidays to you and yours!

****************** The Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************
I invite you to offer someone you care about a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching! It is absolutely F*R*E*E* of charge, with no obligation and no strings attached! And if YOU haven’t coached with me in awhile and would like a “tune up” session please give yourself this gift!

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help clarify your Big Goals and get you into ACTION to make this the BEST year yet, please email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com or call toll-free 888-503-8145.

“The effects of kindness are not always seen immediately. Sometimes it takes years until your kindness will pay off, and is returned to you. And sometimes you never see the fruits of your labors, but they are there, deep inside of the soul of the one you touched.” – Dan Kelly

In the last blog, we looked at the importance of encouraging and validating others to believe in themselves and their worth. You have a great impact on your friends, family, colleagues and especially your children when you make them feel valued.

Now, I’d like to remind you of YOUR value. If you don’t feel valued or validated by others, take a look at how much you are valuing YOURSELF. The psychologist Dr. Phil McGraw once said, “We teach others how to treat us.” Are your words and actions teaching others to treat you as valuable… or are they diminishing your own worth in their eyes?

You are inherently valuable because you are unique and special. Nobody else on the planet can do exactly what YOU do or give the same gifts to the world that YOU do. There would be an empty spot in every single life you have touched if you weren’t here. Therefore, not only does your life matter, it is essential.

Whenever you do some small kindness for another person – listening to them, encouraging them, standing up for them, lending them a hand, teaching them something you know – you are making a difference in the world and your value increases even more.

Rev. Arlene of Unity of Aliso Viejo put it beautifully in her weekly email message from July 13, 2015:

“I was talking to a friend recently and he said that since everything eventually dies, maybe our true purpose was to be born and then to die. I thought, ‘What a depressing thought.’ I said that even though we all die, it is what we do with the life we have that matters. 

The importance of lives such as Jesus, Buddha, Mahatma Gandhi, and Martin Luther King Jr. was not that they died but what they did when they lived. We may not make such a difference in the world as people like this, but we can make a difference. If we have made other lives better just by being in their life, then we have not lived in vain. The number of our years is not what matters but how we spend the years we have. 

The reason I love the movie It’s a Wonderful Life is because it is about how one man in a small town made a difference in the lives of those who knew him. His life mattered, not because of awards he won, or wealth he acquired, or even because of becoming famous; his life mattered because he cared about others, treated others equally and led a life of integrity, kindness and compassion. 

Never think you do not matter. Every day, you make a difference in someone’s life by just being the best you can be. That is what is important, that is what makes a real difference in the world, and that is what people will remember.” 

So never doubt for one moment that you are valuable. You are, in fact, PRICELESS because you make a difference for others by sharing with them your own unique gifts, ideas, talents and opportunities.

As you value yourself, so will others value you, and your kindness and caring will return to bless you many times over.

****************** The Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to offer someone you care about a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching! It is absolutely F*R*E*E* of charge, with no obligation and no strings attached! And if YOU haven’t coached with me in awhile and would like a “tune up” session please give yourself this gift!

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help clarify your Big Goals and get you into ACTION to make this the BEST year yet, please email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com or call toll-free 888-503-8145.

 

 

 

 

July 5, 2015

I was planning to take a breather from writing the blog this Holiday weekend, but I decided instead to re-post the blog from last Fourth of July, in order to remind you of the deeper meaning of what it means to be of service.

“There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.” – John Andrew Holmes

Happy Fourth of July weekend! As we celebrate this most patriotic of all American holidays, we are reminded that “Freedom isn’t free” — and neither are happiness, abundance and personal fulfillment.

I recently read a wonderful book by Felicia Blanco Searcy called Do Greater Things: Following in Jesus’ Footsteps. One chapter that particularly stood out for me was about what Jesus taught about being of service. We often think that “service” to others is given primarily by those who risk their lives or make extraordinary personal sacrifices for their fellow man, such as those in the armed forces, law enforcement, medicine and public service do.

In reality, as Felicia’s book points out, service is something that ALL of us can and should participate in. In return, we will be rewarded with more happiness, abundance and fulfillment in our lives.   If we look around, we see everyday heroes among us, in every walk of life, who use their time, treasure and talents to improve the lives of others in countless ways, large and small.

A You Tube video was recently posted by a bystander who witnessed a spontaneous act of service in the checkout line at Wal Mart. A young mother with children in tow was trying to pay for four packages of diapers, believing they were on sale. When the checker informed her that only the first package was on sale and the other three were full price, the mother was crestfallen and embarrassed because she didn’t have enough money to pay the full tab.

That’s when an older woman in line stepped forward, put one hand on the mother’s shoulder and used the other to swipe a credit card and pay for her entire purchase. The young mother was flabbergasted. The older woman just smiled and said, “Someday, I know you will pay it forward to someone else.”

When a reporter tracked her down later to tell her that the cell phone video of her good deed has been viewed by millions, the Good Samaritan said she didn’t know what “going viral” meant, but she was glad that others knew about it, because she hoped it would inspire them to perform their own spontaneous acts of kindness.

As Felicia’s book states, “We serve best when we are involved with something that uses our gifts. Anytime we give from our passion, we give wholeheartedly and joyfully. Our enthusiasm is infections and people often join in because of our influence…

Service challenges us once again to look at our attitude toward receiving. Instead of teaching us to sacrifice, service teaches us how to accept gifts. That may sound like a contradiction. But when we give for the pleasure of giving, we see how others get the same pleasure from sharing. We let them give to us because we know that it brings them joy, since that is our experience, too….God gives to us through other people.

We also have a tendency to judge some acts as worthy service and other as less honorable. In truth, all service is notable. We all have the ability to contribute to the well-being of our planet, and no job is holier than another.

However insignificant we may feel our own contribution is, we should always remember that our good works are vital to the well-being of the whole.  Without our efforts, someone would suffer.”

This Independence Day weekend, as we celebrate our precious freedoms and abundant way of life, let’s recognize that service is not performed just by our wonderful men and women in uniform, public servants and those who labor in the helping professions. Being of service is is a precious gift that all of us can and should make our personal mission every day.

****************** The Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to offer someone you care about a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching! It is absolutely F*R*E*E* of charge, with no obligation and no strings attached! And if YOU haven’t coached with me in awhile and would like a “tune up” session please give yourself this gift!

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help clarify your Big Goals and get you into ACTION to make this the BEST year yet, please email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com or call toll-free 888-503-8145.

 

 

 

 “You can’t reach for anything new if your hands are still full of yesterday’s junk.” – Louise Smith

Last week, I described the two categories of fears that keep me busy as a Personal Success Coach, as I try to help my clients to successfully reach their Big Goals: Fear of Success and Fear of Failure.

The second type — Fear of Failure — is more widespread and is often tougher to overcome because it involves some deep-seated fears held in your subconscious mind that you don’t even realize are there. The Inner Protector part of your psyche believes it is dangerous for you to stray too far outside of your current comfort zone to pursue your goals because it doesn’t know exactly what changes it could bring into your life. In order to keep you “safe,” your Inner Protector hijacks your vivid imagination to conjure up a variety of dire “What Ifs?” in hopes of persuading you to not risk pursuing your dreams.

I promised to tell you exactly HOW to “look these fears in the face” as Eleanor Roosevelt said we must, and free yourself to move forward. I have learned two very effective coaching methods that I want to share each with you in detail this week and next.

I was trained in the first method by Tim Kelley, a great coach and founder of the True Purpose Institute ™.   It is a critical step in the coaching process we use to help clients find their Purpose. Your Purpose is essentially made up of your “Essence” (who you are at your core) and your “Blessing” (exactly HOW you go about sharing your unique gifts with others).

True Purpose Coaching ™ offers clients a variety of methods for accessing the part of their unconscious mind that knows their Purpose to get details about their Purpose that their conscious mind is largely unaware of. But in order to access this “Trusted Source” part of your psyche, you must get permission from your Inner Protector part, which is the gatekeeper to the unconscious mind.

Your Protector’s role is vital to your well-being: It assesses risks to keep you safe and it tries to make sure that all your Ego needs are met — including material needs and psychological needs. Your Protector wants you to be healthy, successful, approved of and rewarded with all the goodies that will keep you happy and comfortable. So your Protector is quite invested in convincing you NOT to try things it deems risky.

Fortunately, True Purpose Coaching also offers several effective methods to help my Purpose clients get their Protector’s permission to connect to their unconscious mind, where a lot of Purpose information is stored. The quickest and most effective method for most is what Tim Kelley calls the “Worse Case Scenario” exercise. Happily, the WCS process can also be used to uncover the fears that your Protector holds about pursuing your Big Goals. Here are the step by step instructions for how you can do this:

STEP ONE:   Create your Intention: Try to describe your Big Goal in one sentence, including the date by when you would love to reach it. Make sure it is stated in a way that is specific and measurable, so both you and your Protector will know that you either got it or you didn’t. For example: “On or before December 31, 2014, I sponsor four new business partners onto my network marketing Team.”

STEP TWO: Uncover your Protector’s fears about this Goal: Ask yourself: If that became true, what bad things could happen? List EVERYTHING that comes to mind, big or small — even fears that seem highly unlikely to happen. Know that if you can imagine it, that means your Protector is afraid of it. Examples of fears about reaching this Big Goal of sponsoring four new business partners by December 31:

  • 1) I have never trained more than one new person at a time. I won’t be able to handle training four at once.
  • 2) I am new to the business myself, and I don’t know all the ropes yet. I cannot be a good Leader for them.

ETC. ETC. ETC. There can be 5, 10 or 50 potential pitfalls that your Protector will suggest to help keep you “safe” from making the big mistake of sponsoring four people in such a short time! Don’t judge them or laugh at them, just write them ALL down.

STEP THREE:   Deal with each of these fears separately, ONE AT A TIME. Starting with the first fear above, ask yourself ,“If that happened, what is the WORST thing that could happen?” and write down whatever comes to mind next, such as:

I will be overwhelmed trying to train four new people at the same time. (Then ask yourself the same question about THAT answer: What is the worst that could happen if I am overwhelmed?)

If I am overwhelmed, I will stop answering their calls and just hide out.  (And what is the worst that could happen if I just hide out?)

Everyone will think I am a coward and not Leader material. (And what is the worst that could happen if everyone believes I am a coward and not Leader material?)

I will be mortified. (And what is the worst that could happen if I am mortified?)

I won’t want to show my face at any meetings or talk to my own Leader. (And what is the worst that could happen if I avoid meetings and hide from my Leader?)

I will drop out of the business. (And what is the worst that could happen if I drop out of the business?)

I will lose my best hope of ever having financial freedom. (And what is the worst that could happen if I lose my best hope of ever having financial freedom?)

I will feel like a complete failure. (And what is the worst thing that could happen if I feel like a failure?)

I could become isolated and feel suicidal. (And what is the worst thing that could happen if I become suicidal?)

I could kill myself. (And what is the worst thing that could happen if I kill myself?)

My family will be devastated. (And what is the worst thing….ETC.)

Whew! OK, let’s STOP at this point — I am sure that you get the idea! But when you actually deal with each of YOUR fears, you must push yourself to KEEP GOING DOWN the “risk ladder” until you absolutely cannot think of anything that could possibly be a WORSE outcome than the last thing you wrote down. Your Inner Protector should feel mighty uncomfortable at this point if you are doing this right!

Eventually, you will reach a bottom level that will seem either completely absurd – you know in your heart that it would never come to THAT – or so dire that you would NOT be willing to sponsor four new people onto your Team if it meant your kids would grow up without a mother!

When you hit the lowest, WORST Case Scenario that your Inner Protector can imagine, stop and ask yourself, “If I knew for sure THAT was going to happen, would I still sponsor four new people?” The answer could be “Yes” but it is more likely to be “Heck NO!”

If the answer is NO, then you simply walk back up the risk ladder to the point at which you would STOP pursuing your Big Goal if it were going to lead to that WCS. (It might be the point when you found yourself wanting to hide from your Leader and not show your face at meetings.)

STEP FOUR: Once you have identified that rung on the risk ladder beyond which you would unwilling to go, you can now collaborate with your Protector to identify the specific CONDITIONS that need to be in place in order for it to feel safe for you to sponsor four or more people by the end of the year.

Think of these “Conditions” as the Action Steps that you promise to take in order to ensure you do NOT go below the last acceptable rung on the risk ladder. They should always be stated in the POSITIVE – i.e. what you WILL do, not what you will NOT do.

Examples of Conditions that your Protector might suggest to make it feel safe to pursue this Big Goal:

1) If one or more of my new Team members needs help when I am busy, I will ask my own Leader to help them until I can step back in.

2) I will get all four of them together for small group training calls, so I can give them the basic information each of them needs in a short time. This will free me up to spend more time with them individually. It will also give them a chance to get to know each other quicker and support each other as “Team.

3) I will ask them to communicate through emails and texts whenever possible, so I can quickly tell them where to find whatever they need.

You probably will need just a handful of these conditions/strategies to handle each individual fear. When you have worked through all the fears, gather all the Conditions for all the fears into ONE LIST. I recommend that you keep it handy and re-read it at least weekly. This regular practice will help your Protector to continue to feel safe to let you pursue your Big Goal!

Next time: I will share with you another method that really works to help you recognize your unconscious Old Limiting Beliefs that have been sabotaging your success and replace them with new Empowering Beliefs that can help you reach your Big Goals with speed and ease!

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What do you want for your life? My “job description” as a coach is simply this: I help you get what YOU want. I invite you to schedule a complimentary phone consultation where together we’ll explore your big dreams and determine if coaching can assist you in reaching them. I have programs and coaching specialties for every need. Learn more at: http://practicalprosperitycoach.com or contact me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com or toll free at 888-503-8145. Contact me TODAY to schedule a complimentary phone consultation!

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Don’t aim for success if you want it; just do what you love and believe in, and it will come naturally.” – David Frost

“When we set out to do the best we can do, it is inevitable that great opportunity finds us because we are doing what truly makes us happy. We’re in alignment and ready for the opportunities that life puts in our path.” – Josh Hinds

As a True Purpose Coach ™ for the past 10 years, I have encouraged my clients to pursue their passion and purpose, strive to do their BEST at what they love, and trust that the money will follow. Ironically, I got this lesson for myself just yesterday. No choir of angels sang or lightening bolt hit me. I got it by eavesdropping on my husband’s phone conversation.

If you’ve been following this blog for awhile, you know that a little over a year ago, I thought I had found a perfect plan for rebuilding our savings and ensuring a bright financial future for Rick and me as we reached “senior” status. Neither of us wants to ever fully retire and sit in a rocker. But neither do we want to work full-out, full-time until we drop in the traces. We both crave more time to travel and pursue our individual interests (including fine wine for Rick and writing for me).

What stood in the way is that we lost everything in the Great Recession — our retirement funds, personal savings, two homes and main car. Rick’s real estate business tanked completely and my coaching practice slowed dramatically. We spent five years focusing on just getting from one end of the month to the other.

Finally, last year, the Southern California real estate market suddenly picked up steam and Rick became busier than ever before in his 15-year real estate career. At first, he seemed physically overwhelmed. I watched helplessly as he dashed to multiple appointments daily, held multiple open houses each weekend, and worked far into the night most evenings. This was exactly what we had hoped for — just not all at once!

Then I had a brainstorm: I could help Rick with client contacts, paperwork, open houses, etc. by getting my own California real estate license. Never for a minute did I plan to give up coaching, but my practice was still fairly slow then, and I believed I could handle coaching during the week and real estate on the weekends.

Truth be told, I was also doing it partly out of fear. I thought real estate could provide a “Plan B” for me if something happened to Rick.   I thought this was a good back-up skill to have, just in case. Rick could teach me the ropes over time, and I would be ready to take over his business if the need arose. Seems like a prudent plan, right? Nothing wrong with real estate, I told myself, and I thought I would be good at it.

So I took an online Real Estate course, which involved studying and passing three major finals. Each course took me a month or two to finish, but I passed all three with flying colors early last fall, and applied to take the California Real Estate Exam. So far, so good!

Well, this is where my best-laid plans began to unravel. When we are living off-Purpose, as my Mentor Tim Kelley always says, the Universe will find ways to get our attention and direct us back to our authentic life Path. Just as I began to review for the State Exam, my coaching business exploded!   One of my dear friends, Leslie Zann, a dynamic trainer and motivational speaker for the Direct Sales/Network Marketing industry, referred a handful of clients to me out of the blue. She felt they needed coaching in my specialties, such as changing limiting beliefs, adopting the right mindset and using the Law of Attraction to create success faster and more easily.

A handful of referrals from Leslie became an avalanche of abundance, as these clients referred me to others in their company, who referred me to others, and before I knew it, I had a full coaching practice for the first time in my 10-year career! I had no time to study Real Estate because I was busy enrolling and coaching new clients.

Still, I am not a quitter.   I didn’t want to just drop the idea of helping Rick and having my own “Plan B” from real estate, even as month after month, I was enjoying my coaching more and more and reaping greater and greater financial rewards from it. It felt like I had come so far, it would be foolish not to finish taking the State exam and get my license, which is good for four years.

Except that I hated studying the subject matter, which was dry as dust to me. A review program gave me practice questions that could be on the State Exam. I took some practice tests and did poorly on them. I’ve always been an “A” student –so what was up with this?

The truth is, doing real estate just isn’t on-Purpose for me. It’s a perfect fit for Rick. I love sharing in his satisfaction whenever he closes a difficult deal and his clients get their Dream Home, but I don’t want to be responsible for all the details myself.

This is where the eavesdropping comes in: Last night, while I was watching TV by myself   because Rick was doing more paperwork, I walked toward the kitchen and overheard him talking to an agent whose clients had just submitted an offer on a house he has listed. He was attempting to get the agent to understand why the price his sellers were asking was justified. They were discussing “price per square foot” and “comps” and I knew exactly what he was talking about, but apparently the agent for the potential buyers was playing dumb and arguing for her clients’ unreasonable position, attempting to get them a much lower price.

That was my Ah-Ha Moment: I would make a terrible agent! Rick has the patience and professionalism to handle almost any annoying situation or person in his business. What I love about coaching is that I don’t have to work with anyone unless I WANT to and I get paid to tell the TRUTH (as I see it). If I spoke my truth to some of the difficult people Rick handles so beautifully, I would probably lose my license!

So, I hereby give up pursuing anything I don’t love out of fear. Coaching is what I love to do. It is my passion and it perfectly fulfills my Purpose (which is To teach people to love themselves). Starting now, I am going to spend my precious time doing what I love and focus solely on being the best Me I can be.

Now, instead of spending my weekends with my nose buried in a dry textbook, I vow to enjoy my leisure time to the max! Having ample money in the bank is very nice and we are very grateful for it…. And we must always remember that our success comes from consistently following our passions and our unique Purposes, not our fears.

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What do you want for your life? My “job description” as a coach is simply this: I help you get what YOU want. I invite you to schedule a complimentary phone consultation where together we’ll explore your big dreams and determine if coaching can assist you in reaching them. I have programs and coaching specialties for every need. Learn more at: http://practicalprosperitycoach.com or contact me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com or toll free at 888-503-8145. Contact me TODAY to schedule a complimentary phone consultation!

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