Raising Responsible Kids

Everyone seems to be up in arms about the incident at the Cincinnati zoo, the gorilla incident. As a parent, I can tell you that it’s easy to blame the mother for what happened. That’s what people do: jump to conclusions. As a victim of a successful smear campaign myself, I know that people will believe what they are told by those they consider a “credible” source. All it takes is for someone to tell their side without the person present ( this is a cowardly way to get people to take sides ), and then the victim is placed on the defensive and therefore is “guilty” by default. Keep in mind that the child in question is only about 3 or 4, not exactly mature enough to be responsible for his impulsiveness.

Having said this, how do you raise responsible kids? You teach by example. Kids watch everything, and I do mean everything that their parents do. Don’t kid yourselves, your kids will do exactly what you model for them. If you model lying, they will lie. If you model recklessness, they will be reckless. If you model gossiping, they will gossip. If you model irresponsibility and selfishness. Guess what? They will do it too. If you model negativity, they’ll be negative.

The same holds true for: disrespect, conflict, immaturity, a lack of self control, anger issues, self-centered and self-absorbed tendencies, laziness,  a lack of direction, arrogance, disloyalty, impulsiveness, lack of character and lack of integrity issues. They all will be modeled. That’s a tough pill to swallow for some people, but you do live what you learn. And, worse it gets passed down generation to generation. Many times going from bad to worse depending on who’s validating the behavior. Only what is validated will continue, then it becomes justified. Yes, your kids will mirror you. But, that’s only half of the story.

They also model positive things as well. You are a role model, and should act like one. Small children are in the process of learning. The child obvious didn’t know what kind of danger he was in. When my kids were small, it was my job ( still is now that they’re older ) to keep them safe. Surprise, surprise, they still got hurt anyway. I’ve dealt with stitches, casts, sprains, bumps on heads, you name it. Does that make me a bad parent? No, it just makes them kids. Accidents happen, even major ones like the boy in the gorilla cage. By the way, the same thing happened in England a few years ago. Another little boy, he was knocked conscious. Same scenario, different ending. Little boys are a handful.

If you want to have responsible kids, model responsible behavior. Parents are supposed to be aware of their own behavior around their children. Immature parents are too consumed with themselves to be good role models. They end up putting out into the world irresponsible, immature, entitled kids in “adult suits”. Do your children a favor: be responsible so that they know what that looks like. If you make a mistake? Own it. Don’t know what you’re doing? Say so. Feeling overwhelmed? Get help. Teach your kids that people make mistakes, and not to condemn them for it.

There isn’t one person on the planet that hasn’t failed at something. Teach them to persevere through failure, and not to run from things when they aren’t working. They’ll never learn how to fix things that way. Not everything in life is disposable, and some things can’t be retrieved once they are lost. That’s teaching them to run from challenges in life, setting them up for failure. Responsibility helps a kid’s self esteem, sense of self worth, and self confidence. When they see it in you, they will model it. If they know you can  handle things, so can they. They’ll make an impact and solid impression that you can be proud of.



Embrace the Challenge

No one ever said that life was going to be easy. It has proven that it’s not. Everyday there are struggles, challenges, disappointments, and setbacks. All just begging for attention. Life can be overwhelming, and at times makes it tough to go on. But, if you embrace the challenge, you can have more than you ever thought possible.

Most people don’t want to be challenged in life. It’s too intimidating. After all, if you challenge me, I might look bad. More often than not, it does happen. But everything happens for a reason. There will be times in life when you will be flat out wrong. No way around it, and all of the hiding, arguing, and posturing isn’t going to chance that.

Challenge is were strength comes from. Difficulties show you who you really are. They reveal your weaknesses. But, that’s what they’re supposed to do. We are only as strong as our greatest weakness. Some people are weak individuals that have never allowed themselves to be tested beyond their comfort zone. So, that’s where they live. In Comfortville. No one has ever achieved anything great making that place their home.

Challenge strengthens your intelligence. You have to really think through certain types of challenges to be able to overcome them. When you’re in a financial crisis, you just can’t go rob a bank to fix the mess. You have to come up with creative ways to make money, legally. If you want to stay out of jail.

Relationships are made or broken during a crisis. A crisis will show you a person’s true nature. There are people who will either weather the storm with you, or abandon ship when the seas get rough. Challenges also reveal character, integrity, and commitment. In the end showing you who has them, and who doesn’t.

There’s a bright side to challenges as well. You find out if you’re up to it. Real friends remain. Trust is strengthened with those who chose to stick things out with you. Your faith and hope grows. Learning of other options and opportunities that you overlooked before. Doors open that should open, and close that should close. Empowerment is not just a feeling, but a way of life.

Embracing challenges is really just all about accepting change. Things are constantly changing, and we have to learn to adapt. It’s actually a good thing if you think about it. Change is what makes life more interesting, exciting, and refreshing. Change is a good thing. Challenge makes it possible. Embrace it, and watch how great life can be.



Serving Others

I love self reflection, personal growth, and anything that helps me to improve my life and the lives of others around me. I love to serve, it’s just who I am. It’s also my “sweet spot”. Helping others just feels right. I seem to have passed this onto my kids as well. They love to help others in need, and get lots of help in return. You truly get back what you put out.

I’ve traveled all over the world, and the one thing that most people have in common is the need to feel like they matter. Serving others is one way that I’ve observed others meeting this need. Taking the time to help someone out when they are struggling is a surefire way to have blessings returned to you. When you help someone without wanting anything in return, help arrives when you need it. You don’t even have to ask most of the time. It’s just, there.

Everyone you meet is wearing a “make me feel important” sign. Being aware of this will help you: compliment people, smile, give when and where you can, and create an overall sense of well being. This comes from the heart. Even when someone wrongs you, you should still try to look at things from their point of view. You don’t know what kind of day they’re having, let alone what’s going on in their lives. So, cut people some slack. You may be the only person that they come into contact with today that’s even remotely positive. So, make someone’s day. Bless them with a smile.

I don’t know about you, but I feel better after I’ve done something nice for someone not expecting a thing in return. A couple of years ago, I was in line at the grocery store. There was a man that didn’t have enough money for his groceries. The poor guy had a cast on one arm, and on one leg. He was staring at his purchases trying to figure out what to put back. So, I asked the cashier how much it was. $22 was the exact total. Guess what? It was exactly what I had on me in cash. So, I paid for his stuff. He had essentials: bread, milk, eggs, etc… For me it was no biggie, but he couldn’t thank me enough. And, because I paid it forward, a lady rushed up to me afterwards and gave me $10 for helping him. She thought what I did was awesome and felt I deserved half the money back. I wasn’t going to take it, but she insisted. She wanted to pay if forward as well.

Why did I do it? Because he looked like he had been in a car accident and obviously couldn’t work in that condition. So, I knew it was the right thing to do. This guy was in need, and I was able to help. Pure and simple. In the end, that $22 helped him to get much needed supplies for a man who was hungry. When you give from the heart, you get much more in return. For the rest of that day, I felt like I made a difference. That was good enough for me. No, I never saw that guy again, but I hope that he has paid it forward.

Serving people go out of their way to help others, not for rewards, or recognition. They do it because it makes them feel good inside. They respect their fellow man. They feel that everyone deserves to be treated well. And, they do it because they know that a giver has a richer life than a taker. Givers make the world a better place. We remember the givers for who they are, not just what they do. So, learn to serve people, and you’ll make a real difference.



How to Blog and Get Paid (For Beauty, Book, Food Bloggers & More!) — The Millionaire’s Digest

For everyone who’s been asking on how you can make money blogging! Here are a few things that come from the book I’m currently writing that can get advertisers to pay you to advertise on your blog! Hope it helps! 1. Promote an affiliate product on your site Joining another company’s affiliate program is one of the […]

via How to Blog and Get Paid (For Beauty, Book, Food Bloggers & More!) — The Millionaire’s Digest


How far can you get in life without a team? Not very far. I have a favorite team: my 2 younger daughters’. It’s truly us against the world. We work well together. They really understand that family is supposed to be a team. Not many people understand that your family is your most important team. They are the first people you come into contact with on a daily basis in your life. So, how you were treated growing up will dictate what kind of team member you’ll be. Or, if you’ll be one.

Today, so many people are just out for themselves. Teamwork has almost become a bad word. But, those who don’t understand it are really missing out. You really can’t get through life without people in your corner. Unfortunately, dysfunctional families teach their “team” to eat their own. It’s sad but true. This is why, if you come from a dysfunctional family you have to get educated quickly on how to work with other people for the greater good of all.

Selfish people foolishly take credit from their team. They want all the glory, and don’t want to share it. In time, these people find themselves exclusively with users that are only interested in what they can get out of them. Sooner or later, those are the only types that will hang around. The smart ones, will get out of the picture quickly. And rightfully so: Who wants to be used, and have to have dealings in the future with an entitled person?

You can tell someone that’s a good team player, they want everyone to win. They compliment, work well with everyone, and have a goal to help the team be the best. Users on the other hand use flattery ( telling you exactly what you think of yourself ) to get what they want from you. Aesop’s story, “The Fox and the Crow”, comes to mind. The moral is: beware of flattery. Users are psuedo team members. They wreck teams. They’re out for themselves. They use flattery to keep everyone off balance, create chaos, and drama. They throw gunk in the works by working against others. And having them work against each other. Teams can’t win if everyone isn’t all on the same page.

Goals, vision, communication, inspiration, motivation should all be present. Teams embody the spirit of helping and serving. They show collective strength. That’s what they’re supposed to do. Collectively you are stronger with others than by yourself. Too many lone wolves find this out the hard way. And, others replace team members that they should have kept till the end. Much to their detriment. The same team member you replace, will be picked up by another team and help theirs to grow better, bigger and become stronger. Helping your competition become bigger, better, and stronger? Ouch!

Teamwork helps to spread the work around. Everyone has something to contribute, and it helps when they can also get some of the credit. If you didn’t do the work, don’t take the credit. Glory hounds get found our rather quickly. Everyone wants to feel important. Praise and encouragement will strengthen a team. Criticism and fault finding weakens it. Besides, when people feel like a part of a team that’s: grateful, honoring, appreciative, and cohesive it’s a win/win situation. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of that?



Don’t Underestimate Your Kids

Kids are some of he smartest people on the planet. They’re innovative, creative, curious, fearless, and risk takers. So why is it that so many parents treat them like they’re stupid? We praise grades, but not common sense or street smarts. We reward them for all sorts of things, but then want to treat them like they don’t have a brain. Even a 90 yr old can learn something new from a 5 yr old. Does technology ring a bell?

So why are we so quick to dismiss kids when it comes to decision making? Especially kids with common sense, a huge dose of maturity, and logical thought processes? Because, we treat them like they don’t have any life experience. The truth is they do. Kids face challenges daily that many adults can don’t have to, and on a regular basis. Bullies comes to mind: they don’t get fired from schools.

We don’t trust kids. The media portrays them as lazy, selfish, self-centered and stupid. What a standard to live up to. The rotten ones get all the press, but the good ones… It’s a shame. Kids today are savvy,  and want to prove themselves. It’s time that we let them. They’re creating new technology. Changing the entertainment industry through Youtube, and even selling Lemonaid to major food chains. Come on, wake up and start seeing them as fellow human beings.

The dreams they have in childhood become the realities of their adulthood. Think about that for a minute. Kids dreamed of flying, while adults told them it couldn’t happen. Kids dreamed up most of the technology that we use today. Kids are the ones helping parents and in some cases grandparents to use the new technology. The possibilities of a kid’s imagination are endless, and should be treated with respect. After all, most kids want to change the world before it changes them.

Kids look forward to the future, because they want to grow up and do or be something great. Don’t knock them for it, encourage them. You never know what they’re going to do when they grow up, so inspire them while they’re young. Motivate them to follow their dreams, no matter how crazy they may sound. They might just come up with the next best and greatest… Kids have vision, help them define it, and come to life.



Why are people so afraid to ask for what they really want or need? Why are we so afraid to get help? Is there really a stigma, or is there something else to it? Is it considered a sign of weakness? Have we forgotten that we’re all in this together and that getting help is a part of life? Is the fear of rejection overriding good sense? Why is asking now considered Taboo? It may have to do with how things are going in the world today. Asking is exactly what successful people do to get whatever it is that they want. Don’t believe it? Just ask them.

I’ve always been a curious person, so questions come naturally to me. It’s how I learn. But, when I started to get into business, asking questions became scary. I know why, all of the sudden, I knew that what I asked mattered. And, truthfully what you ask does. I went to all sorts of seminars, read books, watched whatever I could on the subject. Then the unthinkable happened: I stopped asking questions. I had information overload. And worse, I was starting to sound “rehearsed”. Yikes! I didn’t even realize it was happening. What used to come naturally, was now something out of a b movie. Bad acting included.

I lost my natural curiosity, and it showed. I was a mess, and afraid to talk to anyone. That’s really bad for business. It keeps you broke. I had to break free, but I didn’t have a clue how. Then the breakthrough came: I got some help, I asked for it. Asking for help was the best thing I could’ve have done. I needed it, and I needed it fast. I hadn’t lost my curiosity,  I had just stop letting it lead me. I had listened to too many people with too many ideas. The essence of what I was trying to do got lost: just getting to know someone.

So I got in the habit of asking for what I wanted. How? I just did it. Most people out there really do want to help when given the chance. For those who don’t, just keep it moving. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, smooth, or even coherent at times. It just needs to be done. There are folks out there who are just dying to share their expertise, skills, knowledge, or wisdom if they were just asked. Others that you were probably just too afraid to bother. It’s usually no bother. Just ask.





Competitive Much?

Everyday you have a new chance to improve yourself. And of course, you should. But, do you suffer from the jealousy and envy monster? You know the one that makes you feel you have to out do everyone else around you? How about just a particular person? Insecurity can cause you to compete for all the wrong reasons. Your only real competition in life is you. To be honest, that’s more than enough.Are you basing competition on your feelings?

When you are out to beat you own personal best daily, you succeed. Being the best just to thwart someone else is a waste of your time. You’re too focused on what the competition is doing. Hoping and wishing that they are watching you. Guess what? They aren’t. Because, they’re following their own thing, and working hard to make it happen. You just aren’t on their radar. The attention that unhealthy competition seeks is usually from a place of longing.  A void that others can’t fill. They’re not supposed too. It comes from a place of lack, and that stems from a fear of being ignored.

Successful people focus on what’s important. Competition keeps you on your toes, but it’s not the main reason most people are doing what they do. It’s passion, desire, and wanting to build something greater that makes an impact. They’re also way too busy trying to improve their own situation. Focusing on what really matters: what they’re doing themselves.

Healthy competition comes from an innate desire to improve. Therefore your intentions are good. Unhealthy competition comes from a deep seated insecurity. The major difference is “why” you’re doing it. One is based on personal achievement which is positive, and helping others along the way. The other is based on negativity, with an obsession of wanting to win at whatever means necessary and/or at all costs. Not good in the long run, you make some serious enemies along the way. The first is coming from a place of genuine selflessness, the other from selfishness.

Healthy competition is usually friendly and helps all involved to strive for better. Including the competition. Think of the Olympics:  all the competitors are there to win, but some have given up a medal to help an injured competitor cross the finish line. Together. That’s strong character and integrity, and it feels good. People respect and admire those who exemplify that. Unhealthy competition is meant to be a weapon used to hurt, and make a powerless person feel powerful. All while getting their ego boosted in the process. Healthy promotes an air of sportsmanship. A true sense that all involved can gain something good in the process.

Are you competitive with other people, or are you trying to outdo yourself? One will attract others that will want to help you get to the next level. The other will attract enemies that will be invested in having others help to take you down. The choice is yours. Do the right thing. Focus on yourself and all that you have to offer. Don’t worry about the competition. Let them worry about you.



When Times Get Tough

Do you ever have days when it seems like nothing is working? No matter how hard you work, you feel like you’re spinning your wheels? What should have taken a few hours, now has taken up your whole day? And still no results? Frustration sets in, and you feel like you’re dead in the water? Those days are rough, but luckily few and far between.

This is when it’s time to stop and regroup. There are going to be days like this. It’s just life, but you can’t let that stop you from doing what it is you have to do. Days when things aren’t going right, are the days that you have to find something else to do. Yes, there are deadlines, and there are going to be times when it’s imperative that you finish. But let’s be real: you can’t beat a dead horse. So stop trying.

Clearing your head and giving yourself some space can be the answer. If things are falling apart around you, now is not the time to make a rash decision. It’s also not the time to give up. Finding balance is going to be difficult, but will help you to regroup. When things aren’t going right, now is the time to stop and take stock. Not of what’s going wrong, but what’s going right. What can you deal with and handle in this moment? If it’s getting up from your computer, walking away from an argument, or leaving work early: do it. There’s nothing worse than being unproductive and heightening your stress level.

Stop living in the “what if” world, and start participating in the “I can do this” reality of your present situation. Nothing is ever as bad as it seems. Some of the worst situations can actually be a breakthrough that you never thought was possible. The worst mistakes of your life can get you back on a path that you might have been derailed from for a long time. You’d be surprised at how many people have to go through something devastating and destructive to get to something extraordinary. Life is full of hills and valleys. But, it’s also has majestic mountain tops.

Just like it takes time to get back on your feet when life kicks you while you’re down. It will also raise you up, when you get up. The very thing that holds you back, will be the same thing that pushes you forward towards your destiny. Embrace the challenge, and appreciate a difficult journey. You’ll become better for it, and you’ll  be proud of yourself when it’s all over. The feeling that you not only handled it, but overcame it will never leave you. Keep in mind that there are those watching that are highly invested in seeing you win, and believe in you. Show them that you can. The strength earned in adversity is the best reward you will ever receive.

Sendlane is Awesome

I have never been a tech person, so anything that has to do with the digital age is new, and exciting to me. I learned that for years, I was doing it wrong in my business. But that’s all changed now that I’ve found Sendlane ( www.sendlane.com ) I was struggling for years to find clients trying to meet them face to face, but now that’s over. I’m on my way to launching and globally at that. I’m not stuck with doing business in just my hometown, and I couldn’t do that without the ease of Sendlane. Web traffic has never been easier. It’s about time too.

I had tried just about everything to get leads. I was failing and didn’t know how to fix what was wrong. The people who were rocking it in the companies that I work with had an unlimited amount of people scoping out their businesses. They were also having unprecedented success. I had no idea how they were doing it. Upon a little research, I learned about Sendlane and now everything has changed. My business is now poised to work for me, instead of the other way around. And, it’s running itself 24/7. My business is working for me while I sleep.

Whether it’s: a webinar, an e-book, special report, video, survey, or marketing campaign, they can help you. They even have a Thank You page and Auto-responder so that you don’t have to contact every one that goes through your landing pages. Your clients can take care of their products and services purchases at their convenience. Totally hands off.  How cool is that?

With the features you need: email marketing, marketing automation, and landing pages to enhance your professional image. Templates that are simple and easy to navigate. If you’re tech savvy enough, you can design your own. Customer service is prompt and very user friendly. Whether you’re a blogger or small business you can build an audience faster, with less headache. Fantastic step by step detailed tutorials. Can’t get a handle on it? No problem, a friendly tech is just a click away. The wait time for me was less than 2 mins.

The tutorials are easy to understand and follow. They flow, and the steps are quick to implement. Publishing is easy, and in real time. You can go live immediately. So, no waiting. Depending on where you publish, you can have responses in less than 5 minutes. You start reaping the financial benefits. Fast. With no real tech experience, and limited resources even the newest person can get their business up and running in no time. Want more traffic, no problem. They show you exactly how it works. Finally, you can stop looking for clients, and/or readers and let them fine you. What a way to work smarter not harder.