Limit the Complaints and Watch Your Success Soar
If you want to see what putting the principles of determination and tenacity into action can accomplish, the story of Manal Elzeen should inspire you. Manal was a high school economics and accounting teacher in the Sudan when unrest developed in that country. She knew that her life and the lives of her children were in danger and that she must get out of the country.
She sought asylum in the United States and, after a period of time, was able to come to this country and settled in Fort Wayne. However, she now faced another problem: she could not pursue her teaching career as her new state of Indiana would not give her a teaching certificate with her credentials. Determined that she would never give up, she instead put her training to work and opened a day care for children in her home.
Because she utilized her skills and worked hard, her business was a success, allowing her to support her family and even prosper in her new home. As Manal says, “If you want to get anywhere in this life you need to work hard and learn more. This is an opportunity to receive the support needed to be successful. I want to make my business great!”
How many of us complain when the slightest setback changes our plans?
When I think of the times I have considered giving up due to nothing worse than the fact that people did not react to me the way I expected, I am almost ashamed when I see the determination of a woman like Manal. Over the years, I have learned that if one thing is undoubtedly true, it is the fact that if you never, ever, ever, EVER give up, good things will eventually happen!
Determination is not blindly following a path, however. Perhaps this is where many people make their mistakes. You have to know exactly where you want to go. The more detailed and concrete your goals are, the more likely you are to achieve them! As my own niece Janelle Cline said, “Those who accomplish great things in life have what I call a ‘can-do’ attitude. They are determined to ‘can-do’ whatever is needed to accomplish their goals.”
When you are determined to pursue a well-identified goal, and when you never give up on that goal, you are well on your way to accomplishment!
The Boyle Factor:
If you were privileged to witness the debut of Susan Boyle on America’s Got Talent, you have probably never forgotten it.
I still get chills when I see the video clip! However, if you missed it, let me give you a brief synopsis: A middle-aged woman, plain and rather dowdy in appearance, walks on to the stage to be grilled by Simon and the rest of the judges. The camera pans away to show the smirks on the faces of the audience. Simon grills the woman about what she is doing there; his message seems to be that she is not “star” material. The woman’s diffident answers do nothing to dispel this myth! Finally, with a dismissive “go ahead,” Simon gives the woman the nod to begin to sing. She opens her mouth, and . . . the entire room is shocked, then spellbound, then on their feet, many of them in tears! Singing “I Dreamed a Dream” from Les Miserables, Susan Boyle showed everyone that what was inside her was nothing like the outside! Her sweet, clear and powerful voice rang through the hall, her performance became an overnight sensation. She went on to have the single most pre-ordered album on Amazon to date and to sell millions of records worldwide. She embodied the ideal of “Believe, follow your dreams, don’t give up and great things will happen!”
This 48-year-old, seemingly unremarkable woman teaches us a valuable lesson. Some people dream and some people make dreams happen. Susan Boyle took her courage in her hands and walked onto that stage, probably knowing that she would be laughed at and even booed. However, she was strong enough to follow her dreams and she achieved miraculous results, despite what must have been a great deal of fear and doubt.
In my new book, The Ambitious Woman, I speak of dream stealers. Dream stealers are those who say that you cannot do what you want. They always try to “bring you back to earth” with their “wise advice” and encourage you to shoot for lesser goals. The problem with dream stealers is they are so often people we like, respect or even love! They may be family members or, as in the case of Susan Boyle, they may be people who are put in positions of power over others. However, just because someone says you cannot achieve your dream does not make it true!
Believe, follow your dreams, and don’t give up. Never let anyone tell you that you are too old, too slow, no talented enough or that your dream is unrealistic. The fact is that if you can dream it, you can do it with hard work and focus!
If you want to see Susan Boyle rock the house with her beautiful rendition of ‘I Dreamed a Dream’ you can view it here.
Do You Like What You See When You Look at Your Life?
You can change it! You can add to it! You can create any destiny you want for yourself! But, how?
I cannot really explain to you the importance of taking action, so instead I am going to share with you a story that illustrates just how important action is.
Mary C. Crowley was the founder of the company Home Interiors & Gifts. You may have purchased her products at one time or another, or you may just be a fan of the great interior décor Home Interiors offers. However, at one time, Mary C. Crowley was not the president of a company; she was a single mother during the Depression with small children to feed and clothe. Mary was faced with a rather desperate situation, but instead of giving up, she chose to take action, take charge and live an action-based life.
No matter what people told her she could or could not do, she moved forward until she had created the company she wanted. It would have been so easy for her to simply give up, but she kept pressing on. Eventually, her company employed over 100,000 consultants and she became the first woman ever to serve on the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s Board of Directors. I can tell you that she did not do that by giving up!
Mary’s life took another turn when she was diagnosed twice with cancer. Although this was a different type of battle, she moved forward with her mind made up: she was going to beat this disease and live her life to the fullest—and she did!
In my own life, I have seen people take action over and over again with amazing results. The simple fact is that no matter how much we talk about doing or changing, taking action is the only thing that really works! Everything starts with you. When my husband and I lost everything, it would have been so easy to give up, to blame others and to simply hand over the responsibility of our situation to someone else. However, I simply could not do that. I remembered my early lessons, particularly the acronym TEAM: Together Everyone Achieves More. I might seek help and support, but taking charge means taking responsibility, even if you are not at fault in a situation. You will find that when you take ownership of a situation, you begin to take action and “fix” the problem.
I encourage you to begin today: take action, take charge, and live an action-based life and you will find yourself accomplishing amazing things!
The world recently lost
an incredible woman with the death of Dr. Maya Angelou.
However, before she died, Dr. Angelou touched millions of lives with her optimism and her unique perspective on life. As she worked to encourage young people everywhere and to reach out to those of all faiths and races, Maya Angelou showed more than once that she understood a simple precept that changes the world: “Only one person can set limits on what you can do, and that person is you.”
Born into extreme poverty and the victim of racial discrimination, Maya Angelou’s life did not seem very promising at the start. However, as she grew, she had others to help her learn to read and support her education. She realized very quickly that learning everything she could would be her ticket to the larger world. She also knew that her own hard work was what would help her attain that education. As Maya Angelou said, “Nothing will work unless you do.”
Her work certainly paid off. From a small child born into the most hostile of environments to the recipient of the Presidential Medal of Arts in 2000 and the Lincoln Medal in 2008 as well as three Grammy Awards, Maya Angelou embodied the spirit of hard work and achievement. Her death on May 28, 2014, left millions across the world morning this once-unknown woman and celebrating her life and accomplishments.
How does this relate to you? Where do you find yourself today? Are you living the life you were meant to live and achieving all you were meant to achieve? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!
In my new book ‘The Ambitous Woman’, I try to encourage and reach out to women who have dreams they would like to achieve. Encourage, according to the dictionary, means to “inspire with spirit, courage or hope; spur on; hearten; stimulate; to give help; foster.” However, I will be the first to tell you that no matter how much I want to help you, simply having you read a book is not enough. As Maya Angelou said, you must be willing to do the work and put in the effort in order to achieve your goals, even if that work is very hard! Only one person in this world can make you achieve your dreams, and that person is you. Start today making yourself into the person you want to become!
Have you ever heard the story of Diana Nyad?
On September 2, 2013, she swam 110 miles from Cuba to Florida. That may not seem like a unique accomplishment; after all, other people have done it before. However, there was a difference between Diana’s trip and those of other people. For one thing, it was her fifth attempt to cross the dangerous ocean between these locations; four other times had ended in failure. For another, she was 64 years old! Even more incredibly, Diana was the first person to make the swim without a shark cage. What this should teach us all is to never give up and find a way to pursue your dreams. The more we stay in our comfort zones, the less inspiration and growth we experience.
I am sure it cannot have been easy for Diana Nyad to pursue that dream. It was not easy for me when I spent two years, along with my husband, remodeling our home to sell it. I kept thinking, throughout the hard work, of the victory we would achieve if we could sell the house at a high price. Just thinking about it made the work easier! However, plans changed.
Suddenly, we found the dream home we wanted. What about our old house? We were not ready to sell. However, we were blessed to be able to pass the house to our son’s family. By taking the chance and putting in the hard work, we were able to not only achieve our dream but also to bless someone else.
The fact is that until you dare to swim without the shark cage, you will probably never realize your true dreams. Stepping outside of comfort zones is difficult, but if you never give up, seek inspiration and find a way to pursue your dream, you will realize the full potential of what you are capable of doing. In my new book, The Ambitious Woman, you will find many examples of how I might never have achieved my goals without being willing to “swim with the sharks,” even without a cage!
Please welcome Janelle Cline – our very first guest blogger! Janelle, I am so thankful for this article, it is full of great ideas and tips for working moms with home businesses! The entry below features just two of her genius strategies – the rest of which can be found here.
Face it, mom’s needs often seem to come last. We are so busy putting everyone else first–husbands, partners, children, parents – and playing so many different roles in life–mother, wife, businesswoman, daughter, sister – that we lose sight of who we really are which in turn zaps our energy and productivity at home.
Parenting is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world, but it’s also exhausting. You are on duty 24-7, no weekends off or sick days. It’s easy to focus on all of your many roles you play in a day and neglect yourself, but that’s not good for you, them, or your bottom line.
But you can’t always stay on the back burner. Instead, here are some quick and realistic tips on how you can recharge your own energy tank while working from home.
Organize Your Morning Routine.
Are your mornings filled with tired sleeping heads, arguments, impatience, stress and aggravation? No one likes to start off her day in a hurried frenzy. If you start off your day in hurried chaos chances are you will expect the rest of your day to continue the same way.
I personally like to make sure my kitchen is spotless the night before – all the dishes done, counters cleaned, coffee pot prepared with timer set. This habit absolutely drives my husband crazy but if it were up to him there would be dishes in the sink for days. I’ve explained to him instead of waking up to stinky dirty dishes and visually feeling overwhelmed first thing in the morning with clutter and cleaning, I’ve found I wake up to a sense of calm and organization as I sip my first cup of coffee and think about my day ahead.
My children respond better to my chipper mood rather than waking up to a tense mother.
Take Time for Yourself
If you take an hour or two to yourself, for whatever nourishes you, the rest of the day (or week) will be easier and fun! Leave the kids and go to brunch with your girlfriends on the weekends or do your Zumba class in the evenings. Your children will develop independence, grow up knowing it’s important to take good care of themselves, and most importantly see that they’re all right without mom hovering nearby constantly. Sometimes taking a break from parenting can give you the energy you need.
If you are having trouble carving out time for yourself, start small. Don’t spend your extra time rushing around to finish your to-do list, it will never end. Instead, prioritize tasks that are going to make you money first and eliminate tasks that don’t absolutely have to get done. Write it down (don’t forget ‘me’ time), if it’s on your calendar, you can plan and work around it. And the next time you have some breathing space, don’t fill it with errands. Instead, just breathe.
About the Author
Janelle Cline is an Executive Consultant with Ambit Energy and uses her company as a vehicle to empower women to strive to elevate their financial lives. Having worked as a professional engineer in the corporate grind the last 13 years, this wife and mother of two recently became financially free and has become passionate about teaching motivated busy women how to achieve their financial freedom. She is sharing the dream of business entrepreneurship, owning your time, and creating passive income by helping people discover a money-saving service…and to also help them change their financial circumstances in an industry that is revolutionizing America. If you’re ready to make a change, create passive income, own your time, or want to elevate your financial life, visit www.MakeExecutiveIncome.com, Janelle can show you how!
Michelle & Adam Carey are great friends of mine and I am so honored they are in my Ambit family! They have built an incredible business in Ambit Energy and have experienced financial freedom at a young age, and they’re still working for more! Thank you Michelle for your contribution to the blog this week, it encouraged me and I know it will encourage the readers!
We have been a husband and wife team with Ambit Energy for over 5 years now. I was recently reflecting on our journey with this amazing company. We were able to grow in so many facets of our lives. Not only were we able to grow our business intelligence, we were able to also grow in our leadership and mature in our faith. That journey started back in late 2007 when my husband received a call from my mother-in law, Cheryl Spencer. She was extremely excited and preceded to tell him about an opportunity that he just could not pass up. She just got back from Texas and I have never seen her more excited. I thought it was strange, an energy company in Texas? It didn’t make sense to us since we, still living in California, have only known one company, PG&E. Although thoroughly confused, we eventually agreed to take a look to learn more. On a side note, we were skeptical and the only way she could get us to sit down and learn more, was to dangle a home cooked dinner in front of us.
At the time a good meal was a rare treat. I had become accustomed to ordering off the 99-cent “value” menu at various fast food restaurants. The real estate market had started to plummet and my husband was virtually working for free at the boat dealership that could not turn a profit. I was slowly sinking in the muddiness of my credit card debt, avoiding phone calls from creditors that seemed to call me every hour on the hour. Life was stressful, and yet we were “skeptical” at a chance to change our situation. I have to admit, that was one of our more, for lack of a better word, stupid moments. I am so glad that she persisted, because we went from skeptics to die-hard believers. I share that with you because, you may be one of those skeptics, or maybe you have a tinge of doubt lingering in your mind if this will work for you. Or maybe you are on the other end of the equation and you have skeptics that are trying to “warn” you about joining a scam. Either way, you must persist to believe in yourself and the opportunity, and that will cause the skeptics around you, even that little voice that speaks doubt into your ear, to completely have a change of heart.
How do you persist despite the critics and skeptics? Here are 2 things to help you.
1.) Know your WHY. I know you have heard this over and over, and it seems so elementary, but you must know WHY you are doing the business and you must be passionate about fulfilling that mission. If you are not passionate about it, you will have a hard time inviting people to take a look.
2.) Listen to the people that are having success, not the people who quit and failed. Notice that I didn’t just say failed. You will fail sometimes in the business; you will still succeed as long as you never quit. Esther used to tell us, “You must discipline your disappointments.” Let me ask you this, if you were to become a real estate agent, would you ask advice from someone that just took the test to get licensed and complains that the real estate market was hard so they quit, or would you ask advice from the top producers of the company that keep having results regardless of the challenges? Exactly. If you buy into their opinions you run the risk of buying their lifestyle, so be aware of whom you take your advice from.
Why are we so passionate about this company? Well, we went from trying to keep afloat in our finances to becoming completely financially free. Meaning that just from people paying a gas or electric bill, that pays all of our monthly expenses, whether we work or not. We paid off all 7 of my credit cards and was proudly able to tell those pesky creditors that it’s all been paid off. I am no longer a slave to my debt.
Our jobs went from full-time, to part-time and then to no time, and now, we own our time. We are so thankful and humbled to have had an opportunity this profound to come across our lives and we truly believe that it is our life’s mission to help other people do the same. No matter where you are in evaluating this company, whether a guest or a consultant, I hope you take this business seriously, because you can truly create the lifestyle that you have always dreamed about. Lastly, always remember that life isn’t about clocking in to make money; it should be about clocking out to make memories. God bless you and I look forward to seeing you share your story in the future.
I know you are expecting the 3 rd installment of “Keeping the Summer Sizzle,” but that is not what you’re going to get today. Before you get too upset, like I always say, discipline your disappointments.
For the past three weeks I have been in the middle of a whirlwind tour of California. I have seen friends, family, met new customers, new consultants. I’ve toured wineries, played on the beach, and seen incredible sights at Yosemite National Park. I have mixed business with pleasure this whole time and I have loved every minute of it! And here’s why: because I love what I do. I don’t feel cheated when a thought about work comes into my mind while I’m on vacation because, when you own your own time, all your life is a vacation!
I have learned how to enjoy the flexibility of my career. I even enjoy thinking about work because I have chosen a career where I get to save people money and in some cases even create income for them. I get to develop real relationships with my consultants and mentor and develop them in their professional and personal lives. I work in a people-oriented industry and that is why when I think about all the phone calls I have to make and all the emails that need to be sent I don’t feel stressed or disappointed that I have to do these things while on vacation. Instead, I recognize that I get to help people from wherever I am! I get to do all the fun things I mentioned earlier and still be available to my consultants and customers!
This is what I mean by taking advantage of vacation time. Like I said earlier, when you own your own time, all your life is a vacation. Take in the family time, the sights, and the experiences! Then send a few emails, make some phone calls, and head off to dinner. Better other’s lives while enjoying your own.
That’s the benefit of what I do and why I will do it for the rest of my life.
If you are in a job or career where you can’t take advantage of your vacation because you’re so exhausted from work to enjoy your time off, think about becoming a member of my team in Ambit Energy. Don’t get me wrong, it requires hard work and dedication, but you set your schedule and you work from anywhere! I honestly believe that I have the best job in the world because I get to make a real and lasting difference in people’s lives without sacrificing my own. It sounds too good to be true, I know. But from where I sit, in the mountains of Yosemite, I can tell you it’s possible and it’s awesome!
Next stop, Santa Cruz beaches!