Author Archives: Jengriz

Write Your Own Rules…Like a Renegade!

Are You A Renegade?

Are You Writing the Rules, Or Is a Renegade Doing It For You?

By Angela Uebelacker

It never crossed my mind that one day I would be an entrepreneur, let alone a business owner that would have the capability to work when I wanted, and wherever I wanted, using social media and Wi-Fi.

We live in a time where having a conversation in person or over the phone has evolved into text messages, or social media sites like Facebook and Twitter or even the ability to talk by video through FaceTime and Skype. And although we have come along way from dial up connections and answering machines, the pace that we find ourselves can be easily overwhelming.

My primary focus with my business is e-commerce and network marketing, and there is a lot to be learned! The process of owning a business or reaching your potential in a specific field has many similarities. For instance, you must continue to educate yourself, become the expert in your specialty, and discover how advances like social media can work for or against you.  Ultimately, these will determine how successful you can become.

Enough Isn’t Enough

My decision to enter into a business that focuses on network marketing and the use of social media was as much about having control over my own purpose as it was to have control over my time and life. As a military spouse our family moves often and although I have pursued and completed college degrees, it became harder and harder to establish longevity with a company as my spouse receives orders to relocate us every few years. School was almost impossible to complete. The main problem was knowing I wanted more, but fortunately for me, there are so many other people that want the same thing…And luckily for us, there are people that have shared their knowledge on how social media can be used to innovate our business or personal image with the rest of us; and how to accomplish this goal more successfully!!

Nowadays there are so many options available for home-based businesses and deciding which one fits right for you is a very individual answer. It all comes down to having a moment where enough is enough or quite frankly enough isn’t enough and taking that frightening first step to changing how you work for other people into how you work for yourself!

Use Social Media to Innovate

Renegades

As I continued to pursue business, I began to realize there is a lot I didn’t know about how social media works or how to use it to work best for me and then I discovered a nice little treasure Renegades Write The Rules: How the Digital Royalty Use Social Media to INNOVATE, by Amy Jo Martin!! This amazing book had exactly what I had been Google searching for, for a long time, but finding many dead ends because it wasn’t “speaking my language” (I’m not a very tech-savvy person – AND it became really obvious). There is so much information available to help understand the social media wonderland, however this book helps to educate people on how to “use social media to INNOVATE”!!!

Amy Jo Martin’s goal is to help people just like you and me discover the best ways to innovate our brand or business using social media.  Social media is a presence with a fierce force of uncertainties however the journey doesn’t have to scare you…it can in fact empower and inspire you to delve into a part of society that is bridging the gap between what is the norm and how we all strive to actually be living!! We often live a life that we enjoy where every day, even a workday, is better than the day before. But owning a business in this social media world allows us to no longer look forward to PAID TIME OFF because our purpose has paid off and we are vacationing, working, living and not just learning more but teaching others what we know as well, thus making an impact and innovating our brands into something meaningful.

Ready To Get Your Renegade On?

An important question is asked in this book (and it is one that really helps you simplify your process): Are you a renegade? Luckily for you, if you can identify with any of the examples provided…well, you might just be a renegade!! So, that being said…if you have ever sat at your comfy desk job and had an outpouring amount of ideas that you could share, yet no one would actually consider them because they’re out of the norm, then You Are A Renegade…if you don’t have a “grand plan, but some basic inspiration,” then You Are A Renegade…if you’ve been asked to only choose two:

Work. Family. Self. 

and you struggled, then you are A Renegade!!! Amy Jo Martin states, “The renegade way is an unquenchable spirit of innovation that often springs from an unquenchable thirst for learning”…so if you find an inability to quench your thirst, then YOU ARE A RENEGADE!!

So, are you ready to get your renegade on?  There are 8 rules that will help you innovate your business or brand in the most meaningful way, a way that will guide your success to limitless measures. And just to be clear, success is not measured in monetary form…it’s measured by the relationships you build, and the amount of attention you gain, by being authentic, genuine, and personable!!  Here Are The Rules:

Renegade Rules:

Rule 1:  Be the Media – With a huge persona, getting to know this guy was the ticket to connecting with a larger audience…Guess who this Renegade is???

Rule 2:  Show Some Skin – Understand why “social media is not a marketing tool. You have to earn the right to sell something in the same way you earn the right to ask a friend a favor”.

Rule 3:  Unmask Your Motives – Connect while remaining authentic, and loyal to your brand or fans. Show some emotion!

Rule 4:  Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable – Find out how The Rock became comfortable blending his personal life with his professional life.

Rule 5:  Ask Forgiveness Rather Than Permission – Does your profession impact your person…and are you willing to allow that to cost you everything??

Rule 6:  Consensus Is the True Authority – How listening to your audience will build your brand!!

Rule 7:  There’s a New ROI in Town – “A measurement that combines the cold metrics traditionalists love with the warm metrics only social communication channels provide”.

Rule 8:  The Act of Good Can Be Scaled – How the connection of “doing business” and “doing good” can help to innovate and influence your brand.

Innovate . Empower . Grow

Write Your Rules

To innovate is one thing, but to empower growth and confidence along the way…that’s priceless. What doesn’t scare you or kill you as they say…makes you stronger or more prepared. And as we continue to find ways to innovate ourselves, even using social media we will discover the amazing talents and ideas hidden deep inside. Using opportunities to learn, grow, and teach others are how we can all become a more empowering force or brand. It’s not an easy way of doing business, but it is possible with the right knowledge, and help. It’s about taking control, and quite frankly being held accountable for what we put out there. It’s time to check in, and ask yourself if you’re writing the rules, or if a renegade is doing it for you?

I encourage you to get your hands on this book, and to check out http://amyjomartin.com/. Listen to her Podcasts, read her blog, and check out all of her amazing speeches…Amy Jo Martin will empower and inspire you to write the rules and become a true renegade!!

Written by Angela Uebelacker

https://www.facebook.com/auebe25

Mission Entrepreneur

Mission Entrepreneur

★★★★

Applying Lessons from Military Life to Create Success in Business Startups!

I am beyond thrilled to share my latest project with you!

As a military spouse, veteran, entrepreneur (and now author!), I’ve always been inspired by amazing stories of military families who’ve overcome obstacles and succeeded in starting a business.  So I decided to write these (and my own) stories down.  However, as I was writing this book, I discovered that these lessons aren’t only about business…they tell a story of resilience, perseverance, and giving that applies to everyone.

So, whether you’re looking to launch your next great startup idea, you’re already a business professional, you’re a community leader, veteran, or military spouse, or maybe you’re just looking for a little inspiration, check out “Mission Entrepreneur” and discover how you can apply lessons from military life to succeed in your next venture!

Download your free chapter, “How to Overcome Your Fears Like a Navy Seal,” and become a 4-Star member of the tribe by clicking here!

And if you’re ready for more, pick up a copy (at limited pre-order pricing) at Amazon.

★★★★

This has truly been a labor of love and I am incredibly grateful for your support!

All proceeds go back to supporting the military community!  

XOXO

Why My Best Epiphanies Happen at 30,000 ft

By Jen Griswold

I am currently in one of my favorite “thinking places” at 30,000 feet on a cross-country trip from DC to LA to see family.  I always say my most brilliant ideas and motivation occur in the shower or on an airplane and I think it’s because I have so little distraction without wi-fi and the everyday constant stream of texts and social media distractions.

As it usually does, in the time between the cheesy airline introductory video and the “you’re free to roam about the cabin” announcement, I made a poignant self-discovery.  I realized that I perform at my best as a leader, coach and entrepreneur when I am gaining new ideas and sources of information by reading good books.  When I am lacking for ideas or I feel like I’m in a slump, it’s time to hit the books!

When it comes to what books to choose, I am a self-proclaimed, “self-help book junky.”  I could read about things like leadership, performance, and motivation strategies for days on end.  But you’ll never find me reading a novel.  In fact, I think the last fiction author I ever really followed was John Grisham during the height of his popularity, so that tells you how long ago I ditched fiction.  I’m more of a non-fiction kind of girl.  They are my jam.

Books are Always the Cure

So, I guess you could say that books are my drug of choice.  No matter what, they are always the cure.  When I crack a book (especially if it’s on an airplane) a different part of my brain opens up and the impact of the feelings of disconnection and overload seem to fade.  New ideas spark new energy and a new mindset.  And somehow, they trump everything else that had previously been weighing on my mind.

Lately, I’ve been on a quest to figure out why I’ve been in the midst of what I would call a “mental funk” in my business.  So today I turned to my tried and true page-turning technique to find the cure.  I’m currently reading, “Shine” by Edward M. Hallowell, MD, and in it the author talks about how easily people fall into phases where they fall out of love with their work.  Usually it’s for one of two main reasons:  1)  disconnection and 2) overload.

I would have to agree.  Most often when I feel the most resentful about my business it’s because 1) I feel disconnected to the human elements of what I do (which is my favorite part) or 2) I feel overwhelmed and overloaded by an insurmountable number of tasks and requests from others.

A Discovery that Stuck

Hallowell makes a surprising and ironic realization that really stuck with me:

“Ironically, the most difficult work can be avoided in today’s crazy-busy world simply by staying busy…..people avoid thinking by being too busy to think.  They dodge the hard work of developing something new by responding to a thousand emails or text messages a day instead.  They deceive themselves into believing they are working productively, when in fact, they are merely processing messages.”

This statement really hit home.  Isn’t this the truth for so many of us?  In my business which includes a very “social” element to it I get an average of 30 emails, 50+ texts, and numerous social media interactions per day.  That, in of itself is a full-time job’s worth of “work” to keep up with.  But I also have lots of other things I need to create, manage, and inspire and when I’m always “just keeping up” with administrative items I don’t have much left to give to develop new progress.  I’m guessing you’re probably nodding your head right now realizing you’re a victim to the same kind of administrative hamster wheel?!

So how do we combat these evil states and get back to being happy and productive?

5-Steps to Get Back to Happy & Productive

Hallowell suggests his 5-step technique that combines both brain science with performance research.

His technique forces you to do some significant self-evaluation:

  • Select

Ask yourself if you’re doing work that lights you up?

Are you good at it?

Do you like what you’re working on?

And do you feel like you can add value?

  • Connect

Find moments to connect with others everyday.

Ask questions of those around you.

Do something nice for someone and enjoy the feeling of connectedness it brings you.  Plan your meetings face-to-face rather than on the phone if possible.

  • Play

Discover ways to engage the creative parts of your brain on a daily basis.

Encourage innovation and new ideas without judgment.

Brainstorm ways to improve using open-ended questions.

Find opportunities to have fun while you work!

  • Grapple and Grow

Don’t let pride get in the way of tackling the issues that prevent you from being at your best and asking for feedback.

Sometimes the act of just talking out loud and ping-ponging things back and forth with another colleague can provide newfound energy and ways to get better.

  • Shine

We all glow when someone compliments us on a job well done.

Find ways to authentically recognize people for the great things they are doing.

As I reflect on why I feel so disconnected from my business right now, I realize that I have severely reduced my human interaction points over the last 6 months because I have been writing my own book (Mission Entrepreneur:  Applying Lessons from Military Life to Create Success in Business Startups)!  In doing so, I thought I would be much more productive because I was getting some extra time back, but what I actually did was removed the part of my business that brings me the most energy and joy.  When I combine that with the fact that I use every extra waking moment to respond to the constant load of emails, texts and social media requirements it’s no wonder I lost my way.  After getting this much-needed time to reflect, I realize I was very deficient in the “connect” and “shine” categories.  I will be making some changes in the way I prioritize administrative tasks so I can get back to what fills my tank; people!

So, if you are struggling to find what’s ailing you, I recommend a trip to Amazon.com or your local library (books are CD are great for when you’re in the car and running kids around).  There is something magical that happens when you have a little quiet space, some words on a page, and time to delve into your own brilliant mind!

To give you that extra little nudge, here are a few of the other books at the top of my summer reading list…..happy reading!

  • The Little Book of Talent by Daniel Coyle (I’m listening to this in the car and my kids even like it)
  • Boss Life by Paul Downs
  • Bounce by Matthew Syed
  • Originals by Adam Grant (really loving this one)

So, get lost in a great book and leave us a comment to share what you discover!

Written by Jen Griswold

www.jengriswold.com

How a Vacation Changed My Life


Written by Jen E. Griswold

HOW A VACATION CHANGED MY LIFE

(Four Lessons Discovered on a Nordic Vacation)

My family and I have just returned from a fabulous Northern European vacation that included 7 nights on the Disney Magic cruise vessel.  This was a much needed chance to recharge and share the love Mr. Milpreneur and I have for traveling with our kids, ages 9 and 11.  It was their very first trip to Europe and we figured that the comforts of the Disney cruise would be a great way for our picky eaters to both see the sites and ensure they would have something they would like to eat every evening.

Along with the recharge I was also enlightened with several great business and life lessons while experiencing new cultures.  With a clear head and fresh perspective, it was amazing what I picked up from the beautiful Nordic culture and sites.  From the cobblestone streets, to the immense history, to the restaurant experiences, there were new discoveries and important lessons around every corner that I can take home to enhance my business practices.

1.  Less is More

Less is More

Russian food is pretty simple

As a lover of all things interior design, I think the architecture and style in the Nordic countries was truly remarkable.  They have perfected the art of efficient and smart design.  No extra, no frills and no waste.  As I would admire the clean and well designed bathrooms or building architecture, I couldn’t help but think of all the ways I could apply the idea of simplifying in many areas in my life.

In my business, I am committing to scheduling my day more efficiently.  Rather than answering emails all day long, I have decided to stick to a strict schedule of answering messages during two 30-minute times in the early morning and late afternoon.  No major development will suffer if I don’t answer it within 15 minutes.

Additionally, I am committing to cutting back on our calendar commitments.  As much as I like to host each event or party, sometimes I can schedule myself into a corner.  Not every event is value added, so I am committing to asking myself more honestly whether each and every added event to the calendar is worth the input.  My hope is that this Nordic cleanup of my practices will allow for a better mental health status and the ability to feel “done” at the end of the day, rather than just on a constant hamster wheel.

2.  Your Roots Matter

Know Your Roots

Given that my great grandparents were both Swedish and Norwegian, I felt an unspoken connection to the people in Northern Europe.  As I learned more about their deep spiritual ways and their struggle as Vikings, it made a lot of stories my grandmother told me come into perspective.

It’s funny how just that physical feeling of “belonging” in the region (although my hair is more of a manufactured blond than most of the true Nordic women), made me feel more confident in my journey in life.  In a way, it makes me make more sense to myself.  And, with that confidence, I think it instantly helped me see how I fit into the bigger picture.

3.  Don’t be Afraid of Different

Try New Things

Cole trying Russian soup

My son is absolutely the worst when it comes to trying new foods or experiences.  And I remember being exactly the same when I was his age.  Yet, I eventually grew out of it and kept reminding him how exciting it is to experience new things.  I found myself repeatedly saying, “Don’t be afraid of things that are different.”

For instance, when we stopped at the port in St. Petersburg, Russia, I expected a bleak and dreary Russian city where people moped around and wished for a more exciting life.  I know that is a wildly undereducated prediction and I should have done more research, but what we found was completely the opposite.  The city was vibrant, colorful, rich in history and religion and full of happy people.

From a city decimated by Hitler during WWII, there was much to learn.  After enduring tough times, the city and people of St. Petersburg found ways to survive and thrive.  Russia has very little agriculture or natural resources and it is cold there most of the year.  Yet, they were resourceful and created caviar and vodka out of fish and potatoes, which are delicacies that have become common across the globe.

Additionally, with cold winters and bleak weather, artists had little distraction and were able to accomplish amazing work in the areas of art, music and ballet.  All in all, before experiencing St. Petersburg, I had an entirely inaccurate perspective and understanding of this fascinating city.  And it reminded me that there is just nothing like experiencing new cultures and experiences to open our minds to what is possible.

4.  Finding Wonder and Magic in Your Daily Life is What Keeps You Young

Magical unplugged family moments

Despite the fact that we are not typically Disney people OR big cruise people, we have somehow fallen in LOVE with Disney cruises.  The amazing service, the attentiveness to all ages, and family togetherness have an incredible effect.  Those who know me know it takes a lot for me to get sentimental, but when it comes to these cruises, they are truly “magical.”  And for the past 4 years, they have been the times I look back on most fondly.

The key reason is because Disney provides us the chance to find the wonder in things again.  Without wi-fi (which they make so ridiculously expensive we just go without), and the pressures of a job, they take care of everything and allow you to truly find the wonder in the places you visit and the people you are with.  It’s just as they say; magical!

Now the truth is, that it doesn’t take a Disney cruise to find the magic and wonder in your life.  It just takes enough escape from the rat race to gain some perspective again.

So, go escape to someplace new.  Enjoy the adventure and let us know what you’ve learned!  Leave a comment on our Facebook page!

Written by Jen E. Griswold

www.jengriswold.com

 

Independence & the Freedom to Chase YOUR American Dream

Independence Day

By Angelina Stephens

What does the American dream represent for you?  One word…close your eyes…what is the first word that comes to mind?

Mine is FREEDOM.  The American dream is the freedom to explore our passions.  Freedom to make something of nothing.  Freedom to break free of limited means and change the world.

The American dream is NOT materialistic…it is NOT about money.

Or is it?

IF YOU CAN’T FLY, RUN.  IF YOU CAN’T RUN, WALK.  IF YOU CAN’T WALK, CRAWL.  BUT BY ALL MEANS KEEP MOVING.

These days, I feel like it’s all I can do to crawl.  Some days, it feels like the only way to move forward at all is to set dreams and passions aside under the weight of responsibility and stability.  The problem is, without ANY forward momentum in the first 20 years of your adult life, dreams are often too distant to dust back off and convert to goals that late in the game.  What terrifies me is the thought of pulling a list of my non-military life dreams out of a pocket to realize that none of them are achievable anymore because I waited too long to start moving.

I would argue that you shouldn’t set ANYTHING aside.  If you look back at your dream sheet, at the things that light a fire inside of you, and it’s there…you HAVE TO do it.  Even if it’s the slowest crawl you’ve ever done.

Here’s why.

Running

Music

Basketball

Horses

Writing

Only one of these things is a regular part of my life right now, and it’s because I was blessed with the opportunity to write this blog.  Not just the opportunity, but the ACCOUNTABILITY to someone else to write this blog.  Because left to my own devices, everything that made my list of life passions, and all of my hobbies, are standing still.

It’s time to start crawling.

I used to grab a basketball and shoot around and do ball drills every morning at the gym.  It was a 10 minute habit that became a ritual.  Throw in an earbud and the world around me disappeared, and some little corner of my mind came to life.

Smallest Step

I used to put on a set of headphones and sit down at the electronic drumset my husband got me for Christmas one year and pretend I was on tour with AC/DC, or BB King.  The sound reverberated through the sticks, into my arms, the world disappeared, and another tiny corner of my mind lit up.

I used to throw on a pair of shoes and run every time my life felt overwhelmed, or scared, or tired, or frustrated, and those feelings were replaced by something calm, and the corners of my mind that had grown dark, grew brighter.

And if I pulled myself up onto the back of a horse and let ‘er rip, there wasn’t a dark corner to be found.

When we let our lives get overwhelmed by the big things, it’s so EASY to tuck the little things away in a dark drawer.  Less should be EASIER.  Less overwhelming.  Less scary.  Less tiring.  Less frustrating.

The problem is, less is not more.  I like to think of my mind as a bunch of tiny compartments.  There is no one thing that lights them all up at once.  But as the glow from one corner creeps into the one next to it, my life feels more fulfilled, more productive…I feel MORE FREE to explore those compartments that I thought were long lost to the darkness.

So how on earth does this translate to business?  Or fitting a basketball, running shoes, a notebook, a drumset, and a horse into my gym bag on the way to the 12-hour job before coming home to the baby and husband, hoping to catch a few hours sleep before starting it all over again the next day?

FINANCIAL FREEDOM IS THE KEY TO HAPPINESS

Whoever says money doesn’t buy happiness is in denial. Money may not buy happiness, but financial freedom does. In a world where money can either set us free or tie our hands behind our backs, financial freedom allows us to pursue our dreams, while financial limitations force us into a life that sustains us instead of a life that inspires us.

Because of money, the older we get the smaller our dreams get. We all start out with grand visions of the future. At some point, we find ourselves looking back on our childhood hopes and dreams like we were just silly kids coming up with crazy stuff to do some day, before the real world came along and grounded us to “responsibility.” That reaction is just a way to justify the fact that at some point, we decided those dreams were either beyond our means, or there just wasn’t room in our lives, and they just faded away.

I still consider myself to be a dreamer, but when I look at myself in the mirror, I see someone who tucked away every little dream that came along and put it away in a “someday” box.  Over the years, each passion in the box collected layers of dust, and deep down, I know that I’m not working towards them anymore. Some of them aren’t physically possible (I am running out of Olympic sports that my knees could handle).  Most of the time, the truth is that we limit ourselves by deciding that they’re not financially possible. They’re too high risk, would take up too much time, or would be too much of a leap of faith without a safety net for our family.  All of these reasons are constraints limited by our responsibility to create financial stability.

SOMETIMES THE SMALLEST STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION IS THE BIGGEST STEP OF YOUR LIFE.  TIP TOE IF YOU MUST, BUT TAKE THE STEP

How many people reach the end of their lives and can say they even attempted to achieve their life dreams?  What would they have done if there were no financial limitations, or if they could find stability that also granted them freedom to manage their time?   I would venture to say that almost everyone settles, and that the main reason they have to is money. We’re willing to work so hard to make ends meet, to keep our family safe, to keep our family fed and clothed and to sustain ourselves. What if we could work just a little bit harder to strip away those limitations?  And then what if we could work a lot smarter and walk away from the hard work that we tie to “responsibility” and “stability,” putting the same level of effort toward living the lives we dream of?  Given the freedom to explore your passions, how would you CHOOSE to spend your time?

Tip Toe

Financial freedom is the key to exploring life’s passions.  Finding a way to achieve that financial freedom may be more work, more overwhelming (for a little while), more scary (at least at first).  It will be HARDER at first.  But achieving that freedom is the key to a life that is filled with MORE passion, MORE excitement, MORE fulfillment.

Money may not buy happiness, but financial freedom could buy the chance to explore our American dreams. I don’t know about you, but I would love to look back someday and at least say I tried, instead of convincing myself that the “someday” dreams I tucked away were just silly kid fantasies, not worth my time as a responsible adult.

What does Freedom mean to you?  Go take the first step and have fun chasing your American Dream!

Written by Angelina Stephens

Instagram.com/angelina.r.stephens.

 

Lessons From My Dad…

Lessons From My Dad

By Angela Uebelacker

How do you capture the legacy of a person you place on a pedestal? My father was a great man, not without imperfections, but definitely the glue that held our family together. On father’s day we celebrate the people in our lives that hold this role. The people that have created a legacy that get’s passed on for generations, and there is such a significant reason…

A Legacy

I lost my father shortly after I graduated from high school. He was a man that always made a funny face in photos; on countless occasions you could catch him making up lyrics to random songs, and always dancing without a care if anyone was watching! Our family is made up of men that are always pulling practical jokes on everyone and truly add to the comic relief needed when life gets chaotic. My father served in the Air Force, was an engineer, and could honestly fix just about anything. He was a great cook, instilled traditions and values in us that live on to this day…a family man that loved the outdoors and having us all together.

Losing my father was one of the most devastating moments of my life, and as life continued after I would soon realize the amazing moments I would miss out on. My father used to send me instructions in college, very detailed instructions on how to remove the backing of my car registration sticker, how to make sure the license plate was clean before placing it, and where to place it. It’s moments like that where I can laugh out loud and then soon realize how much I miss his very presence.

His Blueprint

I’ll never get to see him playing with his grandchildren, but I know how amazing he would’ve been as a Grandpa. Although I am married, I never had a wedding but I’ll never get to walk down the aisle with him or share that father daughter dance. When I fix things, I know that’s his influence and feel his hands guiding mine. When I hear my daughter make up songs, I know that’s him singing along with her…and when we dance around without a care that anyone is watching…I know he is dancing with us! It is my deepest belief that the legacy’s our father’s leave is the greatest blueprint to how well our lives will be! In the most difficult moments their memory or legacy has a way of breaking through and providing us with a vision so clear and secure. There are many fears I have in this world, many moments I will never have, but it is in his very absence that I find the beautiful purpose he has given me.

Lesson’s From My Dad

He has taught me to live a life full of love, and to always find the laughter through the storms we endure. He has provided me with strength and confidence in my role as a parent. He has shown me that being silly, laughing at your self, and dancing as if no one is watching is the medicine to life and how we should all be living it!! And although he is not here to walk me down the aisle when I do plan my actual wedding…I know that he will be present every step of the way! My father’s legacy has taught me to live without regret, embrace being young at heart, and to not take any moment for granted.

Daddy, I am so grateful for the memories we had as kids, for the love you gave us and for everything you taught us. Your presence is deeply missed each and everyday, but your influence remains deep within my heart and soul! I love and miss you…Happy Father’s Day!

Written by Angela Uebelacker

https://www.facebook.com/auebe25


Wishing all the Dad’s & Amazing Guys who support us and teach us to conquer our fears a joyous Father’s Day!

How to Run Your Business (While Vacationing Like a Rockstar)!

Vacation like a Rockstar

Vacation

By Susan Brown

Summer is coming!

Can you believe it? Along with the fun in the sun comes change in routine, kids out of school, and, the best part:  VACATION!

Are you a business owner wondering how to run your business while away? I’ve got some tips to help you ROCK it!

How to Run Your Business While on Vacation:

1).  Be Prepared!

Goals and Plans

If you know you are going to be at the beach, on a cruise, or out of the country, prepare yourself accordingly. A goal without a plan is just a wish. You’ve got to have a method going into your madness to make it work! I suggest writing out a day-by-day list of what you WILL and WILL NOT do while on vacation. If you want to completely unplug, that’s great, just make sure you set up auto-responders on your email accounts and make your network aware you will be away.

2).  Make a List!

I’ve made it a habit to make sure my business is ready to take with me, just as I would make sure to pack sunscreen and a bathing suit in my suitcase. Having a ready- made list of people to contact will maximize the few minutes you do have here and there to work your business! You can also make a week long list of items that are must-dos so you don’t forget anything as your daily schedule changes while away.

3).  Share your Experience!

You aren’t always on vacation, so make sure you take advantage to the cool adventures you are on and share them on your social media accounts! Your audience will enjoy learning about how you spend your free time and it’s a great way to increase engagement!

4).  Meet New People!

Going to a new place is the PERFECT opportunity to grow your network. Strike up a conversation with people you are staying near, those you meet on the beach or by the pool, and even those you sit on an airplane beside. There are ENDLESS opportunities to make new friends while traveling this summer.

Stay organized, plan ahead, and you will ROCK your business this summer!


Click here for more tips on Growing Your Business and Developing a Brand that distinguishes you!

Written by Susan Brown

5 Ways to Survive Summer Break (and keep your sanity)!

Written by Risa Riepma

What kids dream about for summer vacation

A Kid’s View of Summer

It’s Summer…Are You Ready?

I am not sure about you, but the countdown to the last day of school has been in effect for several weeks in my house. For me, the end of school means that not only will my 3 kiddos be spending more time at home with me, but also my husband who is a school counselor.  Despite the fact that my family has had summer break off for over a decade, this summer will be much different.

Last year I left my full time job to grow my virtual business and be a work-from-home-mom (WFHM). YAYYYYYY!

While summer break may mean setting aside the kids’ backpacks and homework, it does not necessarily mean that life slows down. If you have kids and depending on what their summertime activities looks like, your daily schedule is going to looks different and go through a bit of a transition. If you’re used to being in charge of your schedule during the day, it’s time to roll with the punches and be flexible. It may be time to come up with a new daily and weekly schedule. Many home business owners will argue that business slows down in summer months but when this happens, it’s more a result of less income producing activity vs customers having tighter purse strings.

Pay attention to these tips to help your business continue to grow (and help maintain your sanity this summer)!

5 Easy Tips to Survive Your Summer Break:

Tips that Make Life Better

Tips that Make Life Better

1) Plan Your Week Each Sunday

Sitting down with your calendar/planner and your family’s list of activities and plan for income producing activity (IPA) each Sunday will help you be PROACTIVE vs REACTIVE.

I don’t know about you, but having to fit in an unexpected event in an already full day, makes me a bit grumpy. If it means certain activities have to be skipped (because after all, none of us have a clone), then don’t be afraid to politely excuse yourself so that you don’t over-commit.

2) Establish and Stick to “Hours of Operation” For Your Business

Most of us have heard the term “hours of operation” and it sounds wonderful in theory but sticking to set hours that you will do your best to minimize distractions and focus on engaging in IPA takes a conscious effort and PRACTICE! I’ve been practicing this for over 2 years and I still feel like I fall short. As always, recognizing those activities that are time wasters will be key to making the time you do spend, the most productive.

This is especially true in the summer.

It’s important to set hours of operation, whether it is 1 hour/day or more or two 30 min blocks of time each day.  Letting your family know this is “mom’s alone time to work” will keep frustration at bay for you and your summertime rugrats, I mean children. On the flip side to this, doing your best to not be glued to your phone or laptop outside your set hours of operation is just as important. Your family deserves your undivided attention and no one wants to look back at the end of summer break and wish they had spent more time splashing in the pool with their kids.

Remember: daily homework and early bedtimes are just around the corner.

3) Make the Most of Meeting New People and Friends

Summer break + family vacations + new activities = new opportunities to make new friends and share your business!

Whether we are holding more events to share our business, hopping on a plane to visit out of state family, hanging out at our neighborhood pool, or spending more time in playdates, we are going to be surrounded by new people. Being approachable, friendly, and ready to share our products and story can do amazing things for our business. This is especially true during the summer months when we are meeting new people left and right.

One thing I’ve found to be helpful at the end of the initial conversation is asking them right away if they would like to stay connected on Facebook or email. Developing organic friendships where we can be our genuine self and gain others’ trust goes a long way in inspiring others to join us in business as customers and business partners.

4) Set Goals for Your Business and Be Accountable

While June-Aug probably means your kids are putting their feet up more but this shouldn’t be you! Setting BIG goals this summer for your business and not stopping until you reach them will launch your personal business and team to the next level. Finding an accountability partner and someone you can connect with each week to discuss IPA, things that are going well, and areas you need to improve, can help you reach your goals.

Remember: focus on action oriented activities and track weekly stats.

5) Take Time for Yourself

Finding some alone time each week to re-energize and refocus is so important. Life can get a little crazy with all the the moving parts and things we need to juggle during the summer to keep our households running smoothly.

What helps me manage stress is making sure I start each day with a grateful heart. Then, I need to get my workouts in at least 3-4 times/week. I schedule them early in the day so that there is less of a chance that other commitments get in the way.

Remember: Whether it is reading, doing yoga, or whatever your outlet may be, make sure to schedule that in your weekly to-do list. You’ll feel better, have more energy, and be more productive.

Being flexible and able to adapt to the changes that summer break brings is what helps us grow and find happiness. Cheers to a fun summer full of family, smiles, personal and professional growth, and SPF!

Written By Risa Riepma

Build a Business & Continue a Legacy

Go After Your Dreams

Business Along with a Military Career…the Ultimate Freedom

With Memorial Day upcoming, most topics that come to mind are important to highlight, but heartbreaking, as they bring to mind those we have lost over the years…who gave the ultimate sacrifice to protect our Freedom.  They leave us unsure of what to do next, and how to carry on their legacy.  They leave us feeling lost and confused. 

Today I want to talk about something uplifting.  I want to talk about two people who decided to DO SOMETHING about that heartbreak, and to find a way to heal the families that are left behind.  Matt and Micaela are two dear friends who found a way to run a successful business alongside their military careers.  They are incredible leaders that I am proud to serve alongside, and I am the beneficiary of their leadership and mentorship as entrepreneurs as well.  I asked them to join us today to talk about how they balance their business with their military careers, and how they leverage their success to run a nonprofit, the Survivors of Heroes Retreat at Holbrook Farms, Minnesota.  More importantly, I asked them to share a little bit about their inspiration, and how they’re giving back to a community one hero at a time.

Click on the Video Below Watch Their Amazing Story

Thank you to Matt & Micaela for taking the time to share with us today!  From shuffling boxes out of the way of the camera in their new house, fitting in a video the night before Matt went TDY, my internet crashing last minute, filming with a phone propped up, sitting on the bathroom floor (with a baby sleeping in the next room)…it’s a miracle we pulled it off.

Learn More and Get Involved

Mission Milpreneur and Holbrook Farms Retreat

Holbrook Farms Retreat

To learn more about the retreat, check out http://www.holbrookfarmsmn.com, and see how Matt and Micaela redefined their ability to give back at http://redefine.rodanandfields.com/blog/micaela-matthew-brancato-finding-passion-serve/.  To contribute to their mission, click here.

Written by Angelina Stephens

Instagram.com/angelina.r.stephens.

Even Super Heroes Deserve a Day Off!


We salute mother's

Mothers…the 1st Super Heroes


by Angela Uebelacker

Mom’s…The First Real Super Heroes

Gosh…to think about what I wanted to say to all you mothers, in celebration of your amazing Super Hero powers has really been difficult.  By no means am I perfect, or close to winning the ‘Mom of the Year’ award, but I fear there is too much worry and pressure where this thought is concerned.  Now, don’t get me wrong, because we as humans are not perfect (and there are mothers out there that simply shouldn’t be blessed with this role)…but, for everyone else, all of you…GIVE YOURSELF A BREAK!!!

This time of year, or day, is about the celebration of Mothers.  A special day to really highlight all of your amazing qualities and characteristics, and amazing abilities to do everything, be everywhere, produce multiple limbs for holding everything…YOU NAME IT, we do it all!!!  And although this day counts, and we appreciate the love, gifts, cards, and thought that goes into this day…we’re absolutely fine with even a few quiet hours to ourselves…CHA-CHING talk about winning the ultimate pot o’gold HAHAHA.

Embrace Your Many Roles

We love all of the wonderful people that raise us up on this day (in fact, we deserve to be celebrated every single day)!!!  As a mother, we have many roles.  We are students; we have goals, dreams, careers, aspirations…we are smart, driven, empowering, and not perfect!  We want to give, serve, grow, and live.  We want to enjoy life, rock our messy buns, embrace our worn out sweatpants, and every now and then SKIP THE GYM!!!  There shouldn’t be so much emphasis on what we’re feeding our kids, our focus should be on the quality time we’re spending with them, and teaching them morals and manners that will help them grow into decent human beings.

Our kids are watching every single thing that we are doing and not doing for that matter, and they recognize the stress, aggravation, and overwhelming schedule we have created for ourselves…let alone them!!  Yes, activities are important and so is eating a balanced healthy meal, or simply sitting down at the table together with no ELECTRONIC devices!!  So, give yourself permission to embrace the moment…play outside, get dirty, and live life!

Hang Up Your Cape…(for just a moment)

We take on so much as mothers, and you know what…I LOVE IT, TOO!!!  All the chaos!!!  But, we have to remember every day that it is okay to not always be on!!  Whether you’re an entrepreneur, stay at home mother, nurse, teacher, or volunteer, your role is significant!!  You impact people every single day…and you should be so very proud!!  It’s not an easy role, and WE LOVE IT unconditionally, but we also owe ourselves a bit of a break every once in a while!!

If you are not perfect today, you most certainly won’t be tomorrow either…and you know what????…IT DOESN’T MATTER!!!  You will always have Super Hero powers no matter how tall you stand, or how far you fall…and WE applaud you…the genuine, hardworking, loving, dedicated mother, but most importantly we applaud you, JUST THE WAY YOU ARE!!!

Happy Mother’s Day…Today and Every Day!

Written by Angela Uebelacker

https://www.facebook.com/auebe25