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How To Optimize YOUR Brain Power & Take Massive Action

If you created your 2018 Business Success Plan or are working on it, chances are your plan will call for massive action.

We optimize our resources for efficiency and value. Why not optimize the most powerful asset available to us, our brain?

Most entrepreneurs buy in to the latest trend of hustling and overlook the importance of enhancing our brain power. Yet, when it comes to taking massive action, providing your brain what it needs to deliver peak performance wins hands down.

Experienced business owners understand how their brains operate and work with it to optimize results. Do you?

What do you need to know about your brain for peak performance?

We’ve all experienced the auto pilot effect.

For example, arriving home with few memories of the mechanical process of driving there, or our daily morning routine. When we repeatedly do something, it becomes second nature.

When you form habits they become part of our subconscious, or long-term memory. Using less energy, you perform habitual activities without thinking about them. Learning something new, or solving complex problems requires more energy.
You have to think about what you’re doing because it’s stored as a short-term memory.

The goal for brain optimization is 3-fold; to transition vital information from short -term to long- term as quickly as possible, reserve energy, and restore energy reserves when depleted.

8 way to Optimize Your Brain Power

1. Empty your brain of to-do lists and ideas. Keep a notepad with you so you can jot down ideas when they come and use technology to create to-do lists. As David Allen stated in his book Getting Things Done, “Your brain is for having ideas, not storing them.”

2. Practice makes mastery. Move essential information and knowledge from short-term memory to long-term through practice and reinforcement. Once in long-term memory, you expend less energy.

3. Use pictures and music to remember information. Did you know that long-term memories are stored in the emotional brain? Linking information with music and pictures will enhance your memory.

4. Reserve decisions making energies. Use your energy to make important decisions. Energy used to decide what to eat can be used elsewhere. Decide on breakfast once and have the same thing for the next week or month.

5. Work on complex tasks during peak brain times. Do you know what time of day you’re the most alert and focused? Are mornings the best time for you? Maybe you prefer the afternoons or evenings. If you don’t know, experiment and find the time of day you’re laser focused. Tasks the involve planning, brainstorming, or tasks you don’t want to do should be worked on during your peak time. FYI, it’s normal to have more than 1 peak time.

6. Rest and recover. When work becomes challenging, give yourself a break for your brain to recover. Allow at least 15 minutes. If you’re feeling stuck and can’t find the answer, walk away and allow your brain to relax. You’ll find your brain will give you an answer when you least expect it.

7. Stay nourished. Avoid skipping meals and stay hydrated to restore energy.

8. One thing at a time. Multitasking is a huge energy drainer. Avoid distractions and focus on one task for a determined time period.

BONUS: Have yet to create your 2018 Business Success Plan? Tap here to learn how to get started!

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Rookie Mistake: Awkward Sales Response

I enjoy networking. It’s one of many reasons I’m self-employed. Connecting with business owners is exhilarating. Until recently, I haven’t had to deal with being hit on. Either I’m completely oblivious when someone is flirting, or I assume it’s how some people build rapport. A week ago, I had an awkward encounter which  has given me reason to be more aware.

A prospect I met on a networking website wanted to start a referral program for his home improvement business. We discussed his needs and products options over the course of 3 months. He was very personable and we had a good connection.

While attempting to call a friend, I accidently dialed his number. Expecting a woman’s voice to answer, I quickly replied that I had the wrong phone number and hung up. After a few minutes, I realized who I called and that’s when I received a text from the prospect.

The text read, “I kinda wish you didn’t have the wrong number.”

Tickled about the situation, I immediately called the prospect back and jokingly explained what happened. We laughed and during our conversation,  he commented on the sexiness of my voice in a playful manner.

I laughed it off and didn’t think anything of it. He knew I had a boyfriend (at least I mentioned it before). We agreed to schedule a meeting for the following week.
Confident I would close him at our meeting, I began prepping paper work.

Finally!

All the time spent following up was paying off.

During the next few days, we scheduled an evening meeting via text at a local pub grill.

Prospect: “Is 6pm ok with you?”
Me: “Yes”
Prospect: “Cool, since it’ll be coming from work, could we get dinner?”
Me: “sure.”
Prospect: “Great it’s a date!”

Ummm wait, what? Let’s rewind this…. Personable guy, great business connection, thinks my voice is sexy, it’s date??
Oh no!

The feeling of uneasiness started to creep in. How should I reply? Should I brush it off? No, I gotta say something. I started to feel like a lady of the night.
Besides, if I kept this from Ryan, I would feel guilty.
Dang it!
I really want the sale. Should I risk losing the sale?
I completely over thought the situation and my conscience got the best of me.

I replied, “Well it’s more like a dinner meeting.”
Prospect: “When I said it’s a date, I didn’t mean a romantic date. I meant a date on the calendar.”
Like a rookie, I replied with a fist pump emoji.

Although my response was awkward, I was relieved. If it’s a misunderstanding, we can easily sweep this under the rug and continue the sales process.

To make a long story short, we didn’t meet. The prospect stood me up and never replied to my voicemail or text.
Yes, I lost the sale, but I wasn’t upset.

If he truly had no romantic intentions, he would have met with me, right?

I despite the rookie mistakes I’m pleased that I stood up for myself when I felt uncomfortable. Of course I could have used more tact, but practice makes mastery!

Have you ever experienced a similar situation? What did you do? I’d love to hear from you!

                                                                                  THANKS FOR READING MY BLOG!
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Purpose Revealed: Serving Entrepreneurs

I’m sure you’ve noticed that I’ve gone off script with the last few posts and you may be wondering,”What the heck is going on?”

I’ve written about travel for several months and now you see posts about business and self-improvement.
Confusing right?

First, I’d like to apologize for the confusion.

The last thing I want to do is confuse my readers. I enjoy travel and believe in all the benefits it has to offer I’ve uncovered my true passion, helping entrepreneurs.

You know that feeling of complete bliss get after doing something you truly enjoy?

Well that’s the feeling I get when I serve entrepreneurs.

It’s time to accept my calling and share my wisdom with the world.

As a small business owner, I understand the challenges we face wearing multiple hats. We work countless hours marketing, serving others, and improving our business.

My entrepreneurial journey has been filled with triumphs and mistakes, Mount Everest peak highs and deep ditch valleys lows. Yet, through it all, I’m stronger, more confident.

I’ve spent countless hours prospecting, and feeding the marketing beast and almost depleted my resources. If I knew what I know now, I could have saved thousands of dollars and be further along in my business.

I want to share what I’ve learned with so entrepreneurs can avoid the same mistakes I’ve made.

I want your business journey be less tumultuous, and more fulfilling.

I’m committed to helping small business owners create relationship focused marketing strategies that are aligned with their branding and lifestyle.

We all know relationships are key to living a fulfilled life. It turns out the same is true for building a strong, sustainable business. There is a trend of hacking business relationships and it’s costing entrepreneurs money!

What if you could turn key clients into permanent referral sources? How much time and money would you save? How much money would you earn? It’s time to work smart not hard!

Future posts will focus on my passion and I ask for your patience as I transition. I’ll continue to write about travel as it relates to business and still include hot vacation deals from time to time.

If my new focus doesn’t interest you, no hard feelings. Share this posts with someone who would benefit from the information. If you’re a service provider and you’re tired of feeding the marketing beast, than stay tune for future posts.

Thanks for your understanding!

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Need More Referrals? Try Tiered Appreciation


Those who provide referrals should be thanked differently than those who provide leads. Thank everyone the same way and you overlook the superstars who could bring you more business.

Common sense right?

Yet most entrepreneurs send thank emails, or notes to everyone for everything and believe it’s effective.

Well, it’s not.

In fact, by showing your appreciation this way you’re hack your business and leaving money on the table.
Let me explain why.

There’s a difference between word of mouth,  leads, introductions, and referrals. They don’t have the same value.
Although each action markets your business, they don’t all motivate prospects to buy.

For instance, word of mouth buzz creates visibility. It doesn’t take much effort for your network to mention your business to others who need your solution. There’s little to no motivation for the prospect to take action.

A lead is contact information of someone who needs your solution. The only connection you have with the lead is the person who gave you their information. Name dropping might get you dedicated time (hopefully) but there’s no guarantee you’ll get the sale. In addition, you go through the same process as a cold lead.

An introduction puts you a step closer to a sale. When you’re introduced to a prospect trust is transferred to you and the sales cycle is shortened.

On the other hand, those who send business your way sell the prospect on why they need your services, what they like about you, and provides your contact information. All the upfront work is done for you. The prospect shows up wanting your services so there’s little work required on your behalf to close the sale.

All you need to do is to not screw it up!

True referral sources should be appreciated as the rock stars they are. They are literally your sales force and should be treated as such.
Tiered appreciation identifies the superstars in your network and who to give more attention to. Give your rock stars small gifts to show your appreciation and they’ll continue to refer you. Need help with gift ideas? Head over to the appreciation gift page.

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Book Your Vacation Today: Hot Travel Deals

Ready for some HOT TRAVEL DEALS?

I hope so!

I searched high and low for incredible travel deals for you and boy did I find them! Below is a list of vacation deals that caught my eye and if you find a

deal you like, book it ASAP with your trusted travel consultant or with us!

Spring Break Sale: Save up to 60% Funjet Vacations Spring Break Sale

Destinations: Mexico, Caribbean
Travel Dates: 03/01/18 – 04/14/18
Booking Dates: 10/26/17 – 11/09/17
Your clients can enjoy incredible savings on their ultimate 2018 spring break vacation now through 11/9!

Save Up to 50% + Resort Coupons in Playa del Carmen

Photo Credit: Playa del Carmen

Destinations: Playa del Carmen
Travel Dates: Now – 12/20/19
Book By: 11/15/17
Let your clients experience an adults only getaway in Playa del Carmen with savings up to 50% + up to $100 in resort coupons* at The Royal Playa del Carmen.
*Resort coupons valid for bookings now – 11/15/17. Blackout dates do apply. Resort coupons travel dates now – 12/21/17. Credit applies to per room, per stay.

Save Up To 55% Plus Kids Stay Free* at Hyatt Ziva All-Inclusive Resorts

Photo Credit: Hyatt Ziva Resorts

Destinations: Los Cabos, Montego Bay, Puerto Vallarta
Travel Dates: Now – 12/20/19
Book By: 11/15/17
Kids can have a blast at the Kidz Club and parents get to finally relax at the spa. There’s no limit on family fun when pristine beaches, vibrant culture, exciting activities, luxurious accommodations and gourmet cuisine are always included. Indulge in all-inclusive luxury.

Limited Time Offer! Save Up to 35% on Select MGM Resorts Hotels

Photo Credit: MGM Resorts

Destinations: Las Vegas
Travel Dates: Now – 09/30/18
Book By: 11/17/17
Save 35% at these resorts: Excalibur, Luxor, and Monte Carlo

 Azamara $1,000 Cruise Credit + Free Double Upgrade

The world is full of breathtaking views, and with our latest offer, those views can be seen from the sky and from your own personal balcony at sea. You can choose from select European voyages, book your air travel through ChoiceAir by November 30th, 2017, and receive $1,000 in ChoiceAir cruise credit and a complimentary double upgrade.

My Quiet Spaces Women’s Retreat Cruise With ETS

My Quiet Spaces Cruise
Join us for the first My Quiet Spaces cruise event – a retreat designed for Christian women. Engage your mind, body, and spirit through music, creative writing, meditation, movement, and prayer. Gather with other women who are seeking a time of renewal and connection with God. Relax in the warmth of the Caribbean while enjoying the comforts and activities of the ship, beaches and ports with Christian friends new and old. The price of this trip starts at $419 for an inside stateroom, not including the $71 tax or $75 program fee.

Book your spring  break vacation today!

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If you’re a semi-expert traveler, why not get paid for it? Click here for details.
Looking for an innovative way to improve your business? Click here to learn more.
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Do You Know How To Change Your Bad Mood?

Happy day everyone!

Some of you woke up grateful and excited to get the day the started, while the rest of us woke up thinking damn, here we go again…..

I tell you, some days I have to slide out of bed because I don’t want to adult. I try to find positive things to look forward to change my attitude. In fact, it’s been scientifically proven that looking forward to something or someone and turn your day around.

Who knew right?

If you’re anything like me, you like to look up every question you have about life and chances are you find some pretty cool videos and podcasts.  Any time I get writer’s block, feel useless, or just plain stuck, I have my go to list of videos and audio. Below is my top 7 mood changing list. Just promise you’ll share your list with me too!

Motivation:

We all need motivation from time to time and I like Les Brown, Tony Robbins, etc. Here’s one that strikes a nerve every time I hear it. It gets me fired up and ready to work.

Dr. Eric Thomas, You owe you

Ted Talk: Change Your Mind Change Your Mindset

Music favs:

Music can be very healing and it’s great when you need to change your attitude.  I listen to the songs below to change my mood, especially before a big meeting or event.  When I need to strut my stuff and light up the room, I listen to this:

Kendrick Lemar I

Floacist The Stand

The Jackson 5 Can You Feel It

Continuous Learning

I most Americans, I’m a fan of personal development.  Although it’s easy to overdose on all the books, articles, and podcasts available, I found an interesting anti personal development article that’s worth reading.  For those who are on “positive thinking” overload, read this article to find balance.

5 Brutal Truths I learned after positive thinking screwed up my life

If you’re an entrepreneur who gets that dreaded blank star every time you say your elevator pitch, this one’s for you!

Sam Horn: How to Create Interest and Connect with Anyone

What are your favorite motivational talks, videos, and podcasts?

THANKS FOR READING MY BLOG!
If you’re a semi-expert traveler, why not get paid for it? Click here for details.
Looking for an innovative way to improve your business? Click here to learn more.
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Out And About In Milwaukee: Ex Fabula StorySlam

Credit: Ex Fabula

I was invited to StorySlam hosted by Ex Fabula last week and let me tell you, it was amazing!

Spending an evening listening to story tellers did not sound like a fun time initially, but since I never been and was invited, I thought why not.

You only live once right?

Anyway, StorySlam was held at the Milwaukee County Historical Society. You know, the same place Johnny Depp filmed Public Enemy.

Credit: Ex Fabula

Although a Milwaukee native, I’ve never been inside and yes, it’s gorgeous!

The interior has beautiful marble columns, elegant chandeliers, and a gigantic vault on the north end that commanded my attention as I entered the building.
Needless to say the architecture provided a dramatic back drop to the story telling.

Did I mention they had a wet bar too? (Not to sound like a lush, but I was beyond thrilled).

Back to the story….

For those who don’t know what StorySlam is, it’s like poetry slam but with stories. The one I attended included six storytellers. Eight stories were performed relating to the theme “On The Road.” Audience members also had a chance to have their story read by the MCs by submitting short stories or “UltraShorts”.

Feeling a little bashful, I wrote an UltraShort about the time I rode in a rogue shopping cart in my youth. To my surprise, it was read toward the end of the evening!

There were many highlights to the evening that made for a magical experience.

All of the stories had humor and were entertaining. I learned about sniper hunting, the Driftless Area of Wisconsin, and secrets of RV life.

My favorite story was about a lady who spent a weekend with friends in a cabin up north. I could imagine being at the cabin as she painted a vivid picture of

Credit: Ex Fabula

what took place. The story was hilarious and retelling it wouldn’t do it justice. Lets just say the story involved alcohol, bloody hand prints, and a sleep walker.

Ex Fabula offered an eclectic group of story tellers who each had a unique style of storytelling. It was raw, and real, and liberating to connect with individuals on a personal level.

What a great evening filled with personal stories, excitement, and laughter!

If you want to flex your story telling muscles and connect with people, I strongly suggest attending an Ex Fabula event. The next StorySlam is coming up soon so check out their website link below.

Ex Fabula is a nonprofit that’s committed to strengthening community bonds through the art of storytelling. They host monthly story slams in different venues around the city.

For more information about tickets to an upcoming events, workshops, or to learn more about Ex Fabula tap here.

THANKS FOR READING MY BLOG!
If you’re a semi-expert traveler, why not get paid for it? Click here for details.
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Relationships: Lessons From A Children’s Show

As I was preparing for the day this morning, I could hear a children’s show on the T.V. “Do something nice for your neighbor” was sung every few minutes.
At first, I was a little annoyed. But as it continued I paused and walked in the living room to see what the show was about. The Neighbor Day episode of Daniel
Tiger’s Neighborhood was playing.

Every time Daniel and his friends sung the phrase, “do something nice for your neighbor,” they performed different activities to show kindness. Daniel helped a neighbor carry grocery bags, helped the mail man deliver packages, gave gifts to neighbors, etc.

I stood there and watched the rest of the show calling to memory the life lessons I was taught as a child and how those lessons prepared me for adulthood.

How often do we as business owners forget to show kindness to our network?

Doing something nice for others is the cornerstone of relationship building because is brings value to their lives.

We all know the importance of relationships in business and some of us are masters at connecting.
Yet there’s always room to show a little more kindness.

Is there someone in your network you’ve been thinking of and haven’t spoken to in a while? A name that continues to pop up during discussions or in social media.

I encourage you to pick up the phone and call that person to check up on him/her. Have a conversation with no hidden agenda, and ask how you can help them.
Maybe you’ll get a business deal out of it, maybe not. The point is to show you care with no strings attached.

When we focus on relationship building, business growth is one of many side effects. The big reward is creating a group of people who care for you and in the grand scheme of things, relationships is the true measurement of a fulfilled life.

 

THANKS FOR READING MY BLOG!
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Cookbook Inspiration For Your Next Getaway

Have you ever planned a trip based on your favorite book?

If you’ve started thinking about 2018 travels, I have a delightful idea your friends and family will love. Before I share it, I want to share with you a podcast/article from The Leonard Lopate Show.  It’s titled Gabrielle Langholtz Explores America’s 50 States Of Food.  As I listened to the podcast, I imagined a group of girlfriends and I riding in an old school VW van, laughing, café hoping, and enjoying each other’s company.

Imagine taking a cross country road trip based on a cookbook.

How much fun would that be?  How long would it take?

You could visit relatives, take cooking lessons, eat where the locals eat, live stream your journey via Snapchat, etc. I’m sure you and your friends could brainstorm endless ideas.

The link below. Listen to the podcast, copy a few recipes, and share your road trip ideas with us!  It’s never too early for planning your summer 2018 travels.

Check out the following recipes from Gabrielle Langholtz: America: The Cookbook!

WHOOPIE PIES

States: Maine, Pennsylvania

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Serves: 8-9 large whoopie pies

This cake-like chocolate sandwich cookie started showing up in bakeries and lunchboxes in the 1920s, and both Maine and Pennsylvania claim it as their own. It gets its name from the reception it gets when it is served. A whoopie pie can be as big as a hamburger. Serve with a glass of cold milk……

KOREAN PANCAKES

State: California

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes

Serves: 8

Dairy-free, Vegetarian

Los Angeles is home to the largest Korean-American community in the country. Serve these pancakes with a soy dipping sauce, if desired……..

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Best Tips For Traveling With Your Pet

Hey pet lovers. I completely understand your devotion to your beloved four-legged kids. They’re comforting, always happy to see you, and entertaining. This dedication has spread to travel as more pet parents are including their pets on getaways. As more tourist destinations like Disney World are becoming pet friendly, below are a few blogs and articles worth checking out.

5 must have items when traveling with your dog: by Esther Muwombi, Contributor Huffington Post

The 5 tips listed seems like a no brainer, but trust me when I say, you’ll be glad you read this article especially if it’ll be your first time traveling with your pooch.

Top 10 Fall Pet Travel Tips: blog post by Epetsure

Yes, more tips for pet travel. This time it’s for any pet. Just in case you need more helpful hints to ensure smooth travel with your pet check out this blog post.

Pet travel tips: when you should leave your dog at home: blog by Travel Moments in Time

Some pdog lovers want travel everywhere with their furry beloved even when it’s not safe. It’s important to know when you should leave your pooch at home. Read this to help evaluate if your favorite k-9 should stay home.

How To Travel With Your Cat: Flying With Your Cat: by Maggie Clancy of Cattime.com

Sometimes it’s necessary to bring along your feline friend and if you’ve never traveled with your cat, read this article first!

Traveling with Pets by Car, Plane, Train or Ship: blog by The Senior List

This blog is complete with a checklist of all items and issues to consider depending on the mode of travel.

 

THANKS FOR ALLOWING ME TO HELP YOU IMPROVE YOUR TRAVEL!
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