Loyalty Leader

Yesterday I attended a Chamber of Commerce meeting. The speaker was Ms. Debra Schmidt, owner of Loyalty Leader, Inc. Her talk was directed to businesses, owners, and managers but everything she spoke about applies to us equally on a personal level. 

 

Ms. Schmidt spoke about treating clients as valued people. Looking them in the eye when they speak and giving them your undivided attention while you are having your conversation. She talked about keeping your promises, something that most take very seriously in business. Unfortunately, sometimes when we are dealing with friends or family we don’t take our promises as seriously, thinking they will give us a pass. As a life coach, I would suggest that you make your relationship with family and friends just as important.

Ms. Schmidt gave many good tips and suggestions in her hour talk. Recognize and appreciate your clients, be sure not to stereotype clients, remember to treat them as individuals. Be willing to admit mistakes and take steps to remedy those mistakes. Give sincere compliments to co-workers in front of others. Thank co-workers and clients alike, again, always with sincerity.

As you can see, while Ms. Schmidt was talking about good customer service and good workplace behavior, every one of these examples also applies to our personal lives. We know that pre-judging and stereotyping people gets us in big trouble, after all, we’ve heard since we were small that it’s a huge mistake to judge a book by its cover and no two people are ever just alike so stereotyping is bound to be wrong. When we admit that we’ve made a mistake and take steps to correct it, not only do we feel better about ourselves, but those that are involved in the situation usually appreciate the honesty as well. Sincere compliments are wonderful! After all, who doesn’t like to hear that they are wonderful? I know I sure do appreciate hearing that I’ve done a great job on the gardens, or that my new red sneakers are fabulous. And here’s one of the best things about compliments, not only does the receiver feel fabulous but so does the person offering the compliment. And of course, we all know that our mom’s told us to thank others for what they have done for us or given to us. Once again, mom was right. The person being thanked knows that you appreciate them, they feel good and are much more likely to do something else that’s nice for someone else or even for you again. And as a bonus, you feel terrific for putting that extra sparkle in their eye.

I’d like to suggest that anyone who would like to learn more about building customer loyalty visit Ms. Schmidt’s website www.TheLoyaltyLeader.com. And remember, what’s good for the customer is almost always good for our family and friends as well. Thank you, Ms. Schmidt, for sharing with all of us.

For today, remember to treat your family and friends at least as good as your clients, I assure you that you will feel fabulous tonight as you brush your teeth and think about your day.

Namaste,
Sandy

Politics

Well, we have jumped off of the deep end here in the United States. The election for our next president is in two (2) months. How exciting! I love politics and this year is historic on so many levels.

For the very first time, we have an African-American man running for the office of president. We also have a woman running for the office of vice-president.

Now I know that there are many people who dislike this season for many reasons. The advertisements sometimes become incredibly negative, hinting at truths but not sharing all pertinent facts. But here is the exciting part. We have the opportunity to vote for and elect the pair that we feel will best lead our country for the next four (4) years. The speeches and debates are often televised and we have the opportunity to get to know our future leaders much more than was possible just a generation ago. I really like that!

This is our opportunity to coach ourselves. We can empower ourselves in so many ways. ourselves. Learn about the people running for office. Listen to speeches of both parties whenever possible, watch the debates and pay attention to not just the answers but also the body language of the participants. Many of us have already selected the pair we hope will win the election, but many others still have not made up their mind. I encourage you to discuss the issues with friends, especially those who have viewpoints that are generally different from yours. Keep an open mind and a fair and civil tongue; there will be many opportunities to share and learn from each other.

Election time is the perfect time to practice some of the skills you may have been learning. Empower yourself by educating yourself on the issues and where the candidates stand. Assert yourself by sharing and discussing your thoughts and opinions with others without being negative. Remember to listen carefully to what others are saying to you about their feelings and thoughts. You have the ability to keep these discussions positive. This is a time that is filled with important life lessons, we just have to pay attention and participate.

Enjoy this historic event, remember that you have the fabulous opportunity to voice your opinion this November, and it does matter.

Namaste,
Sandy

Harley Fest

I live in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Official home of Harley Davidson motorcycles. This week we are being visited by thousands of Harley Davidson riders and fans as they are celebrating the 105th anniversary of Harley. It’s awesome!

I was privileged to be asked to sell raffle tickets for a beautiful Harley at one of the events. It was just so much fun. Meeting friendly, happy people from quite literally all over the world. These bikers and bike fans are all behaving as though they’ve known each other for years and sincerely missed one another. Making new friends in this environment is certainly not difficult.

This is of course quite an economic shot in the arm for Milwaukee and the surrounding area. More important, it’s been a terrific lesson. People of the area are so happy to have all of these bikers coming into town, they are rolling out the red carpet. Bikers are being welcomed with open arms and in return, they are being the best guests imaginable.

Young and old, families with small children, many of these bikers are even traveling with their dogs. Everyone that I’ve talked to has been ready to stop and talk, tell you about their hometown, what their trip has been like and how much they are enjoying their visit.

I’m so glad to have had the opportunity to take part in this wonderful event. It’s been heartwarming and just plain fun, something that the life coach inside of me says most events can and should be. Once again I’ve been reminded that if you treat people well, they will treat you well. Milwaukee is benefiting from that simple lesson in amazing ways.

I hope that everyone you meet during this Labor Day weekend is a friend, new or old, treat them with warmth and love and I have no doubt you will have a fabulous weekend.

Namaste,
Sandy

Live for Today

Do you have special things that you are saving to use on a special day?

When I got married I received crystal bowls, glasses, etc. I love glass and they were beautiful. However, my husband and I were not holding any formal dinners to use our beautiful crystal, we were much more likely to have casual backyard BBQ’s.

When our boys got to be the age of curiosity they wanted to know all about the pretty glass. Well, it occurred to me one day that it was to be used!! It had not been given to us to sit in a cabinet, but rather to be used and enjoyed. From that day forward, we made a huge salad a few times a week in one of the beautiful bowls. If there was dessert, pudding, Jell-O, ice cream, you name it; we served it in the pretty bowls or glasses. It made the boys feel so grown up and trusted and very special to use the beautiful glassware. And I loved seeing it used.

My point is that we all have special things‚ that we are saving for a special day. Why not make today your special day? Wear your favorite dress! Have that favorite wine, call those friends that you think about but never find the time to call. It’s tough not to feel wonderful when you are wearing your finery, talking to your favorite people and smiling all the time.

Every day is a wonderful gift. We don’t know if we will be here tomorrow. So, of course, make plans for your future, but be sure to live for today. Now is what is important!  Smile, relax and speak with love and hope and compassion. Enjoy the moment and you will find yourself going to bed tonight with a beautiful smile and a feeling of calm, joy and serenity.

I wish for you a fabulous day spent enjoying the now.

Namaste,
Sandy

A Little Help From Your Friends

It’s important to surround yourself with people who are supportive of your goals, whatever those goals may be. If you want to drop a few pounds, you would be wise to avoid people who exist solely on potato chips and sweets. You know that would be setting yourself up to fail, so you simply don’t do it.

Look around you for your own life coach. This could be your spouse, parent, child, friend, someone you know from the workplace, etc. The key is to be sure that this person sees your goal in the same light and is completely supportive, positive and reassuring.

This is also a great opportunity to connect with someone you may want to get to know better or simply spend more time with. If you are trying to lose those couple of pounds, perhaps a co-worker would like to spend part of lunch time walking. Or taking a bike ride every evening with your child. If you find that person who is also trying to accomplish the same goal you have taken your first step. Keep this time spent together positive. When this time is upbeat you will find yourself looking forward to the activity, making it much more likely that you will continue the activity. Share with your friend or ‘coach’ exactly what you are trying to accomplish and be sure that you are an inspiring, positive coach for your partner as well.

There’s nothing we can’t accomplish if we have the right attitude and surround ourselves with people who share the same vision.

Wishing you a fabulous day as you discover the wonderful coaches already in your life.

Namaste,
Sandy

Talk to Yourself… Pssssstttt… you are the very BEST Live Coach you could have!

We are all our own life coaches. Is your internal life coach supportive and helpful?

What does that little voice say to you when you are tackling a new project? Do you hear it saying things like I can’t do this, it’s much too technical I’m just not bright enough for this project.‚

The good news is that since that coach lives inside your head, you have control! So, take positive action. The next time that voice is saying something negative turn it around. When you are starting a new project that looks a bit daunting and that nasty voice starts again, answer it. If you hear  I’m just not bright enough for this project, take a deep breath and answer yourself. I AM bright enough to handle this project. It will be a good challenge for me to take on something new and I feel proud of myself for accepting that challenge.

This applies to all aspects of our life. When you hear a negative voice starting in your head, turn it around. It’s so cloudy and rainy this morning, ugh. Change it to ‘The rain is so good for the garden, the flowers are smiling’. It’s going to rain either way, so try shifting your thoughts and mood regarding the situation, you will start to feel better and your entire day will improve as a result.

Wishing you a day filled with fabulous comments of love and support from the life coach who lives inside your head.

Warmly,
Sandy

Take Good Care of Yourself

Do you take time to take care of yourself?  

When we are sitting in the airplane the airline attendant gives us emergency instructions. One of the first things the attendant says is that if the oxygen mask comes down, we need to put on our own before turning to help others. The reason is that you will be of no assistance to anyone if you are unconscious.

It’s not selfish to take time to relax and refresh ourselves. In fact, it’s necessary. What works for you? Meditation? Talking to a close friend? Exercise? There are so many options. Taking a bit of time for ourselves allows us to release stress and find relief. We allow ourselves to feel relaxed and often find a bit of humor in what frustrated us only a short time ago. These positive shifts in attitude will all lead us to be happier and more productive, which in turn allows us to serve ourselves and others much better.

Take some time for yourself, a few minutes, a few days or even a few weeks. You know what you can carve out of your schedule. Do it on a regular basis and watch yourself become more relaxed, calmer and more joyful, as you experience these positive shifts in your emotions you will also find that you are becoming more abundant and prosperous in your life as well. If you still feel as though it’s selfish to take care of yourself – think of it this way, your life coach not only gives you permission but makes self-care a definite assignment!

Wishing you a day in which you discover how taking care of you helps you to be happier and more productive. Fabulous!

Namaste,
Sandy

Take Action

He’s a list maker. That’s a very good thing for him. His lists are his goals, what he expects to achieve for the day, week or even longer.

The problem? These lists were completely overwhelming him. As he would review these lists again and again, he would feel his stress mount and he became frustrated and almost paralyzed with indecision.

The solution? He started making shorter lists and immediately taking action. If his list today has to do with work duties, he will quickly jot down the most pressing matters. Then before he has time to become worried or stressed, he simply takes care of the first thing on his list. One goal accomplished! Crossing that off, he feels less pressure and is more energized to take on the next task. Each time he crosses off a task or goal, he realizes a success.

He still makes lists, but now he looks forward to writing down these goals. He knows that with each one he accomplishes he feels better about himself. He has come to realize that this makes him calmer at work, more productive and more assertive as well.

This may not work for everyone, but it’s been a wonderful step forward for him.

Do you make lists? How do those lists make you feel? Do they overwhelm you or are they simply a roadmap to accomplishing your goals successfully?

Wishing you a fabulous day as you realize that action leads to your success.

Namaste,
Sandy

Life Coaches‚ with Wings!

Here in Wisconsin, we live with some amazing little life coaches, otherwise known as hummingbirds. These tiny birds go about their business of collecting nectar with determination and the sure knowledge that they will succeed.

Their amazingly fast wings beat so quickly that it sounds as if they have tiny little motors. I’m almost hypnotized when I watch them darting from feeder to feeder as these beautiful little birds chase off intruders. They are surprisingly territorial!

Yesterday I was out in the yard, nowhere near the hummingbird feeders. Suddenly I heard that little motor sound (hummingbird wings beating fiercely) I looked up and here was a hummingbird approaching me and backing away again, it did this a few times. I may have looked a bit silly to the neighbors, as I couldn’t do a thing but stand outside and laugh. Wearing a bright fuchsia shirt I must have looked like a big flower to this enthusiastic, determined little bird.

Very quickly the intelligent tiny bird revised his strategy. He had learned that the intended goal had no hope of success, so he immediately altered his strategy. Making a good decision, he flew over to plants that would yield nectar.

This tiny bird made positive changes in his goal immediately. A wonderful lesson! When something isn’t working, determine why it’s not working. If there is no hope of achieving the desired result, then move on to a plan of action that has more likelihood of success.

Just as important to me, this beautiful bird made me smile.

I encourage you to look around you today, find someone or something who inspires you, teaches you in a positive way and makes you smile at the same time.

Here’s hoping that you will find something fabulous to make you smile all day today!

Warmly,
Sandy

Lessons from My Dogs

misc 002Did you know that some life coaches have four furry feet?

Some of the most amazing life coaches I have ever known have been the boxers who have come to live with us. As I watch Indy, it occurs to me that dogs know how to live a positive, stress free life and inspire others to do the same.

Indy is the third boxer that has been a part of our lives. These amazing dogs have taught me so much. I watched Rocky put up with unbelievable silliness of three very little boys. While he romped and played with them, he also watched over them with love and devotion. He was an unbelievably friendly dog, but he always stood between any of my little boys and someone they might not know. One of my favorite memories was of Rocky sharing an ice cream with my eldest son. Not terribly hygienic I know, but it’s amazing to remember my son taking a lick from the cone and then Rock would lick. They shared an entire cone in this manner. Now that’s love and patience.

Rascal was the next boxer to become part of our lives. He taught our boys and their friends that it was okay to be a bit goofy even when they were growing into teenagers. He would romp and play and follow them around just waiting for a game to start or someone to stop and rub his ears. The boys would forget they were supposed to be ‘big, tough boys’ and would talk in sweet sing-song voice to Rascal, enticing him to play. When they would ‘camp out’ on the family room floor, he taught them the value of sharing as he would curl up on someones blanket. None of those boys, my own sons or any of their friends, ever asked Rascal to move. They simply shared. And they were rewarded for their kindness with boxer slobber and snorts. High praise indeed!

Rocky and Rascal have passed and now Indy lives with us. My sweet boy is always eager for a game of tug or a walk and each time I walk in the door he’s as excited to see me as if I had been gone for weeks.

Each of these dogs has reminded me of the most simple yet profound lessons. Expect wonderful things from the day, and you’ll always find something that makes you happy. Greet everyone as though they are loved and you will be treated with love in return. Share your most precious gifts (slimy toys in their case) and others will share with you.

I could go on and on, but anyone who has ever been fortunate enough to know and love a dog, knows just what I’m talking about. So for today, I’d like to thank my wonderful dogs for the lessons they have shared and that Indy continues to teach and share. They are indeed wonderful life coaches.

For today, look around and find an unexpected life coach. Someone or something that is teaching you perseverance, love, patience. I bet you’ll find something or someone who is teaching you how to live your best life, right at this very moment.

Wishing you a fabulous day,

With warmth,
Sandy