Category Archives for "Inspiration"
You have heard the saying, “Never give up”, many times in your life. You have heard the saying, “Winners never quit”. So when you begin to have thoughts about quitting your job or closing your business you may get pangs of guilt coming at you from yourself and those around you. There is a stigma that quitting is what losers do.
But what if we don't put the label of “quitting” on the action? Perhaps we are on a journey and now your path is leading you in another direction. Or maybe you want to change your mind. Maybe you thought this was what you were destined to do but now are having second thoughts. Does that make you a loser? Does that make you a quitter?
For instance, you might be a nurse. You became a nurse because you love helping people. You love nurturing and taking care of people. You like to help people heal from injuries and traumatic diseases. Plus, the pay is not bad. The shifts are long but you can work with more flexibility than many other careers. Think back to why you became a nurse. Now, fast forward to your current feelings. You may now feel burned out. Your cup is empty and there is no time to refill it. You are getting fatigued working long shifts and graveyard shifts or swing shifts. You end up getting 3 hours of sleep on those days. We can go on and on…
You may be at the crossroads. You still want to help people. You still want to assist in their healing. You still love to nurture and take care of people. The vehicle just needs to change. There is nothing wrong and everything right with that. You are not quitting. You are just changing vehicles.
In this time it is also very normal to change careers at least 3 times in our working lives because we are living longer, it is easier to learn to work in another field or career and our lifestyles change to fit our next path.
You might be a Real Estate agent who is wondering if showing and selling houses is really what you are being called to do. Perhaps you became a real estate agent because you enjoyed being with people, you enjoyed the smile on a new family's face when they purchase their first home, or maybe you got into real estate so that you could invest in properties to build wealth for you and your family. Maybe you became a real estate agent because you like to serve others, help others, make a difference in their lives.
But now you may be wondering… while you love to serve others you also have bills to pay. Maybe you are not making the amount of income you need to make to support your family. And may be you are suffering from burn out because you have been burning the candle from both ends, not delegating your tasks, not creating systems that can be delegated, and not taking right action to reach your financial goals.
I have seen agents who are miserable, barely making enough to pay their bills, struggling with lead generation and getting enough business and yet, they tend to defend their decision to stay in real estate because of the stigma connected to quitting real estate. After all, being altruistic is something you want to be admired for. Being in real estate is not a career but a business. The mistake I see most often is agents who don't treat their businesses like businesses. They treat it like a job. That will never work out. Employee mentalities don't work in entrepreneur settings.
Perhaps you are working in corporate America putting in long hours and climbing the “success” ladder. You chose this path as the vehicle to reach security and have a great retirement. However, years into this grind, you start to see you are giving up too much of yourself and time away from your family. Something is going to have to give.
While the 3 of these scenarios are pretty different, what they have in common, is a chosen vehicle and a road to drive that vehicle on.
Now, maybe you have been thinking about how much you would love to start your own business and leave the 9 to 5. Maybe you are passionate about skiing and want to teach skiing instead of selling real estate. Maybe you are a nurse that knows natural healing alternatives and believe starting an online business coaching parents in how to deal with their child who has ADHD naturally is going to be much more rewarding while still fulfilling your desire to nurture and help others.
As long as you are changing the vehicle on the path you want to be on, that is perfectly fine. I have been hired by real estate agents, business owners and corporate employees to help them get more business only to discover they are not passionate about their business at all and they wish they could be doing something else. If your heart is not into it, the drive and tenacity you need to succeed will not manifest for you.
Interested in having a discovery session to go through your options? If you are contemplating changing horses ( vehicles) the best thing you can do is get an objective opinion and expertise to help assist you to make sure you are making the right decision.
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365 Days of Eliminating Crap Facebook Group by Linda Davis AKA “The Crapmaster”.
I am so happy to have found Linda's Facebook group. Linda is a real estate broker associate with Re/Max in Ledyard, CT.
Around January 5, 2014 I found out about Linda's group- 365 Days of Eliminating Crap
The purpose of the group is to inspire each of us to get rid of 1 item per day for 365 days. If I could do this, that would mean that I would get 365 items out of our house that we no longer need or are of no useful purpose to us.
At first it sounded daunting but instead, it was awesome inspiring!
What started out as the thought, “What in the world can I get rid of every single day?” ended up within one week's time thoughts of real things to get rid of.
It was fun too. Although I did not have time to take photos and post them every day to the group- it ended up that not ONE day went by in 2014 where I did not eliminate something.
Linda's strict rule was “one item per day” NOT cleaning out your entire closet or garage. That was great because if you break goals down into small manageable action steps it is easy to accomplish.
In fact, Linda would oust you from the group if you started posting about cleaning out entire closets and rooms.
It is easy to make sure to get rid of just one item per day out of your house. Most of us have way too much junk and items that can be much more useful to others.
Some items went out to the recycling containers, some stuff was thrown in the trash but most of the items I got rid of were given to others who could use the items. First, I would ask our kids ( the grown up ones) if any of them wanted the items, if they did not want them, I would ask our church members and if no one there wanted them, I put them on freecycle. Our freecyle group here is very good, I rarely have no shows.
I love spices and enjoy cooking. By doing just a little bit each day- I was able to clear out two good sized spice cabinets and one drawer. I consolidated all the half used bottles of spices into larger containers and then labeled all the containers.
I also was able to clean out one half of my walk-in closet. Since I lost a lot of weight, I gave away all the clothes that are now too big for me.
I cleaned out my trunk in my car over time and also many drawers in my kids' rooms as well as in our kitchen and offices.
As you homeschoolers know, you can get pretty cluttered with homeschool books, notebooks, science kits, projects, etc. If you are like me then you also have a bunch of awesome homeschool ideas laying around with good intentions but in reality you will never have the time to finish them:). Yes, I do that too. So the best project was the one of eliminating those projects and passing along books and curriculum to other homeschool families who were in need of these items. Here is Tristan's homeschool desk now:
And here is my clutter-free desk:
It feels so empowering to get rid of “stuff”. It feels so good to look at nice cleared out areas in your home.
No matter how busy you are- you can look around each day for just one thing. It does not even have to be in a specific area. It could also be deleting emails and clearing off your desktop files on your computers.
Thank you Linda Davis for providing this group. I am excited to start another year of eliminating something every single day of the year. I have made progress in clearing out things we don't need yet still have a ways to go.
So onward we go into 2015 getting rid of crap one item at a time!
Every Listing is Won Before You Ever Step Foot in The Seller's Front Door
Sun Tzu said over 2,500 years ago in the ‘The Art of War', “every battle is won before it is ever fought.”
Before you ever step foot on the battlefield the battle has already been won.
If you want to be a listing agent or want to be a better listing agent reading Sun Tzu's ‘The Art of War' is a must read.
The battle is nearly always the one going on inside your own head.
The first step to winning the listing is to “know thyself”. You must know who you are, what makes you tick, what keeps you up at night and what you want to jump out of bed in the morning for. You must understand your limited beliefs, where they come from, deal with them and then, let them go. You must get out of your own way.
If you have any sabotaging behavior ( and all people do) ~ I can assure you that you will lose the listing before you cross the door's threshold.
I get calls from agents who are concerned about going on listing appointments only to lose the listing to another agent. When we work on discovering what is it that creates this reality for them, in most instances it is all about that inner battlefield.
It rarely is about the listing presentation itself.
Even if we can trace the losses back to points in the listing presentation inevitability those points being missed or being made are connected to the agent's mindset. It always goes back to this one pivotal point: the conversations going on inside your head and what your subconscious wants to create for you.
The second step is to know the seller. You must know the seller. Have you done your research on the property? Have you looked up the tax appraiser's report on this seller? Have you checked to see if there are any liens on the property, are they in lis pendens status? Have you checked on the MLS to see the property listing history and sales data of this property? All of these are critical to you knowing how to discuss listing the property.
Have you checked out the seller on social media? Have you checked their facebook page, twitter, linkedin and online? Finding out every single detail you can about the seller will help you connect with the seller.
The third step is sincerity. Does the seller feel like you just want a listing or does the seller feel like you care about their problems, pains and issues? Connecting with the seller on common ground is the key to building trust.
We all know that people only do business with those they know, like and trust. Be that person.
The text of The Art of War is in the public domain.
Here is a link to a downloadable pdf file of the book. Just click on the download link on this library: http://www.paxlibrorum.com/books/taowde/
Many people will take works and text that is in the public domain and add commentary to it in order to copyright and publish the works in book form.
You can buy one that is annotated on Amazon The Art Of War
from $3.99 to $7.99 for a paperback book, the audio version is $1.99 and the Kindle version is .99 cents.
If you would like the simplified text file, the MIT has one here: http://classics.mit.edu/Tzu/artwar.1b.txt.
Listing Experts Academy is the perfect program for agents who strive to be the best listing agents in their markets.
Win the battle by becoming a member today. Text me at 561-502-1577 to get started today.
Lessons Learned from Being Unplugged
This was the first vacation that we went on since I started blogging where I did not blog. It is the first vacation where I even left my laptop at home. I brought no work with me other than my goals journal and my regular journal. I did bring my phone but I used it only for staying in touch with family, using the GPS we like (MotionX) and for keeping tabs on the rest of our family members that we were on vacation with.
I checked my emails while at the airport on the way out and on the way back. I did not even post on Facebook. If you are thinking of doing this I encourage you to just go for it.
Our vacation was for 9 days. It would have been better at 14 days but our son could not miss pitching that many baseball games for the teams he is on. Here in Florida baseball is year round.
1. The emails will still be there when you get back. You can delegate your email duties to your assistant. My virtual assistant takes care of mine.
2. The clients and customers will still be around when you get back. Let the key people know that you will be away. Have your virtual assistant or personal assistant take care of any important tasks, etc.
3. For safety reasons- I did not even post on FB the exact times we would be on vacation, etc. I did not check in either on foursquare or anywhere where else online. Since I have a public facebook profile- it is not wise to share this kind of event until after the fact.
4. Enjoy the eye candy! There is so much visual stimulation when you leave your normal surroundings. When we are at home so much or in our communities, our eyes are so used to our surroundings that we rarely pay attention or give much thought to the scenery around us. When you change the scene- your eyes and brain get stimulated. Soaking it all in is like accepting an amazing gift from God.
5. Treasure the fun with your family.
6. We did discuss real estate with members of our family and different investors and business owners in each of the towns we stopped in. It is very interesting to learn about the way the cultures of each community differ and what we all have in common. We also stopped in local real estate offices to check out their marketing and listings.
We flew into Minneapolis and drove to Fargo North Dakota where our oldest son lives. Our second oldest son and his fiance went on the vacation with us. Our youngest son, 12 year old, said this was the best vacation even over our Disneyworld vacations. Our second oldest son has not seen his oldest brother in over 20 years. And we had not met our oldest son's 2 year old baby boy and his 4 yr old daughter. ( I did meet my granddaughter when she was a baby.) We celebrated her 4 year old birthday.
We then drove from Fargo to Mt Rushmore in South Dakota and stayed in Custer South Dakota. The next day we drove to Cody Wyoming.
The day after that we drove to Yellowstone National Park. We stayed in West Yellowstone Montana for a 2 nights and spent the time in Yellowstone Park being totally amazed at all the majestic nature it has to offer.
Then we drove into Jackson Hole Wyoming one of my favorite places on earth. Jackson Hole is like heaven on earth. As we drove through the Tetons winding our way around, and then down into Jackson Hole, I heard everyone in the van taking a breath with awe. If you have never been to Jackson Hole- it should go on your bucket list now. I have been there many times but it has been over 25 years since I have been there.
After we spent the morning and early afternoon in Jackson Hole we drove into Salt Lake City to stay for a couple of days. I wanted Tristan to see Temple Square. We spent the afternoon at Temple Square and then some time in the Deseret Book store where Tristan picked out his new scriptures and we had them engraved with his name for him.
The pinnacle of our vacation was the last night enjoying dinner at “The Roof” restaurant at the top of the Joseph Smith Memorial Building overlooking the Salt Lake Temple at night all lit up.
Easter egg hunts, Easter egg baskets, Easter egg decorating… many children and parents around the world celebrate the risen Lord with Easter egg events and decorating.
The Easter egg itself is a Christian tradition although decorated eggs have been found in Africa from thousands of years ago and in Persia around 3000 B.C. people dyed eggs red to be given as gifts to celebrate the first day of spring.
This tradition of given dyed red eggs is one the Christians took on to symbolize the blood of Christ and the hatching of the egg is to symbolize the resurrection. This is a by-product of Lent because families who celebrate Lent give up eating eggs during the days before Easter.
Easter eggs were decorated by dyes made from onion peels, tree bark, flower pedals and juices extracted from fruit and veggies. My mother and her family brought their Latvian tradition of dying the eggs with onion peels with them to America. Our family has kept that tradition. The eggs are so pretty when colored with the different onion skins.
Simply boil onion skins in water and then allow the eggs to soak in the dye until you get the desired result. The longer you leave them in the dye the darker the color.
The world's largest Easter egg in the Guinness World of Records was made out of chocolate in no where else but Belgium in 2005. This egg weighed more than 2,600 pounds. Now that is some chocolate!!
The most valuable Easter eggs were crafted in the 1800's and made for the Russian czar families for Easter gifts. They are worth millions of dollars are are embellished with jewels. It is said that only 65 of these were ever made.
The White House Easter Egg Roll is the only time in which you are allowed on the White House lawn if you are a tourist. Every Monday after Easter the White House allows about 4,000 children to take part in this event. This tradition was started by Dolly Madison at the Capital lawn in 1878.
The PAAS Dye Co. started selling Easter egg dyes in the 1880's. They sold a packet of 5 colors for 5 cents. PAAS now says that they sell over 10 million kits every year which also now includes stickers, decorations and more. They state that consumers decorate over 180 million eggs every year.
The most beautiful Easter eggs are the Ukranian eggs that have very intricate patterns that are put on the eggs with wax before dying. Each egg takes 2 to 3 hours to complete.
And what to do with all those hard boiled Easter eggs after they have been gathered? Well, make deviled eggs of course:)!
Enjoying Spring in Wellington Florida
I love spring. It is the sign of new birth, rebirth and wonderful weather before we get into the heat of summer.
I am currently sitting out on our patio listening to the birds chirping away as I write this post. Of course here in Wellington we get to hear the birds chirping all year round. The birds from up north fly here in the winter and congregate in large masses on telephone poles, in the trees and atop buildings.
We have a much more subtle changing of the seasons. The spring here brings a renewed freshness in the air and less rain. Our rainy season is in the summer. Our hurricane season starts in late spring and goes until the end of fall.
Spring is a great time to go to the beach but the water is still a bit chilly for our toesKaterina Gasset SEO Consultant: What do you love most about spring? I hope you're enjoying the season as much as I do here in Wellingon FL! here. The snowbirds don't mind however for compared to the beaches up north- this is warm. It is all relative.
But still, the word, “spring” itself conjures up wonderful feelings and fills my mind with thoughts and visuals of new life being born and springing up around the world in the spaces where spring happens at this time of the year.
Spring abounds on the internet as you are welcomed with wonderful pastel colors in design and objects to feast your eyes upon.
My collard greens are fully mature and ready to harvest and I hope my cabbage is ready before it gets too hot:).
So wherever you are, whatever your climate is like, I hope that you are enjoying the season of spring whether it manifests for you in boldness or very subtly like it is here in Wellington Florida.
Reflections of 2013 ~ Can I Handle the Seasons of My Life?
“Time makes you older, children get older, I'm getting older too… Can I handle the seasons of my life…. ” Stevie Nicks might have written these words in contemplating her choice to make song writing her life however, the words to this song are quite poignant.
Enjoy the song and Stevie's beautiful voice and person as you read my reflections of 2013 ~
Joy and sadness seem to appear on the scene close together. The span of rising up with emotion to the heights of euphoria watching Tristan emerge as undoubtedly the best pitcher in his age and the best short stop in Palm Beach County, most likely also the state of Florida and surely in the top 10 in the country, to the lows of two fathers passing and a dear friend all within months of each other bringing us to diverging underneath a bedrock of grief.
Where does our life take us? While much of life is based on our own choices and the paths we choose to take we are met up with processes in life wherein we seem to not have a choice. After all, I did not wish for my father to die the day he died, Nestor did not ask for his father to die the time he did and Mary's two small sons did not every choose that their mother would die on Christmas Eve.
Yes, we get older and so do our children. Mortality has a way of showing up.
While flashing back through 2013 ~ it was a great year in many respects ~ such is the ying and the yang in life. You would never know success if you never experienced failure. You would never know joy without every feeling sorrow. You would not revere life if we could deceive death.
Tristan is amazing. He is such a great son. We are so honored to have him in our family. All the adult children are working and being responsible. Joshua went to China this year. He is our second oldest son and is a Chef for the Fairmont Hotels. He was offered a very good Chef position in Shanghai for the Fairmont and then just a couple months later they asked him to go to Nanjing to start a new restaurant for the Fairmont. Kaleb is our third oldest son and he is the Chef at Kon Tiki in Wellington.
The grandchildren are all doing great. They are all happy, safe, learning and growing.
Our real estate brokerage – International Properities and Investments LLC had a great year. We hired two agents, one in Wellington and one in Fort Lauderdale. We expanded delegating more tasks to our virtual assistant team. We shifted some goals around and worked on purpose. Listings is still the forefront of priorities for Nestor and we continue to work more on our business instead of in our business.
Coaching and consulting grew during 2013 and I was afforded opportunities to speak at events to brokers who own their real estate brokerages which has really helped to grow the income of our coaching company. I developed a new course called, Listing Experts Academy and I am so excited about the success and the value of this program already. The company increased in revenue by another 20%. I found out recently in one of my entrepreneur masterminds that I participate in that if your company grows by 20% a year for 5 years in a row you are considered a “gazelle” company. 2 more years to go:) to see if I earn that status for our company.
We are continuing to develop new products and support systems for REALTORS®. But life is not all about real estate and we have a lot of interests and experience at our ages wherein we can touch lives, empower others to follow their dreams, help people live happy lives and more. We are expanding the companies, hiring and training and moving forward.
So can I handle the seasons of my life? I believe I can with the help of my Heavenly Father, Nestor and our family.
My biggest accomplishment of 2013 was that I lost 56 pounds.
While I had many achievements throughout 2013 in business and in my personal and family life, if you ask what is the one thing I am happiest to have achieved it would be my weight loss.
My clothes are loose, I dropped over 4 dress sizes and well on my way to a better and healthier body. This is the suit that I wore to speak in Atlantic City at the RainCamp:
Sometimes things show up in your life so that you have no choice but to deal with them. It seems like just yesterday when they told me that there was a VERY big chance that it was cancer.
On January 5, 2013 I went out ready to kick the big “C” out of my body. We went to buy a juicer and I started to juice. We live very near Hippocrates Institute and I have been there on many occasions to learn and eat at their raw food restaurant. I remember all that they said they did with cancer patients and I started to mimic it all.
The good news is that 3 weeks later the tests came back clean of cancer. But there was a side effect to my actions- I had lost over 10 pounds!!!
I felt full of energy and my double chin was disappearing.
Now I look at my photos from a couple of years ago and can not even recall being that obese. But I was.
I still have 40 more pounds to lose which I already know I will lose in 2014.
There were a couple of habits that I formed that have really helped with overall health.
The first thing they teach you to do at Hippocrates is first thing in the morning to drink a cup of hot water with a fresh squeezed lemon in it. We have a lemon tree and our lemons are large so I use half of a lemon. I started this on January 5th of 2013 and have not missed one day of having my hot water and lemon on an empty stomach first thing when I wake up. The best part about this habit is that when I fly I can take my lemons with me. In the hotel room I use my Smart Water and run it through the coffee maker in the room to get hot water, and hand squeeze the lemon. When we drive for vacation or baseball games, I take my lemons and water with me. There has not been one single day in 2013 where I could not find a way to start my morning with hot water and lemon.
The second thing that I have learned and continue to do is to eat naturally fermented foods along with any solid food that I eat. This helps the digestive track and helped me get rid of the “belly” fat which amazingly was the first noticeable change. I used to look like I was 8 months pregnant. My belly is near flat now.
The third thing that I did was have fresh carrot juice with pineapple and with strawberries when they are in season every morning. No, I did not turn orange:). Every morning for a year with the exception of a few times when I was speaking in another state and could not bring my juicer with me. I miss the juice so much when I don't have it.
I also drink my green juice, I love green juices. I do not juice for all 3 meals and if I had done so, I most likely would have already lost the other 40 pounds. But I did not that. I am still working on the “smell” of food factor going on in my mind. But I do work towards eating 70% all raw foods, juices, nuts and snacks. I am not a vegan.
We are a totally Dairy Free family. We do eat grains and we do eat meat sparingly and when we eat flesh, it is mostly fish.
In 2013 I wrote about my juicing journey on my blog and video taped our starting to juice on YouTube. Now it is time to do an “after” video!
This was never a new years resolution and I am glad for that because resolutions rarely create the desired end result. But it was the push, the scare that I needed to get going!
For those of you who follow me and this journey- you know that I was supposed to have surgery to remove the tumors but now my doctor believes they are no longer there. I will go in for another ultrasound to make sure they are gone. Wouldn't that be awesome!!!!
Every Christmas since I was born we've picked out our live Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving. No matter where we lived throughout the years, this has been a family tradition and it is one tradition that I still hold on to. I don't hold on to many traditions especially if they are ones that create unecessary stress in life. But fetching our Christmas tree is a fun activity for our family. Now one of our granddaughters is along for the journey each year.
The process of buying a live Christmas tree has been determined mainly by the state or country we reside in. When I lived in Hawaii, it was a trip to the department/grocery store to get the tree. There was mostly a slim selection but of course that does not matter as much in paradise. In Washington state we would drive to the mountains and choose our own tree to cut down, there they have the most beautiful evergreen trees in the world. In Utah we went to local tree farms where you chose your tree on a lot- but the tree was still rooted in the earth so they were very fresh trees. In Germany there was a huge festival and of course, Oh Tanenbaum was a huge deal! Here in South Florida it is Home Depot or the corner lots where different organizations sell Christmas trees trucked down here from North Carolina.
Here the choices are mostly Frazier firs with a few Nobel firs in between.
As we arrived at Home Depot you could feel the hussle and bussle of Christmas in the air. There was one young newlywed couple excited to be getting their first tree. There were families of all sizes from different walks of life all joined together for one reason, to choose their Christmas tree from the many stacked and tied up inside of an airy outdoor tent. Mostly the mother or the wife would be looking the trees up and down, judging whether the tree made the grade to come to their home. The husbands would hold up the trees and nod in agreement or shake their head in disaproval of the tree.
The trees are all tied up from the trip down here on trucks. In order to see what a tree really looked like, you ask the Home Depot employees to cut off the strings. If you did not like the tree, the worker simply tosses the tree into a pile of trees along the side of each makeshift section in the tent.
As we started walking from section to section we noticed there were a lot of trees that had been opened up and rejected. For years, the search for the perfect tree would take me some time. Many trees are bare in the spots where there is more shade as they are growing. So usually each tree has a not so appealing area. Most people were searching for the perfect tree and one of the criteria is that your tree should be full all the way around and not be flawed in any noticeable way. The stem that stands above the tree should be straight so that your star will fit nicely at the top.
This year was different for us and for the tree we chose. As we explained to the kids what we were looking for, we said that we did not wish to take all day to find the perfect tree and that was not what was important about Christmas or the tree. We noticed a tree that was being picked up and examined by multiple couples and families. Each time the tree was rejected and thrown back into the pile of unwanted trees.
The tree from outside of the section looked like a decent tree. What could be wrong with this tree? Was it so bad that no one would take this tree home?
Tristan noticed the tree as well. As Nestor held the tree up and the kids and I walked around the tree, as if in unison, the feelings were mutual… this tree needed a home too. As the decision to choose this tree was made, any imperfections suddenly melted into the natural beauty of an evergreen tree. We had chosen the tree that no one wanted and yet, it was the right tree for our family and our home.
Welcome to another podcast episode with Katerina Gasset. This is my first podcast. Be patient with me as I learn this process. In this episode I was using an app on my iPhone called ‘Podcast'. When I started to record, I had already said a few words before the recording actually started. So you're not missing anything.:)
Creating outside of the box is a form of marketing that you need to embrace in order to achieve your full potential in your business.
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