Five Ways to Kick Stress in the Rear! (Guest Post)

Stress. We all have it. We all get it and if you are anything like me, you would like for it to just go away! Unfortunately, stress is something that blocks us from living a healthy, purpose-filled life and often stops us dead in our tracks. Have you had that experience?

As I Googled stress one day, I found basic consensus that the top five stressors include:

  • A sick family member
  • Your health
  • Finances
  • Relationships
  • Career/Business

There was a point in my life, when all 5 of those hit at the same time. No wonder I was having trouble just getting out of bed and dragging myself to the shower each morning and barely having the energy to get to work. I did learn although I couldn’t control some of those things, there were some ways to relieve some of my stress to improve my mental, physical, emotional, and relational life. So here are five things that I have learned to do to release some of the overwhelming stress in my life. I know I cannot rid myself of all stress, however, I find that releasing some of it is like a pressure cooker releasing some steam – I am able to get up, hop in the shower and get to work… and for me, that is success!

  1. Learn to say NO! Look at your schedule and commitments and start to de-commit, cancel or postpone those things you really do not need to do. Remember, when you way “yes” to something, you are saying “no” to something else. Make your “yes” be something that will not add more stress to your life. If you can, trade it for something you can gladly say “no” to. For me, I said “no” to being on a committee at my church that was non-productive the previous year and said “yes,” to a business networking event where I could meet others, grow as a leader and share about our businesses.
  2. Share the load. It is true that no one is able to do things just like you. But once you give up the need to control some areas that are causing stress and begin to delegate, your load will be lighter. My husband agreed to take my mom, who couldn’t drive anymore, to the store every other week for me. You cannot imagine how that one change relieved a lot of stress in my life! All I had to do was ask for help!
  3. Let it go. Often the circumstances causing stress consumes our thinking. Train yourself NOT to focus on the stressor. How? Find a way to let it go. For me, I have several ways to do this. I will write the stressor on a rock and toss it in the lake.  Sometimes I will write something down and put it in the shredder. At night, I’ve trained myself to write the stressor on an imaginary white board and then, in my mind, I keep erasing it until I can move forward. If you are a person of faith, surrender it to God.
  4. Hit the delete key. When your head is spinning and will not turn off thoughts say “not helpful” as many times as needed. Or imagine your thoughts being typed on your computer screen and then visualize yourself hitting the delete key. Then focus your thoughts on something or someone you love.
  5. Know what you can and cannot control. Take a pen and piece of paper and draw two lines to make three columns. Label the columns: Stressor, Can Control, Cannot Control. In the first column, list those things that are causing you stress. In the second column, if you have control or can do something to relieve the stressor, write it down with some action steps. In the third column, list the things that are out of your control. If you cannot control a stressor mark through it and get it off the list. It’s not worth your time or energy to focus there.

Coach Cindy Tannehill

Coach Cindy Tannehill is a John Maxwell Team Coach, Trainer & Speaker, Professional Certified Life Coach and the co-founder of Pass It On Purpose Coaching & Training Center in Kansas. She works with leaders and executives in businesses, NGOs, and faith based organizations around the world. She also has a heart for women entrepreneurs and has co-written an online course, Raise the Bar Academy – The Crash Course to help women entrepreneurs be successful in business and life.

www.johnmaxwellgroup.com/cindytannehill www.raisethebaracademy.com

Contact: cindytannehill@johnmaxwellgroup.com or cindy@raisethebaracademy.com

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RETHINKING ONLINE FUNDRAISING from the donor’s perspective (Guest Post)

fundraising_inspirationIn the midst of all the Christmas noise, dozens of emails requesting a donation begin to flood my inbox. Suddenly I find myself sifting through the requests and deciding which ones I have the most affinity with. Many end up in the delete folder. Some because they point only to my wallet and never established a relationship with me, others because they extend in endless litanies, others because they do not clearly show how those who serve the organization benefit, and the vast majority because there is no evidence to understand that the online channel implies visual, participatory, and emotional components that separate them from a letter in the mail.

I know many organizations that want to expand their reach to the online channel. But not many have understood that a donate button is by far the thrill of touching any human being. If a nonprofit wants to cultivate a new audience it should not involve a request for money, but rather first start a relationship with the prospect. In this search, many nonprofits have chosen to chase “likes” across every social media platform. However, many might agree with me that social media is primarily for entertainment and communication. Let’s face it, people do not look in social media for organizations they want to donate to; it simply is not entertaining. Proof of this is the amount of “likes” that nonprofits convert into donations.

To start conquering the online channel, nonprofits should remember that the main hub for their digital marketing efforts should be their own website. Why? Because it is in the digital home where organizations can initiate a relationship with their audience without mercantile shades. It is where they can share their vision and mission, and enrich the visitor experience with visual content, testimonials, videos & text, and show the impact of their work. Though it is hard to engage people with dull web pages, poor visual content, and no chances for the visitors to participate online and somehow become part of the cause.

There are 7 core principles to captivate an online audience: easy, short, fun, visual, modest contributions, participatory, and togetherness. Few nonprofits have implemented them. Everything that screams fun and puts a smile on someone’s face drives us to share it. Any easy process motivates us to take action. Everything that makes us participate in togetherness gives us a sense of belonging. And everything that is visual contributes to our memories.

It’s time for nonprofits to change the input to get a different output. It’s time to start creating online events that help build a relationship with supporters. It’s time to consider that online fundraising takes as much, if not more, effort than face-to-face initiatives and that today’s efforts might not bear fruits immediately but they will in a short time when the online channel will become the main stream of income.

During the year-end campaign, I suggest nonprofits to use two pledge themes: one for advocacy, one for advocacy and donation. And if you are looking to rise above the noise, put your website to work by cultivating an audience and making donating online fun!

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Adriana Granados
Visionary Entrepreneur
www.PixGift.com

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Business Communication…why it’s so important.

Effective Business Communication

When you own a business, it’s essential to have GREAT communication skills.  Whether you are communicating with vendors, clients, colleagues, or employees, your business is not going to work if there is lousy communication.

If you don’t know how to communicate in your business, then you should invest some time and money into learning how to.  Here is a great website to find communication skills seminars in your area.

It’s extremely important to realize that how you communicate is often how people see you as a business owner.  This can have lasting effects on your business and in your business relationships!

Example:  I have spoken to many business owners over the last 4 years.  Because I have the luxury of choosing who I work with, I make sure I pick those who can communicate effectively.  Why, you ask?  Because if I can’t get the information I need from them to work on their projects, then I’m useless and not making MYSELF money.  If they can’t communicate their needs to me, then again, I’m useless and not making THEM money. If I can’t get their projects done, then their business falls short.  Not only are they already behind (which is why they reached out to me in the first place), but now they are even further behind and frustrated because all they want to do is explain their needs to me, but they can’t.

Because of this communication gap I often see with business owners, I started offering monthly support calls.  These phone meetings are a way for us both to come up with a current strategic marketing plan, a detailed budget, and a suggested marketing plan going ahead.  It’s an effective way to communicate what their needs are because I am able to walk them through their thoughts.  This is often what many business owners need assistance with but don’t even know it.

I have also come to understand that many business owners just can’t dedicate time for monthly support calls due to traveling or extremely busy schedules (which I fully understand).  That is why I also created a 3-part online program to help them organize their business, so they will know exactly what they need assistance with.  And they will have everything in order to effectively communicate their needs when they are ready.  Plus, since it’s an online program, they can work on it when their schedule allows, at their own pace.

Now…the hard part is keeping up with emails!!!  I have a very manageable email process I use, and it’s free.  It’s efficient and I can easily find any emails I need.  It helps with my communication process and it altogether helps my business in a big way!

Here is a really great article from Forbes that goes into detail about how to write effective business emails.

The overall message here is…learn how to effectively communicate with ALL your business people.  It will not only help YOUR business, but it will help others as well.

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Elizabeth Debol
Virtual Assistant
Business Virtual Services
elizabethdebol@live.com
http://www.businessvirtualservices.com/


My Weekly Knowledge Log (a list of things I’ve learned from or about this week):
1.   Clean out your inbox WEEKLY.
2.  Schedule social media posts in advance.
3.  ALWAYS ask questions!

THANKS FOR READING!!  🙂

Feel free to use my post on your blog.  Just please make sure to include the link to my blog in your post.  I would greatly appreciate it!:)

Consider filling out this short multiple-choice evaluation to see if you might need some business re-organizing!!   Click HERE.