Why Oksana Inspired me

The Olympics are so incredibly inspiring.  When I was younger and went to the local ice rink at the local park in Western New York, with each twirl I mastered, my dreams of becoming an Olympic skater increased as I attempted a 360 Hamill-Camel.  That was just a dream, but I can apply what I learned by watching the Olympics this year to my personal and business dreams, ideas, and goals.  

With the closing ceremonies I pondered who really stood out and opened the door for me. Many athletes were outstanding and inspirational,  but one in particular has made an indelible impression, none other than Oksana Chusovitina.  While she may be the oldest female gymnast, her drive and determination is renewed every time she steps on to the mat.  The words she said resonated with me and I hope they do the same for you.  “I think when someone has a purpose and is determined, then anything is possible.”  

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Remember to keep dreaming!

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Your heart is one of the top five biggest organs in your body, so start with that.  Find your purpose by looking inside your heart and then go from that point forward.  That may necessitate a larger zen moment for you to figure out.  The rest of the sentence speaks for itself.  When you fall down, get back up.  How resilient are you?  When you possess drive and determination, then anything really is possible.  What is also amazing is that Oksana’s son battled leukemia, but she kept going forward and continuing with her drive, determination, focus and resilience.  In closing, never, ever stop dreaming.  No matter how old you are, I hope you keep your dreams young.

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Just like in Rio, go for the gold!

As the Olympics are upon us, so came my next thought for a new post.  Do you possess the mindset of a winner?  If not, now is the time to do so and start off breakfast with a bowl of motivational flakes and a winner’s cup of coffee.

Wake up in the morning and repeat to self:  Today I am going to be a winner.  Today something wonderful is going to happen.  Today I will set new goals and strive to meet them.  Today I will practice more courage, more patience, professionalism, and overcome any hurdles that should happen to cross my path, and turn any bit of adversity into a gold medal moment.  The mind is a very strong and powerful muscle.  Practice this and you will have fabulous days with a gold medal looming, all within your reach.

So go for the gold today.   What does going for the gold mean to you?  Do you get up each day motivated and ready to start your day with enthusiasm?  Do you have an A+ attitude that you will give your all and try to be more successful than yesterday?  Do you smile and smile at others?  If not, you need to change your mindset now.  Think in terms of how an Olympic athlete thinks.  The physical training is one one-half of the competition; mental focus is the other half.   Yes, your mind is very powerful and can be strengthened by changing your way of thinking to only desiring positively.

Try to be a leader in your field.  Don’t try for perfectionism, for nobody is perfect.  Strive to put forth your best effort daily, follow the path of leaders before you and opportunities for success will be present.

It does not matter if you win the race, but as long as you cross the finish line is what ultimately counts.   You are still a winner.  Life is not a sprint, but a long-distance run.  Each day is a new day to get things right. Practice, believe, learn, grow, listen, and participate.  Do what you say and say and practice what you do.  Be communicative, listen, let others talk.  Communication is essential to all teams and to your team.

Don’t just be ordinary.  Try to be extraordinary.  As a kid, I was always playing sports.  I had a competitive spirit.  Growing up with boys, they didn’t think twice when I jumped in to play a game of tackle football.  Flag football was not an option.  If I wanted to be a part of the game, I had to partake in that moment, be a part of a team (together everyone achieves more), strategize, learn how to play and try to get better.  The first day of summer vacation I got tackled and broke my wrist.  But I still played.  I was not stymied by an injury because my mind said “you can.”

Lastly, don’t give up.  That is never an option.  If you stumble and fall, get up and cross the finish line.  You can go for the gold and if you happen to get a silver or bronze, that is just as meaningful, too.   The most important lesson is to change your mindset and think like a winner!

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Communication is key. Find your key to unlock your door to the world of communication.

This is an old key that belongs to a curio cabinet that I own.  Recently, when moving and finding this key, I examined it and looked at the incredible workmanship that must have gone into making this key and the detail and the sheer weight.  Keys are not made like this today.

If we ponder how we go about business and sales in our daily lives, what went into making that sale successful?  What details did we relay?  We communicated to the decision-maker and advised them what they need and why.   How do we solve their problems?  You have to cultivate relationships by communicating effectively.  Plant the communication seeds, nurture them, and watch your crop grow to a bountiful harvest.

While technology has grown and e-mail and texting has become a quicker method of communicating, that can lose the personal touch that a telephone call or handwritten note can convey.  To be an effective communicator, one must unlock the door to the voice that we all have but sometimes forget to use.  Technology is all around us, but maybe hone in on your time management skills.  Use your time effecively.

More sales are made after repeated contacts; ie, around number six.  I had to follow-up for a year one time to win a contract.  Stay in front of your target, go the extra mile, and keep the lines keys of  communication open.  If one key does not fit what you are trying to achieve, try another until you experience success.

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Find your communication key and open the door.  You will be glad you did.  Communication = success!

Which road will you take today?

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The picture above is one I took in Sedona while hiking.  The first thing that came to mind was Robert Frost and his magnificent poem, “The Road Not Taken.”

Looking back at the history of his poem, Frost himself was said to be amused because so many misinterpreted the poem and the actual meaning of his words.  The interpretation, perhaps, is referring to the foundation of building, block by block, our lives and maybe regretting those dreams and goals we have always had in life, but not pursuing them.  Reading the poem several times in succession, what Frost meant could be up for much debate.

The inspiration for this first post is I blogged before and really enjoy writing.  Whenever someone leaves this earth too soon (Prince), that spurs me to think how short life is, and that we need to live life to the fullest each and every day.

I recently spoke to my sixth grade teacher, now in her 90s.  The poem that she read to our class way back when was “Abou Ben Adhem”.  That left an indelible memory forever.  She made reciting poetry educational, as well as fun.  She told me years later that she thought  I should have taken up writing as a career.

That thought leads to Robert Frost’s words.    Build upon what you have, but expand on your interests.  Go outside of your comfort zone.  Stretch yourself a little bit further and reach for the stars.  Try something new that you have never done.  Maybe — just maybe — step out of what you define as “the norm.”  You may be glad you chose the road that you didn’t take the last time.  Sometimes it’s interesting to mute the GPS and travel to a place you have never been, get lost and finding your way.

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