Mail, Meow Mix and Maximizing Delivery Duty to Make the Mundane Meaningful

Mail, Meow Mix and Maximizing Delivery Duty to Make the Mundane Meaningful

It’s Day 161 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and though I’ve been sicker than a dog, after giving Zumba a miss and sleeping for four hours, I wanted to write about how my Pink Collar Savvy & Chic cat loving mail lady not only drops off mail but Meow Mix to maximize her delivery duty. A few months ago, I posted on Facebook when my husband told me she specially delivers cat treats to our cat Skylar daily and got a great response. As much as that was fun, there is a real lesson to be learned from how this female mail carrier maximizes what some may consider a mundane duty to make it meaningful.

Skylar, who I intended to be an indoor cat quickly let me know she had other ideas. At about five pounds, she’s petite but rules the neighborhood like a lion does the jungle. Still, her size causes neighbors to want to feed her and I’ve had to discourage many from doing so or she won’t ever come home! Mail Lady Sheila is the exception. Since I’ve been working from home, I made a point of introducing myself and learned she adores felines and feeds them all along her route. Getting out of the truck and loving on them is part of the special delivery service. And so her furry friends don’t have to do without when she’s off, the treats are stashed in the truck with instructions for the other mail carriers to carry out distribution activities in her absence.

This weekend, I heard the mail truck pull up and smiled to myself. A few minutes later, I was surprised to hear a knock and figured a package was being dropped off. When the knock persisted, because I wasn’t feeling well, it took me a bit to get to the door, so I had to wave Sheila down before she pulled away. Apparently, she’d taken the time it took me to answer to tear the lid off of her special delivery and to write an accompanying note. I was right about a package being dropped off alright, but as you can see below, the people in the house weren’t its recipients.

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Mail Lady Sheila went above & beyond to ensure her meaningful ministry carries on.

When I told my neighbor Jen about this, she informed me she’s talked with Sheila too and is aware of her love for animals. Jen’s dog has been the recipient of treats as well! I don’t know if Sheila loves delivering mail, but whether she does or not, she’s found a way to incorporate a passion into her job. So often you hear jokes about mail men hating the animals on their routes, but for Sheila, they’re likely the best part of her day. Delivering mail is her job. Delivering love to animals is her true service. Her ministry. It makes the mundane duty meaningful.

Sheila reminds me of the lyrics from Steven Curtis Chapman’s song Every Little Thing You Do:

While I may not know you,

I bet I know you 

Wonder sometimes, does it matter at all?

Well let me remind you, it all matters just as long

As yo do everything thing you do to the glory of the One 

who made you,

Because He made you, 

To do 

Every little thing that you do 

To bring a smile to His face

Tell the story of grace

With every move that you make

And every little thing you do.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic Chick I believe we can serve our purpose and others, including animals, by not just going to work, or working at home, but by being intentional about maximizing opportunities to show grace to those around us when we’re there. I’m certain God is pleased with Sheila and smiles as much as I do when she does her special delivery duty. As pleased as that makes me, it’s not nearly as much as it pleases  Skylar who knows that the Mail Lady Sheila’s truck not only contains mail but Meow Mix!

What little thing can you do to bring a smile to the face of someone in your workplace or at home? God will smile too.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

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Purposeful in Pink & Pondering Mary Kay Cosmetics as a Product

Purposeful in Pink & Pondering Mary Kay Cosmetics as a Product

Day 154 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project started early with a meeting to explore an idea I’ve toyed with on and off for a while. As a girly girl who loves pink and makeup, I’ve always been drawn to Mary Kay Cosmetics. That being the case, when I met a Mary Kay Sales Director at my Evolve networking event, I voiced my interest in learning more about how Mary Kay might work for my image coaching and we scheduled to meet this morning. I decided to be purposeful in pink to honor one of America’s greatest entrepreneurs and I’ve been pondering whether to offer Mary Kay Cosmetics as a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic product ever since.

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Pink Collar Coach, purposeful in pink. Calvin Klein fuchsia shirt dress, bone pumps and pink bag.

In graduate school, I researched Mary Kay Ash as part of my capstone project. My final paper was entitled: “Pink Collar Strategy to Shatter the Glass Ceiling: Entrepreneurialism as a Sledgehammer”. Mary Kay left the male dominated corporate world and founded the company as a way to help other women be successful. Its principles are God first, family second and career third. This so aligns with my values and the image coaching facet of my business. And the freedom and flexibility the company offers fit into my dream “portfolio career” where I’m doing all the things I love on my terms vs. working for others. While all of this is good for me, I believe it could be great for the women I coach, personally and professionally.

Thus far, when I’ve done image coaching sessions, I’ve taken clients to Sephora (and Target in a pinch because the request was added on to go with an out of town client’s new wardrobe!). It seems to make sense that I’d carry products so the image coaching sessions can take place in my home/office, the client’s home, or at the Mary Kay Studio here in town (I didn’t know that existed until today!). That would provide more opportunity for proper makeup application so the look can be replicated at home. And I’m hopeful that doing the demonstrations and providing the products in a more relaxed setting will put clients more at ease.

Really, I’m trying to be purposeful about what I now call, “The Swan Experience”. For those who request a stand alone cosmetics makeover or one to complement the wardrobe makeover, the transformation would simply include cosmetics I carry rather than clients purchasing products from a retailer and paying the marked up prices to cover their overhead expenses. In addition, I’d be able to offer complimentary products and services. It seems like a win win! And, surprisingly, my hubby volunteered that he’s on board should I decide to move forward.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Chick who is building her business to serve you,   I’d love your input. I’m not asking if you think I should “sell” Mary Kay. My question is more if if you were interested in an image coaching session, would you enjoy having the products on hand to try in a comfortable, private setting? I’m trying to be purposeful and provide your preferences, so I appreciate you helping me ponder whether to offer Mary Kay Cosmetics as a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic product. Thank you!

P.S. If you weigh in and I move forward, there may be some giveaways!

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

Zumba Instructor Status Success and Instructing Scribes to Set S.M.A.R.T Writing Goals

Zumba Instructor Status Success and Instructing Scribes to Set S.M.A.R.T Writing Goals

Today, Day 145 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project was a day to recuperate from yesterday, Day 144, which was one of the busiest days I’ve had since I’ve gone full-throttle with my business. It started with all-day Zumba certification training where I not only achieved Zumba instructor status success, but met some amazing ladies who share my love of dance and Jesus! It was an amazing experience. After dancing all day, I made a mad rush to get to the Dayton Scribes Mini Writing Conference where I sang and presented on setting S.M.A.R.T. writing goals.

Though I’m asthmatic and used a lot of my breath dancing, I opened my presentation by singing a chorus from one of my all time favorite’s, which is included on the CD I recorded to accompany my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul. It’s from Nicole Norman’s Legacy.  

I want to leave a legacy,

How will they remember me?

Did I choose to love?

Did I point to you enough? 

To make a mark on things

I want to leave an offering

A child of mercy and grace

Who blessed your name unapologetically

And leave that kind of legacy.

Then I spoke about how we can’t leave a legacy if we don’t use our gifts to bless others. For writers, that means sharing our writing. And whether you’re a writer or not, you probably know that a goal without a plan is just a wish. So, even though you’ve probably heard about S.M.A.R.T. Goals at some point, I hope what I presented will serve as a helpful refresher:

S.M.A.R.T. Goal Setting

Specific: Clearly define your goal in as much detail as possible. Avoid being vague. Think of The 5 Ws – Who, What, Where, When, and Why.

My Example: I (who) will work at my desk (where) and make needed revisions to my manuscript (what) within the week (when) in order to submit to my publisher (what, who) and make my deadline (why).

Measurable: Be able to measure the outcome and how you will track your progress. Use numbers.

My Example: I will follow a revision plan consisting of one revision session per week day for one week until all are complete. 1/5, 2/5, 3/5, 4/5, 5/5 (Could use # of chapters, words, etc.).

Attainable: Make sure your goal is realistic. While it can be good to set stretch goals, it is not good to set yourself up for failure. Set yourself up for success by devising an appropriate writing plan that is reasonable. Also, be sure you have all needed resources.

My Example: I am going to revise half a section in the morning, take a creative health break, then revise the remainder in the afternoon. I’ll need to mark the sections that need revisions beforehand. I’ll also need coffee! ; )

Relevant: Consider whether your goal is worthwhile and enhances your (writing) career. Why are you doing it? Because someone else suggested it or because it’s actually important to you? It should fit into your life and larger (writing) goals.

My Example: I am setting this revisions goal to not only abide by my publisher’s request but to appeal to more readers. I can’t be so married to my writing that it will turn readers away. It will also help me to grow as a writer.

Time-oriented: Your goal should have a specific timeframe, with dates.

My Example: I will have all revisions complete within the week, by Friday, October 6. (Putting a reminder in your phone is helpful).

Writing it down is so critical to success. If you think you don’t need to and aren’t even willing to do the “work” of writing it down, it’s highly improbable that’ll you’ll do the real work to reach your goal…

There were many gifted writers and presenters there, so I was humbled and honored that the information was well received. And the song was a blessing.

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My editor, book coach, and award-winning novelist, Linore Rose Burked.  Kim Villalva, consecutive writing contest winner since 2000 and Dayton Scribes leader.                                    Regency romance author, Kristen Malone. And then there’s me, Pink Collar Coach in                   Calvin Klein pink blazer (my signature of course), cream blouse, black skirt, hose, and booties. 

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Coach who also received a warm welcome from my social media sisterhood regarding becoming an instructor, including the request for a special class, I pray I’m leaving my legacy…And I’m going to practice what I preach and devise S.M.A.R.T. goals around a Pink Collar Zumba Holler party where we can dance the Ds (you know depression, divorce, dysfunctional relationships, diagnosis, etc.) away!

Thank you for celebrating my successes with me! I suspect we’ll have some of yours to celebrate at our party once you set and succeed with your own S.M.A.R.T. goals.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

Author Interview: Janet Kassalen, Author of Children’s Stories With A Grown Up Message – Part 2

Author Interview: Janet Kassalen, Author of Children’s Stories With A Grown Up Message – Part 2

Day 142 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project has been busy in the best way. I took care of some personal business that keeps me in a position to keep pursuing my business and received some wonderful feedback on the CD to accompany my book as well as on my professional growth from someone who was kind enough to share it. In addition to that, I got have lunch and with and plan my next workshop with Jenn-Quinn Wilson, the Wonderpreneur. It is tentatively set for all day Saturday, November 4th. Pink Collar Savvy & Chic and Wonder Diva will bring you: The Making Of A Pink Collar Diva: You! More on this head to toe image day soon!

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Pink Collar Coach & The Wonderpreneur. Showing off her marketing following our lunch mtg. As a plus size model, she’s gorgeous in her cold shoulder dress and I’m in my Calvin Klein casual olive green jeggins, light green top and plaid shirt with comfy flats. 

And here’s the inspiring conclusion of my interview with Janet Kassalen, author of Flip Flap Try: A Cardinal’s Journey. Her children’s book has messages for any of us who has ever struggled to find our career fit or place in this world.

Rainier had to ask for help from others along his journey. Why do you think women are so afraid to admit when they need helps in their careers? How have other played a part in your journey?

You’re not expected to do everything yourself. It’s OK to ask for others’ input and help. Some ladies out there have done amazing things and written words of wisdom we can learn from. It’s important to encourage each other along the way to reaching our goals. I’m glad I went through the process of publishing. Asking for help was a good decision. Everyone was working with and pulling for me. Kay Fittes told me, “If you want something to happen, you have to make it happen. You have to oversee it.” And my author’s assistant let me make decisions, and it helped me grow. I couldn’t just sit back and let others make the decisions. My husband has also helped me. He says the conversation is never over or ended. If you’ve had problems or misunderstandings, there’s always a chance to straighten things out and move forward.

Rainer finds a job that he enjoys. It is meaningful to him and helps him to serve his purpose. How is becoming an author enabling you to serve yours?

I wanted to encourage people and give them hope in finding their dream job or mission. To let them know there’s always a new day to start over and try again. Just go from there.

The tagline on your beautiful website is: Children’s Stories With A Grown Up Message. What inspired you to use your children’s writing to inspire adults?

At first, it was intended more to help young adults struggling with their careers. My book coach thought it would work better as a children’s story. Adults can still learn from it. Reading didn’t come easy for me, but I could understant a children’s book. It was easier to understand, colorful and full of pictures but just as meaningful. And it doesn’t take half a year to read it!

A few years ago, I worked with you to redesign your office, which you call your “Communication Center”. How has having a work space that is beautiful, comfortable, and functional impacted your writing?

I’ve watched your personal and professional transformation. You’ve gone from “timid duckling” to savvy and chic swan. What encouragement do you have for women struggling to find themselves and their place in this world?

Never give up your hope. It’s OK to ask for help. Take vacations. On vacation I had the experience that started the cardinal story.  I also have a CD player with lots of CDs that I call my “To Do” list. It helps to put in the CDs and review to make sure I’m not missing something. Sometimes, I’m not ready to complete a task – if it’s not the right time. Other times, something just appears and it’s what you were looking for. It’s good to get the whole picture of what’s going on to set your priorities. Keep believing in yourself because everyone has the ability to help someone else.

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A few years ago, I worked with Janet & her husband to redesign their shared office. They call the Communication Center. Handy hubby built the sunflower coatrack to go with the room’s theme.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keep Growing to Keep Going – Even When Working in Our Strengths, We Need to Work at Strengthening Them

Keep Growing to Keep Going – Even When Working in Our Strengths, We Need to Work at Strengthening Them

Day 141 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic has been a day of growth for me. Well, actually, the theme of the last few weeks has been personal and professional growth. I’m working with a book coach who is an award-winning author to launch my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, and I also worked closely with my mentor, Kay Fittes of High Heeled Success, to prepare for this weekend’s assertiveness workshop. I’ve maximized every opportunity to ask these two experts in their fields for feedback on my book and agency. And sometimes they’ve both provided it unsolicited! Add to that the fact that I’m in self-imposed Business Bootcamp, and I’m feeling a few growing pains. I’m ok with it though, because I understand that we have to keep growing to keep going in order get to where we want to be, even when we’re working in our strengths.

We’ve all heard without pain there’s no gain. This applies whether the strengths are absent, in which case growing pain develops them, or whether they’re already present and the growing pain enhances them. In my case, with Pink Collar Savvy & Chic, I’m drawing from all of my strengths – the things I’ve  loved since childhood, like writing, speaking, teaching, decorating, and even singing, as well as the things I’ve learned were strengths as an adult through education and experience. Still, that doesn’t make me immune to growing pains. Right now, my mentor has encouraged me to really nail down my agency’s target market, which means rethinking my mission and many of the documents I’ve already created. My book coach is advocating for me to do the same for my reading audience.

As I assured both of them, the feedback is not hurtful; it’s actually quite helpful. There’s just a boat load of learning and labor associated with both requests. You see, I thought I had already truly identified my target market…Now I see that I need to narrow it down to those for whom I can provide unique value. That’s the bad news. The good news is, I’m up for the task – and the learning. In fact, Kay paid me the highest compliment by saying I’m the most open to feedback person she knows. She went on to say that I not only take it, I implement it and move forward. Christy Wright, The Business Boutique author (what I call my Business Bootcamp), would be proud seeing how determining things like target audience is the first step to having a successful business.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Chick with a teachable spirit, I feel so honored that accomplished women who are where I want to go see something in me that causes them to freely invest their time and energy into my growth. Today, because of them (and homework from one of them) I’m a step closer to my business details being nailed down.  I focused on my strengths and took advantage of online resources to teach me about skills and services I need develop/tap into to reach my target market/audience. Like with any good workout, I’m a little worn out but feel so much better because I worked hard (with the aid of coffee) and made a big dent in this big job today. Tomorrow, I’ll keep growing and keep going to serve women. Good things my strengths are at work.`

What about you? Are you continuing to grow your strengths to get where you want to be?

Be savvy &   chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

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Assertiveness Workshop An Asset to All Women in Attendance & We’re Worth It

Assertiveness Workshop An Asset to All Women in Attendance & We’re Worth It

Today’s Kick Up Your Assertiveness Quotient to Maximize Success workshop made Day 139 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project amazing. The participants represented large corporations, non-profits, the education field, entrepreneurial enterprises, those in transition, and others in their Act III (determining how to serve as volunteers, in their churches, etc. after having a career then raising a family). As diverse as the group was, there was something for everyone and the assertiveness workshop content was an asset to all in attendance.

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Pink Collar Coach and the petite powerhouse behind High Heeled Success, Kay Fittes.                    My outfit- sheath dress, blazer, booties, and handbag all Calvin Klein. 
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Me with The Wonderpreneur, Jen Wilson. My red blazer coveys assertiveness.

Not only was the content wonderful, the connections made through the opportunity to network was incredible. Though seated at a table with one group of women, we are intentional about making sure everyone can mix and mingle with an acupuncturist, authors, event planners, early childhood program directors, financial planners, and life coaches among other things. In addition, two complimentary seats are given to women going through Dress for Success Cincinnati, and today they were both ambassadors for the program. So cool!

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The testimonials about the transformational image coaching I provide in conjunction with Kay’s career coaching were powerful and there were lots of tears. The good kind! But that wasn’t the only time emotions ran high. All day, such a current of positivity and support surged through the room that it was palpable.

I love coaching, encouraging and inspiring women more than practically anything, and so was in my element. And I can’t express how rewarding it was to hear women who had never seen me present do so. Their feedback affirms that I’m operating in my strengths zone when I’m sharing from my experience and heart. I was determined to convey how important the topic was to me because I didn’t tap into my assertiveness until I was in my mid-thirties. Being able to share how doing so has enabled me to get the things that I need and want, in all of life’s domains: physical, emotional, financial, relational, and spiritual, makes the effort and hard work I’ve had to put into being assertive so worth it.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Chick who believes the Lord has a plan for my life (Jeremiah 29:11), I know part of the plan was my struggle with assertiveness. Today, if I helped even one woman to be assertive at home and/or at work, and I know I did because they told me, then my struggle was worth it.  In fact, if there was an overall take away from the day,  it was: I’m worth it. That being the case, the assertiveness workshop really was an asset for all the women in attendance.

How is your assertiveness or lack thereof serving you? At home? At work?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

Daily Dose from The Smile Jar: “Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example.” – Mark Twain

 

 

 

What’s Your Why?

What’s Your Why?

Yesterday, Day 135 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project whizzed by and before I knew it, it was after midnight. Since I’d technically missed my deadline, I decided I’d wait and post tonight. Though I’ve only missed writing a handful of days from May 1 until now, I still don’t like to because of the reason I started blogging daily in the first place. Why do you blog every day? you many wonder. Christy Wright, the author of Business Boutique, puts it this way: What’s your why? 

When I went through the abusive situation that caused me to lose practically everything, even after things got better, I was nevertheless incapable of writing for almost two years. In a sense, that time was stolen from me. Now, as I continue to cope with the trauma of that abusive relationship, I’m determined not to let history repeat itself. And, I’m also determined to find purpose in the pain so that I can bless, coach, encourage and inspire other women to live their best lives – even if life just isn’t good – or at least doesn’t feel that way. I live to show women if I can come out on the other side of practically every personal and professional barrier to living a life I love, so can you. That’s my why. Women are my why.

Last week, I met with a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic Swan who got there the hard way. Today she’s very accomplished as master degreed entrepreneur and non-profit owner, recent Forty Under Forty winner, and a member of nearly every worthy board you can imagine. As she explained the support services her non-profit provides for teen parents and their families, I asked, “How old were you when your daughter was born?” When she promptly answered, “Sixteen”, I knew I’d asked nailed the question and hit on her why. It explains the boundless energy and devotion she applies to serving teen parents. Because she was one of them, she has a huge heart for them.

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When we know our why, it motivates us and makes everything, including the mundane, doable – no task is too big or too small. It  makes it easier to get out of bed early to go deal with an emergency at your center when you were scheduled in late. It gives you the patience you need to work with your homeschooling child when patience is running thin on both sides. It keeps you from losing it with that boss, co-worker, direct report, or team member even though you were just an inch from going there. And it gets you to go the extra mile to serve them instead so that your clients and customers get the service they need. When you know your why, it’s forever in your sights and keeps your eye on the prize.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic Coach, the Pink Collar Coach ; ), who knows my why, Business Boutique is helping me to focus on it. When I feel discouraged by posts I believe will  resonate and they fall flat, when I struggle to reach my target audience and wonder why I can’t seem to break through to more women, when I feel I’m floundering in the dark, my why reminds me: In the woman from Zumba who comments on how I’ve inspired her; In the new mom who says I’ve given her the motivation to get back to writing when the kids are down; In the former co-worker who says reading the blog is her morning treat. Those women shine light into the dark places and illuminate what was there all along. Them. You. My why.

So, Pink Collar Savvy & Chic Swan, whether you’re working on the home front or in the workplace, what’s your why?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink  Collar Coach