Who Are You and What is Your Center?

Who Are You and What is Your Center?

It’s Day 217 of the Pink Collar Savvy Chic on Purpose Project and watching one of my favorite Christmas movies, Rise of the Guardians, has me wondering Who are you and what is your center? Yesterday evening, before the family was due to go see the Christmas lights, I took advantage of the opportunity to enjoy some of my Pink Collar Savvy & Chic Christmas cookies and milk with Izzy (my stepson’s daughter) while we watched the movie. It’s an animated and speaks to my inner child in a profound way. The premise of the movie is that all of us who believe in Santa, Jack Frost (the main character) and the other guardians, are guardians too. I do believe and am proud to be a guardian who keeps the magic of Christmas, The Tooth Fairy, The Easter Bunny, etc. alive for children. But that’s not the only reason I was compelled to purchase it after I saw it in the theater with my own kiddos. The scene where Santa asks, “Who are you, Jack Frost? What is your center?” presents the perfect Pink Collar Savvy & Chic professional development opportunity.

A Russian Santa uses Russian nesting dolls as a visual aid. You may be familiar with these stacking dolls, which according to Wikipedia are “a set of wooden dolls of decreasing size placed one inside the another”. The largest doll shows Santa is fierce and intimidating, the next shows he’s fearless, and the next depicts that he’s jolly. The final one has big eyes that are “full of wonder”. Santa explains that he has always seen the wonder in everything – lights in the trees, magic in the air, everything –  and that he puts it back into the world and also protects it in children. “It is my center,” he finishes. Then he repeats his question to Jack: “What is your center?” Jack admits he doesn’t know. But by the end of the movie he does. Long before Jack discovered his center, I knew I’d use Santa’s illustration someday. Today is that day. Recently, I was delighted to find my own visual aid in the form of a pink Russian nesting doll.

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A pretty pink Babushka (another name for the dolls & one my children use often!).                         She looks truly at home in front of my largest Christmas house, also known as a Putz House.  They originated in Central Europe as well.  
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The intricate painting on each of the dolls is exquisite.                                                                       Another of my amazing TJ Maxx finds for under $10.                                                                               The Christmas House was a Marshall’s clearance find years ago.
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I adore this periwinkle stacking doll but almost let her go.                                                        Thankfully, she waited for me & is now a Christmas gift for a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic Swan.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic Coach, my center is encouragement. Encouraging others and protecting them from discouragement is who I am. As a child I started a club to encourage other children. I gave my first public speech and sung my first solo at eight to encourage my church congregation. I got my own Sunday School class at thirteen to encourage preschoolers, which led me to become a teacher so I could encourage more children. My role as a child care center director allowed me to encourage my staff, parents and you guessed it – even more children. I fell in love with training because I could encourage workshop participants. My debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, was written to encourage women, as is this blog. When I got promoted to a Leadership Coach position encouraging program leaders, I knew I’d finally found my dream career. So, at age forty-six I earned a Masters of Leadership and Coaching degree and an Executive Coaching Certificate. These accomplishments didn’t make me a Coach – an encourager – they just put an official title on my center.

What were you created to do? Who are you? What is your center? How can you be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic and put it back into the world? In your home? At work? How can you protect it in others?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

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Debut Novel Releases January 2018 and A Doe-Eyed Girl Named Dani (Be a Test Reader/Reviewer and Meet Her Now!)

Debut Novel Releases January 2018 and A Doe-Eyed Girl Named Dani (Be a Test Reader/Reviewer and Meet Her Now!)

Much of Day 211 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project was spent at my desk/dining room table working on to dos for my debut novel, and since I have a female reindeer who reminds me of Rudolf’s love sitting there, she put me in mind of a doe-eyed girl named Dani in my book. She’s a best friend of the heroine, Lee. She may be doe-eyed and innocent in the best way, but she’s far from naive. In fact she’s one of those peculiar young women whose looks are rivaled only by her sweet nature and her smarts. Dani also has the qualities most of us want in a BFF. She’s no fair-weather friend and sticks with Lee through the thick of her domestic violence journey. Daniella exemplifies what I refer to in coaching as backbone and heart, meaning she brings out the best in Lee and gently nudges her by speaking the truth in love when Lee would settle for less. If she wasn’t fictitious, haters would definitely hate her. But she’s just flawed enough that it’s impossible to. I love this supporting character. Hopefully you will too when you read my debut novel and meet this doe-eyed girl named Dani.

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This doe-eyed reindeer reminds me of Clarice from Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer and of one a favorite character, Dani, from my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose writer, I can’t express how excited I am that my lifelong dream of being a published author is about to come true. In some ways, I remind myself of a doe-eyed girl when I consider how naive I was when I set out to write a novel. At the time I thought I’d write during the summers while I was off from teaching and finish it in a few years. I didn’t even know what I didn’t know about writing or publishing…After all of the revising, rewriting and editing that original novel no longer exists. Dani, however has lived on from one version to this final one. I’m incredibly proud of it and shine a special spotlight on Dani in the final chapter. She’s a doe-eyed girl named Dani but she’s also an original Pink Collar Savvy & Chic swan.

If you’d like to meet Dani before Seasons of Her Soul releases and are willing to serve as a beta (test) reader and to write a short review that will show up on Amazon the day of the release (January 20, 2018), please email me at with “Seasons of Her Soul Beta Reader” in the subject line and I will send you a PDF. If you’ve already agreed to be a reader, your copy is coming soon. Thank you!

pinkcollarcoach@outlook.com

Be  savvy & chic,

~~Pink Collar Coach

 

Pink Collar Coach’s Confessions of A Beginning Blogger: A Weekend With Artful Blogging

Pink Collar Coach’s Confessions of A Beginning Blogger: A Weekend With Artful Blogging

Day 179 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose was low key day spent like much of the rest of the weekend –  with my latest copy of Artful Blogging. Though the first day of daylight savings time started out warm, it soon deteriorated into tornado and flood flash warnings accompanied by rain. And while the forecast prevented me from checking out the much anticipated roll out of “Hearth and Home with Magnolia”, Target’s new line from Fixer Upper’s Joanna and Chip Gaines, I was OK with a quiet day at home – listening to Joel Ostend’s message on bitterness, doing light housework, and lounging around watching HGTV and reading. As a new blogger, Artful Blogging has become one of my favorite magazines. In fact, it’s what inspired me to give blogging a second try.

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Artful Blogging atop a gold Moroccan pouf and Aubusson needlepoint rug.                     Magazine from Barnes and Noble, pouf from Home Goods, and rug from TJ Maxx. 

Back in 2009, when blogging took off, I started a blog: True Confessions of A Christian Girl. It was my first foray into the social media world. I’d been hesitant about putting myself out there having gone through a divorce and other devastating Ds (challenges) that made me fear judgement from the circle of people who’d been part of my life when I was married. I’d worried for nothing. The warm welcome I received made me realize I’d cut myself off from a community whose love and acceptance had nothing to do with my marital status. And though I didn’t have a clue what I was doing, my blog was well-read and grew.

At the same time, I was trying to break into publication and fired magazine articles off at a fast and furious pace. Soon, my first article was published in Inspired Women Magazine (https://www.inspiredwomenmagazine.com) and then I landed a monthly column there. Simultaneously, I was attending writing conferences and working feverishly to finish my debut novel. All while being a single mom of preschoolers and a director of a high maintenance Kinder Care Learning Center! Something had to give. It was my blog.

This weekend, as I read articles describing how various now successful bloggers started their blogs right around the time I did, I felt a moment’s regret. Had I stayed on track then, my blog may be where I’d like it to be today! Before I succumbed completely to the “if I coulda woulda shoulders”, however, I thought back to Joel’s message (it never fails to be exactly what I need), and realized I can’t be bitter about where I was back there as a mom, professional, and writer or I couldn’t have gotten here. Now.

My blog may not be as successful and have as many followers, but I’m a more experienced mom, professional and writer with a that same novel, Seasons of Her Soul, due out in January! I’m also a wife again and part of a big fat blended family. Each of these experiences have grown me as a blogger and I have to believe writing about them will grow my blog. So will including photos, something I learned from Artful Blogging. So I’m thankful for the detour.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Cygnet (a header in Artful Blogging reminded me this is the name for a young swan), and beginning blogger, I must confess I still get discouraged when I think of the amount of time it takes to grow a blog. There are so many details I have yet to master, like how to write the content you readers really want, how to increase traffic, and how to make my posts more visually appealing, etc. But I’m thankful for a magazine like Artful Blogging that informs and inspires me to make my blog the best it can be. Spending time lost in it this weekend did just that and was time well spent.

For those of you who’ve asked why I started the blog, how can you use this information to be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic? Do you have a desire to blog? If so, this magazine is a great resource. I’d love to chat with you about it.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

Pink Collar Coach Doing Nothing But Networking

Pink Collar Coach Doing Nothing But Networking

Day 143 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project had me doing nothing but networking from sunup ’til sundown. My day started with my local H7 Connect meeting where I got some amazing feedback on my business model from marketing and branding experts. During the variation on our 30 second commercial where we were to give our name, business, and a problem we can solve, I pitched my new focus: “I’m the Pink Collar Coach, Tammi Ector, founder of Pink Collar Savvy & Chic. I’m a life coach for professional women. I coach them to minimize their personal barriers to maximize their beauty and best professional life.” I also added that I specialize in the Ds (i.e. divorce, depression, dysfunctional relationships, disheveled appearance, disorganized space, etc.). Afterwards, it was so rewarding to have people tell me not only how unique the model is but that it’s inspirational! I kinda nailed it. ; ).

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H7 Connect with Natalie Reeder, who facilitated this morning’s meeting.

In addition to the great feedback, I also connected to individuals who either know someone who needs my services or who wanted to provide referrals about my business. Before I knew it, it was time to head to my second networking event with eWomen. It was my first time attending and I had a nostalgic moment when I arrived at the Oasis in Loveland and our meeting was in the same room where I presented there for the first time back in 2011. We had a a wonderful meeting as well and I met truly amazing, successful, resilient women. We offered one another support, resources and referrals, and I’m looking forward to attending again next week.

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Pink Collar Coach outside Oasis Conference Center following eWomen with the sun in my eyes! Calvin Klein print bell sleeve blouse, suede skirt & pumps. Purple bag makes print’s purple pop.  

On my way home, I stopped at Life Way, the Christian book store, and got the contact information for the manager so I can get my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, placed there and hopefully do a book signing. I also picked up a new novel from the publisher of my book, and as much I’d love to read it for pleasure only, it’s part homework because yesterday, I was informed that I have to do some revisions on the book, specifically around the graphic domestic violence scenes, so they appeal more to readers…Whether pleasure reading or for work, it wasn’t to be, however, because although the day’s networking was technically done, I had a ton of prep to do for tomorrow’s.

Tomorrow, my long awaited Zumba certification training will have me dancing from 8am until 5pm. Then, I go straight from there to a writing conference where I’m presenting on “Setting S.M.A.R.T. Writing Goals” and singing Francesca Batistelli’s “Write Your Story” to close the evening. Writing the content was only part of what I needed to do – preparing to network – getting my business cards, music CD and mailing list together was just as important.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Chick who doesn’t always feel comfortable with networking, I am comfortable building relationships. And that’s what I felt like I did today. Yes, I want to promote my business, but more than anything, I want to meet the needs of women who need my services. If I can help a woman to prevent her personal life struggles from derailing (another D) her career, like the woman who shared with me about how having a child with disabilities has impacted her employment, or the one who’s been through a divorce, death of her parents, and several medical diagnoses (more Ds!), then I’m humbled and honored that the Lord gives me a day doing nothing but networking. Actually, now that I think about it, I’m doing a whole lot more…

What about you? How can you use networking to live your purpose and meet the needs of those you encounter?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

 

 

The First Leaves of Fall and a Season of Transition

The First Leaves of Fall and a Season of Transition

Yesterday, Day 98, and today, Day 99, of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project have been busy. I’ve been immersed in writing the acknowledgements for my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul (there are so many!). In addition to that, I’ve been collaborating with the award winning author and writing coach who edited my book for publication. She is graciously writing endorsements for the front and back of the book. I was thrilled when she invited me to attend a writing group last night where I was able to have the synopsis critiqued so I can edit it down to a blurb to fit the back of the soft cover and the inside jacket of the hard copy. This is one of the most important decisions because whether a potential reader (hopefully you) likes the blurb or not often determines if they’ll read the book.

I’m so thankful that I’m in this season of transition in my life. Being able to work from home in order to focus on everything that I need to accomplish to meet my deadline for the book to be released in January of 2018 is a blessing. And as I posted earlier this week, being able to do so from my office outside is a beautiful one. This morning, as soon as I stepped on my deck I saw the first cluster of changing leaves. They were confirmation that I should end the blurb where the writing group suggested – as Lee, the heroin, enters fall and a season of change and transition. Though she’s fictitious, from the time I imagined her, our lives have had parallels.

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Transition. 

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Chick who is trying to figure out my blogging voice, my target audience for my blog and novel, and all of the details that go with these decisions, at times I feel a bit overwhelmed. I believe my content, be it career, home, image, or lifestyle, all with faith running through it, contains valuable insight and inspiration for women. I so want to encourage and inspire you! That being the case, I hope you’ll hang in there with me as I find my way through all I want to share until I  land on what you’d like me to share… Like these leaves, I’m hanging in there through this stage of transition and am thankful for the reminder that though I can’t always see through the trees, He’s always shining down on me and has got me through it all.

~ Pink Collar Coach