“Welcome Back”, I said to myself. I took a break, visited with my kids, wrote some articles and a bit for my upcoming book. I emptied my head. Kayaked. Cooked new recipes. Danced in the moonlight.

I’m just sayin’ — It’s summer, and I gave myself a well-deserved break from my normal routine (though I might like to keep dancing in the moonlight as an activity).

My million dollar tip today is this: For your head, for your heart, for your health –Take a break.

When it’s time (you’ll know), just get back to what’s important to you.

For me, it’s helping entrepreneurs with their lives, and promoting their businesses, and making more money, so it can FUEL the life they want to live. And, how they’ll give.

It’s pretty easy to figure, once you get to what’s important.

I’m taking some well needed time off, and working virtually at my lake house. Here’s a picture of what it looks like from my office at sunset, or, what I call my office. Pretty spectacular. I’m lucky to be here.

The View from the Lake House

It’s daytime now, and the neighbor’s kids are jumping off the raft, laughing and screaming. My dog, Lucy, is asleep under the table, and I’m happy to be at peace, with who I am, and where I am.

As I have progressed on my journey, I’ve found that progress isn’t measured by the number of hits on your website, or the number of friends you have on FaceBook. It’s measured by how you are feeling today. Are you happy in your work? Are you serving to the best of your ability? Are you making a difference in someone’s life — even if it’s a small difference (in your mind). You really never know how your words, thoughts or actions impact another in a time of need.

I’m getting better at the Art of Unfolding, and leaving space for expansion. It’s been a wee bit challenging for me, as I’ve been a results-oriented professional for most of my adult life. I’ve found that I can still get results, in a big way, by not rushing things, or pushing them through. Setting the stage, doing the homework, getting everything ready and then pressing the button. It’s the letting go that and observing, that creates unsettling feelings. Less and less, though, as I practice. And more and more, I am able to teach my client’s this strategy, and watch this calming practice work for them.

A trusted colleague of mine mentioned recently that business has three stages: generation (energy and magnetizing); creation (taking action); and institution (putting the structures in place). You can’t succeed without all three, much like a stool can’t stand without 3 legs.

This summer, I’m regenerating. Putting ideas on paper, so that in September, I’ll have plenty to act on, and structures will be in place.

With some newfound freedom, I’m both uncomfortable, and excited beyond words.

It’s a new time for me — to create, and be. To review my priorities, and to work on what will bring me the greatest joy, and prosperity.

I hope that this summer, you have some time to recharge, regenerate and refuel.

I’m just a few days into it, and it’s feeling right on.

Last week, I got a call from the group at T. Harv Eker , with the Millionaire Mind Intensive seminar.  They offered me two complimentary tickets to attend a three day conference in the Boston area for this coming weekend.  There was a $100 deposit to hold my space, and I hesitated to commit. Would it be a waste of time? FEAR. It was for a full Friday, Saturday and Saturday in June, and finally, we have beautiful weather!  Hmmm.  Would I be losing out on a weekend? FEAR. What if it was boring?  FEAR. Honestly, I resisted for days. I asked about cancellation policies. I noticed a pattern of “if it’s not good enough”, I would leave.  My time was more valuable than a seminar, that didn’t provide value.

What I realized was that I was making excuses for something that hadn’t even happened.  I was focusing on failure, in the future — instead of the possibility of growth, prosperity, and creative expansion.

If I got just one MAJOR insight, then I could apply it in my own life and business, and teach it to my clients.

There are free trainings every day available on the great www.

You could listen for days on end, and be a student for life. Some of those trainings are fantastic, some not so much.

If I find the conference useful, I’ll stay, and be delighted.

If not, it’s June.  I’ll work in my garden.

The night before my MMM Tour, I came down with a vicious stomach flu. Feeling better in the morning, I ventured out, not wanting to cancel my Back Bay coffee stop, and eager to talk with entrepreneurs who might want to toss around a few business ideas.

What I didn’t realize was that it was my stomach that was tossing around.  So, I made an executive decision to call it quits – moments after I found a parking spot on Newbury Street, which is no easy feat!

Needless to say, I couldn’t get home quickly enough, and took it easy for the rest of the day.  Several hours, several naps, and several cups of green tea later, I was feeling better. But, I was home, not at my Make Money Monday Tour, helping small business owners.

So I’m writing with the hopes that anyone who may be tossing and turning with a great idea, and who missed me at my MMM stop in Back Bay,  give me a call for some one-on-one time.

Life happens and we make good.

I’d like to take it one step further.

I’d like to make great — wherever I go, and whatever I do.


At my Make Money Monday’s stop this week, I had the opportunity to sit for about half an hour, and enjoy a cup of coffee waiting for my first appointment. I was delighted to have some time to rest and regroup my thoughts after a busy weekend.

In line, I heard a familiar voice that I recognized from years past. It was my plumber, Barry, who had moved out of town. Wanting to catch up, I invited him to sit with me, and in no time, we shared stories about business, family and life. I remember Barry fondly because he was working at my home the day “my water broke” when Vanessa, my first child was born. Being a plumber, and a good one, he took my comment literally, and wanted to fix the leak. He realized soon enough, that what I really needed was a ride to the hospital! 🙂

As I re-focused back to where I was (at Starbucks) and my conversation with Barry, I noticed he seemed excited to talk with me. He mentioned wanting to show me something, and left for a moment to go to his car. With a smile on his face, he came back with a small book.

Loving surprises, I opened the book. As I turned the pages, there were pictures of Barry, at 57 — a perfectly sculptured body builder, winning 2nd place in the Men’s Over 50 Championship.

Barry worked out for years, but for six months trained at an incredible rate, and ate certain foods in certain combinations that prepared him for this contest. He also deleted foods (and many of them) to prepare for this challenge. No wine. No pizza. And little desire, for some of the fun we take for granted.

Barry’s nutritionist and trainer were his team. Team Barry, supported the effort, but Barry alone, had the drive and discipline to get to his goal.

What do body building and business have in common? It takes time, commitment and effort to build a beautiful body — and time, commitment and effort to build a profitable business. There will be days you want to give up. There will be days you are hungry for more. There will be days you are so exhausted you just want to go to bed, and times when you might want to scream — in loneliness, fear or frustration.

The winners continue, not knowing if they’ll place first, second or third. They might not even qualify. But they do it.

They do their due diligence for their own reasons. They stay in business. Follow a plan. Get up every day and work – or work out, or both.

Much like Barry.

When I asked Barry why he did it, he told me it was all about discipline and deciding that this was important to him.

When I mentioned revamping my own nutrition, he told me I could do anything. I believe him, because of one thing… If it’s important to me, I know I’ll have the discipline.

The question is, what are we willing to have discipline for?

What’s your why?

I’ve often been asked to look at a business situation, assess it, and offer recommendations for new ideas to re-energize both the entrepreneur and small business. It’s not about fixing a problem so much, but finding out where the soul of the vision or actual implementation went off track or lacked luster. Other times it’s about creating a plan of action, or powerful promotions campaign to get BIG BOLD results and refocus on what’s important to the client I’m working with.

On a recent Make Money Monday coffee house tour, I had a visit from a young entrepreneur who has a web-based business connecting people and opportunities. She was very passionate about her work, but needed some direction and a sounding board to confidentially address her concerns, and a double espresso of inspiration to move to the next level. I was impressed that she traveled from another state to visit with me at a coffee shop in Cambridge, where we sat for an hour and put together a skeleton plan to build a new platform for her business.

Today, almost two weeks later, she called me with a flushed out plan and details of pricing, levels, and prospects to launch her program. She’s going to the market with a targeted list of opportunities, and has thought out many of the ideas we co-created at our coffee shop session. I love the fact that she knows that building a business is about doing it, getting out there — and that course correction happens. It’s OK. It’s part of business.

I write this today because perhaps YOU may need a cup of coffee, and boost in your business. A confidential sounding board to express your concerns, or someone to help you re-energize your dream.

I will be hiring my new business friend because she has the qualities I look for in building my team. She’s smart, bold, talented, and is willing to put in the hours to make her business work. She has the guts, passion, and drive to make her business successful, and went out of her way to search me out – in Inman Square in Cambridge, MA on a random Monday morning.

Are you willing to get out of your comfort zone, and get the help you need to re-energize, build, or promote your business?

My mission at Let’s Make You Shine is to help you Take Your Brilliance to the Bank.

My recipe for success?

20 Years of Business Savvy
Fortune 500 Promotional Strategy
More Profits, More Attention, and Recognition for What You Deserve.

Let me know when you’re coming to the coffee shop. I’m there till the end of June. You’ll find the dates and locations at www.MakeMoneyMondays.com.

Coffee (and business advice) is on me.

Today’s Million Dollar Tip, is something you may or may not be doing. But, it’s important enough to be a reminder. Stay current with what’s going on in your industry. Take and make the time to learn, and see what others are doing, and how they’re doing it.

Some professionals have to do it to keep their jobs or license.
Entrepreneurs, and small business owners are sometimes so busy “getting” and “doing” all the work, that they put learning and continuing education on the back burner.

I’ve come to learn that connecting with experts, and those who may know more than you in a certain subject, is an important part of growth and expansion. It may be costly, but doesn’t it cost you every time you lose a job, customer or quote?

If our role as a business owner is to help clients solve problems, my thought is to have all the tools (or as many as possible) in your tool belt to help get the job done, and done well. You may not have all the tools at hand — all the time. Some you may have to borrow (a colleague’s advice). Some you may have to rent (hiring an expert ). Some you may send away for (CD’s, books, programs). And frankly, some you may have to dust off and re-sharpen (proposals or ideas that were brilliant that you may have forgotten)!

For me, it’s spot coaching on areas I’d like to learn more about. I’m reading, listening, and working with experts to grow my solid knowledge base to new levels.

For some learning is an excuse to not do the work. For me, it’s inspiration to be able to help more.

This week I’m in New Orleans to visit my youngest daughter and make some time for the Jazz Festival.

If any of you have been here before, New Orleans in May is a beautiful time of year. The sun is shining and the weather is warm. Delightful in fact. It’s late Spring. T-shirts and flip flops. An unhurried lifestyle.

I notice business getting done, and lots of it, with less urgency. New Orleans rocks at its own pace and to its own beat. Perhaps we might think about that for our own lives.

I first came to NOLA with Boston Cares, a community service organization with a group of strangers to help rebuild the city after Katrina. I stayed just one week, but New Orleans made quite an impression on me.

Six years ago I fell in love with this city. Funny that my daughter should choose to go to school here, at Tulane. I’m thrilled to see her blossom, do well, and be a part of a community where it’s important to give back.

Dreamin’, livin’ and lovin’?

I’m looking at my own life from here at the Fair Grounds wondering who I’d like to see at the Jazz Fest. Day dreamin’ actually. Looking forward to listening to many artists that are new to me – The Soul Rebels Brass Band, Yvette Landry, Ingrid Lucia, Luther Kent and the Forgotten Souls. And can’t wait to hear Willie Nelson, a favorite later in the day.

Livin’ my life, and working from the road.

Lovin’ a city that’s re-inventing itself, and time with those that are dear.

Are we making time for dreamin’, livin’ and lovin’ every day?

Don’t you think we should be?

In business and in life we get sidetracked. Bumps in the road. Circumstances beyond our control. Unexpected opportunities and better yet, pleasures that seem to come just when needed. But when we recognize that being sidetracked becomes a habit rather than an occasional daydream, or excuse for not accomplishing your goals, it’s time to take action and get back on track.

Here are 5 easy ways to Stay in the Bowling Lane:

1)      Before you go to bed at night write 5 things (rocks) that you need to work on the next day. Keep this list in a place where you’ll see it. These rocks are important to your progress.  Start working on them, and you’ve got motion.  Inspired action.  All good.

2)      Find a colleague, friend or mentor who can serve as your accountability partner.  If you have to report to them on your progress, and they to you, there’s less chance that either of you will jump lanes. Make a commitment to each other. Make a rule, no man or woman in the next lane!

3)      Create a No Drama Zone – one of my favorites. To each of us, a “No Drama Zone” is different. Limit unpleasant interaction, especially during work hours. Strengthen your boundaries. I often tell clients that you can be responsible to people, not for them. Be strong. Focus on where you need to be, not where someone wants to lead you. Stay in your Bowling Lane.

4)      Keep your workspace clean. Piles of paper, stacks of unpaid bills, unfinished “to do lists” can cause anxiety. I don’t know anyone who needs more anxiety. Do you?

5)      Buy a special notebook, one you love, and draw a “timeline” of your accomplishments — from the beginning of the year, to the end. You’ll be surprised. A timeline is visual. Drawing your progress on paper is wonderful. Your mind just forgets all that you’ve done.

My million dollar tip today is simple, and doable.

Stay in your Bowling Lane and out of the gutter. You’ll score every time.