By Debra W. Gould, MS
Have you reached your ultimate level of success? You know, that bar that you've set in your mind of what it means to reach "the top." It seems we could always do something that would improve our success. We could read more business leadership books, work harder, network to a broader circle ... and the list goes on. What's holding you back from reaching your defined level of success in both your work and personal life?
Here are a few suggestions to help you look for answers to these questions by sharing the top excuses we make on what's holding you back from reaching your level of success?
1. I don't have the knowledge or information.
Unfortunately, this is an excuse for the mere fact that we live in a world of information overload. From Google and systems that generate "big data," information is at our fingertips from smartphones to tablets to wearable devices.
2. I don't have the education required.
Education comes in all shapes and sizes. It doesn't necessarily require going back to college to get a degree. Again, the internet proves a wealth of e-learning opportunities that are fast and affordable.
3. I can't take a risk right now.
This excuse will follow you forever. There is never a perfect time to take a risk. If that were the case, then there would be no "risk" to the situation. To move ahead, you have to give something up and this can be scary and uncomfortable. Don't let this stop you from success.
Debra W. Gould, MS is the president of Debra Gould & Associates, Inc. based in New Orleans and provides management consulting and training services to commercial and government clients. Debra is one of the founders of The Ebony Speakers and co-author of the book, Real Women, Real Issues - Positive Collaborations For Business Success.
Debra can be reached at: (504) 244-6576
email: email@example.com and
By Nancy J. Lewis, MS, PHR, RCC
In the complex world of change, chaos, and uncertainty, we must examine the attitude we embrace. One quick way to assess an attitude of another person is to ask yourself how you feel when they leave your presence? Do you feel inspired and charged up ready to take on the world or you do feel like the life has been zapped out of you? Ask yourself, how do people feel when they leave your presence? Each and everyday you must decide the attitude you will embrace. You maybe faced with challenges and difficult people, but it is still a personal decision as to how you allow the attitude of others to influence your attitude. Consider the following seven strategies for improving your attitude.
1. Surround yourself with positive people. Look at those people that are a part of your network and examine the weather (attitude) that they carry. If gloom and doom is all they bring to you consistently, give them a reality check and make them aware of what they are doing. So often people who are consistently negative are not aware of their negative energy. If they are non-responsive, you may have to minimize the time you interact with them. People who fail to change often become toxic and if you stick close to them that toxicity may rub off on you. Seek out those people who recognize the challenges of the day but continue to face them with a positive attitude. Strive to align yourself with people with energy, excitement for life and a positive outlook on the circumstances they face.
2. Read and listen to motivational and inspirational books and tapes. This is a great way to keep yourself inspired and focused on the possibilities of life. When you wake up in the morning, instead of turning on the television, spend those first minutes reading inspirational, biblical, or motivational books. If you drive to work, put in a CD or tape. If you ride the train or bus, read books or invest in a personal CD player and fill your mind with positive thoughts. You have no excuses because you can go to your local library and get books and tapes. Information on anything you want is on the Internet. You simply must have a desire to find ways to maintain a positive attitude.
3. Count your blessings. Recognize that no matter how things maybe, see the blessing in the midst of the chaos and confusion. As you reflect on the blessing that will help you get things in perspective and help you see the glass half full versus half empty.
4. Smile. Be mindful of your countenance and body language. What messages do you send to people when they interact with you? A smile says to others that you are approachable and it costs nothing.
5. Take time to appreciate the simple things in life. Take a walk in the park and don’t just rush by the roses, instead take time to enjoy and smell them. Take time to watch a sunset and remember who to thank. Spend time with those less fortunate and seek opportunities to give words of encouragement to those who pass your way.
6. Believe in yourself. Recognize that you are special and unique. There is no one else quite like you. So let your positive attitude shine. Walk and talk with confidence and know that you have something special to contribute to the world.
7. Live each day to the fullest. Quit putting off some of the things you want to do in life and go for the gusto now. Learn to maximize the minutes of each day. Practice these strategies to help you maintain a winning attitude; an attitude others want to catch!
Your Comments Are Welcome.
By Debra Gould, MS
Ebony Speakers first successful creation was a book project entitled “Real Women, Real Issues: Positive Collaborations for Business Success” is a unique collaboration between four dynamic women coming together from many years of varied experience and from their mastermind group experience.
Out of that experience came the concept of communicating with other women on the importance of maintaining quality personal, professional and business relationships with other people who promote positive living.
Ebony Speakers is excited to announce that our second project was a recent webinar on Wednesday, June 18, 2014. It was just another example of the next level of connecting our audience to the powerful message of real women working in collaborations.
During one of our unique mastermind sessions we all determined that it was time to launch a webinar. We are blessed to have a technology savvy business woman like Carole Copeland Thomas to lead the way to address the program logistics to host this webinar series. Nancy J. Lewis agreed to take on the online registering process and it was onward to create the webinar entitled Savvy Sisters: Share Strategies for Everyday Life.
The day of the webinar Carole Copeland Thomas welcomed our guests to sharpen up their skills while moving forward in life. This important webinar will covered these topics.
Your Personal SWOT Assessment by Debra W. Gould
Taking Charge of Your Career by Nancy J. Lewis
Using INNOVATION to Get Things DONE by Michelle Porchia
Reinvent Yourself & Stay Relevant in Technology by Carole Copeland Thomas
Here are a few highlights of what we shared with our listening audience on June 18.
Debra's conversation on how can I use the SWOT Assessment to validate my strengths and opportunity to attack the guilty feelings every time I decide to take time for myself.
Nancy's conversation was discussed the difference between whining and winning and addressed the tough questions regarding taking charge of your own career.
Michelle's conversation discussed technology, tools, your game plan, and work boundaries.
Carole's conversation was on the rapidly changing world, connections, collaborations, and effectively using social media including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LInkedIn.
We realize seating was limited for this online registration at only $29.00 per person. If you missed out on June 18th due to meetings, business travel or whatever let me suggest a way to get you plugged into this informational, educational, motivational and inspirational webinar. Ebony Speakers still want to invite you to attend our exciting “special one hour” webinar held on June 18, 2014.
Here's how it will work:
First, register and purchase the webinar.
1. Go to www.ebonyspeakers.com
2. On the top menu bar drop down the Savvy Speakers box found underneath the Webinar Series Box.
3. Our Savvy Sisters Webinar is a Password Protected webpage on our website.
4. You can also download the slides on this page
All I can say is WELCOME and get ready to explore your ability to excel, enjoy the webinar and thank you to our guests.
Lastly, we are in the process of scheduling future webinars by Ebony Speakers. From years of experience in training, human resources and corporate consulting Debra W. Gould, Nancy J. Lewis, Michelle Porchia and Carole Copeland Thomas have crafted a power-packed business guide for women and men of all ages and ethnicities. We hope you'll join us for future webinar discussions!
Topics in the webinar toolkit include:
•Starting and Running A Business
•Working Through Difficulties and Challenges
Debra W. Gould, MS is the president of Debra Gould & Associates, Inc. based in New Orleans and provides management consulting and training services to commercial and government clients. Debra is one of the founders of The Ebony Speakers and co-author of the book, Real Women, Real Issues - Positive Collaborations For Business Success. Debra can be reached at: (504) 244-6576,
email: firstname.lastname@example.org and website: www:gouldassoc.com
Nancy J. Lewis, MS, PHR, RCC
So often we make excuses why we don't do certain things in our life. When we do this, we often
delay walking into our destiny and adversely impact our integrity level. Consider the following five strategies the next time you find yourself making an excuse.
1. Be honest with yourself.
It is important to look at yourself in the mirror and have a heart to heart and admit you have a problem. Don't continue to deny this is an area in your life you are okay with and hope it will simply go away without you addressing it. Others know you are making excuses and it is time you face it also. It is important to state the problem out loud acknowledging you recognize this is problem you are going to fix. It is helpful to solicit the assistance of a trusted friend that will hold you accountable when you find yourself making excuses.
2. Set realistic expectations.
Before you make commitments and say yes to something--even something small--ask yourself if you truly believe you can and will follow through. Some people set unrealistic goals and then fail in accomplishing their commitment. It is critical to have forethought and count the cost of what you are committing to. Look at the time constraints, the magnitude of the task and then make an informed decision. Sometimes you have to say no and that is okay. It is better to say no than to repeatedly say yes and fall short of what you have committed to. Doing what you say you will do speaks to your level of integrity. Integrity is a lot easier to maintain than regain. So think before you commit!
3. Stop whining and start winning.
Stop complaining about what you don't have and making negative confessions. It is so important to count your blessings and know that you win when you begin to speak positive statements of faith. Be slow to speak and swift to hear and if what you are going to say is not in line with what you want to see manifest in your life; don't say it. Choose to move from whining about life and get in the game of winning in life. Become your own best cheerleader recognizing that greatness lives inside of you.
4. Take charge of what you need to do.
Just determine in your heart that whatever you need to do to succeed you will do. Be in charge of your life by making the right decisions and taking action on the goals you have set for yourself. Challenge yourself to know that you have skills, talents, and abilities inside you to make your dreams a reality. Don't look for others to do the things you need to do. Commit to what needs to be done and then do it.
5. Be solution centered.
Instead of focusing on your problem, begin to look at the possible solutions. What you focus on becomes greater; so why not focus on ways to resolve your situation? Be willing to ask for help from those individuals who have knowledge and skills that can help you. Don't let pride and ego keep you from getting valuable insight and wisdom from those who can shorten your learning curve and provide you with helpful solutions to the challenges you face. Choose to use your energy focusing on solutions and then be willing to take responsibility for your life.
Book Debra, Michelle, Nancy or Carole for your next speaking engagement or training event.