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A Three Down Load Day

June 11, 2019

Inspiration, Motivation and Success Strategies for Women Entrepreneurs

In the midst of a phone call with a dear friend experiencing similar occurrences in life, she interrupted me in the middle of a sentence to say, “Hold on a minute, I’m having an enlightened download to share with you.” I paused to receive the gifted insight I had been searching for through meditation and reading. “This happens to me all the time and I wanted you to hear the message,” she said. Wise enough to know when something special is being said; I listened and accepted the meaning.

While on the phone call with this friend, one of my sisters called who typically doesn’t ring because she is busy being a successful realtor, mother and grandmother. “Tracy, I had to share something with you that hit me today about your health,” she said. I listened as she shared information about a health practice I used to do that I stopped. She sensed the practice would help my alopecia. Wise enough to know when something educational is being shared; I listened and agreed with her.

As I drove to have lunch with a long time advisor and friend retiring from her job where I first met her when I was 20 years old, I felt the day was already special with its unique perceptions. Two hours later, returning home I didn’t turn on the radio, but rather listened silently to the ‘pearls of wisdom’ shared from this friend. I didn’t need to download a CD of music to guide me home but rather listened gently to our conversation again downloading the special words.

So often women entrepreneurs work solo, keeping them buoyed up with positivity to handle work load, clients and proposals on their own. Some have a team of associates, mentors or advisors in their pocket to help when needed with the physical tasks of running a business; but many don’t seek the “downloads” of advice from individuals, who know them well, to guide them through a day, week or month. Confident and independent they rely on their selves too much and too long before realizing others have the wisdom they need.

Today be inspired to pause and ask yourself if you are too self-reliant and missing the value of inspirational ‘downloads’ from others. Women don’t always like to ask for help because we don’t want to burden others with our problems; when instead other women are happy to lend the advice we need to see a way through a murky situation helping us gain clarity.

In today’s technological world, we easily download music, computer programs and new apps but we don’t easily download inspiration from others when we need it most. Let’s change that and allow ourselves time to share and listen for unique downloads from people who care about us most.

Global Connections alongside Community Efforts

June 10, 2019

Inspiration,Monday Motivation for women, women entrepreneurs,and women in sports

Across the pond in England, one of my Women Can Marathon running partners Jo Moseley, another mid-fifties aged woman, finds daily joy in SUP (standing up paddle boarding) on the ocean. Through Twitter, I see four daily shots of her before or after her daily adventure wishing I could wake up and teleport to the northern English seashore to join her. I feel our chance meeting wasn’t chance, but one of those divine moments when you meet a soul who speaks to yours.

Besides paddle boarding Jo also performs the act of a #twominutebeachcleanup seaside, trying to help the beautiful oceans remain free from debris. When she isn’t paddle boarding, she dedicates time to #plogging – picking up litter as she jogs.

The plight of pollution in our oceans is becoming a well-known issue especially when discussed by the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio, film star, who created the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation to support innovative projects that protect vulnerable wildlife from extinction, while restoring balance to threatened ecosystems and communities. One of his six main program areas is Oceans Conservation.

With my bright pink kayak by my side both Saturday and Sunday, I had both Jo and Leonardo in mind as we launched our boats at a dirty grass area next to the water’s edge of once polluted Onondaga Lake Park. The lake is still in the progress of clean up. You can tell the community doesn’t trust the waters yet as we, a handful of fisherman, and one other kayaker was on the entire water on a picture perfect sunny day.

I searched for plastic on top the water as my husband when scouting for fish but I saw none. The only items dotting the water’s surface were white cottonwood blooms floating in air and landing gently on the lake. They sparkled in the sunlight like tinsel on a Christmas tree. There was no floating debris in the water – a good sign.

Upon reaching shore, I took two minutes to pick up a plastic bag left by past fisherman and filled it with a couple soda cans buried in the sand next to the shore, candy wrappers and old bait containers and their tops. It took less than two minutes to stop and look and take action. As I walked to the nearby garbage can, easily accessible for anyone to see, I was happy I contributed in this small way to our environment.

As I tweeted a photo my husband took of me and shared it on Twitter, I received the following retweet from Jo Moseley‏(@Healthyhappy50) “Wow! How wonderful; thank you @WomenTIES! Tracy, from Central New York, is doing her #2minutelitterpick after kayaking! The @2minbeachclean family is truly global! #plogging #shepaddles #2minutebeachclean.” Her retweet has been shared by many new global friends who also take care of the envirnoment. It feels cool to be connected accross the world with like-minded people.

Might you join us and even start following these efforts or other twitter hashtag efforts you are interested in partaking in? Twitter isn’t just for tweeting social or business news but also community wide efforts and global happenings. Get yourself and your company involved!

Follow 2 Minute Beach Clean at https://twitter.com/2minbeachclean
Follow Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation and their work at: https://twitter.com/dicapriofdn

Monday Motivation: Succumb to Difficult Elements to Succeed

June 3, 2019

Inspiration, Monday Motivation and Wisdom for Women Entrepreneurs, Women in Sports, Women in Business

A couple years ago I learned a really important lesson about committing to sports and the elements as I trained for the 2017 Boston Marathon. Training for my first marathon began in the crisp beautiful running weather of the Northeast autumn after hot, humid summer breezes and chilly, dry winter’s coat. I had six months to advance from being a two mile daily runner to a 26.2 mile runner. The beginning of the longer runs came in the peak of winter when one had to embrace the elements to get in a training run. It was a vital lesson.

With hands frozen and my body draped in layers of clothes to brace for the cold, I was sweating from the increase in metabolism generated from putting in a nine mile run. I wanted to quit running but told myself I had to endure the elements to be ready for Boston in April. I remember a woman saying to me as I stopped to get water, “You must be training for some big race to be out here in these conditions,” she remarked. “Yes, I am training for the Boston Marathon,” I said in reply. “Good luck! Keep running I know you can do it.” I could tell she was a coach or PE teacher by her attitude. Steely resolve overcomes a marathoner. It has to in order to finish the race.

Yoga was another mental and physical exercise that helped me train for Boston. In Yoga, one has to hold still in poses as legs burn and the mind wanders. Only through deep focus and fortitude can one complete a difficult yoga routine walking away more peaceful, prepared and focused on work ahead. Resolute determination is the other gift of marathon training.

When people ask me “How did you ever run the Boston Marathon,” I simply reply, “I put in the miles and hours needed to know I could do it; if I never trained through hot, cold, rainy, and sunny conditions, I couldn’t have accomplished it because I wouldn’t have believed I could.” Yesterday, as my husband and I stood out in a heavy rain storm for to finish blasting the top coat of our deck because the machine had to be returned this morning, I simply “gave into the elements” just like in marathon training, and seriously enjoyed the feeling of once again accomplishing something most people wouldn’t do in those circumstances. “It makes me mentally stronger,” I acknowledged to my husband. I’m willing to get my hands dirty if I need to – another personal and business motto of mine.

As you face another Monday, why not give in to the elements that are forcing you to conduct work to hit a big money or corporate goal? Just like in marathon training, only by handling and finishing difficult tasks can success come closer. Nothing in life is accomplished only on sunny, perfect days; instead our life is rewarded internally when pushed beyond limits and succeeding in one’s actions and goals.

Succesfully Straddling Both Technology and Human Interaction in Business Today

May 30, 2019

Inspiration, Thursday Thoughts, Thursday Motivation for Women Entrepreneurs, Women in Business, Small Business

Sitting comfortably in my Boston Marathon jacket, hat and shirt, I turned on my computer to listen to 3 back to back online programs. The first video was created by Jennifer Rust, a Women TIES member, who shared her knowledge about creating larger profits for retailers. She also used the presentation to practice for a live speaking event in a couple weeks. I thought the idea was brilliant in terms of working out the kinks in the presentation and experiencing a new way of sharing her expertise.

The second video was given by Deepak Chopra who I typically absorb by listening to his podcasts and not through a video presentation. He had a special guest with him so the cross promotion is excellent for this other person who is not as well known as Deepak. It also allows Deepak’s audience, who might prefer learning through watching videos rather than listening, a better experience. I ended up in a quick peaceful meditation where a deep golden glow entered my body. I had therapy sitting at my desk for free – an unexpected surprise.

The final online program was a two hour educational seminar on using Facebook. Although, I’m very experienced in Facebook, I watched the online seminar to glimpse new strategies and witness how the presentation actually works. The New York Women’s Business Center coordinated the free presentation as they implement more online programs since event attendance everywhere is dropping as people access online technology for learning.

Technology is fascinating and offers certain services current business services can’t present; but I still miss the human interaction with other individuals that can only happen at “live events” where people gather. Like everything, we need to straddle old ways of doing business with new ways to stay both relevant and satisfied.

I was grateful for the wisdom gleaned watching the online presentations but also look forward to my next event where I can hug, speak and interact with women in person to keep the human experience alive and well.

Overflowing Revenue Streams

May 29, 2019

Inspiration, Wednesday Wisdom and Motivation for Women Entrepreneurs, Women in Business and Women in Sports

On the shores of Lake Ontario in a small protected cove, the windy, wild and wet spring waters covered the docks where men, women and children stand or fish during Memorial Day Weekend. The skies were bright blue, without a cloud in the sky, but the banks were flooded indicating rain clouds had emptied themselves numerous times to wash away shorelines, walkways and front lawns of local residents and businesses.

Additional streams of water had forged new paths over the cove’s shore. The scene reminded me that no matter what the season – wet or dry, cold or warm – women entrepreneurs can create their own additional “streams of income” similar to Mother Nature. These extra streams of income may come from an overabundant request for services or products we don’t produce or innovative ideas inside us ready to be brought to the light.

Three years ago a Women TIES member came to my house to perform services when she noticed my pool house, pool and beautiful view. She said, “Do you rent that out for others to use? If not, you should.” It was her idea since she regularly reserves special places to create, envision and write for her business. I wouldn’t have thought about renting out my space although I’ve used VRBO, Airbnb and HomeAway repeatedly for personal use. Ironically, the pool house looks over a beautiful pond which currently is brimming with too much water and streaming slowly over its edge.

Whoever created these “rent-by-owner” places developed a new industry that rivals fancy hotels and old fashion lodges for their money. Innovative ideas may appear difficult to non-creative thinkers, but each of us has the ability to observe, listen and create. There is money to be made everywhere at every moment of the day for an entrepreneurial spirited woman who needs new or additional revenue.

I finally enacted the vision my member saw three years ago by officially starting today to rent my beautiful pool house, pool and stunning view to any woman associated with me or Women TIES including Wednesday Wisdom readers and event attendees. The venue is there for the taking, the price is reasonable, the view outstanding and the revenue beneficial as I regain my financial footing after a long medical sabbatical.

Today’s Wednesday Wisdom is meant to get your ideas flowing, like the flooded lake water, on ways you can bring in additional revenue through new, changed or enhanced services or products. Business is about offering something someone else desires or needs with good service and quality. Have you been asked numerous times about providing something that could be a new source of revenue? Do you have a talent or strength that should be shared in addition to your company? Perhaps you even have a beautiful space to rent out for the summer or year?

Let your creative juices flow like the abundant lakes and streams and see what new money-making opportunities you create to help others.

Recapturing Truths Revealed Traveling Aboard and Running in an All Women’s Race

May 28, 2019

Inspiration for women entrepreneurs, female business owners and women in sports

Today’s blog post recaptures the pure joy and excitement of traveling to England to run with International women in the all women’s marathon called “Women Can.” I learned so many new lessons during this adventure. I hope you read the post and especially the lessons towards the bottom.

There I was standing in an English field with deep green fresh grass, humid sea air and a hilly terrain in front of me. I was shoulder to shoulder with mostly women I had never met or ever run with in an all women’s marathon in a country I never visited before. In fact for two decades I had been nervous to fly over the ocean after the Pan Am 103 bombing that almost took the life of a best friend. My sons urged me to let them fly to Europe as their friends started traveling abroad to which I always answered “no” in fear of their safety. Logically I knew traveling would be safe but I just couldn’t get the image of the Lockerbie, Scotland plane photo with a young man’s leg dangling from his airplane seat out of my mind. I wish I never saw that photo.

Tracy and Adam Higginbotham in Devon, England

But there I was having traveled safe across the pond with my youngest son Adam to open horizons for my sake and his future dreams of traveling. I knew if I could be fearless and fly over the ocean with him, I could let him fly on his own one day not gripped with fear. Sometimes we just have to live a fearful experience to be free from it. As my son hugged me good luck on my 7 mile leg of the marathon relay team, I was proud of my decision to take yet one more risk and travel to run in an unfamiliar place at a new distance with women I didn’t know but who joined me in the experience. The organization 261 Fearless has an influential way of inspiring women to join a community of other women across the globe and in their own communities through the love and fitness of running. I am so grateful to them for that gift.

As I took off on the first leg of the relay, I was hugged by my international teammates – Tanja Butcher of Switzerland, Jo Moseley of Northern England and Melissa Stringer from Kansas City in the USA who joined us when Josie Cessar of Malta had to back out due to a family emergency. Running mostly by a river through knee high grassy trails, pass cows in pastures, lambs dotting distant hills and muddy inclines and descents, I took in every moment I could running. I wanted to stop and take photos but heard myself say, “Take in the images with your eyes and soul so they stay with you forever.”

The 7 miles by far were not my fastest run because trail running is so different than anything I had run before but it was glorious in so many ways. My asthma was kicking in throughout the run but I just kept going until I saw my son and two teammates waiting for me at a quaint bridge where I would pass the race onto my new friend Jo. Teammate Tanja and my son Adam joined me in the last bit of mileage over the bridge. It was a memory I won’t forget especially since my son ran with me for a short bit.

At the finish line tent, I waited with 261 Fearless friends enjoying homemade English tarts, gluten free brownies, and tea! The English love their tea even if they just finished running a full marathon. As each of my teammates finished their legs, they joined me in the tent until we our last runner was approaching the finish line where we joined her running hand in hand to the finish line!

The entire 261 Fearless running team then sat down in the spring sunshine to enjoy a celebratory glass of Prosecco, an Italian wine my English teammates love. My son joined us since he volunteered while I ran and deserved a glass of bubbly himself. Then him and I headed off to the coast to dip our feet in the English Channel in Sidmouth.

I discovered some real truths while traveling abroad and running in this race to inspire you today:

* Women are wonderful no matter where you go. We warm up to each other quickly creating instant friendship. Women love other women’s spirits. Make sure to meet as many new women as you can.

* Any fear can be erased from your mind if you have the bravery to face what scares you. Only in tackling our fright, can we be free to live.

* When you are diagnosed with a health situation you can’t solve, don’t let it keep you from believing you can still participate in life.

* To truly enjoy life, you must live new experiences. If you can’t face a new experience alone, invite someone to join you. It makes it easier and more pleasurable.

* The world is a fascinating place with a million vistas to see. Make sure you travel enough in your lifetime to witness new destinations.

* Anything you experience in personal life is applicable to our professional life. Meet more women to open your business horizons, conquer entrepreneurial fear by trying something that makes you nervous, say “yes” to more opportunities, and visit more places to meet more people to connect with globally at conferences, events and even races.

I hope you have time soon to take up a run on a muddy trail past animals, streams and hilly vistas enjoying every moment and allowing the experience to change you forever in the most positive light

Wednesday Wisdom: Life Is A Playground

May 22, 2019

Wednesday Wisdom, Inspiration for Women Entrepreneurs, Female Business Owners, Women in Sports

Sitting in the morning sunlight, I opened up Outlook Express to see a message from my bank. It wasn’t a standard notification about my account but rather an announcement for a unique marketing opportunity they were hosting in conjunction with a professional sports team. As the bright yellow rays from the sun poured onto my keyboard warming my chilly fingers, I clicked open the announcement, read it and immediately started applying for it. Why not take a chance to brand my company name, mission and one of its divisions to a massive audience.

After two hours on the submission, I wondered if I had too much coffee in my system or too many endomorphins from completing yoga a few minutes earlier that made me jump at this opportunity. Then I walked to my pool sat down and meditated on the importance of my life work supporting women and decided the 120 minute investment was well worth the potential reward. I’ve always been an optimistic person so my positive attitude might be more emotional than logical when it comes to winning a large marketing package to take my company further.

After submitting the proposal, I remembered seeing a social media marketing post a couple days earlier from exhilarated Women TIES member Deborah Cabral, The DeClutter Coach. Deb was in Washington, D.C. attending an event to see her idol Oprah Winfrey. Deb and I have shared our personal Oprah stories so I knew how excited she was traveling far to see her again. Her excitement alone might have been the fuel that inspired me to submit a proposal for this big opportunity. One woman’s excitement is enough to fuel another woman’s enthusiasm. Deb has always dreamed big and moved fast making her a very successful woman in business with her own television show and multiple corporate divisions.

A woman might not suspect how motivational another woman’s success story is to their own dreams. I have always believed women entrepreneurs love being inspired by other women. It’s one of the reasons “women….together….inspiring… entrepreneurial….success” are in Women TIES acronym. I know women need each other to ignite each other’s big and small dreams. We depend on it to catapult us into the stratosphere for larger achievement goals.

Today’s Wednesday Wisdom hopefully encourages you to soak in the extraordinary success of other women in business so it fuels you. Our egos can help but our insecurities can also hold us back. What would happen if you spent two hours applying for a really big time opportunity or spent two days in the company of a female business icon? The worst that could happen would be wasting some time. The best that would occur is motivation to try something new expanding your hope and horizons and even accumulating something grander.

“If you don’t try, you can fail; and if you fail, you can always get back up again,” is my personal motto. It is what I have lived by using courage, guts and faith to help me attain big goals. I hope today you are inspired to live this motto alongside me because my friends life is a playground and we need to enjoy it!

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