150 Steps in August

Success means taking real steps in the direction of your dream. Talk about them here. You deserve to be commended, hailed, supported, admired, copied and shamelessly promoted.

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Lynx
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Promote Steps

Post by Lynx »

JewelB Lynx, how do you promote your workshops? Thanks for the question. It's really non-rigorous, I email everyone I have addresses for (collect them as you go, it's remarkable how many it adds up to). On email be very careful to put everyone on a long list in the BCC (blank carbon copy) address list and send the message to yourself. This way you're not disrupting people's privacy. Some want to be removed (do immediately and acknowledge) and a few get returned, stuff for idle moments. I carry flyers with me and hand them out whenever I can with a short announcement about what its about. I put a short blurb on the back of my business cards (made about 40 this way) and when I hand out my card I turn it over and show the blurb. I posted the announcement on my web site and blog. And then I get ready for people who cannot make it but want to connect (my secret plan all along). The new system I finally made for keeping track has freed my soul. Used to be I had scattered ways of keeping track. Thought for a while I'd put it into a database on the computer. This has two drawbacks: one I can't always get access to the computer when I need to: and b: I forget about them. Also, it's hard to make notes if I deal with people in other ways than the little fields I've guessed at for the database. Sat down one day and told self, Self, this is it! Before we get up we will have something that works! Oh, why didn't you say so. Went to my day timer (six hole punch paper/pen/pencil) and got some blank sheets. Folded these sheets into quarters, devoted each quarter page to one contact, put person's name and phone number and any other info I had (dates available, who is calling whom, etc). And I was in business! Totally extensible, can review anytime, separate sheets can be dedicated to special needs (one for the condo, one for new client prospects, etc.). I'm happy for the day. L
"Vision is not enough. It must be combined with venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps; we must step up the stairs." Vaclav Havel

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Re: 150 Steps in August

Post by Jane B »

Hi all, Mannix, just wanted to offer my sympathies for your situation with the student who quit. It sucks that it happened on such short notice, especially since she had been taking lessons for several years. Funny, the following passage from your post seems a bit close to home:
I'm also frustrated that no one ever gives any type of notice when they are going to quit. Things seem to be going along fine, and then, it's the last day. OK, whatever.
The singer from the band I quit about a year ago blamed me for this. I had been playing sax with the band for several years, maintaining a positive attitude up until the very last rehearsal, then one day all of a sudden I called him and told him I was quitting to try and pursue other projects. Of course I had been thinking about it before, but I guess I feared that if I showed I had doubts or talked about it I would have just been told "well why don't you just quit, etc." and I wasn't sure I was prepared to hear that. To answer your other question about Iggy Pop, yes he is indeed the artist I saw perform. The Stooges are the band he played with before going solo. And I was indeed very inspired by his performance. I thought he had more drive and spirit than any of the younger performers I saw that day (it was a festival with many other bands). Sadly, a couple days later, I read on the band's website that all their gear got stolen in my city, outside their hotel!! jewelb, I appreciate your comment on me being organized. It's certainly something I strive for. As a freelancer who works from home, it's been essential for me to develop my own time management and planning strategies. I would say that effective time management requires a lot of trial and error and patience. Many people get frustrated because they try one approach and it doesn't work so they just figure there is something wrong with them, but they're wrong. I've read several books on the subject that suggest various approaches, and what I realize is there are different approaches for different people with different lifestyles and personalities, and thus, I've integrated bits and pieces of various approaches to suit my own lifestyle and goals. I'd say it's also important to define your short and long term goals as clearly as possible and review these on a regular basis. I try to do this on a weekly and monthly basis or at the end of an important achievement, and it really helps to put a priority on the things I want to get done. Hope this helps. Feel free to ask more questions. As for today's steps: - Did some exercise this morning (situps, tricep exercises) - Did my "facial soak" - Did my voice support exercises - Listened to some songs for a show I'll be featured in this weekend as a guest singer - Listened to some other CD's Other than that my day consisted of work and spending quality time with my little cousin while her mommy went out to an appointment.

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Re: 150 Steps in August

Post by marymary »

Hello to all and congratulations on much impressive progress. I've fallen off the radar for a few months, owing in part to unanticipated changes at work, and in part to plain inattention. However, I have decided to follow the exercises in a book I found called "Thirty Days to Live." As of September 7th, I should have a full report on what has changed. Hope all are enjoying the summer.

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Re: 150 Steps in August

Post by Mannix »

Hi, everyone, Jane, I see what you mean about waiting to tell the bandleader until you were ready to leave. I guess it would be difficult to continue to come for more violin lessons when you knew you didn't want to play anymore. On the other hand, in my case, if I'd known she was going to quit, I could have lined up a new student. Maybe I'll have to be more adept at looking for signs someone's losing interest, and plan accordingly. As for my steps, meeting with success in some areas and not others. As I posted on the clutter-challenge thread, the small steps I've been doing through the FlyLady website paid off when I was able to prepare the house for our cleaning lady in record time. (Prepare = clear counter-tops of clutter so she can actually clean something!) Worked out today, although I took yesterday off because I've been having some aches in my lower back. Goal is to work out again tomorrow morning, as long as back ache does not return. Sadly, my blog has ground to a halt. I've done some reading on the topic, and e-mailed another person who blogs on something similar. Haven't really done enough to write about, though. As happened last month, for some goals, there is just nothing going on. Need to figure out a way to remedy this, considering I probably won't be working on every goal every day. Hope everyone has a good evening, -- Mannix

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Re: 150 Steps in August

Post by Mannix »

Good morning, everyone,
jewelB wrote:Mannix, good thinking on the BMI stuff. I've let it get a little out of control. Fitness/nutrition tips would be appreciated!!
Jewel, I am by no means a master at this, but here are some of my observations: 1. The fastest way to lose weight is to set a final goal and take incremental steps toward it each week. Most importantly, get yourself in a situation where you have to stand on a scale for someone. Yes, it seems humiliating, but there's so much more motivation to pass up that Cinna-bon when you know the weigh-in date is two days away. 2. Having said that, be prepared for resistance to show up when you reach your goal. Once you reach your goal, it's natural to think - "Yay, I can go back to eating what I want!" Unfortunately, not the case. And don't beat yourself up if you gain back some weight, just take action to keep it from creeping up further. (This is what I'm working on now.) If you're like me, weight gain is going to be a lifelong opponent. Hope this helps! Today, I woke up feeling like I was coming down with a cold, but I've really come down with an anxiety/resistance combo. A lot of it has to do with the gig I have to play later today: long drive and need to leave extra early to avoid rush hour, difficult music. Plus I'm still feeling insecure about that student leaving last week. And, our one-year old car is acting up. :evil: Fortunately, it won't affect my job transportation today but I was upset about that prospect. And it's one other thing to take care of next week. So, steps for today: 1. Get outside! It's September weather in August today! 2. Practice the violin for an hour and set aside everything I want to take to the job. 3. Practice Alexander Technique methods as I go through the day. 4. Review task lists and negotiate with resistance on where it's okay to proceed. 5. Sleep in tomorrow.

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Re: 150 Steps in August

Post by jewelB »

Steps: 1. posted an organizational question 2 replied with leaders info for SCL 3. noticed that exercize space is a disaster and developed plan to take it back member only forum 4. researched SMF and phpbb-- any opinions would be appreciated 5. compared my host to what is needed 6. emailed with Laura on this 7. talked to host tech support listening sessions 8. met with my spiritual director 9. contacted a client 10. made contact to schedule a space Thanks, Lynx for the feedback. I'm curious. . . you say "And then I get ready for people who cannot make it but want to connect (my secret plan all along). How do you follow up? What do you offer these folks? I'm missing this component and I can see how it might be key ! Jane B, I appreciate that you appreciate my comments!! :D I've posted for ideas in the General forum here. I get focused on one project and lose track of some others. This is a part-time thing for me, so I set work aside for short periods and find that I can completely lose my focus. Setting goals would be helpful. Keeping track of the goals and reviewing them. . . is a problem. I'm "tangent-y." I agree on the trial and error approach-- looking for things to try. If you have a suggestion, I'd love to try it out! Mannix, Is it appropriate to mention a "30-day notice" request for new clients as they are beginning with you?? I like your weight management tips. I've worked with a dietician before and the weigh ins are a big bonus. Wonder whether my hubbie might fill that role (or whether I'd get snippy?) I want to try WW from home. I've had a number of good habits in place, but they've slipped. I don't have a lot of weight to lose-- 10 pounds, I'm thinking. I've been an athlete, but never a good exerciser. So this is brand new. I bring a lot of "workout resistance" with me. Keep it up, group! --jewelB

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Re: 150 Steps in August

Post by Jane B »

Hi all, Just doing a quick check-in. Yesterday my schedule went from busy to rushed since a regular client of mine gave me an urgent project when I already have a relatively tight deadline to meet in two weeks. In addition to working like crazy, here are yesterday's steps: - went to the gym for an hour - did my "facial soak" - did my voice support exercises - did some work on a new song with one of my bandmates I just got this book I found on amazon titled: "The Frustrated Songwriter's Handbook". The title and description and reviews seemed promising and it was cheap so I decided what the heck. I'm usually very discreet about self-help books and such because I fear people will think I'm lame for reading them. But two of my bandmates accidentally came across it while at my house and they said "that looks like a cool book, let me read it when you're finished." Hopefully that will help change my perspective about this sort of thing. I'll write a response to other posts later today. JB

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Re: 150 Steps in August

Post by jewelB »

Today's steps 11. Read more on SMF-- got more confused 12. Made initial invite list for E-course 13-14. Found space for listening session, arranged date and time 15. Made sign for door 16. Created E-course invitation for scl workshops 17. Ordered Yoga equipment 18. Having 'organizational' conversations and searches There, now that feels like 'something'!! --jewelB

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Re: 150 Steps in August

Post by Jane B »

Hello all, Taking a break from my laborious translations. Mannix, re my situation when I left the band, I would say that I wanted to give you a bit of perspective (maybe your student was in a similar position), however next time I think I would try to do things differently and give the people a heads-up. Good luck finding a new student. On another note, you seem to have a good attitude towards weight loss, i.e. setting goals, accepting that in your case it is something you have to work on constantly, etc. Maybe you can help me out, not for me but for my roommate, who is also one of my best friends. She faces the same challenges as you but feels somewhat powerless, and lately she was feeling rather negative about it. Whenever she needs to vent, I and another one of her best friends will listen and try to be supportive, but we're both thin so she feels like we can't really understand what she is going through. Thanks for any input you may have. jewelB, you seem to be a scanner. From the few details you have provided me I would say that it's fine to have many goals and to want to do many things, you may just have to accept that you can't do them all at once and you can't work on each of them every day. Perhaps defining short-term goals would help you get some focus and decide how you want to spend your time. I can give you some examples of how I do this. I am a scanner too and have many things I would like to achieve: become a better singer, become a better songwriter, get more clients as a freelance translator, be in better shape physically, meet someone, etc. However, the way I divide my time towards reaching these goals varies from one week to another. For instance, right now it is August, everyone is on vacation, therefore you won't see me on the phone making prospective calls to increase my translation client base. However,in a couple of months, the band I play in is giving its first show of original material, so from now until then I've made it a priority to do some songwriting each day. Before that we played a show of covers that were very challenging for me vocally, so I was taking singing lessons and practising 1 hour each day; now I try to keep up with it but only do a few minutes a day because my short-term priorities have changed. You see the logic? Hope this helps...

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Off the Wagon

Post by Mannix »

Hello, everyone, I've fallen off the wagon a bit. It's funny how things have a domino effect. Yesterday, I was following my FlyLady declutter habit of emptying the dishwasher. When I opened it, it was full of black ants! Even though I'd just finished washing the dishes on a heat cycle. So I sprayed the inside of the dishwasher with ant spray and let it sit, meaning dirty dishes got backed up, etc. When I got home from yesterday's gig, I discovered the back door was partially open and our two new cats, who are declawed and supposed to be indoor cats, had gone outside! One of them was on the porch and ran back in the house immediately. I looked for the other one in the house first and couldn't find him, so I went out in the back yard with a flashlight and found him -- very confused and scared. Fortunately, they seem to have weathered the trauma and are behaving normally today. But we have to remember not to leave the screen door open. Then my computer, which I left on while I was at the gig, could no longer locate its internal hard drive. (Huh?) We rebooted it and it seems fine now. Meanwhile, one of the crisper doors on our fridge broke, and now my husband wants to buy a new one. So with all this going on, why not have those two doughnuts for breakfast? :bash: OK, it's 10:00am on Saturday, and it's my time to get back with the program! -- Mannix

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Get Ready!

Post by Lynx »

JewelB Thanks, Lynx for the feedback. I'm curious. . . you say "And then I get ready for people who cannot make it but want to connect (my secret plan all along). How do you follow up? What do you offer these folks? I'm missing this component and I can see how it might be key ! Deep structure: What I am doing is loosely based on the MOVES fund development strategy refined at Cornell. Essentially, I understand it takes 7 to 9 contacts (calls, face-to-face, email exchanges, etc.) before a deal even starts to surface. So sending an announcement starts from my end, they respond. If they work downtown I then write back proposing we hang out (depending on the informality history of the relationship. If more formal I suggest tea or snacks at Happy Hour). Two went to pause (busy or vacationing). To get off pause, two weeks later I compiled a schedule in an email listing the remaining free music events with bands, style, times and location and sent it back out to these two people again. I only listed dates I have not yet booked. What Cornell discovered is that when they shifted their fundraising focus from how much money they raised to how their relationships were developing they got better results over time. Translated to what I do, this mean that I focus on getting up to those 8 (just a number to keep me in the game after the fifth lunch with no sale) exchanges. They also found that small things grew into larger donations. Someone had a sail boat and offered its use. Cornell took them up on it and hosted a board meeting/team building event there. Learn to say yes. For me, can I do a brown bag talk (no fee), yes. Can I come share what I'm doing with other colleagues, yes. This is interesting, can you write a short blurb for newsletter, yes. I'm watching the conversation about weight. If I may offer a suggestion, I would select a goal weight a few pounds lighter than your 'true' goal. On the principle in archery of shooting past/through the target. I would also journal on the meaning of that number, weight, times when you last recall feeling that size. What else will you be shedding as you shed the pounds? Does each pound have a story? Is that story over? How can you heal them, seal them, and drop down? Is this life and death? Or something short of that? Tell yourself you're perfectly ready to return to that size and prepared to face whatever shadowy and confused issues that are entangled with it along the way. Today and tomorrow: Add a background to my website. Now just plain white as I worked on content mostly the last several weeks. Add several new links. Research some stuff for Condo - take my ten-foot pole Make list of tasks for circulating moisture in Condo - it's messy, wear rain gear get in touch with several friends see what I can do to help a book discussion group get off the ground read several technical books Lynx
"Vision is not enough. It must be combined with venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps; we must step up the stairs." Vaclav Havel

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Re: 150 Steps in August

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Jane B wrote:Maybe you can help me out, not for me but for my roommate, who is also one of my best friends. She faces the same challenges as you but feels somewhat powerless, and lately she was feeling rather negative about it. Whenever she needs to vent, I and another one of her best friends will listen and try to be supportive, but we're both thin so she feels like we can't really understand what she is going through. Thanks for any input you may have.
Hi, Jane. I think I've mentioned this before, but can your friend join Weight Watchers, or maybe an online forum devoted to weight loss? There seem to be a ton of them online. I think there's even one on this board. The Slim Fast website has forums and "buddies" as well. (After this morning, I'm thinking of getting one myself.) If your friend wants to start exercising and hasn't exercised before, I would recommend a personal trainer. If she's anything like me, she may not be as powerless as she thinks. It may be a question of giving in to temptation too often, or eating as a form of resistance. If she has to be accountable to someone else, she might be surprised how much power she has. If you and your other friend are thin, you may not be able to tell her this, but being thin/underweight causes problems, too. I know someone who has trouble keeping her weight above 100 pounds. She looks like a skeleton with skin. I'd much rather be at my current weight than look like that. Hope this helps. For Jewell and JaneB - thanks for your comments on the student's departure. Jane, I do appreciate your perspective on the other side of the issue. Sorry if I seemed defensive. I'm very frustrated with the whole situation and teaching in general. Jewell, I think I did have a notice requirement in my contract at one point, but people would ignore it. They'd wait until they'd gone through all the lessons they'd paid for, call and say they weren't coming anymore and stop returning my phone calls. Or go on vacation and not come back and not return my calls. So you can see what kind of lessons their kids are learning from that. While I was driving home from yesterday's gig, I decided it's time to acknowledge I'm ready for a change on the teaching front: either give it up and do something else, or maybe reduce the student load and supplement with another income stream. When I get to the part of "Live the Life You Love" where you design The Big Goal, I plan to include this. I've already started sketching out an Ideal Day! Jewell, about using hubby as a weight-loss buddy: In my opinion, you should find someone else unless you and hubby are committed to losing weight together. If I used my husband as a buddy, we would soon be 50 pounds overweight, sitting on the couch watching TV with Bic Mac Super Size Meals. He embodies all my resistance and food temptations and it just happened again this morning. (Because I let it, I should note!) Even if your husband isn't that bad, I think it's better for him to be supportive in the background. Let a "neutral party" be your weight-loss coach. Hope everyone has a productive day! -- Mannix

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Re: 150 Steps in August

Post by jewelB »

thanks everyone for the good info on weight loss, gathering client contacts, etc. Mannix, I understand that domino effect! steps 19. bought shelves 20. assembled the blasted thing (my auto harp just fits between the top shelf and the ceiling!!) 21. looked at my exercise space. . . needs work,lots of it! I am gleeful to have that new space for storage. * (What I need is a garage sale-- if I can't find anyone to do it with me, I may donate a bunch of stuff.) thanks-- JewelB *I get excited about silly stuff! :lol:

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Re: 150 Steps in August

Post by Jane B »

Hello all, Doing a quick report. Despite being swamped with work and having a deadline to meet in a couple of weeks, I am still managing to find a bit of time each day for my "real" goals (i.e. music, being in shape, etc.) Today I worked all day and I also: - Went for a 20 minute jog - Did my "facial soak" - Did my voice support exercises - Bought tickets to see a concert next week - Took a break to write down some song ideas that popped into my head while I was working Mannix, thanks for the tips for my roommate (and btw you didn't come across as defensive with the whole student thing :wink: ). I think I will suggest she join an online forum next time she gets into her "nobody understands me" mode. Today she was having more empowering thoughts. She biked an hour and a half to get to and from her work. Her situation may be a bit different from what you describe. My roommate is not a someone who eats to feel better. In fact, at one point of her life when she was really depressed, she lost her appetite and thus lost a great deal of weight. I live with her and can tell you her eating habits are actually pretty good. We very rarely buy junk food, we'll only eat it once in a while when we go out, but the last couple of weeks we were on vacation and doing more of that so she was feeling bloated, etc. She is also partial to beer drinking -I wouldn't say she's a problem drinker, but she likes booze a lot- and of course that can have an impact on he weight too. Not sure about the personal trainer for $$ reasons and she is not good with the whole self-discipline thing, but she likes gang/group/social activities so I suggested maybe she should join a dance or aerobics class or something. I think part of the problem is getting past the notion that "it's unfair" because she has to watch her weight more than her friends, because guys don't respond to her the same way, etc. Remember those bug bites on my leg? Well after treating them with cold compresses and cortizone cream they have finally dissappeared...and a whole bunch have reappeared on my shoulder blade this morning!!! Arrrrgghhhhh!!! I'm really starting to wonder what this is. Mosquitoes don't usually bite in bunches like that. And they seem too big to be bed bug bites... spider perhaps? Hmmm... whatever it is it's annoying!

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Head-Banging Day

Post by Mannix »

Hi, everyone, Frustration with the status quo today. First, I was expecting to see a smaller number on the scale this morning, as I'd walked for 2 1/2 hours the day before. (Most of that time I was in my target heart rate.) Nope. Weight exactly the same. Then, one of my older students came for a lesson. He was in Europe for the summer, and is taking a year off before starting at Harvard University. I asked him if he would be able to come for lessons on a weeknight instead of Sunday mornings. (He's the only student who comes on Sundays.) He said that should work but he won't be able to come as often. He'll have to cancel lessons on those evenings when he has his friends over. :evil: (Is there any activity where violin lessons won't take a back seat???) So I asked this student what he wanted out of studying the violin. He said he wants to regain interest in it, but isn't sure that's going to happen. I may be down another student in a couple of weeks, but I guess that's okay for now. I'm starting to feel burned out. Anyway, if he decides to continue, I'm going to tell him I expect him to reschedule friend-visits when he has a lesson scheduled for that day. He'll probably just say he's sick. Sigh .... On a positive note, I finally put another post on my blog. I had to push myself to do it, but really enjoyed it once I got started. And I made a decision not to respond to a Facebook request from an old "friend." He used to be the boyfriend of another friend of mine. Haven't seen him much since they broke up. At first, I thought I would respond, but then I remembered all the drama I had to deal with with him, including getting yelled at when we were on gigs and occasional odd phone calls. (I can't imagine what my friend's life was like!) Gee, what was I thinking in getting back in touch? Here's to the right decision! -- Mannix

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