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Have You Caught the Hurry Disease?

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I couldn’t wait to get to our favorite family vacation spot – Telluride, CO. That was months ago. Now I can honestly say that I had caught the “hurry disease” before I left. You know – the latte in one hand and cell in the other.

In reflection, I recognize how much I hurried through breakfast to get to work, hurried to next appointments, hurried to conscientiously follow up with clients, then hurried to get home and unwind. (Am I kidding myself? Once home I hurried to cook dinner and finally hurried to bed so I’d be rested for the next day!) Exhausting just writing about this.

It took me two full days to unwind. I had to intentionally force my thoughts to move away from work and busyness. Being somewhat isolated and with sketchy internet, I am forced to slow down a bit each day. It was not until the third day I found myself finally withdrawn from my “hurry disease.”

Do you relate?

Do I really have to be in that big a hurry? After all – I AM in charge of my time. Why is it so easy to pressure ourselves to push, push, push? Guess what?! My clients are still there. My friends are still there. And I might have missed memories with family had I not disconnected to be fully present with them.

So here’s the deal. It’s way too easy to be driven by obligation and get in the rut of “have tos.” If we don’t intentionally stop the crazed pace of life, we might miss things like:

• Being fully present with people

• Recognizing daily positive occurrences

• Seeing better ways to handle conflict

• Living mindfully

• Listening – really listening without being distracted by the next “to dos”

Enough said! My commitment is to commit myself. Let’s make a pact, shall we?! You hold me accountable and send me your commitment so I can hold YOU accountable.

 

 That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine

Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

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Find out more about my books here:

Do It Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

do-it-right-3d

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the soft skills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

MMLW 3D

“Monday Morning Leadership for Women is a treasure of timely insights and action plans that can advance any woman. It’s terrific!”

~ Candace O’Keefe -Executive Director, Leadership America, Inc.

Gratitude! It Makes Your Brand Sticky

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“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” ~ William Arthur Ward

 

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of the year. It’s when I show gratitude by giving out loaves of pumpkin bread—a family recipe and tradition during the Thanksgiving Holiday. When clients come to our office or when I meet a prospect, they’ll get a warm loaf. Since sharing is part of my brand, here’s my recipe for those who also love to cook! (PS – Strong brands are willing to SHARE!)

 Click here: Valerie’s Famous Pumpkin Bread

So what IS gratitude and what can it do for you?

It’s being thankful for those every-day positive things in your life. It’s the readiness to show appreciation. It’s the consistent act of kindness.

4 Reasons to Consciously Practice Gratitude

1. It energizes you – Make it a habit to start your day thinking through five things you are grateful for. By doing this, you not only set a positive tone for your day—you’ll also focus your thoughts more quickly on what you DO have rather than what you don’t have.

2. It boosts your brain power – This recent research shows that when we consciously practice an attitude of gratitude, things don’t just look better — they really do get better.

3. It brings people closer – If you want to make friends and influence others, show gratitude. There’s nothing magical about this—it’s a fact of life. Research tells us that the No.1 motivation for employees is to feel appreciated. Being grateful to others makes them feel like their jobs matter. We all have a basic need to feel appreciated.

4. It’s easier to smile – Early in my career, I was confronted by a “dora downer” type colleague saying offensively, “Valerie, why do you ALWAYS SMILE?” If I had known this fact, it could have been a great retort! It takes 43 muscles to frown and only 17 to smile.

  Watch This Video and SMILE!

 Valerie-and-Company-Blog-Gratitude-Makes-Your-Brand-Sticky

 

 That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine.

Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

Light bulb

Find out more about my books here:

 Do it Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

Do it Right!

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the softskills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

Do it Right…When Deciding What to Wear

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What a dilemma – several major organizations have recently declared a less formal dress code than even business casual. Some of these policies are called dressed down, flex dressing, business casual, or relaxed depending on how the dress code is written and what is expected and respected. It’s still the consensus that flip flops are rarely appropriate. In my professional opinion, flip flops in the workplace are never appropriate.

As you can imagine, these new policies can be confusing! So let’s read these articles—then I’ll weigh in with what my experience tells me are ways to “Do It Right!”

 JP Morgan Chase Relaxed Dress Code &How the Office Dress Code is Slowly Dying 

Now what?

Let me start answering by using the guidelines from my book Business Casual – Clarify Please!

Business Casual Clarify Please!

This book was written to answer the question “What does it mean when our dress code says BC?….or “how should I dress when an invitation to a social event says “dress business casual?”

At one point, the Federated Stores were seeking ways to become experts in helping customers who came in wanting to know what to buy that was BC. So I developed a training module, video and booklet for their sales associates with guidelines and questions to ask customers as they determined together what would best suit that company’s requirements.

That led to writing my own book….. now used by human resource departments to give to all employees as a guideline.

So let me get back to an easy way of explaining what business casual looks like.

Bus. Casual Spectrum

 

I divided BC into 3 categories called High Level, Mid-Level and Base Level BC. Here’s a brief explanation of each one:

High-Level: This is a more relaxed version of the traditional business professional.

Choose this level when giving a presentation or working with a client. A jacket or blazer is the key piece of this wardrobe. With the new flexible dress codes, if it’s not necessary to wear a jacket or blazer, make it a habit to keep one handy in your office just in case you need to “up” the level when a situation calls for more power dressing.

high level extrapetitecomhigh level man outfitideashqcom

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mid-Level: This level is most widely accepted for business casual as seen in the majority of companies.

Jackets can be replaced with a sweater. Most training programs, conventions, brainstorming meetings, or planning sessions would be fine if you choose Mid-Level Business Casual. The range of options is widest at mid-level using layering pieces to add variety.

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mid level man covermenmage.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Base Level: This level is for employees in industries whose dress code is always informal, where there is no customer contact.

Wear this style in an atmosphere where flexibility and comfort are conducive to productivity. Dress at this level for company off-site meetings, working retreats, or a more physical day at the office.

men's base level uncrate.com

base level woman-brighton the day blog

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ok – so what if your company now says you can dress even below BC…and wear items like shoes without socks for men…or sandals for women…or shirts not tucked in….or whatever. My suggestion is to play it safe and “dress for where you want to BE, not where you ARE.” In other words, always consider the message your clothing makes about your brand and show your brand by what you wear.

That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine.

Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

Light bulb

Find out more about my books here:

 Do it Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

Do it Right!

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the softskills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

5 Salient Points About Millennials

An Emerging Group of Potential Leaders

With more Millennials in the workplace, I find them refreshing and fun. What about you?

This infographic represents a Beyond.com survey on workplace perceptions of millennials. HR professionals are viewing millennials totally opposite of how they view themselves. So how are millennials rising above what is being perceived and not always true? Read on and you’ll see that millennials actually possess the values and skills that we want to add to our teams.

HR Millenial infographic

This recent article states: Representing over 80 million Americans, the millennial generation is quickly gaining traction in the professional world. Sharp, savvy, and digitally dynamic, millennials are poised to revolutionize business communications. By understanding their values and communication style, you can leverage the tremendous power of the millennial worker for your organization.

Here are salient points about this emerging group of potential leaders:

1. They’re honest: They want a foundation of trust with their colleagues and managers.

2. They want feedback: Constructive criticism engages them and retains interest in their jobs.

3. Complacent? No. Millennials do not want to sit and wait forever to move to their next position. They have an entrepreneurial spirit and want to take on more responsibility.

4. Confident? Yes. They aren’t afraid to build relationships with their managers and beyond. Communication to these higher ups is important to them especially when it involves a major decision or project.

5. They share success: Millennials typically want to share successes as a team and won’t withhold information for personal gain.

Read more about how Millennials communicate in the workplace.

That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine.

Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

Light bulb

Find out more about my books here:

 Do it Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

Sokolosky low res

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the softskills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

MMLW 3D

Authenticity: Who Are You, Anyways?

Authenticity: Who Are You ?
You likely would answer just like I would: “I know exactly who I am” … and you could not have achieved success in any area of your life without a certain degree of self-awareness and self-confidence. In my own experience, my confidence was strong until the day I reflected more deeply on this question about who I am. Why? Because I sensed that many professionals may often exude a presence that just seems fake. You know – kind of “put on” for the moment. And I wondered….do I do that?Is their self-awareness and self-confidence based in fact or is it just a facade?Being less than authentic is rarely intentional — it is just our feeble attempt at trying to speak to issues in a way that meets the need of the moment. Unfortunately, it often results in a reversal the next day, causing you to spout something very different.

This is called “being a chameleon!” Here’s the danger: Others never get to know who you are, what your views and values are, despite how certain you may be about them. In politics and sports, we sometimes hear, “We just don’t know who’ll show up,” and this is a reference to a chameleon, someone who is not consistently one way or the other.

As the economic terrain becomes more treacherous, our instinct, of course, is survival. What must I project to stay alive, to keep my job, to get that promotion? The temptation, however, seems to be: do what is most expedient to achieve the desired outcome.

While that may suffice in the short term, the far-reaching results are less than desirable.

Most of us don’t realize the price we pay for being less than authentic. Remember when your mother told you to always tell the truth because you would not have to remember what you said?

Take that advice a step further. Don’t just tell the truth, BE the truth. Be you. Being authentic alleviates the mental and emotional exercise of trying to remember who you are supposed to be in any given situation.

Some professionals believe being authentic in the workplace is a risk – and often one they’d rather not take. Statistics back this statement. Only 50 percent of today’s workforce comes from a place of authenticity. It’s no wonder employees are often baffled by where the boss is coming from…or which version of their boss will show up from day to day.

Here are some questions to consider as you assess your authenticity as a leader and as a professional:

Exude

Do you give consistent messages regarding your goals for the team, or do you change directions mid-stream without fact-based reasons?

How often do you communicate your vision and passion for the business…in person, that is? Or, are your employees supposed to “know that” because the mission/vision statement is framed on the wall?

When was the last time you openly asked for feedback? Or, have you assumed all is well because the numbers say so?

Being authentic may make you vulnerable, but allowing others to know your vision, your passion, your standards and your expectations is a bottom line benefit.

Being authentic results in fewer misinterpretations, fewer misunderstandings and fewer mistakes. It frees you to be you. As Anne Morrow Lindbergh said, “The most exhausting thing you can be is inauthentic.”

Ultimately, the most important benefit in knowing you are authentic — and perceived as such — is that you have the complete trust of those around you.

Take right now, as an example: Do you have the complete trust of those around you? Are you sure?

Trust is the cement of relationships. Think about it.

This article originally appeared on PrimeWomen.com

That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine.

Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

Light bulb

Find out more about my books here:

 Do it Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

Sokolosky low res

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the softskills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

MMLW 3D

5 Things I Can’t Live Without!

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ANNOUNCEMENT: I’m delighted to be a regular contributor to the online magazine Prime Women. Below is my first published article to share with you.

What are those things that are absolute MUST HAVES in your life?

I’ve been noodling on that recently while vacationing in a town where Starbucks was nowhere to be found. The reason? They don’t allow “chain coffee stores” – so they told me. Can you imagine my withdrawal that week?

So, here is my list of 5 things I can’t live without (other than Starbucks):

1. Not Your Daughter’s Jeans

At last – someone designed a jean that is NOT what my daughter wears. These are absolutely the most comfortable, slimming jean ever! Speaking of daughter, mine had been touting the brand for months. Finally, she pulled me into the mall last week insisting “Mom, just try them!” The rest is history. I bought a pair in every color.

NYDJ

 

2. iPhone

I’m addicted, and not just for the phone. Being curious and a life-long learner, any spare time I have you’ll find me surfing for all kinds of information. Additionally, I feel secure that if some glitch happens and my tech gene doesn’t kick in – the Apple Genius Bar is always there for me. Just think – real people to answer my questions! How novel is that!

3. AGL Shoes

Spike heels have gone by the wayside. Comfort is where it’s at. It took a while to find shoes I like and that fit like a glove. Shoes that are both comfortable and fashionable. The AGL brand fits my fancy all the way around.

AGL

4. Trader Joe’s

Trendy and fun to shop, it’s my go-to store for tasty frozen foods – from appetizers to entrees to desserts. I enjoy finding different types of condiments, checking out their spectrum of wines, or flirting with the flowers to brighten up my dining table. It’s all there—and unique at that!

5. Yeti Cup

I already mentioned my Starbucks habit. I insist on ordering my latte at 180 degrees just so it doesn’t cool down too fast. Maybe I’m too particular, but I want hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold. With my Yeti, it can keep the coffee hot or iced tea cold for hours. The next Yeti on my bucket list is their cooler to take on vacation. Yahoo for Yeti!

Yeti Cup

That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine.

Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

Light bulb

Find out more about my books here:

 Do it Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

Sokolosky low res

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the softskills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

MMLW 3D

Refresh Your Brand – Renew Your Energy

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I wrote during out glorious Telluride, CO! How could I NOT get renewed from our vacation?!

Having said that – at the beginning of the trip it was tempting to check emails, answer what seemed important ones…..and then BANG! My family reminded me, “What are you doing? We’re on vacation! ENOUGH ALREADY!”

Now that got my attention. So I stopped. Did you? Just asking because I know for a fact I’m not alone in doing what comes naturally at work – WORKING. Here’s another message a family member gave that day—“Are you realllly that important that you have to stay connected?”

Since those harsh reminders to stop, unwind and focus on making memories – the mountains seemed more majestic, the cool breeze more refreshing and the rest of the trip was what I intended. A Vacation!

PS: Remind me I wrote this when next year’s vacation rolls around.

 That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine.

Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

Light bulb

Find out more about my books here:

 Do it Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

Sokolosky low res

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the softskills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

MMLW 3D

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A Brand That Walks Its Talk

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It is pure joy working with clients who show their “leadership presence” in so many ways.

Recently, while at a Fortune 500 energy company, the leaders demonstrated their values of being committed to success, doing what’s right, and being respectful. Here are some examples of how these values have served them well.

• From the moment I arrived at their corporate headquarters, the front desk security guards were friendly and welcoming.

• One of the executive assistants had everything set up at the workshop PLUS food delivered to me personally during our coaching sessions.

• Both groups of participants – senior executives and high potential candidates – were totally engaged throughout our Personal Branding program called, Make Your Mark & Make It Count!

• Respect was evident even walking their halls receiving a friendly hello along the way.

It’s all about CULTURE – and this is evidence of a brand walking its talk in every way.

 That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine.

Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

Light bulb

Find out more about my books here:

 Do it Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

Sokolosky low res

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the softskills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

MMLW 3D

Creating the Connection

Being a Mentor Builds Your Brand:

The word Mentor in magazine letters on a notice board

“We all need someone who inspires us to do better than we know how.”

~ Anonymous

Here are 3 tips for being a great mentor.

 1 – Set the stage

Be clear with your mentee what expectations you have for the relationship. It’s a two-way street – and both of you should understand the rules of the road. When will you meet? How often? What if one of you has to reschedule? What agenda will you follow? Clear communication up front ensures an enjoyable mentoring relationship.

Currently several Fortune 500 organizations are using Monday Morning Leadership for Women as their guide for 8 mentoring sessions. Click here to order.

2 – Be vulnerable

That means be authentic. Your sessions are focused on the mentee… sharing HOW you succeeded and offering your wise counsel to help your mentee be more effective in their role. Sometimes it’s helpful to share things you would have done differently or mistakes you made along the way.

3 – Be a good listener

When your mentee wants to tell all – listen to all. Unless, of course, they are “caught in their story” too long. Believe in the person and what they are trying to achieve or overcome. Listening can develop a trusted relationship in which both of you learn from each other.

 That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine.

Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

Light bulb

Find out more about my books here:

 Do it Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

Sokolosky low res

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the softskills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

MMLW 3D

Mentoring Helps Build Your Brand: We Don’t Know What We Don’t Know!

By Meg Weinkauf

Growing up as a millennial, I relied on my family to teach me some of life’s lessons; for example — I learned from my parents how to tie my shoes and when to say please and thank you. I believe that continuous learning is essential to teach us what we don’t know. Now in my thirties I often say, “tell me what I don’t know.”

There are things college didn’t teach, which is why having someone to learn from is imperative. I had many questions after beginning to work in the real world; for example, How do I build relationships with someone I don’t know? How do I ask for a mentor? Do I need a mentor? How do I handle politics within different companies and organizations? What should I wear to be respected as a young professional?

I had no one to ask until I found my mentor. Working with a mentor is one of the most amazing things in this world. My mentor is incredibly wise and has had many years of

experience. Even though I’m a millennial — and my mentor is a baby-boomer — we get along great! I believe that every generation can learn from one another.

I’ve been reading Valerie Sokolosky’ s book, “Monday Morning Leadership for Women” and it has been life changing for me.

MMLW 3D This book is timeless and has helped me work through many of my professional challenges. I’ve found her book to be a helpful guide at my mentoring sessions as I work through my specific work issues. One specific important lesson from the book is how to “manage sideways.”

In a mentoring meeting we talked about ways to work more effectively across departmental lines and build those important relationships with people in other departments. That was clearly a takeaway that I’ve applied now at my work.

As a millennial, I am passionate about the need to have a mentor to help guide me. And I’m grateful to have secured my mentor. I sincerely encourage every professional to reach out and get one.

 Meg

  Click here to learn more about Meg Weinkauf!

 

Watch this:

If you have five minutes – you’ll laugh at what mentoring IS NOT

 

That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine.

Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

Light bulb

Find out more about my books here:

 Do it Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

Sokolosky low res

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the soft

skills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

MMLW 3D

You’ll Love These 3 Tips for Staying Motivated

BE

“Life isn’t a matter of milestones, but of moments.”

~ Rose Kennedy

BE — an Encourager

Research shows that 77% of the messages we get every day are negative. Open the newspaper, listen to complaints, watch the news. Much of what occupies our minds is anything but uplifting.

Take heart and use heart. Be that person who finds ways to encourage others – every day. A pat on the back will do. A kind word is awesome. Giving someone a compliment could make their day. Think of ways you can be a VALUE GENERATOR. That simply means you have made someone feel more valued and everyone deserves that!

Who is a value generator in your life? Who is your mentor? Who believes in you during those times you don’t believe in yourself? If someone comes to mind – tell them.

BE — in the Moment

Time is either well spent or well squandered. So use it wisely. Be fully present with an employee. Stay focused on family when you are WITH family. Be present!

Oh how easy it is to be distracted. Cell phones, multi-tasking, interruptions. Be intentional about where you focus and for how long. Here are a few tips:

• Turn off your cell phone.

• Schedule family or friend time in the calendar.

• Keep work AT work.

What’s my latest focus? Using Fridays to have lunch with someone special. What’s your idea?

BE — in Control of the Controllables

We learned this concept from Steven Covey’s “Seven Habits” book series. Here’s the main message:

• If a situation calls for taking control (and you CAN) then by all means grab it by the horns and wrestle through it.

• If a situation may not be totally in your control (but you could influence the outcome) – certainly try.

• If something is totally out of your control and you can’t possibly influence the outcome – then let it go.

Let’s all revisit the Serenity Prayer:

 “God grant me the serenity

to accept the things I cannot change;

courage to change the things I can;

and wisdom to know the difference.”

 

 

That’s My Voice: What’s yours? Let me hear your wisdom and I’ll send you a free article I wrote for SW Spirit Magazine.

 Valerie@valerieandcompany.com

Light bulb

Find out more about my books here:

 Do it Right!

“Do it right in the presence you exude. Do it right in how you communicate. Do it right in how you demonstrate a strong personal brand. Do it right in how you look, act, walk, talk and ARE from the inside out. Valerie’s tips will build your self-confidence knowing you can Do It Right.”

Sokolosky low res

Monday Morning Leadership for Women

“Business leaders refer to communications, teamwork, and etiquette as “the soft skills.” They are not the soft

skills if they can get you fired. They are the foundation of business relationships, and nothing happens in business until there is a relationship. This book fills an important gap in the education of new and seasoned professionals.”

~Tom Trotter-IBM Executive & Community Leader

MMLW 3D

Valerie Sokolosky

Valerie Sokolosky

PCC, Master Brand Strategist

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