2016

Zion Nat'l Park, Columbine

Thanks

To my colleagues, mentors, and all others who invite me to learn, grow, and become my best self.

The Natural Professional shares EasyTask Manager

Shawn Tuttle, of Project Simplify fame, offered a workshop last evening demonstrating the use of a task management program that will change my ToDo list-making forever!

Shawn's "Let it be easy" approach to professional success has helped millions of Nevada County-ites, not to mention the masses across the globe, to create organizational systems that invite simplicity, ease, and efficiency. To this end, she searched high and low to find the best available task management program, decided upon EasyTask Manager, and became familiar with it by integrating into her own workday. She then put together this hands-on workshop to share the opportunity for effective project execution for the rest of us.

In just two hours, I learned how to list my projects (big and often intimidating), and break them down into specific categories including "office", "call", "computer", "1:1", etc. I then assigned subcategories of prioritization by due date or by my sense of their importance. Shawn shares her expertise in a very pleasant and relaxed manner, able to answer the "what-if" questions that arose, while keeping the information light and easy to understand.

Here's the plan: On Sunday evenings, I will check the upcoming week allowing me to efficiently and effectively understand the big picture schedule. Each evening I will spend a few moments looking into the next day short list of tasks that will bring me closer to project fruition. I can and will check by my "call" list, "email" list, and other subcategories to better plan my in-office work versus my in-person work. Oh, think of the enhanced effectiveness I will be enjoying!

Yes, I have some dinking around with EasyTask Manager in the days ahead so that I become more familiar and comfortable with the program nuances, but I have no doubt that I will fall into a pleasant routine that will serve me, my clients, and my projects. Onward!

An Invitation to the Intersection

The lesson I was presented with was unexpected, as they usually are. It was fascinating to watch unfold and in retrospect, I can clearly see that this lesson brought me to an intersection.

Last Tuesday morning, I watched Chris Brogan's Kitchen Table Talk video, in which he discussed the complexity of how we perceive others, and specifically referenced the subject of public speaking. I was touched by this posting, as it showed a compassionate side of Chris, and made him very real as he spoke about an issue near and dear to my heart: confidence around public speaking. I was somewhat surprised to learn that Chris experiences nervousness before speaking, but more intrigued by the tenderness with which he spoke. My own self-judgment about making presentations diminished just a bit as I absorbed his message.

Come Thursday morning email, Chris Kitchen-Tabled me again about public speaking, in his review of a book written by communications specialist Dr. Nick Morgan, routed to him by Tim Sanders. In linking to Tim's site, I read a post of his about, guess what -- yes -- public speaking! In this blog, Lightening Up, he shared with me an epiphany moment he had recently experienced that led him to understand that he would benefit greatly from "lightening up" when he spoke to a group. Tim's words resonated with me as he described how the drive to be successful will impact the intensity of the presentation, rendering my talk as off-putting or lecture-y to the attendees. The most profound suggestion he shared was to commit to providing value to the audience but make sure that I "enjoy myself along the way". How liberating that was!

The next day, Friday, I received an email from a colleague and friend, Sally Edwards. She was facilitating a weekend workshop in my community that I was planning to attend; you know Sal, she's the founder of Heart Zone Training, world class athlete, author of more than 15 books, and a very fun woman with a commanding presence. Anyhow, she invited me to PRESENT A BRIEF SECTION OF HER WORKSHOP, a 5-15-minute review of a component of her training workbook with which I was very familiar, on a topic that I am excited about and passionate about sharing with others, and one that is an integral component of my business. Oh my! Share the stage with Sally Edwards? I panicked. My brain went right to all the practical reasons why I could not possibly speak on such short notice--I wouldn't have time to prepare, I didn't know much about the anticipated audience, or how many would be in attendance, and really, how could she EVEN suggest that I could get something together in less than 24 hours?! I breathed. I fretted. I ignored it for a while. I thought about it. I looked at the workbook syllabus she had sent as a .pdf attachment. I was pleased to see that she had written "my" section very well and used language that was similar to the way that I cover that topic, and that her perspective nicely linked the content of this favored subject of mine to her Heart Zone Training format in a way that made sense. OK, maybe I could do this...

Well, guess what? I had sent her an email in response, early into my 5-hour doubting marathon, that said, "geez, I just don't know...it's tomorrow, and well, how many people, and who, and what should I wear"? No, I didn't include the wardrobe reference but it did cross my mind... A few hours later, I received Sally's reply which was "Hey...flow with me here - you don't have to present "my" material...do what you want...use your own handout...just talk...yes, this material can go in anywhere we want it...be game ... have some fun...share the stage...what do you say"? Wait a minute, where I had I that before? Wasn't it just the other day...? In a couple of blog posts that had caught my attention...? Ah, the paths of awareness were leading me somewhere...

An epiphany of my own. A moment in which I was at the intersection of my place in the world. A clear understanding that of course, I could give this brief presentation. That I would do so with confidence. That I can and do, positively impact the lives of others. That I bring my message to the world with a genuine intention to make it a better place.

Late Friday afternoon, I spent probably 10 minutes making some notes that related to the pages in the syllabus that I would be addressing. I thought about it for a couple more minutes Saturday morning. That afternoon, when Sally called me up to the front, the words flowed, I was relaxed and effective, and best of all, I enjoyed myself!

Audio adventure

I have had the good fortune and pleasure of working with Richard Bannister to record a couple of relaxation audio sessions. He has so many strengths within the realm of Audio, Video, Photography, and Business Promotion that deserve to be acknowledged. From his website: "After over 20 years in the television broadcast industry, Richard Bannister founded Dreamspinner Productions in 2001. Richard co-holds 9 patents related to video production and a technical EMMY, as well as the prestigious Howard Vollum Award for Video Engineering Excellence".

I appreciate Richard's gentle and expert guidance around content and flow of the audio recordings that we have done and look forward to creating additional media pieces with him. He has graciously agreed to videotape my upcoming Hearts In Rhythm workshop, which is a whole new experience for me!

Please go to Richard's website and learn more about he will enhance your business outreach: http://www.dreamspro.com

Acceptance

Molly Fisk recently shared an interesting notion via Facebook.  She wrote a beautiful story about selecting a word--for the year--that beckons personal exploration; a word that would open up the year ahead. There is no need to rush into selecting my word, she wrote, and to contemplate my intention before choosing the word that I wanted to reflect what I would invite into my life--at least for 2010. Please enjoy Molly's rich and inspiring words here: http://tinyurl.com/yhxayo5

My word is ACCEPTANCE. Acceptance.
1. The act of taking or receiving something offered. 2. Favorable reception; approval; favor. 3. The act of assenting or believing.
Molly further writes about learning the derivative of the word: ac.cept.er, noun. Late Middle English; from Latin 'acceptare'; "to take something to oneself".
"To Take Something To Oneself". This captures perfectly my intention, my invitation, my truth for 2010.

Year End Musings…

2009 will go down in the history books as a big year of change: President Obama, the incredible surge of local farm and food support, the debate on health care reform, to name just a few. But for me, on a professional and personal level, WOW, it has been a very big year. I took stock of the consequences of my leap of faith--leaving a secure, well-paid, and successful career in the Cardiac Rehab Center program that I created and managed for 20 years--and set my sights on developing HeartMatters, an optimal life management program. I left behind the medical model of disease management to focus on health management and primary disease prevention.

What an expansive 12 months it has been! Little did I know that my passion for the work, although it would prove to be enough to keep me going, was insufficient in regards to building a business. I had and still have so much to learn about marketing (totally new experience), pricing (can't be givin' it away!), setting limits (I want to help everyone!), and just the daily grind of maintaining a business and business profile. I have felt exhilarated, terrified, grateful, worried, wise, and overwhelmed at various times this past year.

So many people have helped and supported me: in addition to my family, I have met dozens of successful business professionals who have offered guidance and advice, and encouraged me to stretch to my full potential. What an honor that some of these wonderful people can now be called my friend. It is amazing to me to know of the incredibly rich world of compassionate and like-minded professionals in my own Nevada County, as well as on the planet. I have been able to get involved in local groups that are making a difference in the world, write articles that others find beneficial, participate in Toastmasters, join Facebook (my oh my, how I resisted that opportunity!) and Twitter (still figuring it out), create a bi-monthly online newsletter, and blog to my heart's content. I even learned how to work on my website, a skill I never thought I would cultivate (Ok, wordpress makes it easy!).

I truly feel that I have something special to share--a mix of enthusiasm, life-management coaching skills, clinical expertise, a genuine commitment to the planet which includes eating real food, and doing my part to minimize my use of resources. That others wish to be benefit from my knowledge is a blessing. To be able to motivate others to create change in their lives that will lead to their optimal health and well-being is a gift that I cherish and will promise to tend to each day.


Time management, productivity and Lance Brown’s perspective

I just got off the phone with Lance, my web guy extraordinaire. We discussed, among other topics, my feeling stressed about not having published a blog in over two weeks.  Excuses are not difficult: travel to Florida twice in two months, preparing three new PowerPoint presentations for upcoming workshops, working 2 half-days per week in my husband's office, adjusting to the early dark evenings, exercise, cooking, blah blah blah... As a super-organized person, I have been attempting to develop a "schedule" for writing: Monday, blog; Tuesday, submit an article to an online magazine; Wednesday, connect with other relevant bloggers; and on and on. It turns out that creativity does not respond well to being scheduled--at least for me. In my waiting for a pattern to establish itself, I have become stressed about being behind and now so much time has passed!

I'd like to thank Lance for motivating me through explanation, reasoning, and kind support. He knows his stuff.

If you've been waiting for a blog post or my next newsletter, I thank you. And you won't be waiting much longer...

Introducing…

...my colleague and friend, Kathy Sheffield, RD, LMFT. Kathy has devoted her professional life to the subject of  food, nutrition, eating practices, and the psychology of eating.  She counsels people, teaches, and writes on the subject of eating.  After 20 years as a clinical nutritionist, presently she practices as psychotherapist and nutritionist, advising people who have eating dilemmas like overweight, obesity, eating disorders, medical conditions, and nutritional conditions.  She counsels with people individually in her office in Nevada City, California, and by phone or Skype.

Her burgeoning website, www.theeatingguru.com is now up and running. Check it out!

“Robin brings dedication, focus, passion, and intellect to whatever endeavor she is pursuing. She does not just talk about good health, she practices it thoroughly every day of her life. When she talks to clients about healthy lifestyle choices, they are able to see the effects of healthy choices by observing the woman in front of them!”
Arthur S., Client

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