It’s a New Year. It’s a New Month. It’s a New Day.

The other day I had a bad day. It was bad in the sense that I woke up, nothing went my way, it was cold, I was sick, and it seemed like no matter what I did, the day was already shot. I tried my best to just go through the motions and get it over, and I kept thinking about tomorrow. I kept thinking that I would allow myself to have one bad day and that tomorrow is a new day, a new start, and a new opportunity to make it something great! And that is what I did.

I probably shouldn’t have even allowed myself one day to be such a downer, but I really did wake up the next morning and make the conscious decision to make up for lost time and get things accomplished. That day was one of the most productive and I know the fate of the day was determined by my attitude of thinking that it wasn’t just another day, it was a new opportunity.

I think we enjoy the idea of “newness.” It’s a mental fantasy of an untouched beginning and another chance. We like thinking of the possibilities of what we can do in the new year, the new month, and in a new day. But in reality, do we really take advantage of the opportunity and actually do it? Do we accomplish those fantasies and do we take a 180 degree turn and make things better? We should.

I once read a book (after I was fired from a job), and it changed my life. Unfortunately I have no idea what it was called, but I do remember the main point was that our future and accomplishments depend on our attitude – and nothing else. The book pushed that we can’t change a lot of factors, but we can change our attitude. A simple attitude adjustment can help us do what we want to do and accomplish what we want to accomplish.

So when you have a bad day, take it. Then give yourself a new beginning and the best chance to succeed by changing your attitude and truly making it a new day! Note the difference and it will motivate you to do it again.

The Difference We Can Make

Something GoodWhat if you took at least an hour of your time, once a week, for one year and dedicated it to doing something good? That’s 60 minutes for 52 weeks, resulting in 3,120 minutes of making a difference. What could you do? What would you do?

We challenged ourselves with just that – we will be committed to completing one act of “goodness” each week for 52 weeks and chronicling our journey through Something Creative’s newest project, Something Good. We are making 2011 a year of positives – positive changes, positive contributions, and a positive outlook knowing we can do something good.

So join us in our journey and check out our site, follow us on Twitter and “like” us on Facebook! We will be open to suggestions and would love to get others involved in our challenge!

Here’s to 2011 and the possibilities of making the world a better place 🙂

I’ll Take the Physical Challenge

I can’t even begin to explain how much I learn from physically challenging myself on a daily basis. Every run I complete, every spin class I finish, and every time I do something that physically challenges me, I walk away with a clearer or better understanding of whatever was plaguing me before I began. When I am physically active I become more mentally active, and I get a great rush and the feeling of instant accomplishment.

The other day I was about to register for an upcoming run and I thought about how I didn’t want to do it because I “don’t run in the cold.” Then I stopped and thought “why?” I guess I just always told myself I didn’t like running in the cold and I came to believe I was a bad cold-weather runner. Then I tried to think of times I ran in the cold, and I couldn’t come up with any. So why did I think this?

I then thought about numerous runs I decided not to run because I wasn’t sure how I’d perform. I didn’t know if I could finish a run in the cold, didn’t know how fast I’d be, and never brought myself to face the challenge and assumed I couldn’t complete. Why? Because I had a fear of failing and under performing on something that makes me feel confident. Then I thought about how I will never accomplish anything more and I will never conquer a new challenge if I continue to only run what I know I can finish. How could I be happy with participating in the same runs every year and finishing exactly as I knew I could? Being complacent isn’t in my blood when it comes to business, so I should feel the same way about physical challenges.

…So I registered. I am going to run, and I am going to do well. I am going to accomplish something new and conquer an obstacle I’ve never attempted. And what if I fail? I won’t. Failure is not an option.

Fortune Cookie Was Right.

The other day I opened my fortune cookie to read one of truest fortunes ever. No, it didn’t say anything about being rich (ha) or my future having a positive outlook (although I do enjoy those). It read, “Nothing good was ever achieved without enthusiasm.” How spot on is that sentence? Think about it…

Think about some of your greatest accomplishments and think about how excited you were to achieve them. Think about how much effort you put into accomplishing the final result and how much emotion played a part in the success.

For me, I think about how excited I get when I present and teach. My presentations and lessons are dripping with passion and enthusiasm. My overarching goal of every interaction is to ensure everyone has their eyes on me (or the slides/presentation/examples) and they seem interested in the material. If I catch eyes wandering or heads tilting, I take the conversation in another direction or use a different approach. Either way, the feedback I always receive is that I was engaging and interesting, and that comes directly from my enthusiasm.

One thing to remember is that it is close to impossible for passionate people to be enthusiastic about things that don’t make sense or don’t solicit their interest. It’s tough to fake enthusiasm and it is obvious to others when it is “being faked,” so don’t do it.

Accomplish goals and ideas using your passion and enthusiasm. Channel what motivates and drives you, and use the momentum to boost your attitude straight up to success!

Random Compliment

Today I was at the gym running. I didn’t feel great and also didn’t feel like I performed to my ultimate ability, but I worked as hard as I could based on how I felt. When I finished running, I was sweaty, tired and felt like I probably worked harder than I thought.

As I walked away from the treadmill, a woman on the stairmaster said, “Wow, girl! You kicked butt on that treadmill. You just made me pick up my speed. Nice workout!” I said, “thanks” and smiled and felt awesome that I encouraged her simply by my actions. By running a little faster and challenging myself, I convinced the woman behind me to kick it up a notch – and I didn’t even have to say a word. Her letting me know about her secret motivation meant a lot to me. It was the perfect exchange of an action and a compliment.

So here’s the point. Sometimes we think things and never say them because we are worried that someone might think we are weird or random. Or we don’t talk to others because we don’t think we have the energy to strike up a conversation, etc. (we can find a million reasons to NOT do something – all are selfish). Next time you think something positive, say it. Who cares if it’s a stranger or your best friend. It just might make their day and make them feel a little bit better.

When you think it, just say it. Actions might speak louder than words, but words are what we listen to the most, and what gets our attention.

Pay it forward…

It’s the Execution That Stops Ideas

So if I could say one amazing thing about the iPad, it’s that it motivates you to read and I think that is excellent in today’s society. There is so much good information out there and the iPad ebooks bring it to your fingertips. Love it!

Well since I’ve had my iPad (one month), I’ve read three books. I read at the car dealership, at the doctor’s office, on the plane…and I only have to carry one slick little device to enjoy any book I want! Well, this post isn’t about my iPad. It’s about a book. My favorite motivational book that kicked me in the butt!

Which book? Making Ideas Happen, by Scott Belsky, founder of Behance. (Sidenote: I heard about Behance from the Mashable Social Media Summit and really thought it was an excellent idea. Check it out if you are creative and unorganized.) The book is all about what differentiates us and what defines those who succeed and those who don’t–it’s the execution.

Think about meetings you’ve attended where the seats were filled with smart and creative thinkers. There are usually mounds of ideas discussed and a few that garner extreme excitement from the group. You leave that meeting with great expectations of what could be–and then the efforts fall flat and that great idea never comes to fruition. The person in charge for executing those great ideas drops the ball because they lack the organization to get it done, lack motivation, or maybe they are just plain lazy. That great idea everyone loved remains just that–an idea.

How do you make ideas happen? You have to create an ACTIONABLE plan.

Here’s a small lesson I quickly learned: When you leave a meeting or great brainstorming session, walk away with action items written as actionable “to-dos.” Don’t write down, “follow up with Dan.” Write “follow up with Dan on Friday regarding his progress with the creative for the event.” Then make sure you do it. Get satisfaction in crossing items off your list, but be sure you do it the right way. Don’t cross it off just to get rid of it, cross it off because it brings you one step closer to achieving your goal and putting your idea into motion.

This execution is what differentiates and hinders or fosters success.

Are you busy executing? If not, get busy.

Some Social Media Posts

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Good stuff…at least I think so! 🙂