Books, Movies, and Stuff, Inner Success, Outward Success

I Am An Author

“Write. Rewrite. When not writing or rewriting, read. I know of no shortcuts.”
—Larry L. King, WD

Amen to that Larry!

It has taken me almost two years to hear the words, Congratulations, your book is published.  Today, I announce that I am now a published author and books will be available soon.  While I may not have my biography presented on goodreads or Wikipedia, I will now state that I am an author on my resume.  I wrote, rewrote, erased, read more, rewrote, and then rewrote again.  It took time.  It caused tears and it was hard.  It may have been the hardest project I have ever undertaken.  But, it is finished.  I am published!

Those of you who have been reading this blog while I worked on the book, you know some of my story.  You know I want the women of today’s world to be empowered to voice their opinion, to do success their own way, and to stop fearing rejection.  With this book, I am a student of my own advice.  (Though scary), I will not fear rejection.  I will not apologize for my opinions and my vision.  I have laid them out for everyone to criticize or to love, and I am okay with either one.

Thank you to everyone who has helped along the way, and thank you to my girlfriends who gave me the courage to commit my words to writing.   Help me change the world by ordering a book and sharing the message.

 

 

 

 

 

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Inner Success

Be You, Do Right, Keep Moving

“I do not think there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcomes almost everything, even nature.” – John D. Rockefeller

Perseverance is vital to long-term success. As the richest man of his time, John D. Rockefeller knew that nothing of importance is built without much hard work. To do so, the work and focus must be intentional and consistent  – no matter the task.

In each of us is the potential to be successful, and with focus, a specific mindset, and a vision of your goal to become truly unstoppable you can tap into it.

Begin with Your Game Plan

In life, you can’t stand still, you must always move forward, lest you go backwards. The most direct path of advancement is sometimes not easy to ascertain, and often has multiple speed bumps.  Rather than view these hurdles as setbacks, allow the moments of learning to develop your strengths. If Rockefeller’s father hadn’t been such a cheat, John may not have learned how to make the most out of working, wouldn’t have saved his money, and wouldn’t have become a revered philanthropist. The adversity and hurdles from within his own family taught him to adapt, overcome, and change the world by how he lived.

Like Rockefeller, forget the excuses and persevere! Here’s are five strategies to help keep you focused on moving forward:

  1. Start with what you know. Sometimes your biggest pain or heartache is the very answer to your life goal. What do you seek to improve or change? To that end, think about what you can do right where you are TODAY, regardless of your age, training, expertise, or lack thereof.
  2. Develop yourself. Maybe you have a specific hobby or passion, or have a skill or two. Whatever those are, do them with the purpose of honing your talent. How can you do them better? What other activities can you do to support your growth?
  3. Strive for the greater good. Pursue each goal, not at the expense of others, but with them.  Never forget who helped you, and who continued to motivate you. In your trials, your source of encouragement often is who / want you want to emulate for others in their times of need.  Another quote from Mr. Rockefeller, “Next to doing the right thing, the most important thing is to let people know you are doing the right thing.”  What I often find is that others cannot recognize your good deeds as honest and good.  It is okay to tell them.  It is okay to tell people you are doing the right thing for the right reasons, and not assume they know.
  4. Be prepared to fail. Failure often comes before significant achievement. At times we are paralyzed by analysis.  At some point you have to jump, submit the manuscript, buy the business, or empower the employee to try it their own way. Growth will be stifled if the fear of failure prohibits your ability to recognize opportunity.
  5. Keep moving. After each completed goal, plan for another and another to keep your momentum going. Idleness begets laziness, the effects of which can undo your hard work, trading perseverance for selfishness. But by making an investment toward your goals each day, your mind stays active, your heart stays open, and your life will reap a legacy that inspires us all.

As the end of the year sneaks upon us, are you able to take a little time to reflect on the goals you have accomplished this year?  Can you complete this year’s goals by end of year?  Will you set goals for 2018 and how do you need to develop yourself to prepare for opportunity in 2018?

 

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Inner Success, Outward Success

Mentorship Is My Purpose

The year is 1995, and I, Rachael Row, enter the WMU dorms on the campus of Oklahoma Baptist University to begin the pursuit of purpose.  I am a stranger on this campus, unfamiliar with the town or the school, but ready to figure out what I want to be when I grow up.

Fast forward four years through the track and field career and a Health and Physical Education & Recreation degree, and the entrepreneurial journey begins.  A few career changes, some life experience, and a network of professionals from around the world, and believe it or nor, I am on purpose more than ever!

Because I know who I am and exactly what I am supposed to be doing with my life, I will walk back onto the Oklahoma Baptist University campus, this time as a mentor. I am going to share my understanding of my purpose and my personal brand to young women who are finishing the final leg of their college journey.

Tomorrow night I will use and share my gifts and talents. I have been asked to, not only be a mentor for this year, but also to speak at the inaugural kick off dinner of Lydia’s Lamp Mentorship program for young women on campus.  I am very honored to be a leader in the program, which has been titled in honor of Lydia, the influential and successful businesswoman mentioned only two times in the Bible.

Lydia met Paul and Silas while they were in Philippi and she took time out of her busy schedule to listen to them.  After listening and accepting the gospel, she persuaded Paul and Silas to stay in her home, according to Acts 16:15.  Lydia may have been the first Gentile converted to Christianity in Europe and she may also have been the first businesswoman to open her home as a worship center for European Christians.  Lydia, like women of today, was both a domestic and corporate goddesses.

When speaking to the young women who have entered this mentor program, I will challenge them to grow their personal brand and to grow their network – intentionally and without apology.  You see I am so blessed to have had great mentors early in my career who prepared me to live out my purpose.  I am meant to carry that forward and to mentor other women.  Everything I have done, leading up to this day, has been to prepare me for the role of mentor.  Over the last couple weeks, as I prepared for this presentation, I have been so lucky to have heard from a few wonderful women, whom I have mentored, and am abundantly proud of!

Kara, from New York City, made a significant life decision to step away from the corporate chase to raise her child and support her husband.  Fhionna, from Oklahoma, moved half way across the country to pursue her search for meaning and purpose.  And Shannon, now in Chicago, whom I met eight years ago on this same OBU campus, mailed a heart warming thank you note to me. She thanked me for the mentorship I provided her as she progressed through college and later took a leap of faith joining a start up business. I am so blessed by the success of these young women.

Tomorrow I want to do my best, not only for the women listening live, but also to honor those girls who have trusted me for years as their mentor and friend.  As my mentees grow up, take on the world in their own way, my universe of friendship and network expands.  I want to remind women that if you have “made it” be sure you are mentoring others, if you are on the way, bring someone with you, and if are just beginning – find a mentor and build relationships with those that have come before you.

Every mentorship expands your sphere of influence.  And research suggests that one of the largest indicators of a woman’s success is her network.  So you see, mentorship, networking, and success go hand in hand! #GoForthAndMentor

 

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Inner Success

Every Day Counts

Each day means a new twenty-four hours. Each day means everything’s possible again. You live in the moment, you die in the moment, you take it all one day at a time.  – Marie Lu

 

 

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Inner Success

You Can Choose

Folks are usually about as happy as they make their minds up to be.

Abraham Lincoln

American president Abraham Lincoln’s (born February 12, 1809) favorite childhood books included: Aesop’s Fables, Robinson Crusoe, and Benjamin Franklin’s Autobiography.

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Inner Success, Outward Success

Three Apologies Hillary Clinton Didn’t Make and NEITHER SHOULD YOU.

According to the hacked emails from campaign chairman John Podesta, Hillary Clinton does not like to apologize.

Win or loss, in this go around, the President of the United States of America stands strong with the statements spoken, emails written, and stands taken, and they have done so without apology.  In an election cycle where we heard things we never thought we would: locker room jock talk played publicly, a candidate being blamed for the death of young military men, and the threat of a physical wall  around our country to keep people out.

And in a society where women apologize to our own demise, if nothing else, Hillary Clinton showed us how to climb the ranks without apology.  I often say we don’t have role models of successful women, and whether Mrs. Clinton is elected the President of the United States of America – she is successful and we can learn from her. Here are three things you shouldn’t apologize for and Hillary didn’t either!

TAKING TIME TO PREPARE.
She did not apologize for preparing – privately.  More than once Mr. Trump accused her of needing rest and she responded quite bluntly and frankly, she was preparing.  In an era where we expect people to be available 24/7, either in person or socially, she took the time for quiet reflection and preparation.

As successful women, preparation is a key daily function. When was the last time you took private, quiet time to prepare?  Do you take quiet time daily? Weekly? Annually? EVER? And what would that look like? Perhaps meditating for 10 minutes to prepare for your day, or waking up a half hour early to prepare for a sales call. You need to turn off the phones and the beeps and have some quiet time on occasion – and for that, YOU SHOULD NOT APOLOGIZE.

HOW YOU LOOK.
Hillary Clinton did not apologize for not “looking Presidential.”  On an occasion or two she was accused of not looking the part of a President.  Not once did she back down from that accusation and neither should you. If there is no role model before you that looks like you – it does not mean you don’t belong. You do.

Women, there are going to be times and situations where you are FIRST!  You are the ONLY.  Don’t apologize for not “looking the part.” Look at it positively, if there is no one before you – there is no precedent that you have to adhere to.  Do not apologize for looking differently and presenting yourself just as you are.  Hillary did not apologize and she was running for the top office in all of the world! You have your own unique look and style – and for that, YOU SHOULD NOT APOLOGIZE.

NOT YOUR MISTAKE.

Hillary did not apologize for situations that were actually out of her reign, expertise, and control.  When the accusations about her private server were at their peak and their highest, she didn’t apologize.  If you asked most business professionals working for the government (or any midsize or enterprise level company) they generally follow the directives of the IT person. We can’t know everything.

Women, there are times when you hire people to be the experts.  You hire people to do things to protect you and when they step out of line you know that ultimately the buck stops with you.  But when they mess up, it is their mistake, not yours.  When others fail and cause you pain, take action to course correct.  We can take responsibility for the company role in a mishap, but we don’t have to take the fall for others – and for that, YOU SHOULD NOT APOLOGIZE.

Whatever the outcome of this election, we can take this quick lesson: Ambition can lead us down a bumpy road, but that doesn’t mean we have to apologize at every pothole. Own what’s yours and play full out.

#successwithoutapology  #PoliticsNOTasUsual MyVote2016 #NeitherShouldYou #iVoted 😳     
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Books, Movies, and Stuff, Uncategorized

Crisis Reveals Character

In this election year, I have read several books written by former Presidents of the United States. Their books give some insight into their leadership style and personal path to the greatest title in all the world, President of The United States of America.  Their reflections, and tiny moments revealed in the biographies and autobiographies, can reveal so much about their character and temperament.

In the book, “41, A PORTRAIT OF MY FATHER” by George W. Bush, we see the President through a very unique lens, his son’s.  George W. Bush and his father George H.W. Bush both served our great country as President of the United States, just as John Adams and his son, John Quincy Adams, did nearly 200 years prior.

The one sentence in the book that spurred this blog and my personal evaluation was, “Crisis has a way of revealing character.” WOW, so true.  I quickly think of a few personal crisis situations and ask – how did I respond?  What character did I show when the mass exodus of revenue stream occurred, when conflict arose between two siblings, or when a business partner admitted an addiction?  What was my reaction?   Did I respond in a way that aligned with my character?  What would my legacy be, if those moments were what defined me? In an honest reflection, I made mistakes in my responses and sometimes I allowed emotion to override character.

What does your character reveal about you when crisis occurs?

Do you panic?  Do you run to everyone else to solve the problem? Are you proud and unforgiving?  Do you problem solve or problem state?  Do you make problems worse or better?  Do you make knee jerk reactions and comments that require asking for forgiveness later? Or do you take a minute to jot down your initial thoughts, reflect, and then act in reverence and calmness, as Vice President Bush did when President Reagan was shot?  If you don’t know the story, the Vice President made a few key decisions in very quick manner that calmed the nation and showed loyalty to the President in a very intense time.

Republican or Democrat, man or woman, black or white – crisis reveals character.

With so many newsworthy events revealing character, do you ever ask yourself how you would respond if your child was unfairly harmed?  How would you respond?  How would your character be described if your or your spouse was running for political office?  It is so easy for us to point fingers and judge, but can we be so honest with our self?  How would you be judged?

Not only do I want you to show upstanding character, but in this election year, I hope we choose a President who will show great character in crisis situations.  I pray our future President will show strength when needed, forgiveness when requested, and a calm and clear mind in crisis. God bless the USA and don’t forget to vote!

 

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