Summertime Sparks of Wisdom + blossoming into your true self

Welcome to Odds n’ Ends, a monthly newsletter by me, Michelle Spalding, focusing on business, empowerment, and occasionally something to make you laugh. I’m glad you’re here.

Growing up, one of my favorite things to do in the summer was to lay around on my aunt’s porch with a book and something cold to drink. The library was too far for me to ride my bike to, but thankfully was near the feed store she frequented. If I promised to be quick, she’d let me pop in and return my books and pick up new ones when she was running errands. Because I had to be fast, I grabbed as many as I was allowed to check out at a time from whatever was in the young adult’s area. 

I especially loved mysteries – dreaming of being one of those clever, adventurous kids who would solve a crime with her friends that had stumped the local police. While that never happened, my love of reading has never left me. It’s one of my favorite ways to spend time outside on the porch, with a tall glass of iced tea and a big ol’ book.

What’s your favorite childhood memory of summer? Are you still enjoying it? If you’re not making time for summertime whimsey, grab your calendar and put it on there – summer won’t be around forever.

What if no one shows up?  Or buys? Or complain about my product/service? Should I be doing more? Or less? What about goals?

What if I say something that someone doesn’t like? Or I’m misunderstood? Or my words twisted to mean something else?

What if? What if? What if? Let me stop you right here; what if all that happens? Or what if none of it happens? I am sure you’ll survive. Will it hurt?

We doubt our wisdom. We discount the things we’ve learned that could help others. We give away our time rather than ask for what it’s worth. We write books and programs and create amazing things. We hold back when the world needs us to show up bigger.

I get it; I wrote my first book and then waited three years to release it. While it was safe on my computer, only seen by the eyes of a few trusted colleagues and an editor, no one could hurt me. 

However, once it was online for sale and I’d put myself out there, it was a different story. Some criticized it and even wrote glaring reviews on Amazon, and yet many found it helpful, wrote kind thoughts, and asked me to help with their business. 

So how do you move past all of that? I’m not sure there is a simple solution – but here are a few ideas I’ve found helpful.

  1. Consider the source  – is this someone whose opinion you requested? Are they offering something helpful and constructive? If not, move on.
  1. Cherish the kind words – Print out emails, reviews, testimonials, love notes, and such, then keep them in a treasure box. Then, open that box and read them, especially when doubting yourself. 
  1. Take a cue from Taylor Swift and Shake It Off – Here’s the link, keep it handy and when that inner voice is reminding you of the things people have said or may say – just pause, put this on, and sing along as loud as possible.
  1. Just do your best – that’s all any of us can do. You’re not striving for perfection; that is a myth that has its way of holding us back; just simply do your best, and be complete with that.
  1. Put it out into the world – I think this says it all – “A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for. A ship in port is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.” –  Albert Einstein

Lastly – have a trusted friend you can connect with who will cheer you on, or a group of them. They say it takes a village for a reason, and I believe this is one. So find those friends and be that friend.

I often used to say “no problem” when someone would thank me. I’m not sure where this habit started, but it was my way to deflect the attention of someone’s gratitude when I helped them. 

One day a friend of mine was visiting the studio and heard me wrap up a call with my usual “no problem” statement. After we got settled in to catch up, she asked permission to give me feedback on my call – honestly, it had been a sales call, and she caught the tail end of it, so I thought she had some juicy ideas on how to make it even better. 

She said, “it should never be a problem to help the people you work with or want to work with” – OUCH, she was right! She further reminded me that I helped her see that she had the option to only work with clients who valued her services and treated her with kindness and respect – she further said, “it’s always my pleasure to help them.”

Together we came up with a few powerful replies to use moving forward. You’re very welcome. It’s my pleasure. I’m happy I could help. Occasionally I hear myself saying “no problem” and then immediately add to it, “it was my pleasure to help” – my goal isn’t to be perfect at this, but with just that little awareness to be proud that I was able to help someone.

I’ll be announcing the next book we’ll be reading in the Sparks of Wisdom book club – sign up here to receive the notice and join us.

Are you feeling stuck? Need some support in crafting your business to allow you to live the life you desire? I have a few coaching openings this summer and several mini-coaching packages – find the details here

I am working on dates for speaking engagements and workshops for later this year – I still have a few openings; check out my speaker page to view topics for your group or audience or to book me for your podcast.


Thanks for spending another month with me digitally here. 

Remember to stay cool this summer, 

Cheers,

Michelle Spalding | Small Business Coach

Michelle Spalding
Business Alchemist | Mentor | Author