LEAP into Easy Decorating– Advice from Your Business & Lifestyle Designer!

Most of you know I have been a Business & Lifestyle Designer for more years than I should admit, and most of you know I really grew my business consulting career while I was in the Interior Design industry (well over 20 years years) where I was a teacher, speaker, and industry leader.

I rarely do Interior Decorating anymore (only for special assignments). I teach, speak, write and coach business owners in ALL industries almost exclusively now, but still, I keep up with what makes for a great environment, and I will never throw away the industry that made me become a top notch coach (the Interior Design Industry). It is where I learned to thrill clients and gain powerful referrals, and create the very best marketing activities to land me the best high paying clients.

I AM a BUSINESS & LIFESTYLE Designer, I help people DESIGN LIVES & BUSINESSES that go beyong mere success, into significance … in other words, that mean something, that are beautiful, that are on purpose, that touch the lives of others, that are valuable, that are prosperous, that are “colorful”, and that ring true and authentic for them.

Take a LEAP

Today is a great day to TAKE a LEAP to a more well-rounded life. You cannot be all about business all the time.

So as your business friend and coach, today I want to share just a tidbit of my interior design expertise with to empower you to create an interior environment that motivates and inspires you to live your best life and do your best work. 

Your Interior Living and Working Environments

Let’s get you to stop for a few and think about your interior environment (home and
work).  A comfortable, functional, beautiful, peaceful, fun, and even eco-friendly environment can make all the difference in your happiness level as well as in your business productivity (and results).

I want to encourage you to keep your eyes out for new ways to make your interior FABULOUS!

You can START by putting together your DESIGNER’S TOOL BAG!

 

New Trends in Interior Design

New decorating trends are always on the scene, but are you always ready for them?
Taking a leap into something new means readily having the TOOLS you need to take advantage of your opportunities to design your best work space at any given moment.

Being Prepared!

Have you ever been shopping and wondered if the colors in a particular rug were right for your office? Or have you ever wondered if a lamp or accessory you saw at an estate sale would fit on a particular shelf in your home?

A Ready Attitude

To make the LEAP towards a new empowering environment, and towards new design ideas (maybe even a totally new design style or completely different interior colors), you have to be prepared with a ready, “no excuse attitude”.

Enter your DESIGNER’S TOOL BAG!

This is a basic bag of tools and useful items that will certainly come in handy right when you need them most. All serious design moguls and serious business owners who want their home & work environments to support them must carry a DESIGNER’S TOOL BAG in their car. I am REQUIRING IT (OK, not really)!

 

Here’s How

First you will need a large canvas bag, or a zippered “overnight” bag that will hold
all of your supplies. It should be attractive. Fill it with the items on this list:

A metal tape measure (at least 15 feet in length) for measuring walls, furniture, accessories.

A cloth tape measure (at least 6-8 feet in length) for measuring soft goods like drapery panels, throw pillows for the office, and bedding.

A color wheel (so you can easily find tertiary colors or a color’s complement).

A fan deck (you can get one at the local paint store) for matching colors.

A photo of each room you are working on.

A photo of important accessories and furnishing that need to be considered when matching patterns and colors (ex. sofa, draperies, your desk, your dining room set).

Fabric swatches, small flooring samples, and paint chips used in your design plan (these can all be kept in a special home design binder).

A folder (or IPhone/IPad) with magazine clippings (or images) of rooms you love (for inspiration).

Digital camera or phone camera (to help you remember what you saw, or to send a quick photo to a friend for  their opinion or “approval”).

A pad and some paper (to write down sizes, brands, ideas on the fly).

OK. I’ll  STOP right here so you can START making the LEAP to great lifestyle design by
putting together YOUR very own DESIGNER’S TOOL BAG!

 

Do you have a tip, trick or though about bringing more design into our lives?

PLEASE SHARE in the comments below!

The SHIFT Into Success Event was a Great Success & a Complete BLAST!

What a great time we had in NYC a few weeks ago. Business owners (these were in the Interior Design Industry) gathered in an intimate workshop setting to learn how to make the SHIFT to a business that fully supports them in every way.

The SHIFT Into Success Workshop in NYC with Margo DeGange

I loved, loved, loved teaching theses sessions. So many success stories have poured in since the event.

Attendees got super clear and focused, and got access to some very powerful tools to take them over the mountain!

Entrepreneurs learn a lot about themselves and what stops them from raging success (that we all CAN certainly have). They learned not only how to get more clients, better clients, and their most desirable ideal clients; they learned how to get out of their own way, in a BIG way!

We covered 5 very empowering modules in the one day SHIFT live workshop (all correlating to the word S.H.I.F.T.):

S: See & know your authentic self

H: Have a clear vision of where you want to go

I: Identify winning marketing strategies fit for YOU

F: Focus on your value (the value you bring to clients)

T: Take action (the RIGHT action), of course.

What a blast we had, and I met so many exceptional men and women who came to the event to learn and grow.

I will be teaching a similar SHIFT workshop soon in the Woodlands Texas in 2012, with even more incredible and powerful mindset AND marketing strategies, plus some creative out-of-the-box (what I am famous for) and FUN ways to Rev-up YOUR business really Fast. It is going to be a blast and a game-changer and life-changer for you! Plus we will have some great brainstorming time together and the opportunity to really get to know each other better!

I want you to join me in 2012 in the Woodlands, Texas for the new and improved SHIFT Live Workshop for Entrepreneurs who are READY to embrace their vision in a greater way, so email me if you want it at Margo@MargoDeGange.com, since again this will be a very intimate workshop of less than 50 people, so sign up early. I will add you to the list once I hear from you!

In the meantime, if you want to get the recordings from the NYC event, with all of the workbooks, tools, cheat sheets, notes, and more, you can do that here. If you are an Interior Decorator, Interior Designer, or related professional, I highly recommend it. It will be LIGHTS ON for you! The Woodlands, Texas event that is coming up soon will be for ALL industries!

If you are in another industry such as Coaching, Wellness, VA, or any other service-based business, join me for the next live SHIFT workshop in the Woodlands Texas. I will have details soon.

Margo

Create a Magnificen​t Life and Business “On Purpose”, Part 2 of 3

Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction. ~John F. Kennedy

Tonight let’s continue on with some more revised excerpts from my previous writings on Making a Leap Towards Creativity. As I mentioned last week, the words relate to creating a life on purpose. These thoughts come from my heart, and I believe they will help you to live and do your work “on purpose” and to make your life and your business really make a difference in your universe!

Last week we left off just before Embrace Originality, so let’s pick it up there.

Embrace Originality

Originality stems from tapping into what’s inside of you and connecting that with what you see and notice around you. It sometimes involves expressing ordinary things in new, no so ordinary ways. By getting out of the ordinary, you have greater opportunity to place yourself next to great thinkers. Great thinkers help you to see life, projects, ideas, systems, and people from new angles and new perspectives.

Being around great thinkers is personally very important to me. In my life I purpose to make time to surround myself with those who are, in my opinion, greater thinkers than myself, and with people who have had richer, grander, and different experiences than I have encountered. I want to grow and develop my mental faculties and go beyond societal and self-imposed limits. I want to listen to the minds of others, those who are not afraid to launch out from the deep, to be different—those who don’t even think too much about being different because they are so busy simply thinking and creating. Original thinkers are inspiring!

Being original can start with an old idea. Is there something you do, provide, use, or offer that you can express in an original way, or flavor with a new and interesting “twist”? Don’t be afraid. Every great thinker started their journey with others laughing at them. Laugh right along as you express your own right to be original!

Emphasize Utility

I tend to “emphasize utility” in my life and work. Although I value and love to think on new planes, I am definitely a very practical person. I want my ideas (out-of-the-box as some of them may be) to help others make their lives better in real and concrete ways.

The people in your sphere of influence can be better off because you provide utility. Look at the needs of a group of people—your clients, your family, your association—and identify the problem, challenge, or objective for the group or the individuals within the group, and then get creative in helping to bring about a positive and useful solution with as little negative consequence as possible.

The ideas, products, and services born of innovation, invention, and creative thinking can— and most of the time should— be actually used on a practical level and in practical ways. Think creatively in the formation, and emphasize utility in the application.

Elaborate with Some Restraint

In my career as a marketing and success coach (and in past years also as an Interior Decorator and Home Fashions Designer), I’ve discovered that it is important to elaborate on ideas. This is particularly true when I work with clients who hire me to help them find or see new and creative concepts for their lives or businesses.

As a professional, I have to help the client see, identify, and develop their personal vision, even when they think they do not have a particular vision. I could go out on a limb with creativity and abstract ideas, but I sometimes restrain myself, because I have learned that you must first meet people where they are and lead them out with care. You just cannot overwhelm people if you want help them to capture a new vision for themselves.

I sometimes start by helping them to uncover what they do NOT want. Then we can begin to brainstorm, plan, solve problems, and build solutions related to what they DO want. I ask them a lot of diagnostic questions. I help to develop ideas in them that actually originate in them and not in me. I simply help them bring what they want to light.

Once we develop a plan of action that will thrust them forward in their lives or careers, it is important for me to keep their action steps clear and somewhat simple. This way the client does not feel overwhelmed, and instead they feel in control, capable, and hopeful, excitedly anticipating meaningful changes.

This is especially true when they have just gone through the effort, and even the pressure, of identifying their most meaningful goals and true business and personal lifestyle desires. The last thing they need or want are too many actions to take on at one time.  I let them bask in their newfound direction and creativity peacefully for a while. Then we take the first actions.

Later, as they grow in their vision and in their skills, they can add new goals and additional action steps. Initially though, a moderate amount of information and a nominal number of decisions and action points will serve to empower my clients without causing them frustration or discouragement. This gets them standing solidly on the road to self growth and business improvement with amazingly positive results.

Stay Open to Discomfort

Most of us would like to coast in a place of “arrival” and feel a sense of completion when it comes to tasks, projects, applying solutions to problems, and success in general.  We want to quickly get out of the uncomfortable places and back into comfort. This is our natural inclination.

Yet growth (improvement) is actually a continual process. Getting used to constant movement, whether fast-paced or slow, is a very good idea, and embracing occasional boughts of discomfort is mandatory for success.  I have found that my most substantial and significant growth comes when I allow myself to willingly enter a place of discomfort.  Ironically, I am now very comfortable with being uncomfortable, and I mostly enjoy it!

Sure, sometimes you can coast, but if you want consistent growth spurts that result in greater levels of success, you must stay open to times of discomfort.

Stretching your thinking to learn new things, building radically on current skills sets, and extending your mind to think in new ways takes real effort.  I think it is metaphorically like having a baby.  To birth something spectacular, there is pain or unsettling pressure (or as some people who have never had a baby would say, there is slight discomfort)!  The creative mind is willing to grow and fulfill the creative process in spite of the pain or pressure. There is no other way.

I do think though, that in your personal and business growth, you should focus most on improving your strengths instead of trying to get better in your areas of weakness. It’s fine if you want to gain new skills where you have few or none, but putting most of the attention on the areas of your greatest strengths will ensure that you grow and expand in your area of expertise.

Hang with Great Thinkers

I touched on this earlier, and here we are again. Who you surround yourself with plays a huge part in determining where you’ll go and even how you’ll get there. High energy thinkers are the alternators of life—they help keep your battery charged.

Who are the five people you spend most of your social and business time with (outside of your immediate family—kids and spouse)? Are your friends, colleagues, business associates, and even the people you date helping you stay motivated and focused? Do they drain you and add drama to your life, or do they inspire you directly or indirectly to see and realize your goals?

I think it is important to surround yourself with great minds who will not allow you to go through life taking the more easily traveled road. Creative people elicit and provoke thought in one another without even realizing it. Sometimes it’s a still and quiet thing, and sometimes it’s more animated, but just being in the presence of a positive person, a loving soul, a thinker, a problem solver, or an idea person can be enough to trigger new and exciting thoughts and ideas in you.

Then occasionally, step out into the arena of the off-the-charts wild-thinkers!  Find out where they congregate and get with them for a while. There are greater minds than your own—always. Your ideas and thoughts may seem ingenious—to you! There are others who may challenge those thoughts. Exceptional thinkers help stimulate your creative process by causing you to be accountable to the soundness of your ideas. Your challenger may be another person, a group of people, or even yourself once you get around these wild-thinkers!

Notice Your Emotions, and Use Them for Growth

I can be an emotional person. I’ve been known to cry at sentimental T.V. commercials or movies, and I can easily empathize with how others feel. I can hardly watch the news because sad happenings cause my heart to hurt for people and their families, even though they are strangers to me.  I feel things very deeply at times.

I am also very intuitive, and I can easily “read” people. Sometimes, I think I can understand their motives just by watching their behavior. This has been a blessing and a curse.

Through the years, I have shed more than my fair portion of tears. I’ve been hurt by the ill-intentions of others, and I have seen people I thought were decent and on my side do hideous things to me and to others.  I have been blown away, shocked, and surprised, and then again not so shocked or surprised (since people show you who they are the first time). Yet I still let it hurt me.

I often wasted precious time thinking way too long and way too hard on what someone else maliciously said or did. Over time, I put walls up to protect myself from further harm, and although I was still a generous, kind, and caring person who sought to inspire and connect with others, I managed to keep people from getting too terribly close to me because of lack of trust. This shrinking back kept me from reaching my full potential as a human being. By letting myself be hurt I was only hurting myself!

Boy have things changed!  In order to go on in my journey to fully become my true and authentic self, I had to learn to channel and control my emotions and not let them drive me. Now, I let them guide me and work FOR me. This is freedom!

My emotions have become a teacher, a marvelous catalyst for greater personal development. I am learning every day to use the behaviors I see in others as a teaching tool to better understand myself, and to better understand human nature and human pain & desire in general. I know not to react, but to respond and to be proactive—to bring my emotions and all of their positive energy into the creative process, leaving the negative energy behind.

I’ve learned the art of space—to separate my feelings from the words and actions of others, and to not retort or give my power away to anyone by choosing NOT to be hurt. This isn’t defensiveness. It’s a conscious decision to stay in peace. Drawing healthy boundaries is vital. I now discern and decide with grace who I let into the core of my circle of influence. I know and trust myself and the wisdom God has placed in my heart.

As a lifestyle, I’ve learned the practice of never taking things personally to the point of hurt feelings, even when people do intend harm or are selfish, because their behavior is NOT about me, it’s about THEM.  It’s really none of MY business, and that is such a liberating way to live.

Most people do not usually start out planning to or intending to hurt others, but often they are caught up in emotional deficits that they have never dealt with. The average Jill or Joe just wants to know someone sees and hears them, and they often go about seeking this in the wrong way, letting their egos and insecurities lead them. What they really want is to feel important and significant, and they want to feel valued and loved.

Knowing this allows you to stay clear of defensiveness, retaliation, and unhealthy competitiveness, and it compels you to relate to others from a position of strength, compassion, and kindness.  You actually hold tremendous power to enrich the lives of others by your words, behaviors, and reactions.

Position Your Ideas and Actions within a Meaningful Context

I am always seeking to create meaning in my life. Everything that I do must have meaning and a purpose. Aside from when I am just plain having fun (which actually serves a purpose), I never want to be involved in projects or ideas that are frivolous.

Here is an example. As I grow one of my businesses, I want to know that the people I hire as contract workers truly benefit from working with me. I want to contribute to their lives economically. I want to know that the people I choose to help me in my business are people who really derive value and benefit from the relationship. It is not enough to just pay someone. I want to contribute to the prosperity and self-esteem of others. I would never hire workers because I can get the labor cheap, and meanwhile take away from the soul of another individual. I want everything I do that involves others to build and contribute, and never tear down or take away.

I think it is also important to see the big picture.  Seeing the big picture, say in my company or in my relationships, allows me to form ideas and contribute to them so that they are in line with my real life objectives. I almost always function in terms of seeing the big picture, and I place my life experiences and relationship interactions within that big picture.

So here is our stopping point for today. Next week I’ll continue this message with “Synthesize Ideas”, so get ready!  There’s more Creating a Magnificent Life and Business “On Purpose” to come.

Have a Week of Purposely Creating The Life & Business You Really Want!

Margo

Read the rest…

Read Part 1 HERE

Read Part 3 Here

 

 

Create a Magnificent Life & Business “On Purpose”, Part 1 of 3

True happiness… is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.   ~Helen Keller

When I chased after money, I never had enough. When I got my life on purpose and focused on giving of myself and everything that arrived into my life, then I was prosperous.   ~Wayne Dyer

Tonight I want to share with you some revised excerpts from my previous writings on Making a Leap Towards Creativity. I say revised because I have edited out a lot of the text and mingled in a few of my “today” thoughts.  The words relate to creating a life on purpose. These thoughts stem from my own journey and my own need to be purposeful and to make my life matter, and I thought you might find them helpful as you navigate your own life and business journey.

It Doesn’t “Just Happen”

Living a happy and meaningful life, and running a profitable business that is “on purpose” doesn’t just happen. It’s not like all you have to do is have a desire to make something great happen in your life. You first must get your mindset right, or at least lined up fairly well. Next, you must be able to see and recognize the opportunities that are woven throughout your life and businesses, identify the GOLDEN ones, and act on them with right direction, focus, and clarity.

This message is not a specific “how to” message. Instead it is my thoughts in no particular order that will help you to see the thinking I followed towards my own success. I am always growing and I will never “arrive”, but I always purpose to be aware, clear, intentional, and focused in everything I do, which leads to greater and greater success.

It’s All About What YOU Personally Have to Offer

Creating a life on purpose starts with you. You are unique for a reason. There is deep significance in the fact that your personality, style, skills, and life experiences are identifiably yours. Recognize that you are a creative being and one of a kind, and let your own personal creativity and uniqueness give way to a beautiful life. No one else can be you, or make YOUR contribution to this world. That is your distinctive calling, and others can be better off because of it!

You Are NOT Your Past, and You Are NOT Alone

In my opinion, the best indicator of future behavior is NOT past behavior. The best indicator of future behavior is whether or not someone can ignite an interest or a passion within his or her own heart that is intrinsically tied to purpose, and create a plan for definitive action.

Sometimes this involves the help of another. Skilled and experienced mentors who care can make a huge difference for someone when it comes to making a leap for a new idea, an inspiring dream or belief, or a better way of life.

Don’t Stand in Your Own Way

I am a very independent person.  Autonomy is something I greatly prize, but there was a time in my life (and occasionally these times spring up again) that I had to be willing to subdue my will and submit myself to a person or a process, and relinquish a certain amount of control in order to gain more. The training, mentoring, education, and experience that got me to where I am today took time and discipline, and it absolutely took a certain amount of “letting go.”

Generate an Array of Options, and Let Ideas Flow from Other Ideas

I absolutely think of myself as an idea person and an innovator—as an out-of-the-box thinker, but I know I was not born that way.  These are learned skills.

When I am thinking about new direction or a new idea, or when I am looking for a solution to a problem or challenge, I pull from everywhere possible, and I put all of my possible resources, options, and alternatives in the “brainstorm bucket”.

I also don’t ignore an idea because it seems bizarre, unsound, basic, “out there”, too simple, too deep, crazy, or silly. I know that other ideas may grow from that one. I learned a long time ago to write all of my very creative thoughts down on paper. I have written on paper cups, bathroom tissue, and my leg. I don’t want to lose an idea.

I’ve also learned that if you brainstorm, and write out all of the ideas that come to your mind, you may find that the ones you wrote down towards the end of your list are some of the better, more original ideas. They were deeper down in your creative process. That is why it is a good idea to keep writing even when you think you have run out of ideas.

Enjoy Change

I love change. I actually thrive on it (THAT, I WAS born with)! This is a great thing in my opinion, because the only constant we can depend on is that things will change. The very essence of being alive is change. Cells change, our bodies change, our relationships change, our thoughts change, and the culture changes, too. Today for example, our business climate changes every nano-second, and NONE of us know on any given day even a fraction of what’s going on everywhere, so breathe a big sigh of relief, you are not alone. It’s all good!

Learn to enjoy change even if you know you cannot always stay on top of it. We should not stress with fear that we cannot keep up, but we should be ever learning, growing, and changing to meet new challenges and to offer new, useful, and appealing solutions to the needs and challenges of others.

Be Flexible

Flexibility is the willingness to consider, try, or even embrace new ways of being, doing, possessing, thinking, behaving, reasoning, systematizing, recreating, communicating, and living. You must always be open to what is not coming from your own head. If you want profitable change, meaningful improvement, and new levels of success, you won’t get them from what you already know and do, unless you have already “arrived” (and who has?).

Being flexible causes you to open up to the inputs of others in your life, and this helps you to get to where you need and want to go, and often more quickly than you had imagined!  So, the buck does not stop here (well, your bucks might if you are not open to the wisdom of others).

Being flexible is an exercise of the will, the heart, the mind, the spirit, the emotions, and the actions, and it is always an exercise that you must practice and keep sharp. As you get older and become immersed in responsibilities, you can begin to let your structure and routine take away from your flexibility.  Stay open and be flexible

O.K. I am Going to STOP Here, but THE BEST is Yet to Come! 

For now, that’s plenty for all of us to reflect on.  I will continue this message next Monday, beginning then with “Embrace Originality”, so stay tuned!  There’s a lot more to Creating a Magnificent Life and Business “On Purpose”.

Have a Week of Purposely Creating What You Really Want!

Margo

Read the rest…

Read Part 2 HERE

Read Part 3 Here

What REALLY is Great Design?

Margo DeGange's Website Monday Message from Margo

“Everything is designed. Few things are designed well.” ~Brian Reed

When we think of great design, thoughts immediately go to glamorous clothing, beautiful interior spaces, clever packaging, and colorful covers. But great design may not even involve what looks great (or it may).

And when you think of great design, you may not think of medical equipment or motor parts for autos, or ice-cream machines at yogurt shops, yet great design is infused in areas like this all the time. If something becomes better, more usable, more engaging, more remarkable and beneficial to the users, it has likely happened upon great design. 

So what is great design? It’s actually a lot of things, but I can tell you for certain that for you and me as business owners and leaders, great design has oodles to do with creating products and services that are incredibly useful and amazingly meaningful to people in their everyday lives.

The iPhone has great design. Yes, it happens to look good (sort of) but its looks have nothing much to do with its great design. What makes the iPhone (or similar phones) a great design is what we can do with it and how it enhances our lives.

Not long ago a young woman became frustrated because her grandparents were having trouble telling their many medications apart. The girl proceeded to come up with a little system for them using colored bands, large writing, and an organized way of quickly seeing who the doc was on areas of the bottle not normally written on. She did this for her grandparents—to help them. It was not done with fancy packaging. It was simply a great idea and great design. Today this girl is basking in the financial rewards of her love for her grandparents and her creative, right-brained thinking.

A while back I was talking at a seminar attended by designers of all sorts, but mostly graphic and web designers. I asked, “What is great design?”, and immediately a young man began to voice how so many websites looked like crapola (my paraphrase) and they were not created with good design. I challenged him by asking if a website would be considered well-designed if it looked O.K. or even sub-par but met or exceeded the goals and purposes of the website (in my hypothetical case, to sell large amounts of product). He stuck to his closed-minded thinking and said that this hypothetical website would not be an example of great design.

We have a lot of opinions floating around out there about what great design is. Of course exceptional design can also involve beauty (and better in most cases if it does), and if a clever package actually sells the product, then that IS good design of the packaging IF the intent of the packaging was to sell the product. The package can be born of great design while the product is not. We have all purchased rotten, stinking products dressed in pretty little boxes. Today though, I think it is fair to say that good design in packaging is just not enough. We must go forward with good design in products and services first and foremost.

I challenge you going forward to think about your business in terms of great design, even if you are not an interior designer, graphic designer, or artist of any sort. WHAT do you want your product and service to do for others? HOW can it be better than anything else that is out there, either locally or nationally? What do people NEED and WANT that you can design into what you offer? What will thrill your people?

Think about this concept of great design this week, and rev-up the right side of your brain by thinking outside of the box. (I wish there was an out-of-the-box way to say “out-of-the-box”, any ideas?)

The future belongs to right-brained, creative thinkers who find innovative, new ways of doing things. Get your designing caps out folks. It’s time to dream and design!

Have a Wild Week of Great Design,
Margo

A Business Tool With Real Power: Your Smile!

Margo DeGange's Website Monday Message from Margo

“Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.”   ~Mother Teresa

As business people, marketers, and individuals interested in personal growth, we are always on the lookout for that one empowerment tool or technique that can catapult us into shining success. There are hundreds of such tools, but only one that is instant, easy, free, almost effortless, and can rip through resistance and obstacles of life and business quicker than hot water rips through a pile of snow. That tool is your smile.

Don’t stop reading! If you do, it could mean you are probably not a smiler. Perhaps you are a critic or a “practical person” or even a “realist”. Let’s face it, life can be hard, and we may not have the time or the energy for all of that fu-fu B.S.

Even so, right now, in this exact instant, just humor me and flash a quick SMILE. Do it for just a second. I want you to see how incredibly impressive that smile of yours really is. I bet you feel different already!

Your Smile is an Exquisite Communicator

The smile is universal. Everyone understands the humanity and kindness that it emits. Your smile is a precision communication tool that instantly says, “You really do matter to me”. Even strangers embrace that.

What NOT Smiling Communicates

Not smiling is a big mistake. Not smiling creates an instant wall that others have to climb over or break through, and most people won’t bother going through the trouble. Not smiling says, “You are not that important to me right now”. It also says “I am not happy with life”. Think about it, who wants to hang around with, do business with, or buy from someone who appears to be unhappy with life?

What Your Smile Says About You

A smile lets others know you are approachable. A smile lets others know you are genuine and you care. A smile shows that you are confident and optimistic. A smile communicates that you want to make a connection. A smile says to others that you are the kind of person they should be influenced by. THAT is powerful!

What Your Smile Does

When you smile, you feel better about yourself, your life, your day, your occupation, and you even feel better about the people around you. When you are having a rough day, or having a hard time getting started or a hard time moving through your routine, throw a smile on your face. Suddenly you will have a completely different outlook. It is almost magical (miraculous, really).

What if Your Smile is Not ALL THAT?

A lot of people really want to smile, but they hold back for a number of reasons. They may feel that because they don’t have the perfect smile they should just keep their mouth shut. I say, not so!

Even an imperfect smile is amazing. Imperfect smiles have opened more doors to opportunity than bundles of money have. A smile, perfect or not, will certainly move more people emotionally than no smile at all.

So your teeth are a little crooked, get over it. So your teeth are a little yellow, grab the white strips. So your smile is not perfect, big deal. It is a MUCH bigger deal that you share your wonderful smile!

A Crazy Business Meeting Idea

I’ve heard of these clubs and meetings that are happening all over the country where the entire reason for going is to laugh. I know, it sounds nuts. You gather with a bunch of strangers, and once the meeting starts, someone says, “ha ha ha” and everyone else does the same. Within minutes (sometimes mere seconds) people are laughing and soon they are cracking up belly-laughing, and rolling on the floor in total comic hysteria. There is something about the smile—the laugh— that is so natural, so totally encompassing, that it only needs a spark to ignite it.

I am not saying to go join one of those out-of-the box meetups, but why not be an out-of-the box manager or leader and have some fun at your next office meeting? Here is an idea to get the people on your team to focus more on smiling throughout the day (this is ONLY for the brave).

Tell everyone, “We should be smiling throughout the day. We need to share our smiles, and we need to let others know they matter to us. I need your smile and you need mine”. Then let them know you want to have a little fun with a “Ha Ha” session for a few minutes. See what happens. You might see that it binds everyone together in a way you never could have imagined. Try it with your kids, too!

The Very Least You Could Do

Ha Ha meeting or not, the very least you could do to start building an amazing business and an amazing life is smile. Start now. Start with the next person you see. Start with one, then two, then three smiles. Be a scientist and make it an experimental project by taking note of the responses you get. I guarantee you will be convinced that YOUR smile is your most POWERFUL Life and Business Tool ever!

Have Wild Week of Flashing Your Smile,
 
Margo