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Nurture Growth and Embrace the Results

Laura Novakowski  -  Oct 22, 2012  -  , , , , , , , , ,  -  No Comments

“Live your beliefs and
you can turn the world around.”
Henry David Thoreau

There is a parable that tells of a farmer who decided to plant a Chinese Bamboo tree, one of the most difficult trees in the world to grow. He planted the seed. For days, weeks and months, he gently and faithfully tended the seed.

At the end of year one, no tree had grown. People in his community thought he was crazy. He was tending a mound of dirt. Didn’t he know that the seed was dead. Another year passed and still he tended that mound of dirt. Another year passed and still he tended the spot where he had planted the seed. This continued for two more years, no sprouts, nothing. By the fifth year, people really believed he had lost his mind and ridiculed him.

Suddenly, three months into the fifth year the trunk of a tree shot out of the soil stretching high into the air. Five years and three months later a seemingly dormant seed grows 90 feet!

My point…

Often times, we make the choice to start taking action on a dream and plant a seed. At first, we receive a great deal of support.   People are excited for and with us. Cheering us on, they want to share in our idea, our dream our passion. Time passes and nothing has sprouted. No tree has broken the ground; people stop asking us how our idea is going. We still want and need to talk about it but we are alone.

Rain or shine, our dream still needs to nurtured and tended. Economics cause us to tighten our belt as money, resources and support become even more scarce. Once in a while there are a few believers but for the most part we are on our own.  Seasons pass and still we trudge on investing time, blood, sweat and tears.

To keep our dream alive we find new ways to nurture the soil. We repair strained relationships, cultivate new ones. We seek advice. Learn more lessons. Network more. Play and work differently. Adding different perspectives, we travel out of our comfort zone because although we are tired and bloodied, our head is unbowed.

BAM! One day, that tree bursts from the soil and stands in front of us 90 feet tall.

Just planting the seed would not have been enough. Day-in, day-out, investing talent, courage, determination and passion has to continue. Then the day comes when we can see, feel, taste and touch that 90 foot tree in front of us.

Are you willing to not just plant that seed, but to cultivate and nurture it so  that it will generate significant growth,  so that one day you too can embrace significant growth in your business,  your community,  your life?

Are You Clear About What You Want?

Laura Novakowski  -  Oct 01, 2012  -  , , , , , , , , , ,  -  No Comments

One would think that when a person is asked what they really, really want in work, in life, in a relationship, that the response would be immediate. Surprisingly, or perhaps, not so surprising, the responses are: silence… or “Let me think for a minute,” or more sadly, “I really don’t take time to think about what I really want, I’m too busy doing.”

Silence or “Let me think for a minute”

These two are interesting responses. to me, they indicate that the person is stopped short for several reasons.

  1. Genuinely,they need time to give a thoughtful response because it is important to them.
  2. Actually, they am afraid to express what they really want
  3. They need to think about a response that will sound interesting and important enough to share and impress others.
  4. They don’t trust me and so are not willing to share.

This third response, “I really don’t take time to think about what I really want, I’m too busy doing,” can mean many things, but my mind jumps to the following:

  1. They are not willing or able to invest thinking time in themselves to fully appreciate what they really want.
  2. They are not used to stopping all the crazy busyness to think
  3. They don’t fully understand how import knowing what they really want is to themselves and to others involved with them.

Whatever the reasons or stories we have for not clarifying what we really want, it has become profoundly clearly to me, that this is one of our greatest limiting factors in success in business and joy in life. The more we are clear about what we want, the more likely we  are to attract that which we want, whether it be positive or negative,  into our life and work.

Please consider finishing this sentence, it might just change your life.  What I want out of life is…

Or in the words of Henry David Thoreau….will you “live your life in quiet desperation?”

Make Your Dream A Reality!

Laura Novakowski  -  Nov 30, 2011  -  , , , , ,  -  Comments Off on Make Your Dream A Reality!

“The question for each man to settle is not what he would do if he had means, time, influence and educational advantages; the question is what he will do with the things he has. The moment a young man ceases to dream or to bemoan his lack of opportunities and resolutely looks his conditions in the face, and resolves to change them, he lays the corner-stone of a solid and honorable success.”
Hamilton Wright Mabie

When we stay focused on the problem or the issue that is standing in the way of our dream – we hold ourselves back.  We stop moving towards achieving our dreams.  Instead, we spend time complaining, commiserating and crying.

Mabie’s second question becomes much more relevant, “What will we do with the things we have?” Let’s make a list.

1.  Have a dream.  Dream that you want to win a Nobel peace prize, write a Pulitzer winning novel, become the next Microsoft, own a house on Maui, travel around the world.  Mentally ignore the boundaries and limiting factors, whatever the dream, go for it.

2.  Review your assets.  Evaluate what you have in your personal and professional toolbox.  Assess your talents, strengths, relationships, education, experience.

3.  Create a plan. The dream now can take shape.  Planning will help turn that intangible dream into a tangible reality.  When we plan, we take positive action towards a dream that may not be achieved in our life time.  But, perhaps it can be. We will NEVER know if we don’t try.

4.  Take action. The first action step is to write down the goals that will help to achieve the dream.  Simple to-do lists become mini action plans for each goal that will take you closer to your dream. To-do lists can be great fun but be careful not to make them a laundry list that takes over with tasks that actually take you away from making your dream come true.

5.  Measure results.    Maybe, the book you write doesn’t even get published.  At least, your wrote the book.  Perhaps, you only traveled from one country to another and didn’t make it around the world, yet.   Measuring and monitoring progress is important to helping lock in success and motivation.  It helps us to keep on keeping on.

If we want to make our dreams a reality, we have to work with what we have and then we will “lay a corner-stone of solid and honorable success.”

Believe in the Underdog

Laura Novakowski  -  Nov 09, 2011  -  , , , , , , , ,  -  Comments Off on Believe in the Underdog

A young girl believed in a horse she found him wandering in a field.  He was nothing but skin and bones.  She named him Pippin.

Watch this video, it’s amazing.  The song is Underdog by Lost Trailer. www.youtube.com/watch?v=WbndZajV8Xc

 


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