Is Your Fuel Clean? The Importance of Caring for Yourself First

You must take care of yourself first. We’ve all heard that statement before and can intellectually agree with the logic behind it. Yet, many of us still struggle to take care of ourselves. We are disciplined in many areas in life and business and still struggle with this one.

If you’ve ever paid attention to the pre-flight training from the airlines before take-off, you’ve heard the instructions in case of emergency to put the oxygen mask on yourself first – even before your kids. You can’t take care of anyone if you are passed out!

This same truth holds true for you as a business owner. You are literally the energy and force that fuels your business — no one else is. No one else can power it for you. If you run out of fuel or are full of contaminated fuel your business will suffer. You will work harder than needed. You will struggle to make decisions. You will doubt yourself. The worry or fear you experience will enter your business and permeate its essence. Contaminating decisions, products and interactions with others. And ultimately you are not the only one that suffers. So do all of your clients, vendors, suppliers, creditors, employees and stakeholders.

The clearer your mind and the healthier your spirit, the more able you are to serve the world in the biggest most powerful way possible. For many of us that is through our business.

Think about what that means to you and where in your life you are not taking care of yourself. Where is water leaking into your gas tank? What are one or two small things you can do to change that today?

In my monthly Success in Business Meditation we learn to begin our meditation by focusing on ourselves. I teach you a simple way to do this in just 10 minutes. THEN we are in a clean and focused place to move on to what we are creating with our business. We have the capacity to expand and give in a powerful and compelling way.

Mindfulness and meditation are just one of several ways you can ‘keep your gas tank clean’.

How Do You Handle Endings?

Examining the role endings have in your new beginnings

According to William Bridges, author of Transitions: Making Sense of Life’s Changes, each change or transition has three stages. They are Endings, the Neutral Zone and New Beginnings.

I am focusing on endings this week because they set the course for the next two. Why are endings so important? Unresolved endings impede our movement into the neutral zone, which is a necessary part of the transition process.

Are you struggling creating something new? It might because of how you ended what preceded it.

Take a look at how you’ve ended major events in your life. Marriages, relationships, businesses, trainings, and other commitments.

Objectively reviewing how you have (or have not) acknowledged the endings in your life can be an enlightening experience. Understanding how you’ve handled transitions in the past will ultimately allow you to be conscious during your current or next transition, giving you the opportunity to choose how you react.

Take some time now to reflect on changes you’ve experienced in your life. Are there any patterns you see? Let’s specifically take a look at how you handle your endings, as they affect how your beginnings start.

Change always requires you to let go of something before the new thing can start. This is the Law of Sacrifice. For example, you must end your job to step into retirement. You must end an unhealthy relationship before stepping into a healthy one. You must end making poor health choices and eating on the couch all night to enjoy a healthy and fit lifestyle.

Do you fight and resist endings? Do you acknowledge them and accept them? Do you avoid them or pretend they are not happening? Do you embrace them and welcome them? Are you usually not aware you are in an ending? Do you just want to hurry up and end so you can start your new thing?

It’s not that these experiences aren’t meant to end, but it’s how you handle them that is worth reflecting on. Remember, a caterpillar’s life must end before it cocoons and reemerges as a butterfly. The caterpillar doesn’t fight the metamorphosis, it eats and eats (preparation) to sustain itself through the transition.

The phoenix is another symbolic example of change. When the Phoenix perceives its impending death it ignites itself into a magnificent fire. In time, it reemerges from its own ashes – reborn, renewed, and very much alive.

How do you handle endings? Are you in one now and if so, what can you do to embrace the ending rather than fight or avoid it? How can you honor the ending as a part of your metamorphosis into the new?

Struggling with an ending or beginning? Reach out for a complimentary consultation with Kelly now!

What to do When People Don’t Listen to You

There is nothing ruder and more frustrating than speaking to someone and they clearly aren’t listening to you. While the fact that they aren’t listening says more about them you, if you notice a pattern of people not listening when you speak it may be worthwhile to check-in to your own speaking habits.

According to an article in PR Daily, less than two percent of all people have had formal education on how to listen. Odds are there are a Lot of people not truly listening! But you can’t do much about other people’s listening skills.

Good communication begins and ends with you, as you are the only one you can control. Regardless if you are speaking or listening you want to feel good about how you handled your end of things and most importantly that you kept to your values and goals in the conversation.

The truth is if you feel people frequently aren’t listening to you you can feel disrespected, misunderstood, frustrated, embarrassed and your self-esteem can even plummet.

If you find when you speak people drift away and don’t listen, and again this is more than one person — you see a pattern here, follow these communication guidelines and see if changing your speaking style is in order.

When you speak are you:

  • Brief
  • Positive
  • Specific
  • Honest
  • Authentic
  • Coming from a place of love

If your speaking style meets this criteria for the most part, trying to understand the other person’s lack of engagement can be another route to take. Arrogance, pride, defensiveness, boredom and not wanting to be wrong are just a few reasons people tune-out.

Listening is, in fact, hard work and many people don’t realize they aren’t good listeners. As the speaker, your job is to be sure you are communicating as clearly as possible and evaluate if there is a different/better way to get your point across.

Struggling with listening or being heard? Reach out for a complimentary consultation with Kelly now!

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Meditation. Mindfulness. Money Do these 3 M’s Belong together?

Meditation. When I hear this word I think of people sitting immobile for hours at a time, dressed in white. Possibly in India or an ashram. They are not business people with busy family lives, but people with time on their hands and no kids.

What I don’t vision is a busy entrepreneur taking time out of their day to sit for hours on end to experience a Zen state.

Yet, studies show time and again the incredible benefits of achieving mindfulness, which can be done through meditation.

Meditation to grow your business

A study in the journal Psychological Science shows that mindfulness can help us conquer common “blind spots”, which can amplify or diminish our own flaws. Mindfulness can help us see beyond our distorted lenses to recognize the truth.

Another study in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience shows that the benefits of meditation continue on throughout the day. According to the study, mindfulness meditation can help you focus and remain calm because it helps the brain have better control over processing pain and emotions.

What happens when we bring meditation, mindfulness and money together and work towards achieving a common goal?

Mindfulness is a state of being. Observing where you are and bringing your attention to being aware of yourself. Meditation is a common way of being mindful.

Taking even a few minutes each day to slow down your thoughts, stop thinking about the 15 things you need to do before noon, and become conscious of your self-talk can completely change the results in your business. Studies show practicing mindfulness can lead you to be more focused, less stressed, and have a greater ability to prioritize effectively.

The truth is you don’t need to spend hours at a time meditating to create change in your life. This week’s Fresh Tracks interview with May McCarthy teaches us a simple process to being mindful by setting aside a few minutes each morning.

More meditation = more money?

Do you think you might make more money if you were less stressed, more focused and calm, and had a better understanding of your emotions in the moment?

I know when I am mindful I make decisions faster and with more clarity. I am able to be more focused on achieving my goals and not get distracted as easily. All of which ultimately leads to my ability to serve more people and make more money.

Not sure what to do or how to meditate? Join me in a free guided meditation the first of each month and get a taste of what’s possible.

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Beyond Goal Setting: 3 Daily Habits for Building a Thriving Business

There is a reason why some business owners are more successful than others. It’s not because the successful one’s work harder or are smarter, but it’s where they focus their attention. It’s how they take control of their mind and ultimately their day right from the start. The truth is changing your results can happen without effort by changing a few steps in how you start your work day. And the best part is you can do it in less than five minutes.

Beyond setting goals, which are usually done once a year and are often soon forgotten, there are daily habits those that live and create with intention incorporate into their routine each morning. These habits make an incalculable difference in their results.

Let’s take a look at what you can do……

  1. Focus on yourself and mindset. Clear your head, take a few deep breathes, and slow your mind down. Take control, even if it’s just for a few minutes, of those run-away thoughts and the negative self-talk that can easily take control of your day.
  2. Intention for client care and client attraction. Taking care of your existing clients and focusing on attracting new clients should be a daily action. By taking just a few minutes to set an intention and focus on how you intend to serve and keep your existing clients can make or break your business. In addition, knowing that the right, new clients are on their way to you now allows you to set a tone of gratitude and prioritize what’s important to your business for the day.
  3. Focus on a healthy flow of money and circulation. In every business money should circulate. Similar to how blood circulates in your body and keeps you alive, money is what gives a business its life force. Set a focus that today and each day you will make money. You can certainly be specific about the amount you intend to bring in. The important part is to feel and set the tone for an abundant and profitable day.

You can do this in five minutes or less each morning before you begin your work day. To help with this, I am now doing a monthly business meditation for all subscribers. For free. I would love for you to join me! Register here to receive the link to access the meditation.

Want more? Kelly does an in-depth teaching on this topic in the Fresh Tracks with Kelly Robbins podcast.

Ready to create your Fresh Tracks? Reach out for a complimentary consultation with Kelly now!

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Why ‘Just Be Yourself’ is Terrible Advice


Have you ever gotten the advice to “just be yourself”? It’s probably one of the most common bits of advice given, particularly when speaking with someone who is nervous about doing something new. And while ‘just be yourself’ sounds great, is it really good advice? Do we even know what being our self means in a moment that we’ve not experienced before?

This advice is often given when we are nervous and stepping outside of our comfort zone. The thing is when I am trying something new I don’t know who I am in that situation. I’m cutting Fresh Tracks. I’ve not grown into it yet to know who I am.

My experience is that the process of discovering who I am, particularly when doing something I haven’t done before, takes me jumping in, feeling my way around, and THEN becoming clear and confident about who I am. I don’t know who I am before experiencing this situation because I haven’t experienced it before. What if I am a mess – do I really want to just be myself in this situation?

A better piece of advice is to ‘be my best’. I may be a mess, but in my best moments I can pull myself together to give it my all.

An example I’ll share is when I started producing this newsletter 15 years ago. It was called The Small Business Buzz back then and the first several months it was terrible. It took time for me to discover my voice, narrow down what I had to say and why it was important, and share my message in a confident and powerful way.

I couldn’t be myself because I wasn’t sure who that was. I started writing and producing by taking action and doing the best I could based on what I knew to do. During the stumbling around process I discovered who I am as a writer and a publisher. I didn’t know ahead of time because I had no sense of self about it.

Letting go of who you aren’t to discover who you are

As a Fresh Tracker learning how to be yourself is part of the journey in creating Fresh Tracks. Creating those Fresh Tracks means living and being MORE of who you are right now. For most of us this is a process of uncovering who we aren’t in order to be more of who we are. Stepping into new and unknown territories is part of how we discover who we are in the first place.

Is there a difference between being myself, meaning who I am right now, and being who I choose to be? Perhaps who I choose to be is a stronger, more confidence person? Or I may try different ways of being me and see what is most comfortable and stick with that.

Don’t take the advice “just be yourself”. You can choose who you are in each moment and be authentic at the same time. Instead, I encourage you to “be your best self”.

Ready to create your Fresh Tracks? Reach out for a complimentary consultation with Kelly now!

How to Take Advantage of the Booming Podcasting Industry While it’s Hot

Are you ready to jump on the Podcasting Bandwagon? As predicted last year, podcasting itself is taking off like hotcakes! Now is a terrific time to take advantage of its surge in popularity, and there are several ways to do this.

First, let’s take a look at why this industry is so hot. Podcast listening grew by a phenomenal 23% from 2015-2016, according to study by Edison Research. As a small business owner producing a podcast is a fairly inexpensive, easy to produce tool to reach prospects. Beware not everyone can or should have their own podcast! Take it from my own experience, publishing a quality podcast takes time and dedication.

I wasn’t able to find any hard and true numbers, however, in 2013, iTunes reported they had 250,000 podcasts. I started mine in 2015, so we know the number is higher by at least one now :). Understand all of these show producers are actively seeking professionals to interview with topics their listeners are interested in. Some of them need you!

I started the Fresh Tracks with Kelly Robbins podcast in early 2015, and it was a much bigger project than I had expected! It’s time consuming, is a different way of selling than the e-zine and content writing I’d been doing for the previous 15 years, and requires skill-sets such as interviewing others and brainstorming topics to cover. All of which is much more time-consuming than I anticipated!

Don’t despair if producing a podcast isn’t your cup of tea! There are other ways you can jump on the podcasting bandwagon besides starting your own.

The best way to take advantage of the  growing podcasting phenomenon is to be interviewed on a podcast as a featured guest.

Being interviewed is a terrific and inexpensive way to grow your business and position yourself as an expert! In the two years I’ve been producing the Fresh Tracks podcast I’ve interviewed some amazing guests. I’ve also interviewed some people that were incredibly BAD interviews. There is a definite right and wrong way to be a great guest and promote your business at the same time via a podcast or radio show.

If you would like to learn more about how to make money being interviewed on podcasts – Check out my newest training Grow your business being interviewed on podcasts here.

Another way to take advantage of the podcasting boom is to advertise on a show. If there is a show you like or you know your clients listen to approach the show’s host and make an offer.

The growing podcast sensation is just one of the many new trends you can and should take advantage of in your marketing this year. Check out the other four in our free 2017 Marketing Planning Guide here now.

 

Finding Your Powerful Voice

Your Powerful Voice

What does it mean to ‘use your powerful voice’?

My first thought is which voice? My writing voice or my speaking voice? What does it means to have a voice as a writer? Who am I and what do I have to say? How is what I have to say any different than what anyone else has to say? Is how I speak different than how I write? Should it be?

In writing I believe there is a maturation in developing your voice and discovering who you are and what you stand for. How you view the world is different than how anyone else views it and learning to express yourself through writing can take time and experience.

Your voice is as unique as you are and stepping into your powerful voice is more a process of uncovering it rather than creating it.

Your voice is as much a part of you as your legs or your hair. It is a part of your soul yearning to break free and breathe. To be witnessed and heard. To expand into its maturity and express itself. When you find your writing voice the reader often feels your authority, power, honesty, authenticity. A connection is made.

And then we have our physical voice. As young children we first learn to speak and use our vocal cords and quickly learn the power we yield over the adults in our lives. We use our voice to get attention by crying, screaming, even whispering. We learn ‘inside voice vs outside voice’. We may learn to not use our voice to stay out of trouble. Some of us were taught to be seen and not heard. All of these things effect how we use our voice today – which is mostly unconscious until we start examining how effective our communication is.

An important thing to note…while speech is how you use words, voice is how you create sound. The use of your physical voice is completely different than your writing voice, yet can be just as powerful a way to make a connection.

I spoke with voice coach and co-founder of articulaterc, Hilary Blair, on the power of our voices and she tells us that we can use our voice as a wall to hide behind and not be seen – which leads us to not feeling heard. The frustration is that we may not know why we aren’t being heard. You can listen to the interview on the Fresh Tracks with Kelly Robbins show here.

As business owners, as Fresh Trackers, as adults in today’s world, using your voice is a powerful tool. We use our voice to close sales. To share ideas. To influence others and to change lives. We use our voice to stay in connection with others.

If you want to be heard and make a positive difference in your life and the lives of others you can’t just raise your voice. You have to share what you have to say in a powerful and impactful way. Discovering your powerful voice plays an important role on the journey creating Fresh Tracks.

Reach out for a free consultation if you’d like to discover how you can use your voice in a more powerful way now!

Announcing the 10th Annual 2017 Marketing Planning Guide

Not many will argue that 2017 is different. It started off with an energetic tidal wave of change and emotion and I don’t see it slowing down in the next several months.

In case you haven’t heard, we have a new President in the United States, our increased use of mobile devices has dramatically changed the way we purchase, and the growing freelance and on-demand markets continue to change how we make decisions and buy almost everything.

Like it or not, all of this effects you and how you make money.

Equipped with this basic information it’s time you examine how you are presenting yourself differently this year. We are already a few weeks into the year and the energy is completely different than last year. Are you? Is what you are doing matching the new energy of 2017? Do you know what do you need to do? Where to start?

If not (or you are just curious about the top few trends this year) check out our annual 2017 Marketing Planning Guide.

Growing Your Business in 2017

From our use of emotion in marketing to who and how we network to the actual tools we use to connect with our tribe — this year’s 2017 Marketing Planning Guide is sure to take you in the direction to profits, planning and action!

Now is the time to download our free annual Marketing Planning Guide. After months of research I share with you the top five things you can do in your business to attract your ideal clients. And, as always, all of the tips are low-cost or free!

Download your free 2017 Marketing Planning Guide from Kelly Robbins Coaching here now.

Here’s to all of us living on purpose, creating our lives with intention, and trusting our next step now!

Kelly Robbins, MA
Creating the Confidence to Cut Fresh Tracks

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How Honest Are You in Business?

As seekers of truth and someone striving to live a conscious life I imagine that more often than not you consider your words before speaking them. You pride yourself on not lying. I will also bet that you think before you take actions and strive to always do what’s right.

This is an honorable, compassionate and accepting way to live and be with others and it builds a strong foundation for cutting Fresh Tracks. What you put out you get back.

How does being honest effect your business?

But how does that apply to your business? How does being honest and acting in integrity affect your business results, including the amount of money you make, the clients you attract, and the overall success of your business?

I believe there are good people, people like you, striving to do what’s right, and there are situations where you are not being in integrity with truth and you don’t realize it.

So I am taking it upon myself to bring it to your attention today.

It’s in the seemingly small details that don’t require too much thought and frankly appear harmless that get you out of integrity and in fact end up with you attracting what you don’t want.

Because the actions are small and seemingly harmless we don’t realize the effect they have on our outcomes.

Let’s start with the internet. You may follow and receive information and free training from e-zines like this from me and other experts you enjoy.

Take a look at the actions you take and how you honor the sacredness of the information you receive and share.

For example, if someone (like me for example) is offering a free training such as a report, webinar, or teleclass I may not charge money for it, but I ask for your contact information in order to receive the information. That is ‘the price’ to receive the information.

Don’t make up a fake name, put zeros in the phone number field, or in any way fake out the system to get the information you want without providing the asked for information.

It’s unethical and dishonest to do so.

Here is the truth about business

It is dishonest to put Darth Vader in the name field and receive my manifesto that I spent two weeks writing. It is dishonest to put ‘I don’t give out my phone number’ in the phone number field and still have access to my live training and coaching that I spent time researching and practicing for days before delivering the material. It is deceitful to make up an address just so the fields are completed so you can look at the copy I wrote and write something similar for yourself.

Many of us justify our actions as harmless, even innocent, because there is no money involved. You may tell yourself you’re not hurting anyone – ‘it’s just a free training’ you say to justify your actions. However, not providing the information requested is in fact stealing.

4agreementsThe price I am charging for my 47 years of training, for the hundreds of thousands of dollars I have spent on my education and my business and personal development, for the time I spent away from my children and my family to be where I am today, the price I am charging for all of this is your name and phone number.

If you don’t provide what I am asking you to ‘pay’ you are stealing. And you definitely are not being impeccable with your word.

There is a book called ‘The Four Agreements’ by Don Miguel Ruiz. If you haven’t read it yet, I recommend you do now. The first of the Four Agreements is to ‘Be impeccable with your word’.

Being impeccable with your word is quite an undertaking! And for the most part I believe we all strive to be in integrity with ourselves and others and there are simply some things we do that we never thought of as dishonest.

It’s the little things that get us.

And yes, by giving me your phone number there is a chance I will call you and make sure you received the recording and see if you have any questions I can answer. It’s called doing business.

There is a price for the exchange of energy. As your business grows and prospers you will also not give information away for free (even for this e-zine you paid with your email address and first name) and it is a healthy and sacred way to help others and benefit yourself at the same time.

I share this rant with you because I have started unsubscribing all the Charlie Browns that subscribe to my e-zine. And the folks that register for advanced training and give fake phone numbers and addresses – I am not sending you the training.

The truth is I work incredibly hard to raise my vibration and be a source of strength and wisdom for myself, my family and you – my tribe. I fiercely protect who I surround myself with in my day to day life, both physically and socially, and I am now doing the same for my list. My tribe. I am protecting all of us and the energy of our tribe.

Think about this as you do business with others throughout your week and how you expect to be treated as you grow your business and create your own Fresh Tracks. Are you impeccable with your word? Who are you allowing in your space and how you are allowing them to treat you?