Say Goodbye to Defeating Words

quit-2

Our lives are shaped by our thoughts, but our words speak volumes about ourselves.

Our words affect those that hear them.

Our words send us in directions we either do or do not want to go.

I quit. I give up. I retreat. I failed. No, no, and no!

When we quit, we move on to something new. Right? We never quit, we get better. We have revelations, we move towards our goals, and we march onwards.

I love to throw up my hands and wave to (whomever) is behind me, “See y’all later. I am moving forward.” This doesn’t put me on a higher level than anyone else, it simply means I am through with dragging my feet. I am through with sharing negative talk. I see a new path, and I am ON IT. Thank the good Lord for that insight. Adios amigos! See you later.

I remind myself when I am NOT ON IT:

  • I am enough (beyond God).
  • I am protected.
  • I am creative. I nurture my gifts and talents.
  • I shape my own destiny.
  • I am surrounded by love.
  • I great this day with curiosity and wonder.
  • I have the power to transform my life.
  • I am at peace.

This does become second nature. Concentrating on ability and self-worth is healthy, both mentally and physically, and it is catching.

When we stand firm and confirmed in peace, it spreads to others in ripples and waves.

Let’s do this together.

 

 

Client Appreciation

virtual assistant clients www.relianceoutsourcing.com

I am totally aware of what I should be sharing in social media marketing, but today I am breaking the rules. I am not focusing on me or how glorious my services are.

When I decided to fire up my business, Reliance Outsourcing, it was after I listened to the words of one person, a Virtual Assistant Coach. She said, “I serve others and I love my work.” It was a simple statement, but it sunk in as a conviction to me.

I am an encourager. I have four blogs published. Each blog steers toward a central point no-matter what my role is at that time (farmer, author, life coach, virtual assistant). When I am inspired, my fingers fly to the keyboard to share. To be able to encourage and assist people, to make their business lives less stressful, is incredibly satisfying to me. Enough about me, though, this is about others…you…my clients!

So, yes, I do have the best clients in the world. They have chosen me and I love to partner with them in today’s business world.

When I tell complete strangers, “We are all in this together. In this world. Helping each other. Taking care of our piece of the pie.” I mean that! The world goes ’round with collaboration!

So, I dedicate this day to my clients, whom I truly appreciate. You are the best!

National Be On Purpose Month

to-bali

National Be On Purpose Month fits right into my chain of thinking.

Many of us turn over a new leaf in January. We exercise, eat healthier, set new goals, and overall we feel energized to start a new year. So, why not fire it off with Be On Purpose Month?

When I saw the Be On Purpose title, it plopped me back down in the middle of a thought that has rolled around in my head for several months. Be real. Just be.

We are busy people. I am not sure what we are trying to accomplish when we barrel down the highway at break-neck speeds, while shouting angry obscenities at the person in front of us, who by the way, is cruising right at the speed limit. Or, we become irritated standing in the grocery store line because it might shave an extra 10 minutes off of our day. So, why not have someone hand-pick and bag your groceries so all you have to do is run into the store, or drive through a lane to pick the goods up? This will allow you to…well…be busier!

Living on purpose, in my estimation, goes being just being. Purpose is summed up in two definitions: the reason for which something is created, or someone’s intention or objective.

Logically, I have no intention of hurrying, or being busier. I embrace the intention to live my life the best that I can live it, not based on my circumstances, but based on who I am and what I was designed for. I am a wife, mother, business owner, grandmother, and a person that loves nature, reading, writing, and (shhh!) numbers (hence the bookkeeping). Where does being purposely busy fit in? Exactly. It does not.

Intentional living, being who we are, notice the word intentional (not just being).

Just be.

Scratch off being on purpose for one month. Be on purpose this year. Scratch that, be on purpose.

I am on it.

Are You An Organized Small Business Owner?

organize small biz www.relianceoutsourcing.comDonna Maria Johnson, CEO of Indie Business Network, said to me, “You are organized.” Yes, I am. I go nuts when I feel I am wading through chaos. Chaos does not produce clarity.

She asked me how often I check my email. I replied,”You would be surprised.” Not much of an answer? Later, I thought about my response. I do have a system.

As small business owners we cannot watch our phones and tablets all day long. We cannot afford to not pay attention to our email, but we should never check it continually, or as the whim strikes.

Here is the scoop, everything that we do can be maximized. So, you do not want to miss important emails? Use one particular email address for your “hot” items. Or, use several email addresses for different systems or products that you have in place. Even if you don’t do this, set a schedule to check your email. If you insist on checking email twice a day, then schedule in the time to do so. Do.not.check.your.email at any other time!

Social media is another example where we are able to maximize time. Applications that social media to be scheduled are excellent. Unless you have the time to sit at the screen and post social media updates all day long (who does?), use the tools that are at your fingertips — automated and scheduled social media. Show up in person on social media at scheduled times. Don’t let Facebook or Pinterest drain hours off of your day. Set the timer for 5 or 10 minutes, or less. Do the job, whatever needs to be done on social media, and leave.

Stay organized. If we aren’t organized, we know nothing. We do not function. Take the time to plan, strategize and maximize working hours. When we don’t focus, nothing gets accomplished except confusion and frustration. Start a planner, grab some colorful folders, markers, whatever it takes to lift up and motivate! Do not rely on memory. I love using a ringed binder for a planner. When a new idea strikes me, I write it down. When the focus shifts, or when a phone call needs to be added in, I change the schedule. I use small “sticky” notes in a pinch, but at the end of the day my small notes are shredded and the important notes are written into appropriate places in my planner (the schedule – today, tomorrow, and next week, biz ideas for the future, writing ideas, etc.). I also use several small white boards. When I want something to stick in my head, I write it on a board. It stays there, close-by and visible, until it becomes habit!

What is your purpose? Why do you do what you do? Do you serve others? I hope you answered yes to this, and remember this is your key focus. If you are organized, you will serve others with a sense of, “I love what I do,” rather than, “I cannot do another thing, and I am not sure I can do this at all.”Let your joy shine, entrepreneurs, solo-preneurs, micro-preneurs, and author-preneurs! Make ’em wear sunglasses!

 

How You Can Add Extra Hours To Your Business Day

ww-relianceoutsourcing-com-3

Imagine this, I hand you a business card. It reads: I can help you find that extra hour you need in your day. Call me.

What would you accomplish if you had that extra hour?

What if you did nothing during that hour and somebody else did the work for you?

What if you set that one hour aside to do what you dream of doing for your business, and then you doubled or tripled that one hour each week?

This is where a virtual assistant (VA) steps in. You outsource that one hour to a VA. You purchase an hour, or two, or however many hours you may need, or a package of hours (to be used in a day, week, month or a year), and then you do something else while the VA manages the work that keeps you from doing what you REALLY want or need to be doing.

A VA works with you, as a partner via contract, and often this is done remotely. A VA is your trusted right hand. Your back up.

Your Virtual Assistant does not cost you insurance, a desk, a computer, nor the supervision that goes along with hiring an employee.

On my desk today I have several contracts: re-writing and editing a book, bookkeeping, social media management, customer contacts (email),  administrative work (behind the scene sales), and content writing. These are my narrowed down niches, but I do more. I focus on assisting pastors and churches, small businesses (and especially makers of handmade products), writers (and those that want to write but need assistance), and speakers.

If I cannot take on the job that you need completed, I can help you find a VA that can.

Welcome to my world of Virtual Assistance. It rocks. Call me.

Mary

(Check out these links: Michael Hyatt’s Experience Using A Virtual Assistant, 7 Reasons You Should Hire a Virtual Assistant , and Several Reasons Pastors May Need a Virtual Assistant by Thom S. Rainer, and Chris Ducker’s 101 Tasks You Can Outsource to Virtual Staff to Grow Your Business)

How To Construct A Blog Post

how to construct a blog post www.relianceoutsourcing.com

Blog writing can be as simple and inexpensive as sitting down and writing about a topic using a free blog platform, however, for authors and businesses there are crucial steps to follow to ensure your blog posts are readily found by others through search engines, also to make sure your writing falls within a format that others enjoy reading.

Blog Post Basics:

Title – Create a title that is interesting, to the point, and captivating.

Create the Post

  • The first paragraph should be engaging, relevant to the content of your post, and written in your personal point of view.
  • Guide the reader along through subsequent paragraphs. Paragraphs that are easy to read and not overly long. Long paragraphs should be broken down into smaller points of interest – into digestible chunks of information.
  • Use points of interest, numbering systems, bold type, and bullet points to break the information down into visually appealing steps. Actions steps and lists are beneficial to the flow of your blog content, especially when you are sharing how-to information.

Graphics – Always add a related graphic or video for interest – to attract the visual side of the reader. Optimize photos and graphics by adding descriptions and keywords, with a link back to your page or blog.

Tags and Keywords – SEO! Always add relevant tag words and keywords. Blogs are practically ground zero for search engine optimization. If you want people to find the post that you’ve written, SEO is a critical part of your post. In the body of your post, link to other posts that you’ve written, products that you sell (such as books, if you are an author), and collaborate with other bloggers — linking to each other’s post.

Close Strong – Sum up your purpose in the final paragraph and address your readers for engagement. Ask questions and invite conversation. Urge readers to share their viewpoint or comments.

Blog Topic Collecting Tip – A frequent blogger (a writer who publishes regular blog posts) collects ideas as they work and play. This becomes natural to the blogger. The blogger saves these thoughts and ideas, blog post titles, and short quips or paragraphs for future blog topics.

Two rules of thumb that I find helpful when I both read and write a blog post:

  1. Keep the post to no more than 500 words. Most of us have grown used to reading short articles online. We do not want to read posts the size of small books.
  2. Never apologize for not publishing regular posts. Your blog is your connection with the world. Through your blog, you share how you feel and what you know. Apologies are not beneficial to you or your business in a Google search!
  3. Make leaving comments easy. Do not overtly require information from the reader, like a floating signature form that is difficult – if not impossible – to maneuver around. What do I do in these cases? I never visit the blog again.

Did you find this article helpful? I look forward to your comments – your tips – your experience.

Happy blogging!

There’s Small Biz Power in Pickles

small biz pickles www.relianceoutsourcing.comYou can’t depend entirely on someone else for an income.

You can keep the day job, but the smart thing is to own several income streams.

A hobby easily turns into a business. Make soap. Sew aprons (a seriously popular item). Build websites. Create graphics. Teach your hobby, or craft, to someone else.

I’ll go back and scratch off the word can’t from my first sentence. You can depend upon someone else for income, but what if that one thing goes away?

I recently purchased a jar of pickles. Trust me, I paid way too much for this jar of pickles. I plopped down close to $5.00 more than I would for a name-brand jar in a grocery store.

Here’s the deal. The pickles are attractive. Yes, I said that. The pickles contain garlic gloves and pepper flakes, and they look like something straight out of my grandmother’s cellar (less the label).

The most important thing is, these pickles are handpicked, handpacked, and this beyond middle-aged woman stood outside in the heat to sell her wares. This is handmade to the max. What else? I adored the woman’s bright purple embroidered Mexican dress.

She grabbed a paper plate, opened an ice chest, and didn’t skip a beat. She barely took a breath as she placed one pickle sample after another on the plate, describing each one as if we were attending a pickle party. I was impressed with her salesmanship, right there in a roadside stand on a hot arid central Texas day.

Yes, pickles can be an income stream. Why not?

Do you buy from small businesses? Think about it.

The pickle lady insisted on having me try her fig bread. Talk about yummy! I didn’t purchase any bread because I was well into the double digit dollars with my jar of pickles and two tomatoes (that didn’t come from her garden…most likely from Mexico). Still, this little fruit stand was her small business and I liked knowing that my money went directly into her pocket that day. She was one enthusiastic woman!

What does this have to do with multiple income streams?

Small business, creativity, enthusiasm, and unlimited ways to make money…and to put a smile on someone else’s face while doing it.