Friday, 10 December 2010

"Help! I need somebody"

I've discovered that I have what is known as a portfolio career. I didn't know that until last week, but apparently that is what I have. For others who haven't heard of it before, it is one whereby you do a variety of different jobs or skills, all of which you should love (otherwise you might as well just to do one thing you hate full time!)

The common theme through my 'portfolio' is that of helping people. While pondering this I realised that while we all like to help people we usually wait to be asked. And one thing we tend not to do is ask for help when we need it. Hm... a bit of tricky situation there then.

I do a fair amount of business networking to help my businesses grow and develop. The main questions we ask of our networking colleagues are, 'How can I help you?' and 'What are you looking for to help you develop your business?'

How many people right now could do with some help in their job, career or business venture? Would they tell you if they did need help? Would they ask you for help directly? Probably not. But I'm sure that if you knew more about what they did you would be more than happy to refer people to them who could benefit from what they offer.

Would you rather a large corporate, or even a small business owner who is a complete stranger to you benefit from your custom? Or would you prefer to help a friend out in their business? How would you feel if a friend was struggling, or worse, lost their business or job, and then you realised that whatever they were involved in, you could have helped them out by using them instead of another company, tradesperson etc.?

As a trainer with a major network marketing company I, and my colleagues often find a common theme of discussion at trainings. That discussion centres around individuals wondering why on earth some of their nearest and dearest won't try the services they are offering, when they will so clearly benefit from them. They feel as though some of their closest friends and family are saying that they don't trust them when they recommend what we have to offer. This doesn't just happen in our business, or even in our industry, it can be just the same for employed people. To be honest, many people don't even know what their friends or family actually do for a living, let alone know whether they could give them their custom.

For anyone who has ever been in this situation, in any type of business or job, I would like to set your mind at rest as to why it might be that someone close to you isn't one of your customers even when you have explained how it could benefit them. I have heard it said many times by a very eloquent speaker that I know and have the pleasure of working with, “No-one wants to be a part of your experiment” and this may be one explanation, especially if you are just starting out. However, I think that in some cases it can be that no-one wants to be a part of your failure. Now that isn't to say that if you're just starting out in a new venture, or even if you have been in business or your job a while, that you are going to be a failure. It simply means that they are thinking,
'As your parent/sibling/friend, I don't want to use you for XYZ or buy your product because if you were to fail in this venture, I would have been a part of it and as I'd been a customer of yours I would have been endorsing your failure. That would hurt me because I care about you too much so I'd rather not be involved at all'
To be honest this is probably very subconscious and they don't even realise they are thinking it.

Sometimes it can be quite different however. Chatting with a friend in my networking team a couple of months ago he told me an interesting story about a friend of his who he fell out with. My colleague had started working in our business and wanted to help this friend out by showing him how he could save some money at home. The friend took umbrage at this and thought it was terrible that he was 'selling' to friends. Interesting, he would rather pay through the nose for something to a large faceless corporate stranger than save some money and see his friend be successful in his business? Wow!

I think it's time to have a re-think. I think that we should encourage and support our friends and family and do all we can to help them succeed, especially in such trying economic times. We probably do just this in daily life and family stuff anyway, we just don't think about it from a work or business point of view.

So here's the challenge: We are coming up to a time when alot of socialising is done. You will probably meet up with people you haven't seen for a long time and maybe meet new people at Christmas and new year events. You will undoubtedly ask them how work is going, and do you think some people might be having a tough time,whether they are self employed, a business owner or an employee? Would you like to be a part of their success?

Why not make the time to ask your friend or relative to tell you more about what they do and how they are looking to grow their business in 2011. Then ask them questions such as:
'How can I help you?'
'What would be your ideal customer?'
'What type of business are you looking for?'
'Maybe I might know someone or could keep an eye out for opportunities for you, let me take a couple of your cards or your email address so that I can let you know if I do'.

Maybe this person could help you out now, or at some point in the future. Can you support them in their business or job by giving them your custom?

Wouldn't it be nice to know that you could be a part of helping them through a tough time. Wouldn't it be nice for them to know that you care? Wouldn't you rather help them to succeed than a stranger?

Let's help each other to be more successful.

Thursday, 2 December 2010

What did you say?

On December 10th 2010 a phenomenon known as 'mercury retrograde' starts. It continues until December 29th. This is a time where, from our position on Earth, Mercury appears to be moving backwards on its path across the sky.

Personally I have found that this can cause problems so I'm just giving you a heads up. Whether you believe in astrological influences or not, it's worth making a note.

Mercury is a planet relating to communication and when it's in retrograde this is where there are problems. Computers, the internet and phones will go funky, emails won't arrive, travel arrangements will go pear-shaped and miscommunications can occur.

Now I used to ignore all of this thinking that it wouldn't affect me if I didn't acknowledge it. Unfortunately that didn't work so I had to learn to go with the natural flow of things and be more understanding of it.

How? Well. allow more time for journeys, jobs and projects. Save computer backups regularly (mercury retrograde can often see us having to do the same work more than once), clarify points of discussion and instruction with others to avoid misunderstandings and miscommunication. Write down instructions or have them emailed to you(if your email is working).

Sometimes mercury retrograde causes our perception or interpretation of an event or conversation to be skewed so don't rush into an arguement, seek clarity first until you understand the situation or facts fully.

Being more in the moment and focussing more fully on what you're doing will help greatly, and could in fact be the very lesson to take from this time. Along with being slow to judge, react or jump to conclusions which are all positive traits that we could do well to adopt and take forward on a daily basis as mercury begins to move forward again.

Use this time also to reorganise, reassess and reflect on your life and prepare for the year ahead.

And for those of you thinking that you've already noticed some of mercury's little tricks lately you'd be right. The affects of mercury retrograde started around the 22nd November and will continue in what's known as its 'post-retrograde shadow' until about the 18th January 2011, albeit with a lessening degree of influence.

There are loads of astrology sites and blogs which go into loads more detail if you want find out more. For now, tread carefully, be observant and take your time. Go with the flow of the universe and learn its lessons along the way.

Bright Blessings

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Rave Review!

We've just had fantastic news that our book, 'Help! I Think I Might Be Psychic' has had a brilliant reader review in 'Spirit & Destiny' magazine.
Giving it 4 stars out of 5 the reader, an executive coach from Northampton was wonderfully complimentary. Her comments were completely in line with the way we wanted the book to come across to our readers:
"a style that's easy to dip into",
"comprehensive and concise, it's a practical and lively read",
"a good stepping stone to other areas", and the best bit,
"A highly readable guide which captured my interest and answered alot of questions I had with warmth and enthusiasm"

It's exciting to see our own work in print, it's wonderful that our book sells every month through the world wide web, but to see the positive impact that we can have and get feedback confirming that we have achieved what we set out to is the pinnacle as far as we are concerned.

Best get on with the next one now!

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Leverage - make the most out of what you've got!

I was privileged to join a number of lovely ladies at a Wire networking meeting yesterday in Penkridge, Staffs. I talked to them briefly about something that I'd discovered and I thought, in the spirit of the talk I would share it on here too. I was talking about leverage. While this can be focussed on small business owners or the self-employed, I think that it's also useful for individuals. We all need to earn a living don't we? We need to pay our bills and also to live, to have a fulfilling life and maybe to contribute back to society too. So, I'm going to talk about money for a while, hope that's ok.

Alot of businesses are struggling, alot of households will also find things get tougher over the next few months, and possibly, for some, years. So, I believe leverage is a key to help anyone not only ride out the tough times, but also, help themselves to have a better life all round.

Could you do with an additional income in to your home, or your business?

Who is in a position where they work for an hour, get paid for an hour? Do the job once, get paid once? Unfortunately that means that you limit your income. You do, you limit your income to the number of hours you can work, or by the number of products/jobs you can do. Unless you get a pay rise,or increase the cost of your products, but your income is still limited by these factors.

Who is in a position where they are time poor?
Who is in a position where they have something they want to share with the world and don't know where to start or how to do it? Are you limiting yourself to sharing something wonderful with only a handful of people? Would you like to reach a larger market?

If any of these apply to you, then please, ask yourself this question:

The following questions may help you to answer it.

Have I got something that I've already done or produced that could be turned into something else? Such as articles, newsletters, presentations, talks, handbooks, leaflets, artwork, random scribblings.

What am I an expert in?

What do I have knowledge of or a passion for?

What would I really like to share with the world?

One way to leverage your time is to become involved with a network marketing business. This is recommended by Donald Trump, Robert Kyosaki and many others who are very wealthy individuals in their own right. But you have to find the one that's right for you. Personally I am involved with TelecomPlus plc which is service based not product based so you don't have to keep re-selling product but you still generate a passive monthly income. I get paid whether I work or not. I believe in the company and the service that it offers and find it extremely ethical. Saving people money in the current economy is a no brainer if you ask me. (If you would like to know more take a look at this
website and click on 'earn with us' for a short video presentation - UK only)

Another is to create products that you can sell online. Lets have a look at some these options:

The Written word
Books – leaflets – downloads of valuable information or advice & e-books

The Spoken Word
podcasts, audio books, mp3 downloads, cd's

Workshops /Talks/ Presentations - do you do any of these? Can you turn them into videos to promote yourself, podcasts or other audio products. Can you sell other products in the room when you're putting on these events.

This isn't just about money. It's about getting your message across to as many different people as possible, and by using these different methods you can do just that. A busy person on the road all day may not get time to read a book, but would be happy to listen to a CD in the car. So you maximise your market with different types of products. If you've got something worth saying, use today's technology and say it to the world. And if it really is worth sharing then you can earn from it. You have just as much right to a good lifestyle as anyone else. And realistically in the UK, most individuals and households at this moment in time will benefit from any little extra.

"Whoever renders service to many puts himself in line for greatness - great wealth, great return, great satisfaction, great reputation, and great joy." - Jim Rohn

So, leverage your time, maybe turn the TV or computer off and go spend that time more wisely by planning how you can put some of this into practise.

web resources that you might find ueful when creating some of the products mentioned: for self publishing/Print On Demand/e-books for e-books
cpi- anthony rowe for short runs of books & print on demand publishing – Print on demand publishing – produce on demand CD's and DVD's – expert in kunaki, free 'how to' guide or he'll do it for you for about $10 – pay per track, royalty free music loops for background music for DVD's and events or presentations

Helen Leathers

you can view my products here

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Ever thought you might write a book?

When I get talking to people about the books that I've written, (currently 4 on sale, 1 in the wings and 1 in the process of being written) a very high percentage of those people say something like, 'I've always wanted to write a book'. They (whoever 'they' are) do say that there's a book in everyone, don't 'they'?

So, I thought I'd put some bits together about what helped me to write my books and maybe it will help all of you out there to get writing. You might not ever publish your book, but being creative is about so much more than that. It might be therapeutic or cathartic, or just a big challenge for you to produce something.

One day I just got up and knew I had to write. I was inspired, and I could see, in my head how it had to be. I wrote solidly for three days and wrote the first half of 'The Spiritual and Psychic Development Workbook'. I had never done anything like it before. I didn't think I'd have anything more left to write about but I am continually inspired and haven't stopped writing since. I love it, and I love that my work helps and inspires others.

So what are my top tips? Here you go...

1. I wrote about a subject I loved, felt passionate about, researched, and had practical experience of.
2. I had a strong desire to share my knowledge with others.
3. I allowed the creative process to happen in it’s own way. For me, when I felt inspired to write, I simply took up a pen and wrote.
4. Once I had enough material and a clear outline, I set myself deadlines / a project plan, to ensure that I got finished. But I didn’t force the creative side.
5. I developed a clear picture of my reader.
6. I got serious about it and developed a plan, not only to finish the book but what to do once it was done.
7. As I wrote I often got new ideas, flashes of inspiration about a new project. I simply made a note of them and carried on with the job in hand.
8. I started writing
9. I carried on writing
10. I finished writing
11. I had a clear vision of what I wanted the book to say to the reader, and how I would say it.
12. I asked for feedback from friends, who would be honest, but didn’t change anything unless the changes fitted in better with my vision.
13. I stopped checking for errors, sometimes you just have to finish and get the book out there.
14. I went on a ‘Market Your Book’ workshop that really helped me with my writing and marketing. And in fact, I came up with new ideas, for more books & projects.

Something that I’ve discovered…
“Anyone can start to write a book, it takes a lot of courage to finish one”
Helen Leathers

Thursday, 22 July 2010

all the small things

I haven't put a blog post up for ages. I 've had a bit of a mental block with it and made it into a much bigger thing that it actually is. And then today I realised that it really isn't a big job to write a blog every now and again, I don't know why I thought it was. It should be short and sweet. While I was doing a bit of preparation for a radio interview next week I was thinking about what the pivotal points in my journey have been. And I realised that it's the little things that count in life, it's the little things that make the big things happen. It's the smallest quote that can have the biggest impact. Big changes follow small moments of clarity or illumination. Life is a series of moments and in every moment change is possible. In every moment is an essence of time that will allow anyone to alter their course, or supercharge their future, or, if they don't see it and make use of it, not. Don't wait for the quantum leap, just do something, anything, however small, but do it now. Keep your mind and eyes open for the moments in your life and who knows where you'll end up?