Posts Tagged ‘entrepreneur’

[Spotlight Interview] Ann Lauren- Brains, Beauty & Confidence in Business!

July 29, 2010

Maria:  Ann it’s so great to have you here today!  I am particularly excited to have you as a [Spotlight] guest because the essence of what you do contributes to and challenges the societal norms of beauty, self-esteem and worth.

Before we fully get into what you’re doing TODAY as a powerhouse female entrepreneur and executive, I would love for you to share how you became an entrepreneur.  You started at age 16…where did this bug come from?

Ann: I started out competing in modeling and beauty pageants style events.

That is when I began to experience “height” discrimination in the entertainment and modeling industry.  Many events and televised model searches have height requirements that prevent those under 5 ft 8 from competing at all.

Maria: How did this prompt you to become an entrepreneur?

Ann: It prompted me because I thought there needs to be a change in the industry itself.  I realized having the USA Petite Model Shows would give me the opportunity to present petite women in a positive manner. At the time I also thought it would be wonderful to launch a fashion magazine as well.

There were so many things I wanted to do.
I had a list of goals and I wanted to try to achieve them over the years. So I started out by producing the USA Petite Model events.  That was as a teenager – 16, 17, 18, 19. I went to college and just did a bunch of stuff at the same time.

Maria: You have a background in marketing both online and offline marketing & publicity. How has that helped you on your journey?

I was the Public Relations Director for the NBA Lakers Happy Hairston Foundation, which is specifically for under privileged kids and putting them through college. I also handled the publicity for Celebrity Gold Tournaments working with top sponsors such as the Hosting Country Clubs, Toyota, Callaway Golf, Evian, Titilist, Nike, Lacoste and ESPN programming. My responsibilities included coordinating the celebrities’ press schedules, tee times for the tournaments, and coordinating television-programming schedules for the celebrities.

I learned so much about events, event promotion and publicity! It was amazing! I was working as an independent consultant at the time.

Maria:  So you’ve never ever done the 9-5 thing?

I never did! It’s actually against my religion! Are you kidding?! I think I’m driven to be an independent thinker, to think outside of the box. I think because I don’t have a set regime in the respect I find it constraining when you work 9-5.

Maria:  I’ve noticed you’re very creative. Very innovative and always looking a new solutions.  Do you think this is a learned behavior or just part of your innate entrepreneurial spirit?

I think it’s from having an entrepreneurial spirit. I have always been creative. I love drawing. I’ve been dreaming about having my own clothing line since I was 12 years old since nothing ever fit me! Shopping for me has always been a challenge. I’d always be making my own clothes. I think I was stuck in Home Ec from 7th grade to 11th grade. I literally know how to draw clothes and make my own patterns- I’ve always been creative in that sense.

Maria: What is your mission with Belle Petite?

I’m looking to create industry acceptance and create a paradigm shift away from what the old standards are; 5’9 or more are really what’s considered fashionable in the clothing and modeling industry. What I think needs to occur is, petite women need to have recognition in the market place. That’s one of the only ways we will see clothing designers actually focus on designing for that marketplace. By having positive representation via vehicles like this magazine that deals with petite clothing issues and concerns. It’s much about changing that ideology. Yet they have a double standard while many of today’s celebrities are in fact petite sized women. But we don’t see them on the runways. It’s kind of strange to me.

Maria: Those situations present their own challenges don’t they?

We have a lot of women running around with confidence issues.  They are literally not happy about being petite. In countries like China they have a complete inferiority situation where people are extending, breaking their legs, cutting their bones to grow themselves taller. That comes from looking at American fashion magazine.

Maria: Do you feel like this is an empowerment issue Ann, to help women resolve their self-esteem issues?

Absolutely, there are many petite women, too many shorter gals who walk around not thinking they are attractive because the are 5’2. They want to be that 5’10. That’s what they grew up looking at in fashion magazines.

Maria:  What advice would you give these women?

Embrace them selves.
Sure tall women are beautiful but petite women are also beautiful. Equally as beautiful. We can wear our clothes every bit as wonderfully as the taller girls; as long as they are proportioned correctly. It’s really just a scaling issue.

Maria:  What is your POWERFUL WHY? What motivates YOU?

I love interacting with women and producing events all around the country.  I love the camaraderie of it.  I enjoy watching women become happy with themselves. Embracing the way they are and the positive things they have to offer.

Beauty is a wonderful thing but intelligence, honor and being authentic is the complete package. You can’t be a one-dimensional person. I think the more confident a woman is, the more beautiful she is.

Maria: You are one of those women who are not only making a change in your local community but on a global scale.  It’s really inspiring and amazing!

Yes the amazing thing is we have so many people jumping on board to support this project. Such as Nia Peeples who is our lifestyle contributor. Guest such as designer Alex Mardikian, author Michael McMillian (“Pink Bat Thinking” & “Paper Airplanes”) have been part of my radio show. Also other contributors are celebrity fashion photographer Peter Baratti and beauty expert, Shonda Chase.

Maria: Can you tell everyone how you are delivering your message?

The Bella Petite Hour Radio show is every Tuesday AmericasWebRadio.com at 10am PST/1pm EST. It’s fashion, entertainment and lifestyle focused – we have professional individuals, celebrities to experts who are featured.

The magazine is online and presented in a digital format. We are looking to officially launch in October of this year. I decided to keep it 100% digital because this is the way the industry is moving.  The digital mediums allow us to archive everything.

BellaPetite.com is the web community – it’s not the magazine so everyone can see what we’re up to!

Maria: If people want to learn more about you and follow you how do they do that?

Just join me at BellaPetite.com or on the Bella Petite Radio hour

Reflections on this interview:
I always think it’s important to acknowledge the courage, persistence and fortitude of the entrepreneurs out there who have such vision.  Ann is a woman to watch.  I have no doubt in my mind that she will continue to build this media empire and influence women in a positive manner.  I myself had spent many years in the fashion industry.  And when it is all said and done, it is a business about helping people look and feel good about themselves.  Ann is bringing awareness to a piece of the market that has been neglected for far too long.  My 5″3 self salutes her!

How Serious Are You About Success?

March 22, 2010

This week I was at a local networking meeting for Executives and Entrepreneurs here in NYC. It was a great group of women who I truly admire and respect for all that they want to achieve in this world.  They shared personal goals and dreams for success and abundance.  For sure, they were all compelled to improve their lives.  But I also noticed that the capacity of their business and professional affiliation had several things in common.  They want to change the world.  They want to empower others and really truly walk into those powerful leadership shoes they have been given.

Just this morning I was speaking to a woman who has been relocated to Manila.  I said to her “there is no mistake that you are there now, no matter what the circumstance, you have been put in this position to make a difference to others around you.” She got emotional and realized that in fact this is true.

The point is this;
No matter where you are, you ARE here to make a difference.
Who you are being makes a difference.
And we are moving into a time where leaders are being asked to move with compassion for others like no other time before.

So what’s the problem?
Most are afraid to own their own personal power.

If so you are part of the [Change Agent] community already I’d like to ask you to help us update our database and RESUBSCRIBE to the weekly ezine by clicking here:  www.TinyUrl.com/OptMeIn

The [Change Agent] ezine is completely fr**e and is for people who are serious about making a difference in the world by re-gearing themselves, their mindsets and behaviors for success. You will receive tools, tips and resources that will help you to;

Navigate challenges in building or engaging in business at any level you’re at currently
Repositioning your own leadership with practical skills that inspires others to follow you loyally
Overcome your own fears and shortcomings yet move past them to do what needs to be done
Open you up to understanding that YOU MUST BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE IN THIS WORLD
Move past your insecurities and trepidations to being that Change Agent (that means doing things differently!)
Embrace your own innovation and creativity that revolutionizes ANY business and boost profitability

So I am inviting you to reaffirm your commitment to YOURSELF, YOUR WORK and YOUR PURPOSE here by re-opting back into this newsletter.  It’s quick, easy and simple.  CLICK ON THE LINK: www.TinyUrl.com/OptMeIn to confirm your fr**e subscription.  You’ve got until April 7th to make this choice.  I look forward to serving you in the months and years to come.

YOU TRULY ARE the inspiration, intelligence and power that the world needs today!

How the 5-Cent Candy Bar Revolutionized an Industry: The Story of Milton Hershey

March 11, 2010

Chocolate is probably one of my favorite things in the world.  Often times I would say that there really are only 4 basic food groups: bread, butter, cheese and well, you guessed it, CHOCOLATE! I know you’re laughing but it’s true!

What can we learn about life, business and risk-taking from chocolate? A LOT.  Since chocolate is a great love of mine, I thought I’d share a tremendously inspirational story about how the 5-Cent Candy bar revolutionized an industry and created completely new avenues of success and enjoyment for many.  It’s stood the test of time and is a stellar example of the constant need for businesses to “change, adapt and grow”.  Not to mention they have made many millions over.  I’m using Hershey’s as a study because their business has spanned more than a 100 years.  Which means they have to be doing something right!

What few people know is that in 1897, Milton Hershey was a caramel maker. At that time he went to an industrial fair where he viewed some very expensive chocolate making machinery.  Back in those days, chocolate was reserved for the elite, being considered a luxury item.

However Hershey has a different thought on the matter.  What if he could bring this luxury item to the main stream?  What if he could create and market a 5 cent candy bar? Would people buy it?

He promptly sold his caramel factory for $1 million in 1900. A kingly sum in those days!  He spends several years to develop just the right formula and the 5 Cent Candy bar was born.  That little piece of heaven endured the depression.   It was a piece of comfort that was sent to soldiers during the war.  And then it morphed into many other things:  Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (my personal favorite), Mr. Goodbar, Whoppers, York Peppermint Patties and the beloved Hershey’s Kiss.  Who doesn’t love a Hershey’s Kiss!?  Doesn’t just the thought of it make you smile!?

So that’s part one of this story.  Taking something seemingly luxurious to the masses was very creative and kind of sexy.  After all, everyone wants something luxurious.  Diversification and expansion can happen within a specific product category. You just have to think about it differently; as Hershey did.  This one single idea birthed an entirely new business in this country and later spurred off to create a new company in the UK called “Cadbury” and “Mars” here in the US.  More followed suit as you can clearly see.

Now here comes something really interesting that happened along the way.  In 1985 an up and coming film Director approaches the Mars Company, who is the maker of M&M’s, and asks if they could use their product in his film.  The Mars Company declines.  That Director then goes to Hershey’s and asks them if they can use their similar, yet different product, Reese’s Pieces, as a product placement.  Hershey’s agrees.

What happened next?

Reeses Pieces becomes the food of choice for the alien in Steven Spielberg’s mega hit movie ET. As for Hershey’s, that product placement boosted sales by 65%. SIXTY FIVE PERCENT people!  I’ll say it one more time – SIXTY FIVE PERCENT.  The birth of product placements as a viable marketing tool was born and spurred a whole new stream of income for movie makers, TV shows and other forms of entertainment beyond the maker of the featured product.

The point is this:  stepping outside the box works!

  • Taking a calculated risk is necessary in achieving success – both internally and externally.
  • Looking at opportunities that may be a little off the wall just may bring a tsunami of profits
  • Never underestimate peoples desire to connect with a product or service that brings JOY, SMILES & HAPPINESS or makes them feel a little more elite and pampered!
  • Trust your instincts when an idea pops up!

My parting questions to you are:

  • What opportunities are you over looking to shift your products and services?
  • Why are you over looking them?
  • Wouldn’t you like a 65% jump in YOUR profits?
  • And finally……what’s it gonna take for you to get out of your way? Success is really only one left turn away!

Now, I’m off to eat some chocolate!
No, I don’t share! : D

Monthly Journal Notes: Are You Feeling the Void?

February 24, 2010

Here we go!

It’s time to wrap up the month of February with my personal journal notes for the month! Thank you everyone for your feedback and telling me that you enjoy these little missives that I share with you.

It’s Chinese New Year! Where you aware that it began auspiciously on Feb 14th?  My many years of working in Asia has made this part of my own celebratory calendar each year.  I absolutely love it! Why? Because it is a beautiful ritual; it calls for each person to review past behaviors and decide what’s really important.

Ok it’s also a time when I allow myself to enjoy the awesome food of the holiday too!  If you don’t know this about me yet, I’m a total foodie! : D (Dim sum anyone!?!?!)

I share the importance of Chinese New Year with you because I see that so many people are actually doing this; mostly unconsciously.  What is it that they value? What is important to them? And they are actually realizing their own importance. It’s all an extension of what’s truly valuable in each of our lives and within our self.

The visual I get is that I am standing in a doorway.
Behind me, is the old me. The person who has experienced great highs and great lows in her life.  It’s the Maria who has spent so much time carrying unnecessary baggage and fighting battles that never really existed except in my own mind.  I call those my “Don Quixote” moments – battling imaginary windmills! LOL

In front of me, through the doorway, is a giant void.
Darkness and black.
Nothingness that sometimes is frightening for a few seconds.
Other times it feels peaceful.
Then in those special moments there is a wave of exhilaration.

I’ve spent the past few weeks looking back over my shoulder and realizing that I am no longer that person.  Then looking forward and wondering what’s actually in that field of possibilities.

So many clients, friends and colleagues have shared this very similar feeling and experience recently.  They are dropping things that no longer serve them and recreating the boundaries of their personal and professional lives.  They have expressed that while the void seems, well, void.  There is an excitement for what’s to come.

Are you there too?

We are all experiencing a rapid transition from old paradigms to a new beginning.  We are about to enter what I have come to realize is the “Spring” within the Cycle of Change. Where new ideas, new passions, beliefs and ideals begin to emerge.  Also new, wonderful ideas begin to sprout from the fertile soil of our minds.

That void may feel uncertain and strange. But it’s all part of the process of learning to trust what is within rather than looking outside our self for security. For me, taking a walk on the snow-covered beach recently helped me tremendously to remember this.  It reminded me that in all of this rapid transition, there is peace, if I choose to embrace it.

What are you choosing?

A Lesson from Winnie Ho: The Art of “Being” in Business

February 15, 2010

Winnie Ho is a petite Chinese woman in her late forties who works for a large company in Hong Kong.  I would regularly go to Hong Kong to work with our vendor base – Winnie was my partner at these meetings helping me to navigate language and business pitfalls.

On one particular trip I was in a fully distorted arrogant state.  Just 31 and doing my best to pretend I knew it all.  We’d been given the bad news that something I had wanted to do with a specific vendor was no longer possible at the price that had been agreed to. In front of the vendors management team I simply said “no, the price is nonnegotiable” and walked away from the bargaining table.  I was the customer after all.  Full of my own self-importance I refused to budge an inch.

Later in the office that evening Winnie, her boss Estella and I were going over the situation.  I was really mad.  I couldn’t go back to the head office with this news. It would cost us a lot of money.  I continued to explain this to Winnie & Estella.  Then Winnie tells me that they are willing to hold the price if I am willing to accept an increase on another project that had not been confirmed as yet.  That would help both of us to get what we wanted. Fair enough.

I was livid.  There was no way I was going to do that and let her know in my very animated manner that this was completely unacceptable. Allowing me time to express myself, she then quietly and gently walked up to me and placed her hand on my forearm.  Which caused me to quiet down immediately.

She tilted her head and said “Maria, the world is round.” Smiling at me. “Do you understand?”

“What is she talking about?” I thought.

I paused and responded “Do you mean to say that what goes around comes around?”

Winnie shakes her head no. “The world is a circular place Maria. Where you choose to enter the circle is a reflection of your character.”

This made the pit of my stomach fall to the ground.  My mouth gaped open. “Where do you choose to enter the circle here?” She smiled and walked away.

The lesson that Winnie taught me is that one must look at who we are being in the world and enter from a point of giving, understanding and compassion.  Rather than only thinking about getting what we want. It is the ability to enter the circle from an attitude of abundance being on the “offensive” rather than entering the circle in a state of lack and self-serving which is a “defensive” stance.  No partnerships or relationships can be built on defensive sand. If they are, they are unhealthy and lack stability.

This bit of wisdom has stayed with me for more than 15 years.  I hear her sweet words and feel her warm smile.  It is at those times I am reminded to consider who I am being in the world.  Realizing that the words I choose and the actions I take are a reflection of my character.  In the Chinese culture the word “character” means values and the metal of which you are made.

Where do you choose to enter the circle today?

All That Glitters is Not Gold: Bright Shiny Object Syndrome

January 21, 2010

Have you ever felt like there was a landslide of opportunities that all of a sudden appeared?  You look left and you can choose to take the opportunities on that pathway.  Then you look right and there are other choices.  But in front of you, just in front of your nose, there is a basket full of other opportunities.  They all look exciting – each is a beautiful shiny gem.  Each gleam with possibility!  You are blinded for a moment in sheer amazement at what’s before you.

This can be especially powerful if you have just come out of a dry spell when nothing in your world seemed to be moving.  We’ve all experienced being in what I like to call the “incubation” period where you are regrouping and reconsidering much of your business and personal life.  This is the precursor to having a major shift.  It’s the time when you are making decision about what you really want and desire.

During a session with a client recently, she was saying things such as:

“This door has opened for me….
That person called me to be on a TV show….
I have an editor banging on my door….
There is an opportunity for a new product off shoot and packaging idea….
But I also have this chance to collaborate with another professional woman to launch another arm of my business…..
I was thinking I could do…..and maybe I could also start…”

After a deep breathe, we both laughed.

“Wow” I said, “you’re going to be really busy again. “Again” being the operative word, as her previous pace nearly put her in an early grave at 38 years old.

Is this what you want?”  There was a long pause.
“No, I want my life.  But I also want professional success. I love my work! How do I balance this?  How do I choose when I want to do all of them?”

The most important thing to know is that there are always a lot of opportunities in front of you.  It’s just a matter of being open to seeing them.  There is never a shortage.

There may be times the PAUSE button may be on while you regroup and rest.  As a culture we underestimate the importance of this period. So you will never miss out on anything – really truly, you can’t miss out! The opportunity may reappear in a different form later down the line. It’s all about being courageous enough to take it when it arrives.  So stop rushing around like a chicken with your head cut off.  That’s just a scarcity mindset rearing its ugly head.

However, what’s important is that you’re ruthless about how you decide to spend your time.  Be sure what you choose to do is in alignment with your goals – short term and long term.  But prioritize!

While some projects may seem fun or interesting if they are not in alignment with your end goal you might want to pass on them and focus on what will get you where you want to go.  The only exception to this is if your gut is telling you it’s something you really need to take a look at.  You never know what can come of it.

Keep dreaming but stay focused on your goals otherwise you’re liable to get distracted by all those bright shiny objects around you!

When Gurus Become Gods

November 12, 2009

Yesterday I was pretty restless so I spent several hours in the middle of the day perusing the social media world, updating my tweets and being part of the discussions that were going on.  Personally I love this aspect of social media because it helps me to see what’s really top of mind at the moment. “Great market research” as a dear friend of mine always reminds me.

I’ve noticed is that there are a lot of blog posts and articles being written about teachers, leaders and other note worthy gurus.  I guess that’s fair enough.  When you become more public and are in a position of power you ultimately open yourself up to criticism, comment and others opinions.  After all we are in a country that protects 1st amendment rights.  Free speech and all that.

What I’m seeing are a lot of people “naming names” and criticizing these people openly. They have paid fees to work with some of them.  Others have attended their educational live events or participated in some other program of one sort or another.  So there is  the element of free-will and participation in the exchange.  Actually giving permission to the teacher or leader to impart their particular form of wisdom to the attendee.  Rather than expressing any level of gratitude or appreciation I have witness some pretty severe and sometimes outlandish slamming .

Listen, I’ve paid for these types of services too and found myself less than satisfied but you know what? I made the choice to participate by handing over my credit card.  So it’s my choice. My free will. My money.  Sometimes I wish I hadn’t.  But who is to blame?  No one but me.  It was a choice that I made.

Often times we make these Gurus into Gods.  Hanging on every word. Wishing for them to impart the perfect solution to whatever is going on.  Is that realistic? I think not.  So I offer these 7 things to keep in mind about any guru, teach, mentor, coach or leader in your life.

1. When a person stands in front of you and professes their truth it is their truth. Their wisdom.  From their point of view and life experience.  It does not mean that it is “the truth” or “the only truth” that exists.

2.   Everyone is entitled to an opinion. When an opinion become a need to “be right” and to make others “wrong” that’s a competitive signal. Meaning “I’m better than her/him”.

3.   Take what you need from this person and forget the rest. Not everything they say and do will resonate with you.  Nor should it.  You’re your own person.  It’s like saying everyone likes vanilla ice cream.  (I personally prefer gelato not ice cream and the flavor of choice is nocciola)

4.   No one Guru has the end all be all answer to your problem.

5.   They WILL say something you don’t like or want to hear. It’s inevitable. Sometimes that’s actually why they are in your life.

6.   They cannot always control their guests, staff statements or opinions. People are people and are unpredictable at times.

7.   Any and every teacher makes mistakes or missteps.  Usually at one point or another they may make a correction or amend a previous error.  They are human and should be permitted for possessing a less-than-perfect character.

Ultimately it is up to you to make decisions for yourself. It is about taking personal responsibility for your actions and outcomes. You are not a victim unless you choose to be.

When you make a Guru a God, that means to ask them to perfect, to have every solution to every problem you’ve given away your personal power and choice.

If you are not in alignment with any Guru, teacher, mentor, coach or leader in your life then move on.

If you do not resonate with what they teach, move on.

And most of all, if you really find what they offer so outlandish then stop supporting them with your attendance and credit card swipes.

Are You Done with the Fear?

October 21, 2008

Transforming Fear Into Courage

 

We are indeed, in a time of great transition.  This transition is often unsettling and disarming.  But as I have stated over the past several weeks this is also a time of great opportunity.  All you have to do is use the Law of Polarity to find it.  One never questions that on the other side of night is day or that if something is hot it can also be made cold.  The law of polarity is “the equal opposite”.

 

This period of opportunity is the potential for newness, creativity and innovation.  Often times we hear people saying “necessity is the mother of invention” – and that could not be more true today!  However, it’s important to have all the oars in the water and each person in the boat rowing with you to facilitate “innovation” within your business. 

 

But what happens when you are met with fear and doubt?  You have this great idea and solution but the group around you (and that can even include family and friends) thinks you’re absolutely nuts and have gone off the deep end.  What’s happening?!  It’s a brilliant solution!  It’s cutting edge marketing or technology! Why the resistance? They are afraid, plain and simple.  They are paralyzed with fear because it means abandoning what they know for something unknown. 

 

The breaking point for any significant change is courage.  In this energy space you have the willingness to embrace change and face challenges.  You are able to literally see the opportunities in front of you and identify growth areas.  It requires the ability to feel the fear in yourself and in others but continue to move forward none-the-less. 

 

Allow those fears to surface and observe them as if you were sitting in a movie theatre watching the latest action or dramatic flick.  Ask yourself what’s really going on here?  Is the consequence of the fear greater than the desire to move forward?  Remember, this stage of courage that you are working within takes faith.  And at times it can be a very lonely place to be.  But you must continue to evaluate if the desire is greater than the risk.  If that desire is not greater then you will not move forward.  In this place of courage, you suspend your disbelief. Often times it is a giant leap of faith and will require a measure of patience. 

 

This shift to change and courageousness must start with YOU before you can get anyone else in the boat with you.  And, by the way, you will most likely need to start paddling with or without others.  It doesn’t matter, just get in the boat yourself and start MOVING.

 

Hold steady.  Yes, it is a challenging time.  On the other side there are great rewards for those who walk through the fear and create something new and innovative out there in the world. We are ALL being called to do this.  You are not alone. Think outside of the box and stop modeling other people! Their “model” is also in need of upgrade, repair and innovation.

 

About Maria:
Maria Gamb is the founder of MariaGamb.com and NMS Communications LLC.  She is an executive coach, consultant and speaker who brings her 20+ years experience as a former Fortune 500 Diva and now entrepreneur to the table.  Maria’s mission is to help women unlock their own personal leadership style and create businesses that make an impact on the world around them.  After all, we’re women, not men in skirts.  Our leadership style is uniquely our own and it’s powerful.  Visit Maria on the web at www.mariagamb.com  Sign up for the free ezine [Change Agent] and receive your free special report “The 7 Keys to Transform Your Business & Bottom Line”.

Can this Chaos really be “Divine”?

October 7, 2008

Comprehending the Current Cleansing Process

 

The latest chaotic events of our financial institutions and government actions continue to dominate headlines. I’m often asked, “What’s happening? Can you explain this in a different, metaphysical manner so I can stand above the fear based media hype?”  Living here in NYC, I see the fear on people’s faces and feel the anxiety gripping my fair metropolis. People are looking for the bigger picture.  They want to see beyond the illusions being fed on the news.  We have reached a pivotal point in our spiritual and evolutionary growth. 

 

“Divine Chaos” is the best term to explain the current state of affairs. To define this, one must understand that chaos is a course corrector.  It is the literal and figurative dismantling of a system and beliefs that are out of alignment with the core truths of any group.  In this particular case, they are our national value systems, beliefs, and national truths.  This dismantling is done so it a new structure of consciousness can be put into place.  In fact there must be a complete dismantling in order for this new growth to emerge.

 

By nature man will grasp at, hold onto and defend the thing that he values most.  Usually that “value” is his belief system.  He will take action based on this belief system and the results reflect his mindset. This is the Universal Law of Cause & Effect in action.

 

Do you remember the 1987 Michael Douglas movie “Wall Street”  ?  The most memorable line in the movie was “Greed is good”.  Unfortunately, this is a value that many have held fast to in this country and the result – well, it is what we are seeing unfold.  It is an ideal that we have projected and lived for nearly two decades.

 

However, this subconscious belief is crumbling before our eyes.  In the aftermath, I will tell you that we will become a more group of conscious entrepreneurs and business community leaders.  Why?  Because this old belief system is burning itself out and people are realizing that they must be more conscious in everything they do.  That means being truthful, compassionate and loving in ALL their affairs.

 

We have begun to see this shift as more people are paying attention to the environment and health care, and global communities are forming to aid others at a far more rapid rate than any other time in our history.  The quality and integrity of our leaders are being evaluated with much greater attention than ever before.  These are all signs of a raise in consciousness. 

 

Human consciousness is the greatest raw material we have in making any profound changes. Residing in this consciousness is the ability to co-create and generate something profoundly powerful. But this requires self-mastery. To quote Patricia Aburdene, “Worldly power without self-mastery is the downfall of leadership.”

 

Are you ready to step into self-mastery?

 

About Maria:
Maria Gamb is the founder of MariaGamb.com and NMS Communications LLC.  She is an executive coach, consultant and speaker who brings her 20+ years experience as a former Fortune 500 Diva and now entrepreneur to the table.  Maria’s mission is to help women unlock their own personal leadership style and create businesses that make an impact on the world around them.  After all, we’re women, not men in skirts.  Our leadership style is uniquely our own and it’s powerful.  Visit Maria on the web at www.mariagamb.com  Sign up for the free ezine [Change Agent] and receive your free special report “The 7 Keys to Transform Your Business & Bottom Line”.

Are You A Victim of Circumstance?

July 1, 2008

Do you feel that you are bound by the current circumstances you’re in? Or, perhaps you’re limited by what you’re experiencing? If so, I will tell you that your outward circumstances will never change until you change your interior environment – your mind and how you perceive things change. Your PERCEPTION is really just another way of saying “the glasses you view the world through” or the programming of your subconscious mind that tints every interaction you have, the words you speak, your actions and ultimately your results.

People get really upset with me when I tell them this. “Maria, you just don’t understand!” Yes, of course I do. I’ve been there. We’ve all been in that place of utter despair, feeling helpless at what looks to be the whims of others or circumstances we face.

Recently I had the pleasure of meeting Cory Booker, the Mayor of Newark, New Jersey. He told me a story that I’ve found so inspirational that I’ve been sharing it with everyone around me.

A resident of Newark, Cory returned to his native city once he graduated from Yale Law School. Speaking with this mother, he told her he had arrived to make a difference. He was full of vim, vigor and a super-hero sense of doing good. She told him, if you want to know anything about life, forget Yale and go see Miss Jones on the 5th floor of the projects. Young, arrogant Cory (his own self description; not mine) headed off to see Miss Jones. Walking down the street he passed a gang gathering and a handful of drug dealers. Through the doors to Miss Jones’ building he bounded up the 5th floor walk up and knocked on her door. Tap tap tap.

“Hello, what do you want?” came from behind the door.

“Mam, I’m Cory Booker and I’m here to save you.”

She opened the door and let him inside. “You’re here to do what?!”

He explained his position and then asked her, “What can I do to help?” She motioned him to follow her.

They went back down the darkened hallway and down the stairs through the lobby, where he later learned Miss Jones’ son was gunned down in a needless violent act. Then, they went out onto the street where they “respectfully” passed the narcotic entrepreneurs and gang members again. She stood in the middle of the street and asked, “What do you see here Cory?”

He looked around and mentioned the characters they passed and described the burned out buildings and graffiti around him. All of 5 feet tall, Miss Jones looked up at Cory and said, “You’re of no use to me. Go away.”

Running after her pleading to know why, she finally turned and said to him,”What I see here is opportunity. And unless you can learn to see that opportunity, you will never change anything.”

Embarrassed, he realized his mistake. He had to learn to look past what was in front of him and see the opportunity for greatness even in the darkest places or situations. He had to visualize the light on the other side of the tunnel.

Cory Booker is still early in his seat as Mayor of Newark. His mission statement is: “To be America’s leading urban city in safety, prosperity and nurturing of family life. Newark will set a national standard for urban transformation by marshaling its resources to achieve security, economic abundance and an environment that is nurturing and empowering for families.” (Quoted from the NYTimes)

What you might not know about Newark is that it is one of the nation’s poorest cities with a population of 275,000. One third of the children of Newark live in poverty, and less than 9% of the population has an education beyond high school. Additionally, 1 in 800 residents are hit by gunfire each year. “Staggering circumstances” would be a kind characterization of Newark.

I share that story with you because I think it highlights a very important concept you need to embrace in your own life. This is the law of polarity. Where there is darkness, there must also always be light. Heads and tails are two sides of a same coin. The same holds true for hot and cold, and good and bad. These are all examples of the law of polarity. So what young Cory was looking at was the physical signs of a city in a dire state of reformation. But Miss Jones had the ability to look forward to that potential of greatness. She saw the opportunity and the good that could come from viewing the physical situation differently. Her focus and unshakable faith was based on opportunity and not misfortune.

What are you focusing on? Take your power back and stop being a victim of your own circumstances. It is your calling as a leader to see the opportunity in your family, your community and your business rather than focusing on the negative aspects that exist. Remember, the negative cannot exist without a positive. It’s a universal law. Period.

About Maria:
Maria Gamb” The Anti-Sabotage Expert” coaches female entrepreneurs and other highly motivated professionals to overcome self sabotaging limiting beliefs about money, relationships and success by breaking free from the “security of conformity” using Universal Laws and principles. As an ex-corporate diva, now lady-preneur Maria has seen it all and heard it all! Get ready to unlock your personal prosperity potential TODAY!

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