#17- Wall of Why

A reminder of “why” I reference numerous times each day. Quotes are cheesy and overdone but they do hold a special power of motivation.

My only caveat is (yes, it’s a quote) “you own the post-it, the post-it doesn’t own you.”



Priceless – #16

Simon Sinek, Seth Godin, Avinash Kaushik, Mitch Joel, Malcolm Gladwell, and the list goes on… all experts in the field of modern business philosophy or as I like to refer to it, “Think Why”.

These individuals have made an impact in my professional and personal life. I am a fan, but also a student of their modern school of business and relationships.  Yes, these individuals have many differences but what is more important to highlight is what they have in common.

Creating change doesn’t take millions of dollars and multiple Harvard degrees; it takes just one thing… the ability to never recognize the status quo as reality.

Let me explain. Like a scientist uses research to formulate a hypothesis we (creators of change) use the past as a foundation, use the present as our spring board or challenge and the future is where we set our target. Creators of change see the future as a blank canvas rather than a pre determined color by numbers.

By all means learn from the now and embrace today but don’t let it determine the art you create tomorrow. May your creation be bold, bright, and most of all priceless.


#14 – #greatdaythursday

Life is what you make it. 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. Sounds like another fluffy, flowery, purple ponies, and dancing unicorns coffee shop tag line right? Oh, you are absolutely right, but embracing this optimistic outlook is a simple secret to success, not just a “feel good” Hallmark card. So what, tell me how?

I am fortunate enough to have a #greatdaythursday inspiration that keeps me in check and focused on the good rather than allowing me to become wrapped in the negative energy that can so easily cloud  my mind. Thursday started like a normal workday, CrossFit, coffee, meetings… pretty good. By 9am #greatdaythursday was upon us, declared by an inspirational friend like a proclamation to a group of rebels ready to charge the capital, adorned in flowers atop their purple ponies and dancing unicorns of course.

Believing and seeing your life through a lens of optimism truly is the first step to success. Thursday was packed full of meetings, decisions, continuously changing plans, and many potential stressful situations. However, Thursday was my best day of the week all because of a 3 word hashtag I happened to overhear.  Rather be a “negative nelly”? Go for it. Just keep your manic depression, anxiety, epic sense of disappointment and disapproval to yourself.  It’s your decision,  gloom and doom, or a purple pony party and dancing with unicorns… I am off to learn the cha cha with sparkle the unicorn.


Lesson 13: Failure = Victory

As I am sitting in my living room watching the Florida Gators “upset” the South Carolina Gamecocks I cant stop thinking about failure. The Gators have had a horrible football season this year. Riddled with injuries, inexperienced players, and a young coaching staff, Florida has lost 4 in a row, including a loss to Vandy. If you follow college football at all, you would agree that if there was one word to describe Florida’s season it would be “failure”.

But something wild is happening… Florida is up 14-6 over South Carolina. With the fourth loss in a row coming to Vandy during homecoming weekend, Florida fans, the media, and everyone else had given up on the Gators. It was that moment when the Gators regained their confidence. They walked into Columbia tonight with no expectations, nothing but the love of the game on their shoulders. and that is exactly what is driving them to victory this evening.

When failure becomes our reality we are empowered to work, love, live, play without fear of criticism. The next time you walk into a meeting or start a project with the weight of fear on your shoulders trade it for failure. After all, who doesn’t like to see the underdog win? So drop the expectations, play for the love of the game, and start realizing true victory lies in the embrace of failure.

Day 12 – Ms. Fix-it

Who doesn’t want the quick fix, all in one gadget, magic pill, solution to life’s problems?

As someone who is still learning the finer nuances of interpersonal communication (how to be a friend) my highest measure of success should be the number of other people’s problems I can solve each day, right?! Step 1, step 2, step 3. Conversation over, day saved.

Think again.

As a high “D” the concept of listening is a constant learning experience.

A little background on High D’s: Good leaders and great in crises. Self- motivated, innovative, and self-reliant. May come off  direct and brash and are not good listeners. Hmm… sounds familiar.

I am slowly learning that I don’t have all the answers to every problem, and even more so that people don’t want the “easy as 1, 2, 3” quick fix, they want me.  We crave compassion, support, a sounding board, someone to shut up and just listen.

It’s old news I know, but for the 387th time in the last month it hit me again today, several times, I already have the best tool out there, the ability to stop, put down my instruction manual for life, and just listen.

Day 11 – Optimistic Pessimism

Oddly enough my daughter and I both had our “performance reviews” today.

The kid passed with flying colors. Not exactly shocking considering she’s 4.

However, I was terrified. The anxiety over what could possibly be said in this 30 minute meeting had been throwing me for a loop since I received the meeting planner.

So what’s a girl to do? Learn a lesson of course!

I hope this comes across correctly, I was struggling to verbalize it in a simple and concise way.

I learned to prepare for the worst…

I am not a pessimist by any means, but sometimes thinking like one can be helpful. The next time you’re worked up over “what if” – complete the sentence with all the worst case scenarios cluttering your mind. Say it, write it, process through it. When I challenged myself to work through the worst it became easier to believe the best.

Day 10 – 3 Little Words

I am the first to admit that I am in no way shape or form a perfect parent, not even an almost perfect parent. Far from it in all actuality.

I may “pin” fun lunch box ideas on Pinterest or sneaky ways to get kids to eat their vegetables, but there is no way I have the time, energy, or sheer patience to make Finding Nemo out of berries or turkey roll up scarecrows… it ain’t happening. I am lucky if I remember not to pack something with nuts in her lunchbox for her “nut- free” school.  Yes, I said “nut-free,” and that is a whole other discussion for another day.

As I was saying, the whole “perfect parent” thing, it’s not me. So after a day of high emotions, roller coaster moods, and lots of sassy-ness from my almost 5 year old we had a ‘moment.’ I took a deep breath, hugged her tight, looked her dead in the eyes and in a calm voice said “I love you.” I know, it sounds totally mushy, but oh my goodness, it worked! She was like a new kid, full of obedience, respect, and calm.

Our moment was a wake-up call for me. I have to be more present with my daughter.

With that in mind, today’s lesson: kids just want to feel secure and loved. It’s amazing what a mere 5 seconds of honest, undivided attention can do for a sassy attitude.

Day 9 – Appreciation

Today’s lesson is about appreciation.

I have it pretty darn easy, great job, awesome kid, reliable car, stable finances, supportive family, friends that refuse to give up on me, and the list goes on…

I shattered my phone yesterday and today I am typing on my brand new one… One phone call, a quick claim submission, and presto! New phone in less than 18 hours.

This is just one tiny example of how easy I have it. Today it slapped me in the face a little bit that I need to take a few moments everyday to just appreciate my surroundings, opportunities, and potential. A little dose of humble can go a long way.

Day 8 – off

We all have them…off days.

No, not vacation but those days every once in a while when you just feel completely “off,” totally out of your element and in a funk.

Even in my “offness” there was still a lesson to be learned. Today’s is simple… Recognize it, own it, accept it. By letting yourself succumb to the offness, so to speak, it’a a heck of a lot easier to believe you’ll wake up the next day ON.

Till tomorrow. Katie signing “off”