Replacing The Bathroom Faucet Gave Me A Powerful Life Lesson

We got a new faucet for the bathroom – it was such a deal that it was impossible to say no. Replace the bathroom faucet on a pedestal sink – easy peasy. The old fixture was leaking but still wasn’t that old and everything is open and easy to get at – should be a nothing event to take of the old faucet and replace it with a new one. Maybe 30 minutes – tops.

Well, we know how home repairs go. The simple process of removing the old faucet was neither simple nor a process. Rusted fittings, bent pipes. It was like trying to get a flat tire off the car without the right tools.

But after a struggle it came off. Without it, cleaning the pedestal sink was a breeze. And now with this outdated leaky faucet gone, how amazing will this be to have a shiny new non-leaking faucet. I could feel the frustration of the struggle to get the sink to let go of the old faucet fade to excitement of finishing this unpalatable task. I found myself humming.

That is until I saw it. The new faucet had one large pipe to mount to the pedestal – the pedestal had three smaller holes. As I evaluated the situation, no matter how I tried to fit the thicker stem on the faucet into the smaller center pedestal hole, it just didn’t work. All humming stopped.

Anger stops all repairs

First option. Force it. What if I just bang the faucet into the opening? Hmmm. What could happen? I could break the sink and now a free faucet will cost hundreds of dollars for a new sink. Not a good idea.

Second option – enlarge the hole. Good idea. Search the toolbox – I had never ground porcelain before so nothing I had in the toolbox seemed right. Humming moved to frustration. Frustration was brewing into anger. Words I hadn’t used in a while were rolling off my tongue in every part of speech – nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs – even gerunds. My English teachers would have been so proud of effective use of grammar, tenses and parts of speech. In a huff, I headed to the hardware store to buy a grinding bit. I needed to gently widen the hole in the porcelain – too fast and it would break. If I stayed in this mood, I would break it. Calm down.

The first trip (yes, first trip – you know where this is going) to the hardware store brought back a grinding disc to use with my drill. A minute into sanding and the head of the disc broke off. I bought the cheapest one and got my money’s worth. Good thing I did not have a hammer near me – that saved me from what could have been hours repairing the hole I would have put in the wall. I found myself so angry and so frustrated over something so ridiculous. I drove back to the hardware store like a banshee – aggravated, frustrated, pissed off and completely out of control. I bought several strong grinding bits, determined not to have to shop again today.

At home, I added the bit to the drill and started. Gently rolling the grinding bit around the circle started to widen the opening. The movement around the circle created a gentle rhythm that was actually calming. I focused on the task now, almost enjoying it. After an hour of grinding gently, the opening was sufficiently wide enough and the new faucet slide perfectly into the pedestal. I connected the hoses and the faucet worked like the star it was made to be.

Why is it that we loose our cool over little things?

Life lessons are everywhere

I realized in that moment, that when life sends us challenges – like a faucet that doesn’t fit the opening in the sink – we simply need to slow down, consider our options, decide on the one we want to try and patiently go forward. There was nothing about this faucet repair that warranted my internal outbursts, anger, temper or my elaborate use of curse words, in every language. Nothing. It simply needed me to see this as just one situation needing my best response – like all other things in life. And my best response comes from managing my emotions, staying calm, gathering information, thinking it through and diligently working a plan – not in acting like an out-of-control maniac. Thank you universe – I got the message. In fact I am remind of this message every time I see or use this faucet.

So how does this event remind you of your parenting? What are the events that get you to boil over when all that is needed is to tune in calmly to see things differently?

How does this event remind you of your workplace? How do employees activate your hot buttons about things that don’t really matter?

How does this even remind you of your relationships? How do those you love do and say things that drive you crazy, when all that really happened is they just said or did something – you allowed it to drive you crazy?

I let this little household task get the best of me. But in the end I made peace with the faucet and thanked it for the lesson. Patience. Resilience. Calmness. All of these help us succeed with whatever comes our way. Get upset for the things that really require it – that probably amounts to 1% of the things in our day. For everything else, just learn the lesson of the faucet – stay calm, think it through, have a plan, work the plan then celebrate your success.

What lessons is life providing you so you can show up better on the other side?

To Find Your Way In Life, Think Like An Entrepreneur, with Matt Miller – RFL037

To Find Your Way In Life, Think Like An Entrepreneur – Episode Overview

There is a great quote by Buckminster Fuller. He asks, “What is it on this planet that needs doing that I know something about that probably won’t happen unless I take responsibility for it?” So as we guide, support and spend time with our kids, how are we helping them discover what they know about and love doing? Then, how can we help them learn to tune in to their world to see the needs and opportunities to do what they do best? For some it will be starting a family business. Some will find their career of a lifetime and others will focus on improving some aspect of the world. What matters most is that they connect their greatest joy and abilities with a need they identify in their world.

Attention and Intention

This week, my attention is on work and careers. My intention is to help parents help their kids learn to think like entrepreneurs – always watching for opportunities to do and use what they do best to be successful and happy in life.

Meet our guest Matt Miller

Matt Miller on Think Like An EntrepreneurMatt Miller, a previous Air Force pilot, is the President and Founder of School Spirit Vending, a family run business started in 2007 that combines vending and school fundraising. A committed entrepreneur and passionate dad determined to help his kids discover and find their unique way in the world, he integrates his kids in the business to show up successful, professional and making a difference in life.

IMPORTANT! Download Matt’s ebook, Live Your Dreams: The Top 10 Reasons Why You Need to Own A Vending Business.

Find out more about Matt and School Spirit Vending’s franchising program, a way for busy professionals and their families to develop secondary income while raising millions of dollars for education at

Episode’s Key TakeAWays

  1. Learning to tune in to our world – to really see what is in front of us is the key to finding our unique way in life. We can’t see opportunities to do what we do best and to be our best selves if we aren’t good at gathering and assessing information.
  2. Teach your kids to pay attention to the details – to use all of their senses to get good at gathering information about their world. Our world constantly sends us information – just what we need to invent opportunities.
  3. Life gives us information about ourselves – we didn’t get an owners manual. We try things out to find out how they fit – what we rock at and what we stink at. Tuning in to our world is how we try things out and get to know who we really are.
  4. What does the world tell you about you? What environments get you excited and activate your passions – these are signals to you. It is the world saying – do this, land here, try this out. It is the same for your kids.
  5. Each of us has the ability to think like an entrepreneur – to use what we know our ourselves and our world to find opportunities – for work, school and life. It is a skill we all can learn and one we will have to help our kids learn (there are not learning it in school).
  6. Know yourself to know your own voice. This gives you clarity about what is right in today’s world for you – it will help you to not wander in life – but to be intentional in choosing what fits you best.
  7. Help your kids discover their inner voice – what abilities do they shine with? How can you help them see how to apply these abilities in today’s world?
  8. Homeschooling can provide kids the ability to pursue their gifts, passions and interests – instead of following an existing established school curriculum. Many schools just push students through the system instead of helping them discover and connect to what is unique and amazing in them. Having a voice in how you help your kids discover and experience their world can expand their awareness and opportunities. (See podcast 14 – Living and Loving Life Your Way – with a family that chose to home school their kids on the road as they sold their house and travel the country seeing everything together).
  9. Right in front of you is a brilliant idea – one that could help you find your way in life (good-fit career or life direction) or to start a business that addresses a need, challenge or opportunity. Remember the Buckminster Fuller quote, “What is it on the planet that needs doing that you know something about that probably won’t happen unless you take responsibility for it?” Learn to think this way and teach your kids to think this way.

Some question for parents:

  1. What would be different if you had known more about yourself years ago –and how can you make knowing themselves a priority for your kids?
  2. What opportunities do you regularly see that need you to take some action on?
  3. How can you help your kids tune in more intentionally to their world – to help them be more connected to the information their world shares with them to help them make better and wiser work and life choices?
  4. What can you do together with your kids to create opportunities – and is there a potential business idea that could involve the entire family?

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Stop and Notice Challenge

Each week we ask you to stop and notice – to develop your skill of tuning in to you and your world. This week’s stop and notice challenge is:

  •    Stop and Notice what you are good at and passionate about. How can you connect these to applications in your world?
  •    Stop and Notice what your kids are good at and passionate about. How can you help them learn how to connect these to applications in their world?
  •    Stop and Notice the places for business opportunities – the places for you and your family to work on something together.
  •    Stop and Notice how your kids’ school is helping them or not helping them discover, develop and live their unique abilities. How can you step in and have a more active role in this?

Right in front of each of us, all the time, are opportunities. Not all opportunities are for us – so we must know ourselves and our unique abilities (and help our kids know themselves and their unique abilities) to be able to use them to find or create the opportunities that fit them. Tune in. Stop and Notice. Pay attention – then assess what the world is sharing with you. These are life skills – be sure your kids have them.

Suggested Resource:

The 4 Essentials of Entrepreneurial Thinking – What Successful People Didn’t Learn In School by Cliff Michaels

Think Like An Entrepreneur - 4 EssentialsIn The 4 Essentials of Entrepreneurial Thinking, Cliff Michaels takes us on an inspirational journey while capturing the passion and wisdom of extraordinary people. On the cutting edge of life and business strategies for over 20 years, Cliff not only shares his triumphs and tribulations as an entrepreneur, he unleashes a fun system of timeless lessons anyone can follow. Drawing on classic mentors from da Vinci, Edison, and Mozart, to modern moguls like Jobs, Oprah, and Branson, Cliff suggests we all benefit from a real-world MBA – your Master’s in Basic Abilities. This fast-paced book raises the bar for learning success principles.

How To Help Your Kids Learn to Think Like an Entrepreneur with Ally LoPrete – RFL032

How to Help Your Kids Learn To Think Like an Entrepreneur – Episode Overview

To think like an entrepreneur doesn’t mean you have to start a business. Rather, to think like an entrepreneur means you are someone who actively and intentionally watches your world for places to connect WITH what is best in you, to find your fit and to make your impact. Great entrepreneurs know themselves – what they are good at, passionate about and what matters to them – they know their world – they see its successes, needs and challenges – and they connect the two to create opportunities. Imagine if we were able to get ourselves and our kids to think this way – to go through life intentionally looking for, seeking out and creating opportunities to do what WE DO BEST. Think of the options and possibilities it would create for them AND for us…

Attention and Intention

This week, my attention is on how to help our kids (and ourselves) find our way in life – what fits us. My intention is that we learn to train ourselves to seek out, create and notice areas that need what we do best – so we can build lives of happiness, success and impact. In short to learn to think like an entrepreneur – to give ourselves options.

Meet our guest Ally LoPrete

Ally Loprete on how to think like an EntrepreneurAlly Loprete is a talented coach, speaker and is the host of this Little Parent Stayed Home, a radio program on iHeart Talk Radio, with a mission to bring 1 million parents home through self-employment and entrepreneurship. Known as the Work/Life Balance Parenting expert, she founded the widely popular, the largest online search directory for parents in the world. She is committed to helping all parents realize their greatness, and in the process, learn how to guide, support and coach their kids to do the same – to make their marks on life. High energy, focused and committed to doing amazing things, Ally is a role model for those needing to rekindle the energy to live life like it matters.

Episode’s Key TakeAWays

  1. Every moment provides the OPPORTUNITY to find the joy in life and in being the parent. We just have to choose to see it.
  2. To think like an entrepreneur doesn’t mean you have to start a business. To think like an entrepreneur means you know yourself, know your world and now how to find the opportunities in your world that fit you and your best abilities. Entrepreneurs are always looking for ways to do what they do best – they see things differently – they are opportunity hunters.
  3. Each of us has superhero qualities – we are great at some things (and not at others). When we find our thing, we start to see the opportunities related to it. This gives us clarity in starting to create our road in life – a road that lets us use our superhero abilities to show up big to all we do (note for parents – help your kids start to see and live their “superhero” abilities). Embrace what makes you and your kids different and unique as a way of creating clarity to find what in today’s world is for you (parents and kids).
  4. Opportunities are challenges and life lessons reframed in a positive light. Challenges can take us and our kids down – but by reframing challenges or obstacles into a conversation of seeing the OPPORTUNITY, trains our kids to be confident in handling what life sends them, knowing how to make something good out of whatever happens.
  5. Some people don’t like us when we shine – when we find and do our “thing.” Just be aware and don’t let others stop you from seeing and developing opportunities that are clear for you.
  6. Opportunities help us see what environments light up for us. Opportunities pull us in specific directions. If we see no opportunities, that generally means we are in an area that is not for us. This gives us clarity.
  7. We have to remember that each of our kids is different and the opportunities that will matter to each will likely be different. There is no one-size-fits-all parenting or no one-size-fits-all opportunity. Take the time to help each kid seek out, create or find their opportunities. What do your kids get pulled to or are interested in – these are places for opportunities.
  8. Life is filled with opportunities. Most of them we miss because we focus more on the challenges than the opportunities. As we become more like entrepreneurs in the way we think – always looking for the opportunity in what happens – we share with ourselves and our kids a world of possibilities. In these possibilities, we each will find our thing – our place – our way to show up big to our lives

Some question for parents:

  1. What message do you share with your kids about welcoming and using challenges to find opportunities?
  2. How do you help your kids learn to see things differently – to see the opportunity in things that others can’t see?
  3. How do you stay supportive as kids start to discover their abilities and opportunities?
  4. Parenting is a big job and big responsibility – what do you do each day to help yourself feel valuable, important and living life fully?
  5. How do you pay attention well enough in this moment to hunt for the opportunity to make this moment great?

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Stop and Notice Challenge

Each week we ask you to stop and notice – to develop your skill of tuning in to you and your world. This week’s stop and notice challenge is:

  1. Stop and Notice how you look at life challenges – do you see the negative or do you see opportunity?
  2. Stop and Notice how you help your kids hunt for opportunities. How are you helping them learn how to think like an entrepreneur?
  3. Stop and Notice what makes your kid unique, different and amazing. How are you helping him see this and use this to start to identify the opportunities that fit him?
  4. Stop and Notice how you take care of yourself. How can you be great as a parent if you are not feeling valuable, important and relevant as a person? What opportunities do you have or make to take care of yourself?

Life is filled with opportunities. Most of them we miss because we focus more on the challenges than the opportunities. As we become more like entrepreneurs in the way we think – always looking for the opportunity in whatever happens – then we share with ourselves and our kids a world of possibilities. In these possibilities, we each will find our thing – our place – our way to show up big to our lives.

Suggested Resource:

You Are Here - So Think Like An EntrepreneurYou Are Here – Discovering the Magic of the Present Moment – by Thich Nhat Hanh

In this book Thich Nhat Hanh, the renowned Zen monk, author, and meditation master, distills the essence of Buddhist thought and practice, emphasizing the power of mindfulness to transform our lives. “Mindfulness is not an evasion or an escape,” he explains. “It means being here, present, and totally alive. It is true freedom—and without this freedom, there is no happiness.”

Based on a retreat that Thich Nhat Hanh led for Westerners, this book offers a range of simple, effective practices for cultivating mindfulness, including awareness of breathing and walking, deep listening, and skillful speech. You Are Here also offers guidance on healing emotional pain and manifesting real love and compassion in our relationships with others.

No Way Out – How to Overcome Challenges in Life with Ria Story, RFL021

Inspirational speaker and author Ria Story joins Jay to share how she overcame significant life challenges, to inspire others to be resilient and use what life sends them to grow and be their best.

Overcome Challenges – Episode Overview

Sometimes life feels too big. The things we are given seem insurmountable – how can we see the other side, never mind get to the other side? We have heard a lot of people share the phrase, “it gets better” – and indeed it can. But it takes work to change our perspective as we go through what life sends us to be able to make it through to the other side. Resilience – tenacity – “stick-to-itiveness” – are attributes of those who show up to life and play with whatever it sends them. I love this quote I just heard: “I never lose – either I win or I learn.”

Attention and Intention

This week, my attention is on life’s tough stuff – its challenges. My intention is that we learn how to develop inner resilience to handle everything life sends – the good And the challenging to learn how to deal with life on its terms and show up on the other side wiser, happier and more connected to who they are.

Meet our guest Ria Story

Overcoming Challenges with Ria StoryRia Story is an author, motivational speaker and leadership coach. She has profound things to share with those going through personal challenges and tragedies, and how to move through and past them – how to leave the victim status in the rear-view mirror. Find her compelling story in her books, Ria’s Story: From Ashes to Beauty and A.C.H.I.E.V.E. You can see all the remarkable things about Ria, her work, strength, resilience and ways she helps others rebound at the following links:

Guest Links:

Episode’s Key TakeAWays

  1. Life sends what life sends – our success in life is our attitude about what happens. Every life experience, no matter how tragic it is or it is perceived to be, contains a lesson. Managing our attitude allows us to learn from every experience. Remember this quote from Viktor Frankl in his book, Man’s Search for Meaning, “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
  2. Tough times are part of the formula of life. When negative things happen, we can feel and act like a victim. As we stay in this space, the feeling of victim gets deeper and more profound. The moment that we see and take ownership of our feelings and attitudes about what is going on in our lives is the moment we start to move past our blocks and to heal.
  3. Parents – be aware of what events and challenges are affecting your kids. How can you show up to support your kids without either adding to the challenge or trying to take the challenge from them. Assess to find ways to support your kids as they work with you or with outside help to better understand the challenge and the ways to navigate around or through it.
  4. Parents – how are you creating the life challenge for you kids? How are your decisions adding more challenge to their days? As you tune in to you and your behaviors, what can you change to address a challenge you are creating, to either reduce it or help your kids deal with it?
  5. Resilience is what it takes to get up when life knocks us down. Help your kids develop their tenacity and resilience by helping them solve their own challenges to see how strong and capable they are when life gets tough.

Some question for parents:

  1. How can you help your kids see how tough and strong they are when confronted with challenges in life?
  2. How can you be a safe and sane voice in a noisy, distracting and challenging world?
  3. How are your behaviors creating challenges for your kids? What should you do about them?
  4. What is your attitude about challenges in your life – do you remain positive and learn/grow from them or do they take you down? How is your approach impacting your kids?

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Stop and Notice Challenge

Each week we ask you to stop and notice – to develop your skill of tuning in to you and your world. This week’s stop and notice challenge is:

  1.    Stop and Notice your approach to dealing with the challenges in your life. Do you lose your cool, or do you intentionally maintain a can-do, resilient attitude?
  2.    Stop and Notice how your kids deal with their challenges. What ways can you help them be more successful with their challenges without solving them for them?
  3.    Stop and Notice if you are creating challenges in your kids’ lives. What can you change right now to minimize the challenge?
  4.    Stop and Notice when your kids successfully deal with big events or challenges. How can you draw attention to their success to help them feel validated and courageous?

Life isn’t easy – ever. However, what makes it more difficult is our inability to learn how to deal with it – that wes should maintain instead a positive and optimistic outlook regardless of the event. Remember this quote from Viktor Frankl in his book, Man’s Search for Meaning, “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” So, choose to see the benefit in every challenge and share this with your kids – it will be how they will learn to weather any storm that life sends.

Suggested Resource

Ria’s Story: From Ashes to Beauty by Ria Story

Overcoming Challenges with Ria StoryFrom Ashes To Beauty is the unforgettable story and inspirational memoir of a young woman who was sexually abused by her father and rejected by her mother. Determined to not only survive, but also thrive, Ria shares how she was able to overcome the odds and find hope and healing to achieve an abundant life. She shares leadership principles that she applied to find professional success and personal significance, and how she was able to find the courage to share her story to give hope to others around the world.

When You Are Feeling Down, Do This One Thing To Turn Things Around

Face it, we all get to places and events that seem to take us down:

  • We get tough news about our health or the health of a loved one.
  • Our kids get into trouble outside of the house.
  • Relationships get challenged.
  • Jobs get lost and money gets tight.

Each of these can take us down. And sometimes it feels right to pull the covers up and feel sorry for ourselves. Or, it feels right to lose our cool and get angry. Being a victim or getting angry are the default behaviors for some of these life situations. Visiting these negative emotions is fine, but don’t move in.

Focusing on the negative brings more negative

When we dwell on a tough situation, it can take the joy out of every other part of life. Feeling down or sad about a situation you cannot control just brings these same feelings to the other parts of your life. We all have met or had to deal with people who were upset about something and then let it ruin every other part of their day (we’ll start to see it now as another election cycle happens).

So the question is, when you are feeling down, what is something you can do to turn things around? That one thing is GRATITUDE.

See, even in the worst of times, there is always something to be grateful for. In the moment of shifting out of victim or anger (both show up when we are down), we create a new energy – a positive energy – one that can help us reframe what we see, create optimism and encourage new solutions.

Gratitude changes the energy

Research shares that one of the greatest abilities to heal ourselves and to stay healthy is to live with both a positive outlook and with gratitude. It changes the chemicals in our brains which then positively influences our body chemistry.

If you are dealing with a challenging teen or young adult who has gotten herself in trouble, you are much more capable to handle the issue, help the young adult realign and keep a family together if you keep your mind focused on solutions and stay positive. Using your energy to be angry limits your ability to see the situation clearly, solve it wisely and build a more solid relationship. But with the awareness to shift to a little gratitude, opportunities to successfully resolve become more apparent. After all, what you seek you find.

Studies show that being angry or acting the part of the victim are life’s defense mechanisms; they are designed to keep us safe (notice the brain’s defaults are about safety, not happiness – we own creating our happiness). To (stop and) notice these feelings can help us shift to make sounder, wiser decisions.

Try this everywhere

We can do it face-to-face with our kids – when we focus on what is great and amazing in them. We can do it as money gets tight to see that we have support and help from others, or our health, or a loving relationship. We can do it when we are frustrated in the workplace by choosing to focus on something remarkable about the job or the people. We have to choose (on purpose) to stop and notice the good things when the bad things seem to have our full attention.

Don’t let the downs make you miss all the ups of life. The ups are more powerful than you think – they can completely dissolve the downs. Remember that “be happy” and “be down” can’t coexist – they are mutually exclusive emotions. Focus on the ups and they will help you provide solutions and responses to your downs.

What are three things you are grateful for, and how will you focus on these when life send you things that get you down?

Success and Failure, a Practical Discussion with Seymour Segnit RFL13

A Practical Conversation About Success and Failure – Episode Overview

Seymour Segnit on Success and FailureIn this episode we connect with the founder of thingCharger and clever entrepreneur, Seymour Segnit. He candidly shares his thoughts on moving on from challenges and failures and rallying around successes. His wisdom is for parents as well as the business community.

Attention and Intention

In this episode our attention is on how to notice the successes and failures in our lives, and our intention is that we learn to be realistic in using both our successes and failures to make better decisions – everywhere.

Meet our Guest – Seymour Segnit

A serial entrepreneur who has learned to spot good ideas, build from failures and keep perspective, Seymour Segnit is a realist. He knows his abilities, having been a peak potential trainer; he knows how to look at today’s world for needs and opportunities to add value and make a difference in areas that need what he does best. His latest venture is the creation of thingCharger, a new device charger that eliminates the problem of a tangle of cords and wires. It became the all-time #1 crowdfunded mobile accessory. Click on his links to see thingCharger and some of Seymour’s others great ideas.

Guest Links:

Segnit 1

Episode’s Key Takeaways:

Successes are events to build on. Celebrate them and do more with them.

Help your kids see the areas they excel in and by connecting what they are great at to places in their world, they see successes happen. According to the wisdom of Tom Morris (a future podcast guest) we should be both noble (aware that we are capable of great things) and humble (aware that others are too). So, success is a moment where it all comes together and we use it to learn how to build more events like these. Spending all our time celebrating our successes will quickly help us lose our edge. Celebrate and build.

Failures are events to learn from.

Most people avoid failure; in fact, our culture trains us to fear it and avoid it. However, talking to most of the successful people over hundreds of years, we see that what was different for them was their view of failure. Failure is a learning event, not to be feared, but to be used to grow. This doesn’t mean we shrug it off, it means we pay greater attention to the failure to build a way to be better because of it. Great entrepreneurs never fear failure – they look at it as the information they needed to move more wisely with the next decision. Learn from and grow.

Some question for parents:

  1. How do you help your kids look at and use their successes?
  2. How can you help your kids discover what they are good at to help them identify the areas that need what they do best, to help them learn how to be more successful?
  3. How do you help your kids look at and use their failures?
  4. How do you allow your kids to fail and not always rush in and make things right?
  5. How do you talk about failures – yours, others and theirs – to help them see how to grow from them and not to be afraid of them?

Stop and Notice Challenge

Each week we ask you to stop and notice – to develop your skill of tuning in to you and your world. This week’s stop and notice challenge is:

  1.    Stop and Notice a recent failure. Ask yourself these questions.
    •    What caused it – what was my role in it?
    •    What did it teach me?
    •     What will I be sure to do better next time?
  1.    Stop and notice a recent success. This is important because we generally spend time noticing our failures and not our successes. When you notice a success, ask yourself the following questions:
    •    What caused it – what was my role in it?
    •    What did it teach me?
    •     How can I build on it for the next time?

Life just provides learning – from both successes and failures. Stop and notice both and you will make life your live classroom, ready to teach you all sorts of things you need to be ready for life.

Suggested Resource

Everyday Blessings – The Inner Work of Mindful Parenting by Myla and John Kabat-Zinn

Everyday Blessings Book - A Success and Failure ResourceThis is my favorite book on mindful parenting, well in addition to the Conscious Parent by Shifali Tsbary. Mindful Parenting brings awareness to the moments of our parenting – of learning to show up to the successes and failures of life – always watching, learning, growing and connecting with our kids. In try Kabat-Zinn form, the book is large but it truly is not meant to be read all at once. Find the sections that appeal most to you – and work from there. They address every aspect of mindfulness from its basic understanding, to becoming self-aware, to using that awareness to show up differently to your kids. This book stays on my desk to check in on their thinking as life sends me things to deal with.

Share it with someone. We all get better when we learn how to help each other become the best parents we can be.


Entrepreneurial Thinking, With Tom Kruczek – RFL003

Entrepreneurial Thinking: Episode Overview

Tom Kruczek, President of Notre Dame College and lifelong entrepreneur, shares with Jay Forte, how critical it is for today’s young adult’s success to develop their entrepreneurial thinking – to learn how to be more self and world aware to be able to find or create opportunities to add value and make a difference in their world. Entrepreneurial thinking isn’t about starting a business – it is about changing how to look at ourselves and our world. This gives us information to be able to make better life and career decisions.


Entrepreneurial Thinking, With Tom KruczekTom Kruczek shares his insights as a new college president, recently installed at Notre Dame College in Euclid (Cleveland), OH. He is tuned in to watching and listening to students – what they need, think, care about, want and are worried about. It is his job to ensure his college provides what students need to be ready for life. As much as it is for the administration to listen, it is also important for students to come to college clearer about what they want from college – and to bring their needs and questions directly to the administration.

Notre Dame College is a small Catholic coed institution with a concentration on humanities, sciences, education, nursing and business. It highlights its small class size, excellent academics and personal attention as some of its greatest attributes.

President Kruczek shares the importance of having a college-wide focus on entrepreneurial thinking. For all students to find their way and be successful, they must become proficient in noticing needs and opportunities in their world, and connecting them to their unique abilities and passions to build their life decisions around what they do best. Developing the skills of stopping, noticing and considering (awareness) are built into the coursework throughout the college.

The take away messages for students and parents are:

  1. Know yourself and your abilities before you go to college to amplify the impact and return from college.
  2. Select a college that can help you achieve your specific objectives, and delivers it in an environment that fits you.
  3. Learn to tune in to your world – notice needs and challenges – these are the areas that will likely show you ways to add value and make a difference. This is what is meant by entrepreneurial thinking – becoming an opportunity hunter. Develop entrepreneurial thinking regardless of your major or college objectives.

Check out the college at

Contact President Kruczek at:

@PrezTomKruczek on Twitter

The ‘Stop and Notice’ Challenge

This segment is about noticing your world – about stopping and noticing – about slowing down enough to intentionally see what is in front of you. Most of us don’t do this. This takes practice; this takes effort. We know that the more we practice at things, the better we become – it is the same with stopping and noticing. So, each week I’ll provide a Stop and Notice Challenge – to help you get better.

When you learn to be more intentional about what you notice, you have access to information you didn’t previously have – that information can give you greater clarity to help you make better decisions. Notice YOU. Notice YOUR WORLD. You’ll learn a lot about both.

This week’s ‘Stop and Notice’ Challenge:

  1. What is one need or opportunity you notice at home?
  2. What is one need or opportunity you notice at school?
  3. Why did they get your attention? What connected with you or struck a chord with you – this is critical information.
  4. Finally, think about what ways could you use what you are good at and passionate about to solve this need? This is the way an entrepreneur thinks.

Stop and notice one thing this week on purpose. Then ask the question, what is something I could do to make this better? This is how to be an opportunity hunter. This is how to discover what is in your world, and what is for you.

Notice ‘Hot Jobs’

Each week, I’ll share a job that caught my eye – a job that is growing in need and popularity. I’ll share some details about the job, like salary, education, core responsibilities and abilities needed to do the job well. You can then see whether it fits your abilities and your interests.

Healthcare is big and will be for a while because of the amount of retiring and aging baby boomers. This week’s Hot Job:

Ready4Life Hot JobsHome Care Assistant/Aide

  • Average salary – mid $20’s
  • No college degree required
  • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, home care assistant is among the top 10 occupations with the largest job growth.

Home care aides help care for physically or mentally ill, injured, disabled or infirm individuals who are confined to their homes or living in residential care facilities. They may also provide daily care services to people with disabilities who work outside the home.

Home care aides work under the supervision of a nurse;  they also work closely with family members in the provision of care. Both men and women work as home care aides.

Most full-time aides work about 40 hours a week, but because patients need care 24 hours a day, some aides work evenings, nights, weekends and holidays, or may “live in.” Many work part time.

To be exceptional in this job you need to be compassionate, patient, responsive, respectful, detail-oriented, perceptive, logical, dependable and friendly. You will need a High school diploma or GED, 2 or more years of work experience a clean drivers license and be able to lift 40 lbs.

Go online to find the centers that train for this work; certification can be earned in several weeks.

Be sure you connect your career aspirations with things you are both good at and passionate about. Focus on what fits you. Listen to your own voice.

Suggested Resources

This week’s recommended resource is the book Linchpin – Are you Indispensable? by Seth Godin

Linchpin is powerful resource to remind you that the way you move ahead in life is to discover what it is you do best and bring it to all you do. You become indispensible.

“Linchpins are the essential building blocks of great organizations. Like the small piece of hardware that keeps a wheel from falling off its axle, they may not be famous, but they are indispensable. Have you foudn a short cut that others missed? Seen a new way to resolve conflict? Made a connection with someone others couldn’t reach?Then you have what it takes to become indispensible, by overcoing the resistance that holds others people back.”

Don’t hold back – be the different, unique and amazing person you were born to be – and bring what you do best to your world.

Powerful, direct, easy to read, empowering and engaging. It is on my list of must read for anyone in high school and college.

You can find the book in electronic and hard copy in all the regular places.

And be sure to review the 12 Entry Jobs with Big Earning Potential. This is a slideshow summary on the great website.

Important Links:

  • All Groan Up – Paul Angone – Advice for surviving your 20s

Key People To Follow:

  • Tom V Morris – Philosopher, Consultant to Fortune 100 companies, wise man
  • Britt Hysen – Editor in Chief of MiLLENiAL – lifestyle and cultural magazine highlighting millennials’ contribution to today’s world.
  • SethGodin– Marketing Guru and wise blogger – constant information about showing up and doing great things at work and in life.

Download our Ready4Life Navigation Guide – it will explain how to use our  Ready4Life GPS – to connect you to the tools to know yourself, know your world so you can find your fit.