Breaking The Bondage: An Overcomer…

crossroadsI was at a crossroads, overcoming or full on implosion, letting everything I had worked for consume me. The clock was ticking and only I could make that choice. How could I have been so selfish to think I had really been helping others including my own family? I was a short circuited mess, a ticking time bomb waiting to go off. Something was really not right with this picture.

Right away I went into my prayer closet to ask God what needed to change in me to thrive and succeed the way I truly desired to. Certainly I would be required to walk in a higher measure of faith. Our society teaches us that we must work hard to have the life we want and that God only helps those that help themselves. Though we are called to serve through our work and our efforts, it is not by our own strength and efforts that we excel, but in the hands of our Lord, the very one who breathed and gave us life.

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Lettuce Be A Life Of Magnetic Influence

My friends, I was thinking about you all the other day as I was scanning over a bed of lettuce lettucethat I was using to prepare a delicious salad that I had acquired a recipe for. As I inspected the head of salad I noticed some pieces that had gone bad and wouldn’t be suitable for consumption. For a moment, I thought to myself how wonderful an idea that I do not put something in my mouth that I do not wish to be there. It felt great to have that sense of ‘control’ of telling my body what it should and should not be indulging. The mind is a powerful thing, but what is even more powerful is the action of doing or not doing. I am sure many of you can understand that.

Maybe there is an area that you would prefer to be in more control over, it might be your time, your balance, your body, or your money. Speaking from personal experience, the area that i am working on gaining the greatest control over is my body. For years I had accepted the fact that maybe I had been built to be big. I had almost come to accept this grim reality that it was ‘ok’ to allow myself to pack on the lbs. Though I have never been grossly overweight, I had doubt and disbelief that I could ever lose weight. Heck, I still had some weight on me from having my first daughter, how would I ever gain control over my body? Did I even have the discipline it would require of me to tip the scales the opposite way?

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Addressed To The ‘Stay-At-Home’ and ‘Wish She Were Home’ Mom

Let me start this off by saying there are many, many moms that love being a ‘stay at home mom’. This is the ‘type’ of mom who wakes up early in the morning ready to conquer the superday. She may have a 6 course meal for breakfast on the table, laundry going, and take pride and joy in having prepared 4 sack lunches for the day. This ‘type’ of mom has the chore list completed before she writes it and may be considered the ‘she-hero’ housewife.

Even if this were the case, I believe that there are certain mom’s that do all of these things, but still feel they came up short somehow. There is a lingering feeling of worthlessness that plagues them. Their day is a chore for them, no matter their attitude. They convince themselves that they are happy to serve their husband and children. This is true! This wife may be happy serving her family, but fulfillment is not just about serving or being happy.

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The Greatest Channel To ‘Your’ Success

Hi, for those of you viewing this post that don’t know much about me, my name is Tara Hayes-Johnson. Prior to going into business for myself, I was working 80-90 hours a week for a boss that didn’t appreciate my work. Not only was I burnt out and stressed out, but I had no money to cover my minimum monthly expenses. Knowing that I was going to law school, not only did I need something that would allow for time, flexibility, and freedom, I needed a way to pay cash for school instead of incurring that student loan debt and adding to the debt I already had. In the last 4 years now, I have been able to profit a 6 figure income averaging 6800.00 in profit per month. My spouse and I have paid off over 84k in debt in 34. All I know is, I am diversifying my income,I never have to answer to another corporate boss again, and we are on our way to financial independence here soon.

You might be reading this thinking so what?!? or yeah right, this is the internet,, how do I know this is real??? I have a message specifically designed for you my friend, so indulge me for a moment and stick this one out, this message probably has a purpose for you.

I share this because recently I faced a bit of an epiphany. You see, even though I have made alot of money the last 4 years, doesn’t mean I mastered how to keep it. There are people that confuse the definition of wealth. For some, ‘wealth’ means making alot of money and for others, it means keeping money in your account. Wealth truly means the ability to make money, keep it in your account, and watch it grow in front of your very own eyes. The difference between who keeps their money and who doesn’t is the difference between the 98% and the 2%. According to my corporate trainer, Dani Johnson, ‘98% of the population will be dead or dead broke by the age of 65,’ Some of us are simply searching and measuring our success, comparing and contrasting success to that of others for many of us in a very unhealthy manner. Do you really want to be another statistic; the sad truth is that 98% of us will settle as another statistic because we simply thought we couldn’t get there ourself.

Think about it, you probably know people who want to ‘keep up with the Jones’. The pressure to have the BEST and have brand NEW things all the time grows on us. We see commercials, we network with people, we listen to the radio; these ‘things’ program our minds and trick it to believe we have to pay more to get more and we have to have the BEST. If we don’t have the best then we are stupid, we don’t fit in, we need to get with the program. How far has the lies, the brainwashing truly gotten you? I know this is going to create a stir for some people, and that’s okay. The truth is as a man thinks so is he. You only think that you need these things because you have been programmed to believe that this is reality and the truth. My friends, the truth is, true millionaires have grown their money by using what they have in front of them. True millionaires are so busy investing into others and putting them first that they don’t care about what they have or what they do not have; they have mastered the ability to keep their money in account that grows them dividends and gives them other options for residual incomes; they have learned how to make wise investments even in a down economy.

Let me ask you, are the 50-,60,70,80 plus hours that you work a week worth it to you? Is it worth it to you to sacrifice your family because the amount is never enough for what is outgoing? When is the last time you did something for yourself that truly made you happy? When did you feel you could cut the break? Is the financial pressure you have worth it to you? When is the last time you took a vacation just because you do? Compare your once or current dream circle and compare it to your income circle? How big is your ego, how far has this gotten you? Are your ideas making you money or leaving you dead broke? What kind of stack is in your account?

If you want to stay that way, then that is on you and I promise not to judge you for the lifestyle you desire. We all have hopes, goals, and dreams, and I would want you to live by your design the way that you are designed to be. If you are happy with where you are at and things are perfect, this might not be the message you were looking to read. If you are reading this, however, with a pit in your stomach there is a reason for that. I am so grateful you are reading this message and if you are upset, I know that is because something has reached down into your heart. Maybe you were like me and didn’t know how to cry out for help or what your next steps were.

Let me share something with you if I may. Let me tell you where I was 4 years ago. This won’t be the whole story, but let me highlight to you what that really looked like, just so you have an idea. If my mess helps your success, I am all about you not making my same mistake. Now seven years ago, I met a guy that I thought appreciated me for me. He spent his time telling me everything I wanted to hear. I would come home to the floor vacuumed, meals made, and a perfectly clean home. He would even get the mail for me and bring it in. Kind of odd for a guy that did construction work, who you would have thought would be so busy working that cleaning was the last on his priority list. When I met him, I had one credit card for emergencies. He was so persuasive that one turned into 5 and 5 then 6, so on and so forth. I was in between work struggling to use credit to pay for basic necessities; my first mistake (never again ever). He was off wining and dining women on my credit, etc. etc. He even took a vehicle to which he had no title to. The situation continued to get worse as I did my own investigating. He promised me the moon, the stars, the sky, but had nothing to show for it. He promised to marry me, took me ring shopping, and almost had me sign off on a town-home that I later found would have been fraud because he had lied on the entire application! I started investigating matters and taking them into my own hands. I was going through a Lifetime drama movie of my own and was terrified to share it openly to anyone. I was raised in a performance oriented household and unless things were good, you didn’t make mention of what was negative. I had rejection, abandonment, fear of mistakes, failure, and success written all over me and I didn’t even understand to the extent it went. He began to avoid me, abandoned his post, and left me high and dry to clean up the mess that he had left from so many women before. As far as I know, I am the only woman that he never put through banktrupcy, but I was super close! Most women he did this to were single mothers raising kids of their own. He had never paid his taxes that I am aware of and stopped his payments to his ex-wife for child support. He rode a slippery slope enough that he barely kept himself out of incarceration. I really didn’t know any better until it was too late, so I thought.

Before I met this character, I had a beautiful apartment and a career going for me. His screaming and threatening antics had me beside myself and impacted my ability to function at work. I had social services and law enforcement background, I should have seen the signs. This is classic right, everyone thinks, ‘well gosh, she should have seen the signs’. You can say that all you want, but love is blind and feelings can lie to you. I learned this all too well the hard way.

I had to pick up two jobs just to pay the bills. In fact, I was working 80-90 hours a week. I got 2 hours of sleep a night, and barely ate because I didn’t have time. I was always on the go and didn’t have the time for a social life. I was burnt out in miserable as a social worker by day and retail worker by night. There were plenty of nights that I didn’t get home until 11:45 at night only to have start on my homework towards my paralegal certification. On top of it, I had made a decision to go to law school and had been going through the application process. I thought I could do everything and I was going to show him what I was capable of.

I moved home briefly, but I never felt like it was home. I was not satisfied with my work and I certainly was not making enough money according to my worth and performance on the job. I was always stressed, especially about my finances. He bought a bunch of stuff that we really didn’t need, but he convinced me we needed it! We had a huge, flat screen tv mounted to our wall with Bose speakers and surround sound! You might not think this is alot, but this was just one out of many items we had no use for when we had a perfectly good, fat box television that was still working!!! Talk about not putting money in the right cases, that was certainly foolish on our parts. The worst part is that we put it on credit! Can you imagine the interest?!?

Because he abandoned his post in my life, both jobs were not cutting the cost of the interest alone. I was able to wheel and deal with the companies on lowering my APRs (annual percentage rates), however, it still wasn’t enough. Gosh, I wasn’t even meeting my minimum monthly expenses, let alone interest payments!!! This man was after my life and I had no idea how I was going to escape all of this mess. I was constantly on the look out, unsure of what he was going to do to me or my bank account next. After I cut him off from access to my finances, it still took me 3 paychecks to reach 33.00 in my checking account! I don’t say this to gain your sympathy, but merely to share what I had gone through. Talk about anxiety and panic attacks on a daily basis. I really truly didn’t see a way out of my situation and became so depressed that I faced suicidal ideations regularly.

I was constantly reminded by others of all the mistakes and failures I had made and what they thought I should do. I couldn’t even think clearly. All I knew to do was to work and work harder to escape the realities of my situation. All I knew was that the income I was bringing was not enough and I had to fix it fast. I began looking for paralegal thinking that might be a good option and then stumbled upon a work at home job. I filled out the information, but didn’t think anything of it. So, I filled the form out not expecting a call. Yet, I received a call. I wasn’t very nice and came up with every attitude and excuse as to why I should not or could not do it. I told the guy who contacted me, ‘I can’t afford to go into business for myself’, ‘what if I don’t have a guarantee’, ‘that’s good for you, but how much have you really made’. No matter what angle you looked at it from, I had an excuse for everything. My director in my business should have just said NEXT and moved on, but somehow, he saw something in me and didn’t give up.

I remember looking at the business opportunity and thinking the investment was hopeless. How could I spend money on something I didn’t have money to waste. Sure the folks in the industry said they would, ‘help me’, but how did I know they really would? I had no experience in business before, so I should just stick with something ‘safe’ and pray that ‘somehow’ I will make it out of my situation if I ‘became’ lucky somehow. One thing was for sure, success wasn’t going to fall out of the sky and I had to do something, but what?

I was fortunate that my parents had put money aside for educational purposes and after I reached a certain age, I had the ability to decide what to do with that money. The stocks were really aggressive, going up and down and I wanted to be sure that I had control over my own finances being in a position to tell them where to go, something I never had control of before. I took a risk without a guarantee (heck, most jobs aren’t stable anymore, look at the number of layoffs in our country today). I finally realized anything is better than my situation. My director, actually two directors, were the first to ever encourage me in a long time. They shared something that really touched me. What they said was profound to me, ‘I believe in you’. When I heard those words, I knew that God had placed these directors in my life for a very important reason. I decided from there on, to be teachable and coachable and follow their directions. I plugged into training designed specifically for our industry and also plugged into our industry’s corporate trainer, Dani Johnson. My first month in business without any prior experience I made 1k, 5200k in 90 days, nearly 50k in under 5 months time, and made over 70k my first year. Here is the kicker, I was still working my full-time day job! I only had 10 hours to work my business in the evenings and on a Saturday! The 70k did not include my pay from my full-time job; it was in addition to. 70k!!! This business became my soul source of income as I worked around law school. I was overly ambitious and not very happy with my decision for law. Something about impacting lives and talking to people around me became more appealing then researching and writing articles. Television makes a career in law look so much more glamorous! I prayed about my decision because I didn’t want to burn both ends of the candlestick.

My business ended up taking off and law school was left in the past. In the meantime, I met my husband while in law school and eventually we ended up married and now have a 22 month old daughter. We are very happy together, but that doesn’t mean after I made that money that again I knew how to keep it!!! For some reason, I had some ‘bright’ idea that I should hurry up and pay off all my debts and fast. In theory, this was an excellent idea, but I paid off too much too quick with my husband. We are glad that to this day we have paid off 84k in 34 months, but had we been applying directions correctly, according to what we learned from our corporate trainer, we could be financially independent right now! We followed some directions, but we didn’t follow all. I guess you could say it was like the recipe that had good intent, but re-inventing the ingredients wasn’t such a great idea when the outcome wasn’t as anticipated. We made alot of money, but we certainly didn’t keep it!

Recently, my husband and I had fallen into a hardship. He works part time, but they give him nearly 40 hours a week pay, or close to, rather. My husband and I agreed he should pick up additional income. With my educational background, I thought I had the cat in the bag and that I should start applying to any agencies that could help us out. Of course we made too much money to qualify and unless we had eviction notices, noone could help. I started applying for work, with my education, I had interviews in no time. I was excited about the interviews, but somehow, not fulfilled. I really had tried to psyche myself into believe that more meant more. If I could just land this one job then I could do it around my business, have a nanny for my child, and give my family everything they wanted.

Sometimes you do get what you want, even if it’s not right for you. This was certainly the case for me. I ended up landing that job that still gave me flexibility around my business and on top of it, I had begun helping another director in my industry. Next thing you know I am back to those 80 hours; back to that bondage that I thought I had said goodbye to forever. I was miserable, making mistakes, and had lost my balance. I was missing appointments, flying on the road, tryng to juggle everything. I was trying to be everything to everyone else. Nothing came out of this, but exhaustion, depression, and meltdown. My work became the very thing that I was eating, breathing, and sleeping. My husband and daughter were on the back-burner, while I was the one that was going to lead us to success, NOT! Sure, my appointments were there and I had prospects I was interviewing, deals were on the horizon, and I was confident I could still do all of this! The more I sat in training, the more I started to have this pit in my stomach that something wasn’t right. I prayed about my situation and once again was removed from it and placed strategically back in my business.

I then realized the epiphany. How could I put my work before my family? Were my priorities really in the right order? Was it worth it to put paychecks that paid our bills before my own family? I have the ability to make 1-9705k a sale in my business, so why would I settle for mediocrity and set myself up to fail? My friends, I am here to tell you no work hours could make up for what I was missing in my family’s life. My husband never had the time to look for additional work and I treated him like he was second class. I never wanted to be with him because I was too busy for him. I am not proud of it, but I was short-tempered with my daughter and here I am supposed to be setting an example by leading in business, but also being a wife and a mom; a role that was seemingly non-existent. Talk about not honoring or respecting the relationships that existed. How in the world could I be made ruler over much when I wasn’t being entrusted with what I was given? The answer and conclusion was a simple one, to help others get what they wanted and I would be entrusted with more. The change started with me. I was at a breaking point and no matter how much my husband encouraged me and supported me, I had to make the decision to change. I decided not to move forward with the job and to scale my hours working with another director and in my own business, cutting it down to no more than 20 hours a week! That is a 60 hour difference, but a well worth it difference! I had something in front of me that had made me so much money in the past, so why did I stray from it? All I had to do was pick up the phone, get in front of the computer, have a hallway commute, and work around my husband and my daughter, putting them first. This meant, in the mornings spending time with them and making them feel special and honored. This also meant that each week my husband and I have begun discussing our schedules for the week so that they coordinate; this has opened up family time to spend doing activities in and out of the home, has allowed one on one instruction time that I can teach my daughter, has allowed us to communicate where we can eliminate expenses in our budget and accrue money, allowed us to pay off more debt, and has allowed our financial income to increase; especially in business. I have now closed 3 sales in the last 1.5 months and finally have time, flexibility, and freedom. Instead of only giving part of myself to my work and my family, I am able to give it my BEST shot in ALL areas and it is such an honor to grow with my family and to be one as a family unit. I am able to have that quality time with my daughter and even date nights with my husband! It is amazing to me how less can truly mean channeling more success.

Again, everything may be perfect in your life and you wouldn’t change a thing. If you are, however, in a rut and tired of not getting anywhere, if you are looking to increase your relationships, better manage your time, while having more fun and making a greater income, visit wwww.danijohnson.com, go under the ‘events’ section and register for the next First Steps To Success.

Pound The Alarm…..INeedMOREssleeep….

We live in a world today that is extremely fast paced. Our schedule start to finish is filled with activities or tasks that we feel are important. The minute we roll out of bed, our time tells us where it needs to go. The morning routine alone is packed. First you have to get you ready, then come kids and school lunches, and then you realize the dry cleaner called and it’s time to pick up your suit for your morning presentation. Before you know it, it’s 8 AM and you are expected in your bosses’ office to go over the presentation that will land you one of the most important contracts in the history of your company. Following your morning meeting is a luncheon meeting you must be at because your boss is recommending you for an award to be received at the end of the month.

You have two more clients to meet with before after school soccer practices with the kids before your last dinner meeting for the evening. You drop the kids off at practice and make arrangements for the sitter to come over when you drop the kids off before your meeting. You also have to call the delivery guy for a scheduled pizza delivery as you know you won’t be home in time before the sitter puts the kids to bed. Your evening has just begun when you receive a call from your husband saying that he will be at the office late catching up on reports. You come home and realize the cat hasn’t even been fed and the laundry has yet to be done. You turn to your right and see your child’s science fair project that you promised to help with the finishing touches and your child will be presenting amongst the regional judges early morning, it has to get done. Before you know it, it’s 11 PM before you even settle down on the couch. Next thing you know it’s 1 AM in the morning and you fell asleep on the couch. Does this schedule sound familiar to you? Do you tend to identify with a ‘like’ protocol/routine to your day?

Looking forward to a full-night’s sleep, your head begins to hit the pillow, when your mind starts plotting the next day’s agenda. All you can think about is work and it seems like there is no exit. No matter how much you work, all you do is eat, sleep, breath, and think about your performance at work. If you are not thinking about your job, you are thinking about your kids and everything that needs to be done around the house including when you are going to get your weekly cleaning done. You might even be thinking about when you are going to get the dishes done that are piling up in your sink!

Now this schedule may not seem so bad if it’s just a night here and there, but what if this is a daily, weekly, 365 days a year type of schedule? After all, the average person requires minimum 8 hours of sleep a night. Your body was designed in a way that it needs rest to be replenished. Your mind is a muscle and all your body’s muscles need time to relax. Otherwise, you will not be able to think clearly and your overall brain function will be lower the next day. If your brain is not able to properly function, you will begin to forget at first what will seem like ‘trivial’ things such as taking out the trash, or picking a gallon of milk up at the store. Without adequate rest over time, your body will go into sleep deprivation and you will begin to forget more important things such as meetings or your childrens’ back to school parent-teacher conferences; all important things that you must attend.

All work and no balance does not make you healthier. The fatigue you begin to experience over time equated with sleep deprivation increases stress. Stress creates hypersensitivity to even the smallest of situations or issues and magnifies, intensifying daily tasks in your life. Stress also produces an increase of Cortisol in the body that can cause inflammation, gas, and create weight gain. Cortisol and stress will cause your body to feel more and more sluggish. Your body becoming more and more sluggish along with insufficient, lack of nutrition will cause your body to shut down and not function. When your body is at its lowest point in malfunctioning, this is where overeating leads to intensity of stress. Intensity of stress leads to mental break-downs, and mental break-downs lead to your mind and physical body shutting down to the point you come down with a form of mental or physical disease. At this point you are no help to others, your family, or even yourself.

To think, every physical or mental issue could have been prevented if you told your time where it needed to go instead of time telling you where to put it. Here is a tip of wisdom that your body will thank you for. Your everyday life is all about priorities and learning where to delegate responsibilities, or plain and simply say ‘no’. Do you really have to take on an extra client that afternoon, or are you doing it only because you feel that it will advance your work career.? Was the extra 3 hour meeting worth putting it first over your children?

Those extra 3 hours you booked that client could have been spent preparing dinner, getting kids to bed, scheduling out your next day, or better yet, getting that extra hour of sleep that you’ve been missing. An extra hour of sleep doesn’t sound like much, but it can make or break the difference of how your next day is. Being able to articulate to your clients and work effectively with your boss is important. Being able to think clearly on how to help your son ace his math test the next day would make you and him feel good that you set the time aside to do so. Again, it’s all about balancing your priorities. It is okay to say no to that extra client, especially if it means getting better nutrients, having better digestion, taking care of your body, being there for your family, and getting that extra sleep that your body is begging you for. Your body will thank you for that sleep; especially when you wake up refreshed in the morning ready to take on the day! Your family will also thank you that you put them first before your work. It’s all about time management and how you balance your day. It’s okay to get in a full days worth of worth, but even the greatest ‘energizer bunny’ needs to be re-charged. Rest is the greatest way to increase your everyday function. Make sleep your priority at the end of the day and everything else you are desiring for, will naturally fall into place. If you are looking for ways to better your time management including more sleep, visit www.danijohnson.com, type in the search engine at the top ‘time management’ where you will find related articles.

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