Posted in Balance Life and Business, Online Business Building, Organization, Seniors in Business, Virtual Partner

Mastering Time Freedom Series – A Simple 5 Step Solution to Overwhelm [Step 1]


Why am I entitling this article Mastering Time Freedom vs Time management? Because Time Management has gotten a bad rap over the years. Why? Because it feels like work, requires you to commit to things you don’t want to do and no one wants to keep doing it.

Time is money! Right? Ugh, We have such hard quotes embedded in our brain and even though they were meant to DRIVE us, they may have actually thwarted our success. We no longer want to be forced to do things, we want to own our life and our time.

If you could find a solution to your overwhelm with a simple process that has no boundaries, just suggestions. A system that allows bendability and freedom, would you want to know what it is?

My work requires me to help my clients accomplish that which they resist for whatever reason. fear, overwhelm, physical challenges, or just plain too busy, there are many ‘excuses’ for not accomplishing things. I personally do not do well with accountability and rigidity. I don’t even use those words or practices in my work.

So, how do you get things done when you don’t want to, feel stuck or stopped or don’t have someone forcing you to do it? I like to think as adults, we don’t need someone to parent us. When a potential client contacts me and asks me to whip them into shape, I tell them emphatically, ‘I’m not that type of Partner’.

I developed a very workable Time Freedom plan that allows for everything to get done. At your pace, in your own way.  I have been teaching this module for years. I am offering the outline here. If you would like more, including guided videos and pre-made forms, feel free to contact me.

These 5 Steps are ALL important. Please take them one at a time and even space them out if you need time to prepare for the next step. Have fun with it. I get a lot of responses on how this has changed people’s lives now that they have a system. Some say they had more time to spend with family and equally important they had more time for themselves.

I will GUARANTEE that you will either tweak this system to work for you or you will love it and stop using it one day. I’m here to remind you of the title ‘Mastering Time Freedom’. All I really want to accomplish here is to show you A WAY. A REALLY good way to enjoy doing what you want to do. If it works, keep doing it. If you need to change it, feel free. If you stop using is, guess what? You have a foundation to go back to whenever time gets the best of you. Fair enough?

Ok here we go:

Step One: Purge – aka Mind Dump – Make a list of everything you need to accomplish. This is one of the most resisted steps. Why? Because people think they know everything they need to do. And you know what? You probably do. I’m here to tell you that keeping stuff in your head all the time keeps you from bringing NEW stuff your head. If you constantly remind yourself of all you have to do, you are wasting a LOT of energy and mind space. Most people who FINALLY do this exercise cannot believe the mental freedom they feel.

Exercise:

  1. Get a Notebook or Start a File – Get a really nice notebook or open a file in your computer. The object is to find a place that you trust will be there and you will remember where it is. It should also be easily accessible. If not, you will not empty your head out. This will only work if you empty out.
  2. Start your purge – The first step in purging is to just do a free-form purge. Enter everything you want to accomplish from cleaning out a kitchen drawer to creating a new design for changing the world. It’s all in your head so get it out. Coming up with 100 or more things is not uncommon.
  3. Check yourself – Take a look inside after you have written everything down. Can you think of anything else you have to or want to do? If so, put it down. If your list is private, then consider password protecting it.
  4. Organize your list – This is absolutely optional. I am adding it because I have clients who can’t have their business and personal combined. Feel free ONLY AFTER you have completed your purge to sort things out in any type of categories that serve you. Personal, Business, Smallest to Largest, Near Future to Long term. There are many ways to organize if you desire.
  5. Keep up your list – This is your home-base for all your thoughts. You will be visiting it regularly. So, you will want to add to it as often as you can to keep your mind empty and ready for new things.
  6. Enjoy your empty mind space – Just for giggles, please sit back and look at your list, knowing you have documented everything in your head. Then close your file or book and sit back and see how you feel. On a scale of 1-10 where were you before you started your list and where are you now when it comes to feeling like your mind is relaxed.

Ok, this completes day one of the Mastering Time Freedom Series. Feel free to sign up for this blog to receive each step in the series in your inbox. If you are looking for additional support with mastering your time, contact me.

For more information on how I can help you in life and business, learn more about having a Virtual Partner

Posted in Balance Life and Business, Business Building, Online Business Building, Seniors in Business, Thrive, Virtual Partner, Women Entrepreneurs

Hey, Senior-preneurs, Guess what? You Don’t Have to Do it Alone


Tips and Resources you can use right away to take the load off

You’ve done your ‘time’ in your work years. You worked hard and long. You FINALLY decided to take the leap to become self-employed. Now that you are there, you want to do a little something or a big something, but you want to pace yourself. You want to enjoy your senior years AND build your business. You may feel out of balance. What can you do to get organized, structured or just plain not work so hard?

Marketing is a lot tougher these days. Remember when a newspaper ad and some flyers put you on top of your competition? There’s so much to know. And while you are capable of learning about it, you wonder whether you are in YOUR business or the MARKETING business. Right?

Growing a business online is one of the most rewarding and fruitful things you could be doing right now. The world is your oyster and no matter how old you are, you can build a solid future online. So, if you are doing that, congratulations. Yet, if you feel overwhelmed being chief cook and bottlewasher, you may need a little support sometimes, don’t you?

You could have had a partner, but you REALLY wanted to do this alone. Either they didn’t have the same passion or values as you do or you didn’t want to lose control of your business let alone 50% of your profits.

As a Virtual Partner for Senior-preneurs, I am here to share Tips and Resources you can use right away to take the load off. These are just a few of the tools I pass along. It’s the ‘tip’ of the iceberg. So, if what you need isn’t below, contact me, I’m your resource queen.

Marketing – From website building, graphic design to social media marketing – If you want to stay doing what you do best, then find someone who can do it for you at an affordable price. Outsourcing is THE way to go to manage your business and keep you focused on your trade.

  • Fiverr.com – This used to be a site where everything was $5. Not so much anymore. They now range from $5-$995. But you still get amazing deals here. Search for anything you need. I needed a fillable PDF order form with a countdown built-in to limit characters in a field and there was someone to do that! And it only cost me $25 AFTER I spent hours trying to do it myself. I’ve used Fiverr for many different projects from logos to animated videos. Take a look at how they can help.
  • Upwork – I have hired many freelancers and my clients have as well. You can hire someone for a one-time project or a full-time employee. You can save money by hiring out of the country or you can hire only those from the US. I do advise you to sign up for a complimentary 15-minute orientation call with them. You will be amazed when you see how much you do from this site and how you can run your business more simply. Many fortune 500 companies use Upwork, so why shouldn’t you? You can search with all your specific criteria from an hourly rate, experience, and location. Give them a try.

Management – If you are looking for someone to carry out your marketing campaigns, help you prepare for events, do just about any administrative task you can think of but you don’t want to provide a desk for them … then you want to hire a Virtual Assistant. Hiring a Virtual Assistant requires you to know what you want first. Some don’t realize that they can have several V.A.’s.  So, don’t worry if you can’t find someone who does it all. I’ve hired a few at a time and it worked out great. Take some time to search and interview for the right one(s).

  • Upwork and Fiverr can help you in this area along with many professional V.A.’s that are independent. You can find them if you google Virtual Assistant for hire

Learning – If you need to learn something new and quick, you don’t necessarily have to GO to school. I love online learning and have gotten so much from many sites. Some may seem obvious, but others may be new to you. If you’d like to learn more about business management or social media or even if you want to learn how to do a PowerPoint presentation or create an Excel spreadsheet with formulas, there is someone teaching a class about it somewhere at a VERY affordable price. If you want, you can even pay to further the education of your new Virtual Assistant! I would like to suggest that every entrepreneur spend a designated amount of time each week to learning, staying up to date and mastering their trade. DON’T BECOME A DINOSAUR!

  • YouTube – Not just for cat videos, YouTube is a hub for education. It feels like everything you ever want to know is on YouTube – I go there for the craziest questions and get them answered
  • Udemy – Online learning at a very affordable price. Some of the classes are as low as $10 and they even have Free classes. Many of them have a sample session, so I suggest you listen to the instructor to make sure their way of teaching and even the sound of their voice resonates with you. Don’t just be romanced by the syllabus.
  • Khan Academy – FREE – From Math to Science and Engineering. From Computing to Economics and Finance, everything is absolutely FREE

Balance Life and Business – Now that you’ve gotten some support in managing your business, what will you do with all that extra time? Hopefully, you will spend some of it doing joyful things. One thing I do recommend is that you take time to unwind.

Spend time NOT thinking about your business. While this may be difficult for some (me included) It’s not a luxury. Your balance is a priority when it comes to keeping your stress levels down and your alertness and energy high. Think of this time as a mini-vacation, not a task. Here are some of my suggestions.

  • Transcendental MeditationI have been meditating for over 30 years. I had various methods from visualization, vibrational, guided and just plain sitting in quiet. I took a TM class a few years ago and found it to be extremely helpful even for me. I took a newbie there who could never meditate and they truly enjoyed the new way to relax. You don’t have to spend money on learning TM, you can find your own way to reconnect with your inner self.
  • Unplug – YES, turn off your electronics! I know, it seems crazy, but when there were hurricanes in Florida, we would often lose power. During that time, while everyone was frantic about not having their gadgets, I found such peace and pleasure and found it was truly healing my mind and body to not be plugged in. Now if you knew me, you’d know that I am attached to some type of device 24/7. I sleep with my phone and I’m on my computer all day. And still, I find unplugging is one of the hugest gifts I can give to myself. Try it, you’ll like it! And for those who often tell me they can’t turn off their phones due to a person or two who needs them, put your phone on Do Not Disturb with one of these conditions. Either set it so those who are your FAVORITES can get through (only if you don’t have too many) or you can set it to the ring twice setting and those who really need you will call twice to get through. I find that a great tool and I don’t worry about those trying to reach me.
  • Nature For goodness sakes get out of the house! If you are an online business, chances are that you spend WAY too much time inside. Take time to get out. Not to shop or to socialize. (even though they are good too) Get out of the house to connect with nature. Go to the beach, the mountains, the park. Be in silence. Regroup, replenish and revitalize. You deserve it and your clients deserve to have a better you as well.
  • Volunteer Before I became an entrepreneur I used to volunteer often. Now I don’t get to as much because I work many hours. Volunteering is so beneficial that I think I will write a blog about it (look for it soon) Take time to get out of your own life and thoughts and into contributing to others. You’ll be amazed at how that changes perspective.
  • Find something simple to do – Play with your pet or child (or someone else’s), expressive dance, float in the pool, dig your feet in the sand or even hug a tree. Something that’s nourishing you on a cellular level.

Supportfrom Emotional, Professional, Personal and more. Well, that’s where I can make a difference. If you find that you need support for your business or personal life, take a look at what I do. I’m a Virtual Partner. It’s a service that senior-preneurs have been gifting themselves with. I love helping Senior-preneurs by partnering with them on many levels from building their business to balancing their personal life, to helping them find relationships.  I am a senior who cares and I want to make sure you know that you don’t have to do it alone. Take a look.

I hope these few tidbits helped some. As I said, I have thousands of them to share. If you have questions about your business or just want to share, please comment below. 

 

Posted in empowerment, Inspiration, motivation, Online Business Building, Relationship, Thrive, unstoppable

Face it, I’m Older and I Have More Insurance! TAWANDA!!


A love letter to the Boomers

If you’ve ever seen and related to this iconic moment in the movie Fried Green Tomatoes you will want to keep reading.

This scene is where Kathy Bates’ character gathers up every ounce of her power and refuses to be taken advantage of any more! The declaration TAWANDA that she yells out has been in my vocabulary ever since, whenever I connect to my inner strength or WANT to.

So why am I sharing this with you? Because as we get older, we often feel a little ‘less than’ our younger counterparts. We may feel as though we can’t keep up or that we are having trouble coming to terms with our age at some level. Some of us feel less attractive than the young’uns (and this goes for men as well as women), while others long for the good old days when they were unstoppable. I’m here to declare that we Boomers still have it. We are still millions strong and we still carry a lot of weight (don’t say it ).

I want to take a few moments to acknowledge those of us who are older and wiser. We are a community and I would like to keep it that way. We don’t even know each other and yet… we KNOW each other. No matter where we are from, chances are that we’ve watched the same TV shows, seen the same movies and had a similar upbringing. Our history is different than anyone else’s and only we can relate to it.

We know what it’s like to be older than a lot of todays technology and yet, if you are reading this or writing your own blog, you are probably doing OK in that area.

We have become so much younger than our parents were at this age. Young enough to stay active, start businesses and be incredible role models for other generations. Even the movie industry is catering to our age group because we STILL have buying power. We still OWN this country. Our music is timeless. We had the Beatles and Woodstock for goodness sake. What can ever compare to that?

I’ve always loved being a boomer, we were ‘it’. I am proud to be a part of a community that is so diverse yet so connected. You are my family at some level. You are my people and I’m so happy to grow older with you.

I want to take this moment to appreciate us and to honor us. We are seasoned individuals, thirsty for the future while still basking in and appreciating our past. If you are feeling the same way, if you love being a boomer and proud to be in a world of people who survived much, thrived even more and continue to live until there’s no life left in us, then I want to hear from you. Share with me how you feel connected to other boomers. What makes you proud to be one? And if you are not a Boomer, what about us makes a difference in your life. Thank you for being my ‘tribe’

 

Fran Asaro is a Virtual Partner for 50 and over entrepreneurs. What’s a Virtual Partner you ask? Not a coach… find out more

 

Posted in Humor, Inspiration, motivation, Online Business Building, Thrive

Bringing Crazy Back –  7 Ways to Lighten up You and Your Business


This message is for anyone, any age who can use a refreshing new way to do business by bringing Crazy Back!

My father used to call me Elsa Maxwell. Apparently, she was huge party giver back in the day. He said I would throw a party at the drop of a hat. Work would come second to fun. ALWAYS. Having fun has never been an issue for me. Taking life seriously well, that’s another story. When my sister observes me during my workday she often comments ‘You’re not working, Fran, you’re playing’. My response is almost always the same. Thank You, that’s my goal and to help others do the same. Since this seems to be a gift, it’s my duty to help others tap into their fun selves. I’m not talking about being a goofball necessarily, but a genuine ball of light.

Somewhere it was taught to us to ‘behave’ in business. If you are naturally a serious person then this may be the way for you. But how many of you out there were crazy at one time or another and have ‘straightened up’ for the sake of being professional or worst yet, ‘appropriate’?

I know I will get some comments from those who do believe in being serious when it comes to business and I guess a Funeral Director should. But hey, didn’t you used to laugh more? Play more? Sing more? Why can’t you implement more play into your workday? Could that change the way you feel? Think? Perform?

When I was a Realtor, I perceived the Realtors in my area as straight-laced and serious. I was often intimidated by them and thought I would never succeed because I wasn’t like them. Then one day my broker turned the music up in her office, came back to our work area and began dancing with all of us. I was so relieved that she was being human and playful. I changed that very day and was no longer cautious or quiet. I began to play while I worked. It was a life-saver.

Don’t get me wrong, I know when it’s time to be serious. I know there are certain times to ‘behave’. But the other times, well, that’s MY time to let go.

I have to tell you, just writing about this topic has me feel more bouncy and authentic. I write blogs all the time, and some convey my sense of humor. Those seem to be the ones that get the most attention.

I think this world, especially during these times, could use more joy and laughter. Are you someone who can raise the bar in that area?

Some of you are already tapped into your ‘crazy’. Congratulations! It sets you apart and certainly lightens up the room. Others, well, not so much. So, I put together a few suggestions to help you when you think you are being too somber.

  1. Decide – Yes, deciding that you want to bring crazy back is probably a good first step. Once you make that connection, you will begin to find ways to do this. Maybe you can create a mantra or declaration that would help – ‘Today is the day I bring my crazy back!’
  2. Honor Your Own Level of Crazy – Yes, crazy may be a hard word to swallow, maybe you don’t really WANT to be crazy. Maybe I should have called this ‘tapping into your full self-expression’, but then I think you would have held back a little. I want you to BURST. With that said, on a scale from 1-10 where are you now and where would you like to be? That will give you a good idea of where to begin.
  3. Dress or move differently – Do your best to shift completely into the new fun-loving you. That would include possibly dressing with a lighter touch or walking with a little more bounce in your step. Sometimes doing this first will allow for the ideas to flow and the changes happen more easily.
  4. Create your list – It doesn’t have to be a real list, but, begin taking mental notes of what bringing crazy back into your life would look and feel like. Do you see someone who enjoys their day more than most? What do they do that you can do. Would you like to play more music, sing, dance, have contests, parties, create fun things for you and your clients? If you notice something that appeals to you and you feel a bit scared, take a look at it, that may very well be the thing that will take you over the bridge.
  5. Start slow – Don’t scare those around you by making drastic changes – they may not recognize you. Don’t force yourself to do anything that feels too uncomfortable. A little discomfort is OK though. Start out with a few moments a day where you make yourself laugh a little. Then build upon that.
  6. Tap into your past – We all have those memories where we were a bit wild, playful and daring. Often we say ‘those were the days’. You know, those don’t have to be the days, today can be the day – The day you create something better. Try this, bring some of your past craziness forward to meet the present you and design how you want them to blend. Marry the two and recreate your future.
  7. Help others do the same – You must know other people who may be too business-like. Check in with them and see if they could use a little lightening up as well. It’s possible they’ve been hoping for a break in seriousness and you may have a partner in crime! You may even consider starting a group of contemporaries, where you can do fun, non-business events together.

The old cliché, life is too short comes into ‘play’ here. How do you want to spend your days or years in business? Don’t wait for retirement, until business is better or something else. Crack yourself open today and see what’s inside! Then call me. I’d love to meet the new you!

If this message resonated with you, I’m glad. If you feel stimulated by it, even better. If it motivates you to take action, then I applaud you for being daring.

 

Fran Asaro is a Virtual Partner supporting entrepreneurs who don’t want to do it all alone