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15 Minutes of Focus- Thankful

I look forward to coming back to my blog day after day to reflect.

thankful

Today was a good day.  I met with one of our advisors and we had a really good discussion.  Then again, when do I not have amazing conversations with amazing people?  It’s a benefit of doing a startup. :)

Today I look back on the last 2 years, and my life in general and think, damn.

Damned if anyone can say I’m not a hard worker.  Damned if anyone can say I didn’t give (my career) my all.

And that makes me proud.  Because either way, the end result was me doing my best at what I do.  And it is truly amazing to see the results. :0

Thankful also, for the folks in my life who have stuck by through and through.  The tough times have been awesome, the good times better than awesome, and there is only more to come.

But for now, I’m just grateful to look back on my life and be thankful for the accomplishments to date.  Because damned if I didn’t give it my all. :)

xxoo,

Tracy @ladyleet

15 Minutes of Focus- Do You Believe?

If you seek glory, you are looking for the wrong thing.  Especially in startup.

It’s not in the glory of victory that you find yourself.  It’s the times of darkness.  It’s through the trials and on that last mile where you build your character and become who you are.

That’s why I love the times of hardness.  Because I know only greatness is to come.  And sure, the glory will be there, but I am more proud of the times I endured, I pushed through.  The hardest times make the best times worth it.

That’s why I love pushing my team to our limit.  Because if we don’t stretch our minds and attitudes, greatness is not possible.

And in those “dark” times, those times of preparation before the triumph, you have to believe.  Believe that the triumph is to come.  Know that the harder the times now, the more the success to come.  And the great times always come.  Believe and trust.  Push through.

light-in-the-darkness-china

It’s believing in balance, and it’s believing in rainbows.

A-Tree-in-the-Dark-Rainbow-32552

I believe in balance and rainbows, and that belief has gotten me through the toughest of times.  I’ve emerged a butterfly many a time, and plan on continuing a beautiful rebirth of awesome time and time again.

It is for balance between awesome and hard work that thankful.  Cherish the hardest parts of life. :)

xxoo,

Tracy @ladyleet

15 Minutes of Focus- Attitude

My 15 minute brain dumps daily- a process I’m adopting after talking to Patricia of Lawless Coach.  15 minutes of focus daily can do wonders. Enjoy mine. :).

Still doing these 15 minute brain dumps.  Because I want to, not because I have to (although that statement is to remind myself to have a positive attitude and change my “I have to do this blog post right now” moment).

Have to vs. want to.

Ignoring the Demons

I used to work with this girl who had a sarcastic attitude.  She was just one of those, “I’m negative, but I’m joking and it’s cute” people.  You pretend like you’re negative, and you become negative.  And then it’s not cute.  It’s cute for awhile, but ugh when it rubs off.

I didn’t become negative, but since I enjoy what I do for work and it seemed she did not, I felt this need to automatically say, “I have to go do this”.  Even though when I had to do something, I really wanted to.  I did this so she wouldn’t feel so bad about her have to tasks.  I wanted to help share in her pain.  Fail man, fail.

The reason I illustrate this is because these small comments I made daily about having to do something (vs jumping for joy because I wanted to) actually changed my attitude on things.  I felt heavier, like I had to do the things I loved.  And then since I had to do it, I enjoyed it less.  I enjoyed life less.  And that is the suck.

Introspection is the Win

You gotta stop yourself before you become a lousy bum with a bad attitude.  And you better catch it fast.  It’s about being habitually awesome.

I did.  And I’ve gotten back to wanting do do things (not that that actually changed until I began faking that I didn’t enjoy what I did.)

do_want.

Even words, the words we’re surrounded by, the words we put out into this world are so key in framing our actual lives.

Don’t get stuck in, I have to. Get back to I want to.

Your choice. No one elses.

attitude

This is our life. We make the choices we want.  We determine our success and failures.  We are the only people that we can hold accountable for our happiness, determination, passion, and drive.

It even goes back to this simple blog post, right?  I don’t necessarily want to write this blog post right now, but I have made it a have to.  Because I want to.  Not because I want a 15 minute brain dump, but because I know this contributes to a greater goal of balance, focus, and I know writing grounds me daily.  Which again makes it a want to.

Attitude folks. :) Thanks Patricia for amplifying this desire of want in my life. :)

PS if you haven’t signed up for a coaching session with Patricia yet, you’re only hurting yourself.  And that’s no fun.

xxoo,

Tracy @ladyleet



15 Minutes of Focus- The Sweet Feeling of Success

My 15 minute brain dumps daily- a process I’m adopting after talking to Patricia of Lawless Coach.  15 minutes of focus daily can do wonders.  Enjoy mine. :)

So, it’s almost 3am.  I was rather overwhelmed about 12 hours ago.  It was intense.  Blog post on it here.

I’m back from the Dishcrawl Oakland launch (pic of ribbon cutting below) and have been sitting in the office for about… 4 hours now?  I lurvs it.

dishcrawloakribbon

I finally got that advisor update out.  3 days late.  I tend to beat myself up for these things, and yes, I am the one that gives myself these deadlines.

Re: advisors and asking for help.  It’s an internal battle for me, knowing I need to lean on people but having a serious sense of independence in me that makes me want to take charge of things on my own.  But I do love my advisors, they are the best things ever and the feedback they give me is so darn useful.  It’s great to have awesome brains to lean on.

You’d think a launch of a new Dishcrawl city would stress me out, right?  Nope.  Dishcrawls are extremely relaxing for me these days.  They are all fun!  I love it so much.  Partially due to the fact that we’ve just refined our training to a science and our team is amazing at execution.  Maybe much due to that fact.

Balsamic mascarpone gelato with graham cracker crumbs from Lush Gelato helped too, I suppose.  NO IT HELPED A LOT.

gelato

Everything is a balance these days.  Even lack of balance has a balance.

So I’m balancing the unbalanced life I have, pushing the needle forward, beating myself up for no reason and every reason out there while keeping a smile on and covering these bags under my eyes with makeup.

In other news, I need to try and make a rule of no laptops in bed.  No more working from bed.  It does not help my sleep wellness.

Words of Wisdom

If I had to say one thing to help myself (or you) through the next day or two or three, it would be…

Have dedication to your goals.  Execute with conviction.  Beat yourself up because you suck, then pat yourself on the back because you’re a success.

“Excellence is never an accident; it is the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction, skillful execution and the vision to see obstacles as opportunities.”

xxoo, ’til the next 15 minutes,

Tracy @ladyleet


15 Minutes of Focus- Overwhelmed?

My 15 minute brain dumps daily- a process I’m adopting after talking to Patricia of Lawless Coach.  15 minutes of focus daily can do wonders.  Enjoy mine. :)

WOW.  Wow wow wow.  It’s been 3 days since a brain dump and WOW.  Things have been moving at lightening speed and I’m trying to do 10 million things at once.  Of course, reality means I am only doing one thing at a time, but wow.  Throw that funding stick in there and all hell breaks loose.

secretary-overwhelmed-218a16

http://tinysong.com/or0y <— this song is helping right now.

I feel like a stick in the mud.  Everything is moving, but nothing is moving either.

I *really* need to send out an advisor update.  I have half an hour before our Dishcrawl Oakland launch.  The next 3 months of planning is happening.  Followup is everything.  Everything is everything.

The reason I share this is because it’s something all entrepreneurs go through.

It’s all about finding your breaking point right?  And I’ve once again found mine.  It’s a lovely feeling, to get a grip on it, then focus, then let go and push yourself to the limit again.

But sometimes in the piles of postits, business cards, and action items, you just can’t move. You get stuck in nothing, right in the middle of everything.

The key is finding the determination and magic to pull yourself out of the ridiculous amounts of work and focus.

It’s lifting one brick after another, until you realize it really was easy.  It just seems like a lot.

This is where many get stuck.  Don’t give up in the middle of it.  Just do it.  Keep plugging away.  And success is closer than you think. :)  It’s the ones who push through and make it out the other side who make it to the finish line.  Are you going to make it?  I know I am. :)

xxoo,

Tracy @ladyleet

15 Minutes of Focus- Motivation

My 15 minute brain dumps daily- a process I’m adopting after talking to Patricia of Lawless Coach.  15 minutes of focus daily can do wonders.  Enjoy mine. :)

Motivation is Everything

Ain’t it so?  I love being a strong, empowered female.  It feels damn good to be in charge of your life.

angelina_jolie_site

I get asked quite a bit why I’m so motivated.

Well… to keep a story short, I’ll just write a little thank you letter to someone that was once in my life. :)

Thank You.

Dear X,

I never thought I’d be so strong.

This morning, I was reflecting on the time we spent together.  All I wanted you to do was hold me, care for me.  But you couldn’t do that, could you?  At least, not until after you were done hitting me for the night.

I remember trying to keep the wounds open so you would heal them.  With love, I was hoping.  But in the end, it was just pain with you.

The daily fights, the daily abuse, your strong hands around my neck.  I loved those strong hands.

Injured woman leaning sadly on wooden wall

I wanted to be weak in your arms.  I was weak in your arms, but not like that.  It wasn’t how I ever imagined.

And now look at me.  I’m amazing.  And I must give small thanks to you.

I thank you for forcing me to be strong.  For giving me no other option than to get out and make it in the world alone.

Now look at me.  Aren’t you proud that you helped create me?

I love my life.  I live every day as a symbol of empowerment, thankful and grateful to have escaped from your strong hands, those strong hands I expected to care and comfort me.  Thankful that I can empower amazing women around me.  Thankful I didn’t skip out of life and live under your angry strength.

The leaves are falling around me.  The autumn rain has arrived.  The weather reminds me of us falling in love.  Those passionate moments I could not leave your side.  That desperation of needing to be together- the desperation that turned to hurt and pain.  But look at me now.

GOOD LORD I am thankful. Thankful for the lesson you taught me.  That I can handle anything in this world.

If I was able to get through 2 years of your abuse and isolation, I can do anything.  Truly, anything.

So thank you again.  I don’t really care where you are, but I do care that I’m okay.  Fantastic, actually. :)

Signed with gratefulness,

A Survivor.

Your Motivation is your Strength

It’s been 7 years since I fell in love with that man.

It’s been 5 years since I’ve escaped.

It’s been 4 years since I’ve normalized (you can imagine how situations like these fuck you up just a bit).

It’s every day that I’m grateful.

I keep the reason I am empowered and motivated close to me, just as I believe you should keep anything that motivates you close to you.

It is in the darkest moments of life you find the light.  I keep the moments of happiness, of freedom close.

It is the reason I’m grateful for everything.

What motivates you?  Don’t ever forget those moments.  Be thankful for them.  Be thankful for the trials the world has put you through.  For it is in those moments, those breaking points, you realize what you’re truly capable of.

xxoo,

Tracy @ladyleet


How Loving My Body Changed My Mental Health

Startup.  You work a lot.  And you push yourself (mentally and physically) to the limit.  Those who have not done a startup before don’t understand the physically part, because how much is it to sit at a computer all day working on the internets, right?

Try gluing yourself to the computer for one day, and pushing yourself the extra 20% past your normal boundaries to make that day count 100%.  Try finding your breaking point every day.  It’s exhausting.  Worth it, but exhausting.

After Patricia (Lawless Coach) and I began talking about my life wheel (blog post), health was one of my lopsided parts.

life_wheel

It wasn’t exercising though, it was how I was feeling about my body.  It wasn’t my own anymore, and being so busy, I hadn’t had time to focus on appearances.  I mean, sure I look sexy every day, but I didn’t feel sexy.  Not sexy enough anyways.

Sexy.

Sexy. It’s self confidence.  It’s being in charge.

Beyonce Black And White 1440x900 Sexy Wallpaper

I wasn’t in charge of my own body, Dishcrawl had taken it and drowned me in delicous tastings, chef’s tables, and events.  Oh hot heaven was it delicious.

Back to the point, I decided to take charge shortly after Patricia and I had a conversation.

Determination Always Yields Good Results

I went no carbs.  Taking the first step was easy since I went into it with absolute determination.  After that, keeping on the diet was not so bad.  I wasn’t starving myself (example: foie gras is not a carb!!!!) I was just making decisions not to eat starch and bread.

Plus, a couple dinners here and there… well you can’t get mad at yourself for enjoying once a week (but have resolve!)

Anyways, I have lost about 10lbs now.  Maybe even more.  I don’t believe in scales.  I’ve definitely dropped a dress size.  Wahoo! :)

The result of that, of a slight change in the balance of my life wheel (thank you, Patricia, for the coaching) has made me really damn happy.

The subconscious result of me not being in charge of all aspects of my life was apparent only after the correction.  Sometimes it just takes a bit of perspective from someone else to nudge the needle in the right direction.  And then your action, of course, to follow through.

I feel really good.  Like, so good I want to just run around and do little flips in the air.  I love myself right now and am up to conquer the world.  It feels damn good knowing I will win.  I knew it before, but with the added SEXY I feel, yum yum life can only be delicious and perfect. :)

Maybe it just feels damn good to take charge of another area my life to balance the wheel.

Balancing yourself is not easy as an entrepreneur, but it’s pretty awesome if you’re determined.  Try it. :)

xxoo,

Tracy @ladyleet

15 Minutes of Focus- Prioritizing

Priorities

priorityx

10 million things happen in startup. 10 million AND ONE to be exact.

Fucking hell.

Don’t get bogged down though.  Everything you do, you need to ask yourself- does this align with my daily, weekly, and monthly goals?  Where is my priority?

This applies to meetings, emails, action items, ANYTHING.

Prioritize.  Without priority, wheels keep spinning, and nothing gets done.

Don’t let yourself become the victim of NOTHING.

Sometimes looking at matrices helps so I’ve included one below.

priority matrix

Personal and career growth is all about asking yourself 2nd and 3rd level questions.  Make sure you’re focused on what’s important, not just what’s in front of you.  No one wants to drown in nothingness.

Just like anything, practicing awesomeness of prioritization is an exercise.  Make it a habit, and success is inevitable.

Enjoy your Friday, and have fun with a priority filled weekend. :)

PS another lovely outfit today.  I do look good in blue.

xxoo,

Tracy @ladyleet

15 Minutes of Focus- Centering Yourself & Navigation

My 15 minute brain dumps daily- a process I’m adopting after talking to Patricia of Lawless Coach.  15 minutes of focus daily can do wonders.  Enjoy mine. :)

Centering Yourself

center

Where do you center yourself?  How do you not run around like a chicken with your head cut off?  Where is the center of your focus?

Patricia asked me this two days ago, and I’ve been thinking about it.

Writing helps.

But what I found is those 15 minutes I sit in my car before going into work, recline my seat, and have a moment to worship…  those are amazing moments of focus.

Belief in something bigger, knowing you have a purpose and you were put here on earth for a reason is awesome.  Knowing that He is always with you, and the mountains that seem so heavy?  They are not with His love.

It’s rather comforting and it lifts the burden.  Because oh my goodness do I have lovely large mountains to move, and I’m sure you do too. :)

Peace in knowing I’ll look back on this life and say, “Hot damn, I did something.  I contributed to the greater whole.”  And I did it knowing it was the path He wanted me to take.

That’s rather compelling.  And fabulous to think about for 15 minutes a day before I start the work day. :)

For those of you reading this, it does not matter what faith you have.  With any level of spirituality, this applies, and if you have no faith at all, well all I’m asking is that you find your center too. :)

Music help me find center too.  Currently finding center with Sail by AWOLNATION.  You can listen here.

Navigation

Quickly, I’ll discuss this.

As an entrepreneur, navigation is everything.  But your focus beacon of light is everything too.

WoW__Beacon_of_Light_by_Bhryn

As with grounding yourself, it is also necessary to flow with the motion.  Understand your customers, understand your market, and remember that the only goal you have is to satisfy your customers.

Don’t be married to anything.  Listen.  Feel. Then act.

So many fail because they don’t move with the motion of the market, with the motion of the customers.  Do you know what your customers want?  Build it out, test it, then iterate on it until you find ASPLOSIONS (aka product market fit).

Be okay with movement.  But always come back to your beacon of light and focus.  Center.

It’s an interesting journey, entrepreneurship, isn’t it?

Fun, fluid, and empowering.

BTW I have the cutest outfit on today.  I should really twitpic them.

Have a great day and see you tomorrow. :)

xxoo,

Tracy @ladyleet

15 Minutes of Focus

focus

As an entrepreneur, as a leader, focus is everything, right?

It’s not about doing, it’s about being.  Well, a little bit of both.. and that was the focus of the coaching conversation I had with Patricia from Lawless Coach yesterday.

Since we are about being just as much as doing, focus points are important.

We agreed that 15 minute brain dumps daily would be a fun way to make this being more prominent, so here we go.

Running a Business while Fundraising

Ah, the challenges of having a business floating around while looking for funding.  It’s been going okay, but sometimes I need to dig in and spend time with my ladies.  Today is one of those days.

Our focuses today were planning (so I can get back to fundraising) and now I feel so nicely aligned. :)  I’m sure my team does too.

1. Campaigns from Nov-Jan

2. Dishcrawls Nov-Jan

3. Partnerships 2011-2012

4. DishcrawlTV and those fickle fickle videographers (#rwar)

I feel better now that all is done.  On my mind next is the planning with the dev team tomorrow (so they can focus and I can get back to necessities).

Tonight, I go hunting at the 106 miles meetup.  I can’t wait to meet this Adam Rifkin I keep hearing about.  He sounds awesome.

Oh, and I have a cute outfit on today.  It’s grey with a splash of colour.

Remember to center and focus, people.  It’s the only thing that’s going to keep the needle moving forward.

xxoo,

Tracy @ladyleet