Memorial Day – Thank You

This Memorial Day, just like every Memorial Day since I can remember, I plan to spend some time being thankful.  Thankful for those that have served and sacrificed so much. Thankful for the families, wifes, husbands and children left behind after a soldier made the ultimate sacrifice. Thinking about the parents that opened the door to find a Military Officer and Chaplain standing on the doorstep, and knowing what that meant without a word being spoken. 

Thankful for my dad, George W. Lusher, who served in the Army and Army reserve. Thankful for my Uncle Sam (real name) who served in the Marines. Thankful for the multitude of friends, relatives and complete strangers that faced death, gave their life and sacriiced their past so that I could have a future.

I have posted some Memorial Day photos from various sources on Pinterest:  Thank You To Those That Serve & Sacrifice.

I encourage us all to be thankful today, but do what you want to do. They fought and sacrificed for our freedom so that we can spend this day and ever day doing just that; what we want.

Thank you, God Bless America.

George William Lusher

Be BOLD!

When was the last time that you did something bold?  Something completely unexpected and out of your comfort zone?  If it’s been a while, or if you cannot remember the last time you made a bold decision, now is the time to make it happen!I have recently made two bold steps myself, and I can tell you that I have no regrets surrounding either of these actions.  The first bold step I am referring to was my decision to be a full-time, self-employed consultant. I had previously handled marketing duties for a local restoration company in addition to my consulting business, but  now I am all in working for myself.  This has been the second best decision I have ever made.  I do set my own schedule; I am responsible for finding my own clients, booking my own speaking opportunities, and managing my own business.  I love what I do and I wake up every day excited to get started! Can you say that about your career?  If not, maybe it’s time for a bold decision of your own.

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The second bold step is the decision to fire my hair!  You read it correctly, I have fired my hair!  It had been abandoning my head and retreating for years, so I as the owner of the head, I decided to fire it!  The hair gene came from the Lusher side of my family, and let’s just say we are not known for old age and a head full of hair :)  This again, was a great decision for me.  I feel better about myself and my appearance and everyone has accepted the new, bold look.  I have even received compliments on the shape of my head!  That is a new one! I also removed the goatee, so the grey hair is gone from my head.  Bonus:  looking younger!What does firing my hair have to do with business or more specifically the industry in which I work?  Simple: as a small business owner, making the decision to incorporate a social media plan into your business is a bold step.   For many business owners, it requires a leap of faith into a medium they are not familiar with.  But, as with my career move and my hair, taking bold actions can and will be rewarding if you approach it with careful planning and implementation as well as partnering with the right consultant or team.So, how can you be bold today, this week, this month, or this year?  What bold steps can you take?  Let me know, and let me know what you think of my healthy scalp!

Roll With The Changes

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At the outset, I apologize to the readers of my blog; my updates and posts have been very sporadic lately and I committed to blogging more frequently.While life sometimes throws us curve balls that we don’t see coming,  most likely these pitches allow us the the opportunity to knock one out o the park! That’s a good description of what has been happening in my life and in my business.  Changes that I will explain more completely soon, but opportunities for partnerships and strategic alliances have arisen that otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to embrace; trust me, it’s all good!So, while we may not always expect the changes; we should roll with them and embrace what is going to happen next!  We should Roll With the Changes.Saddle up friends, it is going to be a fun ride!Oh, and if you love classic rock, you know why I used the REO Speedwagon album cover; if not, click on the  link in the picture to listen to the song.As my Twitter brother @VincentHunt would say, et’s GO!

Never Underestimate

I posted on Facbook this morning that you never know where a connection can lead.  My dear friend, referral partner and all around incredible soul, Suni Heflin, re-posted and added to my comments.  As you can see from the comment flow below, many people believe in connecting, building relationships with integrity and the power of networking; especially in a smaller community.This got me to thinking; how many times do we underestimate the potential power of a connection.

  • Do we overlook someone due to the way they dress or look?
  • Do we miss a potential connection because we are too wrapped up in our own world?  Or our smart phone?
  • Do we avoid connecting with someone because we didn’t agree with a Tweet or a Post or a Blog Article?
  • Do we realize the potential power of others network?

Every person we meet could be a potential connection, an opportunity to assist or help or a business opportunity.If I hadn’t connected with Suni, I would have missed an incredible friendship and the opportunity to watch her write the next chapter of her life and career!  Stay tuned for more on that!Put yourself out there; in person, and online.  Make a connection; never underestimate where it can lead.Those are my thoughts.  What about you?  How have you seen the power of connections enrich your life?

                       

Coloring Outside the Lines

You never know where a Facebook status update will lead!   Last week, I posted “Warning! Today I am coloring OUTSIDE the lines ;)The likes and the posts started flowing which tells me I struck a nerve, in a positive manner!  The screen shot below is  only a portion of what people had to say on the post, and a week later, I am still getting likes and comments.After laughing about it for a while, I got excited about what this said to me about life!  We do not like to be told we must color inside the lines!!  Remember as children, when we were taught how to color, we were told to color inside the lines; to heck with that!  Why not do what we feel like we should or could do?  Why not make our own lines and color where WE want to color?  No one wants to be told how to act, whether in coloring, or in life!We were all created as unique human beings with no two people alike!  No fingerprints are the same, no DNA is the same, we are all different!  So why “Color Inside the Lines” like everyone else?I say be yourself! Be different, be unique….take your crayons and Color OUTSIDE the Lines!!

Guest Post: Sending My Baby Off To War

This post is from my friend Ann Marie – @WorkingMoms on Twitter. As we head into the Memorial Day weekend, I encourage you to pause and be thankful for those that fight for our freedom and remember those that have given the ultimate sacrifice. Why present a post about this topic on a site that talks about social media, connecting and our digital world?  Because all of these things we talk about is dealing with the human connection.  This post is as human as you can get.  Ann Marie’s post is from the heart as she sends her baby off to war. Ann Marie and her baby, Taneah are in my prayers. I have had a rough week to say the least……One time in my life when I need to be strong… a pillar for my babies….instead I’m struggling with every ounce of me not to cry…..to be able to breath….not panic with fear…I have been through a lot in my life….all which holds nothing to what I’m feeling about sending my baby off to a war zone…Many of you don’t know but my middle child…child #4…. “aka” short bus (nickname given to her because she is 5ft 1and gives me piggyback rides… I tease that she is so short my butt hits the floor)…T-birder(another nickname)…Taneah is in her last 9 days of training/holding before she is being deployed …….Up until last Tuesday….it didn’t bother me…because I decided to go with denial…my other daughter said mom she wont go….they will probably cancel her orders….I went with that….denial……it was working for me…up until she packed her gear at my house…then it hit me…my baby…my short bus really is going to a war zone and I can’t do anything to stop her from going…to protect her….I looked at her and said you really are going….She said yeah, mom I’m…I said but NaTasha said you wouldn’t be going….she said they would probably cancel your orders…she was wrong…I watched her pack her gear…thank goodness the rat that came to visit which took my mind off her going….The next day….we said our goodbyes…..I thought saying goodbye to my babies that got stationed in Alaska was hard…well, was I WRONG….totally wrong…sending your baby to war….is a feeling that I can’t explain….so many emotions but no words really capturing the way I feel…..When I said goodbye…it was like saying goodbye knowing that I never get to see her again….that the person I’m saying goodbye to will not be the same person I will see when she gets back….it will be someone new….A person I never met before…. Will I ever see her again….she may not come back……over the last couple of weeks we talked about her wishes in case that happens…again I used denial and jokes….thinking she wouldn’t go…yep, worked then…but not now…..reality hits…She left me her car to use…every time I get in it….I can’t describe how I feel….Thankful her letting me use her car while she is gone…but knowing why I have the luxury/honor of using her car…hard to handle at times…but what a sweet baby….I had a parent say to me who does not have a child in the military…as parents we prepare our kids to go out and take care of themselves in the world that’s all you can do…as if she thought this was comforting to me….I looked at her for a moment….and replied yes, we do….but we do not prepare them for war…..not the same I said…thinking to myself….shes not moving away….she is going to protect us in a country that really is not fond of Americans…where bombs go off and guns are shot…forgot to prepare her for that…..I have also struggled with the fact that my son-in-law….child #10…one of my gifts…went to war but I did not get this upset….I love Bryon as much as I do my own….. worried bout him the first time he left…I did cry and was scared for him..the next time…I put it out of my mind and knew he would be ok still scared for him….but with Taneah….why am I a basket case….I feel bad….like I was letting Bryon down…I immediately called my daughter NaTasha and apologized for not being as upset/scared when Bryon was deployed…… I didn’t want Bryon ever to think that I loved him less….She said mom he doesn’t think that….we both think kids should be older when they go to war….and Taneah is blood mom…but I said that should not matter….I think it’s because she is a girl…and Bryon can take care of himself….yes, I was sexist for a moment….one of them is very capable of taking care of themselves… the other…is not so capable….immature… really young….lacking life experiences…I have a new understanding for parents who have gone or are going through the same thing as I’m….Not an easy thing….we can not protect our loved ones…..put them in a bubble…send notes telling people who want to kill them to play nice…and learn to get along…..we loose control of being able to protect them what so ever….not easy…extremely hard thing to do as a parent…To all the families that have sent their loved ones to a war zone….My thoughts and prayers are with you….and always have been….Words cannot express what I feel for your pain or what you are feeling….Thank you to all the service men for your sacrifices that you have given…..to protect us….

Twitter Etiquette – NO Automatic DM’s

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This is an ongoing series of blog posts on Twitter Etiquette. My first post, Ten Things Not To Do On Twitter can be a a good starting point for new users and a good reminder for us veteran Twitter users.Twitter and other forms of Social Media is about relationships. Learn it, live it, and love it; or suffer damage to your reputation when you attempt to shorten the time it takes to develop these relationships! One of the quickest ways to torpedo a new social media relationship, before it even has a chance to begin forming? The Automatic DM (Direct Message). Twitter DM’s can be a tool to communicate privately with one of your followers; but it is NOT a method to automatically send your followers information they have not requested!When you receive a new follower, send them a personal tweet, engage them in conversations and ask to learn more about them or their business. Remember, it is about relationships, not initially trying to sell something!Here are some personal favorites; actual DM’s received by me or some of my followers: I just created a new group for you to join, please check out my blog!It is great meeting you, keep smiling and spreading your good cheer! Hey, help spread the word about this link, video, site You know how to use Twitter, check out my site and give me your valued feedbackNo one knows about this, but I have stock tip that you will want to act on nowFor me, any of these types of DM’s will simply cause me to unfollow you!If you want a good tool for reducing the number of Auto DM’s, check out SocialToo; it is a great service and worth checking out.Let me know some of your “favorite” Auto DM’s and don’t be THAT person that abuses a new relationship. [Read more…]