Why Growing Your Business is as Easy as Making Popcorn

Have you ever wondered:

  • Why don’t I have enough leads?
  • Why can’t I seem to reach my goals as easily or robustly as I hoped?
  • Why are sales so hard?

I have wondered these very same things at one time or another. But I had a crystal clear epiphany of insight when I heard Andrea J Lee talk about how lead generation is like making popcorn. (Hat tip to Andrea for the teaching… and for Indrani Goradia for pushing me to put my spin on the teaching and do a short video about it.)

Why Growing Your Business is as Easy as Making Popcorn

If you think about the process of making popcorn, you heat up a pan with oil, and toss in a few “beta test” kernels. When conditions are right, they pop and you throw in many more kernels to create a bowl of popcorn that has an abundance of kernels. Add some butter or salt, and voila – yummy goodness. [Read more…]

How Shared Hosting Works

Recently I ran into a major problem with a client website. After much angst and several days of the inability to access it I got to the bottom of the problem. Of course the root cause is what I suspected from the beginning but of course both the hosting company and my ISP made me walk through days of technical support hell first. After all a non-IT person reading from a script is smarter than someone with over 20 years of IT troubleshooting experience. But alas, that is a different post [rant].

The root cause of the problem was the shared hosting and the hosts inability to own up to the problem. Another website on the shared server was a malicious phishing site and my ISP blocked that server in their DNS and thus, no access.

How Shared Website Hosting Works

So what does this mean to you as the business owner?

Let me explain how this all works in non-technical terms.

When you buy shared hosting, your site gets thrown on a server that is jammed full with as many sites as the host can possibly put on it. That is how they get the hosting cost super-low.

Shared hosting is like the community pool on a hot summer day. As many people as humanly possible jam into the pool and you likely have no idea who these people are or what they are up to. [Read more…]

20 Ways to Eliminate Stress at Work

The workplace can be a stressful place. Between personality differences, “one-size-fits-all” working environments (think: introverts hate open office floor plans), and having to always “do more with less” while wondering if your job is really secure, work can pile on stress like no other. According to the article “Making a Business Case for Mindfulness”:

Stress in the workplace is at epidemic levels, costing businesses an estimated $2,800 per employee every year.

Yet there truly are ways to find balance and peace along the journey.

How to Eliminate Stress at Work
Image: Ahmed Amir via Flickr
Here are 20 ways to find peace and balance in a busy day as a small business owner:

  • Personalize your workspace (include something in your space that makes it uniquely YOU).
  • Have visual reminders of your biggest priorities (could be photos of your children, partner, or dreams).
  • Drink lots of water. Hydration is crucial for health, well-being, and stress relief.
  • Eat well. Again, what you put IN your body is what fuels it.
  • Take regular breaks.
  • Minimize or eliminate interruptions.
  • Physically move during these regular breaks (we were not built to sit at a desk for hours on end).
  • Keep things in perspective. Unless you work in the ER or other emergency response environment, the crisis of the moment is rarely a matter of life or death.
  • Take your vacation time (and disconnect when you do).
  • Breathe deeply – oxygen is good.
  • Practice mindfulness and meditation in the moment.
  • Create space between receiving information and your response so you can respond rather than react. (Hint: this is a good opportunity to breathe or practice a one minute meditation).
  • Get enough sleep. We are a sleep deprived workforce and it costs us health and productivity.
  • Schedule your day to honor your rhythms. This will increase your productivity and reduce the stress of trying to go against your natural flow.
  • Get perspective. How you think about what happens makes all the difference.
  • Identify and stop imposing even more stress on yourself via perfectionism or setting yourself up for angst (like running late, overbooking your schedule, etc.).
  • Prioritize. Not everything can be an immediate priority. It’s an impossibility.
  • Create a no drama zone in your heart, mind, and space. Let energy vampires and crisis creators feed on someone else’s energy.
  • Treat others how to treat you. Create and enforce boundaries.
  • Cool the flames of panic, stress and overwhelm. Exhale slowly and press the reset button on any “fight or flight” reactions that show themselves.

What do you do to eliminate stress? Would love to hear your tips as well.

It Takes an Egg Timer: Interview with Joanne Tombrakos

Do you wish you had more time? Who doesn’t! We’ve all got 24 hours in a day. It’s what you DO with those hours that counts and creates your life.

Joanne TombrakosI recently sat down virtually with Joanne Tombrakos, author of the fun and handy book It Takes an Egg Timer: A Guide to Creating the Time for Your Life to talk about the book, her love affair with the egg timer, and getting things done.

Let me share a few of my favorite parts from the book.

I love that she makes a distinction between the greek words for time: Chronos, the quantity of time and Kairos, the “right moment” or quality of that time. As a society we are obsessed with quantity. We want to get things done and fit more things into less time. Quality is relegated to the back seat. Yet I firmly believe that the quality of our moments is more important than just about anything. If you can’t be here in the NOW, then where the heck can you be? Quality work only arises when we give quality attention to the task at hand.

For entrepreneurs looking to focus more productively, she offers three important questions:

  1. How is what I am doing going to make me money?
  2. How is this task helping me to manifest my bigger intentions?
  3. Is it worth setting the egg timer for?

If you’re not consciously choosing how you spend your time, you are likely squandering it.

Now, onto the interview: Listen in to my conversation with Joanne Tombrakos (17 minutes)

Download MP3

Egg Timer
Image: Egg Timer via Shutterstock

Learn more about Joanne and buy the book at http://www.joannetombrakos.com


Paula Gregorowicz plucks women business owners off the hamster wheel of overwhelm, struggle, and self-doubt and guides them to a purposeful path of building authentic and successful businesses.

Download the Free Recording: Price with Confidence & Get Paid What You’re Worth at http://www.pricewithconfidence.com.

What is Your WHY? (No Apologies)

Why did you start your business? If you’re thinking about starting one – what is your motivation? Your WHY, your purpose, your deeper calling is the foundation on which you build. You need to be moving toward something versus just running away from something (like running away from working for corporate for instance). So who are you? What do you stand for? What is the change you most want to see in the world? What part do you want to play in bringing that change about?

These are deep questions. You won’t have all the answers and what you discover may never be the “final answer”. We spend our lives living the questions and living into the answers. Yet without taking time for self-reflection and building your business on your deeper WHY, you will not be able to withstand the risks, hard work, and inevitable bumps along the way.

Start right where you are and drop anchor using your deeper WHY as you navigate each day in your business.

Want to create a strong foundation of purpose and systems in your business so you can grow quickly in a way that feels good to you? Contact me and learn how.

How to Prioritize When Everything is a Priority

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