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These People Just Do Not Get It

optimists There is a group of people that most people just don’t understand. They face the same problems we all face …

… but they just don’t get how bad these problems are this time around.

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When they listen to the news, it’s the same news we all hear.

But they just don’t get it … how bad the news really is.

They have the same concerns for themselves and their families that we all have. But there is one difference between this group and the majority of people …

They think their lives are going to get better this year! The future is bright. So bright, they probably wear shades! They think the economy will turn around.

And there’s a startling number of Americans who think this way. In fact, according to a recent survey, more than one-third of all Americans are in this group. And only one out of five people said they worry about the economy on a daily basis.

Are they tuning out?

So what do you think? Are these people who think their personal situation will improve this year nuts? Or do you think they’re onto something? Or maybe they’re on something?

Here’s what they may not be on … they may not be reading, watching, or listening to the news! Bad news does seem to be good news to the news media. We’ve spoken with a large number of people over the last month or so who say they’ve tuned out the news.

Sometimes that’s a good coping mechanism. If you’re tired of hearing gloom and doom, it might be more productive to focus on something more positive.

Challenge spells opportunity

We put ourselves in this group of optimistic people. We think things will get better this year. That’s not to say we won’t still see some hiccups, but it appears that there is significant strength just below the surface.

While we face some major challenges right now, that spells opportunity for bigg goal-getters. But don’t expect to win a spelling bee if you spell it that way!

Getting real

The article we mentioned earlier cites some of the benefits of being an optimist. On average, optimists get sick less, live longer, and appear to have a higher quality of life.

This is consistent with other research we’ve seen on the benefits of being an optimist. Seeing the glass half-full does seem to pay off. But while it’s important to look for the silver lining in any dark cloud, and we don’t think it pays to be pessimistic, we also think that we should be realistic.

We have to sort through all the information in front of us to try to determine what the objective reality is. To make sure that our perceptions aren’t creating a bias as we look at a particular situation.

Because we’re more likely to make mistakes if we’re overly optimistic. We’ll see opportunities that aren’t really there. And unfortunately, we must admit that we’re speaking from experience here.

But pessimists miss out on opportunities because they either don’t see it or they don’t act on what they see.

Bigg goal-getters are an optimistic group. While one-third of the people in this survey said they think things will get better this year, we bet that the overwhelming majority of our community would put themselves in that category.

And that’s a good thing … as long as we filter our optimism with a healthy dose of realism. Be positively real. That’s the recipe for bigg success!

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Thanks so much for reading our post today. Join us next time when we discuss why you should stop trying to fit into the world. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
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(Image in today's post by lusi)

Save the Holiday Party!

holiday We face many important issues in the coming months and years. So we decided to start a movement – to save the holiday party!

Okay, maybe that’s not the most important thing we could address, but we still think that many business owners are making a bigg mistake by eliminating this annual tradition.

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A recent survey by executive search firm Battalia Winston found that fewer firms plan to host a holiday party for their employees this year. In fact, it’s the lowest number in the twenty year history of the study. The primary reason cited is the poor economy.

We think this sends the wrong message. Leaders who portray gloom and doom create an environment of uncertainty. It scares people. People today are looking for signs of reassurance, not signals of impending disaster.

Holiday parties aren’t just about having a party. They’re a great opportunity to show your appreciation to your people. They can help build your team by getting together without the pressure of work. Yet people inevitably talk about work, recalling fun times together from the past year. This builds a sense of comradery which helps get things done at work.

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Get the tips and tools you need to be a BIGG success!
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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If last year’s party is beyond this year’s budget, get creative. There are ways to keep the party without busting the bank. Here are some thoughts:

Look for deals

With more companies cutting back, you might be surprised to learn that facilities are more aggressive in pricing deals for those people who still plan to hold an event. You’ll never know if you don’t ask!

Keep it on site

If you can’t find a good deal, consider having it on site if your facility will accommodate it. Then look for a good deal on catering. You might find that catering firms offer a good alternative since they’re not paying for the overhead of a facility.

Go potluck

If that’s still too expensive, have a potluck. Ask your employees to bring a dish. Consider making it a day-long event. People can “graze” and chat. Just for one day, accept a more relaxed environment full of impromptu conversations.

Make it fun

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marylynnSanta visited us at a radio station I worked at. The employees brought their kids in to tell him what they wanted. It was a lot of fun – all for the price of renting a Santa suit since our General Manager played Santa.

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There are many other ways to make it an event, even if it doesn’t fit the mold of a traditional holiday party. Give out awards. Have an employee who’s into such things produce a fun video or audio.

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marylynnAt one radio station, our production manager put together a fun audio of all of our commercial outtakes. As the disc jockeys recorded commercials, he kept the bloopers and played them at our annual holiday get-together. It was so funny!

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georgeWe gave out gag gifts at one of the companies I owned. They reflected something that an employee had done over the past year that made people laugh. It brought up the joke again and everybody loved it.

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Hold it after the New Year

A number of companies are turning their “holiday” party into an “annual” party. Instead of competing for space during the busy holiday season, they hold it after the New Year. A lot of people really like this because we’re all so busy at the end of the year.

We have friends who turned their annual holiday party into “Christmas in July.” We were fortunate enough to get invited. They had a Christmas tree and played holiday music. It made for a fun evening.

If you do end up doing something different, don’t present it as just the result of budget cutbacks. Tell your people that you want to try something different. Get them involved in finding a good solution.

What do you think? Does canceling the holiday party send the wrong message to your people? What are you doing this year for your people?

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00259-110608.mp3

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Mom’s Lasting Legacy

Mother’s Day is bittersweet both for us since our moms have passed on. But their memories are always with us along with the lessons that we learned from them. That’s the lasting legacy of all of our moms.

Here are three lessons we each learned from our moms:

Mary-Lynn

Be confident in who you are.
I remember coming home from school one day in tears because some girls on the bus had made fun of me. Mom told me it doesn’t matter what other people say. She told me to walk away and ignore them. Don’t stoop down to their level because two wrongs don’t make a right. Then she hugged me and told me how special I was and how much she loved me.

Be willing to sacrifice.
Mom encouraged my sister and me to be in any extracurricular activities in which we were interested. She provided the rides – dropping us off and picking us up. She willingly gave of herself for us.

Think rainbows and butterflies, not gloom and doom.
This was one of mom’s sayings. She encouraged me to get in touch with my creative side and imagine the possibilities. She wanted me to feel free in that happy place. You can’t achieve your dreams if you’re in a gray, stormy place hiding under cover. I use this to this day when I’m having a down day.

George

It’s better to give than receive.

Mom always had this desire to help anyone in need. Even towards the end, as long as she was able, she would do anything to serve others. I remember one time she said that she had driven this “little old lady” to the doctor. Knowing that mom was about 85 at the time, I asked how old this woman was. “Oh, she’s about 87, I suppose.”

Make the most of your money.
Mom was a prodigious saver. She could stretch a penny further than anyone I’ve ever seen.  One way she did this was to make ordinary things extraordinary. There were a number of meals that I thought were something special as a kid. It turned out they were leftovers or made with food that was going to go bad if she didn’t do something with it.

Don’t act your age.
I alluded to this earlier with the “little old lady” story. You’re only as old as you feel. Mom was 43 when I was born. I remember one of my friends coming over when I was a teenager. Mom got out and shot baskets with us. My friend commented on how cool my mom was because his mom would never do anything like that. Just so you know, his mom was at least 20 years younger than mine!

Turning memories into a gift for your mom
On the show, George shared a fantastic gift idea that was his sister Pat’s idea. Along with their two other sisters, they each wrote roughly 90 memories and gave it to their mom so she had a memory to read each day of the year. George said he doesn’t think his mom ever got a gift that made her so happy.

Obviously, it’s too late to do something like this Mother’s Day. But you could give your mom the gift of a memory e-mailed to her every day for the next year. It’s an amazing idea that’s very inexpensive yet very personal. 

Tell us about the lessons you learned from your mom!
Leave us a Comment below!

Our bigg quote today is by Nancy Friday, who said:

“When I stopped seeing my mother with the eyes of a child,
I saw the woman who helped me give birth to myself.”

So thanks, Mom … and Happy Mother’s Day!

Next time, we’ll discuss why you should quit jumping on me like a dog. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

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(Image by vancity197)