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When Your Dream Becomes a Nightmare

turmoilWe hear a lot about developing contingency plans in case reality doesn’t live up to our expectations. But we don't often don't think about having a plan in place in case we succeed beyond our wildest dreams!

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It sounds funny to think about it that way, but your bigg dream can turn into a nightmare in both cases – coming up short or succeeding wildly.

Talent in triumph

We’ve recently seen an example of this with Susan Boyle. She walked out onto the stage of "Britain's Got Talent" as a middle-aged Scottish woman who said that she had never been kissed.

She had lived a very simple life, took care of her mother and sang at her local church. She dreamed of having a career in music for 23 years, even putting together a demo with no success.

Then she took a chance and auditioned for the popular TV Show. It was her bigg opportunity and she nailed it. Her life changed from the moment she began to sing "I dreamed a dream."

The whole world loved Susan!

Talent in turmoil

She became an international singing sensation overnight, going from obscurity to sudden celebrity. She couldn’t anonymously walk over to her local church any longer without a swarm of paparazzi tailing her.

No more quiet at home. Her phone rang off the hook. Everyone – from news outlets to fans – wanted to talk with Susan now.

It took a tremendous toll on her emotional state. Although she smiled for the cameras most of the time, she had a couple of incidents that made her appear unstable.

She was overwhelmed and exhausted by being thrust into the spotlight. In a recent interview on Today, Susan said, “[The] impact was like a demolition ball."

Before long, she started skipping scheduled appearances after her run on the show ended. People questioned her health. They wondered if she had what it took to be a star.

Her bigg dream had turned into a nightmare.

Crossing the line

There’s a dividing line when bigg success is at our fingertips. Will we accept it and move over to the new life of which we dreamed? Will we navigate the road less traveled and keep moving on to bigg success?

Or will we be afraid to cross into the unknown? Will we allow self doubt to hold us back? Will we tell ourselves we don't deserve this bigg success?

You have to plan for bigg success so you’re mentally prepared when you reach this point. How do you prepare?

Visualize it.

By picturing it clearly, you’ll be ready for bigg success when you reach it. You’ll also be more likely to get there! Use all your senses to experience it as if it had already happened.

Build a support network.

Surround yourself with people who care about you and believe in you. Associate with people at the level you’re trying to reach. Let them guide you on your way to your bigg dream and reach out a hand once you've made it.

That's what Susan Boyle finally did. As she said on Today, "I've got to be honest here. I guess I had to get my head around it, but through the guidance of a great team — and they are very good — I was able to see that in perspective and really turn that around.”

Bigg goal-getters work hard every day to achieve their bigg dreams. Make sure you also spend some time planning for that moment when you step into the limelight and shine. That's preparing for bigg success!

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Thanks so much for reading our post today. Next time we’ll discuss what a karaoke party has in common with social media. Please join us. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00448-072909.mp3

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(Image in today's post by xymonau)

Are You a Shopoholic?

shopping_mall There is a group that is suffering more than most during these tough economic times. Unfortunately, their agony is not covered much in the major media. They are all around us. Yet we seldom see the turmoil that they are experiencing. They have chosen to largely endure it on their own, not talking about it to anyone.

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Who are we talking about?

Shopoholics!

This economy has really made an impact on this group of people. There are a lot of people who claim to be shopoholics. But most people who call themselves shopoholics probably don’t really have a problem that borders on an obsession.

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georgeOne of my sisters can shop all day long and never buy anything. She just seems to love being in a shopping arena … she’s a gladiator among shoppers!

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marylynnBoy, I’m not one of those people. I like to get in and out. I have an aunt who likes to do all-day shopping ventures. It gives me a headache and makes me dizzy.

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Problems experienced by compulsive buyers

We’ve taken a light-hearted approach so far, but this problem is more serious than we realize. A recent study, conducted jointly by researchers at the University of Richmond and the University of Illinois, found that true shopoholics comprise a larger percentage of the population than is generally assumed.

About nine percent of the participants were found to be “compulsive buyers” according to this study. True shopoholics feel better when they buy things, tend to hide purchases, have more family arguments, and are more likely to have maxed out their credit cards.

Test yourself

Perhaps the most interesting item to come out of this research is the test they used to determine if someone is a shopoholic. The researchers asked participants to rate the degree to which they agreed or disagreed with these six statements.

They used a 7-point scale, which we haven’t seen but can imagine it looked something like this:

1 = Strongly disagree
2 = Disagree
3 = Somewhat disagree
4 = Neutral
5 = Somewhat agree
6 = Agree
7 = Strongly agree

See how you do:

  • My closet has unopened shopping bags in it.

  • Others might consider me a "shopaholic."

  • Much of my life centers around buying things.

  • I buy things I don’t need.

  • I buy things I did not plan to buy.

  • I consider myself an impulse purchaser.

Participants who scored 25 or more were considered compulsive buyers by the researchers. If your score places you in this group, you’re at the first step to overcoming it – you’re aware it is a problem. The next step is to get professional help.

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How ironic

This economy is really crimping the style of “casual” shoppers – people who really like to shop and spend money, but who aren’t really compulsive buyers.

And isn’t it ironic that many of us are being forced to cut back when everything seems to be on sale? From cars to electronics to travel, now is a great time to shop if you have the money.

But of course, that’s the reason these deals exist. People are saving their money at a higher rate now instead of spending it. We’ve learned some valuable lessons in the last few months.

Conspicuous consumption is out; frugality is in. So are we going to hear about “save-a-holics” in the coming years? That remains to be seen.

Well, we better wrap it up for now … it’s time to go shopping!

Thanks for reading our post today. Until next time, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00331-021609.mp3

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(Image in today's post by Vincitrice)

Marketing in Tough Times: Part 1

marketing1 Today on The Bigg Success Show, we begin a discussion with John Jantsch. John is the author of the great book, Duct Tape Marketing – The World’s Most Practical Small Business Marketing Guide. Forbes chose his Duct Tape Marketing blog as one of their favorites and Harvard features it on their marketing site. He also writes a monthly column and does a podcast for Entrepreneur magazine.

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marylynn
That’s a long intro and it’s not even everything!

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john
That’s good … we wouldn’t want to bore people right off the bat!

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marylynnJohn, I have to tell you. You’re the guy we wanted to come to because with everything going on with the economy, small businesses are struggling right now. A lot of the money that they might have had for advertising and marketing just isn’t there right now. So we want to talk with you about how to promote yourself on a shoestring budget.

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johnA lot of small business owners have done that. The headlines are that the Dow is down. Big companies are cutting back all kinds of jobs. The newspaper industry is in turmoil because of losing advertisers. But the typical small business owner is not putting out hundreds of thousands of dollars in advertising. In many cases, they have gotten to where they’ve gotten because they worked on a shoestring anyway. I wrote a column this week for a publication and talked about the natural competitive advantages of small business. I think that we can have this tendency to get in this “the sky is falling” mode and quite frankly, my experience at least is, that it’s not falling on the small business owner. The small business owner is now finding that the market momentum, sheer momentum, is perhaps not carrying them and that they have to get better at doing some of the things that maybe they should have been doing anyway. But my current soap box right now is to say, “Hey, everything is okay. Let’s just buckle in and do some things right.” So that was my long-winded intro to answer your question. Right now is the best time ever to get closer to your customer.

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george
So what are some customer-building strategies that don’t require spending a lot of money?

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johnYour customer, whether it’s a business or an individual, is feeling some of this economic pressure as well. This is a great time to huddle up and say, “What more can we be doing with you, for you? How can we get together and help each other?” Strategic partnerships have always been a great way to go for folks who are strapped for making the phone ring. Go out and find other people that have your ideal customer in mind. Find ways to co-brand some of your marketing materials, put workshops on together, or maybe just literally pass out each other’s materials. One of the greatest partnerships I ever put together was a plumbing contractor. They were going into people’s house every day. So we said to them, “Let’s find an electrical contractor, a roofing contractor, and three or four other people who treat their customers the way you like. Why don’t you all start going in and recommending each other?” You know how that happens – once you develop trust with a customer, they’ll ask you for every resource you can give them! So doing things like that – things people should be doing, good times and bad. It really does put the spotlight on them now if you haven’t been doing them.

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Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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Thanks for reading today’s post. Next time, we’ll continue our conversation with John. He discusses ways to add value for customer loyalty. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00308-011409.mp3

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(Image in today's post by duchessa)