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Category: Thoughts & Musings

Who Inspires You?

inspirationI don’t know about you, but when I’m feeling less than my bright-eyed, bushy-tailed self, rather than talk about it – which only usually makes me feel worse and puts a downer on the day of the poor soul with whom I decided to share my misery – I tend to closet myself away either at home or taking a drive in my beloved car, and immerse myself in watching or listening to inspirational stories from others.

There’s something very powerful about hearing that Jim Carey started with nothing and every night would drive up to Mulholland Drive and ‘imagine’ what his life would be like when he achieved his dreams…

Or hearing the story of JK Rowling who, although she was a single mother and one step away from being homeless, still believed in ‘Harry Potter’ and even prophesized the fact in the first book, “There will be books written about Harry, every child in our world will know his name”.

Or Sara Blakely starting with the last of her savings, and out of her garage creating a business empire that, by 2014, had her listed as the 93rd most powerful woman in the world by Forbes Magazine.

Life happens…  We all have our ups and downs – but as Charles Swindoll said, “Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.”

I learned some time ago that it’s important to prepare for when those moments of doubt, fear or worry hit – thankfully they don’t hit often, but when they do – to have already a prepared course of action – one I don’t need to think about, but is already there waiting for me…

“Success depends upon previous preparation, and without such preparation there is sure to be failure.”  Confucius

My course of action?  I created a YouTube playlist of videos that inspire me, motivate me, make me think and make me smile…  From Wallace Wattles’ incredible work, to Will Smith’s thoughts on how to be a success…  This ever-evolving group of videos is my go-to place for inspiration when I need it.

Here’s the link if you’d like to take a look:  bit.ly/youtubeinspiring

Who inspires you and what is your course of action for those moments when you need a dose of whatever it takes to get you our of your slump and back on track?

I’d love to hear your thoughts…

 

 

Image courtesy Hartwig HKD

Luxury is a Choice, not a Dollar Sign!

wellness-spa-relax

Look at an image like this and you think of a quality day spa where all you hear are sounds of birds chirping, waves rolling… and many also immediately then jump to “but I couldn’t afford that type of luxury”…

Luxury is a Choice not a Dollar Sign…

On Sunday, I decided to turn my studio apartment into my very own oasis…

Relaxing luxury-spa-type music playing, reading, enjoying fresh juice and nibbling on nuts & steamed edamame, candles dancing away all throughout my Princess Tower, the aroma of glorious essential oils diffused through the air, luxuriating facial, and a bottle of wine that was sipped from a vintage Censka crystal glass I picked up on my travels… 

When I posted about my ‘retreat’, a friend sent me a message saying she wished she could afford to live like I live…

Hmmm, let me think… The wine cost less than $20, the nuts and edamame would collectively be less than $10… Everything else I have already on hand, but even if I didn’t they are not expensive items – you can even pick up candles at the ninety-nine cent store… Even the vintage crystal glass I found for less than $20 (it is ever so elegant – I love it – and it travels with me)…

As I said to my beautiful friend ~ luxury is a choice – it doesn’t need to be expensive – you just need to be mindful and decide whether you will focus on ‘reality’ or make your own…

While we may not be able to click our fingers and put a million dollars into the bank, or twitch our nose and be free from illness – we can choose to create our own world in which we are blissfully happy and loving the beauty of the present moment…

For anyone with the resources to be able to read this post ~~~ Luxury is a CHOICE ~~~ 

Whoever says you can’t enjoy the 5-Star life without having to outlay a 5-Star wad of cash, obviously hasn’t spent enough time with me…  :-))

Sending love and smiles to all… 

 

The Importance of Having a Bucket List (plus here’s a look at mine!)

bucket-list-LSJWhen was the last time you did something you really wanted to do?

Why have a Bucket List?  Most people go through their life as though they have all the time in the world to “one day” do the things they really want to do – and you know what?  Most never do them.

The old adage is true about the cemetery being full of the best books (that were never written because they never found the time to write that book they always dreamed of writing); the most amazing love stories (that were never lived because they never built up the courage to ask the person out or to say “I’m sorry”); the most amazing experiences (that were never experienced because there was always “one day”)…

I often update my Bucket List (that I call a Life List) however recently I did something in addition to that – I wrote out my Life List DONE!  Not just Bucket List items, but also simply amazing experiences I have had – because I decided that “one day” was every chance I get!

What I discovered in writing that list was just how many wonderful memories it brought back simply by going through that exercise – and also just how much I had truly done in my life…

…but I had a special ‘gift’ that many of you do not have…

What is that ‘gift’?  Several years ago I had an illness that was supposed to kill me – and didn’t (I’m stubborn like that).  Thanks to that illness, I realized just how short life really is and how every moment is precious… and I started living each moment to the fullest…

I started paying attention to the beauty in the everyday comings and goings of life…  I started exploring and going places and doing things simply because they sounded interesting or fun…

…and I developed a Life List DONE that inspires me every time I read it.  It contains not only goals and bucket list items, it’s also simply experiences that were ever so cool and that have meant a lot to me.

While you scan my list – reflect on all the incredible things YOU have ALREADY done in your life!

So many times we look at our GOALS and our TO DO lists, and forget just how much we have already accomplished…

…and if you look at my list and think it would cost a lot of money to achieve – perhaps if you did it all at once – and yes, there are a couple of expensive items on the list – but this list is the culmination of the past 10 or 20 years of my life – and also, think about how many incredible experiences you could have, right in your own city – for free…

It’s all about making the most of every moment…

“If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done…”  Thomas Jefferson

Here in no particular order is my EXPERIENCES ‘DONE’ LIST:

  • Own the Car of My Dreams (her name is Bridgit aka Baby Car and she’s a classic Jaguar convertible I restored who has been my constant travel companion for several years while living in the USA – when preparing to finally leave the States, I donated her to a children’s charity.  I just couldn’t bring myself to ‘sell’ her so I gave her to an organization where she could continue to bring smiles to people…)
  • Traced my family tree back several hundred years and completed the Ancestry DNA analysis (I’m 40% UK, 26% Iberian Peninsula, 21% Scandinavian, 12% Irish and 1% from western Europe) – and am writing a novel based on some of the stories…  Stay tuned!
  • Lived on the Great Barrier Reef
  • Climbed all 272 steps of the Batu Cave Temple in Malaysia (complete with an army of macaque monkeys ‘helping’ every step of the way)
  • Rebuild a Car Engine (twice)
  • Wrap a Snake Around My Neck
  • Stayed two nights in one of America’s most haunted B&Bs
  • Ride in a Tiger Moth
  • Sat beside Walt Disney’s original “Dreaming Tree” on the farm where he grew up – while the original tree has fallen over, the trunk is still there, a sapling from the tree is growing next to it – and the entire field is awe-inspiringly beautiful!  Wild flowers that grow as high as your waist in some places…  It is one of my top 10 spots on the planet.
  • Host Movie Premieres at Warner Bros
  • Walk over Sydney Harbour Bridge
  • Host “Going Green” TV show
  • Live in a two-storey villa in a 4.5 star resort with a friend’s 65′ yacht moored at my front door
  • Leave nothing ‘unsaid’
  • Grand Canyon
  • Fly Internationally First Class
  • Mardi Gras Ball
  • Made my living as a Professional Entertainer
  • Find True, Pure, Blissful Joy in pretty much every moment…
  • Live in USA (my dream since I was a small child)
  • Write an Amazon #1 Best-Seller
  • Speak on stage at the United Nations in New York
  • Stay in a luxury vintage rail car at the Chattanooga Choo Choo Hotel (formerly a Victorian-Era rail station)
  • Love Unconditionally
  • Spent Significant Time Touring Through 42 States (so far) – all by Road
  • Fly a Plane
  • I absolutely ADORE what I do for a living!
  • Ride the Incline Railway (world’s steepest)
  • Bring a Stranger Home for Dinner
  • Winter Olympics in Whistler
  • Tombstone, Arizona & OK Corral (where the shootout DIDN’T happen, by the way!!)
  • Angel Oak
  • Drive Across the USA Coast to Coast (several times – and at least 4 times in Bridgit!)
  • Teach at a World’s Top Business School
  • Target Pistol Shooting
  • Forgive and move on
  • Fairy Penguins on Phillip Island
  • Member of various Private Members’ Clubs
  • Visited The Alamo
  • Make a Difference in Someone’s Life
  • Visit Fort Sumter and Fort Moultrie in Charleston, South Carolina
  • Visit just about every significant Antebellum Home in the USA
  • Learn Sign Alphabet
  • Catalina Island
  • Own Personalized Private Label Wine
  • Participate in Murder Mystery
  • Spent several inspiring hours at the Georgia Guidestones
  • Tour Historic Philadelphia
  • Hug a Redwood in the Redwood Forest
  • Competition Ballroom Dancing (as a teenager, and won two awards)
  • Tour Stalagmite Caves
  • Mark Twain’s beloved Hannibal Missouri
  • Member of Mensa
  • Visit Cadillac Ranch
  • Gorgeous collection of Jewellery, Shoes, Handbags & Accessories
  • Hiking Through Rainforest
  • Visit the original Laura Ingalls Wilder house
  • Arabia Steamboat Musuem (the largest single collection of pre-Civil War artifacts in the world)
  • Achieve over 50,000 Followers on Twitter (it’s down to around 37K now, and it was a wonderful experience building the following – it’s interesting that once I stopped actively building, the ‘fluff’ fell off and the 35K or so that remain are constant, loyal followers)
  • Own several Civil War Gowns
  • Struck by lightning – and obviously lived to tell the tale!  Actually, the lightning hit the roof of the garage I was in and went through the power line to the charger cable that was beside me – the spark arced from the cable to my leg, causing a weird burn/bruise-like injury, my hair stood on end, my heart started beating to a very different drum!  Not only that, but it fried the wiring in the garage and even literally ‘blew up’ the automatic sprinkler controller on the wall – we found pieces everywhere!
  • Daily Full-page “Life with Leigh” series in Major Metro Newspaper
  • Own a grand piano
  • Visit Parkes Observatory
  • Treat a Person who is Homeless to Thanksgiving Feast (I do this most every year)
  • Live with Private Beach at my Doorstep
  • Been on stage with Jay Leno
  • Tour Historic Newport
  • Win Awards for my Photography
  • Build a Snowman
  • Ruby Falls
  • Visit Painted Desert in New Mexico
  • Fishbowl Margarita in El Paso
  • Willard Hotel in Washington
  • Visit Churchill Downs (Home of Kentucky Derby)
  • Sailing on a tall ship
  • Attend Private Event in US House of Representatives
  • Shopping on Rodeo Drive
  • Sing for a Living
  • Route 66
  • Drive entire length of Historic Route 1 / Hwy 101 from Mexico to Canada
  • Civil Rights Museum in Lorraine Hotel
  • Swim Naked Under the Stars in a beautiful a lake
  • Drive across the Golden Gate Bridge
  • Danced/Played the giant piano in FAO Swartz in New York
  • Met the Principals of the Russian Bolshoi Ballet & had front row seats
  • Elvis Presley Aircraft Museum
  • Hollywood Walk of Fame (no, I’m not ON it, I just walked along it)
  • Watch the sun rise and set at the horizon while at the Beach (obviously not at the same beach!  LOL!)
  • Natural Bridge in Virginia
  • Historic Santa Monica Pier
  • Four-wheeling over monster sand-dunes
  • Host “Achievers and Unsung Heroes” TV & radio shows
  • Victor Borge 80th Birthday concert
  • Monticello
  • Horseback Riding through Antebellum Plantation
  • Nashville
  • Sydney Opera House
  • Off-Roading Through Monster Sand Dunes
  • Ride the L train in Chicago
  • Crater Lake
  • Build a smart-phone app (several)
  • Attend a Rodeo
  • Travel Through Asia
  • Manage a Charity Feeding Homeless Children
  • Stay in Eco-Friendly Cavallo Point, California
  • Attend a Cirque de Soleil show in Vegas
  • Guest Soloist with Sydney Conservatory Choir
  • Attend Revolutionary & Civil War Re-Enactments
  • Go on a Blind Date
  • New Years Eve on Sydney Harbor
  • Churn Butter By Hand
  • Survive an Illness that was supposed to kill me
  • Conquered fear of Public Speaking (and a good thing, too, given that I chose to go into the field of media and entertainment!)
  • Herd Cattle
  • Contact someone I don’t know who also has my name
  • Tour Royal Selangor Pewter Factory in Kuala Lumpur
  • Buy something at an Auction
  • Attend College Football Game (LSU @ Tiger Stadium) & Tail-gating
  • Ride an Elephant
  • Visit Grant Park in Chicago
  • Do something ‘big’ completely on faith
  • Lead in Musical Theater
  • Study Artificial Intelligence at Stanford (for fun)
  • Niagara Falls (& also did a horse-drawn carriage ride in middle of winter – stunning!)
  • Daily Successfully manage several health ‘challenges’ that sometimes slow me down but never stop me…
  • Own AV Studio
  • Reverse a Trailer Around an Obstacle Course
  • Stayed AirBnB
  • Cuddle a Koala
  • Ride in a Tuk Tuk
  • Live in Las Vegas
  • Co-Host Drive Time on Major Commercial Radio Station
  • Explore a Completely Uninhabited Ghost Town
  • Ate squirrel and rabbit gumbo (where both critters were shot on the same premises they were cooked and eaten – certainly an ‘interesting’ experience but not one I recommend! (for you or the squirrel!))
  • Do several ‘staycations’ where you stay in a hotel in your city and be a tourist in your own town
  • July 4th on the Water in Savannah, Georgia
  • Attended a Louisiana Cajun Boucherie
  • Butterfly Park in Kuala Lumpur
  • Attended an international IndyCar race
  • Visit all Smithsonian Buildings in Washington
  • Swim in a Tea Tree Lake
  • Adopt a Rescue Dog
  • Attend International Surfing Competitions (not as a competitor!)
  • Eat Philly Cheesesteak in Philadelphia
  • Hoover Dam
  • Row 6 – Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge Tour
  • Snorkled on the Great Barrier Reef
  • Dropped 75lb after putting it on during an illness (and currently working on achieving my dream body)
  • Camping By Myself – beside a lake… it was magical!
  • Jekyl Island
  • Start a Non-Profit
  • Visit ‘The General’ in Kennesaw Mountains
  • Ride a Greyhound Bus across several States (boy, was that an experience!)
  • Build Websites
  • Entertain elderly people at a nursing home
  • Shear a Sheep
  • Build several businesses (some were successes – some were monumental failures – although thankfully there were more of the former than the latter!)
  • Natchez Pilgrimage
  • Play Bocce
  • Continually Learn about Quantum Physics
  • Windsor Ruins
  • Create My Own Family Crest
  • Get caught in a dust storm with zero visibility (Ok, so not something I planned, but experience worthy of the list)
  • Biltmore
  • Attend an Event with International Heads of State
  • Hold a Tarantula
  • Stayed in a number of glorious vintage hotels
  • Attend Renaissance Festival
  • Front-row-center at Don McLean concert
  • Shucking Oysters Fresh from the Fire at an Oyster Roast
  • Spend a whole day at a luxury spa, then elegant dinner and a show
  • Sailing
  • Study at Stanford
  • Discover my signature perfume
  • Hole in One (OK, so it was mini-golf!)
  • Magnificent Historic Charleston, South Carolina
  • Picnics are usually 5 Star with Vintage Crystal Glasses & Estate Silverware
  • Teach Someone who is Illiterate to Read
  • New Year’s Eve on the river in Savannah, Georgia
  • Eat possibly the world’s best Lobster Slider – Plymouth (near ‘the rock’)
  • Used Limousines as primary method of transport
  • Toured a submarine
  • Visit New Zealand
  • Attend a Polo Match
  • Visit Times Square
  • Learn CPR
  • Bought a quality western cowboy (or should that be cowgirl) hat and had it custom-fitted (I love bespoke experiences like that!)
  • Drive in Celebrity Speedway Race
  • Catalina Island
  • French Quarter in New Orleans
  • Lasik Eye Surgery
  • Boat License
  • San Antonio Riverwalk
  • Met Masaru Emoto
  • Jet-boating
  • Brewed Beer
  • Atalaya Castle
  • Be a Ghost-Writer
  • Shoot a Bow & Arrow
  • Attend Zulu Lundi Gras
  • Regularly Send Handwritten Notes with Wax-Sealed Envelope, Written with Fountain Pen
  • Learn to Throw a Clay Pot
  • Bowl a 200+ game
  • Donate Blood
  • Aspen
  • Historic Vicksburg
  • Experience a Real White Christmas
  • Mount Vernon
  • Toured an aircraft-carrier
  • Morgan Freeman’s Ground Zero Blues Club
  • Milk Cows both by Hand and Machine
  • Live on a Yacht for a Week
  • Go on a Hay Ride
  • (ref scene in Pretty Woman) Had lunch at Bar at the Beverley Wilshire (they’ve redecorated since the movie)
  • Dined at the Boat House in Central Park

(I update this list (both done and to do) every few months)

…and here is the (much shorter) Bucket List of items still to do… (again in no particular order).

  • Become healthy enough to climb Mt Kilimanjaro in 2017
  • Daily continue to see the beauty and enjoy the bliss…
  • Continue to make a difference and help people achieve their dreams…
  • Be a volunteer at “il Club di Guilietta” (ref ‘Letters to Juliet’)
  • Continue to explore my ancestry, including visiting places from which they originated
  • Be the voice for an animated feature film
  • Achieve the body of my dreams
  • Statue of Liberty
  • Develop a fictional character I love and publish stories about her journeys
  • Live in a Marina (again)
  • Meet and fall mutually in love with the Man of my Dreams
  • Help a family who is homeless to get a job, a home and a new life
  • San Francisco Cable Car
  • Private Plane (I don’t want one, I just want to travel in one if I need to fly anywhere)
  • Learn to better appreciate wine
  • Be a writer for “Huffington Post”
  • Speak Italian and French (I don’t need to be fluent, just enough to understand and to be understood)
  • Swim with Dolphins
  • Attend all three Triple Crown events – Private Box
  • Build a Labyrinth
  • Visit every US state (42 down – 8 to go…)
  • Continue to facilitate inspiring events…
  • Natural Hot Springs
  • Really explore Napa Valley
  • Pike’s Market
  • Williamsburg, Virginia
  • Stonehenge
  • Develop a range of inspirational books, journals, items etc from my photography
  • Coliseum
  • Monaco
  • Machu Pichu
  • Mud Bath
  • Produce inspiring short films
  • Heart Castle
  • Coral Castle
  • Santorini
  • Tour ~ and stay in ~ castles across the UK and Europe
  • Major art and architectural icons through Europe
  • Coney Island
  • Vienna
  • Venice
  • Vintage Rail Tours including Orient Express & Pullman Tours
  • Greek Islands
  • Austria
  • Disneyland
  • Switzerland
  • Easter Island
  • Rome
  • Kiss passionately in the rain
  • Athens
  • Loch Ness
  • Tuscany
  • ‘Nights in Rodanthe’ House
  • Record an album
  • Horseback riding on the beach
  • Hot air ballooning
  • Build a water feature
  • Fly in a helicopter
  • Go on a cruise
  • See icebergs up close
  • Buy jewelry at Tiffany & Co.
  • Horseback riding in the snow
  • Regularly make something with my own hands
  • Christmas Caroling
  • Edgar Cayce Museum
  • Martha’s Vineyard
  • Narraganset Rune Stone
  • Make a Kiva loan
  • Nantucket
  • View a piece of Harry Winston jewelry up close and personal
  • Cape Cod
  • Stay at a Dude Ranch
  • Upperville Horse Show
  • Winchester House
  • Chateau Montelena
  • Newport Tower
  • TCM Cruise as a VIP
  • White Pass and Yukon Railway (Skagway AK to Whitehorse, Canada)
  • Continue to regularly attend exhibitions at the Smithsonian

I’m certain I’ve missed a number of items – and I am constantly adding to it… although the one that is most up to date is on my Luxurious Nomad site – here’s the link:  http://luxuriousnomad.com/bucket-list/

So, why have a Bucket List?

When I finally do meet my Maker, I want to be able to honestly say I lived my life to the fullest – that I used my passions – that I was of service to others – that I made people (and myself) smile – and that I didn’t wait for “one day” that never came…

This list is my inspiration to live the life of my dreams…

What’s yours?

Dionysus/Bacchus (Wine God) Celebration of the Spring Equinox & Eclipse

bacchusBeing the wine-o-clock kinda girl I am, I’m already planning for the Spring Equinox and Eclipse on March 20th…

Dionysus or Bacchus (depending upon whether you are Greek or Roman) is the god of the grape harvest, wine-making and wine, of ritual madness, fertility, theater and religious ecstasy in mythology…

…and since March 20th is not only the Spring Equinox but also a total solar eclipse (sorry, we’d need to go to Svalbard (Norway) to see it…) I figured it was a good excuse to get together with a number of friends and drink a toast to good ole Dionysus & Bacchus!

Hmmmmm… grape harvest, wine-making and wine (WINE – CHECK), of ritual madness (OK, MOST OF US ARE A LITTLE UN-HINGED – CHECK), fertility (NO CHILDREN ALLOWED – CHECK), theater (FEEL FREE TO RECITE ANY OF THOSE POEMS YOU LEARNED IN SCHOOL! OR NOT…) and religious ecstasy (THERE’LL BE NONE OF THAT, THANKS! LOL!) in mythology…

The spring equinox is filled with reasons for celebration. For many cultures around the world it marks the beginning of a new year. For others it’s a celebration of nature – of the return of the sun, of dawn, rebirth and fertility…

…and for us it’s celebrating good friends and a 2015 where your most treasured dreams all come true…

Leave the wake in the past…

wakeAs many of you know, one of my most beloved teachers and the person, next to my great-grandmother, from whom I have gained perhaps my most important and profound perspectives is Dr Wayne Dyer.  One of Dr Dyer’s stories that he uses to illustrate the power (or lack thereof) of our past is the wake of a boat. If you are unfamiliar with the story, in short it refers to the fact that what is past – in this instance, the wake (or trailing wave) of a boat has no impact on the ‘now’ nor the future of the boat – with the boat being analogous to your life.

One thing I witnessed on the weekend, however, prompted me to a revised knowledge that the wake of a boat CAN have quite negative and destructive impacts upon the boat.

Please allow me to explain…

Imagine you are out on a speedboat, cruising along at a high rate of knots, and leaving a very large wake behind you. While this trailing wave has no impact on your ‘now’, nor your boat’s forward momentum, if you decide to suddenly turn your boat about-face and focus on where you’ve been instead of where you are going, your wake can swamp your boat! A scene I witnessed yesterday.

If you are flowing along with a great deal of forward momentum and all of a sudden start focusing on your past, you, too may discover that your life is ‘swamped’ with the unwanted.

…and yet another example viewed yesterday with regard to the potential negative power of a wake, is when you stay too close to the wake of another…

A large boat was very quickly heading into the harbor. A much smaller vessel that had been on a particular course, decided to change direction and ‘wake surf’ the larger boat’s trailing wave.  Unfortunately, the smaller boat was disabled by the power of the wake of the other boat.

The lesson I took from this scene was that if we focus too intently on the ‘past’ of others, we run the risk of disabling our own forward momentum.

While it may seem like a very basic message, this simple notion can have profound impacts on our path from where we are to where we wish to be.

Leave the wake – yours and everyone else’s – in the past where it belongs.

Sending love and smiles…

Social Media tips from Guy Kawasaki

 

art-social-media-guy-kawasaki

I just finished reading this latest book co-written by one of my go-to guys when it comes to the virtual world, Guy Kawasaki.

It’s full of both useful info for experts in the online world, as well as explanations for people who are relatively new to the world of social media.

Here’s the info on Amazon:

“By now it’s clear that whether you’re promoting a business, a product, or yourself, social media is near the top of what determines your success or failure. And there are countless pundits, authors, and consultants eager to advise you. 

But there’s no one quite like Guy Kawasaki, the legendary former chief evangelist for Apple and one of the pioneers of business blogging, tweeting, Facebooking, Tumbling, and much, much more. Now Guy has teamed up with Peg Fitzpatrick, who he says is the best social-media person he’s ever met, to offer The Art of Social Media—the one essential guide you need to get the most bang for your time, effort, and money. 

With over one hundred practical tips, tricks, and insights, Guy and Peg present a bottom-up strategy to produce a focused, thorough, and compelling presence on the most popular social-media platforms. They guide you through steps to build your foundation, amass your digital assets, optimize your profile, attract more followers, and effectively integrate social media and blogging. 

For beginners overwhelmed by too many choices as well as seasoned professionals eager to improve their game, The Art of Social Media is full of tactics that have been proven to work in the real world. Or as Guy puts it, “great stuff, no fluff.” “

You can read more here:  https://www.amazon.com/The-Art-Social-Media-Power-ebook/dp/B00O4RHN8M/ref=as_sl_pc_ss_til?tag=achievement0f-20&linkCode=w01&linkId=YYSQYPPY2QSCCDQY&creativeASIN=B00O4RHN8M

On this day in 1813 Beethoven premiered one of my favorite pieces of music…

On this day, December 8th, back in 1813, Beethoven premiered his Symphony 7 in A Major, Opus 92, at a charity concert in Vienna.  The concert was in aid of wounded soldiers.

If you’ve seen the movie, “The King’s Speech” you will have heard the Allegretto movement (the entire piece is composed of four movements) ~ it’s the moving backdrop to the speech the King makes when he informs his country they are at war.

What I find quite extraordinary is that the audience apparently encored the Allegretto immediately, rather than wait to applaud at the very end of the concert.  If you’ve ever been to a classical concert, you will have no doubt observed the strict silence between movements!

Also interesting is that admiration at the time was not universal as some critics thought Beethoven had composed the piece in “a drunken, mad stupor”.

Whether Beethoven was drunken, mad, both or neither, for me this is one of the most provoking and inspiring musical creations I’ve ever experienced…

Thank you, Mr Beethoven…

 

Click Millionaires

Click Millionaires: Work Less, Live More with an Internet Business You Love

This is a fabulous book with a LOT of useful information, tips, and thoughts that may be new to you – I’ve read it twice and love it.  At $9.99 it’s a little more expensive than some other Kindle books, however it’s well worth the price!

Here’s the blurb from the website:

The rules have changed. The American Dream is no longer the “corner office.” It’s a successful business you can run from your home office, the beach, or wherever you desire. It’s work you love that still allows you the freedom and income to live the life you truly want.

Sound like a tall order? Well, thanks to the Internet, anyone can launch a business with little or no start-up capital or technical expertise. And in Click Millionaires, e-commerce expert Scott Fox teaches weary corporate warriors and aspiring entrepreneurs how to trade the 9–5 job they hate for an online business they love. The book explains how to combine outsourcing, software, and automated online marketing to build recurring revenues, all while working less and making fewer of the lifestyle compromises that corporate “success” requires. Readers will learn how to:

• Find a lucrative niche on the Internet that matches their interests and skills

• Choose an online businessmodel: fromblogs, noozles, and audience communities to digital delivery, online services, affiliate marketing—even physical products

• Position themselves as a experts

• Build their audience

• Design the lifestyle they want

• Balance passion and profits to realize their personal definition of success

Featuring stories of dozens of “regular folks” who have reinvented themselves as Click Millionaires, this inspiring and practical guide shows readers how to stop dreaming of a better life and start living it!

…and when you buy the book you get a free membership in Scott Fox’s Internet business coaching and training Forum at ClickMillionaires.com. Ask questions, develop your business ideas and online marketing strategies, meet fellow entrepreneurs, and get personalized help from Scott Fox and his team—all free with purchase.

I’ve checked out the forum and it is actually quite encouraging and full of useful information and people who are keen to support one another.

Facebook Mobile Advertising: ROI on iOS 1,790% higher than on Android

If you are marketing to smart phone users, this report is of significant interest…

“A study released late last year byNanigans has revealed that mobile Facebook ads on iOS generate up to 1,790% higher ROI than similar ads run on Android!” according to MobiAD.

This is fascinating and makes you wonder about the apparent disparities between iOS and Android users…

You can read more here:  http://myappguy.com/facebook-mobile-advertising-roi-on-ios-1790-higher-than-on-android/

The full report has much more information. To download a complete copy, go to the Nanigans website.

5 Ideas to Recharge Your Fitness Routine

I love these tips from Healthy Tipping Point:

“If you’ve ever trained for a race, you know this is true. A training plan is based on this philosophy.  Over time, efforts build on each other, transforming you from a couch potato to a runner. At Week 1, it’s hard to imagine that you’ll ever been able to accomplish the workouts in Week 8, but by Week 6, your daily efforts have compounded and that long run seems more attainable.

So while I value big fitness goals, I believe the bread-and-butter of healthy living is really in the choices you make every day.  The small efforts are how you get to the big goals. Every day, you must wake up and make the choice to craft the life you want to live. It’s a decision that you make over and over again.

Here are five of my favorite ways to recharge your fitness routine. The suggestions are simple, but I promise – they’ll add up to something awesome.”

continue reading here:  http://www.healthytippingpoint.com/2014/01/5-ideas-to-recharge-your-fitness-routine.html

NOLA Event – Jan 23rd

If you’re in New Orleans on Thursday of this week, I’m speaking at this event and would LOVE to see you there! It’s a wonderful group of mostly entrepreneurs.

Social. Eat. Speak. (Guest Speaker: Leigh St John, Success Testimony)

  • Thursday, January 23, 2014 –  to 

  • 445 South Rampart Street, New Orleans, LA (map)

    Join us for our weekly casual business mingle lunch that will be hosted at Little Gem Saloon which is centrally located in downtown New Orleans on the corner of Rampart and Poydras.

  • Come from your home office or office, suit or jeans.

    It’s free to attend, you just pay for your own lunch.

What are you meant to teach?

teach

Thanks to http://imgfave.com/view/812487 for this image…

Think about it…  If you were put here to teach, what would you teach?

Here are three ideas to help you start to answer that question:

1.  What do you love?  Dancing, painting, talking, inspiring, running..?  For now, don’t think about whether you feel you could teach it, just think about what you love to do…

2.  What do you love to discuss?

3.  What were your favorite subjects in school?  If you wanted to take some adult classes in a subject, what subject(s) interest you?

Now, forgetting for a moment longer whether you feel you can teach, look at your answers and find one or two common aspects.

Done that?

OK, now consider actually teaching that to a group at a senior citizen’s facility – or perhaps a mother’s group…  Where is there a group that would be interested in what you have to teach on that subject?

Remember, you don’t need to know it all, but in some way or other we are all here to teach…

Find your gift and share it with the world..!

Millionaire Fastlane

millionaire-fastlane

Every now and again I read something that SO resonates… and this book is one of them.

Not only that, but MJ DeMarco presents a blue-print for a successful business that EVERYONE should apply.  It is the single most basic yet brilliant piece of business advice I’ve every heard (and I used to teach at one of the world’s top business schools, so that’s saying something!)

Here’s the blurb from Amazon:

Is the financial plan of mediocrity — a dream-stealing, soul-sucking dogma known as “The Slowlane” your plan for creating wealth? You know how it goes; it sounds a lil something like this:

“Go to school, get a good job, save 10% of your paycheck, buy a used car, cancel the movie channels, quit drinking expensive Starbucks mocha lattes, save and penny-pinch your life away, trust your life-savings to the stock market, and one day, when you are oh, say, 65 years old, you can retire rich.”

The mainstream financial gurus have sold you blindly down the river to a great financial gamble: You’ve been hoodwinked to believe that wealth can be created by recklessly trusting in the uncontrollableand unpredictable markets: the housing market, the stock market, and the job market. This impotent financial gamble dubiously promises wealth in a wheelchair — sacrifice your adult life for a financial plan that reaps dividends in the twilight of life. Accept the Slowlane as your blueprint for wealth and your financial future will blow carelessly asunder on a sailboat of HOPE: HOPE you can find a job and keep it, HOPE the stock market doesn’t tank, HOPE the economy rebounds, HOPE, HOPE, and HOPE. Do you really want HOPE to be the centerpiece for your family’s financial plan?

Drive the Slowlane road and you will find your life deteriorate into a miserable exhibition about what you cannot do, versus what you can. For those who don’t want a lifetime subscription to “settle-for-less” and a slight chance of elderly riches, there is an alternative; an expressway to extraordinary wealth that can burn a trail to financial independence faster than any road out there.

  • Why jobs, 401(k)s, mutual funds, and 40-years of mindless frugality will never make you rich young.
  • Why most entrepreneurs fail and how to immediately put the odds in your favor.
  • The real law of wealth: Leverage this and wealth has no choice but to be magnetized to you.
  • The leading cause of poorness: Change this and you change everything.
  • How the rich really get rich – and no, it has nothing to do with a paycheck or a 401K match.
  • Why the guru’s grand deity – compound interest – is an impotent wealth accelerator.
  • Why the guru myth of “do what you love” will most likely keep you poor, not rich.
  • And 250+ more poverty busting distinctions…

Demand the Fastlane, an alternative road-to-wealth; one that actually ignites dreams and creates millionaires young, not old. Change lanes and find your explosive wealth accelerator. Hit the Fastlane, crack the code to wealth, and find out how to live rich for a lifetime.

You can buy the book buy clicking HERE.

Memorial Day Thanks…

memorial daySeptember 2001, I was scheduled to leave my then home in Australia for a speaking & book signing tour across America later that month.
I can still remember watching the news and not believing what I saw…
“Maybe if I check the Internet, I’ll find it’s all some horrible hoax”, I thought to myself…
What I found when I turned on the computer were streams of emails… “have you heard from my husband” … “has anyone seen my daughter” … “my son was last seen on the  14th floor”…
I was on the other side of the world in Australia, the country I would one day call “home” was being attacked and people I knew only via the internet but had become my friends were desperately trying to find their loved ones…
A few months later I did make that trip to the States, and met so many young men in military gear…
“I’m headed to — – – Air Force Base.  We’ve all been called up.  No one knows what’s going on but we’re pretty sure we’re about to be deployed,” said one young man I met.
Another in yet another small town said, “all we know is that we need to report for duty, but we’re ready to fight.  They can’t do this to us and not expect a fight.”
…and one young man on his way to meet up with his unit who I met at a Greyhound station, “this is America – the land of the free – and if I have to give my life to keep it that way, I will.”
Move forward to the present day when I now proudly and passionately live in the United States…
On the eve of Memorial Day, I say to all the men and women (of both Australia and America) who have given so much to protect this land we love, “thank you”…  With all my heart, thank you.
One day each and every one of us will be dust, that’s just the way it is, but my prayer is that your honor and dedication to our Freedom live on well beyond your years.
God Bless America, my home sweet home…

Time Travel

 

time

Have you ever given any real thought to ‘time’ and our travel through it?

Lately I was thinking about my great-grandmother, my ‘Nan’ the woman who largely raised me and taught me all the important values and morals I trust to this day.

Nan

was born just after the end of the 1800s and died just before 1980.

Think about what my Nan experienced during her lifetime…

She saw:

  • The introduction of flight…
  • The introduction of the Model-T Ford…
  • The death of a King (this was back in Australia, a country still part of the Commonwealth)…
  • The crowning of a King…
  • The discovery of Machu Picchu
  • The first man to reach the south pole…
  • The invention of the parachute (well, think about it…  there wasn’t a lot of need for parachutes before we could fly!)
  • The sinking of the Titanic…
  • The opening of the Panama Canal…
  • The “war to end all wars”…
  • King Tut’s tomb discovered…
  • Talking movies invented…
  • First Winter Olympics…
  • Lindbergh flies solo across the Atlantic…
  • Bubble-gum was invented…
  • Walt Disney released Mickey Mouse…
  • The Great Depression…
  • St Valentine’s Day Massacre…
  • Air-conditioning was invented…
  • Amelia Earhart is the First Woman to fly solo across the Atlantic…
  • Lindbergh’s baby is kidnapped…
  • The great US Dust-Bowl (and apparently very few Americans have even heard of this!  Seriously, you should check it out…  Amazing!)
  • Nazi Olympics in Berlin
  • The death of another King…
  • The abdication of a King before he was crowned…
  • The crowning of another King…
  • Amelia Earhart vanishes
  • Golden Gate Bridge Opened
  • The Hindenberg Disaster
  • Japan invades China
  • Broadcast of “The War of the Worlds” causes panic
  • Helicopter invented
  • Yet another world war…
  • Japanese Attack Pearl Harbor
  • First Computer Built (ENIAC)
  • Germans Surrender
  • Hitler Commits Suicide
  • Microwave Oven Invented
  • Slinky Toy Hits Shelves
  • United Nations Founded
  • U.S. Drops Atomic Bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki
  • Chuck Yeager Breaks the Sound Barrier
  • Color TV introduced
  • Korean war
  • The death of another King…
  • The coronation of a Queen…
  • Discovery of DNA
  • Disneyland opened
  • T.V. Remote Control Invented
  • Velcro Introduced
  • NASA Founded
  • Bay of Pigs Invasion
  • JFK’s “Man on the Moon” Speech
  • JFK assassination
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Makes His “I Have a Dream” Speech
  • U.S. Sends Troops to Vietnam
  • Very first Super Bowl
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Assassinated
  • Robert F. Kennedy Assassinated
  • Neil Armstrong Becomes the First Man on the Moon
  • Woodstock
  • VCRs introduced
  • Watergate scandal
  • Terrorist attacks on Munich Olympics
  • Roe vs Wade
  • U.S. Pulls Out of Vietnam
  • Patty Hearst Kidnapped
  • Terracotta Army Discovered in China
  • U.S. President Nixon Resigns
  • Microsoft founded
  • Elvis found dead
  • First test-tube bay

What will our descendants list as milestone events that occurred during our lifetime?

Somehow I don’t think it will be as varied as the changes my Nan experienced.  Even though we feel the world is moving faster and faster, imagine starting your life right at the time men first take to the sky and ending it after they have already explored the moon!

I want to say “thank you” to all the people who have gone before us…  It’s thanks to each and every one of them that we have the freedoms and benefits we enjoy today.

So, when you next think of time-travel, may you give a thought to your own travel through time and the legacies you will leave behind…

Until next time…

Time For Innovation…

innovation“Innovation comes from people meeting up in the hallways or calling each other at 10:30 at night with a new idea, or because they realized something that shoots holes in how we’ve been thinking about a problem.”  Steve Jobs

At present I’m redesigning my entire online ‘life’ to make it more streamlined, while also implementing innovative and sustainable methods to boost the income of several businesses and charities with which I’m involved.

Those two words, innovative and sustainable are very important.

As the saying goes, ‘innovate or die’ (sorry, I don’t know who said it) and unless the methods are sustainable, you will find yourself having to come up with new ways to do the same thing over and over and over again… (and I seem to recall someone mentioning a definition of insanity that sounds very similar to that…)

Is it time for you to innovate?

Does your business need a boost?

Does your life need an overhaul?

Consider taking a step back, reviewing the situation and, as Steve Jobs said in the quote above, come up with an innovative idea  that shoots holes in how we’ve been thinking about a problem!

whack

If you want a fabulous book to help you think differently, I came across this book a looooooooooooong time ago (the mid-1980s to be specific) and it’s still as fabulous in it’s current edition!!!

Check it out!  http://tiny.cc/leighstjohn-whack

 

Hello from the Mark Anastasi Conference in LA

Mark AnastasiI’m sitting in the restaurant of the hotel here in LA having spent (or that should be ‘invested’) today in Mark’s informative conference. As you know, I love my online work and am thrilled with the calibre of information and attendees…

I read Mark’s book, “Laptop Millionaire” a few months ago and bit by bit am putting everything I learned into practice.

You can find the book here.

If you are serious about making ‘real’ money online, Mark and his team are among the very best available

OK, well a few more emails to send and some homework to do before I can finish for the evening…

Wishing you a truly blessed night…

Until next time…

Leigh

Pride & Prejudice 200th Anniversary

jane-austenBeing very much an Elizabeth Bennett at heart (and still looking for my Mr Darcy! ~ or more specifically, hoping he will find me…) I’m enjoying the readathon to celebrate the 200th Anniversary of its publication…

http://www.janeausten.co.uk/janeaustenreadathon/

“The Jane Austen Centre in Bath is to host an event that will be broadcast around the world -a 12 Hour International Readathon.

January 28th 2013 sees the 200th anniversary of the publication of Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice and to mark this bicentenary the book will be read in its entirety during a twelve hour period.

The half- day long ‘Readathon’ will take place at the Centre in Gay Street and will be streamed to eager fans all around the world.

The book, which regularly tops polls as the nation’s favourite novel, will be read in short 10 minute segments by up to 140 celebrities, authors, politicians, musicians, Olympians, school children, competition winners and personalities.

The Centre will also be welcoming internet streams from the various overseas Jane Austen societies and celebrities.

David Baldock, Director of the Jane Austen Centre said, “This is such an important literary milestone that it cannot be allowed to pass without recognition. I have witnessed how Jane Austen’s talent unites people from all corners of the world and this ‘Readathon’ is one way we can celebrate this together.””

Failure and Victory

winner-medal

“Take failures and victory coolly. To do the latter is a very difficult mental exercise. In a running race, the losers, when running neck to neck, prompt the winners to run faster. They inspire the grit, to put in that extra pace which brings victory to the winners. Hence, winners must actually be thankful to the losers for their victory. Those who did not win, I ask you not to lose your self-confidence. Never attach too much value to victory and defeat. All of you are born for far greater things than winning mundane races and competitions. Your destiny does not depend upon a game or an examination – it depends more upon your character, your will power and the grace of God.”  – Baba

This is an interesting perspective ~ that the winners actually have the losers to thank for their victory (I guess if no one else showed up and you still ran the race, would you say you ‘won’?)

If we don’t change, we don’t grow…

“If we don’t change, we don’t grow. If we don’t grow, we aren’t really living.” —-Gail Sheehy

[From Wikipedia]  “Gail Sheehy (born November 15, 1937, Mamaroneck, New York) is an American writer and lecturer, most notable for her books on life and the life cycle. She is also a contributor to Vanity Fair magazine.

Her fifth book, Passages, was called “a road map of adult life”. Several of her books continue the theme of passages through life’s stages, including menopause and what she calls “Second Adulthood”, including Pathfinders, Spirit of Survival, and Menopause: The Silent Passage. Her latest book, Sex and the Seasoned Woman, reveals a hidden cultural phenomenon: a surge of vitality in women’s sex and love lives after age fifty. She wrote a biography of Hillary Rodham Clinton, Hillary’s Choice.”