Monday, January 28, 2013

The Baby Steps Compound

Welcome! Where did January go?  It is the 28th already! Wow!  And the days are never going to stop and wait for any of us to play catch up.  Recently, a task I had not tackled for a while suddenly fell on my plate and it was not funny at all.  While I knew that I had what it takes to deal with this assignment, the magnitude of the work that was required just made me not want to venture into starting.

I spent days agonizing on the volume of work that is required for me to get this done, I whined about the number of hours and days I will have to spend stooped over the computer dealing with it.  I spent over a day scouting the internet for software somewhere that will deal with the work while I had my hands free to do ‘other’ stuff.

The problem was while I was busy doing everything but the work, my deadline was quietly creeping in on me!  Eventually, it dawned on me that I had wasted four days doing nothing but going round in circles… the software I found can only be helpful if I took the initiative and started to do the work one page after the other.

Finally! I woke up from my slumber with the reminder of something I had always known; that all I needed to do was take it one step at a time, and even though it may take a while, I will get where I need to go.  Even though I was looking for a magic wand that I could wave to get the work done in the blink of an eye, it was never going to happen.  I had to do it precept upon precept, line by line.  Even with the software, I still had to take it one little step after the other!

Darren Hardy in his book The Compound Effect, says “No matter what you learn, what strategy or tactic you employ, success comes as the result of the Compound Effect”.  In simple terms, it doesn’t matter what you are trying to achieve with your dream in 2013, it doesn’t matter what lofty plans you have, there are no magic carpets or wands, you will have to do it one step after the other.

The very little steps of success that we take, will all come together to make the big bang that we are looking for.  I know you want the really big contract, where you will earn so much that all your problems and needs are met all at once, (Is that ever going to happen?), it will take the smaller contracts where you have excelled to prepare you for that big one.

I know you will rather have your business situated in a particular area of town and you will rather have certain kinds of clients, what will an office in a choice area of town do for you if you have no track record of successful baby steps with happy small clients.

As January ends, and we all are reflecting on how we have done, please be encouraged that it is not the big or giant steps that constitute the success that you desire, it is the little every day steps that you take towards your dream that will compound into the huge success that you are looking for.

So if you have been too busy chasing the giant leaps that you did nothing about the baby steps, February is another opportunity to begin small and keep doing the little things until pooled together they make a really great mass of success.
Slow and steady wins the race, it is about the steady disciplined steps… they may not seem like much now, but if you keep doing them, they will come together soon enough to release the bang that you seek.  

You may not be flying yet, at least you are crawling, it may not seem like much, it is still movement, and if you keep it up one day you will begin to run and maybe even fly.  No matter what, with every baby step remember, you will make it NeverTheLess, after all, little drops of water can make a mighty ocean.


Sistar B

Monday, January 21, 2013


Welcome!  It is week four already!  How far have you gone in your quest for the dream life?

Behaviour does change so stick it out... don't give up when you get the shock that some do not think that your product or service is the best thing that happened to mankind since fresh air!

Before the launch of Effectual Magazine I stumbled around both with excitement and trepidation .  My creative genius was going on display at a level I could only have dreamt of, I was excited because finally my dream is flagged off and released for the benefit of mankind, and I was nervous because I didn't know how mankind will receive its 'salvation'. 

At the launch I remember that a lot of people requested for copies of the magazine for onward distribution.  They were so optimistic that they were going to sell every copy and remit funds to me, I was ecstatic that we had such great buy in from the get go, and I was so sure we had been accepted by the market and will begin to soar in sales from that point on.

However, that was not the way it all unfolded as three weeks after all the copies of the magazine that had been collected by people with the promise of helping us distribute were returned to the office except for about fifty copies.  Imagine that you sent out two thousand copies of the same thing and one thousand, nine hundred and fifty were returned to you… ouch! For me it was one very painful manifestation of rejection.  For every copy of that magazine that was returned to the office, I felt a fresh stab of rejection and couldn’t understand why the people couldn’t see the great product we were offering them…

Now four years later and still going strong, people still call to ask for that specific edition, and unfortunately, we do not even have a copy to spare. More importantly, I have come to realise that nobody rejected me personally, but that they needed time to adjust their behavior to accommodate our dream.

The point of today’s post is to bring to the fore the fact that we cannot predict the behavior of our target audience and therefore while we expect a miracle at the beginning, we should be open to let those who may need more time, adjust before they commit to us.  In the case of Effectual some of those people came back months and years later to subscribe to the magazine and even become distributors of the same magazine they had said the first time was not a product they wanted to market or even spend their money on.

So what changed?  Their behavior did change, they probably grew up, or the season of their lives changed and they suddenly realized that they needed what we had on offer. Or maybe even their mood changed from what it was. I cannot tell you specifically, but I can sure let you know that with time, most of them came round and we are grateful to do business with them today. 

Even as you go marketing and introducing your product or service today, recognise that saying No to you is not a rejection of you, and secondly that because they said No today does not mean they will not say yes tomorrow.  Behaviour does change and hopefully theirs will change in your favour.  

However,  a few of them wanted us to change what we had to suit their dreams before they got on board, but as we were convinced we had a good product we stuck with what we were doing. So watch out for those ones.

My encouragement for you today is to keep doing what you do the best way you can, keep reaching out and who knows one day soon, they will come calling to ask for what they had initially said they didn’t want or need.

Today, Effectual doesn’t do fifty copies each edition, as a matter of fact we have individuals who do that number of copies now.  So it is all a matter of persistence and recognizing that if your product is as good as you believe it is, then maybe what to do is wait for their behavior to change rather than change to suit them.
But then again, are you sure your product is the best that you can do? Is it possible your own behaviour needs to change first?

Till next week, you will make it NeverTheLess.


Sistar B

Monday, January 14, 2013


Brand new week, fourteen days into the new year, how are you doing?  Because of some unforeseen change that I had to deal with upon reopening for the year, I have found myself working longer hours than usual this early in the year, yet getting back home and feeling like I didn’t accomplish much each day.  I always planned to get into the year running with no downtime.  So I should be proud that I am able to do so much so early in the year while most people are still trying to get off the ground shouldn’t I? 

Well, I am actually worried rather than excited with my progress and the reason is simple… I found upon reflections this past weekend that I have been busy working on just one aspect of the dream while every other part has been left unattended to.  And that is the point of today’s post; how does working on just one aspect of our lives or dream impact upon the big picture?

I find that most of us tend to have parts of our lives that are either more demanding or run a little more smoothly than the others and we consequently spend more time on those areas while neglecting the others.  The question is does giving 80% to a particular part and another 60% and yet another 10% make for balanced living?  The unfortunate answer is no, while it may seem like we cannot give the same amount of attention to every part of our dream, it is important that we prioritise and ensure that every aspect of importance is deliberately worked on.


If for instance I decide that this year, I will expand the business, which is not a bad thing to want to do, it is important that the family does not suffer in the process. However, if in expanding the business I practically now live in the office and visit the home where my family and those I love are, then maybe I am neglecting something just as equally important if not more, to chase after a bigger dream.

Here are a few tips in ensuring that nothing suffers. 

1.       Make a list of all the important aspects of your life (You should have done this at the end of the year actually, but if you are yet to, it is still okay to do so now).  Make sure your list includes, family, health, finances, relationships etc.

2.      Allot adequate time to each spread across each week that you want to spend moving each of this aspects of life forward.

3.      Intentionally give each aspect the required attention each time its circle comes round. And don’t rob Peter to pay Paul, as we proverbially say.

4.      Take time at the end of each week to reflect on how you did on each, to ascertain if you may need to make adjustments

5.      Ask for help from those around you if you need to be kept accountable, or just for help to follow through.

6.      Keep this routine weekly until it becomes a habit to go round every single important aspect of your life.

We cannot allow our health to suffer because we are running a business, otherwise in the end when the money is made, we may not be strong enough to enjoy the gains.  Neither can we spend so much time pursuing a career while our family hardly sees us, or else we may not have anyone to come home to upon retirement, when we eventually make the conquest.

While the business or the dream may be the most visible part of our lives, it can only run smoothly if we are able to find our anchor both in family and faith.  No one man is able to run on his own and make a success out  of it.  Our lives have always interfaced and overlapped with that of others, and there is a major need for us to keep all the 'spokes' that constitute the wheels our lives spinning  effectively for our own good.

So while I am almost overwhelmed by how much this one aspect requires, I am going to take time out to give other aspects their due because I know that every single aspect requires my attention as well!

No matter how many balls you are juggling right now, remember that the right thing to do will be to give equal attention to all that your life is.  You will make it NeverTheLess… I promise, you will.


Sistar B

Monday, January 7, 2013



 It’s the 7th of January already and time waits for no one.  Someone asked me what to do when the first significant thing that happened in the New Year is for the bottom to fall off your plans.  What do you do when your Partner in the dream or business has asked to be released from his commitment? What do you do when the funding you expected to be able to take off, is withdrawn within the first few days of the working year?  What can you do, when your  plan is sent on a tailspin because some major component fell through?

Well!  Yes, what should one do?  Maybe I will not be able to give you detailed answers for your peculiar situation, but I can surely begin by letting you know that what you should do is ADAPT!  The truth is, there is no perfect plan… so if something goes wrong this early, as unsettling as it can be, it is better it has happened this early, you can make adjustments.

What failure wants you to do is throw up your hands and say you cannot go on, because you hit a brick wall.  However, if you go that route, your dream life will be cut short even before you see the gains within 2013.  So consider the following to remain on track…

1.    Adapt as quickly as you can.  Don’t take too much time mourning over what has happened, instead take time to reflect on why it happened, how come you were blindsided and make a decision.  In the past, when I hit this kind of wall, I spend too much time processing and making no decision. The longer it took, the more lethargic I became towards the goal.  But recently, I hit one of those walls, and even though it seemed like what I had built was going a-crumbling right before my eyes, I knew I didn’t have the liberty of time.  I knew I had to move forward and to move forward meant I had to make a decision.  The moment I was able to make that one decision, I began to see a lot more clearly and adapting became easier.

2.      Assess Your Resources and quickly see how you can work with what you have until you are either able to find additional funding, or replace the marker that fell out.  What I realise is that we wait until whatever we are doing begins to go south before we do any assessment; especially when things are going really well.   The first lesson I have learnt in 2013 is that even when stuff is going as planned, it is important to reflect on a regular basis so you can appraise and assess your operations.  So take a look at what you have on the ground and make the necessary adjustments until the storm passes.

3.     Keep Your Attitude Positive.  Surprises such as the one we are talking about here can honestly dampen the excitement with which one has entered the year.  However, that again is a trick to keep us down.  We must keep our attitude positive.  Yes the cup is no longer full, but rather than seeing it as half empty let your mindset be that it is half full.  This snag may delay your result for a while but a positive attitude says, I know it will still work out no matter what.

4.     Go back to what you did the first time and it worked… there is always some pattern that you can go back to in picking the pieces and keeping the dream alive… find that pattern and stick to it until you begin to get your desired result again.

5.      Remember That It is Your Dream.  Because the dream is yours and yours alone, the tendency is that others will not be able to keep pulling with you for whatever reason, but you have to keep going.  So even when it seems like you are alone, remember it is your dream and stick with it!

Finally, remember that adversity is the true test of greatness.  So if you give up now then your strength is small… so don’t give up!  What you are about is important and will bless you and others, giving up therefore, is not an option!  

Remember that there is a big God who is more interested in your success than even you are!  He will ensure that you make it NeverTheLess, I know He will.  So even though things seem very uncertain this early, know that behind every cloud the sun does wait to burst through.  You will make it! NeverTheLess.


Sistar  B