Beauty

My new favorite dress

12:32:00 PM

You know that one dress in your closet that gets all the wear time because it's comfy, and cute, and soft, and makes you feel like a million bucks when you wear it?  That one dress that you've worn to church a million times, and yet, you're gonna wear it again this Sunday because gosh darn it...you can?

Yea, I used to have a favorite dress like that.  It was a cute little black number with a zipper up the back - and it made me look and feel HAWT...I mean honestly, it was amazing.

Nothing could replace that dress.

Until two months ago, when I got a call from this clothing company called Cleo Madison.  They wanted me (really??? Little old me!) to wear one of their dresses and write an honest review about it.

So, here's the thing. I've done reviews like this before.  Oftentimes I've returned the item because it just wasn't simply something I was willing to write about.  I was honestly prepared for that this time.  I went on their website, looked at the items and the prices, and thought - sure, I'll give it a try, but I doubt very much I'll like it. I'm pretty picky. 

So, I picked out a dress, and they sent it to me. And when it arrived it was like unwrapping the softest piece of velvety goodness I've ever put my hands on.

Look at those colors!  And the material is light weight - not at all hot (even though it's long sleeved) and soooo soft!  And the length was perfect (so hard to find something just below the knee...) and it was just amazing.

But, I remained skeptical.  And my happy little heart fell a little when it suggested "Hand wash only" - who has time for that?

How many times have you bought a dress and it was that perfect combination of stretch and soft - and then you wash it a few times and it becomes the same texture as gas station toilet paper - and has little lint balls all over it for added texture?

So, I withheld my excitement until I washed it and wore it a few times.

And I did.  And it kept surprising me.

YOU GUYS.

First.  IT HAS POCKETS.  Yes, that was a super duper bonus I wasn't expecting at all.




I've washed this thing probably 10 times now.  I don't hand wash anything.  Let's get that clear right now - so I'm really putting this to the test.  I turned it inside out, washed on the delicate cycle and dried on permanent press. 

It's still as soft as the peaches from my grandmother's tree, still has the perfect elasticity, has ZERO little lint balls,  and still hits me right below the knee --- not a single bit of shrinkage!

I'm in love with this dress.  I wore it to church this morning for a baptism, and I'm STILL in it right now working at my desk.  It's THAT comfortable.
 
My daughters have already claimed it when I "pass it down" (like that's going to happen.) In all likelihood it will go missing to one of their closets and I'll find a ransom note pinned in it's place.  And I'm fine with that.  How many cute modest dresses have you found recently that your 16 year old daughter wants to steal from you?

RIGHT?

So in closing...Cleo Madison is a BIG YES in my book.  And yes, I got this dress for free from them, but seriously, we are ordering about 8 more.  This one is next. 

MLM

Follow ME!

10:47:00 AM

I've been spending some time on a new networking site as well as Twitter and a few others - and one thing that stands out to me - All the people who are claiming to help you get "more twitter followers!" "More social media followers" "increase your numbers!" But then, when I look at their profiles, sure, they have thousands of followers - but not a single one of their posts is actually engaged in conversation.

It makes me sad to think that in a world where we have such extensive technology available to us, we can reach the far corners of the world - cultivate friendships we may not have ever had otherwise - learn from the masters of their business and their craft with distance not being an issue --- the biggest focus is on the number of people that you can get to "like" your page, or "follow" you.

One thing I've always loved about sales, or business as a whole is the human connection. Meeting people where they are, and learning from them, lifting them, being inspired by them - that is what the human experience is about.

I was talking with a young girl the other day. She mentioned to me that the reason she doesn't like to come to different activities is because she didn't think it was fair to create friendships when she knows that in a few months she will be leaving to go to school far away, and those friendships won't be able to continue. How sad is it that this generation feels that real interpersonal relationships can only exist when the distance between them is within a few miles? I look back onto some of my most cherished friendships - and how because of social media and the ability to engage - not just like - they've remained strong and steadfast.

I remember social media being a blessing in my life, a way that I could remain connected with my mom, sisters, friends, cousins - a way that I could find new connections and nourish new friendships. I still see it this way - in fact this morning I had a conversation with a dear friend who lives in London - who I've never met before in person, but who I consider a very great part of my life. Without the power of social media, I would never have known her.

We need to once again teach our young people the true power of friendship, conversation, engagement, and influence. Social media can be such a great tool for magnifying friendships! Sadly, lately, it's been a tool for gaining hollow popularity and spreading misinformation. Connections are supposed to be meaningful. When you talk to someone you should be engaged, you should want to know what they have to say. You should be open minded and present in the moment. If you can't engage and talk with someone - then you might as well be standing in the middle of a crowded room talking to yourself.

business

I see you are in Network Marketing...

8:53:00 AM

A few days ago I joined a new networking group for businesses and entrepreneurs.  It is web based, and a great place to connect and mastermind with individuals all over the country - and in some cases, yes, possibly expand my business.

I enjoy networking online for a few reasons, one of which being the fact that I can do so in my pajamas, but the other is because the internet allows me to reach into far corners of the earth that I may not have otherwise had the opportunity.  I've met some wonderful people this way, shared experiences, marketing plans, and even gained some very valuable friendships along the way.

One thing I don't enjoy about networking online, is the inevitable group of people that you meet that are only networking to build their business, not for any other purpose.  Typically, their messages go something like this:


"Hello!  I see that you are very involved in doTERRA!  How long have you been with your present company?  I've been with XYZ WIDGETS for about X years (usually a number larger than 2), and we have excellent products, an amazing compensation plan, and we even have a line of essential oils as well as a whole catalog of other products!  If you want more information about how you too can become a consultant with XYZ WIDGETS write me back right away!"

My little internal voice always wants to respond with "Oh, and how's this strategy working out for you?  How many people have you enrolled that you have genuine relationships with?  Do you see your customers as more than simply a digit in your down-line, or are you invested in their success?  Can you put me in touch, right now, with someone in the company who has had great success with the business and would be willing to offer me training and mentoring should you not be available? Have you ever had success enrolling people with this strategy? Is your business purely sales focused, or are you genuinely interested in empowering people to make positive changes in their lives?"

Team family at doTERRA YOU 2017
Networking - the Webster definition - is"interact with other people to exchange information and develop contacts, especially to further one's career." Many people take the last "especially to further one's career" and run with that as the basic principle.  However, what many don't understand, and what most companies that run on a network marketing sales philosophy don't understand is this: you cannot be successful in furthering your business or success if it is just YOUR success you are concerned with.


Some of my "family"
One of the biggest differences in doTERRA, and probably the biggest most important factor for me when I decided to go ahead and create this business to empower my own family financially, was the fact that all those in this company - from the young Elite's just starting out all the way to the Triple Presidential Diamonds...want YOU to be successful.  The company teaches mentoring, trains on how to mentor others, encourages education among all it's advocates - not just the leaders.  The compensation structure is set up to nurture and mentor those in your down-line, on ALL levels, not just the front line.  It is made perfectly clear from the very moment you sign up either as a customer or as an advocate that YOU are important to everyone on the team, and you will be nurtured and taken care of.  As corny as it sounds, doTERRA is a family.

Oh and customers?  Those who just want to purchase the products and empower their families physically? Those that aren't interested in building a business?  They are given just as much love, attention, education, and support as those in the team that are creating an income.  Nourishing customers and creating friendships one drop at a timeBecause, that is what a family does.

So, maybe the next time someone approaches me with the same old line, I'll respond like this:

"Hello!  I'm so glad you contacted me.  I've been with doTERRA for 6 years, most of which I was a customer that simply fell in love with the products.  I've become part of a family here, where I have love, support, encouragement, and all the education I could ever need. While I'm very sure XYZ WIDGETS has provided an income for you, and you are happy with their products, I'm passionate about what I do - and who I work with. I've seen this company and these oils transform and change lives, and I have become a part of something that doesn't just provide me a paycheck, but provides me a sense of being.  I started building this business because I lived a transformation in my own family and self that I needed to share with others.  doTERRA isn't simply a company I'm a part of, it's become a part of who I am - and that's something I'm very  proud of.   I would love to talk to you about my own business goals and transformation - without any expectation of you joining my team.  I simply love to connect, lead, learn from, and be inspired by others.  Isn't that the reason we network in the first place?"

Maybe just for fun, I'd leave my website - just in case.