Learning to Lead

I am a leader in life, no question, but leading in business and leading a team is a journey more complex than I had ever imagined. I truly find all the elements fascinating. Learning to lead individual team members who all learn and achieve their greatness in different ways is something I never really thought about before. I have only ever had to be accountable for myself, and having a strong work ethic, moral compass, and being a high achiever, it was easy for me to succeed on my own. Changing roles has made me look deeper into why I valued leaders I once had. What did they do that made me feel inspired? 

I am a Mother who is not only comfortable pushing the boundaries with my kids but one who is not afraid of the challenges that come along with them. You learn to do what you need to do to get your kids through the tough times and enjoy the calm before the next storm. I am an advocate to the core for the humans I am raising and that will always be front and centre in my life. I feel no different now with my team. I will be their advocate and go to bat for them when they need me to, and I will challenge them to push their boundaries to succeed. 

I jumped blindly into the Financial world and although I wasn’t sure where my creative brain would fit in, I accepted the challenge to see where I could take it. Four years in as a Financial Advisor, I worked hard to built my reputation in a business that knew nothing about me. I came from an industry where my reputation was known to be solid for the better part of my 20’s and 30’s and left to better balance my family. 

I was chosen to lead the team I had been part of and excelled within for a year. When you go from team-mate to team-lead sometimes the transition can be awkward depending on the player within your team. Fortunately mine recognized the passion I had for our department and my want for all of us to succeed together. 

My performance leader took on a role that was her passion shortly after I made the commitment, a commitment that was partially based on having her as my mentor, so needless to say I was forced to adapt and embrace the change quickly. 

My perception of what was going to transpire over the next year, was turned upside down. It had to either get on or jump off, the train was leaving and plan B had become a distant option. I felt the surge of energy inside me rise to the challenge. I hit the road running, learning and adapting to the change as we ran full speed ahead. I took more notes than I ever had and did my own due diligence at every opportunity so I was prepared at any given moment.  At times I felt like I was in survival mode. Most important, I learned to listen. I listened more than I have ever listened before. What was given information I would not have been privy to had my leader stayed, as a replacement was nowhere in sight. I learned the back end of how my department ran and being a seeker of knowledge that was the gift.   

I take my role very seriously, at times I think too seriously but I want to leave a legacy and change the lives of my team in a positive inspiring way. I want them to think of me as helping facilitate their next step. The importance of helping them achieve their own personal goals has turned into one of my personal goal. I want to see them spread their wings and fly, to the moon if that’s what they are aiming for. 

I think of my team as I would my kids. They are here now, but what a great accomplishment to see them succeed on their own one day. My kids have challenged me throughout the years, my son in-particular, but not once did I ever think of voting him out of the family (okay, maybe once) or putting him up for adoption. In all honestly what parent in their right mind would adopt a man-boy who didn’t see the importance of a clean bathroom and/or bedroom and continually drank out of the jug. (I would vote him most improved family member if we were to cast our ballots today) My point is, you give your kids chance after chance to learn and grow and hone their life skills and show compassion and patience with them along the way, your team should also be given the same respect. 

I didn’t think being a Mom would directly help me in my career, but it truly has. My leadership role has also helped me become a better Mom. 

“Great leaders are like parents, they create the environment, so that people that are in their charge become better.” 

“How do I help my people be their natural best!” ~ Simon Sinek That simply says it all! 

When I co-created Tara Cronic with two Women of Wisdom our goal was to inspire women to lead their most authentic lives. We soon realized that we had a great deal of male followers so adapted and practiced inclusion. All three of us are leaders in our own right. We are all successful women in our own lines of business. Each of us would consider ourselves great parents, and all have a strong voice which we intended to share in order to connect authenticlaly. Authenticity to me is the key to a great connection, whether it be in your personal life or in your business circle. What we shared on Tara Cronica was who we were while we were “Exploring the Never Ending Desires that Fuel All Life While Find Lyrical Beauty in Everyday Happenings” which became our mission statement.  

Tara Cronica helped me learn the importance of using my voice to instigate change, inspire others to live authentic lives, and lead with courage. Steve Jobs commencement speech to Stanford University had a part in it that I think of often. He said do what you love and one day you will look back and connect the dots. The dots may not make sense at the time, but they will eventually. I am connecting my dots. 

The training and support that has come with my leadership role is invaluable! I leave each course wanting more. The women and men who have supported me along the way are all mentors to me. I truly believe they honesty care. I can’t tell you how many times I have googled leadership to find more information about the path I am traveling. I had no idea leadership could be so enlightening! As I learn to lead I find out more about myself that challenges who I am. I am continuously being pushed out of my comfort zone and it’s exhilarating to say the least. 

Learning to lead has sparked an ember that I fan each day. The sky is the limit in my world.

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Fear is the Thief of Dreams…Gandhi ~


I was talking to a man-friend of mine about living life with no fear. We both agreed there is no other way to live. He believes “fear usually lives in things unfinished or never done.” I think timing can also play a key role in dreams or goals unfinished or never done. We need to stay tapped into our passion no matter how little time we have for it, keeping our dreams alive!

“Don’t dream your life, but live your dream” ~ Mark Twain

Do you ever wonder why you do certain things? Why do you connect so easily with some but not others? Why did you take Spanish out of the blue? Do you ever wonder how something you’re doing now is going to relate to your future? It’s all about connecting the dots. I often wonder what is the purpose of me writing? Its not for the huge paycheck. Here’s why ~

“Writing is the only thing that, when I do it, I don’t feel I should be doing something else” ~ Gloria Steinem.

It’s about passion. I am passionate about love and life and write in hopes of keeping my passion for it alive. It’s all about sharing my passion and hopefully inspiring those around me while doing so. When you do what you’re passionate about you find what you are seeking in life, changing the energy around you. You can’t inspire others if you are full of regret because of things unfinished or never done. Even if your passion is a hobby, do it for the simple pleasure of doing it.

My life with no fear is pretty simple ~ live each moment open and honest sharing what life has to offer with those around me. I get inspiration from nature, in particular water. I can sit for hours in awe of its vast magnificence. It both calms and excites me. It has such power and peacefulness. Turbulent on top yet tranquil underneath where there is an entirely different world waiting to be explored if we just dip below its surface without fear. Dip below the surface of life and see what it has to offer. We often fear the unknown, yet our world is surround by it. “Fear is the thief of dreams” ~ Gandhi.

Music also inspires and stimulates my creative thoughts. Music opens me. It sends me back to where I’ve been and takes me to where I dream of being. It stirs my soul, balances my being and tunes my emotion.

Unique human beings also inspire me. I admire those who live outside of their comfort zone, very few have the courage to do so. I have only written about a few but there are many. I crave those who make me think and feel emotions that frighten me. I have the desire to write when emotions are stirred deep inside. Then is when I feel truly alive.

So if I were to be living my dream with no fear I would be gazing into a body of water with music in the air writing passionately about life and love, in the company of a man who stirs all of my emotions. Living your dream doesn’t have to be complicated. It’s about making memories and each moment count. It’s not about what you have, it’s about what you do with your passion.

When I saw the movie Romancing the Stone with Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner I wanted to be her. A romance novelist on an adventure, in the end she finds her own love and sails away living her dream. I want my life to be filled with adventure, love and passion worthy of inspiring me to write. I want to write about real romance, not harlequin romance, real romantic adventure.

That’s MY Dream!

Life is what you make it. If you do what you love I think everything else just happens. Follow your passion.  Make your dreams a reality…jump!

I must be in tune with the Universe because this was the Postcard from Gusto this glorious morning…

Click to enlarge postcard….

 

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Svaha Spirit Series: Teachers ~

We’ve all had teachers in school that made an impression on us. My English teacher Mrs Morton inspired our class because she was so passionate about the English language. I loved creative writing because it allowed personal expression in a class filled with rules. She would probably be horrified at my grammar in some cases but hey blogging is a loose form of writing…in general. I am still learning!

My Math teacher Mr Paulson was compassionate. The only reason I passed his Algebra class was because I tried so hard and he recognized my efforts! I came in everyday after school for help but still didn’t understand it. Sometimes you really do get graded on your effort kids!

Teachers have the opportunity to make a difference in our kids lives. My son and his friend were talking fondly of their teachers on our way home from school which made me smile because I knew exactly how they felt. Teachers make a difference! Taylor Mali is one of those teachers.

I’ve posted this video of Steve Jobs before but since Graduation is just around the corner I thought it was fitting. Enjoy, it’s worth the time I promise you…Pinky swear! 🙂 Stay Hungry…Stay Foolish!


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Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish!

You may have already seen this speech but it’s worth seeing a second time.  This is one of those inspiring video’s that leaves you feeling lifted!  I think it’s fitting being that Graduation is in the air!  I will attend my son’s Grade 5 farewell today, knowing that in a blink of an eye, it will be my Son setting out in the world to chase down his dreams!  All I can hope for is that he Dream Big ! Dreams are meant to be touched.

Graduation to me was a new beginning, an adventure.  Your life was about to begin.  You had been training for this moment for 12 years and the day has finally come.  Freedom!  Responsibility!  A chance to prove that you have what it takes to make a difference in the World.

Congratulations to all of you who have completed a goal in life that will stay with you forever, Education!

‘Education is Knowledge and Knowledge is Power!’

Tracy

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