Sunday, September 6, 2015
Long time, no write. Once you read this you will know whyJ
I’ll just cut to the chase and walk through my Balance Board i.e. 9 Life Areas and give you the 411.
I continue to prosper in this area. 2015 was a big investment year as I opened an office in Chandler and have an assistant, Amanda Fletcher. For any entrepreneur, you understand that growth is positive, but it is expensive. These investments have hit my bottom line, but at a minimum adding Amanda, was the right choice to more effectively and caringly serve my clients. It allows me more time with them face-to-face or working on their projects.
On a personally note, I have been house hunting. Who knows if I’ll meet my internal deadline of end of 2015 to move, but we will see. I am still residing in my house that I’ve lived in for twelve years, of which ten included being married. Upon divorce, I promised the boys that we’d stay a minimum of two years for them to acclimate to the changes. I have worked hard to be able to stay here financially for them. For anyone that has gone through a loss, it is very difficult to stay in the same surroundings. I have painted and done some minor aesthetic changes, but there are too many memories here. I need a change. Although I’d like to move to Phoenix and be closer to majority of my clients, the boys come first. Jaxon is portable. He makes friends easy and would have no issues. Marcus is more rigid and needs stability. Therefore, I continue to look in Chandler and Gilbert. My hope is that the new place would have a great working office for Amanda and I as well. Time will tell.
Another success is that my will and trust has been finalized for Carli only purposes. A good feeling for me knowing that the boys will be taken care of.
My reputation is growing. Change brings opportunity and my clients have “opportunities” all over the place. All of my work is received via referrals, so I am meeting that goal. Also, I am a monthly speaker at the TAG, Trusted Advisory Group, meetings. Lastly, I will be a break-out trainer at the AZ Women’s Leadership Forum on 10/15 focusing on Team Leadership. Good stuff there!
Relationships (No MarriageL)
I’m currently seeing someone. They are a workaholic, single dad of twin girls so “seeing” may not be the right word. If you replace dad and twin girls with mom and two boys for the last sentence, you’d be talking about me. I’m guilty but he is definitely guiltier. So we are working on it. If things spice up, I’ll keep you informed.
My health has been going a lot better until about a week ago. It’s football season (which I hate)! We were in the heat last week at the boys’ games for about 5-6 hours. I got heat exhaustion like usual from the fibromyalgia. This put me into a flare up for about a week now. I’m using the Labor Day weekend for a bit of extra rest to be ready for next week.
Outside of the football drama, my health really is in a good place. I am exercising a lot. I do pilates 2-3 times a week, yoga 1-2 times a week, boxing once a week and then the gym as needed. Additionally, I’m still eating 95% clean or for my blood type A+. I have eliminated all medications except for two, one for fibro and one for thyroid. The rest are all natural supplements. My sleep is pretty stable due to the exercise.
On the horizon is the fall…i.e. tennis and hiking. I can’t wait!
The boys are my Beautiful Disasters! Both are struggling with the divorce still. Mr. Roger our counselor is a Christian grandpa that works magic on them. Both are football players. Marcus is now 5’ 10” and 160 pounds plus and Jaxon is 4’ 10” 90 pounds plus. For 13 and 8 those are big boys. They are doing well in school academically. Socially Jaxon talks too much and Marcus is glued to his phone. Overall, they are so loved, I tell myself whatever. I call Jaxon my boyfriend, because he loves me back. I call Marcus my husband as it depends on the day.
Round of applause or smack me upside the head… I have officially completed all of my PhD classes and am in the dissertation phase of the program. Less than a year to go!
Research and Topic for the Book: Impact of Gender on the Mentoring of Female Professional’s Leadership Development
My highlight is that the CEO of YWCA in Phoenix has offered to help me get my participants for the study! She is going to mentor me to get this puppy done. I am so grateful! Also, if you have an organization with lots of professional women, email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll be doing the study this fall or so.
On the personal side, I still work with Robin as my life guru each month plus in yoga practice. She helps me maintain balance and insight into me.
My career goal is to continue with 4SoC, so far, so good. I look at my career in jumps. I have been working on an app to share with everyone with information on 4SoC as well as leadership tips etc. I have a YouTube channel which I will start doing videos. The biggest issue here is simply TIME! I am committed to all though for the long haul.
My spirituality is what keeps me grounded, centered, and positive. It is knowing that God has a plan for me makes everything so much easier. I used to be a 24x7 control freak. It was nuts. I let the small things that I couldn’t control get to me. I was a stress addict.
Now, when something happens, I put it into perspective. First, I remember God’s plan. For instance, if a client cancels, I tell myself that God must want me to have more time for school or to catch up on emails. If I get stuff in traffic, I tell myself that I must need to be on this path versus an earlier one. Next, I practice kindness. When someone frustrates me, I remind myself to do this. I try to remember that each person has a hard journey and theirs isn’t to hurt me. Try it all out!
My A4G is about people. I love my family, friends, clients, colleagues and community. I am smiling just thinking about them all. Just wish I had more time to share with each person in my heart.
Also, please pray with me for my dear friend, Tony Fiori. He is battling cancer. I wish for a positive, painless time for him filled with love. I hope he finds God and the spirituality he needs to feel safe. I treasure the impact he has made on so many. I love that he yells with more love than everyone I’ve ever met.
In celebration of Labor Day, a quote to remind us why the day is a national holiday.
“There is no substitute for hard work.” Thomas Edison
In saying that, try to time a bit of time on Labor Day to relax and reflect with those that are close to you.
Until we meet again, Carli Ann McClure (The Change Enthusiast)
Monday, February 23, 2015
Welcome to the last week in February 2015. I have a new commitment that I am going to put into place for you; post weekly from a personal perspective. As part of that, I am going to start short videos for you from a business perspective, on a monthly basis.
This beginning of this year has been interesting. I’m in the mode of exploration. How can I create my world to be one of a sanctuary? A sanctuary is spiritual. It is safe. It is thought of as a haven. These are the things that I currently seek.
Here are some ways that I have put that in motion. I will hit the 9 Life Areas, but in an unconventional approach
Time Blocking (Reputation)
I have starting time blocking for my clients. Basically, I set aside my time in blocks, Monday through Friday AM and PM. A client is assigned a time slot or multiple slots pending its size. That is the time that they get with me. For example, my CPA firm I coach gets Wednesday mornings. My investment firm gets Wednesday afternoons. It has been working great and I highly recommend trying it. One word of caution is to give yourself breaks in between clients, commute time, as well as leave one or two blocks open for new projects. Also start your time blocks an hour or so into your day; end it early as well. This allows for short conference calls, errands or email time. This helps keep my stress lower as I know I am keeping my weekly commitments to my clients. Most importantly, it helps me set and keep expectations with clients.
Kids Matter Most (Children)
I have created a world where I simply put my boys first. They know they matter most end of story. My clients understand my deep commitment to them. This has eliminated guilt of being a working mom that I have had for years. I don’t have to yell now, as there is rarely a reason to. We don’t run late like before as my schedule plans for their activities. I also have stopped sweating the small stuff i.e. messy rooms and laundry piles. Seriously…who cares?
Weekend Warrior Yoga Retreat (Spirituality)
I attended my first yoga retreat. I signed up alone and attended the same. I knew one of the instructors but was basically on my own. The retreat was Friday to Sunday in Sedona at a famous yoga retreat center. It was an intentional community with no alcohol, smoking, drugs etc. For those that know me, the last two don’t matter, but a relaxing weekend without wine??? Additionally only fish and vegetarian meals served. That works for me as well. Most importantly I had a ton of time to hike the property, as well as attend workshops and yoga sessions. I see how closely my body is tied to nature and how often I forget that. Walking is healing. It was quiet, humbling and freeing. I was able to reassess my life and purpose for it. I am not committed to this type of program twice a year. On the down low, I did have two glasses of red wine with dinner on Sunday upon my return. I detoxed but am only humanJ
e-Harmony Hurdles (Relationships)
I joined e-Harmony at the beginning of 2015 at the direction of one of my past executives. He claimed that is the best place for me to meet a man that I would connect with. So although I completely disagree with this unnatural, inorganic approach to love, I took the dive. Now comes the crazy…
I have various messages from men that could potentially be dating material, but the only man that actually wanted to talk to me (still true to this day) is the following:
- Part African, part Carribean
- Born in Amsterdam, Raised in Holland (a Dutch-man)
- Ex-Professional Soccer Player for the LA whoever
- Underwear Model for Adidas
- Masters from UCLA for Addiction; super smart and savvy
- Works in Malibu with Stars and Athletes on Addiction
- Volunteers as a soccer coach for kids in the community
I am 100% totally serious! What happened to a geeky dentist, attorney or something? I am NOT an LA Barbie Doll. I am a mom, a divorced one at that. Needless to say, I still owe my executive advisor a pic of this guy in his underwear!!!
Men-o-Pause…What the Hell? (Health)
Good news. I turned 38 in December and started in pre-menopause in January. My health i.e. hormones were a mess! From blacking out, dizziness, night sweats to much more, I began the journey to tampon-less freedom and the realization that the 25-35 year olds on e-harmony aren’t gonna want an old lady like this. They will do one thing, Men-o-Pause. Luckily, my childbearing years were over for me prior to this disaster beginning. I’m so sick of being an overachiever…even my body knows I like to do everything first and better. Ridiculous.
Grasping the Nut (Wealth)
I have a few things in motion here. I have added an office and assistant towards the end of last year. We are working on a monthly maximum budget for the business. Additionally, lots of insurance programs in place for the business now; growth requires cash spend to increase. I have a will and trust in process to maximize our family security i.e. Carli dies, cash goes to safety for boys later in life. I am also evaluating whether I should stay in my home or downsize. It’s kind of silly being here. There is lots of wasted space, but the boys love it. So for now it’s a thought. I’d love a small fixer upper in historic Chandler or downtown Phoenix.
A Word to the Wise (Wisdom)
Can you say HATE??? Well my HATE is PHD! I think that the rigor of this program may actually break me. In class 14 of 20, my last statistics course to endure.
New Client (Career)
I am blessed to have added a new client in the first quarter. He’s crazy and fun like the others. He and his team is the perfect fit for 4SoC. Awesome!
Attitude4Gratitude (Grateful Heart Center)
1. My faith
2. My children
3. My family
4. My health
5. My career
6. My perspective on life
The inspiration from my retreat…Namaste. Carli Ann McClure
Sunday, January 4, 2015
CARLI ANN MCCLURE
2015 BALANCE BOARD
“Create my experiences in each life area to be a place of refuge.”
Wealth & Prosperity
Legacy & Reputation
Love & Marriage
40% increase in prior year revenue
Begin building long-term financial security
Flat fee pricing for clients
Separate bank accounts
Branding as Executive Change Consultant & Coach
New clients from referrals
Personal presence in better alignment with my authentic self
Be open to universe for potential life partner
Stay true to my heart and values
Health & Community
Grateful Heart Center (The Balance)
Creativity & Children
Clean eating 80%+
Exercise 3 times a week
Meditation 5 times a week
Therapy, massages & acupuncture monthly
Maximize rest on no activity nights and weekends
Health prioritized as mandatory appointments
Declutter home and office spaces
Family & Friends
Prayer & meditation station in home
Energy in academics, athletics & activities
Quality time with peers, family and me
Therapy & Church
Keep kid weekends focused on them
Wisdom & Self-Knowledge
Life Mission & Career
Spirituality & Travel
PhD, 13 to 17 & start dissertation
Connect learning to life and clients
PhD coursework more organized
Stay 4SoC path
Daily 15 minutes white space to increase meaning provided to others
Maximize contributions of assistant & consultants
God as center of my home
Summer with family to CA
1 International trip
1 New Place trip
1 Personal Reflection trip
Stay connected with church
Bring spiritual elements to my home
Book 4 weeks of vacation
Monday, September 1, 2014
Welcome September. It is amazing that the summer has since been gone with fall is on its way. How that can be in 110 degrees of heat with tons of humidity, I’m not sure. Today, is a go stopping point for me to reflect on the past few weeks that again has been a huge transition.
In true form, I like to focus on the 9 Life Areas. Today, I will stick with just one, marriage.
Marriage. Encompassing the marriage bucket is relationships. I’m venturing into this area. It’s much different this time around. Not only do I date a man and he dates me, we also have to plan on dating each other’s children. Although I have known my GC (“gentleman caller”) for quite some time, this kiddo thing puts deep complexity into a once simplistic phenomenon of dating.
My older son has only met GC once for a brief moment, but is aware that I am in a relationship. My younger son has spent quite a bit of time getting to know him. Upon initial meetings, I asked both how they felt about GC being a part of our lives, on a scale of 1 to 10. The older one said, “a 3”. Knowing his personality, anything greater than a negative is pretty good. The younger one said, “a 100”! I gotta love his genuine optimism.
To make matters even more tangled, when GC told his two children about the possibility of me, one was fine and the other started crying. Then as siblings often do, the other cried tears of empathy as well.
If this was anyone else’s life, I may only laugh or cry. Since it’s mine, I do both.
Navigating this with the changes that each of our children are dealing with their other parents, only makes me and GC want to protect them even more. It’s as though we are the calm, the steady, the dependable ones that the kids need. Making any additional transitions for the kids need to be very intentional and in a way that everyone feels included and aware of the process. Basically, this will be a testament of our dedication and time to this process. Luckily, GC is a thought-provoked conservative that is able to think very long-term and pull me back to the balance that I need. I in turn research every best practice for blended families. I seek out counselors and therapeutic strategies for success. We really are a good team.
The next piece of the puzzle is ensuring that my grief process is complete regarding my 1st marriage; the 5 stages being: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance. By the way, anyone who believes that this process is linear and not iterative is a fool. Each step of divorce is a roller coaster of the stages. I have come to a realization of all of the items that I can forgiven myself and my was-band for, which also leads me to understand those that still exist. There are actually two things left. #1 – I still haven’t forgiven myself for not ending the marriage sooner. I believe in fairy tales. I am a romantic (yes, a romantic-hearted CPAJ). I had hope for the future. This forgiveness is difficult. #2 – I still haven’t forgiven my was-band for how he treats me through this process. I have invested more of everything in him than anyone ever in his life to date, and likely in his lifetime. That’s hard to understand why someone can’t move on with their life of happiness but be grateful for all that took them to that place. I know I am. I have learned and grown. I am grateful for that. I always thought of divorce for me as a change for the future that each of us both needs and wants, but that family is forever. That again makes this one difficult. The good news is that my prayers and faith will get me to forgiveness, I just have to stay the path.
So now that I know where I am with all of that, back to the GC. How do you know when it can work round 2? When’s a good time to even try? How does anyone sign on a dotted line once you actually realize the level of commitment that marriage truly encompasses? My understanding at 22 is vastly different than it is at 37. The more I know, the scarier it becomes. This forces me to take the concept back to its basics.
What is love? A strong affection for another arising out of kinship; Attraction based on sexual desire; Affection and tenderness felt by lovers
A saying that I have in my bedroom wall describes love as… where your thoughts go often throughout your every day.
I suppose that I should also share my personal checklist of requirements for any guy that even stands a chance with me. (Please note this is a Christian approach to marriage, but I will include my interpretations in red.)
1. Spiritual Leader the man of the home is a Christ believer and leads a Christian life that is an example for me and our children.
2. Financial Leader the man of the home works hard in a profession that is respected and he has passion for. It enables him to provide to us and give to others.
3. Emotional Leader the man has as a shoulder for me to cry on, arms to embrace me with and a smile to lighten my world everyday.
4. Physical Leader the man considers my body and his as sacred and treats them both as such.
If you think this is a wanted ad or a fictional character, it isn’t. Every women should have this as a minimum standard. It is also a good point of reflection…how many does your current GC have? Is it enough? Share the list and work on them together. Remember that I am the eternal optimist. I believe in LOVE, even at this stage of the game.
“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” – Lao Tzu
So I will focus on the fact that if I continue to have the strength to prevail through the process, I must be receiving love. At the same time, if I feel the courage to venture forward towards this new relationship, I must actually be in love.
Warm Wishes, Carli