Do you really want to…

Be a ballerina like Natalie Portman in Black Swan? (Well, minus the crazy)

Be some other sort of performer?

IMG 49951 225x300 Do you really want to...

Be an entrepreneur? One of my favorite VC bloggers, Mark Suster recently wrote a great post, Should You Really Be a Startup Entrepreneur? that was featured in the virtual tech bible, Tech Crunch. It really painted an accurate picture of what being an entrepreneur is all about. It's ALOT of hard work. It isn't always gratifying–especially in the short term.  Passion is likely a prerequisite for most. You're going to have to develop a thick skin to fend off all those no's until you get a yes. It reminds me of other similar posts written about other fields. There's this one, So You Wanna Be a Writer? which given the subject, is naturally written in the form of a poem–by Charles Bukowski.

The road to being successful professionally has a few things common. Here's how I see it:

- It's something you MUST do. Get ready to ride the up and downs.

- Practice. Practice. Practice.  Learn your craft. Well. Develop mastery. 10,000 hours according to this man.

- Two words: Dedication & Perseverance. Be willing forgo immediate rewards for longer term satisfaction or success.

The key to success begins with doing what you love and then a whole lot o' work. It's not all that glamorous. I know it's true. I've done it. I've watched , this entrepreneur, and this one among many others do it. If you want a life that is more remarkable than just punching the ole' time clock for 40 years while waiting for retirement it's something you MUST do. You want something better than mediocre right? It's not about being an entrepreneur. You can be a musician like Christine Bougie who follows these "rules." You can be anyone, doing anything. No matter your passion, you must be who YOU are. Follow what you naturally love to do (whatever that is) and become masterful at it.

Now get to work.

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Does the Negative Really Work Better?

I woke the other morning to battle lines being erected on Twitter. It was this infographic that caused it all. In a nutshell–it’s supposed to help you figure out which type of female tech influencer you are. I’m not sure if thefemale tech influencers entrepreneurs 533x1024 Does the Negative Really Work Better? intent was to be humorous, sarcastic, entertaining or what. Whatever the intention there were people strongly on either side of it. Some hated it while some thought it was fun and tweeted which “type” they were. As for me, I thought it was a bit reductionist, not extremely telling, fun and certainly nothing to take seriously. There are way to many other things to think and talk about.

It did make me think though about attention and ways to get it. This controversial (or fun depending on your perspective) infographic made lots of waves garnering oodles of attention for the author. We all know the old adage about kids trying to get attention in any way they can be it positive–or negative. And often times negative attention gets more play according to anecdotal and research-based evidence. What do you think?

Is negative attention really better than none at all?

Have you ever been “guilty” of taking the negative approach yourself?


Themes, Not Resolutions

Resolutions became extinct for me a number of years ago. I got tired of laying out sky high goals in a NYE champagne induced fever. That never worked out. Shocked right? Instead I started doing a Theme for the year. This set my intention and focused me without setting unattainable resolutions that only served to make me feel worse about myself when I didn’t reach them.

Please understand. I’m not criticizing you if you make resolutions. I know they work for some people. It’s just that through my work as an Org/Biz Strategist and Executive Coach I’ve spent a lot of time helping people create intentions and set goals. I’ve watched lots (I mean crowds) of people fail at this. In order to reach your goals you need to follow the SMART rule: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-boxed. This is when resolutions are most effective. But what if you want to create a more encompassing transformation? This is where setting a Theme (or Word) for the year works far better.

How does setting a Theme work?

I think back about the previous year–what I’ve transformed and what I’m still longing for. I then come up with a few words that articulate the transformation I’m looking for in the coming year. Usually I start with a couple and then one emerges as the clear winner. Let me give you some examples to illustrate this a bit better. Here are a few of the words I chose for the past year.IMAG3255 179x300 Themes, Not Resolutions

2005: Money (self-explanatory)

2oo6: Grown-up (also pretty explanatory)

2007: Love (self and otherwise)

2008: Focus (how I used my energy, thoughts & time)

2009: Freedom

2010: Align

Photo Note: The sign in the photo was made by a dear friend who wanted to give me a reminder of my align theme last year. I highly recommend reminders of the visual and other sort.

Doing a Theme for the year has allowed me to create amazing experiences and growth. When I look back at each year I am amazing and all the transformation. It feels good.

Repeat after me. Themes, not Resolutions. Ready, Set…Transform!


Reverb 10: Photo

Prompt: Photo – a present to yourself. Sift through all the photos of you from the past year. Choose one that best captures you; either who you are, or who you strive to be. Find the shot of you that is worth a thousand words. Share the image, who shot it, where, and what it best reveals about you.

Suzan Retro Reverb 10: Photo

This photo was taken during a girl’s night out. It was a beautiful, warm and lots of fun. The camera on my Evo takes great photos but has trouble in dark situations. So, I decided to play with the new retro app I downloaded from the Droid store. I prefer to be behind the camera and rarely love any photos of me. This is my favorite of 2010 because…

1. It was taken by my dear friend Kit.

2. I *love* retro style things: photos, clothes, pretty baubles…if it’s vintage I’m pretty much gonna like it.

3. This photo reminds me of a very fun night with some of my favorite women:

4. It captures in my essence. This is a very rare event. Kinda like seeing double rainbow. I usually make strange faces so my eyes look kinda freaky in photos. So the fact that my essence comes through is pretty special. It reminds me of my favorite saying. OK, I found it on a perfume ad but the message is solid & a good reminder…

All You Have To Be Is You