The Simplest Way to Build a Discipline Map

Zinga Hart Success Quote (2)

Let’s say you’re starting from scratch.

Sure you’ve gotten things done in the past, but your reliability is 50/50 on your good days. You know you need to get more done to get somewhere, but life — ever-distracting life — draws you away from your personal bigger picture. It happens to the best of us, as we make room for new family responsibilities, changes in professions, a call to civic duty, or the gamut of things we have to deal with as we paint our life vision into reality.

What keeps you going? 

For me, my biggest skill to develop has been the habit of discipline, which I see as doing something even though the thought of doing it brings one discomfort. Putting off that 50-page thesis or skipping a morning run all stem from the ideas that come into our heads when we think about doing them…

ugh so many pages to write…

but I’ll get all sweaty…

Whatever the situation or thoughts may be…it is the sensation of discomfort the forces us to choose whether to stay with the discomfort and do what is important anyway or find a way to escape the sensation by another binge session of Shameless on Netflix.

Discipline is the act of going forward anyway.

How does one use discipline?

While we can be sporadic about the ways we are disciplined (you should see me buy the whole town on Sims…), if you are interested in creating your authentic vision of success you exercise discipline in meaningful ways otherwise, you run the risk of life molding your discipline muscles for you. Creating a routine for yourself allows you to apply your discipline to your personal mission.

 So here goes, here’s the simple way to create that routine:

  1. Figure out what you want to do with your life (i.e. write your vision)
  2. Write out what you want to achieve in the next 10, 5,  and 3 years
  3. Develop goals to get done within 1 year
  4. Figure out what you need within 1 month
  5. Write down what you need by the end of the week
  6. Jot 3 things to get done by the end of your day
  7. Check 1-2 (once a year), 3 (once a month), 4-5 (once a week) and update 6 every day.

And we’re done. Sure there are tons of tools you can use, and please remember, you have to actually do the things on these lists for them to be real, but if all you had were a pencil and paper, this list is all you would need.

Build your routines around finding time to achieve what is on these lists and let life fill in the blanks.

Here’s a great article from ZenHabits on mastering discipline.

PS Posting are switching from Tuesday Mornings to Thursday mornings.

professional picture zinga hart return on investment akron cleveland

Return on Investment: Get a Professional Picture

Most of my “One More Moves” are free. Honestly, most of our beginning desires for success in life can be achieved for free. Mapping a business plan, building a network, sharing your ideas, staying productive and motivated….there are free ways to do all of these things, the investment comes when you are ready to grow.

Like all good things that come to grow, you need to invest:

  • energy,
  • time,
  • and/or money

into getting to the next phase of your mission. While you could live in the very romantic world of hopes, dreams, and ideas, you will miss out on the fulfilling experience of creating your desires into a reality.

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So what’s one small investment you can make?

Adding a professional picture to your digital profiles.

I tell you! It’s an investment I made near the end of 2016 and the changes have been real and meaningful. Here are some immediate returns on my investment in a professional photo:

  • Improved level of connections on LinkedIn: Within days of updating my profile pic, I was invited to connect by a US Senator.
  • Impress colleagues: For my new role, I did an interview, having my own professional photo instead of the standard issue one given by the university, allowed me to bring my warmth and character into my first stamp.
  • Increase confidence: When building my website and creating flyers, I feel great sharing my face and brand because I am not doing an “in-the-car selfie”. I show that I could invest in the experience needed to do the job.
  • Better lighting: Improved lighting allows for you to use your photos in a variety of situations, you can cut and paste can add it to book covers, marketing posts, and plenty of other places.

A typical professional business headshot will typically be an investment of $100-$250.

Unless….

How tomakea workshop (3)

You’re a Northeast Ohio (Akron Event) woman and a member of Empower NOW, the social enterprise group that empowers women to empower women through business development, creative connections, and resource sharing!  Get a professional headshot on March 25th for only $10 thanks to the generous donation of one of our members and the sponsorship of the Akron Microbusiness Center!

 

 

Have any tips on getting a professional headshot? Comment below!

Free Higher Ed Approved Tools for Your Authentic Success

If you’ve ever connected with me on LinkedIn, you know I am a proud higher education professional. I honestly believe improving the higher education industry will help unlock the purposeful potential of our nations. So far, it’s been a long journey of leadership, suppression, growth, challenge, contradictions and support. It is an industry that frustrates and excites my energies to no end, and I will not stop until I figure out how to tie higher education to the trillion-dollar ROI it can naturally and organically produce?

Wondering what is a higher educational professional? 

Essentially, we staff colleges and universities in the various roles and positions needed for the organization to effectively and efficiently run. We are the admissions counselors who talked you through the ins-and-outs of campus living or the advisor who helped you consider majors. Our role also extends to presidents, government consultants,  faculty, and residence services. A higher education professional is many-faced, multifaceted, and mold-as-you go role that truly attracts those who are flexible, service-oriented, and enjoy problem-solving as a whole.

zinga hart higher education winter is coming joke

Credit: WinterisComing.Com

For me, it is a career interwoven with my destiny.

What have I learned so far?

Ever since 2013, when I made it my personal mission to show the world the value of education,  I studied and obtained my M.Ed. in Higher Education, with a focus on adult development and success. From my journey, I have learned many things, but the first thing I would tackle in my mission is sharing the tools we use to help develop others. It amazed me, how Meyers-Briggs was only taught for the first time in college and Holland was discussed only in a career-development course in graduate school. These are tools that could be freely accessed by anyone, but only randomly encountered on a syllabus for some students to see.

Well, today, I see and share, so that you can take one more move towards building your authentic legacy of success. Check out three of my favorite tools to use that will help you unearth your inner brand and tap into your personalized success strategy.

Your Learning Style

There are certain ways that people process and use new information. If you want to make any form of learning easier on yourself, discover your learning style and implement any useful techniques immediately. The VARK test was first shared with me by my biology professor, who I later discovered would teach me a lot about learning. VARK stands for Visual, Auditory, Read-Write, and Kinesthetic. These are four basic domains or learning and familiarizing yourself with your special way will cut down on a lot of the time it takes to build new skills, like skills you will need to achieve your final vision of success.

Try the VARK Quiz

Your Work Preference 

The Holland Code was named after John Holland, a person who used military job duty classification to devise a test for work preferences and how they affect success in certain roles. From this research, he came up with six main types of preferences: Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Conventional, and Enterprising.  These six preferences will help you narrow down and understand why you prefer to crunch numbers over writing songs, or why helping people motivates you every day.

Discover your work preference with O*Net.

Your Personality

Myers-Briggs is more popular, but it is still not as widely-used as I’d prefer. This inventory is longer but allows you to understand and describe some of your personality traits and how they interact with others. One, great version of this test is through 16-personalities. What’s your type?

All three of the options are useful tools for discovering and articulating your uniqueness. Of course, everyone is a bit of everything so nothing will be a 100% accurate to you, but it gives you a great headstart.

 

 

A Case for Linking Online Presence to Your Success

For anyone asking Purposely Chosen Women is underway and going well! At the last session, we discussed our personal brand and how it to our goal keeps us focused, while it attracts the people who are meant to support us in our lives. Going through this session really impacted my own insight on how branding performs as a tool for our own personal success. First, a quick definition of branding to keep us on the same page.

Simply put, your brand is your promise to your customer. It tells them what they can expect from your products and services, and it differentiates your offering from that of your competitors. Your brand is derived from who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be. – Entrepreneur.com Small Business Encyclopedia 

I say you branding is what your circle thinks of you even when you’re not around.

The highly subjective amorphous blob that is your brand could easily spin out of control if you are not true to your core. Your core purpose that is, the one acts as a gravity pulling all the pieces and people you need to establish your destined imprint on the world. The practice of personal branding acts during your movement towards success.

What we are really here to talk about though is online branding. Your online brand can be a highly controlled and targeted simulacrum of your real-life brand. With some focus and effort, you can start building your promise all line for your ideal community to see. This allows you to gain leadership and trust online, which are key components of success.

How it Helps

It helps create internal awareness

When we reflect on our online brand and actively establish it, we concern ourselves with questions about who we are and how our thoughts are portrayed. We center our internal beings on our internal voice of purpose, which allows us to connect to our inner self on a regular basis.

Cultivates external awareness

If you never communicate, people will never you. While there are many forms of communication, online  branding allows us to create our own personal archive of our communications. Whether it is writing a blog or showing a video of our perfect piece of grilled zucchini, the internet affords audio, video, and written formats for communication. Find the ways that you are most happy with and stick to it!

Builds our expertise while gaining

Online branding is not only who you currently are, but also who you are becoming. This means your moving to a future state that may not exist. Will fill this path to the future with experience, learning, trials, errors, success. What we learn and the fruits of our labor are the pieces we share with the world. By building our brand we strengthen our capacity to know all about our core purpose. From building a business to baking cinnamon rolls, we can become an expert on the things people know makes us special.  More importantly, people can trust to expect that we know something about our  special something.

dream motivational quotes zinga

Where to Start

Start with the online brand presence audit. Answer some of the following questions below and consider how you can begin to build your foundation or improve upon your already built foundation.

  1. What’s my one-sentence message to the world?
  2. How often can I consistently communicate this message?
  3. Where and how do I want to communicate this message online?
  4. What’s my style?
  5. What impression do I make on others? (Ask 3 or more people)

How to Grow

When you are armed with this information, think about and create some goals for your online presence growth.

Stick to a select amount of online platforms, such as WordPress, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. Then follow these tips.

  • Never stop listening – As you grow, your circle will too. Listen to them for constructive input, new trends to try, or even for inspiration.
  • Stay consistent – Your brand is dynamic and growing, so it requires a certain amount of consistent activity to keep a pace of growth. Find a way to consistently build and do consistently.
  • Change accordingly – Review your brand for areas to change and improve. Whether it’s from some input of information or your frequency of presence. Change when it fits your core purpose.

How can I be consistent and change at the same time Zinga???

Well, that’s just the balance of life. As long as the change is a part of your core purpose and aligns to your true values, you will be staying consistent.

What am I missing? Certainly , there are a TON of tools, platforms, and mediums to grow your online brand. Get started today, and you can msg me for my personal online brand audit checklist.

Until next week.

 

Braisha Owens Stylist, Career Champ, and Motivator

Finding Your Brand Style, Networking, and More with BOStyle.me

I’m starting, Career Champs, a new Youtube segment. Once a month (for now), where we meet with people who are forging their own career paths by owning their own brand, business, product or service. One of the aspects attached to Think and Grow Rich by Napolean Hill is that he surveyed 100 men to help formulate his insights.  While his advice has been a useful starting point for discussing the nature of success, continuing the process of surveying a diverse pool will help everyone refine the own success.

 

In this episode, we meet with Braisha Owens, personal stylist and owner of BOStyle.me, she works as a stylist for individuals, professional shoots, and retail. Her recent risk in going out own her own and building her name in a new city, reaches all of us who yearn, to build outside of their hometown.

Braisha Owens Stylist, Career Champ, and Motivator

Find Braisha’s portfolio of work on bostyle.me

What risks have you taken in your career for a better future?


I had a blast interviewing Braisha! Her motivating energy will leave you uplifted. Career Champs premiers the last Friday of every month. Stay tuned to meet co-owners of Micha Specialty Foods! 

 

Share feedback on the new segment!

Keep Your Brand On-Point this year NYC

4 Smart Steps to Keep Your Brand On-Point this Year

If you are up to date on the latest trends in growing your reach online, whether it is for yourself, business, or passion then you know cultivating your leadership brand means creating content for the web. Content is valuable, purposeful, creations (whether an article, video, comic, podcast, etc.) that attract a particular audience and ultimately drives them to take action.

Yes, all those infographics, quote pics, even random Twitter rants you post are tied to the web of your brand. In a sense, this becomes the pre-impression before the first impression someone might get from meeting you more personally. In a sense it also forms an idea of who you are and a baseline for the value you bring to the table that people can start to believe. 

self authorship zinga hart - Quote is Our Self Image, strongly held, essentially determines what we become

Can you visualize your self-image clearly?

While your integrity is usually tested in real life, your reputation is partially set on the foundation of what you post online. While you don’t have to be a prolific author to write your story, you do need to respect how critical it is to maintain your authenticity, while growing your personal or business brand. Self-authorship is a theory attributed to Baxter Magolda, and is defined as “the internal capacity to define one’s own beliefs” as she wrote in Three Elements of Self-Authorship. This self-definition is at the foundation of developing your personal brand over the course of your success journey. Owning your beliefs takes time because you need to sort out the wealth of information you have absorbed and learned over a lifetime and distill it into your core sense of being. While, not quick task, with simple steps you can begin to dig in deeper, find your internal sage and use that to project and share your brilliant brand with the world in a way everyone can agree upon.

Here are four simple steps to author your self-definition so you can grow and polish it over time.

  1. Journal on what you think you have to do in order to fulfill your dream life: What are the essential things you need to live. Be specific: “Using the bathroom, eat, sleep” are some basics to include, but keep adding until you’ve exhausted your ideas, “own a business, have a family” could all be a part of this list.
  2. Walk away from the list for a day or so and then return. Look over the list and question how this master to-do list aligns to your values, your mission, and your vision. If it doesn’t click, make a note of how the “have to” came into your life. For instance, if you wrote, “own 20-bedroom mansion like Oprah” but your vision is to travel for the rest of your life, then consider Oprah’s role in influencing your personal beliefs.
  3. This working list is for you to return to and to refine over time. Choose the strongest beliefs of the work you have to do to live a full life. Notice what comes up over and over, notice what you are most proud of as you go about your days. Reduce your have to four or five sentences to keep your essentials close.
  4. Own it. Write it out, make it your screensaver, or create a ringtone. Figure out a way to keep your essential commands to yourself a constant in your life.

There are easy steps on the road to self-authorship Of course, there are many more steps on this journey, from vlogging to therapy, but what matters most is getting started. Thanks for walking with me!

 

For more here’s a Youtube video on the four phases of self-authorship

Want a partner to help you hone in on your self-definition?

Set up a free phone chat with me here!

Simple Moves for Personal Brand Consistency

Who’s focusing on their personal brand this year?

I definitely am!

Hanging out with women’s empowerment groups, a new network of fabulous friends and potential partnerships, as well as facing anything that feels like fear head on and with gusto!  The energy of my personal brand building focus contagious and like I discussed at my recent workshop, From Passion to Process, where your passion is your energy! It is a colorful word for describing the feeling that arises when we are doing something delightfully desirable.

passion is energy feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you oprah

 

One part of facing my fears was doing starting my YouTube channel! Cheers to all the vloggers out there, creating video content is an intensive activity!  Although, I create content and help small businesses’ build their brand strategy, putting myself right in the center of of building my personal brand still comes with an edge of awkwardness. Yet, I know confidence comes with time, and I look forward to learning and growing by following this new avenue in my life.

How are you growing your personal goals?

If building your brand means incorporating a new strategy, tactic, or method, how do you ensure that you stay authentic to your core values and vision, while treading across new lines?

Tying your vision to your brand means taking control and ownership of every bit of it. From your colors to your fonts, from your values to your guarantee, you need to ensure that you consistently apply your brand across your communication channels, so that you are easily recognized and familiar to your ideal audience.


So what are the major components of your brand that you need to think about? This awesome slide show by  Jarkko Sjöman covers some basic features of a personal brand with the sage advice of Will Ferrell. 

 

Below are some free or low cost moves you can take to improve and align your personal brand today!

Google Yourself (Or Your Business) 

I just did it! Wow, one year ago it my LinkedIn popped up and that’s about it. Now my content, websites, and many other streams of how I want to represent myself on the web comes to the top of the list. How is your Search Engine presence?  Is Google linking you to the content that you are most passionate about? If you are not showing up in the ranks you may want to consider if it’s time to focus on your online brand. Offline method: Do a personal SWOT analysis. 

Update your LinkedIn profile

LinkedIn is the place to be if you want to have a voice in the professional sphere of our economy. Since I enjoy working with small businesses, start-up entrepreneurs, and non-profit directors, I make it my mission to meet, connect, and learn with the best that LinkedIn can offer. Updating your LinkedIn profile to include your personal vision or mission statement and the specific values you bring to employers, gives your general audience an anchor to who you are.

Create a piece of content (write a blog post, share a video, make a flyer for you local bulletin board) 

Notice I didn’t say start a blog. You no longer have to have a blog to post articles. LinkedIn Pulse is a great platform for sharing content articles, while aligning to your personal and professional brand at the same time. Is this advice to not start a blog, far from it, but if you are not ready to dig into building your own blog yet then a small step forward would be to post there. That goes for other content as well, find ways to collaborate if running the entire content marketing enterprise is too much to manage right now. You should always strive towards having your own platform for hosting and controlling your content, but not having one is no excuse for not participating.

These small steps are only a beginning! If you checked out the SlideShare above you will see your business card, resume, website, and everything you create or is associated with you is a part of your personal brand. Checking on your brand’s bits and pieces means spending time combing through who you are and how you come across to your audience. Building your brand is about ensuring you are authentically projecting your core value, purpose, and passion with the world, which is no small feat!  Keep striving because your end vision is definitely worth it.