I always have an undercurrent of thoughts throughout the day about Brooklyn that go unspoken. This, largely due to the fact that everyone already knows how much I love Brooklyn. When I mention it, they just roll their eyes. Reminds me of when someone wears an “I love NY” shirt and people comment, “If you like it so much, go back!”

I think the reason I’m so consumed with Brooklyn is because my feet had so much to do with my decision to not go back. I was super worried about the life and the grind there taking its toll on my fucked up feet.

Enter acupuncture. Like a deaf person hearing for the first time or a person that is color blind getting the chance to see color, the world opens up for them. It’s full of wonder and amazement at every turn. Well, that’s how I feel now that my feet don’t hurt at all. Not at all. Now that that is my reality, I want to go back. I find myself dreaming big again. My dreams include buying a house in Brooklyn and at my core, I believe that’s possible. Not because my finances point in that direction but because my life usually includes BIG breakthroughs, bigger than I could ever imagine or design.

Something S. said to me recently was, “Lynda, just remember you haven’t written your final chapter yet.” I can’t stop thinking about that. What will my final chapter be? Where will my final chapter be?

I wish money didn’t put such a block on dreams. We think that if we can’t finance it, then it can’t happen.

With my new feet, all I want to do IS pound the pavement in Brooklyn again. Sigh.

Where will my final chapter be? I hope it’s back in Brooklyn, honestly.

Oh the power of suggestion. I’m thankful to S. for mentioning that my final chapter hasn’t been written. He taught me to dream big and I can’t stop.

 

“Desperate Times call for Desperate Measures” – actions that might seem extreme under normal circumstances are appropriate during adversity.

I don’t think anyone thinks of acupuncture first when trying to solve a medical problem in their life. I sure didn’t. In fact, it didn’t even cross my mind until I found myself desperate to insert something, anything new to relieve my pain.

It’s no secret that my feet have been a mystery for years and the pain is so bad that I am present to each and every step throughout the day. That’s a lot of focus on my feet instead of my life but it is what it is. Until now.

I went to acupuncture for the first time a few days ago (and going back today or should I say RUNNING back). It’s incredible that my feet do not hurt at all. Zip. Nada. Zilch. Even getting out of bed which usually takes me 45 minutes and talking nicely to my feet in order to have them comply, took no conversation with them at all for the past two days.

So what’s left now that I have full mobility back? What’s possible for my life now that I am not consumed with pain? Well, that’s what I’m free to discover now.

I’ve been in the recording studio working on the audiobook the past few days and I’m really happy with where it’s going. Good stuff. I should get into Voice Overs after this as I’ve been told I have an amazing voice over voice. That’s great. Then there’s the music eduction workshop next week in Memphis to improve my game in that arena. Again, good stuff. And to help fund these extras in my life, I have the mattress store job that I really like.

I’m back on my feet and don’t know exactly what I’ll do with my newfound freedom but I’ll start by rejoicing and celebrating the power of acupuncture. How it works will remain a mystery but bring on the needles.

Ouch!

Yesterday, my mind was blown yet again at how success is created at the mattress company. I mean finding the right sleep solution is inherently a human quest as everything rides (or should I say sleeps) on it. Those at the top of this company know that and aim to duplicate their success in their people. All of them. They aren’t joking around.

In walks the District Manager and I had to rub my eyes so-to-speak to check if, in fact, what I was seeing was really happening. The DM and store manager, almost without words or any type of set up just began role playing without breaking character. The DM was the customer and the SM was the sleep expert and off they went. The SM, by the way just made the top ten sales list out of all the stores nationwide. To say he’s good is an understatement but there they were. Role playing like their life depended on it. I watched in awe as they played their roles from “hello to close”and then switched roles  after giving feedback.

“I’m the one in training,” I thought. I should be the one fumbling through this, not them. But then it dawned on me – Iron sharpens Iron. This was a perfect example. They even had corrective feedback after each presented which blew my mind as it seemed “perfect” to me.

S. did this with me in Real Estate. From role-playing telephone conversations to handling objections to how to ask for the sale, roleplaying was (and apparently is) serious business amongst the successful.

If a knife is blunt, it still continues to be a knife, although it is less effective just as an uneducated and unskilled employee is still an employee, but is less effective.

There is mutual benefit in the rubbing of two iron blades together; the edges become sharper, making the knives more efficient in their task to cut and slice.

Exactly.

Finally, a knife that has been sharpened will also shine more because all the dullness has been rubbed off its surface.

Yes, SHINE! I want to shine like I did in real estate in Brooklyn through the sharpening of my skills by another brilliant (and yet humble enough to stay teachable) person.

My brother and I visited this week as he was visiting Seattle. He is beyond successful so when he talks, I listen. He said more than once that he just wants to be around people and hire on people that are smarter than him. I get that and apparently this company does too.

Success is duplicated and even scripted. I find myself at all ends of this “Iron sharpens iron” saying. As agents from Brooklyn still call me to train and sharpen them, S. still makes sure I’m sharp in order to pay it forward. I’m just on the other end at the moment learning from those who came before me.

Success begets success.

Iron sharpens Iron.

 

Talk about Grant Cardone and I’m all ears. Truly. The story of Apple? Again I’m all ears.

As I am immersed in the eight week training for selling mattresses, I can’t help but realize that this corporation actually is onto something. They want their name to be synonymous with  excellence, synonymous with the likes of Grant Cardone and Apple. Smart…no, brilliant.

Many companies will say that and maybe believe it, but they are training me like their life depends on it…and the results are astonishing.

Just like Apple has become the best in its industry, so too does this company want there to be no question as to where to go for the best sleep solution.

No doubt being a real estate agent in Brooklyn prepared me for this. I would never see this intense training as fascinating if I had not lived and breathed all things sales and commission. There is something incredibly exciting and frightening all at the same time about living on commissions. So, when Grant Cardone speaks, I listen. Same with anyone else who came before me.

In my last post, I mentioned the various things that I sold along the way but I didn’t look past the product to the heart of the company, if there was one. Some have it, some do not. Those that had it, as well as a training program to duplicate their success in their people, had my attention. Mary Kay is one of them actually and the result was that I was a top seller. They are just good people from the top down. I believed in them.

For me, believing in the top of any organization is key and I’m not alone. There, I find joy and almost a giddy-like disposition that translates my authentic self to those around me – guests and coworkers alike.

Don’t “burst my bubble” as I am super excited about this opportunity to change peoples lives through selling mattresses.

Anyone need a mattress?

 

 

 

As I went to my first day at my second job to sell mattresses today, I couldn’t help but notice that I’M NOT PASSIONATE ABOUT MATTRESSES! I mean, is anyone really? I watched as my supervisor passionately showed me coils, memory foam and other “cool” technology in the pool of the mattress selection world. Very methodically did she go over (and over) anything and everything that has to do with mattresses. I kept thinking to myself, “Lynda, HOW are you going to pull this off? When did you ever pull something like this off?”

And so I began to roll back the tape of my life and reel off the many different things that I sold along the way. All without passion…at first.

  1. Encyclopedias Door-to-Door
  2. Amway
  3. Mary Kay
  4. Shoes
  5. Pizza
  6. Ice Cream
  7. Chickens

What was the “staying power” in these other second jobs of mine? And not just staying power but where I had top seller status in each! What got me past the product to display genuine passion?

It was then and will have to be this time around as well, all about people. Not to say that I don’t need to brush up on the science of a mattress, but it’s the science of personal relationships that’s at the root of everything.

When I was in high school, Rufas was a bagger at the grocery store I worked at. He was the most positive person I have ever met. He would whistle while he packed the groceries and one day I asked him why he did that. He said, “You can bag the groceries or whistle while you bag the groceries and get a raise. Everything is about attitude.” He’s right. Even my producer for my audiobook project asked me one day, “You know what the difference between  a good day and a bad day is?” Luckily, because of the wisdom of Rufus, I quickly answered with, “ATTITUDE.”

I am fortunate to have my days immersed in things I’m passionate about. In fact, my life from the minute I wake up until I go to bed is full of all things “passion” like working on my book and audiobook, reading, writing, sewing projects and not to mention my never ending passion for all things real estate and music. I have to remind myself of why I’m selling mattresses in the first place and that’s to finance (or partially) my passions.

Now I seem to have a better attitude about this opportunity. My producer summed up my summer perfectly when he said:

Lynda’s Summer Checklist

  1. Pick a mattress
  2. Lay down
  3. Work on your project on company time
  4. Record at the studio
  5. Repeat

Just kidding. That’ll get me fired 🙂

 

 

Hmmmm how do I write an “I’m down” entry in a way that might pick me up by the end?

No clue but I’m going to try.

School’s out for the summer and while I should be rejoicing, I’m really not. I love my routine that starts with going to bed around 6:30 pm and waking up around 2:00 am to read/write/sew/think/etc. I didn’t have to get up today but I still found myself going to bed early to wake up early…but it felt different. It felt off. I feel like a fish out of water without my routine, without being needed at school.

Top that off with the fact that today I was supposed to drive across country to move back to Brooklyn. I planned for it all year and decided not to go a couple of months ago for a slew of reasons. I don’t regret the decision but I miss being needed by S. and the company.

I mentioned once before that friends just happen to you in Brooklyn but here it’s very hard to have friends since I don’t live in a building or nearby any of the friends that I have. I live alone and although I enjoy (I might as well since that’s the cards I’ve been dealt) being alone, it does get pretty quiet with nobody to come home to.

I just came back from the Elton John movie and didn’t even stay to the end. I didn’t like it overall but I did like the encouragement early on in his life to be bold, to “go big or go home” and that’s exactly what he did.

As I plug away with the publisher on the final stages of my book, I can’t help but think about whether or not it’s going to be big. I didn’t write it for that outcome but man, that would be amazing to have my book take off.

If it does, will I stay grounded? Maybe that’s why I left the movie early. If he snorted one more line or popped one more pill, I was going to go through the screen to stop him. I’m no Elton John but I can imagine that I’d be tempted to do the same under pressure.

Maybe I’m not down today but just reflective. I need a plan for the next eight weeks or the summer is not going to be my friend. I want the summer to catapult me into great things. The book is almost done, my feet hurt less and less every day making the gym more a reality than not, and I feel blessed throughout each day for my ability to provide for my life and Jessica’s schooling. Am I afraid of the future? Kind of. But not of anything specific. Just the general crash that might happen if I don’t stay one step ahead. What does that even mean? For me, it means to think before acting. To think before reacting.

Summer is just a blank canvas on which to paint another chapter of my life. I’m sure I’ll figure out something meaningful to do for eight weeks. Stay tuned.

In total, my blog has been read in 49 countries. Canada, France and the UK come to mind first when I think about the loyalty of readers from around the world. Every day, almost without exception, these countries show up. I wish I knew them and could correspond with them. But in the absence of that opportunity, I will publicly acknowledge them for their loyalty to my blog. And now to extend that to everyone who reads my entries, thank you. I decided to write my book based on how widespread the blog had become and because so many people prompted me to write a book.

What I would ask is that my readers take a minute to email me at alleylynda@gmail.com to introduce themselves. You have no idea how honored I’d be to get to know those who have been on this journey with me. I know I don’t write every day and I hope to write more consistently in the future. I only write when I feel led to and that has resulted in no ‘dead’ entries or writer’s block since I feel inspired each and every time that I write.

Moving the book (hard copy) and audiobook forward is a dream come true right before my eyes. I even had a friend bring me a suit and said, “This is for the book signing.” What???? That’s amazing. I have to speak “it” into existence as my producer says to me all the time.

Speaking it all into existence right now. Including my desire to get to know my readers all around the world.

Tears streaming down my face this morning as a fleeting thought of my brother, who took his life recently passed through me. In his sixties he decided to leave this world, on his terms.

During this time of Pride awareness, I am overcome with sadness for what he went through as he was a pioneer in the Pride movement. He was gay when it was not fashionable and participated in the parades when the streets were not lined with supporters. It’s as if those who were a part of the early movement were so far ahead of us in recognizing all humans, regardless of identity as precious and valuable. Fighting the fight and keeping the faith that one day this world would just accept everyone as they are.

Have we arrived yet? Have we really come to accept everyone? Truly accept them? I don’t know. I look for signs everywhere I go. Even at the elementary level, students identify in different ways than assigned and are, in fact accepted by their peers. This is refreshing to say the least. I’m convinced that times are changing and the younger generation gets it and I see a fervent effort on their part to just embrace people as people regardless of their assigned gender.

My tears for my brother brought him, in that instant to my table at Starbucks. We shared memories and laughed about the good times. I’m grateful for the ability to feel to the core and let it out no matter where I am or what I am doing. I’ve cried in front of students before as well as in some of the most unexpected places.

I cry out of a place of love. I love people so much and lately have met some new people that remind me how great the human race truly is. People, all around the world just want to love, laugh and be loved. Today I’m going to go the extra mile to smile more and do some random acts of kindness. Life is beautiful when you love.

08Jun

“Hey, smoking can kill you,” said this little girl at my school. I immediately replied with, “So can being mean!” As she quickly tried to decide whether or not that was true (because if it was, she was in for a short life and she knew it), I made a deal with her. I said, “If you are mean less, I’ll smoke less and if you quit being mean, I’ll stop smoking completely.”

Well, that day has come because she has, in fact stopped being mean. For that reason and a million others, yes, I am stopping today. What I can’t figure out is why I started last year in the first place. I mean, how did I go from being so completely against even walking on the same side of the street as a smoker to being a smoker? Crazy really. But I did. No doubt the addictive personality of mine latched onto it just like any of my other vices over the years and took hold of me. Most of the time, I’m just addicted to success and healthy choices that have collectively propelled my life forward.

As I head into the studio today for Day 2 to record my audiobook, I just decided that this is an even stronger reason than the deal I made with the little girl to stop smoking. I have this really transparent relationship with the audio engineer and I’m not really looking forward to the “You smoke? Stop.” conversation that would inevitably take place between us. He’d be right and unlike NY where everyone smokes, it’s a lonely endeavor here. This is the Pacific Northwest after all where the air is clean and where everything is ergonomically correct.

I feel like I’ve shed one of my secrets today and it feels great. I know that this is disappointing news to many that I even did smoke but I did. Those of us with addictive personalities don’t ever really stop substance abuse, we just trade it out for something else. Maybe it will be going through a bag of cough drops next. I’ve done that one before. You get the picture. We just latch on to something, anything.

Currently I fill my time with things that you could say I’m addicted to that are healthy. I love to sew, crochet, play my horn, read and write. And now I am adding the recording sessions to that list. I’ll be adding better food and exercise as well and no doubt I will feel amazing.

All this just in time for the book (hard copy) and audiobook to be completed and released.

Shout out to that little girl for being the only one actually this year who called me out on smoking. “Out of the mouth of babes”…