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Make the List [Day 4 - 30 Days to Changing Your Game]

This is Day 4 of 30 Days to Changing Your Game. Yesterday Carla Young took a bite out that self-sabotaging voice in your head and then kicked in the butt!  Today my super savvy friend, Nat Slavin, shares the one single action he took when the spectre of doubt threatened to stop him from changing his game. Get your notebooks out and have pens at the ready!

Make The List

by Nat Slavin (@NatSlavin)

Three years ago when I was ready to leave a 15-year publishing career I was terrified. I defined my professional worth not by the relationships I had formed in the legal industry, but because of the platform the publishing company afforded me. I doubted myself and thought that absent the platform doors would close and I couldn’t be “successful” ever again. And I was 36.

While I knew I had worked hard, I felt lucky to be in the right place at the right time and thought that I had one shot to find that place, and that shot had already been fired. In the simplest terms I was stuck. I was afraid to do anything; it was easier to do nothing than to take the next risk. And adding to my stuck place was that I had been fortunate: because we had sold the business I didn’t have to run out and find a new job.

And then one day I made The List.

I sat down at my desk with pen and paper and started writing down every name of every person who I thought cared enough about me to help me both personally and professionally. Without opening my address book I wrote down 357 names of people who had entered my life during the past decade and a half who I knew would take my call, and listen to my questions, and most importantly offer advice. These were the people whose life I had entered through both professional and personal circumstances. Friends from high school, relatives and of course folks in my professional network; in the simplest of terms, and I had never thought about the value of my personal network.

I was liberated. I didn’t realistically believe that all of these people would actually be able to offer me anything more than peace of mind. But if one percent, just 3 or 4, took a real interest in my professional development and served as a confidant or mentor, I would find my way. I would be able to, with confidence, enter the next stage of my life.

That list was a gift. So, I offer to all of you the tremendously liberating power of creating The List. Think of those whose lives you have been a part of, whose journey you have supported, and those whose respect you have earned. Make your own list, and know that if you got stuck, there will be names on The List, the members of your tribe, who will be there for you.

And know that as you strive to change your game, you are undoubtedly on someone else’s list. So, if today is not the day to write the list, you can start with two simple steps. Think of one person who has been a mentor or catalyst for change and send them a note and let them know they have had an impact in your life, and then ask them to reach out to someone who has touched their life.

Nat Slavin is founder and partner in the Wicker Park Group and former publisher of InsideCounsel. He was also editor and publisher of Business Without Borders and U.S. Business Litigation and the author of more than 100 articles on legal department management, business development, client service and
marketing strategies and frequently speaks on these topics. He served as the 2007 president of the International Board of Directors of Legal Marketing Association, is on the Board of Directors of the Poder Learning Center, and taught bi-lingual/bi-cultural English & History in Southern California.

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  • Anonymous

    Notes to the Tribe:You all continue to amaze me. Here are a few things that are happening that will enrich your experience here:1) Decide to put today’s theme song at the top of the list today so it does not get lost: Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough http://tinysong.com/6QcT>2) I am asking something extra of the tribe today. On the home page of this blog there is a chipin widget that allows people to make secure online donations to help the people of Haiti. If you can make even the smallest donation, it will help. I simply cannot imagine what they are going through in that tiny impoverished country.3) If you have signed up to be on the email list (you get little extras from me), you MUST complete the double opt-in process to get them. Look for an email from me in your inbox or in your spam folder and click on the link inside it.4) I have set up a Face book Group for us: http://www.facebook.com/#/group.php?gid=2460148…5) I built a list on twitter of all the guest bloggers to make it easy for you to follow them: http://twitter.com/#/list/SarahRobinson/thirtyd…6) There are also two twitter lists of participants in 30 Days. You will find them here: http://twitter.com/MirkoGosch/escapingmediocrity and http://twitter.com/The_Promo_Guy/game-changing

  • http://twitter.com/cherrywoodburn Cherry Woodburn

    Thanks Nat. I think my list would be equally long, the game changer I have to do is utilize The List. As I work to change the direction of my business what better way (as one friend/colleague keeps reminding me) than to ask for help, suggestions, contacts from My List. I think I’m blessed with my relationships so now have to take the challenge from Carla and do that thing I’m afraid of doing – asking friends for help. Happy that things worked for you.

    • Anonymous

      Congrats on being so fortunate! Asking the simple question: If you were me, what would you do next is a great question to ask your friends. Or, I want to be my best possible self, which qualities do you most admire in our relationship. Be sure to tell whomever it is you are talking to something you most admire in them. Also, ask the opposite question: What should I most work on to be that best self? That takes tremendous courage!

      • http://twitter.com/cherrywoodburn Cherry Woodburn

        Great questions. Thank you so much.

  • Anonymous

    Nat, this is sooooo cool. And such a fantastic idea. It’s the little things, like making time to sit down and write that list, that sometimes get in the way. I can’t wait to share this with my friends – what terrific advice!

    • Anonymous

      Thanks, Shelly! It is tremendously rewarding to do a little thing like thanking someone. And knowing you have a “tribe” that’s got your back!

  • http://twitter.com/mckra1g mckra1g

    This reminds me of It’s a Wonderful Life. So many times, we restrict our goals and possibilities based upon the Lone Wolf mentality. We are Alone In The World. It’s actually a perverse mindset that I have, based on the fact that I don’t want to “impose” on people, wanting to be resourceful and self-sufficient. We don’t consider the power of community and its potential in our lives.

    It is when we surrender that need to go it alone and we allow the gifts and perspectives of others to elevate the Whole that true magic happens.

    Thanks for food for thought today. Best, M.

    • http://themarketingmark.blogspot.com MarkSherrick

      I can see it the same way myself, only I don’t think of It’s A Wonderful Life. Using the mental picture that Nat gives above, I picture Willy Loman from Death Of A Salesman – without knowing who you can look to for help, you are stuck behind the shot that was already fired that worked once, and may not work the next time, even if it did work more than once.

      I know that my list would probably have a few different sections – people I know would help me at the drop of a hat, people who would probably do it if I asked the right question, and people who would probably not, but wouldn’t surprise me if they did help.

      I dunno how to take it, but most of the people on the first part of the list would be people I know via Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.

    • Anonymous

      Thanks for the feedback, and I think there a lot of people that feel that exact same way. It’s great to reach out and create a community that has the same mindset. And thanks for the “magic happens” comment – so true!

    • http://sallyg.me Sally G.

      I think I feel the same as you mckra1g. I was brought up ‘not to bother anybody’ and to do everything for myself. To this day I neglect to invite people in to help me along the way. In that way, I’m operating as ‘half’ of a worthy community member ~ I give what I can but am often closed to receiving. This is a very hard habit/belief to break. (By the way, what amphibian did you eat today?)

      • http://twitter.com/mckra1g mckra1g

        Hee! No amphibian today. Just pizza. :) Here’s the back story on “eating a frog”: http://simplemom.net/worst-thing-first-eat-that-frog/ ….and someone once gave me an explanation of being open to receiving that has stuck w/me: denying other people an opportunity to be generous is selfish of us.

        • http://sallyg.me Sally G.

          So funny – I left a reply on Ava’s comment that said pretty much the same thing about looking through the other end of the telescope and seeing ‘self-ability’ as potential self-ishness. It was my husband who had shared it with me. Wouldn’t it be a mind-blowing 6 Degrees of Separation if he was the source in both cases! Also, I liked the blog post you linked — I don’t ‘eat the frog first’ often enough. Although yesterday and today I did, which is why I’m so late to getting here (something I love).

        • http://twitter.com/cherrywoodburn Cherry Woodburn

          It is denying people the chance to be generous, that’s a timely reminder.

          • Anonymous

            I had a discussion a month or so ago with a pastor at a church that my son and I were attending a bible study at. He said that I am denying someone out there the ability to use their gifts and talents to help me with things around my house I am having difficulty doing and that I should reach out and ask for help. I never thought about it like that and what mcgra1g and Cherry said really makes it seem more like I should be doing that.

  • http://twitter.com/thrivecoaching Vanessa Torre

    Today IS my day to make the list! Nat, thank you for this. I am 35 years old and have spent the last 10 years of my life in a career for which I no longer have passion. The last two years have been rough, man! ROUGH! This summer, I started putting my plan together to be done by July 1 and working for myself. My head is filled with serious static and questions and concerns. This will definitely help me get over a personal hurdle – gaining the ability to ask for help!

    • Anonymous

      Excellent, Vanessa! I can’t tell you great it feels to start sharing your ideas and passions with people. It reduces the static and the noise, and people definitely help you find the right path for you. Congrats on dedicating today to being the day to make the list!

  • http://themarketingmark.blogspot.com MarkSherrick

    Making the list may be what I need to challenge myself to do today, re: my posts on yesterday’s game changing posting.

    • Anonymous

      Make the list or I am not talking to you. :-p And wait….where did my song link go?! Gotta go get it and re-post it to Notes The Tribe.

      • http://themarketingmark.blogspot.com MarkSherrick

        You’d better talk….you are one of the few people who I would be able to call who would help me at the drop of a hat.

        So make the list or not, you’re talking. :P You can’t avoid it..hehe.

        True enough – I see no song, my dear.

      • http://themarketingmark.blogspot.com MarkSherrick

        now, as I mentioned in the day three post, I made my list.

        Up next, determining what to call them – I think my people need a cool name like Hooligans – but I can’t use that one, Sarah already took it. :)

  • Anonymous

    Well, Nat, you’ve certainly blown my hair back this morning. As an aspiring litigation refugee, it is the blessing of my very long List that is making all the difference as I change my game. It’s also that List that sees me through during these first few months after my Mom’s passing. The people on that List give me “pinchable moments” of gratitude daily. Thanks, too, for reminding me of what is a really great privilege and joy: being on someone else’s List. As hackneyed as it may sound, we are indeed all in this together.

    • Anonymous

      We are all indeed in this together! The big things can be overwhelming; friends, the network, the tribe, family, loved ones. That’s how we remain strong.

  • http://BestLifeDesign.com drmolliemarti

    What an empowering exercise, Nat!

    I really like the idea of making this list, as you say, focused on “Who do I know?” or “Who has touched my life in a positive way?”
    These names will flow – and surprise you with how many there are!

    What do you think of then going through the list, prioritizing it, and reaching out to 10 people a day asking, “I’ve been thinking of you. Anything I can do to help you at this time?”

    I believe the key to successful networking is shifting from “What is my network worth?” to “What value can I add to my network?”
    It’s been my experience (through coaching others and my own path) that pairing consistent reaching out to others with a genuine intent to help them and bring value to their lives creates tremendous forward momentum.

    When others then ask what they can do to help you (some may not, most will), offer them a specific action they can take – make a connection, give you advice, provide a testimonial, share a resource. Make it easy for others to help.

    Thanks again for sharing your great idea, Nat … let me know if there’s anything I can do to help you at this time :-)

    • Anonymous

      You are so smart! There are some posts coming up that will dig deep into this – especially the one from a certain Go-Giver that we both know. :-) Once The List is made – there are all kinds of things we can do with it, right?!

      Glad to see your smiling face here!

      • http://BestLifeDesign.com drmolliemarti

        Oh, yes! The original (& no one does it better) Go-Giver. What a treat it will be to hear from him!

        Agree that Nat’s List tool is powerful – can be used in many, many ways.

        (As an aside: Since you’ve started this challenge, I’ve been walking around the house saying, “Game on!” It’s now a joke and a pretty standard reply by my kiddos to any sort of challenge. Fun to have the whole family stepping up their game … together!)

    • Anonymous

      Thank you! I love the idea of prioritizing. I think reaching out to 10 people a day is an incredible goal, but even if it’s one person by phone, one by email, one with a hand writtin note and one person every day, or every other day can be unbelievably satisfying and empowering!

    • Anonymous

      I also want to thank you for focusing on “value;” – it’s something we are challenged by and that is hard to define, but you touch on so many valuable ideas that it has inspired me. In looking at making lists and prioritizing those lists I am creating a Venn diagram of people who are on multiple lists. Maybe that’s who I reach out to next?

      • http://BestLifeDesign.com drmolliemarti

        Yeah….about the 10 thing. I’ve been told I set audacious goals :-) MOST important is to find the number that works for YOU that you can commit to and follow through! LOVE (love, love!) your idea of multi-modality (phone, email, handwritten (so important!) – plus could add fb, twitter DM – don’t make this harder than it is!)

        You inspire me, too – and down right impress me with that Venn diagram thing-o :-) You left brain lawyer, you. Makes a lot of sense to prioritize by those in multiple circles of influence. Remember that old 80/20 pareto principle – it works its magic in networking, too.

        • Anonymous

          I am sooooo not a lawyer! Any communication is the right communication: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn. Well, maybe not a text message. I once got a group Happy New Year text. Was nice, but not personal.

          • http://BestLifeDesign.com drmolliemarti

            Sorry…guess you’re guilty by association. Was thinking Sarah had you on her “legal team” (she likes to hang with lawyer types because she may stir up some trouble as she escapes mediocrity…you never know. LOL) My apologies for accusing you of being a lawyer :-)

            Agree on text – not high on connection factor and it’s all about relationships. Enjoy the rest of your day interacting with this amazing community!

          • Anonymous

            EW! “lawyer types”!!! ACK!!! I resemble that remark!

    • Ava Diamond (@feistywoman)

      I love this idea, Mollie!

    • Kristin

      Mollie, I love your mind-shift from thinking about what I can get out of my network to how I can be of value to my network. The people I admire are mostly like this. They are always willing to help others without asking for something in return. I would never hesitate to help them when they need my support because they are such a treasure in my life.

      I started a bit smaller than you and reach out to at least one person a day. Once we begin to focus on being grateful for others and seeing their strengths and values we will discover more and more positive things and love them for every bit.

  • Nicole

    I have heard this before – albeit put in a slightly more mercenary way. I have put this off, but I’ll be starting the list today. There have been so many people that have helped me and that I have helped along the way!

    • Anonymous

      Great, Nicole! Glad this was a kind way of looking at it, and let us know about your experience in putting together the list!

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  • Anonymous

    It has been put on my heart recently to thanks some people who have helped me over the years, thanks for the reminder. And it kind of scares me that *I* might be on someones to thank list. I am going to work on my list, I think it is such a neat concept as I am figuring out my path. And you never know who that one person might be who could help change your life. And I think we should all be aware that maybe we could help someone else too. We need to keep our eyes and ears open.

    • Anonymous

      I have found that two sentences in a hand written note can have an absolutely amazing impact. That small gesture of “thanks” and appreciate is incredibly meaningful!

    • Anonymous

      Marvelousmartha- I think you’re right: we never know who will change our lives. Like you, I am looking for my path. In my case, I have a small – very small – business, that I want to grow. There are lots of things I can do, but I need to pull the threads together into something coherent. I’ve started the list, and keep coming back to it as I think of more names. Who knows what insights they can offer?!

  • Cheryl

    Mmm. Really resonating is @mckra1g’s observation about self-sufficiency and @drmolliemarti’s about looking out, not in (“add value to your network”).

    Some valuable insights so far, @sarahrobinson .. thanks for organizing this trek!

  • Anonymous

    Well damn. Talk about getting exactly what you need. My tendency is toward isolationism and while in my mind I know that I could build a significant list, I find myself wondering if contacting some of the people on the list would be a bother to them. People always say, “If there’s anything I can do, let me know.” I usually just consider it lip-service, especially when I haven’t spoken to those people in years.

    Of course, going back to what Carla said yesterday, that mindset is one of self sabotage. At the very least, I will begin working on my list. There are plenty of people I know would help me and, at the very least, appreciate that I took the time to reach out.

    Question: If one of the people on your list is someone you know can be valuable to your network, but you haven’t spoken to or contacted them in years, how do you pull them back into your network without seeming needy?

    • Anonymous

      By being honest! I have always found that telling someone that you admire them is a great start. Someone worthy of your admiration is someone who likely understand that value of spending 15 minutes, or 30 minutes or even more reconnecting with someone and sharing their experience. Be direct, and don’t forget that while it may have been years since you last connected, it’s really never too late, and it probably seems like just yesterday; for both of you!

      • Anonymous

        Thanks Nat! I’ll keep these things in mind while building my list tonight! :)

  • Anonymous

    PSA: Tribe – Please be sure to read the Notes To The Tribe that I post at the top of the comments each morning. :-)

  • http://twitter.com/JamieLaceyPR jamielacey28

    Thanks, Nat, and thanks again to Sarah. I am fortunate enough to have a very long and hardy list of people to whom I’m grateful and to whom I’ve tried to remember to connect with regularly in the past. In summer of 09, I started my own firm, and have found it a little more difficult to reach out now out of two fears. Fear One: That people will now see me as trying to “sell” them something and will run the other way quickly. [I should mention that I'm very adverse to the over-the-top salesperson...] Fear Two: That I may appear vulnerable or desperate if I ask for help. Your column helped to put these fears in perspective (particularly on the hills of Carla’s column yesterday).

    I realize that I have found great personal reward in helping others in the past, and that I shouldn’t be afraid or ashamed to reach out to My List. Pen is in hand, notebook is in front of me, and outreach begins NOW.

    • Anonymous

      Wow. Great comments Jamie. And I love turning the conversation: “I have been helped by so many people in my life, is there anything I can do to be helpful to you?”

    • http://twitter.com/thrivecoaching Vanessa Torre

      OMG, Jamie – I have the exact same fears. I am not much of a “salesperson.” I always feel like a total tool! The perspective is good and I love what Dr.MollieMarti added about looking at it as a win-wn situation. More of a “How can we help each other.” I was actually fortunate to be contacted by someone I had met ONCE who remembered me from two years ago who called when I started my business and asked, “How can I help?” Knocked my socks off. Turns out, there were lots of ways I could help him too!

  • Anonymous

    The list is definitely a worthwhile task, but it was the challenge to write one note that really struck a chord with me. There was a person in my life who really started me on my path many years ago. I’ve been thinking of him a lot recently and figured I should call him to see how he is doing as his health has not been good. But no, instead I’m going to write him that note telling him how much he has meant to me and how he shaped my future without ever even knowing it. Thank you for that.

    • Anonymous

      You are so welcome, Stephanie. Thanking people who have mattered is always a wonderful gift to give someone. And thanking someone again years later is truly special.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks Nat. It seems such a “no-brainer” to make & keep a list of folks that have impacted your life/career, yet I have only thought of those when I needed a reference, and the list was pretty short!! I’ve been working since 1971 ( a dinosaur) and at this very moment, my mind is in rewind mode and I’m realizing that, YES, I DO have more people to add to my list.

    Why is it that we (me) are so hesitant to “reach out?” I think someone else said that we have this “go it alone” mentality, when in reality, it’s just not the truth. I’d bet big $$$ that most of us here have built amazing, supportive communities over the years. And we’ve added value to their lives and they’ve enriched ours !! It’s just taking that BIG or tiny step out there on the limb, and believing in who we ARE…telling the “committees” in our head to sit down and shut up and making our list and R.O.C.K. ing our plan!!! Play BIG as our friend Amy Bryant says so encouragingly!!
    Another awesome day here….and I am SO lovin’ our “musicologist”…Mrs. Robinson :-) and our FAB guest today, Nat Slavin!!

    • Anonymous

      I think you are going to have a hard time finding someone to take that bet!

      We are naturally limited when we just try and “go it alone” – we start with ideas, like Sarah has, and then we reach out to our community and ask. She made a list (and reached out to the people in her network/tribe) – people I am sure she has both helped and who are there for her, and voila! These 30 days…

  • http://marjorymejia.com/ Marjory

    Thanks Nat for reminding us to rely on our tribe. These are times to support each other and reach out to those who we can count on for blessings. Lovely idea.

    • Anonymous

      Indeed these are those times. And all times are good times to remember those who are there for you, and vice versa.

  • Ava Diamond (@feistywoman)

    Thanks, Nat. This is a great idea. And I love Mollie’s idea of reaching out and asking how you can help THEM!

    A quick note to the people who commented that they were reluctant to reach out and ask for help. It is SO worth it to move beyond that fear. People love to help. It makes them feel good. They find joy in it.

    So you might think of it this way–each time you don’t reach out to someone whose help you’d like, you deny them the opportunity to give, the opportunity to serve, and the opportunity to feel the joy of sharing themselves and their knowledge or contacts with you.

    Giving and receiving. It’s all part of the Universal flow. It’s a balance.

    Thanks again, Nat!

    • Anonymous

      So true, Ava. Great perspective on keeping a balance in our relationships. If it is all one-sided, well, then it is all one sided!

    • http://sallyg.me Sally G.

      I hear similar comments from my husband Ava — “when you choose to handle everything all by yourself, you deny me the opportunity to impress you. I might even be helpful to you. Always acting so capable can be quite a selfish act – with potentially limiting results.” He’s quite wise. And so are you …

      • Ava Diamond (@feistywoman)

        He sounds like a wonderful man!

  • Anonymous

    Nat, My list keeps growing. Thanks for the very simple idea of putting it down on paper. We all know we have networks, but I was overlooking a lot of people until I actually wrote it, as you suggested. I’m going to write a note now, to someone on the list, asking what I can do to help her. Thanks!

    • Anonymous

      Fantastic! I had the same experience. We tend to keep going back to the same “short list” and when we start expanding our mind and being more inclusive, well, the list truly grows!

  • http://twitter.com/magnoliawkshop Erin Baebler

    OK, this is a mind blowing one for me. I am scared to write the list. What if I find out my list is short? You just uncovered a fear I never even knew I had. So, thanks, I think? I’m off to ponder.

    • http://sallyg.me Sally G.

      Erin, I’ll bet your list will surprise you. And I’ll bet there are lots of people out there whose lives you touched but they didn’t have the voice to tell you …

    • Anonymous

      No fear! It’s not a competition. I promise you will start thinking of people with whom your lives have intersected in the most surprising way.

      And what courage to share this fear! I was lucky – I was a columnist in a magazine that 50,000 readers, so my path intersected with lots of peoples’ paths. I am sure that not everyone would want to take my call, and I didn’t reach out to most of them. But knowing that there 3 or 4 people you can start with is huge.

      And you just took the first step by sharing your fear. Bravo for your bravery!

    • Anonymous

      Erin I think my list is going to be a short one too. Maybe just maybe it is ok to have a short list. Too much feedback could be too much noise. It could be that by having a few close trusted folks that we have impacted to gain insights from could be just as good as having a huge list.

  • http://CardsMakeCash.com Jackie Ulmer

    This is especially timely for me today. Reflecting on the past and kind of the “new year, out with the old, in with the new” and that seems to trigger doubt sometimes. Can I repeat success? Have I lost my “audience”? Is there still value in what I offer? etc.

    Thanks for making it easy for me to even just do a quick, mental list and come out feeling on top of the world!

    EXPECT Success!

    Jackie Ulmer

    • Anonymous

      Expect Success! What a great mantra. Thanks for sharing.

  • Shelley

    Yes, and reconnection helps you recollect your path to today! It’s so easy to forget where you came from. I feel ahead of the game here, ha ha! Over the holidays, I had the chance to see several people who would be on my list, people I have not seen for a long long time. The impact on my frame of mind was explosive. It definitely brought a game-changing state of mind!

    • Anonymous

      Congrats for not only being in the game, but being ahead of it! And now that we are in the post-holiday-waiting-for-spring mindset (at least that’s how it is in Chicago), let’s keep connecting and reconnecting and not let go of that energy!

      • Anonymous

        Ha ha I am waiting for spring here in Kansas too.

  • http://sallyg.me Sally G.

    I love connecting with people on the level of ‘human being’ … sharing moments with others where they truly feel like they’ve been ‘seen’, at essence; letting them know that their intent was as visible to you as their actions, especially if the manifestation of those actions did not turn out as intended. There’s such a rush of relief and comfort in the words, “I know how you feel” or “You really made my day”.

    Intention does carry a certain energy with it – one the receiver can feel whether or not they can put words to what they’re feeling. I think it’s important when sending thoughts of love and admiration to those who truly have made a difference in your life that it comes from a place of sincerity vs strategy. Issuing notes and/or making phone calls when sharing admiration, gratitude and appreciation is the sole purpose (ie. you don’t need anything from anyone at the time) will prove more meaningful and significant than when there’s a request of some kind laced throughout.

    I’m loving that developing and nurturing relationships is becoming a more acceptable business acumen. Thank you Nat.

    • Anonymous

      Keith Ferrazzi said in his book “Never Eat Alone” and always in person, “Never keep score.” It’s not wrong to ask people for business help, but be open and honest about it. Ask for what you, but never forget that your personal brand and the relationships you build are based on your contributions, not your deductions.

      • http://sallyg.me Sally G.

        So true. I think Stephen Covey refers to them as Emotional Bank Deposits? (Don’t quote me, it’s been awhile since I read the book but I practice the principle often.)

        I heard this quote often growing up (I’m of Scottish origin) — and it was put in the context of ‘you’re not as great as you think you are’ — but in this case, it would very much be the flip opposite: If we only knew our greatness.

        O would some power the giftie gie us to see ourselves as others see us. (O would some power the gift to give us to see ourselves as others see us.) ~Robert Burns, Poem “To a Louse” – verse 8

  • http://www.reignitingromance.com/ Rachel Miller

    It feels so good to be validated on something I feel so strongly about! Thanks Nat!

    My people, as I call them, are many and varied. They are how I continue to move forward even in the hardest of times. The most amazing part of having really connected with my people is how many of my professional contacts have become such close personal friends. Everyday I feel so blessed to have “my people” around me and supporting me.

    One of them is actually in this group! Teresa Romain has not only been a huge catalyst for change in my life but someone I connected with on a professional level that I know call friend and mentor! Thanks Teresa!

    • Anonymous

      And thank you for validating me! And thank you for using this forum to call out and thank someone who has been there for you. Awesome.

    • http://www.accessabundance.com/ Teresa Romain

      Thanks Rachel – for your acknowledgement and for helping me get started on my list! I can put your name down!!! :-)

  • http://www.accessabundance.com/ Teresa Romain

    Hey Nat and everyone!

    I so get the power of this list… and yet, like some others have mentioned, I am scared to sit down and do it. Because even thinking of doing it, I recognize one painful truth it will force me to see. And that is all the relationships I have not nurtured that COULD have been on my list and part of my tribe. Just thinking of doing this list forces me to face the truth about how many of my past relationships have been more about me “getting” than “giving”…. and when I didn’t need anything or didn’t get what I wanted, I would let the relationship wither. Not something I’m proud of. I have burned more bridges than I like to admit and some other ones are pretty wobbly. Yet this is part of the “game-changing” I had begun to practice even before this 30-day challenge. So – with some definite trepidation and even sadness and regret, I commit to spend 5 minutes STARTING my list today… maybe even writing that note of thanks to one of those people where the bridge between us is only partially standing. So – thanks for the challenge… and the opportunity you’ve given me to take my “game changing” to a whole new level!

    • Anonymous

      Keep looking forward; we have all at times done less than we wish we had, but that is no reason for regret.

      It is never too late to grow relationships, and congrats on reaching out with the thank you message!

      • http://www.accessabundance.com/ Teresa Romain

        Thanks for the encouragement Nat!!!! It helps alot!

    • http://www.anjwritesabout.com AnjWrites

      I just wanted to say that I am really appreciative of your authenticity and willingness to be open in your comments here – it’s inspiring!!

      • http://www.accessabundance.com/ Teresa Romain

        Thank you! That’s something that’s becoming more and more important to me – being authentic and open. Scary as all get out at time… but still really important!!

        • Erin L.

          Thank you Teresa for sharing your thoughts. I spent about 5 minutes scrolling through the comments to find one that expressed this exact sentiment.

          It’s hard to admit, but I truly feel that while I can make the list, there isn’t anyone on that list who I feel would be willing to help me. What’s funny, is that on day one, one of my frustrations that I listed was that I don’t feel like I have a strong network of people. And it really bothers me, because it is the one thing I feel I need the most right now.

          So, how

        • Anonymous

          Maybe you just had your Holy Shit moment Teresa.

    • Anonymous

      Teresa after reading your post here I realized that I too am guilty of this as well. I am going to also include those folks that I have unknowingly left along the wayside into my list.

  • http://twitter.com/22twts Lance Godard

    Nat: thank you for sharing this story; it is quite inspirational. My story isn’t the same but for the part about drawing upon the kindness and support of friends as I transitioned from the prior stage of my life to the one I’m in now. Even though I didn’t read this 18 months ago when I started my new journey, the lesson is as valid today as it would have been then. I’ll start putting together my list tonight….

    • Anonymous

      Thanks, Lance!

      Thank you for reminding us that no matter where you are professionally it is always the right time to recognize the people that have had an impact in your life.

  • sarahrobinson

    Notes to the Tribe:

    You all continue to amaze me. 

    Here are a few things that are happening that will enrich your experience here:

    1) Decide to put today’s theme song at the top of the list today so it does not get lost
    2) I am asking something extra of the tribe today. On the home page of this blog there is a chipin widget that allows people to make secure online donations to help the people of Haiti. If you can make even the smallest donation, it will help. I simply cannot imagine what they are going through in that tiny impoverished country.
    3) If you have signed up to be on the email list (you get little extras from me), you MUST complete the double opt-in process to get them. Look for an email from me in your inbox or in your spam folder and click on the link inside it.
    4) I have set up a Face book Group for us: http://www.facebook.com/#/group.php?gid=2460148
    5) I built a list on twitter of all the guest bloggers to make it easy for you to follow them: http://twitter.com/#/list/SarahRobinson/thirtyd
    6) There are also two twitter lists of participants in 30 Days. You will find them here: http://twitter.com/MirkoGosch/escapingmediocrity and http://twitter.com/The_Promo_Guy/game-changing

  • http://twitter.com/CherryWoodburn Cherry Woodburn

    Thanks Nat. I think my list would be equally long, the game changer I have to do is utilize The List. As I work to change the direction of my business what better way (as one friend/colleague keeps reminding me) than to ask for help, suggestions, contacts from My List. I think I'm blessed with my relationships so now have to take the challenge from Carla and do that thing I'm afraid of doing – asking friends for help. Happy that things worked for you.

  • ShellyKramer

    Nat, this is sooooo cool. And such a fantastic idea. It's the little things, like making time to sit down and write that list, that sometimes get in the way. I can't wait to share this with my friends – what terrific advice!

  • http://twitter.com/mckra1g mckra1g

    This reminds me of It's a Wonderful Life. So many times, we restrict our goals and possibilities based upon the Lone Wolf mentality. We are Alone In The World. It's actually a perverse mindset that I have, based on the fact that I don't want to “impose” on people, wanting to be resourceful and self-sufficient. We don't consider the power of community and its potential in our lives.

    It is when we surrender that need to go it alone and we allow the gifts and perspectives of others to elevate the Whole that true magic happens.

    Thanks for food for thought today. Best, M.

  • Anonymous

    Alright, I guess for me the bottom line is this. I am finishing up graduating with my MA. My cohort are all twenty somethings that went from a BA straight to their MA. I however, took a number of years off, stayed home and raised a family. However, life circumstances have changed to the point of me having a number of businesses that need setting up that I could use mentoring in. But having been a stay at home mom and now a student, I do not have an available list of people within my personal circle that have any notion of what a professional life entails regarding how to set up businesses etc etc. So I guess my question is where to go from here?

    I have attempted to go down the road of networking but again, I seem to be coming up short in that venue as well. I have joined the odd networking group and so far all the events that have been held are at times when I have had prior commitments that are in a non negotiable state so I could not even wriggle my way out of them.

    Mentorship is key for me. I am walking into an arena that no one in my family has gone before, I am doing the unthinkable to most. To have strong, insightful mentors that can give me proper direction on where to go and how to access various resources when I come to a stuck point is crucial to my ventures. So the stuck point I am at? Where do I go? To whom do I turn? and How do I access the multitudes of wisdom and knowledge of those that have gone before me?

    • Anonymous

      Kristie – why don’t you start here with the posters who write things that resonate with you and your fellow community members? If you are on twitter or facebook, write down the names of people you enjoy connecting with. Whose blogs do you read? Who is doing what you want to do? Reach out those people. You will be surprised at how many reach back.

      • Anonymous

        Sarah is spot on, Kristie. And also, use your academic connections to help find a mentor. Did you have one professor in either undergrad or grad school who inspired you, or with whom you developed an important sense of respect? Reach out to that person and ask them if they have a fellow professor or professional colleague with whom you could connect.

        And while you might not have an academic contact at the university where you studied, you can certainly contact them and ask to speak to someone at the business school for contacts in the alumni that might be interested in mentoring. Undergrad, too. I know that my college has asked me to mentor students looking to connect.

        Also, there are great professional groups, like Vistage, that support entrepreneurs and business owners as they try and grow their businesses. Vistage is a little pricey, but they may have a recommendation for a network.

      • Anonymous

        Thanks Sarah. That’s exactly why I joined your group and started a twitter account. I got tired of stagnation. I am on both the twitter lists and fb. Although I had not thought to gain mentor ship that way. Thank you forth insight and permission to contact this tribe. I do believe I shall take up your suggestions.
        Sent on the TELUS Mobility network with BlackBerry

        • Anonymous

          Kristie I sent you a friend invite over on Facebook. I am trying to go back to school and will be totally changing gears from what I was originally studying. I was going for a degree in health promotion and now I am looking into going into web technologies related. Talk about your Holy Shit moment here. Not only that I have been raising a special needs child on my own for a better part of the last 10 yrs. I have also decided to slowly begin my own consulting firm with emphasis on helping small business and home based business owners understand how the internet can help their business. You are not alone and I feel that I am not alone either.

    • http://twitter.com/lipdesign Lori Paquette

      Kristie – You’ve raised a family and now you’re nearly finished with your MA. Way to go! That is a HUGE achievement. Your experience as a mother has given you valuable skills sets and knowledge that the 20 somethings have yet to experience.

      In addition to the wonderful suggestions Sarah and Nat mention here, I would like to add looking at resources and blogs specifically targeted at “mompreneurs.” Carla Young’s MOMeo Magazine, TwitterMoms and MetroMom are 3 that come immediately to mind. These resources have helped me connect to women with similar goals and challenges.

      • Anonymous

        Lori hey I am on TwitterMoms are you?? Also I belong to two networks called Small Business Referral Network and Home Based Preneurs the ladies in those groups are so awesome. They have really lifted me up in the last 6 months to make me feel like I can do whatever it takes to build my business.

  • http://twitter.com/thrivecoaching Vanessa Torre

    Today IS my day to make the list! Nate, thank you for this. I am 35 years old and have spent the last 10 years of my life in a career for which I no longer have passion. The last two years have been rough, man! ROUGH! This summer, I started putting my plan together to be done by July 1 and working for myself. My head is filled with serious static and questions and concerns. This will definitely help me get over a personal hurdle – gaining the ability to ask for help!

  • natslavin

    Congrats on being so fortunate! Asking the simple question: If you were me, what would you do next is a great question to ask your friends. Or, I want to be my best possible self, which qualities do you most admire in our relationship. Be sure to tell whomever it is you are talking to something you most admire in them. Also, ask the opposite question: What should I most work on to be that best self? That takes tremendous courage!

  • http://themarketingmark.blogspot.com MarkSherrick

    I can see it the same way myself, only I don't think of It's A Wonderful Life. Using the mental picture that Nat gives above, I picture Willy Loman from Death Of A Salesman – without knowing who you can look to for help, you are stuck behind the shot that was already fired that worked once, and may not work the next time, even if it did work more than once.

    I know that my list would probably have a few different sections – people I know would help me at the drop of a hat, people who would probably do it if I asked the right question, and people who would probably not, but wouldn't surprise me if they did help.

    I dunno how to take it, but most of the people on the first part of the list would be people I know via Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.

  • http://themarketingmark.blogspot.com MarkSherrick

    Making the list may be what I need to challenge myself to do today, re: my posts on yesterday's game changing posting.

  • http://www.wickerparkgroup.com/ Nat Slavin

    Thanks, Shelly! It is tremendously rewarding to do a little thing like thanking someone. And knowing you have a “tribe” that's got your back!

  • LaConsuelo

    Well, Nat, you've certainly blown my hair back this morning. As an aspiring litigation refugee, it is the blessing of my very long List that is making all the difference as I change my game. It's also that List that sees me through during these first few months after my Mom's passing. The people on that List give me “pinchable moments” of gratitude daily. Thanks, too, for reminding me of what is a really great privilege and joy: being on someone else's List. As hackneyed as it may sound, we are indeed all in this together.

  • http://www.wickerparkgroup.com/ Nat Slavin

    Thanks for the feedback, and I think there a lot of people that feel that exact same way. It's great to reach out and create a community that has the same mindset. And thanks for the “magic happens” comment – so true!

  • http://www.wickerparkgroup.com/ Nat Slavin

    Excellent, Vanessa! I can't tell you great it feels to start sharing your ideas and passions with people. It reduces the static and the noise, and people definitely help you find the right path for you. Congrats on dedicating today to being the day to make the list!

  • Anonymous

    I would like to echo some the sentiments already expressed here. Don’t hestitate on making the list because you are already deciding that people won’t respond when you reach out. Your job is to make the list and reach out. You are responsible for the effort part. For taking the action. Don’t decide for people and deprive them of the chance of deciding for themselves if and how they can help you. If you lead with gratitude and an offer of giving support, you will be amazed at who will get in your corner. And Nat is write. “The List” is how I gave birth to 30 Days. :-)

    • Anonymous

      Wow, Sarah, this response why I’ve put off making a list. I was mentally checking off people who, I thought, upon receiving my correspondence would think “oh, that’s nice” and promptly discard. Actually… that’s one of the reason’s why I joined the challenge, I’ve realized I do that with myself a lot of… count myself out before giving it a whirl. It’s interesting that a somewhat painful self realization can make you feel stronger. @sarahsbordone

  • Nazima Ali

    Very cool. This is something I’ve been working on for a while now, not the list but the group of people I surround myself with. Thanks for the great post.

    • Anonymous

      Thank you for the encouragement and positive feedback!

  • http://BestLifeDesign.com drmolliemarti

    What an empowering exercise, Nat!

    I really like the idea of making this list, as you say, focused on “Who do I know?” or “Who has touched my life in a positive way?”
    These names will flow – and surprise you with how many there are!

    What do you think of then going through the list, prioritizing it, and reaching out to 10 people a day asking, “I've been thinking of you. Anything I can do to help you at this time?”

    I believe the key to successful networking is shifting from “What is my network worth?” to “What value can I add to my network?”
    It's been my experience (through coaching others and my own path) that pairing consistent reaching out to others with a genuine intent to help them and bring value to their lives creates tremendous forward momentum.

    When others then ask what they can do to help you (some may not, most will), offer them a specific action they can take – make a connection, give you advice, provide a testimonial, share a resource. Make it easy for others to help.

    Thanks again for sharing your great idea, Nat … let me know if there's anything I can do to help you at this time :-)

  • sarahrobinson

    Make the list or I am not talking to you. :-p And wait….where did my song link go?! Gotta go get it and re-post it to Notes The Tribe.

  • sarahrobinson

    You are so smart! There are some posts coming up that will dig deep into this – especially the one from a certain Go-Giver that we both know. :-) Once The List is made – there are all kinds of things we can do with it, right?!

    Glad to see your smiling face here!

  • Nicole

    I have heard this before – albeit put in a slightly more mercenary way. I have put this off, but I'll be starting the list today. There have been so many people that have helped me and that I have helped along the way!

  • http://midliferoadtrip.tv McMedia

    I’ve always kept lists in my “head” however, today Nat, you inspired me to take a pen to paper. My list is growing and ideas are flowing!

    • Anonymous

      It’s such a great experience. And surprising, too. I hope you rediscover a name you are excited to reconnect with!

  • marvelousmartha

    It has been put on my heart recently to thanks some people who have helped me over the years, thanks for the reminder. And it kind of scares me that *I* might be on someones to thank list. I am going to work on my list, I think it is such a neat concept as I am figuring out my path. And you never know who that one person might be who could help change your life. And I think we should all be aware that maybe we could help someone else too. We need to keep our eyes and ears open.

  • http://themarketingmark.blogspot.com MarkSherrick

    You'd better talk….you are one of the few people who I would be able to call who would help me at the drop of a hat.

    So make the list or not, you're talking. :P You can't avoid it..hehe.

    True enough – I see no song, my dear.

  • Cheryl

    Mmm. Really resonating is @mckra1g's observation about self-sufficiency and @drmolliemarti's about looking out, not in (“add value to your network”).

    Some valuable insights so far, @sarahrobinson .. thanks for organizing this trek!

  • natslavin

    We are all indeed in this together! The big things can be overwhelming; friends, the network, the tribe, family, loved ones. That's how we remain strong.

  • natslavin

    Thank you! I love the idea of prioritizing. I think reaching out to 10 people a day is an incredible goal, but even if it's one person by phone, one by email, one with a hand writtin note and one person every day, or every other day can be unbelievably satisfying and empowering!

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the great post Nat. Like some others have said I keep the list in my head but I am committed to committing it to paper. I think it will have great power to have the physical demonstration of the number of people in my life who are “list worthy”. And I love the idea of reaching out to a few each day to tell them they provide value to my life and ask how I can return the favor.

    • Anonymous

      And you will be shocked with who you remember and reconnect with once you start writing the names. You will have great memories and great reasons to connect.

  • Anonymous

    Oh boy. Like so many others, I always think I have to do it all myself, that to ask for help would make me look less than, or weak. – heaven forbid, right? But I actually started making such a list a month or so ago, although I never thought deeply about what I would do with it. Well, I love Dr. Mollie Marti’s idea of reaching out to ask people if there’s anything I can do for them – I’m much more comfortable with that approach to begin with, and then we’ll see where I go from there! But this is a great post, and I thank you for sharing your experience and wisdom, Nat.

    Now I just have to figure out where I put that darned list!

    • Anonymous

      I think her idea is great, too. And it’s important to be able to ask for what you need as well! Not everyone will always be available but it is just natural to feel good about helping others!

  • kymlee

    Well damn. Talk about getting exactly what you need. My tendency is toward isolationism and while in my mind I know that I could build a significant list, I find myself wondering if contacting some of the people on the list would be a bother to them. People always say, “If there's anything I can do, let me know.” I usually just consider it lip-service, especially when I haven't spoken to those people in years.

    Of course, going back to what Carla said yesterday, that mindset is one of self sabotage. At the very least, I will begin working on my list. There are plenty of people I know would help me and, at the very least, appreciate that I took the time to reach out.

    Question: If one of the people on your list is someone you know can be valuable to your network, but you haven't spoken to or contacted them in years, how do you pull them back into your network without seeming needy?

  • sarahrobinson

    PSA: Tribe – Please be sure to read the Notes To The Tribe that I post at the top of the comments each morning. :-)

  • natslavin

    Great, Nicole! Glad this was a kind way of looking at it, and let us know about your experience in putting together the list!

  • natslavin

    I have found that two sentences in a hand written note can have an absolutely amazing impact. That small gesture of “thanks” and appreciate is incredibly meaningful!

  • natslavin

    By being honest! I have always found that telling someone that you admire them is a great start. Someone worthy of your admiration is someone who likely understand that value of spending 15 minutes, or 30 minutes or even more reconnecting with someone and sharing their experience. Be direct, and don't forget that while it may have been years since you last connected, it's really never too late, and it probably seems like just yesterday; for both of you!

  • http://twitter.com/jamielacey28 jamielacey28

    Thanks, Nat, and thanks again to Sarah. I am fortunate enough to have a very long and hardy list of people to whom I'm grateful and to whom I've tried to remember to connect with regularly in the past. In summer of 09, I started my own firm, and have found it a little more difficult to reach out now out of two fears. Fear One: That people will now see me as trying to “sell” them something and will run the other way quickly. [I should mention that I'm very adverse to the over-the-top salesperson...] Fear Two: That I may appear vulnerable or desperate if I ask for help. Your column helped to put these fears in perspective (particularly on the hills of Carla's column yesterday).

    I realize that I have found great personal reward in helping others in the past, and that I shouldn't be afraid or ashamed to reach out to My List. Pen is in hand, notebook is in front of me, and outreach begins NOW.

  • http://twitter.com/sjcorum Stephanie Corum

    The list is definitely a worthwhile task, but it was the challenge to write one note that really struck a chord with me. There was a person in my life who really started me on my path many years ago. I've been thinking of him a lot recently and figured I should call him to see how he is doing as his health has not been good. But no, instead I'm going to write him that note telling him how much he has meant to me and how he shaped my future without ever even knowing it. Thank you for that.

  • natslavin

    Wow. Great comments Jamie. And I love turning the conversation: “I have been helped by so many people in my life, is there anything I can do to be helpful to you?”

  • Kristin

    We are not alone in this world – something I all to easily forget. Haven’t started the list yet but reconnected with three people today by asking them how they are and if there is something I could do for them. What next? THE LIST!

    • Anonymous

      You are so right! And like Sarah said, ask for something also. Change your game!

      • Kristin

        Yes, we should allow other people to give back as well and appreciate their help. Learned that a while ago in a seminar on media interviews mixed with lifecoaching. Very interesting mix by the way. You will only be successful in front of a camera when you accept yourself.

  • natslavin

    I also want to thank you for focusing on “value;” – it's something we are challenged by and that is hard to define, but you touch on so many valuable ideas that it has inspired me. In looking at making lists and prioritizing those lists I am creating a Venn diagram of people who are on multiple lists. Maybe that's who I reach out to next?

  • http://www.anjwritesabout.com AnjWrites

    This past year has been one where I have made some incredible new connections and I am actually looking forward to making this list. Eeven though it may not be a very long list, the names will not only remind me to make regular contact with them, but I hope that simply seeing these names will give me a boost at those times when my inner-critic (Fearella) tries to tear me down.

    Thanks for the great post, Nat…and very big Thank You to Sarah for making YOUR list so that all of this could happen!

    • Anonymous

      Fearella. – a much smaller voice than the voice you have!

  • http://www.sunshineboatright.com/ Sunshine

    I was given this task by a mentor nearly 3 years ago. I was amazed at just how many people where on there. The thing that amazes me even more is all the people that would be on there now. The past 3 years have been a time of such tremendous growth for me, I may very well sit down & do this exercise again! :)

    • Anonymous

      It’s great that you have shared your story about doing this once before. I’m glad it was empowering then and know it will be equally so now!

  • http://twitter.com/lipdesign Lori Paquette

    Thank you, Nat, for sharing this. Amazing how something so simple can be so effective — not only at a business level but as a way of reaching out, connecting and giving back. I just started to write down some random names (going back 25 years from my first job out of college) and realized just how blessed I am to have been touched by so many talented, intelligent and giving people. The notebook is about to join me at my daughter’s basketball practice so I can continue the list. I’ve been sitting on a wealth of resources without knowing it. Another *slap to the forehead* moment. :D

    I keep a stash of notecards around to write notes though I haven’t written any in awhile. (as an aside I just put a sticky note on my idea board to design my own cards for this purpose. Would be a nice way to show my work and a wonderful creative outlet for me … ok, brain stop getting A.D.D.)

    Thanks, again, Nat.

    • Anonymous

      Thank you for sharing your story. I think designing your own cards is a great idea. Share the design with us!

      • http://twitter.com/lipdesign Lori Paquette

        Perhaps a line of Hooligan Tribe cards? and 30 Days t-shirts?

  • http://BestLifeDesign.com drmolliemarti

    Yeah….about the 10 thing. I've been told I set audacious goals :-) MOST important is to find the number that works for YOU that you can commit to and follow through! LOVE (love, love!) your idea of multi-modality (phone, email, handwritten (so important!) – plus could add fb, twitter DM – don't make this harder than it is!)

    You inspire me, too – and down right impress me with that Venn diagram thing-o :-) You left brain lawyer, you. Makes a lot of sense to prioritize by those in multiple circles of influence. Remember that old 80/20 pareto principle – it works its magic in networking, too.

  • http://BestLifeDesign.com drmolliemarti

    Oh, yes! The original (& no one does it better) Go-Giver. What a treat it will be to hear from him!

    Agree that Nat's List tool is powerful – can be used in many, many ways.

    (As an aside: Since you've started this challenge, I've been walking around the house saying, “Game on!” It's now a joke and a pretty standard reply by my kiddos to any sort of challenge. Fun to have the whole family stepping up their game … together!)

  • natslavin

    I am sooooo not a lawyer! Any communication is the right communication: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn. Well, maybe not a text message. I once got a group Happy New Year text. Was nice, but not personal.

  • natslavin

    You are so welcome, Stephanie. Thanking people who have mattered is always a wonderful gift to give someone. And thanking someone again years later is truly special.

  • http://twitter.com/JoyFull_deb Deb Bruser

    Thanks Nat. It seems such a “no-brainer” to make & keep a list of folks that have impacted your life/career, yet I have only thought of those when I needed a reference, and the list was pretty short!! I've been working since 1971 ( a dinosaur) and at this very moment, my mind is in rewind mode and I'm realizing that, YES, I DO have more people to add to my list.

    Why is it that we (me) are so hesitant to “reach out?” I think someone else said that we have this “go it alone” mentality, when in reality, it's just not the truth. I'd bet big $$$ that most of us here have built amazing, supportive communities over the years. And we've added value to their lives and they've enriched ours !! It's just taking that BIG or tiny step out there on the limb, and believing in who we ARE…telling the “committees” in our head to sit down and shut up and making our list and R.O.C.K. ing our plan!!! Play BIG as our friend Amy Bryant says so encouragingly!!
    Another awesome day here….and I am SO lovin' our “musicologist”…Mrs. Robinson :-) and our FAB guest today, Nat Slavin!!

  • islandgusto

    Marvelousmartha- I think you're right: we never know who will change our lives. Like you, I am looking for my path. In my case, I have a small – very small – business, that I want to grow. There are lots of things I can do, but I need to pull the threads together into something coherent. I've started the list, and keep coming back to it as I think of more names. Who knows what insights they can offer?!

  • Ava Diamond (@feistywoman)

    I love this idea, Mollie!

  • http://www.soulfilledlife.com Heather Gray

    Hi Nat (and tribe)
    That’s a lot of names! I know I can also fall into the “lone wolf” syndrome — mentioned above. As an introvert type, especially when I am going through a lot of change, I find I need to have a lot of time to myself.

    2009 was a lot of game changing for me. I packed up my NYC apartment (that I had for 9 years), drove across the country and back, spent 2 weeks in Africa and took my entrepreneurship to a new level (from part time to full time writer and coach). At times it was so much change that I found it difficult to talk to people who knew the old me. Almost as if I was in the forming stage of new change and could not answer all there questions about “what’s your plan?!”

    So now you have me curious about writing a list, if it would help just to know they were there if I needed them.
    I feel like now that I am more established in my change and taking action that a list can help too.

    Thanks for another great post, woo hoo — 30 days is a fun ride!

    • Anonymous

      Congrats on such a big 2009! You should be so proud all that you have already done to change your game. I felt so helped by just knowing that folks were out there that I could turn to for advice and, feedback and support. It is indeed a fun ride!

  • http://marjorymejia.com/ Marjory

    Thanks Nat for reminding us to rely on our tribe. These are times to support each other and reach out to those who we can count on for blessings. Lovely idea.

  • Ava Diamond (@feistywoman)

    Thanks, Nat. This is a great idea. And I love Mollie's idea of reaching out and asking how you can help THEM!

    A quick note to the people who commented that they were reluctant to reach out and ask for help. It is SO worth it to move beyond that fear. People love to help. It makes them feel good. They find joy in it.

    So you might think of it this way–each time you don't reach out to someone whose help you'd like, you deny them the opportunity to give, the opportunity to serve, and the opportunity to feel the joy of sharing themselves and their knowledge or contacts with you.

    Giving and receiving. It's all part of the Universal flow. It's a balance.

    Thanks again, Nat!

  • http://twitter.com/thrivecoaching Vanessa Torre

    OMG, Jamie – I have the exact same fears. I am not much of a “salesperson.” I always feel like a total tool! The perspective is good and I love what Dr.MollieMarti added about looking at it as a win-wn situation. More of a “How can we help each other.” I was actually fortunate to be contacted by someone I had met ONCE who remembered me from two years ago who called when I started my business and asked, “How can I help?” Knocked my socks off. Turns out, there were lots of ways I could help him too!

  • natslavin

    I think you are going to have a hard time finding someone to take that bet!

    We are naturally limited when we just try and “go it alone” – we start with ideas, like Sarah has, and then we reach out to our community and ask. She made a list (and reached out to the people in her network/tribe) – people I am sure she has both helped and who are there for her, and voila! These 30 days…

  • islandgusto

    Nat, My list keeps growing. Thanks for the very simple idea of putting it down on paper. We all know we have networks, but I was overlooking a lot of people until I actually wrote it, as you suggested. I'm going to write a note now, to someone on the list, asking what I can do to help her. Thanks!

  • natslavin

    So true, Ava. Great perspective on keeping a balance in our relationships. If it is all one-sided, well, then it is all one sided!

  • natslavin

    Indeed these are those times. And all times are good times to remember those who are there for you, and vice versa.

  • Anonymous

    Nat
    Everything works better with a friend. And a list, well that’s even better.
    And peace of mind is such a valuable gift during a life transition.
    Thanks

    • Anonymous

      A precious gift, indeed. Peace of mind is the starting point for everything!

  • natslavin

    Fantastic! I had the same experience. We tend to keep going back to the same “short list” and when we start expanding our mind and being more inclusive, well, the list truly grows!

  • kymlee

    Thanks Nat! I'll keep these things in mind while building my list tonight! :)

  • http://BestLifeDesign.com drmolliemarti

    Sorry…guess you're guilty by association. Was thinking Sarah had you on her “legal team” (she likes to hang with lawyer types because she may stir up some trouble as she escapes mediocrity…you never know. LOL) My apologies for accusing you of being a lawyer :-)

    Agree on text – not high on connection factor and it's all about relationships. Enjoy the rest of your day interacting with this amazing community!

  • Anonymous

    Once again, thanks to Sarah Robinson for making all of this happen! It has been an incredibly rewarding day just sharing all of your thoughts, goals and ambitions.

    Thanks also to all of you for validating my experience and encouraging me in so many ways. Thanks for your words of support and kindness!

  • http://www.facebook.com/pages/Caring-Creates-/228986840568 Sally G.

    I think I feel the same as you mckra1g. I was brought up 'not to bother anybody' and to do everything for myself. To this day I neglect to invite people in to help me along the way. In that way, I'm operating as 'half' of a worthy community member ~ I give what I can but am often closed to receiving. This is a very hard habit/belief to break. (By the way, what amphibian did you eat today?)

  • http://twitter.com/magnoliawkshop Erin Baebler

    OK, this is a mind blowing one for me. I am scared to write the list. What if I find out my list is short? You just uncovered a fear I never even knew I had. So, thanks, I think? I'm off to ponder.

  • jackieulmer

    This is especially timely for me today. Reflecting on the past and kind of the “new year, out with the old, in with the new” and that seems to trigger doubt sometimes. Can I repeat success? Have I lost my “audience”? Is there still value in what I offer? etc.

    Thanks for making it easy for me to even just do a quick, mental list and come out feeling on top of the world!

    EXPECT Success!

    Jackie Ulmer

  • Shelley

    Yes, and reconnection helps you recollect your path to today! It's so easy to forget where you came from. I feel ahead of the game here, ha ha! Over the holidays, I had the chance to see several people who would be on my list, people I have not seen for a long long time. The impact on my frame of mind was explosive. It definitely brought a game-changing state of mind!

  • http://www.facebook.com/pages/Caring-Creates-/228986840568 Sally G.

    I hear similar comments from my husband Ava — “when you choose to handle everything all by yourself, you deny me the opportunity to impress you. I might even be helpful to you. Always acting so capable can be quite a selfish act – with potentially limiting results.” He's quite wise. And so are you …

  • Kristin

    Mollie, I love your mind-shift from thinking about what I can get out of my network to how I can be of value to my network. The people I admire are mostly like this. They are always willing to help others without asking for something in return. I would never hesitate to help them when they need my support because they are such a treasure in my life.

    I started a bit smaller than you and reach out to at least one person a day. Once we begin to focus on being grateful for others and seeing their strengths and values we will discover more and more positive things and love them for every bit.

  • Ava Diamond (@feistywoman)

    He sounds like a wonderful man!

  • http://www.facebook.com/pages/Caring-Creates-/228986840568 Sally G.

    I love connecting with people on the level of 'human being' … sharing moments with others where they truly feel like they've been 'seen', at essence; letting them know that their intent was as visible to you as their actions, especially if the manifestation of those actions did not turn out as intended. There's such a rush of relief and comfort in the words, “I know how you feel” or “You really made my day”.

    Intention does carry a certain energy with it – one the receiver can feel whether or not they can put words to what they're feeling. I think it's important when sending thoughts of love and admiration to those who truly have made a difference in your life that it comes from a place of sincerity vs strategy. Issuing notes and/or making phone calls when sharing admiration, gratitude and appreciation is the sole purpose (ie. you don't need anything from anyone at the time) will prove more meaningful and significant than when there's a request of some kind laced throughout.

    I'm loving that developing and nurturing relationships is becoming a more acceptable business acumen. Thank you Nat.

  • http://twitter.com/mckra1g mckra1g

    Hee! No amphibian today. Just pizza. :) Here's the back story on “eating a frog”: http://simplemom.net/worst-thing-first-eat-that… ….and someone once gave me an explanation of being open to receiving that has stuck w/me: denying other people an opportunity to be generous is selfish of us.

  • http://www.facebook.com/pages/Caring-Creates-/228986840568 Sally G.

    Erin, I'll bet your list will surprise you. And I'll bet there are lots of people out there whose lives you touched but they didn't have the voice to tell you …

  • http://www.reignitingromance.com/ Rachel Miller

    It feels so good to be validated on something I feel so strongly about! Thanks Nat!

    My people, as I call them, are many and varied. They are how I continue to move forward even in the hardest of times. The most amazing part of having really connected with my people is how many of my professional contacts have become such close personal friends. Everyday I feel so blessed to have “my people” around me and supporting me.

    One of them is actually in this group! Teresa Romain has not only been a huge catalyst for change in my life but someone I connected with on a professional level that I know call friend and mentor! Thanks Teresa!

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  • natslavin

    No fear! It's not a competition. I promise you will start thinking of people with whom your lives have intersected in the most surprising way.

    And what courage to share this fear! I was lucky – I was a columnist in a magazine that 50,000 readers, so my path intersected with lots of peoples' paths. I am sure that not everyone would want to take my call, and I didn't reach out to most of them. But knowing that there 3 or 4 people you can start with is huge.

    And you just took the first step by sharing your fear. Bravo for your bravery!

  • natslavin

    Expect Success! What a great mantra. Thanks for sharing.

  • natslavin

    Congrats for not only being in the game, but being ahead of it! And now that we are in the post-holiday-waiting-for-spring mindset (at least that's how it is in Chicago), let's keep connecting and reconnecting and not let go of that energy!

  • natslavin

    Keith Ferrazzi said in his book “Never Eat Alone” and always in person, “Never keep score.” It's not wrong to ask people for business help, but be open and honest about it. Ask for what you, but never forget that your personal brand and the relationships you build are based on your contributions, not your deductions.

  • http://www.facebook.com/pages/Caring-Creates-/228986840568 Sally G.

    So funny – I left a reply on Ava's comment that said pretty much the same thing about looking through the other end of the telescope and seeing 'self-ability' as potential self-ishness. It was my husband who had shared it with me. Wouldn't it be a mind-blowing 6 Degrees of Separation if he was the source in both cases! Also, I liked the blog post you linked — I don't 'eat the frog first' often enough. Although yesterday and today I did, which is why I'm so late to getting here (something I love).

  • natslavin

    And thank you for validating me! And thank you for using this forum to call out and thank someone who has been there for you. Awesome.

  • http://www.facebook.com/pages/Caring-Creates-/228986840568 Sally G.

    So true. I think Stephen Covey refers to them as Emotional Bank Deposits? (Don't quote me, it's been awhile since I read the book but I practice the principle often.)

    I heard this quote often growing up (I'm of Scottish origin) — and it was put in the context of 'you're not as great as you think you are' — but in this case, it would very much be the flip opposite: If we only knew our greatness.

    O would some power the giftie gie us to see ourselves as others see us. (O would some power the gift to give us to see ourselves as others see us.) ~Robert Burns, Poem “To a Louse” – verse 8

  • Teresa Romain

    Hey Nat and everyone!

    I so get the power of this list… and yet, like some others have mentioned, I am scared to sit down and do it. Because even thinking of doing it, I recognize one painful truth it will force me to see. And that is all the relationships I have not nurtured that COULD have been on my list and part of my tribe. Just thinking of doing this list forces me to face the truth about how many of my past relationships have been more about me “getting” than “giving”…. and when I didn't need anything or didn't get what I wanted, I would let the relationship wither. Not something I'm proud of. I have burned more bridges than I like to admit and some other ones are pretty wobbly. Yet this is part of the “game-changing” I had begun to practice even before this 30-day challenge. So – with some definite trepidation and even sadness and regret, I commit to spend 5 minutes STARTING my list today… maybe even writing that note of thanks to one of those people where the bridge between us is only partially standing. So – thanks for the challenge… and the opportunity you've given me to take my “game changing” to a whole new level!

  • natslavin

    Keep looking forward; we have all at times done less than we wish we had, but that is no reason for regret.

    It is never too late to grow relationships, and congrats on reaching out with the thank you message!

  • http://twitter.com/22twts Lance Godard

    Nat: thank you for sharing this story; it is quite inspirational. My story isn't the same but for the part about drawing upon the kindness and support of friends as I transitioned from the prior stage of my life to the one I'm in now. Even though I didn't read this 18 months ago when I started my new journey, the lesson is as valid today as it would have been then. I'll start putting together my list tonight….

  • kristieschwanebeck

    Alright, I guess for me the bottom line is this. I am finishing up graduating with my MA. My cohort are all twenty somethings that went from a BA straight to their MA. I however, took a number of years off, stayed home and raised a family. However, life circumstances have changed to the point of me having a number of businesses that need setting up that I could use mentoring in. But having been a stay at home mom and now a student, I do not have an available list of people within my personal circle that have any notion of what a professional life entails regarding how to set up businesses etc etc. So I guess my question is where to go from here?

    I have attempted to go down the road of networking but again, I seem to be coming up short in that venue as well. I have joined the odd networking group and so far all the events that have been held are at times when I have had prior commitments that are in a non negotiable state so I could not even wriggle my way out of them.

    Mentorship is key for me. I am walking into an arena that no one in my family has gone before, I am doing the unthinkable to most. To have strong, insightful mentors that can give me proper direction on where to go and how to access various resources when I come to a stuck point is crucial to my ventures. So the stuck point I am at? Where do I go? To whom do I turn? and How do I access the multitudes of wisdom and knowledge of those that have gone before me?

  • http://themarketingmark.blogspot.com MarkSherrick

    now, as I mentioned in the day three post, I made my list.

    Up next, determining what to call them – I think my people need a cool name like Hooligans – but I can't use that one, Sarah already took it. :)

  • sarahrobinson

    Kristie – why don't you start here with the posters who write things that resonate with you and your fellow community members? If you are on twitter or facebook, write down the names of people you enjoy connecting with. Whose blogs do you read? Who is doing what you want to do? Reach out those people. You will be surprised at how many reach back.

  • natslavin

    Sarah is spot on, Kristie. And also, use your academic connections to help find a mentor. Did you have one professor in either undergrad or grad school who inspired you, or with whom you developed an important sense of respect? Reach out to that person and ask them if they have a fellow professor or professional colleague with whom you could connect.

    And while you might not have an academic contact at the university where you studied, you can certainly contact them and ask to speak to someone at the business school for contacts in the alumni that might be interested in mentoring. Undergrad, too. I know that my college has asked me to mentor students looking to connect.

    Also, there are great professional groups, like Vistage, that support entrepreneurs and business owners as they try and grow their businesses. Vistage is a little pricey, but they may have a recommendation for a network.

  • natslavin

    Thanks, Lance!

    Thank you for reminding us that no matter where you are professionally it is always the right time to recognize the people that have had an impact in your life.

  • kristieschwanebeck

    Thanks Sarah. That's exactly why I joined your group and started a twitter account. I got tired of stagnation. I am on both the twitter lists and fb. Although I had not thought to gain mentor ship that way. Thank you forth insight and permission to contact this tribe. I do believe I shall take up your suggestions.
    Sent on the TELUS Mobility network with BlackBerry

  • sarahrobinson

    I would like to echo some the sentiments already expressed here. Don't hestitate on making the list because you are already deciding that people won't respond when you reach out. Your job is to make the list and reach out. You are responsible for the effort part. For taking the action. Don't decide for people and deprive them of the chance of deciding for themselves if and how they can help you. If you lead with gratitude and an offer of giving support, you will be amazed at who will get in your corner. And Nat is write. “The List” is how I gave birth to 30 Days. :-)

  • Nazima Ali

    Very cool. This is something I've been working on for a while now, not the list but the group of people I surround myself with. Thanks for the great post.

  • http://twitter.com/McMedia Sandi McKenna

    I've always kept lists in my “head” however, today Nat, you inspired me to take a pen to paper. My list is growing and ideas are flowing!

  • Teresa Romain

    Thanks for the encouragement Nat!!!! It helps alot!

  • Teresa Romain

    Thanks Rachel – for your acknowledgement and for helping me get started on my list! I can put your name down!!! :-)

  • natslavin

    Thank you for the encouragement and positive feedback!

  • http://www.thepromotionguy.com/ Scott Toomey

    What a coincidence…yesterday I picked up the phone and called someone I hadn’t spoken to in sometime and who has had a profound impact on my life. I have kept a list of people who I have crossed paths with, worked with, had as customers and so on and so for sometime…I always find it good to look at it once a week or every other week and randomly call someone on the list to see how they are doing and thank them.

  • natslavin

    It's such a great experience. And surprising, too. I hope you rediscover a name you are excited to reconnect with!

  • janica

    Thanks for the great post Nat. Like some others have said I keep the list in my head but I am committed to committing it to paper. I think it will have great power to have the physical demonstration of the number of people in my life who are “list worthy”. And I love the idea of reaching out to a few each day to tell them they provide value to my life and ask how I can return the favor.

  • lorilatimer

    Oh boy. Like so many others, I always think I have to do it all myself, that to ask for help would make me look less than, or weak. – heaven forbid, right? But I actually started making such a list a month or so ago, although I never thought deeply about what I would do with it. Well, I love Dr. Mollie Marti's idea of reaching out to ask people if there's anything I can do for them – I'm much more comfortable with that approach to begin with, and then we'll see where I go from there! But this is a great post, and I thank you for sharing your experience and wisdom, Nat.

    Now I just have to figure out where I put that darned list!

  • Susan

    Make the List is inspiring and empowering. Last year I wanted to go on a medical missions trip, but didn’t have the money, so I wrote up a list of all the ppl that I thought could give $10 and came up with over 200! That was so awesome knowing that I had that many ppl in my life that I felt confident would give for my cause. Unfortunately, I had an accident and could not go, but everyone I asked readily said they would give. I knew then that I have several ppl in my life that believe in me. I will definitely be sending notes to those who especially make a great impact on my life. Thank you.

    • Anonymous

      What an incredible story and a great use of your network to help accomplish an important goal. Maybe you can go again, and w/your expanded network raise even more – and do a match. Donate to both a charity and to getting you there!

  • http://twitter.com/lipdesign Lori Paquette

    Kristie – You've raised a family and now you're nearly finished with your MA. Way to go! That is a HUGE achievement. Your experience as a mother has given you valuable skills sets and knowledge that the 20 somethings have yet to experience.

    In addition to the wonderful suggestions Sarah and Nat mention here, I would like to add looking at resources and blogs specifically targeted at “mompreneurs.” Carla Young's MOMeo Magazine, TwitterMoms and MetroMom are 3 that come immediately to mind. These resources have helped me connect to women with similar goals and challenges.

  • natslavin

    And you will be shocked with who you remember and reconnect with once you start writing the names. You will have great memories and great reasons to connect.

  • natslavin

    I think her idea is great, too. And it's important to be able to ask for what you need as well! Not everyone will always be available but it is just natural to feel good about helping others!

  • sarahas

    Wow, Sarah, this response why I've put off making a list. I was mentally checking off people who, I thought, upon receiving my correspondence would think “oh, that's nice” and promptly discard. Actually… that's one of the reason's why I joined the challenge, I've realized I do that with myself a lot of… count myself out before giving it a whirl. It's interesting that a somewhat painful self realization can make you feel stronger. @sarahsbordone

  • Writergrrl

    I just wanted to say that I am really appreciative of your authenticity and willingness to be open in your comments here – it's inspiring!!

  • Kristin

    We are not alone in this world – something I all to easily forget. Haven't started the list yet but reconnected with three people today by asking them how they are and if there is something I could do for them. What next? THE LIST!

  • Writergrrl

    This past year has been one where I have made some incredible new connections and I am actually looking forward to making this list. Eeven though it may not be a very long list, the names will not only remind me to make regular contact with them, but I hope that simply seeing these names will give me a boost at those times when my inner-critic (Fearella) tries to tear me down.

    Thanks for the great post, Nat…and very big Thank You to Sarah for making YOUR list so that all of this could happen!

  • http://www.sunshineboatright.com/ Sunshine

    I was given this task by a mentor nearly 3 years ago. I was amazed at just how many people where on there. The thing that amazes me even more is all the people that would be on there now. The past 3 years have been a time of such tremendous growth for me, I may very well sit down & do this exercise again! :)

  • http://twitter.com/lipdesign Lori Paquette

    Thank you, Nat, for sharing this. Amazing how something so simple can be so effective — not only at a business level but as a way of reaching out, connecting and giving back. I just started to write down some random names (going back 25 years from my first job out of college) and realized just how blessed I am to have been touched by so many talented, intelligent and giving people. The notebook is about to join me at my daughter's basketball practice so I can continue the list. I've been sitting on a wealth of resources without knowing it. Another *slap to the forehead* moment. :D

    I keep a stash of notecards around to write notes though I haven't written any in awhile. (as an aside I just put a sticky note on my idea board to design my own cards for this purpose. Would be a nice way to show my work and a wonderful creative outlet for me … ok, brain stop getting A.D.D.)

    Thanks, again, Nat.

  • Teresa Romain

    Thank you! That's something that's becoming more and more important to me – being authentic and open. Scary as all get out at time… but still really important!!

  • natslavin

    You are so right! And like Sarah said, ask for something also. Change your game!

  • natslavin

    Fearella. – a much smaller voice than the voice you have!

  • natslavin

    It's great that you have shared your story about doing this once before. I'm glad it was empowering then and know it will be equally so now!

  • natslavin

    Thank you for sharing your story. I think designing your own cards is a great idea. Share the design with us!

  • Kristin

    Yes, we should allow other people to give back as well and appreciate their help. Learned that a while ago in a seminar on media interviews mixed with lifecoaching. Very interesting mix by the way. You will only be successful in front of a camera when you accept yourself.

  • http://www.soulfilledlife.com Heather Gray

    Hi Nat (and tribe)
    That's a lot of names! I know I can also fall into the “lone wolf” syndrome — mentioned above. As an introvert type, especially when I am going through a lot of change, I find I need to have a lot of time to myself.

    2009 was a lot of game changing for me. I packed up my NYC apartment (that I had for 9 years), drove across the country and back, spent 2 weeks in Africa and took my entrepreneurship to a new level (from part time to full time writer and coach). At times it was so much change that I found it difficult to talk to people who knew the old me. Almost as if I was in the forming stage of new change and could not answer all there questions about “what's your plan?!”

    So now you have me curious about writing a list, if it would help just to know they were there if I needed them.
    I feel like now that I am more established in my change and taking action that a list can help too.

    Thanks for another great post, woo hoo — 30 days is a fun ride!

  • michaelleiter

    Nat
    Everything works better with a friend. And a list, well that's even better.
    And peace of mind is such a valuable gift during a life transition.
    Thanks

  • natslavin

    Congrats on such a big 2009! You should be so proud all that you have already done to change your game. I felt so helped by just knowing that folks were out there that I could turn to for advice and, feedback and support. It is indeed a fun ride!

  • natslavin

    A precious gift, indeed. Peace of mind is the starting point for everything!

  • natslavin

    Once again, thanks to Sarah Robinson for making all of this happen! It has been an incredibly rewarding day just sharing all of your thoughts, goals and ambitions.

    Thanks also to all of you for validating my experience and encouraging me in so many ways. Thanks for your words of support and kindness!

  • http://twitter.com/CherryWoodburn Cherry Woodburn

    Great questions. Thank you so much.

  • http://twitter.com/CherryWoodburn Cherry Woodburn

    It is denying people the chance to be generous, that's a timely reminder.

  • http://www.thepromotionguy.com/ Scott Toomey

    What a coincidence…yesterday I picked up the phone and called someone I hadn't spoken to in sometime and who has had a profound impact on my life. I have kept a list of people who I have crossed paths with, worked with, had as customers and so on and so for sometime…I always find it good to look at it once a week or every other week and randomly call someone on the list to see how they are doing and thank them.

  • Susan

    Make the List is inspiring and empowering. Last year I wanted to go on a medical missions trip, but didn't have the money, so I wrote up a list of all the ppl that I thought could give $10 and came up with over 200! That was so awesome knowing that I had that many ppl in my life that I felt confident would give for my cause. Unfortunately, I had an accident and could not go, but everyone I asked readily said they would give. I knew then that I have several ppl in my life that believe in me. I will definitely be sending notes to those who especially make a great impact on my life. Thank you.

  • http://twitter.com/lipdesign Lori Paquette

    Perhaps a line of Hooligan Tribe cards? and 30 Days t-shirts?

  • Anonymous

    This would have been a very easy day to read and not take action!

    It was so easy to run through a few names in my head -and -well, I can write a note later….

    But I got out the pad, started writing – and came up with so many people that I’ve not thought about for ages, and been in contact with for even longer.

    And I see that many of them saw something in me that I did not see, or acknowledge, or own, at the time………..

    Time to claim them now, methinks….

    (and I have written to one person (now resisting the urge to say that I will write to more…oh dear!)

    • Anonymous

      And we just met, and you have already written to me! I know every time I reach out to someone that I know I want to reconnect with, I am incredibly rewarded; and procrastinating never gives me that feeling and experience!

  • http://twitter.com/SpiritusShelagh Shelagh at Spiritus

    This would have been a very easy day to read and not take action!

    It was so easy to run through a few names in my head -and -well, I can write a note later….

    But I got out the pad, started writing – and came up with so many people that I've not thought about for ages, and been in contact with for even longer.

    And I see that many of them saw something in me that I did not see, or acknowledge, or own, at the time………..

    Time to claim them now, methinks….

    (and I have written to one person (now resisting the urge to say that I will write to more…oh dear!)

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  • http://www.thevirtualasst.com Michelle Mangen

    Nat – moving post! That is so awesome that you had 357 names on the list and at only 36 and I’m guessing that was long before social media!

    • Anonymous

      Thanks, Michelle! I am very, very lucky to have such a strong network of personal and professional friends. I think social media is just one of the many game changers that can help people really expand our personal relationships.

  • Erin L.

    Thank you Teresa for sharing your thoughts. I spent about 5 minutes scrolling through the comments to find one that expressed this exact sentiment.

    It's hard to admit, but I truly feel that while I can make the list, there isn't anyone on that list who I feel would be willing to help me. What's funny, is that on day one, one of my frustrations that I listed was that I don't feel like I have a strong network of people. And it really bothers me, because it is the one thing I feel I need the most right now.

    So, how

  • http://twitter.com/mmangen Michelle Mangen

    Nat – moving post! That is so awesome that you had 357 names on the list and at only 36 and I'm guessing that was long before social media!

  • natslavin

    What an incredible story and a great use of your network to help accomplish an important goal. Maybe you can go again, and w/your expanded network raise even more – and do a match. Donate to both a charity and to getting you there!

  • natslavin

    And we just met, and you have already written to me! I know every time I reach out to someone that I know I want to reconnect with, I am incredibly rewarded; and procrastinating never gives me that feeling and experience!

  • natslavin

    Thanks, Michelle! I am very, very lucky to have such a strong network of personal and professional friends. I think social media is just one of the many game changers that can help people really expand our personal relationships.

  • joecheray

    I had a discussion a month or so ago with a pastor at a church that my son and I were attending a bible study at. He said that I am denying someone out there the ability to use their gifts and talents to help me with things around my house I am having difficulty doing and that I should reach out and ask for help. I never thought about it like that and what mcgra1g and Cherry said really makes it seem more like I should be doing that.

  • joecheray

    Erin I think my list is going to be a short one too. Maybe just maybe it is ok to have a short list. Too much feedback could be too much noise. It could be that by having a few close trusted folks that we have impacted to gain insights from could be just as good as having a huge list.

  • joecheray

    Ha ha I am waiting for spring here in Kansas too.

  • joecheray

    Teresa after reading your post here I realized that I too am guilty of this as well. I am going to also include those folks that I have unknowingly left along the wayside into my list.

  • joecheray

    Maybe you just had your Holy Shit moment Teresa.

  • joecheray

    Kristie I sent you a friend invite over on Facebook. I am trying to go back to school and will be totally changing gears from what I was originally studying. I was going for a degree in health promotion and now I am looking into going into web technologies related. Talk about your Holy Shit moment here. Not only that I have been raising a special needs child on my own for a better part of the last 10 yrs. I have also decided to slowly begin my own consulting firm with emphasis on helping small business and home based business owners understand how the internet can help their business. You are not alone and I feel that I am not alone either.

  • joecheray

    Lori hey I am on TwitterMoms are you?? Also I beling to two networks called Small Business Referral Network and Home Based Preneurs the ladies in those groups are so awesome. They have really lifted me up in the last 6 months to make me feel like I can do whatever it takes to build my business.

  • http://twitter.com/ginidietrich ginidietrich

    Nat – I don’t know if you’ll see this among ONE HUNDRED AND ELEVEN comments, but this is amazing! It’s not a surprise to me that you could easily write 357 names from memory – you’re one who people will always want to help. What is a surprise, knowing you as I do, that you ever had doubts in your abilities. It’s refreshing and inspiring.

    • Anonymous

      Thank you, Gini!! I so appreciate your comments and support. You set a very high bar in everything you do, and am inspired by you do.

  • http://twitter.com/ginidietrich ginidietrich

    Nat – I don't know if you'll see this among ONE HUNDRED AND ELEVEN comments, but this is amazing! It's not a surprise to me that you could easily write 357 names from memory – you're one who people will always want to help. What is a surprise, knowing you as I do, that you ever had doubts in your abilities. It's refreshing and inspiring.

  • Anonymous

    Before I can make the list I have had to go through my desk and physically find all the names ,addresses,emails and phone numbers of people that have been haphazardly strewn about. If I get nothing else out of this challenge I will at least get organization finally. Who knows I may end up with a more productive work space both on my physical desktop and PC desktop. Yeah Me.

  • natslavin

    Thank you, Gini!! I so appreciate your comments and support. You set a very high bar in everything you do, and am inspired by you do.

  • joecheray

    Before I can make the list I have had to go through my desk and physically find all the names ,addresses,emails and phone numbers of people that have been haphazardly strewn about. If I get nothing else out of this challenge I will at least get organization finally. Who knows I may end up with a more productive work space both on my physical desktop and PC desktop. Yeah Me.

  • http://twitter.com/Mikki_Q Michele Sieniarecki

    My fear is that, in writing that list, it also becomes a list of people whom I’ve failed in some way or another. Throughout my work life, I’ve had s number of “champions” who saw something in me worth developing, but for one reason or another, things didn’t work out. Mostly because their vision and mine weren’t the same, and I believe it’s important to honor your own vision, but also because at the time I couldn’t muster that courage or vision for myself. Is it better to know what you want to do/be and then find those who will support it, or do you listen to the chorus of people who see you in a role that you never saw for yourself? Do I know better, or should I try listening to the crowd?

    Nevertheless, I’m making that list. I’m calling those people. And I’m going to hear what they have to say with an open mind and an open heart. Maybe I’ll learn that I haven’t been such a disappointment after all.

  • LaConsuelo

    EW! “lawyer types”!!! ACK!!! I resemble that remark!

  • http://twitter.com/Mikki_Q Michele Sieniarecki

    My fear is that, in writing that list, it also becomes a list of people whom I've failed in some way or another. Throughout my work life, I've had s number of “champions” who saw something in me worth developing, but for one reason or another, things didn't work out. Mostly because their vision and mine weren't the same, and I believe it's important to honor your own vision, but also because at the time I couldn't muster that courage or vision for myself. Is it better to know what you want to do/be and then find those who will support it, or do you listen to the chorus of people who see you in a role that you never saw for yourself? Do I know better, or should I try listening to the crowd?

    Nevertheless, I'm making that list. I'm calling those people. And I'm going to hear what they have to say with an open mind and an open heart. Maybe I'll learn that I haven't been such a disappointment after all.

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