Afraid to be Powerful

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.
― Marianne Williamson, A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of “A Course in Miracles”

Young Living Diamond Wynne Elder finished up a video I watched yesterday with the quote above. I love it, because I discovered it at the time I needed it. Don’t you love when that happens?

I’ve been in a stuck period in my Young Living career–still haven’t sold a single starter kit. I’m okay with that now. It’ll happen when it happens. Watching another video, this one by Celeste McLean (another YL Diamond), I realized my “why” is so selfish. I’ve been so desperate to make money to quit my day job that for the past year I’ve been thrashing around to one project or another. Celeste and Wynne helped me understand the point of Young Living is to help others. Sure, we do it by selling them products, but that is so not the thrust of it. These women who are two steps away from the top of the company’s ranking system are still so humble and focused on helping their team.

Society, it seems to be me, has one image of success; super-powerful business people are obnoxious, ready to step on “the little people” to get where they want to go. I won’t pursue that line of thought any farther, but these (mostly) women entrepreneurs are becoming successful by helping people to wellness and supporting them with their knowledge and kindness. Sure, not everyone is that way, but by and large the community of Young Living users and distributors is warm and affirming.

With that kind of support backing me up, I’m going to focus, this month and in the coming year, on relationships and helping people toward wellness. I want to let my light shine and “make manifest the glory of God” within me. If I can help you in any way with your health, wellness or other needs, please let me know!

What are You Supposed to Be?

I’m assembling a team.

Nope, not the Justice League.

Nope, not the Avengers.

I’m assembling a team of women (and men) who are passionate about helping others become the person she (or he) was born to be.

What the World Needs Now…

Sometimes it’s really hard to love other people. The world–especially the U.S.—seems really tense and scary these days, to the point where it’s a whole lot easier to write ’em all off and just blanket-fort it. I have to confess that I frequently say, “People suck,” usually during or after a newscast. But what if people suck because they aren’t feeling their best? I sure get cranky when I’m not feeling well. What if they suck because they aren’t the person they are meant to be?

But that’s why we need to spread the word (and the scent) about oils. Wouldn’t it be great to diffuse Stress Away in the middle of Congress? Maybe we can’t do that, but a better world starts with one person and one action at a time.

Jesus commanded us to love, even (especially) our enemies. That is hard, I won’t lie. No matter what your religious beliefs, love is a central tenet. If we don’t consider the wellbeing of others, we get insular and just focus on ourselves. That deprives the world of our unique talents. People are crying out in need–and they need YOU.

Just the Essentials

I’ve spent the past six months studying essential oils, and specifically Young Living. I believe in the mental, physical, emotional and spiritual wellness the products can–and do–bring. That’s why I’ve chosen to devote significant time sharing with you. It’s not some dodgy company or a get-rich-quick scheme. I genuinely care about using my talents to help you become the person you were meant to be through a fuller, healthier life.

Wanna Join?

The point of a team is that we’re all pulling together for the same goals. I want a team because I can’t do it alone. And I want to help you with your goals.

Besides helping others, joining the Young Living team can help you earn an income commensurate with the work you put into it. As I said earlier, you won’t get rich quick, but you’ll have a group of people to help you. I’ll talk more about the monetary aspects in tomorrow’s post.

For now, here’s how to join Team Joyful Oil Life.

  1. Go to http://bit.ly/DonnaFitchYoungLiving.
  2. Click Continue
  3. My name should appear on the next welcome screen. If so, click Continue
  4. Choose your diffuser
  5. Customize your Essential Rewards box (optional, but recommended) and click the Confirm checkbox.
  6. Click Next
  7. Fill out your membership info and sign-in info. (Make sure you remember your username/password/PIN. This will be used to login to your Virtual Office.)
  8. Click Agree and Continue.
  9. Finalize your order, shipping and payment.
  10. Welcome to Young Living and Team Joyful Oil Life! You’ll receive a welcome email from me very soon, but feel free to contact me with any questions!

How to Grab Your Dream of Writing a Book

In 2013, the Huffington Post reported that more than 80% of Americans want to write a book–about 200 million people, just in the US. You can Google to find the details, but I’m intentionally not linking, because the statistic alone is discouraging enough. I could go on to list the reasons they don’t write, even though self-publishing through Amazon and other venues make it easier than ever before. You know why you don’t write, if that’s your dream.

Writing a book seems daunting. All that word-wrangling and how do you come up with a plot and do you have to be drunk and do you have to use a computer and I don’t have a pen name and-and-and-

Whew. Slow down. Take a breath. Here’s some advice on how to make that dream a reality.

What’s Your Superpower?

If you’ve never written much beyond a college paper or high school book report, don’t start out with the “great American novel.” Nonfiction is a great place to begin. It’s not necessarily easier than fiction, but it’s probably closer to what you’ve already written in the past. The first step isn’t to put words on paper, but to think about what you know. Stuck in traffic, scrubbing off in the shower, waiting in the carpool line–seize any moment you’re not actively doing something and rummage around in your head for subjects that you know lots about or in which you’re very interested. No, it doesn’t have to be as huge as “world peace” or “solving the college football playoff issue.” The topics should, however, be broad. In what areas do you give people advice? What seems easy for you that others find challenging? Cooking? Cleaning? Fixing cars? Repairing electronics? Creating web pages? At this point, don’t censor yourself (unless it’s illegal or immoral, but hey, it’s your brain). Let your imagination have free reign. If you’re not sure, ask friends or coworkers or significant others what your superpowers are.

Do not, at any point, go to Amazon and see how many books there already are on the subject. Your future book is the only one written by YOU!

Brainstorm an Outline

Once you’ve settled on a topic, start brainstorming on paper. The purpose of this step is to figure out what subtopics exist within the broader topic you chose. Grab a stack of index cards or pads of sticky notes and your favorite pen. As fast as you can, without stopping to think if it’s good or bad, jot down one idea on each card and rearrange them later. If you can’t think of subtopics, you should back up and choose a larger topic.

Take those cards or sticky notes and arrange them in the order that makes most sense to you. Think of how you would explain your chosen topic to someone new to the subject–because that’s what you’ll be doing! Add notes as you see gaps in the process you’ve outlined. Some areas might be large enough to be broken down further, and that’s okay; in fact, it’s a great thing.

Make a note of areas within that topic you think should be covered, but you don’t know a lot about. Those areas are ripe for research. But don’t get too caught up in the research process. That, too, can take much time away from actually writing. Although it’s a process I love and adore!

Transfer the notes to your favorite word processing program. Don’t worry about the perfect numbering system. A simple 1-2-3 is fine, or go with a more elaborate I-A-1, or whatever works for your brain. You may find that the process of typing the outline reminds you of steps you left out. Add them in at this stage. When you’ve completed the outline, save it as a separate document.

Here’s part of an example outline for a book on creating a webpage with WordPress:

  1. Obtain hosting
    1. Pros and cons of various hosts
  2. Obtain domain name
    1. How to do it
    2. How to choose a great domain name
  3. Install WordPress
    1. WordPress.com vs. self-hosted WordPress
  4. Edit settings

Start Writing!

Start your writing with a copy of your outline, and you won’t have to worry about staring at a blank page. Begin with the first topic of the outline and write about it as if you’re explaining it to someone new to the subject, as I mentioned before. Spend as much or as little time as you feel necessary to cover the topic thoroughly. Don’t worry about using “writerly” prose. Write in a way that feels natural to you. An important part of writing is finding your voice–that is, writing in a way that is unique to you, that allows your personality to come through.

Although I have a hard time following this advice myself, resist the urge to edit yourself as you write this first draft. You don’t have to be perfect the first time through. Naturally you want to do your best work, but that comes through each successive draft. For now, focus on getting that knowledge out of your head and onto the pixels.

Let’s don’t gloss over that phrase “as if you’re explaining it to someone new to the subject.” When I’m writing on a technical subject, like creating a webpage, I have to remind myself over and over to explain terms that are normal to me, but may not be in everyone’s vocabulary. In the outline above, I used the words “hosts” and “hosting.” For the average person, those words means something entirely different than they do in a technical context. Explain terms in a way that makes sense to a reasonably intelligent person who may not know what a domain name is or understand the intricacies of hook size in crochet. Further along in the process you’ll have plenty of chances to fix anything that doesn’t make sense to your chosen audience.

After the First Draft

When the blessed day comes that you’ve written your way through your outline, save the document and set it aside for a day or two. Turn your focus elsewhere. The idea is to gain a bit of distance from your first draft before you start editing it. Never assume your first draft is your last. You will have made mistakes, typos, grammar problems and other issues. That’s no big deal; everyone makes mistakes. Correcting them and strengthening your work on each successive draft is the mark of a professional writer. But celebrate what you’ve done. You’re already farther than almost everyone who aspires to write a book!

That’s all for this post.

Are Your Goals Limiting Your Dreams?

I am all about goals. I’ve built my business around the concept of rewarding yourself for succeeding in your goals. But something just occurred to me, and that’s the title of this post.

Are your goals limiting your dreams?

We get so wrapped up in brainstorming about goals and thinking about the practical aspects of achieving that we forget about the bigger picture.

Ask yourself: What would I do with my life if I had no obstacles holding me back?

Ask yourself: If I could do anything in the world, what would it be?

Ask yourself: How do I picture my most whole, most authentic, absolute best self?

Ponder those questions for an hour, a month, a year. Allow yourself to imagine, to dream what your life would be like.

That is the point at which you start making goals about how to achieve that dream.

Remember, your only limitation is you.

Celebrate Your Strength and Persistence

I’m pretty sure we’re all inspired by stories of women achieving amazing success despite overwhelming odds. Sometimes those stories make me depressed, though. I think, “She overcame such huge odds. There’s no way I could even come close to doing what she did.”

And yet…

We do amazing things everyday. Sometimes I consider getting up and making it to work an achievement. You become used to your routine and your struggles, and it doesn’t occur to you to celebrate that you sent your kids off to school fed and clothed. You don’t celebrate resolving a work situation with integrity. You don’t celebrate a thousand “little things” you do every day.

If you still don’t think you are strong, determined or persistent, remind yourself that what’s easy for you isn’t easy for someone else. My mom often mentions how impressed she was that I took a job in another city where I didn’t know anyone. I never thought of it as being a big deal. I had to do it so I did.

I’m not saying all this to discount a big show of strength at a crucial moment. But I’m confident that before Elizabeth Warren persisted in the Senate, she succeeded in lots of small ways every day. Strength is made up of small acts of persistence.

Celebrate your strength. Celebrate the strength of those you encounter every day. It’s not a big deal. But it really is.