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Women’s Expo Recap, Part Deux: “An Indecent Proposal” from the Past March 15, 2011

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The Fantasy. The Reality. You've Got it Coming To you. Don't let your Rags-to-Riches become Riches-to-Rages!

I think I must have I analyzed the handwriting of about 60 people over the two days of the Women’s Expo. So I totally nailed the “attraction” part of the equation – and, according to what I’ve heard, I was one of the few vendors who did.

Now I have to get better at the “conversion” part. I was so focused on satisfying the demand for the free analyses, I barely had time to promote the items I had for actual sale, such as my new “WINDFALL” book and the handwriting analysis class I’m hosting in a couple of weeks.

Yet I scored some victories here too – partly because my book was featured at another table besides my own: the Perfect Publishing booth. (www.PerfectNetworker.com) There, Ken Rochon and the other authors in the Perfect Publishing program had all their new books proudly displayed.

My gratitude to Ken was amplified by contrast with another man who also showed up at the Women’s Expo – someone who, almost a year ago at another event (not related to the Women’s Expo), deluded himself into believing he was entitled to sex in exchange for giving me a professional boost.

I’m not kidding. He presumed “permission” where none was granted. His behavior was unprofessional at the very least, possibly even illegal. Seldom had I ever felt so violated, even though nothing “happened.” Just the fact that he asked, was bad enough.

I teach that a woman’s Primal Power is to decide whether, and when, sex will occur. That choice is always hers. What would it say about my integrity, if I couldn’t walk my own talk? Sure, I want to succeed, but not at the cost of granting unwilling sexual favors! Monica Lewinsky I ain’t.

Ken Rochon, on the other hand, never demanded anything unethical of me. He was completely straight-up in all his dealings, never over-promising or under-delivering. He “Kennected” me with an editor (www.Your-Words-Worth.com), graphic designer (www.CSheltraw.com), and printer (www.graphicpressweb.com), who all did exactly what they were supposed to do, on time. The production process went very smoothly and amazingly quickly, and the finished book looks terrific.

And then there’s Cara Michele Nether of Women in Wellness (www.WomenInWellness.com), who coordinated the Speakers’ Showcase including free promos on their website for all the speakers. She also set up the Speakers’ Bootcamp with Dave Elliott (www.mpowerunlimited.com) as the trainer, who is OZ-Some at teaching how to connect with people from the stage.

Last but far from least, Patsy Anderson herself, the Promoter Diva of the Women’s Expo. (www.WomensExpoMD.com and www.WellConnectedNetworking.com). She’s the one who set me up with Mick and Tara Carbo for  an interview on www.LiveYourDreamTV.com, Muni Ara Harun of www.TheSignMama.com who made my gorgeous booth displays, and Deanna Lilly of www.BiznessConcepts.com, who got my book’s splash page ready in time for the Expo.

Now THAT’s the kind of people I want to do business with.

See the results for yourself at www.RosannaTufts.com. The TV interview is there, as well as my “WINDFALL!” book and a free report, “YD-RW: Your Destiny, Re-Writable!”

 

Women’s Expo Recap, Part I: How to Attract a Crowd and Make Them LOVE It March 15, 2011

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WOW. After last year’s monsoon rains, this year’s Women’s Expo was blessed with perfect weather – and I was ready, making a big impact. Thanks to The Sign Mama, who made a fabulous 6-foot vertical banner for my booth, promoting my new book, “WINDFALL!! Taming the Jealousy Monster when You or a Relative Comes Into Money.”

From my position on the floor, I could hear how the acoustics of the hall affected the results from the PA system for the Speakers’ Program – and quickly figured out that if you talked too fast, your words would be lost. So when it came my turn, I was careful to take my pace down, so my words would have time to “land.” My topic was handwriting analysis, and the audience was enthusiastic, laughing in all the right places.

As soon as I was done, my booth was swarmed with customers, eager to take me up on my offer of a free, on-the-spot handwriting analysis. From then on, until closing, they lined up like I was a land office! Once word got around at how incredibly accurate my assessments were, they told all their friends: “You gotta go see this lady!”

Kudos to my daughter Lily, only 11, who played the role of Faithful Assistant, instructing the waiting people on how to fill out the form. I could not have managed without her. Here’s some of the highlights from the samples I saw:

  • A lady with the “determination” trait. I asked her if she’d had to overcome a major physical challenge. She said she’d gotten herself off of drugs! “Goddess bless you,” I said, “Congratulations!”
  • A lady with an extremely erratic slant. I guessed (correctly) that she had a sugar addiction. “You can’t control your moods because the sugar is controlling you. It’s in the driver’s seat.” She confirmed that she was pre-diabetic, and I sent her to one of the health-and-wellness exhibitors for help with detox.
  • Two different ladies (who came to my booth independently of each other) with the “perfectionist” trait. When I mentioned this, all their friends burst out laughing!
  • Several people with “stubbornness issues” – I taught them how to shift that trait from stubbornness to true “persistence,” which will always get you the better deal.
  • Two people with “blind persistence” – I showed them a trait that would encourage greater flexibility.

The vast majority of the women I sampled had prominent “middle zone” writing, showing a focus on the day-to-day immediate concerns of life. The few men who took me up on my free offer, were more consistent in showing capacity for longer-range planning. Two women showed a very good balance between mundane activities and higher executive functioning, as well as being healthily grounded in their bodies.

Go to www.RosannaTufts.com, where you can not only order my “WINDFALL!” book, you can also get a FREE report on what these and other handwriting traits mean: “YD-RW — Your Destiny, Re-Writable!”

Stay tuned for Part Deux of the Women’s Expo Recap . . .

Banner for "Windfall! Taming the Jealousy Monster"

The Fantasy. The Reality. You've got it coming to you. Don't let your Rags-to-Riches become Riches-to-Rages!

 

The Power of Story May 23, 2010

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"My Love, I give you this Golden Crown"

One of my author friends once told me that humanity’s most basic needs are not three, but four: Food. Shelter, Clothing . . .  and Fiction.

I have wrestled with this off and on for years. Each time Circumstance pulls me away from Theatre, and each time I come back, it is with a desire and longing more powerful than before. 

Why? It makes no sense. Why would I do something where, according to “conventional wisdom,” the likelihood of financial success is so small? Why does it matter to me so much, to stand in front of an audience and just pour my heart out in song? 

Back in the day, being onstage was my sole hope of getting people to admire me instead of denigrate me. 

First it was school bullies I was trying to impress. Then it was a compensation for teenage social awkwardness. Then it was proof to my employers that I wasn’t incompetent, I was just in the wrong job. 

In every case, Theatre or Music (and sometimes both simultaneously) was a means to get them to see me for what I really am, not for what they think I am, or wish I was. 

But that’s not going to get an aspiring thespian very far. In some cases, it will even antagonize the very people you need most in order to really succeed. 

What really matters is . . . the Story. 

When you can keep your focus on the Story rather than upon yourself, when everything you do is in service to the Story you are telling, your chances of success are much greater. 

I found that out when I came up with the idea for a musical update of the myth of Persephone. No longer was I a wanna-be soprano, scrambling for little scraps of praise and approval. Overnight I became someone with an original Story to tell, something unique to bring to the table, something that nobody else was doing. 

The Story of how that happened, is a Story all to itself.

Story motivates people to think about their lives — and does it at a subliminal level, without preaching. Story slips past barriers that would otherwise be more adamantly reinforced by direct criticism. By looking at it as an Observer, you can say, “I can relate to that character” and learn from what the character does, then go back and implement it in your own life. 

Show, not Tell.

A Good Story can . . . 

 

  • Show a man how to woo a woman.
  • Show a woman how to recognize desirable character traits in a man.
  • Show you when you are being too obsessed about something.
  • Show you how to listen for the whispers of Divine Guidance when the voice of your own fear is too loud.
  • Show you where to find strength when you think all hope is gone.
  • Show you how to think outside the box for an innovative solution.
  • Show you hypocrisy, and expose it with hilarity. 
  • Show you when it’s time to relax and just enjoy good company. 
  • Show you how to die courageously. 
  • Show you when you need to ask for help, and when you need to keep your own counsel. 
  • Show you how to help someone in trouble. 
  • Show you how to spot the chinks in an enemy’s armor. 
  • Show you when you need to step in, and when you need to let someone go his own way. 

and of course,

  • Show you how to create something that people will pay you handsomely for.

All this and much more. And that’s why . . . the Show Must Go On. 

Notice the pattern here: In most cases, Stories are about People. The accumulation of riches is usually a secondary consideration, a consequence of doing something good for someone. When Money (or Power) is the primary focus of a lead character, the Story does not end well. 

So, in And God Said, “Let There Be Money” (a book that would also make a great screenplay), I update the tale of Acres of Diamonds with a story about a man who goes on wild goose chases looking for money in all the wrong places, and how his inability to control his hair-trigger temper drives his wife to seek solace in a love affair . . .  which in turn kicks her creativity into high gear. He comes to ruination while still remaining clueless as to the real reasons why, while she goes on to fame and fortune by creating works of real value.

In Mr. Right, Mr. Lame, or Mr. Hyde? and Cool Girl, or Neurotic Nellie?, a Heart-boiled Detective named “Cherchee la Femme-Noir” goes on the case to  help her clients solve the mystery of finding the Ideal Mate — how to spot clues that someone may be a false lead, or a Keeper. Your fortune will rise or fall depending upon your choice of life partner; these books will help you make the right choice. You make a different “buying decision” when you are investing long-term. 

And, in The Passion of Persephone (a rock opera), I tell a story of finding your own path in life, even when that path doesn’t match what your parents want for you; a story of being tested to see what you are really made of; a steamy story of love and sexual awakening. Persephone gains wealth (in the form of a golden crown from Hades) by facing her fear of pain, death, and parental disapproval; by finding love in the unlikeliest of places; and by finding her hidden talent. 

What story changed your life?

 

100 Internet Marketers, No Waiting May 17, 2010

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I was supposed to go to my high school alma mater in Connecticut for their reunion weekend this past Friday.

So how did I end up in Philadelphia, at a convention of internet marketers, instead?

It was a last-possible-second decision. After a very hectic Thursday morning, I managed to catch the last half-hour of a “Business Growth Expo” put on by the Baltimore Business Journal.

And there, I ran across an old acquaintance from my former life during my ill-fated career as a real estate investor, back when I was still married to Dennis.

As has now been my custom since December of 2009, I was walking around the exhibit hall wearing my trademark brand, the 1940s lady-detective outfit, to promote my public-speaking and forthcoming books, “Mr. Right, Mr. Lame, or Mr. Hyde?” and “Cool Girl, or Neurotic Nellie?”

This old acquaintance knew some of my history, and had been tracking my career from a distance since 2005. But seeing me this time, in my outfit with my killer elevator speech (“your perfect career and your perfect love shouldn’t be a Big Mystery!”), he spotted the kind of talent he was looking for.

He pulled me aside as the trade show was packing up. He told me about an event that was happening this same weekend as the reunion, where a whole lot of online business people would be getting together to discuss their projects and find out how they could help each other out as Joint-Venture Partners (aka JVPs).

Somehow, he instinctively knew that I’d been praying for just such an opportunity, to assemble a Mastermind Team around me to coordinate my career. But it would mean I’d have to miss the reunion.

What were the odds of my finding the kinds of connections I sought, at the reunion? What was the highest and best use of my time? Where was I most likely to be “in the right place, at the right time”?

I decided that this was the Law of Attraction in Action, serendipitously bringing me what I’d been asking for, in this unexpected way.

Making arrangements for care-coverage of my daughter turned out to be ridiculously easy — no hassles, no obstacles. Within the hour, everything was set up and I was clear to go, as if I was supposed to be there.

That same night, there I was in Philly. On a free ticket, yet — my old acquaintance got me in.

Friday morning, about 65 people were in the room, and more would be arriving on Saturday. (Women were distinctly in the minority.) Ken McArthur, during his keynote address, allowed some time for people in the audience to come to the front and tell a little bit about their projects, and say what kind of people they were looking to partner with. (This was something like the model used for BNI meetings.)

Here was a chance to make myself known right away — all I needed was a little chutzpah. I was again dressed in my detective’s trenchcoat and fedora, and needed to make it clear that even though I was a newbie, I was not an out-of-place clueless freak among all these savvy internet marketers, that I could hold my own with the best of ’em.

So when it came my turn, I took a very deadpan, gumshoe approach. Holding my convention badge up beside my face as if it were a law-enforcement ID, I said:

“Mr. McArthur, I’m Special Agent Rosanna Tufts of OZ-Some Success.” Then, pulling out my magnifying glass from my coat pocket — “I’m investigating the murder of the American Dream. I’d like to ask you a few questions.”

It worked — Ken, who didn’t know me from Eve, was nonplussed, and the crowd erupted in appreciative laughter! Had the whole room at Hello!

As the two days wore on, there were about a dozen speakers (the best-known of these was Joel Comm, author of “Twitter Power” and “The AdSense Code”) as well as a copywriters’ panel and HotSeat experiences where hand-picked attendees would get the chance to have their internet-business ideas picked apart and improved by a panel of experts.

As is true of almost any seminar, the speeches were pitch-fests, but nobody was forcing me to “buy” anything — I could just take notes and pick and choose what makes the most sense for what I need at this time of my life,

But the REAL action took place during the breaks, during lunches and dinners, and out in the hallways. That’s when you would get to talk one-on-one with people who could help you. The key here is to not focus so much on yourself and your own project, but to listen to THEIRS to see how you can help. Out of this Spirit of Giving, Joint Ventures are created.

Despite being a newcomer and not very experienced yet, I WAS able to help at least one person! I met a man who had created a special cream for rehabilitating skin that had experienced traumatic injury or was afflicted with “venous insufficiency.” I gave him direction on how he could get a higher profile for his product, telling him of resources and opportunities in his local area that he wasn’t aware existed.

And thanks to my knockout presentation on Friday morning, I was cherry-picked to be in a documentary, along with 5 other people, tracking our progress over the next 2 years, “starting from zero.”

It was an amazing thing, being in a roomful of 100 entrepreneurs, all focused with great ideas, all bent on taking control of their own destiny — and almost none of them were pie-in-the-sky chasers. I had thrown up a thought to the Universe, saying that I didn’t want to have friends who had convinced themselves they were doomed to live crappy lives because of the “hand” they’ve been dealt, that instead I wanted to associate with people who believe they can overcome anything.

For one weekend, I got to feel what that is like. And it won’t be the last.

The Instant Stress Buster November 5, 2009

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(Excerpt from forthcoming book, “And God Said, Let There Be Money”)

Here’s a variation on “Observing Ego” that I invented myself, a Little Technique with Big Results, that I call “The Instant Stress Buster.”

I have based this on my own definition of what Stress really is:

Stress is nothing more than a conflict between what  you want, and your perceived ability to get it – emphasis on perceived.

This is huge, because whatever it is you perceive to be standing in your way of getting what you want, may not be the real enemy at all.

So whenever you are feeling stressed about something, ask yourself these questions:

“What do I want right now, in this moment?”

“What do I perceive is my ability to get it – high, medium, or low?”

Usually, we ask ourselves to evaluate things on a basis of “low, medium, or high.” But in this case, I want you to break out of your default reaction by reversing this order, asking “high, medium, or low.” Why? Because if you determine, right away, that your ability to get what you want is high, then you don’t have much standing in your way – ergo, you can easily let go of any stress you feel around the situation.

If, on the other hand, you judge your perceived ability to get what you want is medium or low, you can then set your brain to working on how you can shift the odds in your favor.

This strategy does a couple of things: it keeps you Present-minded, and it keeps you focused upon what you want, rather than upon what you don’t want, or upon blaming other people. When we get to Chapter 5 where I discuss the Law of Attraction, you will see how important it is to keep your focus upon what you want, because if you focus upon what you don’t want, you’ll only get more of the same.

Let’s look at a couple of simple examples, to show you how this works.

Let’s say you’re in the car, and you suddenly start to feel hungry. It’s an unpleasant feeling, and you feel stress about it because you don’t have anything with you that you could munch on, right now, that would take the edge off. You ask yourself: “What do I want right now, in this moment?” And you answer, “I want my salad with my own homemade dressing, with a topping of fajita steak strips.” (Or whatever suits your fancy.) Then you ask yourself, “What is my perceived ability to get this – high, medium or low?” You decide, “Medium – because I can’t get it right now, but when I get home in 20 minutes, I can do something about it.”And so you are able to reduce your feeling of stress, because you know you won’t have to wait long.

Or how about this: You are getting ready to go out of your house to a meeting . . . and you can’t find your glasses for the life of you. You’re scrambling around the house, frantically trying to find them and remember where you last left them, and of course your stress level shoots way up. This is the sort of thing that drives you crazy, and you’re mad at yourself too, for doing something so stupid.

So you pull out the questions: “What do I want, right now, in this moment?” The answer comes: “I want my glasses – no, wait – what I really want is to have perfect eyesight, so I don’t even need glasses anymore!” This technique enables you to be perfectly honest with yourself, because sometimes you find that you have a deeper desire beyond the immediate problem you are trying to solve.

And then: “What is my perceived ability to get it?” And you answer: “At this moment, low. But in the future, medium-to-high, depending upon what an ophthalmologist says about giving me the surgery. In the meantime, can I get by without the glasses for just a few hours? And resume the search when I’m not so wound up?” You decide that doing without your glasses for awhile won’t constitute the end of the world . . . and your stress level drops again. You walk out the door with aplomb, because you realize it’s more important that when you get to your meeting, you give the impression of being cool, confident, and in control, not disorganized, frazzled, and unreliable. You have also just set in motion a “vibration” that will ultimately bring you what you really want – a pair of fully functional eyes.

No Gurus Here! My Latest Lunch Date June 25, 2009

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A man contacted me at one of the online “personals” sites I subscribe to. After corresponding for a week or two, we decided to take the next step and meet face to face.

A first-generation American born of Russian parents, he was very, very different from the kind of men who usually express an interest in me. Very intelligent, but in a hands-on, street-smart sort of way, having learned how to turn his ADD from a liability into an asset. Turns out he’s a VP for a large bank, handing corporate investments for them – AND he’s also a real estate investor, supervising a construction crew for rehabs.

After he told me a bit about some of the projects he’s done, and the ones he has active now, I asked him a very important question: “How did you learn to do real estate investing?”

His Answer? “I just did it.”

“Nobody taught you?’ I asked. “Nope, I flipped my first property when I was still in college.” (Or did he say high school?)

“You didn’t learn from your parents?” “No, they are both lawyers.”

“You didn’t take any trainings from people like Robert Allen, or Ron LeGrand?” “I don’t know who they are!”

I explained that Robert Allen is the author of Nothing Down. He’d never even heard of it, yet he’s been doing this for 15 years! He scornfully scoffed at those late-nite TV commercials those gurus put out – “All they want is to take your $5,000. They’re not really going to help you.”

That’s not to say he hadn’t gotten burned on a couple of his deals. But he learned from his mistakes. He said, “Now, whenever I try something new, I expect to fail three times before I start getting good at it.”

THIS is a guy who exhibits a lot of the qualities I talk about in my book, about how to be successful in life.

  • Just DO it. Don’t second-guess, don’t doubt.
  • Be resilient.
  • Don’t whine when somebody else gets the better of you. When you fall off the horse, dust yourself off and get back on again.
  • “Fail Forward Fast” – Be willing to do something badly, in order to get good at it faster.
  • Make Decisions and Take Action quickly.

How different from my ex-husband, who attempted to get into “businesses” that were totally incongruent with his background, who acted like the perpetual victim, and floundered around, wasting all his time in “getting ready to get ready!”

Meeting him was also an indicator that I’m finally moving in the right direction. In my book, I write about how I was terrified of losing my inheritance because I didn’t believe I could actually make that kind of money on my own. And by the Law of Attraction – you don’t attract what you want, you attract what you are – I ended up attracting someone who believed in his earning capacity even less than I did! He didn’t think he had it in him, to come up with a Million Dollar Idea, and so thought his only hope was to hitch his wagon to somebody else’s turnkey “system.”

I had to start believing I could make a 6- or even 7-figure income, before I would attract a man who can do the same – and today, such a man showed up!

Now, I don’t know if this is going to turn into anything romantic. We’re still in the “testing the waters” stage. But it was refreshing to know that I could trust him to solve problems on his own, and not cluelessly bring me problems and somehow expect ME to have all the answers. Some important lessons emerged from just this first date – lessons YOU can now use.

BTW, the title of my book, “Don’t Start a Business without ME!” is going to change to something that captures the zeitgeist a little better: “And God Said, Let There Be Money.” Stay tuned for further developments. 

If you want a thing done right . . . June 9, 2009

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When it looked like a choreographer was NOT about to materialize, I worked all day Monday to figure out the choreography for the Tango part of “Your Surrender is Your Gift” from “The Passion of Persephone.” I studied the little 5-minute series of lessons on You Tube called “Dario’s Tango Guide,” and out of that, strung together a series of steps that would work. I even added a few steps that weren’t included in those lessons, but which are more dramatic, including a couple of moves from Al Pacino’s dance in “Scent of a Woman.”

THEN, I wrote it all down! I created a chart with the coordinates marked like a clock, so as to make clear which directions we would be either facing or traveling at any given time. I don’t know dance notation, so I had to improvise. But one advantage to this is it’ll enable me to remember everything so I don’t get confused as I teach Chris the steps. AND it’ll give HIM a memory jog to internalize the pattern after the actual rehearsal is over.

We’ll be performing it, both singing and dancing, Wednesday night at Art-O-Matic in DC, on Half Street near Nationals’ Stadium. We arrive at 6, and start as soon as we’re set up.

SO: Sometimes, you just gotta do it yourself!

AND: When you do, you find that you’re better than you think you are.

 

Know Your Audience June 4, 2009

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The cast at Greenbelt Arts Center; I'm the white-clad figure in the middle

The cast at Greenbelt Arts Center; I'm the white-clad figure in the middle

Whenever you are looking to manifest anything, it may help you to ask yourself, “who am I really doing this FOR?” Who is the “end user” of the thing you want to manifest?

A case in point is the first full-length musical I ever composed in 1997, “According To Us,” which I wrote in collaboration with Charles Butler. He wrote the book and lyrics, and “thunk up” the melodies, while I took his musical ideas and fleshed them out into full orchestrations. It’s the story of three homeless people who’ve been willed the garden of a church by its Rector, and they each tell of how the Rector rehabilitated them and gave them a sense of direction.

Since Charles is the son of a minister, he knows firsthand the kind of people that he turned into these characters for the show. And at first he thought the show would make a good “chancel drama,” as a fundraiser for homeless ministries..

But despite the obvious merits of the show, both musically and narratively, it wasn’t “pulling.” We kept putting on the show in church fellowship halls, to extremely meager attendance. And I knew that the challenging music wasn’t being done justice by the amateurs he was recruiting. Playing the Rector, I was routinely the most professional person in the cast – and a performer is only as good as his/her co-stars. But, as Charles was so often “poor as a church mouse,” having to put this thing on with a shoestring budget, he didn’t think he had the wherewithal to make it a professional production, with FOUR equally strong leads!

We had a bit of a falling-out over this. With my musical theatre experience, I also came to the conclusion that we were playing the show in the wrong places, for the wrong people. “Churches don’t know how to promote musical theatre,” I pointed out. “That’s not their job. It’s no wonder that hardly anybody from the congregations are even showing up. You need to get this show picked up by a legitimate theater, with its own marketing department, that can promote the thing PROPERLY!” I challenged him to do this, and “THEN come back and talk to me!”

A year later, he saw me actually “put my money where my mouth was,” mounting a professional production of my own show, “The Passion of Persephone,” at a theatre festival – and did it with an even more challenging score and a larger cast. And he knew I was serious. If he wanted to keep me, he was going to have to step up, and go beyond what he thought he could do.

Over the next year, he DID IT. He found a local community theatre with an open weekend, and he booked the show into that time slot. He recruited several players from the “Persephone” cast, expanded the show to include four more supporting players, and actually devised a proper set and lighting cues. Even better, sponsor-funding materialized to cover the set design, and one of the performances was recorded for airing on a local public-access cable channel. Best of all, we actually had decent audiences! For five performances in a row!

On closing night, he was astonished at himself. I congratulated him, saying, “Now you can’t go back. Now that you know you CAN pull it off, you won’t ever be able to settle for anything less..” And he realized that I was right, both about this and about WHERE the show should be played, and for whom.

As Manifestations go, this one was pretty good. And I’m pleased to know that I was the “Catalytic Converter” that lit the fire under him.

So: Whether you think you can, or whether you think you can’t, either way you’re right.

And: If you believe in yourself, other people will believe in you too.

Does This Unexpected Income have a Greater Meaning? May 8, 2009

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Prototype of large-format hanging file folder system

Prototype of large-format hanging file folder system

 

For those of you who clicked-through to here from Facebook, Twitter, or one of the other listserves I’m on, your curiosity piqued by the teaser, “What Do I Do with Class Action Check?” I’m betting some of you are facetiously thinking, “I’ll take it — sign it over to ME!”

But seriously, folks – let’s look at it from the perspective of the Law of Attraction. I was totally shocked when I opened up the envelope from the Federal Trade Commission and found a check inside for over $800. When was the last time you got paid for doing absolutely nothing?

This check has a history. It’s part of a class-action settlement that I didn’t even know about.

One thing that most of you don’t know about me: In addition to being the author of Don’t Start a Business without ME! and composer of The Passion of Persephone, I am also the inventor of an office product. It’s a hanging file folder that’s legal-size in width, but 3.75 inches taller, so it can accommodate newspaper articles and other large-format documents without excessive folding.

To make it, I cut a legal-size file folder apart at the fold, then cut a 3.75” length of another file folder at its base, cobbling the resulting three pieces back together with duct tape. (Yes, duct tape reaily does hold the world together!)

I even devised a storage unit with 3 drawers that are tall enough to accommodate these folders, by modifying a closet unit from Ikea. Everybody who has seen the prototype, believes “you’re going to make a ton of money with this.”

And that’s why I contacted Davison Inventegration, an R&D firm in Pennsylvania, in 2005. They were really excited about the concept, because they could see that it met a need that wasn’t currently being satisfied by anything currently in the office-supply market.

I signed a contract with them, authorizing them to do a patent search, file a trademark application, and develop a working prototype. They would also go to bat for me in negotiating the best possible terms of any licensing deals. I had a choice of contract terms: $8000 and a 20% commission payable to them out of any royalties I’d receive from licensing the product,  or $10,000 and a $15% commission, or $12,000 with a 10% commission. I chose the last of these.

They developed a portable prototype that was smaller than my file cabinets, something that could be easily sold for $24.95 retail. Several months later, they were ready to make a presentation to Fellowes, the makers of Banker’s Boxes.

This was a process that took several months of waiting – getting onto the manufacturer’s calendar (which often required at least 2 months’ lead time), then going to make the presentation, and then waiting a month or two to hear the result.

When Fellowes turned them (and me) down, it was back to the drawing board, so Davison Inventegration could rework the packaging of the prototype with the name and logo of the next manufacturer to be pitched.

Each time they had to do this, they would charge me another $335 to revamp the prototype.

It was a long, slow process, and I myself did not get to actually go with them to any of the presentations. After 4 tries, Davison came back to me again, with another prospect, another contract for me to sign, authorizing them to proceed – and another request for $335.

The kicker was their description of the latest prospective target: “In the past, we have made 14 presentations to this company and secured 0 licenses.”

Not exactly a track record to inspire confidence!

It was now November 2008, over three years since I’d begun working with Davison. By this point, I was really mad. I called them up and pulled a Donald Trump on them: “I’m not going to sign this contract. You’re Fired!”

Over the next six months, I pretty much just gave up on the project, as a new one claimed my attention: the writing  and publication of my book, Don’t Start a Business without ME! . . .

Until, out of the blue, I get this check from the FTC. The letter accompanying it reads: “The Federal Trade Commission, the nation’s consumer protection agency, settled a lawsuit against Davison Design and Development, Inc., formerly known as Davison and Associates, Inc., and its principals. According to the FTC, the defendants enticed consumers with false claims about their invention promotion operation.

Of course, I was shocked, delighted, and grateful for the unforeseen income. But it also got me to wondering about how the Law of Attraction is playing into all of this: “Is the Universe trying to nudge me to pick up this project again?”

This happens in the same week that Warren Buffett sounded the death-knell for the nation’s newspapers. Believing that they will be entirely replaced by online communications, he “won’t buy them at any price.” And when Warren speaks, Wall Street listens.

And yet, even if people are buying newspapers less and less . . . they’re still keeping articles, and even entire special sections when their favorite sports teams win the World Series or Super Bowl, or some other really historic events that mean a great deal to them . . . aren’t they? Could a home product that preserves them for posterity still be a viable idea?

If so, how do I re-activate the project . . . without signing anything away to a so-called R&D firm? What manufacturers should I approach?

Anybody out there want to be a venture partner with me on this?

Your comments are welcomed below.

How NOT to make a Good First Impression April 28, 2009

Posted by ozsomesuccess in Business Success, Law of Attraction.
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1 comment so far

Sometimes, you can just TELL when somebody’s about to “bomb”…

 

I go to a lot of business networking meetings in my area – even before I wrote my book, I’ve been doing this. When you go to them, you can easily see who’s really got it “on the ball,” and who doesn’t.

 

At a networking meeting, everybody gets to stand up and do a 30-second Elevator Speech that tells the others what your business is. As you might expect, some of these pitches are snappy and memorable, others are real snoozers.

 

And then there are those who look like they have no business being there at all.

 

Case in point: A woman who stood up to say that she had just become a distributor for a well-known cosmetics company. But to look at her, you would never have known it.

 

For starters, she didn’t dress the part of a professional, but instead looked like she was getting ready to clean out her attic. She wore jeans and a baggy sweatshirt, with a lumberjack shirt on top.  

 

By itself, that would have been bad enough. But when she spoke . . . she was OOZING “no confidence.”

 

Instead of standing still and tall to convey Strength, she not only had a bit of a slouch, but she swayed back and forth as she talked. Such a stance conveys uncertainty, insecurity. It even makes a person look like they’re a bit embarrassed to be saying anything.

 

But the most damning thing of all was when she said, “I’m still trying to figure out how to make this thing work.”

 

Ouch!

 

Not One WORD about the benefits of the product line, or about what she herself would do to provide service to her prospects.

 

I don’t know how old she was, but she came off looking like a college sophomore who hadn’t even figured out what her Major was going to be, let alone what she was going to do with her Life!

 

Even without making any claims to be psychic, I could read virtually her entire life’s story, right there. She had gotten involved with this cosmetics company, not out of any particular love for the products, but because she was broke, couldn’t get a job, and didn’t know what else to do, “hoping” she’d be able to make some money at it.

 

THAT is the reason why I wrote “Don’t Start a Business without ME.” Because if, in your mind, YOU are doing the same thing, you are putting the cart before the horse.

 

And you won’t make ANY money at all.

 

Listen: when you stand up to give your pitch, your listeners are only interested in TWO things: “Have you got something I can use? And can I trust YOU to give it to me?” People will buy YOU, before they buy anything you are promoting. And you have to convey that you LOVE what you are promoting, so you can get other people to love it too.

 

If, with your body language, you are not silently saying, “I can solve your problem” . . . you are dead in the water.  

 

Even worse: Can you imagine, if this had happened in a roomful of men? A man, betraying such insecurity, would have been regarded by the other men as a milquetoast, a total wuss! A minnow, ripe to be eaten by sharks. At the very least, they would think, “Well, next time I have a problem, I’m certainly not going to turn to him for advice.”

 

And that is the reason why I make the bold claim that “Don’t Start a Business without ME” will also Save Your Sex Life. When times get tough, as they are now, the LAST thing a woman needs is the terrible feeling that her man is going to be part of the problem!

 

For all that women say they want men to be “sensitive,” in reality, the most sensitive thing a man can do for a woman, especially in a crisis (financial or otherwise), is to be powerful, self-assured, and protective of her. She needs to hear him say, with calm confidence in both word and deed, “We’re going to get through this.”

 

If he can’t, she will gradually but inevitably come to lose all respect for him. She won’t want to love him, and she won’t want to have sex with him either.

 

“Don’t Start a Business without ME!” shows you how to grow your career from the Inside Out, rather than latching onto a prefabricated business model that may not be a true reflection of who you really are. If your career is The Most Fun You Can Have Outside of Sex, you will be irresistibly sexy! Find out how at www.DontStartABusinessWithoutMe.com.

 

In this economy, you need Charisma on Command. Stay tuned for my next post, where I’ll tell you about a special program that helps you how to get it.