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Global Leadership Speaker and Premier Work-Life Balance Speaker
Speaking Information at (727) 467-0202 or e-mail info@fawngermer.com

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On the road again…

I have gone six delicious weeks without getting on an airplane. What good fortune that all of my speaking events have been in Florida this summer, giving me time to recover from the last frenzy and prepare for the next. I will spend most of the next eight weeks on the road, which means e-mail will pile up, voice mail will fill up and I will wear down. The good news is, I love my work.

The reason I even have this career is because my old friend Kerri Smith suggested I become a professional speaker way back when I was a starving author. She said, “You ought to be a professional speaker. They make a lot of money.” It never even occurred to me that you could make a career out of speaking and that companies and organizations would actually PAY for something like that, but I checked it out and, WOW. She was oh-so-right. As I waited for that book to finally get published, I joined Toastmasters. There are thousands of Toastmasters clubs where you can polish your speaking skills, and the group gave me a chance to give a speech every week. Eventually, I started going to meetings of the National Speaker’s Association, which teaches you how to turn speaking into a business.

I used that time that I struggled to get my first book published to get ready for the biggest reward of all: this career as a public speaker. I go out on the road, meet great people, talk onstage and get so much love from my audiences. Then, I come home to Clearwater — the best place on earth. I can’t believe I get to live this life. I say that every single day.

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And even though I am on the eve of an extremely chaotic and exhausting fall travel season, I know how lucky I am.

Fawn Germer is the best-selling author of four books and speaks to corporations and organizations about courageous and creative leadership strategies.

Time is precious, and I know that right now

I am sitting here in my dad’s office, which is in the bedroom that was mine when I was a teenager and in college. I’ve been showing him some things on the computer, and I’ve introduced him to my blog. Right now, I am showing him how I post these things. Basically, this is father/daughter time, and it is precious.

Dad is 80 years old now. He is the most amazing man I know because he still works — as a pharmacist — and he makes time to visit my mother three or four times a day in the nursing home. I am always being told how lucky I am to be his daughter, but I know that. I always have.

princess bride the free So, he’s sitting behind me and we have been exploring YouTube and the blog and all kinds of other things online. We are supposed to go out for breakfast, but I’d rather just sit here and hang out with him. It’s so good to have a dad like this. He is so interested in everything I am interested in. And he makes this big adventure of life so much more meaningful.

My mother suffered her stroke when she was just 66 years old. That taught me that life is so unpredictable and every moment is so precious. I feel that when I am with Dad. We don’t live forever. But we have right now, and right now is so beautiful.

About this birthday I’m having today…

Back when I was a 26-year-old reporter.

.............. Above photo: Back when I was a 26-year-old reporter.

Today, on the occasion of my 48th birthday, I received a link to a YouTube video of the wedding of one of my best friends in life. It was me, 26 years old and suffering through bridesmaid hell as I awkwardly walked down the aisle in the world’s ugliest dress and tightest pair of shoes.

Notice I am not providing a link so others can see it. It is so clear how uncomfortable I was with myself. At that young age, I still had many, many miles to travel before becoming the woman I am today. Back then, I worried so much about what other people thought of me. I made decisions based on what I thought I was supposed to do, not what I wanted to do. I had to prove that I was smart, able, tough and deserving. I didn’t know that for myself.

One turning point came several years ago when I went camping on Cayo Costa Island with my friend Dana, who has shared adventures with me since I was 25. We were out hiking when it started to rain — hard. Biblical rain. When we got back to camp, our tents were flooded out. The other campers crowded under the picnic shelter, where it was clear they would spend the night.

I looked at Dana and said, “There is one more ferry off this island in 30 minutes. Let’s get out of here.”

We packed up our gear, gave our dry fire logs to the campers who were staying behind and left for shore. We drove home, ordered a pizza and watched a movie by my fireplace.

I’d camped in the rain a dozen times before, way back when I felt I had to prove to some unknown somebody that I was tough. But, on that day, I realized I’d stopped having to prove it to other people. I was secure being the woman I was. Period. What kind of fool camps in that mess when there is a dry bed and hot pizza at home?

I’m 48 now, and I wouldn’t go back to being the 26-year-old in the wedding video for five minutes. It took all those years to grow into a woman with the confidence I needed to set boundaries, priorities and goals that mattered to me — not other people. I grew up into someone I would have wanted to be, and that feels great.

There’s a new boy in the house.

Vinny died fifteen days ago and it was like all the air had been sucked out of my home. My Golden Retriever and I pretended to be good troopers, but Reggie and I were lost without our pal.

I couldn’t help but look for another dog. Not a replacement, because there is no replacing Vinny. But, we needed a place to put the love we’d given before. I just want you to meet the new guy. Name is yet to be determined. Maybe Eddie or Junior or Rudy or Hoss or Joe or Louie. I have no idea. But, this sweet boy came out of a rescue from death row at Polk County Animal Control.

I went to animal control with my new friend, Art Fyvolent, who runs Pit Positive, a Pit Bull rescue with his lovely wife, Lisa. They have taken on the mission of teaching the public that Pit Bulls are not all their reputation cracks them up to be. I know that, because Vinny was half pit. I would never have adopted a Pit Bull, but I found Vinny living on the streets. He was the most gentle, loving boy in the world. Nothing like his Pit/Chow mix would suggest. The only time he ever showed any aggression was when he growled at a very scary man who came to fix my dishwasher. And, I was really glad he did it.

Animal Control was one of the most traumatic experiences I have ever been through. Hundreds of dogs, almost all of whom will be killed within a week or two, begged me for any attention. There was everything from beautiful, purebred dogs to fantastic mutts. I can’t believe people buy dogs when these perfectly wonderful dogs need homes so desperately.

I couldn’t decide. I’d visited Eddie/Junior/Rudy/Hoss/Joe/Louie at Art’s home three times this week, and I wanted this Pit Bull mix because there was something in his eyes that told him he was mine. I’m so happy I could give him a home.

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Reggie welcomed him with open paws. We are smiling again.

Still, I am worried about all the other dogs I couldn’t bring home. It’s unthinkably sad.

The richest man I know is actually the poorest. And, he’s in trouble.

Several years ago, I met a man who would change my life. He hired me to be his writing coach and paid me a lot as we argued endlessly about the book he wanted to write. It was such a brother/sister tug-of-war, and it meant a lot to me. Our professional relationship stretched over four years as he continued to write and rewrite and rewrite the book that he couldn’t seem to let go of. Finally, I told him that he had to publish his book or I would do it for him.

After we concluded our working relationship, we maintained a close friendship. Throughout the years, I have watched him slowly destroy himself with alcohol. He’d be the first one to tell you that he’s been in rehab four times. I’ve known it would only be a matter of time before the beast took over completely and killed him.

Saturday night, he was rushed to the hospital after he was found at the bottom of his stairs in a pool of blood. Right now, he is in a hospital with a brain bleed so severe that it has pushed one half of his brain to the other side. His kidneys stopped functioning. His lung collapsed. And, he is paralyzed. We don’t know if he will live through this. If he does, we don’t know what will emerge. It will likely be a very, very sad ending to the life of a maverick businessman who made millions before retiring young.

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He is a man of many demons. His father beat the hell out of him repeatedly, before finally killing himself. My friend has millions in the bank, but he has always been the saddest, loneliest man I have ever known. People would use him, and he’d let them take his money from him. He just wanted to be loved and appreciated. They saw that and conned him out of millions.

download all roads lead home divx A few years ago, he and I went to a conference, then stayed over to work on his book for another day. The maid came into the room and my client gave her $20 and told her he wouldn’t be needing any maid service.

She smiled broadly and said, “Thank you so much! I take all of these tips and give them to my church.” I saw emotions in her eyes that I have never seen in his. Peace. Certainty. Fulfillment.

I never forgot that. On paper, that housekeeper had nothing. But, she really had everything.

She had everything and he had nothing. And now he is struggling to live and it makes me so sad because he never knew the joy that poor women had in her heart.

Fawn Germer is the best-selling author of four books and speaks to corporations and organizations about courageous and creative leadership strategies.watch kiss of the vampire aka immortally yours in divx

Well, he does have a point…

Long before Palin and Clinton…

Meet Shirley Chisholm, the first black woman to be a member of Congress. Chisholm ran for president in 1972, saying she was not a candidate for black America or for women — but for all of America. We’re hearing that a lot these days.

One of those forwarded e-mails that everyone should read…

Everyone should take 5 minutes to read this. It may save your life or a loved one’s life.

Crucial

Because of recent abductions in daylight hours, refresh yourself of these things to do in an emergency situation…
After reading these crucial tips, forward them to someone you care about. It never hurts to be careful
in this crazy world we live in.

1. Tip from Tae Kwon Do : The elbow is the strongest point on your body. If you are close enough to use it, do!

2. If a robber asks for your wallet and/or purse, DO NOT HAND IT TO HIM. Toss it away from you…. Chances are that he is more interested in your wallet and/or purse than you, And he will go for the wallet/purse.
RUN LIKE MAD IN THE OTHER DIRECTION!
3. If you are ever thrown into the trunk of a car, kick out the back tail lights and stick your arm out the hole
and start waving like crazy. The driver won’t see you, but everybody else will. This has saved lives.

4. Women have a tendency to get into their cars after shopping, eating, working, etc., and just sit (doing their checkbook, or making a list, etc. DON’T DO THAT! The predator will be watching you, and this
is the perfect opportunity for him to get in on the passenger side, put a gun to your head, and tell you where to go.  AS SOON AS YOU GET INTO YOUR CAR , LOCK THE DOORS AND LEAVE.

If someone is in the car with a gun to your head, DO NOT DRIVE OFF. Repeat: DO NOT DRIVE OFF!
Instead, gun the engine and speed into anything, wrecking the car. Your air bag will save you.
If the person is in the back seat they will get the worst of it .
As soon as the car crashes, bail out and run. It is better than having them find your body in a remote location.

5. A few notes about getting into your car in a parking lot, or parking garage:
A.) Be aware. Look around you, look into your car, at the passenger side floorm and in the back seat.
B.) If you are parked next to a big van, enter your car from the passenger door. Most serial killers attack their victims by pulling them into their vans while the women are attempting to get into their cars.
C.) Look at the car parked on the driver’s side of your vehicle and the passenger side. If a male is sitting alone in the seat nearest your car, you may want to walk back into the mall, or work, and get a guard/policeman to walk you back out. IT IS ALWAYS BETTER TO BE SAFE THAN SORRY. (And better paranoid than dead.)

6. ALWAYS take the elevator instead of the stairs. Stairwells are horrible places to be alone
and are the perfect crime spot. This is especially true at NIGHT.

7. If the predator has a gun and you are not under his control, ALWAYS RUN! The predator will only hit you (a running target) 4 in 100 times; And even then, it most likely WILL NOT be a vital organ. RUN, preferably in a zig -zag pattern!

8. As women, we are always trying to be sympathetic: STOP. It may get you raped, or killed. Ted Bundy, the serial killer, was a good-looking, well educated man, who ALWAYS played on the sympathies of unsuspecting women. He walked with a cane, or a limp, and often asked “for help” into his vehicle or with his vehicle, which is when he abducted his next victim.

Everyone should take 5 minutes to read this. It may save your life or love one’s life.lesbian vampire killers movie

How I center myself

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Fast-tips for dealing with work-life balance

When You Have Too Much To Do and No Time To Do It

 

Prioritize and organize. Have a “to do” list for every day, and try to get through it. Make

tomorrow’s list at the end of your workday. Don’t over-schedule your life.

 

Focus. Know what your major goals are for the week and don’t get distracted.

 

Know when you are at your best. If you are most productive between 3 P.M. and 5 P.M.,

that’s when you should be doing the hardest work. Never fritter away your peak hours

on phone calls or other distractions.

 

Clean up your mess. Clutter makes it harder to do your job.

 

Quit procrastinating. Just do the hard or unpleasant tasks you have to do first and don’t

lose time worrying about them.

 

Set deadlines. Know how long each assignment should take, and try to complete it on

schedule.

 

Don’t get stuck in the mud. If things aren’t clicking with what you are doing, either take a

break or switch to another assignment and come back to it when your mind is

refreshed.

 

Use your commute to your advantage. Do work or read when you are on mass transit. If

you are in the car, listen to tapes. Have work with you when you are waiting for

meetings in other offices.

 

Schedule alone time. Clear your mind and focus on what you need to do and how you

intend to do it. Or do nothing. Let your mind and body rest.

 

Have smart meetings. Have an agenda, and send it around before the meeting. If you

have a choice, use it to decide which meetings you will attend. Handle what you can in

e-mails and conference calls, but when you meet, don’t let things drag on endlessly.

 

Delegate. Don’t be proud or stupid about doing what other people are able to do.You

don’t have to do it all, you just have to see that it gets done right.That goes for career

work and housework.

Return phone calls during lunch. Leave a voice message, that way you spend one minute

instead of ten connecting.

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Know what counts. Few people will ever remember which meetings you missed, but

your children and spouse will never forget.

Consider your timing. Maybe you would rather jump off the fast track while your

children are young.  

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