Getting in touch with yourself is something many people try to accomplish, however most people never seem to ever really get to know themselves or their full potential. Recently a new found friend has introduced me to a few books that we both find very interesting – one being The Secret Language of Birthdays by Gary Goldschneider & Joost Elffers. I usually do not believe in these sorts of books, however when he brought the book to me one afternoon, and read all about myself I was in amazement. That book knew me, inside and out. People born on my birthday, January 30, all share similar correlating attributes, and the author compiled them into a book in order to understand yourself, and others.
Why is this so important to me? To LuLaRoe? I will share with you some thoughts about my birthday to better understand why I am sharing this with you, my dear readers.
The opening sentence is as follows: “Those commanding personalities born on January 30 are born to lead.” Well that’s me in a nutshell. I can’t deny it. My best friend, Karen, saw this in me years ago when she was my interim supervisor in my last job. She knew I had to rise up and get out of the basement where I worked. I was not content, and still am not content sitting in a cubicle all day typing on keys. I have energy, motivation and I strive to do better. She introduced me to a program at Quinnipiac, where I finally just finished my M.S. in Organizational Leadership. When I could not get a job right away, one month later I made a huge decision to be the leader in my own business and joined the Queue for LuLaRoe. I am not a follower, I have never been.
The book continues, that I have a “great talent for guiding, entertaining, teaching, explaining, and in general making their ideas clear to others.” I am sure good at entertaining- I seriously am the cheerful office personality. I make everyone laugh, and smile whereas most people are stuck in their mundane, repetitive jobs with no humor or happiness in their day. I have been told by the boss I am the smart ass of the group. A well earned title. Although, the author claims I have great talent for guiding, teaching, explaining- that is something I always need to work on within myself and hope to bring those talents into light. If I want to lead- I must teach. I can be introverted and quiet, and also impatient: all negative attributes for a leader I clearly need to work on. I need all of these traits to be a successful manager in healthcare, and especially in the fashion consulting business in LuLaRoe- they are essential traits for success.
I am not a person who likes to work with others, or take over others projects- I like to work alone and start things from scratch: another correct assessment by The Secret Language of Birthdays. Getting my M.S. online, all the classes were geared towards group discussions and projects. I despised it. Especially in the beginning where I was so used to working alone when I went to school for History. They wanted us to learn to work together, and take on different roles in groups. I still dislike it to this day. In LuLaRoe, we are also in a “group” and have to work together to be successful. I am having a MUCH easier time with this, realizing the group is there to help you rather than hinder you. My team is full of great ladies who chat daily, share ideas, and help each other in difficult situations (be it business or personal related).
I think the most important statement, and possibly the most positive statement about myself from the book is that we do not recognize failure as a set back, but as a learning experience. I think that is a mantra everyone needs. Failure is a set back- that does not mean you should give up. Pick yourself up and start over. Learn from your mistakes. This is why I am so active in so many things- I love to learn. What is the most important thing my ballroom instructor says? Make mistakes! And make them big! Why? Because you then know when you did wrong, and can fix them. Life is all about learning, and growing. LuLaRoe is a learning experience every day. Some ideas I have had worked- great! But others I were not so lucky with and have to learn more and work on certain skills. Ordering the right items and sizes, or how much of a special capsule to order are always challenging and am still learning. Yes- a minor set back but never any reason to give up. Learning about supersaturation of the market was an eye opener when Disney items selling slowed down. Also learning about supply and demand has been a trial and error task. So many businesses have people hired for all these specific analytical tasks, but as a small business owner in direct sales I am learning every single job and how to do it. I am not failing- I am learning and growing every day with LuLaRoe and would never want it any other way.
The negative aspect of my birthday is we are very persuasive individuals. The book states the justification in my “fancy footwork” is for the good of myself, friends, family etc. Although not negative from a business stand point- goodness knows sales people need to be awfully persuasive and cunning even – from a personal level that can be difficult if you end up hurting others around you to justify your actions for another. I will just be aware of this trait, and keep it strong only for marketing and selling my business. I would never want to intentionally be persuasive to cause negative reactions.
I cannot operate without trust, the book hit this one dead on also. I have grown so much since working for the hospital the past almost 8 years. I remember wanting to trust people I worked with, but that trust was broken within a week of working there. It took me years to get over this distrust of anyone in the working world. I never knew who was for or against me. Leaving that department and now starting in a new one almost 3 years ago- I now trust most of my coworkers and have become very close friends with a few of them. I can now function in a work place where I do not feel threatened and can be open about myself without repercussions. It is also important in my LuLaRoe business to have a trust with my customers, and hopefully the customers trust me as a retailer. It is ideal that I am honest about the product, my schedule for shipments, and why I am a retailer. I also think trust between myself and my sponsor is vital to the success of our team. I trust Amanda and her advice, as she also can talk to me for such matters. Trust in others and yourself, and trust from others is how you can become a successful business woman and friend. It is a foundation. Without trust – there is nothing.
Advice from the book to myself is to be more transparent, let people know what I am thinking and what I want, learn to share and focus on personal relationships.
This book has given me a page worth of words, and with these words I looked at myself and now understand my strengths, weaknesses and what I should work on. I highly recommend to anyone wanting to know more about themselves to pick this book up and give it a read!
Goldschneider, Gary and Joost Effers. The Secret Language of Birthdays. Penguin Publishing Company, 2010