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The Art of Sacrifice

by Mystique | Founder of Coordinator For A Day

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Memorial-Day

It’s not easy being a dreamer. It’s even harder being fueled by such a strong passion that acts as an unyielding driving force propelling you to move forward even when you are afraid.  It’s a challenge believing in something bigger than yourself and championing causes that seem futile to some, but for you it’s simply your life’s work. What have you sacrificed along the road to the success? What did you lay down on the line for the good of your purpose? A true measure of the sacrifice is if you were faced with the same choice and absolutely no visible gain, would you do it all again?

On this Memorial Day, as we reflect on the sacrifices our fallen heroes have made for the sake of our freedom, I am questioning whether or not I am going above and beyond the call of duty in my own life or if I am simply playing it safe. Countless lives were lost so that I could have the freedom to follow my passion. Mothers and Fathers buried their young so that I could build a business. Battles raged on so that I could achieve my version of the American Dream.  But to whom much is given, much is required.

It’s not enough to simply try, to press onward toward a vision only to wave the white flag in surrender when the road gets tough. It’s not enough to say, “I gave my all” when there is still breath in my body and energy to spare. It’s not enough to believe I’ve done my part in helping others, when there is obviously still so much work to be done.

The art of sacrifice is when you no longer see yourself because the cause is greater and the reward is immeasurable. It’s the quintessential “dare to be great” moment, the do it now and suffer the consequences later split-second decision that changes your life course forever. It’s the stand up and fight that empowers you to champion the needs of others instead of yourself. And though it may not make you a hero, you will become the ultimate warrior when you’ve laid down your life, not in death, but in living to find more ways in which you can give.

image courtesy of: Beverly & Pack via photopin cc

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The Great Escape

by Mystique | Founder of Coordinator For A Day

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Pink Beach

Sometimes you have to get away to take a deep breath, relax and refocus. Whether you’re working on a short-term project or a long- term goal, taking a break can help you gain the necessary perspective and give you a much needed boost of energy which will ultimately help your creativity flow. A great escape is not quitting. It’s recognizing that you’ve gone as far as you can go and making a sound decision to stop and refuel before you completely run out of gas.

When I had the idea of launching Coordinator For A Day, I think I ran on sheer passion alone. I pushed myself to limits that I wasn’t even sure I was capable of reaching all in the effort of seeing my vision come to life. Everything I did depleted a little bit of energy: from the last weddings I coordinated leading up to the launch of the site to writing all of the copy and interacting with the development team. But I was too amped to notice. I had the worst case of tunnel vision where all I could see was what CoordinatorForADay.com could become and what I had to do to get there. I was blinded by the mission.  It wasn’t until I fully realized that I was moving forward “Yabba Dabba Doo” style (all force of will instead of feet), that I understood that it was time to slow this ride down.

It’s great to accomplish goals and it’s amazing to help others reach theirs, but it’s important to preserve yourself so that you have something left to give. I am really excited about the new initiatives that I am blessed to be a part of, the new partnerships (and old ones) and the vast ideas that spin around in this wacky mind that has been gifted to me.  But I am truly happy and beyond giddy that I took some much needed “me” time. Yes, I struggled with guilt as I made choices to watch holiday movie marathons instead of writing blog posts or playing board games with my husband instead of making the next business decision. But ultimately I am so rested, so ready and so excited to press play that I know that 2014 will be an even more amazing year, because now I not only have passion fueling me, but also a renewed since of purpose.

 

image courtesy of Emilio J Santacoloma via photopin cc

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Rules of Engagement

by Mystique | Founder of Coordinator For A Day

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Engagement Ring

You said, “Yes” and then expected endless moments of bliss thereafter. You could not have expected riffs or wrinkles in your plans. After all, saying, “Yes” was supposed to mean the hard part is over. The searching, the feelings of uncertainty and the anticipation should have ended the moment you said, “Yes” – but unfortunately it didn’t. So now what?

Whether you’re securing vendors for your wedding or contracting with service providers as a business owner, making the decision to entrust someone with your vision can be tough. But what makes it even tougher is the faux sense of calm that you feel when you think that you’ve found the right person or the right company only to later discover that your “Yes” should have been a resounding, “Oh No!”

Here are the rules to help minimize broken engagements:

Rule #1: Research. Research. Research.

Do your homework and then do someone else’s. Just because they’ve received glowing reviews on one site doesn’t mean you shouldn’t check out any other. Ask to speak with actual references. See samples of their work. Do whatever you need to do in order to make an informed decision.

Rule #2: Take Your Time

Give yourself enough time to explore all of your options. There is nothing like reeking of desperation because you’ve waited until the last iota of a second to start your search. Vendors can smell the stench of desperation a mile away. At this point, you can throw away any real chance of negotiating.

Rule #3: Don’t Believe The Hype

Unfortunately some people over promise and under deliver. So be extra leery of those who try to sway you into making a decision faster than when you’re truly ready to make one. They typically operate by promising you everything but the Queen’s jewels. They are exceptionally good at building a connection with you and before you know it you’re saying, “Yes” to them when you haven’t yet received feedback from all of your other suitors.

Rule #4: Get It In Writing

If their standard proposal or contract does not outline all of the specifics that you were promised, then request that they draft an addendum, or better yet draft your own (with the guidance of legal counsel) and make it part of the agreement. This guarantees that none of the details have gotten lost in all of the sweet talk during the sales process.

Rule #5 Be Firm, But Kind

If during the course of your relationship with your vendor things aren’t going exactly the way you envisioned or as contracted, then it is perfectly acceptable to bring your concerns to their attention. If you can accomplish this without becoming a “Zilla” then you may be able to salvage what’s left of the relationship without any further damage.

 

Image courtesy of Jewellery Monthly via photopin cc

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