Category Archives: Jobs

My Life Doesn’t Fit In My Jeans!

Cynthia Ackrill, MD

Ask an audience of 500 high-achieving women what isn’t fitting for them and you will get a lot of answers – from jeans to life to some things that truly can’t be printed! But over and over I hear recurring themes. We want to feel like our life fits, like our precious time and energy is spent in ways that reflect our values, in ways that make us feel effective, and in ways that leave us energy to take care of ourselves and have some fun! 

Why is this so hard? Why do so many truly remarkable women feel drained, their energy scattered in so many directions? To address this critical subject, we’ve invited Cynthia Ackrill, MD to share her expertise and understanding with our readers.

The secret may be in the error of the phrase I just used: “in ways that leave us energy to take care of ourselves and have some fun!” This is completely backwards! Yet, it is such a pervasive concept it is part of our culture. We take care of ourselves last, even give ourselves and each other kudos for the sheer martyrdom of it all. We are secretly competitive to do more than those around us. We are continually rewarded for external achievement, not for our ability to balance healthy self-care with managing the challenges of careers and lives. Sure, you might get noticed for dropping some weight, but it is rare for our culture- corporate or otherwise- to recognize the art of life balance.

Yet aren’t we drawn to those folks who have that grounded-ness, that vitality that comes from putting themselves on their own to-do list? And don’t we really know, somewhere deep inside, that making sure we have stoked the fires of our energy resources pays off–getting enough sleep, good nutrition, movement, recreation, social connection, etc. We certainly know it when we send children off to school. We know their little bodies must have the basic needs met to learn. Yet we expect our brains to be creative when cheating our rest and nutrients.  

Energy spent must be replaced. It’s not linear, by any means. Beyond the basic human needs, what refuels us varies. But we are all systems that operate best when balanced. And often it takes so little to tip the scales back toward balance. 10 minutes of me-time in the middle of a day can recharge batteries for hours. 10 minutes! 2 minutes of breath work can reset your brain and heart- how cool!

What can you do for yourself today to help your life fit? To reclaim some energy for your fabulous life?

To learn more about Cynthia Ackrill, speaker, coach and president of WellSpark, please visit her at her website.

Katie Couric’s Promoters Contacted Oops50.com – No Joke

Annice

Last week, Oops50.com got an e-mail from a promotional manager (Angela) for Katie Couric asking our team to spread the word about her new T.V. show. This is no joke. The letter said:

“We are promoting the fall return of KATIE COURIC to Daytime television with the launch of her new nationally-syndicated show “KATIE.” Blending information, stories of the day and entertainment, the show is being touted as “sunny, sexy and smart.”  The new show will be distributed by Disney-ABC Domestic Television and premieres September 10th. Timely and topical, the show will include powerful segments intersecting news, entertainment, fashion, and healthy living among other topics, alongside thoughtful interviews with newsmakers, celebrities and everyday people who have extraordinary stories to tell. “

If you visit her website, it says she is celebrating women who are re-inventing themselves – Sheryl Crow, Jessica Simpson, and Jennifer Lopez – Really? Nothing against these superstars but do we REALLY care about how they re-invent themselves? Oh, and by the way, from what to what?

Now, the promoters want little old us at Oops50 to post about Katie’s return to television. And in return, they will provide us with promotional images and giveaway items including hats, coffee mugs, tee-shirts, mousepads, and water bottles from the KATIE! show. In return, they said they would help drive traffic to our site.

Katie Giveaways

When I wrote back saying we would consider promoting the show because we like Katie, (after all, who doesn’t?) and like us, she’s over  50. I also wrote back asking Angela to explain how she was going to drive traffic to OUR site. Would Katie like to do a piece about our blog for women over 50?  Seems like a fair trade to me.

The very next day, Angela sent me another letter, not only repeating word for word what she wrote in her first letter, but giving ME a list of things to do to promote our new BFF Katie Couric.  Check out the list:

1) Blog post on your website/blog during the campaign period (now through 9/21). Attached is an asset zip containing promotional images, logos and promo trailer.

2) Post on your Facebook page during the campaign period.

3) Send us a preview URL before the post would go live on your site.

4) Host a giveaway promotion along with your post. Included in the zip file is a jpeg of the giveaway items we have give you from the Katie show to make available for your fans to win. We handle all fulfillment on our end, you can just provide your winner’s contact info at the close of the campaign.

I wrote Angela back again, saying, she did not answer my question about how she would drive traffic to our site, nor did she say whether Katie would mention our blog on her show. I also let her know that while our readers might enjoy the Katie Show, and wish her good luck, I didn’t think they cared about owning a Katie coffee mug or mousepad. Honestly, do the promoters really think we are going to take the time to promote a mega star and get nothing in return? Does that strategy work for them? Show me the money, Katie! Or, at least talk about our blog on your show? Are you listening?

Beautiful Women over 50: What a Difference the Years Make

Lynne

To say that our 40thclass reunion last summer was a life changing experience would be an understatement!  So many wonderful things happened that have forever changed so many of us as a result of that wonderful weekend.  One of the best changes was that, after 40 years, several of us have not only reconnected on a personal level, but we have also been able to team up and form a national sales force for a new company started by one of our very own!

I am happy to say that almost 75% of our classmates were found in the process of planning the reunion. And although our life paths are very different, several of us do share a love of beautiful jewelry which proved to be a great common denominator when we discovered Susan Leasure had created a new online jewelry boutique called Cinderella’s Sea.  This is a unique wholesale accessory boutique created by a woman, for women and run by women.  Cinderella’s Seabrings individual expression in to women’s lives with “The Aqua Princess Collection of Ultra glamorous Jewelry”, embellished with cultured pearls and dazzling crystals.

Reunion Buddies

Susan and I have teamed up and are working together to formulate a team of professionals to work as a sales force across the country, selling our beautiful jewelry and accessories to upscale ladies boutiques.  It’s exciting!  Several classmates and spouses of classmates have joined the team.  I have a feeling that great things will come out of this new collaboration.

Susan

Having dinner with several of these ladies at one of our “mini reunions” in Florida, I found that many of us were looking for a part time activity to help pay for our “shopping habits”.  So what better way to do that than by selling jewelry we all love to wear and own personally?  We all own and wear our favorite pieces of “The Cinderella’s Sea Collection” already.  And you know what?  We have only positive things to say about the collection because we love it ourselves.

Look out America – here we come!  And Fashionistas, be looking for a boutique close to you!  The Cinderella’s Sea Jewelry Collection will be arriving soon!

Ah yes, what a difference the years make.  We never thought we’d come full circle, but here we are, high school buddies, back together again as the sales team behind Cinderella’s Sea!  Check the site out!

Lynne

Rodeo Queen
Party Girl

 

“You Only Live Once, But If You Do it Right, Once Is Enough.” Mae West

Annice

I need a new job.  Sitting at a desk and being indoors on most days is hazardous to your health, and my body knows it.  I have days where I sit in front of clients listening to them talk about their business and then after they leave, I have to type up my notes and enter them in a database.  Sitting too long gives me a royal pain in the butt, so much that I dream of being a mail carrier or a conductor.  I just finished a quarterly report yesterday, so I’ve been sitting at my desk far too long, so now I have a mild case of sciatica.  The pain begins in the lower back and runs through the buttock.   Lucky for me, it’s not traveling down the lower leg because if you’ve ever had a full blown case of sciatica, you know it’s is a killer.

Of course, if I entered the data a little bit every month in a more timely fashion, I wouldn’t have to be computer chair bound, but when clients call, I give in to their needs and put my admin work on hold even though I’ve designated that time for ME.

Too much sitting and not enough movement  is unhealthy.  It’s an occupational hazard for sure, so why can’t I collect worker’s comp and get a massage?  I want a job where I move.  Have you ever seen a slouching, fat mail carrier or conductor?  Did you know they live a long healthy life thanks to all that aerobic activity?

Let me be clear, I’m not just looking for longevity, but healthy longevity.  Many of the world’s famous conductors lived well into their 80’s and 90’s during a time when the average life expectancy was 50 years old.  Evidently, flapping your arms around for hours provides a great cardiovascular workout with a steady stream of blood flowing to the brain – all that, while listening to beautiful music, creating an inner peace.  That’s what I want – a life-enhancing job.  

There is another way.  If I were brilliant, I could expect a long life, say the longevity experts.  Winners of the Nobel Prize live longer than most people.  It seems like the act of winning a Nobel Prize increases longevity and life expectancy by 1.5 years.  They also say Minnesotans live longer than most as well as those who are married.  And who knew that the more money you make, the longer you live?  So, I guess a wealthy married orchestra conductor living in Minnesota who has won a Nobel Prize can expect an uber long AND healthy life.

Mae West

Mae West got it right, and she was 87 when she died.

“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.”

Thank you, Mae.

Changing Cultures & Taking on Elder Care

Totsie Marine

Our Friend, Totsie, disappeared from Asheville, but we found her in Panama.  Here is her story.

Part 1: Making the Decision

“Wanda fell and broke her (other) arm. She is doing better but can’t remember why she has a cast on her arm.” This email came after we made the decision to move to Boquete, Panama and help take care of my 83 year-old mother-in-law, Wanda. It sealed the deal for us. We said we would come to Panama for a year.

How it came to be:  

My husband, Winn, and I had toyed with the idea of moving to Boquete after visiting there in January 2011. Winn’s brother, Kevin, and his wife, Tammy, had been taking care of Wanda for three years and had moved their whole family, including three school aged children, to Boquete about a year before our visit. Their decision to relocate there was based on Tammy’s parents, who had retired there, and their own research on cost of living, quality of medical care and the desire to scale down their expensive lifestyle in the states.

Family in Boquete

Winn and I have a web development business. I started the business in 1996 and he joined me in 2006. We re-branded the company in 2011 from Totsie.com to Webonobo and positioned it to be “Local Global Mobile Web Solutions”. We also had our site translated into Spanish to attract clients who needed multilingual sites. We had always been told “Oh, you could do your business from anywhere in the world.”, so now seemed to be the right time to see if that was true.

Our original thought was that we could move to Boquete, live near Kevin and Tammy and help take care of Wanda while continuing our business. We knew we would have a cable internet connection and with modern conveniences like Skype, we could still have personal connections to our clients.

The deciding factors:

One factor in our decision to move was that our business had slowed, like most businesses in the states, and while we still had a stable roster of 60+ clients which we host and support, the requests for new sites had slowed to a trickle. Even though we had re-branded and felt positive about the new direction, we were still in the early stages of marketing our new global potential.

Another important factor came when I had a reading with an intuitive in Asheville who helped me admit the fact that I was personally burned out. Being entirely self-taught, self-motivated, self-marketed, I had been working long days for 16 years and even though I thought I had a few good business years left in me, the truth came out in the reading and I had to admit that I was just plain tired, that I had become one-dimensional in giving all my energy to the business and what I really wanted was a big change in lifestyle.  

When I told Winn about my true feelings he immediately said “Absolutely, no problem, I can take over the business. I want you to rest and find yourself.” His next thought was that HE wanted to meet with the intuitive. In truth, he had been wanting to change the hectic lifestyle we had created but hadn’t figured out how to make that happen. So now he was motivated to not only take over the helm but also to do it in his style and at his pace.

And yet a third factor is the fact that I turn 62 on March 6, 2012. Yes, I’m a baby boomer. It seemed unreal to me that people really used to retire at 62 but here I was actually considering it! Of course I would have to give up the CEO position in the company and work less hours to qualify for Social Security but that quickly became a no-brainer. Winn, being 5 years younger than me, still felt excited about our rebranding efforts and could see himself running the business with me as co-pilot.

Running the numbers:

Winn loves spreadsheets so he spread us out in all the ways he could think of to evaluate the wisdom of our move. No matter how you sliced it, it looked like a really good idea!

Based on Kevin and Tammy’s experiences and cost of living, he decided that (as the new CEO) we could offer our services at a lower rate to our clients since our cost of living would be lower in Panama and that would create a win-win for our clients, who had smaller marketing budgets because of the downturn in the economy, and us who had lower living expenses. We could continue running the business, just on a smaller more sustainable pace. We would be living internationally which could eventually meet one of our rebranding goals which was to produce multilingual sites for international clients. We both got excited about the positive possibilities of this move and after we found a great renter for our house-someone I already had an acquaintance with who is in our industry-we felt like the light was green to go.

Part II – Next Monday!  In the meantime, Happy Birthday Totsie.