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Mindy Lee M. Lipsky

Certified Business Coach
Certified DISC Practitioner

 

610-705-3526

 

Message Mindy

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Lifestyle Essentials

These are blogs pertaining to life, balance, happiness and inspiration. You will find tips, stories and tools to help you navigate life’s ups and downs

I declare this the summer of Baking, Writing & Meditating!

Today is Saturday! I just came in from sitting out back on my patio with my dog and a cup of coffee. The skies are DEEP blue, there is a cool breeze and the sun is bright and bold!  Best of all, the humidity is VERY low and the temps are in the low 70’s. For me this is the perfect weather. I decided to do my morning meditation our there. Today’s guided meditation was about Abundance, Prosperity and Success. It was the perfect way to start the weekend!

During my mediation I had a light bulb moment… I choose to make this the summer of creativity!  My 2 favorite ways to be creative are Baking/Cooking and Writing!  SO my new goal is to work those in daily in addition to my meditation practice. I am finding my new normal after the death of my momma. To find my balance I want to incorporate the things I like to do in life, instead of just the things I “should” do.

I started Mediating on February 13th 2018 at the suggestion of my counselor. Today marks 146 days of consecutive meditation. Am I good at it… No. But who cares. Even if you do meditation “wrong” you still benefit. Does my mind wander. Yep! You betcha!  However, I do have days where I am more focused and less wandering. I highly recommend trying it. If you are new… try an app. There are a bunch out there. I started with Calm and moved to Insight Timer.  Insight Timer is the app that helped me to make it to 146 days. I suggest you try some out and stick with the one YOU love! If you are seeking inspiration, motivation, balance or just some “me time” I highly recommend trying meditation. It isn’t easy at first, but keep trying… you will learn how it can benefit you, even if you aren’t perfect at it!

A few days ago I started cooking and/or baking daily. I have always loved to be in the kitchen and try new recipes and perfect family traditional recipes! I baked Watermelon Cupcakes with my daughter, made funnel cake, made the Carnival Cruise Line Melting Chocolate cakes (YUM)!, and I even made up a recipe for Strawberry hand pies! I have been researching homemade bread, pizza dough, doughnuts and more!  On the savory side, I have made pretzel roll hot ham and cheese sandwiches, my husbands family traditional Haluski (see the recipe here), and tried Goulash (one of my momma’s favorites!  They all turned out great so far! For me, baking and cooking is relaxing. It has a methodology to it and an order to it that is calming for me. Cooking may not be your thing… but take a moment to stop and think of something that makes you happy!

 

 

 

And finally writing. Yes, I have a lot to say. I have always wanted to write a book. I have 2 book outlines made up, but so far I have not written the books!  I’m not going to beat myself up over it. I am going to make a goal to write something every day. It can be in my journal, or a blog post or maybe a chapter of one of the books!  I am going to just leave it at… I will write each day! I am excited to bring you topics about the things I am excited about, mad about, reminisce about… anything!  So stay tuned!  I plan to have some great content here in the coming days, weeks and months! 

Mindy’s Homemade Haluski Recipe!

Hey there!  Coach Mindy here!  Today I made homemade Haluski to honor our immigrant ancestors on this 4th of July!  I have had a bunch of requests for the recipe… so here it is! I have made Haluski a number of times using a variety of recipes… this is my own recipe using the combined tips from the recipes I have tried over the years. This recipe turns out great every time!  It is hard work to make the dough, but OH SO worth it! Even my Father in Law loved this Haluski when I made it for him! I think he is proud that we are keeping the tradition of the Lipsky family cooking!

Mindy’s Homemade Haluski Recipe!

Ingredients:

  • 2 Eggs
  • 4 cups Flour
  • salt to taste (about 1/4 tsp)
  • Milk
  • 1 to 2 sticks of butter
  • 1 onion (diced)
  • 2 heads cabbage – cut into thin strips
  1. Beat Eggs well in a large bowl
  2. Stir in flour – I use a sturdy spatula at this point and scrape the bottom and sides as I stir. It will become crumbly
  3. Add in 1 Tbsp of milk at a time until the mixture forms a stiff dough. At this point I switched from the spatula to the dough hooks on my hand mixer at a low to medium speed. This takes some time… but if you add too much milk at once the dough is dry in some parts and sticky in others and difficult to work with… so be patient and keep mixing.
  4. Once the dough starts to stick together when you squeeze it… switch to hand kneading, adding more milk if needed until the dough forms a ball that sticks together and doesn’t crumble
  5. Start a large pot with water and bring to a boil while you roll out the dough
  6. Break of Fist sized pieces of dough and roll out on a lightly floured board to 1/8 inch thickness – this takes some elbow grease for sure!
  7. Once the dough is rolled out to 1/8 inch thickness, cut into 1 inch by 2 inch strips and set aside as you roll out the next fist size.
  8. When you have rolled and cut all the dough, drop strips into boiling water 1 at a time. Once you have a decent amount in the boiling water (about 25 strips) start a timer for 3 minutes and let the dough boil.
  9. after the 3 minutes, remove the cooked dough with a slotted spoon or net scoop and repeat with the rest of the dough until all the dough is cooked. (Some set the dough out to dry, I just put it in bowls and set aside
  10. Next in a large pot, saute diced onion in 2 Tbsp of butter until translucent
  11. Once translucent, add the Cabbage and cook until cabbage is tender
  12. Add the dough to the onions and cabbage and stir well
  13. Add butter 1 Tbsp at a time until desired amount of butter is achieved… we use at least 1 stick, sometimes up to 2 depending on how much cabbage and dough we have
  14. Simmer, stirring frequently for 30 minutes
  15. Add Salt and Pepper to taste, serve warm and enjoy!

An Entrepreneurs work is never really done…

HAPPY 4th of July 2018!  

Yes!  I am working on a holiday!  Many entrepreneurs make the choice to work whenever they can… although I am a big supporter of balance and making sure there is down time and time to rest, recharge and recover! Today I decided to put in some time to work ON my business, and will relax a bit later with family!

Last night I had a bunch of dreams… I do dream a lot, but one stuck out in particular. I dreamt that I was helping people through life coaching instead of just business coaching. I know Life Coaching has a stigma to it. There are many out there who call themselves a “Coach” but have zero qualifications to do so… That’s not me! Check out my About page to see why I am qualified… but I digress…

ANYWAY… today I decided to amp up the life coaching side of my business. You see, I just lost my momma on May 8th. She passed away peacefully after a long illness. I was her caregiver for 10 years. In that 10 year time I was also raising my 2 children… they are now 14 & 12… so they were 4 & 2 when my husband and I began being the sole caregivers for my mom. I have been in the sandwich generation for over a decade now. In that time I have made some mistakes, had hard decisions and learned A LOT! In the past few weeks the loss of my mom made me think about what I want to do with the rest of my life. I LOVE COACHING, but I did neglect my coaching business in these last few months of my mother’s life. Do I regret it… NO!  Emphatically NO! But, I DO have to rebuild my business. When an entrepreneur doesn’t work… they don’t get paid!  That is a fact!

Now, I could look at this as a negative, but I choose to look at this as a positive. I get to redesign my business AGAIN! While my passion is for helping small business owners and entrepreneurs grow their businesses… I also have a passion for those raising their children and those caring for their parents or sick partners.  I plan to help BOTH!! In the next few months you will see more Lifestyle blogs in addition to business tips! My expertise in the DISC behavior patterns can help in BOTH areas. So now I can help MORE people!

I took time this morning to re-categorize all the blogs I have written to date, so that you can find the type of information you need more quickly… you can see a list of the categories at the bottom of every web page on this site! I will update my entire site to reflect my new goals as well. 

My goal is to write more with more engaging content… so check back often!

Again… Happy, Happy 4th of July! I do plan to work a bit more then go spend some time with my family! I will be making homemade Halushki today! YUM! (with REAL Dough not egg noodles – yuck!) LOL

Have a super day! Hope to “see” you back here soon! Please check out the new categories and let me know what you think!

A Guide to Understanding Different Reactions to Tragedy

This morning I turned on Good Morning America, as I do every morning, only to be greeted yet AGAIN with the sad news of another mass shooting… this time the worst in “the history of American mass shootings”.  The fact that I just typed… “the history of American mass shootings” brings a tear to my eye. We as a country and the world have faced many tragedies recently… 3 devastating hurricanes, earthquakes, volcanoes, wild fires, excessive heat warnings, floods, social and economical unrest, and now another mass shooting.  As our country faces pulling together after this recent tragedy, I am paused to consider the diverse ways people respond to tragic events. You see not everyone handles tragedy the same. And that is OK!  But it is helpful to understand that some will not grieve the same way you do. When we understand that we can help each other heal instead of judging.

As a coach and DISC practitioner I live for analyzing behavior patterns and solving problems. In crisis, I have seen some people rush to activism, some get to work to avoid thinking about it, some people rush to solitude, some rush to be with the people they love, some people research to find all the facts and try to make sense of it all. The point is… we all handle things differently. 

Most high “D” behavior styles will pause reflect and move on. They will keep busy with things they can control and act on.  They will allow themselves little downtime and little time to process. To others this may seem harsh or insensitive… but, this is just how a high “D” handles crisis.

Most high “I” behavior styles will flock to groups to be around people, some will start a fundraising effort, some will make signs or create (repeated) social media posts of support… a “we’re in this together” mentality.  They may share information that is not backed by fact, but more based on emotion. To others this can seem irresponsible or rash in the respect that they can stir up emotions in others.

Most high “S” behavior styles will shelter at home… surround themselves with what is comfortable, known and familiar. They will bring their loved ones close and make sure they are OK without sharing much about their own feelings. To other this may look like they are keeping their head in the sand… and to an “S”, that is just what they want in crisis!

Most high “C” behavior styles will watch all the news stations, read articles, listen to the radio, scan social media, gather information, and some will even try to figure out a plan to “make things better” or make sense of something that may not make sense.  They are looking for logic… something to solve, an answer. A high “C” will need as much information, angles and stories as they can get, even if it is upsetting to them.  To others this may seem like punishment… “Why are you doing this to yourself… turn off the TV”, But they can’t.

There is no “Right” or “Wrong” way to handle tragedy… what is most important is to give people the freedom to process without judgement of how they “should” react or respond. My goal in this article is to bring to light the fact that we are all different, yet all beautiful. As we try to understand what is going on in our world… remember to give people grace… give people the space to grieve or be angry or whatever emotion comes up for them… without judgement. We will get through this. Sending love and hugs to you all!

Is Eating Alone Embarrassing or Empowering?

Today I sort of messed up my schedule. I thought I needed to be at my first event at 10 am… well it turns out I didn’t need to be there until 3 PM.  I decided instead of driving back home the 45 minute drive and then returning again, I would instead set up shop and work on other things until my 3 PM event. In usual “Mindy Style” I didn’t plan well for my meals… something I struggle with but am working on. I knew it would be good to get a solid meal in before the event, so at 12:30 I decided to go to the local Bertucci’s for a solo lunch!  I didn’t hesitate because I do eat alone from time to time.  The funny thing is, when I tell someone I ate at a restaurant alone they get a shocked look on their face.  “What was that like??”  “Did you feel weird?”  Now, I’m not talking drinking a cup of coffee at Starbucks slumped over a laptop… I’m talking a full lunch in a busy restaurant alone…gasp!

 

Upon arriving I said “Just me” and smiled, the host only hesitated for a moment before putting back all but one menu and lead me to my table. I sat down and figured out what I wanted and decided I wasn’t going to linger on my tablet or cell phone… I was going to observe and relax for the time I was there.

 

So, here is what I observed-noticed: 

 

  1. The older people in the restaurant were engaged in conversation, while the younger ones seemed to be on their phones. (An unfortunate sign of the times I guess). The groups seemed to be in deep conversation, leaning in.
  2. I was served much more quickly than the other tables with 2 or more patrons. I didn’t have the chance to ask if that is by design or if they assume you don’t want to sit alone for “too long”. The tables with groups they seemed to time the meal at a steadier pace. I don’t think they were rushing me, but wanted to make sure I was taken care of. Food came out one after the next… I think I was seated and finished in about 20 minutes!
  3. I was checked on constantly… almost as if they wanted to make sure I wasn’t lonely LOL!
  4. I noticed no one would look at me. I could see people looking around the restaurant but they seemed to skip over me… especially eye contact. Except for one little boy, who on his way out with his mother and sister stopped at my table and said, “Good Morning!” with a huge smile on his face.  His mother quickly rushed him away saying don’t bother that woman. But I quite enjoyed his interaction and was glad I could say “Good Morning” back before he was out of earshot!  I wondered if HE thought I might be lonely and needed a friendly hello??  I did smile at a woman across the room… but she quickly looked away.
  5. There was 1 other person in the restaurant eating alone… She had her tablet and phone going and never looked up even when the wait staff checked on her. I wondered… could she be that busy or is she feeling embarrassed a little to be eating alone?

 

So, have you ever eaten alone?  How did it make you feel?  I loved the fact that I got to eat all 3 rolls in the Bertucci bread basket (my absolute favorite with their seasoned oil!  YUM!).  I loved looking around and really seeing the décor and the people there. I was content not looking at my electronic devices and just “being”, enjoying my meal. Don’t get me wrong… I love to eat with family, friends and colleagues as well!  But once in a while I think it is great to do things outside of the norm.  Eating alone can be very empowering and relaxing at the same time. Give it a try and let us know how it makes you feel!

 

From a Different View

From a Different View

My best friend and her 2 year old son are in town from Michigan this week.  For the first part of the visit my BFF has to work so, we are caring for her son for 56 hours (yes I am counting hours) while she is at a business conference.  I’m not counting hours because I don’t love being with this sweet, adorable, energetic boy… I count hours because our life for these 56 hours needs to be different due to his presence!

 

We have a 12 year old and a 10 year old… so it has been quite a few years since a toddler has been running amuck around the house. We all are on high alert making sure he is safe and happy.  He can’t be unattended like a 12 or 10 year old… so both my husband and I have adjusted our work hours and schedule to make sure we are more than vigilant but actively present during this time, so we can enjoy it!  It’s definitely different… It’s more time on the floor, so the house looks different from that perspective.  I found popcorn tucked under a chair where the routine vacuuming doesn’t reach…  I found a plethora of things little 2 year old fingers can grasp that I didn’t know was actually in reach.  I found he is FAST… I haven’t chased anyone in a long time and am now reconsidering returning to the gym to get back into better shape!

 

So what does this have to do with business?  A LOT!  When was the last time you took a look at your business from another view?  When was the last time you looked at your offerings from your client’s view?  When was the last time you looked at your business from your accountant’s view? Or your lawyers view? Or from your spouse’s view? Or your children’s view?  I could co on… The point is… things look different from other perspectives. 

 

Why not take a look at your business through different eyes this week?  Pick a few favorite clients and ask them to describe in their own words what you do… see what their perspective is.  (It may even help you update your bio or 30 second intro!) You can go even further and ask what improvements you can make in your offerings or services in their opinion.  Use the feedback to make your business BETTER! 

 

Don’t be afraid to take this challenge on!  Look at it as an exciting opportunity to see things from a different perspective and a unique opportunity to make positive changes and make your business better!  Let me know how it goes!

Something to Look Forward to!

Did you ever notice that life is more exciting if you have something you are looking forward to?  I certainly believe that to be true!  When I have a vacation or a visit with a friend coming up, I tend to look at the calendar a lot, counting the days and making my plan to fit everything in that needs to be done surrounding the event.  There is a positive buzz and even if other things aren’t going great, I have “Something to look forward to!”

 

I have a dear friend who moved away a few years ago.  I miss her terribly.  However, if I know specifically when I will get to visit with her again, face to face, it seems to make it better.  I have a more positive outlook and I know the end date (or goal), so I don’t seem to harp on how much I miss her, but instead on when I next get to be in her space. 

 

Sometimes it’s not a BIG event.  It might be something smaller like lunch or coffee with a friend.  Today I had a FULL schedule of work to do.  Some was exciting, some not so much!  However, I planned ahead and sprinkled in lunch with a friend to break up the day.  So this morning when things weren’t going my way, I simply remembered I’d have a break soon and be able to catch up, chat and laugh with my friend over a yummy meal at one of our favorite meeting places.  I came back to my office feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the rest of my to-do list!

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The same is true in your business.  When you have nothing to look forward to it gets pretty dull and mundane!  BUT … When you are diligently working toward a fantastic goal or event, “work” is exciting and invigorating!  When work is exciting and invigorating you draw people to you and your business!

 

The best thing about it… YOU get to control what you get to look forward to in your business.  It could be a presentation you have coming up, it could be a HUGE opportunity you are looking for, it could be writing your first book, it could be acquiring that next amazing client.  It’s all up to you!

 

I have a vision board on the “back splash” of my desk.  This vision board has specific goals in pictures of things I want to achieve or have.  When I find myself getting in a rut I take a good hard look at the vision board.  I choose something to work for… to look forward to!  I set a SMART goal around it (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time Sensitive).  Once I set the goal, I make a plan on how I plan to reach it.  Because after all, a goal without a plan is just a wish!  And voila!  I now have something to look forward to!  I can then make smaller goal posters or notes to remind me what I am working toward.  AND, when I meet with people to network my excitement will ooze out of me and get them excited too!

 

What are you looking forward to? If you don’t know… go find something!

The House with the Golden Windows

When I was growing up my mother would tell my sister and me many stories.  As an adult and mother to my own kids now, I find myself remembering and sometimes retelling the stories I once loved to have told to me.  One of my favorites was the house with the Golden Windows.  It is a story about perspective and appreciating what you have when you have it.  It can also be about not comparing yourself with others… I found this version of the story online… tell me what you think you can learn from it…

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(This is actually a picture of my neighbors window I took to remind me of MY golden windows)

The House with the Golden Windows

     Once upon a time, there was a little girl who lived in a simple, small, and shabby-looking house. When she would be outside playing in the yard, she often glanced over the fence and across the valley and noticed a large house high on the hill. This house had “golden windows” that glistened every time the sun shone on it and the girl would dream about how lovely it would be to live there instead of in the ordinary house like hers.

      A few years later, when the girl was a little older, her mother gave her permission to ride her bike a little further up the street. She rode up the street, across the valley, and up the hill until she reached the house, with the golden windows, that she always admired from the distance.

     As she dismounted from her bike, gazing at the house, she was a bit disappointed in what she saw up close. The house was abandoned and dilapidated. The front yard was surrounded by weeds taller than her and the “golden windows” were actually plain and dirty, reflecting only the neglect of the house.

     Feeling so sad, she didn’t go any further. Heartbroken over the false illusion of her dream house, she mounted her bike and headed back to her house. As she glanced up, ahead of her in the distance, there was a sight that really amazed her. Across the valley on her side of the valley was a little house and the windows glistened just as golden as the house she was just leaving. It was the sun shining on her little house.

     It was then that she realized, she had been living in her “golden house” that she always dreamed of from afar. But her house was filled with love and care. It wasn’t abandoned like the house she often dreamed of someday having. Instead, everything she dreamed of was right there in front of her. In reality… she WAS living her dream!

MORAL: Things aren’t always greener on the other side. The way we view things aren’t always how they really are. We need to appreciate the things we are given and make the most of it.

We often compare ourselves and/or our businesses to others.  We are often comparing apples to oranges or our own challenges/weaknesses to other’s strengths.  When they look at us… they see the golden window too!  In the summer months when things tend to slow down and become more relaxed it gives us time to criticize and compare.  I challenge you to instead revisit and reevaluate what you are doing.  What is working?  What isn’t working?  Take the time to live in the moment, dream, create, and change things up. Ask someone you trust to tell you what they think of your business or what you are doing right in your life.  Then remind yourself that you ALREADY have golden windows!  How will you let your golden windows shine??

The Working at Home Snow Day Survival Guide

Snow Day!  Yeah!  Oh wait… I have to work and now the kids are here ALL DAY…  Sound familiar?  Well here on the east coast and in 24 states across America, we are having what I hope is Mother Nature’s last blast of winter “fun”.  So, that means many of us are working from home today.  I thought I would share some tips on how to keep the day productive.

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Snow Day Tip #1: Create a NEW to-do list just for today.  You can think of things that need to get done that do not involve clients like social media, blog posting, business finance, updating your marketing plan… etc.  The list should be kept short if possible… use today to have a slower paced day yet include something that will really make you feel accomplished. 

 

Snow Day Tip #2: Sit down with the kids and let them know you are working… if they are old enough, you can even show them the list of tasks you need to finish so they can cheer you on and support you through it.  It is good for them to see you working!

 

Snow Day Tip #3: If you do need to do client outreach, be sure to do that FIRST before the natives get restless!  Let them know mommy/daddy needs about 20 minutes (or however long you need) where you cannot be interrupted… Dust off an old favorite movie, a board game or pull out the cookbook and have them choose something they would like to learn to cook.  Heck send older kids out to shovel!  Show them a signal you can do without words to show them you cannot be interrupted.  I put 2 fingers up to my lips as in “shhhhh” then blow a silent kiss.  When you make the calls… It is also a good idea with some clients to just address the elephant in the room… many will have kids home so in the beginning of the call, just mention it… “Oh by the way, if you hear some  background noise, I apologize… after all it is a snow day and the kids are home.   I appreciate you taking the time to speak with me today.”

 

Snow Day Tip #4: Have some way to separate the area you work and the rest of the house… this can be a door or a screen.  Here is a picture of my screen.

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When my family sees this up they know I am working and have to assume they need to be quiet. This also keeps me from being distracted by what is going on around me as well.

 

I have a 3 part blog that addresses tips to work more productively from home.  You can find them here:

Part 1: 20 Tips for Working From Home with Kids during the Summer!  The 3 P’s – A 3 Part Series

Part 2: 20 Tips for Working From Home with Kids during the Summer!  The 3 P’s – A 3 Part Series

Part 3: 20 Tips for Working From Home with Kids during the Summer!  The 3 P’s – A 3 Part Series

Enjoy this winter wonderland today!  Let me know what questions you have!

What are you doing today?

Many of my clients first reach out to me thinking they have a time management problem.  Once we have our first session we almost ALWAYS find that it is something else. 

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Having said that I 100% believe that scheduling is important and can be done wrong if not careful.  Are you focusing on Income producing activities (IPAs)?  If not you are leaving money on the table.  Getting those Income producing activities first will set the tone for the day.  One of the tools I use is the 6 Most Important Things List.  

 

Prioritizing your work and putting the income producing activities first will help ensure you are not pushing papers all day.  What activities create the most income for you?  Is it making calls, holding appointments, selling something or working on a marketing project?  Each business is different and there are seasons.  My recommendation is for you to sit and make a list of how you make actual money in your business… If you sell a product, set a goal to sell 1 or 2 first thing in the morning.  If you offer a service, set up a selling appointment first.  Try it for a week and see if your bottom line increases.

 

Share with me what your income producing activities are… if you don’t know… let’s talk!  It could be that you are leaving money on the table!