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Category: Lifestyle

The Wrong Side of Comfortable, an interview with Amy Charity

Amy Charity joins us on the show today, a retired professional cyclist and the author of The Wrong Side of Comfortable: Chase your dream, Discover your potential, Transform your life. Learn more about Amy Charity here.

Discussion guide and notes from my conversation with Amy Charity:

Amy Charity1. A classic conversation about a person who successfully left a corporate career to pursue a personal passion…taking a risk to left a comfortable life to pursue the unknown.

2. “It’s never too late.” Amy started her professional biking career in her mid-thirties.

3. How do people get unstuck and find the spark that finally enables them to pursue their passion? Don’t be afraid of taking little steps that slowly move towards success here. Small steps matter.

4. What is the wrong side of comfortable? Getting out of the comfort zone, and into the learning zone. “It’s only when you are on the edge that you are learning.” You HAVE to expand what YOU think is comfortable!

5. Grit, perseverance, positive mindset: essentials to success. “You have to want it badly enough to really get after it.”

6. “Effort counts twice.”

7. Life is a sport of suffering. Why are we so afraid of suffering and obstacles? You have to keep perspective in that you will ultimately come out of hard times, and be ok.

8. Feeling uncomfortable may be a sign that you are making the right decisions. In fact, you need to seek the wrong side of comfortable.

9. The importance and attributes of teamwork.

10. Ways to change your life WITHOUT quitting your day job, or ideas on how to do something radical even at sixty-five years of age. You have to ask yourself what you will be more proud of at the end…

You can find Amy Charity’s book here:

About Amy Charity:

Amy has 14 years of experience in the financial sector, working in banking, venture capital, and at a hedge fund. At the age of 34 she left the financial industry to pursue her passion and a career in professional bike racing. Amy raced for the U.S. National Team and signed a contract with one of the top ten women’s professional racing teams in the world. Her team won a National Championship in the Team Time Trial and raced the World Championships. Her extensive corporate experience, combined with her athletic achievements, make her an expert in teamwork, motivation, and pushing boundaries to maximize performance.

(the podcast on iTunes)

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Engagement (and income) in our later years, an interview with George Schofield

Joined on the show by George Schofield, author of “How Do I Get There From here?” Learn more about George here!

Discussion guide from today’s conversation with George Schofield:

1. What’s so different about retirement today and in the future?

2. Why should we keep our marketable skills up to date throughout our lives?

3. How can we handle and manage the explosion of change all around us?

4. Discussion on creating revenue streams as a means of staying engaged in later years, and supplement income.

5. “New aging.”

6. “Active intent.”

7. Asking yourself the question, “Who would you like to be?”

Find George Schofield’s book here:

About George Schofield:

As an entrepreneur, consultant, author and public speaker George works with businesses and individuals to develop new and smarter approaches to life planning and retirement in the New Normal. We’re all under pressure from new forces including reconfiguration of the workplace, the role of formal education, exponential changes in technology, our own increasing longevity, and the dramatically reduced shelf life of expertise and skills. He guides clients in creating a handcrafted life in the modern world – designing their futures, identifying skills they’ll need, and preparing for inevitable twists and turns along the way.

(the podcast on iTunes)

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Love, Loss and Networking: Why Your Networking Should be More Personal, by Beth Bridges

A column from Beth Bridges.

When I was the membership director for a large chamber of commerce, I attended over 2,500 networking events in 10 years.


Why would anyone go to an average of more than one networking event per business day? Why would anyone frequently plan a day that started out with a breakfast meeting, a luncheon, an afternoon coffee meeting and then follow it up with an after hours networking event?

Because it was basically the only tool I had. “When all you’ve got is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.”

When I took that membership marketing job, there was no marketing budget. I didn’t have a sales team. It was just me and a willingness to go out, anywhere, any time to meet almost anyone.

My “why” was so that I could build the organization membership and ultimately be successful in my job. I was all business, all the time.

But it was also fun and friendly because I like just about everyone and I enjoy meeting new people. I connected deeply with a lot of the people I networked and did business with because I’ve always felt that business and personal networking had a lot of overlap.

Loss Showed Me What I Had Gained

I didn’t realize just how much I have intertwined my personal and business networking until I suffered a terrible personal loss.

I didn’t want to lean on my family (mom, dad and brother) because they had lost someone they loved too. Fortunately, my closest friends were there. But so were my business friends.

Whatever I needed, someone was able to help. Set up a complete potluck to feed 100 people at your memorial? Done. Get tables, chairs and linens donated and set up? Of course. Pick up dog food? Sure! And I’ll have another business friend drive it over to your house. Squirrels ate your sprinkler head? I’ve got the exact replacement here in my truck.

I heard from two or three different people day, just checking in on me.

These were people I’ve known for years, but they weren’t “personal” friends. I didn’t have them over for dinner. Their kids didn’t play with mine. We didn’t go to school together.

We did go to the same luncheons. We belonged to the same organizations. We were connected on Facebook and LinkedIn. It was always so friendly when we saw each other and I was always genuinely thrilled for their successes and saddened by their losses.

Somewhere along that businessperson-to-businessperson journey, it became person-to-person. I gained connections … and built friendships.

So I will call these people my friends. Just friends. Not contact. Not connections. Not business friends. Some people might say that you can’t make friends just through business networking.

Not only are they wrong, but they are missing out on a vital component for a happy, long and successful life.

How to Make Networking More Personal

Yes, as business people, our main “WHY” for networking can be for business. We want to get referrals, develop resources, and ultimately increase our sales to build our businesses. Or, if we’re not the business owner, we network to further our careers. We’re in a job search or we’re looking to earn a promotion or we want to do our job well, especially if we’re in sales or marketing.

Beyond business and career reasons, we should also be networking for personal reasons. A great deal of my personal growth has been inspired by my networking. It’s also how many of us to prefer to get our personal service needs fulfilled. We trust our friends to refer us to a reliable plumber, a great hairstylist and the newest best place to eat.

But if you wonder HOW to make friends when everyone else is all about business, here’s how to do it without feeling like the new kid on the playground, looking for new friends.

Don’t focus on getting their business right away.

Do you want to try to sell this person something right now or do you want to have a long-term connection and possible friend? Because the two are possibly mutually exclusive.

No one likes to get a cold-call sales pitch the first time they meet someone. They might judge you to be someone that you don’t want to be involved with.

Be patient and keep your sales prospecting activities a little more separated from your networking.

Be authentic.

We often feel constrained to only discuss business when we are business events. Loosen up! Talk about your life, your family and the things you love. Be your authentic self. Before you think this means you can go off about how hard your life is and how bad your business sucks, no. You need to be your best authentic self.

That means being your friendly, happy and open self. Someone who has good things in their life. Someone who is interested in sharing positive things.

When you’ve met a dozen people at an event, who stands out? The person with the most correct elevator pitch? Or the person who excitedly told you about their new puppy?

You want to be real and genuine and talk about things that matter to you. But not too much, of course. You have to balance this with the next strategy.

Think about their needs first.

If you’re not enthusiastic about networking events because you don’t like to go in and push your own product or agenda, you’re already on the right track. It’s also extremely helpful for introverted networkers.

Go into a meeting or event with the goal of finding out how you can help them first. Or maybe exclusively. It works in business networking because filling other people’s needs is how you give value.

Plus, it works in building personal relationships. Everyone is going through something. You might not be able to cure their cancer or dissolve their grief, but you can be a sympathetic listener. You have no idea how appreciated and valuable that is to someone who is going through something terrible and difficult.

… Or maybe you will.

BETH BRIDGES is the author of “Networking on Purpose: A Five-Part Success Plan to Build a Powerful and Profitable Business Network.” She attended over 2,500 networking events in 10 years, secured a new job in 18 hours with one email, and launched a marketing consulting business through networking. She speaks at chambers of commerce, associations, and conferences across North America. Beth, 2018 Western Regional 400m and 800m W45 Champion, is training to compete in the World Masters Athletics Championships in 2020. Learn more at The Networking Motivator.

(the podcast on iTunes)


Embrace change

The following chapter is an excerpt from an upcoming book, 28 Strategies to be happy, which you can find here. Enjoy.


To be happy in life, you will have to embrace change. Frequently. And you have to accept this fact. For if you don’t, you will be miserable. And stuck.

If you think you can sneak through life without ever changing, you are in for a most unhappy, and frankly, boring life.

You’ll be treading water.

The world is changing. Constantly. It’s changed since you started reading this manifesto. You have to embrace this fact. In fact, to be happy and successful, you have to learn how to TREASURE this fact.

Change is the new normal. The only constant is constant change. This is a good thing. And when you learn to celebrate this, that’s when things become interesting. And exciting.

Yes, it’s the classic case of how something new is at first frightening and different, and then once you do it a few times, it becomes normal and easy. When the something new becomes easy and routine, this realization both exciting, comforting, and rewarding.

But then down the road, it all becomes routine. And then the cycle must begin again.

Think about the first day of school, or the first day of a new job. They are scary and different at first. But before long, they become routine. And then you get comfortable.

This is all good. But life is too short for routine. When you are feeling that way, it’s time to change…

KEY ACTION: Change something. Right now. Even if it how your office furniture is arranged. Trust me, even this simple small change will be invigorating!


You will ultimately find the complete book here!

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Your problems aren’t unique

The following chapter is an excerpt from an upcoming book, 28 Strategies to be happy, which you can find here. Enjoy.


Look, your problems aren’t unique. If you think you are the only one dealing with crazy problems, get over it.

Mankind has dealt with the same problems you are currently having for a long, long time. So, get over yourself, stop feeling sorry for yourself, and figure out what to do.

If mankind has survived all these eons with issues far more significant than yours, you can figure stuff out, and move on to doing your important work, and moving on with being happy.

What is it with us these days? We get so ate up with our importance and how “hard” things are for us. Good Lord, the stuff you are stressed about, complaining about, and paralyzed with fear about, ain’t nothing compared to what mankind has been facing most of our existence.

Heck, at this very moment, there are billions of people that would do ANYTHING to be in your shoes at this very moment.

So, pause for a moment, take a breath, and get over yourself. It’s time to make a simple plan, and get to work.

Yeah, I guess what I am saying is this: Your problems aren’t unique, and you can NO LONGER use them as excuses for NOT making the important choices you need to make.


You will ultimately find the complete book here!

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Take care of yourself first

The following chapter is an excerpt from an upcoming book, 28 Strategies to be happy, which you can find here. Enjoy.


You’ve no doubt heard this plea: When on a plane and in case of emergency, put YOUR own oxygen mask on first, before helping others.

Most initially react intensely that they would certainly take care of their child first, before they tended to their own mask.

But that’s pretty hard to do if you’ve already passed out.

No, helping others is important in life, of this there is no doubt. But you can’t do that if you are personally NOT in good shape.

I am kicking off this manifesto with this simple request: Please focus on YOU. Because no one else will.

Most of the lessons that follow in this book are appeals that ONLY YOU can do.

Most people in your life are burdened with their own demons, and they are certainly not lying awake at night thinking about how to help you solve YOUR problems.

You have to take charge of your own success and happiness. If you wait for others to step in to give you purpose, direction, instructions, and all the answers, you will suddenly be 70 years old and wondering where the hell your life went, full of regrets.

You have the power to determine your own success and happiness. IT IS NO ONE ELSE’S RESPONSIBILITY. It is entirely up to you.

This realization shouldn’t be frightening.

Rather, realizing that you alone have this power should be very, very exciting! And you can do something about it, right now. So…

KEY ACTION: Do something for you right now. Something ONLY for you.


You will ultimately find the complete book here!

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Life is a game

The following chapter is an excerpt from an upcoming book, 28 Strategies to be happy, which you can find here. Enjoy.


If you read only one chapter in this book, read this one:

Life is a game. And you are either on the field playing the game, or you are sitting on the bench or watching from the stands.

For most of my life, I was sitting on the bench. When I decided to get into the game, everything changed, and my life became a “successful” one, a life that was suddenly satisfying.

Look, you may choose to sit on your ass and watch Netflix every night. That’s your choice. But my guess is if you are reading this manifesto, that kind of life doesn’t really suit you.

And understand this: playing the game isn’t easy. It requires work, discipline, blood, sweat, and tears. You will need to practice, you will need to develop strategy, you will play injured, and you’ll get hit hard by other players. And there is a risk that you might lose from time to time.

But you will also achieve wins and great performances!

In the end, when you are reflecting back on your life, you’ll relish the game that you played. You’ll treasure the fact that it was hard, and that you gave as good as you got.

You cannot be happy or successful sitting on the bench. So, choose to get into the game, for you will find that true happiness comes from being on the field, contributing.

KEY ACTION: Decide to do something (a hobby, a different job, new projects) that YOU want to do. And decide to stop “not” doing them because somebody else doesn’t think it’s a good idea.


You will ultimately find the complete book here!

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