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Work-at-home mom: take a deep breath and Do Life Different as you allow these devotions for work-at-home moms to fill the vacuum of your needy heart in the chaos of your busy world.
 
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Archive for Work at Home Resources

Sep
11

Work Is Not About Money

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 First and foremost, work is not about economic exchange, financial remuneration, or a pathway to the American Dream, but about God-honoring human creativity and contribution. Our work, whatever it is, whether we are paid for it, is out specific human contribution to God’s ongoing creating and to the common good.”  – Tom Nelson, Work Mattersmoney jar

I love that quote! Isn’t it true that we so often view work as simply a way to make money. The truth is that it is SO much more than just a way to help pay bills.

I can’t tell you how often I get caught in the trap of thinking that my end goal is how much money I bring in. If I go a day or two without selling some advertising space I begin to wonder if God is mad at me. How silly is that? I believe that while God does care about me and my business, He isn’t all that worried about whether or not I sell ads each day just to make myself feel better.

When I look past the monetary expectations I have for my business and focus on what I see God doing through CWAHM, I am humbled and reminded that this business is so much more than just a way to make money.

And when I keep my eyes focused on Christ and moving in the direction that He is leading me, I work in an entirely different way because I’m coming at things from a Christ-centered perspective. And boy is that a beautiful place to be! (and if I ever figure out how to KEEP myself there I’ll let you know – I’m constantly finding myself back in the worry-about-money boat and having to heave myself overboard into Trust God Lake!)

Our work, or maybe more specifically the WAY we work, is an expression of our love for God. It is one of the main ways that we can glorify Him while we are here on this Earth. It is one of the ways that He has given us to contribute to what He is doing in the world.

Whether our work today consists of

  • * Raising our children
  • * Running a business
  • * Working for an employer
  • * Volunteering somewhere

Everything we do contributes to the kingdom of God if we do it to honor Him above all else.

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Sep
04

Why Bother?

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In the midst of all of the chaos of being a work-at-home mom – the business issues, the kids’ squabbles, the laundry (ugh!), I often find myself wondering why I bother.  Why do I push reading a bookmyself to write, to speak, to work at all? Why not just sit around and do as little as possible?

One reason, of course, is because we need the extra income. But somehow it’s deeper than that. Even when I try to take several days off in a row, I find myself actually WANTING to work. I find this strange, how about you? Do you find yourself thinking, planning, dreaming about how to improve and grow your business or job?

In his book, Work Matters, author Tom Nelson says that there is a very good reason that we may, in fact, enjoy work. (I know – crazy, right?) J. Nelson points out that from the very beginning of Scripture we see an active God, a God at work.

“Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground. ”

Genesis 1:26-28

I love the thought that we are created in God’s image – our creative, active God who not only tells us to get to work, but who models the concept for us as well. In the Genesis account, God isn’t worried about Adam and Eve messing up His creation. In fact, God gives man dominion over the animals of the Earth.  He made humans the stewards of the Earth and in that same fashion we are also stewards of whatever work God has given us.

We sometimes think that NOT working would be more fulfilling, but the truth is that sloth and laziness will never make us happy – and it certainly doesn’t make God happy.

The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, while the soul of the diligent is richly supplied.

Proverbs 13:4, ESV

I had several days this past winter where all I really wanted to do was sit and read a book. While I can technically count this as work (see RadiantLit.com), it was actually me trying to escape doing some hard work that needed done. The first day I gave in and read all day. It was fun for a bit, but after a while the guilt set in. But, I was determined not to let the guilt stop me … so I kept reading.

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Dana Susan Beasley, Branding for Success bloggerstand outCorporations spend tens of thousands of dollars on branding. Think about the “big guys” out there—the Targets and Visas and Starbucks, to name a few. They jealously guard their images. They trademark their logos and slogans. And they go after violators with a vengeance.

They know that their branding is their most important asset.

So why should you, as a work-at-home business owner, think any less?

Unfortunately, many small business owners gravitate to logos and branding that is cheap and free. In fact, some business owners don’t even know what branding is!

A good brand is more than finding a pretty or cool logo. Or going to a cheap and free resource that will give you templates and all you do is plug in your information.

The problem with these resources is it is not tailor-made to your unique business. It is not customized so that your prospects will easily recognize you.

It’s kind of like being lost in a sea of “cookie cutter” homes. Where I live, there are plenty of them! Every time I go in one of these neighborhoods, I get lost because I can’t tell the difference between one house and the next.

It’s the same with your logo and branding. If your logo looks the same as your competition, your prospect will be lost. There’s nothing to distinguish you from the crowd. This is especially problematic with the Internet.

But when you base a logo on strategic analysis, on your Unique Selling Point, your mission, target market, and other factors, you will be building a brand that brings value. This will mean an increase in your bottom line!

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Jul
27

8 Ideas to Help Create Stunning Photographs for Social Media and Beyond!

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Dana Susan Beasley, Branding for Success bloggerdana-photoThese days with social media, a good personal photograph is extremely important. Here are some ideas to help you get the best one possible:

1) Make sure your setting fits your business. For instance, if you are in landscape gardening, you probably don’t want to wear a business suit. On the other hand, if your business is finance, you probably DO want to wear a suit!

2) Color-coordinate your clothes to your branding. Make sure that the colors enhance the aesthetics of your branding rather than detract from it by clashing.

3) Do not use flash photography unless in a professional studio. Flash photography will make your face look harsh. It’s best to use natural lighting. If you can’t take it outside, take the picture near a window where there is plenty of sunlight. Have the photographer put their back to the sun. But watch out for shadows. You don’t want a face half in and half out of one! Also, make sure you are not squinting if you are looking into the sun.

4) Be friendly and smile! A scary photograph will scare away prospects. You want your photograph to have a nice, inviting smile. And the color of the overall photograph should not be dark and gloomy, but pleasant. Your face is your most important feature, especially your eyes. You want the light to be shining in them, making you look alive and vibrant.

5) Watch out for unflattering poses. Usually, a shot taken from a high angle versus a low angle is best.

6) Use good composition in your photograph. That means you should take up two-thirds of the photograph. Create a pleasing balance that is artful and inviting to look at.

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Jul
21

Network Marketers and Direct Sellers–Branding Can Take Your Business to the Next Level and Beyond!

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Dana Susan Beasley, Branding for Success bloggerNetwork Marketers and Direct Sellers--Branding Can Take Your Business to the Next Level and Beyond!Network marketing, multi-level marketing, and direct selling are very popular these days. It’s an attractive option because you don’t have to build a business from the ground up. Many systems are already in place for you, especially product development.

But are you missing out? If you are a network marketer or direct seller, let me share with you how branding can propel your business to new heights!

For example, perhaps you are a distributor for a nutrition company that sells weight-loss shakes. Sure, the company already has a brand, logo, and marketing materials.

But what if you had your own personal brand? For instance, you brand yourself as a holistic health consultant and the weight-loss shakes is just part of your business. You brand yourself as an expert in the field. That way you can expand your business to include selling information products, books, home study courses, and personal consultations.

You can build a customer base on this foundation, giving you power as you grow and change. Or flexibility if the unexpected happens. Companies do go bankrupt, leaving the distributors in a lurch. Or your interests might change. By branding yourself as the expert, you have more freedom to switch direct selling companies if that is what you desire. Because you should already have a loyal fan base that wants to continue doing business with you.

There’s an old saying, that people do business with people they know, like, and trust. By building a relationship with your own customized brand, not just the company you represent, you are positioning yourself for growth into the future.

This strategy is also smart because it brings you multiple streams of income. Now the danger is getting distracted and flitting from one opportunity to the next. Finding out what you are passionate about and what God has called you to is the bedrock that will keep your business endeavors focused and viable.

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Jul
12

Mindset—Your Number One Barrier to Successful Branding

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Dana Susan Beasley, Branding for Success bloggerMindset-Your Number One Barrier to Successful BrandingWhat keeps you from getting the word out about your business and connecting with your prospects? What prevents them from seeing your value?

Often, the number one reason is because of your mindset.

If you don’t take your business seriously, why would your prospects take your business seriously? A well constructed logo goes a long way to building trust and credibility so that your potential clients feel comfortable hiring you out or purchasing from you.

Your attitude about and belief in yourself also play a big part in achieving brand recognition status. If you don’t believe in yourself or your product/service, why would anyone else? If you don’t think you’re worth it to invest in, why would a prospect?

I have learned all this from the school of hard knocks. I suffered a great barrier in communicating my value to prospects. Sure, I had all the graphics and marketing down pat. But what I didn’t have was a belief in myself. What it took was a mindset shift. I realized that if God created me and He gave me all these gifts and ideas, then it would be dishonoring to Him not to believe in me. After all, He believed in me!

Also, I had to be willing to invest in myself. I bit the bullet and purchased a very good training course on sales. It revolutionized my thinking! Today, I am communicating my value and garnering clients because I finally believed in myself and in the value of what I have to offer. I started showing up to serve wherever I could (mostly Facebook), and I listened. Because of that, I have gathered a like-minded Facebook group of entrepreneurs that totals around 200 people and it is still growing.

 

From that group, I have gotten clients, joint venture projects, and ample market research feedback.

All because of my mindset change.

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Jun
27

How Publishing a Book Can Propel You to Expert Status

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Dana Susan Beasley, Branding for Success bloggerdana-pubThe goal of branding for success is to bring your company “top of mind” to your customer. This is called brand positioning.

But how can you do that?

One very effective way is through book publishing. And with the Internet, it has never been easier!

Your aim needs to be that of becoming a trusted advisor. For instance, if you are a representative for a weight loss company, you can brand yourself as a wellness coach and publish a book on weight loss tips that your audience would find beneficial.

Maybe you are a service professional. Take your expertise and create a book that will educate your target market about your particular specialty.

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