Sometimes we look for famous personalities and strangers to be our role models and mentors.  But sometimes, we have amazing inspiration surrounding us. As a coach and eternal student, I am always looking for opportunities to learn. It is incredible how much my friends and clients have accomplished as they continue to tap into their potential and discover their life purpose.

Underlying the larger giant leaps of progress that we witness, leaders create a series of habits, ways of thinking and positive personal goals that build the foundation for their success.  In search for inspiration, I reached out to two very talented and successful women to get a better understanding of what their daily practices for success looked like.

I would like to share the insights gained from my dear friends, Artist/Entrepreneur, Sharmistha Ray and Career Coach, Marnie Rosenberg.  They both generously revealed the powerful practices that are guiding them while they successfully build their business.

1) Stay Aligned to your Purpose & Saying “No”

True leaders, both Ray and Rosenberg, highlight the importance of staying true to their vision.  Coach Rosenburg talks about “keeping one eye on the big picture,” especially when “you are experiencing loss of momentum or feeling a lack of purpose and connection with the task at hand.”  She suggests you “reconnect with the “Why” that launched you down the path in the first place.”  Similarly, Artist Ray stresses the importance of “saying no to a lot of things.”  Her strategy is to “do a careful cost-benefit analysis of every opportunity to see if it has any short-term value that will accrue to long-term value. If it doesn’t, I let it go.”  At all times staying aligned to your long-term purpose, allows for clarity and forward movement.

 2) Laser Focus & “No TV”

Once we have the big picture clear  and are ready to go, we can still wake up in the morning with that sense of overwhelm of where to start?!  Rosenberg talks about being able to shift between seeing the bigger picture and bringing a laser focus to individual steps to start taking action.  To help with this Ray has instituted a “strict no TV rule,” it allows her to “make valuable ways to spend my downtime, even if it’s small things like making updates to my website, taking notes on a new idea for a show or etching out social time with inspiring people.”

3) Creating your Own Rules

As we successful entrepreneurs get going, Rosenberg reminds us that “jumping from one stone to the next, the view will change, and new possibilities may open up that you hadn’t seen before” so to stay open and take advantage of our new viewpoint.  As the new opportunities arise, Ray is clear “I don’t let myself stagnate.”  It is important to not subscribe to conventional ideas while running your enterprise and she calls to the leader in all of us, “Pioneering means you re-invent the wheel, while taking notes from conventional wisdom.”

4) Adjust as Required

As an entrepreneur, although we often have the flexibility to make the adjustments we need, it becomes hard to change course once we become attached to a plan or a date.  Rosenberg talks about the idea of “being willing” to make the adjustments you need to get desired results.  She requests us to “consider what options you have for showing up differently, experiment with an alternative approach, and see what happens. Creativity and flexibility are attributes that set you up to design innovative solutions and to handle whatever life unexpectedly sends your way.”

5) Mindset Matters

Our mindset and perspective can shape any experience that creates energy in our lives. When we are faced with a challenge, it takes all our creativity and positivity to see every situation as “either an opportunity to be used or a challenge to be met,” per Ray.  She has spent time making this a habit and shares that “it also takes forgiveness which is something that my meditation has helped me with. It’s important to celebrate major and minor milestones and express gratitude to yourself and those who have supported you.”

Rosenberg agrees, “when you adopt the mindset that everything is an opportunity for personal growth, you spend less time and energy judging, blaming, and regretting. Instead, you find yourself “in the moment”—appreciating the experience itself, and discovering new paths and possibilities that might foster the sense of fulfillment you seek.”

6) Relax and Reboot

As successful leaders, both Ray and Rosenberg have their personal ways to relax and reboot.  Ray tries to mediate a few times a day to center herself, “although I just got into meditation recently, I have always had the habit of taking out copious amounts of time for myself during the day. It’s my recharge time to reboot and detach from daily issues.”  Rosenberg finds the same value in running, as a long-distance runner, her mind relaxes and she can contemplate the growth of her business during a long run down the San Francisco marina.


Special acknowledgment and thank you:

Sharmistha Ray 

An award-winning artist, curator, writer, speaker and TED Fellow with roots in Mumbai and New York. She has had numerous solo and group exhibitions around the world and writes prolifically on art, while tending to her twin passions: painting and travel. www.sharmistharay.net

Marnie Rosenberg

The CEO and founder of The Crossroads Coach, Marnie is an ICF Associate Certified Coach based in San Francisco. She specializes in career development, career transitions, and leadership coaching, partnering with her clients to clarify a vision of their ideal, set goals and milestones, and design a personalized action plan.