Your Call to Action

by Marcy Heim on September 1, 2020

Hey! It’s SEPTEMBER 1st Day 245! That means 121 Days Left (Leap Year)

Listen up, my friend, YOU have this wonderful last trimester of 2020 to SHINE!

Are you going to finish this year strong? Knock the ball out of the park?

–       Covid or no covid?

–       Election or no election?

–       Working from where ever you are working from?

–       Social distancing and relationship building?

Come on, now…….

2020 has elevated DISTRACTION to a whole new level!

To help you right now, I created the FINISH STRONG FOCUS FORM! Download it now.

I get it. The health concerns are real. The new protocols are real. Homeschooling is real. Concern for family is real. And on the lighter side, now I have to find my keys, my purse AND my mask before I leave the house!

But our core values..

….our love for family and country,

.…our respect for those who have served our country,

….our passion for changing the world with our work,

.…our bond with each other-all others, and

.…our faith that God is using this for good, have not changed.

Highlights at David's Graduation Party

While I rarely do this…the past two weeks have been so powerful for me in realigning  who I am and what I believe.  Both of my boys were home and my band played 4 gigs – one in celebration of David’s graduation from Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA. At David’s Graduation Party show (he’s been in my band since age 13) the first arriving guest ask, “Where is the card box?”  I hadn’t even thought about it.  The outpouring of generosity to my son was overwhelming and SO needed.  Covid hit musicians hard. At another gig, outside, over 300 folks, sun setting, I just stepped offstage and sang, “God Bless America.”  EVERYONE was on their feet joining in. At our last gig, son, RJ, sang “God Bless the USA” as the audience stood for a color guard from the local American Legions and VFW’s and waved flags.  This is just such a remarkable time. Where ever you are – whatever country – may you recommit to the values that make you and your country great.

Thank you

NOW LET’S FINISH 2020 on FIRE!

Be about actions, not distractions.Here are three simple, effective and empowering strategies to step up the quality, quantity, and intensity of your efforts in these final 121 days. Implement them immediately and you’ll quickly close any performance gap.  These, combined with the FINISH STRONG FOCUS FORM!  will help you power through! 

STRATEGY #1 GET SERIOUS 

You have 121 days left. Take the next 7 days to…

… set crystal clear goals for what success by 12-31-2020 looks like.

….decide on the drama you will tolerate in yourself. How does watching the news make you feel? How does being curious about your donors’ year-end giving plans make you feel?

With a finite period of time breathing down your neck, you have no choice but to get serious. Be clear by next Tuesday, September 8, 2020, after the Labor Day holiday in the USA. Execute like your life, career and future depend upon it.  I assure you…they do! 

Decide that what you want is BIGGER and far more important than any fear, excuse or self-defeating behavior which prevents you from achieving it. 

STRATEGY #2 CREATE A SENSE OF URGENCY 

Each day is ticking away. Success is an ongoing game of cause and effect, and by accelerating the cause…you can and will dramatically accelerate the result. 

Your ability to compress and shorten the amount of time it takes to turn any goal, idea, project or problem into a successful outcome will raise your energy. Don’t put it off…put a fire under it! 

STRATEGY #3 DRIVE BIG RESULTS 

Big donors want to fund big visions, yes even now! Get clear year-end giving options in place NOW. Pick your theme. Set goals for your year-end appeal. Define your segments. Write your major donor asks now and set your year-end giving intentions for your top 40 NOW. 

YOU HAVE THIS WEEK TO SET YOUR MIND TO YOUR 2020 SUCCESS!

See it, say it, believe it, DO IT!

Click here to get your free downloadable FINISH STRONG FOCUS FORM!


Don’t tell yourself you want to do your “best.” Tell yourself, “I want to do better today than I did yesterday.” Each day you learn and grow by the victories and failures you experience. All these experiences make you better….and better…and BETTER!

For the next 121 days be better today than you were yesterday. 

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Be of Comfort…Now

by Marcy Heim on August 12, 2020

You are bombarded now with messages, free webinars and more on how to pivot, work from home, take your event virtual and, goodness, even build major giving relationships faster than when we could sit down and talk in person! (really?)

But what about September and fall ….and football….and school starting…and church picnics…and sweater weather….and homemade soup…..and apple-picking?

Summer has ended, but what of all those traditions and joys?

I’m sensing a real grief setting in. 

As our lives changed abruptly this spring, at least the days were getting longer and lighter, the air warmer. Outside is easier to manage this. Now we are looking right into fall with darker, longer days and day-after-day announcements of things that just won’t be happening this fall or happening the same.

As development professionals and partners, I’m asking you to be of comfort to others – right now – these next few weeks. There will be a feeling of loss, and for some real loss as the changing of the season pushes us closer together, but with less traditional activities to experience together.

Comforting holding hand

I’m asking you to have your antennae up for those around you who are in need of comfort.  We grieve loss – and now that can well be what we have always done at this time of year.

Comforting one another can be a complex, sometimes clumsy business. “How are you feeling as we head into fall?” gets the conversation started. I’m getting cues through less energy and sighs. Sometimes it’s a verbal, “I’m feeling a bit down – not sure why.” Or, you may know someone who lost a loved-one. With many not even having the traditional funeral services and gatherings, grief can be harder to manage and your need to comfort even greater.

So, here are some tips to help you comfort another:

1. Be intentional: comfort is no accident; when you comfort someone let them know you want to be there for them. If this is sitting quietly across the room, across the picnic table or on zoom, no matter. If this is written, “Sending you my warm hug of comfort.”  “As you begin a very different fall, sending you comfort as we miss so many of our traditions.”

2. Be empathetic: comfort means you understand, they are not alone, you accept their feelings and problems, and even share in the suffering.

3. Use non-verbal behavior: closeness, availability, listening, and safe-touching signal “you can count on me.” Non-verbal behavior is crucial and signifies “truth” and includes eye contact and forward body lean. Acknowledge that this feels different 6 feet apart.

4. Don’t offer advice or material/tactical help: While you may think you understand the pain, refrain from telling them what to do. You may try asking, “Are there things you do when you feel like this that help you?” Let them suggest their own action.

5. Get personal: If you know the person always came to your event and will be missing it, send a photo from the past at the event and remind them of the joy of being together then and that you will be again…but leave the specifics on when out of it.

6. Be tailored and caring: if you want to comfort someone, consider what they need and what makes them feel cared for – not what you would need or how you feel cared for when upset. “Just happen to have one of your fav chocolate chip cookies.”

7. Be safe: in addition to intentional, empathetic, tailored to the other, and caring, comfort happens when there is a clear distinction between self and other. When you comfort someone, you carry your love and good intentions in the same basket as your empathy for their pain. This demands clarity and self-awareness.

8. Finally, Messages to AVOID: “I know how you feel.” People experience hardship in their own way, at their own pace. While empathy is a good thing, this is about them, not you.  “Just let me know how I can help.” Offering help is great, but leaving it up to them can feel overwhelming. Instead, simply let them know that you are there for them. “Everything happens for a reason.” This implies there is a good reason for your loved one’s pain. Don’t shrug off their hardship; recognize it with a gentle, “we’ll get through this together.”

hugging dog

While I am generally a pretty upbeat and positive kind of gal, fall without football is going to hit me hard!  And to be honest, I am MISSING PEOPLE – the hugs, the conferences, the connections.  Sincerely, it is real to grieve what you can no longer do – the people you can not see right now.  And while you can focus on what remains the same – the dedication of our donors, the value of our missions, family, faith and love, there is a sense of loss you can help others get through.

How are you feeling now as we enter fall? What have you found comforting? Have you lifted up another who was grieving what we used to have and do as September approached?  Please reply and share your experience! Marcy@marcyheim.com

You are a gift to your colleagues and donors. Know that when you comfort them, they do feel better and they appreciate you. And know that our very work – inspiring generosity – allows our donors to provide comfort in so many ways.  Ah, that’s better.

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