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Mental Health Awareness in High Functioning People [Featuring Ask Schellie]

Mental Health Awareness in High Functioning People [Featuring Ask Schellie]

I recently sat down with a long time friend of mine, Schellie Fanfan, LMHC, MS, EdS, CRE, and spoke about the challenges, emotions, and ebbs and flows of running a business. Let me tell you that she brought to light so many things that I’ve thought about or experienced but never really put into perspective with regards to mental health.

As a creative, there’s so many feelings and thoughts that circle our minds on a regular basis. Some things pertaining to business, some to personal, but still there and not always having time to fully process. The realization was that all of these things and more were affecting my mental health. Coincidentally I thought back to green room conversations at past conferences I attended with other creatives having similar conversations and sharing how we each individually “deal” with day to day happenings and what not. What I didn’t fully realize until I talked with Schellie was how being a highly functioning person, the effects to my mental health that would ensue.

Now this wasn’t a formal session, we were actually on set recording some promotional videos for her new website and platform. I saw an opportunity to ask her about what she notices when counseling business owners and entrepreneurs. This short snippet isn’t enough at all, but does give insight on the different ways that our mental health can be affected in our day to day without much notice from us at all.

I would highly recommend that after watching this if you have any questions to reach out to Schellie directly. She has years of service and even more in studies, degrees, and has more acronyms that I’ve ever seen.

Top 5 Reasons Why Your Church Needs a Website

Church websiteWe understand that in the business world, having a website enables your organization to reach a larger audience at a marginal cost and in 2014, it’s an absolute must.  But what about God’s business? Many people don’t think the two are related (or maybe that they should be), but they are.  We are a digital and mobile device generation! Most of our kids have them right along with us and sometimes even before us! We want and often need accessibility to ease our busy lives, hearts and minds as well. Since the goal of most church ministries is to evangelize the Word of God and promote biblical teaching and doctrine, a website is a wonderful and essential way to do just that.  In this blog, I submit the Top 5 Reasons of why your church needs a website, as well as the ways it can contribute to the higher calling.

1st Stay in touch ~ For most churches, they limit their “marketing” to handing out Sunday bulletins or posting newsletters on the bulletin board to keep members informed of meetings and publicize events. However, many of your members may forget to pick up a bulletin or lose it sometime during service and miss out on key information. By having a website, you can post that information and so much more with just the click of a mouse day or night.  Therefore, a website is a great interactive way to stay in touch with your members , whether they’re at home or on-the-go with a mobile device.

2nd   Casting a larger net & being fishers of men ~ In 2014, it’s imperative to reach out and impact the the world for the kingdom of God in as many ways as you can.  We see this in the diversity of music – contemporary, traditional and even Gospel Rap.  If His Word is not intended to “return to him void,” then use this medium coupled with faith to accomplish the goal.  A website can also provide you with a wonderful opportunity to let others know what your church is all about and what they can gain from attending your services or joining.

4th Championing the cause ~ If there is a particular area of focus for your church, let’s say in eradicating homelessness or missionary work in other countries, a website is a great way to let the world know and solicit others assistance.  Many large organizations (such as World Vision) utilize their website to bring a greater awareness to the causes they champion, while offering ways to be a part of a mission or collect donations online to assist those efforts.

5th  The lost sheep and those in need ~ If one of the primary purposes of the church is to help people, then a website is a fantastic tool to do so on a global scale.  There are people in this world that are hurting, who may be at a point in their lives where they need encouragement or may be in real, desperate straits. What a great testimony of kingdom work you’ll create by extending yourself beyond your physical address to someone in another state or even a different country.  You can offer inspiring messages, videos, music and other helpful products such as books and inspirational home accessories.

The Wrap Up: If the sky is the limit and the ultimately desired destination, why not embark on this journey of faith for your ministry and church?  If you believe that the bible was written by man and inspired by God, is it possible that the internet can be used as a tool to reach out to the hedges and highways for His purpose?

Send me a comment and let me know your thoughts on this tool for growing your ministry.

How To Be Your Brand’s Ambassador

Personal Branding-smallWhat is a Brand Ambassador?  Is there a sash  or tiara one gets?  Per Wikipedia: “The brand ambassador is meant to embody the corporate identity in appearance, demeanor, values and ethics. The key element of brand ambassadors lies in their ability to use promotional strategies that will strengthen the customer-product/service relationship and influence a large audience to buy and consume more. Predominantly, a brand ambassador is known as a positive spokesperson appointed as an internal or external agent to boost product/service sales and create brand awareness.”  So unless being a brand ambassador is your promotion strategy – no satiny sash or sparkly tiara for you.  But let’s talk about how to make your brand shine without them shall we?

If you have a business then you have a brand.  And for it to be successful, that brand has to create awareness to its target audience to ultimately achieve and acquire brand loyalty.

Fact: Promoting your brand is a necessity!

Fact: Customers will pay more for brand names that they’ve come to know and trust.

Fact: For your brand to grow, you must promote your brand consistently and disseminate your brand message in as many forums as possible.

Marketing in Your HandsIf you don’t have confidence in promoting your brand, why on earth would a consumer have confidence in it?  You are the impression-setter for your company.  Being a good brand ambassador is all about having confidence when talking about and marketing your brand’s product or service.  Your brand is your responsibility and the success of it greatly depends on your attention to it.  It’s in your hands!

HOW A BRAND IS REPRESENTED TRULY AFFECTS THE SUCCESS OF WHAT’S BEING SOLD! 

Another facet to consider is where are you promoting your brand? Representation of your brand, via your website or print marketing materials, is paramount to supremacy as opposed to mediocrity.  Have you considered using the free tools provided by social media?

If you’re busy actually making your product or providing your service, you might not have a lot of time to promote your brand with your own ear to the phone or feet to the pavement.  You know the old adage “if you can’t beat them, join them?”  Well how about “if you can’t do it, pay for it.”  Consider hiring Brand Ambassadors who will beat the street for you. It’s also called Guerrilla Marketing and it’s become a very common and acceptable marketing strategy.  So there are many businesses that provide this type of service and the rewards can be worth the investment if you choose correctly.

So ask yourself – Do I have the vision, tenacity and marketing savvy to leverage my brand to all its potential and watch my sales and profit margins soar?  I’m sure the answer to the latter part of that question is yes, but you may not be sure about how to employ the leveraging part.  I’m no expert but I do give some noteworthy morsels in my blog titled http://blog.jpdesigntheory.com/branding-to-dos-tidbits/.  So take a few maneuvers from my playbook and let me know how implementing just a few of these tips works for you, as well as your potential or current clientele.  I look forward to hearing how you represent your brand best.

Resources

50 Guerrilla Marketing Tactics You Should Be Using

[INFOGRAPHIC] The Anatomy of Guerilla Marketing

Five tips for choosing a brand ambassador

Top 5 Reasons a Church Needs a Website

In the business world we understand that having a website enables your organization to reach a much larger audience at a marginal cost and in 2012 it’s a must. But what about God’s business? Many people don’t think the two are related (or maybe that they should be), but they are.  We are an iPad and Smartphone generation…and that’s just a fraction of the technology buzz this last year! Most of our kids have them right along with us! We want and often need accessibility to ease our busy lives, hearts and minds too. Since the goal of most church ministries is to evangelize the Word of God and promote biblical teachings and doctrine, a website is a wonderful and essential way to do just that.  In this blog, I submit the Top 5 Reasons why your church should not only consider having a website, but also the ways in which it can which it can contribute to the bigger goal & higher workings of it.

1st Stay in Touch ~ For most churches, they limit their “marketing” to handing out Sunday bulletins or posting newsletters on the bulletin board to keep members informed of and publicize events. However, many of your members may forget to pick up a bulletin or lose it sometime during service and miss out on key information. By having a website, you can post that information and so much more with just the click of a mouse day or night.  Therefore, a website is a great interactive way to stay touch with and inform your members whether within the walls of their own home or on vacation via their laptops or on any other on-the-go gadget or handheld device.

2nd   Casting a Larger Net & Being Fishers of Men ~ Reach out to impact the kingdom of God in any way you can and by any reasonable means to do so.  We see this in music, whether it’s traditional Christian Music, Gospel…even Gospel Rap. If His Word is not intended “to return to him void” then use all mediums to do so as well.  A website can also provide you with a wonderful opportunity to let others know what your church is all about, what you are up to in your community and what others can gain from attending your services.

3rd Championing the Cause ~ If there is a particular area of focus for your church, let’s say in eradicating homelessness or missionary work in other countries, a website is a great way to let the world know and solicit assistance.  Many large organizations (World Vision comes to mind) utilize their website to bring a greater awareness to the causes they champion, offer ways to support or even collect donations online to assist those efforts.

4th  The Lost Sheep and Those in Need ~ If one of primary purposes of the church is to help people, then a website is one of the best tools in the box to help on a more global scale.  There are many people who may be at a point in their lives where they need encouragement and may be in desperate straits. What a great testimony to kingdom work, by extending yourself beyond your physical address to someone who may just end up on your www for a solution they may have been “steered” your way for.  Additionally, if someone does not live in your geographic region, they can access great information, messages, videos, music and other helpful products.  Example: I was watching Joyce Meyers’ program this morning via TV because her church is in Fenton, MO.  But due to promotion of her materials at the end of her program and through her website, I was able to order a great teaching tool for a friend. And not from a store or calling her headquarters, but from my couch in Connecticut via my laptop.
5th Meant to be unique ~ Just like we are all created different, not all websites are built and/or look the same either. Although there may be some concern about joining the secular world in these efforts, you should now that you can be truly “set apart” even with the business of the church businesss.  Website companies now provide many templates, design layouts and stock photography/imagery to make your church’s website look professional whether you have a congregation of 100 or 1,000.  WordPress has really capitalized on creating templates for many professions and they have many designs specifically for churches and religious organizations with various layouts, colors and features.  It can be minimalistic or one with more capabilities such as flash media, video archiving, online stores and so much more!

The Laborers in the Vineyard ~ If you don’t have a church website already but are now convinced you need one, here are a few key starting point considerations:
Find a design company that you feel understands your church and gives comprehensible answers to your questions.

Make sure they can convey your hearts desires and message to the world with your vision in mind while using their talents to accomplish it.

On the business end, be aware that there will be costs for creation, annual hosting, website email linkage and updating.

At Design Theory, I have had the wonderful opportunity to assist in creating some dynamic websites for churches of various sizes and budgets.  (Check out some of our clientele at www.firstchurchclg.org or www.agapefellowshipct.org) But most rewarding, is that I have heard and seen the impact of these efforts locally and beyond as well as how it has grown their ministries.