Men, If You're Not Supporting Your Wives, You're Not Smart!
Posted Sept 30, 2004, 8:05 PM CT
That's right! For the last fifteen years after each and every "event" that I've ever attended, your wives come up to me and say "I wish you could talk to my husband"! Well, here I am. I'm in your grill, and I'm borrowing a phrase from my man Jim Rome - "If your not supporting your wife... You're Not Smart!" What does support look like? Good question. Let's take a look.
The Webster's definition I like for support is "to corroborate, to give aid or assistance". Sounds easy enough. You made a promise "to love and to cherish until death do us part" - that has to be supportive, right? Wrong, it's not enough! Here's the deal. If your wife is working a job, primarily responsible for the day-to-day activities of your children, she's preparing & shopping for meals and homemaking, AND if she doesn't feel that she's being supported, what you have is... FRUSTRATION! Frustration is defined as "to prevent from attaining a goal or fulfilling a desire, thwart, to prevent the fruition of, nullify". I don't know about you, but I don't want to be a "thwart-er"!! Cause when Momma ain't happy, ain't nobody happy! So what do you do? Stop what you're doing right now and sign up for sensitivity training? NO, of course not. Take an interest. Put down the remote and listen. Find out what she is excited about and why. Tell her, "honey, I know you can do it." Those three things alone will qualify you for the "Mr. Wonderful Award", but if you want to take things to the next level, keep reading.
Simply Solutions for the Supportive Husband:
Take some time to learn about the Company. Read the ADVANCE Brochure, learn some of the lingo, realize that cosmetics are a "consumable product" that women do not go without and that Consultants earn half of what the sell!! Learn the Marketing Plan. Pick up one of our Consultant or Director Folders that prioritize and 'focus" on income producing activities.
Decide what you can do to help. My wife's Love Language is "acts of service". [Languages of Love by Dr. Gary Chapman] That means when I do things for her, she feels 'loved'. I remember one day when were still living in an apartment complex seeing this professionally dressed women get out her car to put the trash in the community dumpster on her way to work - I decided at that moment my wife would never take the trash out (or have to ask me). Same goes with gas in the car. In the last fifteen years, Pam can count on one hand the number of time she has had to fill up her gas tank. This isn't rocket science, it's consideration and encouragement!
Plan your week together, ahead of time! This is huge - the Weekly Plan Sheet is your tool. Why is this so important? Because you know ahead of time which nights you will have to order PIZZA or take the kids to McDonalds! Or maybe you want to cook for yourself. Personally, I find that Thomas and I can spend more time playing Playstation if I don't have to cook or do dishes. Seriously, if everyone knows the "family schedule" ahead of time, then there is less confusion which leads to less FRUSTRATION, and a greater feeling of SUPPORT!
When she asks for your advice, ASK a question before answering. Women have a way of asking for your advice when they really want to TELL you something, or just TALK. I don't expect you to grasp this concept over night, this is hard work for us! We are guys, we want to fix things! You've got a problem, great - I've got a New Power Tool! Not with your wife!! "I want your advice" is code; it means "ask me a question so I can share my FEELINGS with you and together we can have MEANINGFUL Conversation. Then you'll understand what I need you to do and how this will benefit our family down the road." This is the key to support: if you allow her to communicate what she needs from you without telling her what to do, you will have attained "enlightenment"! (Providing you actually "do" what she needs.)
When you give advice, make sure it's Smart Advice! Inventory. The most common ridiculous 'tidbit' husbands frequently give their wives is regarding beginning inventory. Gentlemen, you know that if you want a new driver and you go to Tim Golf's Shop and Tim tells you that he doesn't carry the new Quad 7, but he can have it for you in two weeks if you leave a deposit, you are out of there! You immediately head to the nearest 'Golf Warehouse' or find it on-line, and voila, you have your new club in your bag by the next day! Am I right?!?!? Yes, I am. Same is true with cosmetics. People will buy what they see, IF they can have it now!!!!! They don't want to wait, and you certainly don't want to waste time having to deliver lipsticks that you didn't have all over town. That's why starting with a $600 order and "seeing how it goes" rarely goes well. Treat your business like a business, make sure you have product on hand!
If you think you're babysitting when you spend time with your children, You're Not Smart! Let's re-think this. A babysitter by definition only has a vested interest in your child as long as they are being paid. When a father spends time with his child he is making an investment in him/her, hopefully creating a bond that will last forever! Children crave that quality time together, and they never forget it! One Seminar, Pam really needed time to prepare a class she was teaching and wanted a "quiet" house. I took Thomas on a "Thomas Day" - we drove an hour to a special Water Park, we played 9 holes of golf, we ate ice cream, went to the arcade, and rode the go-carts. This was five years ago, and he still will remind me, "Dad, you remember when we had the Thomas Day"? That was great! Bottom line, don't miss out on the special opportunities you have to build special relationships with your children.
Well, I could go on. And I will. I hope you'll check back for my next perspective. I'm out - Jerry
What I Did For Fall Break
Posted Oct 20, 2004, 9:38 AM CT
Yes, Fall Break. Not Spring Break, Summer or Christmas Vacation – it’s new, Fall Break. How things have changed since I was a kid! Although growing up in Florida, I did not walk uphill both ways to school in the snow, but the school schedules have changed more than my hair since high school! My son typically begins his school year sometime during the first week of August and gets out of school the second week in May. He’s got a Fall Break, a Christmas Break, and a Spring Break+ other holidays –political, religious, teacher ‘work days’-- it’s crazy! For years we fought it; we tried to ‘force’ a family vacation in between finishing Seminar and day one of his school, then come fall break -- we “worked” through it! It’s amazing how totally productive you can be with your children in the office along side of you saying “look Dad, look Dad, look Dad”. (Sarcasm) I’d think to myself just 4 more days, just three more days…..and it was worse when he was in private school, because I was “paying” for this – “he should be in school”! Oh, but not this year. Instead of swimming upstream, we decided to roll with the tide in a big way -- a Disney Cruise aboard the Disney Magic!!
Kids love Disney World, it’s a sure thing. The excitement and anticipation is rivaled only by Christmas! Since Pam had left early to do a workshop in Orlando, Thomas and I were traveling together. We scheduled a late Friday night flight [Pam scheduled our flights truth be known—it was the same one she had taken two days earlier]. Our Southwest flight however, was delayed a couple of hours, but it didn’t really matter, and we had a great time because we were going to Disney World. (We did arrive Nashville International Airport early enough to get our ‘A’ boarding cards - very important; you can’t get those online when you are traveling with more than one person). Then the funniest moment of the entire trip – at about 1:00 AM Saturday morning, Thomas and I were heading to the hotel with our driver who picked us up in a Town Car (Thomas was disappointed he didn’t have a Stretch Limo) and we’re driving down a deserted International Drive in Orlando. Thomas is like a little puppy dog ready to wet himself. “Dad, look Ripley’s Believe It or Not…..wow, look Dad, miniature golf…Dad look, the world’s largest McDonald’s, this place has everything!” Then he dead pan’s (like his mom, Thomas is a thinker), “we used to live in Florida, right Dad?” Yes Thomas. “Dad, why’d we leave?”
That’s a fair question. I love Florida, and I still consider myself a Florida Boy. I love humidity. The fact that you only have 2 Seasons – Summer and slightly cooler Summer was normal to me. I love knowing that the ocean is always there, I love golf all year round, and I love being able to swim from April to August. After Thomas was born however, priorities changed. I wanted him to have the experience and relationships and memories of an extended family. That’s one thing I missed growing up, and I was excited for him to grow up around Cousins, Aunts, Uncles, and Grandparents. No one was more surprised than Pam when I suggested we should consider moving to Kentucky, but four months after Thomas was born, on Thanksgiving weekend 1994, we took a bare bottom baby picture of Thomas on Pompano Beach to serve as our “Christmas / We’ve Moved card”, Pam checked into the Marriott with Thomas, the movers and I went to work, packed our office, home and belongings, and we moved our lives, our business, my new family to the Commonwealth! We have four seasons here in Kentucky, one of them less than desirable – and three of them with transitional hazards (overcast, drizzly as it is today.) Right now leaves are falling in my pool, and one of my biggest fall dilemmas—when to CLOSE the pool! Yes, I said close the pool. Back to the cruise.
It was great! Thomas loved it! We opted for a 1 ½ bedroom ship suite [big sounding name for small room on a boat], so were together a lot. No phone, no fax, no email, no web-work, no UPS man, few decisions. We did what he likes the most, spending Quality Time together. Ship life was very agreeable to me. We played ping pong, ate, watched movies, slept in late, ate, watched live performances, swam, ate (without waiting 30 minutes), did shore excursion activities, played Bingo, ate, did karaoke, slept, played video games (while Pam was at the Spa), ate, went snorkeling, ate, some 20 year old told me how fat I was in the “abs” class, and we ate. Upon our return to Orlando, we went to Universal Studios for the entire day capping off our 8 Fall Break days. Yeah, FALL Break – Because a vacation is a terrible thing to waste!
And now, a word from my Mentor, Dan Helou (It's no wonder I can't talk)
Posted April 4, 2006, 3:23 PM CT
Last weekend I saw something at Larry's Pistol & Pawn Shop that sparked my interest. The occasion was our 31st anniversary and I was looking for a little something extra for my wife Kathy. What I came across was a 100,000-volt, pocket/purse-sized taser (stun gun). The effects of the taser were suppose to be short lived, with no longterm adverse affect on your assailant, allowing her adequate time to retreat to safety....WAY TOO COOL!
Long story short, I bought the device and brought it home. I loaded two triple-a batteries in the darn thing and pushed the button. Nothing! I was disappointed. I learned, however, that if I pushed the button AND pressed it against a metal surface at the same time; I'd get the blue arch of electricity darting back and forth between the prongs. Awesome!!! Unfortunately, I have yet to explain to Kathy what that burn spot is on the face of our microwave.
Okay, so I was home alone with this new toy, thinking to myself that it couldn't be all that bad with only two triple-a batteries,... right? There I sat in my recliner, my dog Asia looking on intently (trusting little soul) while I was reading the directions and thinking that I really needed to try this thing out on a flesh & blood moving target. I must admit I thought about zapping Asia (for a fraction of a second) and thought better of it. She is such a old dog. But, if I was going to give this thing to my wife to protect herself against a mugger, I did want some assurance that it would work as advertised. Am I wrong?
So, there I sat in a pair of shorts and a wife-beater shirt with my reading glasses perched delicately on the bridge of my nose, directions in one hand, taser in another. The directions said that a one-second burst would shock and disorient your assailant; a two-second burst was supposed to cause muscle spasms and a major loss of bodily control; a three-second burst would purportedly make your assailant flop on the ground like a fish out of water. Any burst longer than three seconds would be wasting the batteries.
All the while I'm looking at this little device measuring about 5" long, less than 3/4 inch in circumference; pretty cute really and loaded with two itsy, bitsy triple-a batteries) thinking to myself, "no possible way!"
What happened next is almost beyond description, but I'll do my best.....I'm sitting there alone, Asia looking on with her head cocked to one side as to say, "don't do it master," reasoning that a one-second burst from such a tiny little ole thing couldn't hurt all that bad.... I decided to give myself a one-second burst just for the heck of it. I touched the prongs to my naked thigh, pushed the button, and HOLY MOTHER, WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION@!behind!%!@*!!! I'm pretty sure Jessie Ventura ran in through the side door, picked me up in the recliner, then body slammed us both on the carpet, over and over and over again. I vaguely recall waking up on my side in the fetal position, with tears in my eyes, body soaking wet, both nipples on fire, testicles nowhere to be found, with my left arm tucked under my body in the oddest position, and tingling in my legs. The dog was standing over me making whining sounds I had never heard before, licking my face, undoubtedly thinking to herself, "do it again, do it again!"
Note: If you ever feel compelled to "mug" yourself with a taser, one note of caution: there is no such thing as a one-second burst when you zap yourself. You will not let go of that thing until it is dislodged from your hand by a violent thrashing about on the floor. A three second burst would be considered conservative.
SON-OF-A-.... that hurt like heck!!! A minute or so later (I can't be sure, as time was a relative thing at that point), I collected my wits (what little I had left), sat up and surveyed the landscape. My bent reading glasses were on the blades of the ceiling fan. How did they up get there??? My triceps, right thigh and both nipples were still twitching. My face felt like it had been shot up with Novocain, and my bottom lip weighed 88 lbs. I'm still looking for my testicles? I'm offering a significant reward for their safe return.
Still in shock, Daniel
From: Brian Egbert
Thank you for asking me to share my feelings on the "Mary Kay Support System." I would also like to thank you for being a such an inspiration to Blythe and I. We both look up to you and value having your advice, wisdom and friendship. We admire how you carry yourself both professionally and personally. Raising a child with the same values that we see you instill in Thomas makes us feel like amazing parents. That is thanks to you and the values that Mary Kay herself has instilled in all of her friends, consultants, directors and co-workers. That is why this business is not only a job; it is a lifestyle! to be successful in this business it takes a lot of hard work, focus, dedication, and inspiration. Mainly, it takes a lot of support from everyone involved. Whether it be from a family member who doesn't know much about the opportunity or your National who knows that you have what it takes to be the best. As a husband in the Mary Kay world I am always learning new things about the business and the in's and out's of what makes it "tick." I am definitely still "wet behind the ears," having only been introduced to Mary Kay two years ago. I do know that support is a definite must have, in this business. As a husband I know that if my wife is going to be successful that she needs my undivided support of her and her business. She needs that support in order to feel that I am behind her and that she is not alone. It is a lot easier to go through life no matter what you do if you have support from the people around you. How fun would it be to be on the football team and not have anyone in the stands supporting you and your team? This is the exact same thing. You don't have to be a "cheerleader" as a husband but encouragement definitely is what your wife needs. She is not going to be successful if she knows that you don't approve of what she is doing. Sometimes men have a hard time giving their wives the actual support they need and deserve. Men feel as if they need to be the provider and the breadwinner and that you are not a real man unless you do this for your family. A real man is confident and intelligent enough to know that if his wife has that same opportunity and it is her dream and also what she loves to do, that he can stand aside of his wife and support what she does instead of in front of his wife holding her back. A real man can step aside the spot light and let his wife shine in this amazing business. If your wife has your undivided support, she is serious about excelling in the business, and she has the work ethic that it takes she will grow her business into a productive career that supports the whole family. Some things that as a husband you can do to help support your wife are things like encouraging her to complete challenges set forth by directors each month. This will help her get excited when she knows that you want her to excel and succeed. Also, you can do little things like challenge her to book two parties by the end of the day. From personal experience I know my wife strives to prove to me that she can do about anything I challenge her to do. Just a little word of advice though guys, be careful challenging her, sometimes she sees it necessary to challenge you back with something in your life!!! Other ways of supporting your wife takes a little more involvement. As a husband you should care about her business and want to actually know what she is talking about when she comes home and tells you that she sold two princess bags, three satin hands sets and she recruited two girls who both coming into the business qualified. For those husbands who don't know what those things are don't feel bad because at one time I had no clue what those things were either. The more you get involved the more you will learn about her business. Things like reading the Shaw Times Newsletter is a terrific way to get involved and also understand where your wife stands in terms of production and team building. in my personal opinion I believe the best way to support your wife is attend the many conventions and conferences with your wife. Attending some of the classes that many of the different directors teach at these conferences helps you also understand what it takes to become successful in Mary Kay. The one great thing about Mary Kay as a person is that she was not just trying to build a business she was trying to build a lifestyle. With this I mean that guys you don't need to feel uneasy about going along on a trip with your wife and attending some of the classes with her. Many of the topics and speeches can be applied to all aspects of your lives. I like to think of them as life lessons and not just business building tools. Another reason why I enjoy attending these conferences is because you get to meet new husbands all the time and hear their stories about how they have worked the business with their wives for years, the free trips they've been on, the free cars they've driven, and the lifestyle that most people only dream of.
A few more tools you can use to help support your wife are to set goals together both in and out of the business. Set goals that she will strive to achieve and then help and encourage her to meet these goals. Set goals together personally whether it is paying off a mortgage or school loan, becoming the newest youngest husband to retire in Mary Kay, which is my favorite; or becoming closer to God as a family. For most people, if there is something that they know they want to achieve they sometimes work harder to achieve such things. Also, guys it is all right to reward your wife. Take her out for dinner, buy her flowers, and encourage her to do a little shopping for herself. It feels good to achieve your goals and it also feels good to be rewarded for it.
All in all, supporting your spouse with anything he/she does in life will definitely lead to a strong and healthy marriage. I know that God has blessed Blythe and I with a lifestyle that we have always dreamed of and to be perfectly honest with all of you, with the faith we have in God, in one another, and in Mary Kay, it is only bound to get better with the years to come. We truly are thankful for the opportunity that God has set in front of us and we strive to take advantage of it everyday. Guys, I hope this has helped you become more supportive of your wife. Although, I am still new in the business and I definitely do not have all the answers I would be more than happy to answer any questions that any of you have. My email is Begbert_21@hotmail.com Thank you for this opportunity Pam! Hope this helped!
Sincerely, Brian Egbert
From: Cliff Lauchlan
When Leah said she wanted to start a Mary Kay business, it was the second time I had heard of the company. The first was a television show highlighting sales careers. All I remember about the Mary Kay segment was a blonde haired gal and her assistant cruising around in a pink Cadillac planning an event involving pink boas, frilly decorations, and a large group of loud women. When Leah told me she wanted to pursue the Mary Kay opportunity, I remember thinking how she was not loud or frilly and did not own any boas.
We were newly married. I was working at Trader Joes’ and at a Community College. Leah was a first-year teacher. My youthful hopes for the future were vague and uncertain. Mary Kay unsettled me because it demanded certain action: invest in product, book, sell, and recruit. Such risky concrete action threatened my lackluster bubble of hopeful vagueness. A bubble that had, to date, not involved an abundant back-stock of skin care and make-up.
If I doubted the opportunity, I wanted to support my wife, and I could only hope she would be able to pay off her $2400 inventory purchase. I remember informing her with no little hauteur not to bring me a credit card bill in 6 months (as if I could have done anything with it). To me Mary Kay sounded too good to be true, which is interesting since I had not taken the time to listen to what it was all about. My vision of Leah’s business consisted of paying off the credit card that got her started.
We had one car, three other jobs, and still took the laundry over to Leah’s parents’ house! Many days looked like this: I dropped Leah off at school in the morning, went to work at the Community College, and picked her up at 3:30. Leah would then drop me off at Trader Joes’, hold a party or go to an event, and pick me up at midnight. Some semblance of this schedule was the norm until Leah earned the Cadillac. It sounds kind of crazy now. Nevertheless, whenever possible I helped her get ready for and drove her to her parties, cooked and cleaned more often and all the while kept a watchful eye out for evidence of any inextricable boas. While I was supportive of my wife in every way, I still did not expect much out of Mary Kay. Pay the credit card. Move on.
Spring passed into summer and summer faded to autumn.
During the fall two events helped pull the plugs from my ears allowing me to hear what Mary Kay could mean for us. First, Leah earned the first career car. She informed me of the arrangement very matter of fact; I accepted matter of fact. Mary Kay wanted to give her a car, but, enjoying our one car life, we wanted cash, so Mary Kay started paying Leah $375 a month because we did not need a free car. This arrangement, I realized, was a good deal. The second event was Leah’s decision to submit for DIQ. She explained that if she did not submit, her recruits’ recruits would not count toward her team. It was a no- brainer. Mary Kay was paying us; Leah was on the move: there was a future in Mary Kay, and I was ready to listen to what it was.
Leah’s decision to submit for DIQ was also the beginning for me. As Leah began to take full advantage of the Mary Kay opportunity, I also began to learn about Mary Kay.
Through learning about the opportunity, I became enrolled in my wife’s vision. She wanted to go to the top. I could be a ladder. Ladders support a climber’s weight, but also dictate how high the climber can go. Husbands play a crucial role in their wives Mary Kay businesses. I started listening to all Leah’s MK cds. I learned about the business, but also about goal-setting, time management, leadership, discipline, and standards of excellence: lessons that shaped my understanding of life and the living of it. Because of my wife’s continued dedication and commitment to her goals, I have enjoyed new relationships with people of excellence, who still serve as examples to me. By enrolling in my wife’s dream, my understanding of life is more clearly defined, her steel sharpening this dull iron.
Over the past three years we have enjoyed the Mary Kay business. Since DIQ, the Mary Kay journey has been a sprint: Cadillac, paychecks, and travel. We have enjoyed many opportunities to travel the United States, and also to Rome, Italy; Munich, Germany; and St Lucia all courtesy of Mary Kay. Who would have thought it possible? I did not. I just wanted to support my wife but became enrolled in her vision. I encouraged and believed in her and all of sudden a new future opened in front of my eyes. It has been an amazing journey. I am so very thankful to God, my wife, and this company for all the opportunities we have been afforded.