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Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-) (and a request)Views: 1095
Jul 04, 2005 4:29 amOkay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-) (and a request)#

Marilyn Jenett

Hi Monica,

I was going to send you a private message but then thought that maybe my situation and your response may help someone else. I hope my questions are appropriate here and would not be considered consulting for you.

I have always practiced "releasing" what is no longer necessary in all aspects of life - mentally, emotionally and physically (environment and clutter). I strongly believe in creating a "vacuum" in order to attract prosperity. Also, I cannot function in a cluttered and disorderly environment. I visited your website and reviewed the first listed HGTV episode - I could not believe the "before" photos of that woman's office and how she ran her business from there. I could NEVER even walk into that room :-) What a fantastic job you did. (more on HGTV at the end of this post).

Okay, so I don't believe in holding onto clutter. And I follow my intuitive guidance as to what needs to be released. Usually. But there are a couple of areas that I am not clear about (you'll see why) and would greatly appreciate your input. I will only address one of them in this post so it doesn't overwhelm.

First, I moved my corporate business home a couple of years ago after 16 years in an executive suite office in a highrise. I had plenty of cabinet and storage space at my office and I was very organized (neighboring tenants often marvelled at my neat office. I miss those built in cabinets.

So I brought everything home. That included many sizable boxes of components for my beautiful business presentation package. The entire design and printing job for these items cost about $12,000 (about 6-7 years ago). There were 1000 presentation folders - gorgeous terragon green with my logo - black box and gold foil embossed lettering (you can see the web scan here on this "update" page: http://www.MarilynJenettLocations.com - it actually scanned better than we thought it would, but not as gorgeous as the physical items). I even had the booklet envelopes made in matching color - 3000 was required for the minimum custom order (there is a reason I am being this descriptive). There is no address on the folders so they are always current. There were also matching blank notecards and envelopes - again about 1000. I had the letterheads reprinted with the current address and those smaller items (letterheads, cards, etc) don't take up that much space. The package itself that I sent out over the years contained first quality color reprints, bio, articles about me, articles I wrote, etc. A top quality package. But everyone of those items can be put on a website (and some have already).

Help! I am stuck on the presentation folders and envelopes.
In all those years, I have only used a portion of them, maybe a couple of hundred at most. So I have 3 boxes of the large booklet envelopes (thousands) and almost 3 boxes of the large folders (750).

And here are the reasons for my dilemma:

1. My corporate business of 20 years is no longer important to me. My prosperity program is my life now and has taken precedence. I have one huge corporate client, Campbell and I have been involved in their promotions for a year now and will continue, but they take very little of my time, so my corporate business is a lucrative "hobby". I no longer want to do the type of events of past years. It's not me anymore.

2. If I have only used a couple of hundred folders/envelopes over so many years, obviously I will not need the remaining volume unless I continue with my business indefinitely, which I won't. So you would think I would just trash most of them, right?

3. Everything has changed with the Internet. Everything that is in my presentation package and much more has been scanned and can be added to the website. So even if I were to do more business, companies don't request packages anymore. They just use websites, don't they?

I always mailed or Fed Exed proposals, contracts and other paperwork in these folders as well because they were so darn beautiful - I was proud of them. But guess what? Nobody wants paperwork anymore. All proposals, contracts, etc. are emailed. The only thing Campbell and I mail are occasional originals of signed contracts. Another reason to release the excess.

4. I have been speaking about having someone take over that business and run it for me. But even if that happened, would they need and use all those physical presentation materials?

5. The boxes are stored in a closet. I keep them out of sight. But I know they are there. And items that are not used I consider clutter. I don't want to hang on to remnants of the past that are no longer useful. That old vacuum thing - create "space" to make room for the new.

A side note...I had stored my memoirs - family photos, my son growing up, business publicity (I was a media darling for years) in a storage facility for almost 20 years to keep the past "out of sight". I took everything from storage this past year and decided to streamline. (I learned my lesson about "storing" things and will never do it again). My television shows were on video but I had them all converted to DVD - wow! what previously took two banker boxes of space now neatly fits in the corner of a drawer. Same with newspaper veloxes, etc. - had them scanned to disks. So I was able to come up with good solutions to streamline. And I am able to release things that no longer have use or meaning. But...

Thousands of dollars worth of striking presentation folders and envelopes? I can't seem to get those boxes out the door. I could keep 50 of them just for a little security and in case I take on a special client here or there. I am not clear on why I have not trashed them. I don't want to hold onto the past. My business was very meaningful but not any more. Perhaps my concern is that if someone did take over my business, they would want them to do a mailing campaign or something. Not sure. I actually have been speaking with someone about this recently, but I would have to become a consultant to the business to help her, and I am resisting doing that. I think I want to make the break.

Well, this is the weekend of reckoning and I am determined to make the decision.

What's your take on this? Have you had a client go through a similar dilemma when releasing a former business? Shall I claim my "independence" from these beautiful but no longer used items? Or is there something from your client experience that may add to this?

Regarding HGTV, they were clients of mine for years...I produced the events that put them on the map in the cable industry - you can see a couple of them at the above link.
I lost touch with Mariane Whittemore - the last events I did were after they merged with The Food Network. I wanted to let her know what I was doing now with my prosperity program, but their numbers and area codes have changed but I haven't looked further. Have you run into her by any chance in your travels? Do you know if she is still with the company?



P.S. Just in case you are wondering why I had so much volume printed back then...this was a very difficult job for printing (the graphic designers don't take these things into consideration all the time - they go for the appeal and impact), especially the gold embossed foil on the black box. It turned out, as it often does in printing, that it is much more cost effective to print a higher volume than a lower one. I had a printing broker involved who got the right quotes and this was indeed the best way to go. In fact, the business card which the designer created was half green and half black and was so difficult to print that they did several runs to get it right. They ended up printing about a thousand extra cards and just gave them to me. The owner of the printing company jokingly told us that he wanted to make sure that we didn't come back for a long time for a re-order :-)

Private Reply to Marilyn Jenett

Jul 04, 2005 12:10 pmre: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-) (and a request)#

Hi Marilyn, I am not Monica but if you dont mind I would like to offer another opinion. Interesting story sounds like you had a very exciting last 20 years. And now are ready to loose and release. Its been years since I studied the loose and release concept.

Short answer would be to sell the business and give the new owner the option to decide what to do with the presentation folders etc. as part of the package.

However, I feel like I am reading something else in your story. Something deeper about letting this all go. On one hand you are saying, I am done finished with that part of my life and on the other hand there are a few "but's".
I think the act of either making a decision to store all the presentation folders etc and sell them along with the business OR pitch them, yes, just plain shred and pitch.

I will be interested in Monica's reply.

Good luck in whatever you decide!
Terri Weston

Private Reply to Luv2organize

Jul 04, 2005 1:17 pmre: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-) (and a request)#

The Eagle: Motivating Champions Around The World
Marilyn, You really answered your own question as is the case when someone asks a question Like yours. If you want keep 50 folders and other material for emergencies. Get rid of the others. As you will no longer be conducing the Business Throw them out so you can adapt new ideas for your Business,Life.

Ashley the Eagle Motivator

Private Reply to The Eagle: Motivating Champions Around The World

Jul 05, 2005 3:16 amre: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-) (and a request)#

Marilyn Jenett

Terri and Ashley,

Thank you for your interest and replies.

I don't want to "clutter" the board with more detail than is necessary, but I will need to explain a bit more to respond. Bear with me, please.

I don't wish to sell the business for a couple of reasons. First, as mentioned, it has not been that active for the past couple of years. If someone "took it over and ran it, they would be using my renown, experience and reputation to build new business and then maybe they could eventually buy me out. The downside here is that I would have to help this person which defeats the purpose. Someone who was really expert in the industry wouldn't need to take over my business - they would have or start their own.

However, the reason I would not sell: When I began my prosperity program, I had pretty much released my corporate business, BUT at exactly that time I attracted Campbell out of the blue (a wonderful testimony to what I teach!) and what I thought would be just one booking has turned into the largest client (and the most unique one) of my two-decade career. Campbell spent $450 million this past year to market to children.

I have been involved in the largest promotions - the Malibu mansion, the castle in England and the private tropical island. These were booked last year but the actual fulfillment prize weeks are almost a year later - the castle event just happened last week and the island is in a few weeks. Now they have handed me two more - which I just booked this week for the events next summer. Then a couple of weeks ago I was contacted by their Canadian counterpart and they want me to book all of these same promotions all over again for the Canadian market! The fulfillment of these promotions are next year. This is a perfect example of how we can attract success to us when we stop struggling and striving and instead create the mindset for it. Yes, I chose to release my corporate business and the kinds of corporate and convention events I used to do. I even had decided about a month ago (in a moment of insanity) to break from Campbell after that third promotion.

But could I turn away this client and this prosperity? I would be a fool to do so. Especially since this takes so little of my time. And it has provided a great cushion this past year as I have grown my prosperity program. I am grateful for that and the client has shown great appreciation to me by making my small business the sole location vendor for these mega projects. I am a strong believer in the power of gratitude. This client was a gift from the Universe.

So I am very involved contractually with the client's legal department and contracting these venues for the promotions.
I would not turn over legal control of the business to anyone else. I grew this baby, it matured, but it's still mine. And I need to maintain responsibility to this client, for which I am very grateful. So selling the business would be way down the line - and I am back to what to do with the folders? I have a lesson in my program on Release and a section on cleaning out the clutter. I discuss how when we save things that we might need "someday" - someday usually never arrives :-)

So back to the beginning - do I need all that presentation material? Even if a couple of more "Campbells" came along, the answer is no. If I sell the business someday - maybe, but do I want to hold onto them during that time. No. Of course, the folders could also be reprinted in the future.

But I hope you can understand my resistance a little better.
I realize that my business keeps me grounded in the corporate world - just enough to satisfy the need to stay connected to my business roots. Just connected, not immersed fully. And my corporate business does give me credibility for my teachings - you know, walking the talk. The folders may somehow symbolize that. Or it just may be the amount of money I spent on them that makes it hard to release them. At least when you give away a valuable piece of clothing or furniture, you know someone will get use out of it. But trashing valuable things? That's not an easy one.

Again, thank you for helping me explore this. It's not something I would normally take "public" but I felt prompted.

I also am very interested in what Monica has to say and whether she has come across this before.

Be thankful I didn't post about going through decades of photos, my son growing up, etc. that were in storage. Whew!
But I did it.


Private Reply to Marilyn Jenett

Jul 05, 2005 5:43 amre: re: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-) (and a request)#

Monica Ricci
First, thank you for sharing this with the group, as I'm sure it will be a good discussion that others can learn from. :) You're kind to do so.

I'll try to be brief (no promises though!). It does indeed sound as though you are truly finished with that business and that aspect of your life. However, just because you're finished with something, doesn't mean it never happened or it didn't matter. Understanding this and striking an appropriate balance in your life between the past and the present is crucial, in my opinion.

For example, I still have my first wedding album and that's fine with my current husband. Just because that marriage didn't last forever, does that mean it wasn't special? That it didn't happen? That my first husband isn't a fine human being? No. I choose to recognize that and respect it by keeping our wedding album. Does it mean I love my current husband any less? Of course not. It just connects me to my past in a way that doesn't infringe upon the present. We all do this with various "things" in our lives.

As human beings, we feel a need to benchmark our lives, to chronicle our achievements and to create a legacy of sorts. We need to think our existence mattered. This is why we keep photographs, scrapbooks and countless other items that remind us of the past.

Be aware that keeping things from the past does not always mean you're stuck or living in the past. We all want roots to our past, and keeping items does that for us. It connects us to our past as we live in the present. It's really a lovely way to weave the fabric of your life when you think about it.

I can tell you pride yourself in staying in control of clutter and on top of everything, so don't think of yourself as living in the past or being stuck there, just because you're being challenged by these materials. I'm willing to bet that there are a two main factors coming into play here.

1. THE MONEY. We all like to think we're smart. And when we make a buying mistake, whether we realize it in the moment or later down the road, we don't feel so smart. This might be a little bit of guilt/remorse about having spent so much money on something that you're now not going to fully get value from. So what do you do to reconcile it and move on?

I run into this a lot with my clients and here is what we do. I go into "question asking mode".

Will keeping those items bring that money back? (No.)

Is there a way you can sell or trade those items to recoup some of your investment? (sometimes yes, sometimes no)

Did you buy those items using your very best judgment and all the information you had at the time? (Usually the answer here is yes).

Did you get value or joy from this purchase? (usually it's yes).

So what we've discovered is that you did get value or joy from this purchase, but sometimes the best laid plans don't work out the way you want and you can't control that. But what you CAN control is where you go from here, and whether you will continue to allow those items to cause you any mental, emotional or physical pain (pain = loss of time, energy, space, etc) or whether you will release them, forgive yourself for making what you might be considering a mistake, and know that you did the best you could in this situation.

2. YOUR IDENTITY & SELF-WORTH. These business materials are from an important part of your life and career. Throwing them away in some way, represents the finite end of that chapter of your life. Perhaps you are just a smidge sad about that, and who could blame you? Our lives move from one stage to the next and it's okay to look back with fondness on the past, as long as you don't let it hold you back from achieving your future.

(yeah, I said I'd try to be brief...hahaha. Good one!)

When working with my clients, I always try to draw them to their own conclusions by offering alternatives to what they had been thinking. I try to "interrupt their loop" so to speak. I want them to think about their situation differently, so they can come to a result that they're happy with. I do this by asking a lot of questions, making suggestions, presenting options and monitoring how they feel during the process.

If you're asking for a specific recommendation, it would be this:

See if you can recycle these materials. I don't know if the foil will prevent them from being recycled or not, but it's worth a try at your local recycling place. If you can, do so. If you can't, suck it up and let the trash guy take them. It might be hard, but you can do it.

BUT FIRST, take one of each of the different items (envelopes, letterheads, whatever you have left) and have them professionally framed together into a beautiful box frame, so you can display them on your wall to honor your past and your achievements forever.

Also, maybe save a small amount (ten??) if that will make you feel better. Box them, label them and make sure you know where they live, because if you honestly might need them again to give to anyone, you'll want to know where they are. When you revisit that box in another few years, time will have made your fondness wane and you might just decide then that you are ready to ditch the last few because you'll have the framed beautiful ones to preserve your memory of that time in your life.

I hope this is helpful, Marilyn. Let me know what you decide.


Private Reply to Monica Ricci

Jul 05, 2005 6:04 pmre: re: re: re: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-) (and a request)#

Monica Ricci
Marielena, I'm sorry... I don't understand your post.


Private Reply to Monica Ricci

Jul 06, 2005 9:05 amre: re: re: re: re: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-) (and a requ#

Marilyn Jenett

Thank you for your thoughtful reply, Monica...I am going to meditate on it...

Did someone say that Racquel Welch is in the market for 750 presentation folders? (Sorry, I couldn't resist...that post did provide some comic relief) :-)


Private Reply to Marilyn Jenett

Jul 06, 2005 4:40 pmre: re: re: re: re: re: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-) (and a#

Monica Ricci
That must be it! Raquel is DESPERATE for those presentation folders!! :) :) :)

Marilyn, let me know what your meditation yields.


Private Reply to Monica Ricci

Jul 12, 2005 8:39 amre: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-) (Up#

Marilyn Jenett

I have an update on my business "releasing" campaign...

It all began with those hundreds of presentation folders and thousands of matching envelopes, right?

Well, I haven't touched them YET. I decided to go into the room and prepare for the Olympics by going through all of my other business files, photos, boxes, etc. and other possessions in that room. I wanted to really SEE these things and question whether they were necessary to retain, and do any condensing, re-labeling and organizing and eliminating to streamline. I knew that would reveal to me if I was indeed ready to emotionally release former aspects of my business. I remember something that Monica said, I think it's on her website, maybe from one of the shows: Our mind gets USED to seeing items and then we don't even notice them anymore. How true and powerful that is. Even if everything is neatly boxed, you still forget what's in those boxes. So I set out to SEE everything.

I also used an affirmation before I began: "Infinite Intelligence guides me to make the right decisions on what to release from my environment."

I am happy to say that for several hours focus, there are now six very sizable trash bags sitting in my kitchen ready to be dumped! I wanted to look at them for an extra day to feel the accomplishment of release. And that's just the beginning. And keep in mind that I am already an organized person (did I tell you that one of my best friends is a Brother P-Touch Label Maker? I love those things!). So the stuff I released wasn't really clutter (at least until now).
But it was totally unnecessary for me to continue to possess.

Success: I went through the boxes of presentation items that are used to fill the presentation folder - articles, bio, references, publicity, etc. And the first thing I did was pick a number that I felt comfortable retaining. I picked the number 25. So instead of 100 copies of this, I kept 25. Instead of 500 reprints of that - I kept 25. And on and on. I trashed a lot of stuff that although it seemed important to have handy in the past, it is no longer meaningful to me. And made sure that what I am keeping is properly labeled and organized.

I went through my filing cabinet - that was fun. I felt like a fast motion cartoon trashing one thing after another.
And I know that everything in there now IS important to me including those now empty drawers :-)

So the journey is off to a good start. I have reinvented my life and must reinvent my environment to match.

Now let's get back to those folders and envelopes. I did as you suggested, Monica, and called recycle centers. They told me the foil logo on the folder would be an issue and suggested I just trash them. I have decided to keep a healthy stash of the folders and envelopes and get rid of the extra. The matching envelopes - I have a couple thousand and it doesn't even seem right to recycle them. They are still in sealed cartons and new. I am wondering if there is a charity or organization that could make use of them for mailing envelopes even though they are a color. They are 9-1/2 x 12-1/2 booklet envelopes (the flap is on the long side), color terragon green, no imprinting, just plain. They are really beautiful envelopes - as far as beauty goes for envelopes :-)

Anyone have ideas on where I might be able to donate them locally to put them to good use?

If you don't mind, I will update again later. The journey's not over. It's fun to share and maybe someone else will get an idea or two.



Private Reply to Marilyn Jenett

Jul 12, 2005 11:54 amre: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-)#

Tara Burner
congrats on the 'cleaning' and tossing...and as far as the envelopes, check with schools, teachers sometimes can use things...or http://www.freecycle.org and find a local network and post them there!

Tara :)

Private Reply to Tara Burner

Jul 13, 2005 8:48 pmre: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :#

Monica Ricci
YAHOOOOOO Marilyn!! That is a fabulous update!! I am thrilled for you! As for the envelopes, I might offer them on Freecycle, as Tara suggested. Or you could keep a few samples on your purse and when you're out, you could ask your associates, clients, etc. if they have any use for them, or if they can think of a good way to donate them. That might work.

Great work Marilyn, I can't wait for your next update!

Monica :)

Private Reply to Monica Ricci

Jul 21, 2005 11:55 pmre: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :-)#

- Hilary Baumann - Fascination Design
Yay! Also wanted to mention, since they are business items, you may also see if any of there are any business centers around that might be able to use them or give them away (SBDC, SCORE, or Chamber of Commerce for example.)

One thing I ask myself when getting rid of something is "how much would it cost me to replace this if I miss it later?" In your case, as in a lot of cases, what you spent years ago would probably not be nearly as expensive today.

I have had clients that actually want to hang onto boxes of old brochures even after we have designed and printed something completely new and much better for where their business is currently. What they say is "but I spent $xxx.xx on these" and what I hear is "I don't want to throw away money" and the reality is that there is no money there to throw away - only a product that is no longer useful to them that's taking up space. :)

I know I'm a little behind on my reading and responding but I just thought I would share my point of view in case if helps anyone.

Hilary Baumann
Fascination Design

Private Reply to - Hilary Baumann - Fascination Design

Jul 23, 2005 11:44 pmre: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion :#

Monica Ricci
Hilary, you are exactly right. I always tell my clients, "Keeping this item will not bring your money back." It's important to make that distinction between money that you spent in the past and the present value you get from the item.


Private Reply to Monica Ricci

Nov 03, 2005 2:12 pmre: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion : Miraculous Update :-)#

The Eagle: Motivating Champions Around The World
Marilyn, That was a great testimonial of your faith and to wait for the Guidance from above. He holds the Master Plan for our Lives. Too many times people have the Notion that the world owes them a living instead of going out and actually doing something with their Life.

The Lord works in his timing and I am very happy that it has all come together for you.I know your business will be blessed for presenting and helping the Inner City Youth get a head start in Life and give them the guidance they need at this point of their Lives.

I wish you continued Success in your Endeavors.

Ashley the Eagle Motivator

Private Reply to The Eagle: Motivating Champions Around The World

Nov 03, 2005 8:25 pmre: re: Okay, My "Inner Guidance" Needs a Second Opinion : Miraculous Update :-)#

Monica Ricci
Marilyn, I hope you don't consider the length of my reply indicative of my enthusiasm, but THAT ROCKS!! (sometimes that's all that needs to be said, eh?)

Great news and thank you for sharing it with us!


Private Reply to Monica Ricci

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