Evolve’s One Year Blogiversary Giveaway Winners!

I am so grateful that we were able to celebrate Evolve’s One Year Blogiversary with you!

This post is specifically to let you know who the winner’s for Krista’s giveaway’s are, I know that Jennifer Wise was giving away some great prizes too, but she will get a hold of you separately.

My 5 Prizes:

  1. Evolve Journal & Pen
  2. Today Matters by John C. Maxwell
  3. Intentional Living by John C. Maxwell
  4. Evolve Tote Bag
  5. Grand Prize – Live2Lead Book Bundle:

The Winners are:

  • Jennylyn Gross from Havre de Grace, MD
  • Jenny Ham from Topeka, KS
  • Michelle Hunsaker from Parker, CO
  • Heather Smith from Pocahontas, AR
  • Amber Hensley from Ashland, KY

Congratulations winners!

I also want to give a big thank you to everyone who participated in our Blogiversary celebration. You are what makes this blog possible.

Thank you.

What’s Your 30 Second Commercial?

(Elevator Pitch)

What’s one thing every human being on this Earth has in common? Our desire to communicate. Ideally to not only communicate but to make a connection with others. When we meet new people we often have only a very short period of time to make a connection. That initial connection is important because it will be the foundation for more communication (or the lack there of) in the future.

The Success Cycle

I think it’s a fair assumption that everyone has a desire to be successful. I’m pretty sure I’ve never met anyone who says, “you know, I don’t want to succeed”… So how do we get there? How can we become successful?

The first question is really, what is success?

“Success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal.” – Earl Nightingale

Success then is really not a destination, it is working towards and bringing to pass a worthy goal. It is a person who says, “I am going to become this,” and then works to make it happen.

  • It’s a school teacher who teaches school because that’s what they want to do.
  • It’s a woman who is a wife and mother because she wanted to and is doing an amazing job of it.
  • It’s a man who runs a mechanic shop because that was his dream.
  • It’s an entrepreneur who starts their own company because that’s what they’ve always wanted to do.

A success is anyone who is intentionally pursuing a predetermined goal because they deliberately decided to do it.


Whether or not you are a goal setter, I cannot emphasize the importance of goals in the success cycle enough. A goal is a destination, without it, you don’t know where you are going.

Consider two ships leaving a harbor. The first ship has a destination and it’s voyage mapped out and planned. The captain and the crew know where the ship is going, how long it will take, and where it will be stopping along the way. It has a definitive destination and probably 999 times out of 1,000 it will arrive at it’s destination.

Now consider the second ship. Except this time it doesn’t have a captain, it doesn’t have a crew, and it doesn’t have an end goal in sight. We just start the engines and let it go. It may get out of the harbor, but most likely it will either sink or end up deserted on a beach somewhere because it was never given a destination or guidance.

I love this quote by Lewis Carroll in Alice in Wonderland:

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?’
‘That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,’ said the Cat.
‘I don’t much care where -‘ said Alice.
‘Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,’ said the Cat.
‘- so long as I get SOMEWHERE,’ Alice added as an explanation.
‘Oh, you’re sure to do that,’ said the Cat, ‘if you only walk long enough.” – Lewis Carroll

Goals help us know where we are going. Otherwise we can spend a lot of time and effort working, but never really get anywhere.

The Success Cyle

This success cycle was shared by Paul Martinelli and John C. Maxwell. It is how successful people and organizations continually find success.

  1. Test
  2. Fail
  3. Learn
  4. Improve
  5. Re-enter


Successful people test more. If you have entrepreneurial tendencies like I do, then you probably have more than 50 ideas a day, and most of them will never go anywhere… But you will never know if you have a good idea unless you try it.

“The value of an idea comes in the using of it.” – Thomas Edison

Not every idea will be a good one, but successful people are willing to take risks. They are willing to test their ideas and make things happen.


Successful people also fail more. They test more, and because not all ideas are the best solutions, they also fail more. But failing isn’t a bad thing. In fact, failure can be our greatest teacher. We can learn not only what we did wrong, but also what we did right.

“Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill

People who are afraid to fail, by default also let fear prevent them from being successful. Have courage to go to a daring destination, and know that you will fail along the way. It’s part of the process! It’s alright if you fail, as long as you learn something from it.


Many people stop when they fail. They don’t don’t take the time to learn from it, and many don’t try again. I can guarantee you that we will all fail at something in our lives. So, if it’s going to happen anyway, we mind as well keep an open mind and learn from it!

“Those things that hurt, instruct.” – Benjamin Franklin

In Live2Lead 2017, John Maxwell illustrates this point with an example. He talks about a person who tries and fails and gets back up and tries again. Then they get knocked down over and over and don’t let it stop them from getting back in the game over and over again. We think this is great. We love their tenacity, but we over look the problem. They are getting knocked back down by the same thing over and over again and aren’t learning from it.

When we get knocked down, we need to take the time to learn from it so that when we get back up we don’t get knocked back down by the same thing again.


After we’ve been knocked down and learned from our experience, then the next step is to improve. It does us very little good if we test, fail, then learn, but we don’t change our behavior.

“If you always do what you’ve always done, you always get what you’ve always gotten.” – Jessie Potter

To advance in the success process step number four is critical, we have to improve.

“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein

Learning from our experiences is very valuable, but if we don’t do anything different with that knowledge, it doesn’t do us much good. To continue being successful we need to continually improve.


The last step of the cycle is to re-enter. The success process is considered a cycle because it is ongoing. Success is not a single destination. Once you have achieved one goal, it becomes a baseline for the next. We have an entire lifetime to improve! We have an entire lifetime to be successful. And it can just keep on getting better and better.

Think how many major companies have failed because they neglected this last step. They were successful for years and years and then the market changed but they didn’t. They continued operating at a lower level which wasn’t good enough to stay competitive because everyone else was improving. They were left behind.

“Regardless of how good you are, you could be better.” – John C. Maxwell

Start the process again! Test, fail, learn, improve, re-enter. Test, fail, learn, improve, re-enter…

If you look at any successful person or organization, this is what they do. This is how they are continually successful, and I know that you can be too!

Test, Fail, Learn, Improve, Re-enter


  1. Maxwell, John C. (2018). Live2Lead. Retrieved from http://l2l.johnmaxwell.com/
  2. Nightingale, Earl. (2013). The Strangest Secret. Merchant Books.

The Power of Story

An Interview on Cary Mac Arthur's Dare to Find Your Voice Podcast

Jennifer Wise_HMI want to take a moment and recognize Miss Jennifer Wise. She is a member of the Evolve team and I am so incredibly grateful for her. She is very talented and the author of the weekly column #FamilyHistoryFriday.

Jennifer is our memory-keeping expert! She not only writes phenomenal articles, she also provides practical doable solutions to some of family history’s greatest challenges.

The Power of Living, Growing, and Giving

An Interview on Cary Mac Arthur's Dare to Find Your Voice Podcast

Cary Mac Arthur is the host of the Dare to Find Your Voice Podcast on the ewn podcast network.

Her show is all about ordinary people who have extraordinary stories. People who are discovering the Value of Openness, the power of Intention of Clearing old patterns and learning to Express their truth.  It’s about connecting people to their power and purpose by Daring to speak their V*O*I*C*E*.

Blogiversary Giveaway!

I am so excited to be celebrating Evolve’s One Year Blogiversary! A lot has happened in the past year and I want to share my appreciation to you, our reader!

This post is specifically for Krista’s giveaway’s, but be sure to check out posts by Jennifer Wise, I know she has some great prizes to be giving away this month too!

I am giving away 5 Prizes:

  1. Evolve Journal & Pen
  2. Today Matters by John C. Maxwell
  3. Intentional Living by John C. Maxwell
  4. Evolve Tote Bag
  5. Grand Prize – Live2Lead Book Bundle:

 Enter to Win here:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The 5 winners will be notified by e-mail within 48 hours of the giveaway deadline. Good luck!


One Year Blogiversary!

It has been said that a birthday is just another day, so why even celebrate it? For a blog I suppose you could certainly say the same thing. However, a birthday for an individual signifies their unique beginning and the joy of living. Each person on Earth has an opportunity to fulfill their own unique mission. A birthday truly is an exciting occasion! It’s a time to celebrate, to reflect, and to give thanks. The same thing, I will argue can be said for a blog. After all, isn’t a blog really just an extension of the unique individuals who create it. 

What’s Your One Word?

What are your thoughts on New Years Resolutions?

According to a study conducted on January 1, 2017, about 41% of Americans usually make New Years Resolutions, yet only 9.2% of those actually felt they were successful in achieving their resolutions. That may be why about 42% of Americans absolutely never make New Years Resolutions.

The study shows that 72.6% of resolutions were maintained through the first week, 68.4% past two weeks, and only 58.4% past one month.

So why is it that so few American’s are making resolutions and even fewer of those are seeing success?