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  • about.me

    Kakie Fitzsimmons, MBA CPM

    Kakie Fitzsimmons, MBA CPM

    Bio

    Kakie Fitzsimmons is an Executive MBA Graduate, PMI Certified Project Manager and Management Consultant.

    Experience: I.T. & business project management, strategic & change management consulting, leadership development, communications, marketing, operations, digital & social media, and training.

    Industries: Tech startup, product & publishing media startup, retail, banking, financial services, life, health & disability insurance, CPG and non-profit.

    Executive MBA Grad (2013) from Opus College of Business - University of St. Thomas. Studied in South East Asia as part of the global systems curriculum.

    Co-authored, published academic paper; "Best Buy Corporation Strategic Management Analysis" [1] (27,000+ hits in less than two years.)

    2005-2012 VP, Founding partner, Farmer’s Hat Productions, a children's product and publishing company, where she leveraged her creativity and innovation to co-create and launch the award winning Bur Bur and Friends, a cast of diverse characters who teach kids about sports and outdoors. View the full portfolio here.

    An award winning blogger, author and recipient:

    Semi-Finalist – Minnesota Cup

    Teachers Choice Awards

    Disney iParenting Media Award

    Nickelodeon Best Blog Minneapolis

    Mom's Choice Awards

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Posts Tagged ‘Personal development’

Quantum Creativity and the Power of Intention

Posted by KakieF on October 14, 2014

The window of intention

I’ve been thinking about intention lately. How often do we find ourselves slipping into “automatic thinking” ? What does our window of aspiration look like and how do we frame it?

Doing vs. Being | Acting vs. Reacting | Ideal vs. Real |

Intention leads to quantum creativity because for many people, creativity restores order. Some of the most important things that we do in life come from our creativity, which invokes possibilities of new beginnings.

The human condition causes individuals to make flawed assumptions that people do not change. But those of us have done deep self-exploration, know that we get to make a choice to be even better today than the day before.

I am not who I was five or ten years ago because of my curiosity and creativity. They have shown me the excitement to learn and grow that exists around each corner. The good news is that this world is full of random variables that can help us reach and exceed our potential every day.

Intention – Creativity – Restoration

Thanks for visiting my blog, feel free to leave a comment! Below are some quotes about intention, enjoy!

____________________________________________________________

“Live with intention. Walk to the edge.

Listen Hard.
Practice wellness.
Play with abandon.
Laugh.
Choose with no regret.
Appreciate your friends.
Continue to learn.
Do what you love.
Live as if this is all there is.”
                         - Mary Anne Rademacher

“Leadership is the wise use of power. Power is the capacity to translate intention into reality and sustain it.” –Warren Bennis

”Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives.” –William A. Foster

“Some say if you want success surround yourself with successful people. I say if you want true and lasting success surround yourself with people of integrity.”
― Charles F. Glassman, Brain Drain The Breakthrough That Will Change Your Life

“Evolution is a blind giant who rolls a snowball down a hill. The ball is made of flakes—circumstances. They contribute to the mass without knowing it. They adhere without intention, and without foreseeing what is to result. When they see the result they marvel at the monster ball and wonder how the contriving of it came to be originally thought out and planned. Whereas there was no such planning, there was only a law: the ball once started, all the circumstances that happened to lie in its path would help to build it, in spite of themselves.”
Mark Twain

“Promise yourself to be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind. Look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true. Think only of the best, work only for the best, and expect only the best. Forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future. Give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others. Live in the faith that the whole world is on your side so long as you are true to the best that is in you!” — Christian D. Larson

Posted in Business, Reflections on Life | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

6 Successful Ways to Influence and Lead Change

Posted by KakieF on January 27, 2014

6 simple ways to get buy in and influence othersMaking meaningful connections is important in leadership. We easily get caught up in “do-and-move-forward” mode which gets in the way of slowing down to value the relationships we have built and continue to grow. It helps to remember that people rally around causes and values that resonate with them, especially when leading through times of change. We have been trained to continuously scan internal and external environments and there is no question it takes time to figure out how to bring others with us through the journey that is change. Our role is to anticipate resistance, lead with confidence and have empathy for and redirect individuals who may get emotional. Modeling the behavior is a given and we can’t over communicate the key messaging that is required. Below are 6 simple things we can do to lead and influence people and organizations in times of transition. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Business, Reflections on Leadership, Reflections on Life | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

A Random Act of Kindness for Wordless Wednesday

Posted by KakieF on January 22, 2014

When was the last time someone reached out to you and performed a random act of kindness? I was pleasantly surprised when a complete stranger recently did something thoughtful for me just when I needed it most. As a result of her good-hearted deed, I plan to honor her by paying it forward.

WholeHeartedThankYou

As thought leaders, we sometimes forget the view, taking a moment to acknowledge the people around us via random acts of kindness can go a long way. We get so caught up in our calendars, goals and tasks and only see the road ahead. But when we slow down a little to enjoy, pleasant surprises seem to come out of the woodwork.

The Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday, this past Monday, has been deemed a day to encourage making a difference in communities. As I wrote in a previous post called: Servant Leadership: Facts about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Dr. King was a strong proponent of servant leadership, so whether or not you took action this week, I would like to propose a challenge.

What can you do to make a difference for someone this week? Please make the effort, then come back here and share your story below. I’d like to hear what you did, the response you got and how it made you feel. I look forward to hearing from you.

Posted in Business, Reflections on Leadership, Reflections on Life | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Road….

Posted by KakieF on February 14, 2013

Unconditional Love

There are people who will say Valentines Day is a novelty, but I think it’s an opportunity to reflect, create a memory or perform a random act of kindness, because sometimes even the smallest gesture can go a long way.

My mom never forgets a Valentines Day. Last night she came over with the tulips you see in the background of the picture, made dinner and then did some religion homework with my son.

She gave me the red heart ornament in the picture years ago on a February 14th. It says “Kakie” and on the back Love, Mom.  Time has worn the ink from changing the oil in the decanter.

The faded letters on the ornament and the flowers are both signals for me. One, a gentle reminder about being present, new life, spring and what lies ahead. The other is to pause, step back, appreciate those around me and celebrate the journey. We didn’t get here alone and couldn’t have accomplished all that has been without others. Look how far we’ve come. For many of us it can seem quite remarkable.

Life puts gifts at our feet which we don’t recognize at first. Sometimes we stumble over them or we get in our own way. It’s okay because we are all flawed and I think there is beauty in that. Somehow we always manage to get back up, brush ourselves off and move ahead.

We are exactly where we are meant to be at any given moment and we have all of the tools we need. Today, give yourself permission to slow down, take a deep breath, find gratitude and share it with someone.

I would love to hear stories about small gestures that meant a great deal to you  Share them below and thanks for stopping by. Happy Valentines Day.

Posted in Business, Reflections on Leadership, Reflections on Life | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Day 11: Imperfection, Realignment and Leadership

Posted by KakieF on February 27, 2012

We have been traveling down the road trying to figure out life, made decisions for valid reasons and our intentions have always come from the right place. Perhaps there have been situations where we said or did things we wished we hadn’t because we felt pressure or fear. We’ve had regrets and pangs of anxiety when we’ve heard the ongoing question in our heads; “What were you thinking?” and sometimes wish there was an undo button.

Then we are somehow reminded that imperfection is universal and our response is just a symptom of the problem, but not the result. We eventually come around, back to the place where we feel grounded and tell ourselves it is time to realign our thoughts, feelings and actions with our values, principles and goals. It is the spot of acceptance and redemption because we acknowledge being wrong, that we make mistakes and that the human condition is designed with perfectly imperfect flaws. Beauty and broken-ness teaches us there are rewards to staying on our path and to trust that nothing happens by chance.

Being a good leader means remembering we have all the tools we need and it is up to us to use them. Leaning into discomfort teaches us what we are supposed to be learning. Regret gives us the invaluable lesson that there is power in how we choose to use circumstances to move forward and do better.

On this journey of 21 days to happiness, I have wanted to go through this process the right way. Then I realized I get to define what it means to do things the right way. Although I have not written a post every single day, I am thinking about and practicing gratitude constantly because I am writing about it. That is progress, which I think is delightful.

:D

Three things I am thankful for today:

  1. The fresh smell of clean laundry
  2. Starting each day with intention
  3. That I am practicing gratitude each day

Posted in Business, Reflections on Leadership | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Day 9: Then is Now: Letting Go of Resentment

Posted by KakieF on February 14, 2012

21 days to happiness: My story and 3 things I am thankful for: 

Years ago I attended personal growth and leadership seminars by Earnie Larsen, who used the analogy of “Who is driving your bus?” to illustrate how people hold on to resentments and that often, “then is now.” So let me give you an example of what he meant by that.

When Johnny was 7 years old, his parents were constantly at odds and one day, while they were fighting, he began screaming at them to stop, started sobbing and ran outside. No one came to console him, apologize or explain the argument was not about him.

It broke a part of his spirit and sample messages he could have carried from that might be “love hurts, nobody listens to me anyway, I will never allow others to be that much in control again,” etc.

Now, what if we put that seven-year old’s outdated lie in charge of driving his life (aka bus) for 50 years? Who is behind the wheel? That is an awful lot of years of pain and false data from which he establishes his viewpoint. The reality is, his parents were probably young and just trying to figure things out themselves, but that was not what he took from the experience.

Examples like this play out every day at home and at work. As leaders,we manage people with various backgrounds and social styles. Perhaps if we keep stories like the one above in mind, it can help us incorporate emotional intelligence and compassion into our professional environments in ways that are healthy. Intent, usually comes from the right place and situations are not always as they seem at first glance.

Hanging on to resentment is a painful form of abuse that prevents us from having self-compassion, but all too often, we may not even realize we are clinging to a given injustice. That resistance gets us emotionally jammed and a majority of people do not have any idea how to get unstuck.

One solution? “And acceptance is the answer to all of my problems today.”  Someone once told me there are four stages that shine in the face of love. They are:

  1. Allowing
  2. Acceptance
  3. Approval
  4. Appreciation

These four things are at the core of who we are when we are born. What if we made it our goal to live these principles in every aspect of our lives daily as a way to get back to our core being? Including loving all of our resentments and saying yes, accepting the things we can’t control. What if this was your personal growth homework? What have you got to lose? Try it for a few days and let me know how it works for you. Who is driving your bus today?

Three things I am grateful for today:

  1. The process of allowing, acceptance, approval and appreciation.
  2. The idea that “If you don’t give yourself any options, you don’t have any choices.” There is always another way, we get to seek the counsel of others to help us with that.
  3. That I have learned how to give myself permission to let go of old resentments and lies

Posted in Business | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Day 1: Beginning a Journey Towards Self-Compassion

Posted by KakieF on February 2, 2012

21 days to happiness: My story and 3 things I am thankful for.   

Today I am grateful for my health and to celebrate that, I went for a one hour walk. During my walk, I was listening to a personal growth seminar about taking a first step towards a new way of living.

I am ready to make some changes in my life which is going to take courage because it means facing fears openly, with a goal to change “old lies” or negative self talk. The only person’s truth I can live is my own, so I will share my stories with anticipation of finding a new place to stand and have a different view of life. Transparency about vulnerabilities does not come natural to me, but by sharing my walk towards self-compassion I will learn, grow, and hopefully teach. :) Research shows it takes 21 days to form a new habit, so here is my first step towards happiness in 21 days.

“Then is now.” How are we repeating old patterns that began at another time in our lives?

I grew up in a loving family and am the oldest of 3. My parents were divorced when I was young and as the oldest, often, I was the one left in charge when adults were not present. At the age of ten or eleven years old, that meant I got to “tell my siblings what to do.”  I tried and got frustrated because often, they didn’t listen. They were just busy being kids, doing what kids do.

There were good things that came from the experience. It helped me be responsible, strong, independent and someone who sets high expectations of myself, (a blessing and a curse). The hard part was I felt out of control because I did not have the tools to know how to give myself (and them) options. The old lie or message I took from that much of my life was fear of not doing or being good enough.

But now, years later I don’t have to carry that message around any longer because it is not true! :D

I AM worthy, I CAN do the work by telling that old lie it does NOT have control in my life any longer. Today, I embrace this truth. I deserve happiness, I matter and I am enough.

3 things I am grateful for:

  1. That I have family and friends who love me
  2. That I am ready to take this journey and I don’t have to do it alone
  3. That I am learning to treat myself the same way I would treat those who I love

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Personal Courage and Growth is a Choice………..

Posted by KakieF on August 27, 2011

How many times do we allow negative self talk to be in control when life is so full of empowerment choices? When we are hard on ourselves it is an especially important time to break the pattern because we can. We get to give ourselves permission to learn, recycle and reinvent!

Courage takes guts and is about doing whatever it takes to find a place of peace and serenity. Its about facing the things in life that are hard and walking through them no matter what challenges present themselves. It takes an awful lot of humility to face our flaws, but acknowledgement is the first step to healing.

Years ago I was at a personal growth seminar by a local author by the name of Earnie Larson. I was saddened to hear of his passing in January of 2011. He changed the lives of many people and the quote from him I will always carry with me. “What we learn, we practice. What we practice, we become. What we become has consequences.” That statement was about change and teaching ourselves new behaviors.

When we hear the saying that people don’t change it drives me crazy because guess what?

Change —- Is —- Constant.    

It is the way people try not to transform and grow that is crazy. How easily we forget that fear can be healthy if it motivates us to do something differently. It is how we experience adjustments in our lives and what we do with that information that matters. Personal courage and growth is a choice, so what are you waiting for?

Greatness requires simplicity. Get out there and make it happen because you can.

What does having courage mean to you?

Posted in Business, Reflections on Leadership | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

 
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