I wanted to share a few things that I took away from my first big Juice Plus conference. I went to a regional conference in Raleigh back in August, which is what made me decide to commit to the St. Louis conference, but Raleigh was on a much smaller scale.
I’m just going to be honest, I’m a skeptic. I’ve been through a lot of things, seen a lot of sales pitches both in the business world and the religious world and I’ve gotten a little calloused I think. I have always taken people at face value and often trusted them when they didn’t earn that trust. I see the best in people, not what they are, but what they can be. Sometimes, that gets me in trouble. So, I have have become a skeptic over the years. I want proof, I don’t want hype, or emotion or a bunch of fluff. When I took the Dr. Sears Health Coach Certification program, one of the things he says is “Show me the science.” I know that when it comes to faith, we have to have faith without seeing, but some things we have to see.
Right before going the conference I had become a little discouraged. I had already experienced so many changes in my own health since starting Juice Plus and seen improvement in my family and my friends who are also taking it. But, I was having a hard time sharing it with people. It felt like I was trying to sell something even though I really believe so much in the product and believe it will help people if they try it. So, when I was getting ready to go to the conference, I had a talk with myself. “Don’t let yourself get drawn into a bunch of emotion and hype, listen for the proof, look for the science and evidence. Be smart.”
One of the main things I wanted to do at the JPCon was meet Dr. Sears. He is really the reason I started taking Juice Plus in the first place. So, on Thursday, the first full day of the conference, I got to meet Dr. Sears.
Dr. Sears is one of the nicest people and was very willing to take the time to talk with me and a lot of other people who were there for the weekend. I was able to catch him the next day for just a few moments and ask him for advice about my new health coaching career that I am working on. He was busy proofreading a new class that they are getting ready to launch but he stopped and took the time to talk to me. People are important to him.
I also got to meet Dr. Mitra Ray. I have been watching her videos on YouTube for the last several months, so it was exciting to meet her in person. She is very down to earth and seems to be very sincere and happy to meet people and talk with them.
One thing I didn’t anticipate, although maybe I should have, was meeting new people and developing new relationships. It’s amazing how you can go to something like that and there are hundreds or even thousands of people who have the same belief and are on the same path together. It was so positive and uplifting to be around like minded people. I believe some of these new people will become my very good friends.
Sarah is the one who has been encouraging to me this whole time. She has prayed for me and with me, encouraged me and motivated me to go to the conference in the first place. Everyone needs a friend who will walk with them on their journey and help them achieve the things they want to achieve. I’m very thankful for the friendship that Sarah and I are building together. In fact, I think my first flight was a little easier since I was able to look at Sarah and know that some of those little bumps were just normal and nothing to worry about. 🙂 It’s really nice to go places you’ve never been with someone who has already been there, they kind of know the ropes and what to expect. Isn’t it really like that in life? it’s nice to know that you’re with someone who’s been there and can help you in the direction you need to go.
One of the biggest things I took away from the whole conference was that people are what it’s all about. The most important thing about all this is people. It’s about building and maintaining relationships, not because we want to make money, but because we want to make a difference in someone’s life. For someone who’s never had a migraine, it may not seem that big of a deal to share that Juice Plus has helped nearly eliminated migraines from my life. But for that person who suffers migraines all the time and just wishes they could find something to help, that means the world to them. I don’t personally need to lose weight, but I heard many stories of people losing weight after starting to flood their bodies with the fruits and vegetables of Juice Plus, and stories of asthma sufferers getting rid of their inhalers, children with ADHD not needing their prescriptions anymore, and so many more stories from real people with real problems. It was exciting, it was like having an iv of positive for four days, but more than that it was real. I saw real people, touched them and heard their stories of success in business, recovery from so many illnesses and overall a change in attitude and direction in their lives. The really awesome thing is that most, if not all of the people who spoke, gave credit to God for all of their successes and recovery. Where else can you find that?
When I got home from the airport on Sunday, I was exhausted, but yet invigorated at the same time. You might wonder how you can be exhausted and invigorated all at once, but it’s possible. On Monday, I set out to make some progress, make some calls, organize…I just wanted to keep that momentum. I didn’t want my everyday responsibilities to squelch all that positive energy that I had from the conference. While I was taking apart some chairs to have them reupholstered I had so many thoughts going through my head that I decided to record my thoughts. I thought I would share with you some of the thoughts I had that really grew from not only the conference, but from the last several months of change and growth in my life.
One of the first thoughts that came to my mind was about the parable in the Bible of the talents. A master called three of his servants and gave each of them a portion, 5 talents, 2 talents and 1 talent. In this parable, it seems to refer to money, and it says he gave them according to their own ability, then he left on a journey. According to the story, the man with the 5 talents went and traded with them and gained 5 more, the one with 2 talents went and did the same, but the man with only 1 talent hid his. The story goes that when the master came back from his journey, he went to the men and found that the first two and doubled the money he gave them. These two men were rewarded and called “good and faithful”. When he spoke to the man who had 1 talent, he found that the man hid his talent instead of taking it and doing something with it. The reason the man gave for hiding his talent was this: “Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.” The master was not happy with this servant and his 1 talent was taken and given to the man with 10 talents, and he was cast out. This parable has often bothered me. I couldn’t understand why the master would be so angry with the servant, at least he didn’t lose what he was given. I think the reason I’ve always thought that way is because I was kind of like that servant. I was afraid of God. I think one of the main points in this whole parable is that our perspectives of God is what shapes the direction we take. Maybe the first two men were not afraid of their master, either that or they were way more motivated by fear. Most of my life I have played is safe. I think that my fear of God, the fear that he would be angry with me if I failed, the fear that he would turn away from me if I didn’t use what he had given me in exactly the right way, that is what has stopped me from trying so many times. That fear was always right there in front of me. What if I don’t do it right, what if I make him look bad? So, I didn’t try to do much of anything that I wasn’t sure I could do.
There is a much different outcome for a person when they are not afraid of failing, when they are not afraid they will disappoint someone if they fall. They are able to try things, and accomplish things that they never knew were possible, because they are not afraid. I have finally found that place in my life where I am not afraid of God, I am not afraid of failing. In fact, I am way more afraid of staying where I am than I am of failing. I am way more interested in trying to do something even if it doesn’t go exactly the way I have it planned in my head. I think that is what the master was angry about. He wouldn’t have been angry if the man with the 1 talent had lost some or even all of the money as long as he was out there trying to do something with what he had. It’s not about what was done with what the other two men had so much as it was that they did something with it.
The thing about it is that we all have “talents”. For some of us it is money, for others it may be abilities, gifts and other resources. The best thing for all of us to do is recognize what those things are and use them. Sometimes we might fail, sometimes we might fall down on our faces and have to get back up and try again, but we have to do something. Sometimes it even means you can find what you love to do and make it a career, and a bonus for me is that I get to help people in that career.
Something one of the speakers said last weekend really stuck with me. She said, “You have to be you. Don’t change who you are to do this business, just be you.” This is one of the things I’ve struggled with. I have a certain way that I like to dress, and a certain lifestyle and for the most part those things line up with the image the company wants to portray. The big thing was I kept thinking, do I have to dress up more than I like to? Or do I need to have a fancy house or better cars to fit in. One thing I’ve learned recently is that you have to be yourself, no matter what that looks like. If you try to be something that you’re not, you’re just frustrating yourself. I came up with this analogy. What if my dream in life is to fly, not on an airplane, but like an eagle? So if I work my hardest, study, plan, eat right and pray hard to be able to fly, I should be able to fly someday right? The truth is, my body was not created to fly; some things really are impossible. I guess I could resort to having my body altered if I’m that serious about flying, but ultimately I was not meant to fly like that. So by working hard, planning and studying on something that I will never be able to accomplish and was never meant to accomplish I am only frustrating myself. I would become more and more angry with myself for not reaching that goal. Sometimes I think we spend way too much time trying to be something or someone we were never meant to be and we end up frustrated and angry and not using our time in a way that will really benefit us. I know it might sound a little strange, but one of the most important things I took away from the conference was that it is time for me to start using the gifts that I’ve been given, and I need to be myself. I need to remember my value and learn to use my talents in a way that will not only benefit me, but benefit others. Really that’s what we all need to do.
So, as I’m sharing my story, know that I am sharing it because I care about you. Know that I have walked a journey of trying to be something and someone I was never created to be, but all that is changing. I am on a journey of really being me, of sharing what I’ve learned with other people so they can be free, too. When all the people have gone back home, when all the confetti has been cleaned up, when all the beautiful, talented, successful people have gone back to their homes and we’re back to our normal little lives, it’s really about people. It’s about sharing journeys and helping people through the places that we’ve already gone.
This is just the beginning and I can’t wait!