Sunday, June 21, 2009

I will survive! by nicole longoria

It’s been a while since I last posted something and that I apologize for. Many things have happened and are happening since the last post and just know that it’s all good! Getting ready for our official launch of the site this coming Fall is a lot of hard work, sleepless nights, and at times frustrating. But, persistence and perseverance is what I am all about and will continue to do it with faith.

One thing I must say is to remind all the self starting entrepreneurs out there to always surround yourself with people who will impact your life with positivity and an open mind. You will find they are the ones who will help you get over your self-doubts, insecurities, and most importantly your fears. A true testament of people’s characters will come to light when you show vulnerability and when that happens you’ll see who really believes in you. This in some strange way becomes empowering because it helps you to defy the odds and just helps you to become stronger and better. It’s just life!

Anyways, back to the great things happening….Kashi and I are meeting some amazing people out there enriching their communities local and abroad. Listening and learning about these causes are eye opening, concerning, and make you want to get involved. It amazes me how many people don’t get involved because of the lack of inspiration or motivation. And, for this very reason is why we are doing what we are doing to try and uplift all generations especially the nextgen to give and I am talking about sharing a few hours of your life to stimulate and encourage others who need it or even to donate a few bucks to help get a program launched to fill the needs that are missing. The message here is GET INVOLVED!

The biggest gift anyone can give themselves is self satisfaction and worth. This is what feeds your soul and keeps people living and looking forward to the next day. No one can ever take away the gratitude it gives you and euphoric state it puts you on. This is what separates you from being an ordinary to an extraordinary person. Why settle for anything less?

This is the very reason why I will continue to be me with room for growth and take the challenges being thrown at me everyday like a grain of salt. I am here to stay! So, I want to know what keeps you going when faced with unexpected obstacles? Don’t be shy because there are a lot of us going through the same daily grind. Just remember to keep smiling and do you!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

I'm baaacck!

A year ago is when the inception of this idea, to offer an online fundraising platform to non-profit organizations at no charge, came about. But, I have to tell you that this past year was absolutely needed for us to work out its bells and whistles to really nail down exactly what we want to accomplish on this journey with And, to tell you the truth, this past year was reflection time for me after working for a start-up company the past 3 years from doubling its revenue every year to building pageviews of over a few million plus each month was exciting but, so much work involved. The long hours, the constant brainstorming for cutting edge and innovative ideas were exhausting but, fun! I was drained and needed to save myself from burn out before I decided to do it all over again but, this time for myself!

I didn't realize how much I grew as an individual personally and professionally in those 3 years alone until I saw my former boss at a networking function. After being let go due to the downsizing of the company and potentially being acquired by another did not cause any unsettling feelings at all, as most would think. But, gratitude and a pleasant appreciation is what I felt instead. There is an old saying that people are put in your life for a reason and I realized my former boss was put into mine to give me a crash course in being an entrepreneur from starting a company, building it up, making it succeed, and understanding how to keep it there by learning from the decisions made good and bad. It was a blessing I was able to experience this and use it to my advantage while I help build this company and make it successful. It's a long road in front of me and I am ready to deal with everything that will be dealt my way. I understand first hand that I can't expect to move mountains without there being blood, sweat, and tears however, I do expect to slowly chisel my way through it and make a mark for the generations to come.

Everyone I have ever worked with knows I hate to fail!!!! Something I am going to have to get over in order to keep growing as a person and I am sharing my greatest weakness with you all. I have no choice but to take a deep breath and make a big leap of faith. Nevertheless, most importantly, I have a great business partner who I know has my back so, expect great things to come in the year ahead. We are rejuvenated, refreshed, re-energized and ready to help great organizations make it possible to achieve their visions while we inspire and motivate the next generation to give and make a difference. The journey has started and every day we make the most of it - have too!

Anyone out there pounding the pavement every single day and putting yourself on the front lines, I want to hear from you!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Hmmm…what do I look like? by nicole

Creating an image is like art. I find it in the same regards with painters who strive to reach their peak because that is what sets them apart from other painters and becomes their signature work. Well, the same goes here with creating a logo for a company. This too creates a signature for our business and identifies us visually. Now, I didn't say we were Michelangelo or Picasso but, you get the idea.

In the past month I have been working with Kashi and the graphic designer in coming up with concepts of who we are and how our name will resonate to the public. And, it has not been the easiest thing but, I love challenges and this one was great. There is so much detail involved that really made me think how do we position ourselves and what do we want to say to people in just our name and maybe a small graphic. This was bananas but, the most fun and challenging thing I have been a part of in a long time.

We didn't want anything too corporate or cheesy but something hip and cool and I think we finally narrowed it down. The anxiety of the finished product is being finalized as I write and the waiting process is no fun because, I want to see what we look like!! Our baby is coming and all I want to do is see it grow up in the years ahead.

The excitement of this journey is only the beginning of all the many trials and errors we will be making in the coming months. I am ready to face anything that comes my way all in the name of charity. Can't wait to finally put it into cyberspace and I would love any feedback regarding the logo once we get it. Please be kind and will appreciate any constructive criticism you may have.

Anyway, it is time to get back to the boring side of business like pushing paper, yuk. Then again I can't complain because I am loving every minute of it! Check back soon to see what we have been up to in the coming days.

Ciao ragazzi!

Friday, September 26, 2008

The birth of by Nicole

Have you ever wondered why you end up in certain places and meet certain people who cross your path?  I do constantly and even though I will never receive an answer for it I will continue to go with whatever life has in store for me.   I don't consider myself the most spiritual person but, time after time I am starting to understand certain sayings my grandmother use to say like, "there is a purpose in life for everyone and everything that comes your way is the answer to that….it is just up to you whether or not to take advantage of the opportunities presented."  I use to constantly ask her what is she talking about.  Well, one Saturday morning in mid-April I finally got it! 

Received an email from none other than Ms. Kashi.  Title in Caps - GOT A GREAT IDEA – and had to see what she was getting at with this one.  A few months earlier, we realized our potentials personally and professionally were being kept at bay by working for companies not suited for what our passions were in life.  There was an unspoken understanding between us that we were meant to be doing something on a much bigger scale. 

Being a news and political junkie, I read many articles and watched countless documentaries of the sufferings and injustices around the world.  Knowing I always wanted to help people who were overlooked because of their economic and social status, the time felt right more than ever to start contributing and help these causes.   And, that meant everyone from the girl scout troop raising funds to enhance themselves as better citizens or to a global cause by raising awareness and educating the importance of AIDS in poor countries.  The time to act was now and more importantly getting people of the newer generations, Gen X and the Millennials, to get involved and become the next generation of philanthropists.  Times are changing and I want to do my part in saying I too made a difference. 

So, with Kashi's idea of getting swag for a write-off and with me wanting to raise funds globally to help people achieve a better life – we combined our ideas and the birth of was formed. 

This became my way to becoming a better global citizen.