Monthly Archive for December, 2014

Believe in yourself first, success will follow

Photo by Melody Campbell via Flickr.com

Photo by Melody Campbell via Flickr.com

As we continue the holiday season and move into the New Year, I encourage you to contemplate your capacity to have faith, and how faith manifests in your life.  Not just religious faith, which is important to many of us, but faith in yourself and faith in others.

August Wilhelm Von Schlegel said, “In actual life, every great enterprise begins with and takes its first forward step in faith.”  How many things have you accomplished in your life where, regardless of your research and experience, the first forward step was taken in faith?

Awareness of faith can be very exciting. William Newton Clark wrote, “Faith is the daring of the soul to go farther than it can see.”

Exercising faith can be very powerful. Sherwood Eddy once observed, “Faith is reason grown courageous.”

Faith can transcend mere facts, and can actually be a lever for reason. Blaise Pascal believed that, “Faith is a sounder guide than reason.  Reason can go only so far, but faith has no limits.”

Have faith and take that first step. Have faith and dare to go farther.  Have faith and be courageous.  Have faith and leverage reason.

Have faith in yourself, and when you do, anything is possible.  Because, after all, you’re a small business owner.


Blasingame’s 2015 Crystal Ball predictions

Here are my predictions for 2015. My 14-year record is 73% accuracy.

Prediction: Geopolitics, geo-competition and the supply/demand dynamic for crude oil won’t find equilibrium anytime soon, causing prices to fluctuate, but average less than $70 per barrel.

Prediction: Buoyed by consumers buoyed by low gas prices and six years of recovery fatigue, the U.S. economy will grow, but global economic headwinds and currency influences on exports will result in U.S. annual GDP averaging near an unremarkable 3%.

Prediction: Consumer optimism will produce small business contribution to GDP greater than any year since the Great Recession.

Prediction: An improving economy, plus anticipation of a business-friendly 114th Congress will cause an upward trend in small business optimism toward NFIB Index’s 42-year average of 100 points.

Prediction: Small business loan demand will increase as growth opportunities exceed the ability to fund them with organic capital resources.

Prediction: With organizational productivity maxed out, even marginal economic growth will cause small and large businesses to increase hiring.

Prediction: Continued concern about the fragility of the U.S. and global economies will cause the Fed to maintain monetary easing by keeping the Fed Funds rate unchanged.

Prediction: In June the Supreme Court will deliver a catastrophic structural blow to Obamacare in a 5-4 ruling that the law does not permit subsidies to enrollees in the 36 states with Federal exchanges.

Prediction: The GOP-controlled Congress and President Obama will accomplish one thing together in 2015: tax reform.

Prediction: Congressional Republicans will successfully thwart the execution of Obama’s executive order on immigration.

Prediction: The Sony hack and subsequent corporate cyber-terror threat by North Korea will for the first time in history manifest in cyber-security practices of corporate America being elevated to de facto national security concerns.

Prediction: The unprecedented terror threat on a U.S. corporation by a foreign state in Dec 2014 will cause the U.S. government to constrain private firms from responding to such threats on their own.

Prediction: In political theater redux, a Clinton and a Bush will become presidential candidates in the next cycle, but neither will be their party’s front-runners by year-end.

Prediction: Oregon will defeat Florida State in the Rose Bowl on New Year’s Day.

Prediction: Alabama will win the inaugural NCAA Division I Championship Game Jan. 10.

Write this on a rock … Obamacare will continue to make news in 2015, as will oil, cyber-security and a mixed bag of global economic conditions.


Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from Jim!

RESULTS:Have the midterms impacted your attitude about the 2015 economy?

The Question:

Photo credit to DonkeyHotey on Flickr.comHow have the results of the midterm election impacted your attitude about the economy in 2015?

18% - I’m optimistic about next year but not because of politics
44% - I’m more optimistic about 2015 because the GOP control Congress
0% - I’m less optimistic because the Democrats lost control of Congress
38% - I’m pessimistic about the economy because of all the politicians
Jim’s Comments:
As you can see, over half of our respondents are either indifferent toward, or negative about the impact of the Political Class on their business.  The rest are hopeful about their business because of the upcoming Republican-controlled Congress. Alas, the Dems got no love in this poll.
I’m going to have more to say about these results in a longer piece in the next week or so. Stay tuned. Thanks for participating and be sure to take our new poll this week.

**Photo credit to Donkey Hotey on Flickr.com. Image links to page. (CC).

Inspiring words for the coming year

As you know, I often weave my thoughts in this space around a statement someone else has made, or idea they have proposed.  Occasionally, like today, I find something where I have nothing to add, and just want to pass it along.  Below is such a piece.

Photo via Wikipedia Commons

ANYWAY

People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies. Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you.  Be honest anyway.

What you spend years building, someone may try to destroy overnight. Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous. Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow. Do good anyway.

Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough. Do it anyway.

You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and God.

It was never between you and them, anyway.

Indeed.




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