Blog · Life Learner · Self-Management

What I Learned at the Allergist’s Office

Today, I was at the allergist’s office with my daughter – we go two times a week for her allergy shots.  By now, we have gotten pretty accustom to the routine, the office, the staff and typical occurrences that happen on any given afternoon.

Well, this afternoon [as we were waiting out our 30-minute reaction period after she received her shot], a new allergy patient came in.  It was evident the family (or at least the younger siblings) were new because of their fascination with the office.  One of the young siblings caught my attention as he looked around the room.

I can only imagine the waiting room looked much more expansive and exciting to a five year old that it does to me, because he was pretty much excited about everything he saw and was very vocal about it.  HA!  (It was very cute.)

As this boy looked around, he became very excited and said, “Mommy, look!!!  They have a library!! Can I go in that library?”  Well, I wasn’t expecting to hear that… and, I wasn’t sure where he was seeing a library.  But it actually sounded like a fun idea!  Then his mother replied, “That’s not a library.  That is where they keep the records of the patients who come to see the doctor.”  Hey!  I had never looked at it that way…  but, the records room could totally look like a library.  

Although noticeable disappointed, the boy began seeking out other new discoveries he could make in his new surroundings and I left a little more cheerful thanks to the perception that child had.  He had no reason to believe there was not a library full of picture books and fairy tales at the allergist office —- but, what he wished and hoped for grew potential out of what reality really was.  He was innocently hopeful and a bit creative.

What did I learn from a five year old boy in the allergist office??  

  • To resist the reactions I may often have to my common surroundings, tasks, problems and successes.
  • To resist becoming stagnant or allergic to my normal.
  • To resist becoming blind or hesitant towards what’s possible.

Who knows?  I may quite possibly could find a library of potential waiting for me!!



  • What projects could you have gotten done today, if you had a similar outlook to your business as the boy had in the waiting room?
  • What outcome(s) could have been changed with an encounter with a client, if you thought bigger than normal?
  • What dreams do you have that you ignore, that you can’t see them anymore?


TWEET:  What he wished and hoped for grew potential out of what reality really was. #LibraryLessons #LifeLearner @DarlaDHancock

TWEET:  Don’t become stagnant or allergic to your normal —- blind or hesitant towards what’s possible. #libaryofpossible @DarlaDHancock


Blog · Frugalship · Life Learner · Self-Management · The Imbedded Mogul

The Confront Zone

“If we’re growing, we are always going to be out of our comfort zone.”
John Maxwell 

Recently, I was challenged to subscribe to magazines of which I typically wouldn’t subscribe … that reading about topics, cultures and interests different what is naturally familiar to me would stretch my mind and make me more valuable to my clients, personal growth, family and friends.  And, what makes great advice better??  Frugal options!!!  So, I went to one of my favorite places:


  • is not only a GREAT resource for gifts … but, a frugal pick for expanding your comfort zone and redefining your daily growth.  (So, I logged into my account and began searching for magazines that would interest me, but that were different than I would typically select from the grocery store newsstand.)
  • To see some of my SUMMER READING picks, visit my board on Pinterest.

“A ship in a harbor is safe — but, that is not what a ship is built for.”

So, this summer … not only am I blocking off calendar time to read my way into unfamiliar territory, but I also intend to do the same thing with books.


  • My local library has a great selection of books on CD (although, I had to find a CD player).
  • My public library also has a virtual library where I can check out magazines and audio books!!

“We cannot become what we want to be by remaining what we are.”
Max DePree 

Search … go for it!  Abandon the familiar and confront the unknown — you’ll never know what’s been waiting for you on the other side of your comfort zone!!


SHARE WITH ME!!!  What do you do to confront the unknown in your world?

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Blog · Communication · Entrepreneur · Life Learner · Self-Management · The Imbedded Mogul · Writing

Be a Mover

“Entrepreneurs cannot anticipate failure – anticipation cultivates a frozen state.”  Darla D Hancock, The Social Market LLC

If you learn from doing, that means you learn… from something done right or [done] wrong…

I spent [sometimes hours a day] practicing the saxophone most of my growing up years.  Obviously, my ultimate goal was to succeed.  To learn the right techniques.  To seek the right attitude.  To establish the right discipline to be better myself and my skills.  If I were to anticipated failure every time I practiced, even the strongest of determination would outweigh the hope that survives in possibility.

Once and a while, I would turn my saxophone sideways, like a flute.  As you can imagine, holding a saxophone like a flute makes it difficult to play.  I knew that holding a saxophone up could only last so long – physically and audibility.   But, I always enjoyed returning to the proper posture.  I was quickly reminded where my comfortableness was and what I needed to re-examine.  Sometimes, that [lighthearted] break brought back a refreshing comfortably and confidence.

Whether you practice to get better or practice purposelessly wrong, practice never makes perfect — practice always makes permanent.  As well, a negative attitude and avoidance don’t just keep mistakes or disappointments at a distance, they can become the permanent stationary state.

Powerful people cannot be stationary.

Determination needs to drive entrepreneurs to move in a positive direction.  Once in a while, practice looking at things from a different direction.  Be a mover of imagination. Be a mover of goals.  Be a mover and learn.  Be a mover who practices positive motion.

Fellow mogul, be a mover.


This post is the first of my ACROSTIC-MOGUL series?  To read more —> CLICK HERE


“Powerful people cannot be stationary.” Darla #beamover #areuserious @SocialMarketLLC

“Entrepreneurs cannot anticipate failure.” Darla #beamover #areuserious @SocialMarketLLC

“Determination is a choice that produces outcome.” Darla D Hancock #ImbeddedMogul @SocialMarketLLC

©2016 Darla D Hancock, The Social Market, LLC

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Blog · Entrepreneur · The Imbedded Mogul

Are you serious?


/ˈməʊɡʌl; məʊˈɡʌl/


  1.  an important or powerful person
  2. a type of steam locomotive with a wheel arrangement of two leading wheels, six driving wheels, and no trailing wheels

Last Spring, I participated in the Start Smart program at BizWorks Center.  Then, I worked through the program as a brand new entrepreneur and I blogged as the “Imbedded Mogul”.  Yesterday I was asked to be a presenter at the graduation ceremony of the 2nd Start Smart class, to which I responded, “Me?  Are you serious?”   And, now – here I am.

Since I gave my pitch deck speech in June, I have already meet the goals I set for myself and now have clients based in four different states [which has be a great progression in my startup].  However, I continue to learn about customer service, creating better content, improving my business practices, time management and expanding my client base… still very much a start up.

So, what do I say to other moguls in a similar stage that I am in and encourage them to keep going, start learning and stay smart about their businesses?  Well… with a background in teaching, I couldn’t help but use something somewhat elementary, an acrostic.  It was pretty funny when I expressed that I would be speaking “using an acrostic for the word ‘entrepreneurship’.”  There were definitely a few that squirmed in theirs seats thinking it was going to be a LONG night.  HA!

After presenting my acrostic for the word “MOGUL”, I thought I would share what I wrote with you.  I don’t think I particularly wrote anything that has never been thought or written before, but maybe a thought will inspire you where you are.  Or, share it with an entrepreneur that could use some encouragement.

As always, thanks for following The Social Market!!


As I add a post to each letter of my acrostic, click the letters below to find what I wrote:

M  –  O  –  G  –  U  –  L


What’s the best acrostic for the word #entrepreneurship? #areuserious @SocialMarketLLC

5 tips for a successful startup. #entrepreneurship #areuserious @SocialMarketLLC

©2016 Darla D Hancock, The Social Market, LLC

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Blog · Life Learner · Self-Management

The Giving Habit

Humility is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less. —C.S. Lewis

Do you know that good habits can be one of our biggest assets, personally and professionally?

Recently I have set some specific goals for myself and what I have come to discover, is that other good habits that I never expected to develop have accompanied my new practices… most of those occur when I am thinking more about others and less of myself.

As you celebrate Thanksgiving, here are a couple of suggestions for gaining gratitude through a hopeful attitude:


When repeating a positive task or accomplishment, look for additional habits that you develop along the way and be thankful.


Having a positive outlook on potential achievements [and aiming to exceed them] will not only give you an additional burst of confidence, but a positive attitude will allow you to be thankful for those things you have already achieved and more aware of the needs of those around you.


When accomplishing tasks or reaching goals, take a brief look at the little skills or steps that it took to complete the larger task.  Be thankful for a fresh perspective.


Don’t loose sight of tomorrow by ignoring yesterday.  Be thankful for the mistakes you have made – and learned from.  Be thankful for the clients that you have worked with – and learned from them.  Be thankful for change – and what you’ve learned from it.

Be thankful for hope and take gratitude into tomorrow with you… adopt this and you’ll discover a giving habit.


Darla, The Social Market LLC


HERE are a couple great suggestions for building new habits and for a list of habits of happy people, CLICK HERE.  For more verses about thankfulness, CLICK HERE for blog post from @JarridWilson


4 suggestions for developing a giving habit. #thankful #thegivinghabit @SocialMarketLLC

“Humility is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less.” C.S. Lewis #SocialMarketLLC @DarlaDHancock

5 tips scientific tips for creating habits that stick. #thanksgiving #thegivinghabit @SocialMarketLLC

Is gratefulness a process? Habits for happy people & a hopeful holiday. @anthemofhope @SocialMarketLLC

©2016 Darla D Hancock, The Social Market, LLC

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And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.  Colossians 3:15-7

Blog · Frugalship · Life Learner · The Imbedded Mogul

Frugalship. It’s BOGO time!


I LOVE the word “FREE” – even the acronym “BOGO” is a sweet sound to my frugalship ears… and my kid’s ears!

You should have seen the excitement on my kid’s faces when I told them we were going to Starbucks after school this afternoon.  BOGO TIME!  Everyone looked up their “secret recipe” and we stood in line.  (Lots of other people like BOGO too!)

Standing in line gave me a couple minutes to stare up at the celebratory holiday poster.  Although I wished it look more like Thanksgiving than Christmas, I started to question the text message I read earlier this morning.

So, before ordering I asked, “Can you get any drinks buy-one-get-one-free?”  The barista replied, “No, just holiday drinks.”  WHAT?  I thought they were celebrating the coming holidays… not the “holiday drinks”!!  Oh, no!  Well, BOGO is BOGO.  I asked the kids to re-pick a drink, this time only from the “red menu” and I enjoyed my Peppermint Mocha very much.

Why is this my #FrugalshipFriday post?

  1. Thank you Starbucks for special days more special!
  2. I’ve come to realize that I am REALLY good at reading the part of a sale description – the part I want to read.   a. It is a good thing I was with my kids, not meeting a client!  b. Well, going back and looking at their website and other ads, yes, it clearly states, “BOGO Holiday Drinks” and most articles even list the drinks that qualify for the special.  It would be easier if I read the whole ad, text or post!
  3. This is a great reminder that visual communication is VITAL to everyday communication, promos… especially holiday promos.  Everyone has their own perception and idea of what you mean – sometimes before they stop to see or hear what you are communicating.  So, stick with your brand, make your message simple and make it something your customers want to go out of their way to get.

That’s my #FrugalshipFriday – even though I’m writing this Thursday night.

Happy Frugalship!!



What did I learn from my afternoon stop at Starbucks? #BOGO #FrugalshipFriday @Frugalship  @SocialMarketLLC 

Tis the season… well, Thanksgiving. #Starbucks #FrugalshipFriday @Frugalship @SocialMarketLLC



All drinks were enjoyed in the purchases made today.  I do not represent Starbucks or am I endorsed by them to write this post.  FYI:  Starbucks makes the Caramel Apple Spice all year-round, so it doesn’t count as a “Holiday drink” (at least at the Starbucks I went to).  I wanted to get my Fall on!!  Well, maybe I’ll try THIS recipe from My Frugal Adventures.  Thanks, for sharing Charlene!

CC photo via Flickr.


Blog · Entrepreneur · Frugalship · Self-Management · Time Management

Frugalship. It’s not just for Fridays!


…this is not a decision we only make on Fridays.  We choose every day whether or not to be frugal.  Consciously or subconsciously.  Personally and professionally.  And, in almost every area of life.

Daily, we make the decision not to be frugal with our time or how to use our time wisely.  On a daily basis, we make numerous decisions whether or not to be frugal with our money.

Have you been following my October #FrugalshipFriday posts?  If not, you can START HERE.  If so, here are my conclusions to my decisions as a consumer and how my experiences at CVS have effected me as an entrepreneur:


  • I tried products I may not have tried, if it weren’t for the sales – and some are still favorites.
  • On the bright-side, it has made my organizing and planning much easier… a lot less paper to hold on to and expiration dates to keep up with.
  •  It was great while it lasted.


  • The trust I put in the store, to save my family money, was affected by inconsistent changes to policies and within like stores (even before they changed the expired policy all together).
  • Selfishly, it isn’t as easily-available for me [the consumer] to save money like I had been when I had more combinations and choices for saving during sales.
  • It was great while it lasted.


  • By making certain products more affordable (by matching sales and coupons), CVS helped encourage consumers to by products, which benefited the vendors which which they work.
  • The time I spent couponing at CVS allowed me to be familiar with their store, their apps, employees and ExtraCare reward system.  So, I am still comfortable and accustomed to using their app and ExtraBucks.
  • I  think CVS made smart decisions by embedding the lure for couponers into their marketing.  2 for 1 — great business strategy.


  • As I understand, when CVS was taking expired coupons, manufacturers were not accepting them?  (That’s how a manager explained it to me.)  CVS was having to cover the expense for the customer’s savings.
  • With extended use of expired coupons, the use of in-store sales and in-store printed coupons, CVS got the attention of customers working to save money.  The con?  Now that they have changed their policies, I’m thinking it would be smart to attract consistent customers or work to find a new audience!  Either way, I’m interested to see if changing the policy was the best business decision…



As business owner or contractor, is the compromise of time worth in exchange for anticipating frugalship?

For your business, is financial #frugalship worth the sacrifice of time? @Frugalship @SocialMarketLLC


What steps are you taking to insure the decision of #frugalship reflects your values?

Do you value your time and don’t have time to invest in your social media content? #SocialMarket

(Posts about my experiences at CVS are only meant to be a personal “case study” of  frugalship of a beginner business strategist.  My observations and opinions are expressed personally, not to support or negatively reflect on a product and/or business.  For the record, I do still shop at CVS, just not as often or with as many coupons.  Also, yes… my spell check told me that “couponing” and “couponers” are not words… it was my prerogative to use them anyway.)

Blog · Entrepreneur · Life Learner · Social Media · Writing

“Stupid” Entrepreneurs!

Today, I came across an interesting [and enticing] article via Flipboard titled, ‘Shark Tank’ star Barbara Corcoran says all her best entrepreneurs are ‘stupid’.


Whether she meant “the ‘s’ word” or used it as an analogy, it was an interesting read… although, personally, I don’t think “the ‘s’ word” is the right choice.  I thought I would share my two favorite lessons learned from this article:

  1. Entrepreneurs need to be flexible enough to bend – at the right time… but, a smart, strong, intuitive and risk-taker the rest of the time.
  2. A good title will get readers reaction & attention.

I probably would have skipped over the Flipboard article if it had been titled, ‘Shark Tank’ star Barbara Corcoran says all her best entrepreneurs like apples or ‘Shark Tank’ star Barbara Corcoran says all her best entrepreneurs are good at math.

When someone is scrolling through your website, their inbox or social media streams, did you know you have seconds to catch their attention?  HubSpot still says that 33% of email recipients will open an email based on the solely on the subject line.

Here are a few suggestions from HubSpot to get you started on writing subject lines, blog post titles or tweets to get you started:

  1. Make people feel special
  2. Create a sense of urgency
  3. Don’t forget, you can be ‘punny’
  4. Don’t overdue on CAPS or !!!!!

Thanks for the tips, HubSpot!  If you are working on building a skillset for eNewsletter subject lines or are interested about capturing a larger audience, HERE is a great resource too.

Well… go out and get them stupid!!

(Sorry.. had to.)

Darla @SocialMarketLLC


Don’t like to write or have time to invest in creating content?



SHARE IT!  Are you a stupid entrepreneur? #GetYourWordsRight #SharkTank @SocialMarketLLC