Life Lessons:
Faith McKinney

*Are you happy at the moment?

I am grateful at the moment. Many times in my quest to fulfill my dreams and goals, I feel unhappy because my life doesn’t look like what I think it should. When I remember to be grateful then I remember that I really am happy.

*If you could go back and say anything to your 16-year-old self now – what would it be?

At 16 I was living in Japan as an exchange student and getting over being dumped by a boy. Now I would tell her to get over the jet lag quickly and learn everything you can about the Japanese language, culture and people. And I would tell her that being smart and confident is the sexiest attribute!

*What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year?

The most important lesson I’ve learned this year is that it is important to learn how to receive with grace and gratitude. I learned that others need opportunities to pour gifts of love into me as much as I want to pour gifts of love into others.

*What do you most want to achieve in the next 12 months?

The next 12 months will be filled with activity. I will launch my exclusive Networking Organization, I will have a segment on a nationally syndicated talk show and I will speak in five different countries.

*What’s your secret to happiness?

My secret to happiness is remembering to be grateful for what I already have; family, health, hope and love.

*What one ritual or practice keeps you grounded?

As the mother of a special needs daughter, I realize that she does not care about what celebrity I’ve interviewed or how successfully I hosted an event. All she cares about is that I am present for her. This is my cure for a big ego trip.

*What’s your biggest regret?

My biggest regret is not following my dreams as a teen. I wanted to be an interior designer years before HGTV. My father wanted me to take business courses in college. I felt lost and unsure of myself. I didn’t know where I fit in in business school so I dropped out and started my family at 20 years old. Now, in my late 40’s, I am making up for lost time.

*What’s the most important lesson you’ve taught your kid(s)?

As the mother of a special needs child I had to teach my younger son how to love his big sister. I literally had to show him how to touch her, feed her, change her and show others how to treat her too. They love each other very much, it’s beautiful to watch them together.

*What bad habit would you most like to change about yourself?

The habit that I am changing is becoming more structured in my life. I’ve always thought that I didn’t want rigid rules and discipline but I understand the role of structure and discipline in success.

*Aside from motherhood/fatherhood and marriage what are you most proud of in your life?

I am most proud of being a Kidney Donor.

I wanted to make a monumental difference in the world but not by being a victim. I wanted to do something that took commitment and sacrifice. I wanted to leave a legacy for my children and grandchildren to be proud of.

*When were you happiest?

I am the happiest when I am fully present while traveling the world and meeting exceptional people.

*What ten words best describe you?

Compassionate, Intelligent, Creative, Energetic, Stylish, Dedicated, Leader, Inquisitive, Seeker and Strong.

Faith McKinney is an Expert Positioning Consultant, speaker, and author. She is known as “The Great Connector.” She is passionate about improving the way people get their ideas, art and inventions expressed and valued in the world through expert positioning and heightened visibility. In her book: Schmingling- The Art of Being Well-Connected Through Blatant Self-Promotion is the guidebook on how to be seen as an expert in your industry especially if you don’t have any credentials. It reveals the secrets on how to create the life you want, gain killer confidence, get compelling confidence, take control of your brand congruence and foster critical connections. Faith has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Ebony magazine, The Washington Post, books, blogs and more. Faith interviews celebrities and world leaders and she leads conferences teleseminars and retreats for entrepreneurs and speaks all over the world. You can find more info on her website, and follow her on Twitter, @faithmckinney and on Facebook at Schmingling.