We Stand for Equality

We Stand for Equality

I believe strong and healthy communities can weather even the most tumultuous storms. But when a community is divided by hate and racial inequality, it becomes weak and susceptible to irreparable damage.

For USANA, hatred and racism have no place in our community—one that is dedicated to improving lives around the world.

Earlier this month, I wrote an article expressing my deep sadness and heartache for individuals who regularly face racial injustice, violence, and discrimination.

I also looked inward and acknowledged that I cannot fully understand what facing daily prejudice feels like. I’ve taken the opportunity to listen and learn, and most importantly, reflect on what I can do to help.

Video published on June 3, 2020. If you’re unable to view it, please click here.

A Time to Learn

As you know, I’m always striving to learn. Reading books, listening to diverse points of view, and actively seeking guidance all help in my quest to expand my knowledge about the world around me.

The USANA corporate blog recently published an extensive resource of books, podcasts, documentaries, and more to help us learn.

I ask that you please read: “What to Read, Listen to, and Watch to Educate Yourself and Take a Stand for Equality.” And then take action to ensure your own community is inclusive and diverse.

Lead with kindness, tolerance, and love. There is no misunderstanding how you act and how you live.

As the article says, a community is only as healthy as its citizens. It’s more important than ever that we “pause, listen, and refocus on what we can do to be an active part” of eliminating injustice and racial inequality within our communities.

USANA’s Commitment to Racial Equality

USANA commits to the following actions, as initially outlined here:

  • Volunteering. We have set a goal to provide 1,000 employee volunteer hours this year to support organizations that strive for equality. We’ll work with USANA employees to identify non-profit and business partners who will help us have the greatest impact. Stay tuned for details.
  • Training. Internally, USANA is committed to providing additional training and encouraging open discussions about overt racism as well as implicit bias, so that we can ensure a workplace where all employees can succeed and be respected. We also plan to implement a diversity and inclusion committee to help identify areas of concern and strength, and to ensure employees have a strong voice in implementing these initiatives.
  • Informing. We will provide educational resources to employees and Associates about what actions they can take to combat racism and discrimination at the individual, family, and societal levels.
  • Representing. We will evolve our brand to better represent and tell the stories of our diverse community.

Martin Luther King

Subscribers to my monthly email list received a version of this message on June 25, 2020, as well as additional content you might find valuable. If you’d like to subscribe, please do so here.

CEOWORLD Magazine: 7 Keys to Build Harmony in Teams

CEOWORLD magazine: 7 Keys to Build Harmony in Teams in COVID Era, by Kevin Guest

CEOWORLD magazine: 7 Keys to Build Harmony in Teams in COVID Era, by Kevin Guest

Kevin Guest, USANA CEO and author of All the Right Reasons, published an article in CEOWORLD magazine on June 23, 2020.

CEOWORLD magazine Logo7 Keys to Build Harmony in Teams in COVID Era outlines seven traits that create an environment of harmony.

The 7 Traits to Build Harmony

  1. Honesty: Living an honest life endears teams to you because they know you have integrity.
  2. Vision: A leader with vision inspires teams and lifts companies to heights unimaginable.
  3. Relationships: When we value people, that very style causes them to reciprocate with loyalty and diligence to give their best.
  4. Communication: Face-to-face collaboration remains one of the most influential methods of communicating with our coworkers.
  5. Decisiveness: Carefully review issues, but avoid the paralysis of analysis.
  6. Courage: Taking a leap of faith with every step into the unknown demonstrates the height of leadership in today’s fast-paced world.
  7. Service: Find meaningful ways to give back and to make the world a better place.

Read the full article on CEOWORLD.

“When those seven characteristics combine, harmony envelops a company,” Guest writes. “It forges teams through difficulties. It drives organizations to higher levels, and teams generate results they never dreamed achievable. Harmony binds them together for success after success.

Guest says the best leaders he’s seen mentor teams with these seven overarching traits. In 2018, Guest wrote All the Right Reasons, a book that includes 12 principles to living a life in harmony.

Proceeds from the book benefit the USANA Foundation and its mission to feed hungry children. Each book purchase helps to provide 40 meals. Help us as we strive toward our goal of 2 million meals.

What I’m Reading: The Reality Slap

When life hurts, how do we respond in a healthy way? The Reality Slap, a book by Russ Harris, provides us with techniques and strategies to deal with issues that many of us are likely facing today. For me, the book’s helped me learn how to communicate more effectively with my loved ones.

I talk a little more about the book in the below video.

I’m on my third time reading The Reality Slap: How to Find Fulfilment When Life Hurts within the last several weeks. It’s impacted me, especially considering the challenging times in which we’re all living. As we continue to fight through a global pandemic, reality has slapped many people across the face.

Harris offers tips to help us react and respond in a healthy way.

The Reality Slap: Stop, Refocus, Breathe

Kevin Guest - Stop, Refocus, Breathe - The Reality SlapOne of the techniques that stuck with me is: SRB. S is for Stop, R is for Refocus, and B stands for Breathe.

If you’re slapped in the face with something that stops you in your tracks, it’s important to take a minute to ground yourself. If I’m feeling anxious, I look around and start naming things I see. Oh, there’s a red car. There’s a tall tree. I see a rose bush. I’ll stop, and I’ll name it out loud. Within a few seconds, I become present and grounded.

It also works with sounds you hear. “I hear a clock,” “I hear the wind.”

Moving on to refocus, it’s important to be curious about the feelings and emotions that you’re experiencing. Don’t try to put them away or brush them aside. Really accept what you’re feeling.

And then as you’re doing that, you consciously breathe. The breathing technique I learned elsewhere, and it really works for me, is the 4-7-8 method.

  • Breathe in for four counts
  • Hold your breath for seven counts
  • Breath out slowly for eight counts

What I'm Reading - The Reality Slap

Repeat that exercise four times.

A Calming Effect

I think you’ll find that if you Stop, Refocus, and Breathe, you’ll be calmer and react in a healthier way when life slaps you in the face. Your brain will function more clearly and you’ll be able to make better decisions, regardless of what’s happening around you.

For more on What I’m Reading, please visit my other blog posts.

A Giving Community: USANA Answers the Call

Giving back. It’s something I talk about a lot, especially as it relates to one of USANA’s core values—community.

This notion of giving back to our community, however close or far away, guides me. I also believe it’s so important to express gratitude and to offer thanks to the individuals who help those in need.

It seems we’re more aware of the helpers in today’s world. Unfortunately, that also means more people are experiencing pain and suffering. As we persevere during this challenging time, I hope you and your loved ones are safe and healthy.

Over the last several weeks, I’ve heard so many heartwarming stories about communities coming together to provide physical, emotional, and financial assistance. Perhaps you saw this list in the news recently. It highlights how the USANA Family all over the world has answered the call to provide much-needed relief.

Giving Around the World

From the United States to the Philippines to Australia to Korea and many countries in between, we’ve witnessed inspiring acts of selflessness.

Here are a few examples:

United States

The USANA Foundation and its Kids Eat program remain open to continue the mission to feed children in Utah who would typically go hungry. Each week, USANA Kids Eat provides 850 bags to participating schools. In addition, The USANA Foundation is working with its trusted partners at Convoy of Hope to provide 50,000 meals to families across the country.

Philippines

In the Philippines, the local USANA office plans to donate personal protective equipment (PPEs) and Mini CellSentials to healthcare facilities and workers across the country. It’s also supporting essential workers with financial donations.

Australia

USANA Australia is doing its part to donate money to national food banks and charities. It’s also donating $25,000 AUD to Foodbank Australia, the country’s largest food relief organization. The donation will provide 50,000 meals for those in need.

New Zealand

New Zealand’s KidsCan organization will receive a donation of $15,000 NZD from the New Zealand market and The USANA Foundation. The donation helps to support KidsCan’s goal of donating 3,000 emergency food packs to the most vulnerable children and their families.

China

Earlier this year, BabyCare-USANA’s Chinese subsidiary—together with its local sales Associates—donated $394,489.29 USD (2,795,430 CNY) to the China Foundation of Poverty Alleviation (CFPA) and China National Health Commission. The money went toward emergency materials such as ambulances, respirators, disinfectant, and medical masks.

Korea

In March, USANA’s Korea office announced a generous donation from The USANA Foundation of $116,000 (130,000,000 KRW) worth of USANA HealthPaks™ to the Daegu Division of Social Disaster. The HealthPaks were given to medical staff and those in quarantine to help provide them with extra nutrition.

While the list of those helping others is extensive, I’m confident it barely scratches the surface of how much you and those around you have and will continue to give of your time and money. For that, I express my sincere gratitude.

The USANA Foundation

The USANA FoundationAs you can see, many of our efforts over the past few months have been made possible by The USANA Foundation and its collaboration with trusted partners around the world. As you know, 100% of all donations directly benefit those in need. Your donations have made a real difference.

“The USANA Foundation was more than prepared to take action and help all our markets in putting together donation plans to help their communities during this time,” says Brian Paul, USANA Foundation president. “From big donations to small, every little bit helps, and I am so proud to see the work everyone associated with USANA is doing.”

So am I. Thank you for your continued support.

P.S. Speaking of giving, last month USANA produced and employees distributed thousands of bottles of hand sanitizer (video) to front-line workers and first responders. Read more.

A version of this article went to email subscribers on May 26, 2020. I invite you to subscribe here.

Self-Care: Key to Living a Balanced Life

I believe self-care is critical to our overall well-being, especially when our daily routines are turned upside down. HealthCorps posted a Venn diagram on its Instagram that illustrates the importance of this concept.

The diagram shows how mental, physical, and emotional care intersect to contribute to self-care. Self-care is, according to Oxford, “the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one’s own health.”

HealthCorps shared this image on its Instagram on April 14, 2020. It demonstrates how self-care is at the center of our overall wellbeing.

HealthCorps shared this image on its Instagram on April 14, 2020. It demonstrates how self-care is at the center of our overall wellbeing.

It’s a concept that I try to keep top-of-mind. However, it’s also something that can be easily forgotten or brushed aside. Nearly half (44%) of respondents in a 2019 Harris Poll (PDF) believe self-care is only possible for people with “enough” time. I take that to mean that outside influences are demanding so much of their time that they don’t have any left for themselves.

Yes, we’re all busy and many of us are stretched in countless directions. But, for the sake of our own well-being, we should all strive to make time for self-care.

To get in the right frame of mind, I often ask myself these questions:

  • What activities am I performing daily that enrich my health?
  • Am I taking time for me to refuel and recharge after encountering stressors?
  • How do my interactions with others contribute to not only their well-being but also to mine?

Self-Care is Not Selfish

As you might remember, earlier this year I wrote about kindness. In that article, I focused on how we can be a little kinder, a little happier, and a little better in our relationships with others. Obviously, that’s still very important.

But we also should remember to be kind to ourselves.

I’ve heard stories recently about how parents with school-age children are feeling especially overwhelmed right now. With schools closed in many areas, the home now doubles as the classroom. Students are feeling increased pressures to adapt to a new learning environment. And parents, who are also under a tremendous amount of stress, are beating themselves up for not being able to excel as parents and teachers. Nevermind that the adults in this scenario are trying to do this while also navigating a challenging time in history. (It’s also a good reminder that we should be extra-kind to the teachers in our — and our children’s — lives).

If you’re feeling this way, I encourage you to give yourself a break. It might help to explore various self-care exercises.

Though this What’s Up, USANA? article explored self-care from a new-mom point of view, it still provides tips for all of us.

A Forbes article highlighted ways we can practice self-care as well (read the 10 ways). It also explains why taking care of ourselves — physically, mentally, and emotionally — is so important. Among the reasons:

  • It allows you to know your own worth, reminding you and others of your importance
  • Taking time for yourself naturally aligns your work-life balance
  • Developing self-care habits helps you to reduce stress

I believe it’s necessary for us to continue moving forward in uncertain times. It’s important to keep looking ahead. Yet, it’s equally as important to reflect on where we’ve (metaphorically) traveled in our life, what we’ve accomplished, and how we’ve made a difference in the lives of others.

For me, this type of reflection is a key part of my self-care.

What I’m Reading: Don’t Feed the Monkey Mind

As you know, one question I’m often asked is: What books are you reading? If you’re following me on Facebook or subscribe to my e-newsletter, you know that I recently read Don’t Feed the Monkey Mind: How to Stop the Cycle of Anxiety, Fear, and Worry.

Don't Feed the Monkey MindAuthor Jennifer Shannon published the book two years ago, but its message continues to resonate. A lot is happening in our world right now. And before I continue, let me just say: I hope this message finds you healthy, and it finds you safe.

Don’t Feed the Monkey Mind, among other things, explains the importance of employing effective strategies to better deal with uncertainties. That’s to say, understanding what’s within your control and filling your mind with “I choose to…” statements.

For me, I choose to remain positive. I choose to do things that make me happy. I choose to live life forward.

I’m encouraged by all the positive messages I’ve received, and that I continue to receive, from many of you. I believe it’s so important to stay positive in uncertain times.

Please Share Your Positivity

I’d love to hear from you. As you encounter positive messages in your daily routines, whether you find them in books or in conversations or in real-life examples, please share them with me. I want to continue filling my mind with messages of goodness and hope and positivity.

Here’s a video I shared on March 18 with my social media followers. It touches on my mindset following a 5.7 magnitude earthquake in Salt Lake City. In it, I also share a few thoughts on USANA as we navigate these unique times:

Finally, below are the two quotes — mentioned in the video — that I believe are especially relevant to today’s uncertain times. My hope is that we can all live forward and look to the future.

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”

— Albert Einstein

“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards.”

— Soren Kierkegaard

I wrote about this notion of positivity in my e-newsletter than went out to subscribers in late March. If you’re not yet subscribed, I invite you to do so here.

Fine-Tuning the USANA Foundation

The following post features information about the USANA Foundation I included in last month’s e-newsletter.

One of the most important tasks musicians perform is tuning their instruments. In All the Right Reasons, I talk about “harmony” vs. “dissonance” as it relates to music and life. In fact, the book’s subtitle says it all: “12 timeless principles for living a life in harmony.”

When something is out of tune, it just doesn’t sound right. When that happens, it might take only a few minor adjustments to once again create beautiful music.

The USANA FoundationFor the USANA True Health Foundation, that’s exactly what it took — a little fine-tuning to ensure its mission rings true for years to come.

Brian Paul, the president of what is now the USANA Foundation, explains in the video above (or here) a few steps the organization has taken recently to fine-tune its mission.

“We are rebranding,” he says. “There’s a new look and feel but it’s much more than that. It’s us fine-tuning our mission. It’s us giving you more of a tangible way to donate to the Foundation and helping you understand how you are making a difference.”

A question I get asked frequently as I travel is: “Why the name change?” Brian explains the reasoning behind that as well.

“A lot of times when people talk about the Foundation, they say ‘True Health Foundation.’ USANA quite often gets lost. We really want people to understand what the heart of this Foundation is. And that is our USANA Associates, Customers, and Employees around the world.”

I encourage you to visit the USANA Foundation’s website to read more about all the good work this organization is doing. And give them a follow on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube to keep up-to-date on everything related to the USANA Foundation.

Benefiting the USANA Foundation

All the Right Reasons: 12 Timeless Principles for Living a Life in Harmony is available on Amazon. All proceeds benefit the USANA Foundation and its mission to feed hungry children. Each book purchase helps to provide 40 meals. Help us as we strive toward our goal of 2 million meals.

SWEET: Successful Women Empowering Entrepreneurs Together

SWEET Retreat 2020

Hundreds of successful female entrepreneurs gathered in San Diego last week for SWEET Retreat. The annual event, organized by the USANA United States Sales Team, is critically important.

SWEET, which stands for Successful Women Empowering Entrepreneurs Together, is designed to bring together entrepreneurs from all walks of life. Lori Truman, USANA’s Vice President of U.S. Sales, says the retreat helps “SWEET Sisters” empower one another and lift each other up.

It’s a unique event that I think is absolutely amazing.

From what I saw on social media and in hearing from others personally, a strong lineup of speakers, including keynote and bestselling author Elaine Welteroth, were not only inspirational and motivational, but they also offered practical advice to help others succeed — in business and in life.

Members of the USANA management team, as well as top Associate leaders, offered personal insight on a range of topics. Communicating effectively, providing an exceptional customer experience, and creating a clear vision for your success were just a few of the presentations that seemed to resonate with attendees.

While I (obviously) didn’t attend (Dan Macuga and I did come close, several years ago…), I’m certain I could feel the energy emanating from SWEET.

SWEET Retreat 2020 Elaine Welteroth

SWEET: Learning, Empowerment

As I’ve traveled around the world so far this year, I’ve spoken a lot about the value of emotional intelligence. How do we as leaders connect with others in their space? More specifically, how do we better empathize with those facing challenges personally and professionally?

An event such as SWEET, which combines learning and empowerment and camaraderie and outright fun, is critical to USANA as a company. It’s who we are, and who we strive to be.

Direct selling in the United States is a $35 billion industry. And, according to the Direct Selling Association, women make up 75% of the direct sales force.

Continuing to recognize and empower our female leaders is of utmost importance. I’m grateful USANA has strong, talented women leaders who exhibit emotional intelligence and who encourage others, as I like to say, to live life in crescendo.

As Elaine Welteroth emphasized in her SWEET keynote, three keys to success are:

  1. Have a clear vision
  2. Have faith in yourself
  3. Get support from other females

Judging by the popularity of SWEET over the years, and by the successful women entrepreneurs who have attended, I’d say we’re on the right path.

It’s the People You Meet

A jingle from a lifetime ago about people popped into my head the other day.

Oh, who are the people in your neighborhood?
In your neighborhood?
In your neighborhood?

Well, they’re the people that you meet
When you’re walking down the street
They’re the people that you meet each day.

That’s right — Sesame Street. It’s a song that introduces children to a variety of people and professions.

Meeting with members of the media in Beijing.

Meeting with members of the media in Beijing.

As you might know, I’ve been traveling non-stop since the first of the year. If you’re following me on social media, you’ve seen me post pictures from Taiwan, Beijing, and Korea. I’ve spent time in New York and Chicago, and now I’m home in Salt Lake for a few days.

A selfie with some of the people I met in Taiwan in January 2020.

A selfie with some of the people I met in Taiwan in January 2020.

Though they live outside my literal neighborhood, I’ve been thinking about the hundreds — possibly thousands — of people I’ve met over the last three weeks.

The people I’ve met.

Yes, many were familiar faces. But a lot were friendly strangers I met for the first time. It’s amazing how much I’ve learned from them — about their diverse cultures, their expertise in all aspects of life, and how they’re going about achieving their goals and aspirations.

Throughout the trip, I’ve spoken frequently about the value of emotional intelligence. How we connect with people “in their space,” so to speak. It’s what experts say distinguishes great leaders from good ones. Researchers have boiled emotional intelligence down to five key components, one of which is empathy.

Empathetic people are skilled at attracting and retaining talent, they have an ability to develop others, and they possess a sensitivity to cross-cultural differences.

Doesn’t that sound like the kind of person you’d like to be? It’s the kind of person I strive to be.

If you read my blog post from earlier this month, I spoke about kindness and how we each should try to be a little kinder to one another in 2020. Well, as I’ve traveled all over the world and experienced all sorts of cultures, I’m impressed by the people I’ve met — in terms of kindness and empathy.

It’s the people we meet each day that could have a major effect on our lives (and us on theirs). It’s the emotional intelligence we demonstrate in these everyday interactions that will have a lasting impact.

Here are a few more pictures from my recent travels. Thank you all for making me feel so welcome wherever I go.
So grateful for the individuals who attended my book signing in Taiwan.

So grateful for the individuals who attended my book signing in Taiwan.

A warm welcome in New York. Thank you!

A warm welcome in New York. Thank you!

Celebrating the grand opening of the new offices in USANA Korea.

Celebrating the grand opening of the new offices in USANA Korea.

A version of this post originally went to my e-newsletter subscribers. If you’re not yet subscribed, please do so here.

A New Year of Possibilities Starts with Kindness

A new year is upon us and with it a world of possibilities. Many of us make resolutions and set goals — lose weight, advance in our careers, eat healthier, etc. But at the start of 2019, I invited readers to join me in one important quest:

Let’s work toward becoming a little kinder, a little happier, and a little better in our relationships with others.

Now, at the start of a new year: How did we do?

Evaluate and Assess

Facebook - All the Right Reasons Announcement 3Each December, I evaluate and assess what I accomplished in the previous 12 months. I’m also honest with myself and write down what I’d hoped to accomplish, but which I didn’t.

I wrote about my process in a blog post last January. That process includes a tactic I picked up from Benjamin Franklin. As a teenager, Franklin wrote down important things that he wanted to pattern his life after. We think of those as our values. For me, my goals and objectives are closely connected with my personal values.

So we write down our goals, but it’s not enough just to write them down and stuff them in a drawer. Rather, as Franklin did, we must track how we’re doing. Franklin tracked in his notebook how well he did in following one of the 13 virtues he considered to be most important to him. (Incidentally, a more in-depth description of this is included in All the Right Reasons. Not surprisingly, the chapter’s called The Ben Franklin Principle.)

Looking Ahead

Toward the end of 2019, I participated in an important challenge called Commit to You: 90 Days of Health. In addition to writing down my commitment, I recorded it on video and shared it publicly. I committed to living a life more present. To live in the moment rather than dwelling on the past or worrying about the future.

And that’s how we circle back to the invitation at the top of this post. By committing to being more present, I became more aware of how my actions affected those around me. I instantly thought about how I could be a little kinder. Interacting with those I love and care about helped me to become a little happier. All of the above helped me to become a little better in my relationships with others.

But just because we flipped the calendar doesn’t mean we’re done. As we embark on another new year, I ask that we continue to strive for more kindness and happiness in our lives.

As Gary Vaynerchuk, who spoke at the 2019 USANA Live event, wrote on his social media: Kindness is the word of 2020.

All the Right Reasons includes 12 timeless principles for living a life in harmony. Book sales benefit the USANA Foundation to help ensure impoverished children and families reach their fullest potential.