I was once speaking at a conference with Anel Martin; author, trainer and fearless speaker and asked her if there was anything I could do for her. With typical humour, she replied that it would be excellent if I could take her hair to the salon and her teeth to the dentist. Most of us on the speaking circuit know that feeling well. It’s easy to be so busy that we forget to take care of ourselves.

But life has a way of forcing us to take notice and sometimes it’s more serious than that. The profession has been shaken by the news that Vickie Sokol Evans, the world’s leading Microsoft trainer, has been diagnosed with stage two breast cancer and is currently undergoing chemotherapy prior to surgery.

She felt nothing. She was a little more tired than usual but with her schedule that was unsurprising. We are told to check regularly for lumps and go to the doctors if we notice anything out of the ordinary but she felt nothing and had three tumours.

The good news is that it is curable but she will be out of action for some time. She urges you all to go get screened regularly. It’s a timely reminder that we need to make time for self-care.

Treatment of the kind that she needs is fiercely expensive in the USA but it is imperative to her recovery that she is worrying only about getting well and not about where she will find the money from.

To this end, I recently wrote to all the leaders of our profession as I boarded a plane from Phoenix to New York asking for help and over 50 of them replied before I landed asking ‘What did we need?’ It is a great testament to who Vickie is that the profession has rallied around as they have and I have to admit to shedding a few tears in JFK airport at the generosity of spirit that our community has.

So from Friday 22 to Sunday 24 September we will be running an online webathon to raise money for Vickie Sokol Evans. It will feature the greatest line up of trainers for assistants ever assembled in one place and will cost you only $49 for a weekend pass to see as much or as little as you like.

For full details and speaker line up please go to www.executivesecretary.com/webathon.

We send our love and best wishes to Vickie for a full and speedy recovery.

And go and get checked!!


Lucy Brazier, OBE is one of the world’s leading authorities on the administrative profession. Author of The Modern-Day Assistant: Build Your Influence and Boost Your Potential, she is the CEO of Marcham Publishing, a global force synonymous with world- ... (Read More)

2 comments on “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans ~ John Lennon

  1. Gerethia on

    Very encouraging. Lucy , onbelf of all Personal Assistant and Executive Secretary in PNG, I would like you to conduct a 1 week Secretarial training in in PNG so we can afford to attend training on cheapest costings.

    Thank you and looking forward to hear from you.


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