By Sunny Simon

After reading the blog of one of my favorite motivational speakers, I decided to heed his advice and give it a try. Darren Hardy, publisher of “Success” magazine convinced me of the old adage, “If you don’t ask you don’t get.” Sounds simple enough I know, but you must understand I’m a rule follower. If the sign displays a price of $75.00 it never occurs to me there might be wiggle room.

Darren illustrated his point by blogging about an experience in an ice cream parlor. When he got down to the cone after eating a luscious scoop of vanilla his taste buds screamed for more. He charmed the clerk into adding a “small gratuitous shaving to the top” to help extend his joy. Seriously I thought? I would never dream of making such a request. Apparently this guy is super charming because the clerk replied it would be her pleasure. Wow!

I was ready to give this a go so the very next night at a dinner meeting I took the plunge. Dessert was chocolate mousse. As a rule I do not eat dessert, however I thought a cookie would be nice. When a member of the wait staff came by I inquired in my sweetest and most pleasant manner if there was a cookie in the kitchen with my name on it. He replied that he would check, but never returned. I was not surprised, nor discouraged just rather pleased with myself for asking.

Next I tackled my cell phone bill. Last month I was charged a $20 premium for the number of texts I received. I called the nice man at AT&T and told him I wanted my plan to include unlimited texting. He quoted me a rate of $25 more than my base rate. Okay, this wasn’t working so I mentioned regretfully that I am forced to change carriers. At this point he told me he could sell me a different plan retaining the benefits of my current plan and including unlimited texting for $20 less than my base rate. Truly this made even less sense but who was I to question the wisdom of the mega-giant who supplies me with minutes? Sold! Thanks to Mr. Hardy I am now saving $20 every month and utilizing the text feature with no penalties.

Are you withholding your voice and accepting face value? Try speaking up this week for what you want. It doesn’t always work, but I can tell you from recent practice it’s a challenge worth pursuing. I’m getting good at this. Just wait until Santa sees my Christmas wish list!

Sunny Simon is the owner of Raise the Bar High Life and Career Coaching. More about Sunny at