Joyful giving & receiving: your guide to giving clients the perfect gift

As I write this I’m sitting at a friend’s house beside a sleeping 4 month old. Momma is taking some much needed time to herself, something that’s not too common these days for her.

2014-09-11 16.22.54And she is SO grateful.

Even said it felt weird. Almost like it was a bit hard for her to leave the house (can you mommas relate?).

And I don’t even view it as a burden, or something on the to do list, or a commitment I have to keep that I’m not excited about.

I’ve been looking forward to this all week.

1. I’m getting my baby fill
2. I’m beyond thrilled to give a friend some freedom

Beyond thrilled.

The idea that I’m able to help her out like this makes my heart soar with joy. My heart feels happy. That open, abundant, grateful feeling that manifests itself in my body through peaceful joints, a body that feels comfortable, and a heart that feels light.

It’s the perfect mutual arrangement.

She gives. I give. She receives. I receive.

And it got me thinking about how this looks in my business – this mutual receiving and giving.

And quite honestly, it hasn’t always felt this way. Sometimes the energy is off. Sometimes my own goals and fear associated with them led me down a path of looking at the wrong thing – the money, the targets to hit, the numbers on the list. Go, go, go.

Sometimes in my striving, I forgot the giving.

And sometimes in my giving, I forget the receiving. I forget that it’s about a mutual exchange. That the client is giving their money so that I may receive and be in equal exchange.

And almost shamefully I admit that the drive to make the sell, earn the money, fulfill my desires can overtake this beautiful part of being an entrepreneur.

Right here, right now, in this moment – I am bursting with joy for the opportunity to give a new mom some time. I’ve always loved to give the perfect gifts and this is one of my favorites.

The gift of time is the biggest thing we can give.

And I need to remember that in my own business. What I do for people is give them time. Precious, precious time from spending, wasting, and struggling.

When I feel into how this feels in my body and my heart, I make a pact to feel this in my business. Always.

Here’s how I’m doing that and how you can too:

1. Identify the how
How do you give time in your business?

For me, I give clients time by providing them with everything from clarity to copy to a website in my intensives. So while I’m writing copy, they can enjoy some self care. While I take care of creating their website, they can focus on their zone of genius and the joy of what they truly love to do. By taking care of these aspects of their business, I give them time to focus on what they’ll give to their clients.

So in what ways do you give clients back their precious time?

2. See the frustration
How does your gift of time save your clients hours(+) of frustration?

Using my example above, I create that website which saves clients countless hours of researching the technical aspects to building websites, hours from learning these systems on their own, and hours of struggling to determine the heart of their message. And I do mean countless hours… some of them have spent years trying to figure these things out.

We all collapse the timeframe that our clients would otherwise be struggling with their biggest frustration. What are the frustrations you help clients avoid?

3. Feel the energy
Are you tapped into the energy that’s involved with this exchange of giving and receiving?

This one is SO important. Because you’re going to hear negative things. You’re going to hear no. You’re going to hear messages counter to what you believe and what you’re doing. When I’m fully aware of the equal exchange that’s involved between the time I give clients and their payment to me, I’m fully in service. I’m tapped in and lit up. No matter what.

Are you bursting with joy over this exchange of giving and receiving?

4. Communicate
Are you communicating your gift of time in your business?

People ask me all the time what to write about for their business. If you’re stuck, write about the time you give through your services. Because no one can receive the benefit of time if they don’t know you exist or connect the dots for themselves. And we all want time.

Time is the biggest gift we can give and receive.

Give openly. Receive with gratitude.

 

So tell me, does this reframe anything for you? Do you have more clarity on how you are in service to others, so that you can receive with ease?

With love, service, and those tiny little baby toes,
Amy

{Just Keep on Moving} Lessons from a 6:30am run in the rain

Lessons/insights/reminders from a run in the rain at 6:30am:

1.  My glasses are speckled with rain drops and I can’t see clearly. Several times I consider stopping to try and clear them and then realize that would be futile as my shirt is wet and I would have to stop running in order to that.

So I get a bit comfortable with not being able to see clearly and I just focus on putting one foot in front of the other instead of trying to fix it. That’s when it clicked that I don’t need to see the finish line. I just need to see the next step. On this run, in business, and always.

2. I only passed 3 cars on my run this morning and I’m always aware that I have to be careful of my own space because a) some people might not see me and b) some might not care enough to get over. Safety first!

The first car didn’t make any attempt at moving over to the center of the road and forced me into the grass, which is full of ankle rolling potential lumps and bumps. But I was prepared for the possibility and got over as soon as I sensed the car wasn’t going to give me any leeway.

The other two cars I passed got way over on the other side of the road. I was able to stay on the road, had plenty of space to do my thing, and felt safe.

The same thing happens in life and business as well. There will always be those who crowd and push you unsafely off the road. They don’t get it. Let them go in the opposite direction with your sights firmly fixed in front of you.

There will be those who work with you to give you the space you need – and also show you a bit of respect (I mean hello I’m running in the rain here!). Find these people. Keep them around. Appreciate them and show gratitude.

3. When the run gets a bit tough and I’m all up in my head about it, my shoulders start to slump, my feet get heavier, and everything seems like slow motion.

When I catch myself in the mind trip and tell myself I’m not quitting, it shows in my body and my posture is the first thing to adjust. My shoulders move back, my back gets upright again and suddenly everything else seems to fall into place. My pace quickens as my feet find a natural rhythm again. It all becomes easier.

The body shows us what the mind is thinking. When we can let the mind chatter go, there’s room for ease to enter. And it’s more fun to cross the finish line with your back tall and your head held high. Allow ease.

4. Commitment is no joke. Unrelenting.

It was raining this morning. It was also dark. And I went anyway.

That’s how I know that I’m serious about my running and commitment to myself to do something I know makes me feel great. I went when it was uncomfortable. It was worth it.

Where am I not fully committed in my business? Hmmmm…

5. Speaking of uncomfortable, running helps me get used to feeling uncomfortable, being out of that comfort zone.

So much so that when these same feelings and reactions in my body come up in other areas of my life, I’m better prepared to deal with them, feel them out, and let myself ride the wave being uncomfortable instead of immediately trying to get out of them.

It’s okay to be uncomfortable. Weird, yes. Debilitating, no. 3.5 miles in the rain will soon be no biggie. What’s uncomfortable today will be tomorrow’s no big deal.

One foot in front of the other friends,
Amy

 

{The Doula} What do you want to be when you grow up?

Remember when we had to do those projects in Elementary School about what we wanted to be when we grew up ? I do.

And I remember feeling anxious and like the world was closing in on me.

I’ve never admitted that to anyone before. (Hi Mom… ahem)

I always thought there was something wrong with me that I couldn’t find something interesting enough to pursue… or just good enough to get me through my working years.

Everything I saw was an office job of some sort or felt like shooting for the moon. And while I briefly pretended like I would be an astronaut, I knew it wasn’t really true.

I took a look at my mom the guidance counselor and my dad the accountant and I figured if they do it then I must be able to as well.

So I did that 3rd grade project based on my dad’s job, an “Administrative Manager”, because he was the coolest guy I knew.

I didn’t have a clue what that was but I knew it involved a suit and a briefcase. And even now, just thinking about that project, I can feel tightness in my chest and my shoulders collapsing in to protect my heart.

Oh my heart.

It was there waiting with my real wish all along – that rapid but shy and quiet beat of an entrepreneur.

After nine jobs in nine years, after nine years of feeling lost, of feeling like something was wrong with me, not understanding what was wrong with me, I finally learned to make money on my own.

It didn’t happen the way I thought it would.

And there was a lot of confusion. A ton of overwhelm. And even more naysayers.

But my heart, oh my heart.

It fluttered with freedom. It finally felt at home.

So what’s a girl to do but carry on? Figure it out? Get moving?

Life slapped me in the face and I finally quit the full-time, 8-5, cardigan wearing office gigs. And shit got real (in the not so great sense).

Then I started earning money online, from people I didn’t know. Imagine that!

And so shit got real (in the fabulous sense) and I haven’t looked back since… except to figure out what all that craziness was that I went through so others wouldn’t have to.

And let me tell you something, I think there’s just too much chatter out there for new entrepreneurs, which then turns them into struggling entrepreneurs.

Because with all the info out there, how’s a girl to know how to really make her first dollar? How can she really take what’s out there and apply it in her life to get her up and running?

I’m all about “the real deal”, i.e. cutting the crap. Give it to me straight, tell it like it is, what’s the scoop with the behind the scenes. Spill baby spill. {In the nicest and most uplifting way possible. I’m a sensitive soul you know.}

On Monday, I’m sharing the real deal on what I know will get you started in business. Without all the time and money wasters. Without wading through website upon website. And lord knows without all the advice that’s out there.

I’ve giving the scoop on the Only 3 Things You Need to Start Your Business. The exact things that I used to replace my corporate salary and book myself solid with clients – before I ever had a website, business plan, fancy marketing, or knowing a single other person in the online biz game.

Because I’ve learned that those starting out don’t always get the full picture and I just don’t think that’s going to help anyone reach the point where their heart flutters with freedom and feels at home.

I like that feeling and I’m guessing you would too.

If you’d like the inside scoop and to know how I did it, join me for this free hour on Monday.

>> Grab your spot by clicking here <<

Let’s do this,
Amy

{Labor Pains} THIS is sabotaging your intentions and zapping your energy. Change it today.

I’m almost finished with a book called Unfinished Business: One Man’s Extraordinary Year of Trying to Do the Right Things. In the book, the author Lee Kravitz loses his job and in cleaning out his office and the memorablia from over the years, he comes  face to face with pieces of his past that weigh him down.

coffee cupThe Aunt he hasn’t seen in 30 years. The teacher he never thanked for making such an impact on his life. The friend whose daughter died that he never called to express his condolences. The $600 he borrowed from a friend and never repaid. His high school bully who tormented him for years and led him to low self-esteem issues.

It’s fascinating.

And when I grabbed it off the shelf at the library randomly, I had a feeling there was a more powerful reason why, beyond the interesting title.

I often find myself thinking about past things I said I would do but never did. Even the silly, little things.

Like not changing the address on a retirement account so that the statement still shows up at my parent’s house each month. Like not activating my new ATM card when it comes in the mail so that I then forget and try to use it, only to be told that it was declined. Like the time I said I’d make that call, send a note, or write that email.

Details.

And they don’t affect anyone else. Okay, maybe my parents aren’t thrilled to have to continue to deal with my mail. But in the grand scheme of life, no one else really cares. It doesn’t weigh on anyone else. No one else feels the burden of tasks left undone.

But I do.

And then I feel guilty. For not completing simple things. For being so silly as to not just get them taken care of.

IMG_2478So now I have unfinished business AND the feelings I pile on top.

And those feelings take up valuable space. Head space. Creative space. Energy.

What a waste!

I discovered a few months ago the power of intensives for my clients and working within that short and intense framework. And this book is simply confirming what I already know to be true – unfinished business sabotages our intentions and zaps our good energy.

I saw this come up in my own business over and over again until I finally got the message. (Life will do that to for ya.)

When I was a Virtual Assistant helping entrepreneurs with everything from online strategy to website updates, there was a ton of back and forth that looked like this –

  • We meet and determine what needs to be done
  • I get to working on the to dos
  • I need clarification, have a question, or something administrative comes up like a password
  • I email the client
  • I have to wait until the client can respond, sometimes the same day, sometimes in a week
  • I move on to something else on the project list and the item above is left undone

And then it was all downhill from there. Because what I’m not good at is unfinished business.

Once I move on, I move on. And it’s extremely difficult for me to get my energy ramped up again to go back into whatever that project was that was left undone. The moment has passed.

So things would get dropped, forgotten, left unfinished. Eventually I would realize it and try to go back to whatever it was, only to then pile all of those feelings on top to the task at hand.

Sound familiar?

I tell ya, not very productive.

I suppose some people are good at going back and forth, but for most of us it’s called multi-tasking and we aren’t very good at it.

We’ve all heard the research over recent years that the focus on multi-tasking doesn’t actually work. We half-ass a bunch of different things instead of really rockin’ one thing at a time.

And this was never so clear to me as it was in the earlier stages of my business. And it kept showing up until I finally recognized it and addressed it.

Are you seeing this pattern come up for you? How you feelin’ about that?

My guess is not too fabulous.

My guess is that as an entrepreneur, you’re CEO, CFO, CIO, customer service, and the janitor to boot.

feet many pathsWhich means multi-tasking.

It means distractions.

It means losing energy and focus on the things that are most important to your business success and putting money in the bank.

It means losing time and gaining headaches.

So what is really possible when you take all of that away?

When you create a supportive, creative environment with the sole focus on you and your biz…

You create an environment that is –

  • Full of excitement, energy, and passion that keeps you from spiraling into fear, perfectionism, or other saboteurs
  • Focused on just the necessary items to birth your big ideas and bring in clients, leaving the distractions and long to do lists for another time (or someone else!)
  • Set up for success and no excuses so you can ensure you’re really getting your message out into the world and living your dream
  • Calm, easeful, and relaxed – all of those feelings we strive for in our businesses

Which is why I switched to intensives and I encourage other entrepreneurs to utilize this same format.

I know that if you give yourself months to do something… you will take the entire time.

I know that for most of us, if you only allow yourself small windows of time for your big dreams, your dreams will begin to take a back seat to the other areas of your life.

I know that I wish I had figured this out when I started. It would’ve saved lots of headaches, heartaches, and frustration. I know my clients feel power within this framework.

IMG_2319I know it’s powerful. And I know it works.

Take the intensive format and see how you can create your own in your business and life. Whether it’s working with clients or just setting up your day, get creative with it. Approach that to do list as several mini-intensives throughout your day. Schedule your intensive to tackle that big project. Set up your inbox as an intensive with a focus on communication.

Have fun with this one! And of course don’t forget that your environment and self-care are key to creating an intensive that doesn’t feel intense!

The reason I love intensives so much is because in the end, there is no unfinished business. Everything is wrapped up in an awesome bow. There’s completion. And that feels fucking fantastic.

To feelin’ fantastic,
Amy

PS – If those projects are stretching out too far for your liking and you’re ready to wrap up your unfinished business, book a discovery session to explore if I can help.

In addition to copywriting and launch intensives, I offer strategy sessions to help you connect the dots between the scrambled list in your head and the steps needed to complete that project. {That’s why they call me the Visionologist!}

 

{Delivery Secrets} Standing in the fire: massive transformation that takes you higher

I can’t get enough of the TV show Extreme Weight Loss. Can’t.Get.Enough.

Two personal trainers work with one person for an entire year to lose crazy amounts of  weight and the emotional baggage that put it there in the first place.

extreme weight lossIt’s serious transformation.

Most of the time.

Not everyone finishes.

Some aren’t ready. Some don’t stay committed. Some let their old habits and emotions take over. So that despite everything the trainers do, they can’t seem to break free and leap into their new life.

But most?

Most make it.

I’m talking goal weights that are 100 or 200 lb losses. In a year.

Holy smokes.

I can’t get enough. And I cry at every episode.

But to see what these people go through and how they continue to push forward with a complete transformation of their psyche is insane. It’s like my brain can’t even comprehend it and yet is so pumped up by it at the same time.

Recently I was watching an episode and the trainers were stalking the participants, a dad and daughter duo.

And I do mean stalking.

Surveillance. Following in cars. Using walkie-talkies. Snapping photos. The whole deal.

And the whole time I’m watching it, it never crosses my mind that it’s creepy or lying or over the top.

Nope.

I’m thinking this is real life.

This is the nitty gritty.

This is the real behind the scenes shit that goes down.

Because these trainers were standing in the fire for these participants.

Like getting burnt and staying there anyway because that’s what it was going to take for this duo to really change their life.

The accountability. Empowerment. Truth. Determination.

Fire.

And of course the participants were upset when they were confronted. Because the trainers always give them the chance to come clean. And they hope they’ll get the truth. But more times than not, the participants stare them in the face and lie.

And then out come the photos of them skipping the gym. Going to a bakery. Drinking an extra 200 calories from Starbucks and catching a ride home instead of walking.

And the whole reality of the situation comes crashing down on them as they see evidence of their truth in that moment and they can’t wiggle their way out of it.

And they feel violated. And attacked.

And the trainers simply sit there and reinforce the fact that they are there for them and will do absolutely everything in their power to help them succeed. But they can’t do it alone.

Now this – this is seriously standing in the fire for someone.

fire

And it takes a lot of guts. Stalking someone. Having them lie to your face. Confronting them. Getting in seriously uncomfortable situations. Holding people to their word. Doing whatever it takes to help them go higher.

I’ve never seen it done so well as I have on this show. It is absolutely the best example of what standing in the fire looks like and the massive transformation that can result from dealing with that intense heat.

And it’s true in everything from weight loss to business.

Anytime transformation is needed, having someone who will get in that fire with you means the difference between falling back into your old life or leaping into your new one.

I’ve seen it in my own life and I’ve done it for clients.

I have put it all out there. Done everything in my power to help. Ensure they are getting their money’s worth. Helping them so that they can succeed.

Some of them get mad. Sometimes I’m fired.

Others get it and make change.

Some get mad, promise change, and then stay the same.

Which is all totally fine.

The trick is that they have someone willing to stand in the fire with them – time and time again.

A friend can’t do this. A family member can’t do it. Even a business friend will have trouble fully launching themself into the fire and staying there.

Afterall, it’s fucking hot in there.

And while this idea of being in a fire doesn’t sound glamorous or exciting and can sound downright scary – it’s what makes a true entrepreneur successful.

Having someone on your side who is completely devoted to seeing you succeed is not something to dismiss, put in the maybe one day category, or the well it would be nice to have but not now category.

It’s required. And it’s a big not-so-secret must if you want to birth your big ideas and have a faster delivery. {How long do you really want to have those contractions?!}

And that’s why I believe in coaching. Support. One on one.

Because there will be days when you need to get in that fire and you won’t want to. But a good coach is willing to get in there with you, even though she may get burned too.

She knows that on the other side of that fire is sweet, sweet relief.

The smoke clears. The clouds part. That hunky fireman leads you to safety.

And then you’re left to walk forward, in the direction of your dreams.

Because behind you?

Is a pile of ashes that can’t be put back together.

The only way is forward. Refreshed. Anew. With a clear path to success.

Get smokey friends,
Amy

PS – Last night I was able to see two of my very first mentors, Gina DeVee and Glenn Sisk. They were the first people who showed me what it meant to take a stand for someone from a place of true compassion, love, and support. I am forever grateful!

photo with Gina  photo with Glenn

{Labor Pains} Online business is a sham that’s keeping you broke

I’m fired up. (This is nothing new really)

online shamThe world of online business.

Yeah, what’s the deal with that?

Because I’m watching clients struggle, I’m watching others say how easy it is to make money online, and I’m watching a whole lot of people lose out on money because they’re caught up in the online sham.

And here’s why it’s a sham – no online business is truly online.

Shocker I know.

But if you’re wondering why no one is opting in to your list, you can’t find clients, and your marketing isn’t working then take a look at the cold hard truth of online business.

If you talk to any successful entrepreneur who says they’re killin’ it online, you’ll discover all of the things they do OFF line to achieve success ONline.

And I am so sick and tired of watching countless excited, go get ’em entrepreneurs falling into this trap, only to then get so frustrated that they pack up their bags and head back to the office.

So let’s shed some light on it shall we?

Marie Forleo talks about taking a yellow notepad to her fitness classes to get people’s names and email addresses to add to her email list, which had nothing to do with fitness. Same goes for when she was bartending – this savvy lady was chatting up anyone who would listen.

Denise Duffield-Thomas of Lucky Bitch, talks about all of the seminars and speaking gigs she did around town to get her business off the ground. And now she’s writing books to spread her message and lead potential clients to her online home.

I’ve seen countless blogs and stories of people interacting with Tim Ferris and the verdict is always the same – he’s constantly discussing business regardless of where he is. At the airport, at lunch, at a conference.

The one and only Marianne Williamson worked in an office by day and gave lectures by night to small groups around her neighborhood. While her business isn’t totally online, she has followers from around the world who would’ve never known she existed if not for her online presence.

The list goes on and on. {Are you taking notes?}

And I’ve seen the same thing happen in my own business.

Technically it’s online, but success came from another direction.

I’ve never met any of my clients. They live all over the US and a few other countries. I loathe the typical networking groups and generally don’t even try to target local clients. I meet my clients via Skype and the phone. There’s no face to face.

But how did I get those clients? How did I get booked up? (without a website for over a year, mind you)

I started by hanging out in FB groups and responding to women I knew I could help. I found my ideal client who referred me to a ton of people. And the real Hallelujah moment came when that client went to a live event in LA and spread the word about me and my services. From that alone, I booked up the remaining spaces on my calendar and then had to turn people away.

My success did not occur through the magical and mythical powers of the internet.

It occurred because someone went to a LIVE event, connected with other women who happen to be my ideal clients, and then they connected with me.

So while it wasn’t me going offline, the turning point for my business is attributed to a face to face connection.

So can we all wake up to the fact that online empires are not in fact built online?!

You don’t get to set up a website and magically people appear and you are an overnight success.

Disappointing?

Maybe.

And I’ve fallen into this trap a million times! I create what I think is the best thing since sliced bread – I mean have you seen my Launch Your Biz Intensives?! That’s some serious awesomeness right there – and then I launch it and just wait for the masses to stumble upon my genius. After all, the hard work is over right?

I created and birthed the damn thing! So why wouldn’t people flock to it?

It takes me about a day of that to snap back to reality and recognize that while it may be the best thing to ever hit the online business world, if people don’t know it exists, then it won’t really help anyone.

And thus begins a marketing talk for another day.

But I think you get the point.

I like to think the offline piece to online business gives you even more opportunities to get creative and spread your wings.

Sure, you need to build that website. Sure, you can create a business that allows you to be location independent. Sure, you can achieve success online.

But if you don’t wake up to the fact that life is also happening outside of your computer screen you will remain frustrated and broke. I assure you.

It’s an easy trap to fall into. Even I do from time to time with my introverted nature.

With the continued rise of online businesses and more and more FB ads hitting my newsfeed claiming “5 figures without leaving your house” or “the formula to a fast 6 figures”, I think we’re doing a disservice to new entrepreneurs and the truth behind the curtain.

You can have an online business.

It can be profitable.

But it won’t happen without looking around you and interacting offline.

Get out there,
Amy

So what will you do to spread your wings offline? A local mastermind, networking group, chat up the person beside you at the bar (a mentor of mine made $20,000 that way), speak at events around town?

Share your ideas so we can help each other get out there!

 

The story behind “Just keep on moving”

I was a graduate student just starting to seriously think about my final project – the one piece of work to sum up my five years of classes (I worked full time and took one a semester) and what I’m really all about.

No pressure.

uncwA final project, rather than a research based thesis, meant that I could choose something that really spoke to me. Something personal. A creative expression even.

I would write. Naturally.

But what?

Going through a divorce and feeling that itch to break free from my desk job, I could feel the momentum of life pushing me into a new direction.

The desires were getting stronger and harder to ignore.

I had paid the money to join Marie Forleo’s BSchool a year prior and was building my confidence to finally “make that leap.”

But could I really make it in the online space?

I thought so. But was terrified.

So when the final project for my master’s degree came around, I took the opportunity to start a blog.

I would get to write, begin to build the foundation for an online business, and complete my final project for a degree.

Perfect.

I needed a website. And it needed a name.

This proved to be the toughest step in the entire process.

What name could possibly sum up me, what I’m all about, and what my life stood for in those rough days of uncertainty?

I hope I never forget when it happened…

I was out for my morning run. Just me, the lawn sprinklers, and a few geese who loved to hang around the neighborhood pond.

As the sun began to rise, my feet hit the pavement in that steady cadence – left, right, left – my breathe was already in it’s natural running rhythm – in through the nose, out through the mouth, steady.

I didn’t run with music because the darkness required me to be more alert of my surroundings, cars backing out of their driveways with drivers who are on their first cup of coffee.

So I ran. I listened.

I pondered a blog title.

I ran. I listened.

Thought some more.

My brain registered my feet under me carrying me forward one step at a time.

My heart thought about where it had been, the healing it was going through, in awe of how it didn’t completely break.

But it kept beating. Days came and went. And I kept moving.

Left. Right. Left. Right.

See the sky move from dark to royal blue.

Keep moving. Towards home. Towards another successful run. Towards the day that lies ahead.

Just keep moving.

I got this.

HOLY SHIT JUST KEEP MOVING!

And there it was.

As so many times before, it all clicked when my feet were pounding the pavement. In the stillness of my surroundings. In the movement of my body.

Just keep moving – the perfect words to sum up life.

feet on beach jkomI just kept on moving forward.

Eventually I finished my run. Eventually it got easier to get out bed, work towards forgiveness, start the next chapter.

If there’s one secret to life, I believe that’s it – just keep on moving.

That was four years ago and it’s amazing how much this still rings true. How many times I remind myself of these four little words.

And I’ve found that the secret to business is the same – just keep on moving.

Through frustration, fear, questioning why in the hell you don’t just take the “easy” way and go get another job.

Just keep on moving.

You’ll get there.

 

{Labor Pains} Entrepreneurship is crazy enough. We don’t have to be crazy too.

Hi friend, I’ve been thinking –

There’s a reason Olympic athletes have coaches.

Men and women at the top of their game, going after their goals and dreams.

Some of them being crowned with a gold medal and given the title “world’s best.”

They’ve achieved the absolute top prize for their field.

And they didn’t do it alone. And my guess is they don’t ditch their coach as soon as they felt that gold medal around their neck.

But yet, us entrepreneurs have this crazy idea we should be doing things on our own.

We get this idea in our head that when we’re going after our goals, we should be making it happen on our own and without spending a dime.

We give it a fun name like bootstrapping and think it somehow makes us worthier. More deserving. More responsible.

“Oh hey, look at me – I’m finally doing it and I’m being so responsible by not spending any money and aren’t you impressed with how much I’m suffering to make this happen, it must mean that I’m really worthy.”

To claw and scratch our way through the trenches so in the end – one day – we can say we made it. And oh hey look, we did it all on our own.

Well when do we think one day is going to come?!

I rather one day be next week.

Not next year. Or 5 years. Or 10 years. Or maybe even never.

And what do we think our prize will be for making it on our own?

Extra money? Clients? Kudos? Golf claps?

Um. Does this sound crazy to anyone else?

No one – and I mean no one – looks at that athlete on top of the medal stand and thinks “well good for them but they had all that help so they don’t really deserve it.”

Crazy talk.

We don’t expect athletes, doctors, lawyers, accountants, or any other professional to do it on their own – without support, training, and guidance – so why in the hell do we expect that of ourselves?

It’s this weird form of suffering we put ourselves through as early entrepreneurs.

Only later to discover that all of the top coaches and gurus in our field are telling us how much help they’ve received and how important a coach was to their success.

But no. We must hitch up our big girl pants and wade through because we’re too freaked out about the investment to see how hard we’re making it on ourselves.

Se we…

  • spend hours learning to do all sorts of technical junk that we’ll never need again.
  • rewrite the same page on our website every week because we keep questioning if it’s good enough.
  • watch the hours tick by while we search for the perfect graphic for our blog, the font that will really fit our branding, and the colors that will like OMG make the heavens part and clients flood our proverbial website gates.
  • jump from project to project week by week chasing the money that is eluding us because we just can’t seem to figure out what in the world our audience needs.
  • buy another course or program that ensures that this time we will discover all the magical answers that will finally get money into our bank account.

We suffer.

Because it wasn’t hard enough breaking out of the box society was trying to put us into.

Now we must suffer through building a business because it’s the responsible thing to do.

People already think we’re completely insane so let’s make sure we don’t do anything else that anyone else may think is nuts.

Nevermind all those things that are there to help us.

This is supposed to be hard right?! And if it isn’t, then when we do make it to the top then it won’t feel as exciting. Noteworthy. Joyous.

Stop the madness people!

I’ve done the courses. I’ve done the studying. I’ve watched YouTube videos until 2am trying to unlock the technical mystery of the day.

Then I realized what an idiot I was being and got a coach to work with one-on-one. At which point, I actually started to make money.

And I assure you that I wish it had come sooner.

With less headaches. Fewer meltdowns.

I prefer to be an entrepreneur with “crazy” ideas like I can actually change the world and make a difference. (So wild!)

Hop that fence and join me in my kind of crazy.

Step away from the crazy that’s telling you to do it all on on your own.

Because I’ve been both, seen both, and experienced both. And from where I sit (with a business, clients, money in the bank, and a coach) – crazy is not spending money on receiving support that is setting you up for your life’s work.

Your life’s work!

So yeah, I’ve been thinking.

Entrepreneurship is crazy enough. We don’t have to be crazy too.

Don’t start a business, launch your life instead: How to do that without freaking the hell out

I had an amazing call this week with a woman exploring her own business and desires. In the middle of discussing the Launch Your Biz Intensive, she suddenly exclaimed “it’s like I’m launching my life!”

Yes indeedy.

Starting your own business isn’t just about the business.

It’s an entire transformation of your life.

yesIt’s stepping up and saying I desire that for my life and I’m willing to go out and get it.

It’s ALL about saying yes to yourself and your dreams. And less about the nitty gritty details of the business.

Once you say yes to yourself, the rest will fall into place. 

I don’t just help women put up a website and get some structures in place.

I create the environment that supports the transformation of their entire life.

Sure I’m an expert at getting women from point A to B and implementing the biz nitty gritty.

But what I really do is translate their desires into the online landscape and give them a springboard for stepping into the person they’ve always wanted to be.

And holy shit that can sound pretty scary right?

The realization that you starting a business is really more about launching the entire rest of your life.

Lordy I get it.

It would be much easier to just set up shop and start making money.

But the women I work with and surround myself with are making major life changes because they want to make major change in the world. To transform themselves just as much as they’ll transform their clients, audience, and the world around them.

{Why do I want to say here, “with great power comes great responsibility?!”}

So what’s a girl to do then?

How do we keep on moving forward when launching our life sounds exhilarating but scary as hell?

Here’s how to unpack all that baggage and do it anyway {you got this!} –

  1. Play with the vision you have for your life 
    A year, five years, 10 years, 20 years. How do you see yourself and your life? Play around with it! Then figure out if starting a business truly fits into that vision.And by the way, this same idea is true for deciding to take that job in Vermont, quitting because you hate the cold, living on a friend’s couch with no job and $10,000 in debt, marrying that guy, divorcing that guy, selling your house, and leaving your full time job. {So I may be speaking from experience here.}

    Just a simple yes or no – does starting a business {or doing THAT thing} fit into the vision you have of your life?

  2. Make the choice
    If it’s a yes for you, then be a yes! Simply make the choice to claim your desire and your yes.This will show up time and time again in your life, so you must be clear on what your desire is and stick to that yes.

    Regardless of what comes up.{Take note of short this step is! Choose. Simple.}

  3. Stay out of the how
    Often we know we are a yes, but our brains immediately go into the how and then we become a no. But the no isn’t your truth. The no is your fear.Take it from someone who could start a support group for overwhelm recovery – this is where dreams die.

    I would be ready to make a move on my decision and then my mind would immediately get caught up into how am I going to make all of that happen. I would get overwhelmed. And then I wouldn’t do anything. And the dream would begin to slip from my grasp as I could feel the air deflate from my lungs.It’s a constant practice to understand that we’re not in charge of the how. If you’re clear on your desires and you’re a yes, things will shift and conspire around you to make it happen. If you…

  4. Get started
    Straight up – this is the hardest part. And the scariest.Which is why there are many, many seedlings of ideas out there that will never see the light of day.Much like the idea that a body in motion stays in motion, a business in motion stays in motion.So you MUST get started.DO something. Look at your goal and determine what’s one thing you can do today to start moving towards that goal.

    Hint: Do a brain dump with everything that comes to mind with what you know you need to do to reach that goal. Stay out of overwhelm. Figure out one thing on that list you can do today and go do it. Then take the other items on the list and schedule one a day until the list is completed.

    Remember, you already made the choice to go after it.

  5. Set yourself up for success
    As you get started, you’ll soon realize the things that need to change in your life in order to accomplish your goals.Mindset, time, environment, support system – all of these will begin to shift as you launch towards your goals and your new life.

    Be brave in taking a stand for your choice and transformation. And this means being brave in identifying these areas where you need a shift and how you can create success for yourself.The places in my business where things became hard were when I didn’t do what I needed to ensure I would be successful. I put off working with a coach even though I felt very alone. I worked from my couch even though I know environment has a huge effect on me. I kept trying to talk about business and the things I was doing to people who had no knowledge of any of it and were fearful.

    If you get honest with yourself, you know what these items are. And you know what you need to do to give yourself the best chance of success.

Entrepreneurs are a special breed. They go after their dreams. They aren’t afraid to speak up and demand more. They have passion. And they don’t hit the snooze.

Well let me tell you something – it’s because they realize that it isn’t about the business. It’s about the life.

And that’s what many women don’t understand. I certainly didn’t.

Until you’re staring it the face and on the edge of that cliff – you think it’s about your career and a way to make money.

{Insert here any important life decision – choosing that move, going to college away from home, taking that first job, getting married, getting divorced, having a baby…}

What I now see in my own life, and in the life of the women that choose to work with me, is the realization that it’s about much, much more.

And we’re willing to do it anyway.

And that’s why you aren’t just launching a business. You’re launching your life.

Big decisions are less about the actual thing that’s going on and more about saying yes even when you’re freaking the hell out.

And my guess is those big decisions always worked out for you. Some way, some how. It all came together in the end.

Yeah, life’s funny like that.

To your launch,
Amy

The point of the two day intensive is to get you started in your business with the least amount of distractions, excuses, and fear possible. It gets you in the game. It makes you step up in a way that you haven’t experienced before.

It’s launching your life with momentum and focus so you’re set up for success.

If that sounds exciting to you, read more details here and click on “reserve your spot” to score a free strategy session with me.

Make the choice to recommit – A guide to recommiting to your dreams

I love watching shows where people go through massive transformation. It’s so inspiring.

And lately I’ve gotten hooked on the show Extreme Weight Loss. I mean holy cow. These people go through a year with trainers Chris and Heidi Powell and in the end, many of them lose close to 50% of their body weight.

Seriously!

At first I thought it was a simple guilty pleasure, but now I realize why I’m hooked.

It’s super eye opening. And motivating.

Recently I was watching an episode where a woman lost 150lbs in an year.

That means she was carrying around the equivalent of my entire body! Holy cow! That’s a lot of extra baggage to be carrying around.

And at the end, the trainer and the client focused on one thing – the fight.

Chris spoke about the excitement around being on a TV show and how motivating it is in the first month. And then around the one month mark, that excitement and the bright lights fade away. And what’s left is the work. And the fight to keep going.

When you don’t want to.

When things get hard.

Looking at that end goal and remembering that when you want to give up the fight.

And as the credits were rolling, this woman who was literally weighed down by her past decisions in her life, ended the episode by saying, “I’m so glad I chose to fight.”

Amen.

And to me this fight is the recommitment. It’s the choice to say yes.

The fight is the battle between fear and going after what you want. The battle between doing the same thing in your comfort zone and stretching yourself to try something new.

It’s saying to yourself that you commit more to your desires than you do to the fear, uncomfortableness, or the past.

It’s the perfect parallel to entrepreneurship.

Because it’s all about consistency.

Consistent message. Consistent marketing. Consistent action.

That’s the secret to a successful business.

And consistency requires a daily recommitment to your goals. That no matter what happened yesterday, today you’ll get up and take the steps to make it happen.

So we all have our days and our slip ups. If you can recommit time after time that choice becomes a no brainer and that fight becomes a much easier battle.

Making the choice to recommit –

1. Make the choice
It all starts here. Do you right now in this moment make the choice to say yes? Do you make that choice to recommit to your goals and dreams? Make the choice to say yes to your goals no matter what resistance or fear comes up. Just say yes.

2. Forget the past
Today is a new day. So what if yesterday you didn’t make that choice? Today you have. When you recommit to yourself, drop the story around what may have happened in the past or the choices you made previously. Forgive yourself for taking that detour, rather than letting it weigh you down today. Today is a new day.

3. Get moving
Now that you’ve recommitted to yourself, it’s time to get moving. What one thing can you do today to move forward on your dreams? Focus on that ONE thing that will take you closer to your goals. And when you’ve completed that, ask yourself what that next ONE thing would be. Get moving and keep moving.

 

The fight. Consistency. Recommitment.

Anyone who’s reached their goals knows this is the formula.

 

So what do you need to recommit to today?

What are you willing to fight for?

What are you saying yes to?