A few years ago, I found myself immersed in my own Armageddon – within the space of minutes my life collapsed, I shattered into a million pieces and I could no longer function in ‘normal’ every day activities.
In that instant, my life changed forever. I began the long, hard and daunting road to recovery and I spent years trying to unravel the bits and pieces that had been cobbled together to form my life. I had to rebuild every aspect of myself … and my life.
As part of my recovery, I wrote my first book – ‘Keep It Super Simple’ – and as people read the book or heard me talk about it, I found myself being asked to present to companies (of all sizes), associations, conferences and retreats, as well as being interviewed for print and online magazines, podcasts, vlogs and blogs. Without understanding what was happening, I suddenly found myself an accidental female entrepreneur.
I started my business because I had a desire – a drive – to teach other people that there are other ways to live.
Despite having almost two decades of experience helping other people to grow and develop their businesses, I felt like I knew nothing because I hadn’t worked in my new industry before.
Initially, I turned to everyone else for answers, and before I knew it my business was structured in a way that didn’t work for me, or the things that were important to me. I was trapped in a life that didn’t support me in any of the ways that I wanted, or needed.
It wasn’t ok!
My business was sluggish – it would start to move and then stop again. I felt drained and tired just thinking about all the things I had to do. On top of this, I found myself doing a lot of things I didn’t like – and spending a lot of money on them, too! They didn’t align to who I am as a person, but in a vain effort to try and make it all work for me, I did them anyway.
It wasn’t until I stopped and realised that I had stepped straight back into the same pattern of doing everything for everyone else, and in the way that I had been told was ‘right’ that I realised I had to do things differently to create the changes I needed to be able to move forward.
I took some time to create my values and then aligned everything I was doing with them. Suddenly I had the energy to step into my business full time and be constantly fuelled by what I was doing.
As soon as I took this step, my business opened up and everything became easier. It allowed me to create a simple process that makes it really easy for me to determine who I do and don’t want to work with, the things I do and don’t want to do in my day and the ways in which I present myself and my work in the world.
Now I’m often asked what advice I would give to others who want to take a few steps towards doing things a little bit differently, and this is where I suggest they start:
- Learn from the people who teach you how to learn from yourself. Following others will only lead you to experience someone else’s life … so it’s crucial that you find your way forward on your own path.
- Learn to ask yourself questions that help YOU to come up with your own answers. I have found that asking myself questions about things that are presented to me allows me to make conscious decisions about the things I do and don’t want to do.
- Don’t be afraid to do things differently. We are all unique and gifted individuals. Trying to copy something that someone else has done is highly unlikely to work for you because you are your own person. Find the things that mean the most to you and work out how you can incorporate them into your business.
- Stand behind your experience and your knowledge. Your experience and wisdom are priceless and will always be there to help you on your pathway forward. You are the only person who knows what is best for you.
Perhaps the biggest lesson that I learned through experiencing a complete breakdown and transitioning to being a female entrepreneur is this: there is nothing that I have now that wasn’t easily and readily available to me before. The difference is that I now know how important it is that my work and my life support the things that I care most about in the world. I also know that there is always a simple and easy pathway to the things I want, and I am open and ready to try different things so that I can find them.