I have always known that I wanted to make an impact and change in the world.
The inspiration to becoming an entrepreneur was conceived January 2014 when I was diagnosed with leukemia, a rare type of blood cancer. When I received that diagnoses, I knew I had to do something different with my life.
You see prior to this diagnosis, I had just been going through the motion of life. I was a people-pleasing perfectionist, with high expectations of myself and others and constantly on the work grind morning, noon and night. The diagnosis and subsequent treatment was a time to pause, to self-reflect, discern my greater purpose and make a decision to change, to transform. I made a promise that day to shed the fears and doubts that kept me playing small and to be the person I was called to be not the one others expected of me.
I went for my dreams 5 years later by starting my own coaching business. I was enthusiastic, optimistic and excited to start the journey but little did I know what was in store for me. After my certification and shortly after starting my business, I started to hit some major roadblocks in my business. I couldn’t seem to get paying clients, everyone wanted free or super discounted. For a while that was okay but I soon realized it was not sustainable and some were not doing the work. I was crushed and devastated. I did not know how to consistently attract clients and to be honest with you didn’t know who my ideal client was or what I was doing. I was too stubborn and prideful to ask for help and therefore continued to drown in my own failures.
I even got to a point were I really resented my business. I was mad, frustrated, defeated and stressed out. I had spent all this time and money and energy for what? Well everything happens for a reason so read on to learn how my experience having cancer helped me overcome the obstacles in my business.
For several months I had the constant loop of negative self-talk playing over and over in my head
“You are a failure”
“You are not good enough”
“You are a fraud”
“You will be judged”
“No one will pay that amount”
“Who do you think you are to start a business”
And on and on and on.
It led to a lot of doubt, procrastination, analysis paralysis, feeling of impostor syndrome and overwhelm. I started to second guess many of the things I was doing and stopped taking any real tangible action to move my business forward. I was so afraid to be seen as a failure and had so many limiting beliefs holding me back that I had never addressed or even knew was in the way. I had also been burned a couple times by courses that I had paid thousands for that promised inflated results using funnel, ads and complicated tech strategies that never seemed to work.
At the same time those whom I thought were supporting me, ended up turning a blind eye when I was at the lowest of low and needed their help.
And yet despite all of this when most would have just bowed out, given up and returned to their 9-5 job, I didn’t.
I look back at those times now and I can see that my ability to be resilient in the face of any obstacle or challenge that came my way and to build up that skill helped me immensely through the challenges of my business in those early months. I mean I think about how many rejections and failures I encountered but it only made me more determined to succeed because my business was so much more than just a way to make money. It was my way to create impact, to touch lives and make a difference in the world.
I want to share with you the lessons that I learned throughout that time so that you can see failure and the important of resilience as a powerful tool for the biggest success in your life.
So when things are not going as smoothly as you thought, you find your back against the wall or doubt slowly creeps in, you can say “Yes I can do this! I am meant to thrive and succeed! I can do hard things! I am intelligent, capable and resourceful.
8 Lessons I Learned
1.Write out and get really clear on your vision, mission and reason why. This will help you stay grounded and focused. When you have it written down and look at it everyday you are motivated to move forward towards that vision because your brain wants to make it a reality. It’s the best motivator out there.
2. Practice gratitude. Despite everything I constantly reminded myself of what was going right in my life and business and would keep a gratitude journal to always reflect on what I had and how thankful I was for that.
3. Take imperfect action. It was so easy to get stuck in analysis paralysis, procrastination and perfectionism. I overthought it all and made excuses for why it would not, couldn’t, or shouldn’t work for me. Perfectionism is an illusion. Instead take action each and every single day. Write out your overall goal for the month, break it down into weekly micro-goals and break it down into daily action steps and commit to it. Set deadlines for yourself and show grace if it isn’t perfect or always met. Its better to take imperfect steps forward then none at all.
4.Work on your mindset. If you take nothing else from this, know that our limiting beliefs will always pop up when we least expect it and completely throw off our efforts. I knew I had a huge limiting belief about money and so I wasn’t comfortable in enrollment calls. I had to address and change that belief because it was not serving me. To change a limiting belief, write it down and get curious. What is that belief? Where did it come from? Who told you it? Is it true? What makes it true? Are there instances when it isn’t true? What evidence do you have that makes it true and what other explanations could there be? What is a new belief you want to have? What evidence can you have to support this new belief? Rinse and repeat for all limiting beliefs and make sure to continual revisit so it can stick for you.
5. Failure is not the end. If you fail, you are not a failure and failure is not a death sentence, no its an opportunity to learn and grow. Its an opportunity to learn what isn’t working so you can figure out what is. It is all about the perspective you take around it. So don’t let it hold you back.
6. Surround yourself with supportive people. I cant stress how important it is to have someone in your corner you can count on to support and cheer you on as well as hold you accountable to the things you say you will do. This was one of the biggest game changers for me. Be very intentional about the people you have around you and make sure they are people who truly care about you and your success in life and business.
7. Have a set affirmation that you say everyday to keep you in a positive state and energy. Have a morning routine that incorporates prayer, meditation and affirmations to get you pumped, grounded and in alignment to start your day.
8. Be consistent. There will be days you don’t feel like it or some other reason. Consistency is key. Keep showing up for yourself and your business. Don’t let fear keep you stuck. Practice the 5 second rule if you get stuck and take massive consistent action.