If you had of asked me in January this year what 2017 would bring, my reply would’ve been somewhat hopeful but cynical.
“Oh just more of the same old same old, but I wish my business would turn around, otherwise I might walk away.”
You see, a year ago I was in a completely different space.
I was running on empty, desperately trying to figure out my next step in business and gasping for air after 5 years of going around and around in circles. The Woman Rising Network was a dream but I couldn’t figure out how to transplant my dream into reality and I was losing time, energy and money at a rapid rate.
To say my man was also worried could be an understatement.
But it took a conversation with a former Mentor of mine to make me realise I wasn’t being honest with myself, treating my business with the space, dignity and grunt it deserved and was stuck with my head under the sand, wishing, hoping and dreaming that things will just get better…You know without any real hard work. Ha!
Luckily my friend called my bluff and after a few days of feeling sorry for myself, I finally saw the light.
What I had buried deep inside was a vision that I didn’t believe was mine to create. I never gave myself permission to truly honour my dream or trust that I was the one to make it happen.
I wanted to do sooooo much, that I was completely paralysed.
Soon the clouds parted and I started to see what might be possible if I took it step by step, day by day.
You see I’ve always been the girl who doesn’t falter when she wants something. She will go out and grab it with both hands then move on to the next thing, but this determination was actually my downfall.
I needed to take a step back from the way I’d always done things, stop assuming I’d create an ‘overnight success’ just because I was running an online business, and create a real tangible plan made up of the tried and true system of goal, deadline, action plan, and evaluation.
I’d worked through this method for years as a PR and Marketing person, why couldn’t develop the same routine in my own business?
So I did just that and started fresh.
Instead of trying to build Rome in a day, I identified what was included in my definition of ‘Rome’ (aka The Woman Rising Network) and started chipping away at it bit by bit.
Then things started falling in to place.
In September I launched the first ever edition of Woman Rising magazine which more than 1000 women across Australia downloaded – and gave rave reviews of!
This (and an array of other emotions) was the catalyst to help me identify my own feelings of isolation and disconnection working in a regional town, which stimulated The Woman Rising Network Members’ Hub, an online interactive platform for women in business in regional areas to come together from where they are to gain inspiration, support and motivation at their convenience.
The Hub launched last week and I was thrilled with the number of women who joined the movement and will take front row at our monthly conversations with special guests to hear their insights, challenges, plus the chance to ask questions to gain the inspiration they need to keep going.
It seems it’s true what they say, when you do what you love, you don’t work a day in your life.
When all else fails and you’re struggling to see the light at the end of the tunnel, it’s time to stop and ask yourself, “Am I doing what I THINK I should be doing, or what I genuinely LOVE to do?”
Writing content for a magazine, creating a Members’ Hub and building an online Network for like-minded women has been an incredible experience in more ways than one, none other than it proved that when I get out of my own way and focus on how I can be of service, things just flow more. I don’t feel like I’m pushing, striving or hustling my way to ‘success’.
Don’t get me wrong, WRN is not a success in the traditional sense of the word and I won’t be quitting my day job any time soon, but I feel like it’s already a success because I’m connecting and talking to women in a way I’ve never done before. I’m having conversations about real issues, challenges and professional development, not trying to sell a product or service and instead focusing my game on being of service to others.
The shift has been both empowering and motivating because I feel like after years of creating a business I thought would work, or followed in another’s footsteps to relipucate their achievements, I have let go of the shoulda, woulda, coulda’s and tapped in to my own world of possibilities. Then without realising it I created a year that I am proud to tie up with a big pink bow.
Here’s to an incredible 2018!
Let me know in the comments, how has 2017 treated you and what are your hopes and goals for the new year?