What has been the best season for you as an entrepreneur or small business owner? What has been one of the hardest? As a female business coach and a business owner myself, I know all about both. In challenging times and in times of flourishing too, you need reminders of why you do what you do to motivate and encourage you to keep showing up and pushing forward.
As a female business coach, there are 5 truths that I consistently teach my clients. I believe if they understand, internalize, and lean into these then there is nothing that business—or life—will throw at them that they can’t handle.
I want to share these 5 truths with you in the hopes they will build you up and carry you through any season.
Imagine you are sitting on an airplane next to a stranger. After the plane takes off, she asks you what you do. What do you say?
No doubt you can easily describe the product you sell or the service you provide. But, can you explain your purpose—why you do what you do? Sometimes this is a more challenging question that forces you to push aside the details of your product and services as well as day-to-day operations to uncover your purpose and the calling on your life.
Your purpose and calling are deeper. They surface when you ask yourself questions like:
Maybe the answers came to you quickly; maybe some of the questions made you stop and think.
Through Inherited and Co., it is my desire to help others inherit the gift of creating a soul-nourishing, inviting, memory-filled home, like the ones I have enjoyed. —Lauren Klein of Inherited and Co.
My why is centered around helping women (like myself) be financial contributors in their families, while also supporting their desire and need to be flexible for their families. —Jillian Dolberry of Jillian Dolberry Virtual Services, LLC
I have experienced first-hand the challenges of pregnancy and the postpartum recovery journey, and I am passionate about supporting others through it to help ease the challenges and to instill confidence into new parents. I believe that with support, it’s easier to find the joy in the journey. —Tanya Grabbe of Tennesee Family Doulas
Our words are one of the most powerful tools we possess. I’m on a mission to empower more women to embrace their unique voice and use their words to increase their impact and live out the life they’ve dreamed of. I believe that more money and power in women’s hands is the key to improving our world and creating change for good. —Emily Conley of Emily Writes Well
Yes, it is critical that your business meets your strategic and financial goals, but it has to be more. You are on a journey to make the world a better place. And, you have a purpose and a calling on your life, and your success matters for the future good of this world.
Because your purpose and calling are unique, your path to and measure of success is also distinct from everyone else’s. This brings us to the second truth I hold as a female business coach . . .
What were your goals when you started your business? Have you met them? Have you created new ones? Do you feel “successful”?
We are tempted to measure success by the standards of the business world or by comparing ourselves to others in our industry. It is easy to fall into following what the world wants us to do. This can be discouraging or, at worst, can cause anxiety or doubt: should I even be in business?
Instead, measure your success by what you have been called to do. Are you doing this now? Sometimes we are so busy looking for the approval of those we grew up with, people we worked with early in our careers, or our first mentors. But, we may never find that approval even if we work hard and are pleased with our results.
Success is subjective to each person. No one can define this for you. You get to create your own standards and say what success is for you—now and in the future. And, you can even define success in different ways in different seasons.
My third truth relates directly to this: being fulfilled and free are part of your equation for success.
When was the first time you thought about starting a business? Who was the first person you told your idea to? How much time passed before you actually started it?
I love to ask women why they started their business. They always light up when they tell the story of that initial idea and passion. The meaning of the word “passion” has its root in the experience of pain. When we experience pain, something in us begins to stir up and change. Our passions often come from what we want to change and make better for others. Many women have started their businesses out of this passion.
Unfortunately, sometimes women lose their sense of passion, their creativity, and their urgency to transform themselves, their team and their clients. But, without passion, we can’t impact the world in the same way. If the business becomes a grind or merely a money making machine, we can’t have the same level of success or build the same legacy.
No doubt, you started your business to fulfill a dream and ensure greater freedom in your life by being your own boss, setting your own schedule, and handling your own finances. Hold on to that because being fulfilled and free is the only way up the entrepreneur ladder.
(Often we need others to inspire and refuel that initial passion. Conversations that happen in a community of like-minded people remind us of our own passion—that “why” for starting our business—and stirs passion in us and others, too. That’s one reason we call our Facebook community Fulfilled and Free CEOs.)
This is a big one, so I am going to say it again for the people in the back: your wellbeing matters. We can’t talk about business without also considering your health, relationships, and finances.
If you were to give an honest assessment, how would you rate yourself 1-10 in these areas?
Mental. Can you think clearly, solve problems, and enjoy the challenge of new ideas and learnings?
Spiritual. Do you feel like you have time for spiritual practices like reading, prayer, or meditation? Do you have time to be quiet and reflect?
Physical. How is your body doing? Do you get good sleep? Do you make time to exercise?
Relational. How are your relationships with your spouse, significant other, parents, children, and friends?
Vocational. Is work satisfying to you?
Financial. How are your finances? Do they cause ongoing stress?
Recreational. Do you have time to unplug and do things that you enjoy outside of work and household obligations?
Whether you gave yourself all high numbers, low numbers, or a mix, an assessment like this gives a glimpse into your wellbeing. Business can become all-consuming at times. But, in the long-run, you have to take care of yourself. If not, you risk your relationships, your health, and your business because your wellbeing influences and impacts every aspect of your life.
Many women in business have to give themselves permission to slow down, prioritize their needs and health, and take time for recharging and self care. Your wellbeing matters!
As an entrepreneur, you can feel like people don’t get you and don’t understand what you are doing. Do you feel very isolated and lonely even when you are surrounded by people?
Maybe you use the grind of work to put a wall up between you and real human connection. Or, maybe you find that you aren’t really putting yourself and your ideas out there because you are afraid of rejection.
If you want to run your business into the ground, isolate. But, if you want growth and impact, root yourself in a community because community lifts loneliness and inspires passion.
Isolation is from the enemy and he uses it as a tool to kill dreams. You are God’s masterpiece and He designed you with a need for connection. Even Jesus needed his disciples, remember?
This is my main “why” for starting SOWBO: we need community and connection. Here are the amazing things a thriving community can do for you:
Communities provide a platform to exchange ideas, tips, and insights with fellow entrepreneurs who’ve been through similar challenges. Learning from each other’s experiences can be a game-changer.
Building a business can be emotionally taxing. Having a community that understands your struggles and celebrates your victories is like a lifeline. They’ll keep you motivated during tough times.
In the business world, connections are gold. A strong community can open doors to collaborations, partnerships, and opportunities you might not have encountered otherwise.
Surrounding yourself with like-minded individuals who are passionate about their ventures can fuel your creativity and drive. It’s amazing how a dose of inspiration from your community can ignite innovation.
Your community will hold you accountable for your goals and aspirations. They’ll cheer you on, keep you focused, and help you stay on track.
You have purpose and a calling on your life.
Success is subjective to each person.
Being fulfilled and free is the only way up the entrepreneur ladder.
Your wellbeing matters to you, your family, your friends, your employees, and your clients.
Isolation is a dream killer because we were made for connection.
These 5 truths are the foundation of everything we do at SOWBO. From our private coaching to our lively Facebook community, from our virtual networking socials to our in-person events, and from our training sessions to our resource center, we cascade these truths over all we do.
If you are looking for a female business coach or a community of high-achieving women business owners who want to answer your questions and cheer you on, join SOWBO today. We would love to have you!