My desire to set up an online business was part of my plan to gain financial freedom. I wanted more flexibility to travel around the world while having an online business running. Being online means I wouldn’t be stuck behind a desk and it could provide a nice income stream. All along I knew I needed to get this business up and running but it seemed I always had an excuse for not doing what it took to get it done. I knew I needed a mentor or business coach to hold me accountable; but where to find one?
I met James through our involvement with Junior Achievement in 2001. About two years ago I was looking for a speaker for a client doing a two-day strategy retreat and my assistant suggested James. After James made his two-hour presentation at the client event I approached him. I talked to him about my desire to start an online financial analysis training programme. I needed his assistance to keep me on track.
He asked me to attend one of his free talks on Marketing with Confidence. My colleague went to the free talk as I had a client meeting when James was holding the talk. However, immediately after the talk I received a phone call from my colleague expounding on the highlights of the talk and how great it would be for us to join his class. We joined James’ Marketing with Confidence course the same day.
We learned so much about marketing and how we could apply it to the online business. Many of the things people were discussing I had already gone through in operating my financial consulting business over the last 16 years and through personal experiences. As a result, I could contribute to the varied discussions and give suggestions as to how to handle the situations. It was nice that I could share of myself and give back to others. I enjoyed this as much as learning new things from James.
Despite all the knowledge gained by attending James’ marketing classes, my online business was still not up and running. I had yet to find the time to build the course. I spoke to James for more hands on accountability. That is where we are now. It has been about four months now; we meet for an hour every two weeks. He gives me assignments, we talk and he gives me recommendations to meet new people and to think about how I can relate my experiences of working and travelling the world to help others.
Through discussions with James, I have been examining everything, including why I had yet to write the financial analysis courses. Just the other day I was talking to him about women’s tendencies to sabotage themselves. Growing up I watched my mother downplay her intelligence. I knew she was smart, but in the 60’s when I was growing up, being a house-wife was what women did, it was the norm even though some women wanted to pursue other careers. I learned from an early age to look at my mother as a fantastic role model in terms of thinking
and common sense. The best thing my mother ever told me was “Think. Don’t panic.”
“Think. Don’t panic”. This is something I am now writing about. Think about your choices. Think about the consequences of those choices you have made, and then decide. Don’t be reactive be proactive. As a child, my mum would see me get upset when my brothers did something mean to me. She would ask, “Why are you reacting to them? By reacting to what they did, you are giving them what they want – a reaction. If you don’t react they will stop bothering you.”My mother was a genius.
Growing up in the female liberalization period in the 60’s and 70’s I didn’t want to be a stay-at-home-mum. My girlfriends and I were all planning on going to university and having careers; we were going to do it all! Sorry, but you are not going to have it all. No one has it all. I know that now. But how many women grew up with that concept? We have to be realistic with our expectations. We have to make choices about what is important to us. We must realize that what is important to me, may not be important to you. So don’t judge where you are in life by others. As women, we tend to sabotage ourselves. To reach our true potential we need to help each other, not compete against each other.
All of this came out during a discussion with James…he didn’t know my history but he said something that triggered our discussion about women. He helped me realize why I respond to things the way I do. More importantly, he helped me discover a new passion – helping women in business handle issues with a woman’s perspective. James really helps bring out ideas you hadn’t thought about before. And he does it very innocently. He is not digging or probing; that would make most people withdraw. He is truly trying to help you. I love that. I look at what James has done for me and all his other clientele and I think, ‘I can do that!’ He’s pushing me to get it done.
Now, it’s all about implementation. On 8 th June I will be conducting my inaugural women’s seminar aimed at creating a new women entrepreneurship support network …Progress! I hope to see you there! I will share more information in subsequent blog posts.