Joy is important and necessary for PEOPLE LIKE US.
People like us who are meaning makers, conscious, feminist, justice-oriented know that we don’t want a capitalist business model. We don’t want to run our business as usual.
We want more YESES.
Because fuck it.
Like is short.
In my last episode, I talked about things you can do to add joy into your business day.
But, the joy stuff doesn’t have to stop there.
You can operationalize joy.
You can make it a part of your mission, your business practices.
You can bake joy into your marketing plan, your sales strategy.
If your marketing tactics make you feel ick, you need a joy infusion!
If you feel resistance to a certain way of doing business that you’ve learned from someone else, that is a red flag that that system isn’t working for you.
Create your own system that is centered around what works for you, what feels good. It’s easy to think there are rules in business — that’s just because we’ve been conditioned by capitalism to operate by a certain set of workplace and business rules.
We can reject any and all of that if it doesn’t feel good.
Listen to this episode here … or read the highlights below.
How you choose and find your most aligned clients — if your sales process zaps your joy, it needs to change.
How you market and share your wisdom — if your marketing tactics and strategies zap your joy — they need to change.
How and when you serve your clients — if delivery and follow through is zapping your energy, something needs to change.
If you are all work and no play, where does joy fit in? Your daily structure and weekly routines need to change.
If your vision bores you to tears, we can work on that.
If your creative practices are non-existent — we can work on that.
If you are too busy doing it all, it’s time to hire. If your team is sucking the energy out of you, we can make some changes there as well.
How you come up with new offers or products, even email can be a joy stealer.
We can even operationalize joy on the hard days.
Hard Days in the business, hard weeks hard months.
You know, Joy is one of those most beautiful free things that doesn’t take a lot of effort.
That doesn’t take anything from us. It’s just it is always accessible. The question is, do you have the capacity and the clarity to know that that’s what you need right now.
When we operationalize joy, it means we’re really taking ourselves and our work more seriously — not lesss. It’s not just an afterthought. It’s not just a side, little side hustle, like from time to time like that we do just because it’s not a hobby. Joy is an important, positive emotion that we need to feel. Without joy, we’re not going to feel hope. So we need the joy to be infused to be to be baked in at every at every turn for us, for our team, for our customers and our clients. And then ultimately for you know, the community that we serve. So if you’re leading with joy that is going to spread like wildfire, it is a joy is contagious.
And I’ll end with this story. I was walking in the city recently, and just walking down the street, and suddenly we passed a woman.
And her whole face just bloomed and blossomed into the biggest smile.
Just at the sight of us. I was walking with my daughter.
And I of course smile back, you know, but I was so I was so mesmerized by that instant where her joy at seeing us strangers that she’s never seen before.
What it did for me and so that, that joy that I’m talking about that spreads, that happens in your business to it happens in in you and it happens in your business and it happens among your team members.
If you’re feeling the joy, and you’re baking the joy in then your team is going to start to feel the joy and your customers and your clients are going to feel the joy rather than just sterile business as usual.
You can have fun.
When you operationalize joy, you’re going to have more fun. And when you’re having fun, you’re going to stick with it longer and you’re going to work harder and you’re going to feel like you can accomplish anything.
So I would love to hear from you. I would love to hear how you are going to operate, operationalize joy, how you’re going to bake it into your business, how you’re going to bake it into your life and it’s your work day.
So many entrepreneurs come to me feeling like there is more for them that they have more to give, but their capacity is maxed out and they can’t figure out what their next step is, what their Brave Yes is going to be or what that next bold move is going to be.
They want to shake up their business model or shake up their income or their sales, but often as part of the capacity building that we need to do in order to make big moves, or even to make decisions about big moves, we need to help them find their joy again.
Business can be a joy zapper.
Joy stealers are all abound in entrepreneurial life.
Some of the common complaints I hear from my clients who are in this place is they say,
I’m bored with my business
I’m burned out
I don’t get excited about anything anymore.
I don’t have time for joy in my life or my business.
I’m too busy slogging through the daily grind.
My business takes every ounce of my energy.
There is nothing is left for me creatively.
I’ve outgrown my business. And I don’t know what to do next. But I’m too trapped in the day to day to figure it out.
Even if what you’re doing is something you’re not passionate about — and this speaks to the passion paradigm right now, right because Everybody wants to start a business and thinks they will be happier.
Should you follow your passion, or should you do something more practical?
And maybe maybe you’re doing something that you’re passionate about maybe or not, doesn’t matter, doesn’t matter doesn’t matter.
Joy is still available to you to everyone.
And it must be included and baked in for people like us.
For people like us, it is very important to prioritize and operationalize joy.
everything I know about being a creative a creator, and an entrepreneur, which I’ve been doing for 15 years, is that when my passion is 100%, my joy follows. And when my joy leads, business thrives.
Tiny Changes to Make Your Business Feel 10 Times More Joyful
When when you’re trapped in the land of bitter and sour or when you are slogging through doing the boring things that you are not interested in doing. Expansion doesn’t happen in safe zones. And so yes, choosing joy in your business is a brave Yes.
Here’s three changes to make. So that you feel 10 times more joyful in your business …
ONE: the first way, first change that you can make in your business to feel more joyful, one, release the heavy stuff that isn’t working for you. And in this case, I would recommend doing a business cleanse, this is where you stop doing everything that doesn’t feel like joy, everything. And if you can’t let it go, and that is a sign that there is something that needs to change. If there’s still stuff that you have to slog through and do, it feels heavy and hard, and you’re very resistant to doing it, but you have to do it, there’s a sign, there is a red flag there that there needs to be a change in your business and your business model.
TWO: reassess your priorities and recommit to the projects and aligned clients that bring you the most joy or contentment. When you focus on impact and joy, everything that doesn’t meet that criteria has to go and so when you are adding back into your business and you’re deciding what projects you want to do, what clients you want to serve what’s offers you want to put out into the world.
THREE: Focus on your next brave Yes, as the founder of your business, focusing on your possibilities is a great way to boost your energy and your joy. And you know, truthfully, like, if you can prioritize your next brave, yes, either discovering it or following through on it. You’re gonna feel more joy. You’re gonna feel more joy. You just start. And again, brave. Yes, is about the Yes. There’s lots of things we need to do in business that are brave. But they’re not all brave, yeses. Some of them are just brave. Some of those are brave sucks, right? Like, you’ve got to suck it up and do it. But a lot of things can also be a brave Yes, where we’re just feeling good, joyful. Energy is stretching us in a good way. And we are excited about it.
I think back to the times in my life when I said YES to myself, to something that called me and I can’t think of a time I regret.
Every YES was a game changer.
From writing a book and self-publishing, to launching a free email course to traveling across the country solo to attend an amazing conference and put my feet in the freezing Pacific Ocean for the first time.
I haven’t found one yes to lead me astray.
Think back to the times in your life when you said Yes — and by YES I am talking about the Brave Yeses, the kinda scary but liberating and exciting ones.
Not just any yes but the yeses that were meaningful, purposeful and expansive to your life and work.
As busy female founders and creatives, it’s easy to say no to ourselves.
We like our noes.
But I have learned that saying yes can change everything.
And by that I don’t mean to other people’s yeses.
I mean to the deep desires that live inside of us.
When we give ourselves permission to explore our own brave yeses and say yes to ourselves, we’re opening the door to our own higher purpose, our own meaningful lives.
As female creatives, founders and entrepreneurs we are carrying so much more than our businesses and our creative work.
We’re holding a load of responsibilities and stress.
So if you’ve been hard on yourself for not being farther along … it’s not you. It’s the system.
That’s why I’m on a mission with my Brave Yes Coaching Programming to help you offload some of YOUR stress by helping you rediscover your passion and your spark for life, for work, for art, for whatever brings you alive!
I believe working toward a YES is the single most important antidote to a lot of things: burnout, stress, the Land of Bitter and Sour, exhaustion, languishing, boredom etc.
Yeses come in all sizes, shapes and colors, which is what makes them so beautiful.
I also know that most female creatives sit on their true Brave Yeses for far too long and don’t take action.
Let’s change that for YOU.
What is a Brave Yes?
A Brave Yes can mean many things but ultimately it is a powerful action you want to take to become more alive, more aligned and more authentic in your way of being in this world.
These kinds of yeses are courageous and lead us often to a more impactful life or identity as well as bringing us a sense of meaning and purpose.
A Brave Yes may take years or months or weeks. It’s often not an overnight decision though it certainly can be at times, depending on the yes.
I have a client who was burned out by her business model and the hustle and grind and she ultimately decided that her first Brave Yes — we’re still working on others for her — was going to be to get a full-time job and run her business on the side.
This YES liberated her from the pressure of earning money so could get back to loving the creative work she loved. Her job pays her bills. Her business gives her meaning and purpose.
What is a Yes Project?
A Yes Project is a goal, a task, a project, a habit that you want to say YES to because it makes you happy, it lights you up, it brings you joy — or it should.
It’s easy to have a long list of projects laying around in our notebooks and planners, especially as CEOs and entrepreneurs. Sometimes these projects, though, are shoulds.
And Should Projects aren’t the same as YES projects.
I have another client who loves to write and makes a living writing. So naturally she started a YES project that ultimately became added stress and pressure for her. Her first Brave Yes was letting that project go …
And what opened up to her was the space to think, dream and think about what she really wanted to do with her time. It opened up an opportunity for her a truly huge Yes Project — to write a novel.
I host bi-weekly Brave Yes Action Hour sessions for the members of my Brave Yes Slack Community and our whole intention is to create space for our YES projects.
It’s time to Make an Offering to Yourself
We simply cannot keep crumbling to the pressures of the day and not make meaningful progress toward those things that bring us alive, or more wealth, more connection, more change that this world needs right now.
This is why last month I focused on capacity — and will continue to do so.
But we also need to have the courage to fight for what we know this world needs, what people need and how to lead and serve in a bigger, bolder way.
This is where your YES comes in.
Let’s build a YES movement.
I’m calling in right now a movement of action toward A Million YES Projects, founded by female creatives, entrepreneurs and visionaries unfolding in the next 10 years.
Yes, 1 Million in 10 years.
And I’m here to do my part, to help usher in these 1 Million YES Projects.
Because you have the vision to be the change this world needs, you have art this world needs, you have words the world needs, you have offerings the world needs.
Even if you’re tired, even if you’re exhausted — especially if you are burned out — I invite you to say yes to yourself and find a YES to light your path ahead.
I encourage you to create space in your calendar for your YES to start taking action on your YES.
It’s NEARLY IMPOSSIBLE to make a Brave Yes business move — a change, a pivot, creating a YES offer, or implementing the Brave Yes mindset — when you are bogged down by stress, burnout and overwhelm.
Running a business often means a non-stop to-do list. We never reach the end. There’s always more. More to do. More to dream up. More to make happen. More to build.
At the center of all that, is you — the CEO and founder, the visionary behind the business.
And your energy, your capacity and your needs.
The idea of Work-Life Balance seems kind of simple compared to the tangled up threads running through a CEO and her business.
Add to that the possibility of living through a pandemic while also caring for yourself, pets, a house and a family.
In other words, if you’re exhausted, it’s no wonder.
This week, on the Brave Yes CEO Show, I”m talking about what it means to hold more than our business — what happens as a result and why it’s important to honor where we are and build a business from that space.
As founders, we’re not just juggling business and life. There are so many nuances running deep and leaving ruts in our days.
Among my own clients, here’s what they have been juggling beyond their own business:
— Covid mitigation
— Covid recovery
— Health scares and crisis
— Home Repair issues and fiascos
— Health care bills
— Mental Health matters among spouses and children
— Aging, ailing parents
— Job loss
— Virtual Learning Days
As we are juggling all of that, we’re also juggling the cleaning, the meals, the laundry and scheduling all the appointments, filling out all the paperwork, making sure all the Is are dotted and Ts are crossed.
And, in the back of our mind is this … how are we going to bring in the income next month?
And my clients aren’t alone.
Last August, I was gleefully looking forward to FINALLY, FINALLY having 5 full weekdays to do my creative work and serve clients.
And maybe also take time for myself.
But the week my kids returned to school — a school that we quickly learned was not right for them — my husband had a heart attack, toppling everything we knew to be true. Shock. Despair. Fear.
And while I still ran my business, I think I made it look too easy. I was tired of being strong. I needed help. So I got help.
I didn’t share that I made a few changes in my life to make it through. Thankfully my business was doing well enough I could re-hire my house cleaner. I shored up my own foundation a bit by taking on an additional bigger client with more consistency and predictability — which was a very good move for me generally. I learned to lean on people.
Until then I was going it alone. Carrying the burdens quietly.
This is not how we create an environment for Braver Business moves. In my Braver CEO framework, I focus a lot on what it means to empowering yourself to do the hard things.
But that all must start with a foundation of wellbeing … A foundation of YES, I have the energy to do this now.
I’m rejecting the idea that we need to be stronger, push harder and keep trying to get where we want to be — without first acknowledging that this is hard, hard, hard stuff we’re doing and making sure that capacity planning — which takes into account where we are, who we are and what our life circumstances are — as we plan out the future of our businesses.
Your business needs to serve you and your whole life.
You are holding so much more than a business as the CEO of your little Queendom. This notion that all you have to juggle is life and work over simplifies it all. I reject themes of hustling, of showing up no matter what because frankly, you are holding so much more than a marketing plan in your head.
No wonder you forget what you need to do on a Monday. The weekend was filled with chaos.
Take a moment to hold space for yourself, for the many parts of your life that are weighing you down, holding you back, keeping you stalled. Honor that this is your life right now. You are where you are. It is what it is.
To invest in your capacity and planning a business that honors where you are and who you are right now and that you may not have the full on support, the thriving environment, the team, the capabilities you need right now to BE the business you want to have in the future. You are growing through the gap and going through your own expansion slowly, on your own terms. There’s power in that.
Let’s focus on building your capacity AND a plan that honors your capacity. There are so many creative ways to do business. You don’t have to be locked into one vision. It’s far easier to create a vision that is doable than it is to create a vision that deflates your passion and your desire for change.
Creative flow will not show up if you are feeling zapped emotionally or energetically.
This is the biggest obstacle I see with my clients who struggle with accessing creative flow consistently.
Let’s hop on a ZOOM call and discuss the ways in which you can both build your capacity and confidence this year to see your Brave Yes dream through to the finale. Schedule here.