Are you feeling trapped in your business these days? As if there is too much to do that doesn’t feel good and you haven’t had time for the good stuff?
There is one thing that makes my heart hurt and that’s when a woman CEO tells me she feels bored and trapped in her business and it’s impacting her wellbeing.
If there is anything I’ve learned as a Brave Yes CEO and entrepreneur over the past almost 9 years, it’s this: Nothing in business is ever worth losing my own mental health and self care over.
We often go into being our own boss for the freedom. That was absolutely the case for me. I wanted to be home for my girls when they got home from school. I had been a latchkey kid in the early 1980s — as many of my GenX friends were — and so being home with them was important to me.
FREEDOM in entrepreneurship is vital.
Many of us learned in the 9 to 5 world that it’s not for us. we don’t want to be boxed in. We want …
Freedom to do as we please — including taking better care of ourselves and our families.
Freedom to be more fully ourselves — dress as we please, work at our best times and express ourselves our way.
Freedom to use our creative genius — being in business allows our strengths to shine.
And yet eventually, just like with any longtime job, we can fall into a rut and forget that freedom was the mission. We can find ourselves feeling just as trapped in our business as we did in a regular full time job.
We work more or longer hours
We lose authentic ourselves by catering to the clients and customers
We get trapped under the rubble of the daily work and lose sight of our gifts
We get caught in a survival mode cycle
Feeling Trapped in Your Business? A Framework to Keep Freedom at the Heart and Soul of Your Entrepreneur Mindset
Running a business shouldn’t feel like you are trapped.
I help my coaching clients dig out from that feeling of being trapped in their business — or industry — by co-creating a Brave Yes Business Blueprint that gives you a clear vision of how your want to show up as a CEO who is totally aligned with your soul’s goals.
I’m all about alignment, freedom and authenticity.
It is essential that you are able to carry your most authentic self into your work — through your marketing sales and offers — and to cultivate audacious self-worth by activating your highest superpowers.
I call this your A-Factor as a Brave Yes CEO.
Here’s Powerful Framework to Keep Freedom and Authenticity at the Heart and Soul of Your Business Mindset
—> LISTEN TO THIS BRAVE YES CEO EPISODE NOW OR KEEP READING FOR A SHORTER VERSION:
— Authentic Actions — I have dabbled in all kinds of marketing and branding of my businesses over the years. The only time traction happens for me is when I’m being my most empowered, authentic self.
— Activating your Superpowers — Your strengths — not your weaknesses — is what will get you ahead of the curve and help you stand out and help you feel joy. I help you unlock your superpowers so you can build on them and bolster them.
— Audacious self-worth — and enoughness — Part of your superpower system is your self-worth that gives you the inner POWER and confidence to do more of the brave work needed to be successful, to create momentum in your business, and to do the work that feels good.
— Alignment with your soul’s goals and values — A Brave Yes CEO must always feel aligned. Aligned with your soul’s goals. Your values. Your needs.
BOLDER BUSINESS BOUNDARIES BOOST kicks off this week! Over the course of this FREE podcast series you will hear more about how boundaries will ensure you can live by the A-Factor that I use in my coaching with women CEOs, founders and entrepreneurs. LEARN MORE AND SIGN UP HERE.
I don’t know a single entrepreneur who doesn’t struggle with putting themselves out there in the world to shine a light on their work, their expertise, their ideas.
We all want to be braver — at least in some form or another.
I have worked so hard in my 10 years as a creator and entrepreneur to be OK with the discomfort that comes along with doing courageous things.
It’s not always easy work for some of us.
When I was a child, my best friend and I would run around my grandparent’s huge 50 acres of forest, or her family’s rural farm pretending we were supergirls with special superpowers that protected us from everything.
We were fearless.
We climbed rock walls and trees.
We lept from rock to rock in the creek.
We ran through fields imagining we were chasing villains and saving the world.
Oh, if only all that was possible as adults.
Our superpowers must have worked wonders because we always managed to rise up from the pitfalls of our adventures such as the ravenous teeth of dogs chasing us through the woods or even my great fall squarely into a manure pit, losing a shoe in the process.
We were fearless and confident and anything was possible.
Why You Should Consider Cultivating Greater Courage as an Entrepreneur
I have been writing and creating online for 15 years.
And I remember the first webinar I did — and how terrified I was to go before hundreds of people on camera.
Now, that is easy for me.
If you want to play bigger, create more boldly and feel more confident by taking up space in the boardroom or a zoom room, you are likely wondering how you can be more brave.
One of my favorite personal development and coaching tools is focusing each morning on my own Brave Yes Power Tools. These are the tools I have selected that will help me be more me, be more confident and be more brave.
Because I’m not that fearless little girl anymore. I have to work for my courage. It’s a journey. A practice. A set of tools to use every single day because life has a way of taking over as we grow up and as we gain more and more responsibilities. Even when we know better, even when we know something needs to change, we become afraid to take risks.
We need courage now more than ever.
We need ALL kinds of courage because the market is saturated, the world is burning in many ways — physically and metaphorically.
Change is needed — and at every level.
And if you don’t step up and shine a light on your expertise and knowledge, you will be glossed over.
As a coach who literally empowers female entrepreneurs to play bigger in their business, I help you get unstuck so you can make necessary courage moves to grow your business.
What it means to be Brave as an Entrepreneur
Brave isn’t always big.
Sometimes — and often — brave is quiet and hidden from the world around you that only you see it and know it’s unfolding.
My Brave Yes CEO clients are focused on isn’t jet-setting and taking physical risk — though one of my more quiet clients did just brag about breaking a board in her karate class! Many of my clients are approaching midlife, raising families and don’t have the time or energy for big, physical risk-taking.
They want to be influential in their work and industry.
They want to serve deeply with heart and soul.
Inside my Brave Yes Coaching Program, I work with you on operationalizing The Brave Yes Power Tools — a set of powerful tools, practices and exercises to boost resilience, courage and well-being. These are the tools we need to be more courageous, to be women of influence, to be authentic, brave creators and changemakers are necessary.
From my research and coaching work I have identified (at least) 10 types of courage you can apply in your life and business as an entrepreneur.
Here’s 10 Ways to Be More Courageous in Your Business
DO YOU NEED SPIRITUAL COURAGE?
Spiritual Courage is actually one of my favorite areas to focus on in coaching as I have been inspiring women to leave their spiritual comfort zones for many years. Plus, as a longtime creative and creator — it takes a lot of trust to put your work out into the world, especially brave, authentic work that showcases your own ideas.
Spiritual courage is needed most when you need to take a Brave Yes Leap in your life — a new habit, a new attitude or perhaps a long overdue change that is scary yet exciting and liberating. You need spiritual courage when trust is needed as much as — or more than — taking action. Examples of this could include leaving an abusive or oppressive job, relationship or even a church. But it can also be a powerful practice as well if you simply want to expand your own spiritual beliefs or practice.
This kind of courage is also needed when you are ready to try something brave and out of your comfort zone — you know what you need to do but you are afraid nonetheless. Spiritual courage is also needed as you learn to trust yourself more or listen more to your own needs and intuition after years of not putting yourself first.
DO YOU NEED CREATIVE COURAGE?
Creative courage is a powerful yet fun focus area of courage — and one that I use often as an online creator, coach and writer. Creative courage is so needed in this world in order to stand out and make a splash in the busyness of the information highway.
We need leaders, artists, makers,, changemakers and creators to feel free to play and experiment with your full range of creativity and possibility. You need creative courage to write or even to dream of writing a book or becoming an author. You need creative courage to become a better painter, a prolific potter or a puppeteer (I actually have had a client whose husband did just this).
It takes creative courage to come out and practice your passion and to own it — such as one of my clients who is a clown but hadn’t done clowning since becoming a mother.
Physical courage isn’t just about running a marathon or signing up for Ironman — though it can be, for sure. It can also be about finally knowing that you need to make that long overdue dentist or mammogram appointment.
Physical courage is needed when you need to re-learn how to love yourself, take up space with your body and even give up on diet culture and learn how to love and listen to your body.
Physical courage is also needed when you are ready to leave your comfort zone and start to try new things — such as the time I finally swam in the sea for only the second time in my life. It might be ziplining or jumping out of an airplane but it also might be using your body to create a human wall during a protest.
DO YOU NEED EMOTIONAL COURAGE?
Emotional courage is used when you are afraid to show your emotions, afraid to reveal your emotions or afraid to talk about your emotions — or other people’s. This is all about how you allow yourself to be in emotional discomfort as well as practice leaning toward positive emotions.
I’ve been working with women for years on what I call the messy middle — the very uncomfortable space between places or the the midst of change that hasn’t fully happened yet — and this is a place of emotional upheaval, which makes it the perfect time to practice emotional courage.
Emotional courage is about embracing and honoring all of our huge spectrum of feelings that course through us in a single day or week or month. Learning to embrace our sensitive nature is courageous.
This kind of courage can also be about learning to love yourself, finally believing in yourself and your self-worth or accepting all of yourself.
Social courage is about being authentically you in every way and not being afraid to stand out, stick out or look different from others.
It can also be about taking risks to make friendships — or to end toxic friendships.
I love working with my clients on social courage as it’s all apart of our journey toward taking up more space in this world — because this is about walking into a room and feeling like you belong no matter what.
And, just as important, is practicing social courage when you want to network, connect and uplevel in your career. Reaching. outto build new relationships can feel very risky — and yet it’s essential to moving up in your career.
DO YOU NEED MORAL COURAGE?
Moral courage is about speaking up and leading your life based on your beliefs and values. It is beautiful to see people practicing moral courage more and more these days.
Of course, this is also what has divided people so it’s one that is super tricky and generally a challenge for humanity. And so moral courage can also be about listening, compassion and being kind in difficult circumstances.
When we are led by moral courage, we stand up and speak up for those who do not have a voice, we use our power to effect change and we do what we think is best based on our values and beliefs.
Sharing publicly that I support Black Lives Matter and other human rights causes is one way that I practice moral courage. I also have begun to plant trees as a 1:1 initiative for every client I work with.
Moral courage is an essential ingredient to use in the Brave Yes Life since it is values-led living and leadership.
DO YOU NEED INTELLECTUAL COURAGE?
Intellectual courage is hard to quantify but it can be as simple as learning more about an issue or cause that you are interested in. It can also be more complex like trying to understand a concept that is hard for you.
I work with my clients on deepening their intellectual courage all the time.
You need intellectual courage when you feel like you are not being stretched enough to use your mind, your brain or your ideas. You may feel bored by your job or your business. You may be bored in life, in general.
Intellectual courage is often more needed than we think and is such an easy one to work in to your everyday life. But choosing where to dedicate your learning energy is important. You want to focus on something that is going to truly capture your attention.
DO YOU NEED FINANCIAL COURAGE?
Financial courage is having the audacity to face your money story and your money struggles.
This type of courage is needed when you have been afraid to open your bank account and deal with the situation perhaps because of lack of enough money to do all the things you want in your life.
Financial courage is needed most when you need to have a better understanding of your financial situation and have possibly had your head in the sand over where your money is going.
You need financial courage when you are ready to uplevel in your life or lifestyle and take control over your money and your future.
DO YOU NEED IDENTITY COURAGE?
This kind of courage is about being willing to change a part of your identity — or a long held belief about yourself — that is no longer serving you.
If you have a sense that you are being held back by childhood conditioning or a relationship, you may be feeling a need for an identity change. You may need identity courage if you feel like you are ready to transition to a new gender or even to release all binary definitions of yourself. This may also be needed if you are uncovering a new understanding of your sexuality.
Identity Courage is often a huge Brave Yes as it relates to leaving a bad marriage or a bad job. It may mean changing who you hang out with or the kind of work you do or the business you’ve been running. It may also be all about upleveling and rising into someone of influence rather than hiding and staying quiet.
You need identity courage when you want to be braver as you head through a life change that means letting go of some — or all — of who you used to be.
DO YOU NEED SELF-AWARENESS COURAGE?
Self-awareness courage is about making the time and space to finally start knowing yourself and taking care of yourself.
This is often needed most when you are trying to make space for yourself, your needs, your joy and your pleasure after years of denial and hiding yourself.
Self-awareness courage is needed when you need to figure out who you are and what you are about and what brings you pleasure. Sometimes this kind of courage is about breaking bad habits, starting new rituals and routines or knowing finally what you really want for yourself.
This kind of courage is important because the fear of never knowing who you are and what brings you pleasure and joy is real. And, self-awareness work takes courage because it often brings up tender, difficult feelings. But it always leads you to a greater understanding of yourself so that you can be more brave and take up more space.
I’m feeling the good energy one feels after spending a positive, uplifting afternoon with other women. The spring retreat was yesterday and we really focused on exceptional well-being practices that would not only feel good but leave us lifted up and in a more optimal state emotionally and mentally.
It’s not the same as being in person but it’s oh so good.
One of the themes that came up a lot by the end of the retreat is the work that these women need to do around releasing fears.
And in coaching work, this is a big part of the work we do. It’s necessary to release fears in order to move forward in our lives.
When we are standing up for ourselves, our beliefs, our dreams … we are also putting ourselves out there. We are giving ourselves space to do something incredible, something novel.
In my recent podcast, I am talking about how we make decisions to act on our Brave Yes Leaps.
These resilience strategies are a part of my Rise Stronger Retreat Workshops that I am offering for FREE to teams of frontline and essential workers all over the world through Zoom through March. (I also offer the retreat workshops for business and organizational teams.)
There are solutions for that. You can flourish in the discomfort. You must.
You can’t keep looking away and pretending it doesn’t exist.
You must create an armor, a shield, a body vest of protection to walk into the fire.
I can give you the armor and the comfort AND the tools you need to use your voice and take up space and start to make a difference in YOUR way.
The world needs you to do the hard work of showing up because it’s going to take all of us collectively to change the systems that are broken and oppressing the vulnerable and the weakest.
Your voice is needed.
Your art is needed.
Your songs are needed.
Your poetry is needed.
Your brave leadership is needed.
YOU — the real, authentic you — is needed.
It will be uncomfortable, yes. Absolutely.
You will struggle with wanting to close the blinds of life and lay down and take a nap or get up and change the world.
You will struggle with losing people close to you.
You will struggle with whether you have the energy or not.
And I am here to tell you that we can do both.
We must do both — take really good care of ourselves and unearth the zone of genius we have to offer this world AND choose courage over comfort.
We have an earth to save. And children to release from cages and families to reunite. We have an entire race of people who are being killed by the state unapologetically. We have bullies in charge and not just in the White House. Everywhere. Bullies are everywhere.