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Business Empowerment for Creative and Holistic Entrepreneurs

The Two Skills You Need

Jen Aly
Jen AlyPublished on August 17, 2022

To Breakthrough to the Next Level of Business Growth

Business growth always presents some level of discomfort. It’s never easy.

Every time I move to the next level, no matter which area of my life I look at, I have to do something that doesn’t come naturally to me.

I don’t know anyone who has not been impacted by the challenges in the world. This is a time of significant growth for everyone I know.

Personally, I’ve made a few deep dives inward and asked myself what’s important, noticed what I’ve been tolerating, and clarified what I really want and how to make the necessary changes I need. This is a very personal process and impacts my relationship with my business and the direction I want to take my business growth.

While this sounds simple, it hasn’t been easy. And I’m not alone in the change. So many people have been making major decisions out of desire or necessity.

The years before COVID-19 hit, I was overworking and struggling with stress-related health issues, while I ran two businesses and was active in my community. In 2019 I flew to California monthly for the first part of the year for an intense training and the few months after that I spent every waking hour thinking about and preparing for a TEDx talk I was to give in September. I felt exhausted, anxious, stressed out, and burnt out.

And then it was time for the holiday season for one of my businesses. I didn’t want to maintain my jewelry business, much less focus on business growth. I had no rest….and my health issues were getting worse and even morphing into new levels of disharmony.

When the pandemic hit, my lifestyle dramatically changed: I was mostly quarantined alone for 3 months. As a result, I had more rest than I’ve had since I was a young child and I was alone for what was by far the longest period of my life.

During so much time alone during the early weeks of the pandemic, I swam through murky, cold, and rough waters of the depths of my psyche I had never touched before. I had space to feel my feelings as they came up, to feel grief that was present to the world coming unhinged, and residual grief from the past (when I was too busy to feel.)

Through cultivating more capacity or self-presence, confidence in my intuition, and healing self-worth issues, I’ve made huge decisions that are more aligned with the version of me that is coming out of the cocoon. I have a refreshed vision that is more connected to my health, heart, and desires and less from routine, ego, and my head. These insights have been powerful fertilizer for business growth.

How do we integrate the new insights and turn clarity into courage and take “effective action”?

Skill #1 for business growth= Set boundaries.

What are you tolerating?

What is biting at your ankle, so to speak, as you climb the mountain of your dreams? This could be a drain on your energy, overworking, codependency, avoiding something important, etc.

What do you need to let go of, move on from? Where do you need to set a boundary, to say no to one thing to say yes to what you really want?

We say “no” to what we have merely been tolerating, the routines that have been dragging us slowly down away from what we truly want.

While this sounds simple, I find that these consistent lifestyle circumstances are the hardest to change.

Sometimes this thing that we need to say no to is something that we worked so hard to be able to say yes to. This was true for me.

Starting in 2012, I slowly began turning a hobby into a business. I had been severely burnt out from teaching college level English and grading a billion papers a week. I had a new-found relationship with my creativity in the form of designing and making jewelry. It was so nurturing for me.

For 9 years I made jewelry, sold jewelry, taught classes, and had a thriving business that provided thousands of pieces of handmade jewelry per year.

Fast forward to spring 2020 and I was feeling a strong desire to nurture other pursuits, especially expanding my coaching business, writing, and painting. So, I made the decision to put my jewelry business up for sale. The action steps flowed more easily than anything had in a while, I had a burst of energy and focus to do inventory at my studio, and I quickly signed a contract with a broker who would help me sell it.

At the end of 2020, I sent off 99% of the assets from my jewelry business with a happy buyer and could not have been more relieved.

Skill #2 for business growth= Receive support.

Asking for and receiving support has not been my strongest skill set.

The hyper-independant voices in my head quickly squelch the idea of asking for support or giving myself support.

These voices tell me “I don’t need help,” “I’m fine,” and “I don’t want to bother anyone.” Another common voice here may offer that you “should be able to do you yourself,” even if what you are doing is brand new to you.

Starting, running, and growing a business takes a very wide range of skill sets, knowledge, experiementation, risk, vulnerabilty, and energy.

Even after years and years of having businesses, I’m always learning and growing. As fast as social media, technology, and culture change, you have to constantly grow just to keep up, much less to feel ahead.

Sometimes all I need is a conversation with a colleague or friend to have the breakthrough I need.

Sometimes I need to hire a professional who knows way more than me in an area that I want to grow.

When I have given support to myself by asking for it and receiving it, it has been more necessary and valuable than I anticipated. The expert I hire teaches me so much I didn’t know I didn’t know and then I’m on a whole different playing field. And I have those skills and insights to share with my clients.

Stretching into new areas of growth and learning puts you at your next level. Giving yourself support flexes your receiving muscle which upgrades your prosperity.

What areas of your business do you feel confident in?

What areas are you ready to stretch into to take yourself to the next level?

Think of one small action step you can take to stretch toward business growth.

Commit to it and put it in your calendar.

If you are ready for next level growth and support, schedule a Zoom with me to see if working together might be a fit.

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