Hi ,


A small change to my email - the header now represents what I mainly talk about. Funny how such small changes can feel monumental hey?


Anyway, on to today's email...


I realise I could focus on one thing in particular today but I  don't want to right now. That may look unhelpful but instead I see it as useful. There's SO MUCH to say (and hear) about the second lockdown, that I haven't gathered my thoughts on it yet. And yet, perhaps it's just 'norm' already - we're in it, or to coin a phrase I utterly hate and keep hearing; 'it is what it is'.


For now, let's talk friends and our business.


I've been sharing some key phrases over on IG the last few weeks which lots of you have told me are really hitting home. I can also tell since there's engagement on those posts, DMs to me, tags and saved posts as a result (a great sign that your message is making an impact).


One of the most impactful posts was about what our non business friends think. Or should I say, not worrying about what our non-business friends think, and I wanted to break that down a little more here on my email.


In the post itself I broke down why it might be that we do worry what non-business friends think in particular.


Perhaps it's a status thing, knowing we've broken free from the ranks of traditional comparison. Perhaps it's a lingering feeling from when we met them and each of our progression in life, needing and wanting validation. Perhaps it's a sense of acceptance when we've done something different to what others may have done.


Personally I'm at the point now where more of my old non-business friends are doing their own thing than not; by which I mean being employed, or stay-at-home parents (a whole other job, obvs). 


In my immediate family my husband, brother and his wife are all self employed which although different businesses  all serve their audiences or community for the greater good.


What I love though is the feeling when you really begin to acknowledge that having your own business IS your way of life. It's not different, it's not 'out there', it's not something to be brushed aside. It just IS. It's who you are, how you present yourself, what you talk about (possibly endlessly in some cases!) and so it follows that we do gravitate towards lots of other people who are doing the same.


It's why we love networks of other business owners because we can share experiences. It's why we join memberships with other people in similar places to our business so we can learn with and from each other. It's why we 'collect' other entrepreneurs along our journey - connecting on IG perhaps and then continuing to chat in almost intimate ways that feel easy and light. Because we have so much in common.


This isn't to say non-business friends DON'T get it. Nor that they're not supportive. But it shows how we're able to flex and change as we develop our skills, business acumen and growth.


I over-heard a conversation on the radio in the background the other day (so I don't remember who it was with or the programme) with a business owner who was saying she'd had no idea just how much personal development she'd go through in the process of setting up, running and growing her business. She said it was like she'd taken a whole life coaching training alongside her business. 


This feels so true, and such a great description. We learn, grow, build our resilience up, develop new ways of thinking, understand communication, numbers, psychology, our personality, our working and living styles and so much more as a direct result of running our business. 


Now I think about it, the brilliant Lauren from Wear 'Em Out pads said something similar in a recent post of hers too, although she'll be the first to admit she was talking more about how all consuming it really can be...or is.


But back to our non-business friends. 


I believe a lot of them watch as we make the progression from employee to business owner (with perhaps side-hustle owner in the middle) and want us to succeed. They want us to thrive, they want us to grow and shine. They may even tell us that - sometimes or frequently.


They equally, or others amongst our various groups, may be highly triggered by our business developments. I've discovered over the years that many friends would have loved to have done what I did 8 years ago but didn't feel they could, for various reasons.


Notwithstanding that I honestly had no other choice - cancer had left my body ravaged with fatigue and anxiety and I couldn't fathom working in the same way again, nor travelling to get somewhere for that work (although that doesn't make my previous AND subsequent choice to train in coaching any less passionate or from choice either).


But our development can do that to people. And this is where we bring in our business friends too, and the familiarity of any kind of comparison. 


Our growth might make others feel smaller.

Our learning might make others feel they don't know enough.

Our success might make others feel they won't have any or the same.

Our changes might make others scared they won't or can't change.


Notice how I flipped the language. I could have been much more positive but I think this is really powerful to start with to show how anyone -  non / business / us - can feel these things.


Flipping it would be far more inspirational of course:


Our growth does not make others smaller.

Our learning doesn't mean others don't learn or know enough.

Our success doesn't discount or stop others success.

Our changes don't mean others can't change.


The whole part of the original IG post was to say it doesn't matter what others think of our business. 


But the truth is we feel is does - sometimes more so than other times.


But in many ways, if we can separate ourselves from what we need from others (love, validation, attention, amongst other things) from what we know we can achieve in our business (success, growth, ease, profits etc) then we are onto a winning formula.


We don't become devoid of emotion and not care what others think. We just allow ourselves to not get caught up in NEEDING so, or too, much from others, in order to make our business run and grow how we want it to. 


This takes work of course - conscious effort to remind ourselves that we're on the right path, that we have it within ourselves to keep going, to constantly evolve so that our business, offerings, service quality and more are always top quality. 


But to know you can lead with that from within yourself FIRST is the ultimate resilience strategy. It is powerful, it is empowering.


I have in the past talked to many different types of businesses about this and this applies to you all. More recently I have shifted my focus to working with service based businesses (or products with a service offering - both of which support people in some way - and again the same still applies.


So, to conclude. It is indeed safe to not worry what your non-business friends think. It is growth, it is development, it is all learning. You are still you. You still hold the same values (in 99% of cases anyway!). 


Your business and you thrive when you take the path that feels, and is, the most abundant for you. Don't let what others may or may not think about that path hold you back from journeying along it. 


With that, I hope you have a good weekend coming up, whatever home or exercise based activities you're doing.


Emily x 


Surrey, UK

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