As a 7+ figure entrepreneur, author, speaker, course creator, and success coach, I have the rare opportunity of seeing human success (and failure) firsthand, and I know what it really takes to achieve big goals.
Every single day since starting my first company, I Heart My Life, I’ve worked with SO many driven women, from all over the world.
I’ve seen my clients celebrate huge milestones: from resigning from a 9-5 job, to enabling their husband to quit his job and follow his dreams, to the manifestation of trips, to turning their annual salary into a monthly income, to breaking harmful familial patterns that have lasted for generations, to an increase in confidence, and to going after dreams they never thought they’d have the opportunity to reach, like achieving self-made millionaire status and appearing in a Hollywood film.
But, I’ve also seen the struggle people experience on their WAY to the top. I’ve seen a lack of awareness when it comes to desire. I’ve seen women deny what they want and allow their inner demons or fear to run the show. I’ve witnessed jealousy, stubbornness, and competition take women down. I’ve watched them question whether what they really want, deep within, is possible for them. And most painfully, I’ve seen them deny that they are worthy of the success they desire.
I pride myself on supporting women in getting clear about what it is they actually want, giving themselves permission to have it, and taking the steps required to obtain it. That means you too…
…which is why, in this blog post, I’m not JUST going to be sharing the struggles my clients have experienced in their scale, but actually lift the lid on my own, as well.
Although I got to 7 figures quickly (within 18 months of starting my business), there were many things that I did that I shouldn’t have (and didn’t do, but should have done), so today I’m revealing some of the things that that did NOT support me in making my first million.
Keep reading to learn what mistakes I made so you can avoid making them yourself!
1. Holding onto my money
In the early stages of building my business, I would hold onto my money. I didn’t circulate it freely, because I had a limiting belief that if I spent it, or invested it, one day it would run out and I’d lose everything I had. I’d witnessed this play out with family members, and I was worried that it was a generational pattern. I was over-cautious with my money, particularly IN my business, and as a result, didn’t invest in enough support early on.
There was a point, around 7 years or so ago now, that I was working 8-100 hours a week running two group programs and working with 27 clients one-on-one. I remember telling my coach (through tears) on one of our calls that I just wanted to be able to see my husband. Of course, 27 one on one clients was too many for me to manage. It brought a lot of money into my company, but it wasn’t sustainable. Working one-to-many more, raising my rates for one-to-one, and creating evergreen offers helped enormously with getting my time and energy back, but honestly, had I have enlisted the support of a team earlier, I would have reached my goals more quickly and easily and not burned out nearly as much.
At the root of this overworking was a) the limiting belief I had about money being easy to lose (that I spoke into before), but also b) the limiting belief I had about work being hard to earn. Whilst I stand by the fact that there’s nothing wrong with a little hard work and there are times when it has driven me forward, there have always been times in the past when hard work has negatively affected my health, happiness, and relationships (and left me wanting to get sick so that I could catch a break!). This is, of course, not conducive to building a 7 figure business. A strong work ethic is great, but addiction to being on the hamster wheel is not.
It’s no surprise I thought I had to work long and hard all on my own, though, as I grew up with a father who woke up at 4 a.m. each day to go to work, every single day of his life. A 14-hour workday is what was modeled for me, and I figured that it was just the reality of running a business and being successful.
But, as I moved forward in my business, I discovered that there WAS another way. Yes you have to take massive action on behalf of your dreams if you want to make a million, but your business WON’T break if you don’t answer emails in the middle of the night or if you don’t take the call.
And actually, if you have the help of employees or contractors, it’ll not only survive, it’ll thrive. So invest in the support, focus on necessity, think of yourself like an athlete, allow yourself to rest and recover, protect your sleep, indulge in massage and self-care…
…hitting the 7 figure mark gets to be EASY, if you find people to lean on that will set you up for success.
2. Not being vulnerable
When I first moved to London I was broke, but had been making out to my parents that I had everything under control. After a year of being there they surprised me with a visit, and when they stepped into my closet-sized studio flat they got the picture right away that my life wasn’t quiet as rosy as I’d painted it. I cried during every single dinner they were there, and on the last day of the visit had to ask my dad to lend me $5,000 dollars to get by. I was mortified!
I’ve always been an emotional person, and find it hard to hold back tears when I’m upset, but I didn’t like admitting failure, or highlighting any of my weaknesses.
This pattern played out well into my entrepreneurial days, for example I was once really embarrassed to tell the story of everyone dropping out of my mastermind. In case you missed that memo, in July 2017, while in New York City for a publicity retreat I was attending, I opened my computer and pulled up my inbox to check my messages. I spotted an email from one of the clients in my high level mastermind and when I opened it my heart sank. It said that she’d like to withdraw her place.
A few hours later, we received two more emails just like it. I was so upset I didn’t go to the retreat the next day, and on day 3 I actually left altogether to fly to Italy and meet James in Florence. By the time I arrived we’d had two more cancellations, and during our time away yet another couple of emails came in, bringing us to a total of seven drop outs.
This resulted in a significant financial loss for the company, and was a really difficult challenge for me to navigate. For a while, I didn’t share it with anyone. But when I started to open up, I saw how hearing about my difficulties resonated with people. They’d been there too, and they were inspired by what I did AFTERWARD, how I became stronger and the ways in which I grew.
Challenge is one of our biggest teachers, and others can learn from our mistakes. In fact, the more I am open and honest about myself, the more people sign up to work with me. Because our challenges are never just about us, they’re about the people who need to hear our message. When you are vulnerable, you are being of service to the people who require your mentorship the most and are selling the solution to their problem. Not only have you changed your clients’ lives, you’ve transformed your own too, right?
3. Not showing up online
Closely related to that, was the fact that at the beginning of building my business, I worried about what people would think; how I’d make money; if anyone would actually buy what I was selling; how I’d get to where I wanted to go. And it was crippling. It stopped me from showing up online and — ahem — I needed to if I was to have a 7+ figure online business…
I had to do a lot of work to shift the natural Negative Nancy that was my mind. It was as if my compass was set toward what wouldn’t work out, rather than what could.
I often felt that I wasn’t skinny enough, too, which got in the way of my visibility, as over the years, especially as I was building my business, I struggled with my weight. But of course, it was never REALLY what I looked like that was the problem; it was my mindset around my self-image.
And until I rewrote the stories I was telling myself and started showing up, I wasn’t able to connect with people, convert people — any of the things I needed to do to help more people and make more money through my business.
The reality is, everyone who is amazing at something, including being comfortable in front of the camera, was once a total beginner at it. The only reason they’re now so successful is because they took action and learned and grew and healed their wounds as they went along.
4. Being a perfectionist
I think it’s important to speak into perfectionism a little more here as it was one of my biggest abundance blockers (and my clients, too).
The only thing that guarantees your success is action, and if you aren’t taking it because you’re waiting to get yourself, your products, your services, your site, your socials, your camera presence — whatever — just right, all you’re going to do is waste your skills and talent.
I’m not saying I ditched my high standards. I pride myself on those… it’s just my personality to value excellence and polish. But there comes a point at which you have to accept (and I mean really accept) that done is better than perfect. Because if you don’t put what you have to offer in front of people, you won’t grow your business. Fact.
As I touched on before, no one starts out being incredible at something or having everything together from the get-go. The people who go on to become masters and pros don’t keep waiting, they fumble their way through. They figure it out as they go.
One of my friends, Bob Heilig, who’s an incredible seven-figure entrepreneur said in his interview on the I Heart My Life Show that because he always takes such fast action, people think he’s really clear about what he’s doing and what’s going to work but the OPPOSITE is actually true. Because he’s not sure which direction to go in or what will and won’t get results he makes moves QUICKLY and pivots as necessary… and to get to 7 figures, I had to start doing the same.
Even now, as I’m scaling from 7+ figures to 8, I’m starting before it makes sense in my mind to and ruthlessly changing things or dropping things that don’t get me an ROI along the way. I suggest you do too if you want to start seeing results FAST.
To continue our conversation about worry, I will say that worrying is totally normal. I imagine you’ve experienced (or are experiencing!) your fair share of it, too. In fact, most of us are addicted to worry…
…but when we go deep into the subconscious mind, we learn that worry stems from what our parents taught us, or from a specific past experience or trauma. As you were growing up, you probably did have something to worry about; but now, your reality isn’t the same, yet you’re still worrying.
The mind will pull from the ‘previous experiences library’ to predict the future. It wants you to stay safe (stuck) so it brings up these worries based on the past in the hope of deterring you from moving forward. But this doesn’t have to be your forever reality. You can be free from worry, and you 100% should make it your MISSION to be free from worry if a 7 figure business is on your vision board. As worry is nothing but a nail in your tire.
The day I decided to stop worrying, it was because I simply woke up and was struck by the realization that NONE of my worrying was getting me an ROI! I couldn’t come up with one. single. benefit. I’d gotten as a result of worrying. My worry hadn’t gotten me more clients. My worry hadn’t increased my bank balance. Worry hadn’t moved the needle in ANY area of my business or life.
All I’d gotten as a result of worrying was stress, backache, sleepless nights and arguments with my husband, James. The sad truth is that most of our worries never actually happen. Yet we spend so much time, and expend so much energy on them.
But this is also really exciting too, right? Just imagine what you could create/do/achieve if you had more of those resources! You HAVE to leverage your time and energy if you want to make more money in your business, so if you take only ONE thing away from today’s blog post, make sure it’s that.