business advice

Being Afraid and Doing it Anyway…Not Anymore

It was my mantra for years. Being afraid and doing it anyway.

It was even the tag line of my first blog. (That’s some serious wayback shizz. You can check it out here if you want to meet a previous incarnation of me.)

It was what was true for me. I was terrified. And, not only doing it anyway, but using fear as the primary motivator to propel me forward.

It was exhausting.

And, I’m not doing it anymore.

That’s the good news. I finally feel ready to break up with fear as my trusty companion.

eing Afraid and Doing it Anyway…Not Anymore

The maybe not so good news (at least from a business perspective) is that I haven’t yet fully connected with what it means to be motivated based on anything other than fear.

I mean I know that love is the answer. But I’m still learning to sense when I’m making decisions based on love and when it’s fear disguised as love.

Normally, this time of year, I’d be running a Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale, driven by the fear of running out of money, if I didn’t.

This year though, as you can see, I didn’t do it over here at Eyes Wide Open.

I let the opportunity for a sale pass. Even though I knew we’d make great money on it because there’s pent up demand for LIFT and Money Map, especially at this time of the year, when there are tax decisions to be made before year end.

But, I’m re-orienting my internal motivator — no more fear of missing out, no more fear of not enough, no more fear that something’s wrong.

Yes, it takes more time. (Fear forces fast action, without fear driving me, I notice I’m way more patient and slow.)

Yes, I have to be willing to sit with more of my feelings and emotions. (In the past, I’d take action to avoid the feelings).

And, it’s so worth it.

Instead, I took the energy I would have put into that and built a website to archive and create a history of the first-hand accounts of people’s time at Standing Rock. Without this archive, much of this history would be lost to the perpetual scroll of the Facebook feed.

You can read the reports here.

Plus, I got a week in with my family by blood (you can see us all here) and a night in with some of my chosen family.

Now, back at home in Boulder and ready to discover more about the choices I make when I’m not motivated by fear.

To your eyes (and heart) wide open life and income,

Ali

PS — Do you notice that fear is also your trust companion/primary motivator? Or have you transcended that? And, if so, what motivates you now? (And please don’t just tell me desire — because then I’ll have to ask, how do you know that desire isn’t motivated by fear? Go deeper if you are going to post in the comments. Thanks!)

This business model saved my booty (+ pics from NYC!)

I’m glad so many of you have been helped by my recent series on
lifestyle practice,legacy business, how to know where you are
on the path and what’s right for you.

You can get caught up on the past posts here:

The first step to master in business — lifestyle.

From lifestyle business to legacy business — is it
really for you? 
Today, I want to share with you the business model that has been,
hands down, the single best one for me — both on the lifestyle side
and with the greatest hope for legacy (still locking in that part).
The business model I love the most is a recurring revenue
model. And having it in place totally saved my ass.
Back in 2010-2012 when I began the stage of my greatest
transformation (read: was totally losing my shit and questioning
everything), I needed to completely stop doing pretty much
anything business related for about 18 months.
I had to discover the 100% authentic truth of myself completely
separate from any money motivation.
That meant no more private client work for a while.
That meant no more selling products and programs.
And yet, I still had a family to support.
Gratefully, by that point, I had developed a recurring revenue
model that would continue to provide me and my family with
enough income to live, minimally, on my farm, while I found myself.
By that point, I had developed enough content that my members
happily paid the business I had created $197-$497/mo in recurring
revenue every month without me having to create anything new.
That income was enough to support a small team and my family
while I figured my shit out.
Whats funny is that I wasn’t sure I would ever want to create anything
new for the members of that business again, but coming out the
other side of that 18-month break, I was completely energized
to re-build and now it’s the foundation of the legacy business I
am creating to last forever.
I’ll share more of the story with you tomorrow.
In the meantime, if you’d like to learn the model yourself from the
guy who is literally the best in the business (and who I wish
I had learned directly from myself way back then — maybe the
business would already be a legacy business by now), now you
can and you don’t need to pay the $5,000/per person he’s charged
for his in-person workshops in the past.

He’s created a super cool free online workshop to teach you the model
and you can get it right here:

You can learn the recurring revenue business model and whether
it’s right for you here
.
Over the next few days, I’ll share more of my lifestyle and
legacy business building stories.
If you have questions that you’d love to see me focus on
hit reply (or if you are reading this on the blog or Facebook)
post in the comments.
Love beyond,
Ali
PS — I’m in NYC this week with my daughter. She’s been
here for 9 weeks for the Hip Hop Dance Intensive she’s
been attending and this weekend is the big performance.

This business model saved my booty (+ pics from NYC!)

While I’m here I got to hang out with Selena Soo, creator
of the program, Impacting Millions and PR-maven to the
leaders of our industry, like Kimra Luna.
She reminded me that these stories of my long history in
this interesting online business industry may not be traditional
media worthy, but they do help those of you up and comers
so much to find your way along the path of aligning your life
and income.
So, I’ll keep telling them.
Finally, I got to meet with one of my long-time lawyer members,
Erach Screwvala, who has been in my membership program
for 2.5 years and I’m excited to support him in taking his law
practice even higher in the years to come.
This business model saved my booty (+ pics from NYC!)
Best, best, best part is that I still got to serve my members
and love them up throughout my travels because of the
systems and team I’ve built to support it all.

It’s been a lot of work, but so so so worth it.

I can see legacy at the end of this tunnel!

If you want to invest your time, energy, attention and

 

From lifestyle business to legacy business — is it really for you?

lifestyle-business-legacy-business-really

The other day, I wrote about the first step for every professional practice owner to get their income into alignment with their life, financial liberation and a practice/business built around your life.

If you missed that post, you can check it out here.

Financial liberation is knowing that (with your services) you can earn what you need, when you need it, on demand, being all of who you are — and having a great life to boot.

If you take the first step strategically and with wisdom and guidance to support you, you will have a professional practice or service-based business that is thriving within 6-18 months of starting. 3 years, max. (Without guidance, well, many professionals never get there, but I imagine that you are here to make a different choice.)

This is a practice in which you get to serve your clients 1-1, they are happy, your practice is full and life is good.

Until you get antsy and want more …

Either more income.
Or more time.

And if you cannot raise your fees, and cannot take on any more clients, because you are already at the top of your market, charging a high value for your services, and your calendar is full, it’s time to look at shifting from practice owner to business owner.

One side note: once you’ve mastered step one, it’s likely that you’ll have more free time than you had when you weren’t successfully getting hired by clients you love to work with, and you may decide to shift your freed up energy to growing in other areas of your life, such as relationships or health, and not keep focusing on practice or business mastery for a while. And, you do really need to shore up relationships and health before making a run for the next level.

In the event that you do want to grow the business side of your life (generally because you are maxed out on time and income with your step 1 business structure and not impacting at the level you’d like) you are going to focus on bringing on more team support, employees, independent contractors, and others who can serve your clients.

Now, you are moving into the realm of creating a legacy business for yourself.

In step 1, it’s all about lifestyle.

In step 2, it’s about legacy. And that requires you to up your leadership game.

Upping your leadership game, building a legacy business, will require another level of time, energy, attention and money investment than you’ve made up until this point.

You’ll need to learn to hire, train and retain key team members.

Everything you thought you knew about leadership will be tested.

You’ll need a new coach/mentor relationship, investing in learning how to truly become a leader from someone who has done it.

And you’ll need to upgrade your legal, insurance, financial and, tax systems (and knowledge) to another level.

Building a legacy business isn’t for everyone. Mastering the lifestyle business is the first step. Having an income model that works for you to deliver your 1-1 gift in the world is where you start. THEN, once you’ve mastered that, you are ready to convert your practice into a business, if you choose to focus your energy and attention there because your calling requires it.

My calling has required it. I WISH I could have just been happy with my 1-1 law practice, making great income, having plenty of time for my family.

But, my soul was called to another level of impact that I couldn’t have at the 1-1 service level and so I’ve been focusing on legacy-fying my work for the past several years and repeatedly it has me at my edge of growth.

This is what I signed up for and I’ve revisited the decision repeatedly to make sure it’s really what I want.

It is.

I love how my leadership gets stretched, tested and grows as a result.

I love that my work will continue on, beyond me. And not just from an ego perspective, but because I know how impactful it is for the people who use it.

I am growing into loving building teams of people who love working together. This has not always been easy for me.

A legacy business is not for everyone.

Building a legacy business is not necessary and should only be done with eyes wide open and clear choice.

Lifestyle business (or even a life aligned income, forget the business part) is just fine for most people and will provide you with a life and income you love.

Most people will never even get there — they’ll stay stuck in jobs that don’t serve them or the world, and frankly don’t even earn them enough money to have the lives they want.

So try not to get distracted by building your life and income in alignment out of order, or by building a business that isn’t really what you want.

The promise of a passive income business is pretty much a lie.

Owning a business requires your effort, input, and energy.

When you build a business that’s truly in alignment with your gifts and the work you are here to do, it can feel fairly passive because you are getting paid to do what you love, but that’s not because you have magically built some business that pumps out money, on demand.

You can have that through a lifestyle business.

Because you will have learned what your path is, you will have chosen an income model that is aligned with that path, and you will have mastered the art of asking for what you need in exchange for what you have to give to the people you are here to give it to — and doing your work feels so aligned with who you are, that you are getting paid to truly do what you love.

You can have all that through a lifestyle business.

ONLY choose to move into building a legacy business if you are truly called. And then, understand, you are likely to experience a short-term drop in income, another level of investments, and an even more full schedule, as you push your edge into unknown territory around leadership.

If possible, and before that, while your lifestyle business (or 1-1 practice) is flowing well, focus on shoring up your personal relationships and your health and be clear with yourself and the people around you that you are likely going to need to call on reserves as you move into the next level of your personal evolution.

Good luck. And, may the odds be ever in your favor.

(WARNING: profanity in first line of post) Do you have any idea what you are getting yourself into?

Faaaaaahhhhhhck.

That’s my general feeling about business right now. And, I put it right up front to weed out those of you who are too sensitive to be part of my Eyes Wide Open community and don’t actually want to hear what’s real.

[If you don’t like it, you can still benefit from my work through people I have trained as Personal Family Lawyers, Family Business Lawyers, Creative Business Lawyers, or Money Map Masters, most of whom would never use a “bad word” right up front in an email like this.]

eing Afraid and Doing it Anyway…Not Anymore

I’m done pussy-footing around trying to make everyone happy.

I’m building businesses to support people who want to live life and do business awake, aware and on their terms, with their eyes wide open.

I’m putting in a HUGE amount of effort to make the work I’ve created accessible to people without requiring the hundreds of thousands (millions?) of dollars of investment I’ve made along the way to learn how to do the things I teach.

I once invested $25,000 for a DAY of coaching with Lisa Sasevich on how to structure my business model.

I once invested $100,000 for a year long mastermind with Ali Brown. Out of that mastermind came my willingness to teach my LIFT System so you can be smart about the legal, insurance, financial and tax parts of your business.

Would I have created that system if I hadn’t made that investment? No.

As I was making these investments, I promised myself I would make my programs accessible to more people than just those who could afford $25,000 and $100,000 investments in their business.

It’s right about now, when I’ve circled back for a 4th time in the life cycle of these businesses to build the next level systems necessary for scale that I begin to wonder — have I chosen the wrong business model?

What the heck have I gotten myself into?

Currently, I sit behind my computer for 12 hours a day writing copy for sales funnels, reviewing opt-in sequences, creating autoresponders, talking to my team members, coaching my team members to make it through the conflicts, firing people, hiring people, writing job descriptions, creating organizational charts.

Training sales teams.

Considering new governance models.

Should we implement holacracy or keep the traditional hierarchy based governance structures in place?

Daily, I wonder if I should just say fuck it and stay a high-end coach, delivering expensive one-to-one services and going seriously deep with private clients.

I know how to do that, and I do it well.

As I am re-building the systems for both companies, I am working with two private clients and woah, the work is deep.

Both of these clients came to me to discover their own foundation of Enough, and who they are and how they be in the world from the spaciousness of Enough. They both happen to be navigating divorce settlements.

In one situation, I am supporting the entire multi-generational family dynamic, working with the young adult children, and the elder parents in addition to my client.

I LOVE the work.

And, I know it’s not yet time for me to do it full time.

I am compelled to build the systems in New Law Business Model and Eyes Wide Open for them to serve at scale.

All the components have been created.

The only thing in the way is my own ability to stay focused, keep my eye on the ultimate vision, and keep saying yes.

The resistance is alive and well.

I want to write my book. I want to post on Facebook. I want to be done with this part already. My mind tells me I should have done this years ago and tries to convince me I won’t be able to do it.

I know it’s a lie.

I know I can.

At least, I think I can. I think I can. I think I can.

If I had known what I was getting myself into with the Star Creator Archetype path would I have chosen another way?

I can’t say yet. I’m not at the end. I’ll have to let you know.

For now, I am in it.

I am doing the work that I’ve discovered only I can do.

Each time I have tried to hire this work out to others, an interim CEO in one case, marketing funnel automation specialists twice (to the tune of $40,000), a promised Chief of Staff … what I discovered is that this part requires me.

If you could just hire it out, everyone with money would have successful, sustainable, make a difference businesses.

But it’s not as easy as that.

It requires determination, focus, grit, persistence, willingness, learning, growth, evolution.

I’m in.

And I’m going to do a better job of communicating and sharing from here.

I’ve been hiding out a bit.

Because I wasn’t sure I could keep going and frankly didn’t want to share from my uncertainty.

But when I got this message from Facebook yesterday, from 4 years ago, literally the month before I filed bankruptcy, I remembered ….

I chose this. I want this. I don’t HAVE to do this, I want to do it.

And I can share my uncertainty. It’s okay. Valuable and helpful even because you are probably uncertain about whether you can do it too (whatever your “it” is.)

Where I got trapped back in my last iteration of “success” that ultimately led to my giving it all up was that I stopped sharing vulnerably.

I listened to the voices that said “you can’t do that, you can’t say that, you can’t write that, you’ll hurt the business.”

So I fired everyone, let it all go and traveled around in my RV, lived on the farm, and said whatever I wanted for a couple of years. Remember the Whole Truth Show? I loved that show! I loved speaking my truth.

But I missed the businesses.

I missed knowing that when I am being all of myself, and speaking at events, and writing what’s in my mind and heart and soul and people are inspired that they can easily flow into business structures of support that can help their learning, growth and evolution.

I want the both/and.

I want to be a free spirit with business systems to support my freedom.

Ali and Alexis, integrated.

And to have that, I need to put in the effort and focus to truly build the next level scalable systems that work to support it.

So I am.

What are you building  that’s forcing you to face all of your resistance, all your old patterns, all your places that you just want to play small?

Are you compromising your life just because it seems easier to do that than to stretch?

It’s time to stop doing that. I’m stopping with you.

Love beyond,

Ali

PS — On July 7, I’m hosting my first live training in 6 months, specifically for those of you who want to stop compromising and start building your life and income awake, aware and on your terms — with clarity about what you are doing and what you really want so you can choose the “how” strategically and wisely, instead of just throwing money at problems like I’ve done so many times in the past OR being stuck in your head wondering what your next steps should be. Sign up here.