business building

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!)

A staying home experiment, 747 on the Playa, + enrolling high end clients (so much to say!!)

Consider today’s post a long overdue catch up with you.
Yes, you heard from me the last couple of week’s about Marisa’s Experience Product
Formula, but that’s not the same as a good ole’ Love Letter straight from my heart to yours.
This is that.
I’m now about ten days back from Burning Man, and finally think I’ve caught up on my
sleep.
A staying home experiment, 747
I was supposed to travel for the next two weeks, a week in Esalen and then another week
in LA for an Evolutionary Priestess Training, and I decided to cancel it all. I’m even considering
the possibility of a longer-term no travel commitment, to see what would happen if I relaxed
more into being here. You can read about more about my inquiry and talk with me about it
here, if you have thoughts.
This year, Burning Man was more of a family reunion/work trip than an exciting adventure
into the Desert. Sounds kind of strange to think of Burning Man as a work trip, but in some
ways that’s what it was — an opportunity to link up with community folk I don’t see all the time
and to converge and dream into what’s next.
I flew in and out, so minimal travel time, and was there only Sunday until Friday, early am.
I only slept about ten hours in all that time, so I got the full experience for sure, but it was
different this year.
Honestly, there wasn’t even a whole lot of dreaming into what’s next because what’s next
seems to be already happening. You can watch a video of me dreaming with Stephen Brooks
at Burning Man last year, here.
And, all that we dreamed into is in process now. Amazing.
Before leaving, I had a Human Design reading update with a new friend, Karen McMullen
and she reminded me that more than most people, my job is to sit back and wait to respond,
see what shows up and not push in, leading with my own ideas.
Oh, it’s such a challenge for me, but when I do it, I do get big rewards.
Most recently, I got called in to resolve a conflict between two business partners that felt so
good for me to work on, it seriously has me questioning whether it’s time to make even more
space for me to get back to the roots of my 1:1 work, as a lawyer, but far more than a lawyer,
really.
At Burning Man, one of those was that I got to meet the creator of the Big Imagination Project,
Ken Feldman.
Ken dreamed of bringing a 747 to the Playa. And while I have mixed feelings about why that’s
valuable, and the amount of resources it costs, including Ken’s energy (!), meeting Ken was a
great reminder of why dreaming big is so important, even when you have no idea what or how
you will get there.
You can read about the project (and even contribute to it) here.
It seems silly, right? I kind of thought so.
But, when you see it and experience it on this remote strip of Burning Man Desert, it helps to
remember that truly anything is possible when we use our creativity, our community and our
resourcefulness — the best investments we can possibly grow in these curious financial times.
Next week, I’ll share with you another project that has truly blown me away, the creation of the
Camp Mystic Art Car — the Mystic Flyer.
In the meantime, something important for you, if you are ready for a meaningful shift in your
income model …
My dear friend and past client, Elizabeth Purvis, teaches women (and men in touch with their
inner Goddess) how to turn their service offerings into high-end packages that clients love.
In fact, one of our Eyes Wide Open members has already shifted her offerings just as a result
of what Elizabeth is teaching in her free educational series that she has out right now, and will
likely never offer again, as she is shifting her focus for next year.
So, if you are ready to shift into packaging your services into high-end offers (instead of hourly,
or one-off transactions), download and watch Elizabeth’s teachings right here OR download them
and save them for later, when you will be ready.

Okay, I think that’s enough for now!

I’ve got a huge day ahead of me – we just let go of the sales and marketing director at NLBM AND
my marketing manager is out with salmonella poisoning. Plus, I coach lawyers back to back this afternoon.

So, I guess it’s a good thing I stayed home this week, eh!?!
To your eyes and heart wide open life and income,
Ali
PS — If you only get one things from this email, go download Elizabeth’s 7 Steps to a Sold-Out High End
Program if you are ready to package your services into high end offerings your clients love. It’s the fastest
path to increasing your income and one of our Eyes Wide Open members already implemented it and
put it into action with just what Elizabeth is teaching in this free series.

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.