This week I made the decision to let go of my online marketing academy website*.
As has been the case so many times in my career, this decision had been coming for quite some time. I’m sure a few months from now, I will look back and ask myself why I waited so long. Because I typically hang on longer than I probably should. You see, even though my mantra is Let Go & Trust, I still find it hard to let things go.
A spiritual coach once told me I didn’t have a problem letting go, it was the trust part that kept me hanging on. Being able to trust that when I let go of what I know, what has worked, what has supported me and generated income, in favor of the unknown, has always been scary.
So why let go at all?
The biggest reason for me, is it’s what I’m being inspired to do. That little internal voice begins whispering it’s time to move on, that there is more, or at least something different, for me to do. The outside world supports that little voice, with events that are pointing me in a new direction. I start to experience synchronicity on a regular basis. I notice all of this because I have gotten very good at being in tune. But I usually resist, for fear that I might be making a mistake. What if I leave something and nothing new shows up? What if my income evaporates? What if I regret making the change? So you know, I’ve never regretted a single decision!
By the way, I’d be remiss if I didn’t also mention that even though my online marketing academy provides a recurring income source (some might call it passive income, but that’s not really the case because it does require work), like any business it requires ongoing attention, marketing, time and energy. If you’re not willing to put in this time, you really shouldn’t be operating the business. That’s something I teach, and as this latest decision exemplifies, practice myself as well.
My hanging onto things always shows up in my body.
As I look back, I can connect the procrastination of every single major life or career change, to physical symptoms. My body screaming at me to let go. I remember back in the early 90s when I went back to a full-time job despite knowing internally it was not the right move, and I immediately got sick, and stayed sick for a good three months. Multiple trips to the doctor turned up nothing. I was told it was just a virus and that it would run its course. While I told myself I was lucky that at least I had paid sick time, I eventually realized it was my body trying to tell me something. I didn’t belong in a job. I belonged in my own business.
The funny thing is, every single time I’ve made a move, I’ve been supported.
I’ve left behind jobs, income, and businesses. And every single time they’ve been replaced with something better. Something that excited me more. Something that helped me grow. Something that helped me make a bigger difference with more people. And yes, even something that earned me more money.
I’ve often said, just because you’re good at something doesn’t mean you have to do it.
My personality and drive make me good at pretty much anything I do. It’s just the way I was raised. You give it your all or you don’t bother. So doing something just because I’m good at it, is not a reason to stick with something I’m no longer inspired to do. I’ve also become very clear that doing something because others want you to continue is not a good reason either.
You have to be true to yourself.
I believe we all have a calling… some might call it a life purpose. Unlike some who believe there are steps you can take to find that calling or purpose, I actually believe it finds you. But you have to be open. You have to listen. You have to follow that little voice of inspiration down the path its leading you down. Even when you’re scared. Even when it makes no sense. Even when you’re not sure where it’s leading you. Because only then does your calling become clear. I believe the only steps required to finding your purpose are learning how to be open, how to listen, and how to follow.
That is what I’m in the process of doing, yet again, in my career and in my life.
Staying open. Listening. And following.
I’ve been asked by quite a few clients what my next chapter is. And while I have some ideas about what it might be, it’s not totally clear to me yet. So I can’t answer that question. For now I am spending my time reading the books that are showing up, taking online courses that I’ve been inspired to take, meditating, journaling, writing and doing volunteer pet therapy work with my dogs.
Thankfully, all my years of hard work creating online content, have paid off with a passive income stream that is helping to finance this transition. I know it probably won’t last forever, and that’s OK. It’s here now when I need it. And by the way, that has happened every single time I’ve trusted and made a change. I’ve been taken care of. Usually by work I had done previously, but didn’t realize at the time its purpose would be to cover a career transition!
Continuing to Trust
Every single day I get either a new inspiration, or validation for a step I’ve already taken. So I know I’m on the right path. That doesn’t mean I’m totally at peace with it. It’s still difficult sometimes for this former Type A control freak to be at peace with not knowing where the path is leading. But at the same time it’s exciting to be a part of something new unfolding.
And, as I wrote in my bio, I know whatever it is, it will be driven by service.
Because if there’s one thing that has become painfully clear to me after being in the business of marketing for 30+ years, it’s that too many people are focused on building a business so they can get rich. The whole focus on get more clients, make more money that runs so rampant in the Internet Marketing world has led to far too many businesses being created for the wrong reasons. While I absolutely believe you need a strong reason why behind your business, I also believe if that reason is only to serve you, your business will not succeed.
The world does not need any more businesses.
It doesn’t need any more consultants or coaches either. What it does need is people who are focused on solving problems, making a contribution, serving others and trying to make the world a better place.
When you and your business are driven by serving others and filling a need, your tribe will find you. Yes, you still have to market and do the work. But you will be supported. Conversely if it’s all about taking, well good luck. You’re going to have to push pretty hard to make it work. I’m not saying it won’t. But it will be a much harder battle. And, at the end of the day, it won’t contribute to making our world a better place. Something we are in dire need of right now.
Who are you here to serve?
As I continue to follow the path to my new adventure, I’d like to encourage you to step back and ask yourself, What is the motivation and reason why behind your business? If your motivation is not one of service and contribution, I’d like to ask you to consider changing your focus so it is. I promise you, you have a calling, and that calling isn’t all about you. It’s about making a difference. And when you discover that, it changes everything. That’s when you truly begin to experience being in the flow. Your life, and your business, start to click. You enjoy it more. You struggle less. And you accomplish what you were put on this earth to accomplish.
*While I’m closing down my TBS Marketing Academy website at the end of June, my online courses aren’t going away. They will remain available on Udemy so they can continue to serve others while I move on to my next chapter.