In this episode of MarieTV, we do have some adult language. So if you do have little ones around, grab your headphones now.
Marie: Hey, it’s Marie Forleo, and you are watching MarieTV, the place to be to create a business and life you love. This is the MarieTV Call-In Show, and this is my friend Zach Bliss.
Zach: Hi. This is my real voice.
Marie: Yes. So, we’re gonna take some calls today. We’re gonna answer some questions, and do our very best to offer some guidance, some inspiration and motivation to bring your dreams to life. Let’s do this.
Zach: Oh, that sounds good. Mmhmm.
Pam: This is Pam.
Marie: Hi, Pam. This is Marie Forleo.
Zach: Hi, Pam. This is Zach. Hi.
Marie: How are you?
Pam: Oh my gosh. I am so good. How are you?
Marie: Yay. We’re so good. You’re here, and you’re on the MarieTV live call-in show. We’ve got Team Forleo here, and we are so excited to talk with you today. So, tell us your question, and we are gonna do our best to give you some advice and some insight.
Pam: Fantastic. Okay. So, I am working full time as a marketer for a company as an employee, nine to five. I’m also, at the same time, working to build my business as a watercolor artist. My husband is also building a business as well, so right now I am bringing home the most of the money we use to live and pay the bills and stuff. We have four kids, two living with us at home. I also have MS, but I’m really healthy.
I recently met with a business counselor at my local small business development center who told me, he said, “Your business won’t take off until you’re doing it full time.” I think he’s right, but that would require me to leave my full-time job, and convince my hubby that it’ll all work out. And maybe it could, but… We have a little bit of savings, and we have a HELOC that we can live off of, but that makes me feel a little bit irresponsible, and a little bit nervous. So, should I take the leap and see what happens, or should I patiently wait the course and keep working on our business, until we get to the point where it makes more financial sense?
Marie: Pam, I adore you. First of all, I love you so much for asking the question, and providing so much context, and for just having the bravery to go, “You know what? I want to take a step back and really look at this.” So, I have so many thoughts on this, and I’ll share some ideas that hopefully will help you find your own wisdom. Because here’s what I believe. I will tell you, I got a little nervous when you said you spoke to the business counselor who said, “Hey, your business basically is not gonna take off until you do it full time.” Respectfully, I disagree. I think that there are many, many different ways to have a business, quote/unquote, “take off.”
In fact, there was a study done by the Academy of Management Journal. They actually followed 5,000 entrepreneurs over 14 years, and found that the ones that kept their day job were actually 33% less likely to fail. Now, of course that’s just one study. But I will tell you, the first thing that I want you to really look inside for yourself is around self-awareness and risk adverseness. Here’s what I mean. I see people generally fall into two camps. One camp are folks that, when they burn the bridge behind them, when they quit that job, when they must make a business work, when they must generate money, that is when they rise up. So, having that financial pressure is actually a positive thing for them. Right?
Marie: So, they enjoy financial risk. Some people are just built that way, and that’s beautiful. There’s other of us… And I will raise my hand. I know you can’t see me right now, you can just hear me, but I’m raising my hand. I’m in the other camp, where I am more financially risk averse. When I started my business, I had side jobs for seven full years until I felt comfortable enough, emotionally and financially, to leave those side jobs and to run my business full time.
Now, you shared with us not only do you have a husband, and you have children, and there’s some things going on, and you’re the main breadwinner right now. So, I just wanted to share that context, that if you look back in your history, and of course if you talk about this with your husband… If you decide that maybe together, you guys are like, “You know what? We really do rise up when we have a lot of pressure. That’s when our best comes out.” Then, perhaps that advice from the business counselor may actually be right and true for you.
But if you take that look inside and it makes you feel more scared, and as though your creativity… I know at least this would be true for me, where my creativity almost goes down. Right? Where there’s more financial pressure, because I’m operating in a place of scarcity. Then, that’s not gonna be the right choice for you. I always like to tell people, it’s not about overnight success. It’s about getting great over time, and having patience, and taking care of yourself and your family. You just can’t underestimate that.
So, I don’t believe I have the right answer, but I just wanted to share some insights that hopefully can help you find your own. So, knowing your own risk adverseness, and ultimately, it’s about trusting yourself. And then, I want to make one reference before I want to hear some of your feedback. We have an amazing MarieTV episode. If you Google search MarieTV, How to Make the Best Decisions, I walk you through four specific tests that will help you know, both cognitively, intellectually, spiritually, and also from a visceral, kind of intuitive place, how to find your best answer to move ahead. It includes working through some of the worst case scenarios and some of the best case scenarios, and also tapping into your body wisdom. Which, as a painter and an artist, you absolutely have a lot of. So, I’m gonna be quiet for a moment and see what your feedback is, and to see if there’s anything else we can do to support you.
Pam: Well, this is very interesting advice, because I’ve heard both. Like you said, I’ve heard both sides of the story. Either the pressure makes you rise up, or the pressure just makes you freak out, and you are not creative, and you kind of get stymied. You kind of get stuck and stagnant.
Pam: I read Big Magic twice, and in Big Magic, Elizabeth says that you shouldn’t put the pressure on your creativity to support you. And so, I really battled with that, and I thought, “Okay. If I put my pressure on my creativity, will my creativity just be squelched? Will that suddenly be like, “Okay, creativity, provide for me”? And she says you shouldn’t ever say that to your creative genius. Whatever she calls it. I can’t remember. Daemon, or whatever.
Marie: Yeah. Yes.
Pam: And so, this has been a battle for me for many, many years. Because my husband and I ran our own business, like probably 15 years ago, and we were in that place of, “Well, we’d better make some money.” We were chasing down the mailman, “Do you have a check for us today?” You know, that kind of thing. So, I understand the pressure of owning your own business and running your own business, and now that I’m older, and years wiser, I am a lot more hesitant. So, I mean, sure, the HELOC is there, and I have the money. I could live off of it for a year, if I didn’t make a penny. But is that responsible? I don’t know. I’m gonna watch your episode again, because I know I’ve watched it. I’ve watched every single episode.
Marie: Oh, I love you, Pam. I will say that when it comes to finances, I tend to be… And again, this is my own personal view, and I just want to make that very clear. So, I’m not trying to push it on you by any stretch of the imagination, just share it, since you wanted our perspective… I think that it’s really possible for you to kind of look at your finances, look at it with your husband, and work out like, “What is that worst case scenario?” You know, “What if we did use all that savings, and we found ourselves at zero? Is that the position we want to be in?” You had mentioned you have a health challenge, as well. I just want to make sure that you’re safe and okay.
And I don’t believe it’s one or the other, right? I don’t believe that if you have a full-time job, that you’re not living out your dreams or your highest purpose. Again, I know that when I was bartending, waiting tables, cleaning people’s toilets, I found a way to bring joy to those jobs because I knew that they were funding my dream. So I wasn’t in a position of suffering, if that makes sense. I wasn’t in a position of, like, “I’m not getting to do what I really want to do.” I was like, “No, I am so grateful for this, because this is allowing me to create abundance. It is allowing me to create a really strong financial future for myself,” knowing of the place I want to get to, but not putting that pressure on myself to get there right now.
So, I love you for being willing to go back to that episode, and to actually do the exercises that I suggest, especially the ones that are in writing. Pam, please do them in writing.
Marie: Put down those numbers. Look deep into that worst case scenario and ask yourself, “Okay, if the worst of the worst happened, could I live with this?” And then, looking at it on the flip side. “What’s the best thing that could happen if I took this risk? You know, if I stepped away from this job, if we used up all the savings and it didn’t work out, but perhaps the business really did take off. What would that feel like?” So, you have so much wisdom within you, and my intuitive sense is that we just need to dig deeper. We need to unearth it. We need to put it on paper and really sit with it for a little bit, so that you feel confident in how you’re moving ahead, despite what me or that business counselor or anyone else says.
Pam: That’s really good advice. Thank you very, very much for taking the time, and really connecting authentically with me. I love the fact that you are just tapped in and totally present.
Pam: That’s one of the things that I just, I totally admire about you. That’s probably why you have so many fans.
Pam: I’ve told everybody to go and sign up for B-School. In fact, I have two friends that have already signed up for it.
Pam: I want to do it again.
Marie: We love you. Thank you so much for sharing that, Pam. I think Zach wants to just maybe offer a few words of advice, too. He’s here with me listening. He got excited about you.
Zach: Well, I don’t know if it’s advice, or… I mean, it sounds like there are a lot of pressures, like having four kids, and managing the MS, and all that stuff. How do you make room for your passion and your work, and your responsibilities?
Marie: Yeah, it’s a great question. Actually, Zach’s adding in another layer, and what I would say, Pam… I’m sure you’ve been figuring this out. But for me, I almost looked at this recent stage of my career right now, because the business is beautiful and it’s healthy and it’s very robust, and I wanted to fit in writing a book, which is almost like this other passion that I hadn’t had room for. And so, one of the ways that I did it was I started waking up at like 5:00 a.m., and having a few hours of writing time really early, while the rest of the world was still sleeping, while Kuma, my puppy, was not up, wanting to be walked out, when Josh wasn’t up, like, “Where’s my coffee? What are we doing? What’s going on?”
And so, I think it really is about carving out these sacred moments of time, whether it’s in the morning or the afternoon or the evening. Even if it’s just an hour or 20 minutes where we do that creative, deep work. So for you, Pam, wherever you can kind of carve it out and fit it in. But as I’m listening to you, I think that you really do have such strong intuitive hits, and my vision for you in this next chapter is for you to keep getting in touch with that, and get stronger in your ability to listen to your own voice. Because you have so much wisdom in you. I can feel it, and I get excited thinking about… It’s the truth. I get excited about you continuing to hear it more clearly, and act on it.
Pam: Well, thank you. And I do, I wake up at 5:00 every morning to work on… I meditate and I study and I pray, and then I paint. So yeah, I fit it in. But I had a mentor a long time ago, one of my art teachers, who told me… And I said, “I have kids. I don’t know how I’m gonna fit it all in.” And she said, “You fit it in into the cracks of your life.”
Pam: “Because it is your passion, you fit it in wherever you possibly can.” Just like you said, Marie. Like, if I am sticking a bunch of chicken in the oven, I’ll set the timer on the oven, and I will be like, “Okay, I got an hour. I’m going back up to my art studio, and I’m gonna paint for the next 45 minutes.” And if my kids have homework, I’m like, “Come into the studio. You’re working on your homework, and I’m gonna paint at the same time. We’ve both got homework.”
Zach: That’s great.
Pam: That’s how I do it. I just fit it in, wherever I possibly can. But it’s usually waking up super early, and that is my time.
Pam: That’s it. I can focus. I love it.
Marie: Awesome. Pam, thank you so much…
Zach: Yeah, thanks.
Marie: …for allowing us to contribute to your dream today. Thanks for a great question. And I know, I can even hear it in the audience, people are like, “Thank you, Pam.” You just gave so many people so much permission and so many ideas. When you do have a lot of responsibility in your life, how to fit that sacred, creative work into those crevices. We love you. Please keep us posted.
Pam: Thank you so much, Marie. Thank you both so much.
Zach: Thank you.
Pam: I love you guys, and I’ll continue to be a fan and spread the word.
Marie: Love you, too. Thanks, Pam. Bye.
Zach: Ciao, ciao.
Pam: Okay. Have a great day.
Marie: You too.
Marie: Hi. It’s Marie from MarieTV. How are you?
Mayssa: Oh my God. Hi, Marie. It’s Mayssa.
Marie: Hi, Mayssa.
Mayssa: I’m so happy to talk to you.
Zach: Hi, Mayssa.
Mayssa: Oh my God. You are such an inspiration for me, so I’m so honored to talk to you today.
Marie: Oh. Well, we are very grateful to talk with you, my love. Tell us your question, and we will do our very best to provide some insight and some guidance, to help you move ahead.
Mayssa: Amazing. So, just to put you in the context, I’m a beauty influencer and a lifestyle influencer on social media, like for six years now. I used to have a blog and a YouTube channel, and I was posting videos like makeup tutorials, beauty product reviews, et cetera. But for the past three years, I’ve been focusing more on Instagram. So, I’ve been building my audience through the years, and now I have thousands of people following me on Instagram.
Mayssa: But actually, being an influencer, it was like a side hustle. I do collaborations with brands, et cetera. But it was more like a side hustle, than a nine to five job. So, a few months ago, I decided to follow my passion. I quit my nine to five job, and I started my own influencer marketing and social media agency.
Mayssa: And I love it. So, since my audience is still expecting me to post content related to beauty and fashion, my question is, how to rebrand the business to a new activity or field, when you already have an audience who’s interested in what you used to do, and what you’re known for years now?
Mayssa: Because now, I want to share more content about influencer marketing and content creation and social media growth. I also take clients for one on one bookings, so I want to start promoting that on my platform.
Mayssa: I mean, is it okay to do an overnight change, or is it better maybe to announce it before to the audience. So, like, “We’re gonna change the niche”?
Marie: Yeah. I’m gonna give you a bunch of possibilities, and I also want to set some context from my own career, too. First of all, my love, you feel, to me… I want to say congratulations on everything that you’ve done and built so far. It’s absolutely incredible.
Mayssa: Thank you so much.
Marie: We’re toasting you, and Zach is giving you some confetti throws, so that’s awesome. But here’s the deal: You’re multi-passionate. I’m multi-passionate. Many of us are. And even if you don’t feel that you’re multi-passionate, most of us are not gonna stay in the same exact part of our career for our entire lives, right? For 40 or 50 or 60 years. So, all of us have evolutions. I just want to say that for everyone listening, because it can be scary.
You know, when I first started, I was so passionate about life coaching, but then I was also teaching hip hop and dance. I was like, “Oh, goodness. Can I tell my coaching people about the fact that I teach hip hop? Should I invite them to dance workshops?” And then vice versa, right? “Should I talk to my dance people about the fact that I do all this coaching stuff?” Then when business came into the mix, there was just all those same kind of thoughts, so I understand this very well.
Now, you asked a question about whether you should do like an overnight change, or you should do it gradually. I don’t believe that there’s one right way to approach this, but I want to offer you some possibilities, so that you can feel into what you think is the best and most appropriate path ahead for you. So, if I were you, I would consider starting to drip in these new, exciting insights about your path. Telling people about your story, about the fact that you’ve been a beauty influencer for years, and you discovered this incredible passion for influencer marketing. You’ve now started this agency. This is a new chapter in your career. And if you start dripping this in, it lets people know, in a story-based way, which is how we all learn best, what’s about to come.
So, my gut –– again, and you don’t have to listen to me, I just want to offer you a possibility –– is that you start dripping this new content in, understanding that some of your existing followers are gonna be like, “This is amazing. I’m actually interested in this, too. I love beauty. I love to learn about marketing. I love to learn about influencers.” And then, perhaps there’s some people who will be like, “You know what? Maybe this isn’t for me anymore.”
Now of course, you may have considered and thought of, “Oh, should I start a whole new Instagram account, and start like a whole new page, and try and keep up two things?” You could do that if you wanted to, but I find that especially when you’re starting a new business, which it sounds like you have, your time is very limited, and you already need to wear a lot of hats. So getting clear for yourself, first, how many things that you want to manage is really important. Again, you’re totally capable. If you wanted to run two channels, you could do that.
I like to keep things simple. One of my life mantras is, “Simplify to amplify.” So if everyone’s in the same mix… Which, by the way, I did with my dance and with coaching. And I would say probably close to between 60 and 80% of the people were thrilled with both. Like, folks who like to move their bodies also want to improve their lives. So for you, a lot of your folks that are interested in beauty, again, many of them may want to become beauty influencers themselves, or may actually want to become clients of yours, because they want to follow in your footsteps. So, that’s one way that you could consider doing it.
There’s something in my body that just feels like a harsh change. Like, “Oh my gosh. I’m gonna flip everything overnight.” It also doesn’t feel like –– and please correct me if I’m wrong –– that that’s necessarily true for you. You know what I mean? Like, you’re just like, “I want this, hard stop, and that’s just it, and I just want to take it off.” Am I right on that?
Mayssa: No, it’s not exactly what I want. I want to shift step by step, I mean.
Marie: Yes. Yes, yes, yes. You can do that beautifully. So, I think it’s really about dripping in the content, being okay with the fact that you may lose some followers, and not making yourself wrong, or making them wrong, and knowing that you’re just widening up the possibilities for who you’re gonna attract in this next exciting chapter of your life.
Mayssa: Oh my God. I’m so, so happy. Thank you so much, everyone. I really appreciate all of their comments you’re putting out there for us. Thank you so much, Marie.
Marie: You’re welcome, love. Keep us posted.
Mayssa: Okay. Bye.
Zach: Bye. I love the tell your story part.
Marie: Yeah. Tell me more.
Zach: I so identify. I identify with that, because I’ve got all these interests as well.
Zach: And I’ve struggled with this in the past. Like, when I was a production designer, I was also still PA-ing to pay the bills.
Marie: Yeah. Of course.
Zach: And so, I was afraid that somebody would find out in this other world. And so, how do you… If I had just shared my story, then people would have connected to that passion and that drive.
Marie: And also related to the fact that most of us… I think so many creatives, we do so many different things, and we have so many different sources of revenue. And I think that there can be sometimes a lot of shame, when people feel like, “Oh, if I’m doing this thing that my mind considers less than, and then I have this other, more art-ly, creative function, that I can’t talk about both.”
Marie: But I think the more that we do, the more we realize that, “Gosh. Most of us have to do a bunch of different things, to keep the roof over our head.”
Zach: Okay, so in that note, how do you simplify to amplify, in that realm?
Marie: Well, I think simplify to amplify means not having multiple identities that you’re trying to keep separate.
Marie: When you’re just willing to talk about everything, and you’re like, “Oh, this is all me.”
Marie: You know, “This is what I’m doing,” then you don’t have to feel like you maintain five different websites, and five different Instagram accounts, and you’re trying to kind of compartmentalize, and not share it all.
Marie: That’s for me, at least. Zach, thank you so much for being here with me today.
Zach: Thanks for having me.
Marie: Thank you for watching this episode of MarieTV. Now, as always, the best conversations happen after the episode, over at MarieForleo.com. So, head on over there and leave a comment now. While you’re there, be sure to subscribe to our email list and become an MF Insider, because once you do, you’re gonna get instant access to an audio I created, called How to Get Anything You Want. It’s so good. You’re also gonna get some personal updates, and little insights from me that I just don’t share anywhere else.
Stay on your game, and keep going for your dreams, because the world really does need that special gift that only you have. Thank you so much for watching, and we’ll catch you next time on MarieTV. Bam. Bam. Bam.