Women Entrepreneurs Radio Podcast

Work With Me

entrepreneurial spirit

Real Talk: The Truth About Having Your Own Business

Desk with computerNot long after I left corporate, I became a tech writer contractor. With my IT experience, writing experience and my English degree, it made the most sense.


Then after taking coach training, I decided to try that. It seemed like the thing to do, and everyone I was following at the time was a business coach.


Unfortunately, I kept changing what I was doing to match whoever I was following. As you can imagine, that didn’t work out very well.


I didn’t have a clue about running a business, especially after being in corporate for most of my working life. I made a ton of mistakes and wasted tons of money following “experts.” Not that the gurus were intentionally misleading, but trying to fit into their business model never worked for me. But I didn’t know what I didn’t know.


So, after years of business experiences (and learning the hard way) this what I know for sure.


1. Building a business is hard work.


You will put in a lot of time, energy and money (or investors’ money). That means, if you’re looking for freedom, look elsewhere. Depending on what kind of business you’re running, you’ll be working on weekends, nights, holidays — at least in the beginning.


It’s up to you how you manage your time and build your business. BUT, if you’re looking to work a few hours a week and have your sales funnel or ‘bot do all the heavy lifting — think again.


You’ll have to understand sales and marketing and branding (among a lot of other things). Even though you might hate numbers, you need to come to grips with accounting, bookkeeping and taxes. Or at least know enough to hire the right people (or get the best tools) to help you do it.


It doesn’t matter how many books you read or webinars or live events you attend — the real learning will come from actually doing the things.


“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.” – Maya Angelou


2. Overnight success is bullshit.

You might not have heard of that person or brand until they hit it big, but they WERE working in the trenches the whole time. Believe that.


“Books are cool, but knowledge without mileage doesn’t mean anything to me.” – Henry Rollins



3. Origin stories are abbreviated.


I’ve read my share of stories that usually go like this: “I left my job/marriage/was fired/had a life event then there I was with $2.00 and I couldn’t even withdraw it from the bank.” Or “I was living in my car.” Or, on someone’s couch.


Then — fast-forward — “I hit it big and now effortlessly bring in 6 or 7 figures a year, a month or a week.”


I have nothing but respect for the person who worked their way out of a terrible situation. BUT, please tell me what you did from living in the box/car/shelter to getting your life back on track and making money.


That “in the meantime” part is always missing. Tell me that story. Inspire me with your journey so that I know that the dark night won’t last forever. You’re successful now, I get it. But don’t leave out the gritty parts.


“Doubt everything. Find your own light.” – Gautama Buddha



5. Show me the receipts.


I’m sure you’ve seen emails like this: “I made $100k last month using the proven steps that are included in my new online course.” That’s great and I’m happy for your success, BUT, I need to see receipts.


Not just your monthly income statements. Or your spreadsheet screen prints. Walk me through how you did your thing — how many hours? Did you outsource? If you blogged or wrote articles or whatever, how many did you do and what was your turnaround? What’s your rate range per hour or per project?


How many hours did you actually spend designing? Revising? Tweaking and testing? How many sales funnels did you create, test and trash before you found the one that worked for you?


You worked hard for the money — show me how you did it, THEN I can decide if it fits what I want to do. Don’t just tell me the ending of the story. Show me the journey so I can grasp the actual work that went into it.


“Success is most often achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.” – Coco Chanel



6. Business is not predictable.


Having a business is not like having a predictable (at least if your company doesn’t lay you off) income from a job.


A product might do very well, or it might tank. You might have a great initial run, then sales fall off. By the time you get to market, the thing you created might be out of fashion. OR someone else got there first with something that makes your product obsolete.


You might have wild, wonderful success or your big idea might fizzle. It comes with the territory. Surveys might tell you people want your service, but when it launches, you only hear crickets. That’s how it is in business.


Anyone who promises you a sure thing, proven results, income that always increases, a predictable path of ease and endless vacations to luxury destinations is leaving something out.


The work that goes on behind the scenes — the machinery that runs to make it all look effortless — won’t run by itself. A.I. (artificial intelligence) is not going to do it for you. If you are the CEO, you are managing that machinery. You might not do all the work, but you had better know what’s going on.


“The two most beautiful words in the English language are ‘cheque enclosed.'” – Dorothy Parker



7. You have to know your worth.


How do you define success? Is it money? Is it love? Is it peace of mind? What is YOUR definition? Forget about what other people tell you it should be.


Are you afraid to charge what your products/services are worth? Are you reluctant to talk to people about what you sell? Are you afraid to risk rejection by putting yourself out there? It could be that the biggest block to your success, is you. Successful people have coaches and mentors. If that’s what you need, do it.


You’ll have to reinforce your self-worth before you can increase your net worth (this can be one of the hardest lessons to learn).


“Some things have to be believed to be seen.” – Madeleine L’Engle



The Business Reality


There’s nothing wrong with having big dreams. In fact, I think they’re essential. But don’t be distracted by the fluff and the airbrushed lifestyles.


Understand that your faves are working hard for the money. And they’ll have to continue to do so if they want to keep it coming in through all the changes and upheavals that happen in the real world.


Some of them might not be sharing the downturns, the doubts or the failures with you because they’re selling the end result. (And let’s face it, the end result looks hella good.)


When it comes to business ownership, there’s work involved. And there’s financial investment involved. And there’s commitment involved.


One of the blog contributors (and Women Entrepreneur Radio guests) the wonderful Imelda Arcilla wrote about evolving through entrepreneurship. It’s true. The entire process will push you out of your comfort zone and force you to grow and evolve. That’s really the best (and toughest) part.


Be willing to do what it takes and understand that there are no easy, effortless shortcuts to anyplace worth going. You’ll have to put in the work. But the reward can be everything you desire. As long as you’re honest with yourself about what it takes.


Copyright © 2017 Deborah A. Bailey


This post originally appeared on the Secrets of Success blog.



Photo credit:













entrepreneurial spirit

Want to Start a Business? 5 Questions to Ask First

Thinking about starting your own business? Or maybe all you want is a side hustle (with “hustle” being the key word). When it comes to business ownership, do you have the right mindset?

Here are some important questions to ask yourself first!


1. Are you afraid to fail?

Failure is not a bad word in the entrepreneurial world. A high tolerance for risk and the ability (and desire) to reinvent yourself is required for long-term success. On social media you might only see smiling, happy entrepreneurs who claim to make six figures with every launch. But for every successful launch there’s one (or more) that didn’t work. You might not hear about those as often, but they’re much more likely. Entrepreneurs have to be resilient enough to learn from what didn’t work and keep it moving.


2. Do you hate working overtime?

There’s no such thing as regular nine-to-five hours when you work for yourself. Even if you have employees or contractors, you’ll still have to provide direction. “Auto-pilot” doesn’t mean you can have your business run itself while you sit on the beach. Even businesses with efficient systems still have to be managed.


3. Does it make you feel uncomfortable to stand out?

If you’re not comfortable promoting yourself, it will be almost impossible to market your business. You can’t fade into the background then wonder why potential clients don’t know you exist. Even if you hire professional help to market your business, you’ll have to get out there at some point.


4. Do you have trouble sticking to self-imposed deadlines?

When you work for yourself, there won’t be any managers setting deadlines for you. No supervisors watching you work and no time-clocks to punch. You’ll have to be accountable to the timetables you set. If you have trouble being proactive, you’re going to find it hard to stick to a plan and generate an income on a regular basis.


5. Do you know your worth?

If you come from an “hours for dollars” environment, you’re going to have to shift your thinking. Rates and fees should be based on the value you’re delivering, not on the hours it takes to do something.


You’ll have to feel comfortable asking for what you’re worth. Otherwise, you’ll never stop discounting or giving your work away for free. Not that free is bad. It can certainly be used very effectively for some offerings. But if you end up giving away everything because you’re afraid to put a value on it – you won’t be in business for very long.

As a small business owner, your business will be tied in with your beliefs and feelings about yourself. You won’t be just another employee tucked away in a big corporation. You’ll be the CEO of your own business. You’ve got to be ready to deal with the setbacks along with the successes.

Check your mindset first, then you’ll know if you’re ready to step out as an entrepreneur.

Copyright © 2017 Deborah A. Bailey


Photo credit:



entrepreneurial spirit

A List of Tools to Help You Manage (and Create) Your Marketing Content

The Balance Between Writing Fiction and Non-FictionManaging your social media marketing can be tough when you’ve got to do it all. But there are lots of tools out there to make life a bit easier.


There are quite a few here, so make sure you bookmark them to visit later.




Create Graphics for Marketing & Branding


Canva – Free online graphics software.

Adobe Photoshop – Adobe suite of products can be purchased as a subscription using Creative Cloud. Free trials available.

Gimp – Free graphics software.

Uplevo – Free online design platform.


Audio Editing & Podcasting


Audacity – Open source audio editing software.

Wavepad Sound Editor – Free audio editing software.

Adobe Audition – Audio editing software. Free trial available.

Podomatic – Podcast platform.

Libsyn – Syndication for podcasts.


Graphics, Printables & Other Useful Things


Creative Market – Design assets and resources.

Etsy – Online marketplace.

Design Cuts – Design resources.

Graphicdome – Design resources.

Blend Images – Royalty-free stock photos.

Lucid Press – Online Print and Design Publishing Software.

Colorstock – Diverse stock photos.

Her Creative Studio – Styled stock images.

Haute Chocolate – Styled stock library.

50 Shades of Black Stock – Styled stock images of women of color.

SmartMockUps – Free online sofware to create computer and mobile device product mock-ups.

Unsplash – Royalty-free images.

iStockPhoto – Royalty-free images and videos.


Writing & Editing

Chicago Manual of Style Online – One month free trial available.

Grammarly – Free grammar checker.

Smart Edit – Software for editing creative writing. Free trial available.

Disclaimer: This post contains some affiliate links. Resource recommendations are based on my personal experience and my policy is to only promote products and services that I can safely recommend to my readers.










book reviews

Book Review: Finishing School by Cary Tennis & Danelle Morton

Finishing School  FINISHING SCHOOL: The Happy Ending to That Writing Project You Can’t Seem to Get Done (TarcherPerigee; January 10, 2017) by journalists Cary Tennis and PEN/ USA Finalist Danelle Morton is a guide to using goal-setting to get your creative projects completed. Too often we end up with good intentions when we begin, but we run out of steam for various reasons.


The book identifies the “six emotional pitfalls” that can stand in the way. They are, Doubt, Shame, Yearning, Fear, Judgement and Arrogance.


For instance, doubt that you can finish your project may stop you from getting it done. Or your yearning to become a writer might stand in the way of actually doing the work.


There’s a detailed description of the methodology in addition to real-life examples from the authors. They give good examples from their own experiences and dig deeply into each one. Even if you can’t identify with all of the pitfalls, there will be something that resonates.


I particularly liked the idea of having a “Declaration of Done,” which is a way to make an actual declaration that your project is completed. The last chapter of the book sums it up best, “Finishing School is a method for reaching a state of completion and moving on.”


About Finishing School

All too many people start a writing project with grand ambitions but reach a crisis of completion. Finishing School helps writers reignite the passion that started them on the project in the first place and work steadily to get it done.




inspired living

When You’re Not Sure What To Do Next: Write it Out

ID-10030391Even though I’m a writer, I’m not one for keeping journals.  It’s not my thing. But, what I have realized is that writing things down makes them real. Yes, I know that probably sounds weird. How can writing something down make it real? Well, let me break it down for you.


Let’s say you have an idea about getting a new job. Or starting a business. Or buying a house. You have all these thoughts jumbled in your head. You think about what you want to do night and day. You tell everyone you know. You gather opinions and try to make decisions based on what everyone else suggests to you – or based on your knowledge of whatever it is you want to do.


After a while you’re overwhelmed because too of too much information. What you desire is in conflict with what you believe is your reality. That gets mixed up with opinions of everyone you’ve shared your desires with.


When it’s all over, you’re going in circles. Or just confused.


I’ve been there. Not a good place to be when you want to take action. Especially an action you’ve never taken before.


Years ago when I was planning to find a job closer to home (so I could get free from a 4-hour round-trip commute) I wrote down everything I wanted in the new situation. From the length of the commute, to the pay, to the position of my cubicle (on the 2nd floor next to a window). Oh, and I also wrote down that I wanted to be in a building with a waterfall. Why? Just because.


Months later after I got the new job, I found what I’d written down (and forgotten about). Everything I’d wanted, I received. Even the waterfall. Magic? I’m not sure. But something happened.


Each time I wanted something – and was confused how to define it – I wrote it down. When I was house hunting and wanted to define what I wanted (after seeing several homes over about six months, it was easy to get confused) I drew up a basic floor plan. Then I wrote down how many rooms I wanted and what kind of house I desired.


Once it was out of my head, there was no more confusion. No matter what the realtor suggested (or how many houses I visited) I’d defined what I wanted. And yes, I ultimately found the perfect house that fit what I’d written down.


I tend to write things down when I feel I need to, which is not everyday. It’s more of a problem-solving tool for me, than something I use for daily reflection.  Everyone has an inner guidance system and everyone – deep down – knows what they really desire. The way to get with that is to tune out the noise of the world and commune with your own thoughts.


It’s a way to get clear. To let go of the crap. To relieve stress. To heal what’s wounded. Pen to paper can do that (or virtual paper).


It doesn’t matter if you use a fancy journal, or type it out on your computer. Writing is a powerful and healthy way to clear out the stuff that gets in the way.


inspired living

5 Netflix Docs to Watch When You Need a Break from Your Business

televisionIn the middle of everything else I’m up to, I also have a very crowded Netflix queue.

There are a ton of shows that I’m going to binge-watch one day…when I get around to it.

But what I really enjoy are the documentaries. It’s so easy to get caught up in only exposing yourself to business books, webinars, interviews, podcasts – I’m as guilty of that as the next person. But it doesn’t hurt to take a break from all that and watch something that isn’t about business.

(Note: These docs were available on Netflix as of the date of this post.)

Want to add a few docs to your queue? Start with these:


Follows boxer Claressa Shields during her quest for her first gold medal in the London Olympics. Really down-to-earth look at a young woman on a mission to change her life and the lives of those around her. (She recently won her second gold medal at the Rio Olympics.)


A Ballerina’s Tale
Intimate and inspirational portrait of principal ballerina, Misty Copeland. I came away with a new respect for the physical demands of being a ballet dancer. There’s a lot of work and sacrifice behind the scenes. I originally saw this on a PBS station, but this version has about 30 additional minutes.


In the Shadow of the Moon
Includes candid interviews with some of the astronauts from the Apollo space program. You don’t have to be a sci-fi fan (or a scientist) to enjoy it.

5 Netflix Docs to Watch When You Need a Break From Business

That Gal…Who Was In That Thing: That Guy 2
Fascinating documentary about the challenges faced by  female character actresses in Hollywood. You’ll see a lot of familiar faces. As a Law & Order fan girl, I recognized a lot of them from episodes on the various L&O franchises.


What happens when one day, a man is able to see all kinds of beings around him. Is he insane or has he tapped into another dimension? Lots of questions here about the meaning of life but it never gets preachy or “woo woo.” It leaves you with a lot to ponder and gives hope that average, everyday people can change things for the better.






being creative

Why There’s No “American Idol” for Authors

american idol for authors

Businesswoman Using Laptop at Desk — Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Have you ever watched “American Idol,” or the “X Factor,” or any show where contestants compete to win the big prize?


I remember watching American Idol with a friend and she was rooting for her favorite singer to win. We got caught up in the drama and the suspense of it – would the singer win or lose her big chance?


She worked so hard for the spotlight, what would happen if she didn’t make it?


Why do you want to write a book? Is it a deep desire or just a “nice to have?” Are you hoping to promote your business, or tell your personal story?


The great thing is that you aren’t competing with anyone else to tell your story. That applies even if you’re writing a book to promote your business. Your business might have competitors, but your book won’t.




Because no one can tell the story like you can. No one else can have the same life experiences or point of view, no matter how similar your businesses are. Even if your dream is to write a novel or memoir, no one else’s story will ever be exactly the same as yours.


And you know what else? Readers want great, well-written stories, ideas that they can learn from or that help them to stretch beyond their everyday thinking. When I read your book, I’m getting your perspective and (hopefully) I’m learning something about myself as well.


Even when it comes to marketing – you are not competing. Really. If your marketing is truly reflecting your story and your brand – you won’t look or sound like anyone else. (And that’s the catch – you have to publish a book that’s as real and authentic as you are – instead of being a copy of what everyone else is doing.)


So what do you need to get started? An idea, a plan and persistence.


Your big book idea describes what you want to say, your plan (or outline) will give you the roadmap on how to say it and persistence will get you through the process. It’s not about competing to be chosen as “the one.” It’s about stepping up and believing that your idea is worth sharing.

Copyright © 2016 Deborah A. Bailey




inspired living

Increasing Energy in a Stressful Work Environment

Woman eating her breakfast sitting at the table

by Janet Gomez

“From the food we eat, the air we breathe, the things we see, feel, hear and touch, our environment is formed and this in turn profoundly influences and shapes out internal environment”
-Swami Vishni-devananda

A few years ago I offered a teleseminar to provide simple solutions on how to increase energy and to have better health. Some subscribers contacted me with specific questions and I’ve decided to share my response to a particular question that concerns us all.

The subscriber asked me how to increase her energy levels in a stressful work environment.

Our inner state depends on what happens outside. If we live in a stressful situation, all our body systems are affected.

There are three points I want to make to answer this question.

Firstly to increase energy levels in a stressful working environment it is important to be aware of how you eat. When you’re under stress, the body does not direct energy towards the digestive system but rather outward to support the “fight or flight” response. Since the energy is not going to the digestive system, the conditions to promote healthy digestion are missing. The result – less energy.

Proposed Action:
Eat calmly, for example, stop for a moment before eating to think about what you are eating and create a calm environment within yourself. It takes a second. Chew your food slowly and pay attention to every bite.

Follow a routine, regular hours, since routine offers balance and security. Since your body is prepared and able to digest more efficiently during these periods, you’ll have more energy than normal after eating.

To learn to breathe correctly. Correct breathing is important for physical and mental health. If you learn to breathe correctly, you can increase your strength and energy levels. If, for example, you are in a stressful situation and you get angry, breathing helps you to reduce acidity in you body and to focus emotional energy so that it has a more positive effect on the nervous system and your internal (and perhaps external) environment. So, breathing techniques can help you manage stress and bring more oxygen into the body for more energy  

Proposed Action:
Take yoga classes or other specialised courses because Yogis have know for a long time that we can get most of our energy from the air. They developed a system of breathing exercises called “pranayama” to control the “prana” or subtle energy

To ensure that you drink enough water every day because even if you are 1% dehydrated your attention span and concentration can fall by 13% and cause dizziness, irritability, headaches and fatigue.

Proposed Action:
Drink a glass of (warm / hot) water instead of a cup of tea, coffee or a glass of wine. Caffeine and alcohol have a diuretic effect (increases urine production), and the body loses water accordingly.

Drink a glass of water for every cup of tea or coffee or glass of wine you drink.

Always have water with you during the day, e.g. on your desk, in your bag so you can take a sip whenever you want.

Be regular in your water intake – the body likes regularity. For example, drink one glass an hour after breakfast, one glass an hour before lunch.

Need further guidance because you are feeling tired or have a lingering cold you just can’t shake? Drop by and see me in March for a by-donation session or email to arrange a short Skype call (also by donation). 

Janet Gomez, ayurvedic practitioner & nutritional consultant, produces the “Nutri-Jyoti News”, a free  e-newsletter for busy professionals. Feel ready to learn how to use nutritional strategies to manage your energy levels? Then sign up for her FREE e-course “5 Nutritional Keys to Vitality in your Life” on the Nutri-Jyoti home page now.

Copyright © 2016 All rights reserved Janet Gomez


inspired living

7 Health Hacks to Use When You’re Working

7 Health Hacks to Use While WorkingWhether you’re running a business full-time, part-time or still in the workplace (preparing for your leap into business ownership) it’s easy to push yourself too hard.


There are only so many hours in the day, but we’re good at stretching those hours as much as possible.


Thing is, if you burn yourself out, you won’t be able to get anything done. So, here are some tips to help you to stay healthy while you work.


Relax after a long working day – sometimes when you’ve got a lot on your list to accomplish, you want to keep pushing even when your body (and mind) want rest. Give yourself a chance to unwind and recharge. It’s hard to stay productive if you’re exhausted.


Take frequent breaks – I set the timer on my phone to remind me to break away from my work. Whether it’s a break for coffee/tea/water, a quick walk, meditation or whatever you like to do best. Especially if you work at a desk and sit for long periods of time, it’s important to move your body and break away from your task at regular intervals.

Keep a journal – use a notebook, your mobile device or computer to jot down your thoughts and feelings at the end of the day. Some people keep gratitude journals so they can take stock of what they have and what they’ve accomplished. Especially if you’re a creative person, writing can help to clear your mind and get the ideas flowing.

Stay hydrated – have trouble drinking your water? I do too! 🙂 But I’m in the habit of taking a glass of water into my home office when I work (and when I’m in the workplace I do that same thing). Add lemon if you want to give it some flavor.


Take a walk – when it comes to walking, you can do it just about anywhere. Add steps to your day when and where you can, and you’ll be much more refreshed.


 Keep healthy snacks handy – this is a big one! Workplace snack machines (and cafeterias) can be danger zones when you get hungry. But if you plan ahead, you can have plenty of healthy snacks on hand to reach for instead. Don’t get stuck having to grab a high-sugar or high-fat snack because it’s the only thing available.


Take the stairs – if you can use the stairs instead of the elevator, by all means do so. In my last workplace, I used the stairs all the time when I was coming in and leaving for the day. If you’re working from home (and have stairs) use them to get some extra steps in during the day. When it comes to exercise, a little bit can go a long way.


Disclaimer: I partnered with to develop this post and the checklist, however, I wasn’t paid for this post and the opinions are my own.







entrepreneurial spirit

Top Ten Tips for Mompreneurs

Top Ten Tips for Mompreneursby Heather Stouffer, CEO of Mom Made Foods

Mom Made Foods has filled the void for healthy and convenient frozen meals and snacks that speak predominantly to health-conscious parents looking for an easy and nutritious way to feed their families.

As the founder and CEO, I created Mom Made Foods because I believe in convenient meals that don’t sacrifice quality or nutrition, and that kids should be able to eat delicious foods without the added junk.

In remaining true to my values as an entrepreneur, here are ten tips my fellow mompreneurs should consider:

1. Hire experts and delegate. It’s both humbling and important to remember that you don’t know everything! You will not grow your business if you don’t surround yourself with the right individuals, whether they’re employees, consultants, board members or strategic partners.

2. Balancing family and work while taking care of yourself will mean less time for work, which is all right! Your children are only kids once. Don’t miss a big event.

3. The key to success doesn’t lie in the act of thinking about it. It lies in the execution. You need energy and momentum to bring your big ideas to life and sustain them.

4. If you’re not failing every now and then, then you’re not taking the risks necessary to find success. Expect to have failures and learn to turn them into opportunities.

5. Listen to your customers and react. It’s important that they know they can trust you and some of the best business strategies come from customer input.

6. Find a purpose for your career that you believe in. Mom Made Foods was born out of my passion for feeding my family the healthy, convenient foods they need to thrive. What drives me to work hard and give so much of my life to this company is that I am passionate about the mission behind it.

7. Prioritize and re-prioritize. As an entrepreneur, it’s important to be disciplined but also flexible when needed. Every day is an adventure!

8. In raising capital, always plan ahead, look to the future and raise more than you think you will need.

9. Find thTips for Mompreneurse right customers and tune into their wants and needs. Just like no one type of food appeals to the masses, neither does one type of business. Cater to your customer and serve them while remaining true to your mission and values.

10. Bring your kids along on your business journey. Whether it’s a snow day or a long school holiday, bringing your children to your office is a great way to show them what you do day in and day out while adding new life and energy to the office! At dinnertime, when they ask how your day was, answer truthfully. Children of entrepreneurs have a special appreciation for hard work and dedication.

Helping to feed America’s families is a responsibility that I am honored to have. The Mom Made Foods team has never taken that trust for granted and does what it can to continue to grow our relationship with today’s families. As a successful mompreneur, I am proud to have held onto this commitment to excellence, allowing it to guide me, my team and my family as we grow Mom Made Foods.

*Listen to Heather Stouffer’s interview on Women Entrepreneurs Radio™ to learn more about starting a business in the natural foods industry. Listen online on Podomatic:
and on iTunes: