It feels like nothing is happening.
You’re doing all the things. You feel like something should be happening, but it’s not. You thought you were reading the right business books but still aren’t finding the answers.
You’re doing everything you can for your beneficiaries (short of paying their bills for them), but they’re still stuck, still needing more money, still having more family emergencies, and still tempted back to the life they left behind.
You feel like you’re drowning in the endless need that surrounds you.
You feel isolated and alone, even surrounded by people.
It seems like no one gets you. No one can possibly understand the pressure you’re under to deal with government regulations, make payroll, pay bills to keep it all afloat, get food on the table, keep investors comfortable, develop new interventions that work, promote behavior change compassionately, but fervently….the list goes on and on.
You’re conflicted about what, where, and how to share.
You know you should be on social, but it’s such an energy drain for you. It takes so much time. You get sucked into the vortex of comparison. It is frustrating to see others post one success after the other (while nothing is happening for you).
Plus, you wonder what to share. You love your beneficiaries so deeply. The last thing you want to do is exploit them. Yet, people need to know some of their stories to see that your work and methods are effective….and change is happening, right?
That’s exactly what all the other social businesses are promoting….but that’s just. not. you.
You’re stuck meeting social needs, not getting around to profit.
“Will you please hold my baby?” When someone needs you, whether they literally ask or not, you know you’d rather hold her baby than make a sales call or deal with a government regulator on the phone.
Your distractions are cloaked in “caregiving.” Yet, they are still distractions that keep you from doing the hard things that must be done to keep a business running.
Let’s face it, you were drawn to social enterprise because of the “social” part, not the business part. Business is the tool, and frankly, sometimes the necessary evil, to fulfill your social mission.
You’re constantly pulled between the immediate - and very tangible- needs of your people and the often intangible benefits of business and long delays between taking action and bringing money into your bank account.
You might even feel (very) guilty about making money.
You’re overwhelmed by need, life, team, staff, family, and business.
Reading all this makes you feel exhausted…yet…you know this is your life.
The resulting feeling is best described in one word. Overwhelm.
You’re feeling pressure to be everywhere and do everything. Yet, you freeze and don’t do anything - especially not the money-making stuff - because you don’t know where to begin.
You deal with the urgent…all the time…the calls, texts, emails, WA messages…and not the important strategic networking, sales calls, and investor/donor outreach.
Even if it’s not these things, it’s the thing in the back of your brain that keeps trying to come forward, and you keep pushing it back when someone has a “need” that you and they feel only you can fulfill.
It doesn't have to be this way!
Feeling confidence and clarity about your social enterprise…and yourself.
You are able to show up for yourself and others. You talk to the right people. You spend time with the right people. You have a clear path. You can paint a vivid picture for your team, your beneficiaries, and your supporters. You know what to say yes to and what to let go of.
Working from a place of inspiration, not the grind.
You feel a sense of ease and peace. You’re sitting for a few quiet moments at your table or in your chair with your coffee or tea and your journal.
As you write, you have this overwhelming feeling of inspiration come over you. YES! This is the answer you’ve been seeking for the problem that’s too complex to describe.
It flows out onto your paper. And no, this answer did not come from a book or from someone else.
This, my friend, is what inspiration feels like. This is the moment you stop doing the same thing over and over and expect a different result. This is the moment you stop grinding away, and the solution emerges before your eyes. And life gets a little bit easier. You feel inspired to keep going.
Giving from a place of love, not duty.
You feel un-stressed. It is possible! You get to do things because you want to, not because you must.
You have your systems in place. You’re not tied to your phone. You’re spreading time with the people you love doing what you love.
You actually sit down to Sunday dinner with your family (whether your biological family or best mates) and are present and in touch; without regard to what’s happening on your phone. You get to play with the little ones, have adult conversations, laugh at jokes, and maybe kick a ball in the yard, all in the same afternoon or evening.
Having healthy boundaries, even with the people you love.
You recognize the value of self-care and self-compassion. You make time for yourself, you take walks to clear your head, and you have quiet time to settle your heart and mind and get clarity for the next steps.
You own your personal challenges and see them as growth opportunities. You know the priority-people in your life and value and treasure those relationships above the others.
You’re good with saying “No, but thank you” and allowing others to work out their own disappointment.
Investing more and more of your time operating in your giftings.
Let’s say you love being on the factory floor standing beside one staff member after the next, chatting, laughing, telling silly jokes, making fun comments about snafus, or raving about the genius of their newest creation. You can do that!
Someone else can do the accounting, the social posting, or the million other things about business that you don’t really like to do. You get to operate in your highest giftings and empower others to do most of the other stuff.
Guess what?! You don’t need to create a 10-page business plan or read hundreds of business books.
You don’t need to be available to everyone 24/7 or keep your phone on all the time.
You don’t need to solve everyone’s problems or feel guilty because your beneficiaries aren’t experiencing the personal change you know is possible for them.
You don’t need to DIY everything to save money. There is always a cost. Often, DIY-ing is extremely expensive for your physical and mental health.
Most of all, you don’t have to do it alone.
However, you do need to get clear on your purpose, vision, and values. Seriously, why are you on this planet? Why are you sacrificing so much? Why are you exchanging your life for this cause? Does your social enterprise line up with your personal values, or is it more what you think your beneficiaries, staff, and customers need?
You do need to create some quiet time for yourself….daily. This is non-negotiable, or there will be nothing left of you to give.
You do need to have a simple plan that spells out the H & Ws of your social enterprise so others can easily understand what you’re about - you can attract the right people to support your social enterprise and repel the wrong people.
You do need tools, processes, and strategies that simplify your life and business so that you can have boundaries so that your personal and professional growth can thrive again.
You do need to create systems that enable you to help more people.
You do need to get your “spark” back. It’s easy to lose it along the way, and it’s also possible to find it again.
You do need personal support and encouragement in a safe environment from people who “get you.”
And…the “how” of all of this is laid out in Avant-garde Entrepreneur Foundations.
The AGE Foundations Course taught me how to move from a place of being overwhelmed to a place of inspiration. I feel like my vision is more clear, I am better at managing my time and energy, and am operating from a place of clarity and peace!
Trisha touched on the issues that many entrepreneurs like myself face every day, and I enjoyed it immensely. Thank you for doing what you are doing. It is uplifting and incredibly encouraging for the youth starting businesses like me!
~ Daniel, 5 Mindset Pitfalls Workshop
- You find the answers within instead of fruitlessly searching outward
- You quiet the chatter in your head so you can hear your Spirit
- You have clearly identified priorities and feel confident in your path
- You recognize the gaps to fill and what you get to stop doing
- You let go of guilt, performance orientation, and “never enough”
- You feel confident about counterbalancing, knowing you’re not going to lose it
- You cut through the useless stuff to the few things that work.every.time.
- Get clear on your purpose, vision, and values
- Create quiet time for yourself
- Learn tools, processes, and strategies that simplify your life and business
- Develop systems so you can help more people
- Find your “spark” again
~ Aishah Bello, Founder of Voice of the Girl Child & Vulnerable People Foundation
~ Hillary Adongo, Rural and Community Development Expert
You are a social entrepreneur and changemaker who is:
- Loaded with responsibility and lacking personal time because it's spread out between juggling family, friends, school, work, and beneficiaries
- An independent thinker who is accustomed to figuring it all out yourself, DIY-ing just to save money, having it all fall on you, and wanting extra support
- Serving people in up-and-coming communities who are often desperate and seem to be drowning in need
- Questioning (and doubting) possibly everything you read, each decision you make, and are convinced there is a better way if only you search hard and long enough.
~ Douglas Smith, Founder of Sportrise & Co-founder of Peleyta Health
~ Stephen Ben, Founder of Wonder Liberia
~ Bipana Dhakal, Founder of The Learning Fortress
~ Bee, Founder of beekindcolours.com