I've spent lots of time being present with my emotions regarding my emergency savings and am committing to rebuilding my savings portfolio before I leave for Sri Lanka.
I often get people asking me how I was able to build a company that allows me to travel.
I think the real question people are asking is: how did I build a company where people pay me for huge ticket items like retreats and coaching without ever having met me in person?
The short answer is: branding and having a really good brand manager.
My sister, Honey Makwakwa, the founder of Sangoma Society, is my branding manager and she was one of the first people to teach me about the importance of an authentic brand when it comes to building a company.
So I invited her onto a Facebook live to share her knowledge with us.
A few months ago, my friend Wanda, the founder of the Black Women Travel Podcast, said something interesting to me, “We can mirror a successful person and take the exact actions that they take, but that doesn't mean that we're going to get the same results that they get.”
I've been thinking about this lately, because I spent the first 28 years of my life doing what I was told would make me successful and it didn’t work for me.
I went to university, got a finance degree, got an MBA, studied entrepreneurship, wrote the 30 page business plan, got an A in the business planning class, got a board of directors and my business still failed.
In fact, I was a mess from running that business. I was stressed and had daily panic attacks.
When the business failed, I tried to get an investment banking job with all my qualifications and still couldn’t get a foot in the door.
When I decided to follow my passion and be a writer (ironically the failed business was a writing and spoken word business), I was told that it would be easier to get a publishing deal if I was a successful blogger.
So I did what all smart people do - I followed all the successful bloggers who wrote about being a successful blogger and copied all they told me to do.
I read tons of blog posts, I did exactly what the top bloggers said I should do - I studied Search Engine Optimization, signed up for blogging courses, learned how to write the right eye catching headlines, but I still couldn’t get the same results.
I’d talk about the same things they did, I even tried to write the same way they wrote and it just didn’t work.
I couldn’t grow my blog traffic beyond a certain point. I was stuck.
I felt cursed!
It took me a while to realize that people respond to our energy not our actions.
Why do people pay others X and someone else Y for the same kind of work?
I used to ask myself these questions all the time.
Of course, now that I do the work I do, I know that what we get paid has a lot to do with the system (patriarchy, racism etc), our mindset and our deep understanding of the value that we bring to clients or to a job.
We can’t change the system of patriarchy and racism overnight, but we can change ourselves.
People are constantly responding to our vibration, our body language, the way we treat ourselves and how we show up for ourselves.
It doesn’t matter how great we are at negotiating or “faking it till you make it”, if we don’t feel comfortable with the amount that we’re charging or the salary we’re requesting, people won’t pay us that amount.
If you don’t believe that your work or your service is worth X amount; something in your voice, body language or your response will give that away and people will be able to sense it and it will feel false.
Why should people trust you with that amount of money when you don’t even trust yourself with it?
Charging what you’re worth has nothing to do with convincing people of your value; it’s about our self perception and what we think about the money we’re requesting.
In an ideal world, money shouldn't be able to buy us good health. We would all have access to health care and healthy food at affordable rates or even free of charge.
But we don't live in an ideal world…
Why do we find it so difficult to move ourselves beyond survival mode and into full on financial abundance?
Why do we constantly find ourselves on the financial edge?
Sometimes it seems like no matter what we do - we always find ourselves back in debt or with a zero bank balance or just dealing with the same old financial drama as last year or 10 years before.