We won’t be printing any more for this year. If you’ve been sitting on the fence, grab one now. You’ll be one of the lucky last in the doors who get to change their life + business over their next year.
If you use them, your dreams WILL manifest faster, you WILL receive more abundance + you WILL feel more on soul purpose.
Six years of producing these workbooks and gathering the results of them has taught me that, through and through.
We have super limited stocks left, so jump on it now if you are ready to make this year incredible.
AND! If you do buy one today:
You’ll get an exclusive ticket to a PLANNING PYJAMA PARTY where me and my Chief Operations Officer Grant will be sharing behind-the-scenes insights into our company + all sorts of good business wisdom.
Confession time: We haven’t done our 2015 planning yet. And it’s nearly MAY.
So… given that we are close to half way through the year, is it okay that we’re doing it NOW?
Is it TOO LATE?
NO. Of course it is not.
It’s NEVER too late to do planning…
EXCEPT if you don’t do it at all.
There’s plenty of really good reasons why I haven’t done planning yet.
We moved from the very top of Australia to the very bottom. It’s taken me a bunch of time to get myself settled enough and grounded enough to start looking forward into the future again. And I had to wait for some team stuff to fall into place (i.e. waiting for Grant to say yes to joining the team!)
And I’m sure you have your own reasons.
One of my mentors who works with a number of seven figure business women told me that many of her clients aren’t even thinking about year planning in the first quarter of the year. It’s just not the right season for them. Especially this year. Maybe it’s astrological. (I always like to blame things on the planets! HA!)
Even if it’s not January… even if we are nearly in May…
If you haven’t done your business planning for the year yet…
As long as it gets done.
So that’s why we’re having the planning party. To get OURS done.
And we can all pyjama it up together.
You can ask us biz plan + growth questions.
We’ll share how we’re planning out the company’s year.
You can peek into how our brains work together(Hint: powered by gigglesnorts + ridiculousness).
You can have your workbooks open at the same time and either fill it out(if you haven’t got it yet or haven’t started!) or review it(if you already have because you’re obviously more organised than the rest of us! GO YOU!)
So… in summing up:
2015 workbooks are nearly sold out if you be one of the lucky last owners!! ORDER YOURS HERE
ALL workbooks owners (whether print or ebook) and Academy members will get an exclusive ticket (*snigger*) to a PLANNING PYJAMA PARTY where me and my Chief Operations Officer Grant will be sharing behind-the-scenes insights into our company, give you time to fill out or review your workbooks + share all sorts of good business wisdom.
Pyjama party will be in a couple of weeks so you have time to get your book if you order it today.
Okay! That’s all love!
I joke about this, but I’m super serious… ONLY get the workbook + use it if you want to be happier, have your dreams fulfilled + grow your business like a wildflower.
If you’d prefer for those things to NOT happen… DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK.
Okay, I’m off! Miracles are waiting to be birthed and these hips were made for creative birthing!!!!
My body has been going through its own healing + grieving process. Even though I am completely, 100% done with babymaking in my soul… even though it’s strongly recommended by medical professionals to not risk HG again… of course there is a part of me – that deeply feminine, mother part of me – that grieves. Grieves for babies that weren’t mine to have this lifetime. And it’s okay, all these feelings, you know?
Not so long ago, I used to run away from any feeling which wasn’t “positive.” And one of the surprise gifts that came out of having HG was that I finally realised I was allowed to have all my feelings. In fact, it was healthier for me to have my feelings and let them pass, then bottle up all the ones I thought I couldn’t have, and instead they would fizzle and pop out of me as anxiety and sharpness.
HG softened the fuck out of me on that level. And that is a good thing.
So I’ve been feeling all my feelings. Letting them come, letting them go. They are all welcome here now.
And letting the physical process of healing take its time too.
It’s been a longer, slower recovery than I had expected. But that’s probably not surprising – I’m notoriously impatient and want to manifest + do everything NOW.
As the intuitive Hiro joked with me this morning, after having known me for so many years now – my gravestone will NOT say “A Beacon of Patience.” That cracked me up.
So… despite my plans to be ruling the world + kicking back into full speed after surgery… here I am, still needing to go slow + lay low. I know there must be a great, deep spiritual reason for this. That I will not be the person who got into bed when I get back out.
For good reason too.
My world is moving in the most wonderful of ways.
It reminds me of one of my favourite childhood stories: Enid Blyton’s Faraway Tree. That tree, so tall and enchanted, stretched far above the forest and at the top, it accessed different worlds. And every so often, the clouds changed and the worlds shifted. And the inhabitants of the Faraway Tree (like Silky the fairy and dear old Moon-Face) would clamber to the top and find themselves in a new world.
I share that, because the clouds shifted for me and a new land has arrived. And all of a sudden, after waiting and waiting and waiting, I can see exactly where I’m headed + what I’m creating next + exactly how I’m doing it. And it’s beautiful and exciting. I feel deeply, totally on soul purpose.
Spirit and creativity and ease are returning to me in the biggest wave… I haven’t felt so verdently ripe + blooming in all of this for over five years. What a blessing, right? Especially after such a tough time with my pregnancy with Beth. It’s the sweetest rain for quite some time.
What I’m Creating…
I’m remaining fiercely devoted to my Academy + have HUGE plans to take it to the next level. Well, more like a dozen levels up. The plans we have are pretty magical + wondrous, honestly! I’ll share more as they come into fruition.
We’re also developing out a full planner range (including 2016 workbook, diary, wall planner + to do list pad) for the next year. Basically, I wanted to create a full suite of products that would help you make your dreams come true. And make them adorable and rainbow and inspiration CENTRAL. #megafun
You can read more about some of the lovely Academy and workbook changes that are happening here.
You might remember a couple of months ago, just after we moved here to darling Tasmania, I decided I needed to take a retreat. I ended up spending my afternoons sitting in a turquoise cabin overlooking the ocean.
I painted and watched Notting Hill and wrote and cried and illustrated the Hyperemesis Gravidarum zine as a creative side project. I sat and wait for all the pieces of myself to arrive after such a huge move.
And trust me, I TOTALLY resisted going on retreat. I like being a productive mofo. I always think there’s too much on my plate to do it. But I also know that the insights that come up when on retreat are life + business changing. And that the only way to get them is get still and quiet enough to hear them.
During that retreat, I got the insight I needed:
I suddenly knew how to fill the Chief Operations Officer (COO) in my company. Having a COO for me is damn important. It means I get to concentrate on creating + content + strategy + marketing – my genius zone. While someone does the team management + hiring + tech + systems to execute those goals. I’ve been doing both those roles until I could find the right person. It’s the most important hiring decision I have to make.
Anywaysies – on that retreat – I got that big soul intuition to ask our tech contractor Grant Andrew to become COO. We’d worked with him over the space of five months, and my whole team (including my husband who is notoriously hard-to-impress) loved him. He’s a walking heart on legs, has some ridiculously awesome experience + regards work as his spiritual practice + passion. (He’s also the one that organised + engineered the rescuing of our workbooks at Christmas!)
Grant brings a bunch of tech, hiring, business systems, marketing and funnel knowledge with him, along with his inner wisdom of creating a lasting, magical marriage (his wife Jenny is a total earth angel!), connected parenting (he’s a committed dad to his 3 almost-adult kids) and creating (he’s also a singer-songwriter with his own album out). In short – he’s got a lot to share, he’s passionate about teaching it and I place great trust in his wisdom. So I’ve asked him to begin sharing it as well with you – via my blog + in the Academy.
Creative collaboration! What fun!
It’s a big shift for me – to “share the stage” effectively. It isn’t something that’s called me before. However I felt like I would be doing a big disservice if I didn’t share Grant with you and let you learn from him too. I call him a “brother from the cosmic womb”.
I will of course be still sharing + creating… in fact what we’re working on is creating the systems for me to be able to do even more of that.
It’s exciting + good times.
Creative Collaboration #1:
So with that in mind, I thought it would be useful to interview Grant + share him with you all that way.
We also talk about:
the creative process
the importance of setting priorities
increasing our environmental + social consciousness
And if you’d like to see more – like a business/life/heart/creating podcast or vodcast, pop us an email. That would be really fun!
Creative Collaboration #2:
Grant also just ran our first US team retreat last week, and I asked him to share his best tips on creating an amazing team. He shared them poetically here, and I illustrated them into a printable poster for you as well.
I felt 100% certain of Grant’s ability, smart + heart to pull it off (as I mentioned in my interview post with him, he’s the former CEO of a nonprofit, has managed 200+ people at citigroup + owned his own company before I headhunted him).
We’ll be sharing more about the retreat, how it worked, how it was planned + what happened soon.
But for now, Grant brewed up this piece of magnificence.
I loved it so much I made it into a poster.
BUSINESSES ARE BUILT FROM HEARTS: A MANIFESTO
The number of Leonie Dawson International staff in Durango is back down to one (unless you count that awkward head-of-Leonie-on-a-paint-stirrer in my living room.) Instead of spending my days in a beautiful, cozy guesthouse, I’m back to the small office, grinding out the work. Instead of asking if someone is in the room, we’re back to looking for the little light by a name, indicating that a person is on the other end of a Slack* channel and is likely to respond to a message. The retreat is retreating and we’re back to normal life, remote work, and an expanding to-do list that demands some attention.
So what have we learned?
Relationships are real.
Businesses are built from hearts.
From the first moment that I picked Erin, Joyce, and Amber up from the airport, our conversation and ways of relating were just extensions of our daily work-life. People are people, even on the Internet.
Showing up with respect, working hard and delivering for each other, allowing your humor and your personality into the equation, these are all good parts of working together, whether you share a cubicle or a Hangout.
(A brief people aside – some things you just can’t put back in the bag. We have talked about my inner-femininity. THAT ship has sailed.)
Be the change…
If you are trying to build a magical world and really give your best to the world, don’t imagine you can skip the step of being honorable to the people supporting your efforts and still truly succeed. In fact, start there. Give the love you want to give to the world, to your team. Grow them, encourage them, support them. You’ll get it back, promise.
This is not to say don’t get the right people on the bus, and the wrong people off.* But there are ways to work that respect the dignity, the Divine spark, and the contribution of everyone without endangering your mission. Basic decency has to be a starting point for any venture that hopes to traffic in authenticity.
You can’t buy passion.
You can pay people to take orders, but to get people engaged enough to take on the group (even the leader… what ARE they thinking?) to make things better, that takes buy-in. That takes personal alignment with the cause. That takes a willingness to stick up for what you really believe is best.
(Or alternatively, it may just be a sign of someone with a high-D profile (aka a Dominant profile from DiSC assessment) who is determined to win – our whole team are high Ds – dominant, opinionated, determined to do well + create big results #surprisednotsurprised!!)
Passion creates a wonderful reality to inhabit.
To hear each person in turn dig in and make a case for better support, better experiences, and adding even more value to this community, to the blog, to the Academy, to the workbooks, that’s pretty cool.
It means we are all willing to advocate to see things done well, we’re all willing to fight for excellence.We are passionately at your service.
I think the answer to all of business is to care more.
Care about your customers. Care passionately about their problems, what they are experiencing, how you can help them, how you can make it better.
Care about yourself. Care for yourself enough to have balance, to have a life, to not forget to have a good life as well as a good business.
Care about the world. Care about how your business impacts it. Care about the work it does to make it better.
Care about the hearts that make up your business. Without them, there is no business.
I believe the risk of the virtual world is we forget our humanity.
Don’t. You have to work hard to make things real, but the result is worth it.
Hearts build your business. Don’t forget to build up those hearts.
Get together with your people in the same room.
Yes, it costs money. It costs airplane tickets and time.
But it gives back tenfold.
It does what the internet can’t do, and it lets hearts see hearts.
Great magic is created there.
Mail things – nothing says I appreciate you these days like a real letter or package.
Handwrite that card.
Linger a little longer.
Really speak the words that reside in your heart.
The gratitude you feel for your team. The ways they make your heart light up. What they do and are that delights you.
We need to tell people more. There is a great deficit of heartfelt words in business, and in life.
Don’t add to the Great Heartfelt Deficit.
Stay on calls a little longer, let the agenda wander, make room for the water cooler.
Don’t be so focussed on productivity, efficiency, agendas, that you forget the humans that make all of it matter.
Spend time filling up each other’s cups: with stories, with laughter, with endless webcams of your pets and children.
Build a team that are friends, that are family, that are fiercely devoted advocates to the cause.
CEOs shouldn’t just invest in their own growth + support. They should invest in their people too.
One of the things that made me say a big whole-hearted YES to working at LDI*, was how much Leonie + the company walks its talk when it comes to investing in people.
Some of the things we already do:
Having a comprehensive education + training library for employees to use.
Sending staff to conferences (+ team retreats).
Giving them Amazon cards to buy as many work-related and personal development books as they like.
Having a company Audible account for audio books.
Making donations to charities elected by each employee.
Paying good wages.
Asking our team what they most want to be doing + learning, and helping that to happen.
Some of the things we will be doing:
Introducing a Employee Thrival Fund to pay for monthly massages + therapy/kinesiology for each team member.
Taking the whole team on a trip to see the libraries we will be building with Room To Read (likely Vietnam).
In short, letting self care + abundance + education + philanthropy – the very principles Leonie teaches – saturate every part of the company’s heart.
Ask the difficult questions.
Answer the difficult question.
Remember people have bad days, even online.
Give them compassion.
Give them grace.
The good ones, the devoted ones, will do the same for you when it’s your day.
Creating abundance and possibility at a small scale is a preparation for a larger harvest.
Don’t skip the beginning.
Businesses are built from hearts. Tend to them.
Don’t be so mission-focused that you forget the people making it happen.
You can’t do this alone. Love on the ones who showed up to help. It is the first step on this journey of so many miles.
I hope I see you somewhere along the way.
Footnotes from Leonie:
Slack is the instant messaging channel we use for our team around the globe to connect with each other.
“Get the right people on the bus and the wrong people off the bus” I is a brilliant concept from Jim Collins in the great business bible “Good To Great“. Simply speaking, it means you have to make sure your team is only filled with talented people with the right attitude, and fire anyone else. I highly recommend every business owner should read “Good To Great.” Make it a study material. Let it stretch your brain. It took me three months to read it, highlighter + pen in hand, taking notes, discussing concepts with friends. Seeing Jim speak live solidified the knowledge even further for me. Grant has read it too, and we reference it often when we’re talking about business.
I chose that photo of Grant (even though HE thinks he looks a little deranged) because that’s the most usual view of our team have of Grant on webcam. Dude is ALWAYS throwing his head back laughing.
Can you tell why we all adore him yet? He’s the dude this chick-centric company needs!
LDI = Leonie Dawson International = this wee, wonderful, magic-making company.
Additional Maker Notes:
Want to know what we use to create what we create?