Hola gorgeous hearts!
One of the things that really inspired me (+ still does) when I’m down in the salt mines of my business, trying to work out the next step, is listening to the stories of other business women who’ve been where I am + have had an insight that’s helped them along.
With that in mind, I’ve asked a number of gorgeous, inspired, soulful business women to share their sacred AHA! moment – of the thing that changed their business.
Today’s insight is for all the introverts our there that think they will have to change something about themselves so that they can succeed in business.
Lots of love,
The single best business lesson I’ve learned from Leonie:
I can be super successful as my awesomely introverted self
Once upon a time, I believed that to have a successful business, I’d have to become more of a people-person.
You might not know it from talking to me online, but I am, at heart, a RAGING introvert. It’s not that I’m shy – or even quiet, when you get me talking about something I’m passionate about. But interacting with people – fun as it can often be – slowly, inexorably drains me dry.
I didn’t actually know I was an introvert until late in 2012. I mean, I’d heard the term before, but – like so many other people – I thought it just meant someone who was shy. Or someone who didn’t like people. Neither of those words seemed to describe me: I was happy standing up and talking to a roomful of people, so I knew I wasn’t shy. And I *liked* people: in the right numbers, at the right time, and in the right setting.
I do, however, have the highest alone-time needs of any human being I have ever met. I start feeling a little bit crazy if I don’t get time to myself. LOTS of time to myself. I actually used to wonder deep down if maybe I was anti-social. And I definitely figured it was something I’d need to get over if I was ever going to have a successful business.
It wasn’t till I read a blog post from a fellow Amazing Biz & Life Academy member that I realised what introversion was… and that it totally described me.
Just learning that I was an introvert was freaking amazing.
That discovery about introversion totally freed me – but it was a mixed blessing. I “got” that being an introvert wasn’t inherently bad. I knew I could be introverted and still have a business that ticked along nicely. I could even show other introverts how to promote themselves in ways that felt authentic – and I went on to create a programme that did just that
But at the same time, I figured – somewhere in my heart of hearts – that eventually, my introversion would put a cap on my business growth. It just seemed like “accepting reality” to acknowledge that while being an introvert was fine, it would still limit how successful I could be.
I told myself that being authentic and true to who I really am was more important than having a stunningly successful business. What I didn’t realise was that I was buying into an “either-or” myth: either you’re authentically you OR you’re wildly successful.
At that point, I couldn’t imagine someone who was genuinely both. I just didn’t have any models for it.
But then I read a SERIOUSLY life-changing blog post from Leonie.
It was kind of funny. The first time I ran my “Promotion for Introverts” programme, one of my awesome participants (another Academy member) asked me whether I thought Leonie was an extrovert or an introvert.
I honestly had no idea at that point. I knew Leonie was bubbly and outgoing and loved people – which looked liked extroversion from the outside. But I also knew she talked about going stir-freaking-crazy if she didn’t get Leonie-time to work on her art. And that sounded like introversion.
Then, not two weeks later, in the world’s most AWESOME piece of synchronicity, the lady herself wrote this post. It was all about how to succeed in business as an introvert. And I swear I felt my jaw dropping as I read it.
That post gave me proof positive that, as Leonie says “being an introvert does NOT equal sucking at business.” It provided me with the model I so desperately needed of someone who was mind-bogglingly, awe-inspiringly successful AND who honoured her inner introvert. It showed me that it really was possible to be 100% yourself AND have a business that doubles in size each year.
I don’t use the word “life-changing” lightly. But folks, that post deserves the term!
Of all the lessons I’ve learned from Leonie since I joined the Academy, this feels like the most important.
I’ve talked before (several times!) about all the amazingtastic value I get out of my Academy membership. Mine is one of the smiling faces you’ll see amongst the wall of raving testimonials on the Academy signup page.
I’ve talked about how my membership:
- Helped me quit my job.
- Took me from having no biz at all to full-time business-ownership.
- Helped me to raise my rates (twice).
But can I be honest with you? All those lessons… ALL of them… pale next to the realisation that I can be totally, completely exactly who I am, and be successful with that. Not in spite of it, but because of it!
What I learned from Leonie’s post inspired not only me, but also every single introvert who’s signed up for one of my programmes since. That’s why I maintain it’s the single best business lesson I’ve ever learned from her.
Hi, I’m Tanja Gardner 🙂 I’m a professional copywriter, word weaver and story sculptor over at Crystal Clarity Copywriting Ltd. (I’m also an amateur High Priestess of the First Church of Joss Whedon!)
My mission is to help introverted, heart-based difference-makers like you get the word out about what you offer in ways that feel 100% natural and authentic. I help you figure out how to use your unique strengths as an introvert to serve your clients better and make more of your difference in the world.
Because, like Leonie says: being an introvert does NOT mean sucking at business!