The Blog

Strength Used Well

by LDI Team Members on August 17, 2015


Hola possums,

A blog from Grant today – my Chief Operations Officer/BFAM (Brother From Another Mother). Sharing a gift of wisdom that’s a little bit about my recent fuck up , and a lot about what it made him think of.

It’s a real blessing to be able to hear his take on the fuck up. It helps me understand even more my own role, and power, and how to do it all with love + gentle strength.

Grant’s kind of like the Malcolm Gladwell of the heart – he uses analogy + snapshots of story to share the bigger picture. I learned so much from this. I hope you do too.


Strength Used Well

I remember right after high school I worked on a building project. We were nailing up cedar siding. I had done a lot of framing, the parts of building that never really get seen, but this job was different. The nails and the siding would be seen, visible, forever. It was my first experience where swinging the hammer wasn’t just about strength, but accuracy was important. No one wants big dings in their siding.

I have a friend who is a modern-day metalsmith of sorts. He takes dents out of cars. His forearms are ripped with sinewy muscles from twisting his tools all day, lifting little dings and dents. He says it isn’t hard to move the metal, it’s hard not to move it too far. His most important tools are a bright light that shines on the surface and his eyes to watch. He can always spot the amateur’s work because the innies become outies. They don’t know when to stop.

In the mountain town where I live, there are lots of ways to tear up a shoulder or a knee. A friend of mine works in the operating room sometimes and he told me about a doctor trying to remove a pin from a leg. For thirty minutes the operating room reverberated as the surgeon used a slide hammer to try to dislodge the metal. So much force required, on something so fragile – a body.

So what ties all these tales together?

It’s this balancing act of strength and skill that each of these real-world tasks require. Wood doesn’t give to a nail lightly, it has to be driven in. But there’s a risk that you miss and mar the surface you’re creating.

And metal is strong and don’t like to get pushed around, but watching a dent disappear is a pretty amazing process – realizing that it’s the skill of ‘just the right touch’ that makes the work awe-inspiring. I would just poke the tool right through the metal – boom, oops. Now how do we fix that?

And the pin, in a bone, that won’t come out? That one is hard for me to imagine. The whole story is a little far-fetched. That we can repair broken bones, that the miracle of healing can be facilitated, supported, and that even healing can require force and strength, but not too much. You don’t want to shatter something else in the process.

These stories of real work fascinate me.

I see a transfer into the world of virtual work, of relationships and leadership. So much work takes strength, and yet the skill is in not hitting too hard. Us entrepreneur types are strong, that’s what gives us the guts to face the world and live our dream so visibly. But that same strength has a risk. You might mar the wood. You might go too far.

Part of having strength is a responsibility to use it well. A responsibility to know that you have it. To know how hard you’re hitting and where. To stop before there’s a mark – on the wood, in the metal, on a soul.

While we’re building our business, our family, our team, there’s a time for the gift of strength.

Work takes strength, takes power, takes force. But if the only force we have is adolescent me driving the nail with all the power one can muster, it’s the wrong kind of force.

We need skillful force. Mature strength. Surgeon’s hands.

It takes time to learn it, and time to master it.

But it is time well spent.

Blessings on your journey,

grant sig 3

Editor’s Note from Leonie:

Grant said to me a couple of things in the manager-mistake-mending process that stuck with me, and that this story enunciates so well.

Firstly, he said:

I don’t think you quite realise how strong you appear. You seem so assured of yourself, so certain, so forceful with your will. I don’t know how to argue against that sometimes. I don’t think you realise how you appear.

And I had to take a moment to let it soak in.

He was right. I had no idea. I’m so used to being Leonie The Force of Nature that I don’t realise how it affects other people, especially my staff. And if I want to create a culture of support + stability within my company, I need to temper some of my wilder ways in certain places. I’m not going to eradicate it at all – heck, my wildish nature is a part of me, my creativity + my joy. But it is best served in the creative places, not the managing one.

Secondly, he said:

You, as the CEO, and as the company owner has the greater power in this situation. That’s not a judgment, it’s just what is. That’s how business works. You are powerful, and you need to understand and wield that power well.

Hiro elaborated more:

Leonie, as you grow, and as your company grows, you cultivate more power + influence. And you need to be conscious of the strength of that, and how you use it. For every action there is a reaction. Everything you do causes a greater effect now. You have the responsibility to learn how to hold it + use it well.

What a blessing to learn all this, hey?

My response to both of them was:

Well. FUCK! Why didn’t anyone tell me this in school? Shit! Okay! I’ll learn it now! 

And we all laughed and laughed and laughed.

Because it’s hard and yet it’s bloody hilarious really. All this learning + growing + getting over another chunk of your own stuff. Healing + blooming even more into yourself.

It’s the good work to do.

I should mention too – it’s not just me that’s getting my ass kicked into growing here. Ha! Grant will share his own lessons along the way too. That’s the beauty of surrounding yourself with other conscious, growing, evolving people – you have no choice but to up your own game too.

Love, the eternal student,

Sidebar Badge for Affiliates Shining Life and Biz

Say Hello To My Team (Adorable mini videos!)

by Leonie Dawson on June 8, 2015


Hola possums!

So, when Grant ran our US team retreat a couple of months ago, we thought it would be way fun to get some photos + videos taken while everyone was, you know, breathing the same air as each other!

So that you’d start to get to know the gorgeous, glorious hearts that make up our team!

Eventually I’ll put up a purty ABOUT DA TEAM page.

Once I’ve got time to scratch myself, that is.

In the meantime… WA LA!

I effing adore my team!!!

High fives!

how to reinvent your business

Hola treasures,

A rad question answered for you today.

I suspect it’s something you’ve contemplated.

How on earth can we reinvent our businesses without losing clients?

As passionate, inspired, enthusiastic, creative women… we grow, evolve and learn new things.

Parts that used to fit us no longer do. The old way of doing business no longer appeals to us.

We feel called to something new.

A business reinvention.

How do we do it without dropping the momentum we’ve already gained?

To be more specific, the gorgeous Jacqueline asks:

So, my question has to do with reinvention. I took a long time to find my voice, to find out that thing I’m here to do that I do better than anybody else in the whole wide world. So, now that I’ve found it, my question is, how did you bring your tribe along with you as you unfold something new? Because obviously I’m the one evolving, and I’ve watched you do it, and I just wondered your thought process. Because you went from Goddess Guidebook to Leonie Dawson, and you’ve evolved and you’ve brought your whole tribe with you, and I really do want to do that. Is there a way to make it more gentle?

There absolutely is a way to make the process more gentle.

I should know.

I’m like the Madonna of website reinventions.

Well not exactly that, but in ten years, there absolooodely has been a heck of a lot of change.

For those who haven’t been around the Leonie world for as long as Jacqueline has, I’ve had many iterations of my business, my website name and even my personal name.

  • I’ve gone from to to to to
  • I’ve definitely grown and evolved, and as it’s happened, my offerings have grown and evolved over the last ten years of blogging and of creating a business.
  • I used to do only meditation, creativity, spirituality stuff and now I talk about business and marketing as well.
  • I used to offer programs that I no longer do.
  • I’ve rebranded offerings.
  • I’ve changed and my business has changed.

And I’ve managed to do it whilst continuing to grow my business and my mailing list.

So here’s the process I recommend of how to make the change and reinvent your business without losing all your gorgeous clients.


The first step is this one – and it’s a really important one – make sure you freak the fuck out about it.

Think through all your biggest fears:

 “Oh God, I’m just going to wreck my business.”

“Everybody is going to hate me me.”

“I don’t understand why I’m doing this and why I have to grow, and I should just stay the exact same because I’ve had some success with this, and I’m terrified of having to build up again. I’m terrified of having to change my whole business model.”

It’s really important to recognise that fear does come up, and it’s okay and it’s a totally natural and normal part of that process. Everybody freaks the fuck out to begin with when deciding to grow and change and make that transformation in their business.


My next stage is for you to become at peace with it first before you share it.

Don’t share it before you feel solid with your plan and know the way.

This is something that I see other people do from time to time – they say “Okay, I’m changing my business,” but they’re bringing their fear and their excess energy along with it, and people react off that. And then of course it hits your buttons and then it’s hitting the tribe’s buttons and it just creates this big, energetic kaboom and it’s not super pleasant and it can be a little bit traumatic for people, and it can be traumatic for you.

So what I would suggest doing is, using whatever tools that you like to use to get clear with yourself.

Here’s some ways to get that clarity + groundedness within yourself:

  • Journalling
  • Meditation
  • Talk it through with your support team to get their support
  • A trusted business or life coach
  • Your favourite energy healer/counsellor – I always use Hiro Boga
  • Kinesiology can be incredibly helpful (Kerry Rowett is wonderful)

You need to have your tools and support people that you can turn to in these situations. So whenever you are stuck or in need, you know exactly what to pluck from your toolbelt. Look for support in the right places. We don’t need to stay stuck forever. We’re meant to help each other along on this journey!

So use those tools until you feel so strong and clear in your energy about what you’re doing next and why you are doing it.

You need to be their loving, present, unshakeable guide and leader through this change process. You need to be able to not get triggered yourself and just know what it is you want to do, and know that you’re going to be able to do it.

Get super clear and at peace and really confident and strong in your direction before you start sharing it with your tribe.

So, a quick recap: First stage: freak the fuck out, Second stage: get really clear with your stuff and feel really good and clear about it yourself.


So the next stage would then start sharing the next vision with your tribe.

If you’re going to do a business name change, if you’re going to do a whole change of direction, you can put up a great blog post, sharing exactly what you’re doing and why you’re doing it, and of course share it with your mailing list, share it with your social media tribe, and try and answers peoples’ questions as much as you can to give them that feeling of safety.

Be clear about what it means for them and what it DOESN’T mean for them.

Tell them what will stay the same. Tell them exactly what will change.

This will help them allay any fears or calamities and come with you on that journey.

You don’t even have to have a huge coming-out ceremony of what you’re doing next. You can just start incorporating that into your free content – whether it’s your blog, social media, free seminars -start weaving in the new messages of what you’re going to share.

Once you’ve created some groundswell, you can create new offerings about what you want to do next.


Not every single person who’s followed you up until now will resonate with the next direction of your business, and that’s okay.

Just trust that they’re going to find the teacher that they’re wanting with somebody else then.

I regard it as the 10%. Whenever I make a change, I will lose 10% of my tribe. 10% won’t resonate. 90% will, but 10% won’t. And that’s absolutely okay.

And the way that I’ve seen it is that, I cannot stay the same person that I was ten years ago. It is 100% impossible.

Of course, there are people out there who really wish that I could be the same person I was ten years ago, and I’m just not. I’ve had ten years of experience and journeys and I’ve been learning so much about business and getting so passionate about all these different things, and of course wanting to share it with the world. So I can’t stop myself from that natural evolution.

So I accept that I will change. That most of my tribe will resonate with the change and some won’t.

And be totally at peace with losing the 10% (FWIW: The actual number might be less or more than 10%. That’s just how I see it in my head.)


Honestly, a major change in my life came when I chose to surround myself with passionate, spirited women who were entrepreneurs as well.

Because when I came up against the hard stuff, I could go to them. Share what was in my heart.

And hear the answers:

Yes, this is normal.

I’ve been through this too.

It’s going to be okay.



Please know that no one can keep doing the exact same thing and saying the exact same thing as they did five or ten years ago. It’s totally unrealistic to expect that of ourselves and others.

The whole point of being on this earth is to grow and find new passions and learn even more about ourselves and this beautiful spinning globe we call home.

It’s okay to change. In fact, it’s exactly how it should be.

I’m sending you love through your transformation

Transforming your business and soul purpose into its next evolution can be as scary as all get out.

I know. I’ve been there. Had that panic attack. Written that cranky journal message of “GOD, WHY THE EFF DO YOU WANT ME TO CHANGE? IT’S TOO HARD!”

But as in the sentiment of Anais Nin, to not bloom would be the greatest ache of all.

So you gather up your courage. You set your vision.

You squeeze through the eye of the needle, and you come out the other side.

And ahhhh, there it is.

The new land you glimpsed from your rocking boat.

The one that fits your skin even better than before.

This is who you are now.

This is who you are meant to be.

Everything is on its right path.

All my love to you through the rolling waves of change,