When he got to me, he said "now you, you are an entrepreneur."
My ego was pleased, though I realize now that what Michael was really saying was buckle up and hold on, you're in for a wild ride, and maybe I should have been more scared than pleased.
Being an entrepreneur is an emotional roller coaster, as my friend Cameron Herold, founder of the COO Alliance, has written about often. And, I've taken the ride through several iterations of my businesses over the years.
I have loved the world of business, and hated it. I love creating something out of nothing, and I've had mixed feelings about how to best take care of my creations and ensure they last, once I've given birth to them.
Over the years, I've chosen to confront my deepest shadows to find the light of my true purpose, and this is the place I've shared that journey along the way, with the intention of being a beacon of hope for others who may feel lost on their journey. I've felt lost many times myself, and wished that someone would have been willing to share what the real journey of entrepreneurship and personal growth was like for them because I often felt alone as I struggled with figuring out how to both be true to all of myself, while also putting my best face forward.
Today, more than ever, public figures are sharing their internal process on the pathway to success, but it wasn't always that way, and when I first began doing it, it wasn't always so well-received.
But, I've stayed committed to letting you in to see behind the scenes as much as I can, as I believe it's a key part of my life purpose to do so. We seem to have a collective crisis of meaning, and I hope to shed some light on why I think we are all here, and what's ours to do by sharing my process of discovery along the way.
If you want to engage with any of the work that's come as a result of my own discovery process, you can do that in a couple of ways:
1. I invented a New Law Business Model. If you are a lawyer, it will guide you to break free of the traditional "transactional" model of law practice that doesn't serve you or your clients, and give you a way to have a life, make a great living and serve your clients in a truly meaningful way. And, if you are a parent, or a business owner, you may want to hire one of the lawyers I've trained to serve your family or your business in a way that will help you make wise decisions for the people and work you love most.
2. I identified a disease that most of us have, which I've termed money dysmorphia. Money dysmorphia is the distorted view we have of our financial reality that causes us to make poor decisions around how we use our non-renewable resources, both individually and collectively. And, I've created programs that lead to the cure of money dysmorphia and guide us to take back our time, energy and attention in service to a life worth living.
I've come to believe that the first step on the path to curing our money dysmorphia is to get clear on why we are here, and what's ours to do, by envisioning ourselves in what Charles Eisenstein calls, the more beautiful world our hearts know is possible. If you want to live in the more beautiful world our hearts know is possible, watch this free guided meditation I created and share in the comments on that page what you envision, as a result.
The 4-women you see pictured above represent some of the various aspects of me. Alexis Neely, queen matriarch archetype, hard core business woman, lawyer. Ali Shanti, priestess archetype, lover, friend.
I've spent many years working to integrate these parts, resolving deep internal conflicts, and, I hope, giving you the permission to live all of yourself fully.
Most of us build our lives and businesses unconsciously, driven by a success matrix that very rarely leads to true fulfillment. And in some cases, even leads to suicide.
It used to be that no one talked about it. But more and more we are seeing well-known and highly successful (from the outside) people come out and talk about the truth of their depression and their lack of fulfillment, once they got "there".
I'm glad we are bringing this darkness out of the shadows and into the light of truth, and I'm committed to offering up what it means to truly live consciously.
My path here really began in late 2009, when I was at the height of my own success. I had made it. Two million dollar businesses, a best-selling book, appearing on TV regularly, a house by the beach in Los Angeles, my kids in private school -- the whole nine yards.
But in so many ways, it was a facade and I was trapped behind it.
Sure, I had loads of online friends, fans and followers. But my relationship with my kids was in the dump, my in-person community sucked and I was stuck behind my computer 12-15 hours a day, every day and quickly losing passion for my work.
So in January 2010, I shook it all up. I quit doing TV, moved to Colorado, broke up with my then boyfriend/business partner, fired my whole team and set out to discover what I really wanted, who I really am and how I really want to do my work in the world.
It's been illuminating. And liberating. And fucking scary.
This blog is where I have shared the inside look at my own transformation. I've written in stops and starts, depending on whether I felt safe enough to share in the moment, or had to take (sometimes years) to process what was happening inside of me.
Life isn't perfect, but what fun would that be?!? Growth comes as we allow ourselves to stretch into the discomfort and hit our edges. That's where I love to live. On the edge. The razor's edge. Because that's where I find truth.
I would love to hear about where you find yours.
Here's my semi-official bio (with some non-official stuff thrown in for good measure):
I graduated from Georgetown Law School in 1999 (1st in my class baby), where I was an Olin Law and Economics Fellow, and wrote a paper on why women shouldn’t cohabitate with men without marriage (or at least property rights) titled “No More Free Milk.” My male teachers didn’t like it one bit. Fortunately, the grades in my other classes were good enough that it didn’t keep from graduating #1 in the class. One day, I'll return to that paper, update it and publish it.
I went on to clerk for Judge Peter T. Fay on the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Miami and gave birth to my first child, a girl, 3 months into my clerkship. Lucky for me, the clerkship wasn’t hugely busy and I spent a lot of that year online meeting other moms because at 26, I didn’t know anyone else with kids. That’s when I first decided that the best job in the world for me would be spending my days chatting online, which is now how I actually do support my family. It took 10 years for me to break free of the idea that I was wasting my life if I didn’t keep lawyering and allow myself to make that a reality.
I began my formal lawyer career as an associate at the AmLaw #1 law firm of Munger, Tolles & Olson, which was founded by Charlie Munger, Warren Buffett's right hand for all business decisions. At Munger Tolles, I did legal work for people like Warren Buffett, Michael Eisner, and many other ultra-wealthy families in the estate planning and corporate tax department, learning the ins and outs of the financial system and wealth-building. What I saw disgusted me, frankly. But I learned a tremendous amount and I’ve only just begun to talk about the lessons I learned there and how they can help you to break free of the conditioning, fear, shame and guilt that is likely keeping you from living the dream life you’ve always known was possible.
In 2003, after giving birth to my 2nd child, I left Munger to start my own law firm. I knew nothing about business, but within just 3 years I built my law practice into a firm generating more than a million dollars a year of revenue by creating a new law business model. Clients loved it, I didn't. I knew I wasn't here to serve people one on one so I made the hardest decision of my life and sold my law firm so I could focus 100% of my energy on training other lawyers on this new law business model.
In 2007, I began teaching that model to other lawyers through my Personal Family Lawyer program. In 2008, I wrote the bestselling book on legal planning for parents. It's called "Wear Clean Underwear" because your mom always told you to wear clean underwear in case you are in an accident, but once you are a parent, wearing clean underwear alone is not enough; there are important legal planning steps you need to take as well to make sure your kids are taken care of if anything happens to you.
That year, I also began appearing on all of the top television shows, such as the Today Show, Good Morning America, O'Reilly Factor and Nancy Grace. You can see those appearances here and get my official, official bio here on my media site.
At the end of 2009, I woke up to the reality that the "success" I had created was not in alignment with the truth of who I am or why I came here to this planet at this time and I made a promise to myself to take a good hard look at what I was really creating and not to appear on television again until I could do truly transformation TV.
On Jan. 1, 2010, I left LA and moved to Colorado to investigate a new economy perspective on money, life, and community. I bought a farm, started a community and it failed.
Now, I live in Boulder (in community) and I'm still in the investigation. I'm reporting from the trenches so we can all learn from my experiences together. My one most true gift to the world? Total transparency, authentic communication and not hiding.
We're all in this together.
Watch the Whole Truth Show.
Check out the Ali Shanti YouTube Channel.
Check out the Alexis Neely YouTube Channel.
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