The online world is funny. Stop posting on your blog, sending out your newsletter, tweeting or Facebooking regularly and it can seem to your online friends as if you’ve disappeared, especially if they are only used to communicating with you in just one of those forums.
It goes to show you how important it is to maintain an online presence if you are doing business online. And, it’s also important to get out of a rut every now and then, as my friends Gaby and Raj coach themselves and their clients – Stop, Shift and Start.
So that’s what I’ve done over the past two years, Stop, Shift and Start. It feels like I’m in startup phase again, but this time it’s WAY more fun.
If you want to make sure you don’t lose track of me, I’ll let you know the best ways to stay connected at the end of this post.
I received a message from a concerned friend via Twitter DM this morning that said:
“everything ok? haven’t seen any blog posts in some time. seems like you’ve disappeared…”
Yep, I have not been posting here. Nope, I have not disappeared. [I have been spending a lot of my online time on my personal Facebook account these days, so if you really miss me, you can always find me there.]
Here’s what I have been up to in my time not online.
1. Getting ready to file my bankruptcy.
It’s happening some time in the next two weeks. I’m consulting with an astrologer on the exact right date for ease of process. I’ll let ya know what I find out the actual date so you can send prayers of love, grace and ease.
I’m releasing the $500k of debt I took on while exploring every business model under the sun – both online and offline — for service-based professionals.
If you are feeling worried about me or this release of debt, don’t. Both the taking on of the debt and the releasing of it are the best choices I’ve ever made. And it’s all going to create a huge net positive for the world. I’ll be writing a lot more about this in the future.
2. Spending a lot of time with my growing in-person community.
I moved here to Boulder more than two years ago in search of community and boy have I found it. And not just here, but in San Francisco too.
Online friends are great, but there is nothing like the power of touch to really dispel loneliness and leave a girl feeling loved and supported.
I’ve been lonely a lot of my life, but not anymore. Finally, I have found the people with whom I feel home, totally and completely home.
Here are a few of the in-person places and people I’ve been investing my time with:
Craig Filek — my primary partner, my business partner, my partner in awakening. He dropped into my life 6 years at a Dan Kennedy conference; I fell into his arms in tears as my relationship with Russell ended more than a year ago and we’ve been together ever since.
He produced the Whole Truth Show because he knew I just had to give it a go and has now stepped in to run both the New Law Business Model and Eyes Wide Open Life, the two companies springing from the ashes of my dive down the rabbit hole of self discovery and awakening.
Martha Hartney — we met twelve years ago, online. I was living in Miami clerking for a Judge on the 11th Cir. Court of Appeals and had just given birth. I knew no other mamas in real life, so I made my friends online. And I was a breastfeeding advocate. Martha had written a book (ask her to publish it!!) that had a component that addressed legal aspects of an infant being fed formula in the hospital and she found me.
A year later, I moved to California, where she lived, and we met in person at a La Leche League meeting, each of us holding our own blond 18-month olds in our slings. They and we were fast friends. Plus, our husbands got along great.
I moved to Colorado after visiting Martha and her family here back in November 2009 to speak to Martha’s law school class at Denver U.
Today, Martha is a Law Business Mentor™ and principal in the New Law Business Model company with Craig. Together, along with our long-time business managers Corey & Anna, the two of them have freed me to get back into a creative role and out of the daily grind of running businesses.
JoAnne Ehlinger — You may recall that last year I ran into some MAJOR problems with the customer service on my LIFT program after I was the top seller at Lisa Sasevich’s Speak to Sell event and my customer service team dropped the ball on taking care of our buyers in a way that is up to my standards of excellence. Painful learning experience.
I struggled for some time with what I should do about the company, knowing I could not give it 100% of my energy because I was committed to rebuilding the lawyer training side of things. I looked for a buyer, tried out a partner, considered bringing in Corey and Anna to run it and finally my other long-time mommy best friend Joanne stepped in. Despite having been out of the workforce for a long time homeschooling her kids and knowing nothing about online business, the force of her care has propelled her into a key team member and she has been running customer service ever since. Wow, that feels good.
Now that our systems are back online, thanks to Joanne and our new content manager Danielle, I finally feel confident bringing LIFT out into the world again and I’ll be speaking at the eWomenNetwork Conference in two weeks and then hosting a call about LIFT for my online community.
Bryan Franklin, Jennifer Russell, and the simply amazing community they have in San Francisco. Jennifer’s bachelorette party and their recent wedding (see pictures by San Francisco’s best wedding photographer, Wendy Yalom, here) were two life-changing experiences for me (as is just about all the time I spend with Bryan and Jennifer) and I will be spending a LOT more of my in-person time in San Francisco.
There seems to be a strong thread of connection between the Boulder and San Francisco communities (can we get a tunnel?) and I’m experiencing that thread personally as One Taste and Authentic World converge in Boulder at the Boulder Integral Center, where I spend a lot of my time in-person with people I absolutely, positively, complete and totally adore.
Through the practices taught by One Taste (OM) and Authentic World (Circling and Authentic Relating), I am knowing myself and other more than I ever imagined possible. Loneliness cannot possibly live in the face of these practices.
3. My kids.
A couple of years ago I would have said my kids were headed down a path of anger, addiction and destruction. They were not people I wanted to spend my time with. Today, they are two of the most loving, well adjusted, caring, amazing people.
How did this happen? I got offline and spent time with them. I took them to Lightning in a Bottle Festival where I spoke on evolutionary entrepreneurship and gave them the freedom to explore while we were there.
I moved to the farm and we took the xBox out for quite a long while. I integrated them into my life. I supported their dad to find his way (and he currently lives with us on the farm) and he and I took them on trips together, just the 4 of us. They see how we navigate conflict and have learned a new way to fight that feels a whole lot better than the old way.
4. The Farm
Speaking of fighting, I’ve gotten a new vision of what we are doing here on this farm in Berthoud.
Conflict parties. Yes, you read that right. The farm is becoming a place to come for safe, facilitated, loving, healthy conflict.
Look for a conflict party soon — we eat, we fight, we dance. We are not going to eliminate conflict in the world, but we sure could change the way we fight so that it feels good. I’m on a mission to see that happen. Wanna play? Join the New Earth Farm Project Facebook group and we’ll let you know when the next Conflict Party happens.
For more from me on conflict, you can watch my recent talk about a new paradigm of conflict at the Shift Network Festival of Peace here.
I have not been completely offline. Just spending my time differently than I did in the past.
In the past, I was on Twitter hours a day. Now, I spend my time on Facebook. I have more in depth relationships there and that’s really what I am most loving these days.
In the past, I focused a lot more on how many friends, fans and followers I had, now I focus on creating well-thought out and planned campaigns to drive traffic to the new businesses I support with my efforts — New Law Business Model and Eyes Wide Open.
Craig and I are starting a new blog that’s focused entirely on what we’ve learned running every variation of online and offline business model there is for service-focused people who want to help more people. We will mainly talk about things like project management, financial management, legal management, resource management, time management, and relationship management, but from time to time I imagine we will also address the standard money, marketing and meaning topics as well.
Finally, we are looking at how to finance the next stage of business growth and I’m sure we will be covering our decision making process there as well.
You can check out our first few posts now, including one that shows you just some of the places I’ve had my office over the past year.
So that’s a peek into where I’ve been and what’s coming up.
As I share all of this with you, I am finding the urge to say this — a recent article in The Atlantic reminded us women that we still cannot have it all. I disagree. I am so having it all and you can too. More on that over here.
Alright time for me to get out from behind my computer and go meet a friend for a pedicure and hang out with my kids at the park. See ya online! Or maybe off. 🙂
If you’d like to stay in touch, make sure to enter your name and email address in at the very top of this page so you receive email communication from me about the goings on here as well as get access to some really great resources that are about to be swapped out for something new.
You can also keep an eye on my Facebook page and my Facebook profile, that’s where it seems lots of the goodness gets posted.
Thanks for sharing, Ali!
That was an incredibly inspiring post. : D
PJ Van Hulle
Thanks for sharing, Ali!
That was an incredibly inspiring post. : D
PJ Van Hulle
It’s ok, you can say it was me who asked where you’re at 🙂 And you’re a FAST typer. Wish I could hammer out blog posts as quickly as you.
First, Alexis, I applaud you for being so brave to share the realities of your income. But, then again, speaking about your truth shouldn’t be a brave thing – it should be a regular thing. A normal thing. And that’s what I hope emerges from your truth-telling – that more solopreneurs will start having open and honest conversations about the reality of their businesses. Many not in public, but at least in private with each other. Too many are selling a perception that all is going well. I imagine many solopreneurs are suffering in silence wondering why an investment in yet another program just isn’t working. I hope your blog post helps other solopreneurs know that they’re not alone.
I know I’ve enjoyed the independence that owning my own business has given to me since 2006. But for a long time, I didn’t feel that this independence gave me freedom. I was caught up in a business model that just didn’t align with my giftings. I felt trapped. Confined. I was following someone else’s pattern.
But over the past 2-years, I radically changed my business. It’s taken me a bit longer to rebuild my income and it’s a work in progress. I blogged about my transition on Mark Silver’s blog and it’s worth the read – http://tinyurl.com/srefresh
feels good to be included in your unfolding path and how you present it to the world – I love that when the laptops close and phones hit the floor, I’m the one you’re curled up with… or dreaming of, anyway ;-]
Just noticed that the link above doesn’t take you to the right spot. Try
http://www.heartofbusiness.com/2012/how-i-replaced-the-safety/ instead. It pretty much sums up my own transition…
It’s great to see what you’re up to 😉 I can’t wait to read more!
Wow – impressed and amazed by this article.
xx Denise DT
Author of ‘Lucky Bitch’