In this episode I’m sharing my personal top 4 business lessons from 2023. I dive into how mixing feminine and masculine energies can be a game-changer in business, sparking creativity and strategic decision-making. I chat about why it’s crucial for businesses to keep up with what customers want by consistently refining their offers. Pulling from my experience I also share a different perspective on growth.

 

We’re even going to talk about the power of keeping your focus where it needs to be and how to figure out what that is for you. I’m giving actionable strategies for entrepreneurs to keep moving forward even when things feel tough.

 

Listen now to get the tools and tips you need to refresh your approach to running and growing your business and how to stay in tune with your audience and yourself to find more ease as you grow.

 

Key Points: 


  • Embracing Harmony:
      • Importance of embracing both feminine and masculine energies in leadership and how to implement them into your schedule.
      • Significance of creating white space for creativity and intuition.
      • The role of flow and ease in sustainable business growth.
  • Adaptability and Evolution of Offers:
      • Necessity of adjusting and fine-tuning business offers.
      • Reflecting and responding to customer feedback.
      • Addressing economic shifts and connecting to diverse audience needs.
  • Redefining Growth and Capacity:
      • Understanding growth as an increase in capacity and ability.
      • Embracing the concept of being versus doing.
      • Shifting the perspective on challenges and leveraging them for growth.
  • Focus and Control in Business Leadership:
    • Identifying elements within one’s control versus those beyond control.
    • Emphasizing the importance of focusing on controllable aspects.
    • Leveraging challenges and resistance as opportunities for improvement and adaptation.

 

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READ THE EPISODE TRANSCRIPT

Emily Hirsh:

Hello and welcome back to the podcast. Happy Tuesday if you are tuning in live. I have a quick, I guess, story or example for you guys. So in all of my content, my podcast, social media—everywhere—you’ve seen a massive transformation and shift in me, around specifically the idea of harmony and bringing in more feminine leadership and balancing that feminine and masculine. So, sometimes people ask me in my DMs or on Instagram, or even in one-on-one conversations when they’re asking me about these changes, like, “What does it actually mean in your business? Can you give real examples of how you’re implementing this?” Which I totally get because I feel like sometimes the concepts of feminine and masculine energy are very conceptual. For me too, it was hard to bring it to a real-life example when I didn’t fully get it, which was just like three or four months ago. And so, I want to share this with you because this is really real for me today and is a really good example of the harmony that I speak about.

So I try to create space in my days and my weeks where I have the ability to be, quote, “less productive.” So, I’m able to lean into that creative side because especially as a female, it’s very important that we honor the fact that our creativity and our brain and our body are literally wired differently than men. And if we don’t lean into that and we try to constantly, I mean, basically, run our business from force and hustle and grind and constant productivity—not only is it not effective (or I would say effective because it’s possible; like I was very successful doing this), and I could list off successful female entrepreneurs doing this who are more successful than me, but is it sustainable? No, I think it’s a house of cards.

And so, we’re not wired to do that, and so not only is it not sustainable, but it’s also like dimming the potential. And that’s a really good way to describe it because I feel like once I figured this out, I was like, “Oh my gosh, like I can be way more successful way easier and love my life even more. Like, this is so much better.” And so, anyways, the feminine side needs flow, needs the ability to be in more emotions and use those to your advantage—your intuition, your wisdom, your creativity. So, this week, yesterday I had a full-packed, like, masculine day. I actually label on my calendar like “masculine day” and “feminine day.” My masculine days are filled with calls and things that, like, my get-shit-done calls. And so, yesterday ended up being a call day, and then I had a call that ran way over. It was like fully didn’t have space to me in that white space, creativity flow. I was in my masculine, that’s okay, I’m not trying to avoid that. But I have to balance it out with space to step back into my feminine side and create that creativity.

 

So today, I had nothing on my calendar, which is a Tuesday for me, which is normal, and I do this on purpose. And I go into the day still with a to-do list and still with things I need to get done, and usually, it’s around content. Like, these are usually my content days. But what happened today was I basically allowed for things that would have felt very nonproductive to me in the past to kind of step in. So I had to review copy that was from my team, and I ended up spending like an extra hour on that because my vision just wasn’t fully there. And I had the mental capacity and ability to sit there and really let it flow through me what I wanted this to feel like when somebody read this copy for one of our upcoming promotions. And so that was an hour of my time that wasn’t really accounted for, but I made it okay. In the past, that would have been like, I would have been mad at myself. I would have been like, “That was a waste of time. That wasn’t on my schedule because my schedule was always packed.” And now I’m behind. But because I have the white space and the ability to flow on these days and kind of, yes, I have some direction, but sometimes that takes me longer than I am planning, and that is now okay.

 

So I spent the time on the copy, and then because of that, it triggered in me a social media post that I wanted to write. And you probably can relate to this as a content creator. But I swear, just sometimes things just flow through me. Like it’s literally coming from the universe. And I don’t know where it’s coming from, but it’s like it needs to get out. So for me, writing and expressing myself either on my podcast or writing is my art. And when I need to get a social media post out, this is—I don’t know, this feels weird to share, but it’s fine. There’s something about music and movement. So, like, dancing a little bit in my office and having music and just, like, being in it that helps me get it out. So now I spent an hour reviewing that copy, and then I was able to be like, “Okay, this needs to get out.” And I get this energy in me where I’m like, “I can’t sit still, and I can, like, feel it.” I’m like, “Oh yeah, like, there. It’s there. It’s ready.” And it was something that’s kind of been sitting there. I was like, “Okay, it’s coming through me now.” I got it. This sounds so crazy, but I swear to God, this is, like, my creative process. And so then I spent another hour writing this social post and creating this to actually be able to post. And I just put it on Instagram. So if you go back one week from today, you’ll see the post. How I created it was, I had my music on, and I was around in my office. I was standing up, I was dancing, I was moving, I was talking to myself. And that’s how I created it, those posts. Our top-performing posts and me spending that time on the copy for my copywriter allowed her to take that and infuse it into all the other emails and all the other copies she had to write.

 

So what it does is it allows my wisdom and my energy and my connection to you guys and myself to be leading my business. Why I’m telling you this is because four or five months ago, I wouldn’t have given myself the permission to spend an hour on a social post because I would have told myself the story that I have a team, that it is a waste of time, that I shouldn’t be doing that, and that I need to stick to my to-do list and stay in that structure. So having the days that allow me to go off path a little bit, and sometimes it ends up being like, “Okay, here’s another example: on my day last week that I had this, I ended up going out to the coffee shop because I needed to think about something. I needed to get out of my house. And I ran into somebody who I know there, and I ended up talking to her for 45 minutes, and it was great. And that was actually something that then led to me making a decision about someone I needed to decide on because I had that break.

 

Six months ago, four months ago, I would have been like, “What a waste of time. I didn’t have that 45 minutes, and I would have been upset.” So allowing for less structure and more flow is what has led to massive growth. And so why I was saying that me working one hour on that copy then gave my copywriter the inspiration to take it and impact like 7 emails and all the other assets around that promotion that she was going to write. Same thing with the social posts that I made today. Yes, I spent an hour on one post, but that sets the vision for everything else that my team is doing around what I wrote the post for, which was the mastermind. So it’s actually a super great use of my time. And not to mention, nobody else can do this because this is literally my art, my connection, my energy, my intuition, my guidance moving through me. And now the business benefits from it. So you might be like, “Wtf are you talking about?” Or this might be very helpful for you. And my whole post today was about leading as a female and how we have to lead our business differently than men.

 

So if you want to go look at that, you can. And if this is like you feel this in your body, and you are like, “I know that I need this. I don’t even know why, but I need this,” or you already know why you need it, I want you to send me a message with the word “elevate” so we can chat about the mastermind because this is what it’s about. It’s about having a wildly successful business next year and making all of that money that you dream of making but also coming at it from a place where every other area of your life is aligned. So now let’s get into my personal top 3 lessons this year. So I sat down actually last week when I didn’t have a voice and I couldn’t record and planned out this podcast episode, which was fun to think about what are my lessons this year because it has been a year, that is for sure. It has been a year of both, a year of struggles and a year of huge wins, a year of challenges and a year of growth. All of the things have happened this year, and I’m so grateful for it. So here are my top 3 lessons of 2023. The first one is going to be very easy to talk about because of the story that I prefaced with, which is the importance of flow, ease, and white space for success. I don’t care if you are female or male. Yes, I think that women need even more of this, but because it’s how we get our creativity, it’s literally how we lead—we need it. Every CEO needs this. 

 

We live in a society that tries to overpower and pack stimulation constantly, and our brains are not meant to handle that. So, I’m not kidding you. If you want to grow your business next year right now, do this one thing, and I swear to you, grow your business. Mark off at least 30 minutes, ideally an hour in your calendar every day that you don’t have to do something. Like you can go do something. You can go outside, or like, I’ll go water my garden, or I’ll do whatever, I’ll read. But it’s not like a dedicated productive time. Mark that off, and some of the days allow yourself to just think. Decision-making fatigue and overstimulation and mental exhaustion is so real for CEOs that if you don’t create the routine and the structure around giving yourself ease and white space and allowing yourself to flow and be in that creative space, like that is your magic. I don’t care if you’re female or male. Your creativity is going to come through when you are able to fully tap into it. Not looking at social media, what everybody else is doing, and then doing it. Not asking other people, not reading a book even. It’s within you, and you can’t find that unless you have the white space to find it.

 

So, for me, I mean, this has tremendously grown my business. I mean, the whole last few months of success and sales have felt easier than ever before because I’m like the story that I just told at the beginning of this podcast because I’m leading from that place. And it has changed the entire energy of my company, the success of my company, and it’s also been like, “Whoa, it can be this easy. This is crazy.” So, that’s been a huge lesson for me because like I just shared with this story, like, I used to look at white space and times where I wasn’t being productive because I didn’t see it as productive because it wasn’t doing something. I used to look at that negatively; I used to get frustrated about it. I used to be hard on myself about it. And now, I mean, you have to have a balance; like I still, like I said, I have the days that I get shit done. I do a lot of stuff, I have a lot of calls—that is still important in business. You cannot just all the time be all the way on the feminine. That’s a whole other topic, but this has had a tremendous impact on my business. So that’s been a huge lesson, and I’ve made permanent changes in my routine at the beginning of this year having this white space, having my meditation every day, it wasn’t a top priority like I would slip on it for weeks once I made it a non-negotiable everything changed.

 

My next lesson for the year is that changing and adjusting your offers is never going to stop. I was reflecting on the fact that again, like this is the same as last year, but again, I have gone through shifts and changes with our offers in a very positive way. We’ve launched new offers; we’ve changed all of our existing offers, like in one way or another, we’ve made some big changes around what we’re selling and how we’re selling it and how we’re supporting our clients. And this is kind of the reality; it doesn’t mean that you have to constantly be launching new offers, but the speed at which things change today and just this pace at which things move because of the world we live in means that your business has to constantly be optimizing and adjusting. And even putting fresh wrapping paper around your offers or maybe it’s launching new ones. There are a lot of factors that play into this; one of them for me being we have a larger ad spend and reach every month, and so that means I can launch new offers easier. If you’re spending, you know, $500,000 a month on ads, you don’t want to be launching a bunch of new offers because you only have such a big audience to capitalize on. So there are a lot of factors that play into this, but everybody needs to go through the process of listening, paying attention, asking questions, connecting with your ideal customer and your paying customers, and making sure that you take that feedback and you take those needs and you are making changes to your offers.

 

All of the changes that we’ve made, the new offers, we’ve launched, changes we’ve made in existing offers have come from you guys giving feedback, our audience, and our paying customers, and us going, ‘Okay, how can we do this better?’ It’s also come from me responding to the economy. I launched Evolve, which is our lower-priced, done-for-you offer because I know that companies with smaller ad spends need to have the ability to get support. So, I wanted to create a solution for that, and that has come with, in some cases, the economy impacting businesses’ ability to have a large marketing budget. I’m paying attention to the economy, not through the news or what other people are saying and the fear-mongering around it, but the actual situation. And like what our audience is saying, what our customers are saying, and what I’m seeing in their business. So, that’s been a big lesson for me this year because I don’t think going into this year I expected to have as many changes as we did. Because we actually changed a lot the year before, but especially in my industry. And in most industries, there’s just so much. Even the fact that you constantly have competitors doing the same thing as you means you have to constantly be differentiating yourself.

 

There’s a very fine line with this though that it’s like it’s very, it’s not black and white because you want to stay focused, but you also want to keep things fresh. So, you have to kind of walk that line of how do I stay focused, how do I make sure I can scale my business, and how do I keep things fresh? How do I make sure I adapt and optimize my offers for my audience? And there are factors that depend on this: your audience size, how many leads you’re bringing in, do you have a team supporting you? All of those things play a part. Regardless, listening to your audience and making sure that you are constantly kind of on your toes and ready to pivot and adjust and adapt, that is a percentage of this game. Okay, this isn’t my third lesson. So, in one of my recent sessions with the one-on-one mentor I work with here in Austin, doing breath work and somatic therapy, he asked me, ‘What is your definition of growth?’ And that was really cool because it came from a conversation where I was talking about how I’m like if I’m not growing. I’m really uncomfortable, and it’s a core value of mine. It’s not a bad thing at all. But that. I constantly want to be like I have a drive to constantly be improving. And what I was working on and working through shifting my belief around was that growth was associated with doing, right?

 

And so when he asked me what my belief was and my definition of growth, what I said was that growth—I actually had to close my eyes and go through a process to come up with the answer because at first, I was like it’s achieving, it’s like doing new things—I said that growth comes from an increase in capacity or ability. So, an increase in capacity means that, for example, as a CEO, as an entrepreneur when you have high-pressure moments, maybe it’s around revenue, maybe it’s around a team, maybe it’s around something not working out—an investment not working out—whatever it is. All that’s doing when you can look at it through this lens is increasing your capacity for the next thing. So, to me, I am growing if I’m either increasing my capacity in how I can show up, meaning, can you now give me a situation that in the past I might have reacted, been triggered, had a lot of anxiety around, whatever. And you give me that same situation, and I’m able to be like, ‘Alright, I’m able to stay grounded, I’m able to stay in my body, I’m able to stay present, I’m able to respond very thoughtfully and intentionally,’ that is growth. Same thing with ability. I can grow through ability. I can learn how to do something new.

Can be able to podcast better. I can add more leads to my list and get better at something. So, to me, growth is an increase in capacity or ability. And so one of my big lessons for this year is that for me, that’s two parts. 

 

One is that growth doesn’t just come from the ability side of this, that it came from me really leaning into this idea of being versus doing and bringing more harmony back between the two and understanding that in order to increase my capacity as a CEO to be able to handle the team size I want to grow to, the company I want to grow to, the goals I have, the vision I have for the future, I wasn’t going to be able to do that in the current way, like four or five months ago and how I was showing up because I didn’t allow myself the space to be and the flow and the ease and the white space. And so understanding that the moments of not being productive, of having more white space, of having more flow and like listening to that and loosening my grip on that actually increased my capacity to handle things, which then contributed to my growth. And also understanding that all moments of pressure or struggle or a challenge or a roadblock or a frustration. All of those things are just preparing us for the next thing. And this is a huge lesson I learned. I used to see all of these things as either failing or going backward. I now believe you can’t go backward. You cannot go backward if you come at your business and your life with the mindset of everything that is happening like you don’t know the next thing that’s going to happen. Like you can’t. We cannot predict the future. 

 

And so we don’t know if what is happening right now might feel like a huge challenge, but it’s going to lead to a specific decision that is going to lead to even more growth than we could have imagined. So trying to like control the narrative and control everything that’s happening and like have this idea of like it has to go this way and this is the only way to grow and the only way to be successful. That’s honestly what’s keeping you from being successful and really leaning into that. My word of the year, surrendering, and seeing every challenge or moment of pressure, discomfort, resistance, frustration as an opportunity to pause.

 

And look at what I need to shift or what my team needs to shift or what isn’t working, what isn’t aligned anymore. All of those things led to tremendous growth. We’ve made massive changes in the last sixty days, all because of that because I looked at where the resistance was, where the struggles or the problems were. And so now what’s happened is when I have a week that is more challenging with more issues and growing pains or whatever comes up, I’m able to be like okay, thank you. Thank you for these because they are all opportunities for us to make shifts where in the past I would be like what the hell, like why isn’t it working and I’m so tired of this and allow it to really get to me. And so that has probably been my biggest lesson of the year, the concept that you are never going backward. You aren’t. You cannot fail. And if you look at everything that happens, every situation, every challenge, every struggle, every failed quote, not working project, campaign launch, whatever, if you look at it as an opportunity and you allow it to drive your next action, it is only growing from there.

 

And I used to say like I don’t want to go backward or I am going backward or like I’m so frustrated I’m in the same place. All those things and I no longer believe that. And as soon as I let that go, the growth was crazy and it was and also just such a better way to show up for my team because I’m able to be okay. We messed this up, here’s what we’re gonna learn, move on. Like it’s an opportunity. Everything is an opportunity. Everything is preparing us for the next thing and what we’re in control of is how we show up, our energy, our actions, our reactions to the things that are put in front of us. That’s the only thing we can control. There was another time in one of my recent sessions with that mentor where he literally had me write down everything that I can control with my business and everything that I can’t. And was like okay, this is eye-opening because here’s the reality. I can control me. I can control the decisions I make that drive our company. I can control the quality of our delivery by making those decisions. But what I can’t control are clients, the economy. Like it was a whole list of stuff and so it was just cool to see that and be like okay so focus on what you can control versus what you can’t control. So those are my personal top 3 lessons for the year. It has been a year. It’s been such an amazing year in so many ways.

 

It’s one of those years that’s like I will never forget it and I’m also looking forward to next year. I already have so many things planned and in the works to continue this growth, continue this work that I’m doing because I feel that it is so important for me to do. Because I’m able to take this work and impact so many. So, if you’ve been with me this year or a lot of this year, I appreciate you and you witnessing my growth. I’ve gotten so many messages from you guys and being able to kind of witness it and see it and in my thing like. Shifting to my voice and how I show up and it’s just really cool because I’m the same person recording this podcast as I am if you hang out with me as a friend. Like I don’t know how to have multiple personas, I just show up as me so you guys get all of me. And you get exactly where I am right now and you also get a very transparent view into my lessons. My struggles, my challenges, and how I’m overcoming them. And it’s one of my favorite things to be able to share that with you guys. So thanks so much for tuning in and I’ll talk to you on Thursday.