Balance Work Life

Balance Work Life

“Life is a balance between what we can control and what we cannot. I am learning to live between effort and surrender.”
~ Danielle Orner


In this blog, I share with you my thoughts on work/life balance and a few practical strategies to better manage your business when life seemingly gets in the way.

Let me begin by sharing something I heard many years ago from Danielle Laporte.

Balance is a myth.

I remember being struck by those words and whilst I don’t remember everything she said on the topic I remember feeling the truth of those 4 words deep in my bones.

The idea here is that we don’t get to a place where work and life are perfectly balanced, without one taking up more space than the other. Instead the balance tips in favour of one or the other at different points in time. Allow me to explain. If you are sick or need to take care of a sick loved one, then for sure life is going to take priority. It has to.

If all is well on the personal front and we’re in the middle of a big launch in our business, then the scales are going to tip on the side of business for a while. That’s inevitable.

The liberating key here is to acknowledge that. To understand that the balance we often strive for is a myth. That then frees us up to figure out how to better manage things when the scales are tipped one way vs the other. I.e. how do we not drop all the balls on our business when life is feeling full on? And how do we not lose ourselves in our work when business is full on?

I can’t claim to have all the answers here, but for what they are worth, here are my thoughts for how to stay connected with your work when life is fighting for your attention.

Manage your expectations

Whilst on a call with a fellow business owner whose Dad has been seriously ill and who is herself recovering from a second bout of Covid, she shared that she hadn’t been feeling the ability to create content lately, which has never happened before and was asking how she might get her inspiration back. When I reminded her how much she is dealing with on a personal level and how normal it is therefore that she isn’t feeling creative, she broke down in tears.

I see some version of this all the time.

We don’t acknowledge what is going on for us and then on top of everything we might already be dealing with on a personal level, we have unreasonable expectations of ourselves to keep on keeping on. When we can truly acknowledge that our capacity for work may be limited, we’re better able to do the bare minimum than when we try to carry on at full capacity, which just adds more weight to an already unbearably heavy load.

On this same call, I was asked what I wanted to commit to for the next two weeks and without missing a beat I said: maintaining my business until our house renovation is complete. That means nothing extra, no big launches, no working on new things, no bold moves, or big steps. As boring and as safe as it might sound, my only job for the next month is to stick to my content schedule and serve my existing clients.

Even though that is more than enough, there still was a voice that whispered but you should be doing more.

It’s so important to be aware of that voice and to gently and respectively ignore her.

 Plan ahead

This one is a work in progress for me but making the most of the extra time I have in my business when things are quiet on the personal front is key to feeling less stressed when life gets busy or challenging.

That means that when I know I’ll be taking time off for a planned holiday, I can, for example, work a bit harder in advance to prepare content to be scheduled in my absence.

Much like it was in my old corporate life when I knew I had to take leave, there would also be a little bit of intensity ahead of the break, getting things set up for when I wouldn’t be there or handing stuff over to colleagues.

This doesn’t necessarily help when unexpected things happen like sudden sickness, but if you can endeavour to get ahead of yourself in for example your content creation, then you’ll have some leeway to work with when you suddenly find yourself busy with personal things. The trick is to be more productive when the space is there to do it so that you can step back when you need to, without dropping your business essentials.

Get help

Even though most of us work solo in our business that doesn’t mean we can’t recruit others to help take up the slack when we need to take a step back. There are several things you can do to find cover for while you are away that doesn’t require too much work up front for you.

You might, for example, invite a colleague to do a content takeover for your newsletter. This is something I’ve done for my dear colleague Eli Trier in the past. When she was busy getting married, she invited two or three of her most trusted colleagues to come in and write a newsletter on a topic relevant to her audience that she could schedule to go out while she was busy with her wedding. It was great for us as we got the opportunity to be exposed to a new group of people and could share links to our business and therefore get new followers and it was great for Eli, who had three weeks of quality newsletters she didn’t have to write or pre-prepare.

You can even do this with services. Years ago when I was on maternity leave with my first son, I was running a women’s circle with weekly calls. I invited 3 of my dearest colleagues to host calls in my absence and it was great, my women really appreciated that the calls continued while I was away bonding with my baby and my colleagues loved the opportunity to host a group call and share their skills.

And inside my mastermind program, I had a week off and had to miss one of the group calls, instead of cancelling it, I invited one of the amazing women inside the program to test out her new workshop on her fellow mastermind participants, meaning that the women benefited from her wisdom and she was able to get some validation and feedback on her new workshop. So it was a win win, with no extra work from me.

Give yourself grace

Always important but specifically relevant for those times when planning and calling in help just isn’t viable, it’s important to give yourself some grace when navigating difficult personal issues like illness, death of a loved one, birth of a child, children home from school, moving house (or house renovations!!) and all other big life events that inevitably mean our work has to take a back seat.

We would never be hard on a friend or valued colleague during times like these and would find it super easy to show empathy, understanding and love to someone else in this situation. Why then is it so hard for us to extend this kindness to ourselves?

Next time you find yourself in a situation where you’re dealing with some big personal life issues and catch yourself being hard on yourself about work, remember to show yourself some compassion. All being hard on ourselves does is make things even harder. In my experience, the more you’re able to lean into self-compassion, the sooner you’ll be ready to get back to doing what you can.

And there you have it, three things you can do to survive in business when your personal life is a struggle. Is there anything you’d add to this list? Feel free to let me know in the comments below.



Once a week, in the form of an e-letter, I share the best of what I know about building a business with integrity for conscious business owners.

The intention behind these letters is to be a voice for integrity within your (undoubtedly) cluttered inbox. To be the one email you can count on to contain strategic and soulful advice for building a business without selling your soul.

If you want to receive the Soulful Strategies Weekly, simply share with me your name and email address below and you’ll start recieving emails right away.

Why I Don’t Recommend Starting A Business To Most People

Why I Don’t Recommend Starting A Business To Most People

“If you’re starting something on your own, you better have a passion for it, because this is hard work.”
~ Sallie Krawcheck, Co-founder of Ellevest

In this blog, I share with you why I don’t recommend starting a business to most people who ask me about it.

Given what I do — running my own business (from home) and coaching others on how to build and grow theirs — you can bet that I get a lot of people wanting to talk to me about how they might get started as a coach or other online business owner.

I’ve had it many times over the years, basically from people who are unhappy in their 9–5 job and searching for an alternative. Once they learn about what I do, the freedom it affords me and the success I’ve had with it, they are intrigued to explore if the online business world is something that they might also get into.

90% of the time, when I get approached in this way, my heart sinks.


Because usually, they are enquiring about starting their own business for all the wrong reasons.

The wrong reasons

The main reasons people are wanting to explore starting a business or becoming a coach include:

  • Hating their 9–5 job
  • Wanting to work from home so that they don’t have to deal with office politics (and can work in their pyjamas!)
  • Wanting more freedom to be able to work whenever and wherever they want
  • The ability to make more money than they can working for someone else.
  • Wanting to do work that they enjoy more than the work they currently do.
  • Loving the idea of being a coach and getting paid to talk to people.

Now while there’s nothing inherently wrong with any of these reasons (I can totally relate personally to each and every one of these), if these are the only reasons a person has, I think building a successful and sustainable business is going to be an uphill struggle.

Let’s dive into the 6 reasons why I think this.

1. Running your own business is harder than working 9–5

A lot of people think that running an online business will be easier than working 9–5 and in many ways, it’s actually the opposite. For many people, 9–5 is a breeze compared to running their own business.


Because when you run your own business you have lots more to deal with than you do in a paid job. You have to be good at all of the things: admin, finance, planning, marketing, networking, systems and so much more.

It’s not enough to be good at the service you provide (such as coaching or healing), you absolutely need to be skilled in all of the areas it takes to run a successful business. Do you need to be an ace at these skills right off the bat? No, of course not, but you do need to be willing to learn and uplevel your skills in all of these areas and more.

Not only this but you have to deal with the stress of inconsistent income and sales, at least for the first few years. No longer do you have a steady paycheck that drops into your bank account on the same day each month, some months you’ll make nothing or barely scrape by. This can and does take its toll.

Unlike a 9–5, where you can take sick days, maternity leave and holidays without it impacting your pay (at least in the UK) or the overall success of the business, when you run your own business, every day off typically means closing down your business during that time. There are no colleagues to delegate to or to take up the slack while you’re not there. And when no one is working on the business for too many days in a row, this can have a negative impact on your bottom line. Inconsistent marketing inevitably leads to inconsistent income.

2. In the short term you’ll make far less money than working in a normal job

Especially in the online world, there is a huge misconception that it’s easy to get to a place of consistent and sustainable income relatively quickly. Allow me to burst that bubble for you right now.

In the offline world, it’s a given that if you want to start a new business, you’re going to need some investment to cover you for at least the first few years. That’s because it takes years to become profitable (if you even do — many business fail in their first year). Just take a quick look at the google search results I got when I asked: How long does it take a new business to become profitable?

If you’re interested in starting an online business, purely for the potential financial gains, you’re going to really struggle when you learn that it’s not an overnight thing (despite what many online marketers would have you believe). It’s much more realistic to expect it to take anywhere between 2–4 years to get to a place of profitability.


… ‘profitable’ only means you are making money after all expenses have been taken into account, how much money you are making is another story. It may not mean you are making the kind of money you were making or could make with a 9–5 job, that could in fact take even longer.

3. It’s not enough to love what you do

A lot of people are drawn to becoming business owners because they fall in love with a modality, (such as coaching, somatics, dance, therapy or healing) and want to build a business in which they can spend their days sharing their skills in that area, with the people they believe most need it.

Given what I mentioned above about all of the hats you’ll be required to wear as a solopreneur, if you don’t also love the actual business side of running a business, you’re going to struggle. I can’t tell you how often I talk to frustrated business owners who feel disillusioned with their business precisely because they don’t enjoy nor want to do the business building activities (such as marketing and outreach) that will help them get the growth they so desperately need to be sustainable.

If you hate marketing, planning, finances and systems your business will suffer. Most new business owners can’t afford to outsource these things in the early years and they are essential business survival activities that you’ll not only need to master but ideally learn to enjoy. If you don’t, growing your business will become a drudgery.

4. Running a successful business is a full time job

A lot of the people I talk to were drawn to entrepreneurship precisely because they thought they would have more free time. Now while this might be something you can achieve down the line, in the first few years of getting a business off the ground, the reality is that you’ll be working at least 9–5 on your business. I’ve always worked full-time on my business and it’s only in the last year or so (years 4–5 in business) that I’ve been able to scale back some of my hours to work less.

Caveat: If you can’t work full-time on your business, that’s okay but it will in all likelihood take you longer to achieve what someone working full-time could.

The 4-hour work week and other unhelpful noise online about making big money in your sleep is actually a rarity and even then tends to come after a lot of hours of work (and years) have been put in.

Let’s consider “passive” income for a moment. The idea that you can make money in your sleep, it’s possible for sure, I do it on the regular. It’s not uncommon for me to check my email in the morning and to see that I made sales of digital products overnight.

The work I had to do up front, however, to not only create those products but also to do the marketing and build the engaged audience I need to buy those products, took significant time.

I say it all the time, but if it were really that easy to make money in your sleep, working 4 hours a week, no one would work a 9–5 job. Ever.

5. The freedom of working for yourself isn’t the freedom you imagined it would be

The freedom to work whenever and wherever you want is a huge draw of being an online business owner for many people. But it’s not quite that simple. Whilst you may not have a boss to answer to, you do (and should want to) have clients and customers (or potential ones at least) to take into account.

During those years when I didn’t have a full client roster, if I had taken the day off every time I felt like it, then I wouldn’t be where I am today in business. Now with a full client roster, if I cancelled appointments every time I felt like doing something else, I would tank my reputation and the flow of new clients would quickly dry up.

Do I have more freedom than in my old 9–5 job? Absolutely, without a doubt. Do I have the freedom to work whenever or wherever I want, no, not by a long shot. So the reality is somewhere in between these two and it’s often a shock to people who decided to start their own business to have more freedom when they realise that this is not always possible.

As I started building my first business back in 2014, I was what some people call a “digital nomad”. I had left the UK (and my career in programme management) in 2012 and didn’t have a permanent residency anywhere. I had been living in Thailand for a few years and then, shortly after meeting Joan, we travelled to Colombia before settling down for a year in Mexico.

I used to get so wound up by the pictures I’d see online from business owners with their laptops out by the pool or on the beach. As a travelling business owner, I knew only too well how different the reality of running a business on the road is.

Allow me to dispel the myth — You can’t work outside in the sunshine because you can’t actually see your screen, also it’s far less likely that you’ll have a strong enough wifi connection to actually do anything productive online outdoors. Not to mention how uncomfortable it is to work in a hammock!!! These pictures were and are staged to present and sell a certain lifestyle and it works, we make 6-figure businesses buying into that BS.

If you talk to anyone running a successful business abroad, they’ll tell you that they spend more time at the local co-working place or cooped up in their room than they do relaxing by the pool.

6. Running your own business requires courage and resilience

Whilst you might have to step outside of your comfort zone in a 9–5 job (I certainly did in my former career), it’s a daily requirement when you run your own business.

There’s no place to hide when you’re the boss. If you don’t exercise courage on the regular, no one will know you even exist. To exercise courage on the regular, you need resilience. You’ve got to be able to face the critics (inner and possibly outer) and come out relatively unscathed.

Running your own business requires you to embrace failure rather than run from it. To get good at anything, you have to fail first, I know this from personal experience and I see it every day as I raise two young children.

Nobody steps out of the gate doing everything perfectly. When you see someone’s flawless and polished video or perfectly presented webinar, you can bet that they started out with a DIY version that was far more rough around the edges.

The thing is we rarely see most people’s practice runs or failed attempts, we see the end result of years of failing, improving and practising. If you’re not up for the experimentation (and possibly falling flat on your face) part, you’re unlikely to reach the successful, expertly executed part. Fact.

So there you have it 6 reasons I believe that running a business isn’t for everyone. Now, you might be forgiven for thinking that I don’t believe having more time, freedom and money is possible when you run your own business but nothing could be further from the truth. These absolutely are possible. But if you are going into business just for them and expecting that you’ll have them quickly and easily, it’s my belief that you’re in for a bumpy ride.

Given I’m sharing here the top reasons I don’t recommend most people start a business, you might be wondering when I would recommend it.

That’s easy.

When you can understand and appreciate all of the above and still know in your heart that it’s what you want to do 100%.

Even though I didn’t know all of these upfront, I soon learned. My passion to do work that has an impact as well as my desire to be my own boss (with all that that entails) has never wavered.

Is there anything you would add to this list? Or any of the above that you are struggling with? If so, let me know in the comments.



Once a week, in the form of an e-letter, I share the best of what I know about building a business with integrity for conscious business owners.

The intention behind these letters is to be a voice for integrity within your (undoubtedly) cluttered inbox. To be the one email you can count on to contain strategic and soulful advice for building a business without selling your soul.

If you want to receive the Soulful Strategies Weekly, simply share with me your name and email address below and you’ll start recieving emails right away.

Are You Doing This Often Enough?

Are You Doing This Often Enough?

“A salesperson’s ethics and values contribute more to sales success than do techniques or strategies.”
~ Ron Willingham

In this blog, I talk to you about something that so many of the business owners I work with struggle to implement — regularly letting your audience know about your products and services. I plan to share with you an approach for sharing your offers authentically and to give you a suggested plan to make sure you do it.

A while back I asked members of my Mastermind, the following question:

How often are you putting your paid offerings in front of your audience (and how)?

And I was a tad taken aback by the response, the vast majority of the women said that they weren’t doing it at all or if so, were doing it rarely and infrequently.

Now I shouldn’t really be surprised because the kind of business owner that is attracted to my work tends to be so precisely because they don’t like the sales and marketing aspect of running a business. They like my work because I focus on generosity and giving versus manipulation and hard selling. I myself have built a successful business, selling as infrequently as possible AND…

It’s so, so, so important to be letting your people know what you have to offer on a regular and consistent basis.

A chilling parable

Years ago I heard a story that had a huge impact on me, I have no idea where or how I heard this story and despite searching online (many times!), I’ve never been able to find it since. So this is my version of it. It’s the story of a doctor who moved to a remote village.

He didn’t want to tell the villagers on his first day there that he was a doctor, lest he come across as bragging or full of himself. That first night, shortly after he arrived he heard a commotion in the early hours of the morning, but didn’t think too much of it. The next day, he awoke to find the village in mourning. When he asked what had happened, he was told that a little girl had come down with fever and died because the nearest doctor lived miles away and they couldn’t get to him in time.

Of course, the doctor was devastated, he had assumed that a doctor must already live in the village and by not letting the villagers know his profession, a young girl had died.

Now whilst people might not die as a result of your silence about what you have to offer, it’s my honest belief that when we fail to share what it is that we can do for others (on the regular), we are depriving the very people we are trying to help from accessing products and services that could help them to live happier and healthier lives.

So, with that said, how do you let people know what you are up to without feeling like a sleazy car salesman? It’s easier than you think.

A simple reframe

I want to offer you a reframe from the sleazy car salesman stereotype to the courteous waiter.

We’re all familiar with the sleazy car salesman stereotype. The slick salesman who will use every trick in the book to get us to buy a car, even when said car is not in our best interests to buy. We see him as pushy and aggressive in his use of sales tactics and for conscious business owners like us, the thought of coming across as even slightly salesy in this way leaves us feeling cold.

Now think about when you go out for a meal in a restaurant and those points in the evening when the waiter brings over the menu, first so that you can choose your starter and main course and then again later so that you can see the desert menu and, if so inclined, order some coffee.

Do you feel sold to in those moments? No of course not, you’re usually grateful if the waiter or waitress comes over without you having to make eye contact and wave across a crowded dining room. When they come to ask if we want desserts or coffee, we don’t think “uff, I wish this guy would stop trying to upsell me!” No, quite the opposite, we consider it to be a service, one of the very reasons we’re out for dinner in the first place.

But at the end of the day, the waiter is in fact simply sharing what is available for you to buy. Yet for some reason, we never feel sold to. Why is that? Because waiters don’t have a vested interest in how much we spend, they aren’t trying to manipulate us into buying the most food possible. They are simply sharing with us what is on offer and we feel this.

When we can embody the courteous waiter as we share what we have to offer, we too can sell without feeling salesy.

Creating a schedule

What I’ve done to get over my own resistance to sharing about my products and services is to create a schedule for it. I now recommend to all my clients that they too create a schedule of sharing offers, gentle invitations, if you will, to buy something they have created that could help the very people they are trying to serve.

What I recommend my clients do, is to create a schedule for sharing offers/CTAs (calls to actions) that incorporates both those things you have on offer that are paid for as well as things you have on offer that are free. I have a tab in my content schedule spreadsheet just for this purpose (see image below). In it, I have details of all of my offerings, such as my online trainings (paid) and also invitations to subscribe to my newsletter or join my facebook group (free) plus the copy that I would use to share the details with my audience.

I then have a slot for these once a week in my actual content schedule that details where and when I’ll share this information (usually on Instagram or Facebook). I recommend that you share one of your offerings after every 5–7 pieces of valuable free content. Given that I publish content every day and I alternate between sharing about a paid offer and a free offer, I can do this weekly.

If you are not sharing free content as regularly, then your schedule might be different. However, I would recommend not going more than a month without sharing details of one of your offers with your audience at least once. At this rate, you’ll only be letting your people know about your offers 12 times in the whole year.

The reason I love to have a schedule with the copy pre-populated in a spreadsheet is because it makes it easier to share. Given that most conscious business folks I know (myself included) have some resistance to “selling”, automating the process as much as possible really can help. If I have to write the copy every week when it comes up in my schedule, you can bet that I’ll skip over it as soon as resistance rears its head.

It takes a bit of work up front, but once created, a pre-populated, schedule makes the whole process of regularly sharing your offers so much easier.

Some advice about your sales copy

Speaking from personal experience, the hardest part of getting this system set up is creating the copy that accompanies each offering. Here’s my best advice on how to do that. Stop worrying about trying to make it sound enticing, convincing or exciting. That’s where we start to feel inauthentic and salesy and as a result, resistance comes up.

Instead, remember the courteous waiter and simply share clearly and transparently what you have to offer that might help your ideal clients. I like to include all the details (no hiding the price over here) and also say who it’s for and who it’s not for so that people can self select in or out.

The key for me is to always stay out of the realm of trying to convince people that it’s what they need and instead to present clearly what’s on offer so that they themselves can decide if it’s something they want to buy or do.

Of course, this doesn’t mean excluding the potential benefits of your offer, but that’s very different to some of the sales copy you’ll see on the internet that focuses on pain points and uses manipulation and inflated promises to try and get the sale.

My sincere hope?

That after reading this, you’ll see the importance of sharing with your audience, details of your products, services and other opportunities to go deeper with you, without a fear of coming across as pushy or salesy.

And that you can totally do it in a way that provides a service to your people.



Once a week, in the form of an e-letter, I share the best of what I know about building a business with integrity for conscious business owners.

The intention behind these letters is to be a voice for integrity within your (undoubtedly) cluttered inbox. To be the one email you can count on to contain strategic and soulful advice for building a business without selling your soul.

If you want to receive the Soulful Strategies Weekly, simply share with me your name and email address below and you’ll start recieving emails right away.