Self Love

Where in the world have I been…

July 28, 2015
plane

You make plans. 

And the Universe laughs its ass off.

I know I have been SUPER quiet these last few months. To be honest, I’ve been feeling quite guilty about it. I think about this website, and you, my readers, every single day. I have had so many thoughts on how to pick back up again. What to say. How to say it. Where to begin.

Tonight, it finally came to me, and I didn’t have to look far. It’s plastered on the homepage of my website after all.

  • “Be true to your brand.”
  • “Be true to your audience.”
  • “Be true to yourself.”

Well.

  •  I named my brand “Simply Be,” which is just a fancy way of saying, stay authentic.
  • You are my audience, and I owe you the truth.
  • And even though it’s scary as shit, I vow to speak my truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

It was about a year ago that I created this blog, roadjesstraveled.com. As some of you might know by now, I was in a dark place with my business at the time, and this website was my light.

I took Marie Forleo’s B-School, thinking it wouldn’t have much to teach me, and instead, it cracked open the Internet. For the first time in my career, I was exposed to a global community of rad babes doing big things (retreats, e-courses, coaching, video series, masterminds, writing books, hosting seminars and workshops – all in the name of love and living your best life). I decided I wanted to jump on that train.

I had big plans.

(Most of which I executed.)

A weekly blog.

A bi-weekly YouTube show.

A one-one-one coaching business with Entrepreneurial Babes.

A huge roster of clients who came with great monthly retainers.

I had visions of an eight-week online course where I would teach a new legion of empowered chicks how to step into their careers with clarity, confidence and the skills it took me nearly eight years to learn.

But during this incredibly productive time, something else happened.

As I was about to launch my website, my mentor from Cheeky offered me a three-month contract to come work for her at a company based in Dallas, Texas called WorldVentures within their corporate offices on new strategy development.

I said yes for two reasons.

  • It was the biggest paycheck of my life, and I needed a “bridge” gig between Cheeky and launching my own agency.
  • It was an opportunity to work closely with my mentor, who is quite possibly the smartest woman in marketing and entrepreneurship I have ever, ever known.

There were, of course, reservations. Accepting the job meant I had to get on an airplane multiple times a month, live out of a suitcase and be away from my husband, friends, family, dog, Pilates studio, meditation altar and Vitamix. (It’s the little things, peeps.)

The other reservation was the company itself. I’d done some Googling on WorldVentures (obviously) and what came up frightened me. WorldVentures is a networking marketing company (think Amway, Mary Kay, Herbalife, Rodan & Fields), and there is a stigma attached to all of them. It’s fine, I told myself. It was officially my biggest “client” and it got my agency on its feet before I even opened the doors.

Those first few months were an emotional rollercoaster. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever experienced more severe anxiety in my life. I was planning a wedding, separating from a business I had spent almost a decade building, preparing to launch my own new business while adjusting to a corporate environment in a new city, and I was sleeping in a hotel room every single week. Talk about transitions.

Go big or go home, right?

The year 2015 kicked off with a huge, albeit emotional, bang. I had more business, more demand and more opportunities than I knew what to do with. At first it was inspiring, exhilarating, and to be honest, really ego-gratifying. I was saying YES to all of it.

Then a few things happened…

  • Naturally, I got severely overwhelmed.
  • Subsequently, I got severely sick.
  • And surprisingly, I began to fall in love with WorldVentures.

I started to see the WorldVentures opportunity for what it truly is…an opportunity of a lifetime.

Here’s why:

I am traveling the entire world this year, partnering with restaurant proprietors, PR firms, lifestyle marketing agencies and world-renowned chefs, building food and nightlife programming in Asia, the UK, the US and Australia for the most engaged niche audience I have ever worked with. I’m leading the development and launch of a new global food blog and hiring an international team of city managers to support the scale of this worldwide program.

It’s a marketer’s dream.

It’s an entrepreneur’s dream.

And for some reason, it’s happening to me. Does it look different than my initial plan? Sure, it does. I call myself an Entrepreneurial Babe for effing sake, and now I have gone to work for CORPORATE AMERICA? Really?

I think we are raised to judge Corporate America, to run so far from it that we must do our own thing despite the stressors, the worries or the expenses. But there is a greater lesson here. Is CA for everyone? Of course not. But I gave it a chance and ended up falling in love with the company. In the process, I got to see (and am still seeing) a whole new side of business.

Is there a networking marketing stigma? Sure there is, but WHO CARES? WorldVentures grossed a billion dollars last year and donates mass amounts to charity. Every day, I get to work with the most talented, incredible, team-oriented, entrepreneurial bad-asses I have ever worked with. And our members are hands-down the warmest, kindest, most genuine customer-base I have ever encountered. WorldVentures has empowered them to quit their jobs and become self-made entrepreneurs, and their gratitude and dedication to our company are palpable and contagious.

So shame on me for judging.

There are a few lessons here (and sorry it has taken me nearly a thousand words to get to them), so here goes:

  • You define your life, not what you wrote down in your journal a year ago or what’s on your Google Calendar a month from now. You. Every day, it’s you. And you are enough.
  • Own your choices and make them with conviction. If and when they don’t come to complete fruition, be gentle and loving with yourself. It’s really okay.
  • Know it’s more than perfectly fine to change your mind. It can actually be beautiful and serendipitous. Pay close attention to when the Universe starts to nudge you in a new direction and don’t resist.
  • Get out of your own way. Embrace what you don’t know. And stop giving a single shit what people think.

Lastly, I want to say this:

Thank you.

Thank you for making it this far down the blog to hear my small siren of gratitude. This website is still and always will be my light, and I truly write these blogs for you.

With truth + love, always –

Jessica

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  • Ginger

    I have been quietly following your journey & very interested in all you’ve been doing. It’s all so interesting, right? I too am faced with some choices & wondering what the future holds. A path I thought I would pursue, or this other thing I don’t want to be perceived as, or another thing I could never have guessed I might be…”stop giving a single shit what people think” is what I needed to hear (plus, all those other things you said). I’m so grateful for your honesty. Thank you for that. Now I’m less alone in my decision. Also…I’m probably not the only mystery guest out here listening…

  • Erin Sturm

    It’s amazing where opportunities can take us if we remain open-minded! 🙂 I’m so glad to hear that you are enjoying your journey and finding success, even if it’s in a different form that you expected.