It’s my birthday and birthdays are hard. There’s so much pressure to have a fantastic day. You’re expected to have big, exciting plans that involve makeup, heels, a little black dress and a very good time. Everyone is wishing you a happy birthday and sometimes you don’t want a ‘happy’ birthday … sometimes you just want a lazy birthday, a relaxed birthday, maybe even a melancholy birthday. The expectations of birthdays are insane. No wonder birthday blues are a thing.
Not only is there pressure to have the perfect birthday, but there is pressure about what you “should” have accomplished by that day. As a woman, you are expected to be married, have two kids, a house and a healthy 401k by the time you reach mid-30’s. In other words, there is pressure to have the perfect life. Or rather, what society has deemed to be the perfect life for you.
I say fuck all that noise. All that noise is exactly why studies show that women’s earning potential peaks at 35. We are so busy trying to check all the boxes, fulfilling the various roles that society says we should want to play, in exactly the way we are supposed to play them, that we are distracted from a very important aspect of our lives: making money.
So I want to share what I have discovered about building wealth as a 37 year old (as of 12 hours ago) woman entrepreneur. My hope is that these strategies help you to evaluate your priorities and the various roles you play and how you play them.
Lesson 1: The better you take care of yourself, the higher your earning potential. I know this sounds like the fluffiest, most BS advice in the world when it comes to earning more money. But if you know me, you know that I don’t do fluffy. Here’s the reality that I’ve seen among my female friends who run successful businesses that are growing exponentially: we all take excellent care of ourselves. When you are an entrepreneur how you feel everyday significantly affects the success of your business. Are you showing up at your desk in the morning feeling worn out and stressed? Or are you showing up energized and ready to take on the challenges of the day? If you have a team, this is even more important because you can’t lead a team to greatness when you are sluggish and bogged down. The only thing worse than you showing up to work with low energy is paying a whole team of people who are also showing up to work with low energy. Follow the leader, as they say.
So what can you do to pretty much guarantee that you will feel ready to tackle the challenges of entrepreneurship every work day? It’s simple: just exercise, get some sleep and have some fun. Most women entrepreneurs are probably only doing one of those consistently. Note that none of this is about restriction and discipline. This is about pleasure and actually enjoying your life.
Here’s how this looks for me: I exercise every workday preferably in the morning. I know that I perform better on webinars, podcasts, trainings for my mastermind and live events if I have exercised beforehand. This is about releasing endorphins and feeling great not weight loss. And I’m no hero, I do a 20-minute ride on my Peloton and feel like a million bucks. I get at least 7 hours of sleep every night (and I have a 7 month old! The trick is to go to bed early enough that 7 hours is possible even if you have a baby waking you up). I’m typically in bed by 9. And I take time for my everyday pleasure whether it’s watching an episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race, taking a hot bath or reading a novel. Lastly, I pre-book hair appointments, spa days and, trips throughout the year to hang out with friends and spend time with family.
The bottom line: taking excellent care of yourself is not optional when you are an entrepreneur. Staying up all night and working 12 hours a day are definitely earning you less not more. Nothing has increased my revenue more than loving myself, not just in words, but in action.
Lesson 2: Wealth building without boundaries is impossible. Being too scared to say no is preventing you from earning the money you are capable of making. As a woman, you can count on the people around you asking you for too much. And as a grown ass woman, it is your job to know when to say enough. You do not need anyone’s permission to say no.
No, I can’t help you with your taxes. No, I can’t lend you money. No, I can’t work all day, do the laundry, feed the children, put them to bed and then still be interested in sex. No, I cannot add that extra thing into your package for free. No, I can’t answer your calls on the weekends. No, I can’t re-negotiate your payment plan for the 4th time.
No, no, no, no, no. Say no to your spouse, your children, your parents, your kid’s school, your needy friend, your mooching client, your annoying neighbor, the PTA, ALL. OF. THEM. Allowing the people around you to siphon off all of your time is making it impossible for you to build wealth. Be intentional with your time and that means saying no to things outside of your priorities.
The bottom line: you will be happier, the people around you will be happier and you’ll all be a lot richer when you create and enforce healthy boundaries in your life every single day. Learning to have these uncomfortable conversations is an essential prerequisite to becoming wealthy. With all that extra time you’ll be able to prioritize taking care of yourself and the things that matter to you.
Lesson 3: Assume greatness. Building wealth means putting yourself out there and risking failure. Women tend to qualify their success and minimize their accomplishments. “You’ve probably heard the following statistic: Men apply for a job when they meet only 60% of the qualifications, but women apply only if they meet 100% of them.” We don’t ask for the business, pitch the client, or apply for the speaking gig because we think we need to wait until we are more qualified. We think we need a bigger list, a published book, several awards and 141 press mentions before we will be taken seriously. I want you to know that is simply not true.
In order to earn more for your work and be considered for those big opportunities, you need to assume greatness. Yes, your own greatness. Even if you don’t fully believe it, act as if you do. Assume that you are great and that others see your greatness and want to give you opportunities. And then go out and apply, ask for the business and request the big meeting. When you write copy, take a sales call or price your new product, do so as if you are already fully qualified and totally amazing at what you do (hint: because you are).
When I started my law practice, fresh out of my judicial clerkship and only one year after graduating from law school, I could have said I’m not experienced enough to take on clients. And I’d still be inexperienced today if I had followed that thinking. I had little experience but I was qualified. So I took on several clients that scared me and I did great work for them. And my journey to building a 7-figure business began.
The bottom line: I don’t have a single wealthy friend who did not risk failure at some point in order to build wealth. Confidently trust in your abilities and know that you are already qualified, and then charge accordingly.
I hope you’ll give these three strategies a try, I am certain that will lead to more money and change your life for the better.
As for me, I’m canceling my fancy birthday dinner plans and going to drink champagne in my robe, order takeout and watch TV with my hubby in my lovely hotel room. How’s that for a fabulous birthday celebration?
PS: Early enrollment for my Million Dollar Badass mastermind is now open. Simply book a call and fill out our short form to apply now. If you are accepted into the program by February 28th, you get preferred pricing and a special bonus VIP day with me. Book a call to get all the details.