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Guest post by by Lisa Dolce, Right-Brain Business Plan® Licensed Facilitator,

In my last blog post, I talked about how as a Sensitive Entrepreneur, your sensitivity is not a weakness but rather your GREATEST strength.

As highly sensitive people, entrepreneurs like you and I think and feel more deeply than most. We experience the world around us much more intensely. You may think this will hold you back in your business but in fact your sensitivity can be used as a business superpower!

How?

The most important first step is recognizing your sensitivity as a business ASSET, not a liability.

Here are a few ways to look at your sensitivity as a competitive advantage that will help your business to flourish.

Being a daydreamer gives you the fuel to build a powerful business.

Do you feel like your vivid imagination runs away with
you?

Your ability to envision the future is a superpower that is at the heart and soul of any successful business. As a highly sensitive person you can see what most others can’t, and you sense what pieces go together to develop a targeted roadmap to create a standout business.

Being overwhelmed by creative ideas makes you an awesome innovator.

You know that constant stream of ideas that wake you up in the middle of the night? Don’t dismiss this as an annoying quirk!

Highly sensitive people have come up with the most life-changing ideas, inventions and products. Do the names Sir Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein and Thomas Edison ring a bell? Yes, they were highly sensitive just like you. Entrepreneurship thrives on creativity, which is why most businesses have super creative people at the helm.

Being “too emotional” creates remarkable customer loyalty.

Have you ever been told you’re “too emotional” or “overly sensitive”? You probably hide this part of yourself because it can be perceived as a weakness in business.

However, your incredible awareness of the suffering of others can be your customer service superpower. Your empathy and intuition can keep you a step ahead of customer service issues. You can usually sense when something isn’t quite right, and you care a lot when a customer is unhappy. Sensitive entrepreneurs tend to offer a level and quality of customer service that is far superior to many other businesses—giving us an incredible competitive edge and many satisfied, loyal customers.

Bottom line: Please stop trying to “fix” your sensitivity and start embracing it for all its gifts in business. This is the most important step in activating your natural superpowers.

No more hiding. It’s time to step out and shine a light on ALL your gifts, so the people that need you the most can find you.

And when you honor and work in a way that is truest for you, you will be amazed how you and your business will soar!

So how can you use your sensitivity as your superpower?

To discover a few more of your sensitive superpowers, download Your Seven Sensitive Superpowers for Business Success. Lisa Dolce is a Business Coach and Mentor and Licensed Facilitator of the Right Brain Business Plan ®. She is the founder of The Launch Studio and loves to help sensitive entrepreneurs start and grow soul centered-businesses that make a deep and lasting impact in this world.

My friend Emilie Wapnick’s new book comes out on May 2nd and you can pre-order yours today to get some cool pre-order bonuses! I had the chance to interview Emilie about how to make having multiple passions work for you in this Part 1 interview. Part 2 will come out next week, just in time for her official pub date!

Emilie’s Interview

Jenn: Lots of creatives I know tend to get down on themselves for not being able to “just pick one thing.” Can you talk to us about what it means to be a mutlipotentialite and how it’s actually a valuable quality to have? I’d love for you to talk about your term Puttylike as well.

Emilie: A multipotentialite is someone with many interests and creative pursuits. We’re curious about a number of unrelated subjects and often move between domains in our career and over the course of our lives. We can be hard to pinpoint or categorize because we’re into so many different things.

“Puttylike” is an adjective that describes a multipotentialite. I got the idea from thinking about silly putty, and how it’s malleable and changes shape, kind of like us. So you could say, “Suzie is a total multipotentialite! Did you see the music video she wrote and produced that explains the laws of Thermodynamics?!” Or you could say: “Suzie is so puttylike! Did you see the music video she wrote and produced that explains the laws of Thermodynamics?!” You get what I’m saying.

Conventional wisdom pegs multipotentialites as “jack-of-all-trades, masters of none,” in other words: ineffective and unsuccessful dilettantes. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Multipotentialites are creative, out-of-the-box thinkers who possess super powers like idea-synthesis (combining two ideas that don’t normally go together–the basis for innovation), rapid learning, adaptability, big picture thinking, and the ability to relate to all kinds of different people and translate between them (an important skill to have when you’re working with big, cross-disciplinary teams).

Jenn: Being a multi-passionate person can feel overwhelming especially when you don’t know how to make it work for you. I love that you offer some great frameworks for structuring your passions into a fulfilling life/career. Can you give us the highlights of your four multipotentialite work models? I’m also curious to know which one are you?

Emilie: While doing research for the book, I interviewed about 50 multipotentialites who self described as being both happy and financially comfortable. Then I surveyed a couple thousand more. I wanted to really grasp how multipotentialites make a living.

At first it was a little frustrating because everyone had very different careers. There were artists, doctors, teachers, entrepreneurs, architects… I thought: if multipotentialites can be happy in pretty much any role, but what works for one multipotentialite doesn’t work for the next, where the heck should people begin when designing their careers? What I eventually realized is that, even though the participants’ specific jobs were different, there were four work models I saw people using again and again. Each of these approaches to work allows you to get the variety you need as a multipotentialite into your work and life:

1. The Group Hug Approach: having one multifaceted job or business that allows you to wear many hats and shift between several domains at work.

Imagine your interests coming together in one big group hug–It’s like that. To give you an example of what this looks like, I interviewed an Urban Planner named Jimena Veloz who told me that over the course of a single week, you might find her: researching, mapping, conducting field visits, interviewing people, working with communities, drafting reports, organizing events, planning the implementation of policy, designing, communicating to the public, advocating for a project to be approved, and evaluating completed projects. Talk about a perfect job for a variety-seeking multipotentialite!

2. The Slash Approach: having two or more part-time jobs and/or businesses that you flit between on a regular basis.

This is the programmer/teacher/stand-up comedian (see those slashes?). Unlike the Group Hug Approach, where you combine your interests in a single job or business, with the Slash Approach, you are keeping them separate and distinct. You have a handful of part-time work projects, each of which appeals to you for a different reason. Most of the Slash Careerists I spoke with enjoy each of their “slashes” a great deal, but wouldn’t want to do any one of them full-time. Moving between unrelated projects creates a fun, dynamic work week and allows you to diversify your income.

3. The Einstein Approach: having one full-time job or business that fully supports you, while leaving you with enough time and energy to pursue your other passions on the side.

Albert Einstein worked at the patent office for many years. He was essentially employed by the government and had this stable, secure day job. He actually developed his theories on the side. Multipotentialites who use the Einstein work model have what author Barbara Sher calls a “good enough job”: a job that takes care of your financial needs but that also leaves you with enough time and energy to pursue your many passions on the side. (By the way, you can also have a “good enough business,” where you have one narrow, lucrative business that pays the bills and then you explore everything else outside of work.)

The Einstein Approach definitely isn’t for everybody. But the multipotentialites who use it told me that it takes the pressure off of having to monetize every little thing they become interested in. Having your financial needs taken care of can be quite freeing. My favourite example is a guy I interviewed named Charlie Harper. Charlie is an IT manager by day, but come 5pm, he leaves the office and goes to musical theatre practice. He also sings in an a capella group and he builds furniture and boats on the weekend.

4. The Phoenix Approach: working in a single industry for several months or years and then shifting gears and starting a new career in a new industry.

Some multipotentialites like going deeper in a single industry for longer periods of time. At a certain point, they begin to feel like they’ve learned and experienced all they need to, and are ready for a new adventure. At that point, they begin building their skills and connections in a new domain that has piqued their interest, and eventually transition to the new field.

The phoenix is a good metaphor for this kind of multipotentialite because it’s kind of like they reach the end of their “life” in a particular career, burst into flames (or decompose slowly, depending on the interpretation of the myth) and are reborn from the ashes to embark on a new career.

By the way, it is totally possible to be a hybrid of two or more of these work models. Feel free to mix and match these approaches and customize them to your heart’s content.

And since you asked, right now I’m using the Group Hug Approach (my business/online community, Puttylike, is extremely multifaceted. I feel like I’m switching hats all week long, going from writing to speaking to developing courses, to coaching, to design… I also get to focus on topics as varied as work, creativity, mental health, fear, etc.), but I definitely have phoenix tendencies, too. Check in with me in ten years and I bet I’ll be doing something very different (wink wink).

Jenn: Thanks so much for sharing your unique gifts so that we can embrace our puttylike nature. How can we find out more about your work?

Emilie: Thanks Jenn! You can learn more about my new book at HowtoBeEverything.com. And if you’d like to check out the community and blog, head over to Puttylike.com and say hi!

Stay tuned next week for Part 2 of Emilie’s interview where she’ll talk about productivity hacks for multipotentialites, how to get over Imposter Syndrome, and how to lead with your gifts.

Emilie Wapnick is a writer, artist, career coach and community leader. She is the Founder and Creative Director at Puttylike, where she helps multipotentialites (people with many passions, skills, and creative pursuits) integrate all of their interests to create dynamic, fulfilling and fruitful careers and lives.

Emilie has been featured in Fast Company, Forbes, The Financial Times, The Huffington Post and Lifehacker. Her TED talk, Why Some of Us Don’t Have One True Calling has been viewed over 3 million times and translated into 36 languages.​

Break The Time Box

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Guest post by by Cass Mullane, Accountability Coach, Right-Brain Business Plan® Licensed Facilitator, Prosper Creatively, LLC

Don’t you just love getting up in the morning? You pop out of bed, hop in the shower and zip into work because you love arriving bright and early. You sit down and start tackling the tasks of the day and by the time everyone else is rolling in, you’ve already gotten in a couple of hours of good, solid work.

Wait a minute…

Don’t you just hate it when that alarm goes off and you have to get up in the morning? You drag yourself out of bed, stumble to the shower and haul yourself to work, sucking down the coffee just to keep your eyes open. You sit down, look at the stack of work to be done and lay your head on the desk wishing for a few hours more sleep.

As business owners, we all have to deal with getting up and going to work. And we all have models of behavior that are ingrained in us that relate to work. For example, some of you of you come from environments with a time-clock and you punch in on time and leave on time. Others come from a corporate environment a where there are set hours for arrival and departure and you know the minimum work day is generally 8-9 hours.

So, what happens when you decide to head out on your own? How do you set your work hours?

Here are a couple of things to consider when thinking about your work hours:

  1. When do your clients and customers expect you to be available to them
  2. When do you want to be available to your clients and customers
  3. When do you need to spend time working on your business
  4. What are your body’s natural rhythms in terms of when you are most productive and when you need to be doing something else.

I have a client who found herself struggling to get into her office by 9:00 am each day and who would berate herself about not being able to arrive on time and how unprofessional she was. She was also causing herself some discomfort at home as she was unable to enjoy morning chats with her spouse because she was in such a rush to get to the office. In addition, she was forcing herself to work through the last two hours of her day and beating herself up for not getting much done those last two hours. She did not understand why she was having such frustration with what she “knew” was the “right” way to work. After all, she had done it as a corporate professional for many years. Plus, she had read that super successful people always arrived at the office early and stayed late.

When we looked at her self-imposed requirement to be at the office at 9:00 am and not to go home until 6:00 pm, we discovered a few things:

  1. She was not “required” to be at the office at all; much of her work could be done at other places like home, coffee shops or even outside in the parks.
  2. She was not “required” to be at the office at the crack of 9:00, especially since the building itself did not open to the public until 10:00.
  3. She was not “required” to stay until 6:00 every day, especially since the building closed to the public at 5:00
  4. Her body was telling her in no uncertain terms that late afternoons were her least productive time so forcing herself to stay with the expectation of being productive was not such a bright idea.
  5. Her soul was telling her that she needed to change something or she’d go nuts.

So we decided to break the time box that she had encased herself in.

As the CEO of her business she realized that she had the flexibility to set her own schedule to match her body’s natural rhythms with the needs of her business, her customers and clients and her family.

So, are you encased in a self-imposed time box? Are there adjustments that you can make that would allow you a better flow with your business needs and your personal needs?

Is it time to break the time box?

Cass Mullane is an artist with an MBA. Cass’ calm, comfortable approach consistently yields positive results for clients. Her business and personal coaching practice, www.ProsperCreatively.com, specializes in delivering solid left brain business skills to right brainers and creatives in a fun, visual way. She’s a best selling author, textile and mixed media artist and creator of the Cool Stuff Jar™ coaching program. You can also visit Cass on Facebook!


I’m dating myself, but when I first started my business in 2003 there wasn’t social media like we know it today. Facebook didn’t exist yet (gasp!), blogs were just starting to help folks find kindred spirits online, and there was no iPhone to give us instant access to anything under the sun right from the palm of our hand – geez, how did we ever survive?! 😉 haha.

In order to find my community and clients I did tons of in-person networking. While it was draining for this introvert, I enjoyed making some wonderful connections (some that have lasted strongly to this day, including friendships and referrals). It was about the quality not the quantity.

Yes, it’s super-awesome to be able to connect with people from around the world. I’m ever so grateful for the relationships that have blossomed in our global right-brain community.

There’s something to be said, though, about periodically powering down and hanging out with people in real-life, too, right?

If you’ve been feeling caught in the frenzy of our fast-paced world, isolated despite your plethora of Facebook “friends,” or distracted by the never-ending feed of enviable Instagrams, viral videos, or political posts, you’re not alone.

I’ve been talking about this topic a lot lately with clients, cohorts, and colleagues. It seems many of us are yearning to kick it old school and slow down, savor, and connect more deeply with others.

Besides, it’s good for your creative spirit AND it’s good for business.

When you’re in real-time, face-to-face conversations, you can more readily gauge how your core message lands. You can develop more intimacy and trust in a shorter amount of time, especially when there’s safe space for vulnerability and authenticity like in a workshop or retreat. There’s a shared visceral experience that seeps into your bones in a way that doesn’t always translate as profoundly online and that can create a powerful shorthand for future interactions both virtually and in-person.

Plus, it’s nourishing at a soul-level to relate heart-to-heart and be truly “seen.”

With all of the chaos and noise going on right now, how can you make time for more real-life connection either with clients, friends, colleagues, or even strangers (who knows they might become pals or even customers at some point)?

To help spark some ideas, here are a few things I’ve been putting into practice. I invited a few friends to do vision boards with me. I’ve been going on walks with friends and meeting up for lunch or tea. I signed up for art classes at a studio just down the hill from my house. I’ve worked with a couple of clients at my studio and I’m also planning to do some workshops.

You could also write a client or a friend a handwritten note to share your gratitude rather than sending an email or text. You could attend a networking meeting or a class and aim to just make one heart-felt connection. You could volunteer at a local non-profit for a cause you care about.

What kind of in-person connection are you craving? And how can you bring more of that into your life and business?

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Guest post by by Lisa Dolce, Right-Brain Business Plan® Licensed Facilitator,

Do any of the following sound familiar?

• You feel and process things more deeply than most people.
• You tend to soak up the energy in your environment like a sponge.
• You have exceptional empathy for others.
• You’ve got keen intuition and the ability to envision the future.
• You think of your business as a natural extension of your soul’s purpose.
• You want to use your gifts to transform people’s lives and better the world.

If you answered yes to all the above, you are a Sensitive Entrepreneur.

Welcome to the club.

Only about 20% of people in the world identify with these descriptions. It wasn’t until 1996, when Dr. Elaine Aron wrote the groundbreaking book “The Highly Sensitive Person” and coined the term HSP, that our unique skills and behaviors were classified as in a league of their own.

In her book, Aron describes HSPs like you and me as the “royal advisor class.” She explains that we are the creators, explorers, and protectors of society.

As an HSP-turned-entrepreneur, I hope to take Aron’s work one step further. Because I know that when we start soul-centered businesses, we act as light-shiners in the world.

At this moment in history, the voices and services of Sensitive Entrepreneurs are needed more than ever. And we desperately WANT to make an impact—that’s why we started businesses in the first place!

But the truth is? Most of us shy away from the limelight.

Which means we inadvertently hide our gifts from those who need us most.

That’s because being a Sensitive Entrepreneur includes some unique challenges:

• You tire out more easily than the other 80% and need lots of downtime.
• You tend to be quiet and avoid situations with sensory overload.
• You question the material value of your skills.
• You have a greater fear of being judged or criticized.
• You feel like you must be like everyone else to fit in.

And how could you not feel that way??

We live in a world that doesn’t fully understand or appreciate people like you and me—yet.

What’s more, we’re bombarded by messages that say we need the loudest voice and most aggression if we want to “win” in business. Not our style!

So we stay behind the scenes. We’re not comfortable enough to step out in our own skin—which means we avoid sharing our gifts with the world.

But here’s the thing:
Your sensitivity is not your weakness.

I repeat: It’s NOT a weakness.

As a Sensitive Entrepreneur, your sensitivity is your greatest strength.

Unlike 80% of the world’s population, you have a set of superpowers that can make a deep and lasting impact on the world.

Here are just a few:
Powerful vision and intuition. We can reach into the future and see what is possible when others cannot.
Immense creativity. We are known as the “mothers (and fathers) of invention”. HSP’s come up with the most innovative ideas, services and products that can transform the way people work and live.
Ability to develop deep relationships. We can connect with people on a much deeper level, creating great trust and intimacy.

Once you activate your Sensitive Superpowers, you will become unstoppable!

Some of society’s greatest and most respected teachers, artists, healers, counselors, writers, spiritual leaders, and social entrepreneurs are HSPs just like you and me.

Embrace your role as a Sensitive Entrepreneur. Use it to shed light on goodness and beauty and what is possible in this world.

Remember, people are looking for the light shiners right now. They are looking for YOU and YOUR BUSINESS.

This is time for us to emerge from the shadows.

Because you are needed. And you are enough.

Stay tuned for Part 2: “How to Activate Your Sensitive Superpowers!”

Lisa Dolce is a Business Coach and Mentor and Licensed Facilitator of the Right Brain Business Plan ®. She is the founder of The Launch Studio and loves to help sensitive entrepreneurs start and grow soul centered-businesses that make a deep and lasting impact in this world.

Start Seeing Your Success

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Guest post by by Cass Mullane, Accountability Coach, Right-Brain Business Plan® Licensed Facilitator, Prosper Creatively, LLC

You know how it feels when you see someone you care about finally coming to grips with a situation and arriving at a quality solution? You can see that a weight has been lifted, they are smiling and they give off an energy that is infectious. They are happy and practically bouncing off the walls. Don’t you just love to see that happening?

Recently, a number of my clients, friends and colleagues are finding great clarity on their vision for themselves. It’s a wonderful thing to watch, especially as I see the stress and confusion suddenly being replaced with calm and lovely smiles. I feel the positive energy flowing through them and I share their enthusiasm. I can see their success.
How are you feeling about where you’re headed for your foreseeable future? Are you still feeling uncertain and frustrated or are you relaxing into the excitement and joy that accompany a clear direction?

There are lots of tools that can help you get clear on your direction and your purpose. They can include things like vision boarding, meditation, journaling, mind mapping or slathering a board with sticky notes. They can center around picking a word or phrase for the next year, goal setting, strategic planning. It does not matter what the tool is, here’s the key:
1. Pick a tool (or three)
2. Do the work (Dig deep inside yourself)
3. Do the work (Create your plan)
4. Do the work (Make it real!)

Picking a tool is a simple process of trying out each option and determining what’s most productive for you. You’ll probably find that these tools have value for different tasks. You need to pick what works best for you. For example, I meditate at some point most every day to relax and clear my head. I use sticky notes and big sheets of paper to plan and I use vision boarding and mind mapping to lay out my direction. I usually achieve clarity on my direction and on what’s most important to me while I’m outside in the fresh air, whether it’s playing softball, taking a walk or just sitting on my deck watching the breezes waft by.

Doing the work means really digging deep and figuring out what’s most important to you. It means clearing away the fluff and other people’s expectations and diving deep into what makes your heart sing. It means really listening to what stirs your soul and welcoming that into being. What does your perfect day look like, taste like, smell like, feel like. Start seeing your success. The time you spend on this work is time extremely well spent.

Next comes doing the work to actually figure out how to go after it. Here’s where the rubber meets the road. You get to plan it out, put some dollars and cents to it so you know how you’re going to thrive financially and put a timeline on it so you know when things are going to happen. Do not be shy about this step. See your success. Dig in because this is where you get to see it all start coming together and moving from desire into reality.

Finally, start doing what you’ve planned out. I mean, really start executing your plan. Commit to it. Start making the content or the products, start connecting with the people you need to connect with, start generating the revenues and tracking your expenses, start designing the next launch.

Start seeing your success.

Cass Mullane is an artist with an MBA. Cass’ calm, comfortable approach consistently yields positive results for clients. Her business and personal coaching practice, www.ProsperCreatively.com, specializes in delivering solid left brain business skills to right brainers and creatives in a fun, visual way. She’s a best selling author, textile and mixed media artist and creator of the Cool Stuff Jar™ coaching program. You can also visit Cass on Facebook!


With the end of the year upon us, I highly encourage you to carve out some quiet reflection time to acknowledge your learnings, accomplishments, and milestones from the year. I’m sharing one of my favorite year-end review tools – the Exploding Box.

You can click here to sign-up for a replay of a fun, interactive video I did awhile back that walks you through this creative activity.

I’ve made this project super-easy for you (no measuring required!! Yay!). The accompanying booklet includes a supply list, simple cut out templates, coaching questions to help you reflect on your year, and step-by-step instructions to make your Exploding Box.

Even if you’ve done the Exploding Box exercise before, it’s worth coming back to because you’ll end up with a wonderful tangible keepsake of your year.

By the way, if you do make a box, please send us pics or tag me – I’m @jennlee on Instagram. Looking forward to your celebrating your year with you!

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