Vulnerability: Your key to smashing goals this year

To be Vulnerable means to be open to all of life’s experiences Click To Tweet

Ours is a generation of people striving to make their lives look perfect all the time. We post pictures, we update our statuses, we buy new things with the idea that maybe if it looks perfect enough, it will start to feel perfect.  

We don’t know how to handle feelings of uncertainty, unworthiness, loss, heartbreak; so we post more pictures and look even more perfect…sounds familiar right?

Our inability to accept the messiness of life, the ‘imperfection in ourselves’ and the fact that sometimes we’re all just little kids trying to make friends on the playground has affected our quality of life and our ability to truly engage with each other.

The average 20-something- year- old knows exactly how much money they want to earn, by what age they should be married, how many kids they intend to have, where those kids will go to school…all this with a flat tummy, gorgeous skin and long natural hair!

It’s a lot on any one’s plate and has made life this series of ‘check-list moments’. It’s no wonder new year’s resolutions have been given a bad rap over the years, it stopped being about ‘the magic of new beginnings, the chance to hit the refresh button and start all over again’, and instead started being about self-reprimand, self-hate, and comparison to others.

In her brilliant book, “Daring Greatly”, Brene’ Brown explores how striving to achieve your goals requires an openness to being vulnerable. The ability to stand up and say, “January hit me hard, I wasn’t prepared for some of the things life threw at me, I missed the mark and now, I must start afresh”, can affect your quality of life and ability to truly engage with other people.

Our generation is afraid of vulnerability, and for good reason, we’ve all been told we are too much of something to achieve something bigger than ourselves; too short, too fat, too loud, too broke, etc,  and as a result, more and more people are afraid to even try, and those that do, are afraid to try at things that really matter- those big hairy audacious goals.  

According to Brene’, “Only when we’re brave enough to explore the darkness, will we be closer to the infinite power of our light”. To be Vulnerable means to be open to all of life’s experiences from a place of worthiness and self-love, not self-hate.

You are enough! Click To Tweet

Vulnerability is:

  • Starting over after that first business failed.
  • Speaking up about your relationships so that every abuse you experienced is never repeated.
  • Asking for more money, time, attention…if it is what will fulfill your needs.
  • Saying no to anyone who crosses the boundaries set in your relationship.
  • Committing to going to the gym after having fallen off your ideal weight.
  • Asking for help.
  • Presenting your product to the world and getting no response.
  • Having faith.
  • Saying ‘yes’ to love after a major heartbreak.
  • Admitting you do not know what to do, and then looking for the answer.
  • Letting go of some people because your business cannot afford it.

Allowing yourself to be vulnerable is about acknowledging discomfort and then using it in a positive way to enhance your life experience.  A few keys to enhancing your ability to manage vulnerability and therefore better able to live a wholehearted life are;


1. Be open

Sometimes the goals you want to achieve won’t be achieved in the exact path you expected, but it will always be worth it. You have to keep your heart and mind open to new ideas, a new career, new employers etc when it’s required.

2. Dare to show up

No matter how uncomfortable, unqualified or unprepared you might think you are, always show up. Your current life isn’t a dress rehearsal for your next life! If it’s important to you, you must show up.

3. Set and respect your boundaries

Set boundaries for your time, space and relationships, and after you’ve set your boundaries, respect them. Your goals this year are yours to achieve.

Vulnerability is being able to let other people know when they have crossed boundaries that you never intended to be crossed.

4. Wholehearted living

According to Brene’ Brown, wholehearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness. Too many people don’t think they are worthy of love, attention, support, promotion etc. This lack of self-love manifests itself in a myriad of ways that lead to people sabotaging the great things in their lives.

As you go about the business of achieving your goals this year, you must believe that you are worthy of all you are striving for. You are enough. You are enough. You are enough.

For the times when being vulnerable seems like the hardest thing to do, turn to the immortal words of Theodore Roosevelt:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood. Who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds, who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause. Who at best knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly…”

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Setting your business up for success – 5 things you must do

It’s a New Year and everyone seems busy penning down their New Year Resolutions. Business owners are also devising strategic means to boost sales and make more profit.

It’s a time to sit and reflect on the past year and see what can be done to make the present year a success. As a business owner, you want to set your business up for success.  What do you intend to do differently this year?

To achieve a different result, you need to be willing to do things differently. It could be the way you assign tasks or the goals you set in place or even the marketing strategy you adopt.

In this article, I will share with you 5 ways to set your business up for success. This isn’t something you implement once and get a lasting success. No! It’s something you must be willing to implement occasionally to get your desired success.

Set SMART goals

What sets a business apart from another are the goals set in place. You can always distinguish between a successful business and a less successful one by the kind of goals they set.

One way to set your business up for success is to implement SMART goals. SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-based.

Can you spot the difference between the two goals? “Increase sales” and “Increase sales by 30% by the end of the year.”

To get to where you want to be, you first need to know where you’re going. Any business owner can set goals but many fail to set SMART goals.

Specific – Are your goals clearly defined? Do you know the why, what and how of your goals?

Measurable – Can you monitor and measure the progress of your goals?

Attainable –   Can these goals be attained?

Relevant – How relevant are these goals to the growth of your business?

Time-based – Do these goals have deadlines? How soon can they be met?

Engage in social media

It’s no doubt that a lot of users are active on social media. Want to set your business up for success this year? Get active on social media!

A large number of the public are constantly on social media. As a business owner, it’s important you attract, reach out and engage your target audience on social media. It could be Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube or LinkedIn.

What better way to get your business out there than through social media? Everyone seems to be engaged in the social media world. Whether it’s Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, consumers are constantly searching their newsfeed for products and services so, use this opportunity to grow your business, promote brand awareness, make more money, reach a wider audience and in the long run achieve success.

However, you need to monitor which social media channel your target audience is active on. Facebook has a number of 1,870 million active users. Instagram has 600 and Twitter has 317. Just because Facebook has the highest doesn’t mean it’s your target audience preferred channel.


If there’s one thing you must do to achieve success this year is to delegate more often. Your business is your baby, I get it. But if you don’t take care of yourself and learn to delegate, you’ll get burdened and overwhelmed and eventually both you and your business will fall apart.

According to Gallup “founders who have and use high delegator talent can generate better business growth and venture success than leaders who get lost in the day-to-day minutiae of managing a business.”

  • Choose what tasks to delegate
  • Delegate to the right people
  • Communication is key
  • Invest in teaching and training
  • Learn to trust your team

Email Marketing

While most business owners avoid email marketing because they think it’s obsolete, 59 percent of B2B marketers reveals email as the most effective channel for revenue generation. According to McKinsey, email marketing is 3 times more effective than social media and the average customer order is high.

Set your online business up for success this year through email marketing. Why? I’m glad you asked. Email is an easy way to reach mobile customers. Look around you, how many people do you see with smartphones? I’ll tell you. Everyone! We’re all glued to our devices.

A report indicates an increase in the number of purchase made on mobile devices from 3.4% to 36.7%.

  • Email marketing helps you create lasting relationships
  • Everyone still checks their email
  • Keeps your brand top of mind
  • Email marketing is inexpensive
  • Email marketing is action-oriented
  • You can tailor your message to your customers
  • Email marketing is measurable and testable

Respond to change

We all know change is inevitable; it’s a constant factor. As a business owner – whether B2B, B2C, small/large scale or online, you need to embrace change as a contributing factor to business success.

You should be willing to adapt to the dynamic nature of the environment and be flexible. The market and economy keep changing; customer demands seem to change as well. You have to keep up with these changes if you must succeed this year.

When you’re unable to adapt, it’s likely you’ll lose customers and profits which will eventually result in a total failure of your business. You wouldn’t want that, would you? I don’t think so.

Always bear in mind that the world keeps evolving; you need to keep up with the change.

5 business lessons we can learn from Gabrielle Godwin

Gabrielle Godwin is the 9 year old CEO and president of Gabby Bows. She also hosts “Gabby Play Dates” for young girls in shelters where she teaches them about entrepreneurship. Imagine that! I know most of us weren’t thinking about entrepreneurship when we were in primary school.

Gabrielle is in the fourth grade and recently raised $28,000 to fund her accessories business. I say she has quite a few things to teach us, like…

1.  Age is only a number

Gabrielle started the hair accessories business at the tender age of 7 with her mother. Having always had trouble finding hair accessories that would work for natural hair, she came up with the idea of “Gabby’s double-face double-snap barrette”.

Most entrepreneurs use age as an excuse, claiming that it hinders them from making the necessary moves. Think of Gabrielle next time you think you’re too old or too young to get started in business. You’re not.

2. Crowd funding

The need for better designed barrettes with wide colour ranges, as well as more products to meet rising demands, prompted Gabrielle to use crowd funding.  The young business woman received support from numerous backers and raised $28,000 using Kickstarter.

Her business idea raised a lot of interested backers who were ready to fund the project, not just based on her age but also on the viability of the business.

3. Identify a need

Gabrielle’s own personal experience with the inadequacy of the available accessories for natural hair led her to think up a design the will solve the problem. Statistics show the the feedback on the product —which provides services in over 48 states in the U.S. and 8 countries worldwide— are encouraging.

Gabrielle tapped into this gap and made some serious business out of it. With the rising awareness of natural hair, more families are on the look out for  products designed specifically to suit our hair.

4. The importance of support

Gabrielle constantly gushes over the support she receives from her family and others. This has enabled her to grow her business. She has indicated that the fact that her family believe in her business going to the next level has been very encouraging.

The need for a strong support team cannot be overemphasised in business. Family members, friends and peers make for a good support.

5. Giving  back

Heard of writing personal thank you notes to clients? This helps to keep the clients happy and make them feel special. It’s also one way of giving back to the people who have helped your business.

Gabby gives back to the community by teaching young girls in shelters about entrepreneurship. She encourages them on starting easy by using herself as an example.

Since launching her business, Gabrielle has had the opportunity to speak at business events and was awarded the South Carolina Young Entrepreneur award in 2015. It is really never too early to start!

6 ways to turn your business dream into a reality

Chasing a business dream requires a deliberate and focused sense of concentration on set goals.

Don’t you hate-love those successful people who make success seem so easy? Wouldn’t it be great if you could bring their magic to your own life? Imagine walking into a multi-million dollar event to a standing ovation. Everyone is clapping and the spotlight is on you, the bombass CEO of your own company. Sounds like a dream, right? Snap out of it! It’s time to live that dream.

First, there’s the parody of that person who takes the giant step of starting her own business. Now, years have passed and the enthusiasm has dwindled because she’s held on to the same approach. Don’t be her. If you must make the leap, be sure the potential rewards are huge and satisfactory. Otherwise soon, you’ll be complaining like Jane who went into selling clothes because Maryann’s boutique was blossoming.

It’s a simple, sad fact that the vast majority of entrepreneurs would rather invest in whatever business idea is currently trending than create their own dreams. Yes, we all need inspiration but success doesn’t come by pursuing someone else’s dream. You want to become the next Oprah Winfrey? Cool, but you need to learn to do what you love better, faster and more often.

Where am I going with all of this? Simple.

Define your dream

Do you have a business idea? How big is your goal? Think back. How long have you nurtured this idea? How sure were you in it, when it was birthed in your mind? It’s so easy to look around at people who have achieved business success and say, “Oh she achieved that height because she’s special, it’s just the way she was made.”

Okay, saying this may make you feel a bit better, but like Lupita Nyong’o once said, “Your dreams are valid too.”  Yes girl, they are!


The idea, big or small, must be laid out in detail. Achieving your dreams does not have to be easy, but you need to be able to know, at any moment, where you are headed. Set goals with timelines.

Here’s my example, by January 13th, 2017, I shall have set up a firm on the 14th floor of East Grove Towers with a portfolio of 120 clients. Time to werk.

Get to work

The nature of the idea must require an intense sense of concentration. An example would be a goal-driven SLA contributor. Ideally, she is a brilliant lady who is detailed, pays attention to research and is not afraid to be sassy. This is someone who can devote the energy required to get the work done. Now apply that to your business.

Outsource expertise

You must be willing to make the best of resources to get work done. If you have the innate abilities of a genius kid, beautiful! (Also, lucky you) Otherwise, leave the work to experts. This is especially important in sensitive areas like sales, finances or technical implementation. That dream of you wearing 20 hats and running everything yourself should remain in lala-land. You’re awesome but you’re not Super Woman.

Send yourself future letters or emails

This might sound crazy but stay with me. There are great websites and apps that allow you write yourself emails due to being delivered say, in three months. I love starting my letters this way,

Dear future me, by now you must have scored that East Grove Tower office and earned enough for a holiday in Maldives. Where are we at now?

See, not hard. Believe it or not, these letters are a great source of motivation and accountability.

Share your dream with 5 people

You need regular enough feedback from sincere people. This way, you can constantly adapt and make progress toward your goal. These people should call you out when you fail on your business plans. They should challenge you to be the best you can be. Choose the No BS’er friend who will taunt you to action.

Finally, if you must be successful, you’ve got to work hard, very hard. The way you go about it is the difference between good and top-of-the-ladder great. While working hard, remain positive. Positivity is a virtue common to successful people. It’s that cultivated sense of success.

We have Walt Disney to thank for this quote, “Dreams come true… only if we have the courage to pursue them.” What steps are you taking in achieving your business dreams?