“everyone is fighting their own battles that you know nothing about”
I am writing this blog today as part of the healing process I am still going through some 2 years after the event. The impact this particular event had on my confidence and trust was massive. I want to share my experience so I can finally let it go.
2014 was the most challenging year I have ever had and I truly thought I had been cursed. I was tested time and time again. People were telling me what I wanted to hear – promising incredible opportunities that never eventuated. I invested my time, energy and finances into what I believed would lead me to bigger successes. It turns out actions definitely do speak louder than words.
When I wanted to expand my business to the corporate market, I was put in contact with a Life Coach who had her own successful business in the Wellness industry, with similar interests to mine. We connected and I was super excited to be offered the opportunity to expand my business by working with her, helping at corporate events with fitness sessions and seminars, and being the representative for my area to build my profile. This would allow me to promote my own business and build a new clientele.
The opportunity she was offering also included assisting with writing articles for a very popular Australian fitness and health magazine, and the potential to be part of the retreats she offered in Hawaii. At the time I was blown away at how exciting this all sounded, and how it was exactly what I had wanted to offer with my own business. She would become a mentor to me and support me with business advice, and empower me to operate my own successful business.
“Empower me”……..those were the exact words she used. This experience was anything but empowering!
I invested my entire tax return plus borrowed money to secure my “commitment fee” to what she promised. At the time I certainly wasn’t in a strong financial position, so I was putting all of my trust into this opportunity, thinking it would reward me later. Looking back I guess I was naïve and should have really listened to my intuition that this was too good to be true.
It was only a matter of months before I started to realize that the business of this life coach was not at all what she made it out to be. I was paying monthly fees for support that I never received. I was promised new contacts that I never got. One of the major corporate clients she had an affiliation with in my local area was now not interested. I was being reassured that I was being supported by her “wellness family” when in fact I had nothing to show for my commitment to it.
As my finances disappeared so did my self-confidence and trust. I began to doubt myself and my ability to be successful. I was now in a position where I had no choice but to get financial assistance from the government to help me survive. I hadn’t needed this kind of support since I left high school and wasn’t yet in the workforce. I struggled with my pride. I felt that I had failed and was embarrassed to admit that I needed help. Being on government support did not lift my spirits. I was having to apply for jobs that I did not want. It made no sense to me to have to apply for jobs that I had no interest in, just to get financial support. I wanted financial assistance to support me whilst I built my own business, but unfortunately there is very little help for those who are self-employed.
I was in tears explaining to the life coach that I could not pay the monthly fees and felt she was not delivering what she had promised. I never heard from her again……..she cut off all contact with me. She was done with me. Wow, to think that someone from the Wellness industry could have the ability to take everything from me and not even care! I had basically invested my money into her business and not my own. Instead of developing my own business, I had helped improve her business.
I was at my lowest point and was slipping into depression. I had invested thousands of dollars which I had now lost. I had nothing to show for this investment.
The remainder of 2014 was no better for me. I tried to keep positive that everything happens for a reason, and that this was just a test in my strength of character. But after more than 12 months of continuously being thrown curveballs, I was finding it hard to keep my head held high.
Fast forward to today, and I am still in the process of dealing with that depression and becoming the confident woman I used to be. At least now I can look back on these experiences and see with clarity the important lessons I have learnt:
- I do not need to pay someone to make my business successful. I have the ability to do this by myself.
- Be open to opportunities without being attached to the outcome.
- If something does not work out as planned, let it go. Trust that there is a reason for this, and that something better is on its way.
- Remember those people who were actually there for me when I was at my lowest. The friends and family who supported me and believed in me.
- It’s ok to ask for help and admit that I am not always as strong as I make out to be.
- Listen to my intuition and trust that it is always right.
- Learn from the “failures” to become stronger and more determined.
- Understand that not everyone I meet will be honest. People have their own agendas.
- Remember that actions always speak louder than words!
- Always look after myself first!