I always had this vision for my life. I wanted to help people. I really had no idea what that meant when I was younger. I remember being on the board of United Youth when I was in high school and we would meet at a local women’s shelter. It was then that I knew that I wanted to change lives. I wanted to make an impact.
After my sexual assault, I didn’t think making an impact was possible for me. I was barely surviving myself. I was in no position to help others. There are days that I still feel that way.
When the blackness comes in a little darker than the day before.
When I get into my own head thinking that I am worthless.
When those little voices take over and remind me of who I “am”.
Now I know that these are the moments when I can make the most impact. When others get to see the real moments in my life. The imperfect, real, and flawed me. The me that I have grown to love so much over the past 7 years. The me that sees my flaws as strengths and not as weaknesses.
Little did I know, that is what making an impact meant to me. If you would have told me that while I was sitting in that women’s shelter, I probably would have laughed at you. That girl was confident in herself 99% of the time. She didn’t have the experience that showed her life could be extremely hard and unbearable.
Why am I talking about this during blog monetization month?
Well, because this is my FAVOURITE piece of working with women who are ready to start a blog.
Showing them that they can create an impact WHILE also making an impact. That their stories, their past, and their future can connect in a way that allows them to build an authentic business that brings all three of those together.
That to me is more powerful than setting up affiliate links or ads.
That to me is what it means to be an entrepreneur.
Putting all of the pieces of your life together to create and build something that isn’t separate from you but comes from within you.
STARTING WITH YOUR PAST TO BUILD YOUR FUTURE
Does this sound scary?
I never would have thought that those words would come from my mouth. I remember being told to just move on. Don’t look in the past because that isn’t the direction you are going.
There is a BIG BUT coming.
You see, looking at your past doesn’t mean that you are living there. To truly heal, I needed to look my past in the face. I needed to know that what had happened to me wasn’t my fault. I needed to know that there were lessons in there, somewhere, that was helping me to become who I wanted to be.
To get to where you want to be, you need to love where you currently are.
In order to love where I was, I needed to deal with the crap that was bringing me down, that wouldn’t let me move forward with my life.
Blogging allowed me to process these moments in time. It helped me to evaluate what I was feeling and why I was feeling it. It opened up a whole new world to me. It brought women to me. Women that needed to be healed and women that helped me to heal. It worked hand in hand.
It was these moments in time, my friend Jody likes to call them teachable moments. These are the teachable moments in my life that I could take and move forward with. I could use these to create a business that had an impact on those around me.
But you only teach women how to blog or how to add storytelling into their creative content? Is that really making an impact on people?
Do you think you are the first one to say those two sentences to me? I have said those to myself more than anyone else has said them to me.
The thing is, making an impact means something different to others. For you, it means something completely different than it does to me and that is the beauty of being able to build a business like this. You get to decide. You get to follow what feels good and what makes you feel incredible and worthy. I just help you along the way.
BLOGGING IS THE GATEWAY TO THIS IMPACT
Where do you begin?
I want you to think about why you started blogging. If you say to make money then you started for the wrong reasons. Think deeper and harder if you need to.
WHY DID YOU TRULY START A BLOG???????????????
You don’t need to tell me but I would love to hear so feel free to leave your why in the comments below. Now that you have done this, we can begin to figure out HOW you can make an impact while creating an income.
You hear me all the time talk about being an expert in something. Again, you may be laughing right now, thinking to yourself that isn’t possible. I am here to tell you that it is.
I am a blogging expert.
I am a self-care expert.
I am a self-love expert.
I am a storytelling expert.
I am an overcoming trauma expert.
See, there are many places in my life where I have reached expert status. That doesn’t mean that there is nothing left for me to learn. It means that I am willing to learn WHILE I teach others AND that I am not afraid to admit if I don’t know something. That to me is the best kind of expert.
How am I an expert in all of these things? Let me take you on a journey…
In 2014, I started blogging. I knew absolutely NOTHING about blogging. All I knew was that I loved to write and started writing when I was 10 years old.
I lived on Google and YouTube to learn as much as I could.
It was trial and error. Learning what worked and didn’t work as I went along.
This blogging thing took me on a year-long journey to rediscover who I was. I had to learn how to fall in love with the woman that I was becoming.
It was messy and complicated. It was filled with fear, tears, and unexpected happiness.
This is when I began to put self-care on my to-do list. When I decided that I was worth taking care of and being loved by myself.
This is also when I had to look my trauma in the face. I started therapy among different things to help me with overcoming (I hate that word because I don’t really think you overcome trauma. There is always a piece of it there within you.)
During this whole process, I shared my story through blogging. I shared the happy moments, the moments of despair, the moments when I had no fricken clue what I was doing. This is why I think women connected with me. I didn’t try to show the perfect life. I showed my real life, the real healing process.
Blogging was the catalyst for me to be an expert in all the things that followed.
STEPS TO BUILD AN INCOME THROUGH YOUR BLOG BASED ON YOUR STORIES
Are you ready to get started? This just lights me up. I love showing women that their past can lead them to a future that is beautiful, bright, and impactful.
ONE| THINK ABOUT THE EXPERIENCES THAT YOU HAVE HAD IN THE PAST
We have all had moments that have taught us things in our life. These moments do not have to be traumatic. I have had experiences that have taught me something and that would allow me to pass on that wisdom. Think of everything that you can and make a list.
A few examples from my own life are…
Having a baby
Having more babies
Moving to a new country
Moving to a new state for university
You see. You have had many moments in your life where you have learned something. This doesn’t mean that you are passionate about all of them but these experiences will shape you into who you are.
TWO| WHAT ARE YOU PASSIONATE ABOUT
This is something that I had to relearn once I started my healing journey. Things that I used to love to do, I no longer cared about. That is what life is all about. It is about growing and shifting.
What could you talk about all day?
What do you help others with?
What do others come to you for?
What makes you smile just by thinking about it?
What gives you butterflies in your stomach?
THREE| WHAT ARE THE EXPERIENCES THAT YOU HAVE HAD THAT HAVE LED YOU TO YOUR PASSIONS
The things that light us up, light us up for a reason. Look back on your life and embrace all of the opportunities that life has given you. All of the lessons, the triumphs, the beauty in them all. I truly believe that there is a reason that we experience the things that we do. They may or may not all be pleasant. (I truly hope for you that they are!) They are still there to guide us and to give us reasons to keep moving forward.
What are those reasons?
What were the experiences that helped to light these passions of yours?
I have come to see my sexual assault as one of these lessons. Do I wish that there was a different way that I could have had this life lesson presented to me? Of course. I am in no way saying that if you are a survivor of ANY traumatic event, you need to see it in the same way I do. I hope that someday you do but YOU DO NOT HAVE TO FEEL THE SAME WAY I DO!!
Living in my grief the way that I did allow me to truly understand how living as a victim and then as a survivor can be. It allowed me to heal on a deeper level than I probably would have any other way. In order to move forward, I had to pick up the pieces of myself and put myself back together. It has led me to who I am today, the business that I have, and the family that I have.
I do not thank my rapist.
I do not think that what he did is okay.
I do, however, forgive him because I needed to move on. I needed to become whole again. I needed to get him out of my life. He is now a small piece in my story. I now am the writer of my story and he is just a footnote. That is the power of healing. That is the power of letting your past experiences teach you and help you grow.
FOUR| WHAT CAN YOU TEACH BASED ON THESE EXPERIENCES
These experiences, these lessons, these moments in time, what did you learn? How can you take what you learn and turn it into a learning experience, a growth experience for someone else?
Let’s take a less serious example from my life and how you can apply it to your own. Let’s break down moving to another country. What can I teach about moving to another country?
What you truly need when you move to a new country
The highs and lows of moving where you know absolutely no one
Paperwork that makes your life easier when crossing the U.S/Canadian border
How to navigate the immigration system
How to make new friends in a new country
I could keep going but you get the point.
FIVE| TURNING THESE TEACHING PIECES INTO SERVICES OR PRODUCTS
This is the fun part. This is where you get to look at all of the items you listed from list four and think about ways that you can turn them into products or services. Taking my number four from above, here are ways that I could turn this into different products and services.
Start a service to help couples move to Canada from the U.S
Create a monthly program for new immigrants to meet each other
Create a monthly program for new immigrants to meet already established immigrants
Create a digital book that contains lists that outlines everything needed in one spot
There are so many different and unique ways that you can turn your teachable moments into products or services.
If you are needing help with strategizing how to turn your story into a product or service, please book a strategy session. In this two-hour session, we will break down the different pieces of your story, help you to gain some insight, and walk away with ideas on how you can monetize with a timeline.