Updated: Jul 16
Twice in 24 hours, I’ve gotten unsolicited and completely unaligned business advice.
I cannot count on all my fingers and toes the amount of times this has happened since I launched my brand in January 2020.
And as I was complaining about this in voice notes to my best friend, I realized – as I often do when telling her things, I call her my human journal – that the solution to my problem is the same solution I’m offering you. I heard myself use my own sales copy in my head, okay? It was this line:
How can I shut down well-meaning advice-givers who come to me with suggestions for my business?
Let me rephrase that in your language: … for my wedding.
It’s the exact same problem.
As soon as I said that out loud, I knew what I had to do. I have to solve my own problem using the technique I use for you. I have to ask myself what my values are, and what really matters to me in my business.
And then, I have to come up with a business mantra. And if I’m truly a magician an amazing coach, it will do everything I told you yours would do:
• I’ll be able to shut down well-meaning advice givers painlessly
• I’ll infuse my business growth process with joy
• All the pressure to have a perfect business will be lifted, and instead I’ll only be building my dream business
• All the stress to please everyone around me will disappear
It seems like a tall order, but I’m up for it. I spent many years studying and teaching ethics, and then yoga, so values are always front and center for me. But that also means I might have too much knowledge in this area, and I have to narrow it down. So I’m not looking for all the values I hold, but the ones that are essential to my brand, Kith & Kin.
• Community is definitely going to be on the list. I’ve been a referral-based freelancer since 2016, and I got almost all of my gigs through my competitors. Community > competition is a core value of my brand. What’s more, Kith & Kin literally means “friends and family.” Not only is this a tenet of my business, but it’s a value my ideal clients share.
• Honesty about what I can and can’t do, bringing my real-life experience to the table and always being straightforward with my clients, showing up as myself, and not separating my ethics from my work. Big. HUGE. This also means making sure the logistics are legit: budget, vendor list, and timeline.
• Joy - making my clients engagement journey as romantic, happy, and magical as the day itself is my raison-d’être. But this also applies to me! Every entrepreneur hopes to create a life they love, and yet most overextend themselves in the pursuit of success. Not me. My mom always told me that when I grow up, I should be happy. (My dad really wanted me to be a lawyer, so I generously argue with him for free.)
• Kindness is last, and encompasses so much of the first three values. It means kindness in dealing with suppliers and empathy with family of the couple who have their own deep desires for the wedding. It includes planet-loving eco-conscious event planning, and self-loving body positivity. It means giving my knowledge freely and generously, and leading with my heart.
Kith & Kin provides couples with a blissful engagement and a perfect wedding day, reflective of who they are as a couple, and only working with vendors whose values align with their own.
Now, knowing my mantra, next time someone gives me advice, I can shut it down painlessly by reminding myself, and them, if necessary, that unless they are providing me with an amazing community member who shares my values, or with an offer that will inject more joy, honesty, and kindness into my day or my brand, then I’m all set, thanks.
I’ll infuse my business growth process with joy because those who do, teach better. And magically, in so doing, all the stress to please everyone around me has disappeared. Now I’m only concerned with my intention of building my dream business.
Sure, there will always be people who “but” and “should” all over my great ideas and who don’t want to listen, or don’t understand, or don’t trust me to know what’s best for my business. But now I know.
I know this is true, and I can smile and nod and walk away. Or say “thank you” (a complete sentence, and a great conversation ender). Most people don’t follow up, anyway. They like to hand out advice and walk away. These aren’t my coaches. These are my kibitzers. We all have them.
Want the secret to getting rid of yours? Let me do what I do best: figure out your problems, solve them, and get you back on the blissful, tree-lined-and-lake-view road to the wedding of your dreams. DM me on Instagram and let’s chat! I just loooove giving advice. And if you say “thank you” and walk away, I won’t take it personally. 😉