Back In The Saddle

Seems I’ve been missing in action for awhile, I didn’t plan it, it just happened.  I feel a little disconnected from my friends, clients, networks.. and I miss you.

When I first started on this path of being a single mom I never imagined the triumphs and tribulations that would come along with it.  I continue to seek employment and grow my business at the same time… after all its up to me now on my own.  Sometimes those words are scary but I am a fighter always have been and failure is not in my vocabulary.. not even on the toughest of days.

I often hear, “you should get out do for you.”  But between kids and their own struggles with the changes in their life, work, the never ending household chores, lawyers and court days… there seems little time for me.  Its funny I think the only one that doesn’t notice that I don’t have free time is me.  I have become very reactive but ya know what, most single moms will probably tell you its the only way.  My days of planning and scheduling seem to be long past now its about what issue I am dealing with at the moment.

Although life has been challenging I’ve also have a new found happiness.. life is actually really good.  I am the healthiest and strongest I’ve been in years.  When they say stress takes a toll on you, well I can vouch for that, but I love my new found health and happiness!

I have learned to stop and enjoy.. all of it!  The kids and I recently were at that Sutton Fair and I went on the rides with them for a change.  The smiles on their faces was worth the cost of the extra tickets.  Bumper cars, to spinning rides and games.. I played and rode almost everything the kids did.  Of course I enjoyed all my fair food favourites too.. what would the fair be without Big Bone Pulled Pork or some cotton candy?

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Although I was always very active with my kids playing with them, doing crafts, attending all their school activities and events,  I have become more active and patient in everything we do.  A recent visit to Fern Resort proved to be worth it.. although not in this single moms budget, I decided it was much needed for all three of us.   Every minute of our trip was enjoyable.  I was climbing the ropes, playing the games, and enjoying the smiles it was bringing to the kids faces.  Fern Resort holds many good memories for me of my momstown days and going back with the kids as we are all dealing with different issues from the result of a divorce, it just seemed fitting.. and I was right.  The budget only allowed us to be there for one night but we arrived early and stayed as long as we could to take in every minute of the break away from home.  Even mealtime proved to be a fun adventure full of giggles and conversation.  I do hope to take them back before the summer is over as it was the first time in awhile the kids and I didn’t think of anything but the fun that was in front of us… Thank-you Fern Resort.

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So you see.. I’ve been a little busy piecing my life back together as I have moved on as a single mom and first and foremost making sure the kids find peace in their new life too.  Juggling between the work I need to support us and being there for them has had its struggles.  Summer has been especially hard but enjoyable.

Life is good… and so am I .. finally!!!  

September is when I jump in with two feet and continue to grow my business bigger and better so that I can continue working hard and at the same time, being there for the kids when they need me most. …. I am back in the saddle 🙂

 

 

What is a Virtual Assistant?

Recently I started my new business as a Virtual Assistant. After I closed down my momstown chapter I was torn with what direction to go but I knew I loved being an entrepreneur and have many skills to offer.   At the same time I became a single mom so growing my business was also something I knew I couldn’t waste anytime in doing.

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Once again I called upon  Shelagh Cummins for a little bit of help. She also made me realize that I was not living up to my full potential, my original offering of just social media assistance was closing the door before I had opened it.  I have an extensive background in data bases, administrative, social media, event planning, scheduling, bookkeeping, and so much more that a virtual assistant (VA) was a perfect fit for me and my background. This also allows me to continue to stay in touch with my community work and committees that are so dear to my heart.

So first thing was to send out my mini announcement and let my current clients know the new path that I was on and see if I could be assistance to them.  I was surprised as the many emails came in, “what is a virtual assistant?”   So I thought I’d put a simple explanation of what it is I can do to help you grow your business.

Think of me as your personal assistant from afar,  I could also fall under the categories of: administrative assistant, office manager, right hand and friend.  The advantage is you only hire me when you need me. I can help you for long term projects and I can help for short term.  I can help you at a moments notice to keep the ball rolling, you can book my time for down the road to ensure my availability.  Now with so many online options I can work for you if you live across the country or if you are right in my backyard.

My goal is to take the stress and unnecessary demands away from you so you can focus your time on where it matters most.  Weather it be sending out emails to your clients, planning events with you, helping you with your blog, attending live events to manage a booth, preparing reports, bookkeeping entries, blog assistance, performance bookings, website help, databases, research, customer service, even handling the dreaded Christmas card list and more…  I can help you!

Give me a call, send me an email and we can discuss where I best fit into your budget and your business requirements to help you grow your business.

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Moving forward as a single mom and entrepreneur

Sometimes life sends us on the path of least expected, It seemed like I woke up one day and I was on my own learning to provide for me and my kids while growing a new business, a scary, unexpected place I didn’t expect to be.

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Life goes on even when it feels like it has stopped.  You just get up brush yourself off and move forward.  But I was confused as to the how and what but I was working hard on trying to figure it out while dealing with the emotional scares of a failed marriage at the same time.

Then one day as I sat staring at my computer screen wondering what my next step was, people, business friends started reaching out to me. The people that reached out were unexpected but welcomed and heart felt.

One of those people was Shelagh Cummins.  I’ve known Shelagh for a few years; we first met at a training session at an annual momstown conference.  I liked Shelagh from the day I met her, she was real, honest, caring and a wealth of information.  Over the next few years I saw her at conferences like Blissdom Canada and WIBN, I also reached out to her on a few occasions when I needed some business assistance. If it was an emergency she always did what she could to connect with me, no matter her schedule, and help me see the light through the trees.

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As I was trying to figure out next steps there was the answer staring me in the face, a text from Shelagh to assist me once again. I replied with a thank-you but not much more.  Then I realized, I do need Shelagh’s help, I sent her a note and said, “yes I do need to chat with you I am feeling a little lost.” She encouraged me not to give up and stay on my path but build in a more productive way to move my business forward.  She also encouraged me to take time for me, something I am not very good at.

She knew I was struggling both emotionally and in my business and we chatted about finding the best direction for both. I am not sure if she realized it but she took a lot of fear away that day, she also helped me feel less alone as I started my new journey as a single mom trying to support and care for my two beautiful children.

My life is starting to get back on track, and although it’s a different path then I ever saw me traveling it’s a good path that has allowed me to find peace and even a few smiles along the way.  Oh I am still scared but my drive to succeed is now bigger then my fear.

I was the person that just worked and didn’t see the need nor did I think I had the  time for a business consultant, until I met Shelagh.  I realized when we work so hard in our business we often miss the writing on the wall.  I used to say, “I work in my cave.”  What I meant by that is I worked day in, day out, and I didn’t always have the answers working by myself, in my cave.  I chose the path I thought was best for me and my business but I wasn’t always taking the right one, Shelagh helps me find the right path.  In the past I didn’t want to spend what I thought were unnecessary expenses on the business. The truth is the money spent on a business consultant allows me to make more money as I have a clearer vision not only on the path I need to travel but how to get there and enjoy life as I go.

Something I also learned from Shelagh is its ok to lean on people from time to time, and sometimes those you least expect are there for you.  Embrace, don’t walk away feeling shame and embarrassment. I took that advise and recently when Leigh Mitchell from WIBN and Julie Cole of Mabel’s Labels, along with a few others, also reached out to lend a hand I accepted with thanks!  It also showed me the power of social media and women helping women.

I’ve tried to peel back that outer shell that doesn’t allow me to reach out for help and take the help where I can find it in an effort to grow personally and professionally.  I couldn’t do it without being surrounded with amazing people that continue to assist me to stay on this path and become an independent, successful business women. It has also allowed me to not feel so alone.

Be sure to check back , or follow my blog as I will continue to share the ups and downs of life as a single mom.

Rise To The Occasion

As business owners we often have to do things that are out of our comfort zone.  To be successful we rise to the occasion and do it.  I try not to think about the things that are out of my comfort zone and just do what is required to do.  When I was working full time in an office the director once said to me, “Kim tackle the little frogs first and then tackle the big frogs.”

When I first opened my business these were mostly little frogs, small things like selling my brand, speaking in public, being part of committees and supporting community organizations. This may not seem like much to some but I have always been the one that worked behind the scenes, the one that made it happen. I did my job and let others be the front runners. I was the quiet voice behind the scenes and I liked it there.

I put my fears behind me when I opened my business and I did what I needed to do to grow my business and grow personally. Some days that was big frogs and some days it was little frogs.

I decided to pitch a show to our local television station, Rogers TV Georgina… this was a big frog. I pitched the show to our local supervising producer, then to the table of the “big bosses” and then an on camera audition. They liked the idea of the show and over the next 6 months there were meetings to work out the details and see what would be going to air.

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One day I was asked if I would like to host the show, you know be the person in front and centre, I said, “no I couldn’t do that.” I was brought in as community producer and co-host of mommy talk and I was happy with that. In March of 2012 we taped our first show… EXCITING!!!

 

I’ve been community producer and on set every two weeks for our tapings ever since. Then it happened…. A phone call from our host, she had the flu and taping was in 3 hours.

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As the saying goes, “the show must go on,” and it did with me in the host seat. As I sent some texts to our host Amy she assisted me and encouraged me that I could do this. Not a lot of time to prepare, a little nervous about listening to the voices in my ear (the producer) while keeping the conversation going. With a lot of encouragement from our great producer, host and crew I hosted my first show in 2015. Can I add that once cameras were rolling the show was the easy part but the promo was another story.

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A few weeks later when I was needed to host once again, I did it again, a little bit better and little more confident. Although I was happy to hand the hosting hat back to our regular host I was happy to know that I could do this and sometimes we need to tackle those “big frogs” first to reach new heights.

I always tell my kids, “sometimes in life we need to do things that make us nervous but its part of life. We need to step outside our comfort zone and rise to the occasion.” What kind of example would I have been if I didn’t rise to the occasion.

Rise to the occasion; don’t let fear limit your success soar with your dreams.