Tag: boss lady moves

Boss Lady Moves – Interview #2: Constance Ivana – Painting Her Way to the Top

Boss Lady Move – making a major change in your life in order to pursue your dreams, your passions, your goals and become your own boss

 

Moving is never fun nor easy. Moving away from family and friends and the life you know is even harder. Asking your children to trust you as you make such a big change to their lives can be the hardest.

However not pursuing your dreams, living a life of missed opportunities, wondering what your life could have been like if you had just made the move, tried something new, stepped out on faith, has to be even worse.

This is what motivated Constance “Connie” Ivana to make a major move this past year, this and the fact that she wanted to be an example to her two beautiful daughters. Dreaming was no longer an option for her; she was ready to make a change.  As women and mothers, we are often led to believe that it’s okay to put ourselves on the back burner for our children’s hopes and dreams, waiting until they get older before we pursue those things that are important to us. But I ask, what do we think is more motivating for our children: seeing a tired, worn out mother who doesn’t spend time on herself and only lives to serve her children, or a mother who not only encourages her children’s dreams but also shows them, through her own example, just how to go after those dreams, consistently, persistently, never giving up? (I’m pretty sure I know which one you chose.)

Connie’s Daughters

Since meeting Connie, I’ve grown to admire her more and more each day. She and I are both teachers at our school, we’re both new to the school, and, I believe, God placed us on the same team for a reason. Just like He inspired my move from my old school, He orchestrated this union to push me beyond my comfort zone and to show me what it really looks like to make Boss Lady Moves.

Seeing Connie in action is downright fascinating. Not only did she move from Virginia down to South Florida to pursue her dream of being an artist, by the time I met her she already had an office space downtown, a studio space in a new art district, and had made many connections in the art world. By day she is a teacher on our team, by night she is a force to be reckoned with: a passionate artist, entrepreneur, creative spirit working on new projects as they come to her and endlessly pursuing new endeavors including running painting parties and developing a new t-shirt line. (Check out her work here.) She also has a great nonprofit organization called Soulful Innovations which works with women and children who have dealt with domestic violence situations. Here’s the mission statement: We focus on providing group and individual artistic opportunities for women and children to start difficult conversations and begin the healing process. (Check out the Facebook page here.)

And she does all of this while making sure to help her daughters pursue their own interests and dreams whether it be joining the Girl Scouts, entering talent shows, competing in spelling bees, or participating in debate tournaments.

Pretty impressive, isn’t it?

So for this interview I wanted to find out more, wanted to understand even more, how she made this big change in her life. Here’s what what had to say.

Tell me your story. What inspired you to make your Big Boss Lady Move? The plan for the move from Virginia was not to teach anymore. I was leaving the classroom. Really, I just needed a change. I don’t know when the revelation started. Before, all I did was work, come home, sit on the couch. I was living more for my daughters than me, and I was so detached from everyone. It was just too much after all that I had been through for me to try to go out because I would need to get a babysitter, do my hair, get dressed. It was just too much.

However, social media saved me and pulled me out of that rut. It was my connection to people through social media, seeing what others were doing, that triggered that spark in me. I started by working out at the gym, venturing out the house, and meeting new people. I started feeling better about myself. Eventually, I got into my art for myself because it was kind of like therapy for me. It was time to rebuild myself.

The move from Virginia was the final part. It was about what I needed for me regardless of what others wanted for me. It was about my proving to myself that I could do it, and it would offer a change of scenery for my girls. I also did it for the climate because Virginia was too cold for my Lupus. It was debilitating.

The crazy thing is people were worried that I made the wrong move, that I would regret it. But at the end of the day nothing is final. You can’t be afraid because things could turn out to be either positive or negative. You’ll never know unless you try. Seeing other people who were going through hard times and getting out on the other side inspired me. That’s how I am trying to inspire others: by sharing my story. That’s where I got my words that I go by: Positive Vibes Only. That’s how I’m trying to live.

What is the best advice you’ve ever gotten? It came from a friend at work. She told me to stop trying to live in a way that you can’t right now.  Live like you can live now. Don’t overdo it. But if you can, then do it. Recognize where you are and do things in a way that works for you. Don’t put unrealistic pressure on yourself.  What’s the worst thing that can happen if you can’t? If you can’t pay that bill right now, you can’t. The world won’t come to an end.

What was one of your biggest mistakes and how did you overcome it? Starting my business without completing all of the proper paperwork and not having a plan to account for earnings and losses. I am playing big time catch up right now.

What tips would you give to a woman wanting to make a Big Boss Lady Move?  First, never put yourself inside of a box. You can push yourself beyond the limits you’ve placed on yourself. Kind of like being an athlete; do a little bit more and a little bit more and after while what seemed impossible is easy. Second, don’t take advice from people who have no experience in what you’re trying to do.

How do you go about making business connections? For example, how did you get into the art community here in South Florida. As you know, I’m a talker, so I went to every event and venue that I heard about. I talked to people and handed out business cards. Following up with folks was key.

Describe your typical “work” day. It never looks the same from day to day. It starts when my eyes open and stops when I close my eyes. I spend my day marketing myself, networking, responding to people’s messages; I can have 20 open tabs on my laptop at one time.  I’m constantly creating opportunities for myself beyond my full-time job; therefore, my phone is my lifeline to my business. I have no set hours nor work days. While I do make time for my children and my personal life, I do what I need to do. I’m trying to get to the point of where I want to be.

What are your future business plans? Open my own gallery to have space to do what I want to do; space to do all that I need to do. I want to do this within the next five years. I also want to be able to give back on a regular basis. The goal is being truly independent and doing things my way so I am not limited on how I can help others.

What do you do to “get away” from it all? Creating my art is getting away; It’s my peace of mind. When I create, I am in total control.

What is a piece of one-word advice you want to leave for the ladies, one word that needs no explanation but can serve to motivate or encourage other women?     BREATHE

 

(This is the second interview in this series. See the first one here about Sanctuary Girl’s founder, Sabrina Hayes.)

Boss Lady Moves Interview #1: Sabrina Hayes – Pursuing Her Calling

Boss Lady Move – making a major change in your life in order to pursue your dreams, your passions, your goals and become your own boss

We all use social media for many different reasons whether it’s to keep up with good friends, reunite with old friends, to be nosy and spy on other people’s lives, or to just be “social.” However, social media has changed so much over the last few years and so have the reasons that people use it. It has gone from just a way to socialize to a way to interact with like-minded people, a way to learn something new, a way to connect with people around the world, and a way to grow your business.

This is how I met Boss Lady Sabrina Hayes. After becoming a consultant with Thirty-One Gifts, I quickly realized just how much I did NOT know about direct sales. And although my director, Nikki Lee, was extremely helpful, I knew that I could not solely rely on her to learn everything about how to run my business. As a matter of fact, it is because of Nikki Lee that I found out about these Facebook groups where I could interact with other Thirty-One sisters, learn and exchange ideas with them, and where we could congratulate and encourage one another. Then I stumbled upon a Sabrina Hayes’ video where she was sharing her ideas, and everything changed.

Sabrina was a Thirty-One leader and guru. Everyone wanted to be a part of the Facebook group that she helped to run, The Big Pink Playground. I, too, tried to suck in as much knowledge as possible and used a few of her ideas to help grow my business. But I could tell, as others could as well, that there was something different about Sabrina, something that made people want to just sit down and listen. That’s why when she announced to us through heartfelt tears that she was leaving Thirty-One, we were all in shock and very upset. Why would she leave something that she obviously was so skilled at doing? Why would she leave when she was at the top of her game and killing it? What would we do without her?

Well, the Sabrina-withdrawal was short-lived. Sabrina also announced that she was leaving Thirty-One because her heart was in ministry, and she could not ignore her calling from God. While we were devastated that she was leaving the company, most of us were happy that we would not completely lose the wisdom and insight that comes from listening to her. In addition, most of us were just downright in awe of her and her decision to make such a big move and to pursue her dream. Who leaves a career when they are at the top, seem to love it so much, and are loved and admired because of it?

Sabrina Hayes did. And she started this beautiful ministry called Sanctuary Girl and eventually became the owner/CEO of The Affirmation Shop. Here is some information from her website about Sanctuary Girl.

The mission of Sanctuary Girl is to minister to women through the weekend retreat experience in a way that brings them into the safety and security of truly resting in who they are in the eyes of God:

Strong | Loved | Powerful | Redeemed | Enough

Discovering God’s Word, His affirmations of us as women, the innate gifts that He has endowed upon us each individually, and enabling the fellowship of women from all over the country together to lift each other up and fill those empty places through the retreat experience, is the mission of Sanctuary Girl.

I’ve attended two of her retreats, and let me just say that they are life-changing! (Read here about one of my revelations that I got while there.) Once you go, you’ll never be the same. Her retreats have a way of connecting a group of women who are essentially strangers and giving them the opportunity to talk, pray, cry, reflect, and laugh. No one leaves a retreat the same way that they came. No one. This is why I had to interview her for this series because not only did she make a Boss Lady Move by abruptly leaving Thirty-One and starting Sanctuary Girl, she also created a positive brand which includes inspirational clothing, jewelry, home decor, and other accessories including one of my favorites, the Sanctuary Girl Faith Planner. I admire her for all that she has been able to accomplish over the past year as well as her willingness to step out on faith. She has been a huge factor in my quest to make my own Boss Lady Moves.

Enjoying the Santa Monica Pier on my second retreat

 

  • Who has been the biggest source(s) of inspiration for you? Jesus. I pattern everything I do and say after Him. He is the only one I desire to emulate. Hands down.
  •  What would you say is a Boss Lady Move? Just taking a leap. It’s about more than just getting stuff done. It’s being bold enough to even take that first scary step. That’s a boss.
  • What motivated you to make your Boss Lady Move? There was more to my life, my gifts, my purpose than what I was doing before, and in order to do that, in order to pursue that, I just had to jump. I am so happy that I did.
  • What is the best advice you’ve ever gotten? Fear kills more dreams than failure ever will. That kicked me in the butt.
  • What three tips would you give to a woman wanting to make a Boss Lady Move? 
    • Gather your tribe. Surround yourself with women who are positive, believe in you, and won’t let you fail.
    • Put God first. Otherwise, you are relying on your own strength and by doing this, you will fail. You can’t do it without Him.
    • Have an open mind. Success doesn’t always look like you think it will. Be willing to learn and try new things.
  • Describe your typical “work” day. I always starts with quiet time. If my thoughts with God aren’t right first, then my day doesn’t go right. After that, I try to spend only one hour on each task in order to avoid the day becoming mundane. For example, I may spend one hour organizing my shop, one hour reading something informative, one hour doing outreach, and another hour on social media planning. It keeps my mind active instead of being focused on the same task for a long period of time which may cause me to grow bored.
  • What are your future business plans? I’m working on creating a Sanctuary Girl business planner tailored to CEO’s who have a strong faith focus for their business. I’m working on launching the 2019 Sanctuary Girl retreat schedule. I also have planned some exciting new twists for the Sanctuary Girl Faith Planner. Stay tuned.
  • What are your best resources when you look for information to help you with supporting your business? I like to tap into professional human resources, people who specialize in and are knowledgeable about things/topics that I don’t know about. I look to them to fill in the gap of things I need. Human resources are so necessary.
  • What do you do to “get away” from it all? Immerse myself in British dramas.  If I can’t go to the beach, I find some mid-century British shows or movies on Netflix to watch like a great Jane Austin movie. Once I find a good series or movie, I am done. I can spend all day watching.
  • What was one of your biggest mistakes and how did you overcome it? Taking on everything for myself; I am self-sufficient and have to have control. I’ve learned that you have to have a well-structured team and must be willing to delegate and let go. Otherwise, you will run yourself ragged. For example, I’ve come to the realization that I have to give up some control on the Sanctuary Girl Retreat details, planning everything and doing everything. I’ve got to let go and let others do. After getting advice from one of the women in my tribe, I am currently working on building a retreat team. Where do I need the most help? Which women can I place in charge of administrative details such as registration? Who would be good for  planning the kitchen and meal details? And if I find really trustworthy women, having them lead a session while I take a break. Taking this advice will make your life so much easier. You can’t do it all.
  • What is a piece of one-word advice you want to leave for the ladies, one word that needs no explanation but can serve to motivate or encourage other women, one word they can look at and act upon ? FEARLESS