Episode 40

It is Never Too Late to Do the Work You Love - with Special Guest Tracy Willis

Aired 04/26/2021

Anchor Light Therapy Collective founder Laura Richer and guest Tracy Willis, co-founder of the WHE agency discuss the importance of loving the work you do. They will also share the negative toll it took on their own mental health and well being when they found themselves in unsatisfying careers. It is never too late to find the work you love and in this episode Tracy shares how she made a big career transition mid life.

Tracy made the decision to first earn her MBA in management and then take the leap into a new industry doing something that she loves after 15 years in an industry that just wasn’t for her. Five years later she owns two talent management agencies. As an employer she is dedicated to empowering other young women to be their best selves and love what they do. She has also created a second company with a business model that allows people to work part time at their own pace so they can slowly transition out of jobs that don’t make them happy. If you find yourself well into a career or path that isn’t for and feel ready to make the leap into something that inspires you then this episode is for you!

Tracy Willis

Therapists in This Episode

08:05:54 Welcome to our show holding ground. My name is Laura richer, I’m a psychotherapist and the owner of anchor light therapy collective in Seattle, Washington.

08:06:03 Each week, I’m joined by another therapist from the anchor light team to tackle important topics in mental health and psychotherapy. Our goal is to promote well being by normalizing mental health challenges.

08:06:14 We are here holding ground for you. Every Monday morning at 9am on kk and w.

08:06:21 Good morning you’re listening to holding ground here on kk MW where we bring you a little bit of everything in the world of therapy and positive mental health, every Monday morning at 9am.

08:06:31 I am your host, Laura richer. I am a psychotherapist and the owner of anchor light therapy collective in Seattle, Washington. And I’m so excited to share with you.

08:06:40 Today’s guest, Tracy Willis. After working for over 15 years in her career and an industry that didn’t inspire her Tracy made the decision to first earned her MBA and management, and then take the leap into a new industry doing something that she loves.

08:06:55 Five years later she owns to map to talent management agencies, and as an employer she’s dedicated to empowering other young women to be their best selves and love what they do.

08:07:07 She’s also created a second company with a business model that allows people to work part time at their own pace, so that they can slowly transition out of jobs that don’t make them happy either.

08:07:18 So Tracy Welcome to our show I love talking about this topic.

08:07:21 Thank you so much, Lauren so happy to be here.

08:07:24 So I would love for you to share with our audience your story because I know you made a big career change mid life which a lot of people want to do but sometimes they’re afraid to or are they feel like it’s too late, so I’d love for you to share with

08:07:38 our audience what you did to make that happen.

08:07:41 Absolutely. So, I think it all started you know with my, I guess, graduated college and when I was an undergrad and kind of doing what a lot of people do which is to declare a major that you really don’t have a future in and you don’t really have a career

08:07:57 path in mind you just kind of are getting through school. I did that I haven’t English degree so I told Oh, yeah. Well guess what, sit away.

08:08:07 So yes, absolutely. So, I graduated undergrad and English and didn’t really know what I wanted to do. I actually you know got married moved to kind of a smallish town up and Anacortes and the only job that I could find that was even close was in the library

08:08:24 so I was a children’s librarian for about five years. And it was great and I loved it but I found myself.

08:08:34 And I found myself doing this in, in the first few jobs I had like kind of migrating out of my position and into like something else that wasn’t actually my job.

08:08:46 So, I work at the library and I’m trying to do like marketing and PR and special programs and fundraising and different things, and it was great you know they they actually needed that time but when it was time to move on I ended up in a, an operations

08:09:03 job for health company so I was doing operations and a little bit of marketing for the first few years and I just kept pushing toward that marketing part and toward that PR part.

08:09:17 So, I think by the time I got to the end of that 15 years I had completely changed my, my role without necessarily my company support and kind of like I was pushing myself towards something that I, you know, wasn’t hired to do.

08:09:37 And I think at that point, you know the balance, this, the scales kind of tipped and I realized I wasn’t in the, in the career that I wanted to be in.

08:09:53 And so that’s when I think I decided that the only way out after spending so much time in the same industry and doing the same thing was to retrain myself in some way.

08:09:58 So I, you know, I kind of I didn’t have a confidence at that point to just say like I’m going to, you know, start this new business or do something different.

08:10:06 And so I I went back to school, and I got my MBA, while I was working.

08:10:13 And I did that for, you know, took me four or five years to actually get through it.

08:10:25 And, you know, raising kids working full time doing that and and then my in my last year I just had this opportunity to start in a public relations kind of consulting job for a social media influencer.

08:10:36 And through that I fell in love with that industry, I realized this is exactly where I wanted to be. And of course at that point I could not stand another day of my job because I was so I knew what I knew what was going to kind of feel me forward and

08:10:51 what I was passionate about and so everything else I was doing, you know was became really temporary in my mind.

08:10:59 It’s so interesting that we have to get to that place of being really uncomfortable before we take the leap and I see with clients all the time that they’re just, they’re, they’re struggling and actually experiencing a pretty negative impact to their

08:11:22 health work when they’re in the job that they just realized they don’t want to be at anymore you try so hard to keep it going but you get to that place where it’s where you just really can’t. So what were you experiencing during that time when you finally said hey, there is no other option. I’ve got to

08:11:28 do something different.

08:11:29 I mean I think that the.

08:11:31 I think the major, I guess, kind of, you know, symptom or thing that I really saw happening to me was I was so tired. Every day I was just so tired like I couldn’t even think about getting out of bed and going to work without just, kind of, kind of a

08:11:50 a defeatist, you know perspective I was just I was waking up and going on. It’s not Saturday, it’s not Sunday, you know, that kind of fiction that you need to get up for you need to go do this thing that you you brilliant, you know, you’re not inspired

08:12:03 to do, it’s not making you happy and it’s not getting you out of bed in the morning. So going through the motions being really tired and having that general sense of like and I think this had to do with me kind of getting older and that sense that like,

08:12:22 what did I do with my life, like here I am I, is I’m in my mid 40s, I didn’t do what makes me happy I’m hearing about other people that are living the dream and loving what they do, or, you know, becoming entrepreneurs or have jobs that makes them happy

08:12:40 and, and, and I’ve done this for at that point 25 years I’ve been working in jobs that were like, just jobs.

08:12:50 And it just yeah I guess there was probably like just that sort of, it was a it was a kind of a lack gave me a lack of confidence and and feeling that I didn’t achieve what I supposed to achieve and I didn’t feel like the person that I want to be professionally

08:13:09 and so I didn’t feel like the person I wanted to be kind of holistically.

08:13:13 That makes so much sense to me. We have so much in common even right down to the English degree, I like you kept finding myself in roles that you know I was, I was looking for a good career path that paid well, which is fantastic.

08:13:29 I recommend that everyone find a path that pays them well. However, I was only pursuing that and I found myself in roles that just didn’t really suit me I mean I even was to the point where I would be driving to work wondering, just kind of like a minor

08:13:51 car accident, you know, not really her but anyway I wanted something that was I would see these other people to that were like love their careers and they would use their creativity and they’d be helping other people and I was like, I want to do that

08:13:59 too. So, like you I went back to school I didn’t know exactly how it was all going to play out. But just kind of took that one step at a time and eventually the path was revealed of what direction, I wanted to go but there.

08:14:13 I know for me there was a lot of fear that I had to overcome to really be able to make that step. What were some of the fears that you dealt with especially raising kids while you’re while you’re trying to figure all of this out.

08:14:24 Yeah hundred percent money. Yes, money, money, you know I was in a really secure job I was you know paying my bills I was saving a little bit I was, you know, I was also, by the way, had just gone through a divorce so I was a single mom and I saw it was

08:14:39 one income. suddenly and so yeah money was everything, and I had to, I had I couldn’t just you know opt into like getting a roommate and moving into a smaller place you know I had, I had kids and I had to kind of make sure that everything was covered

08:14:59 so that was definitely like the biggest fear. But I think there was a lot of underlying fear that that was based around just you know failure. What if this doesn’t work, and the fear of like, you know, giving away that stability that paycheck that you

08:15:37 always get with your, you know maybe bonuses or whatever and your insurance and your and your, your security to saying like, every dollar I’m going to make is going to be, because I made it, or because I managed it well it’s not going to nobody’s going

08:15:51 pay me if I don’t work. And so, that whole shift in my thinking of being an employee to being an entrepreneur and doing it on my own was terrifying and. And I think, you know, it’s different for everyone there are people that are just risk takers by nature and and

08:15:57 just go for it.

08:15:59 And they will have a different experience doing this but for me I was definitely,

08:16:07 you know, a little risk averse, I think because I, you know, mainly because I’m a parent and I didn’t have that kind of safety net to fall into that is definitely when I work with clients who are looking to make changes, it’s letting go of that stability.

08:16:23 And I think when you’re self employed for a while and you kind of get into the you’ve changed your mindset from the, the employee mindset to being an entrepreneur, that it all starts to become safer to be in charge of making your own own income instead

08:16:37 of relying on somebody else to determine whether you get that bonus or whether they’re going to keep you, but that process can be really scary and like you I had that same family like, how am I going to just make money out of nowhere, No one’s going to

08:16:49 be signing a paycheck for me so that I think is a very common concern and I know you work with people who are looking to transition into careers they loved you do coach them around the same issues.

08:17:01 100% I think that’s, I think that’s the you know the best part of what I what I do now is and I guess I haven’t been explained what I do now, but let’s do that.

08:17:13 Tell me what you do now because as I said at the top of the show that you now help work, you help empower women who want to leave the jobs that they don’t want to be in anymore and create careers that they love So, tell us how you do that hundred percent

08:17:25 yeah so I started I started an agency, and I basically says social media influencer Management Agency so I manage, you know about 60 different influencers that work on YouTube and Instagram.

08:17:42 Tick tock, so it’s it’s, it’s kind of it’s one of those business models that can grow with people feeling it so I can hire two people or I can hire 20 people because everybody’s getting paid on what they bring in, and what work they bring in what clients

08:17:59 they bring in. So, I realized, right away when I started this agency and it was just me and another person, that this was something that was possible that I could add people in because I just to back up a little bit.

08:18:13 I did this as a side hustle for three years before I really launched into it on my own. So for me, that was how I got through that wall of fear is because all I did was add on to my income.

08:18:30 I stayed at my job and I literally worked, you know, nine to five and then came home and worked seven to two in the morning, I mean, every night for three four years, which, you know, I don’t, highly recommend.

08:18:47 But it was all just emails and correspondence with with brands and with influencers and trying to build up the business. So I was able to do it. I was putting it in insane, insane hours but I was able to do it that way and then wait to the point where

08:19:10 was making enough money to justify leaving my job. So that worked for me.

08:19:14 It’s not you know and and I could have worked to two extra hours a day I just chose to kind of be a maniac about it but I you know you you have that flexibility of, you know, just kind of getting out what you put in and it might be a slower growth for

08:19:28 you, but I did the I did kind of the hard work, so I did the groundwork I built the business I, I, I built up these relationships with brands and with with clients, so that now when I realized that what I had, I was able to offer this to other women.

08:19:44 So women who so far we’re at, you know, I have five other women that are doing this on the side, as, as contractors, and they’re able to do what I do without the, the, you know, kind of sweat equity of having to start from from ground up.

08:20:04 But it’s, it works for me and it works for them, I get that extra help, they work on a contract commission basis.

08:20:11 So I don’t need to, you know, worry about payroll or worry about are they working enough hours are they are they doing this, you know, and I can train them and give them this new skill and, you know, if they love it, then what I want them to do is start

08:20:27 their own agencies, after they’ve, you know, trained with me. It just kind of works it’s something that makes me so happy. Now, not just to do the work I do, but to be able to have that for other people, because I know that you know I see these, these

08:20:45 women that are in their 20s mid 20s and working for, you know, other companies in Seattle and just not happy, but I feel like this is it gives them that’s like spark of hope and maybe some new ideas of like what career path they want to take further than

08:21:04 just kind of go down that rabbit hole like I did.

08:21:07 Exactly. Oh, and that is such an amazing thing to offer someone and so so inspiring to see that happen when somebody can make that transition. So is that What kept you going when you were working from nine to five and then 72 in the morning that just

08:21:22 that was your passion project and you loved it or in hindsight is there is there any way you could have done that differently where you didn’t have to push so hard during those three years, I could have done more slowly.

08:21:33 Um, I, you are ready to go, and I was ready to go and that’s just me I’m like, you know, shoot, fire in type of person I, I have to go all into things.

08:21:44 So, and I didn’t want to neglect my other jobs so you know I wanted to, I had to do it that way. For me, I had to go just all in. And honestly, you know it, it definitely took its toll.

08:21:59 And it might not have been, you know, might have been a little bit much. But now, you know, looking back, it’s kind of just like anything that you really work for, you know, it doesn’t come easily.

08:22:11 You have to lay that groundwork you have to put in the hours. And then, you know, I, I wouldn’t have it any other way I’m doing exactly what I want to do I wake up every morning just ready to go, and love every minute of it.

08:22:24 So, knowing that if I you know that exchange for like three, four years of really hard work for a lifetime that I know of, of, kind of professional bliss and being able to you know retire happy is more than worth it.

08:22:44 Yes, and I think it’s so great to point out that you do have to put in that hard work and and lay that groundwork and maybe initially that it’ll be tough, but if it’s moving you in the direction of something that’s satisfying to you and inspiring.

08:22:57 I can’t imagine anything that’s more worth it. There’s nothing more soul sucking and then go to, going to a job every day that you cannot stand.

08:23:05 That’s my favorite expressions.

08:23:09 I felt like there was a lot of soul sucking for years are really made for like the corporate work environment and thrive there I happen to not to be one of them and so you know as the years went on money just wasn’t motivated enough to want to keep that

08:23:27 going and like you you know to get a business off the ground I’ve put in a lot of time and a lot of hours but in the end it’s all been worth it and i and i think it’s great that you point out that there’s so many different ways to go about it, you might

08:23:36 do it the way you did it keeping your, your nine to five and then working on the side, you know as much as you can. Some people might not do that and, and they can build things slower they have the opportunity to not do the nine to five.

08:23:50 But there’s always options, no matter what situation you’re in. Yes, absolutely. And you have to listen to yourself, you have to listen to, you know, and, you know, kind of, take a look at your life and and do an assessment of what what will work for

08:24:05 your family, not just for you but for your family and to give you, you know, the ability to maintain some sort of work life balance.

08:24:14 Yeah, I think like what you said about just that, you know, going to that nine to five job and being in that you’re kind of in, it’s like a bad relationship isn’t it.

08:24:22 I mean, you’re like into this bad marriage where it’s like, there’s so many different good things but you are bad, any type of relationship you Yeah, out of it, and you think about it all the time like this isn’t making me happy.

08:24:35 This isn’t this isn’t where I want to be but you have an investment, you know, an investment of time or an investment of money or whatever it is, education, and it’s just really hard to break the tie but I don’t know the other side is pretty nice.

08:24:50 Yes, and I like what you just said about listening to yourself, if you are like me wanting to get into a car accident on the way to work or that you just like don’t even want to get out of bed like just thinking about going to work, you feel exhausted.

08:25:03 You could probably trust that instinct you can probably trust that there is something better for you Even if you don’t really know what it is quite yet.

08:25:10 It’s okay to just start exploring, because it is like that relationship you don’t leave because you don’t really know if there’s something better for you out there but there probably is.

08:25:19 Yeah, and I think when you let go when you, I mean, when you let go of fear, even if it’s a little bit of time, you start migrating toward what you need and what you, what will make you happy I mean I think we naturally do that don’t really, you know,

08:25:34 not like, like, we’re not naturally going toward the bad side, or toward the dark what we want to be happy. Yeah, but we have to let go because I think that those fears kind of like keep you in the dark, they keep you in that little, you know, kind of

08:25:51 person that you create where you say I can’t do it, and you listen to all the fears in your head.

08:25:56 It was weird I had, you know, I thinking I was kind of thinking about doing this podcast and thinking about like was there a pivotal moment was there one thing.

08:26:06 And there wasn’t really a pivotal moment that I do always have a memory in my head of the first time that I was told, and listened to someone tell me I was fearless and semi ironically It was my boss who basically in didn’t know that he was inspiring

08:26:29 to leave my, he was he was kind of it was a team building exercise and it was you know the person asked like, Oh, you know, say something about each person at this table and came to me and I was expecting him to say something, you know about my how I

08:26:48 perform my work or whatever he does. She’s fearless it and you know and I thought I wait but I am, and I thought about that all the time. And I think that, listening to those types of messages when you’re trying to decide, you know your friends and family

08:27:06 have been seen pieces of your whole life. You’ve heard it from, you know, and that’s the true that’s, they know you best. Yeah, so if they’re telling you that you’re strong or that you’re creative or that you’re capable.

08:27:17 Those are the things that you need to listen to.

08:27:19 Because the stuff in your head is, is it’s probably not validating when you’re going through that kind of fear of change.

08:27:28 No, and when somebody like the fact that that stuck with you when your boss said that you were fearless there must have been at least a little piece of you may even if it wasn’t all of you that that resonated with you that you’re, like, Hmm, maybe, maybe

08:27:40 that’s true. Yeah it resonated it kind of took hold and then all of a sudden I was just thinking about all the time of fearless I was.

08:27:51 I wasn’t actually doing anything about it, about it. Well, that’s the start just to recognize it and that that fear narrative, I think it’s important to point out can tell you all kinds of stories and all kinds of circumstances, I, I know for myself when

08:28:02 I was starting my business I was single, and I, and I thought gosh it’s not you know this is so much harder for me because I don’t have anyone to rely on if I had a partner, it would be easier.

08:28:13 And then I’ve talked to people who have partners and they think, Oh would be so much easier to do that. If I was single because no one would be relying on me.

08:28:21 And so you can spin that narrative any way you want to talk you out of doing what you really want to do but there is also a story that shows you all the reasons why it’s possible and that’s what you want to focus on.

08:28:47 you know, and with, you know, preparing your business and getting that that really prepared in advance so that you’re not, you’re avoiding all the hurdles that you can, yeah, going through it.

08:29:03 And I think just knowing that, did you have points along the way where you ask yourself, What am I doing Who am I to do this, what was I thinking like did you ever have those moments come up.

08:29:14 Oh I had moments where I was. I mean I was, I was in it, right i mean i know i have no other job nothing else to fall back on. I had now 50 people signed to my company that I was managing.

08:29:30 I was, you know, everything was chaotic, I, all of a sudden I went, I just want to go to work again and go to work again, you know, have somebody to tell me what I need to do it so it wait on me so heavily and there were a few different kind of waves

08:29:48 of that, the first year, just because it was, you know, it was uncomfortable for me to have this all on me.

08:29:57 I mean I was it was like you know, like, like I was looking for the person that was responsible and it was realizing that it was me, was yeah freaked me out a few times and so you know there were definitely those moments, but they were, they were quick.

08:30:14 They were quick because the next, you know, in the next moment something magical would have been worried. I have a great thing happened at work and I realized this is me This is, I love this I mean I love the control that it gives my life I love the.

08:30:31 I love the fact that I can you know when you start your own business, you can focus it any way you want. As far as, you know, of course there’s a business center you have to have a revenue model, but being able to for me say what I want my business to

08:30:49 do as a secondary and what culture I want to create is helping other women, and that’s that’s the one tier with the people that actually work there but with the social media influencers who are my clients, there’s, I decided I wanted it to have that a

08:31:06 charitable component so I wanted them to use you know their influence for greater things as well, rather than just making money. And so we do that too so I couldn’t just go into a company I think I tried to make my last company like that but I worked

08:31:21 for I was like, Oh, we need to do this and we need to do that they’re like that’s not our culture that’s yours. Yeah, but but but let’s. And so, I can do that now.

08:31:30 And I think when I get in those moments of like, I want to work for somebody else’s is too hard.

08:31:36 I think, you know, I can’t like this I would lose to everything I’d lose that whole might my control over the culture of my company, which actually you know lens to the culture of my life and what I’m modeling for my kids and, and, you know, my whole

08:31:56 future.

08:31:58 I love that. Well, I love this conversation and we’re going to continue talking more about what it looks like to make a career change mid life and how it really is possible and why it’s worth it.

08:32:11 Um but Tracy if anyone wants to find you and get more information about what you do, where can they go, Oh great, yeah. So, my, my company website is we whe agency.

08:32:25 com, and I’m on Instagram at, underscore, Tracy no he just Tracy Willis.

08:32:34 And, you know, my emails on the Instagram so I’d be happy to talk to anyone who is kind of considering making this this transition. I love, I love sharing my story and inspiring other people, because I know it really helped me to talk to people who were,

08:32:52 who had been through it before.

08:32:55 Fantastic. Well, we’ll be right back. We’re going to continue this conversation about changing career mid life so stay tuned you’re listening to holding ground.

08:33:10 All right, I stopped for the first one.

08:33:14 Yeah, so we made it to 25 awesome.

08:33:21 Sometimes I get worried we’re going to run out of stuff to say but I have a feeling Tracy that we would not ever and I

08:33:28 stopped myself I’m like I’m tired too much I’m talking too much. But no, this is perfect.

08:33:41 Chrissy good. Yep. Okay. Stand by.

08:33:59 Welcome back to holding ground if you’re just tuning in today I am speaking with Tracy Willis, who is the owner of the we agency a talent agency for social media influencers, Tracy made a big midlife career change when she decided to go back to school

08:34:13 to get her MBA and move towards creating a business that inspires her. So, Tracy, what advice would you give women who are looking to make this big career change or make the leap.

08:34:25 Yeah, I think, I mean, the first advice is just that you know there’s never a right time and you got to get that out of your head. You know, it’s kind of like you know when you have a baby and then you get a puppy and you say you just gotta do you gotta

08:34:48 do it all at once you have a good time for a baby or a pop there’s never a good puppy and there’s never like the perfect time to change careers and, you know, rip off your security Band Aid like you have to you have to just kind of go for it.

08:34:57 And so, that I think that’s the, the first piece of advice, and the second piece is to think it just think it through as far as like your preparedness for what you want to do.

08:35:13 I mean, I think, you know, you see.

08:35:16 Just because you love flowers you don’t necessarily know how to open up a floral shop, you know, or it’s like you have to you have to be prepared. And if your goal is to move into an industry that is different from what you’ve been doing, which is what

08:35:32 I did. It was you know there were poor opposite industries healthcare and social media.

08:35:38 So I you know chose to work for another company on the side for a couple of years to really learn it, and that and that that was that worked for me because I was able to, you know, learn from the best and, and then, you know, start my own model.

08:35:56 But if it’s in the same industry you know it’s. If you already have that, that industry knowledge it’s different, but be prepared. And the other thing is just, you know, don’t listen to your fears listen to the good messages that you hear like give to

08:36:10 to open yourself up to hear those good messages because I guarantee if you’re if you’re looking.

08:36:16 I mean the messages are there in the universe coming at you, but you need to open yourself up to share them, you know that you have to have the confidence you have to get rid of the fear.

08:36:27 I had a client that I worked with at one point, who was starting her own business and she was super creative and talented and she was doing things in digital marketing and, and she was getting all of this positive reinforcement reinforcement, and then

08:36:41 she got some feedback about, well, you know, do you know how to manage your, your finances, in terms of your business or do you know how to set up your business structure or pay your taxes or something like that, and everything just came crumbling down

08:36:55 on her she’s like, I don’t know how to pay my business taxes, the air balloon.

08:37:01 Yeah. Yeah. And there are going to be those little things you want to be. Do your research and being prepared, but also you know it’s okay to know that you’re going to be figuring it out as you go along, but I also had those moments to where like, I was

08:37:13 like Oh What am I thinking I don’t know how to do this piece of business, and you can be really prepared.

08:37:20 And you’ll still have to learn some things as you go but most likely you’re probably going to be able to figure it out. Did you, did you have any of those obstacles where you’re like, oh my gosh I don’t what was I thinking I don’t know how to do this

08:37:28 part of it uh definitely I mean you’re like that and same thing with like the getting the actual business structure set up, you know, so I you know I luckily I have.

08:37:39 I know people who know how to do those types of things and, and I had a lot of people be very patient with me. And you know I kind of tackled that part.

08:37:49 By just, I mean, Google’s my best friend. Yeah, I called you know like every Secretary of State and do, you know, Labor and Industries and I’ve called all those agencies and just talk to people and said, Is there anyone that can just help me and I’ve

08:38:09 had people on the phone with me for over an hour.

08:38:25 what you do best, if you can, if you can swing it if you have the resources to do it I, I started out doing it on my own, but I wanted to know, I want to be like really in control of the back end of my business and and how does this work, how do we operate

08:38:44 Washington State, how do we, you know, so now I’m ready to turn it over to somebody else.

08:38:46 Yeah. And, you know, and that’s great advice, you may want to start, you know, you should know how your business is operating as you get started. But then as time goes on, it’s also good to get outside resources, and I know for myself.

08:38:58 I was, I am not a good math or details person necessarily English. Exactly. And so, you know, I would painstakingly like try to keep track of my books and it would always be just at the end of this month it’s just like arduous task that I felt tortured

08:39:12 by and for some reason in my mind I was like, Oh, it’s going to be too expensive to have a bookkeeper I have to do this. And then one day when I finally looked into it, it actually wasn’t that expensive and my time would have been much better spent doing

08:39:24 something other than, you know, going through my, my statements every month. And so that I think it wasn’t Another limitation to is I made a lot of assumptions that I’m not going to be able to afford this or I’m not going to know how to do it before I

08:39:34 even looked into it and there’s a lot of resources available to you that you might not be aware of if you just kind of reach out and ask for some sense.

08:39:43 Yeah, no, I couldn’t agree more. I think you do need to, you know, position yourself to get to the point where you are doing what you’re best at, because I think we, you know, becoming an entrepreneur like you don’t have that support staff, you don’t

08:39:57 have like you did it, when you were working had you know someone that did this part, this part, this part, this part, you’re doing it all and so when it’s time to start, start shedding some responsibilities and hiring things out like, just keep what you’re

08:40:13 good at, not, maybe not even what you love the most, but sometimes you have to make that sacrifice to you’re like I really liked doing that. Well, you know somebody else could do it better and you’re better this so a lot of those type of decisions.

08:40:28 Come up and, and you have to kind of just figuring out as you go a lot of it. I think sometimes. I know I have friends who have tried to start businesses, and I think overthought them.

08:40:43 I mean I think that you have to be somewhere in the middle like if you, you know they’ll, they’ll spend two years planning their business model and by the time they’re ready to go, business model is changed or the industry’s changed or, You know, I think,

08:40:56 you know, I’m much more about like let’s, let’s like figure it out as we go type of person, but not everyone’s comfortable with that.

08:41:05 Well I think you have to if you’re going to be an entrepreneur you have to be at least a little bit comfortable with that I know for me, I’ve been in business now for 10 years my business has gone through several iterations, what I thought it was going

08:41:16 to be is certainly not what it is today. And that’s not even a bad thing I just think that you know I’ve just been learning as I’ve gone along and so I’ve had to change and adapt to what I learned and and and the new things that are out there and if you

08:41:30 do overthinking it again you get back into that that fear spiral where it’s like you can find all these reasons why it’s not going to be possible because you’re trying, you’re looking for certainty, and that is definitely not part of being an entrepreneur.

08:41:43 No, no, it’s definitely not I mean, the only thing you can be certain about is that, you know, it’s up to you. Yeah, that’s it.

08:41:54 Yeah, but you know that I can’t even imagine now going I don’t know if you feel like this too, but I can’t even imagine not doing this. Now, going back to working for someone else and, and, and I and I realized that that’s great for some people and you

08:42:10 know i i have tons of friends who have total job satisfaction love their companies. Everything’s great but they got lucky you know they kind of like one the job lottery they got, they found themselves in the, in the perfect place with the perfect company.

08:42:28 And not everyone fits into that.

08:42:32 Yes. And if, for me, my sister a great example of this. My sister is a teacher and she, her core values are security and stability she loves routine she loves to know what to expect.

08:42:45 And being a teacher and she loves teaching and so being a teacher is a great path for her, my core values are Freedom, freedom, probably not being the number one and then being creative and like you I wanted to create something that was mine I didn’t

08:42:59 want to fall into somebody else’s mold or do something that I didn’t find a lot of purpose in, and so you know it really is based on personality to that, that some people have it, what you value if you value freedom you probably don’t want to work for

08:43:13 somebody else. Right, exactly.

08:43:16 But you know, I think like that and you don’t even have to be an entrepreneur you don’t have to start your own business. No, I mean, you know, 50 years old you can decide.

08:43:24 I, I’ve been in you know working in this job for whatever however many years so this industry I want to do something completely different. and go find a job with somebody else.

08:43:50 I mean there’s no limits I think that, at least when I was a doing the hiring at my last job, and for my department, and I would hire anyone at any age, but I valued experience, and you know I think people are are sort of like scared to go out because

08:43:56 they think they’re too old and no one’s going to hire them, you know everybody’s hiring the the college grads or whatever and that’s just not true. I mean, that’s another fear that you need to overcome.

08:44:06 you may, you may not be groomed cut out to be like a, an entrepreneur, because you want that stability and like your sister and you know you want that security.

08:44:16 So, but you don’t like your job. Don’t stay in that job don’t see that industry or or whatever like you need to get out and do what makes you happy, whether it’s working for yourself or working for someone else but make sure you’re waking up every day

08:44:31 just saying, I can’t wait.

08:44:35 Yes.

08:44:35 just saying, I can’t wait, this class, just because you’ve done, you know, been in one career path, 2420 years you know you could be in your mid 40s at that point and you still want to work for another 20 plus years and you have lots of time to make a

08:44:45 change and you don’t need to be an entrepreneur I actually hire in my business doing therapy, a lot of therapists are coming into it as their, their second career that they’ve already had a career, and decided to go back to school and get their master’s

08:44:59 degree in counseling. And that’s awesome because they have all this life experience behind them that even supports them and in this new career path. That makes me so happy.

08:45:09 Yeah, I love hearing that.

08:45:11 It’s just you know it’s it’s. There’s, there’s just nothing sadder to me I think then thinking about what my life would be if I hadn’t done this and thinking about retiring from a job that just wasn’t me, it wasn’t, you know, wasn’t it wasn’t.

08:45:28 It was just a job. I was thinking about that like with jobs there’s like three, I think kind of like three different levels there’s that job where you’re like somebody says what do you do, and you say, I work for, you know, Amazon or the Safeway or whatever

08:45:43 it is, I work for, and then the other ones like, what do you do, and then you say like I’m a, I’m a barista or I’m a software engineer or whatever, and then you know that, but I think the level that you want to get to is when someone asks you what you

08:45:58 want do you don’t say like, I don’t say like, I’m the owner of the agency I say, you know, I, I, you know, connect social media influencers to bring us, you know, to help them monetize their businesses or, you know, whatever, and I’ve talked about the

08:46:14 work I do and then when you hear someone answer you with that you know that they’re probably on the right path at the right level that they are doing something that they were they care about the work and not the who, the company is or what their job titles.

08:46:29 I love that and it That’s true, that that’s when you know you’re the most connected to what you’re doing is when it’s the work itself that you’re talking about not the company or the or the job and in fact I’ve heard a lot of people talk about their jobs.

08:46:43 Being an attorney I feel like it’s one of these categories where it sounds really good to do it and people make that choice at a young age because they don’t really know what to choose so they just continue on to go to law school and then they’re super

08:46:55 invested in it, but the work itself is not really satisfying to them. Yeah, exactly. And that’s, I think that’s the key is that it’s not people talk about job satisfaction, a lot but like I think it’s like, it’s almost like work satisfaction like the

08:47:12 tasks that you’re actually doing are you embracing those you love those like.

08:47:16 I mean, it couldn’t be something that, that isn’t like necessarily you know quite as you know sexy sounding as a different job but and you’re doing something that’s really functional, but if you have that satisfaction of like, I love when the numbers

08:47:32 come out and they, you know, the balance or I love. Whatever I mean, then you’re still that’s still an awesome job for you. And yes yeah and pursuing what you enjoy not you know what the title is or, or how it sounds to other people I’ve worked with people

08:47:51 who are very satisfied in organizing other people’s houses and cleaning things and doing all that I personally would not find a lot of joy in doing that but they absolutely love it.

08:48:02 They love being in that process they love. Um, you know, the feeling that it gives the person that they’re helping and and that’s what’s important about it.

08:48:11 I love that. Yeah.

08:48:13 So I know for you and your business you taught you talk about like wellness and self care, and that that’s something that you wanted to bring to the women that you’re helping is the opportunity to do something that they love so that they can take good

08:48:27 care of themselves in the process. So tell me a little bit more about that and why you’re passionate about that.

08:48:34 Yeah, I think that, you know, This is something that I didn’t do. And so now I’m adamant about it with everyone I work with and you know I I talked to them all the time about knowing when to quit.

08:48:48 Knowing when to stop your day because I think there are certain jobs like what I do, where you if you wanted to you could probably work 25 hours. It’s a, it’s a global kind of, you know, job so I’m working, different countries that I could get on at three

08:49:04 in the morning and getting new emails, so you have to know when to quit. And when you quit, you have to make sure that your downtime is spent, you know, doing things that are going to satisfy your, your soul and your and your life and sometimes that’s

08:49:24 giving back to your family, sometimes that’s, it doesn’t necessarily have to be taking a bubble bath I think when we think about self care. You know we always think about like, Oh, I’m gonna do my nails and take a bath and, you know, from the face of

08:49:56 That is crying out to be taken care of. So, if you know you know, I mean, in your quiet times when you’re when you when you’re talking to yourself, you know that your family needs more attention, or you know that you know you really need to declutter

08:50:14 a closet, you know that you need to go spend more time with friends you know that you need to go on a trip, and travel, whatever it is that that is going to make you feel better.

08:50:27 That’s self care and sometimes in. In my experience, it’s been that I need to work a little extra.

08:50:35 And when I start you know kind of going in that balance where I’m like, my work is piling up more and I’m doing a lot of self care, like maybe my self care now just to like I need to get, I need to spend a day and, you know, nose to the grindstone and

08:50:51 or x to the grindstone.

08:51:03 I just spent that day and get caught up on a lot of work stuff because you know what, that’s what I need, or else I’m going to get stressed out. So, you know, I think it goes definitely beyond the bubble bath I think it’s about the balance and not forgetting

08:51:10 to disconnect from your work is crucial and for me that’s a technology, break.

08:51:19 And it’s really hard to do.

08:51:22 But I, I, I force it and I try to get everyone else to, as well. There’s times on the weekends where I’ll get emails or text messages from from people that are working with me and I’m just like, what are you doing, it’s like Saturday night at nine o’clock.

08:51:40 You have nothing else to do.

08:51:44 But you know, I mean it’s great because it’s, it’s because they love what they do. Yeah, you know, at the same time, it can, especially this pandemic kind of situation and, you know, we, it’s too easy to just work all the time.

08:52:01 It really is and if you work for yourself or even for somebody else, there’s always going to be something to do there’s never going to be that day where you’re like okay I’ve cleared all the emails and all the tasks and all the things and so you have

08:52:12 to be mindful about giving yourself that space, even if you love what you do, and I run into this in my own business too I love working with clients I love podcasting I love all the things that I do, and at the same time I can still burn out on it if

08:52:24 I don’t intentionally give myself a break. I totally agree with you, and you have, I mean, you, you might have to write it in your daytime or your calendar or something like that or, or schedule some things you know with people, so that you can’t back

08:52:40 out because it is it’s very, very hard and one of the biggest challenges is to to stop doing what you love to do, because you don’t want it.

08:52:50 You don’t want to risk that burnout know it’s hard it’s I mean and the cost of burnout is so high to your mental health your physical health, in the end it’s going to reduce your productivity.

08:53:04 you might even become resentful of something you really love.

08:53:08 So it’s just so important, but it’s also really hard I know especially for people who are taking care of families or, you know, just have a lot of things pulling their attention in different directions.

08:53:19 It’s hard to have boundaries and say know that this is what I have to do for myself do you work with a lot of moms who are trying to get into this work.

08:53:27 So I do, I work with a combination of both like young, some young moms most of the most of the women I work with. At this point, are in their 20s and 30s, but you know I would, I would love to work with older women as well it’s just not a lot of people

08:53:46 my age, really know much about like social media influencer world, I came across it by chance I had, you know, it was definitely I hadn’t ever watched a YouTube video in my life when I started doing this.

08:53:58 And so, you know it’s mostly, but it’s mostly younger.

08:54:03 But I liked, I like working with younger people, too, because I feel like it’s helping to avoid that, that path that I went on, you can kind of circumvent it early us know that there are other options that you don’t have to get caught in that grind and

08:54:20 then feel like you can’t get out of it. Yes and and I think, you know, young people, they don’t know they don’t have that confidence, it took me till I was you know 45 So, how do you, you know, when you’re 25.

08:54:34 How do you have that confidence to say I can own a company. I mean, you, you don’t wouldn’t even know the first thing about, you know, you.

08:54:41 I know that there are a lot of young entrepreneurs, but it’s really not intuitive like you don’t really know how to get started. So I think, you know, I like, I like he was them when they’re younger because then they can, they have that chance.

08:54:54 and someone to guide them I’ve often had that thought, what I would have been like if I would have known when I was younger you know that I could have my own business, which I’m not really sure why I did it because I come from a family of entrepreneurs

08:55:05 my parents had their own business instead of my grandparents, but for some reason as a young person I didn’t have that confidence I didn’t know how to get started or what I would do and so that’s one of the really cool things about social media is it’s

08:55:17 opened up this avenue for people to create all sorts of businesses that weren’t available when we were young.

08:55:23 Oh, yeah, totally different world and when we were young and raising kids I think it worked better for me to have that job where, you know, I’d set hours because I, you know, I could manage the rest of my family life and daycare and all that kind of thing

08:55:41 I can, I can imagine who little kids and doing what I’m doing. I know it’s possible. And, I guess, you know, now that we are kind of connected in a different way, with with, you know, I mean I didn’t.

08:55:53 We didn’t have really internet when I first started work

08:56:07 internet until I was a senior in college so yeah we did, super close and then it was like dial up it was kind of weird. But yeah, we didn’t have any I think having a smartphone and being able to be like, you know, in a parking lot at Safeway closing a

08:56:17 deal with, you know, with your ice cream melting in the backseat like that’s cool. It’s not, it wasn’t like that then. No, we did not. But that’s such I that’s what I like to leave everyone with today is there are so many opportunities if you feel stuck,

08:56:37 and you don’t know what direction to go, just start exploring I mean now more than ever, there are different career paths and ways to start side businesses or to go back to school we can do everything online now from the comfort of our own home so the

08:56:53 options are limitless you just have to kind of work through the fear and, and make, make the leap.

08:57:01 I love that.

08:57:04 Well we are out of time for today Tracy I am so glad that you were on the show to have this conversation I think it’s so important and again I want you to share with our listeners where they can find you if they want more information about what you do.

08:57:17 Amazing Thank you so we agency. com. That’s WHE agency.com. Or you can DM me or on Instagram at underscore Tracy Willis, and it’s just tr AC way.