I came from a background in Outdoor Education. I worked for a seasonal outdoor ed company for 3 years and even became a program coordinator in my last year with the company. As a Generator, this job tested my limits daily. We worked 70+ hours a week and lived on property meaning work never stopped for me. While I loved the job at first, I quickly became burnt out.

Around year two, I began looking for other options. My partner and I started looking for other jobs and we considered moving across the country. But, we ended up staying put. I started to search for alternative ways to make money. I discovered Virtual Assistant and selling things on Etsy.

Ultimately I decided to start an Etsy where I would sell the artistic educational resources that I used for my students. This is where I learned the ins and outs of running an online business. Although I majored in Business Management in college, I really had to re-learn everything, including social media marketing which was not taught when I was in college.

I dedicated any free time I had to growing my business. I built an Instagram that had over 1,500 followers (big for me!) and my Pinterest account had a quarter-million viewers every month. The small shop ultimately brought us an extra $1k every month and I was so proud but it wasn’t something we could quit our jobs over.

Our outdoor ed job became our safety net. We knew that we could go travel and always get hired back. The company was always in need of employees, so there was no way we’d ever be jobless.

I started to search for alternative

Then the pandemic hit.

As you can guess, we lost our jobs just like everyone else in the world. However, on top of our jobs, we also lost our housing leaving us homeless.

In the midst of the panic, anxiety, depression, I was mindlessly scrolling on Facebook when I came across an ad for a Virtual Assistant course. It caught my attention because it was at that moment when I realized I was already doing that…

Throughout growing my Etsy shop, I joined numerous Facebook groups for Etsy sellers and made some friends with some wonderful women who didn’t have a clue about social media marketing. I did.

I became the go-to for social media marketing advice and I even helped a few people with strategies (for free YIKES).

I realized when seeing that Facebook Ad that I was already doing the role of a Social Media Manager and I wasn’t getting paid to do it. So I took out my credit card and invested in the course.

I learned the ins and outs of running an online freelancing business. Within 3 weeks I signed my first (official) client and by month 6 I had doubled my yearly income and booked out. Damn!

But by month six I was feeling disconnected from the work I was doing. I didn’t end the day feeling satisfied, instead, I ended the day feeling frustrated and I honestly resented some of my clients.

I shared these feelings with my Business Coach at the time and she encouraged me to think about pivoting. We looked into Online Business Management and running an agency, but ultimately I decided to become a Business Mentor myself. I felt most satisfied when I was getting deep with other business owners and helping them reach their dreams.

I took a complete one-eighty and changed my business to VA Mentorship. I closed out my SMM clients (not the smartest idea) and started marketing my new services.

I thought I would book out instantly, I had the proven results, I am an educator at heart but…I didn’t sign any clients my first month.

Or my second month.

In my third month, I was able to sign my first client but then another 2 months went by, and no new clients.

To say I felt defeated doesn’t even begin to cover it.

I got a few more clients here and there, I was so grateful for them but I had to pick up a second job to pay the bills.

Then after about another 6 months of trying, I decided to take an intentional break from it all.

I dedicated 3 weeks off from my business. No social media. No planning. No looking at anything.

All I did was read, lounge around, go on hikes, swim, and watch junk TV.

By the end of week 2, I had an a-ha moment.

I realized that I was hiding a key part of myself from my business.

In my personal life, I am deeply spiritual. I love mindset work. I love meditating and yoga. I love Human Design. I love tarot. Yet I wasn’t sharing that side of myself.

So I made a few simple changes. I went from a VA Mentor to an Intuitive Business Mentor. I added Human Design to all of my programs and started offering readings.

I even took a look at my own design and realized I was running my business in complete resistance to it.

I started unlearning everything that I had binged when I first started my business and started getting in tune with what I wanted.

When I re-launched my business, it was as if a light switch was flipped.

The content came easier. My engagement skyrocketed. I even had people pouring into my inbox asking about working with me.

I went from barely signing a client a month to signing a client every week.

All because I made a few simple switches.

To start your own Human Design journey visit hannahplourde.com/humandesign

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