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As a business owner, odds are you are know how it feels to lack confidence. Stepping out of your comfort zone, even the tiniest bit, can make that feeling rear its nasty head. 

During those times, it may seem like there’s something wrong with you, or you are completely alone. And if you fall into the self-destructive trap of comparing yourself to others, you can feel isolated and abnormal. 

Here’s the deal. 

We ALL know what it feels like to be un-confident! 

I have gone through hell and back the past year. Clients stole money from me (oh yes, it happened.) Someone broke into my Costa Rica home and stole $10k worth of my belongings (even the washing machine, pipes, and solid pine doors! The nerve!!!) And I have been wondering where the hell am I taking this company (more days than I care to admit!). 

The truth is, during those hard times, I lost my confidence. So much that I shrank so people wouldn’t notice me. This affected my income, my visibility, and put me in a downward spiral of doubt and pain. I’ve learned, by openly talking about my struggles, that I am not alone! 

It’s quite normal to have your confidence born, stripped, and shaken. Especially when you challenge yourself, try new things, and take steps towards achieving your goals. Guess what? It’s okay (and normal) to feel like you have no idea what you’re doing! 

So, if you are supposed to be an expert at what you do, why do you feel less-than sometimes? 

First, good news: You are not broken or screwed up for feeling un-confident. 

Actually, I would say that feeling un-confident could be a sign that you are headed in the right direction! Everything you’re feeling is felt by business owners and Thought Leaders all over the world.  

The good news is you can overcome your lack of confidence if you have the right tools and support. 

If you don’t feel like The Confident Expert, it is most likely hidden (maybe buried) inside of you. At your core, you are strong, brilliant, creative and confident. Sometimes all you need is a little help bringing that out of you. 

The struggles I’ve faced helped show me that there is something I can do to help people when their confidence is low. (Trial by fire, if you will!) And more importantly, I learned that shrinking and getting small and invisible are all recipes for disaster as a business owner.  

What if there was a transformative program that would help you release some of the fears holding you back? 

Fears that keep you from: 

  • making the money you want to make
  • attracting the right clients to your brand,
  • having a schedule that allows for all the fun, time with family, and travel you really want
  • sticking with an effective marketing strategy that works for you and gets the results you want
  • experiencing  the joy you desire from your life and business

That’s why I have created The Confident Expert Program. It’s time to reclaim The Confident Expert that lives inside of you, so you can get on with building that business of your dreams! 

It’s time. Ditch ditch the fear, get the support you need, and step into The Confident Expert in your business. Apply for The Confident Expert Program today. 

I can’t wait to see you experience new levels of creativity in your marketing, confidence, and brilliance!

The post Lacking Confidence is Normal (and fixable!) appeared first on M. Shannon Hernandez.

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During the past year, when my confidence was at an all-time low, I turned to creative projects. This is NOT the norm for me, but I listened to my soul, who was calling out for me to slow down. Create. Relax. Go within. 

I started drawing, doing Zentangle, and writing haiku. This creative nurturing started the healing process and helped me more than I can even put into words. I also learned how creativity can play a huge role in marketing! Sharing my creative projects on social media helped me bond and form deeper connections with my audience. 

So when I put together The Confident Expert Program, I knew creativity in marketing was a must. 

Creativity allows you to innovate, it sets you apart, and helps you create amazing things in every area of your life. Creativity in marketing helps you: 

  • Boost your confidence.
  • Create more impact.
  • Experience deeper fulfillment in your work.
  • Problem solve and overcome obstacles in fun, new ways.
  • Stand out to your ideal clients.

Creativity paved the path to my own healing, helped me regain my confidence, and eased my stress during a painful, challenging time. Being creative in how I choose to market my business is a game-changer for my business–and my life. 

Creativity nurtures and amplifies confidence. It brings out the best within you so you can show up for yourself, your clients, and your business in all of your magnificence. 

That’s why I created The Confident Expert Program! So you can reclaim your confidence and use the power of creativity and your Content Personality to grow your business with joy and support.

Imagine a place of focus, creativity, and kick-ass mentoring strategically designed to help you overcome the lack of confidence you feel as a business owner. Imagine a supportive community, a sisterhood if you will, of like-minded business owners, gathered together to help one another step into The Confident Expert and explore creativity in marketing together.

Think about what you could create in that space and community. Daydream about the possibilities: more joy, more money, more freedom! 

If this sounds like something you are ready to step into, choose in! 

Apply for The Confident Expert Program. It’s 6-months of focus and learning how to use your Content Personality in creative ways that work for you in a community of kick-ass business owners who have your back!

The post Being Creative in Your Marketing Boosts Confidence appeared first on M. Shannon Hernandez.

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The Writing Whisperer by M. Shannon Hernandez - 4M ago

I’ve noticed two crazy patterns that business owners can fall into when they lack confidence.

They shrink back, filled with shame and judgment, and eventually go silent. 

Or they forge ahead blindly. They immerse themselves in busy-work (i.e., non Revenue Generating Activities), thinking: Maybe if I work harder things will turn around. 

Both patterns impact your business: 

  • Joy is MIA in your life and business
  • Your business isn’t any more fulfilling than a soul-sucking 9-5 job
  • Your bank account isn’t as fat as you want it to be
  • You feel like you are stuck, not achieving the impact and freedom you desire.
  • All the people out there who need the brilliance you bring to the world have no idea who you are!

Do you see yourself in any of these two patterns? 

If so, take a deep breath. Ditch any judgment you might have. Let go of any shame, and listen up. 

When you find yourself in one of these patterns, it can seem like you have no way out. It may feel like all you can do is suffer in silence or hustle your lack of confidence away. But I’m calling bullshit. 

The truth is: You can break the cycle and choose something different! 

It doesn’t matter how far you think you’re gone. It doesn’t matter how hard you’ve worked without any results. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve tried to break out of the self-destructive patterns. 

If you are ready to get unstuck and move forward, then you can make it out, and thrive in your business! 

You have a choice to make: 

Keep doing the same things and expect different results. 

OR

Invest in the help and support you need.

Here’s how The Confident Expert Program can support you in your business:

  • Knowledge.

You’ll get access to years of marketing and business knowledge. At the live calls and workshops, my facilitators and I will teach you practical tools and strategies, and help you use your Content Personality to come up with a solid plan for your business that works for you AND delivers the results you want.

  • Support.

Experience a true community, a sisterhood, of like-minded business owners who will lift you up, help you hone your skills, and cheer you on while you emerge as The Confident Expert you were meant to be.

  • A continuously growing library of content.

Since I started the program, nearly everything has been recorded. There are interviews where you can learn from Confident Experts across several niches, focused workshops and trainings, modules to help you with your specific needs in your business, and you can go through it all at your own pace. 

The Confident Expert Program will offer the tools, support, and community you need to awaken The Confident Expert within (while having a blast during the process!)


\If you are ready to break the cycle and choose confidence, apply for The Confident Expert Program today, and discover new levels of confidence to help you get the results you want out of your business.

The post Confidence is a choice. appeared first on M. Shannon Hernandez.

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It’s become quite clear, among the conversations in my Facebook Group (Marketing for Thought Leaders) and the responses I continue to receive on the survey I sent out to my community: People are hella confused on marketing strategy: what it is, why it’s needed, and how to put one together. If you have an ineffective marketing strategy, business can just be sucky. Let’s change that!

A MARKETING STRATEGY is the overall strategic roadmap that will help you get to your goals. Whoa—-that means you need to set some goals. So let’s start there.

(NOTE: I teach peeps to create a 60 or 90 day marketing strategy. It takes this long for your prospects to get on board with what you are doing. And that strategy is focused on TWO goals at the most.)

SET MARKETING GOALS Use these questions to set some marketing goals for the next 60 to 90 days:

***GOAL ONE: The WHAT.
a) What do I want to accomplish? (more optins, more referrals, x peeps in my upcoming course, etc.)
b) Is this accomplishment tied to a revenue goal? If so, what is my revenue goal?

***GOAL TWO: The HOW.
a) Is the revenue goal tied to a sales conversation goal?
b) How many sales calls do I need to schedule to reach the above goals?
c) What’s my sales call conversion goal? (30%, 50%, etc.)

CREATE THE MARKETING STRATEGY Use these questions to help you develop a strategy for the next 60-90 days, based on your goals:
a) What is my Content Personality and how am I using it in my marketing?
b) How will I track/measure the results from my marketing? (Remember, the definition of doing the same thing over and over and getting the same results (or no results) is INSANITY.)
c) How can I have tons of fun INVITING people to work with me and when hosting sales calls?
d) What is my offer? (Note, I said, ONE offer, not offers!) Remember, simplicity is the name of this game! Simple marketing strategy works. CREATING AND IMPLEMENTING THE MARKETING PLAN After you have taken care of the top two categories, it’s time to lay out the week by week 60 to 90 day marketing plan. The key here is to be consistent, have fun, and be consistent, have fun! (Notice a theme there?) Remember, joy first…then the money will follow. #JoyfulMarketing

Here are 9 symptoms of an ineffective marketing strategy. When the ineffectiveness rears it’s ugly head, it can look like this:
1 – Not enough people booking appointments
2 – The right people are not booking appointments
3 – There is no marketing strategy in place at all!
4 – Lack of engagement
5 – “I’m in overwhelm mode and I spin out when it comes time to think about marketing.”
6 – “I hate marketing so I never make time to do it.”
7 – “I’m not confident in my marketing.”
8 – “I don’t know how to market my expertise.”
9 – “I’ve been mainly building a business based on referrals, so I don’t know how to put a marketing strategy in place now.”

So now the ball is in your marketing court: What will you choose to do?

How can you build a profitable, joyful business if your marketing strategy is broken, or you don’t take the time to create one for your business, or you aren’t confident with the strategy you do have?

The answer: You can’t. It’s impossible to run a profitable, joyful business if your marketing strategy is broken.

I can help.

It is entirely possible to embrace your Confident Expert, experience more joy in your life and business, and make a shit-ton of money in the process. <3

And it starts with making sure you have at least one offer that is transformative for your clients— and then building out a joyful marketing strategy to attract the right peeps to that offer.

If you’re tired of DIY solutions and want to get some help figuring this out together, request a Visibility Session. I look forward to speaking with you!

The post 9 Symptoms of an Ineffective Marketing Strategy (And what to do about it!) appeared first on M. Shannon Hernandez.

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Here’s a major problem I continue to hear from business owners: I have the most awesome course (or package, or retreat, or training), but it’s just not selling. I don’t understand how to market my stuff so it sells. (Have you tried selling with stories?)

I hear ya! I, too, used to have the same problem.

Until…I started using storytelling in my marketing. That is when everything changed.

This happened about 3 years ago, by accident. I told a story about my mom and I traveling through Italy together on Facebook, and then mentioned that I help people market their businesses so they can travel with loved ones, and before I knew it, I had two new clients.

Talk about a happy accident!

Why does story marketing work so well?
**Stories change feelings.
**Stories captivate and engage.
**Stories help people see themselves (or not) in what you are sharing.
**Stories create an emotional connection.

And…when people are touched, moved, saddened, joyful, and enraged…they take action.

If you KNOW you’ve got good offers—and you are EXCITED about the work you are doing—but very few people are paying attention to you — story marketing can change ALL of this.

Over the last couple of years I have developed a process that helps entrepreneurs understand how to craft stories that sell. The results have been AMAZEBALLS. Every single time I have taught this, my students who apply the learning and post a story (written, video, audio, etc.), make sales. (I’ll share specific examples in the next email to you. And no, you don’t need to be an expert story teller to succeed!)

While this may seem “too good to be true”, the truth is that there’s a fine line between a good story and a great story when it comes to your marketing.
**If you jump too fast to the offer, it feels like a bait and switch to your reader (totally slimy).
**If you don’t put enough emotion in the story, the story falls flat and doesn’t captivate your reader.
**If you don’t have a strong call to action, the reader gets wrapped up in the story and doesn’t click on your offer!

What if selling your product or service could be as easy as telling a story? What if the story did the hard work of “convincing” someone why they should work with you, or buy your course or program or product?

Over in my year-long program for Thought Leaders, the Content Strategy Academy, we help you understand how to put your content out into the world in a way that feels really, really good to you–and to your future clients. The Academy is all about helping you understand marketing and strategy so you can make a bigger impact in the world and reach more people.

I wonder what would be possible for you and your business (and your bank account!!!), if you got some structured help with your business and marketing strategy? Check out the Academy! We hope to see you there! <3

The post Is Anyone Out There? What To Do When No One Is Buying Your Stuff! appeared first on M. Shannon Hernandez.

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I’d like to answer a question I received about story marketing:

Q: Where can I use stories in my marketing? Like, where should I put them?

A: Everywhere! But let me get a little more specific.

Newsletters: Did you know that for every month you go without communicating with your list via email, you lose 10% or more of your relationship value and goodwill with your future customer? And after 6 months, they have moved on and are working with your competitors. We ain’t got time for this nonsense! Stories are a great way to connect with your community and build stronger relationships.

Facebook: Depending on your Content Personality, Facebook is a fantastic platform for you to share what is going on in your world—and tie those stories to your offers. If you are a live-in person and/or video personality—go live and share a story! If you are a written personality—draft a short story and put a picture with it! If you are a visual personality—create a meme or visual and pair it with a story!

Sales pages: Story sells. So why not start using story on your sales pages and in your personal invitations for others to work with you? This simple act of leading with a story can mean a big difference in enrolling amazing peeps into your programs, courses, events, and 1:1 work.

Stories connect us. They create an impression or a feeling and generate an emotion around an experience.

Two weeks ago, I was in Denver presenting at a conference called Imagination IQ. You guessed it – I was teaching fellow biz owners how to Craft Stories That Sell. Because I had limited time on stage, I shortened my workshop and hit the main points.

And guess what happened? Allison posted her story on Facebook – the very one she drafted during my presentation. Within two hours, she had two paying students for her upcoming WordPress Course. Woohoo! And the next day, she posted this on my Facebook wall:

Allison is not the exception. Elizabeth has been using my process for crafting stories that sell to fill her massage therapist mentoring program. Meg has been using stories to fill her workshops. The list could go on and on, but I think you get the point! <3

Storytelling in your marketing removes the triggers, the sales-y feeling, and the alarms that go off when someone feels they are being pitched to. No one likes being sold to. It feels yucky and pushy for them. And it feels awkward for you.

I wonder what would be possible for your business, and your marketing, if you spent time with me, understanding how to craft stories that sell?

Over in my year-long program for Thought Leaders, the Content Strategy Academy, we help you understand how to put your content out into the world in a way that feels really, really good to you–and to your future clients. The Academy is all about helping you understand marketing and strategy so you can make a bigger impact in the world and reach more people.

Here’s to having more fun and magic in your marketing—through story and BEING you.

The post Where to Use Stories In Your Marketing appeared first on M. Shannon Hernandez.

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The Writing Whisperer by M. Shannon Hernandez - 1y ago

One of the biggest things that kills the entrepreneurial spirit is social isolation. This is such a hardship because as creatives and Thought Leaders, we value feedback and community so that we can improve our ideas and businesses. We rarely create great stuff in isolation.

Over the last week, I have been talking to entrepreneurs in this community, and I see a common thread in the conversations we are having: You often feel like you are alone.

Here’s a few snippets of the convos I have been having:

“I want a stand out biz but just don’t know how to get the message out there. I spend so much time alone that I talk myself out of my own ideas.”

“I have been hiding behind my business. Your video on Facebook showed me that I am invisible. I want to change that, but need help on how to do that in a way that feels good to me.”

“I have so many offers that no one knows what the hell I am doing. I wish I could narrow this down and only offer the one or two that would make the biggest impact.”

“I don’t even like what I am doing right now. I need a new business that brings me joy. I want to get out of bed everyday and do something I love.”

If you can see yourself in any of the above situations, i am inviting you to take a new approach at building your business: Let’s put YOUR joy first, and watch what happens.

Two years ago I headed to Chicago for a business retreat that changed my life. Little did I know that this would be the case—I was just excited to meet new people and think about my business in a new way. That was when I was introduced to a tool called the Joy|Money Matrix.

It was at this retreat that I had a spiritual and emotional shift on a level that is still very hard to put into words. When I laid my entire life out in front of me – my hobbies, my relationships, my business offers, my marketing channels, etc. – I saw everything for what it was: Almost 80% of the things I was doing didn’t bring me joy. It was eye-opening, and not at all how I wanted to continue leading my life or doing business.

I came home from that retreat committed to doing things a new way. I used my Joy|Money Matrix to transform my entire life: I built the Academy with content that was sitting around on my hard drive (now brings in $15k/month in income), I made a decision to become an international retreat leader so I could offer transformative experiences for those in my community (have held 4 retreats – 2 internationally since then), I trained and qualified for the NYC marathon (an injury kept me from participating), and I hired a housekeeper and started shipping my laundry out to get done for me (because I hate doing those chores!).

Since then? I have used this tool every single quarter of the year to plan my next moves in business and life. And not only that…but I got licensed in this body of work so I could help people just like you change and enhance their businesses and lives, too.

I’m getting a few business owners together for a virtual intensive soon. During our time together, you will:

  1. get clarity on your Thought Leader purpose, mission, and vision, so you can use this information as a filter for every single decision you make moving forward. This means no more bouncing around from idea to idea and offer to offer.
  2. determine the best way for you to share your Thought Leader idea with the world, so you can create messaging and marketing that positions you as a Confident Expert. This means no more hiding – we are going to share your brilliance with the world.
  3. discover how to use this strategic tool that combines your spirit and heart with your brain and entrepreneurial drive, so you can make business and life decisions that are completely aligned with how you want to be spending your time. This means both financial and time freedom.

What is it costing you every day you wait to build the business and life of your dreams?

Let’s make your business more visible, in a super joyful way! Request a Visibility Session. You don’t have to do this alone. <3

The post You Are Not Alone In Business appeared first on M. Shannon Hernandez.

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We’ve been talking a lot about JOY the past few weeks and how clarity can bring that euphoric joy that at many times we lack as entrepreneurs. We have our ups, our downs, our oh-shit moments, and moments of sheer confusion and loneliness. Let’s not forget the moments of What the hell should I be doing right now?, followed by another check-in on Facebook.

But on the other side of those struggles, not so far away, just over the hump if you will, is joy. Joy that comes from what only clarity and alignment and a deep inner knowing can bring. Joy that isn’t mixed with overwhelming downs and oh-shits and confusion and isolation.

I’d like you to meet Nukhet Hendricks and hear her story.

Nukhet is a fire-cracker if I have ever seen one! She is building a leadership coaching business, and she has several stories she was no longer willing to live: the Turkish immigrant who was ridiculed for her accent, the worker who was told she was too strong for a woman—and needed to tone it down.

Prior to working with me, Nukhet was having trouble defining what she did and the types of clients she wanted to work with. She desired to stand on a stage and deliver her message to many, and she wanted to have a global impact on women and girls, teaching them that leadership is NOT just a man’s world, and that women need to rise up and lead fearlessly, if we are going to experience true change in the world.

Two months ago, Nukhet experienced the powerful work I have been doing with Thought Leaders when she enrolled in the Joy|Money Matrix + Marketing Alignment Intensive. Since going through this in-depth process which requires one to look at all areas of their life, take stock in their joy, and then market from THAT place, her life and business has completely changed.

In fact, I caught up with Nukhet this week, and here’s what she wanted to share with you:

“The Joy|Money Matrix program has been life-changing for me. Working through this program led me to clarity like none other about my life; both personal and professional! 

Here is what has been happening since January:

1.  I got very clear on what I LOVE doing and why; hence the clarity around my purpose.

2. I redesigned my programs in my business. They are now aligned with my purpose, vision and mission. Delivering them brings me immense joy while being transformational for my clients.

3.  Two former clients contacted me, expressing their desire to continue to work with me; because they are ready for their next level of personal and professional growth.

4. I got booked for speaking engagements in Tampa, FL and Washington D.C.

5. I got booked for a speaking engagement in London, England; therefore actualizing my desire to have a global reach.

6. For the first time since I started my business, I am not anxious about my business.

7. I now have enough time to grow my business and have fun too because I am clear on what is for me to do, what I need to delegate and what I need to let go!

8. Creating authentic content has become easier.

9. I now operate in my zone of genius because when I am working on my business, I am energized, not drained; I can do this work for the rest of my life!  Now I know for certain; I was born to do this, like Joan of Arc said.

10. To my husband’s absolute delight, I finally have time to go on dates with him, instead of telling him I am too busy or tired.

11. Last but not least, I find that I have the energy and the desire to take exquisite care of myself; emotionally, physically and mentally instead of pushing it to the bottom of my priority list.

JMM is now my go to tool every quarter to stay in alignment with my joy, my life, and money.”

I want to be VERY clear here: This is not an outlier testimonial, a flash-in-the-pan-success that is unique to Nukhet. I have led at least 40 entrepreneurs through this process so far, and over 87% of them have had such clarity in their life and business that their marketing became JOYFUL and has led to more money, more visibility, more time, and more freedom.

I’m inviting you to join me for the next Joy|Money Matrix + Marketing Alignment Intensive.

Are you ready for a different approach to finding JOY and MONEY alignment in your business? If so, Request a Visibility Session. I can’t wait to speak with you!

P.S. One more fun thing! Nukhet didn’t mention that she has found her unique Thought Leader voice throughout this process. Check out this graphic from her Facebook feed (including the engagement – WOWZA!) and her website.

The post The Power of Clarity in Business: Nukhet’s Story appeared first on M. Shannon Hernandez.

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One of the things I’ve been speaking a lot about is making choices from a place of joy. I truly believe that when we focus on joy first, true transformation takes place in all areas our lives and businesses.

What does it mean to scale joy? What does it look like?

It looks like:
*you only saying yes to the activities, offers, and clients that light you up
*you exploring ALL the pieces that make up you and your brilliance, and figuring out how to market those things and get paid well for them
*you spending time doing the things you love – art, volunteering, family gatherings, travel – and building a business AROUND those things
*you going to bed each night knowing that you are living your best life possible and making an impact with your work

I’m getting a few business owners together for a virtual intensive soon, called the Joy|Money Matrix + Marketing Alignment Intensive.

During our time together, you will discover what brings you immense joy, so you can:

  1. get clarity on your Thought Leader purpose, mission, and vision, so you can use this information as a filter for every single decision you make moving forward. This means no more bouncing around from idea to idea and offer to offer.
  2. determine the best way for you to share your Thought Leader idea with the world, so you can create messaging and marketing that positions you as a Confident Expert. This means no more hiding – we are going to share your brilliance with the world.
  3. discover how to use this strategic tool that combines your spirit and heart with your brain and entrepreneurial drive, so you can make business and life decisions that are completely aligned with how you want to be spending your time. This means both financial and time freedom.

Ready to see if this intensive might be a good fit for you as you move forward in your business? Request your appointment with me now, so we can have a chat about the future of your business and marketing.

The post Scaling Joy is the First Step to Business Transformation appeared first on M. Shannon Hernandez.

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The Writing Whisperer by M. Shannon Hernandez - 1y ago

What if JOY was the business plan that got you the biggest results?

I am using a tool called Joy| Money Matrix + Marketing Alignment to help biz owners around the globe understand that prioritizing joy is imperative — so the money can flow. I’ve also incorporated a Thought Leader vision, mission, and purpose activity into this experience. And guess what? It has been a game changer for my students who get super-clear on their WHY.

When you know your WHY in your life, in your joy, in your offers, in your relationships, and in your marketing – YOU become unshakable and unstoppable.

Here’s what a recent student had to say who went through the Joy|Money Matrix + Marketing Alignment experience with me:

“Completing the Joy|Money Matrix with Shannon illuminated 2 factors for me… bottlenecks and distractions. Through the process, I was able to clearly see when my offers weren’t aligned with my business vision. These offers were a distraction from what I wanted to create and were taking my time and energy away from my true vision. I also realized that when I spend my time on tasks that bring me little joy, I become the bottleneck in my business. I procrastinate or avoid these things and it leads to my business stagnating. Now, I’m having fun focusing on the offers and tasks that light me up, and delegating or eliminating those that don’t. The best part is this is a tool I can use over and over again to check in on my business as it grows so joy is my profitable business plan!” ~ Kim Restivo Lange

Are you ready to make JOY your new business plan?

If this spoke to you – reach out! We might just have an opening in the next Joy|Money Matrix + Marketing Intensive. If you are interested in moving from unclear messaging and invisibility to being more confident and brand messaging that captivates yourself and others, please request your Visibility Session with me now.

The post Make JOY Your New Business Plan appeared first on M. Shannon Hernandez.

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