Book Review – She Creates The Way by Jessica Debry

She creates the wayShe Creates The Way by Jessica Debry was written for women who want to start their own business but are struggling in some form. Jessica writes this book partly from her own own experience of starting a side hustle while still working a 9-5 job before transitioning full time in to business. Her encouragement for women is to start building their dream and learn on the go and not wait for an ideal time when all things will be in place to start.

The book is divided into two parts. Part 1 focuses on seven crucial lessons which act as the mental foundation needed for the right mindset to build a business. Part 2 deals with the practical steps for starting and growing a business. Altogether the book has 14 chapters. In the following sections I have briefly reviewed each chapter.

PART ONE – EMBRACE LIFE’S LESSONS

Chapter 1 – Follow The Nudges

You’ve just bagged a dream job. A job you’ve been wanting to get for a long time. After following the traditional path of school, university, degree and jobs for years, you’ve finally got your dream job. Life is good right? Except it doesn’t feel that way. After starting the job you don’t feel the happiness you expect. Something in your heart is telling you, ‘this is not it’. That’s exactly what happened to Jessica. After getting what she thought was a dream job her heart did not feel right about it. She was getting ‘nudges’ that she needed to do something else. She started pursuing side passion projects and 15 months later left the ‘dream job’ for her own business full time. The lesson here is clear, if your heart is telling you something, consider it and go for it.  Follow the nudges. At the end of the chapter Jessica presents us with three questions to embrace the ‘follow the nudges’ lesson. They are:

  1. Where in my life have I been feeling dissatisfied?
  2. Why is my current reality not currently matching my expectations (and what can I do differently)?
  3. What am I being nudged towards (what am I truly passionate about?)

Chapter 2 – You are not your past

Jessica shares a passionate story in this chapter to encourage us not to let our past hold us back. It’s about a woman who grew up in a very poor household, lost the use of her left eye at the age of 2 in an accident, was bullied at school, fell into depression as a teenager and tried to take her own life but didn’t succeed. She did recover, became a successful writer, got married had children and studied to become a Mechanical Engineer. What makes this story more passionate is that, the woman Jessica was writing about is her mother. And the key message being passed through this story is:

Your past doesn’t have to define your future neither does it have to define you.

This is great encouragement for every one of us, so whatever dreams we all have, if we don’t hold to our past or let it define us, we can go ahead and achieve them.

There are three ’embrace the lesson’ steps at the end of this chapter. Summarily they are:

  • Step One: Identify the story – identify the story or limiting belief holding you back.
  • Step Two: Get present – move into the here and now by getting present.
  • Step Three: Look forward – define your goals and plans for the future.

At the end of the chapter also is the story of Kathrin Zenkina who according to Jessica created the way. Kathrin is the founder of Manifestation Babe.

Chapter Three – Stare Fear in the Face

This chapter is all about dealing with fear. Jessica uses a number of stories including hers to describe how to deal with fear. She makes it clear that fear does not actually go away but we can still act in spite of the fear.

She describes fear as:

FEAR = False Evidence Appearing Real

She challenges us to look fear in the face and just do what we need to do. According to her:

The truth is, there is only one thing that helps dissipate fear, and that’s taking action.

I also like this one:

So if you find yourself held back by the need to plan, identify this as the perfect opportunity to stop the planning process and move forward to the next step of taking action.

Everyone feels fear, even successful people but the key is to feel the fear and do it anyway. Here are four more interesting quotes to encourage us:

To be human is to feel fear.

The only difference between those who reach success and those who don’t? Even though the fear is there, they have the will to push through it, no matter what.

Most importantly, remember that fear is an indicator of change.

And if you’re afraid of something, know that the feeling of fear is simply an indication that you are getting closer and closer to your big goals.

The ’embrace the lesson’ for the chapter is a visualization exercise.

Chapter 4 – Learn as you go

No doubt Jessica is a story teller and she uses another story to encourage us to be afraid of doing something when don’t have the skills or experience for it but rather learn on the goals. She tells the story of her job as a destination shopping specialist on a cruise ship for 6-months. A job she didn’t have the skills or experience for. She was counting on training from the current person in the role to help get to grips with the job. Unfortunately that person had to leave due to an emergency and Jessica had to learn by herself. It started out as a disaster but in the end she did become one of the best people that had ever been in the role. Her key strength here was to learn as much and as quickly as she could while she did the job.

Particularly when it comes to entrepreneurship, there are no training manuals or guide books, we just have to learn on the go. This is the lesson Jessica is trying to teach us through her story. According to her:

 

By keeping an open mind and absorbing everything that comes your way, you can shape and shift everything about your future – both yourself and your business.

She also states that:

And if there’s one thing you need to remember about the “learn as you go” approach, it’s that you don’t need to know everything. The only thing you need to know is that you’ll learn it as you go along.

She uses the story of Sara Blakely who became a billionaire by building Spanx to encourage us about this concept.

The ‘Embrace the lesson’ steps for this chapter are:

  • Step One: Identify the first step – Moving forward doesn’t mean you need to know everything; it just means you need to know the FIRST thing.
  • Step Two: Take action – Stop thinking about it and move into action mode.
  • Step Three: Trust the process – You’be got to have faith in yourself. Trust that everything will happen and unfold exactly like it should.

Another encouraging story at the end of the chapter is about Amber Dee, an online business and marketing strategist.

Chapter 5 – Make Failure Your BFF

A lot of us may have been looking at failure the wrong way. After all we are mostly taught that failure in business is a bad thing, a lack of success. But Jessica tells us, that’s a wrong mindset to have. She states that:

Because not only is failure unavoidable, but also it’s a natural part of your pathway to entrepreneurship.

If you want to be successful, it’s time to embrace failure.

She’s sees failure as redirection. A learning lesson to either pivot to a different direction, adopt a new approach, or move on completely. Two reasons why Jessica believes failure is our friend is because:

  1. It can remind us of how strong we are. When we fall we are able to get up again and keep going.
  2. Failure gives us advice. It can guide us towards our next step, teach us what to do and what not to do.

Towards the end of the chapter Jessica discusses five females who overcame failure. They are:

  1. Arianna Huffington
  2. Vera Wang
  3. Ruth Fertel
  4. Oprah Winfrey
  5. J.K. Rowling

There are three questions for this chapter’s ’embrace the lesson’:

  • Question One – What did i learn from the situation (failure)?
  • Question Two – How can I grow as a person?
  • Question Three – What are three positive things I can take away from the situation?

Chapter 6 – Be Courageous

If you are going to achieve your goal or dream you will will need to be courageous. Jessica explains how on the path to pursuing a goal she experienced rejection after rejection. She was about to give up but she caught herself and kept going and eventually did succeed. She states that:

Being courageous doesn’t mean having an unrealistic outlook.

True courage is maintaining a vision no matter what.

Being courageous means stepping up even when you want to retreat back into a place of comfort.

The lesson of this chapter is for us to be courageous in all we do and not be quick to give up.

The ’embrace the lesson’ has three steps:

  • Step One: Exercise your courage muscle.
  • Step Two: Hold the vision.
  • Step Three: Trust the process

And there is also an encouraging story from Melissa Eckman, the creator of MelisFit, the #yogspiration movement.

Chapter 7 – Persevere, No Matter What

This is the last chapter in part one of the book.

In my opinion, this is a similar message to that of the previous chapter on being courageous. Persevering is about not giving up, even in the face of challenges. Jessica writes that:

…just like courgae will give you the strength, perseverance will provide the tenacity for you to keep going.

Lots of uncertainty lie in the path of entrepreneurship and things can get messy but perseverance can provide us with the strength to pull through.

Just like previous chapters Jessica uses a story to illustrate the importance of perseverance.

The ’embrace the lesson’ for this chapter is a visualization activity.

PART TWO – CREATE YOUR WAY

Chapter 8 – Don’t Quit Your Day Job…Yet (Hello Side Hustle)

The advice Jessica provides here for women is important. Go ahead and start your business but do it as a side hustle. While you may truly hate your job, it provides you with stability in the meantime. Don’t quit your day job yet. Use your spare hours to build your business while your day job takes care of your bills and gives you stability.

The ’embrace the lesson’ for this chapter is simply some more information on why you should not quit your day job yet and to illustrate the concept you will read the story of Cara Alwill Leyba who is a best selling author and master coach.

Chapter 9 – Create The Time To Get It Done

We can’t increase the amount of hours in a day but we can manage our time so we have the opportunity to work on our side hustle. Being able to create that time is what this chapter is about. In describing this concept I like this statement she makes:

Here’s the key: be intentional. You’d be amazed at how much you can get done in a short period of time. Especially if you’re hell-bent on making your dream come to life.

She presents us with four steps we can take to create time for our side hustle. Summarily here they are:

  1. Step One: Batch your pockets of time – Find pockets of time in your day that you can use to do some work on your side hustle. It may be during a lunch break, late at night or early in the morning. Find that crucial 45 or 60 minutes to do some work.
  2. Step Two: Adopt a morning routine – Early morning is a great time to get things done. Waking up an hour earlier can give you time to 365 hours a year to work on your side hustle. Jessica even shows us an example of her morning routine.
  3. Step Three: Single-Task Your Work – Ditch the multitasking and focus on one thing at a time. Jessica shows us an example of a single of a single-tasking plan.
  4. Step Four: Start big, work small – This is a great one. Plan big but work at that plan with small daily tasks. Great advice. Jessica shows us a process to do this. Write your goals first, then explore the projects you will need to complete to achieve the goals and then break down the projects into small tasks that you can work on daily.

By starting big and working small, it’s easier to not only cross items off of your to-do list, but also to break down your great dreams into am attainable system.

Chapter 10 – Monetize Your Passion

Here Jessica explores what we can do to start a business. I like some advice she gives around making extra money. She challenges us to avoid that and rather think bigger. According to Jessica:

While these options are good for a little short-term cash, they aren’t a long-term solution for mapping out your dream business and life. That’s why i want you to think BIGGER than that.

The options to make short-term cash include things such as ride sharing, filling out surveys and the like.

Here’s what she really challenges us to do:

Because the best way to generate purposeful profits that light you up s to start and build a business that is based around your biggest asset: your knowledge

She encourages us to find our gift and build a business around and she says why:

It’s unique to you, and only you can share it with the world. That’s why your business should be an extension of YOU.

Jessica let’s us know that if we are still struggling to find a proper business idea, there are a number of questions we can ask ourselves:

  • What is my favourite hobby?
  • What are people coming to me for advice on?
  • What’s a topic I know a lot about and I can’t stop talking about?
  • What am I most passionate about?
  • What business idea can I launch the fastest?
  • Which business idea am I most likely to stick with?
  • What business is going to make me happy?

By answering these questions hopefully you will identify a passion you can turn into a business passion.

Nine different ways to make money online are also discussed. They are:

  1. Selling your services.
  2. Provide 1-on-1 consulting / coaching.
  3. Offer group coaching sessions
  4. Sell a direct sales physical product
  5. Sell digital affiliate products
  6. Create and sell a digital workbook or ebook
  7. Create and sell a digital course or program
  8. Create (or source) and sell a physical product
  9. Launch a subscription box business

Jessica also tells the story of Robyn Baldwin, the founder and creator of the Alpha Female Podcast

Chapter 11 – Expand your brand (and email list)

Jessica believes that the one thing that can help to grow an online business is building and growing an email list.

Building your email list is the most surefire way to have a sustainable profitable business.

After expressing how important building an email list is to a business, Jessica shares five ways to grow an email list. Here they are:

  • Write a guest post for a Big-name blog or website
  • Be interviewed as a guest on a podcast
  • Publish a book on Amazon
  • Host an online giveaway
  • Host an actionable webinar

Chapter 12 – Go Basic: 10 Steps to Online Success

In this chapter Jessica shares 10 steps that can help us to succeed online. They are:

  1. Step One: Find concept clarity in who you are and who you’re really serving.
  2. Step Two: Create a website that is a virtual embodiment of your concept clarity.
  3. Step Three: Attract your perfect client with your lead magnet.
  4. Step Four: Consistently grow an email list of adoring fans.
  5. Step Five: Build your online brand with consistent, valuable content.
  6. Step Six: Increase your web traffic and expand your audience online.
  7. Step Seven: Create connection and trust
  8. Step Eight: Improve your social proof and connect with your audience via social media.
  9. Step Nine: Launch a digital or physical product that your perfect client is dying to purchase
  10. Step Ten: Rock your launch, rake in the profits and live happily ever after.

And of course a story to validate this about Amy Porterfield who has been named by Forbes magazine as one of the Top 50 social media influencers.

Chapter 13 – Two Weeks Notice

The two weeks notice referred too in this case is the two weeks notice you give to quit work and go focus on your business. Work on your business till it’s reached a point that you are earning enough and then hand in your notice. In reality there will never be an idea time to do so and you will always feel a degree of uncertainty but at some point you’ve got to make up your mind to do it.

According to Jessica:

You don’t need to have everything perfect. You just need to embrace the work you’ve done thus far and trust the path that you’ve created for yourself.

Chapter 14 – Write Your Own Story

At the start of this chapter, the last one in the book, here is what Jessica writes:

Now that you’re nearly finished with this book, it’s time to write your own story.

You are the author of your life…
might as well make it a great one, filled with following your heart and going after your big dreams.

So the challenge to us is to ditch the traditional path, create your own way.

This is a very encouraging book and a great one for women who are thinking about entrepreneurship to read. It is written in a simple to understand way with some key principles that anyone can act on. It is also not a big book so you are not going to get bored before finishing it. Also the stories are great and very encouraging and even more, Jessica provides us with links and references to a lot of extra resources that can help you as you create your own way.

 

 

 

 

 

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