In my interview with Fiona, we talked about how she overcame her ups and downs in finding her own path to success and bliss. I have attended one of Fiona’s Women Success Circle events and I know first hand how she loves to empower and uplift others through her work.
Fiona Craig is an author, Life Balance Coach based in Sydney with a background in NLP, Meta Life Coaching and Gestalt Psychotherapy. She runs a wonderful Women Success Circle as well as her coaching and mentoring programs.
In our interview you would hear how the glamours young model eventually become the woman who coaches and mentors others to live a more balanced and fulfilled life!
Fiona’s journey is a total Heroine Journey, with all the fascinating encounters as well as some time in the belly of the whale. She has a lot to share in how to peruse our dreams, understand our limiting beliefs and start a new chapter in life.
She is also the author of an award-winning book “Stuck in a rut – how to rescue yourself and live your truth”. If you are feeling uncertain how to move forward on your path or need a dose of inspiration and encouragement, you got to check out this episode!
- The journey of a young woman working in modelling, advertising, jewellery design and eventually becoming a coach and Gestalt Psychotherapist
- How to live with courage and learn how to love yourself
- Some people can heal, and some don’t, why is that?
- Healing from chronic fatigue and mindset shift
- Run your own race, make peace with who and where you are
- Do not let people tell you what you can and cannot do!
- Writing her book, find your own rhythm, what works for you and focus on progress.
- All the big wins stem from this idea: “When you got nothing to lose, why don’t you give it go!”
If you would like to get in touch with Fiona Craig, please go to www.LifeBalanceCoach.com.au
Sze Wing: Hi everyone. Wow. I’m really happy to do this interview today with my dear friend and colleague, Fiona Craig. So little short introduction, Fiona, you’re an author, a life balance coach and you’re based in Sydney and I know you have a background in NLP, Meta-Life Coaching, Gestalt Psychotherapy. You also run your own coaching and mentoring programs as well as something I love, the Women Success Circle. So that’s the introduction for Fiona and welcome, thank you so much for being here today.
Fiona: Well, thank you Sze Wing, thank you for having me today.
Sze Wing: Great. And also we have a guest appearance, Fiona’s dog at the background, as you can see where he is, I don’t know if he is a puppy or it’s a mature-
Fiona: Yeah, he’s an eight year old Caboodle.
Sze Wing: Yeah, sleeping at the background, for those who are watching our interview.
Fiona: Sleeping in the background. He thinks he’s part lion, because he likes to be up on the cushion. So as much as I try and arrange the cushion to look perfectly symmetrical, he likes his side, he will go and actually push it down and go and sit on top of it like a lion, that’s what he loves to do.
Sze Wing: It reminds me of my daughter, as in, first of all, she go around the house and go, I don’t know why, and she does the same thing, arrange the cushion, and jump on top of the sofa, so. You cannot expect the house 100% the way, how you like it when you have hairy friends or little people.
Fiona: Yeah, that’s exactly right, I’d rather have a home, and a happy home where everyone feels comfortable, as opposed to having a house and gardens home where I feel like, Oh, break that, Oh, don’t touch that, so good.
Sze Wing: And it’s funny because I know that we’re all tending to stop both people listening, but actually I think one of the theme that will come through in today’s interview is about how life unfold in a way that may be unexpected and you don’t have a hundred percent control most of the time, you can do your part but you can’t just say, The cushion has to look this way, and it turns up very differently. Well, I guess it kind of fit into the theme, and I’m going to elaborate on that.
Sze Wing: But first of all, I want to talk about how I recently attended one of your women’s success circle, and I really loved it because I know that you wrote about that, when you put up the event. You say it’s about uplifting and empowering other women, lot of people say that, but when you go there it felt very different and you may not true to the words sometimes I think some of the networking event, it’s very speed dating, and not so comfortable sometimes. But I found your event very personal and people are very honest and they share the story and the tips, and it was really amazing. So thank you for hosting those events. How do you like your events by the way?
Fiona: Well, thank you for coming and thank you for those kind words, and I’m so glad that that’s the experience you had, because when I started creating women’s success circle, it was all about the experience and I think exactly what you’re saying, we get a kind of a bit lost, and have other intentions. My intention always for women’s success circle was to bring heart centered women together. And so women I guess that are looking for friendships and they’re looking for support and they’re looking for authentic, honest dialogues. So I guess you can already hear that I’ve been a therapist or I am a therapist, so that comes through. But, I know, because I’ve been to many events, and I just felt that it was very fake, and it was not about the people, there were other intentions.
Fiona: So I’m really glad because women’s success circle is honestly about supporting other women, so all the guest speakers I choose are women that have that similar intention, that they want to… they have a message, something important they want to share with other women, they want to inspire and connect. I’m thrilled that you’re going to be the next guest speaker.
Sze Wing: Thank you, thank you for the opportunity.
Fiona: In March. And I just put a lot of work into the events. So just from the concept and just collaborating with the speaker, I think it’s important the speaker also gets a good experience, and that they feel that their values are aligned with my values, and that we are co-creating something, and I find it very exciting. Then whoever comes on the day is just meant to be there, and I think it is about creating a warm, safe place, so people can put their hand up and speak to the speaker and share a personal story. I do have guidelines on my meetup group, because I think it’s important that people know that when they are coming to women’s success circle that they will be safe, and that the confidentiality is assured and they’re not going to be recruited or poached or spammed or sold to, all those kinds of things that sometimes you can get at networking marketing events. But it’s really a nice place
Sze Wing: It’s really enjoyable.
Fiona: … So I definitely go… I tend to go over more in quality rather than quantity, so I hold three a year, and then I sprinkled some free events, like Vivid, we had a couple of ladies come along to Vivid, and I think it’s just nice and there are a lot of women out there that sort of feel a bit different, that might be more sensitive and just looking for a good friendship, and of course like career women, moms, people that have just moved to Sydney.
Sze Wing: I guess What I want to say because on that day, so there are those entrepreneurs or very successful career women, but there are also people who, taking a slower pace, working from home mom, but still want maybe come back to work place, or people at different walks of life and I think they’re looking for a group that they can share. I mean learn something useful inspirational and friendship, as you said. Some of the events you’re only going for marketing or you’re going for social media, it becomes more work related. But then sometimes the conversation and things you get out of those events. That’s very valuable information as well, but it’s quite different. That’s why I think it’s very enjoyable because there’s a lot more potential to grow from that. So that’s why.
Sze Wing: So, let’s get back to Fiona, because I read about her and I talked to her, so I’m really keen to hear a little bit more about your background story so to speak, because I know that when you started, it’s such a beautiful story, because you were a glamorous young girl in modelling, working in a very different industry, then now you’re a woman who coach and mentor other women live a more balanced life because it sounds like, I don’t know about you, but I worked in the film industry for a few years and I think balance isn’t a word there. I mean they-
Sze Wing: … do not expect you to have work life balance, this is a joke, they demand you to dedicate your entire self. To be honest, when I was working in that industry, I found almost everyone around me were single, divorced or never have a long-term boyfriend. I found this very hard for women, especially if you want to get ahead. So anyway, your story, tell us, how do you go from that to coaching.
Fiona: Oh, well, yes, it’s quite interesting. I started off with modelling only because my mom said, “You should be a model.” And I think when I was young I was very impressionable, really up until the age of 30, I tended to do what people said, what they thought was best for me. And that’s normal because we trust people, so I trusted my parents and thought, oh that was good, but oh God, did I hate that. Plus I was too short. Five foot six.
Sze Wing: Right.
Fiona: I know, I know if there’s kind of like one in a million, and I just, yeah. It just is not going to happen, and I hated the focus on my look. So I moved into advertising, which is behind the camera, which is quite exciting being a TV production coordinator, because I got to use all my organizational skills and I’ve always been a really good organizer, I’m such a list girl and I really like that end of the day when you’ve ticked a couple of things off, and I like planning. So I did really well in that job, but nowhere else to go, but being a TV producer, and I wasn’t passionate about making commercials, I just enjoyed my role and I got to meet a lot of people.
Fiona: It was the eighties, and it was very much a lot of fun and a lot of parties. So I moved away from that and my parents said to me, well you’re good at selling, why don’t you take a career doing something like what do you sell? What do you love? And I said, I love jewellery, I love fashion. So then before you know it, I was on a plane to Los Angeles and I spent two years studying diamond grading and jewellery design. Yeah, it was a great year in LA, it was so much fun. So here I am, 24 and having the best time of my life, and-
Sze Wing: You were in the UK before when you were doing the advertising within it?
Fiona: No, no, I was in Australia in North Sydney.
Sze Wing: Oh, and then you go to LA.
Fiona: And then I go to LA and then it’s from LA after I graduate that I realized, Oh, I’ve got UK ancestry, I could go to London. And I remember being in the campus where you study your jewellery and diamond grading and looking at the library, and some of these beautiful jewellery books, where all these people buying these huge rocks for their wives and stuff, and I thought, Oh God, the Crown Jewels of London, oh my God, I would love to work this.
Fiona: So what did I do? I just wrote a letter and I sent a picture of myself, and before you know it, I had a phone call and I was asked for an interview. So I went from LA, took a flight over to London, but I only had like two or three weeks and not much money, but anyway, somehow I landed the job, and before you knew it, I was living in the house with five Australians and one bathroom.
Sze Wing: How exciting.
Fiona: … and they timed it so that we didn’t go over so they could go get up and go to work in the morning, it’s hilarious, it was great because the Australians were Brisbane lawyers and we did lots of traveling, I had a wonderful time there. But then I started to get sick, and at first I wasn’t quite sure why, and it was the start of chronic fatigue. There’s many different theories about how you get chronic fatigue, because there’s many different ways. And I think because basically I was a bit of a party girl and I didn’t eat well. I also was very conscious of my weight, so I tended to probably stay on the skinny side, and just burn my candle, I was been an all or nothing girl.
Fiona: I picked up a virus and I couldn’t get that out of my system and I progressively got very sick and I spent almost a year in bed in Sydney. So I go back home, I’m a year in bed. That’s really when I stopped to look at my life and just thought, Oh, what’s going on here? What do I like about it? What do I not like about it? And what am I doing to myself? So I started looking at some counselling, because I needed that for myself to change some of these behaviours. That’s when I realized that from the age of 16, I’ve always loved psychology, and always loved understanding about the mind, always loved understanding behaviour, why we do what we do, why do we think the way we think?
Fiona: And so I finally went into my passion, which is what I love as opposed to what other people told me I should do. And that’s really the path I’ve taken since, which is positive psychology, the counselling and then the degree, then moved into Gestalt Psychotherapy, which is the post grad qualification. Then that moved into coaching, when I started my own business, because I didn’t want to work in drug and alcohol and mental health. And that’s generally where most of the counsellors end up. I had this idea of starting my own business in something that I’m passionate, and the clients that I really want to see. And being a single mum at the time because my marriage had fallen apart.
Fiona: So I thought I’m going to work with women that are struggling with their Work Life Balance, struggling with their juggling. And so that’s how life balance coach was born, but then over time that’s kind of morphed into more about finding your purpose, finding your authentic self, and so work life balance, I still get clients asking for work life balance assistance, but it’s a little bit more finding the real you.
Sze Wing: Yeah. There’s so many interesting thing you just said, but I think one of the thing I find is that, you obviously is a woman with courage, you left home, you work in a very competitive, stressful industry in advertising and then you went to LA and then you go to UK with a letter, you’re just like, Oh, I want to do that, let me try this out. I mean, you just go and get it, and clearly you were very good at marketing or expressing yourself. And it’s very brave in a way for a young girl to do so many amazing things.
Sze Wing: But at the same time, I think it’s even braver when you come back home, and spend a year to recover and really think what matters to us, because you could have spent your entire life… Many people may spend entire lives still trying to do what people think they should do and expect of them, but to take a pause and look really deeply into what you really want to do, sometimes it’s the hardest thing, because we may not like to discover ourselves, because sometimes the truth is actually quite hard to show the world, when everybody thought you were the glamor girl, but you’re now, no, I actually want to work in psychology. It’s a very different direction.
Sze Wing: And not everyone has the courage to say, “Listen, this is what I want to do now,” and act on it. So many people say they have a dream to pursue, but they keep on finding different reasons not to pursue it. And it takes more courage to stop and change direction than keep flying high. So I felt it was really interesting story, and you can’t control everything, like you pick up the virus, yeah, you were probably doing too much or maybe tired, but then it’s sort of the life unfold in such a way that you have to make a decision, often that’s really life changing in that situation.
Fiona: I think at the very core of all that was the lack of love for myself. So what I think to heal myself, because not many people heal from chronic fatigue. So I did everything and I really got into the whole natural therapies thing, meditation, acupuncture, drinking foods, all kinds of things I was doing. This was back in the early nineties too, so I was very lucky that I was able to heal myself, because I was… But it was interesting while I was healing myself, I was really noticing my mindset, and what I try and do is every day achieve a little bit more, just to boost my confidence.
Fiona: So it might be, today you’re going to go down to the letter box and get a letter, and then you’re going to start doing that every day, and then you’re going to start cooking, and then you’re going to go on a bus to… And just sort of staying up… Just sort of getting out of bed. And so slowly from being completely, it was those little times where I could go, “Right, okay, I am getting better, I am making progress.” And so I’m a bit like that with my clients, I think it’s really good to kind of look back and see how far we’ve come. And I never berated myself, I never… Family around me was a bit hard, like, “Oh, you should be married now, or you should have kids,” because I’m in my, at the time I was in my early thirties when I was sick with chronic fatigue.
Fiona: But, I just thought I’ll run my own race, and I was very fortunate that I did meet somebody, I’ve got a beautiful son who’s 17, and I’ve sort of been able to have all the things that mean something to me.
Sze Wing: I definitely see, as we, not necessarily growing older or more mature, but just when, as we grow, the question of what really matters to us and what success really means, what make us happy becomes such a sentimental question. But sometime it’s so painful to answer because we created an environment, whether it’s work or family, that isn’t even set up for that, because it’s someone else’s dream. So it can be challenging to move from one to another.
Sze Wing: The thing you mentioned about a lot of people don’t heal from chronic fatigue, and I heard that some people say you can heal, but there are a lot of people who can’t. You think it’s related to what you just said about loving yourself, willing to take that step, or willing to re-examine your life, what really matters.
Fiona: I think that that’s exactly what it is, and I think that it was scary, because I realized I was a little narcissistic, and I had some shadow aspects of myself, and the things that I didn’t like about myself. But it was understanding them and integrating them, and a lot of who I am today, naturally from my parents and some of their experiences and moving around, we never really had a base, been such a cancerian, and I do love my home, my home is so important. But growing up my dad was moving us every few years, and so I found that quite unsettling, because I’d have to make new friends again, and then leave them. And so I went to four different primary schools and four different high schools.
Fiona: So funny enough, I vowed when I had my son you will not have that, you’ll stay in the same, unless it’s your choice, because I always ask him, are you happy? Are you happy at the school? I always like to check in that it feels good for him. So, yeah. It’s funny, yeah, it’s funny. Kind of reflecting back and you think, well, there anything I would have changed? And probably not, I think that everything happens, I am very much of the mind that I’m going to try something. So when I sent that letter off to Prouds I didn’t have an expectation or an agenda or Oh my God, if I don’t get this, I’ll have to go home and work for Prouds or something.
Fiona: I just thought, give it a go, I’ve got nothing to lose. I have that even with creating life balance coach, I just could not get a job as a relationship counselor in my area of the Eastern suburbs, always the bridesmaid, never the bride, and I thought, why don’t I start my own business? So then I had to spend a whole year of learning, website, SEO, marketing stuff, I was just immersed, I’d watch so many YouTube clips. So I could just understand this amazing entrepreneurial world that we live in, and then make a choice about how I want to present myself in this world. What are the things that I like to do and what brings me joy, so it was sort of being a bit, definitely an interesting sort of journey.
Fiona: I think that when you have the confidence in yourself that you can do it, because I love it when people said to me, Oh, you won’t get on the first page if you Google for life coach, or Oh you won’t do… There are many people that are so negative, I’m almost like I’ll prove you wrong, I’ll get there, I’ll get six keywords on there. Don’t tell me something I can’t do, because I will then make it my mission to prove to you I can.
Sze Wing: That’s fantastic. And I definitely believe also incremental small decisions changes every day, you go to the letter box, versus being first page on Google search engine. I mean, you first started to be able to get out of bed and go and get a letter, and then eventually you could achieve all this amazing thing. And I think it’s really important, success doesn’t come overnight, and in fact you need to built a foundation of who you are and understand yourself capabilities, your strength, and you talk about shadow and to be honest, if you live more than one day or one inch tall, you will have a shadow. I mean, your personality Default or flaws or social conditioning or past experience, we have shadow aspects, but the point is what are we going to do about it? And then how are we going to sometimes learn from it?
Sze Wing: That’s why your story was fantastic and getting to where you are today, which is running your own business and truly honouring, helping other women. And also you wrote about it. I mean you have a book called Stuck In A Rut, and once again you are proving people wrong, I’m sure that was probably part of it, because I know that it won awards you, you have a lot of media attention. So tell us how did you prove them wrong? What did you do?
Fiona: Oh, that was a funny one too, because when you start this life coach journey, everyone says if you’ve got a book. So I thought about it for a long time and I thought I wanted it to be something that will really inspire and help women and not just something like a calling card, because I understand from the marketing perspective, we have a service industry, so having a product is fantastic and I’ve never been excited about going down the online program journey, besides all the technical stuff you have to learn, which would kill me. I’m just all about human connection, so meetups seemed a logical thing for me. But with the book, I actually really enjoyed the whole process. It started by, I wanted to put together the 12 popular blogs on my website into an ebook and then that morphed into a book.
Fiona: I also wanted to add client case study so people got to have an insight into how I work with a client, and how I combine Gestalt Psychotherapy with life coaching. And I actually was really quite sad when I finished it, because it was such a nice process to get up every morning, walk the dog, start at nine, I used to finish at one and then, because I’m really good in the mornings, but hopeless in the afternoon. So I used to do that and then reread what I had written in the evenings and it was just so, it was a nice rhythm, and I think Stuck In The Rut? Came to me because I got so many email inquiries. Hi Fiona, I’m Stuck In A Rut, I’ve got two kids and I didn’t know what to do and this and that. Or I’m in a job I don’t like or I can’t seem to achieve my weight loss goals, feeling stuck.
Fiona: So this word just kept coming to me, stuck, stuck, stuck, stuck, and then the how to rescue yourself and live your truth, the end part of the book just came to me one day. I was literally walking and I thought I rescued myself, I think I want to really empower women to rescue themselves, because we can only rescue ourselves, whether it’s in a bad job or a bad relationship. It just requires us to mobilize, requires us to be willing to change, and change is difficult, scary, and it’s painful sometimes.
Sze Wing: So I can agree with you more, 100%, because when I work on my book, I also really enjoyed it and I think, yeah, yeah, yeah, marketing. Yeah, yeah, yeah calling card. Nothing wrong with that, but actually if it is really your heart calling, it becomes so much more enjoyable than just trying to punt out 2000, 4,000 words a day. And it took me very little time to actually write a book, because I already got the material, I also like you, enjoy the writing and for those who say I’m too busy, la, la, la. I get up at five and I do an hour and sometimes half an hour, whatever you can .
Sze Wing: If you’ve got something you really want to do and you just have to make use of small chunk of time and believe me they do add up and they will become a book, because some people think, oh, you need the luxury for four hours in a day to sit down, have a cup of tea and write your book. Often, a lot of authors that I know don’t have that, you have 30 minutes here, an hour there, 20 minutes here, but it can really work.
Sze Wing: So for those who are, if you were wondering, yeah go for it because you got me and Fiona, both saying that we really enjoy writing a book, it’s not a painful thing, I really enjoy, and I think a lot of nonfiction author have their own journey and they want to share the message and the lessons and that’s why it’s another therapeutic thing for us to do, but also helping others.
Fiona: … and I had the option of actually speaking my book out. So one of the chapters, I actually did that, because my book had a sort of a template, a what, why and how. So each chapter is the same, and that makes it very easy, so then I’d use headings. So it’s a bit like, when you’ve done academic and you’ve written degree and you’ve written lots of essays, for me it made it easier to write, but I did try a chapter of speaking it out and it just wasn’t as successful. So I think I just enjoyed the whole process sitting in front of the laptop with a cup of tea and writing, other times, then I’d cut and paste. So, I don’t know if this is good to know for other people, but I’d write and then I’d go and have a shower or something would happen I go, Oh, I forgot, I should add that in.
Fiona: So then before you know what I had posted, so little of things, I had my notebook in the shower when I was washing my hair, I’d get some great ideas, or I remember, Oh, that’s right, that client did this, I should incorporate that case study in that chapter. And it was funny, but then I was just so into that world. I’m lucky I didn’t get run over by a car or something because I’d do thinking and thinking and thinking, but positively, not obsessively, but just enjoying the whole like thinking, Oh, I want to add that in, take that out, and so yeah.
Fiona: But I did go through a publishing house in Melbourne, because I didn’t have the confidence in terms of editing my book. And it was nice to hand over my manuscript to someone to read through, and give me a lot of pointers and things. Then recently we edited, I’ve done another edition, and therefore I’ve added bonus chapter on, when you’re stuck in a career rut, which is a bonus chapter called Find Your Dream Career, because after I wrote the book, which was 2014, 15, I do have a lot of clients coming to me in career routes, or transitions in their career. And so I added that chapter in and I took a few little things out. And yeah, it’s kind of good, because when you have your own book, you can play with it.
Sze Wing: And I have to say, I mean, nonfiction works very differently from fiction. And I think with nonfiction, sometimes we have to update it because we have more story or new tools and ideas and we evolved and so, I mean, there’s good and bad things. The good thing is that you make the book even richer and better in many ways, but the downside, sometimes you just have to do something with this product. It’s doesn’t just sit there and that’s it, like a fiction. But I do really enjoy writing and publishing a book. But tell us a little bit more about, getting awards, the media attention and all that kind of stuff. Tell us a little bit tips or lessons or whatever that you can share?
Fiona: Well I think that’s really just a fluke and just, I don’t know, I’ve been on Facebook-
Sze Wing: Or is there?
Fiona: Well, I’ve in Facebook and then someone would have, Oh, I’ve won an award, and I think, Oh, you can win awards for books, I didn’t know that. Oh, wouldn’t that be nice? I mean, I’d see awards. You go to a bookstore and you’d see a nice little silver badge or something. So I did a little bit of research and I found all these, I guess, contests or places which you can submit books. So I was very excited, I was a winner for one and then I was a finalist for two others, Book Burner and International Book Awards. So that was exciting, and I enjoyed doing that. And then I thought, wonder if you do get your books in bookstores? Well then I found out about Woodslane and they’re a distributor, so I contacted them and I sent them copies of my book.
Fiona: So, really it’s again, that whole thing of that letter to Gerald, and go and work in London. I said, “Well, you got nothing to lose, all you’re just going to get is, why not give it a go.” The only thing I probably wish I’d spoken up earlier about was my original book cover, because it had me on the cover, and so it created a bit of mixed messages. I’m really happy with my new cover, which surprisingly I found through a Canva template and it’s the pink of my website is the color of your wall. It’s the beautiful color behind you, I love that pink. And so I rebranded last winter, I made everything pink, and I decided I don’t really want to work with men anymore, I feel I only ever had three men a year, in fact, it was quite funny, but I thought I’m really going to give you all a message, I’m just going to pink it out and really bring some of that divine feminine energy into my work, and so that’s why I sort of decided to re-edition, re-do everything and I think it’s important to refresh, and it felt good, it felt like another spring.
Sze Wing: Yeah, I do think that as we grow we fine tune and change directions, and it’s nice to freshen things up from time to time, and book cover is such an important thing for those of you again who are interested in working on a book, the sentence of people don’t judge a book by the cover is not true, people do. Having a good cover, it’s very important, but also if you are having a series of books, it’s even better to have a theme or aligned design, so people can recognize this is the same author. And if you feel drawn to in every few years that you update your book cover that is more aligned with your current branding, it’s also very clever to do, because it’s again freshening up and boosts sell. So yeah, that’s really good on you, and I have to say that the fact that you often just go cold Turkey, why not? I’m just going to write a letter, I’m going to apply and here you go and you get it.
Sze Wing: I think a lot of us stop in the front door, what if we get rejected? What if they don’t like it? That this “what ifs” becomes “never”.
Fiona: They’re trying to sabotage us.
Sze Wing: Yeah.
Fiona: They do, they become the blocks and the barriers for realizing our own potential. And a common thing I get is, Oh, I’ve got nothing to say, or I’m not good enough, or why would someone buy a book from me? Or why would the so what… And so a lot of people put themselves down, and then they overthink it and start going, well, I’ve got to be like, and they mentioned some superstar or mentioned some mega entrepreneur. I know that mega entrepreneur probably started their first blog with one reader, my first reader was my dad, everyone starts somewhere. It’s that whole building up, and I never went from the point of achieving something, I always come from a space of joy and fun. So if it’s not fun, I will stop doing it.
Sze Wing: That’s so important because that give us the freedom to try things out and not thinking so much about what if I didn’t get it? And if you don’t try, you never know. And I think some people say, well, if I don’t try and never know then I would never prove wrong, rejected, a fail. But so many of us tried even things and didn’t make it, and in 10 years time you look at what you have achieve, not the things that you tried and didn’t make it right. And still, if you look at the numbers, say if I try 10 things, two things succeeded, I say two things succeeded. I think that’s such an important thing and good on you to really show us life example about how that can really change your life or just having more fun as well. I think that is very important.
Fiona: It has to organically grow, I mean, my women’s success circle now has over 300 members, but once upon a time there were 12, and my very first workshop was in a juice bar, and I ran that and I just brought topics, so every month someone would come and there’d be topics and then things started getting a little bit bigger and I thought, Oh, I’ll just go to the Raddison, and so then we’re in the lounge room and having high tea, then from there I sought the events room, so everything just organically grows. I think that’s a nice pace for me to, because I’m not someone that will just take charge, and tomorrow you’ll see me on the project, I build, I like to build up, and I’m building my own confidence, and I feel that, that’s what I gently support my clients to do, is to not go so far and take a leap of faith. It just doesn’t work for me.
Sze Wing: And also for people who are listening, if you only have two people coming to your group or on your online program or whatever, some of this mega success story and now there are hundreds and thousands of people in the members group or whoever, but they start with a couple, and sometimes there are more facilitator than the participant, but you kind of have to kind of keep going and learn from the mistake and fine tune it, and if you get discouraged by not having 50 people show up in your first event and you give up, then chances are, it’s very hard to build something that has a strong foundation.
Sze Wing: So everybody goes through it and don’t see it as a failure and really just discouraged, because like Fiona said, it started small but that’s organically growing, and that’s how everything is like really.
Fiona: Yeah, exactly what you said, and I think it’s that mindset. So when I did have a few people come to the meeting and it was, well that was fine for me, because I wasn’t expecting much more, I wasn’t comparing myself. And I think that’s another thing, we have analysis or kind of, that comparing syndrome where we have to be as good as the next person, run your own race. I always run my own race and it just feels so good to be doing it my way. It’s empowering for myself rather than looking over my shoulder and going, “Oh, how much is that person earning? Or what’s that person doing? Oh my God, I must go and do that too, I must go and buy that product.” Really follow your gut and follow your heart and just really sit back and go, “Is this going to be really good for me?”
Fiona: So there is a bit of visioning, structure and then unstructure, so I do play within this playground, but I also have sort of goals and things that I’m curious about exploring more of. But at the moment I’m quite settled with what I’ve got, funny enough, I’m in that phase of life. Okay, this is really good, I just keep perfecting it and enjoying it, I don’t feel I need to change it or make it bigger, better kind of.
Sze Wing: There’s a season of things, there’s seasons that some people called a creative void where you reflect on your lessons, you rest, you replenish, and then there’s a season of lots of ideas and there are seasons that have lots of going out there and spread your ideas, and then there’s a season of completing all this ideas and learning from this. So I believe everything is cyclical, and I also really want to say, I heard someone say recently about you do you, don’t try to do someone else, because it’s going to make you unhappy and you can never measure. So it’s better to just do you.
Sze Wing: One last thing, Oh, I think one thing is very important to point out as we both been speaking and doing events that, even only two people, five people showed up, do your best in front of those five people, don’t look like, Oh my God, there’s only two of you? People in your audience can feel it, and if you don’t bring your top game and give them the best you can, and show them this, Oh my God, I’m so disappointed, there’s only four of you. It really, it’s bad for you, it’s bad for them, and people can feel. Even though you pretend, I have been sitting in situation where I could see the performer was disappointed by the audience.
Fiona: So was I.
Sze Wing: And it’s really important to know, no matter how many people show up, you show up for yourself, you perfect your work, you give you 100%. And don’t just go, Oh my God, people knows it. And it’s really bad habit, and I think it’s important to mention it, because I don’t want to be sitting in the audience when you showed up and go, “ah.”
Fiona: I think that’s very true, I’m so glad you say that Sze Wing, because I have been to an event and I could just see when it was at the end and he was inviting everyone to take up his program, which was a bit strange, because it was a free event and then you’re trying to
Sze Wing: Oh, the selling thing.
Fiona: Yeah, and sell a two grand program. I felt that was, I would have done maybe a three or 400 and then done the 2000 sort of. But anyway, no one took that up and then you could just see, you could just… And I just went, wow, and then I could just sense that in a critic, something’s going on this and real negative self talk where… And then making that about him.
Sze Wing: But also we feel uncomfortable
Fiona: Oh, I was feeling really sad, I felt so-
Sze Wing: It’s like Oh my God, I think, yeah, definitely. So anyway, I really enjoy our chat today and-
Fiona: Yeah, me too.
Sze Wing: So, for people who heard our conversation, say they want to maybe look at your program, your book, or connect with you one to one. What’s the best way to find you online?
Fiona: Well, my website, lifebalancecoach.com.au, and that’s where you’ll find the book and the women’s success circle, everything’s in that website.
Sze Wing: Great. Thank you so much.
Fiona: Well, thank you Sze Wing, I’ve really enjoyed it, thanks for your time too.
Sze Wing: Thanks.